How to Make a Vision Board for the New Year: Your Step-By-Step Guide

As always, a new year brings with it a fresh slate, a new 365 days to do whatever we decide. A clean slate. A fresh approach to our new year, and what better way to dream it up than on a clean vision board!

For many, January 1st is the day of the year that we stop, take a good look at where we are, and set goals for where we want to go in the coming year.

Whether it’s wanting to get into better physical shape, travel to epic new places, pick up new hobbies, or nourish relationships in your life, we all have something we hope to achieve in the new year. So, traditionally, we set New Year’s resolutions.

There’s something undeniably inspiring about the end of one year and the start of a new one.

Though the fact of the matter is that there’s no right or wrong time to set goals (and can and should be something we engage in all year long), there’s something undeniably inspiring about the end of one year and the start of a new one.

And regardless of how your past year has gone, there’s no better time than right now to begin goal setting.

This year, think outside of the traditional goal setting of New Year’s resolutions though. It’s estimated that while around 40% of all Americans set resolutions this time of year, a shockingly low percentage of those goals actually end up turning into reality.

Research suggests somewhere in the neighborhood of only 8 to 10% in fact. And by February, if not sooner, the vast majority of those big dreams and well-intended goals have fallen by the wayside, and we’re right back where we started in late December.


What’s Better Than New Year’s Resolutions for Goal Setting? Meet the Vision Board

Life is short, and we think your big dreams deserve better.

So instead of making yet another vague, abstract, but nice-sounding resolution that has an 80 to 90% chance of never coming to fruition this year, how about making those dreams a little more tangible?

Enter the vision board.

A physical, tactile representation of your goals, a vision board can be a way to physically pin down – if you will – all the hopes and dreams and goals you have, and give yourself a visual reminder of what you want to achieve, every single day.

All the studies on goal-crushing and achieving your resolutions point to key truths. If you stick to these, they will result in smart goal setting and much better odds of said goals turning into reality.

“If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough.”

Among these are the importance of setting specific goals – ones that are measurable and somehow tangible. In other words, resolving to lose weight is vague and unmeasurable. But, saying you want to lose 10 pounds by the end of March, and 40 by the end of the year? Much more likely to happen.

The experts agree that putting your goals down on paper or on a physical vision board where you’re forced to look at them far increases your rate of success versus only having the thoughts in your head.

Another difference-maker is making your goals public. Post them on a blog, or again, a vision board (maybe one that hangs in your office or living room for example), where others can see and help hold you accountable.

Goal Setting 101: Here’s How to Prep Your Vision Board

Ready to dream big for 2023 and turn those goals into a tangle product? Here’s everything you need to get busy crafting your very own vision board.


1. Choose Your Medium

You have a few options for how to make your vision board. You can choose to go digital, using simple program like Paint or even PowerPoint. With these programs you can insert and paste images, type out words, add colorful backgrounds and effects, and pick fonts.

If you go the digital route, you can then either print your final creation when you’re done, or save it as the background to your computer, so you’ll have to see it every day when you login. You could also set it as your phone background if you want.

2. Get In the Zone

Getting your headspace right for vision board-crafting is quite possibly the most important step in this whole thing. Choose a time to make your board when you’re able to really focus, get in the zone, and not have any distractions.

It can be fun to make your board with a group of friends, maybe over a bottle of wine. But if solo thinking is where you thrive, then choose where ever you do best.

Set the scene next. Light a candle or incense, pour a glass of wine, or make yourself tea. Surround yourself with crystals or put on music that speaks to your soul.

3. Choose Your Goals

Alright friend, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty. You have big goals to set.

To begin, it might be helpful to think of your goals as divided up into categories. These could be overarching categories like career, spiritual, health, relationship, hobbies, family, experiences, etc.

Begin by just “brain dumping” these goals down onto paper. Just get them out of your head and onto a list. Let the words and thoughts flow – don’t edit yourself or hold back. This should just be a rough draft.

