What is a Sankalpa? The Art of Purpose

El Sankalpa es una intención o propósito profundo.

Sankalpa is a concept that we can find in the yogic and Vedic tradition and that we can translate as “resolution” or “intention“, although it is necessary to qualify this translation in order not to remain in a superficial aspect that can give rise to misunderstandings.

The word itself,“Sankalpa“, comes from Sanskrit:“San” means“together with” or “union“, and “Kalpa” means “way” or “manner“. Thus, Sankalpa refers to a vow or a resolution taken from the depths of the heart.

It has been an integral part of the Vedic tradition since ancient times. It is used in rituals, ceremonies and especially in the practice of Yoga Nidra, a type of deep meditation.

Unlike Western goals or resolutions, which are often based on superficial desires or perceived personal shortcomings (such as losing weight or quitting smoking), the Sankalpa originates from deep knowledge of the authentic self and represents an intention related to our life purpose on a deeper or spiritual level.

Characteristics of the Sankalpa

Unlike New Year’s resolutions, which are often external and may arise from self-criticism or social expectations, a Sankalpa is born from self-knowledge. It is an intention that springs from an understanding of what we really need for our evolution and well-being.

The Sankalpa is not expressed in negative terms or in the language of lack. Instead of saying “I will quit smoking“, we would express ourselves in the following way “I choose health and wellness for my body“. This positive, affirmative choice is more likely to be deeply rooted and manifest in reality.

It is a short statement. It should be easy to remember so that it can be repeated mentally with ease, especially during meditation or times of reflection. It is formulated in the present tense, as if it is already happening. This helps to evoke a sense of reality and urgency in our subconscious mind.

Although others may have similar or even the same intentions, the choice and formulation of the Sankalpa is based on individual authenticity and what truly connects with our heart and soul. It is both a lofty and realistic aspiration. It is based on an attainable vision so that the mind does not immediately reject it.

Above all it is a commitment to oneself. It represents a firm decision to move in a particular direction or make a specific change, not mere empty words.

How to create your own Sankalpa

Creating a Sankalpa requires introspection and sincerity. We must immerse ourselves in deep meditation or a state of self-reflection to understand what we really want or need in our life.

Some questions that can help in this process are:

  • What do I really want for my life?
  • What internal or external changes would facilitate my spiritual evolution?
  • Are there any internal obstacles or patterns that are hindering my growth and well-being?

Once a clear understanding emerges, the Sankalpa can be formulated into a short, positive affirmation. Keep in mind the keys we have described in the previous paragraph to write your own Sankalpa.

The Transformative Power of intention

The Sankalpa has the power to reprogram the subconscious. Through repetition and concentration, the mind begins to move in the direction of the Sankalpa, facilitating actions and decisions that are aligned with the stated intention. Over time, the Sankalpa can become a tangible reality, demonstrating that our mind has immense power to manifest our reality.

Once we have established our Sankalpa it becomes an integral part of our daily life. We need to repeat it with conviction, especially during meditation, pranayama practice or at the beginning and end of the day. Constant repetition acts as a reminder, keeping the intention alive and directing the energy towards the manifestation of that intention.

Common mistakes when formulating our Sankalpa

The Sankalpa is a tool that can help us make profound changes in our lives. However, if it is not formulated or practiced properly, its effectiveness can be compromised. Here are some of the most common mistakes people make when formulating it:

Ambiguity in Formulation

One of the most common mistakes is formulating a Sankalpa that is too vague or ambiguous.“I want to be happy” or“I want to be healthier” are examples of this. While these desires are valid, they lack specificity. An effective Sankalpa should be clear and direct, such as“I choose to find joy in the little things every day” or“I commit to nourishing my body with healthy foods.”

Focusing on the Negative

Some people tend to phrase their Sankalpa in terms of what they don’t want rather than what they want. “I don’t want to be stressed” or “I don’t want to get sick” are signs of a negative focus. It is very important that we formulate our Sankalpa in a positive way to direct our energy toward the desired manifestation, such as “I choose peace and calm in my daily life” or “My body and mind are in perfect health.”

Lack of Personal Connection

A Sankalpa is not simply a generic affirmation; it must have a deep, personal connection. Sometimes people adopt Sankalpas based on what they think they should desire, rather than what they really want. It is vital that our intention arises from genuine introspection and not from external expectations.

