There’s one major difference between a New Year’s Resolution and an intention. It’s where it comes from.
The word itself descends from a Latin word, which means to stretch towards something, while in Sanskrit it means a commitment. So, an intention stems from listening to your inner-voice and understanding your true desires. Whereas, a resolution is something that comes from your mind and is generally motivated externally.
A New Year’s Resolution is often something that we feel forced to do, like lose weight. Sure, you’d love to lose weight, but when you feel pushed into action it is likely going to end in failure. Whereas, an intention is your true desire and it fits. There is nothing forced, it is merely true.
Start Listening To Desire
We are always happier when we are in tune with our inner-voice and taking notice of how it is directing us in life. When we experience sadness and frustration, it’s generally because we have fallen out of step with our true desires and instead, we’ve been chasing other pursuits.
Human beings are all desire – the desire to be loved, to desire to love, the desire to be seen, to be heard, and to be happy, fed, and clothed. When we are in tune with our desires, nothing can stop us. Where we do run into trouble, though, is when we think we have to hide our desires. That tucking them away is the right way to proceed because we don’t deserve that happiness. Therefore, we push dreams away and dismiss ourselves as being unable to achieve them. This goes for your health, too.
Discovering Your Good & Bad Intention
• Quiet Time – learn to spend time with yourself. This will benefit your mental health, but it’s also a great opportunity to sit with herbal tea, get some candles scattered around, wear your comfiest clothing, and just breathe and spend time with you.
• Connect – do you enjoy yoga or perhaps you prefer to sit with a good book? Whether you’re going to take a long, hot bath or head out for a walk in nature – find ways to calm yourself down and relieve your stress. Your health will benefit from easing your mind and getting in tune with yourself.
• Journal – it doesn’t really matter where you write it, whether it’s in the notes on your phone, on your laptop or in a physical journal. What matters is that you’re doing it. Start by writing out the title – What I want or something similar. Now, take some deep breaths and get ready to unburden yourself of your wants and wishes. Don’t try to monitor what you’re writing; just free-write whatever comes to you. You should consider your mental health, physical health, and your emotional health, too. You can also include your spiritual health if you feel so led. Spend 20 minutes completing this exercise.
• Review – now that you’ve poured your heart out, you can check in with how you feel about it. Dismiss any feelings about being unable to do this or that. Those are your truest desires and they are the ones you should make an effort to chase.
If it’s too easy then it probably doesn’t matter that much, and if it’s hard… well, that doesn’t make it impossible. It’s just going to make it sweeter once you get there. A good intention would be to improve your overall health by increasing your intake of fruits and vegetables. A bad intention would be suggesting that you lose weight, without quantifying it or understanding how you’re going to achieve it. Life isn’t about New Year’s resolutions; it’s about listening to your inner-voice, following your true desires, and having the best intentions for your health, whether it’s physical, emotional, or mental.