If you’ve spent any time at all on Pinterest, you’ve probably heard of vision boards. If you haven’t, a vision board is essentially a collage of images and quotes representing your goals. The theory is that making your aspirations tangible and visual helps you manifest them into being. While I love anything that might help someone reach their goals, vision boards never felt right for me. Pasting magazine cutouts and motivational quotes onto cardboard just feels a little…hokey. And, I’m not so much an artist as I am a musician. So, I created for myself a vision board alternative: a personal growth playlist.
What is a Personal Growth Playlist?
I’ve been making playlists since I started listening to music. I love curating a little gallery of songs that share a theme or a mood, or that go along with a story. My favorite playlists, though, are ones filled with music that reflects who I am in ways that I can’t describe in words. It’s my own theme music, in a way. What I call a personal growth playlist is similar to a theme music playlist, except it reflects who you want to be rather than who you are now.
Unlike vision boards, personal growth playlists focus on feelings and ways of being instead of material objects or specific experiences. The songs you pick have a vibe that you want to embody yourself. If I want to feel more confident, say, I’ll choose upbeat rock or pop songs. For a more intimate, inward-looking feel, I might pick slower folk or classical music.
Lyrics are just as important as genre and style. I, for one, can’t love a song with lyrics I don’t connect to (unless it’s just the catchiest tune ever). So I make sure my personal growth playlist only features songs with lyrics that speak to me; or, I opt for instrumental music that really strikes a chord (pun!). The point here is that no matter what music you add to your playlist, make sure it’s personally meaningful to you.
How to Craft Your Playlist
1. List Your Goals
To make a “personal growth playlist,” you’ll need to know what you’re growing toward. You probably already have an idea of your goals, but I find it helps to list them out. This will make it easier to choose what music to add when you have a clear sense of the mood you’re going for. For example, I’m working toward confidence, inner strength, and a willingness to break out of my comfort zone. So, I’ll probably go for rock-based, mood-boosting songs with strong vocals and powerful lyrics.
2. Write Your Title
Before picking songs, I like to give my playlist a creative title. Try to condense your list of goals into something memorable, yet reflective of the person you want to be. I’m calling my playlist Fierce Fearless Femme. It tells me that I want to face my fears and find strength and power in my femme identity. When you hit your perfect title, you’ll know–it’ll feel just right.
3. Add Your Songs
This is the fun part! Now that you have a title, you can go through your music collection and add songs that fit your theme. If you already have songs in mind, add those in too. Your playlist can be as long or short as you want; mine tend to be pretty long, as I always add new songs when I discover ones that feel right. I also like to keep my playlist as a “work in progress,” editing it if I feel like some songs aren’t working anymore.
Listen to your playlist whenever you need to connect with yourself and remember your goals. Maybe you’ll listen while getting ready in the morning, while driving to work, or after a bad day. What’s great about this vision board alternative is that you can bring it with you everywhere, as long as you have a device handy. It can be whatever you want–there really are no limits!
Finally, don’t think I’d end this post without sharing my own playlist! Listen to “Fierce Fearless Femme” below, featuring some of my favorite artists.