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I love the start of a new year. So many possibilities, opportunities, adventures and experiences lay ahead. Although I consider myself an optimist, I would still jump at the chance to help direct how my year is going to unfold.

If someone were to tell me there was a tool out there to do just that, then I'd be willing to explore it. Would you do the same or would you prefer to just see what happens in 2018?

I've discovered that some people love setting goals around this time of year and others hate it - like seriously despise it. Whatever category you fall into is fine by me, but I believe anyone can benefit from making a vision board. It's a physical, tangible reminder of what you want the coming months to reflect.

When I told Mildred from book club that I was excited to begin working on my 2018 vision board, her response was an expression of sheer horror. Did she think I said Ouija board? Whatever. That lady is so negative. All I have to say is that you can't knock it until you try it. Boy is it fun, and it truly works for me!

books and magazines

I made something like a vision board for the first time back in my 20s. It was essentially a one-page poster covered with images of things that made me happy, and I used it as room decor. It wasn't until 2017, though, that I decided to try it again with images representing goals rather than things I simply liked. I signed up for a friend's vision board event (think room full of fun women, tasty hors d'ouevres, and table space with piles of magazines) and had a ball.

We were given time to think about our goals, and then look through magazines, catalogs, photos we had brought, etc. for images that resonated with those goals. We simply cut out those images and pasted them on a poster board. Anyone can cut and paste pieces of paper with images they like (think kindergarten here - so don't tell me you're not artistic and can't cut and paste!)

When I left the event, I went home and immediately taped up my board to a wall where I could see it every day - and be inspired to stay focused on things that brought me happiness. The photo above is a snippet of how that vision board turned out so you can get an idea of the project.

book and snacks on a couch

This process was different from my typical goal setting; I could see my goals every time I walked by the poster. They were no longer just written on a page in a notebook that was shoved in my desk which I'd maybe pull out a few times a year to revisit. Having a visual representation of my goals not only served as a daily reminder, but gave me a level of accountability because my family could see it and ask how XYZ was going.

So, how did I do with my goals in 2017, you ask? Quite well, I'd say! I reviewed my old board a few weeks ago in preparation for the new 2018 vision board I'd be making at a friend's home (this time with couples so my husband got to join in on the fun). I evaluated how my goals either needed to be carried over from 2017 or modified based on any accomplishments or new interests. I had been a success, especially with my plan to lap swim more often, and looked forward to taking myself to the next level in the new year.

woman looking out a window

Regardless of how you choose to envision your year (or don't), I wish you great things in 2018. If you'd like to give vision boarding a try, though, and live near Silicon Valley, I can put you in touch with a friend who has an event coming up later this month. Otherwise, I recommend trying the project at home, or simply searching "vision board" on the Internet to see how people craftier than myself approach their boards.

I don't believe there's a right or wrong way to do a vision board; it's all about what works for you. But I can say with confidence that it's certainly worth the time. Just a few hours can result in 12 months of a whole lot of direction.


About Elizabeth Kemp

Elizabeth KempAfter a successful career in high tech PR, Marcom, and an MBA to her credit, Elizabeth Kemp decided to follow her passion for the ultimate product launch, becoming a full-time mom to two amazing children. Along the way, she has learned the value of exchanging helpful ideas and information to make life a little brighter. She recently debuted the popular blog litetherapy.org as a forum for sharing fun finds and doing her part to spread happiness around the world. Elizabeth loves to laugh and has a positive attitude (most of the time). She’s currently raising her family in the San Francisco Bay Area with her kind-hearted husband of 24 years.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/litetherapy
Website: https://litetherapy.org
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