Intention setting for long term happiness
I made a promise and set a goal in the last newsletter (http://www.britttanya.com/blog/overcoming-limiting-beliefs) and as you are most likely aware I did not achieve it. What you are not most likely aware of is the guilt and trauma I put myself through when I did not complete it. The last time I wrote I actually didn’t feel too well, yet because I had made a commitment I pushed myself to keep going. That then precipitated a nasty two week cold. I am still learning and my life is still a process and I think I missed the point in setting that goal. The most important thing is not to get news letters to you every week but to ensure that when I do send them that they add value to you. I too am still on this journey of learning and making mistakes. In fact I imagine and I also hope that I will always be learning more and growing. It has only been though making this mistake that I have learnt that for me to keep my creative juices flowing I need to give myself space for down time and this has led me to the distinction between goals and intentions. My new intention is to send out newsletters as often as I can and I promise to ensure that they have content that I feel will add value to your life, should I need down time I will inform you that I will be off line for a while.
As a coach I use goals extensively in my sessions and they are wonderful to get people moving forwards quickly in the direction of their choosing. However I do have some reservations about goals that I am going to talk about now. To reach optimum happiness or fulfilment in our world I think we need most of all to be aware of balance. If someone exercises too much without stretching they are likely to injure themselves or cause damage to their body later in life. If someone is so focused on work and getting on in life their private relationships might suffer and they might find that they have lost connection with those they love or that they are in the middle of a divorce. All you need to do is look at the world we live in, we might have achieved a lot, amazing space travel, food production on a massive scale, the extraction of vast amounts of natural resources and the list goes on. However it has come at a cost; war, famine, environmental change, racism and so on. This driven action whilst satisfying the short term goals does not always bring fulfilment, joy and peace. At the root of this is the balance of male and female energy. This may sound a bit strange so let me explain.
Male Energy Female Energy
And so on And so on
Just because you are a man does not mean you only have male energy and likewise if you are a woman you do not only have female energy in fact I have seen men with mainly female energy and I have seen women with mainly male energy. You will have to look at the attributes above and decide which energy is strongest in you. Neither energy is better than the other to create a sustainable life. To create and sustain anything we need to use a balance of both. Nature demonstrates this very well; there is a time for growth and a time for rest, a time when the sun shines and a time for darkness, a season for warmth and growth and a season for cold and regeneration. A time when animals are busy doing, building their nests and raising their young and a time when they are allowing, mating and building up their own strength to repeat the process. Because of this balance it carries on year after year.
Goals use masculine energy and requite effort, force, focus and a lot of energy! When your life is so focused, direct and action orientated you can often burn out and miss many of the most wonderful things in life such as love, joy and happiness. Intentions seem to be a better balance they have the focused component of masculine energy but they also encourage allowing which comes from feminine energy. I have found that intentions are more sustainable, enjoyable and invigorating. If you read the definitions of the two words below you will see that while intention encourages focusing and direction towards an outcome or object a goal is attained using effort and ambition. It is interesting that the word goal came from the meaning of limit and this also shows up when you use goals because often you are so focused on the goal that you limit your creative abilities. To have a life filled with goals can be quite draining which is why a lot of people do not achieve theirs and this includes New Year’s Resolutions.
Intention – Conceptions formed by directing the mind towards an object. From Latin intentio(n-) 'stretching, purpose', (http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/intention)
Goal - The object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result. Origin Middle English (in the sense 'limit, boundary'): of unknown origin (http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/goal)
Intentions give you the masculine direction but instead of being totally action orientated and focused on achieving you are able to allow the process to unfold. When I have done this I have found that my life becomes magical. For instance, some years ago, when I made the decision to move from coaching individuals to coaching corporations I set the intention and then I went about my life with an open mind. I spoke to who ever came across my path not just about me and what I was doing but I asked them about themselves and genuinely took an interest in them. It was only because I did this that I bumped into the CEO of an international company who was looking for exactly what I did. I didn’t meet him because I called 100’s of companies and forced myself to get out there - very masculine and goal type action. I met him because I made time for my children’s sports day and I got talking to one of the other parents who just happened to be the CEO of an international company. This is the allowing I am talking of. And if you learn to use it you can save yourself hundreds of hours of striving and also turn around your achievement time from weeks to hours. So how do you do this?
This year is mounting up to be a very busy year for me and my family. The intentions I have set myself are
With love Britt