New Year. New Decade. New Life.

2020 – the beginning of not only a new year; but a new decade. As the fireworks settle over the city and transform into a new dawn, January 1 is the perfect moment to reflect on the year that was before moving into a new year of exciting challenges and changes.

I am fortunate to experience our new decade from my favourite city in the world. Roma. While it is exciting to see how another country from my owns celebrates, it is also an opportunity to sit in quiet reflection of my achievements during 2019.

Rome, for me, is the right place to spend a quiet moment away from the complications of “real life” and think about what I want to achieve in 2020.

The first day of a new year is important if we are serious about making changes in our lives. That is why it is important to take a moment of quiet reflection and put pen to paper as we set our intentions for 2020.

But do not feel you have to lock yourself into these intentions. Creatively writing open, honest intentions will leave room for you to make modifications in say six months if needed.

Before you start to write an intention, first you must reflect on the year that was. Ask yourself questions. What did you learn, achieve and most importantly what were your challenges?

We can only grow when we understand what challenges prevented us from achieving our goals. Once we know our challenges we can then work out a plan of action to overcome them.

A journal is a great tool to assist us identify our challenges during 2019. I use a journal each year to keep me on track and regularly review my intentions.

Most importantly, a journal becomes your best friend. A confidante. It is a place where you can be open and honest with yourself. No-one will read it or judge your words. A journal is a place where we have the freedom to be ourselves.

Once you have identified last year’s challenges, look at why they were challenges. What prevented you working through them. Write those thoughts in your journal. Is it possible that perhaps you need to break them down into easily digestible chunks? Do you need to remove barriers from your life? Use your journal to brainstorm your ideas and steps needed for you to overcome those challenges.

Now you are ready to start writing your 2020 intentions.

An intention can be as big or small as you need it to be. But, the important thing to remember is it needs to be meaningful to you and achievable.

I will share one of the intentions I made this morning during my reflection time. In 2019, I had the habit of doing things because I felt obligated which left me with no time for me. So my intention to resolve this will be:

Every day and every week I will review my diary and clear things which make me feel trapped, burdened or constrained and which I have the power to do so.

An intention written in this way allows me the freedom to choose how many activities that obligations I will commit to without compromising on my wellbeing.

Setting an intention is only the start.

To keep track of your progress, it is best to set regular review sessions throughout the year. I choose to review mine each quarter. However, if you are new to intention setting, try to review them at the end of your first month. This will allow you to re-evaluate where your focus should be and set revised intentions if needed.

Also, do not forget to celebrate your achievements along the way. When you reach your goal, take a moment to reward yourself .

Equally, if you are struggling, be kind to yourself. It is okay to have setbacks. These teach us more about ourselves and show us who we are. Challenges build resilience and courage and make you the best person you want to be.

So, as we move into 2020, go forth and conquer and make this your best year ever.

I would love to hear some of your new year intentions, feel free to share these in the comments below.

Felice Anno Nuovo!