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Last Updated on April 17, 2020

8 Vision Board Ideas To Visualize Your Important Goals

8 Vision Board Ideas To Visualize Your Important Goals

Imagine living a life you consider ideal and balanced. Sink into the desirable details of your job, your relationships and the hobbies you pursue. Revel in the fulfillment of your experience. What are you doing to make this exciting life happen? How is your future self different from you today? Paint a picture of all that you notice – colors, people, actions, places, feelings etc.

The process you just engaged in above is called visioning. This involves playing with our right brain to invoke creativity and imagination. It’s a process that often helps us get to the heart of what we desire, what holds value for us, and then prompts us into action from a space of aliveness and alignment.

Does it work for real? Of course!

Quoting a study from Psychology Today:[1]

“Mental imagery impacts many crucial cognitive processes in the brain… The brain is getting trained for actual performance during visualization. It’s been found that mental practices can enhance motivation, increase confidence and self-efficacy, improve motor performance, prime your brain for success, and increase states of flow.”

Famous athletes like Tiger Woods, Muhammad Ali, and Jack Nicklaus are known to have employed visioning for their success.

A practice for making visioning more real is creating vision boards, which are representations of our goals and dreams. At their core, these boards are a collage of images, words, and phrases that capture your dreams. The intent of this collage is to make you feel truly giddy, inspiring you into focused action.

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Vision boards that are created from the space of receptivity form when we are open to messages that come when we ask for what is waiting to take shape. These visions can be in the form of colors, feelings, words, or sensations. Such vision boards are highly spontaneous and intuitive.

The second kind of vision boards are created from the space of intention, where we look into our deepest longings and actively engage in exploring, expressing, and representing these desires through different means. This is a form of manifestation.

Let’s look at what we can put on our vision boards that capture our dreams.

1. Words

Words have a mysterious way of impacting us. Whether the words describe feelings or echo states of being,  they all evoke experiences we have had or wish to have.

Look at magazines to cut out words which describe how you want to be or what you want to feel. You can even write them in big, bold, colorful letters. My favorites are ‘curiosity’, ‘flourishing’ and ‘gratitude.’

2. Quotes

Quotes are great sources of mindset formation and effectively express an idea or experience in its entirety. No matter what the context in which the words were originally said, the impact of a good quote is timeless. The readers make it their own.

Choose quotes which give rise to intense and accurate thoughts that match the state/experience you wish to arrive at or those which encapsulate your journey. These can be from your role models, favorite authors, teachers, or even something out of a song! You can even add poems.

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3. Self-Affirmations

Self-Affirmations are different from quotes since you write these on your own, for yourself. They are aimed at changing one’s worldview and undoing limiting beliefs. Research suggests that they can minimize anxiety, stress, and defensiveness associated with threats to our sense of self, while having positive neuro-psychological effects and keeping us open to improvement.

Create affirmations which start with “I am..” and challenge beliefs about money, success, ability, and skill. Write affirmations which go beyond what you think is possible and change the ‘cannot’ to ‘can’. Here are some affirmations you might find useful.

Here’re some great ideas for your inspiration: 10 Positive Affirmations for Success that will Change your Life

4. Art or Doodles

Art or Doodles created by you are one of the best ways to strengthen your desired states. Since it is you who is representing your vision through imagery, there is no better way of owning it.

You don’t have to be skilled in art to create doodles. You just have to be willing to play!

You can doodle your life map, or just use colors to intuitively express your feelings without form. Draw your future successful self, in your dream job or taking your dream vacation. And if you are game for a creative risk, doodle your favorite quote or your own affirmation.

    Source: http://louisegale.com/2014/11/marakesh-dreams-art-retreat-adventure-in-morocco/

    5. Pictures

    Pictures are a wonderful alternative to the doodles, since they can snap you out of any hesitancy you might feel towards drawing.

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    Depending on the vision you are working at fulfilling, you can put up images of associated people who are successful and images which evoke feelings you wish to experience (gratitude, joy, love, celebration, etc.).

