The Power of Setting Intentions

It’s the first day of 2018, and it’s time to think about goals and intentions for the New Year.  I’d love to say that my first intention is to never have a panic attack again, but I know that isn’t likely to happen.  I felt one coming on this morning as I drove to yoga, hoping to forge my path into 2018 anxiety free.  If I had the choice of a super-power, it would be the ability to just snap my fingers and have it magically disappear.  I don’t.  And so now I start another year of working on managing it.  How am I going to do that?  Good question.  For now I’m going to start by setting some intentions, writing down some goals, and taking some action towards them.

The panic arises at times that I feel completely relaxed.  It sneaks up on me, completely out of the blue, just when I think everything is going so well.  It makes no sense, this complete mind-fuck.  I had come through the holidays with some issues to manage, but I was feeling so great when I woke up from an 8 hour sleep this morning.  I have no explanation for why it appeared out of nowhere.  And therein lies the shittiest thing about this mental disease, it comes when it pleases and sometimes it goes without any sense.  It seems to come when I actually allow myself the relax and be happy – it’s almost like it has a voice that says “you are feeling too good, you are forgetting about me, well fuck you I’m back, with a vengeance”.    Well guess what anxiety, fuck you too.

So here’s the part about intentions.  We all have the best of them, and sometimes they just don’t work out.  Despite that, I do believe in the power of positive thinking.  I’ve read that people who are sick with cancer, heart disease, and a multitude of other issues have gone into remission and manage their illness through positive affirmations and the setting of positive intentions.  Today my intention was to start the new year right with some yoga, some down time and focusing on doing things I love – like cooking.  So, although I felt anxious on my way to yoga, I kept going (despite the overwhelming feeling I had to turn around and go home).  And it was worth it.  Over 90 minutes of stretching and focusing on my body and my mind.  I was so relaxed at the end of the class that I almost fell asleep during the closing savasana.    I sent the intention to go and do the class for myself,  I followed through, and it paid off in spades.  The rest of my day has been incredible.

My intentions are different from my goals.  My intentions for 2018 include:

  • I intend to travel often
  • I intend to practice self-care
  • I intend to continue my personal growth
  • I intend to love unconditionally
  • I intend to accept the things I cannot change and release control

I think 5 intentions are a good number to start with.  I could probably write a list of 100, but for now, 5 is manageable.  Adding more would just cause me anxiety.  And that is something that I don’t intend to do.

Happy 2018!  May the New Year bring you happiness and peace.

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