Why Vision Boards Work - Any Why You Should Create One

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Let's chat about what an ordinary day of adulting really looks like, shall we? You wake up via an annoying cell phone alarm, after ever-so-gracefully hitting the snooze button about three times. Then you stumble out of bed and commence your daily routine of making yourself look half way decent and head to work. After a long day's work, you come home, have dinner and shoot the breeze (possibly watching Netflix or Hulu) until you go to sleep and do it all over again the next day. 

Here's the deal - it's incredibly easy to live that same exact story over and over again - day in and day out. 

While doing something differently, going on adventures, pursing new goals, or learning something new look amazing as you're scrolling Instagram, they all TAKE EFFORT. It takes a significant amount of your time and energy planning and executing for these things to actually become a reality. (Oh, and you also have to be consistent because if you're not careful, you could start planning and then your goals can disappear in an instant if the roller coaster of life get's in the way.)

That's where vision boards come in. 

A vision board is a visual representation of all the things you want to accomplish over a certain period. While it's common use a simple poster board to build your vision, you can create a vision board using any medium that fits best with your style. I like to do create a vision board at the beginning of the year instead of setting a New Year's Resolution because I love having a huge canvas each year to set goals in every area of my life

Creating a vision board could be just what you need to break out of the every day snooze fest, here's why:

 

Vision Boards Give You A Reason To Reflect On What You Want Out of life.

In any given day, you can point out the things you don't really enjoy about your life. You can also daydream about things you'd want to accomplish if you had only the chance. Thinking about these things every day means absolutely nothing if you don't make an effort to fix them.

Creating a vision board is your opportunity to reflect on your life - the good and the bad - and redesign your story. Through your vision board you can set goals to do more of the things you enjoy about your life and less of the things you don't enjoy. Your vision board is your escuse to take a moment to think about your needs and focus entirely on your action plan to make it happen.

 

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Your Vision board serves as a constant reminder of your goals.

The real power in vision boards is the daily interaction with them. If you put your vision board in a place where you'll get to see it every day, it will begin to train your mind to think about the things you want, even when you're not necessarily thinking about them or focusing on them. While you may have had difficulty focusing on accomplishing your goals, your vision board will be your point of focus. Depending on what you put on your board, you're placing yourself in the position to solve those problems or focus on those goals even when you're not trying. 

 

Your Vision Board Is Your Reminder to live a full life

The most powerful thing about the vision board is that it's your own blank canvas and you're absolutely unlimited in what you can put on it. Your business goals can sit right next to your travel goals, next to your money goals, next to your relationship goals. When  you look at your board, you're not only thinking about the home you want to buy, but you're also thinking about how you're going to align your money habits to reach those travel goals and buy your first home. With a vision board, you begin to view your life as one full picture and it's your job to put all the pieces together in perfect harmony. 

Vision boards are powerful for many different reasons, but the biggest value you get from a vision board is the effect it has on your mindset. The second you decide to create a vision board you are making a consious decision to put yourself and your needs first. You make the decision to take control of you life. You assert your strength over your life. When you create your vision board, you paint a picture of your future - you tell yourself and the universe that this is what you will have. And even if you don't hit the moon, you'll surely land amongst the stars. 

xoxo

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August Blog + Traffic Report: Doubling Our Traffic, Growing Our Email List & Making an Impact

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August Blog Progress Report

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Oh August! After our mid-year brunch last month, I felt incredibly inspired to get back to basics and create experiences that would allow women to come together to share ideas and goals. Every time I spend time with my #ThriveSquad, I leave feeling ready to create the next BIG THING. 

August was a sprinting kind of month where I spent my time really focusing on the launch of our latest women's empowerment and vision-focused event, Visualize Your Victory. Hosting in-person events is one of Thrive Lounge's primary monetization and community building strategies because we're able to meet our #ThriveSquad in person and learn what their goals are so we can better help them in the future. We also love when they meet each other and those meetings turn into partnerships, collaborations and lasting friendships. (No one networks like our ThriveSquad :) 

So, how did we do on our August goals? 

 THE RECAP - AUGUST GOALS:

  • Have A Successful Blogger Week Talk
  • Launch Visualize Your Victory to local community groups
  • Curate elite speaker list and activities to create a stunning event

 

Have a successful blogger week talk

Blogger Week is an annual conference held in Washington, DC that helps new and experienced bloggers learn how to create, market, grow and monetize their blogs. I was selected to give a talk at Blogger Week about how to create a Big, Hairy, Audacious Vision for your blog. The purpose of my session was to help bloggers thing bigger about the impact they would make with their blog. Rather than thinking of your blog as a fun little project, I encouraged people to think about their blog in terms of the impact they will have on people and how that tied to their personal mission and vision. I got really vulnerable with attendees, I told them my stories of failure, poverty and hunger (like no food on the table kinda hunger) and how that experience drives me to be there for others who may be suffering in that way. Because of my story, I feel pulled to help people work towards their vision. The talk was incredibly successful as I got attendees chatting with the people around them and sharing their story in small groups. At one moment, people started sharing their experiences with weight loss, homelessness and abuse - and how that empowers them to build something to help others. That was the moment I knew I accomplished my goal. 

