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5 Intentional Living Ideas For A More Fulfilling Life
Here’s the sad truth:
Most of us are living unfulfilling lives.
Now, by no means am I trying to offend you. I am merely pointing out something that I know you already know to be true.
For instance, does any of this sound familiar:
Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.
- waking up in the morning dreading the day that is about to unfold
- not having enough time for you
- tolerating relationships with people that, well, aren’t great
- wasting time with menial things like social media
- you’re stressed out, like, all the time
If you’re shaking your head like, “yep that’s me,” you’ve come to the right place.
Because, here’s the bottom line:
Being happy and feeling fulfilled should be your number one priority.
I know, I know. Easier said than done. But, that’s where these intentional living ideas come in.
Here’s five inspirational intentional living ideas that lead to a more fulfilling (and happy!) life:
Intentional Living Ideas:
1. Have A Vision For Your Life
Riddle me this:
How can you live a fulfilling, purposeful, and happy life if you don’t know what it is you want from life?
The truth? You can’t
See, creating a vision for your life should be your first priority as you start your intentional living journey.
Why? Because you’ll have a concept to form action around.
Your vision for your life could be as simple as being happy.
Now, once you acknowledge this vision, you can live with intention every day to only make time for things that make you happy.
It sounds crazy, though, right?
I mean, we all want to be happy. So, one should be able to assume that we all live with the intent to be happy every single day.
But, here’s the kicker:
I know that all of us have done something today, yesterday, or last week that did not fulfill our underlying desire to be happy.
Take me for instance:
Today I did not make time for yoga – something that I love and that makes me happy. And, not doing yoga today gave me anxiety, because I didn’t make time for yoga. And, well, anxiety doesn’t make me happy.
But, when we consciously acknowledge the vision we have for our lives, we can act with intention each day to fulfill this vision.
So, take action:
Grab your planner and write down the vision you have for your life. Then, take action each day to fulfill your vision. (But more on that in a minute.)
Remember: This does not mean “where do you see yourself in 5 years.” Think broader. What do you want more and less of in your life? How do you want to feel, regardless of your success or status? What do you want to experience?
Related Reading: What Does It Mean To Live Intentionally + How To Get Started
2. Plan Your Time
How do you make sure you’re fulfilling the vision you have for your life every single day?
(Ok, most days. Nobody’s perfect!)
You plan your time.
Seriously, there is no better way to stay accountable for your time and your actions than to write down a plan.
Each week or day, remind yourself of your life’s vision. Then, plan your time according to that vision.
You’re reminded that your vision is to simply be happy.
So, you encourage yourself to do more things that make you happy, such as meditating, doing yoga, and making time for valued friends by scheduling time for them in your planner.
My favorite scheduling tool is the hourly daily planning page in my beloved Erin Condren
It may seem crazy at first to schedule out your entire day with start and end times for tasks and activities, but I highly recommend giving it a try.
When you plan your days like this, you are accountable for your time and consistently reminded of what things are important to you and your vision.
The bottom line?
You are always, always more likely to do something if you write it down.
You must take full responsibility for the outcome of your life if you want to fulfill your vision. So, write it down and do it!
Recommended: Need help managing your time? I highly recommend grabbing the Ultimate Productivity Bundle for 46 resources on productivity, goal setting, planning, and more.
3. Get Rid Of Distractions
We live in a pretty stimulating world. Wouldn’t you agree?
With access to social media, Google, books, podcasts, and more right at our fingertips, it can be harder than ever to be intentional with our time.
Because let’s face it:
Who’s making time for real life when you have umpteen seasons of a million shows to watch on Netflix?
If you want to be intentional with your time, though, and fulfill your vision, you must get rid of unnecessary distractions.
(Or at least decrease them. Baby steps.)
Start small and build up to a life free of distraction. For instance, delete your least used social media app.
Or, even better:
Delete the social media app that brings you the least joy.
For me, this was Instagram. I found no enjoyment scrolling through pictures of people’s supposedly perfect lives and often left my Instagram binge sessions feeling like absolute garbage about myself.
Deleting social media and ridding yourself of other distractions, does two things for your intentional life:
- It frees up massive amounts of time to do valuable things (like engage with people in person) that align with your vision
- It instantly removes your need to validate your self-worth through unmeaningful things like likes and comments and instead opens the door to begin validating your self-worth based on how you feel, how you treat others, how you spend your time, and so on.
At this point, you might be thinking:
“Man, living with intention sounds hard.”
And, here’s the cold hard truth; it will be hard sometimes.
You see, it isn’t easy to remove something (like social media) from your life after years of use. It isn’t easy to skip naptime in lieu of doing something productive. And it isn’t easy to distance yourself from friendships that are no longer fulfilling (but more on that in a moment.)
The point is:
Doing what is hard in order to improve your life is ten times easier than continuing to live a life of void of fulfillment, purpose, and happiness.
So, I challenge you to do what is hard and delete Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat or Instagram. I can tell you from experience; you’re better off without it.
4. Place More Value On Your Relationships
Let’s go back to the idea that you want to fulfill your vision to be happy every day.
Now, let me ask you this:
How many people have you made time for this week, this month, or this year that did not fulfill your intention to be happy?
