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10 Gen Zers On The Intentions They’re Setting For 2023

The new year is upon us, and you know what that means — finding the most sparkly NYE outfit, eating the best food, and setting resolutions that we’ll probably give up on by February. The new year always seems like a perfect excuse for a clean slate, allowing us a chance to finally do that social media cleanse that we were planning all of 2022.

If you’ve failed to complete a new year’s resolution, you’re not alone. According to a 2018 study by YouGov, only about 4% of people who set resolutions actually stuck to them. Now, I’m not a resolution hater: I always set some goals myself, but by the end of the year, I notice that I only ever kept the habits that actually excited me. (Anyone else religiously update their Goodreads challenge?) 

It feels like there’s this pressure to completely reinvent yourself every year or you somehow failed at being a human. To escape that feeling of failure and actually make the changes you want in the new year, try setting intentions instead of resolutions.

ICYMI: An intention is what you intend or plan to do; your aim. Essentially, intentions describe how you want to feel throughout the day, month, or your lifetime, and not necessarily big habit changes that are difficult to do overnight. So, with the spirit of NYE in mind, I spoke to 10 Gen Zers to hear the intentions they’re bringing into 2023.

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RODNAE Productions / Pexels
“Be more intentional.” — Alexia, 22, University of Central Florida

“I want to slow down and not move so quickly. I want to enjoy life in the present. I’m such a fast-paced human — always speaking before I think, forgetting important things because I didn’t write them down, and quitting something if I’m not good at it on my first try. This makes me miserable because I feel like my life is passing me by, and I’m only 22. So, I want to slow down, be present, and intentional in 2023.”

“Be kinder to myself.” — Madison, 21, University of Florida

“It’s easy to neglect myself in the constant flow of life. For 2023, I’m setting the intention to be kinder to myself. When things get hectic, I talk negatively to myself — especially whenever I forget to do something. It leads to a lot of undeserved disappointment. I can’t seem to let myself just be. I want to be kinder and prioritize my happiness the way I do other things in life.”

“Be comfortable with being alone.” —  Eliza, 21, Murray State University

“The intentions I’m setting for next year are to live the life I want with happiness and become more comfortable with being alone. I’m graduating college in 2023, and I still don’t know what exactly I want to do or where I want to go, but what I do know is I want to be comfortable being alone. I found myself depending on others for happiness this past year, and learning to be happy by yourself is one of the biggest things you can do.” 

“Be present in every aspect of my life.” — Hannah, 22, Keiser University

“I want to be more present on my physical, mental, and spiritual health journey. I feel like growth in these areas will shape my life and allow everything to flow together. I plan on making meditation and boundaries a big priority in 2023.” 

“Pursue things that make me feel whole.” —  Alicia, 22, California State University, Long Beach

“I want to give my energy to projects that inspire joy and creativity. By setting this intention for 2023, I’m one step closer to my most authentic self. I want to allow room for self-exploration, radical acceptance, and compassion, which will open up opportunities to meet myself and others in new and exciting ways.”

“Travel.” —  Alexis, 21, University of South Florida 

“I want to follow my dreams this year. I have heavy intentions of kickstarting my van traveling adventures that I plan to build into a tiny home with no prior experience. So that’ll be interesting, but I’m excited. Traveling in this van has been a dream of mine for years now, and seeing it come to life will bring me a sense of overwhelming pride. I’m beyond excited to experience the world and nature in a new way while meeting new people, gaining knowledge, and overcoming different challenges. I want to show myself I’m truly capable of everything I’ve set out to do. This year, I want to do, see, learn, and grow more.”

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PNW Production / Pexels
“Step out of my comfort zone.” —  Joshua, 21

“My full intention for 2023 would be to continue my college career. The brain has always been a mystery to me, and maybe I need to step out of my comfort zone and be open to studying new things. I’m taking the time to truly know myself, understand myself, and love myself before I can step into the college world again. I’m hopeful that my decision will be the right decision. Another intention of mine would be to move out and have my own space. As a young adult, privacy is such a necessity. Having your own space can be so peaceful. It will give me space to heal, grow, and love myself.”

“Enjoy every last moment.” — Natasha, 21, University of South Carolina Upstate

“It’s my last year before going to law school and then working forever, so I want to experience life this year and have fun. My intention is to relish in the feeling of last times. It’s my last year playing college soccer, and probably the last time I can travel as much as possible before a work schedule constrains me. I want to run my pockets dry and be left with so many good memories.”

“Take my dreams seriously.” —  Sophia, 21, University of Massachusetts Amherst

“I’d like to be a writer. Maybe a poet or a novelist, but definitely something creative. I put a lot of my energy into my school work, which I’m proud of, but it doesn’t leave me with enough energy to invest in my personal projects. Yet, it’s these projects that are most fulfilling to me. I get frustrated with myself in the writing process, but the feeling of finally getting the words right is absolutely unmatched.”

“Stop focusing so much on the past.” —  Breanne, 22, University of Central Florida

“I want to focus more on the present moment. I notice myself having one foot in the past and one foot in the future. This year I just want to experience life for what it is.”

Avery Worley is a national writer for Her Campus. She has written across all verticals but takes a special interest in the wellness section, especially mental health, sex and relationships, and all things astrology. Beyond Her Campus, Avery attended New York University's Publishing Institute and is getting her Masters in Mass Communications from the University of Florida. When she isn't writing, you can find her exploring NYC with her latest romance novel in hand and relating way too much to "mirrorball" by Taylor Swift. If it's the fall, she's definitely rewatching Gilmore Girls.