Setting your intention for a bright new year.


The beginning of each year is a chance to take stock, to reassess the comings and goings of our lives and to give thought to the direction we wish to head in. Maybe it has crossed your mind that this year things are going to be 'better', that you will make some changes in your life or let go of some old views that might be holding you back? Maybe you feel fatigue within that arises from the buried knowledge that you are not living your life to your potential?

How would it feel then, to be the architect of your destiny, that the seeds of thought we plant now may flourish today or in a year from now? Life can be a very effective therapy. Each day, each breathe is a chance to mess things up but it is also a chance to start again. How we resolve to live our life has the power to change the direction in which we sail, to tether ourselves more firmly to our North Star or our inherent values about how to live a life well.

We can use the power of Sankalpa, loosely translated as deepest heartfelt desire, or resolve, to begin any day, any year, any practice, any journey.

When you say something with your whole being it can change the world.
— Thich Nhat Hanh

What is my intention?

Ask the questions you have welling up within to help you find your Sankalpa. Every question is a chance to take a personal inventory of our lives, and to help bring clarity and focus to our core values.

We can ask ourselves…..

How is it that I want to show up in the world today?

What is it that I want to achieve in this life, the practice?

What is my purpose for being here at this class, on this earth?

What is important to me, what or who do I value?

What are my reactive patterns when life challenges me?

And if you are stuck simply ask yourself  what is the kindest thing to do or say or think towards myself and others today?

If we learn to set an intention then we can bring more focus, more attention to what it is we need to achieve and thereby redirecting our energy to where it needs to go.   The practice of setting a resolve or intention will also help you see that you have everything that you need within you to achieve change.


Setting your Intention

Once your awareness is more attuned you will find intention setting an easier task.

First ask yourself, 'what is it that I need to achieve, be like or do today?' Maybe you are suffering from stress or feel overwhelmed, tired or not good enough. Maybe you are having difficulty at work, or in your relationship.

Set your intention in the positive as if it has already happened. 'I am loved/ whole/complete/ strong/ free .....' choose a word that sums up how you want to be today or this week. State it in the present tense.

We can strengthen our intention by choosing a follow-on thought to keep you coming back to the practice.

Whatever (life brings) or regardless (what happens) are two great words to use in a Sankalpa because they remind to stick with it regardless of external influences or barriers that present themselves.

Today I am whole, complete and loved regardless of what life presents to me.

Keep coming back to your intention during the day, if need be write it down. The intention setting practice is about being mindful and remembering to practice. Keep practicing your intention on a daily basis until if feels like it has taken root and then move to the next seed you wish to plant.

Lastly, just see what happens.  The beautiful thing about Sankalpa is you are not trying to change yourself, or  trying to quell the negative aspects of yourself, rather you are trying to direct your energy to the areas in your life that need it and thereby presenting the best most beautiful version of yourself to everyone you come into contact with.