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I woke up this morning to a gorgeous sunrise peeking through my bedroom curtains. Instead of immediately heading downstairs for breakfast, I quietly embraced myself in my big blue bathrobe, tucked on my fuzzy gray slippers, and sat on the floor in the middle of my bedroom. I stopped to stare at the vision board I created last night.

Vision Board

I love arts and crafts projects. Cutting and taping and creating is a natural part of who I am and how I connect with the world around me. So, when a friend shared the idea of creating a vision board as a New Year’s discipline, I was all in. Ahead of our gathering, I searched Pinterest for ideas and examples. I perused ‘how to’ posts on the process of creating a vision board. I purchased a large cork board and some map pushpins and gathered stacks of magazines, a few personal photos and inspirational printables I’ve been saving. When the time came Friday evening to create my board alongside several close friends, I felt prepared with my steps for the journey.

What was beautiful about going through this process with others was how images and phrases sparked memories and stories and dreams in each of us. Surrounded by stacks of magazines, from travel, health & lifestyle, and home & garden issues and, yes, even a Cat Fancy or two, we each tore out pages that had images or words and phrases that resonated with each of us. We even passed pages to each other if we found something that reminded us of someone else in the room. The purpose of this activity was NOT to think about it too much. The intention was to be open and guided by that deep inner Voice making connections to what was on the page. I tend to overthink things, so although this was challenging for me at first, I found it became easier and freeing to simply be led through the process as the evening continued.

Through my first few magazines, I was drawn to more words and phrases than I was to the images in front of me. Many of the words I was drawn to related to my Words over the years (joy, trust, gratitude), as well as travel & nature. When I finally did find images I connected to, they stopped me in my tracks. They spoke to me. For some of the pictures, I couldn’t quite identify what drew me to them. Most were mysterious and sparked a curiosity in me. There was something there. I removed those pages and added them to my pile. An image of a man rowing a canoe towards a rustic old house; a woman in a gorgeous dress looking mysterious as she walked toward a centuries-old building; a pair of legs with striped boots kicked up into the sunshine with a sense of whimsy; two empty beach chairs facing a body of water. I still don’t know what each of these images means to me, but perhaps that’s the goal. They speak my vision when words are insufficient. They chose me.

After breakfast, I came back upstairs to my initial early morning posture of sitting on my bedroom floor to gaze again at my creation. But, this time, with laptop in tow, I captured these reflections:

  • A picture of a huge pink unicorn on top of a blue car with the words ‘let’s make today fun.’ This reminds me of something my mom told me awhile ago. I seek self-reflection and deep & personal dialog within my books and movies and conversations. My mom simply stated that it’s important to take time to view or read and discuss something simply for the fun of it. This image reminded me of that conversation.
  • The red stained lips with the words, ‘it’s a matter of trust,’ reminds me that my romantic relationships are directed by God and that He is always enough. If there is a man in my life, then God is still at the center of that relationship and I need to trust Him through that journey.
  • In this time of sabbatical, I have reflected on my need for space and centering. Words like ‘retreat’ and ‘dare to set boundaries’ and ‘the examined life’ inspire me to continue to make time for myself once I re-enter my job next month.
  • I counted SIX images that are similar to each other. Each of them shows a person, back turned, with a scene in front of them. A girl running down a desolate beach; a woman, hands on hips, taking in a mountain vista; a man paddling away in a boat, a woman mysteriously moving towards a gothic building; me, staring out at a field of sunflowers from last summer. I’m puzzled as to why I’m drawn to these images of people gazing at something beautiful or venturing into the seemingly unknown. Perhaps, those images tap into my sense of discovery and newness and my love for the outdoors. Whatever the message is, the frequency and similarity of these images tells me that this message runs deep within my soul. These images portray a sense of peace and connection for me.
I plan to hang my vision board in my bedroom this weekend. It will be the last thing I see before I go to sleep each night and the first thing I see when I wake up in the morning. At the center of my board are the words ‘be grateful.’ I think the point of a vision board is what you envision for yourself for the future . . . what your hopes and dreams are just around the bend. But, my board is more of a reflection of where I am now, a collage of familiar truths about myself. After all, right here, right now is where that vision begins.