June 6, 2017

4As: Affirming Intention as a Daily Practice

Each day I am starting with a practice of identifying my Aim, Attitude, Action, and Achievement to set and move forward with intention. So much of my work is focused on others, that this is an opportunity to focus on me in the context of collaborating with my clients, students and co-workers. The following is adapted from the book How to Have a Good Day by Caroline Webb.

The 4As

  • Aim: What is my intention, my purpose, my focus for the day?
  • Affirmation: This is a positive affirmation of wow am I approaching this aim? What qualities am I bringing to this the purpose?
  • Action: What work, knowledge and influence am I bringing to the aim?
  • Achievement: How will I know that I have reached my aim?

Example1: Working with a strategic planning client

  • Aim: to provide guidance, direction and focus to a group that has strong voices and high expectations
  • Affirmation: I have the tools, experience, knowledge, and context of the big picture perspective, plus the voice to speak clearly, and concisely
  • Action: listen, provide observations, give direction, and stay focused on actionable items that are realistic in the context of strategic planning, while playing the role of translator of ideas into action steps
  • Achievement: I have provided guidance, insights, have documented actionable items, taken responsibility for my specific role and what I need to deliver, while not over-promising

Example 2: Leading a restorative yoga class

  • Aim: to create a safe space in which there is a sense of connection to community
  • Affirmation: I have the tools, experience and resources to facilitate the group; students trust me and value my voice
  • Action: Teach from my heart, feel the safety within myself and share that calmness and connection with others
  • Achievement: Following the final meditation, create a mandala from twine in which each participant is holding a connection point and we have woven a safe space where we can breath more easily and deeply

As I read these examples I had the second A as Attitude but I changed it to Affirmation. it is clear that this step gives me focus and sets me up for success.