Living with Intention
Last week I had to go to the dentist to have my night guard realigned (gum recession is REAL, people!) and the appointment ended up taking longer than expected. I intentionally left my phone in my purse - on the windowsill away from my chair - so I wouldn't be distracted or tempted to aimlessly kill time looking at the screen.
The dentist was in and out of the exam room making adjustments to the apparatus, so I could've easily used the extra time to check email or social media. Instead, I decided to just sit and be still. To close my eyes and take deep breaths, something I don't do nearly enough.
When the dentist was in the room, we chatted about our kids, schools, the housing market, the trials and tribulations of living in the Bay Area, and so on. As he worked, he talked about some of the stresses happening in his life while I listened. I empathized with what he was saying and I tried to offer advice. But mostly I was just there, fully present, actively listening and engaged in that moment.
When it was time for me to go, I went to the receptionist to pay my bill. She disappeared to the back for a moment when the dentist called her. She returned to the front with a slight grin on her face, took her pen to the bill I was looking at on the counter, crossed out the amount due and wrote the words "thank you."
I have not stopped thinking about this incident. Had I been distracted with my phone or my own stresses, I would've missed out on having a rich conversation and experience with someone whom I typically see for about five minutes every six months. Had I not made the intention to be fully engaged authentically, I wouldn't have received such a generous gift. I believe amazing experiences and unexpected surprises can happen when we are fully aware and present in a moment, and when we make intentional choices to do - or not do - something.
This week I began a three month journey working with an accountability group where the expectation is to be fully present, engaged and authentic with a small group of women entrepreneurs. The belief is that the more you show up and the more you put in, the more you'll get back in terms of reaching your potential with clarity of your dreams and success in your business and life. The commitment I've made to this course, as well as my experience at the dentist, emphasizes my passion for living life with intention and purpose, both personally and professionally. This month I'll be focusing on living with intention, and I hope you'll join me! Feel free to share any ways you live with intention - I'd love to hear from you!