A few days ago I was talking to a friend of mine about the shift in niche she’s starting to make with her blog. She writes about beauty but she was feeling a bit, well, down and directionless I suppose. Ultimately, as it usually does with me, it came back to the question of “why”. It was three questions really,
- Why do you blog?
- Why do they read?
- Why does your content help or relate to them?
As I was speaking to her I began to realize just how much that all relates back to not just my blog but how I live my life. It’s always about “why” and it’s always about conscious intent.
Intentional living is about developing conscious intent
It’s more than doing things on purpose, it’s about being self-aware enough to understand who you are, what you are motivated by, and the intention guiding your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. It’s knowing your core tenets and the values that guide you.
It’s identifying the ‘why’ behind your life choices, evaluating that ‘why’, and choosing to stand behind it come what may.
It’s consciously choosing, each day, to unapologetically live according to your ‘why’ and it’s easier said than done. It took a matter of hours to identify the core values of my life but it took me years to reach a point where I unapologetically live according to them. In fact, it’s only been in recent months that I’ve felt secure enough in my values that I’ve been able to make a decision, act accordingly, and stand by it in the face of opposition. I’ve slowly learned, over the years, that it does not align with my personal life choices to engage the opposition nor feel as though I have any reason to defend my beliefs or values. I’ll discuss, but I won’t defend.
[bctt tweet=”I do not owe anyone an explanation or defense of my personal values.” username=”ashleyfromfbl”]
I’ve slowly learned, over the years, that it does not align with my personal life choices to engage the opposition nor feel as though I have any reason to defend my beliefs or values. I’ll discuss, but I won’t defend because I do not owe anyone a defense for my personal values.
One of the first steps of living a life of conscious intent is to identify three core values.
When my husband and I were first dating this was the topic of one of our earliest conversations. I asked him what he would define as his core values. Brandon didn’t even pause to consider before answering with generosity, acceptance, and empathy.
I knew I loved him but I watched him as he went about his life and I saw that he was a man that not only held core values but who acted them out each and every day of his life.
I’ve seen him purchase meals for the hungry, donate money to causes close to his heart, and offer financial assistance to those who have asked at any time that he was able to help.
I’ve seen him speak to countless people without judgment for their lifestyle choices, their decisions, or their mistakes. I’ve watched him as he’s encouraged others to embrace the lives they feel led to pursue despite what the world at large may think of them.
I’ve seen him offer an empathetic ear to a person in need even when that person had wronged him in the past. I’ve watched as he has set aside personal grievances in order to offer understanding and empathy to a hurting soul.
Watching how he lived his life so devoted to his values encouraged me to live my life with a more conscious intent upon my values as well. My core values, as I’ve identified them, are truth, support, and love. Those three values guide everything I do in my life.
Every decision or action is guided by:
- Is it truthful?
- Is it supportive?
- Does it show love?
If those answers are ‘yes’, I act in conscious intent and live out my values in all things I do.
Have you identified your core values yet? Do you live daily with conscious intent?