Creative Visualization:
Use the Power of Your Imagination to
Create What You Want in Your Life

by Shakti Gawain

New World Library, 2017. ISBN 978-1-608-68464-9.
Reviewed by Mary Ann Moore
Posted on 04/26/2017

Nonfiction: Creative Life

Shakti Gawain's first book, Creative Visualization, launched her career as an internationally known speaker and seminar leader. The book also launched the New World Library, which began in the kitchen of a small apartment in Oakland, California when Gawain and Marc Allen decided to get their books and pamphlets out into the world. This new edition marks the 40th anniversary of the book and of the New World Library.

As well as being a boon to others, Creative Visualization showed Gawain and Allen how to visualize and create success. With this new edition, there are bound to be new readers who will learn to use their imaginations to create what they truly want.

Creative Visualization is a "synthesis of the most practical and useful ideas and techniques" learned by Gawain in her personal study. I have found the book to be straightforward, readable, and accessible as well as inspiring what can be possible.

It's not necessary to believe in any metaphysical or spiritual ideas "though you must be willing to entertain certain concepts as being possible," Gawain points out. She recommends studying the principles and trying the techniques with an open mind and heart. Then you can "judge for yourself whether they are useful to you."

"Consciously imagining what we want can help us to manifest it in our lives." Gawain explains that one can be in a "receptive mode," relaxing and allowing impressions to come to us. In an "active mode" we consciously choose and create what we wish to see or imagine.

Affirmations are one of the most important elements of creative visualization and Gawain gives many examples. They are positive statements that can be general or specific and are always phrased in the present tense (not the future). "Remember that you are creating something new and fresh" is an exciting aspect of affirmations.

People have often used the word "abundance" as something they want to manifest. I was glad to see Gawain's clarification: "We need to realize that after our basic needs are met, the experience of abundance has more to do with expressing our creative gifts in satisfying ways, and learning to give and receive in a balanced way, than it does with extravagant consumerism."

In Part three of the book there are several sections on meditation and affirmations under the headings of Grounding Yourself and Running Energy; Creating Your Sanctuary; Meeting Your Guides, Healing Meditations; and Invocations.

Part Four describes "Special Techniques" such as keeping a creative visualization notebook. (There is actually a Creative Visualization Workbook by Shakti Gawain and that's what got me started a few decades ago.) Creating your own notebook is a place where you can work on goals, affirmations,"ideal scenes" and "treasure maps."

Gawain explains the setting of goals very clearly under several categories that include personal growth/education; work/career; relationships; creative self-expression; money; lifestyle/possessions and leisure/travel.

A "treasure map" is a physical picture of your goal or area of your life. It can be drawn, painted or collaged with pictures and words cut from magazines. The strongest memory of this practice for me was the drawing of a stone house I did with many details including a fireplace and stained glass windows. I was delighted to find an old stone house (with an apartment for me just as I had drawn it) available for rent. Although I wasn't first in line, I did get the apartment!

Shakti Gawain gives good advice throughout the book including: "If it feels helpful, releasing, opening, strengthening, enlivening, or inspiring, do it." It seems a good philosophy of life. I'm grateful to have been reminded of all the ways to approach life with myriad possibilities.

Shakti Gawain is the bestselling author of Living in the Light, The Path of Transformation, Creating True Prosperity, Developing Intuition, and several other books. She lives with her husband, Jim Brown, in Mill Valley, California. Visit her website.

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