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Setting Intentions

It can be so easy and habitual to believe the stories we tell ourselves. Many of these stories are dictated to us by our culture, our upbringing and our primal fight or flight BS. “Do more, be more, buy more, work more, hustle more…until you’re perpetually exhausted.” I’m over it; over buying into the stories that do nothing but keep me anxiety ridden and small.

For the last several months I’ve had a desire to do some deep work. Work that requires me to make time and space to get real with myself and intentional about what’s working and what isn’t. Have you ever felt a strong desire to shift?

As the universe would have it, after a yoga class I enjoyed this past fall, I struck up a conversation with one of my yoga teachers, Jessica Amsden. We talked about all the things: mothering, teaching, yoga, even minimalism (tiny house living anyone)? This sparked the idea of a Winter Solstice class focused on intention setting. And thankfully, within a few weeks, the class I had been calling in was beautifully actualized by Jessica- in one of the most heart warming, and inspiring classes I have taken to date. If you live in RI or Southern MA, it’s time to make a visit to Raffa Yoga, where this special class was held. There is a whole lot of healing going on at this mecca.

To begin our Winter Solstice class, we wrote down our many intentions, the negative scripts that are holding us back, and so much more. All of this written work culminated in the creation of our Sankalpa. Yogapedia defines Sankalpa as a “Sanskrit term in yogic philosophy that refers to a heartfelt desire, a solemn vow, an intention, or a resolve to do something. It is similar to the English concept of a resolution, except that it comes from even deeper within and tends to be an affirmation.”

If you’ve been craving a shift, and have been longing to make space that will help you rewrite the negative stories and habits that are no longer serving you, I encourage you to create your own version of Sakalpa. It’s incredibly transformative to write down your intentions, and so gratifying to actually light fire to paper as you release the shit that weighs you down. And that was the homework given out at the end of class-to burn the paper we wrote down our limiting self beliefs on. It’s liberating to watch the damaging words written on paper disappear into a beautiful bright flame.

Heading into 2020, I’m reminded of what matters most, and I’m steadfast in honoring the Sakalpa I’ve created. When life starts testing me, and pulling me in all sorts of directions, I remember this-the most important promises we make are the ones we make with ourselves.

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