Endings and Beginnings

Blog post by Jeannie O’Neill, Regional Education Director

In one of my favorite books Their Eyes Are Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston wrote; “There are years that ask questions and there are years that answer.” What kind of year will 2018 be for you? It is commonplace for people to make resolutions for the new year. Recently I have changed that practice to one of setting intentions. In this blog, we will focus on how to set those New Year Intentions and make them truly meaningful and soul-centered. So, let’s take a moment to toast to the collective consciousness and do our own personal part to get closer to our own truth. Follow these steps to have a year full of purpose, focus, questions asked or questions answered.

Let’s Begin with a Mantra

Mantras are used in so many different rituals and spiritual traditions. Begin by finding one that is true for you and feels authentic. Sometimes it can feel like a big question; What is my mantra?? Begin by thinking about a bigger theme in your life that you would like to see more of. Sit with that theme and see if a message comes into your mind that seems actionable. What would your VERB be for 2018? If this exercise still feels daunting, I like to dive into an Affirmation Deck. My favorite right now is The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein. Sit down and clarify your purpose, draw a card and see what the universe has in store for you this year.  My mantra for 2018 is “Whatever it takes to get closer to consciousness.”

Goals without Attachment

Can you create goals without feeling an attachment to a specific outcome? Goals give you vision, but think about letting the universe take the reins when it comes to timelines and completion. If you set a goal of collaboration and leadership, imagine ways that it will play out in your life, but try to resist the temptation to feel like the only way this goal can be accomplished is if it looks a certain way; like getting a promotion or a raise. Make a list of goals on paper and then put those goals in different categories. Think about goals in the arenas of things like health, work, relationships and spirituality. So at the end you can see if your year is focused more in one area or another. For me, 2018 is about alignment of Spiritual growth and commitment in all areas of life.

The Power of the Written Word

Take time to write your goals down, make a vision board, use the space around your desk and in your car to be able to VISUALLY be reminded of your mantra, goals and plans.

Go with the flow while maintaining focus

Writing down your mantra and goals may help give you a reminder and some drive, but what about sticking to them? This is where you can allow the universe to take control and surrender to the possibilities that your vision might not quite align with the bigger vision, but that does not mean that your intention is not being seen and heard. Check in on your intention, mantra and goals at the quarter points in the year. I like to assess around the Spring Equinox, Summer Solstice, Autumnal Equinox and Winter Solstice. Where have shifts happened? Where is there more room for letting go and to make space for growth??

Is anything standing in your way? Are you clinging tightly to old belief patterns, stories or habits that are limiting to your achievement? They say that in order to experience something you have never felt you need to do things you have never done. Where are you open to change, and where can you open even more?

This is just the beginning to setting intentions and goals in order to start the new year on a strong, focused and fluid path. They also help you adjust to the varying challenges that life throws your way. Start the new year with a clear mindset, and adapt as you go. You will learn a lot along the way!