A vision board can be a creative way to get a sense of your North Star. In other words, to visually see where you want to be headed in your career and life. A vision board is an inventive way to bypass our more linear minds and allow our ingenuity to come through. It’s a visual representation of the outcome of your goals and can become a reference point and a source of inspiration. In its most concrete form, a vision board (that actually works) is a board where you put images and other items to remind you of your goals, intentions, and where you want to be headed.
Why Make a Vision Board?
- We know through science that visualization helps improve performance.
For a solid 40 years, sports psychologists have used visualization to help improve performance. The effectiveness of this has been proven through research and is now consistently used with professional athletes from sports stars to Olympic participants. This is because we stimulate the same brain regions when we visualize something as when we actually do it. This means our brain is getting to practice by imagining what it takes to get there. And the same works for visualizing the end result or the goal. Our mind becomes more efficient in figuring out how to meet these goals.
- Vision boards give you a chance to think about and then picture what it is you really want for yourself and your life.
- They can help you get unstuck or unblocked.
Because they come from a creative process, there’s a way that a vision board can bypass a person’s sense of resistance to change. You aren’t trying to come up with answers. Instead, you’re letting your intuition step in and guide you as you notice what images you’re drawn to visually. The purpose is to lower expectations and pressure because in some way you’re doing it for fun. (In contrast to thinking in a straightforward way about what you want to do with your life.)
- Vision boards are motivating and inspiring.
The vision board becomes a visual reminder of what you are going for and why. Above all, it fortifies your intentions to follow through with your goals.
Types of Vision Boards
There are many types and themes a vision board can take.
Here is a variety of them:
- Annual Goals Vision Board
- Intentions or Values Vision Board
- Home, Love, Life, Family
- Visioning Your Dream Life
- Travel Vision Board
- Vision Boards for Specific Goals (weight loss, fitness, geographical change, career, etc)
- New Year Vision Board
- Spiritual Vision Board
- Who Are You Really Vision Board
This vision board is great for having a way to reflect or show images of who you really are, what’s important to you, your strengths, personality, your essence, and how you see yourself, inside and out.
- Intuitive Vision Board
With this type, you use the vision board creation to take you through an inner journey or process, with the goal of gaining more clarity. These boards are rich in symbolism. You do this by simply choosing photos, pictures, etc that you are drawn to. Later you assemble these intuitively, or in other words, you allow yourself to not think too much about it but instead naturally assemble the board. Then when you’re finished, you can interpret the board to gain insight into what could be seen as a subconscious process.
- Relationship Vision Board
- Couple’s or Family’s Vision Board
- Bright Ideas Vision Board
- Life Purpose Vision Board
How to Make a Vision Board
There are many ways you can successfully make a vision board. Here are a few approaches. Read through and then follow one or make it your own by doing a combination. You can create a vision board with magazines or create a board on Pinterest digitally. But the overarching objective is considering what you want your life to look like, where you want to be headed in your life or career, and/or how you want to feel in the future. There are no specific rules when it comes to vision boards since it’s about creating something that will inspire you to realize your goals on a day-to-day basis. Some vision boards host a single goal or idea, while other vision boards go big and consider what you want for your whole future.
Here are some guidelines:
First, make some space for self-reflection and consider what’s most important to you. Do you want to focus on a specific area of your life or work? Or would you like to focus on the big picture? Do you want your vision board to represent short or long-term change? Using yearly benchmarks is standard, most digestible, and easiest to track progress, but go with what feels right to you. This is a creative process and you can trust your instincts.
It’s worth mentioning that you can go in with a very specific goal but you can also create an intuitive vision board where you simply choose images based on what feels right to you and later interpret the vision board. More about that as we go along. Most of all, this is the part of the process where you want to get clear about your goals and intentions in building this vision board. Identify this before you move to the next step.
You can choose to do your vision board by hand as a more crafty approach, in which case you can get out your magazines, or you can print images from online (Pinterest and Instagram work well.) You can also choose all digital images and use an app to arrange and display these (see apps listed in next section.) However you choose to work, go through and choose images, find phrases, and quotes that represent what you want, and inspire you to work towards getting what you want.
You can do this with a very intentional attitude where you hold a vision and look for specific images that represent that. Or you can use a more intuitive approach, as mentioned before, where you let yourself choose images intuitively (and later interpret what goals and dreams emerge from the pictures you’ve chosen.) Either way, in this phase of the project, you are collecting everything that will later go into your vision board. You might include trinkets, ephemera such as bookmarks, notecards or postcards from friends, stickers, mementos from events or places, really anything that you can fit on there that feels meaningful to you.
At this point, you are either using a corkboard, a magnetic board, or a poster board and figuring out how you want to assemble the vision board. Or you can use Pinterest to create a board, use an app such as Canva, or use udreamr where you can create a vision board that will be printed and shipped to you. Whatever you choose, this is the time to assemble all the images and materials you’ve collected in a format that feels meaningful. Give yourself a stress-free hour or two to put your board together. Or you could even have a vision board party and do the whole process with friends.
Finally, to make the vision board really work, you’ll want to display this somewhere you will see it every day. Otherwise, you can use your digital vision board as your laptop’s backdrop or your phone’s home screen. If you don’t have time to create a vision board from scratch, check out these 25 vision board templates.
Once you have your vision board that actually works in place, it’s time to break each of those pictures down into goals. These goals can be concrete to-do items that you want to list in your calendar or do each week. But they can also take the form of affirmations. The most important focus at this stage is to make this a reality for yourself through action.
Want some coaching and support with creating a vision board? The coaches at Ignite Your Potential are here to help. Reach out and take advantage of our complimentary 25-minute phone sessions.