At the beginning of 2020, before I even knew that our world would change so dramatically, I began a new mantra; Be Intentional.
And after everything that has happened this year to turn the world upside down and change almost everything I do, that one thing has remained a constant. Be Intentional.
I have attempted to incorporate that thought into every action I take and everything I do. From bending over to tie my shoes to the most complex post-processing of one of my photos, be intentional.
But what does that mean, exactly? It’s hard to describe, but it became sort of a wrapper around everything I do, a mindset, an approach, and an execution, all in one.
Here’s a simple example. Within arm’s reach of the keyboard I am typing this with, is my trusty Keurig. I can reach over with my right hand and grab the latest mug of coffee without taking my eyes from the screen while continuing to type with my left hand.
And doing so, I can knock the cup off the credenza and onto the floor, ruining my morning in a single second of inattention.
So, I don’t do that anymore. When the coffee is ready, I stop typing. I stand up. I turn to the right and take the half step to the credenza. I then firmly grasp my 20 oz coffee mug with my right hand. I pick up the lid with my left hand. Placing the cup securely on the plastic board put there for this purpose. I push the top down and make sure it is tight. I then take my first, long sip of coffee.
What’s the difference between these two courses of action? About seven seconds. But one is a recipe for disaster, and the other is a short break resulting in a pleasurable experience.
One is intentional, and the other is half-assed.
My photography is another prime example. I’ve only taken a fraction of the photos I usually would have by this time in the year, but my camera is still always with me, ready to help me capture what my eyes and my mind sees.
On my morning walks, it would traditionally happen like this. Something would catch my eye. As I turned to see what it might be, my right hand was raising the camera, flicking the power switch with my index finger. By the time I had put my full…