What's the difference? Perspective.
This time of year your social media feeds become flooded with eager friends, family members and groups we follow all setting resolutions. For me this year was different, I still saw people sharing resolutions but most of the posts I saw were about intentions. They seem like two sides of the same coin, but in reality the attachment we have to each word is vastly different.
Resolutions and intentions can feel similar to goals. So why is it that most of us give up on resolutions usually by week 6 but intentions can travel with you much longer? This is where perspective comes into play. A New Year's Resolution is a resolute, unwavering goal, often rigid and more than vigorous than we are ready for. This leaves us setting ourselves up for disappointment. This winter season is when your body wants to hibernate, to conserve. However many of us try to force ourselves into those unrealistic expectations like, never eating pasta again or working out every day at 5 am. Both of which have their merits (but I would encourage you to enjoy whole wheat pasta instead!). The real struggle here is just that a struggle because you now are required to be resolute, unwavering in your new discipline. This brings us to the intention side of the coin. Intentions begin fundamentally different, mostly because they do not always begin with the turn of the New Year. Intentions simply have less barriers and more freedom. Beyond that the word intention is often intermingled with purpose. Having a purpose feels good, even if that purpose is to enjoy more green food before simple white foods. Some times intentions are just for one day, making them much more manageable already. When do we choose to hold a longer intention it is held with purpose and a devotion to self care.
So if you are like the millions of Americans out there that have resolutions I invite you to give your self the opportunity to soften. Perhaps adjusting your perspective of the rigid, all or nothing mindset to making the choice that suits you best in this moment. Because ultimately these New Year's goals are always designed to help us reach our fullest potential, to become a fuller version of our already perfect selves. So how does beating yourself up about eating something that brings you pleasure or sleeping in to snuggle with someone you love (pets included) translate to failure? It doesn't, it is simply a new day with a new intention.
Not into intentions or resolutions? Maybe choose a word to honor this year, or join me in my question of the year. Does this nourish you?