Resolutions vs. Intentions

Here it is! Another year coming to an end!

I mentioned in my previous post that I will not be setting any resolutions for 2017, instead I will be setting intentions. Some people have asked me what the difference is, and I am happy to elaborate.

First step, defining the word “Intention”:




a thing intended; an aim or plan.

A “Resolution” on the other hand: a firm decision to do or not to do something.

There is a large difference already, just from One seems like an idea, a feeling, while the other is quite firm with a rigidness in its definition. Both have the same concept: setting a goal, but both expect different results.

Try this at home, think of a New Years resolution. I will too, so we may use it as an example for this exercise. “I will be healthier and lose more weight.” There, now I’ve said it. Since it is a resolution, my first step will be to perhaps purchase a gym membership. Maybe I will go to Jenny Craig and enrol in their program. Maybe I will go on Groupon and buy a 30 class pass for kickboxing – all of which are viable solutions. Let me remind you at this point that a resolution is a firm decision. None of the aforementioned methods are necessarily wrong, however, I have unknowingly set a timeline for myself – must happen in 2017. Now ask yourself this question – how will you feel if for some reason you are unable to achieve this goal? What are the chances that you will spiral down? How quickly will this impact you? Of course, all of this is speculation, you may be able to handle it just fine and move on, but I am sure you know someone in your life who will take this negatively.

Resolution are a lot of times hard-hitting and may lead to illogical, irrational decisions. The goal is the only thing that matters, which may add a whole lot of suffering to the journey. An unpleasant journey will still give you results, but maybe not the results you were looking for.

Intentions, on the other hand, hold a softer meaning. Let’s imagine the same situation, but instead use different words, “My intention this year is to be healthier…”. All of a sudden the focus changes. Maybe the first month will now be spent researching, rather than rushing to find solutions. An appointment with a naturopathic doctor or a nutritionist, perhaps? You will find yourself talking to more people, reading more, and finding a solution that serves you best. Now all of a sudden the journey is meaningful and you are doing what works for you. Best part of it all? If you do not get your required result, you don’t need to bring yourself down. All you do is…set another intention. Also, intentions see no timeline. You are in no rush. In fact, it does not even have to start on January 1st, you can set one now.

I set intentions on a fairly regular basis. Waking up, getting ready, how I am at work, how I am at home, the attitude I have towards life in general – all of these are a result of the intentions I set. It leads to increased awareness of your surroundings and of yourself.

20161229_184157-01Try something new today, set an intention. Remember, the New Year only celebrates the earth’s orbit around the sun, it does not change you as a person, and it rarely ever changes the world around you. Keep it as a day of celebration, but do not let one shift from year to year impact how to INTEND on living your life.

Did I mention – breathe? Happy New Year xx

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