What types of meetings stress you out? Presenting to clients? Sharing bad news to a team? Negotiating a raise? Telling a family member you won’t be able to make a special event because you have to work? Telling a supervisor you won’t be able to make a meeting because of a family event? A high stakes sales pitch? An important conversation with an important donor? All these meetings can be stressful. Do you set your intentions before you go into one of these meetings?
I recently had a meeting where I could feel the inner tensions. I’ll admit I even had a bit of low confidence. I knew I had to settle myself because I was ready, knew my material and just needed to catch my breath before I began. So I said…”Settle yourself Polly, set your Intentions”.
Grabbing one of my sand rakes, I headed to the local beach. As I walked, I was looking for the best place to set my intentions. I found a white log on the beach, it was beautiful and I found myself asking…what would it look like if I raked it back to life? Slowly I added leaves on the beach, then it turned into a bit of a dance as I added the veins to the leaves. Slowly the log began to take on new life just as the fog over the water lifted. Beach walkers stopped to talk with me; people from the cliff above shouted down to tell me how much they liked the design.
As the leaves branched out from the log, my intentions became clearer. I was bringing new energy to the log and the beach. One woman said…”the whole beach just feels so different today because of your work.” Ah, there was my intention…go into my meeting so that the participants feel something new, fresh and engaging. My intention was to help the participants feel new and refreshed.
As I returned to my car, I stopped for the birds eye view of my design. The leaves spread across the sand and created an image that was new and refreshing for the cliff walkers. There was my second intention of the day…create an experience that helps people to see things in a new way.
I packed my rake away, drove to my meeting, and settled in to the room with clear intentions. I was ready to meet the needs of the group.
How do you set your intentions before a meeting when you are feeling stressed, anxious or even low in confidence?