Happy New Year friends!!! What a crazy year 2016 has been, and I don’t know about you, but I sure am excited to be starting a brand new calendar. January is already off to a fantastic start for me and while I am sure there will be challenges ahead, I am looking forward to a fun, successful, memorable 2017. Below are some general self-improvement resolutions that I am setting for myself, but can be tailored to fit your personal goals. Also check out my 5 tips on ways to actually achieve them. I’d love to hear what you hope to accomplish this year, please feel free to share in the comments below!
- Eat more green stuff and less sugar– Eating healthier is on everyone’s new year’s agenda, because we rarely achieve it the year before. Make small, manageable dietary goals that you can feel good about achieving. Baby steps and baby carrots lead the way to a healthier life and salads. Also becoming more mindful about eating and what you are putting into your body will bring your attention to what’s in your food and in doing so, may help steer you towards healthier options.
- Cultivate and release creative energy regularly– It is has been proven time and again that art, dance, music, singing, any expression of emotion is a great way to release stress and elevate your mood. Whether this be photography or painting or graffiti or singing, DO IT! And do it more often! Express yourself, whether it’s a stick figure doodle or a masterpiece, create and share something. Put your art tools in a place you can see them regularly, not tucked away on a shelf, so you will be more inspired to use them. And share your creations! Instagram that shit, hang it on the fridge, frame it, heck, maybe even sell it! Encouraging and pushing yourself to take time to pursue things you love is crucial to living a happy, balanced life.
- Become more connected– Whether this be with yourself, with friends and family, with nature, with your religion or spirituality, try and understand it more and acknowledge the need to better your relationship with it. Try reading a book on spirituality or consciousness, take more mindful hikes, enroll in a wellness or community class to learn something new about yourself. Take time to phone a friend or write a card to someone from your past who you haven’t talked to in a while. Reconnecting with ourselves and those around us can give us a clearer perspective in a world of chaos.
- Set and achieve goals– Ask yourself, “How can I make my life a little bit better?” Maybe financial security and being able to save money? Eating healthier and meditating more to re balance? Starting your own successful company? Whatever your goals be this year, write them down and work towards them a little bit every day, and before you know it, you will look back at your life today and say, “Ya, life was good then, but boy is it sweet now!”
How to Actually Accomplish your New Year’s Resolutions
- Set achievable goals. Don’t bite off more than you chew. Doing so will make your goal seem daunting and more challenging than it needs to be. For example, instead of saying, “I’m going to go to the gym every day!”, try “By the end of January, I will have worked out at least 20 out of 31 days.” This gives you something to work towards, while allowing yourself sufficient breathing room to make excuses some days and rest others.
- Tackle one at a time. “This year I am going to eat healthier and save money and call friends and family more.” While these are great goals, trying to achieve them all at once will be overwhelming and not focusing on them will cause the year to pass by without achieving them. Try approaching your goals month by month. For example, “I will focus on diet and exercise in January and February by working out consistently and making a conscious effort to eat one piece of fruit everyday.” “By July I will have saved at least $500” and “Around holidays, I will make a conscious effort to call my sister and uncle.” See the difference? The later approach allows me to focus all of my energy on fitness and exercise at the beginning of the year so I can develop those healthy habits early on, allowing me to stay balanced and ready to tackle other goals.
- Set deadlines. Giving yourself an end date to accomplish things by is important because it gives some measure of importance to your goals. Just like homework when we were in school, we never would have done it if we didn’t have to hand it in by the due date. Some goals should be accomplished between January and April, like ones related to diet and fitness, so these healthy habits can be practiced throughout the year, while other goals, like saving money or career goals, may take longer. For these, set incremental goals, small ones you can achieve that will lead to your greater success.
- Be specific. Without details, new years resolutions can seem more like daydreams, something to wish for but seem in achievable. Like saving money. I would love to not have to live paycheck to paycheck and month to month, but saving up is hard when there’s rent and weed to buy. Therefore, instead of just saying I’m going to save money, I’m going to resolve to have $300 in my savings by March, $500 by July $800 by October and $1000 by the end of 2017. Also, imagine what that money is going towards, and again, get detailed! Is it going towards an epic weekend retreat in the mountains will all of your friends and the pups? Is it going towards starting your new business? Is it going towards an amazing house with a huge backyard? Envisioning that money paying off will make you more likely to contribute to the fund, so daydream away in all the glorious details!
- Recruit a resolution buddy! See if any of your friends or coworkers or family members have similar goals. By working together, you can push and encourage each other, and both of you are more likely to achieve your goals, all while strengthening your friendship. Win Win! It can be one on one, or you can make it a group challenge, posting about it to encourage others that they too can start checking off some of their new year’s resolutions.
I wish you the very best of luck this year. If you are in the Boulder, Denver area and are interested in a wellness coach, I sincerely encourage you to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can work towards a happier, healthier 2017 together!