Change Sankalpa Frequently

If we want our Sankalpa to have an effect, it is essential to repeat and meditate on it regularly. Constantly changing Sankalpa does not allow the energy to consolidate and work effectively. While it is true that a Sankalpa can evolve over time, we must give it enough time and space to manifest naturally.

Unrealistic Expectations

While the Sankalpa is a powerful tool, formulating one such as “I will win the lottery this week” may not be realistic or beneficial in the long run. It is key that the Sankalpa focuses on personal growth and development and not on material or external goals that are beyond our control.

Lack of Patience

The manifestation of a Sankalpa is not an instantaneous process. It requires time, repetition and, most importantly, faith in the process. Expecting immediate results and giving up when immediate changes are not seen is a mistake. Patience is essential to allow the Sankalpa to work in the deepest layers of our subconscious.

Not integrating it into daily life:

Limiting Sankalpa only to moments of meditation or during yoga practice and not bringing it into our daily life is another mistake. To be effective, it is beneficial to remember and repeat the Sankalpa at different times of the day and allow it to guide our decisions and actions.

What are the Benefits?

Beneficios del Sankalpa en el yoga.

One of the great spiritual truths is that if we want to make progress, we have to forget about the benefits. Simply dedicate ourselves to our spiritual practice consistently, addressing the obstacles that come our way, and the positive results will eventually follow. However, here are some of the benefits that can be derived from using the Sankalpa in our practice:

Clarity and Direction

One of the biggest challenges most people encounter in their lives is the lack of clear direction. We are constantly bombarded with information, choices and distractions. The Sankalpa gives us clear direction and a definite purpose. It serves as an internal compass, helping us to navigate through life with clear intention and make decisions that are aligned with our deepest values and aspirations.

Empowers the Power of the Mind

When we formulate a Sankalpa in the present tense and repeat it regularly, we activate and strengthen the power of the subconscious. This can lead to a faster and more effective manifestation of our intentions and desires into reality. It has been shown that positive affirmations can influence the neuroplasticity of the brain, which means that they actually have the power to change our brain structure and the view we have of the world around us.

Emotional Stability

Staying grounded in our Sankalpa helps us cultivate a calm and resilient mind. By focusing on a deep intention, we can reduce the mind’s tendency to wander and worry. Over time, this can lead to greater emotional stability, making us less susceptible to mood fluctuations.

Strengthens Commitment and Determination

Declaring an intention is a sacred vow with oneself. When we adhere to it we cultivate qualities such as determination, perseverance and commitment. These attributes are essential not only for advancing in the practice of yoga, but also for overcoming obstacles in our day-to-day lives.

Deep Spiritual Connection

Beyond the tangible benefits, Sankalpa also facilitates a deep spiritual connection. It connects us to our most authentic self and to the divine purpose of our existence. This connection can be an endless source of inspiration, peace and joy.


During the process of formulating and refining our Sankalpa we are embarking on a journey of self-discovery. It invites us to look deeply within, to understand our true aspirations and to recognize limiting or destructive patterns in our lives, and most importantly, to take action to change them.

Examples of Sankalpa

As we have mentioned, it is essential that each person creates his or her own Sankalpa, full of personal meaning and connecting with his or her own desires and goals. Below we are going to give you some sample Sankalpas to inspire you to create your own, which remember is very important:

  • I am full of peace and serenity.
  • Every day I choose joy and optimism.
  • I am a source of love and compassion.
  • I move through the world with grace and ease.
  • I am connected to the wisdom of the universe.
  • I am in harmony with everything around me.
  • I choose health and wellness for my body and mind.
  • I open myself to receive and give love unconditionally.
  • I am on the right path to my life purpose.
  • I live with intention and purpose.
  • My heart and mind are open to new experiences.
  • I am resilient and face challenges with courage.
  • I accept and embrace all parts of my being.
  • I forgive myself and others with ease.
  • I live in the present and trust the process of life.
  • I am grateful for and celebrate the abundance in my life.
  • I choose to live from an authentic, purposeful life.
  • I am a perpetual student, always willing to learn.
  • I radiate positive energy and attract good vibes.
  • I am surrounded and protected by loving energies.
  • I listen to and trust my intuition.
  • I am able to manifest my dreams and aspirations.
  • I live in balance and harmony with nature.
  • My mind is clear, and I make decisions with confidence.
  • I am worthy of love, joy and prosperity.
  • I attract healthy and nurturing relationships.
  • I grow and evolve with each experience.
  • My life is filled with meaning and purpose.
  • I am connected to the source of my true self.
  • Every day I grow closer to my true self.

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