Inspiration Board: The Art of Art and Poetry to Motivate You

Last summer I decided to make an Inspiration Board” of sorts on the back of my door in my parents’ house where I put sheets of lined paper and wrote in sharpie markers lists of things that I wanted to do. For example books that I wanted to read by the end of the year, physical activities like horseback riding and rock climbing that I want to try, a list of bucketlist travel destinations that I wished to go, and a variety of tv shows that I wanted to try. I crossed these things off of my list as Summer 2014 grew near, and I began preparing for a summer at home and potentially doing another board.

I tore down that board three weeks ago and replaced it with coloured sheets of construction paper written on in sharpies markers with large print words of “Neat” “Dream” “Inspire” and a large sheet that holds the top of my door that says “LIVE THE ADVENTURE” which is to, you know, remind me of Louis Cole’s philosophy of carpe diem and doing what is fufilling in everyday life, making every day the adventure instead of planning for an adventure ahead.

Some people believe that inrpisation boards are useless and to be completely honest the “dream boards” as I refer to them, that have catelogue cut-outs of fancy cars and pretty Chanel perfumes and dream jobs are…pretty, and nice for the cover of a highschool binder or for a journal, but if you are making realistic, beautiful life goals it makes more sense to think of things, experiences, that you would want to do and shoot for those. That is what makes up our everyday, not the things we have but the things we do.

So my new board is covered in lists like “Gone Marauding” which has places I would like to realistically travel to, a list called “Just Goals” that are things like “learn to make merangue” and other realistic practical fun experiences I would like to do, athere another page full of just things I would like to do around the world, like horseback ride through the Scottish Highlands and visit Kilimanjaro, and a few scattered pages of notes and things that I’d like to try, braille, “Taco Farm,” (a restaurant near my house), boxing, and other tv shows and books that I’d like to get to before next summer it seems.

I do not know the right way to make a motivation board, but in my experience after four years of university and covering my walls with posters and pinboards full of papers that I had done well on or was proud of, playbills of shows I had contributed to, sticky notes filled with lists, reminders, to’do’s and yoga classes, balloons, masks, figurines, pokemon cards, and anything else that I could find over the school year to keep me going, I have learned a few things about giving yourself a creative place to display what you want.

Use colour and use the artistic abilities that you like. If you respond well to photographs in black and white, well, do that. If you respond to lists like me, make lists on coloured paper or with coloured markers. If you respond really well to calendars hell cover your walls or boards with calendars! Whatever gets you going run with that. Some people respond well to a blank slate to fill in or to keep blank, and some people respond well to pinterest or tumblr, all of these things are mediums in which we can notify OURSELVES on what we want to do in life, so, go with what you like.

Be clear and concise about what the goals are. Don’t just write things like “write” because that is vague and not inspiring. Things like “write poetry” make a difference, that ignites thoughts and feelings towards poetry, or “draw in my sketchbook once a week” sounds better than just “draw,” am I right?

You’re not a god so don’t expect too much from yourself, but also shoot for the sky because you know you can do it. It’s all about being realistic yet challenging yourself. You may never become a profession basketball player, but you may be able to play basketball in LA on a famous court (I tried to use an example I knew nothing about…my bad). If you’re broke, shoot for “save enough money for a vacation” instead of “year long trip around the world by next summer.” Realism is goood.

And finally, trust yourself. Believe in yourself. Be good to yourself, and make this inspiration board YOUR OWN. Make your own goals, shoot for your own stars, and be kind to others. Live YOUR OWN advenutre, not something someone else wants, and with that positivity things are bound to come true, with dedication that is.

I may never get to snorkel in Australia, but at least I am shooting for something, and that is what makes my inspiration board with it.



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