Are you longing for a circle of women friends who make you feel at home despite the constant overwhelm of day-to-day life?
Have you lost sight of yourself and the hopes and visions you once had?
You're consumed by pressure to succeed no matter which way you turn. There's a job to maintain, the partner to please or gain, the future to secure, maybe the children to raise into brilliant brains. All of this while you've placed yourself on the back burner of your own life.
Until one fine day, you find yourself in a battle you've mainly fought alone, that has left you now bleeding on the ground. Exhausted with a slew of self-deprecating thoughts.
What if there were a sisterhood, a women's circle, a group of ladies just like you to pick you up and straighten you out? To show you how to ignite your courage and self-esteem and guide you back to passion and purpose?
Luckily, there is.
What the heck is a sisterhood anyway?
"Because there's only one thing stronger than magic: sisterhood" – Maya Angelou
Sisterhood, also known as a women’s circle, is an incredibly powerful network of women. They come together from all walks of life ready to join hands, hearts, and minds for a more significant cause. Think of it as solidarity—that brings and holds us together based on shared values, ethics, or similar interests and aspirations.
It's like an inner group of sisterly friends with whom you encounter and groom love, kindness, appreciation, and much more—emotions many of us have long deprived ourselves of. Or worse, compete with each other for.
So sisterhood really is—as Tara Isis of Wild Woman Sisterhood says
“an environment where women connect and in respect and quality.”
As such it holds a sacred space for its members—for their disappointment, slips, and bruises. And a space to unleash the great powers that lie within each one of us. When we finally connect to these forces, there's no holding us back.
Why do we all need sisterhood?
“When we gather there is a collective power to heal, find our voice, rise up and make a difference.” — unknown
Sisterhoods bring the best of qualities in women to the surface, once we learn to accept them as our own and begin to refine and make use of them. The list of benefits is long, so let's just take a brief look at some of them:
“Sisterhood is the underlying force behind feminism, and even unites women who don’t know one another. It’s about a nurturing type of love, and an empathy for each person’s life experience" – Norbert Juma, Everyday Power
How a sisterly way forward pays off
Sisterhoods harness the collective power and energy of like-minded women. Pay It Forward is such a sisterhood — a sponsorship based support that is passed on—from one woman to another.
Its founder, Merry Lynch, a survivor of sexual and verbal abuse, today claims
"Without the emotional and financial support of other women, my life most likely would have taken a turn for the worse."
Driven by her longing to reciprocate the help she got when she needed it the most, Merry has created this platform to help women in need to come together and experience what a sisterhood member describes so well:
“Because of you donating I was able to attend without guilt. Being able to just stop and think about what it is that I truly want! And now, I am paying it forward for other survivors of sex trafficking to go through the experience as well! This is the ripple effect of your generosity! — Catherine Wilson
Merry’s sisterhood uses a variety of vision board techniques (check out Rosemary Bointon's post on Your Vision Board: How to Live your Dream Now +Examples) that profoundly help you to discover the unique path you're on along with the ins and outs of human behaviors and emotional intelligence. It brings women together in on-line events, offers mentorship and emotional support. It's a place where you mutually assist each other in your individual quest for growth.
The women bring a ton of experience to the table, which they're often unaware of. Not surprisingly, some shyly express their dreams for the first time in the sacred space the weekly meetings hold. These same women can support another woman through the Pay It Forward Sisterhood. And so the journey continues.
”I have taken Merry Lynch's Vision Board Workshop class six times over the years. It has been such a beneficial tool in helping me visualize my goals whether they be for my business, personal, health or relationship. When she announced the Pay It Forward Sisterhood program and the ability to be able to sponsor another woman, I put my hand up immediately. It is so exciting to be able to nudge another woman to take the time and assess her life – Bridgette Vermette
And by the way...it's no myth.
There's a myriad of possibilities once we strip ourselves of the pain from ignoring our dreams and goals and begin to chase them instead.
"My vision board has helped me to make my goals concrete." - Katarina/Czech Republic
Are you ready to stand up for a future filled with the powers of sisterhood?
