Have you ever whiled away a couple of hours creating a vision board? Chopping up old magazines and probably wasting quite a bit of that time trying to find just the right image to perfectly encapsulate your thoughts. The wonderful house, the foreign holidays, the special time with loved ones, boundless energy and good health, fulfilling career, more money. Whatever is important to you at that time.
There’s no doubt that these can be powerful tools in deciding just what it is you want from your future, but, and this is a big but, unless you plan how you are going to get there, this is just going to be a rather attractive dust collector on your wall. If you’re a vision board devotee, you may find the idea of minimising the importance of it uncomfortable, but, bear with me. By all means create your vision board, but don’t rely on that being the end of it. Take the next step and create an Action Board. You may be familiar with creating actions towards an outcome in a business situation, perhaps even in the visual format of a Gannt chart or similar, so think how it would feel to have actions towards your future in an easily and quickly absorbed format?
What is an Action Board?
Simply put, it’s a pictorial representation of what you are actually going to do to get the things you want. Take each long- term goal and break it down into steps you can achieve on a monthly or weekly basis. You can use the magazines again, but, since it pays to do this regularly, what about using an app like Pinterest, PicMonkey or good old brightly coloured post it notes that you can move around, add or take away?
By looking at this on a regular, preferably daily basis, it trains your subconscious to focus on specific outcomes and actions and be more open to opportunities.
Perhaps one of your goals is to spend more time with family. What are the active, positive steps you are going to take to make this happen? How about committing to arranging a family outing every month? What date, where?
You want to change jobs or career. Decide to apply for 3 jobs this week. Arrange a meeting with your boss to discuss promotion. Put aside time in your diary to research the courses and funding you need to retrain.
You want to be healthier. Commit to running 5 days a week. What time of day? Schedule it in your diary. Plan and prepare healthy meals for a week every Sunday night. Cut down to one glass of wine a day.
Of course, these are only suggestions – you need find the right things which will motivate you and are realistic for your situation. And getting the right action board will take a little practice but the results will be so worth it.
Remember – Vision is great, Action is Better