Setting New Intentions for 2022
“Intentions compressed into words enfold magical power.”
New year, new opportunities! January is the perfect time to reflect, dream, prepare and set intentions. Setting intentions is the act of stating what you intend to accomplish through your own choices and actions. It is your own personal commitment to what you want to happen in your life. When you are intentional about something, your focus is fully in the moment and you think about who you are, what you do, and why you do it. Setting an intention is one strategy that can help you achieve your goals.
Here are steps to help you set an intention:
Step One: Determine what it is that you truly want to happen.
Figuring out what you really want in your life is the first step in the intention-setting process. What you choose can be big or small; it might be buying a new laptop or it could be choosing to eat more healthy foods. Once you make your intention, write it out and let it sit for a day or two. When you come back to it and if it still resonates with you, then that is a good intention.
Step Two: Determine who you have to be to make your intention a reality.
Setting an intention is about “being” so you need to focus on who you need to be to make your intention happen. For example, if your intention is, “I will get grades of B or higher in my classes” then you have to be a person who prioritizes doing the work to get the grades. So your intention might be, “I intend to complete all my homework assignments” or “I intend to see myself as a capable student.”
Step Three: Decide what specific steps you will take to make your intention a reality.
Motivational experts have a phrase they often use, “Specificity breeds success.” This means you set up the small steps that need to be taken in order to fulfill your intention. So if your intention is, “I will lead a healthier life in 2022” then your smaller, specific steps could be, “I intend to go for a walk 4 days a week” or “I intend to start my day with a nutritious breakfast.”
Step Four: Reinforce your intention every day.
Reflect and think about your intention when you wake up in the morning. If you do this every day, it will soon become a daily habit. Before you get out of bed, say your intention out loud. For example, “I intend to be a healthier person so I am going to get out of bed, take a refreshing shower, make myself a healthy breakfast, and go outside for a walk.” And then do it!
Setting an intention is a wonderful tool to help you create the life you want to lead. And remember, the intention you set for yourself should be tied to your personal values and perspective on life. Try to frame your intention as a positive. For example, “I intend to treat myself and others with kindness” rather than “I won’t gossip.” Your intention can be a specific goal or a simple word or phrase that you would like to connect with, such as “be courageous” or “be at peace”.
Here are some thought-starters that can help you get started with setting your intention:
- What would you like to build or create?
- What makes you feel proud?
- What are your dreams for yourself?
- What are you grateful for?
And here are some intentions that might resonate with you:
- I intend to embrace change
- I intend to act with courage
- I intend to stay calm and focused
Happy New Year from all of us at Advance LA!
Jeri Rochman, JD, MS
Jeri Rochman, JD, MS, is the Advance LA Director of Community Outreach, a Life Skills Coach, National Board Certified Counselor and Certified Parent Educator. Interested in learning more about Advance LA’s services?