Goals vs. Intentions

The Question

What is the difference between a goal and an intention?


The Concept

Goals are about doing, and most often involve a sequence, timeline, and future point of completion. Intentions are about being, and involve a continuous aspect of consciousness that is always happening in the now. Goals are easier to set than intentions, but we often fail in the end. Intentions are harder to set than goals, but it’s impossible to fail—although the clarity and intensity of the intention are infinitely extensible.


Deep Dive

Pick a goal you currently have and elevate it to a high-level intention.


What goal are you currently most committed to achieving? How could reaching for it work against something you desire even more?


It’s often clear whether or not you reached a goal. How can you have a sense of success or failure with your intentions?


If a stranger had access to everything you did, felt, and thought over the last week, what’s a predominant message they would notice you were radiating to the world?


Is it easier for you to experience emotion around the things you desire—or the things you fear? Describe the feelings, body sensations, energies, images, colors, scents, textures of an intention you wish to hold.


What thoughts and feelings are you most likely to radiate that are counter to the nature of your
intention described on the previous page?


What’s an unspoken intention your organization holds that is misaligned with a stated value?


Do you spend more time talking with your family about their goals or their intentions? How about with your team?


What’s an unspoken intention you hold that is misaligned with a stated personal value?


What are three intentions you have for the next year?