What is Intentional Living and How can it Change your Entire World?

 

DEFINING IT:

The basic definition of Intentional Living is "A lifestyle based on an individual or group's attempts to live according to their values and beliefs."

In less vague terms, it means focusing on small, daily decisions and making sure that they serve the greater purpose of Living your Ideal Life. 

REAL TALK:

During the work week, most of us wake up, roll out of bed (eventually), check social media, throw on some clothes and makeup, grab breakfast and coffee (on a good day), and race out the door to work. On the weekend, we might just lay in bed all day watching netflix and thinking about how we need to do laundry. Then we order Seamless and apologize to our friends for not meeting up, making up some crazy excuse that doesn't sound like we're being totally lame. 

This familiar behavior begins a daily cycle of reacting to your environment, rather than helping to CREATE it. 

If you only get up because you're going to be late for work, only grab food that is quick and easy, only throw on the clothes that were closest at hand, etc, etc, then your brain is totally living in REACTIVE/ SURVIVAL mode. 

SO WHAT?:

So why is this such a big deal, you ask?

When we are in survival mode, we tend to be more stressed, easily aggravated, even depressed and exhausted. Each decision is made at the level of  STAYING ALIVE.

And, yes, of course we want to stay alive. But, ironically, this motive often ends up blocking your ability to THRIVE. 

Thriving often means making difficult decisions, followed up with hard work, to get you where you really want to go. 

Surviving focuses on finding comfort and safety, and therefore increasing the chance that nothing AWFUL will happen to you. Unfortunately what it really does is increase the chance that lots of MEDIOCRE things will happen. 

Yuck! That's not what you're going for when you consider your 5-year plan, am I right?

So how do you break out of this cycle of Surviving, not Thriving?

TAKE THESE 5 BABY STEPS:

STEP 1: FIND YOUR PASSION

Determine what your values and beliefs actually are, what are you passionate about? What do you believe and care about so strongly that you can't help but tell others all about it? (even when you see their eyes glaze over with disinterest)

THIS IS YOUR END GOAL. TO LIVE A LIFE FILLED WITH THE PURSUIT OF YOUR GREATEST PASSION.

* If this step seems hard, don't worry. I wrote a blog post all about how to Find your Passion in 4 Easy Steps. Read it here.

STEP 2: BABY STEPS

Think of 3-5 Baby Steps you could take towards your end goal. There is a great TED talk about Intentional Living, where Kathleen Ventura mentions her first baby step to quitting her job and biking across country... she goes to R.E.I. and buys a bike! It can really be that simple. If you're starting from zero, just take the most obvious step forward. 

STEP 3: 15 MINUTES A DAY

Add 15 extra minutes to your morning routine to Focus on these Baby Steps and which one you could start today. I like to pick out my jewelry during this time. I choose a crystal based on the step I need to take that day. I might need support for creative thinking, clear communication, or extra energy, etc. 

If you aren't that familiar with crystals, you can choose based on their color, as that's often a great indicator of their healing properties (clear for clarity, blue for calm, yellow for energy etc) or you can sign up for a Crystal Consultation, and I can help you find the crystals that are perfect for this moment in your life!

STEP 4: REFOCUS

Find ways to Refocus your Intention throughout the day. Reach for your crystal in moments of frustration, exhaustion, etc. and quietly reaffirm the importance of your Passion! It's easy to slip into survival mode, but this will help pull you back out again.

STEP 5: FIND SUPPORT

Find friends to support you on your Intentional Journey. It's always a good idea to surround ourselves with like-minded people. Find those who are working daily to realize their goals and dreams. This will not only help motivate you, but will help keep you from getting distracted along the way. 

If you have trouble finding a local group, I'd love for you to join my Facebook group the Creativity Club, where we share what we're learning and accomplishing, and support each other in our creative pursuits. 

Have any further questions? Feel free to message me or write your questions or comments below. I'd love to hear how your journey starts and to what amazing places it takes you! And if you want to get an email when I post my next blog on Balanced and Intentional Living, you can subscribe to my newsletter here.

All the Best, 

Erin