Whatever the category, think big, but also specific. For example, if you’re a travelista and seeing the world is a huge goal of yours, don’t just aspire to see five new national parks in 2023. Get specific with it. Which ones will you see? What will you see there? Where will you eat? And so on.

Think big, but also specific.

If one of your goals is getting into a better healthy routine, don’t leave it at that. What does “health” look like to you? Disconnecting from your phone more and spending at least one hour outside each day? Running a marathon? Being able to bench press 25 pounds instead of 15?

The more specific you can get, the better. Your goals should be so clear you can taste, see, smell, hear, and almost touch them before they’ve become real. Give yourself permission to get totally lost during this step. Feel each goal as though it has already happened, and truly imagine your dream year.

Choose your goals and live the life you love: You Can Manifest the Life of Your Dreams and It’s Simpler Than You May Think – Here’s How

Goal Setting 201: Here’s How to Create Your Vision Board

Once you have all of the important goals down on paper, it’s time to create the dang thing!

1. Get Your Supplies

Depending on the medium you chose (physical or digital), get your supplies! If you’re going the digital route, you can use free programs such as Canva or Pic Monkey that give you blank templates. You can make one in the size of your computer desktop if you plan to save it there, but you’ll also be able to print the finished product.

If you’re going more old-school, get something like poster board, or plain construction paper. You’ll also need scissors, a glue stick or tape, and whatever art supplies like markers, glitter, and stickers you want to embellish your board with.


2. Choose Your Images

You can scour the internet and your own photo files for images you want to attach, and simply copy and paste or insert the images onto your template, arranging them and adding visual effects, words, and colors that inspire you.

Whichever medium you choose, make sure you arrange the images in a way you will enjoy seeing every day and that will fire you up to look at each time you pass it. If you can’t find an image that encapsulates the exact feeling or goal you’re going for, make your own or use a word instead of an image.

Your goals are too important and this one precious life is too short to let your goals stay in dream-territory.

It’s key to choose images that conjure up how you want to feel, or make you feel something when you see them. For example, if getting physically fit is your goal, as it is for so many of us, don’t just flip through Pinterest or a magazine and chose an image of an airbrushed fitness model with washboard abs.

That probably isn’t going to do much for you in the way of inspiration. In fact, it would just make you play the comparison game, more so. Instead, if you want to get healthier because getting healthier will allow you to feel freer and more confident, then choose photos of something that symbolizes freedom and confidence to you.

3. Make It Your Own

Let your mind wander and do what feels right. This is nobody’s board but yours and there are no rules here, so long as it inspires and speaks to you.

If you goal is to travel more, choose an image of your dream destination. Choose one that makes you almost feel like you’re there. Choose one that causes you to smell the smells, taste the tastes, and see the sights of that place.

Something materialistic on your vision board like a dream tattoo or hair goals? Don’t shrug at goals like these or assume they’re less meaningful just because they’re more “superficial.” Slap those on your board too! Remember, these are your goals and your dream life, and everything from the big to the small counts.

4. Create a Plan of Action

An important last step that’s totally crucial yet often falls by the wayside is to create a plan of action. Plan steps you can begin to take to get you closer to your goals.

Remember, it’s not enough to visualize. The law of attraction is more complex than simply visualizing what you want and waiting for it to magically manifest in your life. The visualization step is important, but as the saying goes, “A vision without action is merely a dream.”

Get planning! Use these 7 Law of Attraction Hacks That Will Change Your Life Forever

Vision Boards for Goal Setting Are Better Than New Year’s Resolutions!

Your goals are too important and this one precious life is too short to let your goals stay in dream-territory. So get out there and create the year and the life you want and deserve!

Hang up your vision board, look at it daily, envision the life you want, and then go out there and create it!

Here’s to the best year yet! And to New Year’s resolutions that actually stick!

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Emmy Schneider-Green

Emmy is a passionate vegan foodie with a wanderlust spirit. When she’s not working her digital marketing day job or writing, she's probably spending time with her two calico cats, lifting weights, listening to a true crime podcast, or daydreaming (sun & moon Pisces here!)

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