Living a Free Spirit Life

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What it Means to Live with Intention

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I noticed my mood changing.

You know…that kind of shift where you are feeling at ease and light and then all of a sudden…your insides are churning…your mind is racing…you are stewing and that relaxed and happy state is long gone.

In those moments we must practice stopping.

We must pause.
We must take notice.

We must observe and reflect about what the heck is going on?

We either get swept away by our emotions and blow off the handle (been there many times) or we catch ourselves while it’s happening and with practice we may be able to breathe through those feelings and let them move on without the explosion.

Notice I say with practice.

Emotions are powerful. In a single moment, our mind can get swept away thinking about the past or worrying about the future or repeating the same consuming thoughts about what did or didn’t happen and then BOOM…we are caught up in the story again and again and again.

How do we break free?

Here’s where living with intention comes into play.

When we make a choice to live with intention, we are being willing to become observers of our mind and our body.  We are willing to step back and take a deep look at our lives – to see the connections between what we think, how we feel and what we do.

We practice the art of reflection and are able to take note of what’s working, what isn’t working and make our choices based on how we want to live.

What does living with intention mean?

* Living with intention is about breaking free of the thoughts from our past.

* Living with intention is about breaking free of the worrisome thoughts about our future.

* Living with intention is about being open to change.

* Living with intention is making a choice to ACCEPT where we are in THIS MOMENT, to LET GO of the thoughts and behaviors that aren’t supporting our life anymore and to STAY OPEN to a new way of thinking and being.

* Living with intention is about being mindful and kind and present. It’s about knowing what is important to you and creating your daily life to support that.

* Living with intention is being connected to your intuition and trusting where it guides you.

* Living with intention is about cultivating the courage needed to live in accordance with your own values and needs, rather than going along with the crowd.

* Living with intention is about walking the path less traveled and being ok with that because you know this way is aligned with your true nature.

* Living with intention is about being authentic, exploring creativity and expressing compassion.

What does living with intention mean to you?

Leave a comment and let me know.  I want to hear from you.

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Here are 3 simple tips on how to live with intention starting today:

1) Listen to Your Body

Make space each day to sit and check-in with your body.  Notice how you feel. Are you getting headaches? Are your shoulders carrying the weight of the world? Do you feel nervousness in your belly? Is your low back tender? How’s your energy level? Are you feeling filled up or depleted?

Sit quietly and comfortably in a chair and give yourself 5 minutes today to simply notice how you feel.  Observe. Breathe. Connect. Be kind. This isn’t a time to judge yourself but rather to be tender and open.  Stay open and really listen to what your body is telling you.

Your body is a messenger. Listen to what it’s saying.

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Living a life with intention is about STAYING OPEN so you can learn from your observations and make choices based on what you see.

Maybe it’s been a while since you’ve had a massage. Maybe you let your self-care practices slip and it’s time to get back to daily movement. Maybe your mind is heavy and you’re sorting out stuff from the past and you need to write it out or schedule lunch with a friend or make an appointment with a counselor. Maybe your shoulders are tight and that might be telling you you’re carrying too much responsibility and it’s time to ask for help. Maybe you take on too much and care for others at the depletion of your own needs.

Is it time to simplify your obligations so you have more space in the day for your own health and well-being?

Observe. Breathe. Connect. LISTEN.

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2) Declare Your Top 5 Life Priorities

What is most important to you? What do you value most in life?  Write it out big and bold in your journal. Make a list of all the things you love, but then simplify and prioritize the list to your top 5.

My top 5 priorities at this stage of my life are: 
My Health & Well-Being, My Family, My Creative Work, My Home, My Relationships (friends/community).

This list helps guide my decisions because anything else that comes up that drains my energy or takes me away from what’s truly important to me right now I have to say “no” to, which leads me to tip number 3.

3) Learn How to Say NO

Can you volunteer for the neighborhood board? Can you join the school PTA? Can you bring 250 home-made cookies to the school party? Can you take on the responsibilities of the two employees that were just let go? Can you do more and more and more???  The list of daily requests doesn’t stop so it’s up to you to protect your time.

Living with intention is about learning how to say “no” to the things that take you off your course.

If you set an intention to become debt free and yet get swayed by every commercial and ad vying for your attention, that isn’t serving you very well. If you set an intention to be explore your creativity but never free up your daily schedule to make space for it, that’s not serving you very well. If you set an intention to exercise more but don’t let go of something on your plate to make space for daily movement, that’s not serving you very well.

If you say yes to every request and come home depleted, exhausted and overwhelmed, then…you get the picture.

Living a life of BUSY and OVERWHELM doesn’t give you the SPACE needed to make better choices.  Saying “no” to doing too much will help you say “yes” to living a more ease filled, peaceful life.

You need to schedule space in your daily life to nurture and grow, to heal and love.
Making space will bring more ease to your day, will help you reconnect to that inner wisdom and peace that is always within you, and will guide you to a life of INTENTION.

Leave a comment or email me and let me know how you’re doing.
We are on this path…together!

love Shannon


SHANNON KINNEY-DUH

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