My Happy Place Week 1: Visualisation

Today we are learning about visualisation, ‘the formation of a mental image of something’, in order to bring about a sense of calm. During the Covid-19 lockdown period many of us are feeling isolated and perhaps not as calm as we would like to be. So, today, I am providing you with a video (below) of a 10-minute visualisation to listen to and enjoy as well as tips on how to begin creating your own.

I hope you enjoyed hearing and imagining the visualisation of my Happy Place, now it’s time to try out building your own. Although I speak mine out loud to be able to share it with you, when you are creating your own it is not necessary unless it is helpful for focus and concentration. 

*It’s very common to get distracted especially when attempting something new. Keep in mind that you are building these images for yourself and you can return whenever you like. Acknowledge the distracting thought and try to focus backon your Happy Place.

How to get started creating your own Happy Place

Gathering Ideas: You are creating this visualisation for yourself, so take some time to think about the places, times and things, people and activities that you have enjoyed and might want to include. You could start by making a list of words or images or even by gathering items around you that will help you start the creative process.

Activities: During my visualisation I did a few small activities to give a sense of pace, time passing and achievement. I chose activities that I found calming such as walking, resting and exploring. If you have a favourite activity – think about including it. I’ve provided some images of activities that I do – what activities might you include?

Location: Where is your Happy Place going to be? To get inspired, look through old photos, a magazine of beautiful places, watch a holiday programme or even re-read a part of a book that you loved the setting of. The Location you choose is up to you. It can be somewhere you have never been before. As a child I enjoyed imagining rock climbing although I had never done it – I liked the idea of it and had seen it on TV so I would reproduce these images in my mind and use my imagination to get started. Once you have chosen your location there are some more things to consider – what time of day is it? Who else is with you? What is the weather like? What clothing or special equipment might you need?

Senses: Use of senses can help to bring focus to your thoughts and make them feel more real by adding in the sense details such as taste, touch, sight, smell and sound. I like to start with my use of ‘sight’ but you can choose whatever sense works best for you. Perhaps think about how you already use your senses to understand and retain information about the world. Use that sense to bring depth and reality to your Happy Place.

Start Small: It is easy to get distracted from your visualisation, so give yourself as much or as little time as it suits you best. If you find yourself being distracted, know that now you are building your visualisation you can always revisit whenever you want. Each time you visit you can build on what you have already created, just like you would if you were doing a painting – it comes together with time and layers. Later you might want to elaborate on your first version or simply keep it the same. Either choice is fine.

A ‘me’ time adventure

Remember this is all about you having some quality ‘me’ time. It’s an adventure and an exploration which leads you to your first visualisation.  I hope these tips of how to get started have been helpful. If you have more questions, please just get in touch.

If you’d like to share something that you have created inspired by either my visualisation or your own Happy Place please do send it in – we’d love to hear from you. It can be in whichever format you prefer visual, verbal, physical or written.