Intentional - or not??

fall leaves

The word intentions gives me such a feeling of confidence and with curiosity I am going to try and explain just why that is.   It is a natural process is something we all go through daily, with awareness or not, so what would it be like to bring a sense of purpose to those intentions?

Intentions in their many forms- intentions with relationships, intentions for your work life, and within your body- are powerful in and of themselves for propelling us forward.   They orient us, remind us, can be self affirming, and are our connection to our hopes and dreams.  Gentler than goals, they encompass not just "doing" aspects of ourselves but also the more abstract realms of "being".   They are a part of our daily life from the moment we get up with the intention of getting to work on time, to deciding  what we eat for lunch or how we spend the evening after a demanding day.

Even going to the grocery store can involve a certain amount of intention and a certain amount of time organizing or assessing the situation.  We ask ourselves "what do I need, what am I missing?"  "What are  the ingredients in that new recipe I want to try?"  "How do I want to plan so there is time in the day for getting there?"  Wow, what would  happen if we gave that kind of attention to the bigger necessities in life??

Like, let's say the Holidays ( you knew I had to go there right??)  How could setting some intentions serve you in being who it is you want to be during this holiday season?   What intentions do you need?  What are you sad about missing during this seasonal time in the past?   What ingredients are necessary in setting the stage and how will you create  them?  What kind of organizing or planning is needed to stack the cards in your favor?

So many questions....it would be easier to just cross our fingers and hope for the best and while I am a big believer in Easy, experience tells us that these intentions deserve some time to reflect and plan and dream.  Our most important relationships are on the line, you know the ones that are the life line to our peace and happiness, the same ones that during stressful times can drive us crazy!   And how about our bodies?  A heartfelt connection to what it is that would really help our bodies survive, (thrive?), during this holiday season is worth some thought.

Setting intentions doesn't need to take a lot of time or be one more thing on your to do list.  It could happen on the bus to work in the morning, waiting in line at your favorite food truck, walking the dog, or while in the middle of a sun salutation.   I personally like to write things down and then take a moment to find a gesture in my body that reminds me of who I am and who I want to be out in this demanding world.  I wear a mala around my wrist to remind me of my name and the fresh open possibilities that it represents.

What will you create for yourself this holiday season?  What intentions do you want to remind yourself, gift yourself?  It will be an act of generosity to yourself and the others in your world.

May your Holidays be all that you intend them to be and may you be well.

New Story - Old Coat

Ooh, this motion feels good! 

Ooh, this motion feels good! 

Anticipating our late summer I realize it is time to remove the extremely heavy woolen coat I have been wearing for....Quite awhile.  It was time - I wanted the airiness, the freedom from the weight.  And I realized this cloak was not going to come off easily,  as it had been carefully wrapped and buttoned up to  protect me from the dangers of living in a demanding world with chronic pain and illness.  And I also realized that while it was protecting me it was also suffocating me.  My energy was stuck deep inside that woolen fabric.  I had a hard time completing things that I wanted to do, that I had started, that could ultimately be very satisfying.  I had a sense of resistance as I pulled around the weight of this cloak with an awareness that it was creating discouragement and deep fatigue.  My spirit felt wounded, clipped so that any kind of flight was totally out of the question and everything was difficult.  Ugh.

What is this weighty cloak?  Stories, old stories based on the past, that had helped me regain a sense of balance in my body.  There was a time that I needed to tie down my will power, the will power I had used to override my body's needs and fuel my desire to work better, play harder. The will power that blocked out all messages sent in desperation from my body to slow down, take a break, and finally broke the cellular master design that controlled my immune system, resulting in autoimmune illnesses that turned out to be much stronger than my will.

And after a long while the coat helped.  It slowed me down and allowed the natural instinct of my body to heal and rebalance. It is a story I want to remember; this story of rest, compassion and care of myself and it is a story I am ready to rewrite.   I no longer need to be bound by a heavy cloak to take care of myself.  My patterns have changed and I have learned that rest and awareness are powerful allies, to use when necessary, no cloak required.

I see that these stories we tell ourselves have impact.  They can propel us forward in the direction we hope for or they can weight us down, stuck and immobile.  They impact how we see ourselves, how we interact with others, what opportunities come our way...or don't.  And because we know them so well the possibility of a new ending is unlikely.

As we all know, life by its own nature changes; I change, my body changes.  I needed a new story if I wanted to twirl carefree in a sunny, open field.  So I did take off the coat, letting go of fear, trepidation, confusion, along with the sense of heaviness and resistance that accompanied it.  I have not forgotten the lesson of rest and awareness and now I have the choice of weaving it into a new pattern, a new story, one that includes a little twirling.

So what old story have you been dragging along?   Is it still helpful to you or is there a rewrite that might provide a little more movement in the direction that is calling you right now?

Comment below and let's get this conversation started!