Earlier this month I hosted a 2022 Reboot Challenge as a fun way to connect and kick off the new year feeling inspired with my internet friends! For the past several years I’ve tried a variety of different approaches to start the new year off with motivation and momentum. These approaches include (but are not limited to…): resolutions, goal-setting on a personal and family level, and choosing a word of the year. Recently I decided to try setting some New Year intentions for myself. The point is to have a more gentle approach to guide me, ground me, and inspire me. I spent time thinking about what I need/want more of. And what I need/want less of in my life. And I broke some of those ideas into important categories I want to be intentional about throughout the year ahead.
Here are the categories I chose for my New Year intentions:
- Personal growth and development
- Self love
- Health & wellness
Day 1 – I focused on organizational New Year intentions
Like so many others, I love to get organized at the beginning of a new year. Though I have to admit, it’s always easier said than done. With two young hooligans and a husband who has a high-intensity, highly-demanding, and unpredictable job, our life tends to be full of a LOT of chaos and inconsistency! Finding rhythms that work for us and keeping things organized in our lives can feel pretty overwhelming at times.
The reality is… when I am intentional about finding ways to get more organized and work to create systems that help KEEP things organized, we ALL tend to thrive better around here. And I experience much less stress, anxiety, and overwhelm from day to day. It’s really a win-win.
At the beginning of a new year, this process looks like purging household clutter. Getting a planner that I can use to map out our days. Stocking up on fresh journals. And taking a mental inventory of what strategies have worked for me in the past and where I am coming up short. This helps me remember what matters most for our family and strategize ways to stay grounded in those things.
My organizational New Year intentions for 2022 are: Have a Monday check-in meeting with myself each week and actually use my dang planner this year!
Day 2 – I focused on personal growth and development New Year intentions
You may or may not already know this about me, but I have loved to read ever since I was a child. And while my book interests are wildly varied, reading about personal growth and development has always fascinated me! I’ve always been intrigued to learn more about myself and others on a deeper level. And about the psychology of human connection and perception.
Each year I add a hefty pile of self-development books to my #TBR list. And have gained so much insight and knowledge from some amazing reads through the years. In 2021, two books that had the biggest impact on me were The Lazy Genius Way by Kendra Adachi and Share Your Stuff by Laura Tremaine. They both had major takeaways for me that I haven’t stopped thinking about to this day! This year I’m making a conscious effort to include more books like these in my 2022 #TBR pile.
My personal growth & development New Year intentions for 2022 are: To read (at least) one self-development book each season this year and to keep going to see my therapist regularly.
Day 3 – I focused on personal self-love New Year intentions
As we sat down for dinner the other night, I was being silly, going around to each person saying “I love YOU, and I love YOU, and I love YOU” until I got all the way around to Noah who was sitting beside me. He looked at me, bright blue eyes shining, and said in the most matter-of-fact way “and you love YOURSELF TOO, right?!” It instantly reminded me of a quote I read last year by Rupi Kaur. “How you love yourself is how you teach others to love you.”
Of course, I quickly added with a joyous exclamation “YES! and I LOVE ME TOO!!!” making a mental note to speak self-love out loud more intentionally around my boys more often this year. The truth is, loving myself isn’t always easy. It takes daily practice and a lot of grace.
Over the years I’ve learned that in order to show up for the people I love in my life, I have to do the work to show up for myself first. If I give myself grace when I make a mistake, if I take time for myself when I need it, if I speak affirmations out loud to myself – I’m not only teaching my boys how to love externally, I am modeling how to love themselves.
My self-love New Year intentions for 2022 are: Schedule a weekly SOLO date for myself and plan an overnight SOLO retreat two times this year. MUST get it on the calendar too! The solo dates could be going for a walk or enjoying a coffee shop latte. Maybe visiting the sculpture garden at a local museum. Or something more indulgent like a nice long hot bubble bath (with the door locked!!). And I’m always desperately in need of a good pedicure! My favorite retreat option is booking a hotel room for myself and reading, ordering room service, sleeping in late, and just enjoying peace and quiet for 24 hours!
