All posts by Intent

Living with Intent: What Are You Creating?

Over a year ago we saw the release of Living with Intent and the Intent.com app.
Both came after years of growing an Intent community who shared their truest hopes and passions with one another, supported one another and saw one another make dreams a reality.

So what’s going on over at Intent.com?
Today we wanted to share these beautiful intents created by our members while on the go using the Intent app: Continue reading

An Open Letter To All Graduates: Create Something That Makes The World More Luminous, Curious & Golden

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Dear Graduate,

Congratulations you have crossed the finish line. As you know, your route here was filled with tears of joy and sorrow, dreams shattered and fulfilled, moments that dispatched you to the arms of a beloved, remarkable beginnings and ends sealed with generous promises.

Closing this chapter in your life offers a time of reflection on you. In fact, the day you were born the world became more luminous. Chances are along the way you forgot this truth. At times it was overshadowed by fear or dismissed as insecurity, but I am here to remind you that it is still present. It is something that is uniquely yours, and can’t be outsourced. In fact, there is no end to your luminosity.  It is there amidst the lump in your throat and misty eyes. It is there in your sweaty palms and confused mind. It is there deep in your belly and lined in your heart. It is there.

And so I am thinking of the very word ILLUMINATE and asking you to use it as you move forward. Let it become a part of your being, your manifesto if you will. I am thinking of the very letters that make up this bold ten letter word.

I am looking at ILLUMINATE as what it literally spells out. It is here. Continue reading

I.L.L.U.M.I.N.A.T.E  A Ten- Step Plan For Creating Abundance In Your Life

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By Kristin Meekhof, LMSW

A little over two years ago, I began sharing a bit about my writing journey. I embarked on an entirely different career while maintain my day job as a clinical social worker. I wasn’t sure how to write anything for a national platform. I didn’t have a literary agent, a publishing contract, any type of media connections or a marketing background. I simply wanted to share my story and that of other widows in the hopes that they would feel less alone. I did one blind entry about gratitude to the Huffington Post and to my surprise, they published it. They were not the only major company to open their arms to me.

What followed in the past two-and-a-half years is nothing short of phenomenal. I became friends with Dr. Deepak Chopra, who did the cover blurb for my book, “A Widow’s Guide to Healing”, and I began to contribute to Maria Shriver’s platform, and she also did a cover blurb. In addition, I was interviewed by Katie Couric, American Greetings, my story was on the USA Today website, and I found myself at ABC’s headquarters doing a live hour long tweet chat. Most recently, I was at the United Nations.  By the way, Deepak did not introduce me to any of these individuals, nor, did a publicity team garner this support.

The question I am most asked is this- How did I manage this on my own? 

Many of the practices I developed evolved as my own writing / publishing process evolved. However, I can share with you that I know that because I practiced what I call I.L.L.U.M.I.N.A.T.E. this ten- step program which I developed over time, my world is richer and brighter. These practices aren’t exclusive to the publishing world. Anyone who is interested in creating more abundance can integrate these steps. Continue reading

Battling the Myths of Foster Care

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There’s an ongoing battle to tear down the myths about foster care. In a recent NPR interview, one foster parent discussed the negative impressions that the public is often given related to foster care—and how it’s a barrier to the great work that can be accomplished: “I think all too often the focus is on the negative and not on the good things that happen, the kids that were reunited with their family or the adoption.”

To hFoster-Care-IG-for-Publish-Smallelp counteract negative perspectives and continue to educate Master of Social work students and social service professionals, SocialWork@Simmons created “The Facts of Foster Care.” This infographic provides the latest objective and authoritative data published by collecting bureaus related to foster children and foster families—as well as data that will help to dispel myths about foster care. The goal is to achieve better support for those who need it most—especially the children and those who are caring for them. Continue reading

It’s Time to Seek out a Therapist: Can Couples Counseling Help?

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If there is a persisting pain in our back, we see a chiropractor. For a chronic cough, we call our family doctor. So why is it so difficult for us to turn to help when there is a persistent, nagging problem in our marriages?

There are many couples that could do with seeking out a marriage or family therapist.

Couples therapy has a track record of 70%-80% of the marriages that participate successfully staying together and moving past their problems. That number is nothing to sneeze at considering the divorce rate hovers around 50% year in and year out.

Marriage counseling is a big help because we can’t look at our own relationship problems objectively. We tend to wear blinders when it comes to our own behavior, which places the blame squarely on our spouse’s shoulders; but in a relationship it takes two to make and two to break. Continue reading

What Makes A Great Cup Of Coffee Great?

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If you are a coffee fanatic, you can attest to the myriad of taste varieties and characteristics this drink exhibits. Some come with earthy tones and sweet fruity aromas while others have floral and tea-like flavors. This spurs curiosity as to what really brings about this broad spectrum of savory experiences with the beverage. Besides, it would be interesting to find out how to bring your desired flavor profile into your home-made brew. So, what makes a great cup of coffee?

