New Year Intentions
With the new year around the corner, it’s easy to get in our head and overthink what we need to stop, start, fix and change. The cursed “shoulds” begin to cloud our mind with guilt and shame, leaving us feeling hopeless before January 1st rolls around. The new year does not need to be a time to be hard on our self for what we have not accomplished. This phenomenon creates a sense of internal lack and unworthiness. In turn, we write a list of ways to be better by making resolutions. This pendulum effect swings us from one extreme to another, setting us up to fail before we even begin. That’s why the gyms are packed in January and start to die down toward the end of February. Let’s look at how we can shift our perspective on the new year.
“The new year does not need to be a time to be hard on our self for what we have not accomplished.”
Before we jump into 2019, it is important to reflect on the year we are wrapping up. Take time to look back and think about how much you have grown, how much you have learned and honor the person you are now. Here is an example of a reflection ritual from the Chopra Center. Get out a piece of paper or journal and take time to contemplate the following:
- What I accomplished in 2018
- List of disappointments or setbacks
- Lessons learned from setbacks
- Forgive whomever you need to forgive
- What I am most grateful for
Don’t beat yourself up for the things you didn’t do. Celebrate your successes, celebrate what you did achieve and focus on what you have done. By reflecting first, we create a mindset for compassion as we complete the year and get ready to start anew.
“Take time to look back and think about how much you have grown, how much you have learned and honor the person you are now.”
As you look to the new year, see if you can shift the notion of making resolutions to setting intentions. Intention is defined as a purpose or attitude toward the effect of one's actions or conduct. Ask yourself, what intention do I want to have for the year ahead? For example, my intention for 2018 was to trust and surrender. By setting this intention, I entered into a practice of letting go of control and accepting things as they are. Having a purpose-driven intention helps to ensure our motivation is aligned with our goals. Having goals are helpful if we are coming from a place of mindful awareness.
“Practice gratitude for all you have done and how far you have come.”
Lastly, allow for grace. Be kind to yourself as you set your intentions and goals for 2019. Check in with the voice(s) in your head. Make sure not to disparage yourself or demand unrealistic results from your efforts. Treat and speak to yourself the way you would a dear friend or loved one. Practice gratitude for all you have done and how far you have come.
Cheers and Happy New Year from Boost Counseling & Consulting!