1. Get rid of those “goal weight” clothes
We’ve all got some pair of pants in the back of our closet that we fantasize fitting in perfectly one day, or browse outfits that get labeled “once I’m in better shape.” This type of thinking isn’t doing you any good. In fact, it’s probably counteracting any progress you hope to make. If you have this constant image of who you need to be and what you need to look like, you are going to slowly drive yourself nuts. Love who you are in the moment, and don’t treat yourself as a rough draft.
2. Stop skipping meals
Whether it’s a misguided attempt to lose weight, or you just lose track of time and realize you have skipped an important meal, it’s important in the new year to cut this damaging habit. It doesn’t seem like it’s doing much, but in the long run skipping meals can wreak havoc on your metabolism, as well as overall energy levels. Figure out a time that works in your schedule and commit to eating at that time. It may help to prep meals the night before if you know you will have a hectic day.
3. Make a list of the people who have hurt you most, and then burn it
We often talk about this idea of “letting go” and what exactly that entails. It’s not an easy or simple process, and something that can be completely different for the individual dealing with it. When you switch into a mentality that you have the power to decide what hurts you, you’ll find it can help in moving on from a painful situation. There’s something cathartic about using pen and paper, so to start off the new year ready for love and forgiveness, write down the names of people who have caused any hurt that still lingers within you. Take the paper and throw it in the fireplace, and as it goes up in flames, let go of the anger and hurt too.
4. Reorganize your work space
If you’re feeling overwhelmed or unclear with what your objectives are in the workplace/career path, it might help to take a day to just completely rearrange your desk, or other place you do most work. Maybe print off some inspirational quotes you like, and place them somewhere you can see whenever start working. It might boost your motivation.
5. Dedicate a “me” day each week
We get so caught up in taking care of everyone else, that we often neglect our own needs. If you aren’t first making sure you are healthy and happy, what good are you really going to be to those around you? Though this can be a difficult task with responsibilities that get in the way, try to put aside one day every single week that is about YOU. Maybe you carve out a few hours to read a book, or take a class on something you’re interested in learning more about. Take a day that is just about you, and prioritize yourself again.
6. Take a daily walk
Instead of diving into an intense new work out regimen and pushing your body to a point that you’re no longer sure your body works anymore, try starting off with something easy to commit to every day, like a 30 minute walk. Create an awesome playlist that pumps you up, get outside, and just enjoy your surroundings. It’s a small thing you can do every single day that will make you feel better.
7. Make a list of weekly goals that are doable
If you want to be the next Oprah, that’s fantastic, but simply having the goal “be Oprah” might freak you out more than it inspires you. Try making weekly goals that are realistic. Maybe this week you will call and catch up with that friend from college. Next week, you can go through your closet and donate things you no longer need. By breaking things down weekly, it can be easier to get more done and then feel more productive.
8. Go social media free for at least two weeks
This holds truer to some people, but in a time when we are bombarded with constant updates on what those around us are doing, it’s fairly common to slip into a Facebook induced slump. People choose the best light to shine on themselves on social media, so of course you’re going to see only the cool and exciting things. We compare ourselves to each other on the daily, so it can be really refreshing to step away from Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. for a bit and not constantly see who is getting engaged and promoted.
9. Cleanse your life of toxic relationships
This is a tough one, I’ll be honest. We can find ourselves in toxic, unhealthy relationships and not even realize that’s what they were until much later when we are no longer in them. And depending on who the person is, you can’t always just cut the strings. But take a moment to clear your mind, then think of each important relationship in your life. What are these relationships bringing you? Do you feel drained more often than not with this person? Are you always giving, and not receiving the same thing in return? Try to look at these relationships as objectively as you can (though that’s impossible to fully do) and decide which ones are causing more harm than good. Formulate a plan to distance yourself from the damaging ones, and once you have gotten far enough away, do NOT look back. Continue moving forward. You’ll thank yourself later.
10. Practice being honest with yourself
I’ve found that the person we lie to more than anyone is ourselves. We’re incredibly good at it too. We can convince ourselves we’re okay with situations when we truly aren’t. We can bury emotions, bottle up fears and insecurities, and keep it all on lock down for a long, long time. But doing this will eat away at you in little ways. It can show up in your health or general mood. Or maybe, one day you just explode and everything you’ve been secretly lying about exposes itself in a very destructive way. To avoid this, start being honest when you wake up. Check in with yourself and how you feel. Are you sad? Are you angry about something? Are you worried? If you are, admit it to yourself. It’s okay. Being honest and validating your own feelings can be so rewarding and helpful on the path to happiness.