Recently I started setting an intention for my day first thing in the morning while I have a shower. I don’t really know how or why it started, it’s been rather instinctive, but it feels really good, like I’m positively influencing the way in which my day will unfold.
Perhaps the experience of my day is unavoidably coloured by the intention, a kind of self-fulfilling prophecy, I don’t know. But I do know that it has been having an impact and not necessarily in the way I intended.
Initially I dabbled in this intention to help my day flow – Today will be productive, things will fall into place with ease, communication will come freely and honestly, interactions with people will be positive.
Hours after I set this intention for the first time, the issue I’d been having with my Internet provider was resolved. At that point the issue was 17 days old and a solution didn’t seem to be realistically on the horizon for another few weeks.
It began with yet another call to the service provider and we did the ‘it’s your responsibility, no it’s your responsibility’ dance. And through the kindness of my electrician, who I later called in sheer desperation with no expectation that he could or would help, I was rescued and the issue fixed.
Not only did he illegally reconnect the wires in the pit in the ground out the front of my house, he also stayed and configured my laptop and modem. As it turns out he is one of only six people in Sydney who were responsible for connecting all the lines and configuring the Internet settings for the systems in Homebush Bay for the Sydney Olympic Games. I could have kissed his feet if it wasn’t highly inappropriate and misleading.
As I was showing him out, my phone rang and I automatically answered it, discovering the microphone had miraculously started working – I accidently drowned it at the beach a few days before and was dreading the trip to the Apple store. Yet, only hours earlier I’d had to make calls with the headphones plugged in to hear the person on the other end.
Tick for intentions (and miracles).
In the days following I continued setting intentions along the same lines but nothing as definitive as the ‘fixed Internet/iPhone day’ happened again. Everything was good, easy and drama free. And somewhat boring while I was testing the theory of intentions.
So to really put the theory to the test, I set an intention that was specific and measurable. And because it was so specific I threw the universe a bone and made it that whole week’s intention.
It was – This week I want to have a connection with a stranger.
I didn’t mind whether it was a chat on the bus, a conspiratorial giggle in the supermarket or a straight out hello from a perky child.
A friend rightly suggested that I must remain open for the duration. No FaceBooking while on the bus, no glancing away when eyes meet in a lift, no blinkers.
Perhaps because I was expecting something to happen I noticed that I was smiling at people. Properly smiling, not a pursed lipped ‘yes I’ve noticed you’ smile we tend to do to appear friendly but not inviting. My smile was open, honest and genuinely inviting.
I moved through the week with my open smile waiting to connect momentarily with a stranger and have my intention come to fruition.
With all of this smiling I became aware that when I was around strangers whether by myself or with others my natural default setting is defensive. A big red stoplight hovers above my head that’s only ignored by those supremely arrogant or those with possible mental health issues – some might argue they are one and the same and I probably wouldn’t disagree.
As the week drew to a close, I sat down and put my memory to work retracing my week of steps – had I somehow missed it? It began to dawn on me that all week I had been having connections. I’d actually been having them everyday. The smiles returned to me by the checkout chick, the bus driver, the guy who sold me lunch, the lady in the lift, were all open, warm and generous. There wasn’t a pursed lipped acknowledgement of existence in sight. With each open smile returned, we were just one comment away from the connection I had envisioned when I set the intention.
I didn’t get the outcome I was looking for but what was delivered was just as special but rather more significant – I changed my mind. I don’t want to walk around with a stoplight barrier to possibility above my head. Defensive is not who I am as a person, it was a mask I’d adopted for whatever reason. So I burned it. No more defensive mask.
In reflection I also see the flaw in my intention. The one at the beginning of this post is directive – Today I WILL. The connection intention was simply – This week I WANT. Not directive at all, a little wishy washy in fact. Simply for the sake of wondering, I wonder how different this post would have been if I had used I WILL.
I am so grateful for this week not only because the change in mindset has the potential to open a world of new possibilities but I have the impression this may have been an important step on the path to Surrender.
And to think, all it took was an open smile!