See It, Believe It, Achieve It
In our book, Release - The Simple Success Solution for Real and Permanent Weight Loss, Deb Cheslow and I invest quite a bit of time discussing different ways to inundate your five senses with your goal.
Our rationale is that the more you can immerse your physical senses in your weight release goal, the stronger the images you will generate when you think about it and the stronger you will feel about it.
Those feelings will drive your body into action in ways that are consistent with achieving the goal you have set for yourself.
The cool part is that when you are immersed in your goal, it is REALLY easy and effortless to do the work – the meal planning, the cooking, the exercising, visualizing, etc.
What is a Vision Board?
What is a vision board (also called a dream board, a goal board, etc.)?
In a nutshell, it is a collage of pictures that represent aspects of the attainment of your goal.
You can clip pictures from magazines, and/or print pictures you find online (Google Images and Pinterest are awesome places to find pictures of just about anything).
Then you can arrange the pictures on a bulletin board, glue them to a piece of poster board, turn them into a screensaver slideshow, tape them to your journal – whatever makes sense so that you will see those pictures over and over again throughout the day.
For example, if your goal is to lose 50 pounds and to run a 10K, you might go online and find a picture of a runner who is in great shape, a picture of a race finish line, a time clock with the time you hope to finish your race in, an awesome running outfit, a torso region with a 6-pack of ab muscles – whatever YOUR image of the ultimate achievement of your weight release goal is in YOUR mind.
It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks – it’s what rings your bell when you see it.
You want to create your vision board with images that get you excited and amped up when you look at them. It’s those feelings that are going to make things happen for you.
There is a caveat to be aware of with vision boards.
You have be very conscious of the pictures you choose to inundate yourself with.
Here is an example to illustrate my point:
I have a client who has been doing amazing things in her professional life, but has been struggling in her personal life, especially with her weight.
I was talking to her about what her stumbling block was (as she is an incredible practitioner of this material) and she said, “I just don’t know. I have pictures all over my kitchen and my office of what I want to look like and reminders to eat healthy. For instance, on my refrigerator I have picture of a cheeseburger, a milkshake and a big, fat butt and then a picture of a salad, a glass of water and a headless photo of a slim woman in a bikini.”
I immediately said “Get rid of the picture of the fat butt.”
She argued that she needed it there to remind her of what would happen if she kept eating out of control.
I asked her which picture had the greater impact on an emotional level – the fat butt or the bikini picture.
She admitted that the fat butt picture literally made her cringe every time she saw it.
I then explained how the emotional response to the fat picture would keep her gaining weight forever because her subconscious mind was processing “fat butt, fat butt, fat butt” every time she set foot inside her kitchen.
I could see the “a-ha” moment in her eyes as she realized that she was sabotaging herself with the images she was inundating her subconscious mind with.
This week, take some time and start creating your own vision board for your weight and fitness goals.
Find images of bodies that look like yours will look when you release all the excess weight.
You can even crop the head off the body so you can really imagine that it is yours – or better yet “photoshop” your head onto the body.
We have a big vision board in our office and then we have screen savers on our computer that run slideshows of images that are particular to each of us.
We get re-energized each time we look at the pictures and it makes circumstances that might otherwise tempt us to slack off on food, water or exercise so much easier to overcome.
Vision boards are awesome tools to help keep your head in the game when you might otherwise just slip back into old patterns of behavior.
I don't know about you, but looking at a picture of what I want and knowing if I just keep making great choices I WILL get there keeps me energized and motivated.
Of course there are times when I want a donut or a piece of chocolate and it's not my Free Day (stay tuned for that one), but my vision board makes it easier to keep my eye on what I ultimately want.