A couple of years ago I fell ill — very, very ill. It was a devastating period in my life and I am still picking up the pieces. At my worst, I needed something to lift my spirits. I wasn’t sure if I was ever going to feel better, which was a devastating thought. I needed to come up with something that would help me push through the whole troublesome ordeal. I needed to find the silver lining.
I came up with two ideas: The first was to help people like me with the same disease who weren’t fortunate enough to be able to try all the treatments I could. The second was to learn as much as possible during this difficult period. In such extreme conditions, I figured plenty of lessons could be learned. Boy, was I right.
The most valuable tool I learned was the power of envisioning. The first time someone suggested that I look into it, my reaction was, “I am fighting for my life and you think I should do some new-age crap? I don’t have time to sit outside in a field of flowers and to absorb life as it comes to me.” But at one point, I was so low on my spirits that I decided to give it a go.
That hour changed my life. I walked out of a room an hour later feeling a million pounds lighter. I was still very sick, but I was so excited to get better and the life I would eventually have.
Now that I am doing better I still use the power of envisioning. It’s easy, fast, effective and free.
So often in life, to-do lists bog us down. Whenever we want to make a change in our lives, whether it’s in our careers, lifestyles, diets or love lives, we get stuck in doubts and the things we need to do to make changes. And then, the burden gets so heavy that we often drop the whole thing. When figuring out if our relationships work for us, long mental lists of “plusses” and “minuses” pop up, along lists of “buts” and “ifs.”
It’s impossible to figure out. When we try new diets, we do so out of frustration and think about all the things we can’t have anymore. We get frustrated, focus on all the negativity and decide to drop the whole thing completely.
But when you try to envision how you want your life to be, you only see the positive. Your mind is free to fantasize about anything you want. All you need to do is ask yourself one question: How do I want my life to be? Don’t think about the stuff that’s happening right now in your life — just imagine yourself happy.
How does that look? Do you look healthy? Vibrant? Laughing? What are you doing? Just envision yourself happy. Just sit on the couch, and instead of looking at the TV, watch the movie in your head. The movie in which you are the star and you are happy. When you open your eyes, it’ll be like you created a happy memory.
The truth is, you don’t need any to-do lists. When you have seen yourself that happy, you know what to do. You know what you want and how to get there. It’s not rocket science. If you can see yourself happy and healthy, you don’t need to think about what you can’t eat anymore; you just automatically make better choices.
Because you are not making these choices out of frustration or out of guilt, you are making them because you want to be the person you know you can be. Instead of denying yourself something because you hate yourself, give yourself things because you love yourself.
The same goes for that relationship about which you’re not quite sure. If you see your happy self in your head, you’ll be able to tell whether or not the person in question is compatible. If you are with someone who does not make you completely happy, that person has no place in your happy movie.
If you can envision yourself happy, the vision is attainable; there is always a way. You just have to see it to believe it.