Four Layers of Intentions

Intentions – our why.  Our why of others, our why of responsibilities and tasks we are given, our why for what is said to us or asked of us, our why for what we are doing, our why in who and what we trust and our why for our life and existence.


Our intentions are the most powerful force behind everything we say, do, hear, see, smell, taste, touch and feel and as importantly the outcomes we experience.

Intentions are the purpose and reason behind everything we do, say and ask. They are our motivation, motive and our agenda.

Our true intentions influence the outcomes we experience. And what we put out we get back.

I have had many people say to me “I had good intentions, but the outcome was not what I intended”. Or was it?

Do you actually know what your true intentions are? Are you aware of your intentions at the time you take action or say something, or do you only become aware of them after the outcome? Are you aware of them at all?

It takes awareness and understanding of your processing and the different layers of intentions that you experience, for you to truly work with your true intentions and create the outcomes you truly intended.

As I am writing this, I ask myself what is my intention for writing this blog.

For me it is what I know I am to do, it is an opportunity to express what I know and to discover what else I know that I was not aware of. I want to see how this blog unfolds and how I will write this.

I also want to share, connect and support awareness and processing for others.


Now is the time for you to explore your intentions. This is an opportunity for you to see where you are at now in your awareness, understanding and processing of your intentions and where you may get to after reading this blog.

What is your intention for:

  1. doing the job or work you do?
  2. living where you do?
  3. being with the partner you are with (if you have one)?
  4. having the close friends you have?
  5. for reading this blog?

People often focus their intention and reason for doing things, on the outcomes, results and people around them.  On things that are external to them.

“I am doing this to help them …..”, “ It is my purpose to get people to ……”, “I want to help people….”. 

They believe they are doing things for others.

However, there is very little that human beings do that is unconditional.  Unconditional  being where people do things totally for the other person or other people, and where there is no purpose, reason or benefit in their action for them.

The more comfortable we become in owning that just about everything we do, we do for ourselves, the more powerful we will be in being conscious of our intentions and their influence. The more we will experience and accept the outcomes we create from our intentions.

This does not mean that you only have one intention and that you only do things for you.


From what I have processed and discovered in me and others, there are layers to intentions.

To discover the different layers of intentions you have within and on the outside of you, it requires self-exploration and a willingness to face and be truthful with yourself. This is because your true intentions lie within your truth.

There are layers of intentions you have that have an external focus. This is where the reason for what you do and say is focused externally and about an outcome you desire outside of you.

There are also layers of intentions where the focus is internally of you. This is where the reason for what you do and say is focused on you internally and is driven by an outcome you desire inside of you.

You also will have dual intentions in everything you experience-you have an external and an internal intention.


OUTSIDE YOU – externally

  1. External Situation Intention
  2. External Person Intention

INSIDE YOU – internally

  1. Internal Surface Intention
  2. True Intention

An example to clarify the operation of the layers:

I remember exploring intentions during one of the training programmes I was facilitating. One of the men spoke up half way through the session and said “bulls..t” in relation to the four layers of intentions and that most of what we do we do for us. 

So I asked him if he could share more of his processing.

He said “when I go to the store and buy my daughter a toy, I do so, so she and her friends can play with it.” And I asked him, “so why do you want your daughter and her friends to play with the toy?” And he stopped and pondered on the question. He responded with “Actually I buy it for my daughter, because it makes her happy.”

Me being me and knowing intentions, continued to go further.

“So why do you buy your daughter a toy to make her happy?” At this point he dropped his head down and rested it on his chest. He was moving out of the processing in his head, and down into the rest of his body. His response was “Because it makes me feel good as a father”.

He had come along way in his processing of this, however we still had not got to his true intention and truth yet. So I asked him “As a father, why would you buy your daughter a toy?”

His answer was “I want to”.

Our true intention is so simple and real and yet we struggle so much to own this. We can’t we just own our truth.


This fathers layers of intentions in buying his daughter a toy were:

OUTSIDE YOU – externally

  • External Situation Intention – so she and her friends can play with it
  • External Person Intention – to make his daughter happy

INSIDE YOU – internally

  • Internal Surface Intention – to make him feel good as a father
  • True Intention – he wanted to

If this father had bought the toy and given it to his daughter based on the external situation intention, she would have taken it and possibly not even played with it. The message sent to his daughter would have been one that was not clear in its intent. She may have even interpreted it as her father bought the toy for her friends and not her.

Why? Because there is a significant gap in the intention and energy between the external situation intention and his true intention. People can sense and feel this, and if they don’t get the answer as to why this is, they make up their own. Questions are raised in a persons head and some may even get suspicious, believing there is more to this action. Then trust breaks down, because people sense there is more to the persons intention. And they are right.

If this father had given the toy to his daughter based on her being happy, she may have felt the weight of the expectation that she had to like the toy and be happy with it. She will have felt that there was something else attached to the toy, because of the gap in intention and energy between the external person intention and true intention.

If this father had given the toy to his daughter based on it making him feel good as a father, his approach would possibly come across as though it was all about him and not her. Yet again she will feel the gap in the intention and question it – whether subconsciously or consciously.

If this father gives his daughter the toy because he wanted to, the message will be clear, clean and visible. There is no gap, there is nothing hiding, there is no other energy lurking. She will see and feel the transparency of his joy and happiness in having done this for him and her.

If this father owns his external and internal true intention, then he will own that he bought the toy because he wanted to AND he wanted to make his daughter happy. The outcome of the transparency of these two intentions sends a very clear message to the other person. As a result the outcome will be a reflection of the true intention.


Our intentions impact our trust levels with others. They leave questions about peoples agendas and whether they are hidden or not. The hidden agenda is purely the gap between the true intention of a person and the intention they are claiming is the driver for their words, questions or actions.

The more you own your true intention, then the more you will experience the outcomes you truly intend to have.


Having now explored the four layers of intentions, explore these questions again. This time from the perspective of the four layers of intentions and see what your answers are now.

What are your intentions for:

  1. doing the job or work you do?

  2. living where you do?

  3. being with the partner you are with?

  4. having the close friends you have?

  5. reading this blog?

2 thoughts on “Four Layers of Intentions”

  1. Hi Melinda,
    An interesting read, thanks for explaining so clearly.
    My head says, lack of attention to my intentions needs some thought and practice.
    On the other hand I think I personally tend to waffle in an attempt to explain where I am coming from when communicating.

    1. Dear Lynne thank you for sharing, intentions is a process that requires awareness as you know, and it requires being aware of the different layers of ones processing, to identify what our true intentions are. I do not experience you waffling when you attempt to explain something. Neediness is often an intention that drives alot of peoples communication, actions and decision making. One step at a time.

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