Until recently, I used to be 100% resistant when it came to setting intentions. It always took me back to public middle school when we learned how to set ‘goals’. They had to be ‘attainable’, ‘measurable’, specific, and unmistakably boring.
Setting intentions felt like predicting what was going to happen, like I had to DO something to make it happen - just because I set it. Or I had to hold tightly to that intention with my dying grip. They rubbed me into thinking: ‘why do I have to decide what I want?’ I felt like I had to put myself in a box and make my dreams small and ‘reasonable’ to do it ‘right’ and actually reach my goals or find out who I was and what I was capable of.
This wasn’t working for me. Rather than depending solely on my will power, my ability to take action and work for what I wanted, I was ready change things up and call on a greater energy of support and trust.
I was ready to drop all the beliefs I had about setting these attainable and reasonable dreams and expectations for myself in the future.
So when I decided to change my relationship with intentions: I had to forget everything I thought I knew about setting anything, my relationship to desire and the future, and my attitude.
Our human brains don’t like changing patterns.
Whenever our human brains are in the process of changing a pattern, it’s really supportive to have the attitude of possibility. Are those stale old excuses and make believe obstacles really true?
What's true is that it is more than possible to change your habitual belief about anything - and it’s more than possible for your intentions to form your reality as you most desire. If we believe it’s possible for our intentions to manifest - they will.
I often talk about one important energy: trust. This thing we call trust is needed as you set your intention and let it go. But that's not to say manifestation doesn't work for skeptics. You are continually creating your experience - you called in everyone in your life for some purpose - and the quality of your job, the stuff around you - you manifested that. Was it intentional?
SO when we begin to change our belief about intentions - it's really important that we trust! Trusting that whatever happens is of some purpose and especially when the things that happen are confusing or don't seem quite right - trusting there's a bigger course in motion and we may not have the answers.
When I began to set intentions in this trusting and meaningful way - I did them about everything could imagine. I set intentions about how I wanted my day to go, how I wanted my work and down time to feel, what I wanted to wake up to.
I set intentions for my car rides, business meetings, yoga classes, healing sessions, conversations, vacations, the next 30 minutes, I set intentions for things I wanted like My most divine intentions are the ones I set before I go to sleep at night.
They usually go something like: This conversation will feel: easeful, meaningful, and insightful. Or tonight I will heal in my sleep, have sweet dreams, and wake up feeling clear and rested.
For me to set an intention that feels aligned and in my highest good: I really have to connect to my heart and its truest longings. The setting intentions aside - when we do that (connect to our heart and it's true longings), when we really tune into how our soul wants to be live in this life - that's magic in itself. Pair that with an actual intention which I like to think of as a prayer to the Universe... talk about a LOT of power. Enough power to truly change your life.
One beautiful thing I love about this practice is that there is no stress about it coming true. I set my intention and I don’t usually think about it again.
Set it and forget it. The Universe heard you.
I started to notice the magic of these intentions when I would remember the intention I set because it was actually happening!
One beautiful reminder that had struck my heart deeply is remembering a movie I frequently watched as a child: "It's a Beautiful Life"
As a story about the holocaust; it doesn’t have the brightest backdrop. Most of the story is about a father and son in the throes of genocide. The perspective of the father always broke my heart in the best way. He created this story about what they were doing being a game so what was going on didn't feel scary to his son. He had the power of intention on his side while sustaining a playful and lighthearted attitude that really did keep his son safe.
He intended for this journey into the unknown - that he knew would likely end in death - to be fun and meaningful.
The intention - or the stuff he did to bring it to life didn't change the reality that they were smack in the middle of genocide. But it did change how they were experiencing it.
No matter what: we're responsible for our perspective and worldview. We've all seen examples of people in seemingly impossible situations with a beautiful outlook.
The reality that you experience around you is directly related to your intent and ability to see what you want to see. Intention is a really big piece of this.
You may not even be aware that you are already creating your experience in a way that you don't like! Where your attention is focused on - that will manifest. What are you spending time paying attention to?
At any time - sense what you actually want to experience or HOW you want to experience something (think feelings). And Set. That. Intention!
There is so much more to say about this topic and I may be adding to this as time goes on - or writing more blog posts about it... But here's one last thought.
On multiple occasions I've set an intention and the opposite thing happens. For example: I set an intention for something to go easefully. And when that thing didn't go easefully - it was clear the Universe was showing me what was between me and that thing feeling easy.
It was blatantly obvious so I couldn't ignore; something had to go differently for that intention to be possible.
In order for that thing to feel easy - I had to change something about myself. I had to change the way I showed up. When I listen and trust that signal - then there's a clarity for ease to flow.
Intention cheat sheet:
- Get clear about what your heart truly wants.
- Choose language that resonates with that and create a statement - say it aloud or write it down.
- Trust the process - you are supported.
May we all take responsibility for our experience and impact
May we all be fulfilled and dazzled by life
May we all be grateful for the journey and energies that sustain us
May we share our light!