After a season of indulgence (from caloric to financial) it’s common to make resolutions hoping to become a ‘better’ version of ourselves.
Thou shalt get more exercise, thou shalt eat healthier, thou shalt drink less wine, etc..
But research shows that only about 8% of people actually achieve their resolutions, and this restrictive, often harsh approach to change is rarely effective and can leave us feeling much worse than when we started. It just doesn’t feel good to approach resolutions with restrictive, militaristic effort and obsess over success and failure. But New Year’s resolutions aren’t like ordinary goals. They have a far more powerful effect on our psyche because the end of one year and the start of another symbolizes new beginnings, a new chapter, and another chance to achieve the things we’ve always dreamt of. So what if this year, we thought in terms of intentions rather than resolutions?
Intention comes from the Latin intendere, “to turn one’s attention,” and intentionem, “a stretching out.” While resolutions are firm and hard, intentions are flexible. They’re about where we direct our attention. They’re about being mindful. Today, we’re sharing a few easy ways to create more mindful intentions for the new year, so 2018 can be your healthiest (body, mind and soul) yet!
Creating Mindful New Year’s Resolutions
1. Consider Your Intentions
The best question to ask yourself is why you’re creating certain goals/resolutions. If your goal is ‘lose 10 pounds’ ask yourself – why do I really want to lose the weight? Is it because of low energy levels or the desire to stay active with the family? Honoring the personal meaning behind an action can help us maintain resolve with more successful results.
2. Focus on the Process
Rather than focusing on how difficult it’s going to be to achieve your goals, pay attention to the benefits of getting there. Studies have shown that intensely focusing on results paradoxically makes us less likely to achieve them – so instead of focusing solely on an action (like losing those 10 pounds) focus instead on the steps that will help you get there (like walking more or eating more plant based). Enjoy the process and find joy in the steps it takes to get there.
3. Be KIND
No matter how well we design our intentions, there are going to be weeks and/or months where achieving them seems impossible. Life will get in the way and challenges will present themselves. The best thing you can do to get back on track and continue working towards your goals? A fundamental life lesson to keep in mind is that we are constantly beginning again — each day, each breath. So stop with the negative language and judgement. Simply return to love, kindness and compassion and know that we’re all here just doing the best we can.
At SpiraVeg, we believe that New Year’s Resolutions are about growth, improvement, health and joy and we hope these simple steps help create a more mindful, meaningful 2018 for all of you! What intentions are you setting this year? Share in the comments below – we love hearing from you!