How To Set Your New Year’s Intentions

Your intentions create your reality”

A new year can be an exciting time, but also emotionally triggering for others – especially if you’ve recently gone through a divorce or other challenging transition in life.

You want to start looking ahead, but the trigger of what you are leaving behind can cause feelings of sadness, anxiety, depression, and even viewing yourself with a critical eye.

I personally struggled with feelings of fear and shame following my own divorce, and then job loss only months later. I had just turned forty and felt that everything in my life had blown up, and the new year approaching seemed to shine a huge spotlight on the negative emotions and my fear of the unknown.

I sat down and wrote of list of resolutions. None of which I succeeded at. What I should have done, was make a list of intentions instead.   

Resolutions are often focused on smaller goals like exercising more, less social media, losing ten pounds or cutting out sugar. Resolutions are intended to kickstart a change. While these changes can be great, when you are entering a new year after you’ve had a shit year, a new approach on thought-based changes might be more beneficial than losing ten pounds.

An intention has a broader focus and often has to do with personal growth, mindset, or self-improvement. An intention can be more forgiving, without the pressure of failing or succeeding with a resolution. An intention honors your effort and your process, it’s not just results driven.

In setting an intention, you move forward without having an attachment to a specific outcome—it’s more about the journey you are on. You still might lose the ten pounds, but it’s because your intention involves self-care.

A few examples of intentions are:

  • I want to be more positive this year.
  • I want to be get comfortable surrendering to the things I cannot control.
  • I want to have a healthy relationship with my mind and body.

So how can you approach this new year with the intention of thriving?

Here are Four Tips to help you as you set your intentions for the upcoming year.

  1. Reflect: Make an effort to learn from what you’ve been through. Set aside time to reflect on the past year. What did the last year teach you? What did you learn from that relationship? What did you learn from that loss? What have you discovered about yourself? What are you grateful for? 
  1. Curiosity: Approach the process of reflecting on your past year by envisioning your upcoming year with curiosity. What is to come? How will things be different this year? What new things will I explore? Give yourself the time and space to explore the possibilities. *Gulp* Maybe even get a little excited? 
  1. Forgiveness: This is not about forgiving others, which can come in time, this is about forgiving yourself. Forgiveness isn’t approval for what has happened, it’s choosing to rise above it. Self-forgiveness is not about letting yourself off the hook. It simply means that you accept what has happened, acknowledge you can’t change the past, learn from your experiences, and continue to move forward. 
  1. Patience. I know you want change to happen overnight, just patience grasshopper. Healing of any kind takes time. One of the first books I read when I was going through my divorce was “Love Warrior”, by Glennon Doyle. There was a powerful quote in her book that still sticks with me when I think of wanting to fast-forward through my challenging times, “The warrior journey is staying present with love and pain. Feeling them both, letting them bubble up in my body and come and go without hitting an easy button to escape.”

Don’t get me wrong, I am not anti-resolutions. However, when life has been challenging and you are overwhelmed with that is next, putting more pressure on yourself to succeed with a resolution might actually do more harm than good. But, when you approach your new year with intention, you become a force to be reckoned with.

To download my free 2022 Intentions Worksheet, CLICK HERE.

Remember, You Got This! 




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