Replacing a Resolution with a New Year’s Intention


With only a few days into a New Year, we may feel a bit discouraged with our New Year’s resolution. The U.S. News reports by mid-February roughly 80% of all resolutions have failed. The definition of a resolution might be part of the problem for many of us.  A resolution is a firm decision to do or not to do something. Losing 10 pounds, exercising 20 minutes a day, drinking more water or less alcohol are undoubtedly healthy goals, but failing to reach these goals can be discouraging. A resolution is a solution with an end goal and failing may cause us to feel less adequate.

My intention is Joy.  Every time I focus on my intention, I have succeeded in training my brain to look for joy. But it doesn’t end there, because of the brain’s neuroplasticity, the neurons are learning to connect to this pattern of thought more often, and it can become a habit.  It will replace negativity and anxiety.

Let’s look at changing the resolution to an intention; an object toward which the thoughts are directed; a purposeful aim.  The resolutions stated above can be rethought as an intention of taking care of your body. There is no final goal here, just an ongoing purpose where so much good can be gained.

Although Bishop John H. Vincent’s prayer is titled “A Resolve”, it is a beautiful intention to begin each day.

Jim Carrey’s movie Yes Man (2008) is a comedy on accepting the possibilities in life. Although a silly exaggeration of an intention, fear can override a simple intention of saying yes more.  Fear should never control us. Open yourself up to faith and believe in miracles. You will form life-long positive habits and experience life loving where you are by living in the present moment. It’s the only time you have control of, anyway!