Something New

I'm feeling energized, inspired and at peace with the start of the new year. I can't tell you the last time that I felt truly confident about the future. For the first time in many years, I feel like I'm living...not just surviving, but really making the most of being a living, breathing person. I'm comfortable taking risks and trying something new to improve our quality of living.

This year, instead of making a list of New Year Resolutions, I decided to follow a practice that stems from yoga tradition called, sankalpa or resolve. This practice is a radical departure from the traditional resolution in that it assumes that you are already a whole person fully equipped with all that you need to realize your purpose. You just need to focus your mind, through meditation or quiet contemplation in order to connect with your most heartfelt desires. Because you are tuning in to the energy that is already inside you and awakening to your life's purpose, there is no way that you can backslide into 'old habits'.

Traditional resolutions assume that you are incomplete and that you need to change who you are or impose rigid guidelines to get you what you want. It is pretty comforting to know that you already possess all you need to live a fulfilled and happy life.

To discover your heartfelt desire, reflect on these questions taken from the current Winter 2010/2011 issue of Yoga International:

What is something I really want in my life?
What is the most important goal in my life right now?
What should I be devoting my energy and resources to?
What is my biggest dream for myself and my life?
What actions can I commit to that are consistent with this heartfelt desire?
What needs to happen in the next 6 to 18 months to move me forward on my path? What is the first step in this direction?

You can also reach a sankalpa through a visualization board. Again meditate on the above questions and then cut out images from magazines, postcards, etc. and paste them onto a large piece of posterboard. Having the visual images as a reminder of your intention is really pleasing and it also draws the positive energy of your intention to you.

After reflecting on my own heartfelt desires, I have made a number of exciting decisions that will integrate all of my interests for living a fulfilled and sustainable life. Stay tuned as my sankalpa manifests.

Peace and Wellness,