By Shahira Esmail
At the start of every new year we are consumed with thoughts and talk about resolutions. I often feel bombarded with the latest trends in health, fitness and gadgets that will make it all so easy. And more often than not I don’t pursue any meaningful changes. This year, rather than looking outward for what I would like to experience in 2018, I am looking inward and reflecting on my goals by creating a vision board. I accomplished this at WEN’s “A New Year, A New Vision: Dream into 2018 Workshop,” a hands-on event hosted at the Google Community Space in San Francisco.
You may be asking, what is a vision board? A vision board is a tool used to clarify and concentrate on a specific life goal. It is a visual collection of images, phrases and words to help remind us of our goals, dreams and intentions for the year. The first task we were asked to do was to create a list of goals or focus areas for the year, these could be related to our professional lives, health, families, ambitions, or anything we would like more of in our lives. Once the “hard work” was done, the rest of the time was about having fun, being creative and connecting with the great women around us – all the while clipping up all the magazines.
For me personally, the focus was around getting out in nature, feeling empowered as a woman, including travel in my year ahead, and trying to approach all aspects of my life with kindness for others and kindness towards myself.
The results of the evening were truly inspirational, everyone had such unique and personalized visual representations of their year ahead. I am excited to see my vision board every day and work towards my goals throughout the year.
If you missed the event and want to create your own vision board here are some general steps to keep in mind, you can find more information on the Jack Canfield Website or The Chopra Center.
1. Create a list of goals you’d like to achieve in the next year
To visualize your goals, first you need to know what they are. Spend some time getting clear on exactly what you want your ideal life to look like, and what you need to accomplish in the next 12 months to get you closer to your goals.
2. Collect a bundle of old magazines with beautiful pictures
If you don’t have any magazines at home, ask your friends to give you any they no longer want. You should also be able to pick some up at your local thrift store. Or you could check out your local recycling depot.
3. Find pictures that represent your goals and inspire you
Schedule a couple hours one evening or weekend to go through the magazines and cut out pictures that represent your goals and speak to your heart in some meaningful way.
4. Make a collage out of your photos
Once you have collected enough photos, it’s time to make your vision board! Go to your local craft or dollar store and buy a large piece of construction or poster paper. A corkboard or large piece of paper would work as well. Then glue, tack, or tape your pictures to the paper or corkboard in an arrangement that is visually pleasing to you.
5. Add motivational “affirmation words” that represent how you want to FEEL
Your vision of your ideal life shouldn’t be focused on “stuff” so much as on how you want to feel. For this reason, you should add words you want to feel daily: “joyful,” “abundant,” “powerful,” “fearless,” “loved,” “strong,” “healthy,” “loving,” or “financially free.”
6. Take a few moments to contemplate your vision board every day
To get the full benefit from your vision board, it’s important for you to place it somewhere you can see it every day.