It’s about that time in the year when people start forgetting about/giving up on those New Years Resolutions they promised themselves, as the prospects of that fresh start that were once more hopeful are now wearing off, and the reality of proper dieting and working out for that beach body have become much more of a Herculean task than they originally thought. I stopped making resolutions a long time ago because I didn’t want to promise myself a ridiculous goal that I’d inevitably fail to achieve. There had to be a better way to actually achieve some of these goals. Enter, the vision board.
To start. I never really saw the point of vision boards. Like, I knew the purpose, but I didn’t really see how it would help. When I made my first one, I was fresh off a devastating break up and like any friend watching you hurt, one of my buddies tried to “help” by dragging me off to a yoga and vision board workshop. I went because, honestly, I had nothing better to do. And it was more productive than sitting at home and feeling bad for myself.
I’ve never been one for something like a vision board. I don’t know, I guess I always saw it as a pointless exercise in being a “basic white girl”. Quite frankly, up until recently, I always felt self growth a pretty silly thing. I ashamedly admit that now. But that’s what this whole piece is about.
So I went thru the motions of it all. Killing time. Desperate to do something to get my mind off what was going on. I cried thru most of the yoga, not really getting much out of it, I thought at the time. Then out came the boxes and boxes of magazines to cut up for our vision boards. I didn’t really have a focus for mine. I just put stuff on it that I wanted. I wasn’t making any new years resolutions (even though this was held at that time of year). Because well, you know where I stand on that. I just threw stuff on there that I wished I had. I didn’t really have any intention of going after those things either. As far as I thought, I was just doing something to pass the time and get out of the house.
I finished my vision board by covering it with things I dreamed of and wanted for myself. I sat it on my dresser against the wall and for the past two years, I’ve glanced over at it from time to time. I figured if nothing else, it would at least remind me about something positive to focus on. Which at times, it did.
The funny thing is that recently I noticed something. The last time I walked past it, I realized that I had accomplished a few things on that vision board, without planning it! How funny. Maybe it did work! But as I looked over it, the negative inner me thought, it’s just a coincidence, I had only accomplished a few things on the board. However, over the next few weeks, as I passed by it, I kept realizing that I had actually accomplished a lot more dreams than I had thought.
There were big wins, the more obvious ones like my success with weigh loss. And there were little ones too. Then there were the ones that didn’t make themselves so obvious. The more I thought about the board, the more I was seeing wins, just not how I envisioned them coming about.
Themes that jump out at you
Hot New Body, Gets in the Best Shape of Her Life, Sexy New You, Make-Over You
….I wanted to deal with my weight gain.
Date smarter, Powerful Passions, More Sex!, Romance
…I wanted to find love.
Seek Happiness, Bliss, Facing the Darkness
…I wanted to find happiness and shake those demons.
Travel, Japan, Asia, London, Alaska, Seattle
…I wanted to continue to get out there and travel (even start this blog).
Second Look, Grow
…I wanted to improve on the things I didn’t like about myself or learn to accept them.
…I wanted to get more back to basics, start switching to healthier, natural foods & products. I also wanted chickens!
A Dream Fulfilled
…I guess this one could apply to any of the above.
Many of these are clumped together as I realized there were overarching themes. But then so many of them overlap in more ways that I can explain here. So many nuances. Some more obvious than others. Some more easy to accomplish. Some impossible or impractical. Some outside of my financial abilities. All things I wanted. Dreamed of. But didn’t really intend to do anything about at the moment. Or attempt to accomplish any time soon if at all. Remember, I wasn’t taking this seriously. Plus, I’m a dreamer. Not a doer. I know that, always have. I’ve been told a lot that so many things aren’t possible and with my natural inclination to dream and not pursue, I easily dismissed all this. But a dreamer still likes to dream, so it was nice to just do that at the time.
Over the past two years, there were a few of these “dreams” that I went for, the ones that were easier to accomplish for sure, like getting chickens. However, several long years of research and finding reasons to not pull the trigger, kept me from doing something so simple. I’ve had those sweet hens for many months now and all the prep work and stressing over actually getting them, seems so trivial today. They are seriously the most low maintenance creatures I’ve ever encountered. Going to Alaska was another difficult/simple thing. I wanted to go, but I couldn’t afford to go. I had a friend who recently moved there and I knew I could go to visit her, nothing stood in my way except money. And money typically is the most common thing in my way that keeps me from doing much. I decided to pool all my summer school money together last summer and put it towards a plane ticket. I basically worked for 6 weeks for one trip, but it was an incredible experience. Maybe I didn’t pull off Japan or London, but I’ve already been to those two places and Seattle was originally a stop-over for my Alaska trip that I just ended up not being able to swing. I checked a big one off the list though and that’s all I care about. It’s a start of momentum with travel. As for dating & romance, I had never really casually dated and wanted to make a point of doing that before another long term relationship popped up. I got Tinder and started swiping. I was terrified to go on basically a blind date and I did it more than once! To my surprise, I had some good experiences. And I also had some weird ones. I probably won’t do it again but I don’t feel like I’ve missed out on that part of my life anymore. I’ve always been very sure of what I want when it comes to love and that experience just solidified any questions I had lingering. Love was one of the things I wanted but found differently that I had planned. Though no planning of my own, I stumbled on self love and that unlocked a whole lot more than I had imagined possible!
It’s funny to put into words. But I guess that’s why I’m telling you to do it. It put my dreams in my face every day and I guess that was enough to keep me thinking on it. I have fresh eggs daily, I’m 50 pounds thinner, I don’t really care about finding someone because I’m happy with myself, I’ve finally gotten my travel blog live, and I’m building towards something. Most importantly, all aspects of my life are moving forwards where they weren’t before. I’m better for it, that silly vision board. So go on dreamers and dream! Get out those old magazines and glue down all of your fantasies. Pursue them. Or not. Just don’t let yourself forget about who you want to be. And if you’re as lucky as me, you might not even know you’ve lifted a finger and in two years, you’ve leveled up!