“Our intention creates our reality.” – Wayne Dyer
Whether you are looking to simplify your morning routine or that last hour of your workday before you have to leave the office, setting your intention is a critical step to successfully shifting your behaviour patterns. Think of setting an intention as providing you with a target of precisely where you are going to focus.
In our first instalment of this series, Lisa wrote about determining your “why” and how it acts as your compass as you seek to simplify. Go back to your why and use it to help you set your intentions. Consider which area of your life, if simplified, would best support your why and make that area the foundation of your intention. Now write it down. Putting the intention onto paper serves as a visual reminder and it also helps to de-clutter your mind as you move towards a simplified life.
Here are a few of our go-to tips for setting intentions:
- Keep it positive.
- Be specific. Be clear about the area you want to simplify AND how you are going to do it. Committing to simplifying your morning, for example, is well-intended but to make it happen, commit to 1-3 things you could actively do to simplify your morning. (If you need some ideas about the how, stay tuned for our top 10 tips for simplifying – coming after we complete the S.I.M.P.L. (E.) framework).
- Reconnect with your why – your purpose. This is the part where you tap into the emotion. For example, if your intention is to simplify your physical space by organizing your office, connect with how it will make you feel when you arrive in the morning to start your workday and find a clean desk with only one file awaiting your attention. Compare that with the emotion evoked by cleaning up your office because your boss told you to do it.
Most of us have multiple areas of our lives that could use simplifying: filing systems, communications (email, text, telephone) in both your professional and personal life, morning routines, scheduling kids’ activities, the last hour of the workday, some physical at home or office, exercise regimes. Start with one – the one that will bring life to your purpose. And remember: it’s about progress, not perfection.