Our imagination can be a very powerful tool in changing our lives.
Often our greatest limitations in life aren’t in the things we can’t do, but in the things we’ve never considered doing.
By using our imagination, we can think of new possibilities and new ways of living life that we haven’t applied yet to the real world.
For example, what would it be like if you were a confident person?
This is a great question to ask yourself if you struggle with confidence and want to build self-esteem.
It helps you define what “confidence” really means to you. And it also gets your imagination working to help you think and feel as if you were already a confident person.
If you had confidence:
- How might you think differently than you do now?
- How might you act differently than you do now?
- How might you feel differently than you do now?
Try closing your eyes, just for a second, and begin imagining yourself as a confident version of yourself.
Answer the questions above as you do this. And see in your mind’s eye what this new self would actually be like.
This is just a start in getting your mind to think in more confident ways, even if it doesn’t automatically translate into your actions.
Now take it one step further by imagining this confident self in a particular situation.
Identify a specific area in your life where you want more confidence – at home, at work, at a bar, or wherever. Then imagine how this confident self would think, feel, and act in this context.
What would you do differently if you saw a girl or guy you wanted to talk to? What would you differently if you were giving a presentation at work? What would you do differently if you were pursuing a personal goal?
Imagining these scenarios can be a great form of mental rehearsal. It prepares our brains to think and act differently when we actually find ourselves in these situations in the real world.
You can strengthen this mental rehearsal by trying to evoke as many senses as possible in your imagination: sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell.
This can take practice. The idea is that the more accurately you can imagine the situation, the better it will translate into your everyday life.
The point of this whole exercise is to turn your imagination into action. It’s not magic. It’s a way of training your mind to respond and act in new ways.
Check out The Science of Self Improvement to learn how to improve yourself and your relationships with others.