Being intentional is one of the best ways to make your life meaningful, satisfying and have impact.
If we drift around, letting life, friends and family make all our decisions for us, we probably have an easy life but not one full of meaning. By choosing our friends, our work, our hobbies and everything else we want to have in our life intentionally, life can mean so much more.
It can be tough to be intentional all the time, having to choose everything, not just going along with what the herd is doing. First you have to choose if you are going to do something different for every difference choice, and then you have to actually decide what to do. It’s time consuming and uncomfortable. It can be the last thing you want to do at the end of a long day.
Here are a few things I’ve found make it easier.
One thing at a time
As with all habits and changes, go one step at a time. Don’t try and do 10 different things at once. You’ll get burnt out and give up. Being intentional is hard work. It’s a lot of thinking and planning and sometimes going against the people around you. Take it one step at a time and you’ll see more success.
Plan ahead. If you are purely hoping that you’ll be able to do what you want to do when the time comes no matter what then you might be mistaken. If you haven’t thought about what you want ahead of time then you may not even know. You’ll be pressured to do what the group is doing. You’ll be pressured to do what society wants you to do. Having thought about it ahead of time makes it much more likely to happen.
Having a group you can rely on to talk and ask questions is crucial. It’s best face to face but there are also many online. Don’t worry about not being able to find one, they are out there. You will probably have to do some digging though. The best one is probably not the first you’ll find but something is better than nothing. Always be looking and keep the best groups close.
How can you align other many activities together? If a few activities are all heading in the right direction then they might just play off each other. Often healthy intentions can build off one another. You start eating healthy because you’ve been going to the gym a lot and don’t want to waste all that hard work. Being intentional about your health and what you eat and how much you move is a very good foundational block for your life but it can be really hard to get started. If it aligns with many other things in your life then it will be easier to keep going.
Photo by cocoparisienne