Entrepreneurs are born with a fire inside. When we’ve got an idea, we’ll do whatever it takes to get there. From sleepless nights and hustling, to head-to-the-ground days, entrepreneurs aren’t anything if they’re not determined. That drive and purpose we feel can be invigorating, but the more we dream, the more there is to get done. And that can create a vicious cycle as our to-do list grows and grows. There are so many tasks to check off that list that, over time, it can be easy to lose sight of the big picture. We begin to lose track, and sometimes end up heading in the wrong direction, or no direction at all. That’s why learning how to step back and analyze our progress from afar can be incredibly helpful for those of us with an entrepreneurial spirit.

I’ve been there. I’ve been so deep in the trenches of growing my business that I’ve lost sight of my big goals, and gotten off track. Sometimes I’ll be so focused on the minutiae of a project that once I (literally) zoom out, I realize I’ve spent three days perfecting a hand lettered piece that’s spelled wrong! One of the best tools to counteract this tunnel vision is visualization. You’ve probably heard of athletes using this technique to visualize their winning moves before they head out on the field. Well, you can use this same technique to visualize the goals you want to achieve and the steps you need to take to get there. Visualization helps you to take a step back and envision how you want to grow and feel in all areas of your life. With enough practice, it helps your goals become more tangible and feel more within reach. Why? Because they become familiar territory in your brain.

To Visualize Your Big Picture Goals, Ask Yourself These 5 Questions:

Entrepreneur writing business goals in Mind Your Business workbook by Ilana Griffo. Photo courtesy of Lindsay Stephany
Entrepreneur writing business goals in Mind Your Business workbook by Ilana Griffo. Photo courtesy of Lindsay Stephany
  1. Where do I see myself in one year professionally? 
  2. What aspects of my career bring me the most joy, and how can I do more of them?
  3. What’s weighing me down? 
  4. What limiting beliefs are holding me back?
  5. What do I want a typical day in my life to look like one year from now?

Now that you’ve imagined your future and how you want your life to look a year from now, start making decisions with those goals in mind. That entrepreneur you hope to become: start living and breathing as that person today. It can be so easy to forget about the deeper meaning behind your work and let temporary goals come to the forefront, but if you continue to keep the big picture top of mind, you’ll start taking tiny steps every day towards making it happen.

In Your Dreams

Entrepreneur using In Your Dreams vision board kit to fill workbook. Photo courtesy of Lindsay Stephany
Entrepreneur using In Your Dreams vision board kit to fill workbook. Photo courtesy of Lindsay Stephany

Now, you may be asking yourself how you can keep these goals “top of mind” when there’s so much else running through your head each day. That’s where creating a vision board comes in. A vision board is a collage of pictures, words, and quotes that help you “see” the future you want to create. It may sound like a cheesy craft project, but it’s actually a powerful tool that will get your creative juices flowing. You can create them for professional projects, or any other area of your life where you are looking to grow moving forward. Vision boards have helped me at many stages of my creative business, and that’s why I created a vision board kit, In Your Dreams, to help you do the same thing.

After you’ve asked yourself the above questions and formed a clear vision of how you want to grow, you can start gathering images and quotes that represent your goals and use them to fill your board. Cover it with as many things as you can that will inspire you and challenge you to chase your dreams each day. Once you’ve created your vision board, hang it somewhere that you’ll see it regularly. Seeing all your goals in front of you, and being constantly reminded of them, will help you take a step back and make day-to-day decisions with those goals in mind. Walking past your board, you’ll be reminded of what’s important to you, what you’re working towards, and what truly matters. Feeling inspired is one of an entrepreneur’s greatest assets. A vision board can ensure you don’t lose sight of that spark.

How do you keep your big picture goals in mind? Let us know down in the comments.

This article originally published on GREY Journal.