as a tool for meditation & How and why it works

Did you know that researchers have found that individuals who visualize exercising, without doing any physical movements, build stronger muscles? This is a powerful testament to the degree to which imagining an activity can trigger the same response brain response as actually doing it. There are many examples of how visualization can help individuals overcome various kinds of anxiety.

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Because its well established that spending time in nature can have a beneficial effect

for those with state anxiety, (anxiety tied to the state of one’s life or the world, as opposed to trait anxiety) Australian researchers tested whether a visualization practice would have a similar effect, and they found that it did (Nguyen.) (The practice in question was guided imagery [GI], i.e. giving verbal descriptions to an individual who pictures what is described in the mind’s eye.) By picturing calming scenes mentally, individuals experienced reduced anxiety. But nature is by no means the only anxiety reducing experience.

There are many scenes one might visualise

to invoke calm and confidence, really any image that has no negative connotations for one and does have restful one’s has potential. This is the key to sleep stories, as well. When one is having trouble sleeping, it’s important to shut down stimulating thoughts, and imagining calming scenes can help one to do so.

Visualisations have also shown to help one get past specific anxieties

For example, Ayers and Hopf (1985) found that having students visualize successfully giving speeches helped reduce public speaking anxieties.

There are many forms of visualizations that one can access on EKA app.

Ayres, Joe & Hopf, Theodore S.  (1985.) Visualization: A means of reducing speech anxiety, Communication Education . 34:4. 318-323.

Holmes EA, Mathews A.(2010.) Mental imagery in emotion and emotional disorders. Clin Psychol Rev . 30:3. 349-62.

Nguyen, J., & Brymer, E. (2018.) Nature-Based Guided Imagery as an Intervention for State Anxiety. Frontiers in psychology . 9: 1858.