In my yoga classes I ask you to set an intention for your practice. To be still and draw your intention in with your breath, and to repeat it in your mind. To make that intention about you, to place it into the present tense, I am…. love /strong / coping / flexible / resilient/ present, kind, etc. Your intention could be about your yoga practice, or what it is you are manifesting for you personally, on or off the mat, and its best to set it not so far ahead of yourself ( if it feels too far off your mind automatically rejects it as being untrue). It doesn’t have to be a one word intention like my examples, and I tend to use the same one for months, often years even.
This January, 2016, there has been quite a bit of planetary influence that has amplified our usual practice of New Year resolution or intention setting – and in addition to your normal process of intention setting for class and resolution making for the year I have been encouraging students to take a big sheet of paper and write down 108 things they want to do this year, in 2016. They could be small things, to do a clear out of your wardrobe, to visit far flung friends, to see snow, to run 5km, to write a book, do a course, care less about something, take more care of yourself; just write from your heart, 108 things. Lets bring them to class, talk about three things on our list…. bring your list back at the end of the year, I will give you reminders to check in on your list, maybe every 1st of the month read your list and schedule some things to your diary….. Our class is a safe place without judgement to bring your intentions.
Many years ago when my children were little I was sitting at a New Years gathering of friends and each person went around the room stating their resolution, I had three children under five at the time; and my resolution was to put all of the family photos into albums that year ( maybe 10 years worth of ridiculous numbers of pics ). Someone at the gathering turned to me and said, wow, couldn’t you set your sights a bit higher than that? I was gutted, and also very defensive as I felt I had set myself a realistic time frame for a big job that was an optional extra to my survival and main role for the year of caring for my children – I did complete my goal. That experience of being judged comes up for me each time I think about setting goals. Your goals are for you and no one has the right to judge you for them. Just saying.
Several students and I recently did a 7 day sugar challenge together, a sweet ( haha ) one week free online course – I loved it, managed ( just ) to stay below 6 teaspoons of sugar a day ( including fruit – which is a challenge in the Aussie summer ) and was really pleased with how that impacted my body – in particular my eye bags shrank – I didn’t expect that, in fact I am not sure I realized they were even there until they were gone! But it did make me wonder what other parts of my body were puffy and unhappy with my sugar intake that I hadn’t noticed. I encourage you to add a sugar detox to your list of things to do… if the course is repeated I will pop it on our social media for you. Hydration is another great intention to focus on ….
So intention setting, something that has really resonated with me at the end of this year as I moved house, took on new pets and classes and juggled my children and life was the phrase I came across ” wherever you don’t place your attention, chaos grows” I think I do chaos quite well, in fact a friend complimented me on it recently, I have a large family, chaos to a certain extent comes with that territory, but I am certainly going to be more mindful of where the chaos is sprouting in the areas of my inattention…. of intention… of mindfulness.
I look forward to sharing 2016 with you
Happy New Year – Peace and Love – Min xx