“The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction not a destination.” – Carl Rogers
Similarly to a ship floating aimlessly at sea, if we do not set intentions and goals for our life we will just drift where the seas take us. If the captain has a plan for his ship, it does not matter how he gets there for he has intention to get to the end point, and regardless of how rough the seas, or how long it takes, he will not stop until he reaches his destination. You have the ability to take control of your life and steer your ship. The process is the most important part of the journey. For along the way you will encounter diversions, hurdles, obstacles and failures and in it in these learnings that you build strength. Life will always have challenges. Do not wish for an easier life – instead hope to build a stronger, better you.
One of the most simple ways to help direct your life is setting goals, getting really familiar with them. Know what they look like, what they will sound like, what they will feel like, what life will be like when you have your goal. And then get simple – what can you do in your life right now to get yourself closer to your goals? Setting daily intentions can help you to shape the world you live in and to process you further towards the life you want. Here are some key points to think about when setting intentions for yourself;
Each night before you sleep write down a list of tasks and a list of intentions for the following day. It might be something as simple as ‘wanting to be on time’, or ‘to read a chapter of your book’, ‘to make time to get to the gym or meditate’, ‘to nourish your body’ or ‘to call a friend’. Your intentions are yours and yours alone. After all it is your life. Writing out your intentions the night before allows your unconscious mind to go to work while you sleep to arrange all that you intent for yourself.
Write what you want, not what you don’t want. This is one of the most important things to note when writing intentions. You want to attract the things you want. And your unconscious mind in unable to process negatives, so if you are saying to yourself ‘I don’t want to be late to my meeting tomorrow’, all that your unconscious mind hears is ‘I want to be late to my meeting tomorrow’ and that it what you focus on unconsciously. Instead say ‘I want to be on time to my meeting tomorrow’, you shift your focus to the desired outcome.
Keep them simple. Write between 5-15 intentions. Make them simple and succinct. It is easier then to see what you want to achieve if it is clear and not to wordy.
Make them achievable but also allow yourself to grow. If you start having intentions like ‘I want to learn a language in a day’ – that is great that you have high expectations of yourself, however if you have too high intentions for yourself and you are unable to meet them, you may end up feeling unsatisfied by your work. If you are just starting out, start small. Like ‘I want to read ten pages of my book’, or ‘I intend to meditate for 5 minutes today’, or ‘I intend to walk around the block’. Intentions are the start of creating new habits for yourself. And if you can commit to the small things, it makes the larger takes at hand easier to commit to once you have strengthened you ‘commitment’ muscle.
Look back over your intentions at the end of the day. The great thing about intentions is that you can set and forget. Once you have given yourself direction, your unconscious mind takes over and allows you to process through life with your intentions in mind. Looking back over them each day helps you to realise just how much you have achieved from what you intended. Celebrating even the little successes, helps you to experience joy in every moment. After all the good life is a state of being, so changing your state of mind now, will help to create an abundance of happiness once you reach the end state.
Test it out for a fortnight and notice the changes in your life, in all that you accomplish and in the direction you start to take.
Happy Intention setting.