A new year! A new opportunity to fail miserably at your new year’s resolution! Awesome! I’m all about failure! That’s the way to learn. Normally, I would congratulate you on this wonderful failure, but this year, we’re going to flip this whole resolution/failure tradition on its head. We’re going to opt for “intentions.” Instead of failing, we’re going to set these intentions and work towards them. There’s no failing in working towards a goal. With every step, there is success along the way!
About four years ago I start focusing on intentions, or a theme for how I wanted to feel and live as I moved through the year ahead. I’ve found much more success in this mindset. It is less about creating lofty goals, and more about creating a path for the year and aligning with a feeling and an attitude.
While resolutions like getting in shape, leaving the job you hate, getting your finances in order are very focused and achievable, it’s hard to find a motivating sense of personal gratification. These resolutions are long-term and may take a long time to achieve. This long journey is where many people fail. We are creatures of habit, and immensely focused on instant gratification (thanks a lot, smartphones). Is it really any wonder why most people give up in resolutions by the end of January?
The difference between those who have accomplished goals quickly and those who may have taken years to accomplish their goals is the level of emotional intelligence, integrity and attitude. Think of it like someone who won the lottery versus someone who took five years to build a multimillion-dollar business. Who do you think most likely grew the most in their journey to becoming a millionaire?
In my experience working and collaborating with entrepreneurs from all different backgrounds and levels of success, the person who trudged through the mud day-after-day, keeping their intentions at the forefront of their mind, found a heightened sense of wisdom, appreciation and resolve. They may have taken a longer route, but this gave them the opportunity to experience the school of life firsthand. I’m a firm believer that slow and steady wins the race. We need the opportunity to work on ourselves in order to become the person who achieves the goals and dreams we set out to accomplish.
If you’ve set a resolution for the year, I invite you to repurpose it by asking yourself some “big picture” questions:
For me, the shift from focusing on intentions rather than resolutions has been the catalyst for personal growth and an ongoing sense of fulfillment for the past four years. Focusing on how I want to feel throughout the journey, rather than a means to an end, kept me focused on the bigger picture and not just instant gratification. Today, seemingly unobtainable goals have and continue to materialize in my life – i.e. moving to Seattle, buying our first investment property, starting this blog, creating the Unapologetically Alive podcast, paying off my credit card debt, leaving my corporate job, being able to work from home.
If I had been solely focused on using these end goals as my resolutions for the year, I would’ve lost steam along the journey. I owe my success to focusing on the intentions behind the goals – how I wanted to feel as I worked toward accomplishing these goals at my own pace. Read more about my journey to achieve these goals by setting intentions – Actionable Steps to Pursuing Your Dream and How to Succeed in Business by Really Trying. It’s funny, when you align with the intention behind your goal, things start to unfold.
Maybe you’re thinking, if we are going to fail from the get-go then what’s the point in setting a goal at all? I hear that! It’s frustrating! With all the focus our culture puts on New Year’s resolutions and goals, it can often feel like we’re playing someone else’s game. That’s not motivating in any way, shape or form. We all have dreams. We all have something we’re yearning to breathe life into; it’s part of who we are. This is where we reset with an intention. “I want to (insert your intention here).” It can be as simple as, “I want to write down on paper, my fantasy job.” That’s not so daunting, is it? Write down that intention. You’ve succeeded! How’s that for personal gratification? “I want to create a business plan for my personal training business.” “I want to make a happiness vision board.” These are goals. What is the intention behind them? I want to feel empowered? I want to feel strong? I want to feel enlightened? These are the intentions to align yourself with that will carry you along the path to achieving your goals.
It may feel daunting to think bigger, step outside of your comfort zone and shift from dreaming of your goal to walking toward it. Simply writing an intention on paper is a way to visualize your goal and get that wonderful sense of personal gratification.
So, what are you waiting for? Do you need help developing a clearer intention for 2020? If you find yourself creating a story that is preventing you from pursuing your dreams, I’ve been there too. Whatever the reason – fear, doubt or hesitation – I’m here to help! Schedule a Complimentary Consultation Call with me and we’ll dive in and face these roadblocks head on together.