Welcome to Living the Intention!
I love setting goals and having a clear sense of where I’m headed. And in the daily, in the ordinary moments of life, I have also found that I often need to be just as clear with myself about what needs my attentionright nowso that I don’t wander too far off that path.
Through my coaching with leaders of all shapes and stations of life, there always comes a point at which the deepest change starts to happen. After the creative and motivating work of defining their vision and goals, and addressing a couple of workplace issues, something unexpected happens. We uncover messy or unproductive habits that are trying their best to get in the way. Some critical element of their situation changes. A crisis grabs their attention.
When someone is facing a difficult situation, I typically tell them that I will send them good thoughts or offer to say a prayer if I know something about their spiritual background. Over time, I discovered that it felt more authentic for me to ask them what intention I could hold to help them get through that specific challenge. Those intentions are written on small note cards and sit in a jar on my desk. I read them regularly and remove them when I know that the person has successfully navigated their issue.
The intention is not a long-term goal. It’s a direction for the present moment. For just-now energy.
An intention may also be a knowing that hasn’t yet happened.
Intention is grounded in who we are and where we are going. It is connected to those long-term goals or our purpose while helping us wind our way through the messiness of life…
…I hold the intention of gaining knowledge for the friend who is going through medical tests, aware of how this may impact their long-term health and wellness goals.
…The intention of financial stability is important for the client who has had a set-back that might alter some of their retirement plans.
…A highly accomplished woman asks me to hold the intention of courage as she tries something new.
Over the years, I have found patterns – common themes – to these intentions and will use this blogging space to share those with you. I hope to give you some strategies and ideas for using those intentions to propel you forward, weaving in personal stories to keep it real.
While recently working in the garden attempting to establish dominion over some unwanted plants coming up between the patio pavers, I said to my husband, “I expressed my gratitude to the weeds….though it might have sounded like ‘Die, you worthless creatures!’” I delivered my grumpy message to the weeds while aggressively dousing them with a natural, organic concoction designed to kill the offenders while not polluting the ground or poisoning our dog. The odd-smelling liquid is a weird combination of ingredients that essentially offers the weeds a bubble bath while tossing them in a light vinaigrette.
“I’m sure they understood your intention,” came my husband’s dead-pan reply.
While I generally think of myself as a fairly positive, loving person, you can rest assured that I will hold the intention to be authentic with you in this space. No sugar coating. We may touch on intentions that are uncomfortable. Or on times when the intention was clear, but the action plan went terribly, terribly wrong. Sometimes an intention starts out sounding noble – like feeling gratitude for something unwanted in our lives. But the action reveals another, more honest, intention.
Some of the intentions we explore will capture your attention, while others may not resonate with you. To honor different learning styles, I will try to give you multiple ways to learn more about each intention. Sometimes we aren’t yet ready to hear what we need. My hope is that you will find value in thinking about intention in a different way, and every now and then, something you read may be just what you need in that moment.
Thank you again for taking the time to visit Living the Intention.
Until we meet again, what intention can I hold for you?
If you have 3 minutes, read this article on how intention gives real power to your actions.
If you have 10 minutes, send me a message (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will set up a brief phone conversation to talk about ways I can support you in your intention.
If you have 15 minutes, this LinkedIn Influencer interview with Oprah Winfrey expands on the quote at the top of this blog post.