The inspiration behind this month’s theme was taken from a quote I shared late in January on my Instagram and it really resonated with me. I kept coming back to it and thinking how to react/relate to the message in my day-to-day life. The quote centred not only on our intentions but also our attention, which, to me, really stuck:
“Energy flows where the attention and intention goes.”Gabby Bernstein
You may know already that I love Gabby’s messages and quotes and while some of her work may be a little more “out there” and spiritual than others (which I appreciate is not for everyone) a lot of her mantras are easy to connect to and often speak volumes about our lives.
This one is a simple message, to the point and direct but how often do we only give our attention OR our intention rather than both together? And how often are we then disappointed or surprised that no action comes of it?
I didn’t realise it, but this is me. Ten times over!
Intention without attention
In light of February being the second month of the calendar year, a lot of people are either still going with their January resolutions or feel like a failure that they gave up weeks ago. This alone is one of the main reasons I don’t believe in New Year Resolutions, rather we should set and think about New Year Intentions. More than that, we can begin a new intention any time of any day. There’s a lot of focus on January 1st being the starting point of the “new and better me” or “my dream career” but you can make today, tomorrow, any day your starting day.
How many of you made resolutions at the start of 2021? And how many of you set yourself intentions? They could be daily, monthly or yearly, but the act of setting intentions can really promote a more mindful approach. I believe it also encompasses a sense of re-evaluation, a more connected thinking and offers the chance to adjust our intentions as we see fit. You don’t need to worry about breaking an intention in that sense.
So, why do your greatest and most thoughtful intentions fall flat despite all your will and desire? A lack of attention can be to blame.
For example, I had dreams of releasing a second, third, even festive eBook by myself in 2020 following on from my first eBook released in January, Nourish Me. I had so much enthusiasm to make a summer collection of recipes and then an autumnal one, and then a wintry/festive edition. But nothing happened. Until now, when I have just released my second eBook Nourish Me 2 (only for newsletter subscribers for this first week, please sign up here). I only really realise now why this was the case: a lack of attention.
I was, fortunately, busy with other projects, brand work and campaigns, delicious recipes and timely photography and content – all of this work took precedent and took all of my attention. Leaving no time for my eBook dreams, despite my intentions.
Attention without intention
On the flip side, where we think to focus our attention will work wonders for our dreams and goals, if we have the right intentions. Without them, our attention falls to the day-to-day tasks that may be fulfilling and enjoyable (the above-mentioned timely content and brand campaigns) and therefore our energy follows.
We tick off our to-do list and the tasks that have our attention, but we may forget about those bigger dreams or the wider picture because we simply feel like we don’t have the energy for anything that falls outside of this.
This is where a lot of my action, inaction and general mindset lies. I say “I’m too busy for xyz” or “next week is already look so packed, I don’t know where I’ll fit that in” or something along those lines. I am consumed with the more-immediate work, which, is a common issue and not always a “problem” as I still enjoy my work! But it leaves little room for my other dreams.
A simple example is this very blog post, I had the idea earlier in the week of what I wanted to write about, started drafting sections in my head. I really did want to take action on it, the post was taking up my attention but, deep-down, I knew I had no intention to write it up until pretty last-minute. And this is where you’ll find me now!
Attention + Intention = Magic
This is where the magic happens! When we have our attention and our intentions aligned, our energy knows where to flow. There is a clear path to our desired end goal, and we will get there. Now the work begins to work on your dreams, release that second eBook (finally) or start a project on the side that brings you joy! I believe the more we practise the act of bringing together our attention and our intention, the more easily it will become and the more in-tune we are to when the two do not align.
Focus your attention, close a few of those tabs open in your brain, hone in your intentions to prioritise a few key goals or manifestations and allow your energy to follow.
There is no magic pill for achieving your dreams, but consciously make the choice every day to act with attention and intention and your actions will build one block at a time.
p.s. find the recipe for these Chocolate Covered Cookie Dough Bites on my Instagram post here.