• Estevan Family Resource

The Power of Intention

I am feeling really curious about how you are navigating this COVID-19 experience. What thoughts and feelings are coming up? What actions are you taking as a result of these thoughts and feelings? Who are you being under these circumstances?

For most of us the COVID-19 has changed our lives in very significant ways. A wide variety of emotions are showing up, often changing minute by minute, dependent on our focus for the moment - watching the news, playing with our children, walking our pets, reading a good book, connecting with friends and family through social media, taking an online course or watching the COVID-19 hit show, Tiger King!

Let me reassure you. It is normal to be feeling fear, anxiety, concern, sadness, overwhelm and anger. It is also normal to feel grateful, happy, relaxed, content and even joyful. We are human, we feel. What we want is to be mindful of how we choose to express these emotions, and we all know our behavior is a choice, even if it doesn’t feel like it sometimes! All behavior serves a purpose – to ease pain or to experience pleasure.

We want to look at our behaviors and decide if they are helpful or unhelpful to ourselves and others. Empowering or dis-empowering to self and others? If it’s helpful, great! If not, is there a better way? What is it? Are you willing to practice this new behavior?

This leads us into my topic for today: Intention. What is your intention for your life? How do you want to show up in this world? Creating an intention allows you to live purposefully. You become proactive in your choices and hold yourself accountable to a standard you set for your life. It allows you to be authentic no matter who is around or what circumstances you are currently experiencing.

An Intention:

1. Is proactive - a positive behavior you decide ahead of time to incorporate into your life

2. Is stated in the present - intended for present and future practice

3. Is inner focused - you are responsible for the outcome

4. Is framed in the positive - eliminate words like “not”, “no”, and “don’t”

5. Begins with - “I am willing to” or “I am willing to practice” We use the word practice because there is no expectation of perfection. You are learning something new and practice makes progress.

6. Is concise - direct and to the point so it can be memorized

For example, “I am willing to practice patience, understanding and acceptance for myself and others during the COVID-19 experience.”

Thoughts that support the intention could look like: People are afraid and fear shows up as sadness, confusion, judgement, anger, and anxiety. I can be patient with others knowing these are fear reactions. I understand and accept this because I, too, have been afraid. I can show compassion instead of reacting defensively. I can smile and say, “I sure will be glad when this is all over” knowing and showing we are in this together.

Maybe you want to set an intention around your relationships, such as “I am willing to be loving and kind in all my relationships”

You might want to change the lens would you see your world through “I am willing to be aware of all I have to be grateful for in my life.”

Maybe you want to set an intention regarding your health, career, family or something else. Choose an area to focus on that matters most to you and practice, practice, practice. I would love to hear your intentions, so I encourage you to comment on this post or however you are most comfortable.

So, here you go:

Today, I am willing to (practice) __________________________________________________________.