#MindfulMarch | From Mindfulness To a Life Of Intention

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The last week of the month and the last week of #MindfulMarch are here, and I hope that as we round up what we learned over these last few weeks (the fundamentals of mindfulness, ways to incorporate mindfulness into your everyday routine and the importance of creating more than we consume) you were able to shift your perspective and see mindfulness in a new light. Maybe even recognize areas that you could dust off, re-imagine and improve.

But how do we go from mindfulness (the thought, the awareness) to a life of intention (the action)? How do we implement the things that we are aware of into a life that feels good and does good? And even more importantly, how do we sustain it? How do we return to it, when life goes off track?

1. Become an essentialist.

An essentialist is someone that focuses only on getting the right things done. It’s less about productivity or strategy, and more about discipline. An essentialist, as Greg McKeown describes in his book Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less (consider this recommended reading) is “someone that discerns what is absolutely essential, then eliminates everything that is not, so they can make the highest possible contribution towards the things that really matter to them”. In short, if creating matters to you, you should devote time to creating, uninterrupted by meetings, checking your email and raiding the fridge for snacks. Using mindfulness (awareness) to find out what matters most to you is the first step into transforming your dream into a reality (action, a life of intention).

2. Keep a reminder in sight.

I have a note taped to my computer that says “live small, create big”. That’s what matters most to me. So every time I sit down to create, I’m reminded of why I do this. Why I come back to my desk, day after day. More importantly, so that whenever I’m feeling unmotivated, or when I feel like shopping online instead of writing, or when I feel like browsing Pinterest and feeling sorry for myself for not owning an oceanside villa in Malibu, I can be reminded that my focus is to live small, to live within my means, to learn to be happier with less, and create big, important, impactful work.

3. Learn from the people that have already figured it out.

Whether you’d like to stop supporting fast fashion and shop more ethically, or embrace minimalism, or find ways to slow down more, there is always someone who’s well on their way in the respective lifestyle. Learn from them. Send them a message and ask questions. Share some of your struggles and ask for guidance. Chances are, they’ve figured out how to overcome the very things you’re just now feeling discomfort towards. Some of my favourite people to follow are Sara (ethical fashion + sustainable living), Breen Splitt (delicious, healthy recipes with a side of wisdom), Sophie (sustainable + simple living) to name a few. Align yourself with people who are already living your desired lifestyle and learn from them.

4. Give yourself grace.

There’s a common misconception that a simple life is an easy life, and I can promise you that it’s not. A simple life is one of intention, of choosing, day after day, to subtract and eliminate. To only make room for what is useful, valuable and adds joy (thanks, Marie Kondo). There’s nothing easy about choosing less - less clutter, less consumerism, less distraction - in a time of exactly that. It’s constant movement against the grain. Give yourself some space for failure and some grace.

As we close out this series, I hope it has nourished you and given you the resources and inspiration necessary to audit your life and make changes where needed. Remember, a simple life is not always an easy one, so give yourself ample space and grace to trial and error. Experiment and find what feels right for you. Curate a life that feels good on the inside, and in turn, watch as you exude light, happiness and beauty.

Until next time,

Vanda