The last four or five years, my routine to prepare for each new year has evolved from choosing (and rarely achieving) a traditional resolution to setting several smaller intentions and goals focused on different parts of my life. This year, I adapted it further to include a ‘shedding’ of negativity from the last year, highlighting of all of the great things that happened in 2017, and then set my intentions for the upcoming year as well as a little trick to keep me motivated for the months to come. Below is how I set my new years intentions and a free downloadable worksheet for you to do this, too!
Shedding the Past
I’m not going to lie, 2017 was a strong kick in the pants for me. There were a lot of things that I would love to forget, but I’m a firm believer in learning something from each experience (good or bad), so in order to learn I needed to shed how terrible I felt about these things. My process looked like this…I wrote all of the hardest parts of 2017 onto a sheet of paper, read it out loud (and cried about some of them – crying is cleansing!), and then I lit that piece of paper on fire and watched it dissolve into ash. Sounds pretty dramatic, but I swear I felt such relief! It’s really helped me to appreciate the challenging times that I’ve survived and move on to focus on more positive things.
Highlighting the Good
As much as 2017 served up some big health and business challenges for me, there were so many wonderful things that happened, too. It was a year filled with lots of family, friends, and Love.
In my bullet journal, I’ve made block of space titled ‘gratitude & memories’ each week, and at the end of the year I go through each of those highlights and write them all into a new spread all together. This is the second year I’ve done this with my bujo, and it’s become such a great way to remember both the tiniest and biggest beautiful moments (some of which are shown above).
Intention Setting, Hopes and Dreams
Once I finish reviewing the year that’s gone by, I start to look at the new year ahead. There are quite a few different areas of life to think about here – personal intentions (family, relationships, friends, travel, health, fitness, self-improvement, etc), business goals (marketing campaigns, financial targets, creative expansion, etc), household dreams (decluttering, renovations, painting, landscaping, etc), and many more.
In my opinion, setting one big resolution in one single area of life would not make for a very productive year, even if the target was hit. Setting several smaller goals for each ‘category’ will show the biggest difference and the most overall improvement.
BONUS: Choosing a Word (or two) of the Year
With my intentions and hopes and business goals and life dreams are all laid out on paper, it’s often easy to see a theme amongst them. Choosing a word that fits with the theme can be a simple reminder of the intentions, and help to motivate throughout any challenges in the months to come. My words of the year are “less and more” as in less clutter and creating more space in my home and workshop, less busy and more productive time management, less digital connection and more time spent with loved ones in person, less spending and more saving…you get the picture. This little reminder to think of what I really want in my life is just the thing I need to keep me in line with my intentions for 2018.
Just getting started on your intention-setting for the new year? Me too! Who cares if we’re late to the party as long as we show up. And if something you thought would be good for you isn’t working, change it up! No need to wait until next January 1st to start anew. Today is always the start of a new year, and it’s always a great time to set new goals.