Beyond New Year Resolutions
Many of us make new year resolutions every year at the beginning of January. But how many of us keep them? While the new year seems like an attractive time to start new habits, there is no reason to wait until the beginning of the year (or month or week or day) to start something new.
What can we do instead of making New Year Resolutions to help make each year more successful than the last?
Instead of making new year resolutions, focus on being intentional in all your decisions this year. Try to plan ahead, concentrate on what you are doing, and be present in your every day life. Allow your daily routine to have importance, and make sure to plan at least a few minutes each day for something healthy and relaxing that you enjoy.
Waiting until the beginning of the year can be a prescription for failure. It allows you permission to continue engaging in poor habits or behavior, because you are going to change your behavior “soon.” Instead, start changing your behavior as soon as you have the idea. Small changes can cumulatively lead to big changes. Positive changes can help you lead a healthier life.
Focus on the Positive
In your daily life, keep a gratitude journal/list to help you remember the important things in your life. If you don’t enjoy writing, you might make small videos on your phone to record your thoughts.
To keep the big picture, write down something good that happens each week of the year on a small piece of paper. Put these notes in a jar or record them in a notebook. Next December, look back on the positive things that happened all year. Even small victories and moments count!
If you are going to add a new activity this year, make sure to make time in your schedule by choosing something you can replace. For example, you might choose to attend exercise class more, and spend less time on social media. Replacing a less healthy behavior with a more healthy one is a good strategy for forming a lasting habit.
Ideas for New Experiences
Is there a book you’ve been wanting to read or new music you’ve been wanting to listen to? Is there a museum you haven’t been to? Make it happen this year.
New experiences can help broaden your mind more than making new year resolutions. Some other ideas of activities to add:
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