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Mindful Resolutions: A Guide to Setting Soulful Intentions for the New Year

Happy New Year, lovelies! 🎉 Every year, as we step into a new chapter of our lives, I'm reminded of a resolution I made a few years back – the year I swore off sugar entirely - or, tried to.

Of course, the first few days felt empowering, but it wasn’t long before I was dreaming of chocolate chip cookies and fruit-filled pastries. I held out for a couple of weeks, but then, a co-worker’s birthday cake happened. One slice turned into two, and before I knew it, my no-sugar resolve crumbled faster than a cookie in a toddler's grip.

The guilt from that was enough to keep me away from sugar for just a few more days.... But it wasn't long before a rough day at work came and I ended up finishing an entire carton of ice cream! This 'all-or-nothing' approach left me feeling like a failure, swinging from restriction to overindulgence. It was a classic case of setting myself up for an unrealistic and unsustainable goal. Sound familiar?

But here’s the beautiful part – this experience was my wake-up call. It taught me something crucial: the resolutions we set need to nurture us, not punish us. They should be like gentle whispers to the soul, encouraging growth and self-love, not harsh demands we impose on ourselves.

That's why I shifted towards mindful resolutions – those sweet, soulful intentions that align with our deeper needs and true desires. Goals that are less about strict rules and more about embracing a journey towards wellness, understanding, and self-compassion. Because, my dears, the way we talk to ourselves, the goals we set, they should fill us with light, not weigh us down with guilt.

So, as we toast to 2024, let’s explore how we can set intentions that truly nurture our soul and bring joy into our lives!

girl smiling and practicing self care

In this blog post:


As we embrace the New Year with open arms and open hearts, let's talk about what I really mean by 'mindful resolutions' and why they're a game-changer for our overall well-being.

Defining Mindful Resolutions:

Mindful resolutions are like gentle nudges guiding us towards our true potential. They are rooted in awareness, intention, and the present moment. Instead of fixating on specific outcomes, mindful resolutions focus on how we want to feel and the values we want to embody. For instance, instead of setting a goal to 'exercise 5x a week', a mindful resolution might be 'to honor and connect with my body through movement'. It's a subtle but powerful shift from doing to being, from achieving to experiencing.

Benefits of Mindful Resolutions:

The beauty of these resolutions lies in their holistic approach. They encourage us to grow in ways that enrich our lives, not just check off boxes. By focusing on our inner world – our thoughts, emotions, and desires – we create changes that are more sustainable and fulfilling. Mindful resolutions promote mental and emotional well-being, reduce stress, and increase our ability to handle life's ups and downs with grace and resilience.

Mindful Resolutions vs. Traditional Goal-Setting:

Traditional goal-setting often hinges on rigid, specific outcomes and timelines, which can create unnecessary pressure and a sense of failure if not met. Mindful resolutions, however, are more fluid and adaptable. They're about progress, not perfection. This approach acknowledges that life is unpredictable and that we are constantly evolving. It allows us to recalibrate our intentions as we learn and grow, rather than being shackled by rigid goals.

The Role of Self-Compassion in Mindful Resolutions:

At the heart of mindful resolutions is self-compassion. This isn't just about setting goals; it's about changing the way we speak to ourselves and treat ourselves on our journey. Self-compassion means being gentle, understanding, and kind to ourselves, especially when things don't go as planned. It's about celebrating the small wins and learning from setbacks, rather than berating ourselves for not being 'perfect'. When we approach resolutions with self-compassion, we create a nurturing space for true transformation.


Preparing to Set Your Intentions

Before we dive into setting our soulful intentions for the year, it's crucial to prepare ourselves – both our surroundings and our inner world. This preparation is not just about making a list; it’s about creating a sacred space and mindset where our true desires can gently surface.

Creating a Calm and Peaceful Environment:

First, let's talk about your physical space. Find a spot where you feel at ease – it could be a cozy corner of your room, a serene spot in your garden, or even a peaceful café. The key is to choose a place that feels soothing and free from distractions. Light some candles, play soft music, or surround yourself with items that bring you joy and comfort. This serene environment acts as a gentle cocoon, encouraging your thoughts and feelings to flow freely.

Techniques for Inner Reflection:

Now, let’s turn inward. Inner reflection is all about tuning into your heart and listening to what it has to say. Here are a few techniques to help you connect with your inner self:

  • Deep Breathing: Start with a few minutes of deep breathing to center your thoughts and calm your mind.

