#25 - Setting an Intention for 2015
I don’t know how they work for you, but the words “resolution” and “diet” have the following effect on me: I picture a stern master with a long beard and hard face, condescendingly declaring: “Dominique, you lack discipline. This year is the year you will discard old habits and replace them with new shiny ones!”
Is it surprising to you that this approach rarely works? It’s not because I shouldn’t adopt a healthy diet, but because the new ‘resolution’ operates at the same level that created the problem in the first place. I have outcomes I want to change, so I change the behaviours. Wrong!
"You can’t solve a problem with the same level of thinking that created it." ~Albert Einstein
To change a behaviour within days or months, not years, I have to challenge thought patterns occurring a few levels higher (reference Robert Dilts on Logical Levels of Thinking). So, keeping to the healthy diet example, if I want to change what and when I eat, I have to consider what strategy I have been using to get the results I have now. If I never take my lunch to work, the chances are that this strategy will lead me to eat prepared foods that are high in saturated fat. Or if I take a grande chai latte every afternoon, chances are I will impact my glycemic index.
Strategy is a level up from behaviour, but even higher are the values and beliefs underlying the strategy. Why am I doing what I am doing? Comfort, sociability? Why is that important to me? Acceptance of others? Path of least resistance? Even higher up the logical levels of thinking, we have identity: Who am I being when I do this? Am I am respectful of Self? Who do I want to be when I grow up? Healthy and Resilient, For what purpose or intention? Let me frequently remind myself of the higher goal I have for my life…
So, rather than trying to change various behaviours for 2015, I have decided to set an intention. My intention is to make a difference, even a small one in the reader’s life, by shoring up the courage to be as genuine as I can in my own life’s journey. By showing up authentically, I am hoping to support others in their authentic journeys, their genuine conversations and positive ways of engaging in their world.
The next tips will be about old habit busting with the goal of increasing self-confidence and decreasing inertia. After all, there is no time to lose in getting the life you want!
I’m excited about 2015 and all the possible personal and professional achievement it holds for you. May your strongest intention hold you firmly in the direction of your glorious future!