According to World War II Medal of Honor recipient William A. Foster, “Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.” A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about the power of intention. Here’s a blueprint for tapping into your intentions to help you navigate life with greater focus and clarity, while creating extraordinary results.
1. Get clear about what you want. Whatever you are unconscious of becomes your fate. Ask yourself, “What do I really want?” After you gain clarity, identify any disempowering beliefs that are preventing you from getting what you want. To change self-limiting beliefs, ask yourself, “What will this belief ultimately cost me emotionally, physically, financially and relationally if I don’t release it?” Sit with this question and decide once and for all that you are no longer willing to pay the price of not realizing your dreams.
2. Write down your intentions. There is power in the written word. Record your intentions in a journal, small notebook or on 3×5 index cards that you can carry around and review regularly. You can begin your intention statement with “It is my intention to…” or “I intend to…'” Focus on what you want, NOT on what you don’t want.
3. Visualize the conditions you desire to manifest. Through our imagination we have the ability to conceive and cultivate possibilities. Visual imagery (our “mind’s eye”) is an effective way to translate abstract ideas into concrete manifestations. To help shape your vision, create an inner representation of your desires and engage your body’s senses in a way that you can see, feel, hear, smell and/or taste your experience. Through visualization, you can stimulate changes that are considered inaccessible to conscious influence.
4. Use positive affirmations to help you stay focused. The use of affirmations is a powerful technique to change your negative self-talk into something more positive. An affirmation is a positive statement that can be used to change the way you think about yourself, your circumstances and your life. A positive affirmation would be, “I assume full responsibility for my thoughts, behaviors and actions.” Repetition changes old paradigms and stimulates growth to promote your goals. Therefore, tape the affirmation anywhere you can regularly see and speak it aloud to yourself.
5. Expect your dreams to become reality. Banish doubt by viewing all that you do as a catalyst for propelling you into the direction of your desired state. Do not focus on your current circumstances or what always has been. Focus only on what you intend to attract and manifest in your life. Eliminate from your thoughts conditions of limitation and impossibility and begin thinking in terms of abundance and possibility.
6. Maintain a spirit of gratitude. Gratitude is a pathway to possibility. Focusing on those things that you are grateful for opens the door for increased abundance, self-actualization and achievement. Nurturing gratitude is a way to develop a more positive way of thinking by helping you to appreciate the things you already have, rather than focusing on the things you do not have. Ask yourself, “What am I grateful for in my life today? What about it makes me grateful? How does that make me feel?”
Don’t go through life merely wishing your life were different. Set intentions and proclaim to yourself and others that you are serious about what you plan to do!
Until next time,
Water and words: easy to pour, impossible to recover. ~Chinese Proverb
Most people are unaware that they are not living an intentional life, because they are accustomed to reacting to external circumstances, rather than taking proactive measures to make their goals and dreams a reality. When we lack intention, we wander through life without meaning or direction. Intention clears the way for us to transform our thoughts, spoken words and actions with a specific purpose in mind.
When your life is in chaos, recognize that you are out of harmony with intention. Being intentional is living your life from the inside out by becoming conscious of your thoughts, words and actions and how your energy impacts others.
An intention can be set for any aspect of your life that you would like to change or improve. For example, an intention could be to: find a career that you’re more passionate about; get a promotion on your current job; optimize your productivity; advance your education; spend more quality time with family and friends; carve out time for self-reflection and renewal; become more healthy and physically fit; learn to speak a foreign language; master a musical instrument; and the list goes on.
Being intentional means listening to your authentic self. To begin developing your own intentions ask yourself:
1. What is most important to me in life?
2. What are my deepest values and beliefs?
3. What energizes and inspires me to be my best self?
4. How might I express my unique gifts and talents to make a difference in the lives of others?
Allow yourself sufficient time to explore these questions and pay attention to what new impressions, insights and ideas emerge and inspire you most deeply. Once you have clear answers, they can be used to develop your intentions. In the meantime stay tuned for Part 2, A Blueprint for Tapping Into Your Intentions.
Until next time,