Maximize the Power of Intention for the New Year

Resolutions … Goals … Intentions

It’s here. Time to welcome it. 2023. No turning back now. Welcome the year that’s here. Galvanize the power of intention for 2023.

New Year’s resolutions often get a bad rap. Justifiably so. Made in a moment, forgotten the next. Personally I gave up on the concept years ago. But I’m a believer in goal setting. I do it myself every year. It’s a process that I chip away at over several weeks, contemplate, dream about, discuss, write about … and recognize that life will come along (as it should) to shape and shake my goals.

Intention is a different bird entirely. Intention is the foundation that underlies my home.  Not just my house, but my home. Intention supports who I am and who I aspire to be. It is aspirational. I am living it and embracing it every day, but I will never fully achieve it. As they say about journeys, the meaning is in the going, not the destination. When my goals are supported by intention, there is a good chance that they will happen (or something better). When my goals are not supported by intention, there is little likelihood that they will happen.

Intention is about the space we inhabit. It’s the mood and the mindset. Whereas most goals involve actions (I will take a trip, write a book, get married, find a new job, learn to sing etc.), intentions are about a state of being. they are about deep change, learning, growth. To take a workshop in mindfulness is a worthy goal. To experience a more open heart is a great intention.

Maximize my Intention for 2023

My principle intention for 2023 is to live with calm mind. It won’t be the first (nor, I hope, the last) time that I embrace such an intention. I write those words with my whole heart and mind. I know that when I live with a calm mind, everyrthing works out better. It is not a “to do” goal, but a “to be” goal that supports every to do goal that I could imagine.  That said, there are steps involved. Movement starts with awareness. Being as aware as I am able of the thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations and external stimulants that fill my life. I begin my noticing and accepting. Not judging, not analyzing, not swearing to change, but noticing and allowing. Noticing with kindness and compassion. Allowing. Letting go of judgments.

As part of my early morning ritual, I take time to imagine myself, all day long, living with a calm mind. It is like taking a shower that cleans me all over. I mentally run through the day, watch myself in a meeting, siting down for coffee, writing a blog, cooking dinner … I see myself with a calm mind. I notice how I feel, how I think, how I speak. I find myself flowing more from one activity to another.  Easy. Relaxed. Calm. Calm. Calm.

And then …

Often, the day does not go exactly as planned. Upsets, stressors, fears inevitably show up. Intention does not eliminate such events, but it significantly affects how I respond. I don’t fight the changes, but I do refocus to maximize the power of my intention.  I see them as part of the tapestry, one more chance to respond with calm. I breathe easier. I watch the stress come and go. I allow. I sink into my intention.  For example, a book I’ve beenrfeading that helps me do this is “From Triggered to Tranquil” by Susan Campbell

How about you? What’s your attitude toward resolutions, goals and intentions? If you haven’t set an intention for 2023, how about it? If you care to share about what’s up, I’d love to hear. I think there is a special place, out there in our cosmic playground, for people who choose to live from intention. I’ll see you there.