Guided Imagery Meditation: What it is and why you should try it
Nov 19, 2018
In this post you will learn about a type of meditation called Guided Imagery, and the Top 5 benefits of trying it. There are various Guided Imagery "scripts" that take you on a mental, guided journey. There are scripts to help people fall asleep, to visualize success, to reduce anxiety and more. Watch the video or click here to listen to our newest guided imagery. In this particular one, you will go on a journey to a peaceful place in your mind. This is a place you can always return when feeling stressed, upset or overwhelmed. This is a fairly short Guided Imagery. Some are longer. Several of our other Guided Imagery Meditations are available at https://www.psychsavvy.com/p/freebies
Top 5 Benefits of Guided Imagery Meditation
Meditation has received a lot of attention lately, even though it’s a centuries old practice. You may be familiar with it as a way to calm the mind by focusing on a word, phrase, or sentence that is repeated, or by trying to clear the mind altogether.
Guided imagery meditation is a specific form of meditation that takes the listener on a journey that can be visualized in the mind.
Guided imagery meditation is a well-recognized practice by athletes who mentally visualize succeeding in their sport (landing a triple axel, completing a touchdown pass, etc.), but it has many other applications as well. Whether preparing for a big presentation, gearing up to ask for a raise, or taking a few minutes to yourself to escape a hectic day, guided imagery’s benefits can extend to any specific goal you may have.
And, physiologically, our bodies respond the same whether we are experiencing something or imagining such an experience, which means that by practicing guided imagery, we are not only reaping mental benefits but also physical ones.
Here are the TOP 5 benefits of guided imagery meditation:
- Relaxation: There is an intrinsic connection between the mind and the body, so visualize a peaceful place while slowing your breathing, and your body responds. Mentally, this means reduced stress and uplifted mood; physiologically this means slowed heart rate, lowered blood pressure and improved balance of your body’s hormones. (Click the link at the end to experience our newest guided imagery where you will go to a peaceful place in your mind to reduce stress and promote relaxation).
- Anxiety Reduction: While feeling anxious from time to time is a normal part of life, it can often take over our minds, causing more severe problems like substance use, trouble sleeping, phobias and panic attacks. Guided imagery meditation gives us the opportunity to slow down racing thoughts, gain control of our breathing and heart rate, and calm our minds about what worries us.
- Focusing the Mind: We are bombarded by tons of information each day. Luckily our minds tend to differentiate the important information from the unimportant. While this is tremendously necessary, the downside is that we may struggle to be present in the moment with so much going on around us. Guided imagery meditation can help us focus on what we want to bring back to the forefront. The sheer act of preparing for a guided imagery meditation forces one to consider what is worth focusing on, which may be different from what you have spent the rest of the day thinking about. Within the meditation exercise, focusing the mind on this place or activity allows our minds a break from mental chatter and gives us a chance to re-center ourselves and realign our priorities.
- Increasing Success Rates: Practicing guided imagery meditation gives you an opportunity to do a dry-run of what you will be doing in the future. In addition to reducing anxiety, this exercise can help you foresee pitfalls and prepare for them, before the real thing takes place. For example, if you are studying for a difficult exam, practice guided imagery meditation. Be very thorough with your visualization: imagine the time you will arrive, how long you will spend on each section, topics covered by the test, etc. This process allows you to uncover things that may be standing in your way of achieving success, such as remembering a certain topic you overlooked. Taking the time to slow down and really think things through makes success rates go up. Athletes use this type of visualization to promote winning the game, catching the pass, making the shot, etc.
- Getting Happy: The four preceding benefits all contribute to the ultimate goal of living your best life. Feeling relaxed, less stressed, focused, and achieving goals, are all contributors overall happiness!
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