  • Guided Meditation: Use a short guided meditation focusing on self-discovery or gratitude to help you ease into a reflective state.

  • Journaling: Write down your thoughts and feelings. Don’t worry about structure or coherence; let your pen flow freely.

  • Visualization: Close your eyes and visualize your ideal day or year. What are you doing? How do you feel? Let these visions guide your reflections.

Acknowledging Your Current Life Situation and Emotional State:

It's essential to approach intention-setting with honesty and acceptance of where you are in life right now. Acknowledge your current situation – be it challenging, transitional, or flourishing. Recognize your emotional state without judgment. Are you feeling hopeful, anxious, excited, or a mix of these? Understanding where you're starting from helps in setting intentions that are not only inspiring but also realistic and relevant to your life.

Remember, there’s no rush in this process. Take your time to truly connect with yourself. This preparation phase is not just a step towards setting intentions; it's a beautiful act of self-care and self-love.


Crafting Your Mindful Resolutions

Now that we're in tune with our inner selves, let's start crafting resolutions that resonate with our heart and soul.

Guided Steps to Identify Resolutions:

  1. Reflect on Your Values: Think about what truly matters to you. Is it family, health, creativity, growth, or something else? Your resolutions should echo these core values.

  2. Visualize Your Ideal Self: Imagine a version of yourself that you aspire to be. What habits do they have? How do they spend their time? Use this image to guide your resolutions.

  3. Break It Down: For each area you want to focus on, ask yourself, "What small, realistic steps can I take to get closer to this vision?"

  4. Framing Intentions Positively: Frame your resolutions with positive language. Instead of saying, "I won’t procrastinate," try, "I will embrace timely and proactive actions." Positive framing makes your goals more inviting and achievable.

Examples of Soul-Nurturing Resolutions:

  • Health: "I intend to honor my body with nourishment and joyful movement."

  • Relationships: "I intend to cultivate deeper connections with loved ones through quality time and heartfelt communication."

  • Career: "I intend to seek growth opportunities that align with my passions and strengths."

  • Personal Growth: "I intend to dedicate time each week to activities that nurture my creativity and peace of mind."


Integrating Your Resolutions into Daily Life

Setting intentions is just the start; integrating them into your daily life is where the magic happens.

Strategies for Daily Routine:

  1. Set Reminders: Use phone alerts or sticky notes as gentle nudges to practice your resolutions.

  2. Incorporate into Existing Habits: Pair your intentions with habits you already have. For example, practice gratitude during your morning coffee.

  3. Start Small: Begin with tiny, manageable actions to avoid feeling overwhelmed.

Mindfulness Practices:

  1. Daily Reflection: Spend a few minutes each day reflecting on your intentions and the steps you've taken towards them.

  2. Mindful Breathing: Use mindful breathing as a tool to bring your focus back to the present moment and your intentions.

Dealing with Setbacks:

Remember, setbacks are part of the journey. When you face a hurdle:

  1. Be Kind to Yourself: Practice self-compassion. Remind yourself that progress is not linear.

  2. Reflect and Learn: Ask yourself what led to the setback and what you can learn from it.

  3. Realign: Gently guide yourself back to your intentions without self-judgment.

Staying motivated is about celebrating the small victories and understanding that each day is a fresh opportunity to embrace your intentions. Keep your heart open, your mindset positive, and watch as your mindful resolutions transform your life, one beautiful step at a time.


Each of us are on a unique path of self-discovery and growth. This year, let's embrace our resolutions not just as goals, but as loving companions guiding us towards our truest selves. Remember, there is no 'one size fits all' in this journey. Your resolutions are as unique and beautiful as you are.

As we step into this new year, I leave you with this affirmation: "I am on a journey of growth and self-love. Each day, I choose actions and thoughts that nurture my soul and bring joy into my life. I am worthy of this beautiful journey."


Check out some of my favorite resources to stay mindful:


Working on our goals is so much better surrounded with others on the same path! I'd love for you to send this article to a friend, or leave a comment with one of your mindful intentions for this new year!

Share them with me wherever you like to hangout!

Instagram: @bewellwithsteph_



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Steph Genco, plant-based wellness & nutrition coach for women.

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PS: You are worthy of living and capable of creating a healthy lifestyle you love. 🤍


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