The New Year is a great opportunity to restart, re-focus and make changes for the better. Looking back on the year that passed, we can reflect and celebrate our wins - what we did well in 2021; while also recognising if there are bad habits to break and good habits to start that can bring real change to our lives. Here's when we usually come up with new year's resolutions to begin the year on the right track.
Question: Do you believe in New Year's resolutions?
For some people, having new year's resolutions is giving yourself needless pressure to make a change, improve yourself and your life just because it's the turn of a year. Also, January should be no better than the other 11 months in a year to decide you need to make improvements in your life. It totally makes sense but perhaps what's great about the new year is the fresh-start effect, the renewed energy and motivation, and the beauty of new beginnings, which you can use as a starting point to something better. Why not take this as a chance, right?
Have you made your resolutions yet? What's yours? The bigger question is - will you be able to keep your resolutions?
When it comes to resolutions, they are easier to make than to keep. When the January motivation high wears off, some of us, unfortunately, will slide back into old habits. If the tradition of making new year's resolutions have worked for you, that's great, keep at it! If not, don't lose hope. You can set intentions this year instead.
Here's why intentions are better than resolutions.
Intentions compared to resolutions are not set with an outcome or result in mind but rather it is a map to guide you through your journey and destination. For example, a resolution can be "to lose weight and exercise more this year" while an intention can be "to live a healthier lifestyle in 2022". The resolution is created to be accomplished and if not achieved, then there's the notion that you failed to keep that resolution, leaving us with a guilty feeling after. Whereas the intention of living a healthier lifestyle can cultivate various actions and allows for a continuous and purposeful life.
With intentions, yes you still might want to lose weight but you're not too focused on just losing weight but helping you develop a mindset of caring more about your health as a whole. Then maybe you will try eating better food, cooking your meals at home than eating fast food, exercise regularly, take more walks, do more active sports, go hiking, quit smoking, buy an air fryer, or try yoga, spend more time outdoors, meditating and minding your mental health, etc. There are more ways to get you to your goal and you may just be able to enjoy the journey too!
Intentions do not limit you to one goal that requires a specific action and outcome but a goal and mindset that cultivates effort and actions that you can incorporate in your day to day, ultimately leading you to a big change in your life and help you establish habits that are sustainable in the long term.
Sounds great, yes? If you haven't made your resolutions yet or decided not to, then try setting intentions instead. Think about what you want, where you want to be, what kind of life you want to lead, how you want to transform yourself for the better. Write them down, take action, you can make it happen!