You're in a room full of women raising a toast to each other's success. As your proudly walk around you sense a festive feeling of belonging. There's support, friends, sisters and a community you wholeheartedly love. You've teamed up and jointly helped each other on your path.
You’ve allowed yourself to be seen while demonstrating bravery and courage. You’ve experienced the powers you and others have and what can happen if both unite.
You’ve understood what sisterhood is all about—that it’s more than just a bunch of women. That it’s a path to sisterly freedom that leads to travel, to love, passion and purpose, to a new job or simply to the abundance life has to offer.
This could be you. All you have to do is reach out to us.
Have a look at what the Pay It Forward Sisterhood can do for you! Click the image below....
Guest Blogger: Kerstin Krause
Kerstin Krause is a certified content writer, a seasoned traveler who's walked her talk, a passionate writer on the stuff life teaches us, an aspiring motorbike rider and so much more. She currently publishes on medium.com where you can find more of her work.
Do you know what a vision board is or what you could use it for? Maybe you’ve heard of them but don’t know what they can do for you. Try this.
Imagine that your wildest dreams are coming true.
Look deep into your mind’s eye and see that dream taking shape. See yourself doing the actions that bring your dream into reality. Imagine the feelings. Let them well up and explode into your mind, like shooting stars across a night sky.
It’s a powerful moment when you can see your dreams, when you can visualize the life that you want for yourself and your family coming true.
Wouldn’t it be great if you had a reminder of that dream and those feelings to look at every day, to remind you where you want to get to and what you want to achieve?
What if you could capture those feelings and dreams? Wouldn’t it help to start working towards living your dream now?
Well that’s what a vision board can do for you. Want to know how?
Let’s start at the beginning.
What is a vision board?
A vision board is a snapshot of the picture of the dreams and desires that you hold in your head. Using pictures, photos, words and illustrations. you fashion them into a collage on your board: a visual embodiment of your dreams, desires or ideal life-style.
Your vision board not only embodies your dream, but acts as a prompt to your brain (especially your sub-conscious) to achieve that dream you have so lovingly crafted.
Is a vision board the same as a goal setting board?
Some people say that vision boards and goal boards are the same thing. Others disagree and say they are different: because a vision is an end result whereas the goals are like objectives or milestones along the road to achieving the vision.
Sometimes your vision only relates to one aspect of your life: eg being successful in your career or owning your own house. A purist might say that’s a goal because once you’ve achieved it, it enables you to live the life you dream of – ie live in a house that you own.
To me, it illustrates how you can use vision boards to dream dreams or set goals for yourself wherever and however you want to. It doesn’t matter whether it’s all encompassing or only to achieve a specific goal in one aspect of your life.
You can set the big picture or you may find It’s much easier to work towards one aspect at a time. You can have more than one board: you might prefer to create a goal board for each separate part of your life which all adds up to that life you dream of.
Take a look at how this vision board worked for Catherine
Catherine, from Maine in the US, is a great example of how a vision board can work. She wanted more freedom which meant she needed more help in her work. She made her vision board and here’s what happened:
How does a vision board work?
So Catherine had a very solid result from her vision board within a couple of weeks. But it doesn’t always work that way.
Dreams are flimsy things that can drift in and out of your mind. It’s easy to forget them or ignore them. But a vision board makes your dreams and visions of life more concrete through visualization. You can literally see the feelings that you were expressing about your dream.
Creating a vision board is an emotional journey and the vision board helps you to align its emotional impact with your rational thinking. So it both reinforces your dream and inspires you to take action towards your vision of a better life.
Proof that vision boards really do work
Some people don’t believe that vision boards work and like a lot of things in life, they won’t work unless you put the effort in. But a vision board is something tangible to look at each day to remind you to visualize what you want to do or be. It conjures up those pictures in your mind, where you are achieving your dream.
Conjuring up pictures has a posh name: visualization. Visualizing yourself doing something and going over how exactly you’re going to do this is termed mental rehearsal. They are great tools used in many fields to help achieve a specific result. Athletes are renowned for using them. So do musicians, negotiators and entrepreneurs. Performers (such as dancers and actors) use it to help control their nerves, teachers train students to ace their exams.
