- Mental Health
Guided Imagery Education
Reach for the Sky
Discovering New Things Through Guided Imagery
There are many things to learn about ourselves and our environment through this exercise called guided imagery. I call it an exercise because the first time you attempt it, you might not have the ability to focus on the journey. It's the lack of focus that tends to keep people from gaining many of the many benefits guided imagery offers.
The same thing is true about guided meditation. To gain the full benefits of any exercise, it takes practice, perseverance and consistency. This is a form of guided meditation, and you can discover a lot about yourself on your journey with the proper tools.
Nevertheless, this type of exercise is for gaining a relaxed feeling for a healing process or just plain old stress relief. Stress relief is part of the healing process for lowering blood pressure and hypertension. You can learn how to build self confidence and self esteem in addition to eliminating stress. If you read, as we all do from time to time, that can be considered a form of guided imagery too. That's because of the story that develops in your mind. Your mind defines its own description of the surroundings and the characters' feelings, which you, the reader, may identify with, given your imagination and the situations developing in the story.
Guided Imagery and Your Imagination
Visualize this: You find yourself standing on a beach. You're wearing shorts and a short sleeve shirt and you have sandals on your feet. You feel the warm air blowing against your skin and the warmth of the sun on your face. You can see seagulls flying in the blue sky above you and walking around on the beach right where the waves break on the shore. You hear them screech as they maneuver around each other foraging for food. You look up and down the shore line and find that you're all alone.
You stand there momentarily and take all of this in. There's a blanket on the ground. So, you sit down. Looking out over the water, you inhale, this time focusing on the scent of the salt in the air. You close your eyes and listen to the wind and the seagulls in the distance. Then, you exhale, relaxing even further. You hear the waves crashing on the shore. And, as they roll back into the water, you relax further and further, as you focus on breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth, relaxing more with every breath.
The Visualization Experience
What did you see and hear? Did you sense the heat from the sun? What color shirt and shorts were you wearing? I left those descriptions up to you. Can you describe what you just felt there? If you understood what just happened, then most assuredly, you're ready for a higher level of guided imagery.