Updated: Jan 11, 2022
We all do it (or at least think about it)— we wake up on January 1st ready to set our New Year’s resolutions. Well, I am here to tell you to throw those resolutions out the window and focus on setting positive intentions for your life. Creating unrealistic “resolutions” puts unnecessary stress on you possibly setting you up for failure. Think about it, the word “resolution” is so finite and doesn't allow you the favor and grace needed to make sustainable life changes. Resolutions subliminally imply that you are not good enough and that you need to create a “new you” when in fact the current you is just fine the way you are, and may just need a tune-up so you can be the best version of yourself—as determined by YOU.
One way to manifest your dreams is to set positive intentions and create a vision board to help you manifest your wildest ambitions. Guess what?
The vision doesn't always start at the beginning of the year either. Setting aside times throughout the year allows you the freedom to create (and revise) goals to support your life’s vision.
Shifting focus to setting intentions is a more purposeful way to help you get to the end result—whatever that may be for YOU. You may want to focus on self-care, mental health, physical health, being more present, securing a promotion at work, traveling more, spending more quality time with family and friends. Whatever your intention may be, here are 5 tips to help you set and nurture your intention.
1. Know your “why”.
What is your desire for change? Connect your intentions to your feelings and don’t get too stuck on the desired outcome. For example, if you want to lose weight, ask yourself, why do you want to lose weight? It may be that you want to live a longer, healthier life so you can see your kids and grandkids grow up or for you to feel strong so you can do your favorite activities. Once you have established your why, write down your intentions (Tip #2).
2. Write it Down
The best way to get to where you are going is to have a written plan. This way, you have a concrete tangible tool that you can use to maintain focus. Use positive words, speak in the affirmative, present tense, and focus on your feelings. Review often so you can manifest your vision. Here are some examples:
I am healthy, free of chronic diseases.
I track my water, food, and nutrition intake every day.
I eat healthy foods that fuel my body.
I love myself and take care of my body, mind, and soul.
I wake up everyday at peace.
I practice gratitude daily.
3. Be realistic
Don’t overwhelm yourself with trying to overhaul your entire life in one fell swoop. Set small intentions that focus on specific areas of your life. Once you start to make progress in those areas, then branch out into other areas. This is why it is important to know your “why” (see Tip #1).
4. Reset and Revise
Set aside time occasionally, to check in on your intentions. If you feel like you are not making progress, think about these areas below. You may also need to think about setting a new intention that aligns better with your current lifestyle, which is okay because it shows you are being thoughtful and intentional about what you want for your life during this stage of your life.
How do you feel about your progress?
How can you refocus your energy to align with your intention?
Do you need additional support? Who can provide support?
Think about the roadblocks that are keeping you from living out your intention. What steps can you take to remove those roadblocks?
Write it down, journal your progress, and get an accountability partner(s).
You don’t have to do it all on your own—tap into your support system for positive reinforcement.
Having built in accountability will help you keep your intentions and recognize if progress is stalling. Give yourself favor and grace if you stray away from your intentions—you are human and life happens. Re-center and get back on track; it is more about the journey than the final destination.
Allowing yourself to be present in the moment will help you work towards your goals, ease your stress and anxiety around reaching your goals, and help you discern what’s important to you (or not).
Self-improvement happens when we are intentional and make commitments to ourselves.
Cheers to a new year and another chance to be the best version of YOU!