We are now one month into the new year and the ink is barely dry on my intentions for 2021, but I thought I would share my progress each month on each intention as the year unfolds, hopefully to inspire you to keep pursuing your dreams. After all, the very name of this blog encourages everyone, myself included, to love every single day of life, which you CAN achieve with gratitude and living intentionally. I started my journey by very simply expressing gratitude for at least one thing every day. Being in a state of gratitude for that which brings you joy attracts more joy-producing events to you. It really is quite incredible how this simple practice can change your life.
Another life-changer is living intentionally. By choosing to live intentionally (yes, it is a choice!) you become laser focused on your dreams and projecting them into the life that you want. With every inspired act you take, you are literally bringing your dream life into existence.
“As soon as you start to pursue a dream, your life wakes up and everything has meaning.”~Barbara Sher
A little background might help here. For over three decades I was a practicing civil litigation attorney, a profession I essentially fell into but remained in because, well, that’s what I knew and frankly I was too afraid to try something else. My practice involved a tremendous amount of writing, albeit not the type that lit my heart. Over the years I started many creative writing projects in my *spare time* but they always fell by the wayside, my energy and time overtaken by the rigors of a busy law practice.
A couple of years ago, I made the radical decision that I wanted (or perhaps more accurately needed) to retire from law to pursue a more creative life; one that would allow me the time and energetic space to do what I love. Many questioned my decision. Many wondered why I couldn’t “just work another five or ten years” before retiring. But my decision was one that I was compelled to make, driven not only my own sense of self-respect, but by the deep desire to love every part of my life, not just the evenings and weekends.
Just announcing the decision to my employer was a tremendous unburdening. This was not a ‘two weeks notice’ type of separation and many months elapsed between the formal decision and my final day.
June 30, 2020. My last day working as a lawyer. The very next day I began this new chapter of life and have never felt happier. Sure, there have been moments of financial anxiety. I still work on a freelance/contract basis to pay the bills after all! And while working from home, on my own schedule, has its’ perks, the pandemic often left me feeling isolated.
But there has not been a single minute of regret over my decision.
So, back to my 2021 intentions. One of my main intentions is to complete and publish a book that I started roughly two years ago but that was often relegated to the back burner by a fatigued attorney who did not know much about living intentionally. Fast forward to July 1, 2020, and I set an intention to complete the manuscript I had started two years prior. There were some initial fits and starts as I settled into my new life, and by the end of 2020 it was only about halfway complete. But I did not waver in my intention and renewed it on January 1st, exactly one month ago.
Well, I am pleased to report that the first draft of the manuscript is FINISHED as of January 29th! The editing and publishing side is still to come (and will be the subject of future posts), however the feeling of completing a manuscript that was over two years in the making has inspired me. It has inspired me to keep dreaming my book into reality and taking the steps necessary to make it so. It has inspired me to write this post and to share the progress of my intentions to inspire you in your own year of living intentionally.
After all, “Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.” ~Henry David Thoreau