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Embodying Intentions: The Ultimate Journey Aligning Mind, Body, and Spirit

Embodying Intentions is the Ultimate Journey Aligning, Mind, Body and SpiritBecause of the demands of today’s fast-paced world, people who seek personal growth find that setting intentions is a powerful practice for transformation. However, there’s a crucial distinction between setting intentions and embodying intentions.

Let’s explore the story of two sisters, Sarah and Emily, to illustrate the difference between setting intentions and embodying intentions.

Sarah and Emily both yearn for fitness and wellness, so they set a common intention — to improve their physical health and well-being. Notice what happened…

Setting Intentions

Sarah enthusiastically set her intentions, writing them in her journal. She outlined specific targets — running a marathon, losing 10 pounds, and eating healthier. She told everyone about her intentions, seeking validation and support for her goals.

Emily, on the other hand, was more reserved. She, too, wrote her intentions in a journal, but she didn’t feel the need to broadcast them to others. She kept them private, viewing them as personal commitments to herself.

In your assessment, which approach will be most successful?

Embodying Intentions

Sarah diligently followed her plan to achieve her fitness goals. She signed up for a gym membership, hired a personal trainer, and started following a strict diet plan. She was determined to stick to her regimen, even if it meant sacrificing social outings or leisure time.

Instead of focusing solely on external goals, Emily prioritized cultivating a holistic sense of well-being. She embraced mindful movement practices such as yoga and meditation, listened to her body’s cues, and nourished herself with wholesome foods that made her feel energized and vibrant.

Have you changed your mind about which approach will be most successful?


As time passed, Sarah achieved some milestones, such as completing a marathon and reaching her target weight. However, she often felt stressed and burnt out from pushing herself too hard. Despite her accomplishments, she still struggled with self-doubt and dissatisfaction, constantly seeking validation from others. She lacked a deep connection to her intentions.

Emily embodies her intentions, holistically and sustainably integrating them into her daily life. She prioritizes alignment with her values and positive self-care, leading to a more fulfilling and authentic experience.

Are you surprised by their outcome? According to many coaches, what Sarah did was the SMART thing to do. She checked all the boxes for the criteria for success: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound, yet that wasn’t enough. WHY?

Why Embodying Intentions Transform Lives

Embodied intentions integrate our intentions into our very being, aligning mind, body, and spirit. When an intention becomes embodied, it transforms from a fleeting thought to a steadfast commitment ingrained in our daily actions and behaviors.

So, what does it truly mean to embody an intention? It’s about more than just verbalizing or writing down our goals. It’s about making them an integral part of who we are, so much so that they naturally manifest in our everyday lives without conscious effort.

Embodiment begins with a crystal-clear understanding of what we intend to achieve and why it matters. Upon this clear foundation, we can build a strong commitment.

But clarity alone is not enough. We must regularly practice fulfilling our intentions to anchor them into our being. Through consistent action, our intentions become ingrained as habits, shaping our thoughts, actions, and ultimately, our reality.

How You Can Bridge the Gap Between Thought and Action

Add structure and support to your intentions by cultivating the following practices.Add structure and support to your intentions by cultivating the following practices.

Mindfulness and Somatic Awareness. By grounding yourself in the present moment, you can better connect with your intentions on all levels — body, mind and spirit. You’ll tune into the sensations and signals of your body, facilitating a deeper understanding of your intentions.

Reflection. Your intentions should align with your core values and priorities. Deeply reflect on what truly matters to YOU to set authentic and meaningful intentions.

Authenticate your Desires. It’s essential to differentiate between conditioned desires (what others expect, or what you think others expect of you) and genuine longings. By cultivating self-awareness, you can discern whether your intentions stem from societal expectations or your true self.

Self-Awareness. Regularly observe your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors without judgment. This heightened self-awareness empowers you to course-correct when your actions deviate from your intentions.

An empowered intention possesses three key elements: clarity, alignment, and embodiment. Let’s delve into each aspect and explore techniques to strengthen them.

1. Clarity is the cornerstone of an empowered intention. Without a clear understanding of what you intend to achieve, your efforts may scatter, leading to ineffective action. 

Techniques for achieving clarity include:

  • Journaling: Write down your intentions in detail, including why they matter to you and what outcomes you envision.
  • Visualization and Future Pacing: Picture yourself already living your intention. Visualizing the desired outcome helps crystallize your vision and enhances clarity.
  • Precision in Language: Use specific language when articulating your intentions. Avoid vague or ambiguous statements that dilute clarity.

2. Alignment ensures that your intentions resonate with your core values, beliefs, and priorities, thus they become more potent and sustainable. 

Techniques for alignment include:

  • Reflective Practices: Spend time reflecting on your values, beliefs, and priorities to ensure that your intentions are congruent with them.
  • Language Alignment: When formulating intentions, use language that aligns with your values and beliefs. This helps reinforce the connection between your intentions and your inner truth.
  • Visualization Alignment: Visualize yourself living in alignment with your intentions, embodying the values and beliefs important to you.

3. Embodiment involves a consistent practice to integrate your intentions into your being, so they become natural expressions of who you are. 

Techniques for embodiment include:

  • Somatic Techniques: Incorporate somatic practices to release resistance and align your body with your intentions.
  • Body Scans: Regularly scan your body for tension or resistance related to your intentions. Release any physical blocks that may hinder embodiment.
  • Affirmations: Use affirmations that reinforce the embodiment of your intentions. Repeat them regularly to internalize and embody your desired outcomes.

Embodied intentions are powerful tools that create real and lasting change. That’s one of the major ways I’ve shaped my life into one I’m proud to live. I’ve compiled other tools I use into a road map for life. I invite you to download an Introduction to The Stepping Forward Program

 Your “Dream Big, Start Small” here’s the one thing you can do today.

To maximize the power of your intentions — set a few crucial ones, then embody them! How?
Take time to reflect on your values, aspirations, and priorities in connection with the these questions:

There’s a big difference between setting intentions and embodying intentions. Embodied intentions create harmony between your mind, body, and spirit.

To maximize the power of your intentions — set a few crucial ones, then embody them! How?

Take time to reflect on your values, aspirations, and priorities in connection with the following questions:

  • What do I truly want to experience, achieve, and manifest in my life?
  • What values and principles are most important to me?
  • What areas of my life feel out of alignment or need attention?
  • How do I envision my ideal future or desired outcome?

Your answers will reveal your true desires, which reveal the actions you really want to take and can easily maintain. It gives your life unshakeable structure and stability. And don’t we all need more of that today?

Photos by Mario Dobelmann, Fabio Fistarol , and Jeremy Bishop

Setting Intentions

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