Creating a Shmorian Intention for 2011

For whatever reason, I’m not into doing a big year-end review post right now. And probably because I’ve been intensely focused on writing my ebook, I even missed my blog’s 2nd birthday. Sorry, Sweetie-Blog.

I’m choosing to roll with it, and not trying to force myself to do the year-end stuff because if I do it out of a sense of should, it will make for a boring read, anyway. If in the next couple of weeks I change my mind, I’ll write it up then.

One thing that’s been on my mind, though, is this whole idea of getting ready for 2011 by creating a vision.

I don’t know when or why it happened, but “creating a vision” for anything makes me feel all angsty. Paralyzed, even. And I know I’m not alone in that.

Maybe it stresses me out because “vision” sounds too grandiose. Or permanent. Or like I’m committing to something before I have enough information. It also makes me think of those Corporate Vision Statements. Blech.

This year I’m giving myself permission to skip it. Well, sort of.

Because I do think it’s valuable to plan ahead in some form.

The key is to find a method that works for you. If the method of planning ahead you’ve chosen triggers a bunch of stress or makes you feel pressured, it kind of defeats the purpose, no?

I wasn’t sure what to call the kind of planning I’m doing, but when I thought about it, “Creating a Shmorian Intention” is pretty accurate. Plus, It completely avoids the V-word. (If, however, the I-word is triggery for you, get a thesaurus and go nuts. This is about doing things in ways that work for you.)

This process is great if you want to do some kind of planning for next year, but don’t want it to be overwhelming or overly structured.

Step 1

The first step in creating a Shmorian Vision for 2011 is to scrap the “What’s my vision?” question and replace it with “How do I want 2011 to feel?” Or “How do I want to feel in 2011?” works, too.

We all know how we want to feel.

In fact, I’d bet good money that if you don’t know how you want to feel, it’s because you’re trying to figure out how to achieve the feelings at the same time you’re trying to choose the feelings. That never works.

Everyone’s different, but for me, I want 2011 to feel Abundant, Fun and Creative.

I’m sure I could add a few more, but those feel the most important.

Step 2

Step 2 is to start exploring the feelings you chose, one at a time. There are no rules for how to explore them, but the idea is to look for clues that will help you turn the feelings into something that’s plan-ish.

Here’s how I’m using the list of how I want next year to feel…

Abundance

What would give me a sense of abundance?

Although more income would certainly help, for me it’s not quite that simple. It has more to do with giving myself the things I want and need.

I tend to talk myself out of doing (or buying) the things I want. I’ve been craving chai tea lately. When I was at the store yesterday and saw some on the shelf, I picked up the box but then put it back and started walking away.

Once I realized I was doing that thing again, I went back and put it in the cart.

Was it overpriced for the amount of tea in the box? Probably. But after weeks of wanting chai, it was worth it to meet that desire.

That’s the kind of thing that helps me experience abundance, so there will be more of it. Noticing what I want and just doing it already.

Fun

How can I experience more fun in 2011?

This one definitely has similarities to Abundance.

Having more fun means investing in things that are fun for me. Allowing myself to spend money (and time) on those things.

Buying more yarn for fun knitting projects.
Creating some jewelry or other crafty stuff with my hands.
Flying to visit some friends.
Building time for those things into my schedule.

Creativity

How will I experience more creativity in 2011?

Again it comes down to allowing myself to use time and money to do more creative things.

For my business that means dipping my toes into video. And sharing what I know about how to create products and classes to support your business.

Outside my business, crafts will help with this. Also, more zentangles and unstructured noodling time.

Step 3: Rinse, Repeat

From there, you can get as specific as you’d like.

For example, on the Creativity front, I’ll be digging into creating some course outlines for what I want to share in 2011. And as those courses begin to take shape, I’ll decide when to share them (sign up here to find out the what and the when).

What you want the year to feel like will serve as your guide as you add details to your “plan.” That’s what makes it Shmorian.

Another dose of permission

Permission to stop if it gets overwhelming. And permission to stop before you’ve got a concrete plan.

The point is to bring some mindfulness to what you want to create by starting with how you want to feel.

This is supposed to be more enjoyable (and a lot less intimidating) than Creating a Vision, remember?

How about you?

What do you want 2011 to feel like?
What are some of the ways you’ll make that happen?

So much love to all of you. I’m so grateful to get to hang out with you here on the blog and I wish you more of everything you want in 2011. Happy New Year, my lovelies.

8 thoughts on “Creating a Shmorian Intention for 2011

  1. Kathryn Hunter

    I can’t stand New Year’s resolutions. Haven’t been able to for years, but this, the idea of a creating a vision, setting the intention of how I want to feel. So much more my speed. Thanks for sharing the idea. :)

  2. Victoria Post author

    @Kathryn – Yes! I’m exactly the same way about resolutions. In fact, I wrote about that very thing a couple of years ago. So glad the “feeling” approach was a better fit for you! May 110% of your intention come to pass this year! xox

  3. Lori-Ann

    Thank you!
    Resolutions: blehk. Intentions: yes!
    (When I first read this, I read “inventions” in place of intentions. Fun! Hmm, how can I go with “inventions” for 2011. . . .)
    Now, I’m off to feel about how I want to feel. . . .

  4. Michelle Russell

    Hi Victoria!

    There is such wisdom in this…nevertheless, I find myself in a different place right now. For me, the last couple of years have been about getting in touch with my feelings (for me, the first step has been asking “How do I feel?”; only then can I move on to figuring out how I want to feel).

    What it comes down to now is that I have a very concrete outer goal. I need to get out of cubicle hell and become self-employed. Thankfully I’ve been working on this, and have plans for moving forward on it in the immediate future…but I honestly can’t imagine feeling how I want to feel unless that very large part of my outer life changes.

