Intentions are in the present moment.
Expectations are future oriented and have to do with goals and outcomes.
When we base our happiness on what we expect to happen, or hope will take place, we open ourselves to disappointment and suffering.
A fact of life is that sometimes we get what we want and sometimes we don’t. Life contains about equal amounts of pleasant and unpleasant.
Also it is true that we are not in control of outcomes.
So what is our intention? To keep trying to get life and relationships to go our way? Again, trying to do the impossible.
Since that is strain and suffering, let’s not take that path.
The most effective way to happiness is to know what our intention is, and to return to it when things go in a different direction.
This is what really matters.
How do we feel when someone doesn’t do our bidding or keep their word, or just plain ignores us? If we are disappointed and feel a loss then we have been expecting something—not trusting that whatever occurs is what is needed at this moment. That’s not an easy thing to trust!
Instead we have been attached to a certain outcome. We have expected something that didn’t happen.
As I mentioned before, expectations lead to unhappiness.
There is a saying in AA: “The lower your expectations the greater your serenity.”
So let’s go back to intentions.
How we view the situation will either cause more suffering or aid the healing process through integration.
Integration and integrity come from same root word: to make whole--which is also the same root word of healing.
Is wholeness our intention? Or do we want to divide things up? To segregate? To exclude what we don’t want, such as displeasure?
To follow the path of division is a sure way to unhappiness.
We can choose to walk the path of integrity by admitting to ourselves our real intentions and motives.
In fact, we can discover our intention by checking our motive.
Are we committed to do no harm?
Or is this based on convenience and circumstances?
How often are we kind to others when it is easy and doesn’t cause personal pain? How much does personal security motivate our actions?
Intention comes from our core beliefs about life, about ourselves and how we fit in—or don’t, and in what we trust.
What do we believe the intention of the universe is? Do we think it is simply random and chaotic, without a purpose?
If so, I think we are missing something essential!
I believe the universe is filled with intention.
The universe intends to grow consciousness via synergistic energy which comes together through compassion and love, working together by seeking the good for all.
As we look for more ways to cooperate with that which is higher than any personal safety by including the good of all, we will live with a greater sense of joy.
Is our intention to be a part of the upward movement of all life? Or do we just want things to come out our way?
It is vital is to look for a helpful way to live when things don’t come out the way we had hoped.
There is always a safe place we can go. We can choose to share Metta. We can wish ourselves and others well. We can negotiate, dialogue with the other, use our journals and seek therapeutic means; such as seeing a therapist.
These practices develop that which is real and lasting—trust in the invisible and intangible energy that underlies all “beingness.”
This is the path to happiness.
We particularly notice when we have gotten off that track and are deceiving ourselves through excuses and rationalization.
Becoming intentional requires that we earnestly look into the attitudes we hold in our mind. How much compassion do we feel? What are we paying attention to? What are we thinking? What are we worried or nervous about?
Intentional living becomes a constructive habit by returning to it often. Through this we are actually aligning with the Spirit of the Universe rather than struggling to accomplish something alone—which is an impossibility since we are all interconnected!
Joining together we flow with great energy. And all it takes is to point our mind in this direction, over and over again.
Check our motive. Is it to get someone to like or approve of us? Is it to give love—or get love?
The greatest form of love is to trust the True Essence of another and to reflect upon whether what we are about to do is truly helpful—or will it undermine another by believing they don’t have the capability within themselves to do what is needed when they truly do.
There is a helpful axiom:
Don’t do for others what they can do for themselves.
And then ask ourself if we are expecting a certain outcome? Or will we trust the highest truth of another—not necessarily what they say, but the nature of the Christ/Buddha within them?
What will we trust? It is wise not to trust personality, but place our faith in the core Essence of another’s being; for this is their true nature.
I believe Universal Energy flows through everyone and everything, keeping us all whole at the deepest essence of our souls. This energy knows how to evolve and has been doing so for the last 14 and a half billion years. Pretty good track record!
My intention is to be truly helpful. And leave the outcome to God!