 

MARKETING FOR VISUALIZE YOUR VICTORY

I had the idea for a fabulous rooftop event where attendees envisioned themselves 5 years from now having accomplished your 5-year goals. Attendees would be encouraged to introduce themselves as a NY Times Bestselling authors or successful millionaire entrepreneurs. This month, my goal was to get the marketing together for this event including social media images, quotes and digital flyers for all the speakers. If you follow us on Instagram, you'll know I crushed that goal! 

 

CURATE ELITE SPEAKER LIST AND ACTIVITIES FOR Visualize your Victory

Finding speakers for an upcoming event can be somewhat of a struggle if you don't plan on doing a call for speakers, especially since we all know the speakers can make or break an event. I am always nervous when I pitch speakers to be apart of an event because, like most people, I don't like rejection (However, I am noticing the more pitching I do, the less affected I am by rejection. It's slowly becoming this thing that just happens when you put yourself out there over and over again.) The speaker list and activities grew slowly as I researched and reached out to each speaker individually. However, by the end of the month, I was incredibly proud of the list of speakers, which included many women that I looked up to and hoped to collaborate with. 
 

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PAGE VIEWS:

Last Month: 1,425
This Month: 3,147 (120% higher than last month)

 

EMAIL LIST:

Last Month: 506
This Month:  748 (47% higher than last month)

 

INSTAGRAM FOLLOWERS:

Last month: 398
This month: 500 (25% increase over last month)

 

3,147 Page views, 500 Instagram Likes, 748 Email List

TOP TRAFFIC SOURCES:

72% SOCIAL MEDIA

  • 93% Pinterest
  • 3% Facebook
  • 3% Instagram
  • 1% Twitter

25% DIRECT LINK

3% ORGANIC SEARCH

<1% CAME FROM RANDOM PLACES ON THE INTERWEBS

 

TOP PAGES VISITED THIS MONTH:

Now that we've been working on the site for almost a year (and tracking our progress the entire time), it's easy to see the clear winner in where our site traffic is coming from. Even though I have a Master's in Analytics, you don't really need it to see that Pinterest is where the vast majority of our new traffic is coming from! This month, we decided to stop working on our other social media accounts all together, only using Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for connecting with people, but doing the majority of our social media activity on Pinterest. 

 

EMAIL LIST:

In April 2017, we made the switch from Mailchimp to ConvertKit for our email service and this completely skyrocketed our email list. I love how Convertkit makes it incredibly each to send freebies to your audience and create automations like the one I use for the 5-day vision challenge and the web forms are completely customizable so it matches the rest of my site. Here's a look into how our email collection has grown since switching over to ConvertKit:

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Another huge contributor to our email list growth has been our two meetup groups, located in Washington, DC. We host two meetup groups that service content creators, My IG is LIT and District Content Creator Collective. These groups allow up to connect with our target audience on a personal level to understand what their goals are - this gives us the insider scoop to be able to product things and create content that best fits their needs.
 

SOCIAL MEDIA

We were originally tracking our Facebook following, but after blogging + social media sharing for the past few months, we've realized that our target audience (at least locally) is on Instagram. This is where we meet local people who are movers + shakers and that's where we've chosen to have our fun conversations with friends and connect. So, it's no surprise we've stopped tracking our Facebook following (a platform we don't really use to connect) and started tracking our Instagram following. :)

This month, we saw a nice bump in social media following from speaking at the Blogger Week conference. When you have a great talk and inspire others to follow their dreams, they are happy to follow you on social and keep up with you to see what else you have going on long after the event. 
 

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  • Make Visualize Your Victory a huge success!

 

WHAT WE LEARNED:

Every tiny step you take contributes to your brand as a whole and each interaction you have with others is an opportunity to share your vision for your future and to help someone discover theirs. Speaking at Blogger Week was an unpaid opportunity, but it gave me an opportunity to take what I normally share in blog posts and bring it to life in person in front of a brand new audience. Many of those women joined my email list and followed me on social media others bought tickets to Visualize Your Victory and everyone (I hope) benefited from my talk - which was my biggest goal for this month. 

