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Good Intentions

Intentions get a bad rap.

Instead of seeing them as a guide for who you want to be and how you want to live, we say, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

We say that because we equate intentions with doing nothing. And that’s a cardinal sin in the society we live in today. We must always be “doing.” By contrast, intentions develop from thoughts and feelings, the precursor to action.

I want to rehabilitate intentions because, at their best, intentions show us who we want to be and what we want to do. In fact, intentions are goals in embryo.

Ahh, goals. As a former HR professional, I can talk to you endlessly about goal setting. S.M.A.R.T. goals? You betcha! Goals are tangible. They can be proven outwardly to others. Through your efforts, goals are meant to be recognized externally.

Corporate HR Director

When I worked at a large hospitality company, I focused on compensation, benefits, and H.R.I.S. I spent half my time working with corporate office employees, the other half doing specialized work for the hotels.

As time passed, I saw a need for a new role, a dedicated HR Director just for corporate office employees. I shared my idea but it didn’t go anywhere. Deep down, though, I wanted that job. I wanted to take care of the employees at corporate office.

Years later, I returned to the same company in that very role, Corporate HR Director. I was thrilled!

Goal or Intention?

During my first incarnation at this company, becoming a Corporate HR Director was simply an intention. I thought and felt we needed a committed role just to take care of corporate office employees. “Goal in embryo.”

I didn’t do anything to get the job I wanted. If I had set a goal to get that specific job, I would have single-mindedly pursued only jobs and opportunities that led “there.” No project management, no chairing the strategic planning committee at our children’s school, no working in the meat industry.

So, was being a Corporate HR Director at this company a goal or intention?

Setting Intentions

I believe we need to set intentions at the turn of the year. Goals have their place, too, but not in this liminal space.

“Being,” which is the primary force behind intentions, can feel wishy-washy. What do you mean, I don’t need to do anything to make something happen? That’s crazy talk!

Well, you know why you need to “make” something happen. Because you must always be doing.

North Star

Visualize intentions like the North Star. They guide but don’t direct. In comparison, goals point.

There is one North Star. See the lesson in that. One North Star, one intention. Set one intention. Write it down. Say it aloud. Find ways to remind yourself of it.

Change your thoughts and you change the world. No action required. Don’t believe it? Try it. You’ve got nothing to lose because there’s no effort involved. In fact, your only job is to resist the impulse to act. All you need to do is sit with your intention.

You can connect to your heart’s intention through movement. Yoga works for me. Meditate. Pray. Write. Breathe consciously. Yes, it can be that simple. Focus on the breath to drown out the internal noise. Click below for a quick illustration on four-count breathing.

Header Photo by James Wheeler on Unsplash, Photo by Chantal & Ole on Unsplash

Take some time this week to set an intention. Just one. Relax by imagining who you want to be and what you want to be doing. No action required, just be yourself.

You have to be open minded in order to grow. The coaching that Laura gave me opened my eyes to what and how I was doing things and allowed me to see the bigger picture. I am not done yet but I already see the changes in my everyday life.

MM

I think coaching is a great way to help you clear your mind when you get stuck with overwhelming situations or when stepping into changes in your life.

MO

Coaching is life changing. It pushes you outside your comfort zone and challenges your perspectives.  It is highly motivating and the exercises and techniques used are both fun and informative.  I think the main benefits of coaching are to see yourself, others and the world more clearly.  I think coaching is valuable to anyone regardless of where you are in your life or career.

LE

I honestly never thought I’d need a coach. I thought coaching was for CEOs and industry VIPs. I didn’t think it was for the “little guys” (i.e. me). Now, I’m of the belief that everyone – yes, EVERYONE – needs a coach. Coaching has really benefitted me and I’m so grateful to have had that time with Laura. It’s changed my life!

VB

Laura is very patient. She took the time to understand what was causing me to be stuck where I am today and help me build a better vision so I can continue to grow.

MM

I think Laura’s coaching was what I had been waiting for. Laura was so approachable, kind, and open. Her willingness to help and support made a difference for me. I found in her coaching new strategies, ideas, and perspectives that I could incorporate into my goals and objectives that I didn’t see before.

MO

Laura is an incredibly intuitive, positive and caring coach. Her techniques helped me recognize both my strengths and areas I might want to explore as I embark on the next chapter of my career. The exercises she employed were instrumental in providing self perspective and challenging my frames of reference.

LE

Laura is a natural coach. Her probing and compassionate questions helped me learn about myself: my value system, interests, goals and strengths.

LM

Coaching sessions with Laura gave me new perspectives on how to process specific feelings and situations in life.  She showed me how to sit with my emotions, acknowledge them, and then use visualization strategies to move through them.  I now feel more confident and in control of how I choose to walk through life.

CP

From the beginning, Laura put me at ease, creating a safe, open space for me to talk and share freely without fear of judgement. I loved the variety of approaches she used depending on the topic we were working on and it was fun being able to try out things I wouldn’t have considered before! With Laura’s coaching, I substantially grew my confidence in the workplace, overcame fears, dealt with issues I’d been carrying around for many years and, most importantly, learned to value myself and define a path forward into the future.

AG

Laura’s coaching was a breath of fresh air and EXACTLY what I needed at that point of my life. I didn’t realize how impactful coaching was going to be, but by the end of the sessions together, I left feeling refreshed, inspired and genuinely curious about what my future held for me. Because of Laura and her coaching, I believe I became a better person – someone who is more open-minded, someone with a clearer focus, and someone who is willing to explore opportunities and possibilities far more than I ever did before.

VB

I engaged Laura for coaching as I took on an expanded role leading an asset management company in Canada. As a female, I knew I would be a role model and had high expectations of myself. I was feeling overwhelmed and anxious.

In our first few coaching sessions we worked through exercises that allowed me to reflect on my purpose, leadership style and what mattered most to me. I continue to be grounded by the clarity I achieve in my coaching sessions – allowing me to be resilient and confident when challenges came my way.

OS