Traditionally, the start of January is the time when we set out our intentions for the year ahead; when we gather up our failing willpower and give it a boost in order to achieve our goals. 

 Whatever your aims are, you will probably need some help as more than 90 per cent of our resolutions dissolve into a pile of dust by mid-February.  

 Self-help author Anne Jones likes to set herself targets as a way of keeping motivated and, over the year,s she has found these simple steps work very well for setting intentions and manifesting what she needs and/or wants in her life: 

Be sure of what you want to achieve 

Before you set out intentions, sit down and think about what it is you are asking for – either of yourself or for the universe to provide for you. The Law of Attraction is a powerful force that will actually give you what you are asking for but it will match your vision as like attracts like, so it’s really important to be clear. Make sure you are coming from your heart; that this is something you truly want, and that you are not being influenced by other people or what you feel you ought to be doing otherwise your heart will not be in it and it will doubtless fail.  

Write it down 

Write down your intention, what exactly it is you intend to do or attract. This helps anchor your thoughts into the paper which takes it one step towards reality. Draw what you want or plan to do or be – just a simple sketch will do but the more detail and colour the better.  

 Ask for help 

Ask for help by making a request for assistance in attracting what you need or the strength to fulfil your intentions. Ask whoever or whatever you believe in: angels, spiritual masters, gods, nature or just put it out to the universe with a symbol. I use symbols to emphasise any intention as these bypass my own self-doubts and put out a clear message.  

 Set the action in motion 

Get on with what you need to do to put your intention into action eg if you want to be more active, join a gym or an exercise group, if you want to be less stressed take up yoga or meditation. If you want to lose weight, enrol in slimming classes. If you want to write a book, find a title and start scribbling down your thoughts. If you want to meet a partner, then join a dating site. If you want to start a business, make a website. Start to put your intentions into action immediately. Don’t prevaricate, don’t hesitate - just do it! 

 Let it go 

Now, let go of your thoughts on how you think you will reach your goal. The universe works in strange ways and we often achieve our goals and get what we desire in a way that we hadn’t even imagined. If you keep stressing about your goal, you will be letting your emotions and mind get in the way.  And lastly, don’t beat yourself up if you feel you are failing at any time, just make the next day a fresh start.  Good luck! 

  • Anne Jones is an international author and key-note speaker.  Her self-help books have been translated into 17 languages.