How many of you feel like goal setting is a vicious cycle? You set a goal, don’t achieve it, then feel super crappy like you can’t accomplish anything so why bother? I don’t know about you, but I feel this way, and I got really tired of it. I found this article that explains why I feel this way. So, months ago, I decided to change my “goal setting” mechanism. I’d like to show you how to make a vision board and help you understand why you need one. During the winter months, it can be really tough to feel motivated and inspired. My friend, Lisa at Lisa Designs Life gives you 3 great steps to beat the winter blues, including creating a vision board.
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What’s a Vision Board?
Several months ago, I found myself in a leadership position and lost sight of the balance of my home and work life. At the time, I didn’t know that I desperately needed something I could visualize, to keep me focused. I heard from one of my coworkers and mentors of something called a vision board. I had never heard of a vision board before and it piqued my interest. She told me that it was something she used to keep her motivated and focused on her goals. It’s a constant reminder for her to fight for the goals that she has decided are worth fighting for. HOWEVER…I feel that a vision board is somewhat a goal setting mechanism, but it’s a little different for me. I feel that it’s a way for me to VISUALIZE how I would like my life to be.
Types of Vision Boards
Vision boards come in all shapes, sizes, and styles. Ultimately, they all have the same purpose. They are meant to be some kind of visual aid to help someone see their goals, dreams, desires, or life. My vision board is right next to my bed and above my desk (yes, my desk is in my room…bleh). I get to see it every morning and am reminded of the goals I set for myself. It can be as big or as small as you want it to be.
Some people like their vision board to be words only. Some, such as myself, prefer only pictures (I think they’re prettier and they feel a little more real). Others like a combination of words and pictures. There’s no right or wrong way of the style you want your board to be. It should scream your personality, though! It’s way more fun that way, don’t you think?
Why You Need One
This next year, I plan on having our kids make vision boards for themselves. It’s a great way for them to understand the importance of visualizing how they want their life to be and being accountable to achieve what they want in life. In order for changes to happen in our lives, we have to change something about ourselves. That’s a really big step! I think we all fear change to some extent. We tend to settle in on how things are and accept that it’s the way it is.
But, if we really want things to be different, there must be changes. The vision board will give you the ideas you need to hopefully understand what changes you need to make in order to make your visions a reality.
Let’s Make a Vision Board!
Step 1: Get your supplies.
I found my cute cork board at Target, along with the very cute push pins. I found the exact same corkboard on Amazon here. Measure the area where you want your vision board to be and make sure it fits. You don’t want it taking up precious space on your walls or you will end up taking it down.
I always get photo paper for free when I buy my ink for my printer, so I didn’t have to buy any photo paper. You can always find the photos you want on the internet, download them to a folder and put them on a flash drive to take to your local store that does photo printing. If you prefer not to venture outdoors to get that done, you can get some of that photo paper here.
Step 2: Brainstorming
You need to just throw out some ideas of how you visualize your life. What do you want to be able to do? What do you want to achieve? Don’t be afraid of what you want either. Anything goes! Don’t tell yourself that it’s not going to happen. If you want it, write it down! You will get down to the filtering part in the next couple of steps.
Step 3: What is Your Vision?
Deciding what you want to put on your vision board can be a really hard decision, but it shouldn’t be painful. So I will break it down simply for you. You’re welcome!
1. Give it a name!
This ultimately needs to be the reason behind your goal. For example, I want to exercise. That’s a good goal, but why do you want to exercise? Is it to lose weight? Is it to simply be healthier? Instead…”I see myself as a healthy person.” What about: “I want to take my family to Disneyland.” Why do you want to take them? Is it because you want them to experience the magic of Disneyland? Is it because your family desperately needs a fun vacation? Doing this makes your visions more meaningful and gives you real purpose behind them.
2. Long term vs. short term?
Obviously, you’re going to have to make some changes in order for these visions to become a reality. Decide if you want your changes to be long-term or short-term. In my opinion, its fun to make in between short-term and long-term. Changes that you can achieve in a few months. You can take them off your board and make room for a new vision. It’s fun to see that you are making progress! Again, totally up to you.
3. Make sure they are achievable!
Now, this is the part where we start to filter from brainstorming. Don’t burden yourself with unachievable changes or visions…ever, ever, ever! If your goals need to be tiny baby steps towards something, that’s fine! Start with tiny baby steps.
Talk to your therapist or someone you love and trust to tell you if your changes seem achievable for you and your situation. This is also a great way to have someone there to hold you accountable. I know it might seem silly to have this as part of your checklist, but really, sometimes we need to take a step back and think about our visions and ask…” hmm, is this even possible?”