Day 4 – I focused on creativity New Year intentions
Anyone else find that their creativity seems to come in cycles? Last year it became apparent to me that during different weeks in a month/season I am either hitting a creative lull or spilling over with more ideas than I can keep up with! I also realized that when I am in a lull, inspiring books can be a great way for me to hold space for creativity without it feeling forced. This year, I want to dive into this more. To take better advantage of those times when I am bubbling with ideas. AND continue to hold space for creativity even when I’m in a creative slump.
My creativity New Year intentions for 2022 are to: Block specific time and activities in my calendar each week for creative inspiration! Not just for writing/photography (which ARE my favorite go-to creative outlets). But also for other things that I’m curious about exploring that could bring me joy and inspiration! Maybe painting or drawing or embroidery, playing guitar or learning how to use procreate on my iPad. Maybe reading more books about creativity or visiting an art exhibit. I want to give myself permission to be adventurous with my creativity and to have FUN with it.
Day 5 – I focused on health + wellness New Year intentions
This category seems pretty straightforward and simple to come up with intentions for. But is also super hard for me to stick to! It’s so crazy to me how challenging it can be for me to prioritize even the most crucial elements of my health and wellness. Remarkable how much my overall bandwidth for life is expanded when I check off basic things day to day.
My health & wellness New Year intentions for 2022 are to: Get better sleep, drink more water, and move my body every day.
I’m working hard on carving out a better sleep routine for myself (starting with creating some new bedtime and morning rituals!). I’m getting back into the habit of carrying my favorite Yeti water bottle (a gift from my friend) around with me throughout the day. And I’ve starting getting creative with ways to move my body more. Especially on days I don’t have tennis or soccer. Things like riding my bike, going on hikes with my family, walking to the park with the kids. Oh and of course, dancing in the kitchen while I’m cooking dinner. Even parking further away from the entrance of places so I get in a few extra steps. Overall I know that being intentional about these basic things will improve my quality of life monumentally. It’s time for me to start taking them more seriously.
Day 6 – I focused on friendship New Year intentions
I feel like these past two years of the pandemic have really taken a toll. Especially on a lot of my closest friendships. Not just in the limited ability to be physically present with one another, but also because of the mental and emotional ways we’ve all become overextended in our daily lives. We’ve been carrying so much more than we ever have before. That has limited our bandwidth to connect on deeper levels with one another. For me, finding the time and energy to show up for my friendships during covid has been one of the most discouraging and trickiest parts for me to navigate.
Recently I’ve been trying some new approaches to being intentional about rekindling and embracing my friendships. I’m hoping to keep that momentum going into the new year. My relationship building New Year intentions for 2022 are to: Hold more space for showing up in my friendships and be more accountable in them. I want to be deliberate about scheduling phone dates/FaceTime coffee dates. Set reminders in my phone to follow up with friends throughout the week. Plan a girls trip to meet up together once covid calms down. And send more snail mail/birthday cards!
Day 7 – I focused on learning-themed New Year intentions
Back in college I had a hard time trying to decide on a major because I was intrigued by so many different subjects & didn’t know how to choose just one. Turns out I was afraid to miss out on all of the other things I could learn about! Luckily, I realized I could be a lifelong learner regardless of my major! Ultimately, I ended up choosing to study Psychology & English & even went back to school later to study nursing.
I hope I never stop learning about things that interest me for as long as I live. I love that technology makes learning so accessible to us nowadays. I’m amazed at the broad variety of courses, workshops, tutorials, etc. that I see offered virtually.
Some days motherhood can feel all-consuming. I don’t have much time or energy leftover from my day-to-day life for learning. Most of what I can muster goes to learning new activities to try with the kids or meals I want to cook. But this year I’m being more intentional about learning & exploring more of what I enjoy outside of motherhood. I want to reclaim my love of learning & let it serve up some fun for me in 2022!
My learning New Year intentions for 2022 are to:
- Sign up for a few creative writing courses through @exhale.creativity
- Take one @skillpop online course that sounds fun to me each season
- Learn more about my DSLR camera & take one photography course
- Keep practicing guitar
- Play around with learning Procreate on my iPad
I have a good feeling about all of the potential that 2022 holds for each of us. It has certainly started off on a familiar vibe to the past two years but I truly believe that taking the time to set some gentle New Year intentions for myself will help guide me, ground me, and inspire me throughout the year ahead.
What kinds of intentions will you set for yourself this year?
Join me here on the blog each month as I set monthly mini-intentions (setting those is another one of my intentions for this year!).