I push play on the workout DVD and follow the instructions. But it’s what’s said in the middle of the workout, in the times when I want to give up, that sticks with me.
Set your intention.
Figure out what you want to accomplish at the beginning of your workout and remind yourself of it in those hard moments, when you feel like you don’t want to do it anymore. It’s the thing that keeps you going, the one thing you focus on when everything else feels chaotic.
- Some days my goal is to simply finish the workout.
- Some days I decide that I’m going to do one more rep.
- Other days I set my intention on doing one less modification.
When I know what it is I want to get out of my workout, I know how to approach each move, each round, each rep in a more focused way. I’ve also started to realize that setting my intention at the beginning of my day is as helpful as setting it in my workout. When I pause to consider my day, and what I want to accomplish in it, it helps me stay focused. And when I set my intention first on God, and His agenda for my day instead of my own, I’m better able to do the work He’s called me to do without getting distracted or discouraged.
In this particularly hectic season, knowing how to prioritize my day is essential, or I’ll find myself trapped in choice paralysis. Too many decisions, too many options, too many possibilities. When I try to do a little of everything and multi-task 50 items at the same time, none of them are done well. If I want to do a few things well, I need to decide at the beginning of my day what those will be and stick to them.
Then, as social media comes at me, and emails fill my inbox, and meetings pop up on my calendar, I can run them all through the filter of the intention that I’ve set for the day. Will it help me achieve the goals I’m working to accomplish? If they will, they’re a yes. If they won’t, they wait for another day.
It’s a small step to choosing intentional living over instant gratification and immediate availability.
What is your intention today? What are you setting you eyes on, after they’ve focused on God?