A new year means resolutions and new beginnings. The most common are to lose weight, save money, spend more time with family — the list goes on. I’ve had my fair share of typical New Year’s resolutions, but this year, I’ve decided to do things a little differently.
A new year is a great excuse to make a list of the things you like the most about yourself and those you like the least, that way you can continue the good things and improve the others. This year I’m bringing a new meaning to the idea of new beginnings. Instead of making resolutions or drastic changes in my life, I’m going to make new years promises to myself and actually keep them.
This year, I did what I do at the end of every year and made my list. I then made the following four promises to myself. These new years promises will not only complement my mission to improve the things on my list that need improving, but they will also improve my overall quality of life.
Like many of us, I tend to put so much of my time and effort into my career and relationships that I often forget about me. There are so many places I want to travel to but continue to put off because of work and the general hustle and bustle of life.
Instead of telling myself I will travel this year, I have made a promise to myself to travel, and will plan at least one specific trip for myself. Once the trip is on the books, I am more likely to actually do it. Make yourself more accountable, and make your “me time” more actionable. This will also give you something to look forward to during the busy weeks ahead.
Like most people who like to travel, my bucket list is lengthy and oftentimes overwhelming — even for a girl-on-the-go like myself. I add to it all the time, but it seems like I hardly ever check anything off. It can become counterproductive because if you have a bucket list, you are so focused on writing down your goals that you don’t actually go out there and accomplish them.
Throw out your bucket list and achieve more. You will spend less time imagining what you want to do and go out there and do it.
It’s important to look after yourself, but it can be difficult to prioritize this with the rest of your life. We often put ourselves at the bottom of our own priority lists, which is not where belong. However, it’s easier than I thought to incorporate self-care into our everyday lives.
Like many of us, I’m guilty of going to bed at different times every night, which is bad for our overall health. A fixed bedtime will result in a better amount of sleep because our bodies respond better to a schedule. Pick a nightly bedtime, and stick to it. Your body will thank you.
Yoga has become a popular trend for many and does not only have physical benefits, but it can reduce stress and improve brain function. This will be my new daily ritual, even if for five minutes. It’s important to remember you don’t have to dedicate five days a week to reap the benefits.
Journaling was always one of my favorite things to do as a kid, but that quickly faded away as life happened. However, it’s still a recommended practice for adults, and allows us to reflect on our lives and keep up with to-do lists. You can also start a travel journal like I plan to do, which is great to document where you’ve been and where you plan to go.
This doesn’t mean I will go sky-diving or swimming with sharks. Trying new things should be catered to your personal interests and lifestyle. What is it you’ve wanted to learn more about? What makes you curious? I’ve always wondered what it’s like to travel by train, so this year, I plan to travel somewhere by train. I will also learn how to cook Thai food because I love the culture and the cuisine — not to mention a good challenge.
If you try new things, you will learn more about yourself, especially if you step outside of your comfort zone. For me, that will be traveling overseas alone. While I love to travel, I’ve never gone far by myself. There is something so exciting and scary about it all at the same time, but I bet it will be a great journey of self-discovery.
Many of us forget to give ourselves the attention we deserve when life happens. We get so wrapped up in our careers, relationships and other things happening in our lives, that we forget to nurture ourselves — and trust me, we need nurturing. Well I’m here to tell you that it’s not selfish to focus on yourself and your wellbeing every once in a while. In fact, it’s important — very important.
Say goodbye to traditional New Year’s resolutions, and make personal new years promises to yourself.