Declutter Your Mind + Decrease Stress in 3 Easy Steps

Declutter Your Mind + Decrease Stress in 3 Easy Steps

I once heard that a woman’s mind is similar to an internet browser being open with a million tabs.

 

That sounds exactly what my head is like.

 

I am constantly running through a mental to do list; groceries, tasks, things I need to do months from now, things I’ve already forgotten to do. Honestly it’s exhausting just thinking about all that I think about.

 

Add to all those lists, the fact that my mind is constantly spinning around thoughts, feelings, emotions and these dang post partum hormones, it’s enough to go crazy.


I find myself often feeling stressed, inadequate, and lost in what I am supposed to be doing because my brain is overflowing with information and noise.

 

When I feel my anxiety starting to grow, I am reminded to take a step back and evaluate just what exactly is going on in my head. Which types of thoughts are consuming me? Am I fixated on something? How positive do I feel on a daily basis?

 

And when I realize that my brain is just too full… it’s time to do a clean out of my mind.

This post may contain affiliate links which cost you nothing extra to use but help me fund this page. To read my full disclosure head on over here.

 

3 Ways to Clean Out Your Mind

 

1. Brain Dump

 

One of the ways I’ve been able to cope with my post partum anxiety better is by doing a nightly and weekly brain dump of tasks. Often my anxiety leaves me with racing thoughts that leave me feeling behind and like I am a failure because I can’t get things done like I ‘should’ be. Getting all of my thoughts down on paper allows me to free up the space for more positive thoughts and a sharp focus on what’s important.

 

I use a really simple template that follows the Franklin/Covey method of organization that not only allows me to dump out all of the tasks that I need to get done but helps me prioritize them so that the next day, I can actually attack the things that matter… not just the things that other people need me to do or that I think are priorities but are really just procrastination techniques.

 

 

Using these quadrants (drop your email below if you want to download your own copy of this sheet) I can get down all of the thoughts of tasks that I need to complete, projects I want to work on, or goals I am dreaming of.

 

Quadrant 1 contains all the things that are important AND urgent to complete. This could be something I have to pick up from the store for dinner the next day or a work email I have to write or respond to first thing in the morning.

 

Quadrant 2 is all of the things that are important but NOT urgent. Examples of what could go in this block include things like plan your child’s birthday party, make that dentist appointment for next month, or work on your meal plan for next week.

 

Quadrant 3 includes things that are not important BUT urgent. Now I’m not saying some of these examples aren’t important to someone.. But they just might not be to you. This could be things like make those homemade cupcakes for the bake sale tomorrow (because you know you could just buy them right?) or go out of your way to pick up something a family member MUST have at the store near you.

 

Finally, quadrant 4 contains all those things in your mind that are not important and not really urgent at all. Let’s call these ones ‘time fillers’ or ways you procrastinate. This could be the fact that you want to rewatch all of Grey’s Anatomy before the new season starts or rearranging your closet.

 

By using this form when I do a nightly or weekly brain dump, it saves me time because, as I write things down, I can categorize them and refocus myself for the week with getting done the things that must get done and that matter!

2. Evaluate Your Circle

Another great way to start to clean out your mind is to see who you’ve been spending time with.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love the people in my life a lot, but there are some who are just energy vampires.

Do you ever stop and evaluate the mood YOU are in after you talk to specific people? Are you irritated? Does spending time with them cause you to complain or gossip more? Does your productivity stop when you have certain friends stop by for a little bit?

We are the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with, and when you notice your brain getting more full of stuff that doesn’t matter, such as gossip or negative thoughts, you should stop and see who you’ve been around.

If you primarily around people who complain a lot or always play the victim, you’ll find that to be what happens to you as well. If they are people who get stuck in other’s drama or always gossiping about what they see on social media, I bet you find your head getting clouded with the same types of thoughts. And if those people aren’t very ambitious or goal oriented.. Well you get the picture!

That being said, I don’t think you need to just cut people out of your life but I do think taking a “space break” is not a terrible idea. When I realize and can pinpoint which people in my circle seem to be changing my mood or mindset the most, I either take some time away from talking to them (I may even unfollow them on social media for a while) or I try to become more aware of how I am changing as a results in spending time with them.