A famous English rugby player, the goal kicker Jonny Wilkinson, used to visualize a woman he called Doris, sitting between the rugby posts holding a Coke can. He imagined a blue line connecting the ball to her can of coke, through the goal posts. Then he pictured his kick of the ball sending it soaring through the posts and knocking the can out of her hand. He’s a legend of rugby now.
Scientists found that visualization has the power to change the physical structure of the brain because the brain doesn't distinguish between a real or an imagined exercise. It helps you to focus.
So looking at your vision and visualizing yourself doing the things you dream of is not just day dreaming. None of this means that you can make a vision board and just forget about it.
Vision boards work because you do
Here’s how you make your vision board work for you.
Visualization is very motivating and trains your brain to believe you can achieve what you’re seeking. But you need to practice visualizing the life or dream you are evoking. Looking at your vision board on a daily basis and visualizing your dream, it focuses your thoughts and primes your brain to take the actions and do the work so that you can achieve your vision.
The best approach is to review your vision board every day. Then ask yourself what you can do today to make the dream manifest.
Some people find it sinks into their sub-conscious better if they review it last thing before they go to sleep. You wake up primed to focus on the actions you need to do to achieve that dream.
How quickly does a vision board make a difference?
Some people have results from their vision board remarkably quickly, like Catherine did. Others take longer: their ideas need time to simmer for longer.
Here’s Agnieszka’s story.
"I did my vision board with Merry in 2019. Since then, some "miracles" happened in my life. I gave up my job and now I have my own company, I work internationally and step by step make my dreams come true. My vision board helps me stay on track and every time I have doubts or a bad day, I look at the picture and I see myself in the right place."
Agnieszka is the CEO of Newlandd Learning & Development and you can find her here: https://newlandd.com/.
First steps for a vision board for a life you will love today as well as in the future
The very first thing you need to do is to dream your dreams, list your goals and hunt for your lifestyle ideas. Choose the one you’re going to spend your time working on. Do you find that tough? Here are some ways of getting into it.
Ask yourself the following questions:
Two big tips to get you going
Tip no 1: Take your time working on your dream. You might find that all sorts of things come welling up that you didn’t expect. Here’s what Mari from Thailand said about the vision board course that she did:
‘These workshops gave me time to reflect and do some inner soul searching into what I really was seeking. I am worthy and deserving of all that I seek. Thank you for helping me to uncover that.’
Tip no 2: Ditch any negatives – your subconscious doesn’t like negatives but latches on to them. Eg don’t dream of not being as fat as an elephant – the first thing your mind does is conjure up a picture of yourself as a fat elephant. Dream positively of being healthy and slim.
Why does this happen? We have an immediate bias towards the negative – a hangover from primitive times when we expected to be trodden on or eaten by a dinosaur or some other wild animal. So the sub-conscious latches on to a negative goal because it wants to train you to be ready to run away from a nasty surprise as fast as possible.
Building the big picture from the small picture
Some people want to dive in straight away with a huge dream. You can devise your vision board to reflect both the big dream and to fill in its component parts. So, you might develop your dream in steps, each new one leading to your next topic.
You might feel that you have a random set of dreams perhaps with multiple related ideas eg:
This is Melissa from Idaho's vision board. She and her, then boyfriend, quit their jobs to travel and volunteer in orphanages in Cambodia, Philippines and Vietnam. They now are married, have a baby, and have their dream jobs. They both had relationships in the past that did not work out and wanted to make sure this was right.
Like Melissa, by working on the bigger picture of your dream and how to achieve it, you might end up developing a career which will enable you to travel with your partner and might also provide you with extra income when you’re retired. How cool would that be?
The TANTALIZING choices that make up your dream life
Now you get to the fun part. You need to gather images to put onto your vision board. Ooh – where to begin? It can make you feel like a kid in a sweet shop. The best ones to choose are those that evoke the emotions you feel when you think about your dream.
