Do you remember when you were a child? Your imagination was so powerful and vivid and fertile, that you could truly see yourself as being anyone and doing anything you could imagine. That wonderful imagination tends to fall dormant in adulthood. With therapeutic imagery, we use the power of the mind by stimulating that imagination and allowing ourselves to once again “see” ourselves doing, being, and thinking in ways that we want to be. And when we can truly “see” how beautiful and strong we are inside, these attributes naturally begin to manifest in our outer lives.
Imagery is the language of the subconscious mind and the interface between the mind and the body. Therapeutic imagery can help us understand what our bodies are telling us about our emotional and physical condition. This allows us to get a deeper understanding of what changes we may want to effect to become healthier and happier.
Recent studies have shown that using imagery therapeutically actually has the ability to help build new neural pathways. By re-creating situations in our imagination and, there, watching ourselves react in positive and healthy ways to situations and people, we can change the pathways that habitually trigger negative thinking, unhealthy habits, and emotional reactions. The subconscious mind does not know the difference between reality and “make-believe”. So by practicing being who we want to be, we create new habits of thinking and behavior, and so we can achieve real change.
Therapeutic imagery is now commonly used for pain control in many hospitals and other health facilities, and as a tool for managing many physiological conditions. Medical research has shown that imagery actually has a powerful influence on the control systems of the body, influencing heart rate, blood pressure, our ability to heal quickly - and even our own ability to boost our immune system.
Imagery is extensively used among sports professionals for maximizing sports performance. Using the mind-body connection to tap into their own personal power, many people are able to enormously improve their skills and their confidence level.
Imagery can also be used for self-discovery. Inner "journeys" are wonderful ways to uncover our innate gifts, strengths, and resources. Allowing the self to inquire deeply within and invite images to come up, we can better understand our own true motivations, priorities, and passions, find new and fresh inspiration, and release ourselves from our subconscious limitations.
"Imagery is a flow of thoughts you can see, hear, feel, smell, or taste. An image is an inner representation of your experience or your fantasies - a way your mind codes, stores, and expresses information. Imagery is the currency of dreams and daydreams; memories and reminiscence; plans, projections, and possibilities. It is the language of the arts, the emotions, and most important, of the deeper self.