Whoa! It’s May! Now’s the time to start thinking about how you want to make this summer enjoyable in multiple ways. That includes fun activities and also ways to expand your wellness. Vision Boards, Mind Maps and Bucket Lists are great tools to use!!
We often thing about Vision Boards at the beginning of the year and they are a great part of planning then. I wrote about the basics of how to create vision boards here: http://carolbrusegar.com/creating-vision-boards/ We can use them seasonally as well; create your very own and/or a family Summer Vision Board now. Take some time to gather pictures and words that illustrate your goals, ambitions, hopes and dreams for the coming season. You might include photos you’ve taken of things you’ve done and places you’ve gone in the past that you loved. Here are some tips to get started.
Use Bright Summer Colors
Color helps to create more of a theme to get you in the spirit. A great way to do that is by focusing on the colors we associate with this time of year. Bright yellows, oranges, blues, red all portray the energy of summer.
Include Flowers and Gardening
To decorate this vision board, use a lot of beautiful seasonal flowers and other gardening images. If you want to create a garden someday, find images of your dream garden, both in size and layout, and the actual flowers you might include. If you just want flowers for decoration and to reflect the seasonal theme, use sunflowers, zinnias, roses and other flowers that you enjoy in summer. If you grow herbs, vegetables or fruits, be sure to include them.
List Your Health Goals
Decide what you want to do in the upcoming months in terms of your mental or physical wellness. Use words, lists, and images to reflect your personal health goals. Break them down to specific things you will do. For example, meditate and/or journal daily to improve your mindset and attitude. Or connect with 3 friends per week. Or picture favorite summer fruits and vegetables that you will enjoy each week. Make those goals come alive and be appealing with the visuals and well-chosen words.
Choose Activities and Outings
What sports do you enjoy doing in the summer – outdoor tennis, volleyball, badminton, etc. For many of us, water-related activities will be high on the list. What sports do you enjoy as a spectator during these months? There are so many places to visit – zoos, botanical gardens, museums, historical sites and more. Which ones do you want to enjoy this summer? Then think of fairs, expos, musical events. Decide on your priorities and put them on your Summer Vision Board.
In addition to thinking about what you’ve enjoyed in the past and want to do again, think about new activities and experiences you want to include in your summer plans. Add them to your Summer Vision Board. Set aside some time and get started! This can be a great launching point to the coming months.
Mind Mapping as a Planning Tool
Another tool to jumpstarting your dreaming and planning for the coming season is MIND MAPPING. It is a tool that can release creativity and engage the entire household. Mind mapping is a two-dimensional technique that uses imagery, drawings and color to help us tap into both sides of our brains. It is an alternative to outline and list making techniques and is more detailed than a vision board. This powerful tool helps us visualize tasks or ideas, come up with new possibilities as we brainstorm, and organize our thoughts.
Basics of Mind Maps
Here are the steps to do simple, hand-drawn mind maps.
- Gather plain paper, colored pencils, markers, or crayons.
- Choose a topic you want to explore.
- Draw a circle in the center of the paper and write in your topic in a word or phrase.
- Draw lines out from the center where you write a few words, a symbol or drawing for each idea you have, and add sub-topics or related ideas in lines off these main points.
Make additional maps as off-shoots or expansions of your first map. You can expand, modify or discard ideas from the first map on the topic.
An Example of a Summer Mind Map
Start with the main topic of “Summer 2023” and think of several categories of things you want to be part of the season, like:
Accomplish 1 Big Goal, Have Fun/Recreation, Help Others, Explore, Read, Start a New Hobby
These are the spokes that come out from your main topic. Then add specific things that you want to do under each. For example, under Help Others, you might list Deliver flowers or a treat to a neighbor, Call an isolated relative weekly, etc.
Then start a new mind map for each subtopic, add the ideas as subtopics and think of how, when and who would be involved in each one. Here’s where you may weed out things you don’t want to do, and you can always add additional things that come to mind.
Mind maps become a planning tool that are good reminders of the larger picture and help keep track of details. Keeping your mind maps in a folder or binder is helpful.
Use Bucket Lists
Another helpful tool are Bucket Lists. I have 2 sets of Summer Bucket Lists – 1 sheet for each month May through August. They have mandala coloring headers for more fun. Check them out here:
Summer Bucket Lists Flower Mandalas to Color Printable 5 – Etsy
Summer Bucket Lists Butterfly Mandalas to Color Printable – Etsy
Use a Planner and Journal
Once you have created a Summer Vision Board and/or Mind Map, this could help you continue the planning and record your experiences: Planner & Journal: For Day Trips: Getaways and Mini-Vacations
I’m Carol Brusegar, author, photographer and curator of information. My focus is on gathering and writing on topics that enhance all our lives – regardless of our age. Topics include health and wellness, personal development, innovation and creativity, and a variety of helpful, practical tools and practices. I have a special interest in helping people over 50 years of age to create their 3rd Age – the next stage of their lives – to be the best it can be.