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How do you get what you want in life, love and relationships? Well, here’s what does not work: merely wishing for, wanting, needing and/or deserving it. You can’t succeed without intention.

When people share access to the same information, resources, opportunities and experiences, yet do not get the same results, intention is the difference. Intention has nothing to do with what you wish for, hope for or what you say is important to you. It is not defined by what you want, need and deserve. You may passionately desire a relationship of honor, esteem and respect with a faithful, loving partner. You may desperately need refuge from mistreatment and abuse. And you absolutely deserve to be loved. However, people (including outwardly successful professionals and entrepreneurs) can and—too often, do—live their entire lives without having their desires fulfilled and their needs met, or getting what they may rightfully deserve. You get only what you act on with intention.

Are you investing your time, attention, energy and money into your problems—or into your solutions? Too often, while the answer may be “Yes” when it comes to professional development and education, it’s “No” when it comes to investing in personal growth and healthy relationships.

As with professional development, personal growth requires intentional investment in four key areas:

Your Time.  Are you intentionally investing it in reading books, attending seminars and other activities (many of them free) to enhance your personal growth?