You know I don't really believe in rules about "how to" do anything, but this is how I make my dream board, if you're curious. (I call it a dream board. vision board is also a great term as is life map. Call it what you wish.)
1. Collect images.
I collect images throughout the year. I tear them out of magazines and keep them in zip-loc freezer bags and file folders. When it's time to start thinking about my dream board, I start sorting through my images and picking the ones that feel right to me. At this stage, I'm just going for the images that make me feel good and not really thinking about why or if they relate to my dreams for the year.
2. Create a surface.
I use a bulletin board and every year I cover it in poster board or scrap booking paper - something that I can lift off and replace when it's time to make the new board. You can also use one of those tri-fold presentation boards or a stretched canvas or just the poster board itself. The bigger, the better in my opinion.
3. Figure out what you want.
Sometimes I know specific things that I want and sometimes what I want is more of an idea or concept. Sometimes I'm more in touch with what I want to feel or where I want to go spiritually or intellectually than I am concrete details. It doesn't really matter. The dream board is about your dreams. It's your map to you, so it can be about swimming pools and red boots or it can be about happiness and mental peace. It can also be a combination of these things. I make a big dream board at the start of the year that encompasses my dreams for the next 12 moths and smaller specific ones throughout the year.
4. Refine the images.
Once I have a clear idea of what it is that I'm inviting into my life, I begin moving my images around on the board and getting a feel for them. Sometimes an image just won't feel right, so I remove it. I remember once I had chosen a picture of a woman for my board because I liked the hat she was wearing but on second examination, she suddenly looked ill to me. I knew that every time I looked at that image, I was going to think of illness, so I removed it. I spend a lot of time sitting with my images and listening to them to make sure they line up with where it is I want to go. At this point, I start looking for images to represent the dreams I've decided on for the year. I go back to the magazines for this and I also use Google image search.
5. Get some words.
Just as I collect images, I collect phrases (or affirmations) to use on the board. Write the statements in the present tense, as if you are already living this dream. I look for words and phrases to cut out of magazines, but I also write my own. One thing I don't do is use my own handwriting on the board. I always type and print things out. This is a mind trick. We often don't believe or trust ourselves the way we do outside "authority" and when we see a statement like I experience joy written in our own handwriting, it doesn't have the same impact as a typeset Joy clipped out of a magazine. There are two phrases I use on every dream board: THIS OR SOMETHING BETTER NOW MANIFESTS FOR ME IN DIVINE APPROPRIATE TIMING and WHATEVER IS THE HIGHEST GOOD FOR ME IN SERVICE TO THE UNIVERSE, I NOW CLAIM. I was talking to a friend yesterday about how we don't always know what we want, how sometimes we think we know but then it turns out that thing we want isn't what we want at all. These two phrases take care of that.
6. Choose a central image.
I used to believe that I had to use an image of myself on the board. Sometimes I would glue my head on top of another body or sometimes I would find a picture of myself that I really liked. The key here is finding an image that you really like. You want to be able to look at this picture of yourself and feel great about it. This image goes in the very center with all of the other words and images sort of radiating out from it. This year, I'm pretty sure my central image isn't going to be me at all but rather a picture I found to represent me. I'm thinking of putting my name somewhere on it, though.
7. Choose a "higher power" image.
I always put an image over the head of the central image (or the "me") to represent spirituality. Sometimes it's a Buddha or Kwan-Yin, sometimes an angel, sometimes a candle. Last year, I used Reiki symbols.
8. Arrange the board.
This is the fun part. Move the images and words around and listen to how they speak to you. There are so many different ways you can arrange the board. Sometimes I live space in between, sometimes no space in between at all. I work intuitively at the point, just feeling where things want to go. I often end up with sections of the board representing sections of my life. This is also a time when you'll find some of the images just don't work. Only keep the ones that feel electric and vibrant. How you feel when you look at the board is the only thing that's important.
9. Glue things down and embellish.
I prefer rubber cement. Glue sticks also work. Once you get things where you want them you may want to add other stuff like stickers or glitter. You can paint or draw or draw squiggles. You're going to be looking at this board a lot and you want to feel great when you look at it so, have fun.
10. Give the board a boarder.
My favorite boarder is gold glitter which use on the wooden edge of the bulletin board. You can also use a black marker or anything, really, to create a frame.
11. Charge the board with your intention.
I think of creating the board as a ritual. I light a candle or two, put on healing music, and focus on my intention for the coming year as I'm arranging. When I'm finished, I sit quietly with the board, read the words to myself, feel the emotions and sensations -- really experience it.
12. Keep it to yourself.
This may sound superstitious, but I don't really want other people seeing my board. Sometimes they do, and that's okay, but as a general rule, I feel protective of my dream board and like to keep it private.
13. Dream with it.
I take my dream board out once or twice a day and sit with it, meditate with it, listen to it. I swim around in the images, calling up the dreams and experiencing them. I say the affirmations. I feel the dreams on the board as the here and now. In the past, I've taken a picture of my dream board and used it as the wallpaper on my laptop.
So these are my rules but there really aren't any rules except for this one: feel great.
I'll be making my dream board tonight in the light of the blue moon. If you choose do the same, I'll light a candle for you, too.