It’s the end of 2019 and the start of a brand new year is upon us….2020! If you are like most people, you may make a New Year’s resolution that you plan to implement to improve yourself in some way as we kick off a new decade. Perhaps you are thinking of weight loss, a new job, earning a new degree or stopping smoking. All of these are great things to strive for. But making them a resolution might set you up for failure because the minute you miss a day at the gym or light up that first cigarette you may feel like you blew it and this thwarts the actual achievement of your goal.
Resolutions by nature are daunting and may even be intimidating. I offer you another option, to shift your mindset and set an intention for 2020. An intention is something you plan to bring about, achieve, or manifest. It can encourage a sense of self-awareness and alignment with who you are and what you truly want. It’s not about a promise that resolves an issue, as a resolution does. Rather, it can help you gently direct your thoughts and thereby, your actions in a particular way. And if you select a word or phrase as your intention, you can bring it to mind every day, and your actions throughout the day and all year can be pointed in the direction of your intention. When you need to make a decision or have a choice about something, your intention can lead you to make a better choice for yourself. This gentle way of working toward a new area of improvement in your life has a far greater chance of working as it inspires you to come up higher in the area you set out to.
It’s important to remind yourself of your intention every morning or journal about it daily or weekly. In doing so, it is kept on top of your mind every day and you will tend to make decisions that lead you to this intention every day. For instance, if you set an intention as “I am grateful for my optimal health and wellness”, notice it sounds more positive than “Go to the gym every morning,” which sounds restrictive and somewhat like a punishment. With your intention, you may feel empowered to do multiple good things for your health, such as take more walks in nature, eat more fruits or vegetables each day, take a new workout class, or even take a dance class. These are all multiple options that can lead you to your goal of optimal health.
Here are some tips for designing your New Years Intention.
- Take time to self reflect. Consider all aspects of your life. Reflect about your career, your personal relationships, your financial situation, your employment, your health, your happiness, your hobbies, your physical activity, your eating habits, your sleep, your stress levels, and your spiritual life. What is your level of satisfaction in all of these areas? Which one area is where you most wish for improvement?
- Consider your WHY. Ask yourself, of the area that you most wish to improve, why is that the case? What spurs you to this goal? What will accomplishing this do for you? How will it change or improve your life once it is achieved? You want to be aware of the “why” behind your intention because reminding yourself of your WHY is going to be the key to keeping you on track.
- Create a statement in a positive light that incorporates the improvements you wish to make in your life. Here are a few tips I’ll offer you to help you formulate your New Year’s intention statement:
- Include an expression of gratitude in your statement. (“I am grateful for…”, “I am thankful for…”)
- Ensure it is written as a positive affirming statement. Don’t use negative words. And don’t use words like “I want…” or “I wish for…” because that reaffirms a state of lack. This will block your likelihood of achieving your goals.
- Be certain to keep the sentence in the present tense. Much like any affirmation, being in the present tense is a mindset shift that says it’s already yours.
- Avoid using the words “should” or “want”, as these words assume a sense of lack. And you are better off coming from a place of abundance, not lack. That will attract more abundance to you.
- Keep it as brief as possible. One word is best, but a short phrase is also useful. Here are a few examples…
- I am grateful for physical healing.
- I am thankful for a peaceful family life.
- I am happy about my exciting career that helps people.
- I have gratitude for the wonderous travels I experience with friends.
- I love that I am strengthening my relationship with my Creator.
Setting intentions can give you options and freedom. It’s a gentle yet effective way of bringing you closer to your best life. Allow your intentions to guide your plans, actions, and choices all throughout the year. Keep them top of mind. And remember to give yourself credit and celebrate your good choices all along the way to achieving your goals.
I wish you much happiness, joy, and abundant wellness in 2020!