Sunday, January 9

Setting Intentions for the New Year

So it’s 2011….already. I’ve been telling Jeanine how I am choosing to refrain from using the terminology, “New Year’s resolutions.” I don’t know, it just seems like too often New Year’s resolutions fall by the wayside. During yoga practice, we set an intention. It can be something like, “I am relaxed and focused” or “I am fully present and living in the moment.” Or anything you want it to be, really. So I am viewing my New Year’s resolutions as intentions. They are daily intentions that I incorporate daily into my life. One example is making contact with one alumnus each day – just a quick email or a call or even a text – to touch base and keep connected. I am often overwhelmed by this task even though I love staying in touch and hearing from everyone. It’s just that I tend to think of it in total – meaning there are a ton of alumni to keep in touch with and thinking that I need to get in touch with each one of them, right now. Instead, my intention is to “do a little bit every day.” My intention is already having a positive effect!

I encourage you to set some intentions for the New Year! Frame them as affirmations for yourself and see what happens. You all have some great things on the horizon. We are excited to start hearing about offers and hearing your plans for this next phase in life! For the new scholars, it is also an exciting time. This is where you start to develop a “grad school mindset” that will carry you through this year and the next.

I’d like to include a post from Lou and the Winner’s Circle – it underscores my sentiments here. Here’s to a great New Year!

"A Positive Future, by Intent"
Do you look at the future with hope and a belief that no matter what comes your way, you will succeed? Or, do you look at the future as hopeless, and there’s nothing that can be done to change it? What you believe has a lot to do with how well you weather the challenges in life. Let’s talk about how our beliefs affect what happens to us. A couple of things to keep in mind:

1) As human beings, we move toward and become like what we think about; and 2) Our present thoughts determine our future.

As human beings, we are teleological or goal-oriented. Also, we are picture-oriented. We think in pictures. If I say, “red apple” you don’t see the words “red” and “apple.” In your mind, you actually “see” a red apple. You see, we don’t see with our eyes. We pick up light with our eyes and then it is translated into images in our brains, depending upon how we’ve been conditioned to translate the light. Words create pictures, and we are drawn to pictures.

So, if you believe the future is hopeless, you will be drawn to every hopeless, depressing, “it’s only going to get worse” story you can find. We are comfortable when we find evidence to prove what we believe is true, and we act in accordance with those beliefs. This is also known as a self-fulfilling prophecy. “I knew it was going to be bad, and it is.”

The same thing holds true if we believe the future is full of opportunity, and that we have the power to make it even better. We will see evidence of the possibilities, and be drawn to them because that’s what we are thinking about. It is not surprising that people who look with positive intent are healthier, happier and more successful.

So, how do we make that switch in belief? It’s all about changing that internal picture you hold, and it isn’t going to happen by accident. It is made, first, by your intent.

--Lou Tice, The Pacific Institute

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