Skip the resolutions, create intentions

Does the image to the right remind you of any past experiences you’ve had of making a resolution, like eating less sweets, using willpower to stay on track, and shortly finding yourself doing just the opposite? And then falling into a pit of shame and self-blame, thus negating the enjoyment you could have derived from indulging in those treats. We humans have been making New Year’s resolutions for thousand of years, both as religious ritual and secular practice. According to recent research, while as many as 45 percent of Americans say they usually make New Year’s resolutions, only 8 percent are successful in achieving their goals. Resolutions are often aimed at resolving some problem–lose weight, drink less, save more money and they are often very specific, for example, lose 10 pounds. But they can also be too defined so that we feel we’ve failed when we don’t reach that specific target. There are instances where setting a target goal and measuring your results are beneficial, such as athletic training. However, for most people a more open approach may work better. Setting an intention of eating healthier, with guidelines, could result in weight loss and many other benefits as well. The dictionary definition of intention is “a mental state in which one commits themselves to a course of action”. I believe it includes our attitude and the experience we want to have as we take action, not just the end result, as well as who we become as we manifest it.

“Every journey begins with the first step of articulating the intention, and then becoming the intention.Bryant McGill

I think the pandemic has made us realize the futility of being attached to specific outcomes. Being open and flexible creates a space for something even better to show up. If we are too focused on both the result and the way we want to receive something, we may miss out on some unexpected opportunity that we might not have even imagined. Reflecting on 2021 I realized that what I want more of is creative and adventure experiences with family and friends as we have done in the past. Just visiting and talking is great, but I get most energized when we are doing something together. One of my most memorable 2021 experiences resulted when I forwarded a fun article to a group of friends who I thought would enjoy it and one of those friends organized an outdoor costumed gathering based on it. It was a magical experience! So this year one of my intentions is “I easily and effortlessly co-create positive memorable experiences with family and friends that we all thoroughly enjoy.”  I look forward to seeing what unfolds. What are your intentions for this year?

Ha! What resolutions? card by Jane Norton

“Intention is more than wishful thinking…it is a philosophy of the heart put into practice, a consistency of conscious patterns of thought, energy and action.”

Jennifer Williamson


What has been your experience of setting resolutions or intentions in the past?

If you achieved any results, what do you think was the key to your success?

What are some intentions you would like to manifest in your life this year?


Create an intention for something you want to manifest. Make a written statement and keep it in a visible place.

You can use this basic format: I choose to manifest (WHAT) by (ACTIONS) with (ATTITUDE) and (ENERGY), concluding with “This or something better”.


Dr. Wayne Dyer’s book The Power of Intention: Learning to Co-create Your World Your Way explores intention as a field of energy that you can access to co-create your life. Lynne Mc Taggart’s book The Intention Experiment: Using Your Thoughts to Change Your Life and the World shares cutting-edge research on the power of intention and her group experiments in affecting change.

NOTE: I am not a fan of making Jeff Bezos any wealthier. I share links to Amazon for the book reviews and free Kindle samples. I prefer to support independent bookstores and Kobo, the ebook publisher for those Indy stores.