Intentions 2016

Today is the last day of 2015, and if your year was anything like mine, it was a little crazy, very exciting, but totally life changing.

To recap my year in a few sentences: I left one career, started another, moved to a new city, got married to my wonderful hubby, and got pregnant with our son shortly after getting married. I rediscovered some things about myself, made some awesome new friends, and recognized that there are a few things I really love and want to focus on. All in all, it was a good year.

But I still want to grow and improve. There are stills goals I want to accomplish, and that is where intentions come in. In yoga, we talk a lot about intentions. Intentions are what we want for our practice, whether it’s a short workout or what we want to accomplish over the course of a long period of time. As the year is ending, I’ve been thinking a lot about my intentions for the next year. As I start this blog, I thought it would be a good idea to write down my intentions for 2016.

But what is the difference between a resolution and an intention?

A resolution is defined as “a firm decision to do or not to do something” while an intention is defined as “a thing intended; an aim or plan.” But an intention in yoga goes a step farther than just something you have a plan to do. The word for intention in yoga is sankalpa. This word is translated as “a vow that has been birthed in the very core of your heart.” It is different than a goal because it comes from a deeper place inside yourself instead of your thinking brain. Typically, a goal comes from a place of feeling, like you need to accomplish something to be happy, but even if you achieve a goal, you may still feel unfulfilled. An intention has more fulfillment in it.

So here are my intentions:

1: Go to the hospital to deliver and leave as a family

I’m due at the end of February/beginning of March, and while my pregnancy has been textbook, I’m not naïve. I know that anything could happen. So I intend to stay calm, hope for the best, and do anything to walk out of the hospital with my husband and son.

I’m sure this sounds like a silly thing to have an intention for, but it’s really not. Delivery is scary. And you’d be shocked about all the things you worry about while pregnant. I’ve started reading “Birthing from Within” and the author remarks that worry is the work of pregnancy; being pregnant will produce worry. In the instances in which the mother- and father-to-be were not worried were the instances of complications. She doesn’t really encourage worry but rather a healthy understanding of what could happen, options, and to still have confidence in your body. I think it’s healthy mindset. And I intend to go to the hospital with my husband and walk out as a family.

2: Lose the baby weight through healthy means

A healthy mom will be a happier mom. I love my body and myself and really intend to return to my pre-baby weight through healthy means. That means working out, eating paleo, breast feeding, and keeping a healthy attitude.

This does not include crash dieting or over working out. This does not include anything that would jeopardize my health or milk supply and, thus, jeopardize my son’s health. Many women really do feel the pressure to be super skinny and see pregnancy as something that will ruin their bodies. The truth is that many women have been told lies about pregnancy and how it will affect their bodies. For example: did you know that it takes a woman up to a year to physically recover from pregnancy, labor, and birth? No? It’s true! So why do so many women beat themselves up for still having some weight on themselves a month after giving birth? It takes time and effort to lose weight, and more time if one just pushed eight pounds of human out of her body. So let’s give ourselves a break and use healthy methods to be healthy instead of unhealthy methods that punish the body.

3: Pay off a large portion of student loan debt

Who doesn’t have student loans these days? I have a lot. Nearly everyone with some semblance of an education has student loans or some kind of debt. According to national statistics, the average amount of student loan debt a person has at graduation is $35,000 (congratulations, class of 2015!). I intend to pay off at least $8000 of my current student loan debt. I plan on doing this through budgeting, frugality, and side hustles. I have this intention because I believe that by taking care of my debt I can do more to contribute to my blossoming little family and relieve myself of some stress.

So far those are my intentions for the coming year. I don’t feel the need to do more or try more right now.

So what are your intentions for 2016? I challenge you to find them. Write them down and how you want to accomplish them. Search yourself and you might be surprised at what you find.

Happy New Year, reader!

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