Fortunately, we live in a day and age where not everything is about us. We seek to improve not only our lives, but the lives of others, as well. While this is more commonplace these days, it is still sometimes a struggle to create this mindset as a way of being rather than return to old habits.
Old habits and patterns are hard to break. We may wish them away and want to do better and be more, but without practical tips and advice along with the creation of new habits, we’ll remain stuck in the same old place for another year.
If you’re looking to become a better you this year, check out these ideas. Hey, try just a few and see what happens.
- Take Time for You – While you might associate being a better person with doing more for others, the truth is you need to take time for yourself in order to be that better person. If you are burned out and stressed, you won’t be a positive contribution to anyone. Taking time out for yourself is not selfish; it gives you the opportunity to refresh your own wellbeing.
- Create Daily Me Time – Once you understand that taking time out for yourself is a contribution then it’s time to schedule it. It is important to keep your integrity to yourself when declaring your “me” time. Set aside some time daily. If you are like most, this may seem near impossible; but guess what? You can find 15 minutes every day.
- Be Dedicated to Your Personal Time Now – If you don’t respect your personal time, no one else will. Take your 15 minute meditation time in the morning or your daily time out on the front stoop just listening to nature; read an inspiring book; which take’s you a few mere moments every day.
- Let Others Know You’re Serious about Your Personal Time – Once you have an established amount of time and set time of day, let everyone know you have a big, “Do Not Disturb” sign on your back. It’s fifteen minutes and, yes, everything will survive without you for a while.
- Start a Gratitude Journal – Grab a journal and write down what you’re grateful for. Really. On your worst day you can always find something. For example, even though I didn’t get the promotion I wanted, I now know what the process is and what I need to work on to better my chances before I put in for the next promotion. I am exactly where I am supposed to be in this moment and am grateful for the experience gained. You might look back and also be grateful that you didn’t get that promotion after all. Hey, you have better things to do!
- Keep Positive People Close to You – Your attitude will directly affect your day; so if you are being sour and negative, your day will spiral into a sour and negative day. Keep positive friends close by and reel them in when you need a boost. Don’t be ashamed of your bad moods, just take responsibility for them. Grab a friend, talk about it and then let it go.
- Keep Negative People out of Your Bubble – You’ll never eliminate all the negative people in your life. After all, some of them are probably your employers, co-workers and family members. You can, however, keep them at a distance while wrapping yourself in a more protected coccoon. You don’t have to let their negativity into your space. Make a choice to slowly distance yourself from them and know that their negativity has nothing to do with you; it’s their stuff don’t own it for yourself. Remember, you are most like the 5 people you spend the most time with. Hang out with smart, happy friends!
- Choose Your Filters Wisely – If you read negative stories, watch the news and get involved in gossip, you will most likely end up with negative thoughts. After all, negative stories are what so much of these things focuses on these days. Choose what books, music and television you let in. Stop ‘hanging out’ on social networking gossip sites and take responsibility for your own actions.
- Listen to Music – Music, any music will change your brain waves and fast music will give you an extra boost of adrenaline. There’s nothing like switching on some tunes and watch how quickly your mood changes and your body starts to move.
- Start Your Day the Right Way – Start your day the right way with one positive thought, affirmation or conversation. If you read something positive, think something positive or say something positive, your day will be that much better and you will have done this by your own power.
- Laugh it Off – Have you ever started your day by tripping over something, losing your car keys or finding that the raccoons knocked over your garbage pail? Rather than get upset, laugh it off as life stuff. Need some more laughs? Check out some comedy on Netflix or YouTube.
- Smile a Little – Smiling releases serotonin. When something goes wrong or someone irritates you, smile about it. You will instantly feel better – how hard is it to be in a bad mood with a smile on your face? Really, try it.
- Be the Person You Envision – If you are seeking a mate in life or even if you want to attract more success – be the person that you envision successfully reaching those goals. Be someone who sets goals, takes risks and faces challenges with grace. While hard at first, the more you practice, the closer you will be to becoming that successful person. You can’t become what you haven’t envisioned for yourself.
- Time to Get Organized – Set up a filing system, get a calendar and keep it updated, throw out your unnecessary junk. Once the initial work is done, all you have to do is maintain the organized systems. Don’t want to do it yourself? There are VA’s, bookkeepers, social media experts everywhere to do it for you. It’s amazing how disorganization can mentally hang on you.
