Choose intentions over goals….

It’s been a thoroughly enjoyable and fascinating couple of weeks.  I am so grateful to have participated in a variety of different events, and I have learnt so much, and gained so much inspiration from all the people I have met along the way…

After a thoroughly enjoyable day as both participant and coach at Lisa Valentine’s retreat day last week, I have kept reflecting on the power of focusing on intentions over goals…

During our yoga sessions, Lisa explained how setting goals can often been unhelpful because if we fail to live up to the high expectations we set ourselves, there is an inevitable feeling of failure. She describes intentions as a much gentler, kinder approach to achieving what we want to achieve day to day, rather aspiring to a future outcome, and I wholeheartedly agree…

During my workshop on journaling, I invited the group to share their experiences and opinions on the benefits of journaling.  I then shared my journaling prompts that I use each morning and evening to guide my short daily journaling practice. As I reflect upon them now, I can see clearly that these can be described as intentions that I live by each day.

Helping others to create small, but intentional and consistent, actions or habits  is also very much at the heart of my work as a health coach.

Coaching is about asking powerful questions, which is key to helping us create our intentions. Journaling can also provide us the opportunity to ask ourselves the same important questions…

I have heard intentions being described as ‘heart led, which I think is a beautiful description. As coaches we always invite people to consider what impact their choices will have on them and the important people around them, and how it will make them feel, and this is key to creating meaningful intentions. Asking these questions, whether through journaling, or with the support and guidance of a coach, can really help us to approach life with this curious mind and enable us to make daily choices in alignment with what we want….

Suddenly the goals seem less significant as we achieve what we want simply by mindfully choosing to take small, consistent actions…

For example, I know that exercising has so many benefits for me:  as well as keeping me fit and healthy, exercise makes me happy, it gives me energy, it helps give me real mental clarity and focus. Exercising outside also gives me additional health benefits of nature and natural light, whilst exercising with others provides the social connection that is vital to health….

However, instead of setting myself up with a rigid regime, my intention is simply to do some form of exercise every day. I am grateful to be able to access and enjoy a range of different exercise, but sometimes it might be as simple as a 10-minute morning yoga practice, or a short walk in the park. However, whenever I am faced with a choice to exercise or not to exercise, if I ask myself ‘How will it make me feel?’ the decision is easy every time!

This was also the theme of the brilliant women’s health call with Bex Brame earlier this month when she described the power of intuitive eating. To her no food is ‘off limits’ as she knows this very often just leads to cravings and over-eating. So, whenever she makes a choice of what to eat, she will always ask herself; ‘How will this make me feel?’ Simple, but so powerful, and clearly the key to start making any choices in alignment with what you want to achieve….

We all know that our lifestyle choices have a huge impact on our health and wellbeing, but it is not always easy. However it is these tiny simple actions or habits that we take intentionally and  consistently day after day, or week after week that create real change. I really enjoyed discussing this power of habits with the staff and clients at Pilates Place members evening last weekend, and it was great to hear wonderful examples of people experiencing huge benefits from creating positive habits with their food and sleep…

It really isn’t complicated. All too often we make life difficult for ourselves, but when we start asking the right questions it is so much easier to start living with intention, and to start living the life we really want…

So, if  you are struggling to make positive and sustainable lifestyle changes, I would really recommend introducing a simple journaling practice. This will enable you to start asking yourself important  questions,  and help you to create consistent and intentional actions and habits.

However, if this still feels a little overwhelming, and you feel like you could benefit from a little support along the way, I’d be delighted to be your guide. I can help by you by  providing simple accessible information, and the support and accountability you need to help you create real and sustainable change. To discover more about how I can support you please book in a gifted 1:1 session today.

In the meantime if you are struggling with a particular lifestyle choice today, I would invite you to just pause a moment, and simply ask yourself, ‘How will it make me feel?’

Thank you for reading.  Wishing you the very best of health,

Harriet x

 

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