Do you ever feel like you are being swept up by the wind?
The air just lifted you off of your feet and with every gust and every whirlwind you are carried along further and further. You try moving your feet to catch yourself from tumbling around, but you realize you are no longer in control. The wind is too powerful.
All you want is to find your feet on stable ground again.
Or sometimes…life can feel like the whole world is spinning, the movement of people and the earth just seem to keep passing you by, all the while you’re stuck. Time keeps moving on, it decided a long time ago that it wasn’t going to wait for you. So you’re left standing frozen, feeling as if you are falling behind whilst life moves on waving goodbye in the distance.
Yeah, we know that feeling…all too well.
If you are feeling lost or as if you have no control over your life or even frozen, stuck in your life then your first reaction is to fight. It’s an instinct.
We do what we can to survive and we fight like hell for it.
But if we have learned anything from the latest trends, this is the time where finding calm in the storm has never been more preached.
You see it everywhere. Mindfulness. Intentional living.
We know it’s value, we know we need it. But if it was that easy wouldn’t we all find our peace already?
We’ve been experimenting and practicing intentional living for a while now and we’ve been taking note of what has worked and what hasn’t.
Because the real question here is, what does it really look like to live intentionally?
We all think we know what it means and how to implement it, but are we right? Is it really making the positive influence in our lives that we are expecting?
These are some questions we’ve been asking and we’ve realized just how valuable they are. That is why today, on the blog, we are sharing ‘Not just saying intentional, but being intentional. What intentional really looks like and how you can fully receive value from your efforts.’
Get off the hamster wheel.
We already know that you know being intentional means choosing what you spend your time on wisely. You’ve probably been implementing ways you can organize your days and carefully choose what is worth spending your time on and what isn’t. For some reason, no matter how we planned our days or how selective we were about what we said yes to or no to, life still happened! Things just kept popping up and we were either completely thrown off or still doing our best to fight like hell to stabilize ourselves. Which was the opposite of what we are trying to work towards.
We still felt like a hamster spinning on the wheel of life and we were trying to keep up at the same time of working our hardest only to end up not getting anywhere.
Let’s face it, shit happens. And it is time to get off the hamster wheel.
The first step to jumping ship is debunking some “intentional” myths. Every blog post you will read will share tips on to be more intentional, not this one. Why? Because how someone else is intentional with their life doesn’t apply to everyone else. Each of us, are intentional in our own way.
Myth number one, Intentional Living is how everyone should live their life. Put your blinders up. Stop following tips on how others are more intentional in their life and start using your own intuition to figure out your own definition of intentional living and what makes you feel intentional and what doesn’t.
“Stop doing what other people are doing because they said it worked especially if it isn’t working for you!”
The second myth, being intentional means choosing what is worth spending your time on. While yes, this does mean you are being intentional…we feel lately this truth has turned into a muddled mess. People are trying to be more intentional for their own personal reasons such as they are feeling run down and spreading themselves too thin, they want to spend more time with their family, they keep wasting time on leisurely activities instead of being productive, they have so much on their plate and are too overwhelmed to find a strategy that works for them to create a schedule to manage their days, or they are tired of doing tasks/favors for others especially ones they do not enjoy doing or having too many obligations to other people, again, especially for people they do not feel appreciate their time and efforts.
These reasons lead people to be more intentional to solve their problems. While being more intentional is a great tool to incorporate and practice to become better about spending your time in ways that make you happy, we feel it is more of a scapegoat than a resolution.
Being intentional is about uncovering little purposes in everything you do therefore you walk away feeling as if you fully absorbed the benefits of your actions.
If you shift your mindset from using intentional living as a solution to your problem to discovering purpose in what you do, you’ll experience yourself feeling fulfilled instead of feelings of guilt, resentment, or uncertainty. Ask yourself why you want to be more intentional, is there a bigger problem deep down? Is there something more going on than you realized? Find the root to your problem, start to explore those problems and what you really need to solve them. Then shift your perspective on being intentional because the next step is to…
Make what you do count.
When we realized that choosing what we spend our time on didn’t really serve the purpose we were looking for we started to search a little further into why and what can we do to make this feel like it is actually working for us.
Our ‘aha moment’ came when we were talking with others about how people read through so many books so quickly. Like most people, we question their retention of what they’re reading when they read so fast and so much so often. Are they really getting absorbing any value or are they just going through the motions?
It’s time to stop doing things for the sake of doing them.
If we are going to do something we are going to make sure we walk away with some kind of purpose, value, no matter how small.
If we are going to read a book we are going to make sure we got something out of it, if we took a course we are going to give it our undivided attention so we make sure we are getting something out of it, if we went to the gym to get a workout in we are going to take our time and be aware that every rep is really working our muscles so we can make sure we are getting something out of it. Simply, make sure you get something out everything you put your efforts towards.
Intentional (adj.) performed with awareness, done deliberately, consciously, or on purpose.
Being intentional isn’t always about being specific about how you spend your time, but about how what you spend your time on is done intentionally to receive purpose. As we’ve said before, sometimes you can’t help what life throws your way and you can’t always be intentional about how you spend your time, but what you can do is make sure that everything you put effort towards provides you with the value and fulfillment you need. Because there is always a benefit to your actions you just need to look for it…
Don’t let yourself walk away empty-handed.
Now, don’t get greedy here. We don’t mean literally don’t walk away empty-handed. There are so many ways to reap the benefits of what you spend your energy on to receive energy and fulfillment in return. Our ultimate goal here is to walk away from intention with purpose and avoid feelings of overwhelm, selfishness, and uneasiness.
Receiving value and knowledge from a book or course, receiving gratitude and meaning from helping others, receiving self-confidence and self-belief from a workout, when you place intention into your efforts…into your actions whether you enjoy doing them or not…will always allow you to walk away with something of value. This mindset is what will raise your spirits, help you realize your self-worth and enrich your life with purpose.
If you are still wondering how you can find value and receive energy from your efforts you can read our post How to be Open to Receiving and How to get In-Tune With Your Body to Prevent Burnout.
Sometimes when something isn’t working for you all you need is to take a step back, re-evaluate, and most importantly eliminate outside influences to discover a new mindset, a fresh perspective, to make something work for you.
Being intentional is a tool that can be used in many ways and for each individual intentional living will look differently, but we can all look at using intention to help us seek purpose in what we do while still making what we do and how we do it entirely our own.
Have you tried being intentional in a different way? Do you feel what you do has more purpose? Share with us below how you have used intention to walk away with value and what value did you feel you walked away with?