Setting the Wheel in Motion – Bringing Intention to Life

Lake Erie - Intention
My 2017 Intention

It’s the last Sunday of the year and I’ve made it to a finish line of sorts. At this time last year, I set an intention to write a weekly blog on a word or a concept for mindful focus.  My goal was multi-purposed. Setting a weekly focal point would give me one mindful concept to zero in on each week.  And making a  commitment to write about it each week would sharpen my intention. It made it both tangible and a stronger commitment.  Choosing to write once a week seemed manageable. It was a stretch from what I was already doing but not unreasonable.

Internal Wisdom

I tired to make my plans reasonable, but I had no idea how difficult the year would be.  The term “hell and high water” certainly applied to 2017.  There were some dark moments when I wasn’t sure what the point of anything was anymore and certainly wasn’t sure about this whole blogging experiment. But then just when I thought I might give up, tenacity would kick in and something would inspire me to write one more post.  I didn’t always make it on Sunday, but I wrote one blog each week and actually wrote a few extras.  Some were great posts, some were just okay, but always I was writing for myself – what I needed to hear that week, tapping into my own internal wisdom.

Setting an Intention

As we edge closer to the new year, less than 24 hours away, I know that some of you are considering new year’s resolutions.  I prefer the word intention because I think resolutions have gotten some bad press. If you have an intention (or two) in mind, I’d like to suggest some things to consider.  This is based on my own experience. If it makes sense for you, great.  If not, just ignore it.

The most important thing to me seems to be tapping into your own deep wisdom.  What is it you want to be different and how can that happen?  If it’s not something you really care about, the intention will evaporate pretty quickly.  What are you passionate about ushering into your world? A new habit… a changed attitude…a new practice.

Setting the Wheel in Motion

Remember it is easier to set a small wheel in motion. The energy required is small. Then physics takes over and the wheel can keep moving. So the next thing is to break your intention into the smallest part that you can, to ensure success. Tiny successes add up to big wins. We all know this, but sometimes we just want the big win and in so doing set ourselves up for failure.

Putting your intentions in writing and posting them somewhere, will also help keep the wheel moving. (I just mean posting somewhere like your refrigerator or bathroom mirror, but if you feel like posting to the internet, go for it.)

My intentions for the year are to:  a. keep writing once a week – through hell and high water; b. create a weatherproof papier mache dragon for my garden; c. make more of the garden beds grazing gardens (eat as you go); d. more consistently taking the connectedness and calmness I experience in sitting meditation into interactions with challenging people.

I’d love to hear of any intentions you are setting for the new year.  Reply in comments or send me an email.

For more information on weekly mindfulness focus words click here.

Papier Mache Dragon


  1. Madhuri Land
    January 2, 2018

    The Dali Lama’s New Years message talked about setting intention for the new year tooo. Cool!!

    Thank you for all the wonderful posts this last year. You helped me keep my focus on what I CAN do in a very difficult year!! Very uplifting and very helpful in a practical way.
    All the best to you and yours in 2018.
    Keep writing and I will keep reading and putting your guidance into action!! Deal?

    • Joann Calabrese
      January 3, 2018

      Thank you and yes, I intend to keep writing. Happy New Year to you.

  2. Madhuri Land
    January 2, 2018

    I LOVE your dragon!!

    • Joann Calabrese
      January 3, 2018

      I’m going to post the whole process for my papier mache dragon soon.


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