Here is a fun and easy transformation exercise you can try yourself, with students, or anytime you want to show someone how to break through perceived limitations. A number of my favorite authors and speakers share this exercise and I'm excited today to share it with you!
Hopefully, you are some place where you can read one step at a time and really try it before reading the next one. If not, maybe save this post for later when you can actively participate.
First Step: Stand with both feet apart and plenty of space around you for movement. Find something to look at directly across from you in the room, lift your right arm up and point at that thing. Then, with your feet still planted, twist your upper body as far as you can to the right, following your pointed finger with your eyes. When you've twisted to the right as far as you can, look at the new thing you're pointing to and make a note of it. Next, come back to facing forward and relax your arm back to your side.
Second Step: Close your eyes and imagine doing the exercise again. Visualize bringing your right arm up and pointing at the first spot and pretend you are actually twisting to the right again. In this imaginary version, see yourself twisting past the original landing point and going a little further. Then, imagine yourself returning to your original position. Repeat this two more times, going even further in the second imaginary version, and going super far the third time.
Third Step: After opening your eyes, really do the exercise again. This will be the second time you've really done it, but the fifth time you've gone through the process if you count the imaginary versions. Notice the new spot you are pointing to when you finish. Really try all three steps before reading any further!
I love this exercise! I've tried it with a lot of students this week and every single time, they were pointing significantly further to the right after the visualization rounds. I reminded them that the instructions said to go as far as they could the first time and asked why they could go so much further when they did it again. The general response from all the students has been so simple...
"Because I saw myself doing it!"
Remember this exercise next time you are facing a perceived limitation in your practicing, performing, or life. If you can see yourself doing it, that will go a long way toward actually doing it!
P.S. Want to read more about breaking through perceived limitations? Learn how to complain specifically and convert those complaints into practice productivity by clicking HERE.