3 min readThe word “intent” has frequently been popping up for me lately in conversations and books. I’m currently re-reading a book that I read several years ago, Excuse Me, Your Life is Waiting: The Astonishing Power of Feelings by Lynn Grabhorn. Ms. Grabhorn talks about thinking and feeling about what we DO want rather than focusing on what we DON’T want – substituting “inspired doing for wasted doing by stopping our constant knee-jerk responses to everything … our focus held enthusiastically on what we prefer in life”.
Ms. Grabhorn suggests that by setting our intentions we can become “deliberate creators” of our lives. So, I flagged that page in the book but I didn’t do anything with it, until yesterday. I had a well laid out plan – leave a half hour early for my Toastmasters meeting so that I could renew my driver’s licence at the service centre in the same building. Well we all know what happens to the “best-laid plans” and mine was no different, it went awry. After over 20 minutes of watching the “Now Serving” numbers crawl from 80 (where it stood when I got there) to about 86, I knew that with number 94 I was not going to be on time for my meeting in five minutes. I started to get anxious and frustrated. Everyone was taking so long, the employees seemed to be talking too much to each other, people seemed to be moving in slow motion. My thoughts were totally focussed on how long it was taking and how I was going to be late for my meeting.
Suddenly Ms. Grabhorn’s message of “setting your intentions” popped into my mind. I thought why not. I tried to get myself into a better head space by smiling and thinking over and over, “I intend to be on time for my Toastmasters meeting”. Even as I was doing this, somewhere in the back of my mind the thought was still there that there was no way it was going to happen. Everytime my mind slipped back to a negative thought I would steer it back to my intention and I kept smiling and trying to feel positive. Much to my disbelief, the numbers started to move faster and finally it was my turn. I was out of there in 10 minutes after I set my intention. The elevator was waiting for me as I approached at 12:05pm (five minutes late for my meeting). When I got to the meeting, they had been delayed because the room wasn’t ready and I ended up going in to the meeting with everyone else – on time!
So how did I become the deliberate creator of my situation rather than a victim – I set my intention (be on time for my meeting) and I relaxed and smiled and stopped focusing on what I didn’t want (this is taking so long, I’m going to be late). Was I really the deliberate creator of my situation or was it just coincidence? I don’t know. Will I keep trying to be the deliberate creator of my life – you bet! It can’t hurt.