A client shared some humorous anecdotes with me about moving into her new house, and one of them stuck in my mind. “I found an old To-Do list in the back of my junk drawer, and you know what? I’ve accomplished everything on that list, even the projects that seemed out of reach to me at the time I wrote it.” Later that week another client said the same thing about one of her old boyfriends. “He was a French pop star and I was completely enamored of him. I put a date with him at the top of my to do list and kept it there for a year. Believe it or not, at the end of that year I was going out with him on a regular basis.”
In today’s fast-paced world many of us create daily to-do lists as a matter of course, to try and stay organized and on top of our lives. How many of us look at those lists casually, dismissing them as wishful thinking? Well, don’t. Try to see your to-do list as statements of intent, less a request than an order form. “This is what I will produce today”, or this week, or next month or this year.
Intention is a powerful tool. Positive, deliberate intent, written down, carried around and re-read frequently possesses the double whammy of intent plus action. You may not see writing something down as action, but it is, and it just may be your first step towards the culmination of a project.
Dr. Martin Luther King once said in his famous speech, “You don’t have to see the whole staircase to take the first step”. Writing down our intent is the soul equivalent of taking that all-important first step. Maybe you haven’t a clue how to accomplish what you have on your To-Do list. Maybe you have a general outline in your mind but no specifics. Here is where magic comes to play.
In the book “The Magic Power of Deliberate Intent” by Esther and Jerry Hicks, the action of writing down your intention infuses your intent with power because words have power—ask any child. So be mindful. Word the intent on your list in a positive way. Say “I am” instead of “I want to” or “I’ll try”. As Yoda told young Skywalker, “There is no Try. There is only Do.”