Why 'Inner' New Year's Resolutions Are The Key To Creating External Change

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Just about everywhere you turn this time of year, people are sharing about, writing about, and posting about their New Year’s resolutions. And, most often, these resolutions relate to some aspect of our external lives that we’re committed to changing.

With all this focus on outer change, it’s easy to neglect the inner dimension of change, which includes unseen forces like intention, clarity, energy, and momentum. They may be invisible to the eye, but inner New Year’s resolutions actually determine whether we fulfill our intentions or abandon them altogether.

Just as thought precedes action, our external goals must be fueled by an inner New Year’s resolution if we’re to have any success in bringing them to fruition. In fact, the more focus you apply in allowing the inner momentum of your intentions to build, the more effective you’ll be in creating outer change.

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Here are 3 steps to creating an inner New Year’s resolution that will ensure your success in manifesting the external changes you desire.

Step 1: Focus on one area of your life where you’d like to create measurable and meaningful change.

To land an arrow with any accuracy, we first have to identify the target, and trying to accomplish too much at once is a sure way to miss the mark completely. So when contemplating your resolutions for the New Year, challenge yourself to be specific and to think in terms of the end goal that you want to create.

Here are some questions that may help:

—If I had to pick just one area of my life to create a measurable and positive change, which area would have the greatest impact on my overall happiness?

—In which area of my life do I currently feel the most dissatisfaction?

—What aspects of my life have I been working on for the longest period of time?

If health concerns or a less-than-ideal level of fitness is negatively impacting your ability to express yourself in other areas of your life, making an inner resolution around your wellbeing probably makes the most sense. Likewise, if you’ve been struggling to make ends meet or languishing in a job that has no future, you might decide to make a career or finances your primary focus.

While there are likely multiple areas of your life that you’d like to improve, focusing on one at a time will increase your creative power and set a precedent that will impact other areas of your life in time.

Step 2: Align your energy by working backward.

Most New Year’s resolutions only take us as far as identifying the external change we desire to make. But unless we’ve marshaled the internal resources needed to reach that target, these efforts are largely wasted.

Maybe this is why, according to a poll cited last year in The New York Post, 68% of us give up on our resolutions within the first month of the New Year.

Identifying the target isn’t enough. We also have to make the energetic shifts that align us with that target. In other words, we need to look beyond the conditions we want to change and connect with the quality of energy that we wish to infuse into this aspect of our lives.

As you think about the changes you’d like to create in the area of your life you’ve chosen, these questions will help you identify the quality of energy that will support you in manifesting this change:

—What kind of person could easily manifest this change?

—What qualities and skills do they possess?

—What actions do they consistently take? What are their go-to daily habits and most dominant moods?

—What are they committed to? What do they give top importance and priority? What does this person consistently say no to? What do they consistently say yes to?

Your answers to these questions will help you clarify the quality of energy that will naturally lead you to create the outcomes you desire. And when you focus on infusing that energy into every action you take, you’ll find that you can accomplish more with less effort.

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Most of us approach our New Year’s resolutions from an action-only standpoint. We make the phone calls, plan the date nights, and put the reps in at the gym, but unless we’re connected to the energy we’re trying to invoke, these actions fall short and we end up either exhausted or discouraged.

The solution to this is to embody the energy of your desired outcome before jumping into action. In other words, deliberately decide how you want to feel, and get into that state of being before you do anything.

For example, if your inner New Year’s resolution is to create a closer relationship with your kids, distinguish the qualities you most want to experience with them and make sure your vibration is aligned with that energy. If your resolution is around improving your health or strengthening your body, begin every workout by first connecting with whatever vibration will serve you most at that moment.

Remember the “why” that is fueling your desire to change, and breathe in the energy of vitality, stamina, sexuality, relaxation, increased immunity, or whatever else you desire.

If you’re resolved to inspire greater success in your team at work, make sure you’re rolling in each day with a frequency of genuine excitement and joyful anticipation that the best possible outcome for all concerned is now in the process of unfolding. Remember, your vibration is what initiates meaningful and lasting change, not your action.

A few minutes of aligning your energy with the outcome you want to create is far more powerful than hours and hours of action taken without this connection. It’s like the difference between using an electronic device that is running on battery power versus one that is plugged in and being fully charged by a live electrical current.

Action that is infused with energy and intention produces results that are astonishing compared to what can be accomplished with action alone.

Step 3: Focus on your moment-to-moment alignment with the quality of energy you want to infuse into your life.

If we view our resolutions in terms of black and white — as either having been accomplished or not — it’s easy to become discouraged. With one misstep, it can feel like we’ve suddenly lost all the ground we’ve gained.

But by viewing your inner New Year’s resolution in terms of an energy flow and a moment-to-moment allowing of that energy, you’ll realize that you are never more than a thought away from getting yourself back on track.

You’ve already done the heavy lifting. By deliberately identifying the external change you desire to make, and connecting with the energy that will most easily facilitate that change, you have set a powerful creative process into motion. Your only work now is to continue aligning yourself — in thought, mood, action, and belief — with that energy.

Declaring your inner New Year’s resolution is like dropping a rock into the middle of a still pond. You can trust that unless you do something to interrupt the natural unfolding of events, eventually the ripples will reach the shore and you will realize your goal.

Rather than waiting for the moment your inner resolution becomes an external reality to congratulate yourself, celebrate every choice you make that brings you back into alignment with your desired outcome. Making your alignment with this energy your primary goal is the key to manifesting your inner New Year’s resolutions.

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Christy Whitman is an energy healer, Master Certified Law of Attraction Coach, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Art of Having It All: A Woman’s Guide to Unlimited Abundance, as well as her latest book, "The Desire Factor: How to Embrace Your Materialistic Nature to Reclaim Your Full Spiritual Power".