05 Jan Be intentional about 2017 – Set some intentions.
This time of year, a lot of people are making New Years Resolutions – resolving to make a change in their life. These resolutions are often about health, spending, bad habits that we’d like to change, or something related. I think resolutions are a great idea to make small (or large) changes within ourselves that we’ve been wanting to make. But, they don’t always stick (at least in my experience) and they are also more about a specific thing.
At this time of year, I also think it can be really beneficial to set intentions and goals for the year ahead.
I believe that everything changes when you are intentional: when you are intentional about how you spend your time; when you are intentional about who you connect with; when you are intentional about how you show up in the world or in your day-to-day.
Going through the process of setting an intention (or a few) at the beginning of the year helps you to determine how you want your year to unfold. Who do you want to be, how do you want to show up and what do you want your focus to be. It is about calibrating your energy to be aligned with what really matters to you.
Karen Gifford says, “Setting an intention is a little like setting your compass: it is always there in the background guiding you in a certain direction, even though you may not consciously be thinking about it at any given moment. There’s something a tiny bit magical about setting an intention—you may be surprised to find the world may seem to reflect your intention back at you, once you’ve taken the time to define it.
Many people, ourselves included, have had the experience of setting a clear intention only to stumble on a helpful book or have a very useful conversation about the object of that intention almost immediately afterwards. Or we may have a very satisfying experience, only to realize it almost exactly fulfills an intention we set for ourselves some time ago. An experience like that feels uncanny in the best possible way—like the universe is taking care of us and wants to support our best hopes for ourselves.”
I believe that we have the power to create our reality and setting an intention is an amazing way to set the foundation for what you want to create. And setting intentions can be powerful as it relates to manifesting and co-creating (which I believe we do), as well as having a touch point to check in with how we’re doing – are the things we’re doing in alignment with our intentions? Are we focusing our energies where we want to focus them? Am I being who I truly want to be and doing what I truly want to do?
As we all know, 2016 was quite a year. Looking back, I see a year riddled with loss – loss of many impactful and memorable people, the shocking loss of an election and with it, the loss of security, safety, certainty and hope for many. But, those overwhelming losses were just a part of the year. Overall, I see 2016 as a time of immense letting go. Yes, those losses are part of the letting go, but my year was also ripe with incredibly transformative experiences and insights that came from a strong energy of letting go. I saw it in myself and in others. And I believe that we have been letting go so that we can create space for what meant to come next – for ourselves, for our communities, for our country, the world, and beyond.
So, as the New Year approached, I had the strong desire to intentionally let go of 2016. To reflect on the year, acknowledge the good, the bad and the transformative, and determine what I wanted to leave in 2016 and what I wanted to bring with me into 2017. And from there, I really wanted to set some intentions and goals for 2017. With all of the letting go that we did in 2016, I can feel how important it is for us to determine what we want to create in those open spaces.
It was such a good intention, to do those things as the years transitioned, but life is what happens to our plans. So, like many, the actual turning of the calendar slipped by. I was with family and friends, celebrating, connecting (and skiing), and I wasn’t in the right space or mindset to really spend some conscious time with myself. But, that’s okay. So many worry that we need to make resolutions or set intentions or plan our years at just that right moment. NOT TRUE! It is okay to give yourself some time to recover from the holidays. It will happen when you are ready and the timing is right. And honestly, you can make resolutions, create goals or set intentions whenever you want!
I have personally set aside time for reflection, letting go and setting intentions this coming weekend, just because that timing feels right for me. And, I’m actually going to offer a free call on Sunday, 1/8/17 to anyone that is interested in setting some of their own intentions and goals for the year. I will be taking the group through some of the exercises and questions I use to reflect on the previous year and intentionally look ahead for the coming year. Stay tuned for the details on that call.
Whether you choose to make a resolution or to set an intention(s), create goals, or all of the above, I hope that you are feeling good about stepping into this new year and how you intend to move through it.