Vision Board exampleThis is the time of year that I get together with some girlfriends to make vision boards for the coming year. While you can make a vision board any time, I like creating one at the beginning of the year to set my intention and guide my meditations for the year. It’s also a time to take stock of the previous year. If you aren’t in the habit of doing this, it’s a great way to wrap up a year and get your head around a new one.

To begin, I usually page through my journal and my calendar and make a list of everything I’ve accomplished or survived. Some years, it’s a great long list. This past year it was less about accomplishing things and more about putting one foot in front of the other, as we lost five family members starting with Buddy Girl.

It always helps me to look back over the year, reflect on things that were wonderful, acknowledge what was not, and simply take stock.

Then I can start setting a vision for the new year and what I would like to see happen.

Vision boards aren’t magical. You don’t cut out a photo of a Mazerati, paste it on fomecore, and the next morning one shows up in your driveway. But they do seem to have a way of illuminating our life’s path, perhaps because the process taps into our subconscious desires in a way that making lists simply can’t.

Life coach Martha Beck says that the best way to use a vision board is to make one, set it aside and forget about it, then look at it a year or two later. Lucia Cappachione, author of Visioning: Ten Steps to Designing the Life of Your Dreams, advocates a more active approach, putting the vision board in a place you’ll see it every day and looking at it during meditation. One of my friends, a Wise Woman and artist, puts hers facing her exercise bike. Mine is usually in my kitchen, where I can see it every day.

However you choose to use it, think of a vision board as a tool for helping you get clearer about what you want, where you are going, and how you might get there.

Here’s Lucia’s book, if you want to learn more about her approach: