Lately, I’ve been experiencing the urge to be near the ocean. The ideal for me is a tropical environment with soft brown sugar-like sands, lush towering palm trees through which the ocean breeze whispers mother nature’s secrets, and water so ridiculously clear and azure in color that when I close my eyes that’s what appears on the screen of my eyelids.
Sounds great, right? Well, there are some hurdles I have to overcome before I can get to that tropical paradise. First, I need to save up the money by re-prioritizing my spending. Instead of indulging, for instance, in things like pedicures and spontaneous shopping trips to Target (you know how this can go!) I’m going to have to put that money into a travel account. Or hey, even better, that fun little piggy-bank I got at Target last week! Next, and this isn’t so much required as it is desired, I want to look and feel fabulous in bikini on the beach. So I am setting a goal to exercise five days a week. My three-days-a-week routine is doing a lovely job of maintaining a physique, but I want to challenge and then reward myself with the holiday. Given all of that, I think eight weeks is a reasonable time-frame to save up and tone up.
Now. Here’s where the real challenge comes into play. I have to choose for the next two months in favor of my intention to float and frolic in the warm waters of the sea. My tendency is to react to the immediate desire, i.e. “Cute piggy-bank!” (flower vase, scarf, etc.) or “Happy hour instead of the gym? Sure why not!” Making conscious choices daily will determine whether I’m sitting seaside this summer or pushing a red shopping cart browsing the beach towel isle.
In an effort to make the daily choices fun and functional, I’ve created the breathe – see – feel method, described below. I invite you to join me and use it whenever you’re faced with a decision to indulge in an immediately gratifying activity OR to consciously choose in favor of something you really desire and intend.
First, breathe. Inhale a deep full breath and then exhale slowly, mindfully, and allow for instant conscious awareness. It clears the mind of racing thoughts. It also relieves the near constant “fight or flight” response induced by fear or confusion. It’s kind of like pushing the reset button. I like to imagine the exhale as a down escalator…taking me from the upper floor (my head, that wants something NOW) to the lower floor (my heart, that intends something more meaningful).
Next, see. Visualize yourself successfully reaching your goal or manifesting your intention. Notice the environment. (I did this while writing the first paragraph above.) Observe what you’re doing in that environment. Is it day or night? Who are you sharing the good news or good vibes with? See them, too.
Finally, as you see your intended results come to fruition, feel the positive emotions this success elicits. You know what it feels like to get what you want or succeed at something important so let yourself feel those feelings in advance – I bet it brings a smile to your face! After all, isn’t that what we’re going for when it comes to immediate gratification?
When we breathe, see, and feel, we get present to how the choice before us is either “for or against” our real intentions. In that moment we align our head and heart, our choices and actions so that achieving our goals becomes powerful and pleasurable.
Right then, I’m off to put piggy front and center, depositing (what was going to be) “latte money” in her on my way out the door. And this time I’m choosing the flush of redness in my face from a work out over the red bull’s eye.
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Colette Davenport is a health, relationship, and intimacy coach with 20+ years of training, formal education, and life experiences culminating in a truly integrated and holistic body of work. Colette’s private practice, THRIVE [mind+body+energy], is a Tantra inspired coaching and training platform shaped by her personal philosophy, which is rooted in self-awareness, compassion, service, mindfulness, personal growth, communication, gratitude, and love. Miss Davenport studied at Texas Healing Arts Institute in Austin, TX and received a holistic health coach certification from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York. To connect with Colette visit her website, Facebook, or Twitter.
Image via Lululemon