As a mother-of-two with a full-time job, I lead a busy life. Most of the time, thanks to the carefully managed system I have put in place at home, everything runs smoothly. But every now and then, the plan goes awry because someone is sick; we have guests or I forget to pick up a child from school.
At times like that, I desperately shuffle everything around to get my family and professional life back on track. But that's not all; as well as keeping up with the grind of everyday life, I also need to focus on my future. Because these days, it's not enough to be successful at managing your life right now; we also have to have a clearly defined plan for 10, 20 or even 30 years down the line.
Whether it's how much we aim to save for our retirement, the career progression we hope to make or the dreams we have for our children's education - we need to know now how we want to live our lives a couple of decades down the line. And it's that pressure to keep on top of what we want from life now, as well as what we want in the future, that can feel a little overwhelming, particularly if we still have big dreams we want to fulfill.
This is where Visualize Success (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch; Dh4) could be the solution to the problem. Designed to help you relax and literally "visualise" your future triumphs, this self-help app uses the power of hypnosis to help you realise your goals, no matter how unrealistic they may be. Using the soothing voice of Andrew Johnson, a clinical hypnotherapist based in Scotland, the app gives you the tools to change your thinking by tapping into your subconscious so that you actually believe in your own greatness.
To make this happen, simply plug in your earphones, tap "Begin" on the app's home page and Mr Johnson will present you with a series of instructions, which you can opt to ignore when you listen to his advice in the future; it's recommended you listen to the app for a minimum of three weeks for the optimum effect.
Soothing music is played and Mr Johnson asks you to relax each part of your body until you are in a deep natural state of physical and emotional relaxation. He then encourages you to take your mind back to a time when you felt confident, happy and successful and to amplify those feelings. The listener must then visualise their goals right down to precise details, such as the car they will drive, the clothes they will wear and the people that will be around them.
They can choose whether to finish the programme in a state of sleep, be woken or even listen to it several times. While the app certainly leaves you feeling more relaxed, whether it pays off in the long term is something you will have to wait and see.