The Art of Being Intentional

Drumroll, please! I’m sticking to the promise I made in my last post (found here) to tell you guys about my New Year’s resolution. The problem is, I don’t want to call it a “resolution.”  That word, in my mind, has come to have a negative connotation with it. I don’t know if it’s the countless years of promising to do something and stopping a week later that’s given me a bad taste in my mouth, or the genuine thought of only having goals because it’s a new year. Either way, count me out.

This year, I’ve chosen to start every day with a phrase. My mom first brought this to my attention when she said she just wanted to “be intentional,” when doing things. The more we talked about it, the more I realized how great of a goal this would be for my life. From simply being intentional about saying “hello” to a stranger to intentionally waking up and making it to the gym every morning, this phrase can be personal to everyone’s needs.

I’ve chosen to hold off posting about this daily goal until now because I wanted to make sure I was serious about it. According to the Today Show, January 17th is the day that most Americans abandon their resolutions. It was on that morning that I had woken up and intentionally dragged myself to the gym despite not wanting to go. When I got home and heard the anchors discussing being done with resolutions I felt so proud of myself. I didn’t do it because it was a goal for the new year, rather, I did it to be intentional about a healthy lifestyle.

Since making this daily change, I have told many people about how my mom and I have chosen to live. One friend of mine told me her friends’ experience with choosing a new word to live by every year. Through the word of the year, this friend has challenged herself to do so many things, for example, stepping out of her comfort zone in huge ways like skydiving.

This even stuck with my older sister, pushing her to write a lovely Facebook post. On the days where being intentional is hard because I’m stuck inside due to extreme weather, her post has added gasoline to my dying fire. Screen Shot 2019-01-31 at 11.03.18 AM.png

The thought of “being intentional” hits everyone differently. It can provoke a new way of living for each person who is willing to change their way of thinking.

Like always, I have to say,  life is different for everyone. Some people have goals to lose weight while others want to socialize more. Being intentional makes you stop and think about what you are doing and the underlying reason to why.

Why did I stay in and watch a movie I’ve seen a thousand times rather than going out and spending money to see a new movie? Maybe I’ve saving to make my travel goals a reality. Why did I hold the door open for a stranger? Maybe it’s because human interaction is what I thrive on. It can be little moments like this, or moments thinking about something as big as your career, where we make a conscious choice to be intentional about what we’re doing.

So, what’s my daily goal for this year? Good days, bad days, and every day in between, I’m choosing to be intentional.

Sincerely,

Krystal, With a “K”

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The Art of a Resolution

3, 2, 1. . . It’s officially here, the beginning of a new year! 365 chances to become someone better. It’s that serious time of the year where no matter who you follow on Instagram or Twitter they are talking about what they are going to change about themselves physically, mentally, or what they’re going to do better. We all have that small voice in the back of our minds saying, “This will be my year,” so we promise to ourselves that we will spend less money on stupid things, go to the gym every day while eating perfectly, or some other unrealistic goal with no actual plan. All of a sudden, after week one or maybe a month, you have failed to continue towards your goal, and you tell yourself, “There’s always next year.”

Another year, another goal that you just didn’t have time for, or it was really too hard. There are a couple problems with most of our New Year’s resolutions. For starters, they are usually unrealistic; are you really going to all of a sudden drop half of your body weight after never working out or eating well a single day prior to this resolution? Are you really going to spend less money on materialistic items after you’ve never paid attention to what you buy or how much money you spend? Losing weight or aiming to spend less money on things isn’t unrealistic, but losing a large amount of weight or cutting your spending habits cold turkey is. Instead of saying you’re going to lose weight, focus more so on smaller goals, for example, packing a healthy lunch every day versus going through the drive-through every day. These small changes can work up to a larger goal. When you think you have reached that small goal make another and then another, working your way up to that larger goal.

Another problem with our new goals is that we don’t hold ourselves accountable. It’s important to write down your goals or maybe tell someone who you’re close to what you’re working towards. Doing something small like writing your goal on a notecard and sticking it to your mirror so you can see it every day will help remind you of your goals each morning. Furthermore, after making a goal do you reflect on how well you’ve worked towards it each week? Mentally telling yourself what you did well towards your goal the past week or what you need to do better the next week (or physically writing it down) can be extremely helpful when it comes to reaching a goal.

Finally, another problem we have when it comes to the goals we make at the beginning of the year is that we don’t make it a habit to change. We often want the change to happen right when we decide it, so when we don’t see the change in the mirror, our wallet, our everyday environment, or any other place we expect to see a change, we often feel like giving up. It’s important to realize that everything takes time, and practice makes perfect. You can’t expect to drink more water each day if you don’t try to be consistent about it. Practice and consistency create habit. Once you create habit you will see a change; maybe not overnight, but little by little you will see it and feel it.

Overall, the new year is a great time to take a look at your life to make a change. No matter what you decide to change, whether big or small, be realistic, keep yourself accountable, and make a habit. If you aren’t going to be serious about your goal, do you even really want to make a change that badly?

Sincerely,

Krystal, With a “K”