I have been thinking a lot about representations lately and how important they are in our journey, mostly because I have been spending a lot of time in front of my shrine lately, to retain my center.
Representations are a way to physically create the new reality you want, to help train your unconscious mind to move toward those things you want in your life, and to make those good, centered feelings your "normal state" of being. The two I recommend, the Vision Board and the Shrine, create anchors, positive mental patterns to attract those things you want, and attract those powerful states of being into your reality. These are visual/ sensory anchors to serve as reminders to your mind of your journey and to help your subconscious mind create the life you want.
The Vision Board is a visual representation of the things in your evolved self and your evolved life. It is a large picture comprised of many smaller pictures of things that represent what you want in yourself and your life, the life of your life as a hero.
In the old days, people would cut pictures out of magazines and paste them to poster board. If you desire, you can still do that, but in the age of technology, this is not necessary. Mine is on PowerPoint and I access it periodically on my computer and also through my iPhone. In addition, I printed out color copies of my vision board which I can keep with me and access wherever I go.
You can obtain images of just about anything you would want to put in your vision board from Google Images, plus some of your own pictures you can upload. You can use software like PhotoShop, PowerPoint, or numerous others to arrange the pictures as you like.
There are not a lot of "rules," except that this board will need two things - an image of you and an image of your evolved self. Make sure those pictures are somewhere on the board and bordering each other so you know it is you evolving into the image of your ideal self.
Other than that, put in pictures of whatever is important to you, things you want in your life, representations of your way of being, whatever works for you. I have images of my family, my hobbies, my goals, such as writing, subtle energy, Tantric images, and pictures that represent the peaceful, grounded, present, carefree, confident state of my evolved self.
You might find yourself moving and changing pictures. Maybe part of your board represents the "to do" section, and another the "done" section, and you move images as you grow, adding new "to do" images along the way.
One suggestion, if you want to attract women in your life, have the images of women around the image of you and your evolved self, so it's clear it's you with these women and not just girlie pinup artwork.
Have this board so you can access it daily, preferably several times throughout the day. Use it as part of your meditation; maybe begin by looking at the vision board, then holding that image as you begin your meditation.
Obviously, use your judgment at work. Some vision boards are not appropriate for cubicle land. You can explore creating two vision boards, one for work and one for home, or ways to access your vision board at work without getting you in trouble with the boss (or sued by your employees, if you are the boss).
What is the value in this? It creates a picture for your subconscious mind, which will begin drawing those things into your life. You don't have to consciously think about what you're looking at, in fact it works better if you just look at it and allow yourself to "zone out" a bit, just let it drop into your subconscious.
Make your vision board a daily part of your life, even if it's just a few moments a day. Your mind does not need to see it for hours on end, and the last thing you want is your mind creating resistance to your vision board by seeing it as work. So see it as a way to relax and go to your good place. Make it something you genuinely enjoy looking at and try "feeling into" your vision board when the opportunity presents itself, feeling the images and the overall impression of how it feels to be in that life. See if you can make your vision board come alive for you in your mind and know it will come alive for you in your life.
Lately I have been spending a lot of time in front of my shrine. It has elements - visual and scent (in the form of aromatherapy) - that help bring me into that calm, centered, empowered state which is my source of personal power and positive growth.
A shrine is your physical anchoring spot, a place where you can feel grounded in something that represents YOU. This is not about changing your religion or anything like that, although you can make it as spiritual as is right for you. This is a place where, when you are here, it is your space, with things that inspire you and make you feel good about yourself. Looking at your shrine, you feel like a hero.
So find an area in your living space. It can be a shelf, a mantle, a part of a bookshelf, the top of your dresser. Find items that make you feel good, that represent you, that inspire you. It does not have to make sense, it does not have to fit the décor of the rest of your place (unless you are so aligned that your entire home at this moment is a perfect reflection of you, in which case a shrine might be redundant), it does not have to be a "shrine" in the classical sense. Just start finding things that either have great meaning to you or inspire you, and arrange them in a way that, when you look at this, it feels like your space, and only your space.
One recommendation is to try to include the four elements in your shrine - water, fire, earth and air. Air can be accomplished by placing the shrine by a window, but you can play with this as you see fit, if it interests you. Tantric practitioners make a point of involving the four elements. If that is something you would like in your life, this is a good place to start.
Mine is this old, ratty bookshelf I bought at a yard sale for a buck from this Irish guy who was moving to Japan, so there is even a story behind the bookshelf. It sits on my porch (air). It has this little bamboo plant (earth, water) and lots of candles (fire). It has a collection of items that either mean something to me, represent a good time in my life, or look awesome and inspiring. I also have my aromatherapy water diffusers there, and two drawers to hold my aromatherapy oils. I have arranged it so it just feels like me when I am there, and it feels big and calming and spiritual. It even smells awesome. It is a corner of the universe that is mine and it feels great being there.
This shrine is a way to remind yourself of your greatness, to deepen your self-love and find a place of grounding, to find your center. I recommend you add and change it periodically as things come in and out of your life, and that you consider having something living in it, to represent life energy.
How Do You Know These Are Working?
There are really only two ways you know these representations are working for you. First, looking at them makes it easier for you to access your peak state. In other words, you feel good, empowered, centered in the presence of these representations. And every time you visit them, it gets a little easier to access that state, and the state gets a little more powerful, a little more clear.
Second, you find yourself drawing the things you are asking for into your life. What you have put into your vision board and shrine start appearing, either as things in your life or feelings and experiences. It is important to focus on the things you are wanting as if they have already happened. If "nothing happens," you will want to evaluate. Perhaps you are not being clear or honest with what you truly desire in your life. Perhaps the representations are not powerful or positive enough. Perhaps your mindset is negative when you look at your vision board and shrine. Keep refining and adjusting until it "clicks" for you. And know that it will.