Serendipity or Intention | Propelling Business from 2008 to 2010


Welcome to a new year!

Today is the first day of 2009. I’ve yet to write down all of my 2008 accomplishments, reflections and moments I want to remember. It’s been too holiday-hectic around here this week to claim quiet time to do that. Yet, a theme’s emerging.

Last year, I relied more on serendipity than intention to get from December 31, 2007 to January 1, 2009.

Let’s compare the two definitions so you can see what I mean:

Serendipity: a talent for making fortunate discoveries while searching for other things 

Word History: We are indebted to the English author Horace Walpole for the word serendipity, which he coined in one of the 3,000 or more letters on which his literary reputation primarily rests. In a letter of January 28, 1754, Walpole says that “this discovery, indeed, is almost of that kind which I call Serendipity, a very expressive word.” Walpole formed the word on an old name for Sri Lanka, Serendip. He explained that this name was part of the title of a silly fairy tale, called The Three Princes of Serendip: as their highnesses traveled, they were always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things which they were not in quest of….” Source:

intention’>Intention: An aim or design (as distinct from capability) to execute a specified course of action. from the Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms. US Department of Defense 2005

Silly fairy tale versus the Department of Defense – which approach propels farther and faster?

Before we get too far into 2009, I’m hoping you’ll take some time to catalog your 2008 accomplishments in a variety of categories. You choose, here’s a start:

  • Publishing
  • Releases
  • Connections
  • Projects
  • Revenue
  • Family
  • Spirituality
  • Travel
  • Education
  • Health
  • Contributions

Now, do the same thing for January 1, 2010. What, ideally, would you like to write in each of these categories? What will it take to make it happen? Will you rely more on serendipity or intention?

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