For as long as I can remember, I have always felt drawn toward goal setting and intentions. Sometimes this activity resembled the magical thinking that "The Secret" series promotes, but probably more often, it had a good dose of Brian Tracy's "Maximum Achievement" as his book was a major influence in my life when I stumbled upon it in a used book store in my early twenties while I was in a deep rut where nothing seemed to be going right.
Who can really say what influences and experiences make a person and what different paths my life might have taken had I not dug deep into goal setting at that early time in my adult life. I believed then and still believe now that it is important to:
know what you want and know it so well that you understand the motivational factors behind it (sometimes knowing what we want is the hardest part or perhaps our dreams can feel so big and expansive - who are we to dream so big? I've experienced this before in which I would share goals with "friends" and rather that join in my excitement, they would take it as an opportunity to gossip about my grandiosity behind my back and that was really damaging to my self-esteem. I was very thin-skinned in my early twenties. Regardless of whether you're thin-skinned or not, I'd recommend choosing carefully who you fully share your dreams and intentions with as not everyone is always on the same wavelength as you)
to focus on it daily
set deadlines for yourself
map out actionable micro-goals that will eventually lead to the manifestation of your bigger goals (baby steps make it more attainable)
write them out often (with paper and pen) and stay positive (negative emotions really do attract more of the same)
So, with these platitudes in mind, I've created a digital vision board as a first step to get my creative juices flowing. This is not my final product, but something I can continue to work on, tidy and build upon as my vision becomes more clarified. I've set it as my desktop background so I can look at it and feel inspired each time I see it (and being that I do a lot of computer work, I`m sure I'll be seeing it often).
How do you go about creating a digital vision board and why digital? I'm beginning to like the digital medium because:
all our pictures are collected in this format already anyway
when we want an inspirational picture, we have only to search the web
there's no need to save magazine clippings anymore
there's no need to make a mess with glue sticks, ModPodge, glitter and tiny little scraps of paper everywhere (I'll leave the mess-making to my children - thank you)
when you screw up, you hit "undo" (it can be heartbreaking to dedicate hours to a physical project only to ruin it all with a misplaced spatter of puff paint - trust me, I know this all too well)
our goals change as the years roll on, why start an entirely new vision board for 2019 (unless you want to!) when you can build on what you've already created - just like in real life. New children are born, businesses change direction, we and our loved ones experience major life changes outside of our control. It can all make our vision board seem a bit irrelevant if it doesn't accurately reflect the chips we're dealt
you can keep it in multiple places - print it into a poster or onto a canvas, keep it as wallpaper on your desktop or wallpaper, wherever you are that you have a moment to focus your attention
I can't give you the tools and tips that will make you a good graphic designer, but playing on a platform such as Canva is free and fun. My first attempt for Indie Birth School last semester was a big fail because I didn't understand the first thing about graphic design and would find myself defaulting to Word because, from my former career as a paralegal, Word is what I understand best. Over the holidays I've taken the time to familiarize myself better with Canva and it's actually pretty awesome! PNG Tree gives you three free daily downloads of visually appealing images and graphics and I'm sure there are many more free resources out there that I've never even heard of. I've barely scratched the surface in my own understanding of graphic design and website building (and I can't wait to learn more). The beauty is we start now in all our imperfection and learn as we go. If we waited until we had perfected a skill, we'd never get anything done.
There's no limit to what you can create in pixels, on canvas and in your life, so what are you waiting for? Get ready to make 2018 your best year yet!