This is a topic very near and dear to my heart, so thank you for reading! -Ruth-
Intentional Living. So what does it really mean? To me, it means to think, speak, act, and live with complete purpose. Intentional living is something I strive for everyday and it is very hard to accomplish. I have literally been focusing on this for over a decade. To be honest, I do well at times and completely fall off the wagon at other times. And I have to remind myself that is oaky. The strange thing is that I am such a habitual and routine oriented type of person, that it leaves me dumbfounded as to why this particular habit is so hard to cultivate. Maybe it is because it hard, really hard. In times of stress, doubt, frustration, and even excitement I tend to not think, but rather react. And, I know from my past that only a fool reacts.
I have added this goal, once again, to my personal goals list for 2013. I would like to share with you some of my personal thoughts on how to achieve and intentional life full of purpose and direction!
Cultivating Habits Creating a purpose, setting goals (but not to many), and living in the present are a few ways that I like to help myself cultivate good habits. Life is made up of choices, a lot of them! Every single day is a another opportunity to choose the path you want to follow.
Simplify your life A good place to start is with in our homes. Becoming a minimalist and de-cluttering our surroundings is a great start. You will have less “stuff” to maintain and clean, and ultimately less to worry about! Possessions do not add to our quality of life, they only subtract from the things that are truly important to us. Stop comparing yourself to others and decide what is important to you!. Another way to simplify your life is to access your commitments and learn to say “NO!”. It’s never a good idea to stretch yourself to thin, because then you will never really be giving all of yourself. Lastly, examine popular culture and decide for yourself what to take from it and what to leave behind.
Spirituality Whether you believe in the holy trinity, nature, or gnomes, finding spirituality, believing in something more than ourselves and our surroundings is crucial to leading a simple and meaningful life. Without spirituality, there is not meaning. If you do not have a strong sense of faith, maybe try doing some research and diving deep within yourself to find your purpose.
Physical Activity Let’s get physical! Get up and move, it will help you connect your mind and body. I enjoy hiking, biking, and yoga to achieve the ultimate mind/body connection, but do what works for you! And don’t forget to have fun! Being active will also help you to fight depression, weak immunity, and boredom.
Mental Stability Take a little time out, grab a notebook and take some time to do a little inner reflection. Figure out where your talents, passions, strengths, and weaknesses lie.
Affirmations I like to start my day off by literally creating my day, verbally. I tend to do a prayer/affirmation/day planner type of thing, literally, out loud. I usually do this on my drive to work so that it’s semi-private. Well, except for all the other folks in their vehicles wondering why I am talking to myself. I’m not crazy guys! I promise. This activity just helps me to stay focused on the things I intend to accomplish throughout the day. Try it!
“Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.” – Wayne W. Dyer