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More To Love teaches plus size women how to learn body-acceptance and end dieting for good. 

3 simple ways to have a life full of "YAY!"

Rachel Estapa

yay birdMy life today looks almost exactly like the life I had envision three years ago. But getting there wasn't magic nor because I’m more awesome than anyone else – I did something extraordinarily simple: I connected a vision of my ideal life to a very easy map to follow. And doing so has brought me a ton of YAY! moments in my life. Wouldn't you like to have way more YAY's in your life too?

Last week, I talked about the very powerful & useful role intentions play when you’re trying to live your heart’s desire.  Below are three simple steps you can take this week to get going on an intention that can change your life in huge ways – you just need to get started!

#1 Create intentions that have the power to move mountains

When you set a purposeful intention, it’s got to be crystal clear as to what you want to gain from it. For example, it’s not enough to say “I want to be healthier” and hope that’ll be enough, because intentions need to be anchored in a more visceral way for them to be effective. A great intention that would encompass the desire to be healthier while also honoring other parts of you would be “I trust in my ability to make wiser, healthier choices for myself.” See the difference? Sex-up those intentions and draw out some creative inspiration for yourself!

Part two of this process is to then outline the road it’ll take to reach your goal. Lots of people freak out at this stage, because it feels overwhelming and daunting to see where you're starting from and where you want to be. But that overwhelm is just in your head! Virtually all goals (within the realm of your reality) are ones that are possible to achieve, so really the issue then becomes your belief around your ability to meet the goal - so that's what is tripping you up and not the goal itself. But guess what? Coaching works to unravel that knot so you can get on with your goal & your happier life!

#2 Write it out & keep it in a public place

Once you've created an intention and an action plan to support it, make sure you get it out of your head and onto paper. This is a key step because it’s the first time you're allowing your new intention to take root. It seems insignificant, but it's a major milestone. Make your document your own by decorating, coloring, highlighting – whatever makes you feel connected & creative - that energy will be infused in your actions and help support you.

One of my favorite visioning exercises I use with my clients is The Life Plan, which is a worksheet I created to help people map out their success. Once completed, the life plan becomes an outline for our time together and also serves as a space for your varied intentions to live.

Another great way to cultivate the intention is to store it in a public place where you’ll see it often. This could be on your fridge, over your work space, or by your nightstand – anyplace you frequent often. When I first created the Life Plan worksheet for myself I kept it on my fridge, so every time I was in a central room in my home I was reminded of it. It really helped!

#3 Review, revisit & re-align as much as you need

Intention road maps are very useful, but don’t think they are carved in stone. You can revise and edit as needed and I actually recommend re-visiting your action plan every six-months to check-in. A key aspect of sustainable change is flexibility and consistency, which can only occur if you routinely allow for a review period. It’s also awesome to be able to check-off goals you make along the way!

The first step in any change is letting yourself dream, but until that dream is met with real-world efforts and actions, you’ll just be left wishing and wanting. Remember, you don’t need to make intentions harder than they need to be: the key is to pair meaningful vision with diligent action. Once you have a map, the rest is well --  easy! like saying "yay!"