Goals are important, they are markers of success, but they are always future focused. The power of intention is about the here and now. It is focused on our present state of being and how we currently view life.
While the road to Hell is paved with good intentions, I also think the road to depression is paved with failed goals.
Unlike goals, intentions are the feelings we have today. Intentions are the blueprints to what our body and mind need to do to work towards goals.
And the entire “self-help” movement could do with a bit more intention rather than be highjacked by goals alone.
The topic has been inspired by reading and listening to others, in this case it was from Farnoosh Brock’s podcast, “Bring Your Intention to Every Interaction” and I was struck by the simplicity of intentions.
Goals often are reliant upon outside forces we may or may not be able to control. If you are like me, when I miss a goal, I usually feel a lot of discouragement and failure. This can lead to a decrease in self-esteem which then leads to giving up for a while.
A very unhealthy cycle!
Intentions, as I’m now understanding them, are the driving force to keep us propelled in a direction so long as we are taking action.
Goals can be rigid and very black and white. We hit them, or we miss. Success or failure.
Regardless if we hit the goal 100% or made adjustments along the way, intention allows us to keep moving forward. It almost seems unAmerican at first glance. Modern American anyway, the early days were a bit more fluid and fraught with intention looking for action.
When the early Colonial settlers set out to rid themselves of King George and England, they didn’t sit down with Ben Franklin’s little book (Franklin Planner) and lay out the goals:
- Dump the Tea (due by December 16, 1773)
- Start a Revolution (due by April 19, 1775)
- Draft Constitution, get States to ratify (due by July 4, 1776)
- Send Redcoats packing (due by end of 1783)
The intention was freedom from a remote monarchy. The events above came about because of that intention, and the dates were the result of enough of the right people being in the right place at the right time with a combined intention to rebel.
The road to Hell is paved with good intentions – intentions not acted upon.
The road to success is having good intentions – which move you forward, help define what success is, and keep your mind and body in sync with milestones (goals) along the way.
Intentions are like promises to yourself, except without the guilt and the punishment and without the repercussions if you don’t meet your goals. They come from a deep place inside, and are focused more on the present than on the end result … Intentions, by their nature, will also help you take away a far better view from undesired outcomes, such as an unfair dismissal at your job or an argument with your partner … If you approach everything from a different place in your life, you will take away different messages even from seemingly negative outcomes. ~ Farnoosh Brock
Learn: Are you more preoccupied with missed goals than your intentions? Time to reboot!
Act: Action is what will keep you moving forward. Go a bit free handed with the intention, set small goals along the way while keeping the desired outcome always top of mind. If you have action with a purpose, you will feel the success as you grow and develop.
Share: What are your thoughts? Did I miss the mark?