Setting Intentions and Personal Goals
Time to take life into your own hands by subjectively planning the road ahead.
Setting goals isn’t about making as much money as you can or getting that ring on your finger. It’s about believing that you can achieve what you want and feeling content with your choices. This requires long-term vision planning, which starts with a deeper understanding of your current situation. We delve into this, in our last blog “Learning to Self-Reflect Before a New Year”.
If you struggle to stay on track and hit your goals, it’s often because you haven’t considered your intentions, for they are the driving force behind you achieving your goals. Intentions emotionally drive your motivation and persistence to stay focused and gain results. Combining these is the key to becoming more mindful, as they encourage you to consider all elements of your being as well as the direction you want to go in life.
Without a goal we become stuck repeating the same patterns. If you have a dream or want to change old ways, then setting targets for the new year is the right move for you.
Intentions vs Goals - What’s the difference?
In short, intentions are what you desire and goals are the steps you take to realise them. Let’s say, your intentions are like your guiding star, directly leading you towards the life you envision for yourself.
Goals without intentions can feel distant and unachievable, especially if it involves change. It’s easy to give up once life throws a curveball at you and your goals suddenly take a back seat. This is where intentions support your plan, honing in on the bigger picture encourages you to stay on the right path. If you have the end result pictured in your mind, the small challenges on the way are easier to accomplish.
Time to start thinking…
Setting goals is part of a cognitive process of planning and analysing. It takes some work and practice but once you find your rhythm you will have clearer expectations of how and what you gain from it.
Here is an example of how you to set intentions for your goals:
Your intention can be to become more efficient at work, you want to be more focused and productive. This will be driven by goals such as to “start the day with exercise” “go to sleep earlier the day before” “praise yourself for hitting short-term targets” “use a planning and time management strategy”
A simple exercise to kick-start setting intentions would be to begin your day considering how you want to feel throughout that day. Jot it down and keep it in the forefront of your mind. Begin the sentence with “I will…” , i.e, “I will be patient, I will feel confident about my decisions.”
The power and control is in your hands
The most powerful understanding is that you are in full control of how you navigate through life. Living with purpose and a deeper understanding of self is our most valuable lesson. It leads us to make choices that better our lives and develop healthier and stronger relationships.
It’s a new year with an opportunity to start fresh. While goal-setting might sound satisfying, it’s important to keep our expectations in perspective. Why not set your intentions and treat yourself to gentle, loving and dynamic change. All amounts of growth is a success, whether big or small.