Every January, I pick a word to set my yearly intention. In 2021, my word was “love.” By August, I had met Pete, and two weeks ago, we got engaged! For context, I’m 48 and have never been married, so this is a very big deal. On the surface, my story may seem straightforward: goal set and accomplished.
If you dig deeper, however, you learn that my intention of “love” not only gave me perseverance to endure the dating apps a little longer, but it also guided me to choose to love myself. As it turns out, leaning into self-love is what truly opened me up to a relationship. If I had simply set the goal of “find a partner,” I would likely have remained on the dating merry-go-round. My love intention challenged me to remain open to love in all its forms, including the form of self-compassion.
Try setting an intention, rather than a specific goal, for 2023.
Want a promotion at work? Set an intention around creating impact.
Want to write a book? Try an intention of flow.
Want to run a marathon? Set the intention of vitality instead. A vitality intention will not only guide your actions to follow through on workouts, but it will also help you make better diet choices, set a better morning routine, and set more clear work boundaries.
Why set intentions?
- To keep you open to opportunities that arise.
- To allow for perspective when you experience setbacks — the focus is on the journey, not the destination.
- To guide your attention, helping you to laser-focus on what you want more of.
When you do this, love, impact, vitality, [insert your word here] is bound to expand in ways you can’t predict, and that just might make all the difference.
Identify in one word: What do you want more of in 2023?
Notice: What parts of your life are ripe to cultivate that intention?
Create a support plan: How can you build in support from yourself, from others, and within your environment?