Have you made a vision board yet?
Yes? How did it go?
Are you mildly intrigued but don’t know where to start/don’t believe in new age-y magical thinking/gave up on harnessing the power of the universe a while ago?
Perfect! This is for you!
What is a vision board?
A vision board represents what you want in your life, either in the near future or long term.
Why would I want one?
It helps focus your daily thinking. As we know, the grass isn’t necessarily greener on the other side of the fence; it’s greener where we water.
The more we clarify what we want, the more we’ll focus. Daily attention motivates progress and, eventually, results.
What’s the best approach?
Some vision boards are specific and external, such as the floor plan of the house you’d like to buy. The make and model of the car you’d like to drive. A certain amount of money you’d like to earn. The destination of a vacation you’d like to take.
Other vision boards are more internal, representing goals for areas of your life similar to a Wellness Wheel. For example: spiritual; social; physical; intellectual; emotional; and, career. Your vision board might include a health issue you’d like to improve, an intellectual pursuit, new friendships and relationships you’d like to create, or career directions you’d like to take.
What tools do I need?
The best vision board is one you create yourself rather than print off, scan or photocopy. You’ll want construction paper, a diverse assortment of magazines, scissors, and tape or glue. You’ll also want tacks or something to affix it.
What should I put on it?
You don’t know what you want? You want everything and can’t fit it all on one board?
Start by flipping through your magazines. What’s that, you don’t have magazines? Get some. You can buy new or used or even get some free. Check second hand stores, libraries, online postings, recycling depots. Don’t think about your selections too much, just get whatever catches your attention. How many should you get? Three or more. Variety is good, but similar genres or topics will be fine too.
Flip through your magazines. Don’t read the content, you’re there for the pictures and some isolated words or phrases.
Pull out images and words or phrases that appeal, attract or captivate. Don’t analyze. Go with your instincts and reactions. Do this with all the magazines.
Now sort though the images and words. You’re looking for a story to tell. Arrange the words with the images. Remove some images and words if the board is too crowded. Re-arrange until you find a pattern you like.
You can also create multiple vision boards for different areas of your life.
Where should I display it?
Your vision board is more effective the more you see it. You’ll want to display it somewhere you’ll see it every day, preferably for a few minutes at a time or more. A location in your office, kitchen or bathroom, or by your dresser or closet, usually work well.
My first vision board exercise
The magazines I had weren’t varied or selected for this purpose so the images and words aren’t the best fit for what I wanted to represent. I went ahead anyway in an anti-perfectionist approach.
When I finished the vision board, I was surprised that I didn’t want to display it. I thought it was silly. A maintenance guy was accessing the premises and I didn’t want him to see it. This struck me as funny because I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t notice or care. And if he does, well, so what?
It was then I realized the vision board is effective. Even if it’s not an exact representation of what you want, it’s you. It’s your inner life, your psyche; your thoughts, feelings, desires. Maybe some you’ve neglected or a new direction you’d like to take, or something you’ve only barely whispered to yourself.
You’ll know you’ve created your vision board well if you have an emotional reaction of some kind.
My vision board
My vision board represents the state of mind I want to begin the day — before a loop of noise takes over. Example: What do you mean that email didn’t go through? Seven minutes. Do these earrings go better? Six minutes. Good morning, Hank the Hedgehog, what’s up? Are you ok? (He almost never willingly shows his face before nightfall.) Five minutes. Why didn’t the phone charge? Four minutes. What’s wrong with the kettle? It’s brand new. Three minutes. He called in sick? Two minutes. Oh, my hair looks nice. One minute.
Here’s my vision to calibrate my mind for a new day:
A Passion for Living: How I want to embark on the day regardless of what I’m doing. The images of a plush armchair, a stack of books, an elegant and comfortable luncheon al fresco remind me that everyday things can be made special and beautiful.
Sultry: This is a balance to the intellectual. The images of the window with lace curtains, the glowing amber lamp at dusk, and gold-lettered mailbox are all romantic. They’re from another era and full of possibilities.
Realm of the Senses: This is a balance to the cerebral, similar to above. The images denote warmth, scents, burning wicks and reflected sparkling light. A pile of pillows by an open window. A tray with tea, a paper and small flowers. All representing a savoring of moments.
Inspired: This represents new experiences and openness. The image is of a woman emerging from a shell. (She might be retreating into the shell, but for my vision board she’s emerging.)
Instinctive Pleasure Life Enhancing Romantic Magical: This speaks for itself.
Happiness.: It’s the point of all the minutes in all the days that make up these trips around the sun. And, the only punctuation I used on the board.
Your vision board
Over to you, beautiful people! What’s on your vision board?
Don’t have one yet? Go ahead, it might enhance your life. And if not, it’s a fun exercise. When’s the last time you played with construction paper?