Here's to a New You in the New Year
Here are 5 ideas for how to tackle a new and better you in the New Year!
The benefits of getting outdoors are almost endless. Studies have shown that being in nature relieves stress, helps focus and clarity, improves memory and indeed helps us live longer! In this day and age of constantly being plugged in, it is more important than ever that we check out. The best thing about it is, it's free! No gym membership necessary here - just get outside and breathe in the fresh air while you take a light stroll, jog or hike. If you are mired in city life this can seem a bit challenging. Set a reasonable goal of even once a week for twenty minutes walking the nearest park to your home or work. You might be surprised once you begin getting out for the 20 minutes that you want to expand to longer outdoor sessions or a second day!
Exercise (if only a little)
Similarly, regular exercise can make for a happier and healthier you. We've all made the resolution of hitting the gym 6 days a week for an hour, only to become overwhelmed and be couch-bound with Netflix by Valentine's Day. Instead, start with small goals that will realistically work for you and your schedule. An hour at the gym might not fit your busy schedule. What about 10 minutes, 3 days a week? It helps to schedule exercise first thing in the morning before you are sucked into the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The reality is that even a small amount of regular exercise can make us happier, stronger, sharper and healthier in body, mind and spirit.
Get Out of Town
As we all know, the year can present us with the doldrums and a sense of being on auto-pilot. Set a goal to get out of town at least once a month, if only for a day-trip. Or better yet, get to a different country if you can! Regardless, travel is one sure way to break up the monotony and regain inspiration. It's a HUGE world out there - full of sights and sounds and tastes and experiences. Go take them in! Meet new people. Eat at new restaurants. Try a different wine varietal! You'll be surprised at how the invigoration of getting away can actually make you appreciate your home even more and fill you with a new energy. If you can find even a half day a month, that's twelve mini-vacations you will take next year!
Save $ (Something. Anything!)
We can probably all agree - we don't know anyone complaining about having too much money. It always seems that we could use juuuuuust a little more. Whether its a 5 gallon water jug full of loose change or a new money market - find a way to consistency tuck a little of what comes in away for safe keeping. It doesn't have to be much, all that matters is that you put some away. There are limitless resources online with tips and ideas on what methods might work best for your particular circumstances.
Pay It Forward
Nothing on this list will lend toward a happier life than practiced generosity. Make a daily practice of doing something kind each day for another human. We're all in this together and we all need a little help and a whole lot of love. Buy a cup of coffee for the man or women behind you in line at the coffee-shop. Volunteer somewhere locally that you believe in. Or,simply be an ear to someone who needs to get something off their chest. The world needs more kindness and it can start with us here, now, today. The best part: The opportunities are endless. So, get creative and (like Ghandi said) be the change you want to see.
These are just a few ideas for how to make slow, steady change to a happier and healthier you in the new year. The important important thing is to make the effort, forgive yourself if you fall off and hop back on the horse! What are some ideas you have for a better you in the new year? Comment below!