The past, its just that. The past.
It’s behind us. Yet, most of us live so much within the past instead of living in our present. A major focus of ours is on the future as well. Again, not living in the present. Intentions allow us to focus on the present moments and provide us with a focus on life at hand. It pushes you to focus on yourself, who you truly are and what you truly need and want.
An intention is an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result. It focuses on who you are and and your why. An intention is the truest words that you can speak to yourself. It is honest, authentic and tied to your energy. It is an expression of your inner self, who you are on the inside, and who you aspire to be. Furthermore, it is a vow to yourself that you plan to see manifested in your life. With your entire being and heart.
An intention is like the through-line for your present desires towards your goal. For example, if your goal is to start journaling, your intention can be “I intend to be in my moment and write everything that comes to my mind.” Intentions aren’t about denying or pushing away real feelings, instead, they are about choosing what you want to focus on. Therefore, in this example, you would be focusing on your act of writing.
For me, I like to set daily intentions in which I write at the beginning of each day. It is a reminder and guide for me to be present on my intention throughout my day. I also set monthly intentions at the beginning of each month to support in my overall act of being present throughout my month. I revisit my daily intention at the end of each day and my monthly intentions a few times a week and reflect upon how present I am with each and what I could do to be more present.
Tips to Setting Intentions
Choose Your Time
Choose an allotment or segment of time that you want your intention to focus on. Whether that be a day, week, month or longer, choose a timeframe that works well for you.
Think about areas of your life that you are drawn to uplift. Whether this is an area in your life that is going well or not so well, if it popped into your mind during your reflection, that may be the area in which you would like to focus.
Make a visual or visuals in your mind about how you would like to presently and actively “work” to bring it to its next highest point. Think about what would make this particular area the best for you and make you feel the best.
Feelings, Feelings, Feelings
Think about how you want to feel about that particular area or aspect of your life. Set the vibe for this area of your life by giving it a feeling of how you would like it to be.
Write it Out
Set your intention by writing it out. The act of physically writing something out allows us to internalize what we are saying and in this case, intending. Write it in a place that you have quick access to so that you will be able to refer back to it with ease.
A goal is what you specifically want to achieve. It is a specific outcome that you are working towards. Goals allow us to think about the future and where we would like to reach.
Goals provide us with an anchor for our intentions in reality. Helping us to manifest our internal into our physical lives. They are the next step in setting our intentions.
I set goals at the beginning of each month. More recently, my goals have been attached to my intentions. I think about the area of my life that I would like to uplift, think about how I want to feel in that particular area, set my intention and set a goal. I do not think much about the “how”, as my universe will work on that aspect. I focus on my feeling and outcome.
Tips to Setting Goals
Motivation is Key
Your goals should motivate you. They should be a foundational source that is important to you and pushes you forward. Your goals should also be something that has value in achieving them. If you have little interest in the outcome, or they are irrelevant given the larger picture, then the chances of you putting in the work to make them happen are slim. Motivation is key to achieving goals.
Set SMART Goals
Powerful goals are designed to be SMART, Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time Bound.
Set Specific Goals
Your goal should be clear and well defined. Vague or generalized goals are unhelpful because they don't provide sufficient direction. Make it as clear as you can to depict where you want to go by defining precisely where you want to end up.
Set Measurable Goals
Include precise amounts, dates, and so on in your goals so you can measure your degree of success. If your goal is simply defined as "To reduce expenses" how will you know when you have been successful? In one month's time if you have a 1 percent reduction or in two years' time when you have a 10 percent reduction? Without a way to measure your success you miss out on the celebration that comes with knowing you have actually achieved something.
Set Attainable Goals
Make sure that it's possible to achieve the goals you set and in the timeframe that you have set them. You want to be as successful as possible in the goals you set, therefore, being realistic is essential.
Set Relevant Goals
Your goals should be relevant to the direction you want your life to take. By keeping goals aligned with this, you'll develop the focus you need to get ahead and do what you want. Your goals can even be directly related and connected to your intentions.
Set Time-Bound Goals
Your goals should have a deadline. This lets you know when you can have achieved what you have set and you can celebrate y0ur success!
(adapted from www.mindtools.com)
Write it Out
Set your goal(s) by writing it(them) out. As mentioned above, the act of physically writing something out allows us to internalize what we are saying and in this case, goal setting. Write your goals in a place that you will look at and reflect upon them often.
The difference between setting a goal versus setting an intention is that a goal is about achieving a specific outcome, whereas an intention is about setting a specific mindset or feeling. Intentions and goals are things in which I have set from the time I was a little girl. They are sort of what drives me on a daily and over a long term spectrum and perspective. As my self-work continues, I focus on more of the feeling that I want as opposed to tangible and close-minded goals. Whether you have been setting intentions and goals for awhile, or are new to it, use these steps to begin or deepen your process and journey. Try to focus on the feelings that you want to feel too!! Ohhhh the feels, lol……all of course while being,
Unapologetically Me. Unapologetically You. Unapologetically Us.
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