I have trouble with vision statements. I’m usually not at a loss for words, but something about putting the words “vision” and “statement” together gives me pause… After all, vision is about well, sight. Speech? Not so much.

This is probably why I was very excited to attend a Vision Board Workshop last year, hosted by my friend Randi Light of New Buffalo Hypnosis. If you don’t know what a vision board is, it’s a visual collage of images that you want to attract into your life. Books like “The Secret” that focused on the laws of attraction made this technique popular a few years ago, though I’m sure the technique is nothing new.

At Randi’s workshop, she guided us through a relaxing meditation where we were urged to envision our highest and best selves, doing the work we were went to do on this planet during this lifetime. Immediately following the meditation, Randi gave us a blank piece of white cardboard with two sides that fold in on the middle (sort of a triptych, if you will), a glue stick, a pair of scissors and access to loads of old magazines. She instructed us to begin cutting out images and/or text that appealed to our still groggy subconsciouses, and told us not to think too much about why something resonated with us. Just trust instinct.

I was aware that my board was shaping up to include no an insignificant number of images dedicated to outdoor activity…and also food, especially very healthy food. At that point in my life (December 2009) I wasn’t particularly active, especially outdoors and wasn’t exactly the poster child for healthy eating, so these images seemed strange choices for me, but I went with it.  I also included some headlines: “The Power of Ideas”, “Opportunity Ahead”, “Thank You”, “Eat More Vegetables!”, “Healing Is A Simple Act”, “Holistic Specialist Strips Away Emotional Junk”, “It’s Never Too Late To Learn Something New”, “Harness the Power of the Sea”, “Building a Scaffold for Social Change”, “Recognition”, Eat better for less–grow the ideal garden”, etc. Couldn’t say why they attracted me at the time–they just “felt” right.

In the past 16 months, here are a few of the things that have manifested in my life:

  • Just a few weeks after completing my vision board, I won an award for Indiana’s Most Influential Woman in Social Media. Well, there was the recognition my board promised. Now that I officially knew what I was doing with social media tools, it was time to look for a way to use these tools for the greater good…
  • I began a site called 219 GreenConnect a few months ago to help connect eco-conscious people in Northwest Indiana to one another and to relevant resources and news. The Facebook page is currently a bit more active than the actual site and I have recently begun a LinkedIn group for professional networking as well. I guess you could say that I am “building a scaffold for social change.”
  • My husband and I have a 12′ x 12′ plot in our neighborhood community garden this year and have begun to eat considerably less meat and quite a few more vegetables. We participated in a workshop a few weeks ago to learn how to best prepare our garden soil and plant strategically for higher yields. I am attending a worm composting workshop later this month and am excited to get my vermiculture bin going soon.
  • As for harnessing the power of the sea–we installed a new rain barrel last month and harnessed a barrel’s worth of water in no time since it rained for the better part of the past few weeks. We could have harnessed much more, had we invested in multiple barrels. This helps cut down on water bills, but also prevents excess water from entering the storm drain.
  • In January, I became the co-organizer for Northwest Indiana Green Drinks, a monthly educational networking meet up, centered around environmental causes. I am very thankful for the people I have met through this event and the power of the ideas shared.

I’m looking forward to seeing how the rest of this vision plays out. I have been reminded over and over again to “honor my gut instinct” and that “it’s never too late to learn something new” — I do it nearly every day! I strive to live more simply all the time and heal myself as I heal my planet.