What is your favorite word? I was recently asked this question, during a group ice-breaker activity. It was fun to hear what words others chose and why. One person liked hippopotamus, because it was a fun word to say. That is a fun one. My favorite word is intentional.
When I first began submitting articles to the paper a few years ago, people would ask me what the purpose was for writing the articles. Perhaps people have seen over time. I hope to encourage an intentional way of life, for you, for me, for all. Intentional is doing what is right and good for everyone involved and doing it with and on purpose. It’s a way of viewing the world in a thoughtful, appreciative, deliberate and goal-directed way. It’s living and loving with your whole heart.
Doing something on purpose means that we’ve chosen to do it. We always have a choice, in anything we do. Sometimes it may seem we are stuck, but there is always a choice to do something different, or to view the situation differently. Perhaps you hate your job. You can complain about it and wear yourself out (negativity wears your body down), you can find purpose within the job (find meaning; such as ~ what difference do I make doing this job), or you can find another job. When my mother was young, and it was her turn to do the dreaded job of dishes after a family of 10 was done with a meal, she would bring purpose and joy to her job, by pretending she was on a commercial for dish soap. It made the job fun and important.
Webster’s dictionary defines intention as the thing we plan to do or achieve. There is thought and direction involved. If I want to have a good relationship with my children, I will choose to interact with them, be present, ask them questions, play their play, and put myself in their world, because that is how relationships develop. The gift of listening and seeking to understand another are critical to any relationship. Determine what you want and then work toward that. That is intentional.
Sometimes people criticize the perhaps oversimplification that things happen for a reason. Everything on earth has a purpose and it was created with a purpose. It seems then, that there is truly a reason for everything, good or bad. Finding the good and being thoughtful and appreciative of it all, is living intentionally. Noticing and appreciating all that surrounds you and realize you are where you are, at the moment, for a reason.
Living and loving with our whole heart, another piece of intentional is about doing what is right for all people involved. Following your heart in decisions you make, without allowing your head to interfere with skeptical or defensive thoughts, helps you do what is right for everyone. Our hearts are our true guides in life.
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This is intentional and that is why it is my favorite word.