What does happiness really look like?
Have you ever stopped to think about it? Really think about it.
There were so many years that I said, I just want to be happy. Not that I considered myself to be unhappy, but in general I was open to receiving more happiness. I was perfectly content with whatever level of happiness life chose to deliver to me. I was totally satisfied living unconsciously. I never realized there was an alternative so there wasn’t much to be unhappy about.
I notice during that time I had not learned the lesson of intention.
I was living my life and allowing it to happen to me. Grazing through my world of materialism happy with mediocrity. I didn’t put intention into any of the important things. My intention was focused on my career, the attainment of status, and acquisition of material wealth. I had a nice house. I had a nice car. I had a nice life. But at the end of the day I found myself exhausted—completely exhausted, both mentally and physically.
So I would zone out in front of the TV for marathons that would last up to three days every weekend.
I spent my “free” time zombified and my “work” time looking forward to my “free” time.
It never occurred to me that I had a choice here. I’m a perfectly intelligent human being with street smarts and yet it still never occurred to me that I had a choice in how my life was designed.
And I know I’m not alone.
I was going through the motions of life waiting for another day to appreciate it. Some call it not giving a f**k as if that is the key to being happy. On this I must respectfully disagree. While there are things I don’t give a f**k about that no longer serve me there are plenty of things that I’m finding are worth giving a f**k about. It’s pretty simple actually…I give a f**k about my experience here on this planet and I’m tired of waiting. I want to enjoy life now. So now I live with intention.
I have increased the level of intention in all areas of my life with one purpose—more love. I want to love more of my life with every day. I know it may sound funny, but the number one shortcut to loving more of life is to just—well—love life right now. To stop waiting.
When I started parenting with the intention of having authentic relationships with my children based on love I noticed that I am an amazing mother who loves designing learning experiments with intention. When I started exercising with the intention of seeing what my body was capable of I found myself in the middle of this amazing cycling community with people who help each other achieve greatness with intention. When I started eating with the intention of fueling my body I found foods that are designed to fuel with intention. When I started picking restaurants with the intention of having nutritious amazing food I noticed I stopped eating fast food and started finding amazing hole in the wall places with people who cook with intention.
When I designed the spaces in my home with intention, I noticed I fell in love with my home and started using my spaces with intention.
Intention. I am happier than I have ever been because I set the intention to be happy. I am healthier than I have ever been because I set the intention to be healthy. I am more full of love than I have ever been because I set the intention to be full of love. I have the most loving and authentic relationship I have ever had with my children because I set the intention to have a loving and authentic relationship with my children.
Intention. Is. Everything.
When I was living unintentionally I was watching life breeze by in a body that was overweight from eating to deal with the emotions I didn’t want to feel that stemmed from an overwhelming sense of anxiety that I was going to somehow fail at being the best version of me. I was living unintentionally while trying to set the intention to be the best version of me. Well that just seems silly.
So now I set the intention to be the best version of me. And so I am. I look at every choice as an opportunity to up-level my experience, whether it’s the kind of coffee I’m drinking, the shoes I’m wearing, the song I’m hearing or the people I spend a lot of time with.
And I use a feedback loop so it keeps getting even better and better. In every experience I ask what really works for me? What would make it better? It is a simple feedback loop I call (plus EBIs) that I am intentionally using to design my ultimate human user experience.
An experience where I am in love with life. Where I am surrounded by people who are in love with life. I set the intention for a mind-blowing human user experience that is designed with intention.
And so it is done.
Author: Nichole Kelly
Editor: Renee Picard / Assistant Editor: Ellie Cleary
Image: Natalia Drepina/Deviantart