Sometimes just a day or two is enough to get your head on straight, let you put on your positivity panties, and get moving! Other time, you may need to do a long term reevaluation of the role that person plays in your life and how you see the relationship continuing.

3. Add in some Positivity

Once you’ve emptied your mind of the clutter and negative influences, it’s time to add in some positivity.

I firmly believe that your thoughts become your belief system and when you are able to put in as much positivity as possible into your brain, all those negative thoughts don’t stand a fighting chance!

I am a HUGE believer in getting in at least 10 minutes a day of personal growth or development. This can be reading a book, listening to a podcast, or hearing someone read an audio book! You can pick and choose what types  of things you want to hear and need at the moment and dive in! Here is a list of some of my top positive mindset books for moms to get you started!

Another great way to add more positivity into your mind is to add in some positive affirmations! I have been doing this for a few months now and it really has done wonders to change my mindset!

 

I read one a day and repeat as needed! I have affirmations now in my planner, on my fridge and as the lock screen of my phone! My favorite is this set of Positive Affirmations for Moms!

 

Anytime your brain needs a break, you feel overwhelmed, and the stress of the day to day is cluttering your thoughts, I highly recommend taking a deep breathe, putting on some music to help you relax and taking some time to clear your mind and prime it for positivity! It’s worth it to take the time to ‘slow down to speed up’ and take care of you!

 

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4 Benefits of Healthy Living

4 Benefits of Healthy Living

Hey you…

Yes you busy mom.

I know that it can be hard to focus on yourself. I know that your needs are the last ones that cross your mind each day. I know it can feel selfish to take care of yourself and your health. I know you feel like you don’t have the time to worry about yourself.

But can I tell you something… YOU HAVE TO.

Taking care of your health is a catalyst into self love and positivity. When you make the conscious choice to decide to care about you, your health, and your mental wellbeing, you take massive steps towards being a more positive and purposeful mom.

I really want to touch on the impact of exercising and healthy eating for us moms. I get that these things are tough to get done but know that when you make the time to get in daily exercise and focus more on your eating, you are setting the example for your family of living a healthy lifestyle.

 

Now that I am 5 months postpartum with my 2nd baby, I realize how much harder it is to get in even just 30 minutes of exercise each day. My demands are greater, I’m more exhausted, and honestly I just don’t feel like it. Once they go to bed, I just want to curl up with some Netflix or close my eyes.

 

But I know, if I take time to take care of me, I am more in love with myself and a better mom for them.

 

 

 

 

So why should you take care of yourself and your health?  

 

 

More Energy

 

Ladies, we NEED energy to keep up with little people. I currently have a 5 month old, a 2 year old and an 11 year old. They keep me on my toes for sure! I need as much energy as possible to keep up with our day to day lives and not drag my feet all day. And while I love a good cup of coffee (or two), I know that I need natural energy to to feel good and keep our ship running tight.

 

In the beginning when you start working out, you get into this cycle of feeling ‘too tired’ to work out. It can be tough for us moms because normally, the only time we have to workout is either super early in the morning before they get up, or after bedtime (that’s my time) when you just want to crash.

 

But know, after 2-3 weeks of exercising at the same time consistently you leave the ‘I’m too tired” stage and join the “Exercise gives me energy” stage.

 

Keep with it and know that the energy moving your body gives you will pay off!

 

 

Less Stress

 

After my second baby (my son Isaiah) I struggled with Postpartum Anxiety. I was having a tough time holding it together, was crying more often than I ever imaged, and felt my stress levels going through the roof. This was also a time when my husband was out of work (for 7 months total) and just thinking about finances had me eating my feelings.

 

 

Once I developed a healthy workout habit, I felt my stress levels decrease a ton. Doing some at home kickboxing, lifting weights in my home gym, and checking in with my virtual accountability groups, made me instantly feel less stressed and more in control.

 

 

Adding in healthier foods to my day to day diet also changed things tremendously with my anxiety. On the days I may have ate more processed foods or had a binge, my anxiety was through the roof. When I had times I stuck to whole foods and used my food to fuel my body and not my emotions, I felt amazing.

 

So if you are like every other mom out there and have stressors coming at you every few minutes, know that by taking care of your health you are healing your body not just physically but mentally. Yes, living a healthier lifestyle can help you live longer to be with your kids but it can also make your mental health feel more in control and balanced.

