Sunday, September 7, 2008

Finding Time to Make Intentions Reality

Flicker time

"Scary and difficult and painful don't have to stop you. Scary and difficult and painful are the very things that transform you into your best self."
- Sally Hogshead from her book "Radical Careering"

Since probably sometime in high school, my life has been set on high gear with prospects of college, life, studies, work, family, etc.. At times (sometimes quite unintentional) these things that make up my life pull away from what really matter: dreams and those intentions I never seem to have time for.

I have tried to find every way to bring back the focus to what I really want to later accomplish in my life, those goals and those dreams, those intentions that seem miles and miles away. What I have initially done to combat the distractors is making lists in my free time of what really matters in my life, a personal "mission" statement if you will.

There are essentially three parts to this type of this modified mission statement.

First, identify what is it that I want to focus on. I keep the list at five or less to make to keep from overwhelming myself. The following is a sample of a list I composed.

I want to focus on...
1. writing
2. graphic and web design

Second, I ask why and what do I want to accomplish with these goals. What benefits will I derive from making these intentions a reality. This part can be divided into two lists.

I want to accomplish this because....
1. I enjoy writing and it helps me relax
2. I'm interested in this field and wish to make a career out of this
I want to...

1. Write stories and poetry, have a better mastery of the English language
2. Create a better portfolio, be more aware of various choices in design

Game Plan
Third, I ask how I want to accomplish this, keeping in mind that I want to be realistic and brief when I'm writing these down. Keep in mind that all this "mission" statement is in list format to provide a clear, more concise view of these intentions.

I will accomplish this by...
1. Writing at least an hour a day
2. Keeping an idea sketchbook and studying various designers on the web and in print

My whole plan with this statement is to later make these goals an essential part of my life. Starting simple is more realistic that trying to dramatically change your life overnight and therefore making the change come more naturally rather than forced.

Also, it's tough knowing that listing these goals, intentions, and dreams is one thing but actually accomplishing it is another. I found that cutting out bad habits that consume much of my time helped me redirect that focus onto what matters. Time can't be bought or wished into thin air but it can be cultivated and worked on.

A cool suggestion I found on Steve Pavlina's site called the 30-day trial period. It basically sets your goals or intentions on a 30-day trial period. Check it out!

Until next time!

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Blogger Elizabeth said...

Hi Karina,
This is something I am working on too. Making a list of goals and how you will achieve them is so important. I just listened to a great podcast on this. It was on "Hip Tranquil Chic" a yoga podcast I love and there were 3 parts of an interview called "Hot Mommas Project" about women and success, particularly dealing with time management and setting goals. I really like your blog.

September 17, 2008 at 9:43 AM  
Anonymous Ananga said...

Thank you for submitting your post to the Living by Design Personal Development Carnival - your piece was one of ten selected from over 50 entries.

September 21, 2008 at 8:03 AM  
Anonymous Ari Koinuma said...

Hello Karina,

Stopping by from Ananga's blog carnival -- enjoyed your post.

If you are as young as I suspect (I'm making assumptions here based on the fact that you're in undergrad) then the mindset and maturity you're displaying in this post is quite awesome! It'll serve you well as you go about your life. I wish I had thought like this when I was in college.


September 21, 2008 at 7:02 PM  

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