reflection practice - Setting intentions and living them!
how are you?
What is becoming important to you at this season?
Do you have an intention for the coming months?
I've been reflecting on these questions this weekend and I feel inspired to share with you my personal intention as a practical example to layout some steps that I find helpful in bringing my intentions to life. A well-meant and affirming sticky note on my fridge can be a sweet reminder, sure. But I am way more curious what else I can do to embody and live by my intentions.
Here's an outline of how I like to go through this reflection and turn it into action.
1. Write down your intention. Without overthinking it. Grab a pen and paper and just write down what you would like to put into action or what you would like to experiene this summer. What would feel good? What is important to you right now?
to give an example to illustrate this process, in my case I am choosing to work with this summer: Trust in th surprises of life. Give space for things to happen naturally & spontaneosuly without micro-managing your daily activities.
2. Feel your intention. Instead of rephrasing and worrying about the wording too much, drop the pen and paper now and close your eyes and FEEL how this intention makes you feel in your body. First, you can let images come up, but then notice which sensations in these images create in the body
in my case: living as less of a control-freak feels vast and fun and exciting. I feel a big smile on my face and my heart feels spacious and warm and relaxed.
3. Identify opposing thoughts. Which opposing/secondary thoughts are present when you connect with your intention? Allow for those to be there, too. it can be quite fun and interesting to identify all the thoughts and judgements around your intention. Let them speak!
in my case: yeah, trusting in the surprises of life is good, but what if nothing happens? I will be bored. I will be disappointed. Nothing will ever happen if I don't control the map of my days.
Identified opposing thought: fear of boredom/silence, lack of trust.
4. Specify balancing action to yourself. What can you do to strengthen your intention and to soothe the opposing thoughts? Trust, that you have the knowledge of what would support specifically YOU in making your dreams come true. Anything that feels good and authentic goes and can be part of your self-care practice:
- writing little fridge-notes/affirming mantras to yourself
- which movements support your intention/ which movements soothe your opposing thoughts?
- which breath practice or pranayama can support your intention?
- which meditations (that you know and have liked) could support you?
- which music sets you in the mood to live by your intention?
- negotiate small, practical deals with the opposing thoughts to change some daily habits
- which other small action or activity brings your body into the vibration of your intention? (Think in the direction of sports, dancing, playing music, painting, building something)
in my case, this is how I would specify some of these actions and prescribe them to myself:
- in my asana practice: slow movements and restoratives in my yoga practice help me to soothe the grip of the controller-mind. Just starting a practice without a plan in mind or knowing where I want to end up strengthens my ability to see how things unfold naturally in their own time and to trust that answers always come when needed.
- in my breathing practice: simply observing the breath and letting the breath freely move reminds me how it feels to let life move me.
- in meditation: meditations on emptiness remind me how magnificent it is to explore "nothingness". A sure soother for fear of boredom!
- small deal negotiation: Dear control freak, how about for two days a week I don't write a to-do-list nor make plans and we just see how the day unfolds as we go along?
- activity: picking up the guitar and making up a silly song about my opposing thoughts makes me take them less seriously. If you're not so fearful with your opponents and start inviting them into the room, they usually soften. You will find lots of these type of practices in coaching or other therapeutic traditions: how to step into dialogue with those energies, etc. and bam! they lose their power. Just like that.
The more of these balancing actions you can activate, breathe in, listen to, and fill yourself up with,... the more embodied your intention can become.
Hope this is helpful to develop your own intuitively guided practice. May it support your innermost intention to come to life!
This meditation can be your morning coffee ;) start the day connecting with your breath, inner clarity and peace. Visualize the ocean breathing. Drink up some love. And then go about your day. Enjoy!
a slow and yummy start into the day. breath focused practice of slow moves, warming up spine, finding ease-fully into surya namaskar/sun salutations with gentle twists to cleanse our fatigue, malasana with twist and then already to the floor for some lower back release and hamstring flexibility. includes a guided savasana. Enjoy!
Start the day singing! the first round I chant line by line so you can listen once and then blend in your voice when I repeat the line. Followed by 2 more rounds to chant together. Enjoy!
welcome yourself just as you are. Connect to breath and senses of hearing, smelling and feeling, creating your unique experience in this moment. it's all here for you to enjoy!
a short meditation that you can do at any time during your day - less than 10minutes. following your breath between earth and sky fills you with calmness and trust and reconnects you to your creative nature. Try it out and enjoy!