 

 

Confidence

I spent my daughter’s second birthday party hiding from the camera. I was 3 months postpartum with my son and haven’t lost any of the baby weight. Between the holidays, postpartum anxiety and stress eating, I was the same weight I was the day I gave birth.

 

And I was embarrassed.

 

I missed out on so many moments because of how uncomfortable I felt in my skin. I didn’t want to be in any pictures, I was wearing the same 3-5 outfits because they were the only things that I felt semi comfortable in, and I would cringe every time my husband touched me.

 

My confidence was at an all time low and I was miserable in my own skin.

 

But here is the thing. This had nothing to do with the number on the scale. That was just a number. If pregnancy taught me anything, it was how amazing my body was and I finally broke through of the tie I had to that dang number.

 

What it had to do with was my confidence. I felt like a failure because I knew that not having taken care of my health truly meant that I was failing myself and my family. I knew that, for me, it meant I was not making myself a priority because I didn’t think that I mattered at all.

 

I found myself avoiding going to meet up with friends, or wanting to even leave my house because of how I looked. When I walked in the store, I would look at my feet and just assume everyone was judging me since i still looked 6 months pregnant. This weight was not only affecting me physically (it was seriously hard to get up the stairs, let alone carry 30+ pounds of kids at the same time) but it was mentally making me beat myself up each day.

 

I had stopped loving myself. I had stopped believing I was worth the time and effort it took to gain control of my health again. I had stopped feeling like myself.

 

Once I began to workout regularly and cook myself and my family healthier meals, things changed. I was proud of myself for working hard, I was proud of myself for taking a little more time to get our meals set for the week, I was proud because I knew that I was working each day to love myself more.

 

The confidence you gain when you take care of yourself plays out in so many places in your life. You don’t realize how much of a hit your confidence has taken until you start to make changes to take care of you.

 

 

More Positivity 

 

Once you start to take care of your health , your mood will start to dramatically change. For me, taking care of me with healthy eating and exercise can turn me from being Ta Ka to Te Fiti in just a few minutes.

 

The other day I was so cranky. I was tired of my daughter tugging on me and everything everyone was doing was getting under my skin for no reason at all. My husband asked me kindly “did you workout yet today”? I realized at that point, I hadn’t. Actually, I hadn’t dont anything for me at all today.

 

So I stopped, laced up my sneakers, and got to work. I didn’t have a lot of time so I streamed a 30 minute cardio kickboxing workout, got rid of my stress and ended the workout feeling so accomplished and proud of myself.

 

I stepped out of that gym red in the face, sweaty and with a big smile on my face.

 

Exercise give you happy endorphins and a huge byproduct of that is a happier attitude and mindset.

 

And here is the thing, as moms we set the mood and atmosphere in our home. When we are negative, naggy, and always in a bad mood, it impacts our family. I had a period before I started to take care of myself when I could feel my family walking on eggshells around me. I could tell that they were worried that I might change the mood of the room with my negativity.

 

That is no way to live, for both them and me. Taking care of you will change your mindset, change the mood in your home, and allows you to be a role model for your kids.

 

Would you rather their role model be one that is negative or one that is positive? You’ll impact them no matter what, so it’s up to you to decide how!

 

 

I preach self care for a lot of reasons, and I listed 4 of them above. When you take care of your body and your health  you start to believe in yourself more, you believe that you can accomplish more, you believe that you are worth the time and effort to take care of yourself and you love yourself more.

 

When you believe all of those things, you accomplish more, you’re more productive and you start to see your UNLIMITED potential.

 

If you find yourself stuck in a rut and not sure where to start, can I encourage you to start with focusing on you and your health. Get in a little bit of exercise each day or start to change some of your habits to be healthier. Over time, you’ll start to see things shift and change and you’ll believe in yourself more.

 

You are worth prioritizing your health so can I encourage you to just believe in yourself today? I’m giving you permission to take time to love yourself today, for you, for your health, for your mental well being, and for your family. YOU ARE WORTH IT.

Want to get started on healthier habits NOW?? Head over and get my E-Book and start prioritizing yourself TODAY! 

Click HERE to check it out!

For When Money is Tight…

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5 Podcasts to Jumpstart Your Positivity

5 Podcasts to Jumpstart Your Positivity

Get Your Personal Growth Cheat Sheet Now!