Start looking for images whether in art, in magazines, your photos or which embody the feeling that you are seeking to gain. Maybe you see an advertising image in the street or on your computer. Take a photo or download it.
Start collecting quotes that inspire you to take action towards that goal or dream as well.
Conjuring up your emotions takes all of your senses
Allow your imagination to roam as to what helps you to conjure up your dream. You can use all your senses! So if you want to improve your health, choose a picture of a healthy meal coming out of the oven. Admire the colours of the food. Imagine savouring every mouthful and enjoying it all the more because you can smell the healthiness that it’s going to give your body.
Or maybe your dream is to be a better friend. So have a photo of a big hug from your friend to conjure up the warm feelings of friendship that you want to achieve. Feel the bones in your friend’s shoulder as you put your arms around them. Exaggerate the sensations, the feel of your friend’s body, maybe the way that they smell, the touch of their hair as you hug. The warmth and joy you feel.
Make a collage of all the images and photos. Then shuffle the pictures around until it looks right for you. Try different combinations. You might find the process starts you off on refining your dream, providing more detail.
Strengthen the images by adding quotes, sayings or even inspiring words, such as ‘connection’, ‘closeness’, ‘focus’, ‘adventure’ or the emotions that inspires you.
Keep going until just by looking at the collage, you can feel the emotions that led you to choose those images.
Now you need to decide what kind of vision board suits you best.
Transforming your dream into a tangible vision: 10 different ways
Real vision boards verses virtual
Some people are happy to show their vision boards to the world and proudly display them in their kitchen. Other people don’t want to make a mess with glue and bits of paper and would rather have a private document tucked away in their computer. We all have different ways of dreaming our dreams.
It’s quite possible to make a virtual vision board. You can find online templates on sites like Canva or BeFunky. Mindmovies is a great tool because it’s like a short film for creating a picture of your life. You can also use Power point, Evernote or mind maps.
My very own vision board example
Ok, I freely admit that I’m not the most artistic, so my vision boards tend to be pretty simple, but here is an example of a virtual vision board that I made really quickly for my 200 Plant Foods Challenge. I made it on Befunky.com using their collage maker.
It’s personal because a lot of the photos are my own, taken in our badly lit kitchen (not the taro drink though and I couldn’t get all the potato colors together myself although I did try).
I included the photo of produce for sale from my friends’ organic farm which reminds me to eat bio/organic as much as possible as well as reminding me of the value of friendship and eating together as well. And of course, I have a vested interest in Rosemary, which is for remembrance. It’s another reminder to keep eating the veggies!
Don’t forget you can print out your virtual vision board too.
Working out where to put your vision board
The best place is the one where you are most likely to see it and focus on it on a daily basis. Catherine put hers on the wall just above her computer screen so that she was constantly looking at it. Good places for a lifestyle vision board are on the fridge, on any noticeboard you have or on the inside of your front door.
On the bathroom door or on your wardrobe door are great places to see it before you go to sleep.
Or simply frame it and hang it up as a picture somewhere such as in your hallway or going up the stairs.
If you drive each day, try finding a place to put a small copy somewhere easy to see in the car – eg on the dashboard.
Take a photo and print out a small copy and keep it in your wallet or bag. If you’ve done a career vision board then in your office is a great place.
Alternatively, a good place for a virtual vision board is as a screen saver on your computer or phone. You probably spend quite of time looking at them! So use them to give your sub-conscious a shove.
Success today creates your vision tomorrow
You can use this technique to
The examples are endless!
Vision Boards: fun for all the family (including the children)
Kids love creating pictures and creating a vision board for themselves which can be a really good way of teaching children (at an appropriate age) life lessons about how to achieve things and how to discipline themselves to work towards their aim.
You could do it as a family and encourage each other to play your parts in achieving the vision.
If you’re a student, you can use a vision board to incentivize yourself and help you to study. (Just remember, vision boards don’t study for you, but they help you to focus and direct your brain’s attention to what you need to do).
Want some real examples? Here you are.
