“where there is no vision, the people perish….”
“the most pathetic person in the world is someone who has sight but no vision.”
as the New Year approaches and i find myself embarking on (many!) new adventures, i decided to attend a Vision Board workshop at my yoga studio. what, you may ask is a Vision Board, let alone a Vision Board workshop?! i had similar questions myself and had a hard time describing to others what i intended to spend the morning of my day off doing. still, something stirred in my spirit and i knew that was exactly where i needed to be.
the concept of a vision board is simple: compile all those things you want to Be, Do, and Have, whether in pictures, words, phrases, and display them on a board. in doing so, you create a space that houses all your desires, and reminds you daily what you’re looking for in this life, where you’re aiming yourself. and on a deeper level, as i soon learned, you’re allowing yourself to be vulnerable enough to admit you want something.
we started our time together with a brief series of yoga moves, warming up our bodies and allowing the morning to slough off, like old skin. whatever it took to get us there, whatever our mornings included, soon melted off and a peace settled about the room. the coach explained a bit of the science behind the vision board, words that went over my head as i didn’t bring my journal to write them down. and then she set us free to dream.
in the middle of the room were hundreds of magazines for the taking, and scissors and glue sticks and poster board. i gobbled up several magazines like a child starving and began searching for images and words. initially, i just grabbed at anything that attracted me, not thinking about what i really wanted to see in my life.
this has been such a strange time of transition. i recently started studying naturopathy, which has shifted the focus of my priorities. i also decided that my current job was taking too many precious resources, mainly time, and that i’d rather be spending those on the path it seemed i should be on. i reached out to my yoga teacher, which in turn led to a job with a local yoga studio. i am currently merging into my work there, while slowly cutting down my work with the winery. i am also supplementing my income by selling Pampered Chef, so my time lately has been spent learning the ropes and spreading the word. needless to say, there is a lot of change and transition happening.
which left me breathless, so to speak, when it came to the vision for my life. this transition has forced my hand in a way, to develop that picture a bit, but there are still so many other items, tangible pieces that just weren’t coming into focus.
i wrestled with myself as i turned page after page. what do i desire to have, to do, to be?
the more feverishly i worked, the more i wrestled. the more i wrestled, the more feverish i became. until finally i realized the issue: my own limiting beliefs. focus, i told myself stubbornly. focus. what do you REALLY want? as if my vision board where now some budgetary to-do list, with limited resources to supply it’s coming to fruition. but there were no limits, and that was the point of the exercise. what would life look like and include if you had no limits?? that was the very point of this time.
i had missed it. i had let the limiting voices become mine. but i didn’t let them take over. i started to let myself answer honestly and without reserve.
i want to have peaceful mornings, i thought, to create a home, to have yoga be a more central part of my life. i want a family to warm these rooms, to hear the laughter of little people. more tangibly, i want to be engaged and be married. i ripped out pictures of engagement rings and my wedding dress, and a couple holding hands. i want to visit Paris and New York City. i want to own my own business and remodel the kitchen. all these things went on the board.
above all else, the coach added at one point, is the feelings associated with these things you desire. how do you envision yourself feeling? she asked.
i struggled with this the most. the truth is, i gave up a long time ago hoping to feel. it is a classic survivor skill, neutralizing all expectation and hope to avoid disappointment. i just didn’t realize how deep it went. at the heart of all my wrestling, i was scared. scared to admit what i really desired, scared to see it come to fruition, scared that maybe it wouldn’t fulfill me as i hoped, scared it may never come at all. i was, and am, scared of good things happening.
i verbalized this to the lady next to me, fidgeting as i admitted it. do you ever feel that way, i asked. she nodded confidently.
“that’s called vulnerability,” she said. ahh, yes. vulnerability. my old frien-enemy. how to ever make peace with her, but that is a different post for a different day.
with my vision board complete, i rolled it into my yoga map and rode my bike home, the visions swirling in my mind. the coach suggested putting it somewhere we could see it daily, and looking at it, reminding our subconscious selves what we’re looking for in this world. so my little work of art sits on my dresser. and the words “boss” and “family” and “cooking up a business” stare back at me when i wake and when i get dressed for the day, to remind me of what is possible and prompt me to pursue my dreams.