"New year is the glittering light to brighten the dream-lined pathway of future." Munia Khan
Some of the world's most influential thought leaders—Deepak Chopra, Gabrielle Bernstein, and Oprah, for starters—all agree that it is completely possible to turn your dreams into reality. It's called manifestation. Well, that and hard work.
It's not magic and it's not something that happens overnight. For success to happen, you have to set your intention, believe that it will become a reality, then take active steps towards making that abstract idea come to fruition. No matter what your goals are—to learn how to relax, to be more patient, to improve your relationship, to travel more, to find a job you adore, to build your dream home, or to simply be kinder to yourself—a vision board is a great tool to have during your journey.
But what exactly is a vision board? Simply put, it's a visual representation of your goals. These are typically poster-sized visuals, containing all kinds of images and text that represent something you're trying to accomplish.
Don't confuse it with a mood board, though. While similar, they are not the same. A mood board is more of a planning tool used for aesthetics like decorating a room or planning a party scheme. A vision board relates to your life direction.
"Strategic planning is worthless - unless there is first a strategic vision." John Naisbitt
There are really no rules when it comes to vision boards, since it's about crafting something that will inspire you to realize your dreams and goals on a daily basis. Some vision boards hone in on a singular idea such as travel, finances, or relationship goals, while others look at the bigger picture of what you might want the future to look like.
Does a vision board really work?
It turns out putting your goals on paper in this type of visual format can actually help you achieve them. And there is plenty of research to back it up. According to Psychology Today, mental practices (like visualization) can increase motivation, confidence, and even motor performance. In fact, in one study, researchers found that, in athletes, visualization was almost as effective as physical practice. It's also a fun arts and crafts project that allows you to see what your goals would look like once you achieve them.
Okay, ready? First, consider what matters most to you.
Take a moment of self-reflection and figure out what’s most important to you. Think about the one or two segments of your life you really want to change and focus on the words those sectors bring to mind. Then, decide if your vision board should represent short-term or long-term change. For most, yearly benchmarks are most digestible and the easiest to track progress.
Then, get out your magazines.
It's time to hunt through your old stashes for visual representations of your goal. Or, you can print images you see online. For example, if you'd like to finally take a vacation, find yourself a palm tree pic and some glue.
As you create your vision board, keep it neat and attractive. Be selective about what you place on your vision board and remember that less is often more. Use only the words and images that best represent your purpose, your ideal future, and what inspires positive emotions in you. There is beauty in simplicity and clarity. Too many images and too much information will be distracting and harder to focus on.
Or use online images.
If you prefer to go the digital route, there are plenty of free online programs to help you make your vision board. For simplicity, you could create a board on Pinterest. But if you want your digital vision board to more closely resemble a physical one, use an app like Canva, which can be accessed on your phone, tablet, or computer. You don't need to be a graphic designer—this program is free (you can pay a premium for added functionality and graphics) and is extremely beginner-friendly. Simply import your inspiration photos and arrange them into a collage on your blank digital canvas. Canva offers the option to print your board, share on social media, or even download a wallpaper for your desktop.
To make your vision board work, put it somewhere you can see it.
The trick is to choose vivid and attractive images so that your vision board regularly catches your eye. Make sure any quotes you use are short and inspiring. Once you're done, put your vision board in a place that's within your regular line of sight—your nightstand, home office, or even by your TV—because the key is to look at it as often as possible. If you're not comfortable making a big, public statement on poster board, you can use a large photo frame or a digital vision board as your laptop's backdrop or your phone's home screen.
And lastly, don't be afraid to make updates...
Though a vision board is a wonderful tool to help you achieve your goals, you can't just sit back and expect it to magically make things a reality.
Think of your vision board as an organic, living thing—rip things off, add things—and be open to variations of what you want to achieve.
Here's How to Make a Vision Board for Manifestation, oprahdaily.com, Mar. 2021 and 21 Way to Make Your Vision Board More Powerful, jackcanfield.com, 2021