- Time Chunk – Chunk your time into sections and give yourself an allotted time frame for whatever you are doing and stick to it. Have you ever started cleaning out a closet in the bedroom and somehow found yourself cleaning the kitchen only to return to the bedroom and it’s still a mess? Hey, I do it too…lol. Working in focused 90 minute chunks has been a lifesaver for me called the pomodoro time management method. There are lots of pomodoro style timers out there. One to try is Tomato Timer.
- Use Your Cell Phone – Use your timer on your phone to time your tasks whether it is running errands or cleaning or making phone calls. Knowing how long you generally spend on these tasks can help you see where you can make improvements which will reduce the stress in your life.
- Use Technology – Use your phone for reminders on your calendar – birthdays, appointments or remembering to get your social media set up for the month. Set up your bills to be automatically paid each month through your online bank. Research online ahead of time where you’ll get the best deals before going shopping. Why waste those precious brain cells on things that can be automated. I like to use Evernote to track all sorts of things – to do lists from blogging schedules to grocery shopping, reading material – hey, it’s one of my favorite solutions.
- Shut Down and Unplug – Sometimes you just need to do the opposite of tech and take time off from technology and unplug from all your social devices. If you want to be a better you, you need connections – real life connections. You need to see faces and hear voices. Hey, head out to the coffee shop – whatever, just do something that involves real people. Practice your networking.
- Pick and Choose Your Time – Only you can schedule your time productively. If you choose to scroll on Facebook or to stay up late and oversleep in the morning, the results will be an unfocused and unproductive life. Choose and schedule your time carefully and reap the positive benefits.
- Set Attainable Goals – If you set your sights too high, you are more likely to fail. It’s ok to have one big goal but break it into smaller attainable goals to work towards. Completing these smaller goals will keep you motivated no matter how long it takes you to reach the final big goal.
- Grab an Accountability Partner – When you set a new goal, it’s important to let people know about it. It’s also important to obtain an accountability partner. When you know you have to answer to your accountability partner and that others are watching your progress, you will work that much harder so you don’t disappoint anyone, including yourself. You also have that partner cheering you on from the sidelines.
- Just Say No – Repeat after me – no, no, no. Learn how to say no; while difficult at first, it gets easier with time. Saying no frees you up to do what works best for you and your life.
- Incorporate Health Routines – Never forget the importance of health routines. Keeping fit is your responsibility and it doesn’t have to be sixty hours of cardio or 100 pounds of weightlifting. A simple power walk done several days a week; about 5 days for me, works well. The unexpected side benefit is having quiet time to plan my day.
- Pay Attention to What You Eat – Okay, so this one’s not so easy. Just do your best. You know what foods are good, what is not so good, and the ones that are just – shit, did I really eat that? Having a cheat day is just that, one day. When you eat right, you feel great. Do more of that.
- Pay Attention to How You Eat – It’s just as important to pay attention to how you eat as it is to what you eat. Take your time, slow down and eat sitting down. Try not to talk while eating. Take a few minutes to digest after eating. While it is the practice of today’s society to “do lunch,” it’s important to breathe right and eat right for proper digestion.
- Take a Time Out – Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths a few times a day, even if you have to go out to your car or take a bathroom break. A few minutes of deep breathing and relaxation can reset your mindset for the rest of the day.
- Get the Proper Rest – Lack of sleep can make you feel bad and have negative thoughts. If you’re not getting enough sleep at night consider taking a power nap during the day. Even 15 minutes can reset you mood, creativity and your focus. Set your alarm for 15 minutes and watch how much more energized you will feel afterward.
Drink a glass of water before bedtime to hydrate your body and help it flush toxins. Drink another glass first thing in the morning before eating or drinking anything else to help kick start your organs. Better yet, add a slice of lemon to it to boost your detox.
Everyone wants to be the best they can be. By following these tips you are well on your way to a more balanced, focused, energized life.
When you feel balanced, you’ll feel better about yourself and everything else around you.
So, if you got this far, I just wanted to share that there’s really only 27 tips, but that’s more than enough to get you going.
Let me know what works best for you.