“Five seagulls are sitting on a dock. One of them decides to fly away. How many seagulls are left?”
“Well … four.”
“No,” Jones responded. “There are still five. Deciding to fly away and actually flying away are two very different things.
“Listen carefully to me. Despite popular belief to the contrary, there is absolutely no power in intention. The seagull may intend to fly away, may decide to do so, may talk with the other seagulls about how wonderful it is to fly, but until the seagull flaps his wings and takes to the air, he is still on the dock. There’s no difference between that gull and all the others. Likewise, there is no difference in the person who intends to do things differently and the one who never thinks about it in the first place. Have you ever considered how often we judge ourselves by our intentions while we judge others by their actions? Yet intention without action is an insult to those who expect the best from you.”
(Andy Andrews, The Noticer)
What have you decided to do but are too afraid, or stuck, or comfortable to actually do?
- Start running?
- Declutter your kitchen drawers?
- Wake up early?
- Finish that book you’ve been working on for months?
- Learn how to paint?
It’s a simple equation, but one that trips everyone at some stage.
Intention (I am going to travel to Thailand this year) does not equate to action (I’ve just paid for my flights to Bangkok).
Simply because we intend to do something does not make a dot of difference to our actual situation. We may be 100% certain that we will visit Thailand this year, but until we have booked, paid, packed and boarded the plane, our situation hasn’t changed. We’re still sitting on the dock.
So ask yourself, “What do I intend to do?”
Then, start doing it. Fly away from the dock. Even just a little.