January 1, 2017
Like most people, I try to start the New Year off on a good foot. Take this morning- I began by whipping up a green smoothie. I then walked to Starbucks (because coffee is one of my resolutions every year, thank you very much). As I enjoyed them both, I thought about what I want the next 365 days to look like. With this in mind, I headed to a hot yoga class at 9:30 a.m., my mind swirling with good intentions and thoughts.
As soon as I stepped inside, I knew I was in the right place, as the large chalkboard outside the studio had the question posted, "What's your intention for 2017?"
"Be more present."
"Drink more water."
There were many other things written, but you get the idea. Since it was a yoga studio, all of the intentions had a sort of a zen-bend to them. That said, as I began the class, I was wondering how I’d pick an intention or two that I would actually stick with.
Then the instructor came in the studio and turned on the music to signal class was starting. She asked us to relax on our backs, close our eyes, and think about 2017, and what we wanted it to look like.
She didn't ask us to choose an intention.
She didn't ask us to make resolutions.
Instead, she had a simple request:
“In this New Year, I want you to remember, that this is your journey. You have the right to choose what your 2017 will look like.”
Not fully into the yogic mode yet, my mind immediately protested. "Oh yeah? Stuff happens to us all the time, we don't have the power to choose what happens. We can't necessarily control good or bad…"
It seemed my instructor was anticipating thoughts like this. She continued, clarifying what she meant. "You get to choose how you react to the same situations that are presented to you over and over. You can choose if you want to go further than you ever have in your job, your life, or even just in your yoga poses. You are in charge of your journey. In 2017, you get to decide how far you want to go. It’s always your decision.”
When presented in this way, I saw the word “intention” in a new light. A powerful new light that surpassed the "set an intention" we hear all the time, but perhaps never embrace to its fullest potential.
Setting an intention means choosing to make our lives better - sometimes in small ways, and sometimes in very epic ways.
It means being more present.
It means deciding to be more kind.
It can even mean choosing to drink more water or drink green smoothies.
But by all means, it means showing up… for ourselves and all of the glorious potential we have to make our lives wonderful.
Here’s to your 2017 looking exactly like the journey you create for yourself.
Most importantly, remember that what that looks like is your choice.
Cheers and Namaste, Friends.
And may your 2017 be epic.