The Science of Visualisation
Visualisation is science backed.
Have you ever purchased a new (to you) car, and suddenly it seems that every second car on the road is the same as yours? You would swear that they hadn’t been there before.
That’s the power of the Reticular Activating System.
The Reticular Activating System (RAS) is a bundle of nerves at the bottom of the brain stem that determines the priority of information that is allowed into your conscious mind.
You see we are being bombarded by way more sensory based information than we can handle at any one time. Much of this information is filtered out of our awareness.
Until… something brings it into our consciousness.
- Like buying a new car.
- Or, you might learn a new word or phrase, and suddenly you seem to be hearing it everywhere.
- Or you might be introduced to a new music artist or actor, and suddenly it seems that they are everywhere.
Your RAS has changed the priority on the information involving these new conscious thoughts, and so you seem to be seeing more and more instances of them.
The truth is that they were likely there all along and only now you are noticing them.
We utilise the power of RAS in visualisation
Imagine a rich, chocolate cake on your kitchen worktop. It is glinting in the sun so you know that it is moist and delicious and it has a creamy frosting on top. You reach over and cut a slice, the knife gliding through the cake, with a little push back from the sponge texture. As you release the knife, the rich chocolatey smell reaches your nostrils.
- What do you notice is happening in your mouth?
- Are you salivating? Is the cake so rich that you are feeling a little nauseated?
- But where is the cake that is causing you to feel these real feelings?
Your brain cannot tell the difference between what’s real and what’s not.
By purely visualising the cake on the kitchen worktop, you had a physical response to it.
This is what makes visualisation so powerful. We can give our minds an experience of something that we desire, which helps the RAS to prioritise the opportunities that we need to help us achieve our goal.
Your brain cannot tell the difference between what is real and what is not
You may have heard the phrase, “be careful what you wish for”.
We can understand this through what we have learned so far. Whilst it is true that the RAS will filter information according to what you are focused on, it is important to ensure that you are focused on what you want more of in your life.
What you focus on E X P A N D S… and if you are focusing on what you want to avoid, rather than what you want to attract, then you will not get the result you are hoping for.
I remember back when I was learning to ride a motorcycle. My instructor would tell me, “Eyes up, look where you want to go. Eyes up, look where you want to go.”
Her reasoning was sound. The bike would naturally go the way I was looking. But if I saw a pothole up ahead and began to fixate on that, what do you think would happen?
I would crash into the pothole, because that’s where I was looking.
It’s the same with visualisation.
Watch the video below for more tips to make your visualisations the most effective and powerful they can be.
Visualisation is a powerful,
tool in my coaching practice and now you know why.
Lorraine Hamilton is an award-winning coach.
She is also a former engineer, voracious tea drinker and wannabe race car driver.
She is the founder of the Feminine Success Accelerator® and has spent the past 17 years coaching ambitious high-achieving women, writing books and mentoring hundreds of other coaches to greater freedom and success.