4. Give yourself a timeline!
This is critical! If you don’t have a timeline, these ideas will just sit there for months, never being accomplished. Kinda lame, yes? If I want to take a family vacation, I need to say, “I want to take my kids to Disneyland by June 20__.” If it’s a money issue that I can’t take my kids to Disneyland, I know I need to save money for a certain amount of time. I’ll even be able to save up a certain amount per month until I can get there.
Step 4: Create Your Pictures/Words
I was able to find all of my pictures by simply googling them all online. After giving all my ideas a name, it really wasn’t hard to find pictures to match my visions. Collect them all and save them to a folder. Have them printed on either 4×6 or 5×7 photo paper.
Step 5: Lay them out.
This is the fun part. Organize your pictures by how they fit the best on your board. Have fun with it! Overlap and trim if needed. See how it’s not perfectly proportional?
I use this handy paper trimmer to make my pictures perfectly straight because I’m really picky about straight lines on my pictures
6: Pin ’em up
Make sure you pin them on the board before you hang your board on your wall. Nothing’s worse than getting your board on the wall and forgetting how you had them arranged on your board.
My Vision Board
Just to give you some ideas, I’ll show you why I chose the pictures that I did for my vision board.
1. I Want to Be a Healthy Person.
I want to keep my body healthy and lose a few more pounds, so this helps me remember to exercise as often as I can. Changes to make: Wake up early and exercise 3-5 days a week.
2. Cherish my Children.
Every day I find myself wishing my children’s lives away. “I wish they were potty trained.” “I wish they could make themselves lunch.” “I wish they could drive themselves.” “I wish they could tie their own shoes.” I’ve been told I will miss these days, I need to cherish them. Changes to make: Train my brain to stop wishing their lives away.
3. Be a Temple-Going Person.
It’s a privilege in my LDS religion to be able to attend our faith’s temple. I take it for granted far too often and I am missing out on spiritual blessing when I don’t attend regularly. For some people that means once a week, for me it means once a month. Changes to make: schedule temple dates on the calendar every month and make it a priority to attend.
4. Get Back to Hawaii by 2019.
My husband and I want to go back to paradise. Our first trip strengthened our marriage and we would do it again in a heartbeat (as soon as we can afford it again). Changes to make: We must budget better and save money specifically for the vacation.
5. Magnify My Calling.
In my religion, we volunteer our time and our talents to serve other members of our faith. Changes to make: Take my calling seriously and dedicate my time to helping and serving others.
6. Be a Strong Woman.
I struggle daily with silly fears that make my anxiety so much worse. If I can remember that God will help me through my fears, my anxiety is kept at bay. Changes to make: Let it go! Stop caring about what others think about me. Train my brain to think differently.
7. Be Focused on My Problems, Not Other’s Problems.
Because I aim to please too much. I forget that some problems aren’t my problems. I just need to remember that I don’t always need to get involved and try to solve a problem that’s not mine. Changes to make: Train my brain to remember that someone else’s problem is not my problem.
8. Be a Brave Woman.
This goes back to my anxiety problems. I need to face my fears and be brave every day. Changes to make: Remember to take a deep breath and just do it. Forget about what people think of me and remember my reasons for why I do what I do.
9. Take a Family Vacation.
We took our family to Disneyland several years ago and we promised them we would take them back every couple of years…ya, it’s been 6. Ugh. We really want to get back there. It’s such a fun place. Changes to make: A matter of budgeting and setting aside the money.
10 Take My Family to Harry Potter World in 2019.
We’re Potter nerds to the core! One of these days we want to take them all to Harry Potter World. That’s more of a fun goal, rather than a vision.
11. Have Hope.
This is my daily reminder to stay positive and have hope in all things. To have faith in society and believe that it is good and those good things will come to pass. Changes to make: Train my brain to give people the benefit of the doubt. Stop assuming that they’re thinking negatively or that they don’t like me.
12. Have a Strong Marriage.
My husband and I have a very strong marriage. I am super proud of it, but it never hurts to strengthen something that’s already strong. It can always be stronger and withstand the test of time. Changes to make: More spouse dates! 🙂
13. Have Friends.
I really struggle with making friends and keeping them. I’ve wanted to make it a goal to take friends to lunch or see if anyone wants to go do something together. Changes to make: Make it a point to have friendly conversations with other women. Be genuinely interested in them and reach out.
14. Have a Pretty Living Room.
I want my living room to look something like this. Changes to make: This is all money and time. Once we have the money set aside, we can start getting this one completed.
So, that’s my vision board in a nutshell. The beauty of the board is that it is so customizable to what you want or what you need. I have several characteristics that I’m working on because we really can’t afford monetary goals right now. One thing I will say, especially for those that suffer from severe depression, don’t make your goals unachievable. This article here is a very good read regarding depression and setting goals.
Here’s the link to the checklist needed to make your vision board. Do you have a vision board? If so, how do you go about putting yours together? I’d love to know in the comments below! Good luck!