Overall, I learned one thing - Don't take your opportunities to make a difference lightly. Take it seriously, practice out loud, on paper and in the mirror, record yourself and listen to the recording over and over until you it's just right. For some, you'll only get one opportunity to make a life-changing difference. Make sure you do it right. 

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5 Unique Ways To Create A Vision Board That Fits Your Style

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No matter how many people talk about their success using vision boards (the great Oprah included), vision boards can appear from the looks of the materials to be completely non-magical right? I mean, seriously, it's made of white poster board and some old magazine clippings, there's no gold, silver or diamonds involved. But no one can deny, that no matter how flimsy, these little boards with tiny pieces of paper glued to them have the power to change lives. 

Vision boards have a unique way of keeping your personal goals front and center - and top of mind throughout the year. (There is no way you're going to forget that you wanted a promotion when you have a poster boards that says P-R-O-M-O-T-I-O-N in huge letters sitting above your nightstand.) Every time you look at your goals, you'll think about them - and that gives your mind to think of new ways to solve your largest challenges. 

When you create a vision board you are forcing yourself to take some time to think about what you really want out of life. That time of internal reflection that you take to cut out all of life's distractions and focus on your personal needs is the first powerful point in accomplishing your goals because you take the time to decide on those goals. You are focusing your mind on what you really want. Then, when your vision board is complete, putting your finalized creation somewhere that you'll be able to see it every day constantly reminds you of those goals throughout the year.

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This is great news because you don't have to settle for the white poster board that most gurus opt for when creating their board! Nothing against the white poster board at all, but we're all about being true to you, here! 

Here are a few ways to infuse a little bit of "you" into your big vision this year:

 

If you're financially conscious, create your vision on a cork board.

I'm a huge advocate of being frugal any chance I get so a cord board is my canvas of choice when I create my vision board. I create a vision board every December so I could easily go through 50 poster boards over the course of my lifetime (hopefully many more). However, by my second year of creating a vision board, I opted for a beautiful cork board that I can use year after year. (Pro tip: This also looks really good if you want to hang it up in your bedroom or somewhere else prominently visible in your home.) In the first week of December, I take a look at my vision board and take account of what I've accomplished and what I haven't tackled yet. Then I remove the old quotes and images and re-use that same cord board to build my vision for the next year. 

 

For the designers, build it on canva.

Some people are designed-inclined. (Yes, I'm looking directly at all of you Pinterest pinners with your perfectly designed pins that you make look effortless.) For all of those fortunate enough to have some real design skills (or just enjoy creating beautiful things), you can head over to Canva to create a beautiful design. Canva is a design tool that you can use to create pretty much anything! You can upload pictures of you and your family, your grandest relationship goals, add in your favorite vacation spots and type in your very own quotes. Then (the icing on the cake) you can order a printout of your creation right there on the site. (Pro-tip: If you're on the computer a lot, save your vision board as your screensaver. Remember, the goal is to put your board somewhere that you'll see it daily.)

 

If you like to journal, build your vision inside your personal journal.

I try to journal at least once a week. (I used to journal daily, but hey, who's keeping track?) I love blank journals with motivational quotes on the cover like this one. In my book bag, whether I actually get around to journaling or not, there is a little purple and blue journal that use to I write out my thoughts and feelings about my days. If you're known to carry a journal around, like me, why not take your big vision and create mini vision board right on the inside of your journal. That way, as you write in your journal, you can reflect on your goals. (Pro Tip: I also carry around an old school paper calendar like this one. That could also be a great place to put your vision.)

 

If you don't want to share your goals, use an envelope strategy.

Sometimes you have goals that you don't want to share with others. Maybe you have a special goal that you want to keep all to yourself until you're ready to share. How about rather than not putting the goal up on your board at all, put it in an envelope and put the envelope on your board. That way, it can still be a part of your big vision AND you still get to keep that goal all to yourself. #winwin

 

For the sentimental, stick with the paper - and keep it throughout the years.

While I've been tearing down my vision every year to replace it with a brand-spanking new one-year plan, one of my best friends was doing the exact opposite. She was creating her vision board on poster board and keeping it each year. She even had a cute poster board holder that held all of her vision boards from the past to present. With about 4 vision boards under her belt, she could clearly see what goals she was pursuing and how her priorities have shifted over time. 

 

Similar to eating a Reese's (and from what I hear, skinning a cat) there's are multiple ways to do it. Just remember that creating a vision board is all about you and the goals you want to accomplish. The most important part about the vision board is that you create it to fit your needs and inspire your inner soul. 

 

Happy creating!
xoxo

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