Last time, I wrote about setting intentions for the year rather than resolutions. By chance, I decided to clear up one of those piles of folders that I believe we all accumulate, and amongst them I found a stock of my intentions which went back twenty years.
I sat and read through them and was immediately reminded of just how powerful they are. I usually forget what I’ve written down until the next time, and then adjust them to help me move on some more. What I hadn’t really realised before is just how much progress I have made on so many elements of how I want to improve.
This is not because I have been deliberate or conscientious about it. As I said, I usually forget what I have written within a month. It is because intentions are like a direct command to your unconscious. They seep into your way of thinking about things and play a part in how you make decisions, how you act. I knew this theoretically, but here was the proof.
Just that act of writing down how you want to feel in general, and then some things you intend to do more or less of is enough to help you improve your life without a lot of effort.
And even at a simple level they work just as well. Setting your intentions for how you want a conversation to go, or an encounter, or a day, can make a positive difference without consciously trying. It is a powerful use of our unconscious that makes life easier, so do experiment with it.