This post was written by Paige, runner up in our Girlville Youth Blogger Contest 14-17 year old category. Congratulations, Paige!
The great Walt Disney once said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.” Did you know that this famous inspirational quote has actually been scientifically proven to be true?
Any given teenage girl has had goals she wanted to achieve, of any size. But often times, pursuing your dreams comes along with many stressful situations. In this article I’ll teach you how to use visualization as a tool to help you succeed when you are nervous.
How to Visualize
Visualization is basically imagining success. When it’s time to go for it, you’ll be more confident and motivated if you’ve visualized success. Here’s how I would visualize if I were nervous for an exam:
- Sit or lie down in a comfortable, quiet place and close your eyes.
- Begin to visualize. I walk into the testing room, and sit down in a desk. I’m tense, and I want to open the test booklet and get it over with. I sharpen my pencil and begin the test, as the teacher starts the timer. I flip through the questions, looking them over. It looks like this is going to be easier than I thought it would be! I remember everything I studied and confidently finish the exam. Usually when I visualize, I imagine myself becoming less nervous and more confident as I execute my task. Begin your visualization with how you are currently feeling, and end it with how you hope to feel after you complete your task.
- Ideally, I would have visualized with much more detail. The more realistic you can make it, the more mentally prepared you’ll be for the real situation. Use your five senses and try to create vivid emotions and thoughts.
- Write your exam! You’ll probably feel less nervous about your test and be able to completely focus on your test, not on the butterflies in your stomach. As long as you’ve studied the material, you’ll be practically guaranteed to do well
- Practice makes perfect! The more you visualize, the better you’ll be at it. After a bit of practice, feel free to adjust your visualization routine to something that works better for you.
Why visualization is so important
I’m a competitive climber, and I’ve used visualization for years to help me cope with nerves and perform under great amounts of pressure at national competitions. I’m pretty convinced it has enhanced my performance hundreds of times, but I’m not the only one who uses visualization. From Michael Jordan to Jim Carrey, any high-level athlete, or performer has probably used visualization at some point in their career!
If that’s not enough proof for you, visualization is scientifically proven to enhance performances under pressure. Once you mentally believe in yourself, your body quickly catches up and makes your dreams a reality!
So how can you use this simple mental exercise? Use it when you need an extra boost of confidence at drama tryouts, basketball games, violin recitals or even making friends in a new class. By simply believing you can do it, you truly can achieve great things.