What is Guided Visualization?
A guided visualization begins with a calm, soothing voice giving you directions on how to calm the mind and relax the body. The guide may ask you to focus on individual body parts, gradually relaxing the muscles in your feet, legs, hips, and so forth. Sometimes I have my clients focus on their breath, paying careful attention to each inhale and exhale. To help engage the senses and heighten the experience I use soft music, incense and candlelight. It is also important that the individual feels safe, so I make sure we have an appropriate amount of privacy.
After the mood has been set and the person is fully relaxed I ask them to activate their imagination. I may have them visualize a peaceful scene in nature or a healing white light or see themselves accomplishing a goal, to name a few possibilities. I also like to use positive affirmations to promote self-love, forgiveness and confidence. Silently repeating these affirmations helps to reinforce those good feelings.
If you have never tried a guided visualization it might seem mysterious or even silly, but in my experience it is a powerful way to promote personal healing and inner peace.
How is Guided Visualization Helpful?
Most of us lead extremely busy lives. We have grown used to feeling stressed out, tense and pressured, however this is not the natural state of the body and mind. Wellness is our natural state and nature seeks equilibrium. In essence, a majority of us spend most of our lives in an unnatural state of anxiety, brought about by the expectations placed on us by our jobs, families, friends, churches, and other social obligations. We need to balance all that whirlwind activity with some time to relax. Guided visualization is an effective way to refresh and unwind.
There are a variety of health benefits to guided visualization. These benefits include lowering blood pressure as well as the level of stress hormones the blood. If you get sick often, it can help improve your immune system by reducing the stress hormones that can lead to illness. After guided visualization you may feel full of energy, exceedingly relaxed and able to face the challenges that await you with a renewed sense of strength, purpose and patience.
Guided visualization is also a wonderful tool for solving problems and achieving goals. If you have been trying to quit smoking, earn a raise or paint a masterpiece a guided visualization session may help you realize your full potential. It can enhance your creativity so that you can look at your problem from a new angle. It can also improve your self-confidence, helping you approach your situation free of fear and allowing others to see you in a more positive light as well.
Finally, guided visualization is a wonderful tool for those in search of a deeper level of self awareness. It is like taking a journey through your unconscious mind, or experiencing a lucid dream. The symbolism and experiences you can manifest in a guided visualization may not be “real” in a physical sense, but they create a very vivid experience that can allow you to explore aspects of yourself that you may keep hidden in your daily life, or simply don’t have time to explore on a regular basis.
How Can Reiki Enhance Guided Visualization?
Reiki is an ancient Japanese form of hands on healing. I use it during guided visualization sessions because it is extremely effective for balancing the body’s energy system. Reiki is a wonderful way to unwind and allow yourself to heal past and present emotional, physical, and mental wounds. It helps eliminate unhealthy patterns and remove the negative energy stored in the body.
A session using both guided visualization and Reiki incorporates the balancing effects of Reiki with the healing potential of personal imagery. Imagery is based on using your imagination to bring about positive changes in your life, while Reiki is based on removing energy blockages from the body. The combination of these practices allows you to engage your mind and body in the healing process in a unique and creative way. It is an emotional and intuitive journey that can leave you feeling both refreshed and hopeful about how you experience life.
How Can a Tarot Reading Enhance Guided Visualization?
Including a Tarot reading in a guided visualization session is beneficial because the cards introduce imagery that can bring about the most direct route to solving a problem. Tarot can help you get in touch with your inner self. The images on the cards represent archetypes, which are fundamental elements of what it means to be human. The archetypes in the cards include, but are not limited to, our need to satiate our desires, our hopes and fears, and the roles we play in society (e.g. the father, the mother, the fool, etc…). Reflecting on a Tarot card before, during and after a guided visualization can bring about a more in depth and colorful experience.
For example, The Sun, is a great card for helping you get in touch with your own inner child. I have led a guided visualization using this card that helped a client rid rid herself of past regrets and pain. She refers to it as one of the most healing experiences of her life. This card also has the potential to unearth the playfulness and innocence we are all born with, but lose as we become adults.
Each Tarot card carries particular archetypal energies with unbounded healing potential. I try to use them as often as I can to inspire the most healing and effective guided visualization experiences.
How Can I Try Guided Visualization?
I recommend visiting a professional for an in-person healing session. I have visited a Shaman, multiple Reiki practitioners and Tarot readers who have helped me grow spiritually and heal emotional and mental traumas in my own life. I now provide these services for others through The Joyful Lotus Healing Services, a business I started in 2013 with my best friend. Follow this link for a full list of our services. Although I am a practitioner, I still seek the assistance of other professionals for treatment because I am firm believer in the effectiveness of having an experience guide assist me in the personal healing process.
If you cannot afford to see someone, or want to try this on your own before you invest in a session, I recommend finding a guided meditation on YouTube. There is a LOT out there, some are good, some are bad, so please try a few before you make a final judgment. The same goes for going to a practitioner, no two people are alike, so be willing to try a few different approaches before you give up completely! If you want a friendly beginner’s meditation try something by Deepak Chopra. I like this healing meditation because it is simple, and the perfect length of time to relax in the middle of a busy day.
If you have questions please feel free to ask in the comments below. I hope you have found this helpful and informative! Happy healing.