How to set up intention for success

Happy New Year wishes to our dear yogis and yoginis. It is the time of the year when we are joyous, hopeful and full of optimism. In this heady time, we draw goals and resolutions for the year for fulfilment. This year how about setting an intention instead of a goal / resolution.

Now you might ask the difference between a goal and intention?

Some key characteristics that separate

Goal Intentions
External journey Inward journey
Future Outlook Living for the moment
May not align with your own sensations / feelings Aligned with your sensations
Succumbs to social pressure Irrespective of peer pressure

Goals/ Resolutions are future focused. Sometimes they can be vague or unrealistic expectations from one self.  Setting of goals can motivate, but they can also give a feeling of “Not enough’. There is a constant tussle and questions in the brain regarding the goal…

Will I fulfils my goal? Should I set another goal should this goal not succeed? What will happen if the goal is not reached?  A sense of unease can creep over which is harmful for health mentally and physically.

You might find success in your goals, but non-achievement may lead to being harsh on oneself that would eventually lead to frustration or disappointment.


Setting intentions, on the other hand, is much different than having a goal-oriented focus.

Living your intentions, allows you to focus on how you want to be in the moment, your everyday feelings, the feeling of being in the present. You live your life by what matters to you.  When intentions are set, it is not about winning or losing, it is about “Living the moment”

Focusing on intentions does not mean you give up your goals or desire to achieve.  You need to have a plan or course of action to succeed in your goal or to make it a reality.

To give an example,

You may be to set a target of deriving maximum benefit from your yoga classes. The intention here would be to ensure that you remain focused during each of the classes while practising Sthir Sukham Asana. This combination will ensure that you enjoy the process of achieving the goal.

By setting your intention first, and combining it with goals, you will become a Zen master, enjoying the journey as well as the destination.

Love & Happiness

Bala Arvind & LSY Team.

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