1 day ago
Goals vs intentions for 2019. ——— First: words matter, and framing matters. ——— As part of an ongoing effort to weed out habitual consumptive/extractive/colonialist thought patterns in my mind — domestication is a state of mind y’all — I have been contemplating the ways in which I set goals for myself, and by what metrics I judge whether I’ve succeeded or failed. But success and failure themselves are so black and white, which rarely if ever accurately maps on to consensus reality: if my last relationship ended unhappily but I grew and matured in ways that would’ve otherwise been impossible as a result— was that a success or a failure? A goal is something tangible that you reach out and try to grab, and either you succeed in grabbing it or you don’t. And once you’ve grabbed it and consumed it, you can forget all about it and move on to the next target to be vanquished. An intention, on the other hand, is less tangible and therefore more malleable. To set an intention is not to strive for some object or event in the future, but simply to proceed through the present with a clear understanding of how you will approach whatever arises. If I set a goal with my work to make a certain amount of money or reach a certain number of people, whether I accomplish it or not, as soon as it’s within my grasp it vanishes, and I have to begin the conquest all over again with a new set of goal posts. But if, instead, I choose to operate with the intentions of meeting my financial needs and reaching the greatest number of people, I can be far more fluid in my operations, and because there is no destination and no deadline, I can change course on a whim when I feel called to head in another direction. Success and failure become inadequate for describing the results. So: what intentions are you setting for yourself in 2019? As for me, I intend to proceed into the next year with my heart more open than ever, doing my best to spread good vibes as far and wide as I can manage, and deepening my capacity to serve my fellow human animals as a bridge to the natural world and a more feral way of being.