    You can also find pictures which are exactly similar to those you see in your imagination. If you wish to increase the challenge, you can have pictures representing different actions you will take.

      Source: https://ruthchasefineart.files.wordpress.com/2013

      6. Souvenirs

      Souvenirs, as sources of inspiration, are highly potent. They can serve as reminders of your strengths, uniqueness, achievements, successful relationships, and positive associations.

      If there are souvenirs which you associate with the birth of a specific vision, those are the ones that must go on the board. You can have anything from name tags, appreciation notes, trinkets, key-chains, dry leaves, buttons, magnets, string lights, etc. The possibilities are endless. Just pick souvenirs which are pertinent.

      7. Goals and Intentions

      Goals and intentions form the basis of our visions.

      Put up the goals and intentions attached to your vision in creative ways. You can make an intention tree with the roots being the vision, the bark being your strengths, and the leaves being all the intentions you have to achieve the vision.

      You can also create a mixed media sun, with the large goal as the core and all possible actions as the rays.

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        Source: 3 Wishes Creation from Etsy.com

        8. Lists

        Lists can be fun if you make them so. Vision boards can include lists of gratitude, your bucket lists, motivational song lists, support system lists, and books to read for achieving the vision. List core practices or ideas, which help you step into the reality of your vision.

        Play with color, fonts, printing, or writing. The more vibrant you make it, the more appealing it will be.

        Final Thoughts

        Vision boards are a work in progress and will evolve with your changing visions and dreams. But the best thing about this practice is that there is no wrong way to create a vision board.

        Remember, your vision board is a gift to you from your best self. So, it has the potential of being a deeply meditative experience as well.

        Filter out distractions, put on some calming music, and dive into the magic of visioning.

        More Ideas About Visualizing Your Goals

        Featured photo credit: Estée Janssens via unsplash.com

        Reference

        More by this author

        Nilisha Mohapatra

        Nilisha is a Facilitator, Learning Designer, and Adult Learning Specialist.

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        Last Updated on July 13, 2020

        How Not to Feel Overwhelmed at Work & Take Control of Your Day

        How Not to Feel Overwhelmed at Work & Take Control of Your Day

        Overwhelm is a pernicious state largely caused by the ever-increasing demands on our time and the distractions that exist all around us. It creeps up on us and can, in its extreme form, leave us feeling anxious, stressed and exhausted.

        If you’re feeling overwhelmed at work, here are 6 strategies you can follow that will reduce the feeling of overwhelm; leaving you calmer, in control and a lot less stressed.

        1. Write Everything down to Offload Your Mind

        The first thing you can do when you begin to feel overwhelmed is to write everything down that is on your mind.

        Often people just write down all the things they think they have to do. This does help, but a more effective way to reduce overwhelm is to also write down everything that’s on your mind.

        For example, you may have had an argument with your colleague or a loved one. If it’s on your mind write it down. A good way to do this is to draw a line down the middle of the page and title one section “things to do” and the other “what’s on my mind”.

        The act of writing all this down and getting it out of your head will begin the process of removing your feeling of overwhelm. Writing things down can really change your life.

        2. Decide How Long It Will Take to Complete Your To-Dos

        Once you have ‘emptied your head,’ go through your list and estimate how long it will take to complete each to-do.

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        As you go through your list, you will find quite a few to-dos will only take you five or ten minutes. Others will take longer, often up to several hours.

        Do not worry about that at this stage. Just focus on estimating how long you will need to complete each task to the best of your ability. Here’s How to Cultivate a More Meaningful To Do List.

        3. Take Advantage of Parkinson’s Law

        Now here’s a little trick I learned a long time ago. Parkinson’s Law states that work will fill the time you have available to complete it, and us humans are terrible at estimating how long something will take:((Odhable: Genesis of Parkinson’s Law))

          This is why many people are always late. They think it will only take them thirty minutes to drive across town when previous experience has taught them it usually takes forty-five minutes to do so because traffic is often bad but they stick to the belief it will only take thirty minutes. It’s more wishful thinking than good judgment.

