Goal (Dis)oriented: Why I’m Setting Intentions for 2017 Instead of Resolutions

published Dec 28, 2016
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

I’ve been setting New Year’s goals and resolutions for like, forever. Every December 31, I sit down to craft a super long list of things I want to achieve in the New Year. Every year, I tick a few things off my list, which feels incredible, but the things I don’t accomplish make me feel like I didn’t do enough. (Sound familiar?)

Instead, for 2017, I’m doing things a little differently—opting for New Year’s intentions instead. Here are three reasons why:

Intentions are Focused on the Present

While I’m all about dreaming big and working hard, sometimes goals make us focus way too much on that external future achievement that we forget to enjoy the present moment. Intentions, on the other hand, are less about hitting that goal and more about how you want to live in the moment.

Intentions Make You Feel Really Good

Instead of saying “I want to hit the gym six days a week” or “I want to lose 10 pounds in two months,” set the intention to move your body everyday in a way that feels good. Doesn’t that sound more enjoyable?

This intention won’t leave you feeling guilty if you miss a day at the gym and will inspire you to crank up the music and dance around your kitchen or jump up and down on your bed for some cardio because that’s what feels good on that day. Goals are very strict and leave no room for the curve balls life will throw at you. Intentions are flexible and feel good no matter what.

Intentions Will Still Get You to Your Goal

Setting intentions doesn’t mean you have to throw your goals out the window. The cool thing about living your intentions is that they will inevitably get you to your goal—and probably faster. Think about it. If you don’t put pressure on yourself to go to the gym a certain number of times a week and leave yourself some wiggle room to be active in whatever way feels good, you’ll want to do more of it because it feels good. The result: You’re staying active and getting fit, naturally. Whether you set a goal or an intention, the destination is the same. Intentions just make the process of getting there so much easier, gentler, and a hell of a lot more fun.