Have you ever wondered why New Years resolutions don’t work? Think about it. Resolutions are generally focused on fixing something that we perceive as “wrong” or “bad” about ourselves. Resolutions focus on negatives, on criticism, on judgement, usually topped with a glob of guilt! When we fail to live up to our lofty resolutions, we beat our selves up. We see ourselves as failures and are wracked with guilt and shame. I don’t know about you, but this seems to me like a surefire way to feel pretty horrible about yourself.
Instead, I invite you to focus on creating an intention for 2015. Think about what you want more of in your life. Is it love? acceptance? kindness? forgiveness? understanding? compassion? Ask yourself what would you like to experience more of in life? What makes you feel alive, connected, fortunate? What brings fulfillment, meaning and joy to your life?
It’s important to remember that an intention is not a goal. Setting an intention is a way to focus your attention on the “here-and-now” in the ever-changing flow of life, when we feel off-balance and we come back to our intention, it will bring comfort. Setting an intention allows you to live your life with integrity and compassion – for yourself and others. Just thinking about your intention brings pleasure and peace.
There are many ways to set an intention. Meditation, yoga, guided imagery. If you are unfamiliar with these practices, then simply close your eyes and create an image of yourself at your very best. Use all your senses to create a vivid image and see what comes to mind. Try not to allow negative self-talk into this vision, if negative thoughts emerge then let them go (without judgement) and re-set your focus to positive, compassionate thoughts. Once you have decided on your intention you can solidify it by creating a piece of art that represents your intention and displaying it in a prominent location. Or simply write the word on a piece of paper, sticky note, or note card and keep it with you as a reminder. If you are still struggling with the process, seek help from a professional counselor, life-coach, yoga or meditation instructor. Live life with intention in 2015.