It is an easy concept to grasp, practice makes difficult tasks easier. Practice also reinforces patterns, so much so that with enough practice, patterns become automatic - no conscious awareness is required to perform a task at that point. So it is true with awareness, intention and acceptance. If you find yourself in a situation that you do not like, you did not get there by intending it happen once or twice. You practiced that negative intention daily, probably until it became automatic. You didn't know until now that you were doing this, but it happened all the same. The practice of being aware of the intentions flowing through your mind, creating your good intentions, and accepting those changes into your life makes this process automatic as well. You just need to start.

Just as you may make a New Year's resolution - intending to start the year right - without regular practice it may fall flat. Just as taking a new route to the market requires concentration the first time or two its traveled, so does this new process. As soon as you revert to the old route, you start to forget the new route. Without practice, our skills fade.

Starting now, make a small amount of time each day to practice this new skill. It doesn't have to be the same time each day, though that helps reinforce the pattern. Also it doesn't have to be long; fifteen minutes a day will suffice. During this 15 minute period do the following.

  1. Settle into a comfortable place, where you won't be disturbed.
  2. Take two or three deep breaths and relax into your place of choice. Be aware of how dense your body is, how it feels as you settle in.
  3. For the next 10 minutes, count each breath. As thoughts arise, remember to keep counting your breaths - let the thought come and then go. Be aware of your breath, and aware of your surroundings. Listen to the sounds you hear or the smells that pass by you. Rest and feel comfortable in that awareness.
  4. After 10 minutes, stretch and feel thankful for the peaceful break. Create the feeling of appreciation as you stretch.
  5. For the next 3 minutes, close your eyes and bring your thoughts to your intention for a better you. Think of your intention, bring it to the front of your mind and see yourself in the situation you desire. As your thoughts drift, bring them back to this desire. Create a sense of joy in yourself as you dwell on your intention.
  6. For the next 2 minutes, feel thankful that this new situation is on its way to you. Feel as if you have just received the greatest gift ever from someone - a deep appreciation and thankfulness for the gift you have received. Know in your heart that you will use this gift to the best of your ability and celebrate that it is finally here.

The above steps will turn the task of intending your positive future into an automatic process. Soon, you will start to do this without having to remember or remind yourself.

One last thing to watch for throughout the day is negative thoughts. As you practice breath counting daily, your awareness during the day will increase and you will start to notice the unintended thoughts more often. When you do notice thoughts that you do not like, replaced that thought with another. An easy way to do this is to think about something completely different. For example, if you find yourself thinking "...I'll never have enough courage to ask for..." think, "...when is the next time I need to practice my intentions?"