Setting Intentions for a New Year

Coral Gables Counseling Center - Thursday, January 30, 2020
By Cristina Nicole Fernandez, Esq.

Divorce Coach

All of a sudden, I wake up, and here we are, living in the year 2020. Wow.

I don’t know why but it feels to me (even as I write this at the end of January) as if 2020 is in the future. Like Jetsons kind of stuff… but here we are in 2020, and there are no flying cars, and we’re not yet living in outer space (though Elon Musk may get us closer to that during our lifetimes)!

This odd feeling of being in the future has really inspired me to contemplate and consider what my vision for my life is today, take inventory of my life, and to think of what my future self looks like.

As we start each new year, we often make resolutions, set goals we believe will improve our lives, and often make decisions that will drastically change our lives. New year, new you and all that, right? In fact, that’s the theme of our newsletter for this month.

For as long as I can remember, each new year I would feel a huge buzz of excitement about all of the possibilities and all the changes I wanted to bring into my life and would set specific resolutions for the year…

          Resolution: I will go to the gym 3 times a week
          Reality: Signs up for the gym and goes three times in the entire year

         Resolution: I will wake up early and exercise and cook a healthy breakfast
         Reality: I’m not a morning person so we can imagine how this one goes…

         Resolution: I will prepare food for the entire week and diet so I can lose 10 pounds
         Reality: The second the word diet enters my head is the moment I fail…

A couple of years ago, while I was going through my divorce, on New Year’s Eve 2017, I spent a couple of hours doing a private yoga class with my sister, taught by my great friend, Rosie Araujo. During that class, Rosie asked us to write down our intentions for the year. What did we want to focus on in the upcoming year?

Undeniably, I was in a moment of massive change in my life. As I meditated on this question, my intention for 2018 became clear. I was going to have a year of massive change – one in which I embraced the changes coming into my life. I dove into them and made the most of these changes in order to shape and form my life into what I wanted it to be.

Through this practice, my focus shifted from what I was going to do specifically that year to achieve whatever my “goals” were, to an intention I came back to almost daily throughout the year. This allowed me to embrace the changes which were inevitably happening around me and within me, and to use those changes as a catalyst to grow and create happiness in my life. It’s crazy because I remember at the time I tried to imagine what changes would come about in my life. The reality is I could not have possibly imagined or controlled what those changes would be. Two years later, my life looks completely different.

The Fresh Prince said it best, “my life got flipped, turned upside down.”

This has changed my mindset about what each new year means to me. It’s less (or not at all) about setting expectations and specific goals, but more about letting go of ALL expectations and setting an intention to guide my decisions, my actions, and thoughts. This has allowed me to be more creative and open to anything that flows in my direction as a result of that intention. By letting go of the limiting belief that I am supposed to know how things are supposed to be done, how my life is supposed to look, and allowing things to flow naturally in my life, I have achieved the most creative inspiration, change and growth in all my years on this earth.

2019 was a year of MASSIVE GROWTH and 2020 I am LEVELING UP.

I believe intentions should be the guiding force in all of our actions and decisions. In my coaching practice, I begin by asking my clients to set their intentions, so that we may return to those intentions in difficult moments; when we feel down, to inspire us, when we have to make difficult decisions, and to guide those decisions to be ones that are true to what we really want for ourselves instead of what we or others think we should do.

I leave you with some powerful thoughts from the great Deepak Chopra’s article “5 Steps to Setting Powerful Intentions:

“Intention is the starting point of every dream. It is the creative power that fulfills all of our needs, whether for money, relationships, spiritual awakening, or love.

Everything that happens in the universe begins with intention. When I decide to buy a birthday present, wiggle my toes, or call a friend, it all starts with intention.

The sages of India observed thousands of years ago that our destiny is ultimately shaped by our deepest intentions and desires. The classic Vedic text known as the
Upanishads declares, “You are what your deepest desire is. As your desire is, so is your intention. As your intention is, so is your will. As your will is, so is your deed. As your deed is, so is your destiny.””

– Deepak Chopra, M.D.

Check out Dr. Chopra’s article for “Five steps for harnessing the power of intention to create anything you desire” in your life, and for other useful resources and meditations you can use to practice setting intentions, letting go, and allowing the universe to do the rest.

Have you set an intention for 2020? Either way, I want to hear from you! Drop a comment using the link below!
Leave your comments here.