Is Your Attention on Your Intention?
We have heard the saying that “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry,” but what exactly does that mean for us as humans pursuing our greatest dreams and desires? Well, for many, it is a saying that depicts the loss of hope, or ultimate defeat and despair.
So why is it that so many well-intentioned plans end up failing? To best answer this question, I think we should look at where our focus was when we took the specific actions that led to the failed result. Were we focused on the actions themselves, or were we focused on the intention ~ that being, the objective behind the actions? Aha. Perhaps, the plans were not “well-intentioned” after all!
This is where the secret to creating profound results comes in to play. What is this secret, you ask? Let’s dive in to a couple of the many pearls of wisdom I gleaned from my favorite book The Passion Test and see what we can uncover.
1. What you put your attention on grows stronger in your life.
Let’s take a look at what this really means. Where is it that most people put their attention? While I’d venture to say that most of you reading this are visionary leaders, unstoppable in the pursuit of your dreams, you must agree with me that this is not at all the norm, right? You’d likely agree that most people are plodding through life, focusing on all the things they don’t want to happen, and all the reasons their dreams won’t come true.
And when those don’ts and wont’s DO come true, we can quickly look and see that our attention was on our doubts and fears, rather than our strengths and capabilities. It’s the Law of Attraction at work. The bottom line is that every single day, we create our life based on what we give our attention to. It’s a choice, but unfortunately, most people get stuck in the cycle of defeat and despair simply because of where they choose to put their attention.
2. Action keeps attention engaged.
This is really crucial. This is why it is imperative that we are pursuing our passions ~ those things that ignite the insatiable fire inside of us and satisfy our heart’s deepest longings. When our attention is on the fulfillment of our passions, our actions keep our attention engaged!
Don’t get me wrong, I am a HUGE fan of setting goals and working toward them, but an un-escapable truth of life is that circumstances DO change, and to meet the success we desire we must embrace both laser-like focus AND adaptability at the same time. I realize that we spend a lot of time discussing the importance of taking action, but at the end of the day, it is not really action that creates the results we desire. If that were the case, things would happen exactly as we planned them!
However, we know that more often than not, that is not how results come to be. No matter how detailed the plan may be, we set out with our “best laid plans”, only to discover twists and turns in our pre-determined route that require us to either deviate or derail. It is our intention, directed through the process of attention, that creates the results!
This is why it is so important that we remain open at all times. Things simply do not happen the way we thought they would. When we remain attached to our plan we end up stuck, spinning our wheels …. or worse, completely derailed. Yet when we open ourselves to the possibility of something better, we adapt, and find a new direction that gets us back on track. The plan of action is what keeps our attention engaged in the fulfillment of our intentions, and exactly how that manifests is what keeps life exciting and fun!
The most important element of staying open to possibilities lies in our ability to trust. In every moment, we are either in a state of expansion or a state of contraction. This is our internal guidance system at work, and the trick is to really tune in a listen.
When we feel expanded, we are open, connected, loving, compassionate and ready for anything! This is our signal that we are on the right track and it is time to take massive action! On the flipside, when we are contracted, we feel anxious, irritable, angry, tense, disconnected and uncomfortable. This is our signal to step back, take a break and reflect. Unfortunately, many people attempt to push forward while in this contracted state, which is what is happening if you are repeatedly hitting a wall and getting nowhere.
It is only when we can let go of the idea that we are in complete control of everything that happens in our world, that we can open to trust and stay on track to ultimate fulfillment and joy. By learning to relax and turn within when contraction strikes, we give ourselves the chance for new ideas, solutions and opportunities to arise. We begin to see doors where before there were only walls. And when those doors appear, that’s the green light to move forward again, in your renewed, expanded state of action! You are once again unstoppable in the pursuit of your dreams!
This concept is why I’m a fan of going further than simply creating goals, by creating a Personal Strategic Plan. This helps us to understand that there is nothing wrong with changing direction, as long as we are crystal clear about our choices and the world we are creating for ourselves (our intentions). Even if you cannot anticipate everything that will affect your path, you have a much better chance of dealing with it effectively if you’ve thought ahead. I will talk more about the importance of having a Personal Strategic Plan in an upcoming post, but essentially, it is about having a well-thought out process, which produces fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide who you are, where you’re going, what you do, and how, when and why you do it. A Personal Strategic Plan is about bringing immense clarity to your vision, mission, purpose and legacy, and making choices that will positively affect you as you are moving forward on your life path.
The Passion Test sums it up just beautifully, “when you have intention and attention with no tension, the whole process becomes fun!”
Intention ~ Attention ~ No Tension. Now you have in your hands the secret to manifesting anything you truly desire in life! Go forth and prosper!