The other morning I was driving the kids to school. Each day in the car I ask the girls to create an intention for the day. As I got to that time in the morning drive, I said to Ella, "Ooh, It's Intention time. Okay, what are you thinking? What's your intention for today?" Ella, sitting in the backseat, head down, was reading and I could tell she wasn't that interested in answering me. She absently responded, "To pick a good book in library today."
I looked at her in the rearview mirror: "E. You can't make that your intention. You're going to do that anyway. Let's think of something that stretches you a bit. That you have to be - I don't know - Intentional about." She put her book down and thought for a second before saying, "My intention is to not fight with Sophia."
Yessss. That's more like it I thought.
I responded with a smile and said, "That certainly is a good stretch goal." I was about to move on to Sophia when a minute later Ella said, "Nevermind. That can't be my intention."
"Why not?" I asked.
She looked at me and then Sophia and said, "Because I don't actually INTEND on doing it."
When I asked Sophia what her intention was, she said, "To be nice to you, mom." Again, I questioned if that was a stretch goal and said, "Is that stretching you? Is it hard for you to be nice to me?" She looked at me and nodded a definite YES.
Okay, so there's that.
And now MY new intention? To stop driving the kids to school in the mornings.
Maybe my children are too young to understand the value in setting intentions, but there IS value.
Setting a daily intention allows you to decide what you will create/accomplish in a day. It puts you in the driver's seat and allows you to set the agenda for your day and what you desire for yourself.
How many times do we wake up and let the day just pull us along? Whether it's hungry children waking us up, a list of text messages and emails that came through overnight, or just a demanding schedule that requires us to wake up and just GO, so often we are the ones reacting to our day while others set the agenda.
But we can still claim it as ours, by setting an intention and deciding how we want to live. Maybe you want to be more considered in your responses during meetings. Or perhaps you want to speak up. Your intention could include people and how you want to communicate, it can include actions and how you want to show up, or it could include thoughts and behaviors. You decide. And that's 100% the point. Because when you decide how you want to live...well, you're that much closer to living YOUR life.
Instead of feeling like you are just barely keeping up with the demands being thrown your way - you're the one deciding what gets your time, your attention and your energy.