I hosted a Vision Board Party on Saturday, November 21st. And by all accounts it was a success! In the event you've been living under a rock and aren't familiar with a vision board- it is basically a visual representation of your goals or aspirations. First, you start off with a blank poster board or sheet of paper (you can also create virtual vision boards) and then you look through magazines for words and images that best represent your goals.
For example, if you want to travel more in the upcoming year, then you would look for photo's of airplanes, or certain destinations like a beach, Las Vegas, London, Rome, etc. Or keywords like "adventure" or "journey". You cut out these images from the magazine and arrange them on your poster board in a way that is aesthetically pleasing to you and then glue them on to the board. Once you are done you hang it in your office, bedroom, closet, kitchen, etc. wherever you will be more inclined to see it and be reminded of your goals.
The owner of the venue where I had my event said something really profound in regards to vision boards: Visualization leads to manifestation! I think that pretty much sums it up!
Here are some tips for pulling off a successful vision board party:
1. Venue- You need to find a venue for your vision board party. Determine if you want to have it at your home, clubhouse, library or other location. TIP: Of course your home would be ideal depending on the number of people you're hosting but most public libraries will let you use their rooms for free. I hosted my event at The Woman's Earth, a wellness studio in my city where I am a member. You get discounted rates on space rental. Wherever you decide to have the event, make sure the space is open and can accommodate your guests and everyone has enough room to spread out and make their boards.
2. Guests- If you are doing a small group, I would suggest only inviting people who you know will be inspired or can serve as an inspiration. You can have as few as 3 to 5 people or upwards of 20. Just make sure all in attendance feel like they are getting something out of it and they have enough time to create! Be mindful: vision board parties are suppose to be positive and uplifting, make sure you invite the right energy into the space! Don't invite people who will bring in negative vibes.
3. Invitation- Once your guest list is written down, create a fun invite and send it to your guests. I actually did my entire guest list through Facebook after creating my invite. If you have enough time and plan the event far in advance you can also get cute invitations printed and mail them out to people who may not be on social media. Also, for me I chose to charge a small fee ($15) it helped cover supplies and refreshments but it was also to solidify a commitment from attendees. When you have a "free" event (unless it's all family) sometimes people will RSVP and not show up. But usually when people pay a fee, they are more committed to attending and participating.
4. Supplies- I subscribe to three magazines, so I usually have old magazines laying around. Most of the time I stack them up and take them to the recycling center but since I knew I was going to be having a vision board party I started saving the magazines. I also picked up free community magazines from the grocery store and got a few from the dentist office. You can also check the recycling centers or doctors offices, nail salons, beauty salons for extra magazines. And depending on how many people you're inviting-- if it's a really small group-- you might just pay for a handful of magazines or ask your guests to bring some if you aren't charging a fee. I also purchased little notebooks with inspirational covers and put them in a gift bag along with chocolates so that the ladies had a parting gift. AND I purchased a copy of Cheryl Strayed's Brave Enough along with The Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes and did two giveaways at the party.
5. Agenda- Even though most of the time will be spent scouring through magazines, you don't want there to be a lull in activity. I opened the party with an ice breaker to introduce everyone and to get them thinking about their goals for 2016. I had soft music playing during the event, walked around encouraging everyone and gave everyone a sheet entitled "2016 Intentions" to further help them streamline their goals for the upcoming year.
One thing I didn't mention above was that I planned this event a month out. So, I sent the first save the date for the event around October 21st. You want to be sure you allow yourself enough time to get everything together. It will probably work even better if you enlist someone to co-host, pick someone who is going to take it seriously and hold up their end of the responsibilities.
And that's all there is to it! Just be sure as the host/hostess you enjoy your self and make a vision board as well!
In February of this year I paid a deposit for a vendor/author table at the National Black Book Festival, which wasn't scheduled until October 2015. My book was still in the editing phase but I used the festival as momentum to finish the book and I looked forward to attending hoping it would help legitimize me as an author.
Past festivals boasted some very well known authors and after being around for more than half a decade I was convinced this was a pretty big deal. It was also an added bonus that it was taking place in my hometown- Houston. Side note: I actually asked a friend who had attended about her experience the year prior and she told me NOT to attend that it wasn't worth it but I had to see for myself. . .I had very high hopes despite her warnings.
The festival itself was scheduled for three days and I could draw this post out with a nit-picking critique but I will just say overall it was a bit of a disappointment.
PROS: I met other authors and we exchanged stories, tips and information that I am certain will be beneficial as my journey as an author continues to unfold. I got to hear Roland Martin speak.. .he was extremely candid as he talked about self publishing, sharing some very useful information.
CONS: I sold a dismal amount of books after being told that 1,000 people would come through the festival over two days (there were more authors than readers/visitors on both days). It rained and I am certain that was ONE deterrent but after speaking to other authors I don't think it was really promoted well and the location may have also kept people away, it definitely needs to be more centrally located. . .I traveled over 45 miles ONE WAY two days in a row!
All in all it was definitely a learning experience. I would not attend the festival in the future as a vendor but depending on the author/speaker line up I might go IF it moved closer to downtown.
It's really unfortunate because it is an amazing concept but I don't think the marketing and promotion is being maximized. I do hope that it turns around and returns to the glory days I heard about a few years ago.
Writer. Reader. Designer. Creative Spirit.
“I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide.”