As a cognitive behavioral psychologist mental and behavioral rehearsal was a staple of good therapy. I was always fascinated by the studies demonstrating how mental rehearsal works and read many studies by psychologists, research scientists, Olympic trainers and athletes, demonstrating how and why mental rehearsal works in our body-mind.
One of my own teachers and mentors, Dr. Charles Garfield, author of Peak Performance is a pioneer in the study of mental rehearsal. Dr. Garfield is a clinical professor and computer scientist and was a member of the team of engineers, analysts and support staff on the Apollo Eleven project. It was his work on the first moon-landing project that led to his discovery of the dynamics of peak performance and mental rehearsal.
Researchers like Dan Murphy (Sport psychology interventions), Dr. Daniel Kirschenbaum, author of Mind matters: seven steps to smarter sport performance and Director, Center for Behavioral Medicine, Dr. Sean McCann, U.S. Olympic Committee Sport Science and Technology, and Dr. Jean Williams, Applied sport psychology: personal growth to peak performance, have led the field in sports research and the power of mental rehearsal for positive change and success.
Well known authors and athletes like Dan Millman, author of The Warrior Athlete and George Leonard, author of Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-term Fulfillment teach that mastery is a journey and mental rehearsal is a process along the Way.
Everything you’ll ever need to know is within you; the secrets of the universe are imprinted on the cells of your body.
Dan Millman, Way of the Peaceful Warrior
What is Mental Rehearsal?
Mental rehearsal is the process of imprinting images of your goals and expectations in your mind. You practice seeing and feeling the positive outcomes and achievements that you want to manifest in your conscious reality. Kinesthetic memory and visualization increase your likelihood of success. You can use mental rehearsal for any area of your life, health, wealth, happiness, relationships, sports, business, whatever you desire to allow in the life you are creating.
Research demonstrates that imagined events that are vividly imprinted in the mind’s eye, are recorded by the brain and central nervous system as memories. What you imagine becomes just as ‘real’ as when you are performing the actual behaviors. Your imagined experiences are not distinguished in the mind from actual physical experiences. When you repeatedly imagine something with feeling – your subconscious mind accepts these feelings, events and capacities for future reference.
Whether learning to play a sport, play an instrument, improve a relationship or expand your spiritual capacity – when you repeatedly imagine something with feeling and focus, your subconscious mind accepts these events as ‘real’. There are resultant changes in muscle development, mental capacity and beliefs.
Most of our peak performing athletes, business people, teachers, writers, actors, or anyone expanding their capacities, use mental rehearsal to not only improve skills they already have, they also use mental rehearsal to develop new skills. You can use mental rehearsal to help yourself with whatever you choose to change or create in your life.
When I was teaching psychology at the University of Hawaii – I worked with a local High School basketball team. They had never won a championship before. We worked with basic relaxation techniques and then moved to mental rehearsal. The team won its first Championship that year!
I also taught skills in public speaking and job interviewing and acting. When you practice either in beta-mind and with actual physical interaction with your environment, or practice completely in your mind and imagination – the end results are almost identical.
What you have mentally rehearsed in alpha or theta – the stored information in your subconscious mind and in your muscle memory will go to work to produce what you have rehearsed in advance.
The New Use for Mental Rehearsal – Change at the Spiritual Level
The simple 6 Steps of The One Command is one highly successful approach to using mental rehearsal in a very unique way to change your DNA. You can easily learn the 6-Steps of The One Command in the book, The One Command by Asara Lovejoy.
Meditation is also a wonderful method for mental rehearsal and I have learned some new meditations from another of my teachers, Dr. Joe Dispenza – in his new book, Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself.
The use of Mental Rehearsal as a core process along with meditation, and The One Command empowers you in changing your DNA and creating the body-mind and life that you desire. I use mental rehearsal along with meditation and The One Command with all of my clients to break-through from the level of the theta mind (The One Command) and the alpha-theta mind (meditation) and beta-alpha-theta mind (mental rehearsal) – so that they are saturated with the opportunity to change their minds, change their DNA and change their hearts. You can use any or all of these steps in your life as well.
How to Do It
Mental Rehearsal can be accomplished during simple relaxation (going to alpha) and picturing a thought pattern or an activity, or through meditation (alpha-theta) and can be anchored in your DNA through the subsequent use of The One Command (theta).
Mental imagery has always been a part of our daily lives, most often through the use of negative imaging or worry. People can be very skilled at visualizing disasters – most of which never happen. When you imagine and worry in your beta-mind – you have a cascade of chemicals that can be very destructive to the body over time, such as the release of cortisol.
For many decades now, our sages and scientists have been teaching us to think on, pray on, and meditate on, what we want instead of what we have. What makes this a very successful spiritual practice is when you elevate your imaging and visioning purely to what you want instead (of what you have) and then Command for that outcome in the theta brainwave, at that point – you have created the changes you desire.
To change your mind – and change your outcomes – use the process of Mental Rehearsal, meditate with intention, and then anchor your desired outcome with the 6-steps of The The One Command and you will have a personal practice that honors and supports your desire and decision to create not only a new life for you, but a whole new world of peace, value and success.
Dr. Katie Garnett
Dr. Katie Garnett is in demand as a personal life and business coach for people around the world, helping them to expand their lives in ways they had only imagined before.
As Co-Director of The One Command Life global membership and radio personality on Living in the Quantum Field radio show with Asara Lovejoy, Dr. Garnett brings her background as a psychologist, corporate consultant for Fortune 500 companies, popular speaker, mentor, coach, and program director to her work in Europe, Asia and the U.S.