So, that last post was really supposed to be a book review. When I started writing, I realized that before I could write the review, I needed to give some background and then it morphed into a post in and of itself.
I’m here, parenting alone with the kids (with help from my sister and my mom!). Being the sole parent 24/7 is pretty stressful and the first week Henry was gone, I did okay for a few days but by the end of the week, my nerves were frazzled, and my fuse was short. I was in the middle of reading Living with Intent by Mallika Chopra during this time.
Inspired by the book, I decided I needed to set an intent to be more patient, both with the kids and with myself, especially as we get used to this new set-up. I wrote it down in my journal: “Intent: Be More Patient” and I’ve been trying to internalize it. Part of being more patient means letting go a little bit. And I have. Whether or not that is a good thing remains to be seen. Alice said to me the other day, “Since Daddy left, you say yes a lot more.” Ha ha? or Mmh….?
Living With Intent is the kind of book that you need to read more than once. The first time, you kind of get the lay of the land. The second time, you start to stuff into motion. What I really appreciated about this book is that Chopra acknowledges that there is a lot of one step forward, two steps back and that though we might try to take action, we might not be ready for it and so we fail, and fail again, and berate ourselves, and feel badly. It’s all part of the process and we shouldn’t be so hard on ourselves.
And what is the process? Chopra devotes a chapter to each step: Incubate, Notice, Trust, Express, Nurture and Take Action, but the process is reiterative, not linear and some steps take longer than others. Throughout the book, Chopra illustrates the process with stories and observations from her own life, and each chapter ends with an exercise designed to help you practice the chapter’s focus. At the back of the book, you’ll find a section for recording your daily intents, a mind map, and a balance wheel to make the ideas in the book more concrete and to guide towards purposeful practice.
This is a book that I will keep on my shelf and return to, time and time again. Highly recommended for anyone feeling a little lost and looking for some direction.