for alignment and purpose
Are you one of the many who sets goals for the New Year? And then also one of the many who lets these goals fade as the year progresses? Setting ourselves goals or resolutions is a common practice as we move into a new year, yet how many of these remain unfulfilled months later? Somehow, we mean well but life and past habits seem to get in the way.
Rather than setting myself goals, I prefer intentions or directions. Whilst a goal is often linear and specific, an intention may be described as a determination or plan to act in a certain way. A key distinction is that whilst it is possible to fail on a goal, it is not possible to fail on a direction or intention. It is part of a larger process designed to help us travel along our unique journey, enabling us to live a life with meaning for us.
But before we set ourselves intentions, it is helpful to be clear on what matters to us. What is it we really want? What is important to us? What higher purpose or meaning resonates with us, like a guiding light?
Of course, not everyone has a clear understanding of their purpose and what it is they really want. This requires a deeper understanding of ourselves, and what it is about our life that gives it meaning. But how do we do this? A good starting point is ensuring we have the stillness, space and time to reflect on what it is that really matters to us. This may be achieved through time spent meditating, or practising mind-body exercise such as yoga. Likewise, time in nature may provide the clarity needed to feel what it is that moves us. Often it is a process that takes some time, and of course can be refined as we move through life.
As an example, if we decide our ultimate higher purpose is living with inner peace, our values may include being present and mindful, practising self-care, and practising kindness and gratitude. From these values our intentions may then include regular meditation, choosing healthy foods and exercise, and giving back to the community though charity work. As with setting goals, discipline will be required, and writing our intentions down and reflecting on these daily may be helpful. It is also important that we consider the habits and routines we have in place and how these will support our intentions. Intentions that align us with our purpose are more likely to be realised than goals that simply focus on further acquisition or achievement.
In summary, we can set intentions by first gaining an insight into our purpose and focussing on the values which flow from this. Our intentions can then be set to align with our purpose and values, enabling these to be reflected in our daily life.
With clear intentions we are able to live in the present moment, whilst looking forward, guided by our values and purpose. A key part of this process is taking responsibility for our own fulfillment, setting boundaries where appropriate and having the self-discipline and courage to follow through with what matters to us. Living a life with clear intentions, linked to values that ultimately support our higher purpose, doesn’t of course mean that every day will be harmonious and perfect, but it does mean that we will live with awareness and meaning. And in this way, we live with greater alignment between mind, heart and soul.
By Kerrie Clayton
Kerrie has been a member of the AHHCA for over 10 years and is currently part of its Committee of Management. She is a qualified Aromatherapist, Nutritionist and Reiki Master, with additional qualifications in colour therapy and flower essences. In addition, she is currently completing studies in Spiritual teaching. Kerrie may be contacted via www.wellnesswithkerrie.com