|Intention. I know you know what it means, but when pressed to define it in words your tongue may get a bit tied. Most people somehow relate intention to goals or the process of goal achievement. And that is true, as we must ‘intend’ in order to accomplish. But intention is so much more than simply the road to completing a goal. Intention has a decidedly spiritual side. Even the dictionary has a definition that involves intention as prayer.
So what’s the purpose of all this? Who cares about all this intention mumbo jumbo anyway? Well, intention is a powerful tool in life and if you’re not already using it to the best of your abilities, you’re missing out. Using powerful intentions is a primary way for us to focus ourselves and be open to new information.
A powerful intention is like a lighthouse. The lighthouse shines a strong powerful beam of light that acts as a beacon for the ships at sea. I would bet that at some time you have felt like a ship at sea, lost perhaps, buffeted around by strong currents and waves, and finding a beacon – or following your intention - can give you just the direction you need.
So, intention is a tool that creates direction, focus, and openness in our lives.
Often folks mistake intentions and goals. There’s a big difference.
Goals are attainment ideals that we set for sometime in the future. Two things to think about with goals – the energy that we use to accomplish goals is push; and goals keep us in the future.
Intentions, on the other hand, are aims that guide our action in the present moment. Intention is what allows us to discover better ways of approaching our current challenges and remaining in the moment. It is really only in the present moment where we have our power – the past is gone, and the future isn’t here yet, so your power is how you act right now.
Jennifer Louden, The Comfort Queen, http://www.comfortqueen.com, wrote about this distinction beautifully in her book, 'The Women’s Retreat Book'. She advises framing intentions in the form of a question. Questions tend to make us more open to opportunities and awareness, rather than simply having the tunnel vision of accomplishment and checking things off your to do list.
I think you’re all pretty familiar with what goals looks like:
· Increase salary by end of the year
· Paint living room this weekend
· Call 5 new leads by Friday
Here’s some examples of intentions:
· How can I best care for myself this week?
· What do I need to do to be my most productive?
· How can I listen and honor my own inner wisdom?
· What are the natural resources in my life that serve me?
· How can I ask for help?
· When do I need to hold my boundaries?
Feel the difference between the push of the goal and the pull of the intention. Both are useful tools, you just need to know how to use them both effectively.
In the Weekly Women’s Focus and Intention Call, http://www.coachbalance.com/weekly-womens-focus-and-intention-call.html, that I conduct, women spend time creating powerful intentions that steer their actions during the week. These women find this weekly practice extremely helpful in grounding themselves during the week, and in providing direction in what is often a chaotic environment. For these women, intention provides the necessary guidance to stay on track - both with their to do list, as well as their inner feelings of control and satisfaction.
Intention is powerful! Do you have powerful intentions in your tool belt?
About the author:
Copyright 2005 Catherine A. Bruns. This article may be reprinted in full with the following attached: Life Coach Catherine Bruns helps women to achieve their goals while creating a balance between what they do and who they are. For more information visit http://www.coachbalance.com
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