There are different factors that determine the taste of coffee in your cup. Though the origin and processing of the coffee bean contribute to its taste by large, the preparation method and handling while at home affects the outcome as well. Here are some of the ways you can ensure a great cup of coffee: Continue reading

The Emotional Rollercoaster of Launching a Book (Or Anything Really!)

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Dear friends:

Today, Living with Intent is officially out in paperback – available online and in bookstores. (On Amazon, you can get it for less than $10 right now!)

I was reflecting this morning on how different I feel today than I did a last April when the book was originally released.

To be honest, the day of the release I was anxious, an emotional wreck and felt a bit like a failure. I  didn’t have much media on “launch” date, and spent the day getting my hair done for my book party at ABC Home… Not what I had anticipated.

At the event, which the amazing Gabby Bernstein graciously hosted, I felt emotional when we started – I saw friends and family there to support me, as well as kind, passionate, interesting people who were there to celebrate. All the effort I had spent writing and promoting the book left me speechless until at last I let go (with a few choking tears) and enjoyed the evening. Continue reading

What You Hold On To, Holds On To You

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By John Maclean

I became an incomplete paraplegic at the age of 22, because of a road accident. Running was the thing I loved to do most in life and it was taken away from me in a split second without warning or consultation.

Meeting the man who put me in a wheelchair was not going to be easy. I didn’t feel anger towards him or crave retribution, but I was apprehensive about getting in touch with him, hearing his voice, seeing him in person. My concern was that it might be a negative experience—and that would make things worse for me, not better. But I also knew that if I didn’t face up to this I would never be free of it. I wanted to know what happened in the cabin of that truck just before it hit me and what the driver’s reaction had been and how his own life had turned out. I wanted to know for sure that it was an accident, that my paraplegia was an unfortunate consequence of a random event.

Dialling the number was extremely difficult. It was nothing compared to facing up to the injuries I’d suffered when I woke up in the spinal unit at the local Hospital, but I had no choice but to keep going then. Facing the man who put me in a wheelchair was another issue altogether. I would be putting the ball squarely in his court and that was both risky and confronting. Continue reading

Best Marriage Advice for Everyone

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Most people believe that only those people who marry their soul mate have marriages that last.  A myth is that long marriages are the result of two people falling deeply in love and never losing that feeling.  Romance novels and romantic movies both show the same myth – that only those passionately in love have strong marriages.  The truth is far different.

The best advice you will ever hear is that the best marriages are created when two people fall in love and then work hard to stay that way.  Marriage is not easy and both spouses need to work to be happy and in love every day.  You may not believe this, especially if you are new in the relationship and still see stars when you and your special someone kiss.  This is an amazing feeling and one you never want to end.

In reality, the stars will fade if you depend on emotions to fuel the feelings.  You need to make a conscious effort every day to let your spouse know how much you love and respect him/her.  This can be really tough when life gets busy with jobs, children and a house to take care of, but if you don’t want to do all of this alone, you need to make your spouse your first priority. Continue reading

Mildly Medicated: ADD, Normalcy and Finding Acceptance in Music

Pay Attention!

If there were two words that I could have stricken from the English language growing up, it would have been those two. You would think that hearing them countless thousands of times you’d become desensitized, but you don’t, or at least I didn’t. People with ADD, which is very different from ADHD will know what I’m talking about. It has nothing to do with being smart or mental capacity, it’s just that your brain has its own set of commands and protocols that it intends to follow, and getting it to do something completely different and focusing just goes against the grain. In fact, it really wants to do something completely different most of the time, regardless of how much I want it to do what everyone else is doing. It’s not a question of desire; it’s a question of a biological constraint. The sooner you learn to work within that constraint, the easier things become.

There are a lot of very good people who I know I frustrated early on, my mother is one, and this woman has the patience of a saint. She was raising 3 boys on her own, and I’m sure I didn’t make the task any easier for her. My family, my teachers, all people who had the best intentions of trying to help me, sometimes made matters worse. I learn at my own pace. Sometimes that can be slower than normal, and sometimes faster. It depends on the protocol. Thankfully I was able to find a connection with music. Listening to it, understanding it on an intimate level, and being able to play it was somehow within my ADD brain wiring protocol. I must admit that in the beginning I was not very good, but I found out early that my condition seemed to exclude music while my brain usually bounced around from subject to subject, or topic to topic. I realized I was actually able to practice for very long periods of time and get things accomplished. Through music, I was able to be recognized as more normal, or should I say “more acceptable”. I dove into it with everything I had. I knew that in some way, it would be my salvation. Continue reading

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