Intentions for 2019 :: How to Set a Sankalpa

Intention setting is a fickle beast, because it is sometimes confused with a resolution, most notably made during the month of January. It’s sad to say but most of the time our resolutions are not only short-lived but they’re short-failed. The reason for this is that some resolutions are centered on ego and expectations that will not fully satisfy a true need or want if it ever did come to fruition. Think about it for a moment:  

New Year’s Resolution: Go to the gym more.

Intention: I am healthy and whole. 

New Year’s Resolution: Quit Smoking. 

Intention: I choose to live healthfully. 

So I ask you to change the narrative this “resolution season” and use an affirmation to focus on a resolve or intention that is specific to you to bring about a positive change in your life.

Make a Sankalpa. 

Sanskrit breakdown:

San= A connection with the highest truth


In yoga, Sankalpa means intention. Sankalpas are usually practiced in Yoga Nidra (a form of meditation), but today, think of a short phrase, sentence, or mantra that is clear, concise, and speaks to you. It’s expressed using the same wording each time to bring about a positive shift, change, or clean slate. It’s often in the present tense, using “I am” or “I will.” 

The most notable difference between a boring old resolution and a Sankalpa is the belief that it is already within you. You are already whole, healthy, a non-smoker, etc. We simply need to peel back some layers and, like stepping stones, achieve our goal. Think of something you want to do. Write it down if you can and keep it somewhere safe. 

How to set an Intention/Sankalpa:

Plant the seed. 

When you start a Sankalpa, you are actually willing something into the present moment. If you think it, the intention behind your thoughts in this moment is already happening. 

Keep the intention short and simple, using direct and positive verbiage. Do not use modifiers such as “I will try to heal;” rather, “I am healed.”

Visualize your intention.

Sankalpas are the dreamers. Choose something that is most certainly attainable but is also challenging, perhaps fear-evoking, and most likely, a little uncomfortable. Then, like stepping stones, move forward using what you have. In our daily lives, we can draw upon our Sankalpa at any moment, using it as a guide for our thoughts, words, and actions.

All paths lead to and from your intention.

As you move through your role as a wife, a mother, a father, a brother, a working mom, a stay-at-home mom, things will bubble up and choices will be made. If it doesn’t serve your sankalpa or intention, be ok with letting it go and choosing something that does. Keep coming back. 



Sarah is a yoga teacher and stay at home mom of two beautiful darlings. Born and raised in Plano, TX, she moved away for college at the University of Kansas. After studying Journalism at KU (Rock Chalk), Sarah moved back home to attend SMU where she received a MA degree in Advertising and studied abroad in India. Married in 2012 to love of her life Kyle, they took to the suburbs in Allen to start a family. She is now is a stay at home mom with her two babies, Everett Brave (2 years-old) and Winnie Grace (6 months-old). Sarah is also a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT-200) and teaches Vinyasa and Prenatal Yoga in the Allen and North Dallas area. Former Lululemon Ambassador for Dallas, she loves being part of the yoga community and sharing the gift of yoga to people of all ages, levels and life stages. “Yoga inspires, creates, manages those little places in our lives, in our hearts that need to open just a little bit more. When we open our hearts, we open our life up to such joy. It all starts on the mat, and slowly a transformation will unfold.” Sarah believes she was put on this earth to be a mother, teaching her children the importance of love and kindness along the way.