Are you someone who lives a life where you just go through the motions? Possibly not making your own choices but life making choices for you? It’s time to put an end to this and focus on intentional living.
Intentional living gives you the power to make choices that revolve around your core values and the life you want to live. The choices you make will define your life, and there’s no way around that. With that being said, it’s time you live with intention so you can design your life and become the best version of yourself.
In this article, we’ll cover one of the pillars of self-discovery—intentional living—which I designed to help you discover who you are and flood your life with consciousness. If you want to dive further into the pillars of self-discovery, get a copy of my book, You Deserve This Sh!t.
Purchase your copy or download chapter one for free below.
What Is Intentional Living?
Simply stated, intentional living is putting purpose behind your choices and actions. It’s a conscious effort to live aligned with your core values and beliefs, putting the power of your own life in your hands. Living life with intention requires you to be self-aware, slow down, and think before you act. If you’re tired of life happening to you, intentional living can be your savior. It will restore your life with purpose and allow you to feel like you’re living a life you designed, and not one society designed for you.
Why You Should Care to Live Life With Intention
I get it, you may be thinking, Why the hell should I care about putting purpose behind my choices? I used to be in the same boat; however, I was tired of living a life that didn’t complement what I truly valued. What I realized was this: Choosing to not live intentionally and sacrificing purpose in your life is the easiest way to toss your vitality and life force out of the window. You should care to live intentionally because it helps you become the best version of yourself, and you only have a finite amount of time to do that.
How to Live Intentionally
Of course, learning how to live intentionally may seem like a challenge to start, but don’t feel unmotivated. It’s a simple as infusing your life with purpose. Here’s a four-step breakdown on how you can start to live intentionally today.
1. Identify Your Core Values
Your core values are simply your fundamental beliefs. They are guiding principles that help you understand what choices or actions will add or remove value from your life; they shape your behavior. Because your core values can also help you stay in line with your path and goals, it’s crucial you understand these values when you want to start living life with intention.
Think of your core values as street signs and signals, they keep you in check and on the right road. You can identify your core values starts with this quick exercise:
- Step 1: Write down everything you value in life; consider your experiences, how you like to feel, and who you want to be surrounded by.
- Step 2: Review your list and place your values into related groups
- Step 3: Choose your top core values
2. Understand Your "Why"
Now that you have your list of core values, the next step is to understand your “why.” Your “why” in life is the reason you take specific actions; it’s your north star. It’s like a business’s mission, but for your own life. Your “why” is truly an accumulation of all your values. To better understand your “why,” study your top core values and make sure you’re completely in tune with them.
While your core values and your “why” are closely related, your “why” is the common theme of all your top core values. Review your top core values and find a theme between them.
3. Make Conscious Decisions & Choices
Once you have a list of your top core values and a theme that represents all of them, it’s time to start making conscious decisions and choices based on that information. Now is the fun part; now is when you start putting your desire to live intentionally into play.
When a situation or decision comes up, it’s easy to quickly react and make a rash decision; however, that’s not you any more. Someone who lives intentionally does not make rash decisions. Instead, when you encounter a moment like this, stop, take a breath, and make a decision based off your core values and your “why.” Making a decision with this type of awareness will put you in the best position possible to stay aligned with your path and fully step into your power.
4. Be Consistent & Check In With Your Values
Just because you start making decisions that are aligned with your values doesn’t mean you’ve mastered intentional living. It’s vital to remain consistent and not give up on intentional living. Once you’ve pledged and committed to this lifestyle, it’s forever; there’s no going back.
Be sure you check back in with your core values, because what you thought you valued at age 20 may be different than what you value at age 40. Life changes and our values evolve, and that’s totally okay. So if you want to continue living intentionally, which I highly recommend, then check in with your values every so often to make sure you’re aligned with your path and living as your best version.
Tips for Living Life With Intention
- Embody a positive mindset: Living intentionally requires you to have a strong, positive mindset. If you’re just getting started, do your best to find positivity in every situation. This will help you be excited about life, making decisions aligned with your values, and putting purpose behind your actions.
- Hold yourself accountable: I’m not going to be there keeping you in check; you need hold yourself accountable. Consistency is key. Living intentionally is like exercising, the more you do it, the easier it becomes.
- Put yourself first: You are a priority, don’t forget that. Living intentionally helps restore purpose in your life, so be sure your decisions are aligned with your values and not somebody else’s. It’s easy to want to please other people, but at the end of the day what matters is that you’re living the life that you envision.
- Become self-aware: One of the easiest ways to identify your top core values and live intentionally is to become self-aware. When you are self-aware you understand your character, feelings, motives, and desires. Simple self-discovery journal exercises or a daily journaling practice is an easy way to get started on this journey.
- Learn to say no, and be okay with it: When you start to live intentionally, you will slowly learn the importance of being able to say no. When you say no to something, you stand your ground and protect your top core life values. You may find yourself saying no more than you say yes, and that’s completely fine.
Living intentionally is a commitment to infusing your decisions with purpose and making sure those decisions align with your core life values. It’s time you stop going through the motions and use your freedom to choose as an opportunity to design your life, and become the best version of yourself. I challenge you to take action on the four steps outline above today. Ready. Set. Go.