How Intentions & Sankalpa are Different From Resolutions & Goals

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Lesson Overview

In this lesson, we clarify the differences between goals, resolutions, intentions and sankalpa, and how this knowledge can positively impact perspective, perception and progress.


Be clear on how goals, resolutions, intentions and sankalpa relate and differ, and how to support students in meeting goals and in utilizing sankalpa and intention for optimum benefit.


Clarify the differences between goals, resolutions and intentions, and why this is important. Define sankalpa. Provide two types of sankalpa and give examples of each. Describe the “radical premise” from which a sankalpa practice starts. Explain how a sankalpa can be discovered. Provide a format that can be used when formulating a sankalpa. Note two techniques for accessing heart-felt desires. Explain what can be done to help avoid the common obstacle of falling into an “all or nothing” pattern which leads to giving up at signs of imperfection. Explain how yoga helps to overcome such obstacles as past conditioning, internal reservations, or an unconscious agenda.  Give up to 20 sample intentions that students may wish to work with during their practice. Interpret the research findings from the “Good Samaritan” study.

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