Replacing Resolutions with Intentions


The word resolution means a firm decision to do or not do something, implying that one is actually doing something wrong. (i.e. Let’s reflect on 2016 and make a list of all the things that we want to change about it, and then 2017 will be the best year yet.)

Well, I don’t buy that.

Every experience we have is designed to help us grow so that we are prepared for the next lesson. Some big, some small, some so necessary to shape you into the new best version of yourself.

In 2010, I had my first son. He was born with Laryngomalacia, aka a floppy voicebox (although we wouldn’t find that out until 2 months later). Our status quo was feeding him with a bottle, holding him upright with his head tilted back as close to 180 degrees as his neck would allow just so he wouldn’t choke. He sounded like Darth Vader with RSV (sounds dramatic right? It was.) During the first 2 years of his life, I would give him the Heimlich maneuver at least 50 times. I can still recall the feeling in my belly while waiting for a well-visit, watching moms pull their children away from mine as I got the mom stare-down (Why is that momma not in the ER?!).

Well we did. We had our first ER visit at 11 weeks old and have since had more than I can count and many a stay on the PICU floor. We saw specialist after specialist trying to figure out why. it. wasn’t. getting. better. It took me close to TWO YEARS before I stopped noticing the stares, and it wasn’t even 100% of the time. I needed that sweet boy to help me move on from the stares and frankly learn how to parent in the way that made sense to me, not to the world. (You can read the long stories on my personal blog.)

Setting Intentions

So instead of resolving to stop caring about the stares, I set the intention of being confident in my parenting by trusting my instincts. Of course, the moment I did, my son’s breathing was resolved and we found answers to our questions. We had our last ER visit 3 years ago. Ironic? No. Meant to be. 

So this year, instead of a resolution, I challenge you to set an intention. The word intention means the determination to act in a certain way (i.e. what you want out of 2017 instead of what you want to change.)

It could be to see the light in everyone you meet. It could be to think for 5 seconds before reacting. Or it could be about forgiving yourself.

Because really the fresh slate idea is about deciding who you do want to become, not what you don’t like. And whatever you decide, intend to give it your all.