Mental Time Travel
When we imagine events, our brains process these events as if they were real. Our brains have a difficult time telling the difference. This means that if we regularly imagine ourselves as happy in the future, we actually feel happier.
Activity: Mental Time Travel
To give you a sense of how this works and feels, let's do a guided happiness visualization exercise. During this exercise, you will mentally travel in time to a future when you are experiencing happiness. Before we begin, think about what you want to focus on. Maybe you want to imagine having stronger relationships with your family, or maybe you want to imagine being more accepting of your negative feelings, or maybe you want to imagine gaining the confidence to live more authentically.
Try to think of what it would be like to experience what it would be like it this happened.
1. Think about the people, smells, and sounds around you while you experience happiness.
2. Focus on the good feelings that you are having. How would it feel? Who would be around? Where would you be?
3. Imagine how this experience will make you feel even better in the future.
4. Imagine anything else that helps you fully experience true happiness.
5. Make sure you do not focus on aspects of your current life that are not making you happy. Just imagine that you are a happy, future version of yourself.
For the next 2 minutes, close your eyes and imagine being the future happy you. After completing the exercise, reflect on the experience using the text box below.