Imagery scripts should be unique to an individual. There are many examples you can use and start with. But, you must make it “yours” in order for it to be as effective as possible. Here are some tips to make them most effective for you.
- Generally, use “I” in your script to make it more personal. Though some people will find it more effective to use second person “you” language.
- If you prefer to be “led” through the process; then script it with direct instructions (“Close your eyes”, “Imagine your legs like pistons”).
- Active or passive voice work (“Relax your arms”, “I’m focused on the ground in front of me”, “I’m relaxing my arms”).
- Use words & phrases that you normally use. The vocabulary has to seem natural to you.
- Use key affirmations – those positive reinforcing statements – that resonate with you (“I feel strong”, “Nobody, but nobody beats me in the last mile”).
- Emphasize elements that have power with you. If it stirs emotion, creates a vivid image, gives you goosebumps – then you are on the right track!
- In your mind use a voice – tone & emphasis – that makes it real for you.
- If you don’t like hearing your own voice, have someone else record it for you.
You can record a script, actively read through a script or in your mind recite the script. It doesn’t have to be exact word-for-word but the power comes in the images, feelings, senses that are stimulated.
With those things in mind start with relaxing and clearing your mind. Allow noises to drift into the background. Hear them and just let them go. Begin to focus your attention on the hear and now. Nothing else is important at this moment.
Here is one sample script focused on preparation for a run and getting mentally into a workout.
I am taking a deep breath, inhaling all the air I can… exhaling slowly. All the tension in my body-is leaving me. I am’ feeling relaxed. I am relaxing. I am letting go of my worries and concerns, my mind is clearing. My mind is free of clutter. I am letting go of the day. I am letting go of worries and concerns. I’m letting go of the events of the day. I am thinking clearly. My body is relaxed, ready to perform. I am focusing on my body. I am taking a deep breath… exhaling slowly. I am poised for action. I am focusing on my body sensations. I am comfortable. I am prepared, fit, healthy,-well trained, strong, confident. I am confident I can meet the challenge of this run. I am taking a deep breath, inhaling all the air I can… exhaling slowly.
I can see myself running… my posture is erect, arms swinging back and forth crossing in front just about to midline. My shoulders are relax and my head is looking straight ahead. My eyes are focus 10 yards in front of me. I see the ground in front of me moving past steadily. My arms and legs are in perfect synchronization, moving effortlessly. My legs move back and forth like a pendulums. My feet glide over the ground, touching the surface only briefly, lightly, as if springs are in my legs. The heel of my foot strikes the ground first just for a second my foot roles forward, up to the toes as I push off from the forefoot, as my other leg lifts high and thrusts powerfully forward, powerfully striding forward, effortlessly, moving like a gazelle over the ground. I feel light. I have boundless energy and enthusiasm. I am moving effortlessly over the ground, I feel light, my feet are gliding over the surface, lightly touching, only for a second, moving forward gracefully, mechanically, powerfully, controlled, with spring in my stride …moving over the ground like a gazelle. Light. My legs move in perfect synchrony… automatic… and effortless.
I can feel my body moving smoothly. My body temperature is comfortably warm. There is a light flow of perspiration over my body. Perspiration drips from my forehead down my face perspiration drips down my neck, down my chest, down my back I feel a cool breeze, it cools my body; my singlet is wet, I feel the breeze blowing through my singlet, there is a cool sensation on my skin. My shorts are damp from perspiration the perspiration continues to drip down my legs, the light breeze blows across my skin, cooling my body. I am comfortably warm. I feel the moisture of my perspiration and cooling sensation of the wind.
Time is drifting by without notice, time is of no concern. I feel free of barriers. I feel confident. I feel free. I am strong. I am ready to do my workout.
I take a deep breath. Open my eyes. I rise; move deliberately and confidently into my workout.
I am prepared mentally and physically to succeed. I am relaxed. There is no pressure. I am focused on my workout. Nothing stands in my way. I will take three more slow deep breaths and go forth.
I’ll post the same script next but in a directive approach instead of first person. Visualization/mental rehearsal is one critical element to successful racing. If you would like to have a script developed for a unique circumstance or race situation, drop me a line. In the future, I hope to develop podcasts with various imagery scenarios.