I am OBSESSED with self development.

 

6 years ago I was depressed, living in self loathing and suffering from terrible anxiety. I didn’t see all the possibilities in my life but just lived my life making sure others were happy.

 

I am proud to say I am a reformed people pleaser, currently have a suitcase of strategies to manage my anxiety and see the positivity even when things are tough (and believe me, this past year has been a tough one).

 

The #1 way I’ve been able to manage my anxiety and change my mindset is through personal development.

 

For 6 years now, I have made it a habit to get in at least 10 minutes a day of personal development either in written word or by audio. At first, I thought personal development was for people who needed a lot of help and of course, that wasn’t me 😛

 

Once I change my mindset and realized that the only way I could be better for the people around me was to improve myself, I dove straight in.

 

Finding 10 minutes a day is something anyone can do if you are really looking to change your mindset and life. Can you put a podcast on while you fold the laundry? Is your commute more than 10 minutes? How about sticking an audio book on? Are you willing to get up 10 minutes earlier to sit and read a little with your coffee before the craziness of the day?

 

Because YOU ARE WORTH THE TIME it takes for self care.

 

What should you do in your 10 minutes?

 

When you find your 10 minutes, I don’t want you to waste them. I was you to fill your cup with podcasts and books that get you excited and drive you to hit your goals.


Podcasts are great because

  1. They are free.
  2. You can listen to a variety of people.
  3. You can pause whenever you need and pick up later. 
  4. They are portable and you can take them anywhere you have your phone.
  5. So many podcasts are in the interview format so it can help you find new influencers that you love.

 

You can get them free on your phone with either the app called Podcast or Stitcher (depending on your phone).

As you search for podcasts to listen to, you’ll find ones that you love and some that you don’t connect with, and that’s okay. Don’t give up if it takes you weeks to find the people and podcasts that motivate you but, when you do, make sure you subscribe to their shows so that fuel your fire so you can listen to them without having to search.

 

If you have a goal of having a positive mindset, I want to toss you my top 5 favorite ‘must listens’ to get you started. If you want the rest of the list, make sure you drop your email below and download the rest of my fav podcasts AND my favorite personal growth books. The email will also contain bonus tips on how you can find time in your day to actually get it done so drop that email now!

My Top 5 Podcasts to Change Your Mindset Right Now

  1. Earn your happy

Author: Lori Harder

Topics: Personal Growth

Podcast Time:  10-45 minutes

 

  1. The Lavendaire Lifestyle

Author: Aileen Xu

Topics: Personal Growth

Podcast Time:  20 minutes

 

  1. Achieve Your Goals

 

 

Author: Hal Elrod

Topics: Personal Growth, Productivity

Podcast Time:  45 minutes

 

  1. Happier

 

 

Author: Gretchen Rubin

Topics: Personal Growth

Podcast Time:  15-30 minutes

 

  1. Optimal Living Daily

 

 

Author: Justin Malik (with various contributors)  

Topics: Personal Growth

Podcast Time:  10 minutes

 

 

This list is just a jumping point into becoming a more positive you! I have a list of more of my fav + my top books to get you started that I’ll send you FREE! To get your personal development cheat sheet, toss your email below and it’ll come right to your inbox!

 

 

 

For When Money is Tight…

Dear Mama.   I see you.   You’re at the checkout line wondering if your card will go through. You know you should know exactly how much is in your account but you’ve been too scared to check and know that you just need to get some produce and milk.   You hold your...

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Create An Action Plan That Works in 4 Easy Steps!

Create An Action Plan That Works in 4 Easy Steps!

When it comes to setting goals, most of us could rattle of 5-10 things we’d love to accomplish. And each year, almost everyone makes these goals or resolutions and swears “this is the year things will be different”. But often, by February, most of of these goals have been thrown aside because life got in the way.

 

 

If you want to accomplish BIG things this year, you will need more than just a goal. You need an ACTION PLAN. But instead of making a plan that makes your goal overwhelming and scary, I am going to encourage you to make a plan that breaks your goal down in small chunks and sets you up for success.

 

 

Step #1 Pick Your Goal

 

 

If you haven’t had a chance to go through my series on how to create amazing and manageable goals, head over check out parts #1-3 first!

