Setting Intentions

And making them HAPPEN.

Thrive invites voices from many spheres to share their perspectives on our Community platform. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team, and opinions expressed by Community contributors do not reflect the opinions of Thrive or its employees. More information on our Community guidelines is available here.
Photo by Zoltan Tasi on Unsplash

The New Year is the perfect time to think about setting intentions.  When we mindfully set intentions, it’s like planting seeds. We have the opportunity to start “sprouting” something that we want to bear fruit.

There is a real way that we can plant our intentions with more power, and there are real ways that we can nourish our intentions to maximize the fruit that they bear.

First, how do we decide what seeds we want to plant?

Mutually Beneficial

If we set intentions that only benefit us, they will have much less power than if we set intentions that also benefit others. This mutual benefit brings more energy to support the growth of all that we are trying to make happen.  Focus on how whatever you desire authentically is of mutual benefit and you will empower the intention.

The WHY beneath the why

There is always a reason why we want what we want — and, then there is a deeper WHY. For example, my husband and I wanted to buy a NYC apartment after we got married. We wanted to own our own home, and we wanted to have a home that we could raise our family in — focusing on the desire of having a home to nurture and raise our family is a deeper, more emotional drive than just thinking about our desire to own our own home… it is the deeper WHY that will bring more power to what we are trying to manifest.

Be grounded in gratitude

Another important intention setting practice is to be grounded in gratitude for all that we already have as we set the intention. Gratitude and appreciation is a vastly different energy than feeling like there isn’t enough and this makes a big difference in our ability to make miracles happen in our life.  Many people tout the power of “being hungry” and for most people, that equates to feeling like your life depends on something happening — if it doesn’t happen, you won’t be able to survive!  Yes, this mentality spurs action, but it is action tainted with negative energy.  Instead of hunger, tap into gratitude and inspiration.  Inspiration is far more motivating and you are less likely to give up if you are driven by love over fear.


Next, having clarity and being SURE of what you want is key… because once we set our intentions, we need to nourish them to have the best outcomes.   And staying clear and sure, not changing our mind or having contradictory beliefs around the intention is VITAL.

Most of us struggle with being clear on what it is that we really want and we struggle with changing our minds.    But imagine you are at a restaurant, ordering your meal. 5 minutes after you order the chicken, you grab the waiter and say, oh actually I have changed my mind — can I get the pork chop instead? The waiter says sure, and heads to the kitchen to tell them to stop the chicken, start the pork… well, 5 minutes after that, you change your mind again, and the process has to start over. This is a great analogy to think about what we are trying to manifest in our lives. If we are constantly changing our minds, we are losing the momentum of what we are trying to achieve.  We need to get clear.

Root out contradictory beliefs and fears

Another major issue is that we have contradictory beliefs around what we are trying to manifest.  For example, if we were raised with mantras like, “money is the root of all evil”, and there is part of us that still believes that on some level, it will literally be blocking our ability to manifest wealth.  The contradictory beliefs work against us and plant fears that we need to bravely face.   There are infinite examples of this in all areas of our life and we must root out these often subconscious beliefs and fears if we want to maximize the manifestation of our intentions.  

Visualize, visualize, visualize

Next, we want to visualize and BE the change and… bless the change. 

On the visualization, we want to imagine not just the change happening, but AFTER it happens, how it FEELS. The more specific and vivid our visualization, the more powerful it is. I know it sounds silly, but it really works. So, if you are setting an intention for a new home, imagine how it feels to be sitting in the living room, being in the back yard planting the flowers… and next BE the change — so if you want to get that promotion, BE the person that is worthy of the promotion, handling the big projects with grace, being the go-to team member. If you want to manifest wealth, BE a good money manager! And, anyone that you see that HAS what you are trying to manifest, BLESS it. You can’t have anything (or keep it!) that you are sending negative energy towards.

Focus on the positives

Speaking of negative energy, remember that your brain has a strong negativity bias, so as you go about life, you will notice and stick to the negatives much easier than the positives — we need to override that and get ourselves to focus on the positives and stay in a positive state of mind. This energy is real — it impacts the quality of our work which impacts the quality of our results.

Take action every day

Speaking of work, we need to take action every day towards the intention. This is HUGE. Nothing will come from sitting around. We need to hustle. And, if we aren’t sure WHAT we are supposed to do, anything is better than nothing. Literally, even if the action we take turns out to be a failure, at least we are failing forward and gaining the learning from the actions we took. Every day, we need to take action.


Lastly, we need to surrender on timing and “little hows” — timing is always going to be out of our hands. If we are trying to control ANYTHING that is out of our hands, we are literally choking off the flow of life to what we are trying to create. We need to be brave and trust in the force (yes, I am quoting Star Wars.)

And often times when we look back at the truly miraculous things that we’ve accomplished in our life, the “little hows” come in the most unexpected packages.

The way my husband starting managing artists blossomed because he sat next to a fabulous artist (moonlighting as a babysitter covered in stickers!) in the back of a plane on one random cross country flight.  They got chatting and it turned into another massive career path. 

The “little hows” rarely can be orchestrated! They just flow in unexpected ways.  So, let them. Surrender to the flow and be open! Don’t miss those opportunities that are often disguised in unexpected packages.

Clarity, Courage, Caring, Surrender, Openness, Hustle, and Gratitude.

Following these principles as we set our intentions and nourish them will ensure the best outcomes for our intentions for the New Year.  We can make them happen!

You might also like...


Go From Chaos to Alignment With This Powerful 4-Step Process

by Emilio Diez Barroso

Intentions Pave the Way for Creative Purpose

by Jeffrey Davis
Discontent biracial lady gesturing face palm on camera against yellow background

5 Reasons Not To Offer Free Webinars Unless …

by Amy Goldberg
We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.