Over many years of reading self-development books and listening to or watching programs on self-development, I was taught the importance of having a vision board. The idea is that if you write down your goals or have pictures posted in a place where you can see them every day that you will be more likely to manifest what you want in your life.
I have created a few vision boards over time. They would hold pictures of families, babies, places I wanted to travel to, cars, houses etc. I would also use a lot of words and phrases that expressed things I wanted to attract into my life.
One day last summer, I came to the realization that continuing to focus on what was on that board, would always leave me in a place of wanting. I decided to let it go and remove it from my bedroom wall. Around the same time, I was listening regularly to an online series that Marci Shimoff was hosting (the author of Happy for No Reason). I don’t recall exactly who she was interviewing, but something that was said triggered the idea to create a board that listed “Things That Give Me Joy”.
This change of focus completely shifted my energy. Instead of focusing on things I wanted and didn’t yet have in my life, I began to focus on the feelings – the deep joy of things I was already experiencing in my life. When I have an experience that invokes a feeling of joy, I record it on my board. When that experience is repeated, I put asterisks around the words or phrases to highlight that experience. The idea of doing that is to create a map to provide some direction for the path I am on.
The things that stand out for me as I look up at this board are “Connecting with People”, “Working together with others towards a cause or common purpose”,” Relationships” – particularly referring to the relationship to the man in my life, “Energy”, ”Gratitude”, “Sharing my Journey with Others”, “Learning”, “Self Discovery”.
For many years I was conditioned that it was important to have goals and to work out a plan to make them become a reality. I would set goals for my business every year of how many people I would train in my business, how much production I would do every month, and how much money I would make. I wasn’t inspired or motivated by these goals and would usually fall way short of making them happen.
I have found since I shifted to focusing on “Things That Give Me Joy”, I have let go of the need to set all kinds of goals. I have a bigger picture sort of vision for my life that is more about looking at what is it that I am called to do. I am learning to trust that the path will reveal itself as I go, just like I talked about in my posting of “The River”. It is very freeing to let go of all the expectations I put on myself or allow others to put on me and just trust that if I stay in a space of joy and continue to do the things that bring joy into my life, I will keep moving forward.
I still fall back into what is comfortable or safe sometimes, even though it might not be where I necessarily find my joy. I know that it is just a space to catch my breath and prepare for the next adventure on my journey. I accept these choices as the gift that they are.
Living in a space of joy, is about doing what you love, about discovering what you get passionate about and acting on it. Focusing my energy on the things that bring joy into my life has been life changing for me. I am deeply grateful for the teachers that inspire me to act on these ideas and to share them with you.
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Leah Schroeder is a Reiki Practitioner www.lifeforcehealingservices.ca and Financial Advisor. “I was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. For most of my 46 years this has been and currently is the place I call home. I have been working as a Financial Advisor for the past 15 years educating people about their finances, helping them restructure and reduce debt, invest for the future and properly protect their families. A strong sense that there is something more I am supposed to do in the world, a fascination with energy and a series of intuitive nudges has led me to begin practising Reiki. I have a desire to learn and practise other healing modalities, as well as serve children and empower young women around the world. I am grateful for the opportunity to share my thoughts and stories with you.”