 

Part #1: Reflection

 

Part #2: Visualization

 

Part #3: Goal Setting

 

 

The best way to not get overwhelmed with achieving your goals is to not pick too many to tackle at one time. Sometimes we try to do everything as women and what happens is we are doing ‘okay’ at tons of things but feel like we are drowning. I would rather pick 1-3 things to work on and be AMAZING at than just mediocre at everything!

 

 

Go through and pick 1-3 of your top goals that you think would leverage the most joy in your life and use them to create your action plan.

 

 

Head over and get a goal setting workbook here is you need a jumpstart to creating yours!

Step #2 Make Your Timeline

 

The biggest game changer in achieving my goals came when I stopped looking at my goals as a one year goals and brought them into the 12 week year light following the principles laid out in the book The 12 Week Year.

 

After reading the 12 week year, I realized that if I put a quarterly timeline on my goals I would be more likely to achieve them. How many times have you made a big goal and done nothing to move towards it until, you get to the end of the year and start to hustle to make that dream come true? If you look at your goals with a quarterly deadline, you’ll be more likely to push harder to get them done. If you look at each day as a week of the year, you’ll stop putting off the important or even non important tasks and GET THINGS DONE!

 

Pick your 1-3 goals and give them a date that is 12 weeks or LESS! Put it on the calendar and make it a date you celebrate because you’ll get things done!

 

Step #3 Create your 10 minute tasks

 

Okay here we GO! Let’s create manageable tasks to complete your goals in just 12 weeks.

 

Yup.

 

Those things that you have been putting off for years WILL be accomplished in the next 12 weeks if you are ready to go for it.

 

As a busy mom, I know how tough it can be to complete your goals with all of the other things you have to do day to day. So instead of deciding that you’re going to just get a 3 hour task done each day to move towards your goals, your job is going to be to break it down into tasks that can get done in 10 minutes a day.

 

Go through the workbook (download below!) and pick the goal you want to focus on. Use the lines below each goal to break down action steps for them. If the goal can’t be done in 10-20 minutes IT IS TOO BIG and you need to break it down more.

 

 

For example, say you have a goal to create a scrapbook for your kid’s birthday. Instead of just saying ‘create book’ you need to break it down. I don’t know how many times I’ve said I was going to do this and don’t even print pictures to get started (do people do that anymore?) What you need to do is BREAK it all down super small and write down each and every step you will need to complete such as;

 

  • Use FREE prints app to order pictures
  • Search for coupon code for album
  • Buy photo album
  • Organize pictures chronologically
  • Space out pictures
  • Buy background paper
  • Cut background paper
  • Assign picture to paper
  • Put pictures in album
  • Buy stickers and other decorations
  • Fill in graphs in alum with decorations
  • Write in memorable events

 

And you could probably even break some of these down even further! But see how, when you make them smaller tasks, your goal is MUCH more manageable and less overwhelming. If you take these tasks and pick even just ONE per week, you can accomplish your goal in those 12 weeks by your due date.

Step #4 Assign the items

 

If you’ve gone through and done the work of breaking down your goals, I don’t want you to stop here! I want you to go to your planner and give each of these items a date to accomplish. Write them each week in pen and don’t change them. If you are like me, and you don’t write it down, then you are less likely to actually get it done and completed.

 

So take your tasks, give them a date and get started!

 

If you are ready to get started with your goals, head over and get your workbook now so you can break down all of your goals here! Just drop your email and it’ll be sent right to you to get started!

 

 

For When Money is Tight…

Dear Mama.   I see you.   You’re at the checkout line wondering if your card will go through. You know you should know exactly how much is in your account but you’ve been too scared to check and know that you just need to get some produce and milk.   You hold your...

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Successful Goal Setting in 3 Steps

Successful Goal Setting in 3 Steps

*This is part 3 of a DREAM BIG series! If you haven’t checked out Parts 1 (Reflection) and Part 2 (Vision Casting), make sure you head over and read them and complete the workbooks so you can make the best goals for you!

Raise your hand if you’ve ever had HUGE dreams, got super excited about them, decided you’d start Monday and then… it’s months later and nothing has happened. Or maybe you have made a few steps towards your goals, things got tough or you got sidetracked and another year has gone by and you’ve missed those goals you set for yourself.

