New Year Resolutions: Make a Vision Board

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It’s that time of year again. Time to assess the past and envision the future. Not everyone writes New Year Resolutions (my friend SuZen comes up with hers at each Solstice), but even when we do, it’s often hard to feel inspired about them. Who wants to write the same resolutions over and over again, especially when we weren’t successful in achieving them the last time we wrote them? And yet, this does help us to make a commitment to our goals. Statistics show that we retain 75% of what we write down. If the first step to achieving a goal is to remember it, then that’s obviously a very important step.

However, learning consultants say that most of us are more likely to retain ideas if we visualize them. Now, you could draw little pictures next to each resolution. Or you could make a Vision Board. I ran across this idea on Beliefnet. It wasn’t exactly a new idea to me: years ago I pasted my picture on the cover of a Writer’s Digest magazine as a way to visualize my success as a writer. I felt a little foolish doing it, but I have to admit that each time I look at that cover, I feel a little burst of self-esteem. The act of making that cover was an investment I made in myself. And every time I look at it, it has a positive effect on my psyche.

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A Vision Board Example

That’s the idea behind the Vision Board. Its purpose is to help you to “see” yourself in situations and states of being that you haven’t yet achieved. Through the use of magazine images, photographs, drawings, quotations, affirmations, passages from books, stickers, newspaper articles, memorabilia–the list is endless–you can bring to the fore your inner beliefs and desires. Just putting the vision board together will make you think about what you want out of life. Looking at it frequently will keep those intentions from fading from your mind. And you can update your vision board whenever you feel the need to re-imagine your life or solidify your goals.

There are several ways to make a vision board. One is to use a sheet of paper, poster board, cardboard or foam board and glue all your items to it. Another is to use cork board or some kind of bulletin board and use pushpins or thumbtacks to affix your items (this version is easier to update). A third way is to put together a vision board right on your computer using online or software applications.

Here is Christine Kane’s post about vision boards, including how to make them. Christine is a musician and life coach/motivator.

And here is a nifty application you can download and install from Oprah.com: O Dream Board.

IDEA: Get together with your friends and have a Vision Board Party!

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Ellen Keim

Ellen is a freelance writer, essayist and copy editor, living with three cats and a husband in Columbus, OH.

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