What Mari did with her vision board
Remember Mari from Thailand? Well, she’s a teacher. What she did was teach her students to create their own vision boards. What a great idea! Here are some of the vision boards her students created.
How Dorota's dreams came true
Here’s Dorota with her vision board. Maybe you can guess what she was looking for. Yes, you’ve got it! She was looking for love. Here’s what Dorota said:
""Merry - my last vision board all came true. I found my soulmate and married him. Merry has the passion and knowledge that it takes to make personal development interesting, relevant and inspirational."
Dorota is living her dream.
Use your vision board to make your dreams come true
You now know how to make a vision board.
Visualize it now: see yourself choosing the dream that is going to inspire you. The one that is going to come true for you. Then imagine all the images that conjures up – now you’re hunting down those images.
You assemble them into a beautiful swirl of ideas, hopes and dreams. You find the perfect place to keep your dream in front of your eyes. You see yourself working out how you’re going to make this dream come true. So every day is a happy day because you’re growing ever closer to your dream.
And now you realise you are living your dream, even if you haven’t got to the end result. But you’re enjoying the journey and making each day count – and who could ask for more?
Now it’s up to you. Take that first step, make your vision board and start living your dream, today.
HOW TO MAKE A CRAP BOARD – GET FACE TO FACE WITH YOUR LIFE
My favorite workshop to facilitate is a program focusing on VISION BOARDS. I just love them. Vision boards have totally propelled my life into what it is today. I have used vision boards throughout my life whenever I felt stuck, frustrated, off track, un-loved & un-worthy. I think I came out of the womb knowing the power of a vision board. Heck, just the other day I layed out a vision board on my desktop and covered it with a piece of glass so that I see it all day long!
Staring at my vision board makes me happy...or merry! The words and images that I chose uniquely represent what I am wanting to attract. It keeps me focused on my goals and gives me a swift kick in the ass when I need it. Next, you have to hang your vision board in a place where you see it serveral times a day. This will insure that the images and words become top of mind awareness. Making you ready for all of the goodness that is about to flow your way. I usually hang my vision board in the bathroom or bedroom, this time I decided to create one my desk. Whatever you do, don't just make it and file it away. Things just seem to unfold and opportunities seem to be placed in front of me, crazy as that sounds. People call me “lucky,” I call me “prepared”.
Earle Nightingale says that, luck is just preparedness on steroids. I can do that. I can hold onto a vision and put things in place to allow for the flow to happen. But the caveat here is that I then am the one that has to take action. That part can be a bit scary because afterall, who am I to live such a beautiful life? What? Who am I NOT to? Nonetheless, it can be scary once things begin to appear or doors begin to open. There is a lot of head stuff that has to happen in order to feel worthy or ready for all the goodness the world has to offer. Vision boards can help with that.
Oprah has this to say about vision boards, watch it here:
Some people think vision boards are all fluff and are a silly waste of time. Where do you fall? Have you ever created a vision board? I have so many stories that have happened in my life which I can directly point to one of my vision boards for. And if you hang around with me long enough, you'll get to hear them all.
But for the non-believers out there…I suggest you do a Crap Board. Mark Waldman describes Crap Boards in this way, putting down on paper everything that is bothering you and thinking about it deeply, helps to release the worry. A kind of meditation, if you will.Take a deep look at the life you have. Write down everything you hate about your life. In detail. Pull out magazines and cut out images and words that reflect how you feel about your current sucky life and then...let that shit go!
Don’t miss a thing, use the acronym below to you make sure you have the bases cover:
Paste all of the images and words on a board and hang out in front of it for a while. So, now how do you feel? That’s what you've got. Now if I were you, I would take the thing outside and burn it and go back inside and begin to build a vision of the life you want.
Build it and it will come!
P.S. If your interested in learning how to create a kick ass vision board that attracts, then sign up for the waitlist of my upcoming on-line program. I will leave no stone unturned and no information on the power of your thoughts left out. You’ll get it all. Click the link below to get notified when the program launches. Are you ready to unsuck your life?
It was over 36 years ago now when my then husband and I had a disagreement, he asked me to leave…so I packed up our girls ages 4 and 18 months and left.