Just like being intentional means you make time for things that fulfill you, it also means that you do not make time for things [or people] that do not fulfill you.
Yes, even if you and Sally have been friends since kindergarten.
It’s a hard truth to accept, but true nonetheless.
You should not be exerting energy and time on people, places, or things that do not fulfill your vision.
When you allow your time to be absorbed by meaningless relationships, you hinder time that could be spent on meaningful relationships (or activities).
The bottom line:
Place more value on your relationships. Especially on your relationship with yourself.
You deserve to live a life of fulfillment. And only you are allowed to determine who and what absorbs your energy and time.
But, how do you know which relationships are or aren’t fulfilling your vision?
Here are some questions to help:
- After leaving your interactions how do you feel? (i.e., happy, sad, jealous, intimidated, inspired)
- Do you go above and beyond to make time for this person or do you often make excuses for why you don’t have time to see this person?
- How do you feel right before you’re about to see this person? (i.e., anxious, excited, annoyed, complacent)
Once you’ve answered these questions, it should be very obvious to you which people align with your vision and who you should and shouldn’t exert time and energy on.
(Remember, ain’t nobody got time for somebody who makes you feel jealous, worthless, anxious, etc., regardless of how long you’ve known this person. Do the hard thing!)
5. “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff”
One of my favorite books of all time is called “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff.”
It is an amazing book and a badass mindset to adopt if you want to live more intentionally.
As you can probably guess, “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff” is about learning how to better choose what things deserve your energy.
Much like my previous tip, it is important that we value our energy and mental well-being above anything else.
Because, here’s the deal:
When we let small things, like a rude Instagram comment, negatively affect our mood, we are wasting energy on something that does not matter.
And, when we allow ourselves to exert energy on things that don’t matter, we decrease the energy we have to put towards meaningful things.
I’m sure you can relate to this:
You’re driving to work and some asshole cuts you off. You have to slam on your breaks, you’re yelling profanities, and now you’re late to work! Freakin’ idiot.
You get to work, still annoyed, and tell all your coworkers about this fool who cut you off on your drive in. You spend the rest of the day replaying the event in your head while making up absurd scenarios of ‘what could have happened.’ (Ok, maybe this part is just a me thing.)
At the end of the day, you get in your car and think, “I hope I don’t get cut off again on my way home!”
Finally, you get home and tell
Wow. Ok. When you see it written out like that, it’s easy to see how much energy and time we sometimes waste on things that don’t actually matter.
How much energy would have been lost if you simply shrugged it off and went about your day as normal?
You got it: None.
It is easier said than done. I know.
I’ll be the first to admit that my blood pressure skyrockets the moment my toddler spills her freshly poured orange juice.
But, if you take a second to remind yourself to not sweat the small stuff, you’ll likely realize that a small orange juice spill isn’t something to waste your energy on. Simply clean it up, and move on with your day.
When we don’t waste our energy on things that don’t matter, we open up opportunities to learn and to spend our time doing things that do matter.
If you want more of this goodness, check out “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff” on Amazon. It is only $11 and such a fantastic read.
Skip To The Bottom?
Did you skip to the bottom? That’s ok, I’ve got your back.
To review, if you want to create a life that you love and that fulfills you, consider these five tips:
1. Have A Vision For Your Life – Consider what things you want more and less of in your life and how you want to feel daily to unearth the vision you have for your life, such as being happy. Because, when you have a vision for your life, you have a concent to form action around.
2. Plan Your Time – When you schedule your time in a planner, like the Erin Condren
3. Get Rid Of Distractions – Between social media and Netflix, it is harder than ever to be intentional with our time. But, when we remove distractions from our life, we free up time for meaningful thoughts, activities, and relationships. Do the hard thing and delete the social media app that brings you the least amount of joy. Baby steps!
4. Place More Value On Your Relationships – Being intentional with your time means that you make an effort to make time for the things that fulfill your vision. But, it also means that you do not make time for things (or people) that do not fulfill you. Ask yourself the four questions from section four of this post and truly evaluate if every person you exert energy on actually deserve your energy.
5. “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff” – My favorite book is called “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff” and I truly think every person on Earth should read it. Learning how to not waste your energy and time on things that don’t matter is an invaluable lesson that everybody can benefit from. Because, when you don’t waste your energy and time being annoyed by somebody who cut you off in traffic, you’re really opening up new opportunities to spend your energy and time on things that do matter.
The bottom line?
Being happy and feeling fulfilled should be of high importance on your list of to-dos.
And, luckily, these five inspirational intentional living ideas are an excellent place to start.
You’ve gotten a lot of intentional livigin ideas from this post.
Here are some tips to take action and start your intentional life:
2. Grab a planner like the Erin Condren LifePlanner to plan your time and create accountability for the vision you have for your life.
3. Purchase the best book ever, “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff,” and change your life! (But, seriously.)
Alright, I think that sums everything up! (And you’ve probably had enough of me for one day, ha!)
How do you stay intentional and fulfill your purpose? Did these intentional living ideas inspire you? Leave some inspiration in the comments below!
JOIN THE WHO SAYS WHAT COMMUNITY!