Monday, 4 September 2017

Steps For Creating A Vision Board: Reshaping Your Life

When we are clear on what we really want out of life, the universe will suddenly align in new, unexpected and mysterious ways to make things happen that previously might have seemed unattainable, highly unlikely or simply impossible. Even before I created my first vision board, I have seen this principle (of the Determined Mind) work its magic in countless areas of my life (job opportunities, travels, dumpster finds, the entire journey to moneyless living, etc). Now I am also starting to see that a vision board can serve as a great (daily) reminder of our hopes, dreams and priorities in life. It can help us remain focused on what we truly want rather than what we don't want, and it can also help us catch any self-sabotage, subconscious resistance, or doubts that might crop up (as well as blind spots, double standards and hypocrisy) so that we can nip them in the bud.

As with most things in life, the actual process of creating a vision board is far more powerful than the final product, because it brings us clarity along the way. A clear, uncluttered, conscious and determined mind is what we need to create the life of our imagination. It works because when we are clear on what we truly want and focus on those aspects of our lives, we no longer resist whatever else happens. When all our focus is on what truly matters to us - what makes us feel truly alive - then everything else pales into insignificance. It doesn't matter anymore. It falls away. It literally disappears from our world. If you no longer give it any attention, it ceases to exist. That is how you rebuild your world. You can starve the parts of your life that no longer serve you by just refocusing your attention on what matters to you most.

Attention is always selective, so it's not a matter of either focusing your attention or not. We are always in the process of creating a new world, whether we do it consciously or not. Therefore it is important to focus with awareness, so that you can create consciously. And a vision board is a great way to get started.

Here are my personal guidelines for creating a vision board:

1. Think about what you really, really want. This is probably the hardest (and most important) part. Sometimes we think we want certain things, but upon closer inspection we just believe we want them. Maybe we really want something different. Also, sometimes we set the bar too low, due to limiting beliefs. What would you really want if there were no limitations? What makes your heart sing when you think about it? What would make you excited to be alive? How would you like to feel in this world? What kind of world would you like to live in?
Make sure you don't go for too much comfort. Remember that comfort kills growth. What would make all the pain worthwhile? What would make you forget about it altogether? If it's something you can find within your own heart, then that would be even better. No one can ever take that away.
2. Make a selection of your own favorite photos (and perhaps some from the Internet for things that haven't happened yet, or that you don't have suitable photos for); the ones that make you feel so enthusiastic and happy that you forget about everything else - even if just for a moment. Photos that make you laugh, or that remind you of good times or good qualities of yourself. Next, match those photos to the themes you selected for your vision board.
3. Write a detailed description of all the themes so that it is clear in your mind what you are going for. I kept adjusting the description until just reading the text made me feel enthusiastic and happy about the future. You can read the description I wrote for my themes in the second half of this post.
4. For each theme add affirmations, action steps and perhaps even powerful songs that make you feel happy, enthusiastic, empowered or peaceful - such as this one.
The most important steps to manifest your dreams are step 5 and 6:
5. Make sure your thoughts, words and actions are all in alignment with your goals. This helps you to stay mindful and alert of possible limiting beliefs that need to be worked through as well as self-sabotage (e.g. inaction).
6. Completely let go of any outcome and realize that your life is already wonderful as it is. Enjoy the process of becoming.
Whenever I look at my vision board - because of the happy pictures I have chosen - I am reminded how great my life has already been so far and I would not want to waste a moment of it by focusing on what *might* be missing. If you focus on what is missing in your life, you actually miss everything that is already right here, right now, making your life wonderful. Looking at my vision board I also feel excited about what's yet to come - on such a deep level that I know and feel that I would not want to settle for anything less than the highest vision (depicted on the board). If it were to require some time to materialize, it would be so worth the wait - no matter how long it would take. And even if my dreams would never materialize at all, it still wouldn't matter because I am living my truth authentically. This is what life is about for me. Time no longer matters when you have chosen your highest vision. When even time loses its significance, looking at the vision board makes you feel like you are already there, celebrating your life as what you envisioned. And when your mind is no longer in the way, that is the truth.
7. Review your board from time to time and change it as you change.

Creating a personal vision board is a fun, empowering and freeing experience. The mind is a powerful force. It is important to remember that. Therefore, take it seriously, and spend some contemplative time on the first step. Your focus can literally change the world. If we make our focus too narrow or focus on things that only benefit ourselves, we run the risk of becoming blind for others' experiences, and others' suffering. However, if we focus on creating values that benefit all beings, then we can transform the world together.

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