TIPS FOR EXECUTIVES: IMAGINATION AS A MENTAL PROCESS
Updated: Aug 17, 2021
By: Luis Pinate
Imagination is the ability of our brain to create scenarios and situations based on previously stored information.
To imagine is to create, it is to put our mind to work in achieving a goal. It is taking experiences, objects and sensations already known and organizing them differently to obtain the desired result. This has allowed us to create technological wonders, medicines, art, books, architectural designs, etc.
Imagination is a conscious process and therefore is out of the programs and beliefs controlled by the subconscious. When you imagine you create a neural network of an experience that has not yet happened.
How do we pass what we imagine or visualize to the subconscious that controls 95% of our system, so that it works on autopilot for our benefit?
Imagination happens in the frontal cortex of the brain, a study conducted by the University of Dartmouth has discovered the areas of the brain responsible for the imagination and concludes that it is not a simple brain process. There are 11 areas involved in the imagining process. More than a zone, it is a whole complicated neural network or an association of neurons.
If you want to make this work, this is the key.
For the imagination to work correctly, it must be as detailed and specific as possible. Example:
If you have to give an important presentation to a client, a board of directors or a team, then the exercise is to imagine in detail all the aspects of that presentation. From the participants and how they are dressed to possible questions, comments, your confidence with which you respond, the success or positive outcome, the way they enjoyed and interacted with you, the clarity of your message. Etc.
The more detailed the better. The subconscious does not know if what you are seeing is real or not, but it is going to register it as an event where the emotions and the result was positive. Your subconscious will try to repeat it in order to provide that feeling again. This experience will cause the brain to secrete serotonin, also called the happiness hormone, the presence of this hormone in the neural circuits generates feelings of well-being, relaxation, satisfaction, and increases concentration and self-esteem.
The function of the mind will be to use all possible and existing resources to make this happen.
Another way to guarantee the achievement of what you imagine is to make it a habit, by making it a habit it will be in control of the subconscious and there it will run automatically.
Take imagination as a habit. A good exercise to use every morning is to imagine the outcome of the most important things you want to achieve that day, this way you will use all your resources to predict the expected result.
Imagination is a very useful tool that is rarely used by executives in their daily rush, and is a constant in successful and high-performance professionals, but also in athletes who have managed to improve their performance using imagination to anticipate the desired results.
Some sports coaches call it "rehearsal or mental practice"
Through this rehearsal, basketball players will mentally prepare their free throw before executing it, and weightlifters visualize a successful lift before their attempt. A soccer player can also use images before the game starts to help him focus and prepare his body for what is required during the game.
It is the method used by the 23-time gold medalist Michael Phelps, Katie Ledecky, Andre Agassi, Phil Mickelson and many others.
My suggestion to executives is always: Don’t let not knowing how to do it, limit or hinder your imagination. Imagination is the first step in using memories, ideas, and perceptions that are synchronized to close the gaps and make you achieve your goals.
Imagination power creativity, some people can’t identify exactly how to achieve something because they live in the fog and can only see 10 feet ahead. Imagination will help you move the 10 feet to clear out the next 10.
Take a few minutes to create the habit of imagination and prepare for extraordinary results.
If you are interested in participating in our next free Executive Imagination and Clarity Session, please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org to add yourself to the list and we will send you the details.