If you are coming to this post anytime of the year, it’s never too late (or early) to create a vision board. I usually create a board for my business at certain times of the year (usually in the spring when I’m starting to get a feel for the direction the year is taking) Creating a vision board is not just for the new year. It’s a fun project all year around.
Some people use the words vision boards and mind mapping interchangeably. In one of her recent newsletters, Lisa Messenger, author of several books and founder of the Collective Hub, said she credited her very productive January to the extensive mind mapping she’d done in December.
Lisa states she started with a general mind map, very much like the one I describe below, then took each of the individual things she’d mind mapped about, both professional and personal: upcoming projects, books, podcast, health, family, etc. and pulled those into their own separate mind maps to go deeper into each subject.
This is a very visual way of creating a plan, whether it’s a personal or professional plan, something for hobbies or a business plan.
Total side note aka rabbit trail: We’ve lived in a world where a traditional business plan has been the main way a new startup is seen as organized, credible, ready. But maybe the traditional business plan is ready for a bit of a disruption. After all, women see things very differently, often visually and less analytical then our male counterparts. I can see extensive, well thought out mind maps having their own place in the business world as either a part of, or completely in place of, the traditional business plan.
We are tapping into different parts of our brain when we are pulling pictures, words and images to describe what is in our hearts and heads.
If I understand Lisa’s perspective, I can relate to her process. My main board, the first one, is pretty loose and free, like in the process I describe below.
When I’m writing down goals for the year, I’m thinking hard. There’s effort to be smart, strategic, figure out what is most important and the best way to achieve said goals.
But gather a group of friends, eat some good food – or throw together a salad bar like I did in late January with my friends and make it a group event!
Creating vision boards and mind maps is an easy way to gather and start creating no matter how creative one thinks they are or no. Grab scissors, pull out some magazines and start going. When I’m finished with the board, it’s easier for me to identify the priority goals for the year.
The supplies needed are minimal:
- Magazines and/or scrapbook paper
- Tape/cement glue/hot glue/glue sticks
This year, I found Elmer’s Rubber Cement on a last minute run to the grocery store. It went on smoothly without the bumps of a glue gun or the less-than-stellar-stickiness of the glue sticks. Note: it does take a minute to dry BUT it is strong enough for anything from magazine paper to the thicker scrapbook paper.
Take the time to cut, cut, and cut some more as you chat and look through the magazines. My friends and I talk together and share ideas.
At the dinner + vision board party, we were talking and sharing and not so focused on our goals on a cerebral level. As I go through magazines, I look for quotes, words, colors and pictures that seem to be drawn to me. I don’t think too extensively, I just keep cutting out what catches my eye. The goal is to get several dozen clippings.
Once I have several cutouts, I grab the poster board or the canvas and began arranging the pictures. Sometimes I’ll use some scrapbook paper to create a background with a color vibe to go with the pictures, quotes and images.
If I don’t like it, I simply keep pasting over and over. You can see in this year’s board, completed on poster board, that several layers are added on in places.
These boards are beautiful because we created them; they aren’t works of art in the sense of something we display. It’s for us, a way to jump start a new season with color, creativity, fun energy and a group of friends.
Because we aren’t so focused on an analytical level, fun things pop out. Words you may not have thought of suddenly “pop” out of a magazine. A picture inspires a new idea or something I’ve forgotten. That’s part of the fun of vision boards. It’s a great way to inspire ideas and a direction for a new season without taking itself too seriously.
It was a fun way to utilize some of the magazines collecting around my apartment. Honestly, I love to collect magazines, but they were starting to pile up. This is a fun way to use them and clear up space.😊
Now, if I want to go a step further and utilize vision boards/ mind maps like Lisa Messenger does, I’m going to take that board and create other boards with more written words and guides to figure out what is most important and what needs to get done.
Pieces of paper and lists often get lost in piles, buried or thrown away.
But there is something about goals laid out visually on poster boards that keeps me coming back, thinking, dreaming and working on the goals most important to my life and the lives of those close to me.
Here is a picture of the board I created at the party. As you may be able to see, I kept on layering until it was finally time to stop. If you don’t like how it is going, just add more layers!
Do you create vision boards? Do you have a group of friends you create with? I’d love to hear about your way. I’d love to hear your thoughts!