10 Ways to Set Goals with Soul

In our current generation, we are raised to work with the law of attraction – that is, attracting money, beauty, and adventure into our lives. It’s in our movies, our books, our art, our music – it’s everywhere. Without monetary success and enviable life, you’re insignificant.

But the fact is that the more you seek for that type of lifestyle, grasping for more and constantly discontent with what you have and what you’ve accomplished, the less happy you are. In our fast-paced culture, we are rarely encouraged to take time to be quiet and thankful, to reflect on the abundance on our lives. Over time, you begin to feel empty, and no amount of money adventure makes you feel good. Life begins to fall apart, and pretty soon, you find yourself asking, “What’s the point?” The popular boyfriend cheats; the job turns out to be unfulfilling; and international adventures just make you miss home more.

Set goals in life

A lot of goals we set for our lives are based on what we believe we should have or what rather than what we actually desire. What we need to do instead, is to refine our intentions that resonate with who we truly are and set goals that are less glamour and actually reflect what we truly desire.

With that in mind, here are ten rules or practices to live by that can help you to focus in on setting heart-centered, genuine intentions.

1. Be guided by how you want to feel rather than what you want to have.

According to Canadian author and speaker, Danielle LaPorte, “Knowing how you actually want to feel is the most potent form of clarity that you can have. Generating those feelings is the most creative thing you can do with your life.” This sounds easier than you think. Honing in on what you feel takes some real soul-searching. A good way to start is to write down five things you’d love to manifest in your life and then evaluating each one to discover the feelings you think having those things will give you.

For example, say you wrote down that you’d like to get out into nature more, and that’s because you want to feel more alive. Then you realize that you want to be more decisive because you want to feel like you have power over your life. All in all, you see that you just want to feel useful and nurtured; these five desired feelings arise: powerful, useful, alive, nurtured, and creative. Then you take these five attributes and live by them.

2. Get visual – Goal Visualization

Visual aids are powerful, and creating a vision board is a great step to take towards manifesting your dreams. Start with a large piece of cardboard or a corkboard and a pile of magazines and get snipping. Choose images you are drawn to, not simply pictures of things you want. Let your heart lead your choices and try to go into the exercise with no preconceived notions of what you’d like to find.

You might find yourself drawn to a picture of a campfire, for instance. Before cutting it out, meditate upon it and consider why it is you feel the way you do. Are you yearning for more warmth in your life? More downtime or bonding opportunities? Are you thinking of getting some outdoor time? Decipher what exactly it is that you want, and let that be your guide.

3. Form an intention-setting circle of trusted friends.

Successful goals are much closer when the people around you are helping you towards it. Gather some positive, encouraging, and trusted friends around your and plan a monthly intention-setting session. Let every person have the opportunity to voice their intentions for the upcoming month. 

Make the atmosphere welcoming and nurturing. For example, light a candle, play some soft music, or gather around a campfire. Get creative, and see what happens when a few people come together to reach their goals!

4. Create a gratitude ritual

Goals and gratitude are necessary to one another. Practicing gratitude is like saying to the universe, “Thank you, more please.” It’s a way to look back on what you felt and what has happened and to give thanks to whom thanks is do. It’s also a form of prayer.  

A great way to faithfully practice this is to have a gratitude journal where you habitually check in and write what you are thankful for. Take time in our fast-paced culture to be truly quiet and thankful rather than grasping for more, and your life will feel much more abundant.

5. Follow the cycles of the natural world.

If you look at ancient cultures, they have set times for planting, sowing, and harvesting. It’s only in our own culture that it’s always a time for harvesting. We ask too much of ourselves and are far too spent on a regular basis. If you let your life be guided by more natural cycles, you’ll have a healthier way to set goals, to know when to work hard and when to take time to rest.

When you push yourself too hard, your body breaks down as a result; you find yourself laid-up with a nasty cold. Use spring to declutter and get outdoor, summer to socialized and celebrate life, and autumn to look within and give thanks for the abundance.

The ancient health science of Ayurveda offers wisdom on working with the seasons and cycles of nature, from what to eat to support your mental and physical health to how to dress and conduct yourself to balance your predominant dosha (your Ayurvedic mind-body type).

Another cycle to consider is the moon cycle. It offers quiet guidance that can work magic in your life. For example, the full moon is a time when things come to a head and feelings are close to the surface. It can also be a time of productivity. As the moon wanes it can remind us to practice gratitude and harvest what we have learned. As the new moon draws near, we can check in with ourselves and look back on how our intentions were played out during the cycle.

6. Your body is your GPS.

Your body is a powerful and accurate guidance positioning system. Make a practice of listening to your body. Fully inhabit every limb, bone, and cell in your body, and listen to its wisdom. It’s often trying to tell you when is a good time to slow down and take a break and when you need to push yourself and work harder. Follow the signs, and let your body guide you. So often, we’re spending our time doing something that isn’t what we actually need. Sometimes your body knows best, and when you listen, life has a way of taking care of itself.

This takes practice, however, and courage to say “no” when people expect and even pressure you to say “yes.” We’re constantly being driven to go, go, go, but as Danielle LaPorte says, “Amazing grace can happen when you choose inner wisdom over external pressure.”

7. Make a mental not of who you admire and why.

It can be so subtle that we don’t realize it, but the people that we focus on and admire are often the people that we become. That being the case, focus on people that are determined and unafraid to be themselves. And instead of being jealous of them, set intentions based off of what you like. Tell yourself things like, “I am a powerful decision maker,” and over time, you become one. You see potential in yourself rather than the inability to become something you are not.  

You need to believe these types of statements down to your very core, however, in order for them to manifest themselves. Look for qualities that make you feel more grateful, competent, and authentic rather than material things like big houses and flashy jobs.

8. Be courageous: tackle old beliefs.

The Abraham-Hicks Law of Attraction says the art of allowing is just as important as the art of intention. You can’t shy away from your inner demons if you ever plan on being successful. One of the best ways to do this is to use Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). Take note when an inner voice says things like, “That’s impossible” or “You’ll never be like that.” If you let it continue, it becomes the truth instead of the lie that it is.

However, if you grasp ahold of these limiting voices, it’s a step towards success; you can then identify your old beliefs, bring them to light, and work through them. It’s all easier said than done, so enlisting the help of an EFT practitioner, a trusted life coach, or a like-minded friend to get you’re your inner demons could be well worth your time.

And don’t think you’re excluded; we all have limiting beliefs, but we also have the ability to move past them and allow our authentic intentions to manifest themselves.

9. Cheer on others.

We get so caught up in comparing what we have or don’t have with those around us to celebrate with those who have succeeded, but doing so is essential. Make it a habit of supporting and loving your friends and family when they achieve their dreams. It’s a statement that you are joyful and abundant and ready for more.

10. Prepare to receive abundance.

Look at your life and take a survey of all it involves. What media do I allow into my mind? Who do I spend most of my time with? What do I talk about more than anything else? How do I nourish my body? Observe your own habits, what makes you feel good and what does the opposite. Just knowing these things gives you greater power over your own life and its abundance. Listening to podcasts and reading books by people you admire can also help to bring fresh insight and ideas into your life.

Over time, success will turn from “having” into “being.” Instead of longing to have all the things, people, and experiences life can offer, you can be satisfied with being creative and empowered, by being a supportive friend and an adoring spouse. Material-focused goals only result in dissatisfaction, but soul-centered intentions make life abundant and beautiful.

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