What does it mean to live your life with intention? And how can you be more intentional every day? Let’s explore how to be intentional in your thoughts, beliefs, and actions — to live purposefully and powerfully.
“We shape our lives and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt
“An unintentional life accepts everything and does nothing. An intentional life embraces only the things that will add to the mission of significance.” ~ John C. Maxwell
Intentional Choices for Intentional Living
Success and goal achievement seldom happen by accident. Every outcome in our lives is the result of choices we make each and every day. At the most fundamental level, living intentionally is about increasing awareness and accepting responsibility for your choices and their outcomes.
We all make thousands of choices every day. Many are small, such as what to have for dinner, or whether or not to go to the gym. Others are larger, with broad potential implications on your career, family, relationships, health, and future. It’s easy to put those choices on autopilot and save yourself the effort of being intentional. But being intentional is much more than just getting by; it’s about taking ownership and actively engaging in your life.
Start assessing your choices, large and small each day. Determine whether those “easy” or “obvious” choices are moving you steadily towards your goals. Then intentionally choose the thoughts, beliefs, and definitive actions that will propel you towards fulfillment, satisfaction, and success.
Take a few minutes each morning to write down three things you intend to “do” or “be” each day. Your intentions can be about personal qualities like: be decisive, be assertive, or be more approachable. Or hone in on skills you already possess, such as: stay open to others’ opinions, focus on the positive, or listen actively.
Say “No” to Say “Yes!”
Being intentional about your choices allows you to say “no” to what is not serving you in your life, and opens you up to say “yes’’ to what will. Set intentions for what you want, and rid your life of what holds you back.
Whatever your intentions, identify and write them down daily. These intentions will help you stay focused on what’s important to you and significantly increase the likelihood of getting the results you truly want in life.
Tips to Be Intentional
- Start small. Pinpoint small habits in your life where you can be more intentional, such as: eat more greens, spend less time on electronic devices, or detach yourself from negative relationships. From there, watch those small choices snowball into larger ones with positive results.
- Be empowered. If you ever feel as though life is happening to you — that it’s out of your control — notice the difference when you rephrase “I have to” to “I choose to.” Intentionally take charge of your choices, mental and active, and regain power over the outcomes.
- Get your mind in check. Choice starts in your mind. You may not have power to change your circumstances, but you always have a choice about how you respond to them. Practice being intentional in your thoughts, behaviors, and emotions, and intentional action will follow.
- Pinpoint roadblocks. Overcome your personal roadblocks by creating an intention and taking action. If you sense a loss of power or control, adopt a mantra of strength. If you feel rushed, practice slowing your physical and mental responses through conscious breathing. If you feel passive, kick-start your progress by making a list of next actions and take the first step.
Leap Forward Coaching offers you a proven process and life-changing experience to be intentional about your personal and professional growth. As your coach I am dedicated to helping you reach your fullest potential.