last year, i read an interesting article about new year’s resolutions. rather than big resolutions, the author suggested an intention for every week. this idea resonated with me instantly. having a couple, even just one, resolution can be a lot of pressure. while an intention a week is also a commitment, i liked the thought of it being a journey to explore many different things.
the idea is that you’re embarking on smaller mini-resolutions. i made my list of intentions ahead of time but i chose which would happen when as i went along. spoiler alert: mine may not have been as mini as i thought and i didn’t actually get to all 52. but if i learned anything about this last year, it’s this: being perfect is overrated. some other musings…
being true to yourself, really
my intentions were different shades of things i’ve put off, things i’ve always wanted to do, and things i should do. after all, the ‘new year, new you’ theme is still very front and center. so i looked for things to get out of my comfort zone. this was both liberating and frustrating. liberating because i made clear goals for myself and had to focus my energy towards them. frustrating because some weeks you’re just too busy or not in the mood.
eventually, the same pressure of the big resolution got to me. everywhere you look there are ‘carpe diem’, live life to the fullest’, ‘no regrets’ type mantras. the encouragement is almost suffocating. i didn’t want this to become a checklist but at the same time i didn’t want to give myself outs. after some hits and misses, i’m slowly learning the delicate balance between holding myself accountable and giving myself the room to be imperfect.
agility isn’t solely for athletes
life expands and contrasts. you have to go along with it. i had many preconceived notions of how i would accomplish my intentions. i would document them on instagram. i would write a blog about each one. the latter was definitely an overshot on my part having not blogged prior. this is where that balance comes in. i could either beat myself up, or i could still enjoy my intentions without writing a blog post for every single one. so i changed my course. it’s about the experiences anyway, right? and like 52 intentions can be, not all of them are soul searching, life changing events. no, sometimes you just need an ez pass to avoid backups on the toll road.
you could wait, or you could just do
ok, i know this might sound strikingly similar to some of those encouraging mantras. and i know it’s not always that easy, trust me. this is where the accountability comes in though. it’s natural to want to share experiences with others. or to want to wait for everything to be in it’s place. prior to these intentions, i put off certain things because the timing didn’t seem right, or i didn’t have a partner in crime. in at least half of these situations, it was just an excuse. timing isn’t always right. i like solitude as much as i like company. so i needed to acknowledge those moments when i was being lazy, or scared, or whatever and get over it. from this i learned that it actually is true: the more you open yourself up, the more good things happen.
there ended up being another reason why i liked doing smaller intentions. one that i only recently figured out. in yoga, we talk about intention a lot. during our new years day class, my teacher asked us about the difference between intentions and resolutions. suddenly is was pretty clear. a resolution means ‘a firm decision to do or not to do something.’ an intention is ‘a thing intended; an aim or plan.’ actions may speak louder than words, but intentions can be deafening. intentions are something you constantly come back to.
so don’t resolve to fix something that isn’t broken. instead, intend to be the person you want to be. nothing more, nothing less.