Tis the season for making resolutions and, if you’re like most folks, you probably already have a list of projects and goals that you’re preparing to tackle in the New Year. According to a recent report by the University of Scranton’s Journal of Clinical Psychology, 45 percent of people make resolutions, but only about eight percent of people will actually prove to be successful before December 31, 2013.
And aside from scribbling plans to drop 15 pounds on a bar napkin or mentally tossing around an idea to start a new business, there may be a better – and much more effective – way to document hopes and dreams that vastly improves the odds of them actually coming true.
In 2006, Rhonda Byrne took over the literary world with her book The Secret. The self-help tome guided readers in the “law of attraction” – the idea that if we think positive thoughts, the universe will cause us to encounter people and opportunities that match those thoughts and feelings. One of the primary tools Byrne advocates in the book is the use of a vision board, constructed of a bulletin or poster board covered with pictures and phrases of an individual’s dream life.
The belief that staring at a board full of random magazine clippings can actually propel us into prosperity and happiness is still far-fetched to some, but with over 21 million books in print and $300 million in sales (from the book and related movie combined), it is evident that The Secret, or at least the theory it represents, is no fluke.
Kelly Daugherty received The Secret as a gift from a friend and, although she was initially one of the skeptics, decided to give vision boards a try as she prepared to launch Smashing Golf & Tennis, her unique line of athletic apparel-meets-shapewear.
“I’ll admit, I was a non-believer,” said Daugherty. “Actually I was more than a non-believer. I would tell people to stop wasting their time and that vision boards are for people that believe in voodoo, astrology and tarot cards.”
Ultimately, Daugherty was attracted to the notion that creating a vision board could help her to channel her efforts to get her startup off the ground.
“To me it was about focus and positive energy,” she added. “For example, I really wanted to be in specific media outlets, which meant I spent a lot of my day networking with media and trying to create new story ideas. In turn, I wasn’t spending as much time as I would have liked selling to additional geographic regions, but every time I would get distracted, I would go back to my vision board and say ‘In Year 1 — these are my goals. Attain these, and then make another board.’”
And vision boards aren’t just for business. As an international athlete, global soccer ambassador and owner of Eat Soccer, a website geared toward all things soccer, Qiana Martin saw such incredible success with her first, career-oriented vision board that she now makes one for nearly every facet of her life.