Mastering Intentionality: The Key to Creating Your Own Success

person climbing a mountain

In this cut-throat, competitive, and fast-paced world, you might wonder how great and successful people attain their achievements. Some attribute it to luck, but is that really the case? Is success truly about being born lucky, while those who aren't have simply run out of luck? 

Michael Gerber, a renowned business guru and author of "The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It," famously said: 

"The difference between great people and everyone else is that great people create their lives actively, while everyone else is created by their lives, passively waiting to see where life takes them next. The difference between the two is the difference between living fully and just existing." 

Gerber implies that successful people don't leave their lives to chance—they make things happen. In the realm of emotional intelligence, this is called intentionality. This single competency distinguishes those who are successful from those who are not. 

The good news is everyone—including YOU—has this competency. You just need to develop it. Just like muscles, although everyone is born with them, they don't become strong or capable of lifting heavy weights immediately. To be fit and strong, you must discipline yourself with regular exercise, a proper diet, and adequate rest. The same principle applies to intentionality. While you have the potential, it requires consistent effort, discipline, and resilience to fully develop and harness it. 

The Common Misconception 

You might say: "I did everything I could. I manifested what I wanted. I was positive and confident, but I was still not successful. Why?" 

One common misconception is equating intentionality with manifestation. They are different. 

Manifestation is based on the idea that you can think your dreams into reality. Intentionality, however, is about thinking and acting deliberately, knowing what it takes to control your own outcomes and destiny. 

People with intentionality: 

  • Make decisions and take action consistent with their goals and values. 
  • Manage distractions and stay focused on their objectives. 
  • Make consistent efforts to bring about their desired outcomes. 
  • Clearly understand what they want to achieve in life, career, or even in a specific meeting. 
  • Act deliberately to achieve their desired outcomes. 

For example, if you want to start a successful business, merely visualising "success" is manifestation. Intentionality adds researching the market, creating a business plan, setting milestones, seeking resources, and staying committed despite challenges. 

Key Differences Between Manifestation and Intentionality 

Thought vs. Action: Manifestation focuses on the power of thought; intentionality emphasises deliberate action. 

Belief vs. Strategy: Manifestation relies on belief in the power of thoughts; intentionality relies on a strategic approach to achieving specific outcomes. 

Passive vs. Active: Manifestation is more passive, relying on mental focus; intentionality is active, involving conscious and purposeful actions. 

Control: Intentionality involves understanding and controlling the steps needed to achieve goals, while manifestation relies on the idea that the universe will respond to your thoughts. 

Intentionality is more than wishful thinking; it is HARD WORK. Like muscle building, it requires time, resilience, patience, determination, and effort. However, the rewards of intentionality are significant, maximising the likelihood of turning your dreams into reality. 

Signs You Lack Intentionality 

Everyone is born with intentionality. However, as mentioned earlier, intentionality needs to be exercised and developed to harness its full capabilities. Here are some tell-tale signs that you might need to work on this competency, which could be why you're struggling to achieve your plans: 

You Often Fail to Set and Adhere to Goals. You either fail to set goals or, if you do, you don't follow through with them. Consistently missing or abandoning your goals is a clear sign that your intentionality needs strengthening. 

You Allow Life to Control You. You find yourself being tossed about by the prevailing winds of life, reacting to circumstances rather than proactively shaping them. This lack of control over your direction suggests a need to develop greater intentionality. 

You Get Easily Distracted. You are easily distracted from what you ideally want to achieve, whether that's your ideal life, finding your perfect position or career, or being deliberate in choosing friends or a mate. Frequent distractions indicate a lack of focus and intention. 

You are Unsure of What You Want and are Poor in Planning. You are unclear about the outcomes you seek and fail to plan to achieve specified outcomes. Without a clear vision and a strategic plan, it's difficult to make intentional progress toward your goals. 

Recognising these signs is the first step toward cultivating intentionality. By addressing these areas, you can start to take control of your direction and work more effectively toward achieving your desired outcomes.

Developing Intentionality 

How do you cultivate this essential skill? Here are some expert-backed tips to help you develop intentionality. Remember, intentionality requires effort and dedication, so be prepared for a journey that might take time. You may even benefit from a coach to guide you through this process: 

Be Actively Intentional: Regularly ask yourself, "What do I want to achieve here?" Reflect on your goals for various contexts, such as meetings, your day, or the upcoming week. This helps ensure you are not merely reacting to circumstances but proactively shaping them. 

Set Clear Intentions: Define and pursue your goals with determination. Be specific about what you want to achieve and visualise the steps needed to get there. 

Embrace Joy and Astonishment: Experience the joy of creating richer, more meaningful, and loving interactions. Develop closer friendships, stronger bonds, and greater success at work. 

Stay Focused: Avoid distractions and stay committed to your objectives. Set priorities, manage your time effectively, and maintain focus on what truly matters. 

Seek Support: Don't hesitate to seek help. A professional coach can provide valuable guidance and encouragement. Coaches offer objective perspectives, accountability, skill development, motivation, and strategic planning. 

Believe in Your Control: Adopt the belief that you control your destiny. Recognise that your actions and decisions shape your future, and approach your intentions with confidence and determination. 

Developing intentionality is a transformative journey requiring commitment, but the rewards of enriched relationships, professional success, and personal fulfilment are well worth the effort. 

"Control your destiny, or someone else will." - Jack Welch 

Greatness and success are not byproducts of luck. They are the result of discipline, resilience, and hard work. Intentionality is crucial. For greatness, you need to not only manifest it but also intentionally work for it. 

So, what is your next move? Will you let circumstances control your destiny? Will your dreams simply remain dreams? Or will you control your destiny and shape your circumstances? 

The choice is yours. 

We are Here to Help   

Be intentional in developing your intentionality. 

At People Builders, we have a team of expert trainers and coaches who will help you and your team develop Intentionality and many other Social and Emotional Intelligence competencies.Contact us  today for a quick chat to see how we can partner with you to train and coach you and your team.  






Let's start a conversation!

Contact us to see how we can partner with you to bring out the best in your people.

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.