We’ve arrived at the final few days of the year, and how we participate in this transition will set the tone for the next one to come. If we want to be active creators of our own life instead of massive observers of our life (letting things happen TO us), it’s important to get clear and move, think, and feel with intention.
One of the best ways we can do this is by trying to think of a phrase or word that encapsulates our intention. It may sound cliche or too woo-woo to pick a “word of the year,” but I’m telling you – it works!
I use my word of the year to guide decisions, make plans, and to set goals.
What the difference is between a goal and an intention? A GOAL focuses on the future, on external accomplishments. They have a specific outcome, describe what you want to do, and are future-focused, like to run a marathon. Go surfing in Hawai’i. Create better sleeping habits.
An INTENTION focuses on a present, internal state of being that you want to cultivate. Intentions describe how you want to be or feel in the moment, how you want to move through life, and how you want to show up. Some of my clients have had the intention to live with more confidence, compassion, mindfulness, inspiration, joy, generosity.
The word of the year focuses more on intention than a goal. It helps guide how you get to the goal, how you align your life with your values, and how you create the life you are meant to live.
Some people think they should choose a goal and set intentions to support that, but aligning with our intentions first will keep us from wasting time, money, and energy on goals that won’t fulfill us.
To set an intention, think about how you want to show up in the next year. Who do you want to be at the root of all your actions for the next 12 months? (Be sure to not stress on creating the perfect one because you aren’t sure what the next year will bring. It may change as you learn and grow and that’s totally okay!).
Another way to think of this is to ask, “What would help me live more authentically in the next year?” Or, “What quality would help me show up the way I want to in the world?”
Sure, joy, confidence, love…those sound great, right? But sometimes what we need isn’t so comfy. Surrender. Forgiveness. Vulnerability (that’s mine for the next year)…can make us want to squirm a bit.
When we head into that territory, it’s more like we’re asking for something like a bitter medicine that heals. So sometimes, to find our word of the year, we can ask, “What medicine do I need for the next year?” or even, “What would crack me open and reveal my authentic nature?”
Like I said, mine is vulnerability, and I am admittedly nervous about this one, but I know it will help me open my heart even more, and shed the armor I’ve had up for so long (more on that in the pod).
As for goals, they’re the action part of your intention. They’re the things you will do so your vision becomes more tangible. Once you’ve set your intention, you can set your goals. Look at how each goal aligns with your intentions (and other goals) and ask yourself – do they support each other, or conflict?
The trick can be in staying connected to your intention as the days go by – with all the distractions like emails, to-do lists, work obligations, daily chores and tasks and all the other crazy shizzle life throws our way. One thing I’ve found really helpful is to find a talisman for your word of the year. It can be as simple as a piece of jewelry, a special article of clothing, a rock or a shell, an epic song or playlist, or a picture. Some people even get tattoos (but don’t blame me for that idea later). Either way, having a physical reminder can help you stay connected to your word.
Ok – so here we go, rebels. I’m on mission to be cracked open by vulnerability itself. What about you? What will help you live your most authentic life? May it be just the medicine you need.
In this Episode you will learn:
// The difference between goals and intentions – and why it matters
// When an intention becomes medicine
// How to pick your Word of the Year – and have it actually mean something
// Strategies for saying connected to your intention when life gets in the way
// Check out Episode 32 – How to Review Your Year
// Check out Episode 33 – Living in Alignment
// Want to join us for 6 months of magic and adventures in the Adventure Mastermind? Of course! Head to www.AdventureMastermind.com to get on the waitlist now – applications open in January!
// If you’re new to the squad, grab the starter kit I created at RebelBuddhist.com. It has all you need to start creating a life of more freedom, adventure, and purpose. You’ll get access to the private Facebook group where you can ask me questions! Once you join, there’s also a weekly FB live called Wake the F*ck Up Wednesday, where you can ask questions that come up as you do this work – in all parts of your life.