What Good is a Vision Board? (Plus Creative Tips!)
As someone who values creativity, putting together a vision board sounded like a great excuse to pull out the craft bin and have some fun—and that’s exactly what my friend Katie and I did one evening at the start of the new year.
While it took me a weekend to sort through photos and decide on what to include on my board, it was still worth the entire CREATIVE process. However, there were two BIG problems I encountered...
#1. What good is a vision board if it ends up sitting in your closet collecting dust?
Yep. That's exactly what happened to my vision board right after I made it. My plans were to hang it in my office; however, my creative space was in disarray as I slowly continued the remodeling I had started last fall (in between school and work).
January and February rolled around and I still hadn't looked at my vision board, until one Saturday my 8-year-old daughter made a stubborn observation...
"Mom, if you don't clean your office, you're never going to hang your vision board! And before you know it 2018 will be over and then what good will it be?"
Point taken from the mini-me with her hands placed firmly on her hips. And so, we cleaned my office that day (though the remodel still isn't fully finished) and we hung my vision board on the wall above where my desk would eventually go.
THE ANSWER: Be PURPOSEFUL in where you put your vision board! Also, have a friend (or kiddo in my case) keep you accountable to your goals and dreams (thanks Little J).
#2. What good is a vision board if you never act on what you see?
I have been one to write out goals in years past and have them fall to the wayside as they are stuffed in a drawer or shoved between the pages of a forgotten book. This year, however, I decided to do things differently! Christine Kane shared that "A vision board, at its core, is a visual representation of all the things that you want to do, be, and have in your life."
While this is a noble idea, action must accompany your vision in order for it to become a reality. Joel Barker once said, “Vision without action is a dream. Action without vision is simply passing the time. Action with Vision is making a positive difference.”
The art & science behind your vision board...
Okay, that makes sense. Vision + Action = Success, but did you know that simply looking at the images on your vision board has the potential to trigger parts of your brain to actually produce action?
Sounds strange, right? Well, in an article from the Smithsonian about how the brain processes artwork and images, researchers asked several participants to examine certain aspects of a painting while they were hooked up to a special device that monitored brain activity. Individuals were directed to focus on the wrist of the person depicted in the artwork; in doing so, it was discovered that the visual cues from the painting stimulated parts of the brain that “controlled the observers’ own wrists.”
In other words, what we look at can have a direct impact on our physical responses.
As Joyce Meyer said, “Where the mind goes the man follows,” and what we spend our time looking at and talking about directly affects our mind and eventually our actions.
THE ANSWER: Not only is it important to visualize the end goal, but it’s also important to imagine the processes of getting there. This prompts our brain to take actionable steps. Do you desire to lose weight or establish a new career? Write out a plan with deadlines (or lifelines as I like to call them) and put it on your vision board!
CREATIVE TIPS & RESOURCES:
1. Keep it simple. While writing out goals is admirable, don’t overwhelm yourself. Start out small and work your way up if need be!
2. Use magazines AND the internet! If magazines are hard to come by, scour the internet for ideas. Just be sure to check the policy of the website before copying images to your computer (I like to use CC0 images that are available on websites like pexels.com).
3. Add actionable steps. Secure decorative envelopes to your vision board that you can use to hold action steps for each specific goal (i.e. health & fitness, finances, family, spiritual, career, etc.). Review these steps regularly and add due dates to your calendar to help you move forward towards your goals. For example, I added a weekly savings chart with the amount I plan to save every week to one of my envelopes. *See example image above.
4. Make it pretty! Okay, I have to admit that this is one of my favorite parts. I literally added glitter, twine, silk flowers, and battery operated lights to my board just to give it some glam! (Gotta love the dollar section at Target!)
5. New to Vision Boards? Check out Christine Kane's article on How To Make a Vision Board. In it, she also includes 3 Types of Vision Boards to get you started!
So far, since hanging up my vision board and writing out my action steps, I have been successful in committing to at least three of my top goals and am well on my way to pursuing the rest!
If this blog post was helpful to you, please let me know! I would also love to hear your ideas on what has worked for you and your vision board—or if you have plans to make one!
 Kane, C. (n.d.). What is a vision board? Retrieved from http://christinekane.com/what-is-a-vision-board/
 Garlic, I. (2011). QOD. Retrieved from http://iangarlic.com/2011/05/24/qod-vision-without-action-is-a-dream-action-without-vision-is-simply-passing-the-time-action-with-vision-is-making-a-positive-difference-joel-barker/
 Tucker, A. (2012). How does the brain process art? Retrieved from https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/how-does-the-brain-process-art-80541420/
 Meyer, J. (2013, January 8). Twitter @JoyceMeyer. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/joycemeyer/status/288857630338871296