Every year it’s the same, everyone asks you, “so what’s your New Year’s Resolutions?” These goals we set for ourselves at the beginning of the year feel like a great way to commit to a new beginning, that clean slate moment. Yet it seems that so few of us end up able to follow through with them, even if we have a strong start. Sadly, for many of us this means that our resolutions will likely be replaced with negative self-talk full of feelings of guilt, disappointment, and defeat.
This year I want to challenge you to do something a little different. Close down your eyes, take a few breaths to chill your thinking mind, and ask what you want to see for yourself in the coming year, what do you want to give to yourself, what magic would you like to see surrounding your life? What does this year ahead look like, what does it feel like, how are you spending your time? Allow this image of your upcoming year to shape your year’s intentions.
Goals are usually quite specific, like going to the gym (now virtual) or a run every day, or doing Meatless Mondays, or maybe no alcohol for a year. Instead, try to find the intentions that support you in creating this life every day. For example, bringing health into your life, rekindling your partnership with passion and joy, time for self-care, etc.
This morning my New Years Intentions came to light as, treating my body like a temple, growing my connection with my partner with kindness and joy, growing my spirituality, living a life full of self-love and love for others, and truly believing in myself and what I am capable of. When I saw my vision of all of this unfolding in the upcoming year I was filled with excitement, happiness and contentment.
But the beautiful part is how all of this is so very possible. Creating these intentions allows you to set a variety of goals to support these endeavors, like going for a run, or going meatless or without alcohol. And because it’s not terribly specific there is space for life and all of it’s predictable and unpredictable nature to happen as it inevitably does, and to dance along with it. Can’t workout today? No worries, I have 10 minutes to take a walk, and I still feel gratified that I am acting with purpose towards my intentions, towards the life I am eager to live.
Once your intentions are clear, write them down and place them where you can see them every morning when you are planning or thinking about your day. Maybe that’s inside the cabinet door where your coffee mugs live, maybe that’s next to your daily task list, on your fridge, or next to your meditation cushion. Allow yourself to determine a more specific goal around one or more of your intentions that day. When you see your list, read it to yourself, remember the vision you have of the life you will be living this upcoming year. Let it become a part of you, and don’t forget to celebrate when you realize your intentions are becoming alive in your actions and choices.
Another great aspect of setting intentions instead of resolutions, is that there is no “wagon” to fall off. Every day you just get to wake up and decide how you are going to chose to act on your intentions that day. And tomorrow is another day with another set of choices. There is no defeat or disappointment, just a new day of choosing you and what you want for the life you are wanting to live.
A very Happy New Year to all of you, may it be full of everything you are hoping and dreaming for yourself. And may you give yourself the chance to live it!