Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Intentions - post #2

Last week, I posted about my intention or 'word' for 2018. It's spontaneous. I'm going to try to make 2018 the year of spontaneous. Now, I have to confess I've made very few spontaneous decisions since my last post. It's hard! But it's there. It's in my head. Even one spontaneous choice is a step towards aligning my actions with my intentions.

Before I talk about these intentions, I should say, there is no point of destination with these intentions that I set. When the year comes to an end, there is no way for me to measure whether I've 'succeeded' or 'failed' with my intention. And that is not at all why I set these intentions. I set high standards for myself and my intentions are meant to challenge me. Some days, I do really well, some days I do absolutely nothing that aligns with my intention. But this doesn't mean I've 'failed.' I just think about it and decide how I can better align my future actions with my intention. But if I'm being real with you, most of the time I just let it go! It doesn't matter at all! I'll talk more about this as I discuss my past intentions.

2016: SOFTEN

In 2016, my intention was to soften. This is tough. But I made this decision because I wanted to change my reactions to everyday things. I wanted my first response to be in love and compassion. Not judgment or frustration. I still struggle with this, and I still continue to work on this.

What I found especially hard with this intention is that acts of kindness are not synonymous with softening. I couldn't bake or compliment my way out of my reactions. Yes, I continue to bake for people (because acts of kindness are always good) but I've tried to adjust the way I react to life occurrences.

I would also like to take a quick minute to mention that I had (and still have) a hard time finding the line between softening and being a pushover. I do my best to react with compassion in every situation I encounter while still making sure I am holding true to my values and conveying that I do not accept nonsense. It is definitely difficult to be firm and gentle at the same time - my mom is really good at it (like, scary good) but I'm still working on it.

2017: JUST BE

Let me be upfront and say that I am still not very good at this. It's still something I have to be very intentional about. Which is super counter-intuitive. Just being & being intentional are polar opposites, I know! But I'm hoping if I'm intentional about this for long enough, it'll stick and become natural. Who knows? Maybe I'll always be an intentional 'just be-er.' And I'm ok with that :)

I mean, I don't have much to say about this intention because I don't yet know how to just be very well. What I worked on last year, is being in the moment instead of worrying about the future or the past. I'm really good at thinking tomorrow I will do this at this time then I will do that after lunch. I'm good at planning, but planning means I'm living in the future. I'm waiting for what will happen tomorrow or the next day instead of just basking in the right now.

So, I worked on this by capturing moments in my mind - weird? I don't know. Here are some examples... my family went on a bike ride last year and as we were sitting having lunch, I intentionally looked around and captured the moment in my mind. I just looked around and thought about how I would want to remember this moment. Another example is at the beach this summer. I was walking in the waves during low tide with Hannah right before she left for Poland. I found myself beginning to dread how the next year will play out without her. But instead, I re-tracked my mind to look at the waves, to smell the salty air and remember that moment just as it was. 

Sometimes, I just try to take a mental picture. Instead of worrying about what could come next, I focus my energy into how I want to remember that very moment. I think 'just being' is so much greater than my little energy re-focus but it's helps me to soak in the moment and hopefully, eventually to just be in the moment.


I would love to hear what you think about New Year's Resolutions or Intentions. This is always such a hot topic around this time of year and I love hearing about other's intentions!

 I saw this list by Day Designer on Pinterest the other day and I loved it! It is such a great starting point or reference when picking an intention! I loved reading through this list and I know I will be consulting it next year when I choose a new intention. So many great words! I love kindness, gratitude, grace, sparkle, listen... I mean, I love them all!

Thank you for reading! See you tomorrow!

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