Daily exercise of imagining our best possible self for two weeks results in increases in optimism.
Imaging our best self can engage the parasympathetic nervous system – the function responsible for relaxation and slowing the heart rate – resulting in renewed optimism and improvements in working relationships.
Richard Boyatzis, PhD, a professor at Case Western Reserve University, does research how people and organizations (from teams to communities) can make the changes they want and how they can sustain those changes. He says:
“There is strong neurological evidence supporting the theory that engaging our parasympathetic systems — through regular physical or leisure activities — stokes compassion and creativity.”