I was devasted, scared, ashamed, embarrassed, angry and relived all at once. The emotions ran over me like a freight train.
Since that time many twists and turns have happened. The ups and downs of life, the accomplishment and the setbacks. But the one thing I am sure of is, I made the right choice.
Recently at the wedding of my youngest daughter I had obligatory gathering which included my ex-husband. Cordial is the word that comes to mind. Oh, how far I have come. I am proud of the woman, mother and grandmother that I have become.
That young woman who married a man over 40 years ago blossomed through a choice she made. It wasn’t always easy and surely wasn’t always fun, but the road taken proved to be the best path for me. I am forever grateful. Divorce was not in vogue when this all happened. I had no college degree (at that time), had not yet figured out how I would support myself or my girls or even who I might become. But for me anything was better than the verbal and emotional abuse I sustained. Although, there were no bruises or my body, no physical signs of pain, the abuse ran deep and was devastating.
But there was something inside me that said, “life didn’t have to be this way.” That I had a choice and although the outcome was unknown, the risk was worth it. It turned out that the cost was of epic proportion, not in dollars but in heart break and yet the choice; was still the right one.
I had to learn to forgive myself for not having the where with all or stamina to stay and take the abuse for the sake of the family. As the outcome was life altering.
It took years, no, decades to forgive myself.
Today, at the wedding of my youngest daughter, I had the opportunity to revisit those feelings. I am proud and worthy of the life I have built.
The choice was mine, just as it is yours and every other day of your life. And although the choices you have maybe different from mine those 40 years ago, the fact is, you still have a choice. No matter how big or small.
What are you intending for your life, even if only for today? Are you ready to commit to you and your dreams? What are the steps, the tiny steps you can take to move you forward? The choice is yours.
Cheers to a fabulous you!
I'd be over thoughts like this but nope. There they were staring at me in the face. I wanted to keep sharing but I looked at this event as a lesson I needed to learn. What kept running through my thoughts was, "do what you love and forget the rest." Have you heard that before?
I had gotten so wrapped up in the social media thing that I wasn't loving what I was doing anymore. I had set up rigid deadlines for my on-line presence and had to learn new apps and programs to keep up. It was time consuming and totally inteferred with what I love to do. So, here I was faced with a dilema, so I became quiet to be able to hear what was about to bubble up.
On the bright side I found that it was time for a change anyway. Just like getting a new hairdo, I was ready for a new look and feel. But where do you start when you want a new you? Soul searching baby...lots of soul searching. And let me tell you, sometimes that ain't pretty. It was almost more frustrating to figure out this new path and get excited about the unfoldling, than it was to just scratch the whole idea. I started and stopped, and started and stopped. Until, the path became clear.
Finding a clear path that creates thoughts of abundance instead of scarcity takes time. It takes time to quiet the mind and listen to that inner guidance that always has your best interest at heart. Then as I listened, "Braving Midlife" came about as many of you (my followers) had been referring to me as "brave." That was scarey. I didn't see myself as brave and yet as I looked back through the years of journals that I kept, the clients I served, the people I placed myself in front of, I realized that I am all of that and more. I am excited about what lies ahead, no matter my age. I am doing more of the work that I love than ever before, all while living in a foreign country. And all I had to do was let go and listen.
So as I begin to pull together, define and refine what midlife means to me, I will share with you my experiences, the lessons, and the people that I meet along with way, in hopes that this will inspire you to step forward into the beautiful human being that you are and share that person with the world.
As time goes on, I hope you will have an opportunity to join me on my travels, so be sure to sign up for my newsletter. And as my programs begin to move to an on-line platform I will be sure to keep you informed. For those of you that have an inkling of becoming a midlife entrepreneur I have so much in store for you. My life is full from me doing what I love and I wish that for you as well.
Be sure to bookmark my site and visit often...oh...and don't forget to share. After all, sharing is caring.
Cheers to a beautiful life,
P.S. Begin living a life on purpose with a purpose. Take my FREE on-line Living an Intentional Life program today. Simply click on the image below to begin.