    I guess you could say I’m not being open to the possibility of feeling different in my current situation, but you know what? I’ve tried (oh, how I’ve tried), and nothing shifts. So now I’m looking for the sweet spot between tuning in to my feelings and accomplishing specific goals.

  5. Victoria Post author

    @Lori-Ann – Haha! Inventions for 2011…Hmm…How about a pill that makes it so you fall asleep right when you’re ready, and then you get 8 hours’ worth of sleep in 4 hours? Get right on that, will you? ;)

    @Michelle – Ooh…I think I need to clarify some things.

    What I was trying to say is that if you’re not sure what you want to do, one way to begin to access that information is to ask yourself how you want to feel.

    You already know what you want to do: Get out of cubicle hell. (Yay! I’m so excited for you to make that happen!)

    I’m definitely not saying you should keep trying to find ways to feel the way you want to feel in your current situation. Rather, I’m guessing the work you did to get in touch with your feelings is the very thing that helped you make self-employment your concrete goal.

    In other words, the feelings you want to experience can serve to filter your options. If you want 2011 to feel rejuvenating, you would need to choose to spend your time and money in ways that will support that. Hanging out with friends that complain all the time would likely get filtered out. Focusing on creating work that’s rejuvenating would get filtered in.

    Perhaps I’m misunderstanding what you mean, but I don’t believe that “tuning into feelings” and “accomplishing specific goals” are mutually exclusive. Feelings can serve as a guide to help you know where to focus your energy, and can be indicators of what’s working and what isn’t as you go about accomplishing your goals.

    In a sense, you’ve already done what I outlined in this post. Since you already know what you want to do, you could still use the steps to help you narrow down how you want to do it. (For example, if you want to feel security as you leave your job, you could start detailing what would help you feel secure. The could be $x in the bank, or moral support from your network or you name it.)

    And of course, people vary. This is just one of many ways to set goals and priorities.

  6. Michelle Russell

    Hi Victoria!

    First of all, I apologize if my comment sounded confrontational. I didn’t mean that at all–I think it’s SO important to set intentions, and the way you talk about doing that here makes huge sense to me. I guess maybe some of my own frustration was leaking through because I’ve bloody well known what my intention is for a long time now, and haven’t made the progress I’ve wanted to. (Note: I completely realize that I never make the progress I want to–I still have Superhero Syndrome. :o)

    I like the quick mnemonic “Feelings = Filter.” That’s an easy way to remember what to pick when I feel overwhelmed by choices–which would lead to my feeling the way I’d like to?

    And no, I don’t think that tuning into feelings (inner process) and setting goals (outer process) are mutually exclusive either. I think we often falsely polarize them in the same way that we do with “body/soul,” “material/spiritual,” and all those other dichotomies we use to separate parts of ourselves that should be integral.

    But I think I’ve done so much inner work over the past few years that I’m just getting hungry for some outer, tangible results. My impatience coming to the fore, as usual. :o)

  7. Victoria Post author

    Hi Michelle :)

    To know what you want to do for a long time and feel like significant progress isn’t being made is so painful. It reminds me of the year after I’d completed coach training. I knew I wanted to be a coach but I was completely stuck on actually getting started. The pain of the stuckness was so intense that within a few months of graduating, I decided I had to give up on that dream.

    I’m not saying that’s what you should do at all, because my deciding to let it go was just an attempt to avoid addressing the fears I had around starting my business. I’m simply sharing it to make sure you know I really do get it. :)

    One thing I’ve been learning is that we each have our own pace for how quickly we can integrate change. It’s not that the pace can’t be quickened, but it needs to be honored. And not honoring it by forcing things to happen more quickly (or more whatever-ly) can have uncomfortable effects.

    I think of the pace as a muscle – you can’t quicken it unless you build up to the faster pace. If you try to build up to it too quickly, you’ll probably get injured.

    Probably doesn’t alleviate your frustration much, but you’re definitely not alone in wanting to move faster.

    I wonder if some of the frustration comes from focusing on the end goal of quitting your job. Which means that by virtue of the fact that you haven’t quit yet, you haven’t “succeeded.” I think you and I have talked about outcome-based thinking before, so I’m sure that idea isn’t new to you.

    I guess I’m just wondering if there’s some way to really emphasize what you have accomplished. And maybe also a way to make the small bits of outer progress more visible as they happen. Perhaps by breaking the steps down into tiny pieces, and every time you accomplish one of those pieces, you put a gold star on a calendar. So that you can really see what you’re doing.

    Again – I know you probably already know this stuff. Partly I’m sharing because I’m sure other readers are feeling frustration at their pace, too.

    Hugs for all the frustration. Even though the progress doesn’t look the way you want it to, I know it’s there. It will happen.

    xo victoria

  8. Michelle Russell

    Victoria,

    I like the metaphor of pace as a muscle–the more you work out with it, the stronger (or in this case, potentially faster) it gets.

    Coincidentally (or not), I was just talking with someone this morning who mentioned that having a “negative goal” (i.e., it’s reached when I no longer have, no longer am, etc.) isn’t generally very helpful. And now you’re reminding me of it (yes, we’ve talked about it before) . . . methinks I should listen. :o)

    And someone else suggested making a list of all the things I have accomplished in the last year or two. I probably won’t do that because I have more productive ways to spend my time, but I think I’ll start doing that moving forward. Because you’re right again–I have trouble seeing everything I do accomplish. Which, people tell me, is a hell of a lot. I’m just too used to looking at the other side of the coin.

    Coin-flip time!

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