That sentence is a tad redundant and I wrote it that way on purpose. It’s one thing to have an idea in your head. It is yet another to start thinking about what that “idea” would look like put in action.
And yet another to put it on a Vision Board where you can not only see it but imagine it alongside your life goals.
Once you can visualize an idea, think about what it means to you and how it is is a part of your life, you become closer to turning that dream into a reality. Many successful athletes visualize success before events.
Creating a vivid and detailed image or plan is, in fact, part of successful goal setting, because doing so requires you to think through the steps and understand what is required of you to achieve a particular goal.
What’s more, creating a Vision Board that you post in an area of your living or working space where you can see it daily further reinforces your goals and your ability to achieve them.
Seeing something daily is both an affirmation and a reminder of our goals.
The Form of Your Vision Board
Today you can create virtual or concrete vision boards. I prefer the practice of creating a concrete, tactile vision board, because for several reasons. One is just because it’s fun to cut and paste. Don’t we all wish sometimes we could return to the early days of primary school where glue sticks and not computers dominated our daily life? Similarly, it is all too easy to get caught up in “SERIOUS” goal setting and making plans for the future.
Life should be fun.
Life is good.
Life is beautiful.
Have a little fun!
On a more serious note, ahem, the act of physically cutting, pasting, and designing your board is therapeutic and a robust tool to help make your goals and dreams a reality.
The first time I made a vision board, it was in a seminar run by Career Services at my Alma Matter CU Boulder.
However, it wasn’t until I read the Gifts of Imperfection, by Brene Brown that I really began to realize the gift behind the creative work for any and all adults, in creating a Vision Board.
- Give your vision and goals clarity.
- Highlight your values, needs, strengths, passions, inspiration, and your available resources.
- A functional way to reaffirm your goals that you can come back to and “see” for inspiration.
- To keep yourself on track and motivated.
- Allow yourself to be playful or creative: find your passion and inspiration, have fun!
Vision Board Warm-Up
Answer the following questions quickly. Blink responses. Gut answers. Don’t overthink! Just Go! Grab a pen and paper and answer the following as a warm-up:
- What makes me happy?
- What is a quote that I find inspiring?
- What is an affirmation I’d like to use to guide me?
- Who is someone (real or fictional) who inspires me?
- What are five words my co-workers/classmates would use to describe me?
- What are five words my boss would use to describe me?
- If I could do anything for work, what would it be?
- What are my five biggest strengths?
- What do I do for self-care right now? What can I add to this practice?
- What do I want to achieve professionally in the next year? Go back to work? Change my work? Create my own business? Other?
- How much time do I want to spend at work vs. not at work? What is my personal “work/life ratio” for feelings of happiness and success?
- What do I want to achieve in my personal life in the next year?
- What do I want to achieve for my health in the next year?
- Where do I want to be professionally in 3 to 5 years?
- How do I want to live?
- What does my dream workplace/office look like?
- What does my dream home look like? Or what makes a “home” for me?
- How do I envision my ideal relationships?
- What experiences do I want to have that I’ve yet to access?
- What is my definition of success?
Basic Supply List at Amazon (these are affiliate links) or your local Office Supply Store.
- Poster Board: 22” x 18” or 24” x 36” (60 cm x 90 cm): can be white, corrugated cardboard, plastic board, signboard, whatever you wish, as long as you can glue on it, write on it, and hang it on your wall!
- Glue Sticks: (clear) or fast drying glue paste of your choice.
- Colorful Markers: I like Sharpies for ease of use and because they write on just about anything (my toddler has tested this for me).
- Pictures, quotes, etc. from Magazines, Journals or News Papers.
- Images you print off from online.
- Post-it Notes or note cards for handwritten quotes.
Find a big piece of paper, cork board or poster board. Minimum size (legal paper) but can be as big as you wish.
- Unless you’ve got a big display space, I recommend a half-sheet or 22×18 inch (about 55 x 45 cm) poster board as the ideal size. Beware that if you order on Amazon, you might get a lifetime supply, although this will make it easier to update your board every year! Generally, you can find some poster board in the school supply section at your supermarket or Target.
- If you’ve got lots of display space, feel free to go big and use a standard 24×36 inch poster board (60 x 90 cm).
- Other supplies:
- Find your inspiration:
- Magazine clippings or digital images (again, I like magazines, so you don’t fall down the black hole of the internet, but I also don’t want you to devote a day to find your materials.
- Follow the path of least resistance. If you don’t have adequate magazines, print off pictures online or draft your vision board on Pinterest today and create a physical board later.)
- Look for images (and words) that represent the three goals you addressed last week. Keep your Mind Map and goals close by for reference.
The Vision Board Process:
Once you have your supplies in place, look for images, text, and quotes that align with your vision and goals.
- First, find a picture of yourself from any time in your life that you love. Maybe you are 4 years old at the park on a swing, maybe you are at university reading a book, maybe it was last week out with friends.
- Whatever it is, look for a picture that aligns with your goals.
- Maybe it shows you happy, with a twinkle in your eye, ready to go after the world!
- Or maybe the picture is thoughtful, you watching the sunset or looking over a peaceful body of water, someplace where you felt calm and in control of your destiny.
- Whatever it is, look for a picture that aligns with your goals.
- When deciding what else to use, ask yourself:
- What is it about the image or the text appeals to me?
- What the story behind the image or text in terms of my goals?
- Is the image aligned with my values?
- Look for Images that show where you want to live or work (geography, space, architecture, nature).
- Quotes that inspire you or represent your values or that are indicative of your goals.
- Pictures that represent the steps to your success, what you want to do, learn or achieve.
- Pictures that represent happiness, success, satisfaction, connection, your future.
- Find as many images and texts pieces as you can. You might want to “over find” in the sense that when you start to construct your board, you will decide that certain selections work better to pull your image together than others.
- If you find a quote or image that really “sings” to you then give it a central spot. Glue, paste or tack your images onto your board. Creating this visual representation of your dreams that you can go back to in a blink of an eye will keep you on track and motivated.
Now Go Create!
Now that you have your materials and you’ve done your warm-up exercise, it’s time to sit down and get sticky. Have fun creating your vision. Designing your life. Living a life of intention. If you’ve got any questions, don’t hesitate to ask. And, when you are done feel free to share your vision board via your favorite social media. On Instagram, you can tag me at @Voky_Be On LinkedIn, you can find me at linkedin.com/in/alisonrakoto And on Twitter, I am @alibcandid.
I am a career coach and strategist that helps you find work you love.
How do I do this? Think of me as a professional grandmother. I ask you questions, I help you identify and celebrate your strengths, I provide you with guidance in setting career and life goals that will help you achieve success. Whatever you chose to do, I am your champion and I support you in chasing your dreams.
If you’d like guidance finding work you love or help with your vision board, I’d be thrilled to work with you. Contact me today and let’s set up a time to talk!