Do you live an intention or attention-driven life?
A good friend of mine got into a divorce and wanted to build up her own life. Until just before the divorce, she had done everything together with her ex. He was, to some extent, wealthy, so there was no reason to do or not do anything. A nice project here, a helpful course there and before she knew it, she had learned a lot. All this knowledge and experience was, of course, a nice bonus and one would say that it should be easy to find a job. Unfortunately, the opposite was true.
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Always attentive and driven action
In all these years, she had taught herself to be completely attention driven. An opportunity or project came along, or she saw a helpful course in a booklet or on the Internet and took part in it. It was never her initiative that led to anything. It was just what came her way.
Attention-driven people receive impulses from their environment and react to them. Impulses include your phone ringing, the traffic light turning red, and the advertisement to learn how to draw those nice mandalas. Impulses give you the feeling of being very busy and energetic and can bring you a lot. The only question is where they take you. You’re sitting on the back seat of the van, as it were, that drives over the road without you holding the steering wheel.
Attention-driven people are people who are often easily distracted. Someone cycles by and then they have to give it attention and look at them. The phone vibrates because of a new message, and then they have to see who it was. Often very tiring for the people themselves because they have usually come to believe that this is the way they are and that they can’t do otherwise.
The power of attention-driven behavior
Some people believe that life becomes more comfortable if you just let what happens to happen and let everything come to you as a gift. It brings you into unexpected situations that can give you a lot. Besides, you can’t prevent what’s meant to be, they believe.
Handing over your life to a higher power
Completely attentive people have a good point. It does indeed prevent a lot of stress when you take life as it comes. However, this has more to do with learning to accept than just letting everything happen to you.
Believing that an invisible force from above has already determined everything for you, also has disadvantages. Because who are you and what influence do you have on yourself and your surroundings? If everything has been determined anyway, then you don’t have to want anything anymore, because that doesn’t make any sense anyway. Or is it?
The power of intention-driven action
Unlike attention-driven people, intention-driven people focus on the higher purpose, they have in mind. They know that happiness is a choice and purpose is a verb and don’t do something just because it comes their way; they do it because it contributes to their intention and internal compass. They realize that the time you have here on earth is not unlimited. They organize their lives in such a way that everything they do has a reason they choose within the time they have.
Your intention in life gives direction
Intention-driven people know what they come to do on earth and know what they want to contribute. This way, they know who they want to be able to contribute and what they need. They take full ownership of their actions and deeds. They sit in the front of the bus with both hands on the steering wheel and their foot on the throttle. They determine their own course and speed and thus ensure that the right things come on their way because they drive there themselves. For example, many famous inspirational athletes won with a purpose because that purpose enabled them to make that extra step every day.
Without intentions, it is difficult to find a job
Back to my good friend. After having acted for so long in an attentive manner, she had lost herself. She no longer knew what she wanted or even who she was. Despite all the fun projects and courses, she was unable to give herself any direction. She had to learn to drive again. But that wasn’t all, because where do you go when you don’t know the way?
Because of all these courses, she could do photography, acting, drawing mandalas, running an AIRBNB, and so on, but she had no real passion for anything. It became really hard to set some goals. So what are you going to do? Meanwhile, she had a job for one day a week to take care of the lunch, but that wasn’t what she wanted either.
Unlike what she was used to, the jobs didn’t just come to her path. That’s not how it works in the big people world. Jobs you find, seldom come at you.
Intention driven life gives the self-confidence to act
The solution for her is to get back to her intentions. Why is she on earth, and what does she want to contribute to the community and the world? What will be her legacy? That doesn’t mean that you get a job right away, but you do know in which direction you can look for a job.
She had become so insecure that she could do something that she didn’t want to apply for a job. According to herself, she was not really good at anything and was always distracted, so how could she be of value?
By knowing what is important to you in life and what you want to contribute, your ideas about how good you are at something fade away.
If you think it’s very important that seals aren’t clubbed to death anymore, then you really don’t ask yourself how good you are to prevent this from happening. Then you’ll be standing at Greenpeace’s door asking to help them, signing petitions on Facebook, and so on. You’ll learn the skills to stop these animals from suffering over time effectively.
And that’s precisely the difference between intention and attention-minded people.