How to Create a Vision Board

 What is a Vision Board?

A vision board is typically a poster board, bulletin board, or art canvas on which you paste or collage images that you’ve cut from various magazines. These images represent who you want to become, what you want to do, or where you want to be in five to ten years. The idea is that when you surround yourself with images and words of who you want to become your smaller month to month or year to year goals can be drawn from this board, and your life will change to match those images and those desires.

How to Create Your Vision Board

I’ve read several ways to create a vision board. A simple internet search will bring these to light (open life vision, specific life vision, or themed vision board). My experience is with creating an open vision board for a single year, and that is what I’ll share below.

Five Steps to Creating Your Board

Step 1: Sit in a quite space for 5 minutes and reflect on your health, your career, and your personal life in the next five to ten year. What do you see?

Step 2: Collect a variety of magazines which help you to connect to the vision you saw. Go through the magazines and cut/tear pictures that connect to you. Don’t think too much about them. If you are drawn to an image or word, pull it out. Don’t glue yet, just create a big pile of magazine pull outs.

Step 3: Go through your image/word pile and begin to lay them on your board. Eliminate any words or images that n longer feel right, really listen to your intuition here. As you lay the pictures on the board, you’ll begin to get a sense how the board should be laid out. For example, you might assign a theme to each corner of the board (health, career, and personal life). Or you may just leave the images randomly as they fall. There is no wrong answer here, use your intuition and be creative.

Step 4: Glue everything onto the board, consider a glue stick vs. White glue which is wet and will wrinkle your images. Add writing if you want. Add paint if you want, again, there is no wrong answer.

Step 5: Hang your vision board in a place where you will see it often.

Keep in mind that your vision board may change as you’re working on it. You may decide to create a career board but once you’re looking through magazines and after your reflection time, you might change your mind to create a more general vision board for the New Year.

photo(6)My 2012 Vision Board Decoded

The image here is of my 2012 board. When I sat to reflect, I really didn’t have any strong ideas come forward. I had a very successful 2011 where I had accomplished all of my goals, and I felt that I was in a transitional place, where I was maintaining many of my previous year’s successes. A few things I knew I wanted to maintain. I wanted to continue to travel (this is represented by the map in the background). I knew I wanted to continue to live a healthy, active lifestyle, this is reflected throughout many images and words (Happy Life, Balance, fun, shared). I wanted to continue to run and race. I wanted to start teaching indoor cycling again (demonstrated by the image of a cyclist). I also wanted to continue to my Master’s as well as my teaching at Brock University (life in education, teaching). So some of my specific goals were reflected, as well as more general well-being related ones. Remember you don’t have to know exactly what you want when you start. Follow your intuition and don’t limit yourself.

Have you created a vision board? I welcome anyone who has created a vision board to write your own experience in the comments…

Setting a Vision and Goals for 2013

2013 is almost here. So it’s time to start determining what it is you want out of this year and re-establishing the direction you want your life to go in. Whether you’re making resolutions, intentions, or goals, creating a vision for yourself prior to establishing any of these helps you to see and feel where you want your life to go. A vision helps you to provide focus and direction to your goals or intentions and helps you to discover your path. Here are a few tips for setting a vision and goals which to help you get the most out of 2013.

Setting A Vision

Close your eyes and visualize yourself in 5-10 years, what do you see, hear, and feel? Who are you with? Where are you? Then using a pen and paper, jot these ideas down using the present tense.

photo(6)If visualization isn’t something you’re into, consider creating a vision board to demonstrate the life you want to live. Cut photos and phrases from some of your favourite magazines and attach them to a canvas or insert them into a photo frame.

Still not jumping at the idea? Then how about going photodigital? Why not use a digital tool such as Pinterest to create a board of inspirational quotes and eye-catching photos. Pin to a board titled “Vision for my life in ten years” or “Vision for my health in 2013”. You can keep it private or share it with friends, and with the iPhone app can be pinning on the go!

photo(1)Another great iPhone app I love for dream creating, vision boarding, and goal setting is Getting Dreams Done. It’s simple to use, walks you through the steps required and won’t let you sneak ahead without doing the initial work. After creating your vision, you can set and track your goals and it has a calendar to hold you accountable to achieving them.

Setting Your Goals

Your vision for yourself is established, and hopefully through the process you started to notice some trends, so now it’s time to turn these visions into goals. Bring out that pen and paper, or open your app and start writing.

Step 1: Start your goal with “I”

Step 2: Follow up your “I” with a verb “I run” “I train” “I attend”

Step 3: Write your goal in the present tense – it’s happening now!

Step 4: State what you want and not what you don’t want – “I eat clean” vs. “I don’t eat junk foods”

Step 5: Give yourself a “by when” – what date will you complete this goal by?

My example: I qualify for the Boston Marathon by November 3rd, 2013.

 You’ve Written A Goal, Now What?

Create a system to get them done. Break down your goals into incremental steps and put those steps into your calendar or app. A step might be joining a fitness group or run club.

Tell someone about your goal! Find someone with a similar goal and share yours. This creates support for you along the process and holds you accountable.

My example: To reach my goal of qualifying for Boston, I’ve registered for a number of races already this season and I’ve challenged myself by adding another Marathon to my training schedule. I am currently investigating running groups in the area to join up with to help me increase my pace. I’m also investigating a variety of training plans which have been proven to support runners in making their goal times.

What’s one of your goals for 2013? Become accountable and share it in the comment section!