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Waking up on Monday morning after a long weekend of play can be tough. Even if we’re starting on a new project — a new school year, job, or work season, — the excitement doesn’t always mean we’re up and ready to go full-tilt.
Sure, we say we’re looking forward to something, or happy to be doing it when we talk to our friends, co-workers, and family, but in my experience, happiness is a verb.
Francesca and I taught two workshops at the 3rd Annual AcroFest this weekend. It was awesome; acrobats from around the country came in to teach and practice some wild things, ranging from Acrobatics to Modern Dance to Hoop Yoga. The coolest thing was not the iced Tumeric drinks or the high-level skills being taught - it was the intention set at the opening ceremony. Before all of the majestic gravity-defying work started, we gathered around as a group, chanting “let all around us be… peace, love, flight, joy” over and over as a group warm-up. If you were outside looking in, it might have seemed strange or really “hippie”. On the inside, it was a huge transformation. The group as a whole became unified. People that would normally have been over-hyped and anxious chilled out to a level where they’d consider safety above tricks, and those on the low-energy end were brought up to a higher space.
This is the power of setting an intention. When you take time to acknowledge the purpose of your task BEFORE you do it, you shift your perception of the whole task. Perception is reality. You see it every day in the people you meet. Some are clearly disenchanted with their work: they don’t believe they’re doing anything more than the day to day tasks of the job, there’s no greater vision. Others see their efforts are actually moving the world closer to their view of the future every day. They’ve set an intention, their bigger mission is more than the sum of the menial work tasks.
There’s an old Native American story that embodies this idea. A Grandfather and Grandson are camping together.
The Grandfather tells the Grandson, “There are two animals inside of me, locked in constant struggle. One wants to fight, kill, and destroy the world. The other wants to make peace, friendship, and work together.”
The Grandson asks, “Which one will win?”
“Whichever one I feed,” the Grandfather says.
As we start a new season of school and work, it’s important to take time to set our intention for the path ahead. We’ve all got the power to harm or heal - it’s up to us to choose which animal to feed.
Written by Corey Loftus
Founder / Visionary : constantly quotable
Corey is a voiceover artist, yogi, and father to a fur-child named Eddy.
He'll work for almond butter.