The Power and Purpose of Intention Setting

As the New Year approaches, we naturally look to the potential of the months ahead like they are a fresh canvas, or a blank slate, and consciously or unconsciously…we set intentions.

In truth, we are constantly setting intentions, day to day, and even moment to moment. 

Small ones like going to get a coffee in the morning. 

Bigger ones like starting a family, changing careers, or making a big lifestyle change.

And the act of setting an intention, strikes a chord within us, that sets in motion that thing coming into fruition. Smaller intentions like making a coffee…well, these are generally not difficult and manifest without much to write home about. 

Larger, or more meaningful intentions, generally require us to do things differently, to take action, and to create new habits. These ‘bigger’ intentions also generally require us to reflect on or upgrade our mind-set or beliefs, or to do some emotional healing work. This is especially true if the intention we have set represents going to a new level in a particular area of our lives. 

For example, if we have been working at a particular income level for many years, we may have many subconscious beliefs that relate to that income level. It might feel safe and familiar for many reasons. It might be a similar income as one of our family members (as an aside, it is common to experience an income plateau that matches one of our parents as a subconscious way of not rocking the boat). Or we may have internalised a belief such as ‘wealthy people are greedy’. Or we might link poverty and struggle as a noble path. Or we may be carrying anger at someone and it is draining us. The list is potentially endless!

One of the ways it works is that our intentions show us everything we have created in our life that stands between them and us. This is a powerful magick – ask for what you want and meet all the obstacles you have created that stand in the way of that. 

Jane Hardwick Collins

Are you beginning to see why those big, bold, intentions you set sometimes don’t end up happening?

Or maybe you’ve given up setting intentions at New Years because from experience they seem doomed to fail?

If we aren’t aware of this process, we can easily get sidetracked and give up as soon as the obstacles rear their heads.

Unconscious Intentions

Very often I will ask people what their intentions have been recently, and they will reply ‘I don’t really have any’.

I will then ask what has been happening in life, and when we dig a little deeper, their intentions become clearer, like a recent client who shared ‘Oh, I don’t really set intentions, it’s just I took two weeks off of work so I could relax, but then my kids got sick, and my partner works non-stop and I couldn’t get any care for them, and people kept asking for my help, and somehow I ended up doing more than usual’.

Can you see the link there? She had unconsciously set an intention to relax and then the lack of support with the kids was the first obstacle, and then she had a hard time saying ‘no’ to friends which was the second obstacle, and unknowing the way that life unfolds like this, she wound up feeling rotten and seeking help to relax and unwind.

When we know the power and purpose of intentions, we are truly in co-creation with life, and our dreams serve us as much as we serve them.

Eleanor Mann

Conscious Intentions

Had she known about the power and purpose of intentions she would have been prepared to release the old patterns that would come up for healing.

When her kids got sick, she may have recognised the challenge for what it was. This particular client found that actually, while she said that she had no support, she actually felt so anxious leaving her youngest child with other people she never really tried to find help, and after healing some core wounds around trust, this shifted and she was able to hire a lovely babysitter who they all adored.

Are you getting the picture?

Our intentions, whether conscious or unconscious, set us on a healing journey. We can get further on our path of awareness if we can learn to both set intentions consciously, and work with the obstacles, both external and internal, as consciously as possible.

When we know the power and purpose of intentions, we are truly in co-creation with life, and our dreams serve us as much as we serve them.

There are many ways to work with the obstacles that arise when we set intentions. At The Reconnected we use Breath and Body Attunement to connect with the subconscious material that relates to our intentions.

You may like to journal or spend time in nature, paint, draw, meditate, do some therapy, whatever helps you move through the obstacles with greater awareness.

So, what are your New Years Intentions this year?

Eleanor Mann
Eleanor Mann

Eleanor is co-founder of Reconnected Parenting and Reconnected Magazine alongside Emma Alta. She is a children’s counsellor and breathwork and delights in raising her four teenaged children.

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