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01 July, 2020

Visions of Things That can Be.

Visualisation - Vision

One way of working to establish a clear vision for yourself or your organisation is to visualise the future.  This can help crystalise the thought process and develop a well formed outcome that can become the Vision for you for the next week, next year or even the rest of your life. A similar process is used by Native Americans called a vision quest which involves cutting yourself off from others for a while, travelling to a peaceful location and letting nature guide you to find an answer.  This may be a too time consuming for many but visualising the future can be much quicker it is just a question of how to ensure the visualisation is purposeful and not merely a day dream.

Visualisation - Blue Trees

Many people say they have trouble with visualising things so here are a few tips.

  • ·         Don’t think of a blue tree.  Try your absolute hardest not to picture a blue tree.  It is difficult not to picture a blue tree – right?
  • ·         Make sure you are the star of your visualisation.
  • ·         Make your visualisation into a movie, with technicolour and sound track.
  • ·         Experiment with the picture, see what it looks like when you make it black and white or mute the volume.
  • ·         Look around in your virtual world and see what else is there, are you in a familiar place or somewhere new?

Once you have got your visualisation you can then use it.  The GAP method mentioned in my last post lets you experiment with different situations and practice your reaction to them. The best thing to do according to the research is to visualise challenges and develop how you respond to them.  Now come out of the visualisation and write down your learnings so that you can turn them into actions.

Still having issues visualising? There are plenty of guided meditations on the internet and one I use is called Future Self – The Beach by Diane Lindsey.  She has plenty of others on various platforms but here is a link to this guided meditation on Insight Timer

Visualisation How much detail should I include?

The answer is as much as possible.  Wayne Rooney, the international footballer and currently captain of Derby County has been using visualisation since before he became a professional player.  This article from 2012 explains more 

And perhaps his success in the game has helped to make the idea of visualisation common practice.  It is of course no substitute for physical training in sport but your brain can’t tell the difference between your visualisation and the real situation so you are doubly prepared for the situation you are visualising.

Visualisation Golf Vietnam

A story that I have often heard and presumed to be an urban legend was of a Prisoner of War using visualisation to play his favourite course and returning at the end of the war to break the course record.  A bit of research proved that although the version I had heard was embellished.  Colonel Hall did use visualisation to keep his skills and sanity whilst imprisoned for eight years in Vietnam.  He recalls that as he had no golf club he had to concentrate on his hands.  Six weeks after his release as a POW he played in a Pro-Am tournament.  Here is a link to an interview that he gave about his experiences.

Visualisation 90% mental

Golf is 90% mental as are a lot of other sports and life in general.  As Commanding Officer of the Army’s Leadership School I always felt obliged to play in the annual golf tournament, despite being absolutely dreadful at the game.  One year I was paired with Jed Sparrow who if it was possible was slightly worse than me.  I always use to say that I can’t play golf but I can get you to play golf better so I tried it out on Jed.  Rather than the multiple instructions about positioning arms, legs, feet, head wrists and all the other instructions I used to get from a professional I got him to concentrate only on his hands.  I used a scaling technique (more in a future post) and much to his surprise and in truth a bit to mine he hit an absolutely wonderful shot that landed on the green!  Unfortunately we ran out of golf course before we could sort out his putting.


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