10 Ways to Live with Intention

10 Ways to Live with Intention

In a world where we spend most of our time making a living and juggling our basic needs, sometimes we get stuck on auto-pilot, going about our daily lives, and miss opportunities to live with intention.  To enhance feelings of connectedness, joy, and accomplishment, consider these 10 ideas: 

“Do the hardest thing first” to increase feelings of accomplishment. We tend to procrastinate on the hard stuff. This can ultimately leave with us feelings of dread. By doing the hardest thing first, we create a space to feel good about ourselves, and other tasks become easier and feel less burdensome. Try it and see!

Make a decision” to do something instead of staying stuck. Procrastinators often struggle with this and end up not accomplishing necessary tasks. This can lead to negative emotions. Even if our decision needs to be revised later, just making a decision and taking a small action creates momentum in your life.

Acting as if” is a skill that can affect self-esteem in a positive way because instead of ruminating on negative thoughts, we improve brain chemistry. Instead of worrying (“Can I do this?”), act as if you can do it, then at least try. See if the outcome isn’t more positive. You might surprise yourself!

“Make a to-do list and start at the bottom.” Just mix it up. Sometimes our brain needs that!

“Do something for another person.” Getting out of our own head and seeing the needs of others can help us to find more balance and gratitude in our life.

“Make gratitude lists.”  Every day. It’s easy to forget who and what we are grateful for in our lives. Gratitude generates positive emotions that act as a buffer for depression.

“Send a thank you card.” Or any kind of card. Who hasn’t gotten a card from the mail and been especially delighted? Studies show that written communication has a powerful effect on the brain. We feel better because someone cares.

“Asking for help” can be hard but everyone needs help at some time or another. While the answer may not always be yes, when we can enlist the help of others, we feel cared for, problems get solved, and burdens are lifted.

“Create a budget.”  Having command of our finances gives us a sense of competency and creates order and structure in our lives. 

“Organize a space in your home.” This idea has taken on more meaning since Marie Kondo showed us how to rid ourselves of things that do not “spark joy” in our lives. Really, we feel more in control of our lives when we can find our stuff.