Soul Gardening

“Don’t wait for someone else to bring you flowers.

Plant your own garden and decorate your own soul.”

If I am being honest, there was definitely a time when the mention of the word intention conjured up mental images of a hippy dippy, space cadet-type person that spouted all kinds of super-spiritual jargon hardly rooted in reality. Fast-forward to the yoga teacher in me and intention is a word that frequents my vocabulary, and rightfully so, as intention-setting is such a powerful force in this world. (Too bad my younger self missed so many incredible intention-setting opportunities!)

I was well into my 30's before I realized the power of intention setting. As a yoga teacher my daily live revolves around intention. I am pretty sure my 13-year-old daughter thinks I am a little much as my advice to her is usually, “meditate on it”, “take deep breaths”, and “set intentions” as she navigates all the usual problems of middle school. As my offspring, it’s no wonder that she rolls her eyes, and mumbles under her breath, thinking I am too out of touch to understand her woes. Of course, her pre-teen brain doesn’t comprehend the power that I am trying to offer her. (Oh, the irony of parenthood; the universe gives us little people that are so much like us, we get to relive lessons, seeing them from different perspectives.)

The definition of Intention is an ‘aim or plan’. In our modern lives, our energy and attention is constantly pulled in many different directions, even as soon as we wake up in the morning. We live in a state of over-stimulation. In the morning, the alarm clock goes off, our email beckons our attention. There are big and little people that pull at our energy. We have jobs that need us. The news, traffic, social media, and everything else we come into contact occupy our time, energy, and focus. It is easy to get overwhelmed and lose sight of yourself and your soul’s callings in the midst.

Take a deep breath and imagine a life where there is a clear separation and distinction between where your energy is being pulled and where you choose to direct your energy. There is a big difference between the two. Intention is the action of elevating our essence and living deeply connected. The more trips I take around this sun, the more I feel called to step deeper into my truth, to live in alignment with my presence, and to honor my soul’s purpose. Maybe as you read this, you can relate to your own soul’s yearnings. The truth is we are all being invited to elevate our existence, to embody our truest essence. The best way to channel this energetic calling is to use the power of intention, because intention is the beginning of all transformation.

Let’s get playful and do a life analogy… If you plant a garden, you go to the local home improvement store or nursery, you put thought into what flowers, trees, and bushes to purchase. You would likely have a gardening blueprint in your mind of how you want the outcome of your planting to be. You do research on how much sunlight each plant needs, and this determines where in your yard you plant it. If you think of your life as a garden, do you take the same time and intention into planning or aiming how you want your life to be and feel? Do you know what you want your day, week, month or year to go? Do you have a plan or an aim that is rooted in the direction of your soul versus external status symbols, goals or aims, such as the job or the house or the money in the bank? (Which are all great things, but our soul of course demands more.)

Coming back this concept of intention, which is a highly focused mind state, Spring is the ideal time of year to get clear on what areas of in the garden of your life that you want to ‘tend to’ and ‘plant’ for the remainder of the year. Below is a list of things that outline a balanced sense of wellness.