What am I dedicated to?
We had our first Fireside Chat of 2021 in The Powder Room this week. These sessions, facilitated by two of our consultant experts, Henny Flynn of The Positive Menopause and Gabriella Espinosa of Women’s Body Wisdom, are designed to be open conversations focused on some of the more nuanced and sensitive topics that can arrive during our menopause transition. Free for our subscribers and Makers, they are intimate - an opportunity to explore openly new tools and practices - but, as importantly, to share and listen to each others’ stories and reflections of midlife.
And the topic for discussion? ‘Intention setting in midlife’. As we move out of the unique mood that was January 2021, Gabriella and Henny discussed the important distinction between resolutions and intentions.
From faults and fixing to compassion and embodiment.Gabriella describes intention as:
..’a short positive statement of intent that is inspired by your wish to heal, change or enhance an aspect of your life. Intention setting is not something you can think yourself into – it is an embodied practice. This means the intention resides within you as an energetic quality, a glimmer, a stirring of your heart’s deepest longing.
Setting intentions is a practice that invites you to take time to connect with your body to notice where you are called to witness and feel the glimmer of your intention reveal itself.’
What is interesting about intention-setting is the mindset shift that takes place when you stop relying purely on willpower and the mind. Intention-setting brings with it, compassion.
Too often resolutions can be based on a perceived fault; a failure - a need to fix. Whereas, intention-setting recognises that we are already worthy.
We learned too about the power of interoception - the act of exploring how our body feels on the inside - and how tuning into this knowledge can help us reconnect with ourselves and learn how to act based on the signals our bodies give us. Science tells us that being able to feel inside our bodies, makes us better able to feel ‘about’ our bodies.
How to Set an IntentionIt’s as simple as starting with gentle self-enquiry:
1) Find a quiet space, choose a comfortable seated position with your feet making contact with the ground
2) Engage in gentle movement or stretching slowing coming into stillness
3) Place your hands on your heart or belly centre
4) Take 5 rounds of slow deep breathing – inhaling softly and exhaling slowly through the nostrils
5) Consider the following enquiries:
What is something I want to explore or deepen?
What do I need more of in my life, in my work or in my relationships?
What is my heart’s deepest desire?
How do I want to feel in this next stage of my life?
6) Notice how these words land in your body and which parts of your body lighten-up the most? How does your heart feel when you respond with the enquiry?
7) Come up with a word or phrase – an affirmation that signifies what you are intending and repeat it softly to yourself.
8) Write down the affirmation on a piece of paper, hold it in your hands and as you gaze down at the words notice the sensations or feelings that arise for you.
9) Place the affirmation in an area that you frequent letting it serve as a daily reminder of your intention.
Examples of IntentionsIf you’re wondering how intentions can be structured, here are a few of the phrases shared in the session by our community.
I treat myself with love and compassionI appreciate my body for all she can doI am strongI am resilientI embody joyI welcome pleasure and alivenessI am calm, I am kind, I am clear
So, this weekend, why not find a little time to explore and then receive your own personal intention and see how it makes you feel?
With love, the MPowder Team