Forget About New Year Resolutions, Set Intentions Instead

How many people end up making the same old New Year resolutions every year hoping that this time they will be turn out differently?

Research shows that four out of five people give up and abandon ship by February. Too many unrealistic goals set you up for discouragement and failure before you’re even out of the gate.

Let’s take a closer look at behind the scenes. Resolutions that don’t work are basically goals without intentions that end up being meaningless and unfulfilling.

How would you feel about going on a plane with no pilot? The same thing happens when you don’t set your intentions. You miss out on the driving force and principle that can guide your actions and help you achieve your goals. Incorporating the power of intentions puts you in the driver seat of your life. By joining both forces together, you can harness the power of being more mindful as you welcome the opportunity to start fresh each day with a clean slate. Intentions keep you grounded in the present moment and remind you to keep your focus on your dreams. 

The key to setting conscious intentions is knowing that in every moment you have a choice about where you want to put your energy and your focus. What you focus on now is what will grow. Expect miracles as you activate the law of manifestation and attract that which you desire in life. Always remember that “energy flows where intention goes”.

In the yogic philosophy, the word Sankalpa is a Sanskrit word for “san”meaning a connection with the highest truth and “kalpa” for a solemn vow thus making a commitment with ourselves to support our highest truth, affirming a resolve for our heart’s true desire.

As you become clearer about how you want to live your life, the path also becomes clearer. Point your goals in your heart’s direction and you’ll get there faster. Tap into a life filled with gratitude, hope, determination, grace, peace, joy and presence.

Intentions are inward driven and focus on the present moment. 
Goals are outward driven and focus on the future projections.

Intentions are based on our feelings and heart’s desire (state of being).
Goals are based on facts and action (state of doing).

Intentions are about the direction we are heading & enjoying the journey.
Goals are about the destination & the end result.

Intentions create long term growth and transformations.
Goals create short term gains. 

Intentions is about who you are and why you want to do it.
Goals are about what and how you are going to do it.

Intentions help you keep your aim and motivation as you learn how to turn obstacles into stepping stones. Intentions allow you to engage and enjoy the process rather than stress out and force the outcome.

Goals see mistakes as setbacks, you either win or you lose. You focus too much on the outcome and forget about the journey. You miss out out on all the lessons and joys along the way.

Most of you are familiar with the SMART acronym for setting goals namely (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time bound)

Well, now it’s time to set SMARTER intentions

S   soul-based – dig deep and connect to the core of your being

M  meaningful – what’s of value to you and set your priorities 

A   attitude adjustment – create a positive mindset to support your goals

R   review along the way – be open to feedback and learn to refocus

T   trust and believe in the power of intention; eliminate self limiting beliefs

E   envision – visualize and pay attention to the details of your dream

R   relax – have fun and enjoy the ride

Practical tips for setting intentions

  • Press the pause button – use quiet time to lower the volume on the outside noise and make quality time with yourself. Tune into your inner voice, listen to your heart’s desires, reflect on what you want in life and connect to what is important to you. Ideal time to meditate, write in your journal, draw, paint, do yoga, go for walk in nature.
  • Write it down – makes your intentions more tangible & concrete like a contract; make an action plan with the specific steps you’ll be taking to fulfill your intentions. For example, if your Intention is “I want to be healthy”, one of your goals is to exercise 4 times a week.
  • Make it visible – serves as reminder; do a vision board, put up pictures.
  • Keep them positive – use affirmations, written or spoken, to reinforce  and give you a booster shot of confidence and strength every day. For example, say “I want to be calm and relaxed” as opposed to “I want to be less stressed”…Paint the picture of what you want, not of what you don’t want.
  • Make it special – create a daily ritual where you set your intentions either  in the morning, evening or whatever time is convenient for you.
  • Release your intentions  – let go and let God work out the details. Watch all the synchronicities appear as you pay attention.
  • Have faith – just like planting a seed, you trust the universe will nourish your dream. No need to doubt or to dig up the seed to see how it’s doing.  Keep nourishing it and your dreams will grow into your reality.
  • And don”t forget to celebrate with rewards. Treat yourself !

Every journey starts with the first step of creating your intention.  

When we live with intention, our actions are aligned with our truest desires and our highest self. We learn to live our lives on purpose and with purpose. This will keep your soul nourished and alive with passion. Choose to live your life with awareness and compassion in the here and now.

With the new year comes the opportunity to write a new chapter in the story of your life. Are you ready to take ownership and create the masterpiece of your life?

Wishing you  many magical new beginnings in the New Year!

Antoinette Giacobbe