Inspiration: Tattoos and Vision Boards

Once you find inspiration, it’s important to hold onto it. It is a tricky little devil that will sneak out the back door in an instant. It’s easy to get tripped up by colds, vacations, traffic jams, wilted lettuce, or whatever random inconvenience pops up to give you an excuse or a real live version of  a reason to not do the thing you want to do whether it’s write, work out, eat healthy, dog training, painting, or meditating. It happens.

Like we talked about yesterday, when that does happen it’s important that we accept it for what is and then move forward. We can pick up after a breath, a good night’s sleep, or the next time and give it another shot. It’s important to not lose sight of the reason we were so motivated to do the thing in the first place. What is our end goal? Where are we trying to get to? What is the payoff?

It can be nice to have a visual reminder of why you should not give up. A thing you can glance at to put you back on track or reignite your passion. Something that speaks to that beast of inspiration living inside of you. Is this a photo or a quote? Maybe it’s a meme? It’s a very personal thing, so you have to find that.

If you are embarking on a particular treacherous journey of self change and discovery, you could collect a few things that speaks to you and put them together as a vision board.


I made one recently, and I love it. I put it inside my walk in closet, so I have to see it everyday. Let’s break it down a little bit.

Pictures  – I took the 7 above photos of London on my very first international trip. I grew so much because of that trip. They also remind me of my art (photography), which also reminds me to stay present. They remind me of my love of traveling and exploring the world, as well as my long term dream of one day moving there.

Quotes –  It’s hard for you to see them in the picture, but here’s what I grabbed.

Image result for discipline is the bridge between goals and

Image result for start writing no matter what

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Image result for the perfect job doesn't exist

Image result for if we wait for the moment when everything

Image result for you have to make time

And this little image about healthy living…

Image result for think positive healthy living

And then, I just hung up all of my longer necklaces around it, because why not.

Sometimes though, there are things you want around as visual reminders in a more permanent way. I’m talking tattoos. I have definitely put some ink, money and pain into that before.

One that I had done a little more recent was actually inspired by a meme. Have you heard of foxtato?

Image result for foxtato

I fell in love with this little guy the moment I saw him. I shared it with friends, with coworkers, and my kids. In fact, it became a bit of a running joke. I would tell my son “Foxtato believes you can do the thing” on a regular basis when trying to motivate him to do extremely difficult tasks like getting out of bed in the morning.

So, for reasons I might go into in a future post, I decided to get a tattoo of Foxtato on Christmas Eve of last year to remind me that I can do the thing. Whatever the thing may be.

View this post on Instagram

I did the thing. #foxtato

A post shared by AJ Rhodes (@a_life_created) on

It looks better now after healing, but I’m too lazy to take another picture. lol

My newest tattoo is possibly my favorite experience of the tattoo process. I worked on the idea for this tattoo for years, and it is 100% about self awareness, taking inventory, balancing the chakras, and embracing my spirituality. I found a wonderful tattoo artist who listened to exactly what I wanted and she created it. Thank you, @kylieagreen

Whatever method you choose, enjoy the process. That is the important part. Change is a journey that is more gratifying when you playfully engage with it. Create something that taps into that vision you have of your best self, but does so in a way that embraces who you are now. Because you are pretty fabulous just as you are.




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