1. Bake something. Even if it’s from a box, or a recipe you learned from one of those Godforsaken viral cooking videos, just bake something. I recently made rice krispy treats (okay, there was no baking involved there) and then frosted them with Nutella. Highly recommend.
2. Celebrate the fact that it’s a leap year. IT’S A LEAP YEAR. This comes around as often as the Summer Olympics; THIS IS BIG. The 29th is a Monday though, so if you want to throw a leap day party, you might want to plan it for the weekend before. And yes, I’m perfectly serious about this.
3. Save up for something. It doesn’t have to be anything big — you don’t need to magically save for a trip to Thailand. It can just be putting a bit of money away here and there to encourage yourself to implement it into your life on a more regular basis. Save up for a great pair of boots or an aspirational ~wooden cutting board~ you’ve been eyeing.
4. Plan an amazing evening at home with your significant other. Have the experience of going out in the comfort of your apartment. Cook together, splurge on a good bottle of wine, and appreciate the fact that you don’t need to go out to have a nice night.
5. Do ten push ups. Interpret this however you’d like to. If you want to do ten push ups a day for every day of February, do it. If you want to get ten push ups done in the whole month of February (which will be my preferred route), that works too.
6. Try to get through an entire day without coffee. It’s harder than you think.
7. Start a new TV series with a close friend. My roommate and I recently started watching The Bachelor, so I’ve now become one of those Chicks Who’s Obsessed With The Bachelor, and I have no regrets. Ben H is so hot, yet so empty inside.
8. Forgive someone. If there is one person in your life that you’ve been holding a grudge against for too long, forgive them, even if it’s only in your head. You don’t have to call them, you just need to make peace with whatever happened yourself.
9. Try to be more patient with the people you work with. When they’re dragging their feet on a project, or still aren’t answering the follow up email you sent three days ago, try to give them a break, and take a breath before you respond.
10. Try to say one kind thing every day and really mean it.
11. Go on more walks. Even if it’s freezing where you’re from, try to walk home from work, or get off the subway a few stops before your house, and just be outside and get some exercise. For all you fitbit-ers, it’s a great way to get some extra steps in.
12. Take fewer pictures of your food. Don’t get me wrong, you should absolutely Instagram a picture of the damn delicious brownies you made if you feel like it. But when you’re out to dinner, skip the photo and just enjoy the meal and the experience.
13. Watch Master of None on Netflix. Also watch John Mulaney’s The Comeback Kid. Trust me.
14. Stretch for five minutes every night for a week before you go to bed.
15. Learn how to poach an egg. Hint: you can learn, but it will still never look as good as they do on your gourmet eggs benedict at brunch. Nonetheless, they still taste the same if you cover them in hollandaise.
16. Try a makeup-free challenge. Do a few weeks, a weekend, or even just a day without makeup.
17. Reach out to someone in your office (or at your school) in an entirely different department, who you’ve never talked to before. You don’t have to creepily say hi, or take them to lunch, but if you’re given the chance to either stand awkwardly next to them and say nothing or strike up a conversation, choose the former.
18. Let your friends bitch to you when they need to. Be there when they need to vent, or when they’re stressed. Don’t be the person that turns the conversation back toward yourself every 37 seconds. Just listen and try to give honest advice.
19. Watch one of the debates. The Republicans are on the 6th and 26th of February and the Democrats are on the 11th.
20. Cuddle with someone under a fleece blanket whether it’s a significant other, a roommate, or a puppy. (I’m hoping for a puppy, personally.)
21. Try a new type of wine or beer that you wouldn’t ordinarily go for.
22. Let yourself feel every emotion instead of pushing them aside. When you’re angry, be angry. When you’re feeling great about your accomplishments, don’t downplay it because your friend is having a bad day. When you’re upset, stop pushing it away because you think it’s not okay for you to be sad.
23. Get a massage.
24. Allow yourself to blast pop music and watch romcoms. Stop feeling like you’re only supposed to like things that are cooler than that and just embrace the fact that Taylor Swift is bizarrely catchy.
25. Ask your best friends what one thing you should work on is. What do they observe as the “flaw” that gets in your way. Are you too impatient? Do you not open yourself up enough? Genuinely consider their answers and try to be more aware of your behavior.
26. Get the fuck off social media for one full day. Realize that you don’t miss it nearly as much as you thought you would.
27. Give yourself a self-breast exam, even if it scares you.
28. If you just got out of a relationship, unsubscribe to their notifications on Facebook or mute them on Twitter so you don’t have to see their updates. You don’t have to unfriend them, but spare yourself from seeing their every move on social media.
29. Send one of your friends a letter. While you’re at it, pick up a few stamps because I bet you don’t have any.