Where did the time go? This year has gone by so quickly. How are you feeling about going into a new year?
When the end of each year rolls around, I can’t help but feel a little enchanted by the infinite possibilities.
A great way to set yourself up for a fulfilled, satisfying year is to set an intention. Just like we do in class. I tend to keep them straight forward and simple, not overly spiritual, or complex (though those are of course fine too): I am peaceful, I am calm, I listen to what my body needs, I let go of what I don’t need…. etc
Setting an intention for your new year can play out however you like but setting an intention can be a lot more flexible than traditional new years resolutions which tend to get a bad rep and for good reason, apparently only 19% of people actually complete their new year’s resolutions and of those 71% “fail” in the first month but continue anyway.
Setting an intention is based more on feelings and less on desires. It also gives you flexibility to change. We are whole beings, we can’t say what the next year will bring but we can say we will take action to build something we want. More peace might mean more lofi music and low lights. More joy might mean joining a group for country walks. Or it might look completely different. That’s the beauty of it all.
I quite like setting a goal for the year, a good tangible thing, something realistic, motivational and smile-inducing. I set goals all year round, not just on New Years (that’s how much I like it hahaha) but it is also a sign of my flexibility with life. Not just setting a goal and reaching it but understanding the WHY. Why am I wanting to set this goal? How does it make me feel? How many different ways can this goal be met?
How to set a New Year intention
Step 1) Have you already got a resolution?
Your resolution might be “I’m going to walk every day”. Try asking yourself why you want to walk every day? Is it for health? Is it to be outside in nature? Getting down to the root of your intention means that if you fall ill for a few days, you won’t think you’ve failed because all you’ve done is rest and maybe opened a window. Resting is good for your health and even just a bit of fresh air from an open window can do wonders. Indoor plants might also form part of your resolution, once your think about.
Step 1) Starting from scratch?
That’s great too!
Take a few slow deep breaths. Look at something nice; out a window at nature, a candle flame, or your closed eyelids. How do you want to feel in 2024? What do you want more of in your life? What are the key words that come to mind? Peace, Chill, Fun, Nature, Healthier. You can stay with one word or you can use it to build your intention. Then write it down. Post it on social media. Say it to yourself in your yoga class when another intention isn’t more obvious.
Step 2) Create 12 Actions
If you break the year down into months and set a tangible goal for each month, a goal that is realistic and compassionate, you are more likely to meet your goals.
Step 3) Be flexible
Let go of perfectionism and re-examine your resolutions regularly.
Step 4) Spend money
Money is a pretty big motivator. It can sometimes help you stick to a goal if you spend money on it.
Step 5) Enjoy the journey
Don’t attach your happiness to the end goal.
Enjoy the journey! It’s easy to fall into that negative cycle of thinking that once I reach my goal, I’ll be happy at last.
But the power is in the journey. Where we learn to value personal growth as a never-ending adventure. When we value the journey over the destination, we’ll never lack in motivation.