The power of pictures

Published by Ali Gordon-Creed on

These days, manifestation is everywhere. You can’t scroll on your phone without seeing statements like “live your best life” or “you do you.”

But how realistic are these claims, and do we really “just” have to ‘believe to achieve’?

I run vision board workshops on a regular basis so I thought I’d give an overview of the brain science, as well as the processes that interfere with manifesting.

Back to basics

Firstly, let’s revisit the basics.

Biologically as an embryo forms, the vagus system is created very early on and connects our brain, heart and stomach. Its evolutionary function is primarily survival – survival in the sense of ‘knowing’ or sensing  what our organism needs in any given moment to thrive or just survive.

The science of manifesting is teaching your conscious mind to get information from, what is for most of us, our unconscious vagus system.

It is interesting to note that there is no phrase in the English language that says, “trust your brain.” Our trust intrinsically comes from our heart or gut – that is the truth of our vagus system. Neurologically our hearts are the repository’s of knowing what is true and good for us…not our brains.

My vision board workshops are aimed at reconnecting us consciously with our heart’s desire or our organism’s ‘knowing’, and then utilising the best capacity of brain, which is creative imagination.

So, how does that work when it comes to creating a vision board?

The brain is far happier with images than words.

It takes only 13 milliseconds for the human brain to process an image. The human brain processes images 60,000 times faster than text.

Images evoke more emotion and tap more into our system than words do which is exciting for us – more of us are drawn to that.  By engaging this emotional reaction, we’re letting the polyvagal system activate. Society and education has taught us not to listen to our instincts. As a result, we’ve lost touch – or forgotten how to interpret – some of our more primal reactions. You’ll be aware of the phrase ‘fight or flight’ but as we no longer round corners and see wild animals, we perhaps don’t know how to listen, understand or even register this response.

When does a vision board not succeed?

What stops a vision board succeeding can be belief systems that we have concluded about ourselves. For example, a teacher told you that you wouldn’t amount to anything, a grandparent told you that ‘women in our family don’t do that’.

These self-limiting beliefs are attached to a lot of emotion – the emotion will always override the thought – we may want to succeed but if deep down we feel we don’t deserve to then we absolutely will not! It is important to have a safe space where you can begin to look at some of those limiting beliefs and the vision board workshops offer this.

The vision boards are created after a time spent gathering ‘ingredients’ both consciously and unconsciously as well as clearing any limiting beliefs. This is important because we will only engage our subconscious self if these beliefs are disproved.

Our subconscious is so strong it will enable us to self-sabotage without us even realising.

Sometimes the experience of addressing these negative thoughts can be profound. But it does have to be the right time for you and so those ‘aha’ moments don’t come for everyone.

But, when they do for those who are open and ready for change, the facilitated space can fast-track your best next journey.

Creating a vision board signals, and reinforces both your conscious and unconscious every time you see it, laying down new neural pathways with new thoughts and feelings which allow for a new future.

The success of your vision board depends on it creating a sense and feeling akin to that which would come with achieving your dream. Therefore, every time you look at it, you should be infused with happiness, calm, contentment, excitement, joy etc.

What you can expect

Taking part in a vision board workshop walks you through the process I have described in a psychologically safe and appropriate way. You can expect some laughter and possibly tears. You can expect to leave the workshop with a creation of your own that you love.

If you’d like to book on to one of my workshops, please contact me on 07770 935579 or email

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