Use This Fun Tool to Plan Your Next Career Move

May 02, 2014 - Joe Matar

Are you at a crossroads in your career? Perhaps you’re looking for the perfect career for your skill set. Maybe you have an OK job, but it’s not quite what you hoped. Or maybe you’ve finished school and are planning your next move.

When change is on the horizon, it’s common to overthink, worry and question everything. The brain takes over: you create pros and cons lists and the agony of the decision can take over your whole life. Luckily, you’ve got another way to work through this situation. It may seem silly, even trivial or new-agey, but creating a vision board can provide clarity, attract your ideal career and save your sanity.

A vision-what?

A vision board is a visual representation of what you want to manifest. At the most basic level, creating a vision board can help you see what you’re thinking. It puts visuals to complicated thought processes where words may fail. Oftentimes, the images you choose don’t necessarily make sense, but when put together, they create a representation of your true self.

On a deeper level, vision boards help you attract what you want in life. Think of it like asking the universe for what you want. If you don’t know what you want to create or manifest, the universe won’t know, either. The key in manifesting is to know what you want and articulate it. Many of us have a hard time articulating our deepest desires in words, so creating a visual image helps.

This process taps into a deep, unconscious part of yourself that knows your ideal career. This part is free from cultural desires or what you think you want or are taught to want. You might be surprised to see the career you want isn’t about money or prestige or that you’re interested in a different industry.

Vision boards are useful for many life changes, from finding a mate to buying a house, and can be used for general life purposes, like career or vacation goals. There aren’t any rules except to find a bunch of words, images and visual representations of what you want and put them on a board. Size and your artistic ability don’t matter.

Remember that the brain wants to create whatever it’s told. If you constantly tell yourself you’re a failure or don’t deserve a good job, you’ll never achieve what you truly want. What you put on your board needs to transcend these self-defeating thoughts to focus on the positive potential in yourself. Whatever you believe, you become.

Create a vision board in five simple steps

Creating a vision board is simple:

1. Collect your supplies

Find every old magazine in the house that can be cut up, pull out the scissors and glue and have a dedicated piece of cardboard or poster board to use. You could even use cork board and push-pins. Be as creative or simplistic as you’d like.

2. Set aside time to work on your vision board

Sit down with your supplies, maybe some nice music, a glass of wine and no distractions. Either do this by yourself, with your partner or have some friends over for a vision board party.

3. Close your eyes and center yourself before you open the magazines

This could be as simple as taking a few slow breaths or as complex as a full ritual and meditation session. Don’t try to do anything new, but do what feels appropriate. If you’re trying to find a job or attract your ideal career, repeat “ideal career” or “find a job” to yourself a couple times. By doing this, you set the intention of what you’re doing and remind yourself of your goal.

4. Open the magazines and cut out anything that resonates with you or inspires you

This is big: don’t try to create something or think too much. If you flip a page and an image speaks to you, cut it out. If you see a keyword and it creates some thought or reaction, cut it out. Flip pages and cut and lose yourself in this process. Let go of the desire to analyze or figure anything out. By refraining from thinking about it, you’ll be able to access deeper areas of yourself.

5. Put the images and words onto your board

Either find a creative way to arrange them or just slap them on.

What to do with your completed vision board?

When your board is complete, hang it somewhere you’ll see it. Look at your board often, think about it, study the images and keep the intention or goal in mind. Take some time in the morning or before bed to reflect on your deepest dreams, goals or desires. Use all your senses to imagine the end result, like what it feels like to sit in your new office or the happiness you feel when helping people.

This may not be a quick process, but by keeping your vision board in a noticeable place, you’ll constantly be sending messages out into the universe that you’re serious about creating this change and you’re ready for that goal to manifest into reality. If you’re truly committed to manifesting this change, the universe will respond. (Click here to tweet this thought.) Stay focused, but be patient. You can create your own reality and attract your dream job.

Amber Erickson Gabbey, MA, is a freelance writer, holistic health expert and yoga instructor. She blogs at Mindfully Written with the goal of inspiring and empowering others toward health.