We’ve all been there. Not many people actually wake up each day and think ‘hmmm I  think I want to achieve nothing and see what happens”. Most of us decide we want more out of life or we at least want to attempt to achieve things before our lives end.

 

But how do we actually create goals that make sense for our season of life, that are attainable but still push our limits, and that bring us joy?

Well I’m glad you asked….

Embrace Your Season 

The one thing that I want to remind you when you create goals is to embrace the season of life you are in. Currently, I am in a season of being a mom of 2 under 2, running a coaching business and blog, and doing my best to be the best mom, wife, friend, and sibling I possibly can be.

This means for me, I have to realize that this may not be the time for me to set a goal to be a missionary out of the country but perhaps, to volunteer a few times a month locally. While I have big goals of traveling the world for pleasure, right now a goal of getting a few date nights in is much more achievable and reasonable.

It’s important to not only realize your season but also to not become jealous of other people’s season. Sometimes we sroll on social media and see people we knew in high school or college and, when we come across their page and see incredible things they are doing, it can make us feel inadequate or that our goals are too small or not enough.

Embrace the season of life you are in, realize that you are meant to be in this season right now, and create goals that compliment them without feeling envious of other seasons of life.

What season of life are you in? Take the time to acknowledge it, embrace it, and be ready to make goals to be your BEST in this season.

Stretch Yourself 

When thinking about your goals I’m sure you’ve heard people say DREAM BIG but what does that really mean?

In my opinion, dreaming big is all about making sure your goals move you out of your comfort zone. I mean they SHOULD scare you a bit. When you think of a goal, you should say ‘hmmm i don’t know if I can do this but I’d really like to try”

 

Do you have goals like this? Ones that scare the crap out of you but you don’t ever write down because you’re afraid of failing.

 

THESE are the goals I want you to write down today. The ones that you have always thought would be cool but have been too scared to go for. But make sure they are ones that make sense for your season as well.

 

If you make goals around spending more time with your family or doing leisure activities but are in a season where you are up for a big promotion at work which requires extra time away from your family, than maybe now isn’t the time for this goal.

 

What are things you’ve always wanted to do? What are ones that you put on your vision board  and would love to accomplish?

 

Using the SMART formula 

 

When coming up with your goals, just writing down something you want to do isn’t going to help you much. You have to write them down super specifically so that you know what you want to accomplish. I’ll be doing an additional post on how to make an action plan for these goals so the more specific you can be now while you create, the better!

 

You should work to create goals in each of the important areas of your life instead of just a few general ones. Think about goals you might have for your health, relationships, spirituality, leisure, etc… You’ll want to make goals for each of those areas as your roadmap. Make sure you download the goals brainstorming sheet below so you can make sure you don’t miss any of those areas of your life!

When you go to make those goals, you’ll want to make sure you follow the smart formula, meaning are your goals are

 

Specific

Measurabale

Attainable

Realistic

Time Bound 

 

What does this actually mean? Let’s use an example about healthy living:

 

Specific: Instead of writing things like “I want to be healthier” write down “I want to run a 5k” or “I want to lose 20 pounds”.

 

Measurable: Don’t use terms like ‘be better”, use terms that allow you to measure the goal. Ask yourself how you would know if you were better at something? Instead of ‘be in better shape’ you could say “I want to be able to do 15 pushups with correct form”.

 

Attainable: When I talk about attainable goals, I don’t want you to truncate your dreams, rather I want you to think about goals that actually could happen right now. If you want to make a goal around completing a triathlon, it wouldn’t be realistic to have that goal during the winter where you’d be swimming outside. This might be a better goal for the spring time.

 

Realistic: Realistic goals go back to what we talked about when we talked about seasons.If you’ve never ran a day in your life, a realistic goal would be to complete a 5k rather than an Iron Man

 

Time Bound: Time bound goals and the ones that really drive me. I make my goals for the year but then break them down for each quarter because it makes them time bound and more achievable for me. An example would be changing your goal from “I want to lose 20 pounds” to “I want to lose 20 pounds by March 30th” Putting a date on it will add that sense of urgency to your goal.

 

Ready to get started with your goals 

 

Then make sure you head over to get your free brainstorming sheet that will help you organize your goals for you! I’d love to know some you’ve come up with so leave your top goal in the comments and put it out in the universe!

