I absolutely love the beginning of a new year! It’s filled with so much hope and possibility!
For me, 2017 was filled with big wins like getting engaged, teaching at a new yoga studio, launching my new website, starting a new part-time job teaching Pilates reformer classes, getting my first corporate health coaching and yoga opportunities, seeing my health coaching clients make massive shifts, and doing a lot of inner work on myself. But the year was also full of profound challenges like working in an incredibly toxic workplace, feeling uncomfortable in my body after gaining weight due to stress from my job, losing my job after standing up for myself, experiencing a lot of self-doubt around running my business full-time, and anxiety over finances as I transitioned to working for myself. But I like to think that challenges are divine opportunities to learn and grow.
In the past, I had the same resolutions every year – lose weight, pay off debts, and find my dream job. Year after year, the end of December would come and I hadn’t achieved my goals.
When I became more intentional about my goal setting, everything changed. My life began to transform into exactly what I wanted. I’ll be honest, it was pretty magical.
At the beginning of 2017, rather than resolving to pay off debts, I set an intention to spend less on material items. I ended up doing the Minimalist Challenge and reading the book Money: A Love Story by Kate Northrup. Both completely changed my mindset around money and made me more mindful of the things I buy, and helped me to get way better at budgeting and saving. I also created a more realistic plan for debt repayment.
I also set the intention to create more freedom in my life at the beginning of 2017. I was feeling over scheduled and burned out working full-time, running my health coaching business, and teaching yoga and fitness classes. My 8 to 5 was also becoming increasingly stressful and toxic, which lessened my desire to work there. I began scheduling one evening a week for self-care. I didn’t see health coaching clients, do any work, or teach classes on those nights. I also began visualizing what my life would be like if I was a full-time health coach and yoga teacher. Every morning as I walked from my car to my office, I imagined how I would feel if I was able to live up to my true potential without having a supervisor who held me back, work with people who lifted me up and inspired me, and do work that was fun and exciting. During the Solar Eclipse, I set an intention to create even more space in my life. The next day, after speaking out when I felt my supervisor had been inappropriate and unprofessional, my boss informed me that I would either be terminated or I could resign immediately. I resigned. As traumatic (and unfair) as it was, I also felt like I had manifested it through my intentions and visualizations.
These are just two examples of how intention setting created massive shifts in my life, but there was even more growth in other areas of my life because of the intentions I set at the beginning of the year. I, of course, didn’t achieve all of my goals. I usually revisit my goals throughout the year and decide if they still feel relevant or achievable. You can read about my 2017 intentions here.
It’s not as simple as setting an intention and hoping it will happen. Intentions only work when there is action! But an intention can help you get clear about how you want to feel.
How to Set Achievable New Year’s Intentions or Goals
I begin by creating a sacred space and making my intention setting a ritual. I diffuse essential oils, light candles, drink tea or coffee, put on some music, and get cozy.
First, take some time to celebrate the past year. What did you accomplish? What made the year magical? What did you do right? What challenges came up?
Next, write down release statements. What do you need to release from the previous year that is no longer serving you? You can even write these down on small pieces of paper and burn them if you like rituals.
After taking some time to think about the previous year, I come up with a word for the new year. This is my overall intention for the year, a feeling I’d like to cultivate.
My word for 2018 is Abundance. My mantra: I create abundance in all areas of my life – love, friendship, finances, fun, relaxation, self-care, creativity, and passion. 2018 is a big year for me because I’m focusing solely on my wellness business and I’m getting married! So abundance felt like the perfect word for the year.
Once you’ve found your word for the year, set New Year goals or intentions that will allow you to grow in order to find happiness and contentment with who you are right now. We tend to set New Year goals from a place of lack – we feel like we’re not skinny enough, fit enough, wealthy enough, happy enough, etc. But when we set goals in a more positive way, it’s easier to achieve them! I tend to set all of my new year goals with my word of the year in mind.
Because I own my own business, I set personal goals and business goals. You might categorize your intentions as Work, Personal, Family or whatever you choose. I set quite a few intentions for the new year, but you can focus on one or a few if that feels more manageable to you.
My 2018 Personal Intentions:
- I feel happy, present and low stress as the fiancé and I plan our wedding. Our wedding is gorgeous, relaxed and fun.
- I create a more consistent personal yoga practice and find a balance with teaching.
- I forgive myself for my financial past, shed my limiting beliefs about money, and create financial abundance.
- I make pleasure a priority and shed guilt for doing things that don’t feel productive.
- I spend less time on social media. I use social media in a strategic way for my business, and spend less time mindlessly scrolling.
- I’m happy and healthy, I love my body, and I feel confident.
My 2018 Business Intentions:
- I create financial abundance in my business.
- I help more women through 1:1 coaching.
- I launch my new virtual program at the beginning of the year, and help women lose weight without dieting, create healthier relationships with food, and love their bodies more.
- I grow my email newsletter list to reach more people. You can join here!
- I write guest posts for like-minded blogs and websites.
- I partner with companies I love and earn income from blogging partnerships.
- I create video content consistently.
- I teach more essential oil classes and share my positive experience with oils with more people.
- I consistently share my favorite nutrition products from Life’s Abundance and share my positive experience using the products for the past two years.
- I grow my yoga classes and offer private yoga session to share yoga with more people.
Setting intentions and goals only works if you create action steps to achieve them. Here area a few tips for setting action steps…
- Identify the obstacles that could hold you back and set action steps for overcoming them.
- Determine how you will have to adjust your life to achieve your goals. You can’t add more into your life without taking something away.
- Make your goals a priority and dedicate specific time to achieving them. Put it in your calendar.
- Start small. If you want to have more energy, then start with going to bed 15 minutes earlier each night for a few weeks. Then try drinking a smoothie each day to add more nutritious foods into your diet and crowd out foods that are zapping your energy.
Want more? I love using How to Write Fail-Proof New Year’s Resolutions from Rebekah Borucki because she has a great process for releasing what’s not serving you from the previous year and A New Year Tradition that Works by Sarah Jenks because she has steps for creating a meaningful new year.
What is one of your intentions for the new year? Share in the comments!