Vision boards; the very concept can bring you crashing back into childhood. The glossy images from magazines plastered around your room, acting as motivators towards a better you; the older you, the one who didn’t live with their parents, the person you will be once you move out. Though you may cringe at the idea of taking a page from your juvenile former self, realise that you may have had more wisdom than you thought. Used correctly, vision boards can work.

Vision boards are based on the Law of Attraction, “simply put, the Law of Attraction is the ability to attract into our lives whatever we are focusing on.”  It is a law of the universe and applies to all.  By focusing on goals and visualising success, the law states that anyone is able to achieve their goals using “the power of the mind to translate whatever is in our thoughts and materialize them into reality.” Practicing positive mental-imagery and optimism will favourably influence your daily life just as negative thoughts will have an unfavourable influence. A vision board capitalises on the Law of Attraction by bombarding you with images of your goals, encouraging your mind to absorb the images.

Img: Jen Kelchner
Putting together a vision board may make you cringe, but just think about how effective it can be to have your ideal self/world/lifestyle staring you in the face each day. It serves as inspiration if nothing else. It establishes a designated place for goals. Looking at the images will access a part of your mind that is far-removed from the doldrums of work life, prompting you to formulate plans for how to work towards a better version of yourself.

Psychology Today went so far as to test vision boards themselves. Neil Farber conducted five different experiments involving the vision board and found that the constant unhappiness with one’s current situation could be, in fact, harmful to the psyche. Constantly aspiring to things out of reach or not necessarily a part of the “greater plans behind the curtain” can leave us feeling unfulfilled and unhappy at things that are out of our control. He took issue with several aspects of the vision board, but his biggest takeaway was with the name itself. Rather than try to achieve goals by visualising, Farber concluded that it might be wiser to create an Action Board: “Fantasizing about your perfect world and your perfect life may make you feel better in the short term but will limit your ability to transform your dreams into reality.”


How to Board Up the Office

Img: The Decorista
It wouldn’t do to post up a plaster tri-fold of your dreams and/or goals. Others will definitely poke fun at you for doing so. As with anything, there are sceptics, but infusing the workplace with positive imagery can have a huge effect on your happiness in the office. There are ways to incorporate vision boards discreetly. Some tools allow you to make a desktop vision board. Bloggers have created video walkthroughs for visual learners that use various free programs or simple programs like Adobe Photoshop

For a low-tech solution, use the border of your monitor to create a vision board. For many office workers, hours are spent fixed on the computer screen. Why not capitalise on that space by adding some good imagery. Paste some tasteful cut-outs from magazines, write out reminders/phrases on sticky notes or find patterned tape to emphasise the boarder.  Focus on images or sayings that reflect how you want to feel. It’s important to instil the right feelings. Seeing an image of a perfectly decorated home may act as a motivator in the short-term, but choosing an inspiring design concept that speaks to you will awaken ideas within over time.

The architecture in Seville, Spain is unbelievably intricate and beautifully inspiring. They’re also known for their gorgeous tile-work. The energetic patterns and awe-striking effect of the city are aspects that I’d like to incorporate into my home. This image (right) would fit perfectly on my vision board:

Or I could place a small tile from the city on my desk.

Don’t shy away from non-traditional things. It can be useful to surround yourself with trinkets that inspire. Despite the negativity vision boards can instil, good things can come from a vision board that works with your personality and sense of drive.  Regardless, your work area could use some sprucing. 


Jacqui Litvan

Jacqui Litvan, wielding a bachelor's degree in English, strives to create a world of fantasy amidst the ever-changing landscape of military life. Attempting to become a writer, she fuels herself with coffee (working as a barista) and music (spending free time as a raver).
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