One of the first things I ask people who come to me for help with their vision is what their goals are. I’ve heard “I just want my eyesight not to get any worse!”, and “I’d love to stop having to buy stronger reading glasses. I know at my age (emphasis mine) my sight can never be great.”
It feels to me like these folks are setting their sights too low, so to speak. When I started vision improvement over 15 years ago, with my strong -10 prescription, I had the goal of eventually being able to function without glasses or contacts, though I had no idea how I was going to get there, or how long it would take me. Why would I ever want to improve a little bit, and then stop partway, still needing glasses to see well?
In our coaching sessions, people commonly make disparaging remarks about themselves, sometimes so automatically I know they’ve said these same words hundreds of times in the past. “I’ve never been good at …” comes to mind, whether it be “sticking to a routine” or “choosing healthy food” or “taking breaks at the computer” or “going to bed early” or “putting myself first”. When you say something negative like that, you reinforce it, driving the unwanted pattern deeper.
Instead try saying “I’m learning to…” or “I’m so glad I’m starting to …”, to begin building the new pattern. “It’s so great I’m reading more easily with fewer headaches!” — can’t you just feel the enthusiasm in that? I’m a great believer in enthusiasm, which feels like fuel to me, to get us closer to our goals. Ralph Waldo Emerson said nothing great was ever achieved without it.
When I took off my eyeglasses for longer and longer periods of time, then eventually for good, the world seemed limitless. It wasn’t just that I had no restricting frames around my view. It felt like my awareness was let out of a cage too, like I could reach out my attention in every direction without it being blocked. At first this was scary — the universe was so big, and I was so small! No wonder I’d wanted that “protection”, wanted to limit the input coming at me, back when I was a fearful child.
It’s a central principle of vision improvement that no matter what the condition of your eyesight, you can learn to see in a more relaxed easy manner. Even if your sight is pretty good, you might be able to make it great if you give it a little more attention. Listen to how you talk about your eyes, and how you think about them. Even if everyone in your family wears glasses, that doesn’t mean you have to take on those self-limiting visual habits too.
Just for a moment, imagine seeing as clearly as you’d like to, up close to read small print, in the distance to see the birds soaring over the horizon, and all the sights in between. From the time I was young I have dreamed of flying, looking down and seeing everything far below clearly, and I did not have glasses on my face in these dreams. Who’s to say I can’t see this far and this well when I’m awake too? I don’t intend to needlessly limit my attitude about my sight, and neither should you.