While cleaning out my office today, I found some interesting papers tucked under a large pile on my desk. These were my attempts at clarifying my values, goals, and priorities while I was on leave from residency.
These are purposefully taken as pictures with my camera, and thus you can’t see all the details… the point is not to read my particular values, goals, and priorities but to think of your own and WRITE THEM DOWN. This exercise isn’t for everyone, but my black bag for self-care contains a journal and other visual stress relievers such as collage, drawing and crafts. Being very visually driven and a perennial list-maker, these tools work for me to both relieve stress and at the same time reiterate my personal direction.
You can see that I pasted my hand-written lists on construction paper, the act of which for me was therapeutic in itself. When I was a kid, I had always wanted to be either an artist, an architect, or a fashion designer.There’s something about collage, cutting and pasting images and words, that harkens back to childhood art projects and the feelings of freedom that accompany those memories. I still do this today when I want to make vision boards. Find out more about how to make them (or any collage) here. Want to go paperless? Lululemon’s blog also has a good intro to the many digital collage programs out there. Lastly, check out this article by Martha Beck for Oprah’s blog on making a vision board. Here’s an example of one of mine:
Try it, have fun with it and learn more about yourself in the process!