set intentions not resolutions by slhr photography

Why New Years Resolutions Should Just Die

set intentions not resolutions by slhr photography

Just Say No to New Years Resolutions

A few years ago I came to the realization that I hate New Year’s Resolutions. They are so notoriously known to be unsuccessful and prone to failure that there are about a million memes poking fun at this dysfunctional tradition. For a couple of years, Kevin and I even tried to do fun resolutions that we just knew we couldn’t fail at. For example, we had a resolution to try one new pizza place in Chicago each month. Totally do able right? Wrong. We missed at least 2. We persevered the following year with a goal of eating at a new themed restaurant each month. Again, we missed at least one month. What gives?

We all set our resolutions with the best of intention. We’re going to lose weight, drink water, read more blah, blah. But inevitably the shiny newness and most of all the motivation runs down and by February we are feeling guilty, ashamed, and eating cake to soothe the emotional wounds of our apparent failure. I have a better idea for you.

Live Your Life with Intention

That’s right. Live your life with intention. Intentionality is the key to shaping or designing the life we want to live. But what does that even mean? It means instead of setting a goal you are bound to fail when motivation runs out, you set an intention to live differently. For example, if you want to lose weight, instead of going on a diet, set the intention of eating more nutrient dense foods. And when you “mess up” and eat too much pizza and ice cream, you just bring yourself mentally back to your intention of feeding yourself nutrient dense foods.

This concept can be a bit vague and overwhelming so I like to choose 3 words I want to describe my year. My words for 2018 are Joy, Growth, and Adventure. Sounds pretty optimistic, eh? I think so, and I’m looking forward to bringing myself back to these intentions throughout the year when they start to slip away from me.

What does bringing myself back to these intentions look like? Well for example, knowing myself and my life, I’m likely to experience some restlessness and agitation. The urge to get away and do something different or exciting. I can take a look at my intention of adventure and see how I can use this concept to soothe that restlessness.

I’ve already implemented this one, actually. I had a major bought of restlessness most of December. I looked at our sad little travel savings account and felt miserable. I decided to pinch all the pennies and see what kind of money we could save. I also decided to hustle harder in my business and reach out to my ideal clients and get some bookings to increase our savings. Those things paid off, and I was able to book a trip to LA, Palm Springs, and Joshua Tree for mid February.

Must be nice right? Well let’s be real, every time I’m restless, we won’t be able to travel far. It’s not financially feasible especially because the more I travel, the more I crave travel! But I can look at my adventure intention and find another way to fulfill it. Could we go on a day trip somewhere? Try a brewery in a nearby city? What about hiking the sand dunes or renting a paddle board? Heck yeah! Those things all sound so fun and would totally fulfill the need for adventure in my soul.

What do you guys think? Does this sound do able to you or just crazy? I totally believe in a to each her own philosophy. What works for me may not work for you, but I can tell you, I’m crazy excited for this year and all the opportunities to fulfill these intentions!

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