          We can use Parkinson’s Law to our advantage. If you have estimated that to write five emails that desperately need a reply to be ninety minutes, then reduce it down to one hour. Likewise, if you have estimated it will take you three hours to prepare your upcoming presentation, reduce it down to two hours.

          Reducing the time you estimate something will take gives you two advantages. The first is you get your work done quicker, obviously. The second is you put yourself under a little time pressure and in doing so you reduce the likelihood you will be distracted or allow yourself to procrastinate.

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          When we overestimate how long something will take, subconsciously our brains know we have plenty of time and so it plays tricks on us and we end up checking reviews of the Apple Watch 4 or allow our colleagues to interrupt us with the latest office gossip.

          Applying a little time pressure prevents this from happening and we get more focused and more work done.

          4. Use the Power of Your Calendar

          Once you have your time estimates done, open up your calendar and schedule your to-dos. Go through your to-dos and schedule time on your calendar for doing those tasks. Group tasks up into similar tasks.

          For emails that need attention on your to-do list, schedule time on your calendar to deal with all your emails at once. Likewise, if you have a report to write or a presentation to prepare, add these to your calendar using your estimated time as a guide for how long each will take.

          Seeing these items on your calendar eases your mind because you know you have allocated time to get them done and you no longer feel you have no time. Grouping similar tasks together keeps you in a focused state longer and it’s amazing how much work you get done when you do this.

          5. Make Decisions

          For those things you wrote down that are on your mind but are not tasks, make a decision about what you will do with each one. These things are on your mind because you have not made a decision about them.

          If you have an issue with a colleague, a friend or a loved one, take a little time to think about what would be the best way to resolve the problem. More often than not just talking with the person involved will clear the air and resolve the problem.

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          If it is a more serious issue, then decide how best to deal with it. Talk to your boss, a colleague and get advice.

          Whatever you do, do not allow it to fester. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away. You need to make a decision to deal with it and the sooner you do so the sooner the problem will be resolved. (You can take a look at this guide on How To Make Good Decisions All The Time.)

          I remember long ago, when I was in my early twenties and had gone mad with my newly acquired credit cards. I discovered I didn’t have the money to pay my monthly bills. I worried about it for days, got stressed and really didn’t know what to do. Eventually, I told a good friend of mine of the problem. He suggested I called the credit card company to explain my problem. The next day, I plucked up the courage to call the company, explained my problem and the wonderful person the other end listened and then suggested I paid a smaller amount for a couple of months.

          This one phone call took no more than ten minutes to make, yet it solved my problem and took away a lot of the stress I was feeling at the time. I learned two very valuable lessons from that experience:

          The first, don’t go mad with newly acquired credit cards! And the second, there’s always a solution to every problem if you just talk to the right person.

          6. Take Some Form of Action

          Because overwhelm is something that creeps up on us, once we feel overwhelmed (and stressed as the two often go together), the key is to take some form of action.

          The act of writing everything down that is bothering you and causing you to feel overwhelmed is a great place to start. Being able to see what it is that is bothering you in a list form, no matter how long that list is, eases the mind. You have externalized it.

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          It also means rather than these worries floating around in a jumbled mess inside your head, they are now visible and you can make decisions easier about what to do about them. Often it could be asking a colleague for a little help, or it could be you see you need to allocate some focused time to get the work done. The important thing is you make a decision on what to do next.

          Overwhelm is not always caused by a feeling of having a lack of time or too much work, it can also be caused by avoiding a decision about what to do next.

          The Bottom Line

          Make a decision, even if it is to just talk to someone about what to do next. Making a decision about how you will resolve something on its own will reduce your feelings of overwhelm and start you down the path to a resolution one way or another.

          When you follow these strategies to can say goodbye to your overwhelm and gain much more control over your day.

          More Tips for Reducing Work Stress

          Featured photo credit: Andrei Lazarev via unsplash.com

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