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5 Tips for Making a Virtual Vision Board

5 Tips for Making a Virtual Vision Board

When it comes to making goals for the new year, I often just jump in and pick big things that I think would be cool. Normally, I make a list and never look at it again. Maybe I’ll pull it out a few times a year, swear that this is the time I am going to stay committed, rewrite my goals (in pretty colors this time) and then ignore the list…. Repeat cycle ALL year.

 

Does this sound like you too?

 

Well this year will be different for you.

 

Why?

 

Because I am going to break down the step by steps on how to make the right type of action plan that makes sense for the season of life you are in and ACTUALLY use it!

 

These steps include:

  1. Reflection
  2. Vision Setting
  3. Goal Setting
  4. Create an Action Plan

 

If you missed Step #1 of this series on REFLECTION, head over and get your end of year reflection workbook! Do it NOW … then come back here to do step #2!

 

Creating A Virtual Vision Board

 

I like to make a vision board each year. It sets the stage for what I want to accomplish and makes me feel focused. And a few years ago, I switched over to creating virtual vision boards.

 

Virtual vision boards are ones you can make using programs on your computer and print out. I like to create this way because it gives me the freedom and flexibility that I sometimes found missing when it came to using magazines and poster board the old school way.

 

When using a virtual vision board, you have the internet at my fingertips to find pictures you want, search for ideas, and can edit things as needed. You also had the opportunity to save my vision board so you could edit and adjust each quarter without starting completely over if your priorities changed.

 

Step #1 Brainstorm

 

Before you jump into the creation of your vision board, I want you take time to dream a little. If you haven’t gone and done the reflection, make sure you do that FIRST. This will help you really get focused for a new year.

 

Using the vision board worksheet (get yours below!) I want you to sit in a quiet space and DREAM BIG. Like BIGGER than you thought possible.

Using the areas of your life in the workbook; think about where you’d like your life to be this time next year. Think about these areas:

  • Spirituality
  • Health
  • Relationships
  • Finances
  • Personal Growth
  • Work
  • Family
  • And any others that come to your brain

Write a few words that will help you really start to picture your future year.

 

Step #2 Find Your Images

 

The second step to getting going with your vision board is to find images that relate you your vision. This part is the toughest for me because I can get  hung up on finding the ‘right’ picture. I want you to really get that perfect image out of your head and be open to what you find.

 

You can use a bunch of really great free stock photo site (you can find even more over here!) such as

 

  1. Unsplash
  2. Pixabay
  3. Pexels
  4. StockSnap

 

At the top you can search any image you want and lots of pictures will come up for you. Pick one that really stands out and save it to your computer in a folder labeled ‘vision board’. You will want to make a folder for these photos because you are going to go back and use them again later in the year as you do your quarterly reflection.

Put it all together

 

My favorite page to use for awesome collages is Canva. It’s free to use and you can upload pictures or use any of the great free stock photos that they have.

 

Start by picking your design size. I like to use the 8 by 10 so that it prints nicely. You can create a custom dimension at the top, just make sure you change units to inches

 

 

 

 

You’ll then find a collage template that fits that amount of pictures you have. You can always move things around and resize them so don’t feel locked into anything.

 

Upload your images from your folder (aren’t you happy you organized them!) and place them wherever you’d life

Step #4 Add in mood words

 

Once your images are in place you can use the text option to add in words (such as happy, inspired, debt free) or full quotes! You can also go to the elements tab to use shapes to give yourself some blank space to write)

Step #5 Print and Display

 

Now that you are done, you can export it as a JPEG image (if you want to say, save it as the background of your computer or print it on photo paper) or a PDF (for basic printing). Canva also has the option where you can order prints directly from them!

Share and Put it out there

 

Now that you have your vision created, I want to see it! Share it to your social media ad make sure to TAG me on either Facebook or Instagram!

 

Put your vision board somewhere you will see it daily and share it with your stakeholders. There is power in putting your dreams out there!

 

Next Steps:

 

Make sure you head over and get the Vision Board brainstorming sheet below so you can start to get thinking about your year! And check out next week’s blog in this series on how to take this vision and make it into actionable goals so your pictures and dreams can come to life! And watch below to see me create my vision board live (start the video at 5:00!)

 

For When Money is Tight…

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