One Word and Vision Boards

How to use vision boards to set and achieve goals

For the last several years, I have chosen a word in January to give me focus for the year. Then using the word as a theme, I create a vision board to provide focus for the year. Mid year is always a good time to review and reflect on how my goals and vision is taking shape.

Choosing the word takes a bit of thought.  I want it to stretch me and ground me at the same time.  I want it to encourage and inspire. 

One year my word was JOY and the  year I moved into retirement from my school counseling job of twenty years and into entrepreneurship, I chose, ADVENTURE. My word for 2021 is Grow.

When I teach a vision board workshop, I’ve developed a process for creating a vision board that involves much more than just picking some images you like and slapping them on a board.  Instead, we talk about how we might use the one word in our lives and what it  means to us. We envision our future and the steps it would take to achieve our goals. Then we create vision boards to represent our one word and how that word will impact our efforts.  This is a great way to create focus around a central theme. In fact it is so powerful, that I have clients who tell me years later that they still look at their vision board every day and reflect on how they will create their own future and their own success.

Here are some directions for how to create vision boards.

Supplies for a Vision Board

Creating a vision board is very simple.  You will need the following supplies:

  • Poster board or cardboard–any size is fine but think about what you want to do with the board to help you decide.  Sometimes a small board that you can take with you when you travel is a good  idea.  Or maybe you want a larger board to focus on each morning or even to  hang on a wall in your house.
  • Lots of magazines–you can ask co-workers, friends, or even professional offices for their cast-offs. Alternatively in this world of digital images, you can search for and print images off the internet.  
  • Rubber cement or glue
  • Markers, crayons, colored pencils
  • Fun stuff–glitter, feathers etc
  • Music to create by…

How to Create a Vision Board

Once you have the materials you are ready to go!  You can create the board alone in your home or get together with friends. Here’s the process:

  1. Peruse the magazines and tear out the pictures and words/phrases that catch your eye.  Make a stack.
  2. Sort the items you selected and arrange the ones you like on the board.
  3. Glue them down in the pattern/collage that you have created.
  4. Add any decorative items that you wish–using gel pens, glitter, feathers etc. to finish your board.

Types of Vision Boards

You can create a board around a theme, a word, a goal or multiple goals.  You can use pictures, quotes, even photographs. There are no rules for vision boards.  Here are the basic vision boards that you could consider:

  1. A board that centers around a certain goal. You might have a goal around getting a new job or losing weight.
  2. A board that is more general and open to possibilities.  This might be a board that gives a certain feeling or atmosphere such as serenity or adventure.
  3. A board that is created around a certain theme or even one word that will inspire you for a period of time.
  4. A transition board.  This might be the board you would make as you move into retirement or motherhood or college or a new job.

How to Use the Vision Board

  1. Put it in a prominent place.
  2. Focus on the board on a regular basis.  Incorporate it into your daily review of goals and action steps.
  3. Add to the board as you feel inclined.

I have used this activity in various workshops and training classes and it is always a hit!  Have you ever made a vision board?  How have you used it?  I’d love to hear in the comment section.

Want more strategies for stepping into your power and living an intentional life? Here’s a workbook to help you gain focus:

Workbook on Living an Intentional Life

Grab your copy HERE


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Dream Achiever: Not Your Average Vision Board Workshop

  1. Your Mission: Your Why
  2. Who You Want to BE: Your Core Characteristics
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Date: Friday, January 22, 11-12:30

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  1. Determine Your Ideal Client
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