Why New Year Intentions are Better than Goals


This New Years I was in magical Sedona, hiking the red rock spiritual vortexes. Vortexes are the intersections of natural electromagnetic earth energy, and are known to support and amplify spiritual transformation. This is a photo of Bell Rock, one of the most well known vortexes, and it was the perfect spot for me to pray and set my New Year’s intentions.  

The start of a new year usually brings in patients wanting to lose weight, to stop drinking, to start exercising etc.  There’s a force that happens in January--a collective energy that pours forth a mixture of hope and a desire for a fresh start.  Most people get swept up in resolution making, and I notice that much of it centers around diet and lifestyle, since bringing awareness to the truth of how we feel can be uncomfortable.

What about setting a personal intention instead of jumping on the new-year-new-you bandwagon? A new year’s resolution can be limiting and may even set us up for disappointment, where as a new year’s intention can feel expansive, liberating, hopeful.  Here are some tips to set your New Year’s intentions:

  1. Broaden your intentions.  For example, if your resolution is to “lose weight,” you can replace it with “caring for my body.”  Having a narrow and specific goal such as losing weight can limit your opportunities. But, if your intention is to “care for your body,” this could open you up to going to bed earlier, relaxing in a hot bath, going for hike with a friend, and enjoying nourishing foods.  Feel the difference?

  2. “I am” vs. “I will” Declare you intention as if it is happening now, not in the future.  Notice the difference between “I will lose weight,” and “I am caring for my body.”  The first statement places emphasis on a future event that may or may not occur, whereas the second statement creates an opportunity in the present moment.  Saying “I am caring for my body” can inspire you to take a few deep breaths, get up and stretch, drink a big glass of water.

  3. Be here now, and not in the past.  Although reflecting on last year can be helpful in guiding your intention for this year, obsessing about the past can leave you feeling stuck.  Being present means allowing all of your energy and focus to be in this moment, and there is tremendous power in that alone.

  4. Find a word.  Sometimes after meditating, I will receive a word of guidance, which then turns into my intention for the day/week/month.  This is a great way to practice sitting in stillness and allowing your intuition to come through. If you are intimidated or uncertain about this practice, you can purchase a set of angel cards to get started.

To your New Year Intentions,
Chalita and Amie