Apiece Apart Travels: New Year Intentions with Gemma Ingalls and Roanne Adams

Apiece Apart new year intentions
In the first days of 2019, friends (and past Apiece Apart Women!) photographer Gemma Ingalls + creative director Roanne Adams travelled together to Hawaii.
While exploring the volcanic beaches and otherworldly landscapes, they stopped to discuss what it means to "set intentions": Or, how we can be more gentle, learn to roll with the chaos, and be grateful for the present. Read on for their conversation, recorded as they sat on lava rock (!) on the last day of their trip.  
Images by The Ingalls

Apiece Apart new year intentionsApiece Apart new year intentions

Gemma: I thought I had my 2019 intentions organized: give more, love more, create more. I swam with Ram Dass on the last day of 2018, floating on my back in the warm water, looking up at the sky, just ‘being.' Different lessons have surfaced. So often I’m doing, moving, seeking, going. But the best moments on this trip have come when I chose to stay and let things unfold.
Yesterday, we got to Hamoa Beach late in the day. It looked like the sun was going to go down behind a mountain, and my impulse was to pack it in — it would get cold, it would get dark. But we stayed, and the sun stayed too, right on top of the ridge line. The water actually felt warmer as the air cooled. 
Ro: That’s beautiful, and that’s exactly what Ram Dass meant by “Be Here Now.” It’s simply about embracing the moment — the present is the only time we actually have, we will never have this moment again so we have nothing to fear or regret. The present is limitless. 
I think setting intentions for the new year is good thing because it helps to remind us of what's most important and brings us back to the next stage of personal growth. I think my intention for the new year is around coming back to myself: Since I had a baby last year, 2018 was all about nurturing, giving, and growing a new life. Self care and my passion projects were put on hold. But now that the baby is 8 months old and my family has expanded, I know that 2019 holds the opportunity for further expansion, my daily intention will be: I chose to expand not constrict. 

Apiece Apart new year intentions
Apiece Apart new year intentions

Gemma:  Yesterday I did a ‘loving kindness’ meditation -  have you ever tried that? Such a nice practice of self acceptance and compassion. I’ve spent so much of my life pushing hard against my own constraints, created within relationships, career, and creative process. Having this drive has been good, but there is a sweetness that comes in the letting go.
So much learning has come through my children; they bring in chaos and constant change. Parents give so much of themselves. It’s endlessly challenging, but also a great lesson, and a relief to accept that you are not always in control of the way life unfolds.
Ro: I think that's a huge part of our growth as humans, right? We realize we're not always right. There's no perfect score in life. We can’t control everything. I don't have to be perfect, and things around me don’t have to be the most perfect version for life to be good. I know it’s counterintuitive to have our “New Year resolutions” be to not strive for perfection, but I think we need to give ourselves breaks otherwise we cause ourselves and the people around us to suffer.

Gemma: You don't always have to try harder, be better…

Apiece apart new year intentions

Gemma: I’ve also been thinking about intention as a daily practice. It can be anything. I have a little ritual where I draw the moon cycle every morning on the same piece of paper. It’s simple, but that distilled time I set aside often shifts my whole day.
And grounding down is its own form of intention: deciding to stay home and cook, deciding to be truly present with your partner or family or self. I get so wrapped up in ‘doing,' continually looking for new adventures, new anything. I have found a quiet sort of magic just staying put and enjoying the life I’ve created. There is real solace in that.
Ro: Less doing, more being.