2017 was all about development, however it was also more chaotic than expected. Hence, this is the first post since August (yikes!). With more responsibilities in my day job, buying a home, some health issues and placing a higher priority on networking, 2017 was both a successful and yet highly stressful year. Because of this, I began prioritizing wellness, social time and the need for organization a lot more, especially as the need for balance became even more obvious – because let’s be honest, who has time for problems? I began to research tactics for a healthier, happier new year, and even began to enforce them during the holidays! Here are six simple practices you can customize into your lifestyle.
1) Rid Yourself of the Old and Unused
Shocker, right? I had been listening to some podcasts on minimalism occasionally through the year, and while I had donated more and shopped less, I took it to a whole other level in December. I donated clothes, shoes, books I hadn’t read in ages, and tossed everything from old makeup and broken pens, to that vintage tee with just too many holes. We live in a one bedroom condo, and it was beautiful to see our space look breathable and less chaotic!
2) Unsubscribe from Emails You Automatically Delete
Of all the tactics for a healthier, happier new year, this is probably the most underrated. I overheard this point on public transit and thought “duh”. It wasn’t until the next day that I realized this was actually applicable to me. I had been automatically deleting so many promotional updates in auto-pilot over time, that I had never unsubscribed! 80 unsubscribes later, and I decided to subscribe to updates I would actually want to read on a regular basis. News updates, blog articles and upcoming sales for certain local shops now make my personal inbox feel so much cleaner!
3) Rid Yourself of Restricting Attitudes
In saving for our home, we unfortunately gave up travel for five years. Gross, right? I got so used to this, that I began to think vacations were not for me. Even now, the concept of planning a getaway feels so foreign (get it, foreign!? PUN’D!). A few weeks ago, a friend asked me if I wanted to go away for the weekend, and I felt almost nervous about it, as though I couldn’t possibly leave home for more than three days. After some pondering, I realized how ridiculous this was, and that it was only because I became so used to not going places. As mentioned in Making Time for Things You Love, prioritizing is crucial for goal-setting, however, don’t remain restricted to this mindset. Since that realization, I am committed to embracing the “new” in that I CAN travel now, and it is going to be great! I am now planning multiple voyages this year, and will be attending some local events that I kept pushing aside with those “Maybe next year” excuses.
4) Clean Stuff You’d Normally Forget About
This is probably really gross, but I will admit it. I probably clean my makeup brushes on a yearly basis, and by yearly, I mean probably never. If it’s not something I, or we would handle weekly or bi-weekly (i.e. clothes, counters, bathroom, etc.), I fail to acknowledge its requirements for cleaning. Other items in this category would be hair products that have residue on the side (how hard is it to rinse that off?), and basic cleaning in hidden storage spaces in our condo. I also found multiple products that I had forgotten, and placed them on the counters so I could start using them on a daily basis. Probably not the most exciting of the tactics for a healthier, happier new year, but helpful long-term!
5) Try Volunteering
I volunteered quite a bit in 2016, however completely missed the boat on this for 2017. We are all so busy with our own priorities, but taking time to support your community can be a very beautiful experience. Not only are you helping to empower or assist others, but doesn’t it feel good? In an atmosphere where daily media often depicts the negative, I feel good after volunteering because I realize that there are so many people that want to help others and that compassion overpowers any kind of tension I feel from media that is trying to evoke fear, desensitization or discouragement. If you can only try a few of the tactics for a healthier, happier new year, save this one!
6) Consume More (Intellectually Speaking)
Podcasts, articles, books, there is so much now that can provide us with new perspective. My 2017 planner will tell you that I read over one hundred books this year. Intense right? Surprisingly, not really. I was not expecting to read so many, it just happened naturally, in chipping away at the chapters on my transit commute to work, in waiting rooms, during lunch or before bed. The latter actually helped me to cure my issue of sleeplessness, which I discussed recently here. Not a reader? Try adding in a podcast, magazine or article to your day that evokes some form of mindfulness or creative discussion.
Got any points to add? 🙂 Leave them down below!