January 8 – “Hold a picture of yourself long and steadily in your mind’s eye, and you will be drawn toward it.” – Harry Emerson Fosdick
When I was a child, I bounced a rubber baseball against the front of my garage for endless hours. The garage had windows, and panels with various designs and angles. The design and angles made for a lot of weird bounces, and the windows made for a lot of trouble for me as I managed to break just about every one of them (4 doors each had 6 or 8 windows. Nearly all were broken by me, some multiple times).
When I would play ball I was always working on my fielding. I imagined myself playing the infield for the Cleveland Indians (my home town team). If a ball got by me, or I didn’t make a clean scoop and throw, a runner would get on. I would play entire games in my mind. In my mind I was a major league infielder, and a darn spiffy one at that.
Sadly, no amount of that practice or visualization translated to my actual experiences playing Little League baseball. I was a serviceable First Baseman, defensively. I threw left handed and batted right, and while I could occasionally hit for a bit of power, I never was terribly successful at the plate. Basically, despite the work I put in, and the mind’s eye that I employed, I lacked the talent. When Little League ended, so did my aspirations of playing in the Majors.
Today’s quote and meditation is about visualization. The book, Weight Watchers Success Every Day. 365 Meditations for Your Weight Loss Journey, explores the notion that we can be more successful when we visualize ourselves in our goal state, and then fill in the details.
The good news is that being a more healthy version of myself does not take any talent. It does, most definitely, take diligent practice and execution. And, I believe, it does take a bit of visualization.
When I was losing weight in 2014 and 2015, I took progress pictures of myself. Those pictures helped me to objectively see my progress, and motivate me to go farther. One of my favorites is this one, which I call 3 Weddings.
I haven’t taken progress pictures in quite some time because my progress ground to a halt. And, since June of 2016, I have been making more of a Regress toward obesity.
Today I am going to work on visualization. I have pictures of myself looking the way I want to look. I plan to keep those handy to visualize the goal state. But, I think more importantly, I am going to work on visualizing myself doing the tasks, and making the choices that will bring that goal state to life. Namely:
- Tracking my food every day
- Working out a minimum of 3 times
- Walking at least 12 laps (approximately 2 miles)
- Making my overall step-goal of 8,000 per day on non workout days, and 10,000 on workout days
- Sensibly snacking, only within my limits
- Drinking at least 2 liters of water while at work every day
- Fearlessly stepping on the scale on Friday morning
These are the things I am setting out do this week, and I am going to create those scenarios in my mind to help me achieve them
I know that when I envision myself failing, and making bad choices, I am setting myself up to fail. I am painting a picture of that failure and giving it time to fester in my mind. Instead, I am going to live intentionally and replace an image of failure with one of success.
Bobby-C’s thought for the day… To be successful, I must eliminate the picture of failure I have painted in my mind. That picture must be replaced with a feature-length movie of me marching toward my goals.