Every year, billions of people create New Year’s Resolution in an effort to improve their lives in some way. It’s an honorable tradition that you can use to enhance your life – and the lives of others. New Year’s Resolutions are also notoriously difficult to keep.
The difference between keeping a resolution and forgetting about it by February is focusing on creating habits. Discovering how to translate a resolution into a daily habit will help you stick with the resolution until it becomes a part of your life.
If you aren’t sure where to start with your New Year’s Resolutions, here are some ideas. Each of the following are a wonderful place to start moving toward a more healthy and happy life. . We’ll also be share how to create daily habits out of each resolution.
Remember, you’ll have more success working on one at a time in small steps rather than making swooping, dramatic changes all at once.
Resolve to Volunteer More
Do you love the community in which you live? Resolve to help improve it by volunteering with a local non-profit organization.
Volunteering not only helps the community, but also provides you a number of mental and physical health benefits. This can lead to a happier and healthier you.
Explore the charities within your community to see which causes jump out at you and evoke an emotional reaction. Perhaps you’d like to dedicate time to fundraising for medical research. Maybe you’d like to help underprivileged children in your area. You might be compelled to help out at your local animal shelter.
You may have to go through an interview before being brought on as a volunteer. Even though you won’t be paid, you’ll still be representing their organization and they’re looking for the right people. Submit your application as soon as you can to capitalize on your motivation to give back.
Once accepted, ask for a weekly or monthly schedule. Treat your volunteering schedule like a second job. Within a week or two of volunteering every day, it’ll become a habit and a part of your daily life.
Resolve to Improve Your Finances
Almost everyone has room for improvement when it comes to personal finances. Whether you’d like to start saving for your pension, a holiday or improve your credit, creating realistic financial goals is a relatively easy resolution to keep.
Begin by formally writing realistic financial goals. If you want to get out of debt, write down exactly how much debt you have left. If you’re aiming to save, you’ll need to create a monthly budget to improve your money management skills. You may even conclude that achieving your goal means earning a promotion or finding a new job.
Break down your financial goal into smaller, more achievable milestones. Then, decide what you can do every day to reach those milestones. Plan for a dedicated time to review your financial goals, just like you would for meditation or journaling.
Some financial goals, such as saving for a big purchase or pension primarily involve setting something up once and not changing it often. You can have your paycheck partially deposited into a savings account, or enroll in a pension deduction.
Resolve to Quit Unhealthy Habits
From smoking to negative thoughts, most people have unhealthy habits that they’d like to quit. Ending a bad habit is a great way to improve your life. Yet, it can be difficult to quit.
Instead of focusing solely on ending a negative habit, make it a positive endeavor by creating a new habit in its place. For example, if your resolution is to quit smoking, couple that with a resolution to start playing the harmonica. Instead of smoke breaks, go outside and take harmonica breaks.
Coupling ending a bad habit with creating a good habit shifts your focus to thinking in a positive way (beginning) instead of a negative (ending). This change in perspective can make all the difference.
Resolve to Meditate Often
Meditation can happen any time, any place and requires no additional equipment. You’d think that it’d be an easy resolution to keep, but maintaining a regular meditation practice can still be incredibly difficult.
Meditation will benefit you in countless ways, from improving your emotional state to increasing your ability to focus on important tasks. It’s the ultimate self-improvement habit.
When you resolve to meditate often, define what meditation means to you. Does it mean being seated in a formal posture for X minutes per day? Does it mean taking up a form of moving meditation, such as Tai Chi? Does it mean becoming mindful and present throughout the day?
For most, meditation begins with a seated position and closed eyes. Decide on a time every day where you can be alone and will likely have a clear mind.
Morning meditation is highly recommended, as your mind will likely be more clear than after your day has begun. Additionally, morning meditation creates clarity that will enhance your entire day.
Setting aside time to meditate is vital in creating a meditation habit.
Be careful not to judge the “success” or “failure” of each meditation session. Those terms don’t apply to something as abstract as meditation.
Meditation takes practice, and the benefits of meditation can take time to appear. With daily effort, you’ll start to look forward to meditation time.
Resolve to Eat Healthy Food
Eating healthy food can change both your body and mind. Despite having amazing benefits, it’s a notoriously difficult resolution to keep. However, by enforcing a few regular habits, you can embark on a healthy new lifestyle.
Eating healthy food begins when buying the food. The first habit you need is eating before you go shopping. This simple tip will help you make more logical decisions, instead of letting your hunger make decisions for you as you walk down the aisles.
The second step to eating healthy is cooking at home. Select a few easy recipes as a starting point, and go from there or take some old favorites and alter them to be more healthy. You may discover that cooking your own meals makes them all the more satisfying.
Each of the above New Year’s resolutions will enhance your life in different ways. Tackle each in your own way, and remember to focus on one at a time while creating new daily habits that will become a natural part of your life.