Children love to daydream, it is a pleasurable pastime and so long as it does not dominate their lives it is a healthy and important aspect of them. Sadly as we grow, we are taught to believe that daydreaming is a waste of time, that there are more important things to be done and that there is no place in adulthood for daydreaming. When we accept these attitudes we are relinquishing part of our creative process, we are closing down a very important aspect of our being: our imagination.
What is Creative Visualisation?Visualisation is mindful daydreaming. It draws upon all resources for your experiences past and present, from your imagination and your innermost feelings.
Why visualise? Taking the time to sit or lie quietly and let your imagination colour visualisation not only exercises the creative processes, it relaxes and re-energizes the whole body. Imagine that you could spend between 20 minutes and an hour on a sun drenched beach every day soaking up the sun, or that you had a beautiful garden of flowers that blooms all year round to relax in. Creative visualisation can help reduce stress levels, lower blood pressure, speed healing, alleviate depression, and reduce perception of pain and lower fatigue, to name just a few benefits. It can also give you peace of mind.
How to StartStart simply. Begin by sitting or lying in a quiet, comfortable place and closing your eyes. Slow your breathing, and begin to paint, in your mind, a picture of something you are familiar with, something that makes you smile; your favourite person, flower or animal. If you are finding this difficult take a photograph or a picture from a magazine and spend some time each day looking at it, then close your eyes and build the picture in your mind. Practice this for a few days. Once you are able to visualize the image clearly and hold on to it flesh it out, add to and change the colours, you can even imagine sounds or music to go along with it. As the images become increasingly life-like you can begin to picture settings, other people and objects, movement and sounds.
Here's an example of a relaxing, healing scene to build up to:
- Imagine yourself in a tranquil place of relaxation. You hear the whisper of leaves in the trees, water bubbling playfully.
- You turn to look for the water, and see a small waterfall spouting form a rock. The water gurgles into a wide clear pool, warmed by the bright sun.
- You notice a float by the edge of the pool. You slip into the water, holding the float. Straight away you feel the warmth from the water soaking into your body, loosening the tensions.
- You lie across the float and allow yourself to drift across the pool. You are relaxed and safe here.
- You begin to feel light and calm and you realize that this water has healing powers. As it laps against your skin, it is washing away all tension. Pain and discomfort slip away like distant memories, until you can feel the healing energy flowing throughout your body.
- You float on, enjoying the warmth until you feel completely energized and ready to leave the pool. You may choose to drift into sleep, or to wake feeling renewed and refreshed.
- Count to eight to ease yourself slowly out of the visualization then open your eyes.