Setting Monthly Intentions

Setting Monthly Intentions - www.livethelittlethings.com.png

September, already? It’s hard to believe that it’s another new month.

I try to set intentions every month to help keep me on track.

When I set my intentions, I focus on making them more about how I'm feeling, truly tapping in. Intentions are what fuel what I do everyday. They get me to actively think about my life and how I want to feel, my goals and the habits I am making to get to those goals. They're the little things I want to keep in mind within that particular month. 

Is intention setting new to you? Maybe you need a refresh. Here are the main 6 I focus on:

Think about what you're eating.

I love this intention. It's not super strict like "Don't ever eat carbs again" or “only eat vegetables and healthy things”, but will allow me to make conscious decisions about what I'm eating. Eating healthier has been something that is always my main focus. Since the start of Summer, this has been my focus because sometimes we all fall out of balance and our eating habits shift, so I'm going to make it an active priority this month.

I feel like this is something a lot of people struggle with. I want to make healthy eating a habit and something that I enjoy!  

Do something everyday that's just for YOU!

September is going to be a crazy busy month for me. I’ll be moving out of my apartment in Portland, OR to travel a bit and relocate back to San Francisco. Shocking! I know. I’ll get more into this in a late post this month to not shift the focus from this post.

With all of these changes, this intention is to make sure I pick up a good book, try a new food, bake if that is your thing, have a dance party or snuggle my dog everyday. Making time for myself to do something I love is a way I practice self-care. 

Get moving 3x a week.

Ok, it doesn’t have to be 3, it can be whatever number it is for you. For me, 3 is my magic number; it is doable when I’m bouncing back into a routine.

This month, I want to get back into a routine. I had sprained my ankle in July and have been slowly recovering from that. A lot of the normal workouts I would do, I had to take a break from. I didn't want to make it something like "go to the gym everyday" cause that's probably not going to happen. I just want to keep active by doing something like taking a yoga or Barre3 class, trying a new workout on ClassPass, or going for a run - keep those endorphins going!

Disconnect in the morning and before bed.

I am totally guilty of waking up, instantaneously checking my phone to read email, post on Insta, and so on. I’ve made it into a habit to go to bed early, and wake up at 5:30 almost every morning. I give myself about an hour to fully wake up, drink water, brush my teeth, write in my gratitude journal, and make coffee. I cherish the ritual of making coffee in the morning. There is something about this one hour in my day that I love and is special. It’s probably because there are zero distractions, and I can really focus on setting my day.

Maybe the challenge for you this month is to try and limit the constant need to be connected and save your phone time for something that really matters. Do you open your phone and read something that bothers you that it effects your sleep and how you start the day?

Focus on your missions!

Don't compare yourself to others. Not to me, your best friend, your neighbor, the woman that seems to have it all in spin class, not to anyone. TBH, this might be really hard. Gotta put those blinders up and FOCUS!

Do things from a place of love; not fear.

This intention is kind of the same thing. Am I posting on my blog today because I'm scared I won't have a successful business if I don't? Or am I doing it because I want to connect with other people?

Mindset is everything. 

What are your intentions for the month? Share them here, I’d love to know!

Mindfulness: Make Today Count

In the event that you’re having a case of the Mondays, here is a reminder on how to reframe your thinking to ensure you maximize every single day.  Our bodies like to naturally find the easy route, and so do our minds. But to live each day passively is defeating the purpose. 

Getting into a rut is natural, but the challenge is getting yourself out of it – to mentally tap in: to be present in your work, to focus on your goals, to actually connect when in conversation, and to embrace each waking moment. It’s easy to get caught up, just as it’s easy to get stifled with boredom – make a choice to not do either, and instead to mentally tap in. You are your own best investment. Make today count.

Time is something that never stops and is constantly moving. We cannot create more hours in a day, minutes in an hour or seconds in a minute. What we can do is be more present in our minutes of the day and be more aware of each moment to make it feel like we have created more time. Or at the very least, take advantage of every minute of every day. 

To not just live but to live fully. Taking this mindset while we are working out can have a huge impact, much less in life in general. There is a significant difference in mindlessly going about your workout and just “getting it done” and actually being aware of each and every repetition your body moves through.  

Test it yourself. 

Go ahead and stand up…wherever you may be right now. Perform a squat, just a quick up and down, no thought behind it. Now perform a squat and pay attention to your legs bending as you lower your bottom to the ground, push your heels into the ground and straighten your legs back into starting position. Lastly, squeeze your bottom at the top of the squat, pressing your hips forward slightly.  

Take a moment to think over the differences between your first squat and your second squat. If that wasn’t enough to fully feel the huge difference in each squat, then I challenge you to perform 10 squats turning your mind off, take a few minutes rest and then 10 squats with your find fully aware. It is definitely then, if not before, that you will feel the effects the second set of squats-the mind turned on squats. 

It was fascinating to see the difference of the mind. I tried this little experiment while using Muse meditation headband. While you meditate, Muse measures whether your mind is calm or active, and translates that data into weather sounds. When you're calm, you'll hear peaceful weather sounds. This neat product is great if you are developing a meditation practice or want to dive deeper into it, but definitely not required for this mini exercise.

It is amazing to think about the difference of a simple 10 squats—but think about if applied this mindset to each movement during your entire workout routine – or more so, your entire day. 

How do you beat the Monday Blues? Share with me here!

Valerie Fidan

Valerie is a San Francisco native who gave up the comforts of home to travel the world continuously. Now based in Portland, OR, Valerie is a Social Media Marketing Consultant, helping solo entrepreneurs and small business owners DIY their social media by teaching them the in’s and out’s of SMM. She enjoys health hacking recipes, a good cocktail, yoga, hikes, live shows, puns & dad jokes.