midlife, personal growth

Setting Intentions: Living Our Best Life

Image of handwriting setting intentions of love and not fear

You’ve decided to live your best life. If this is truly your intention, then you are already on your way.

What is an intention?

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines intention as a determination to act in a certain way, a clearer formulation or greater deliberateness; synonymous with intent, purpose, design, aim, and objective.

If we want to live our best life, we can’t meander through our days without setting intentions.

We can’t passively allow the wind and storms of life to blow us in whatever direction they choose.

Nope, not having any more of that.

Intentions are not the same as goals.

Goals are focused on the future while intentions are how we intend to act and react in the present moment.

Intentions bring underlying meaning and purpose to our days, even when we’re blown off course. And maybe even more so when we’re feeling a little lost.

To understand that our intentions direct how we feel, our perspective, and our reactions to the curveballs we inevitably get thrown, can bring more meaning, understanding and even gratitude to our lives.

Are intentions powerful?

Every intention you have is a choice rooted at its core to one of these two emotions: love or fear.

Recognizing this, and consciously choosing to live from love-based emotions can help us find more.

More satisfaction, more purpose, more meaning, more peace, more energy, more compassion, more capacity for self-care, more ability to forgive and release what keeps us trapped in fear.

“You create your reality with your intentions.” – Gary Zukav, Seat of the Soul

Setting intentions helps us live a self-guided life, rather than living out our days giving up control and at most, reacting based on our underlying fears.

Intentions can help us gain back control. It doesn’t always feel like it, but we are indeed at the helm of our intentions and the captain of our own ship.

Why do we have so much love, hope and encouragement for kids when they graduate high school? We assure them that they can “reach for the stars” and “dream big” and that whatever their intentions are, it is always possible…

And yet, we tend to give up on ourselves when we hit midlife.

We think, why should we bother, our story is already written, we’ve had our chance, why bother setting intentions at all by this point in life…

Well, I say PHOOEY!

“You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own… And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go.” – Dr. Seuss, Oh The Places You’ll Go!

This still applies to US my friends!

Notice the title is not, “Oh The Place You’ll Go…But You Better Get There Before You Turn Fifty or Just Give Up!

Whether you’re allowing yourself to be steered away from your goals by permitting your intentions to be infected with fears, or you’ve empowered others to dilute and confuse your intentions (with their fears), these are your choices. The choices you are making every single minute.

Consciously examine whether your intentions and actions are helping you live your best life.

Pay attention to whether you are making choices that are rooted in love or are based in fear.

Intentions are the mental and emotional (and yes, spiritual) muscles that you flex every time you take a breath. Every morning when you arise. Every step of your day. Every night you lay your head down to sleep.

 “You set your soul free each time you choose love.” – Kiyanush Kamrani, seedsoftheheart.com

Be brave. Do the work.

Have the courage to dig out and uncover where fear is pinning you down and spanking you into submission. And in those instances, consider how approaching with the intention of love could change the outcome.

“She was powerful, not because she wasn’t scared but because she went on so strongly, despite the fear.” – Atticus, Poet, The Dark Between Stars

Discover, uncover and realign your intentions from a loving perspective and the positive energy and good vibes will flow. Not just outward to those you care about, but those love-based intentions tend to come right back around to you.

Allow yourself to evolve.

We’re never too old and it’s never too late to learn, to grow, to experience and to explore who we are in this moment. That exploration can lead you to the power of setting intentions.

We remain, perfectly imperfect.

I’m certainly not perfect about always setting my intentions from a place of love. Fear is a strong emotion and still finds its damaging way into my choices and actions but having an awareness of where my intentions are rooted, and realigning when they are stemming from fear, is having a positive impact on my life and on how I feel. I wish the same for you.

Cheers to mindfully setting intentions rooted in love and not fear and to choosing to live our best life.
– Marlene

 


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