Christmas is coming and right behind that is a new year. The thought is terrifying and very exhilarating, mostly because I still have so many Christmas tasks to complete and because a new year means that I have another chance to get my life in order, but somehow I never get to fully take advantage of it. Instead of living with feeling of being unprepared as the new year approaches I’ve decided to be more proactive this year. Today I want to share 6 ways to start the New Year right!
Journaling is one of the easiest ways to work through ideas, emotions and memories. I highly recommend that everyone buys a journal of some sort and writes in it daily, or at worst weekly. The benefits are higher if you do it at least once a day. There are many types of journals from simple Mead composition books, Moleskine journals, fancy notebooks with pretty designs or quotes, gratitude journals or journals that tell you what to write about.
You can use your journal for whatever you want, but think of it as the best place to get those thoughts, ideas, memories, goals and emotions out in a free space. In my opinion journals are a great way for examining personal growth. I’ve already bought three different journals for the new year.
It’s time to go back to elementary school cause coloring has become one of the most recommended ways to relieve stress for adults. Everyone is cashing in on the adult coloring market, but you don’t have to buy a coloring book just because it says it’s for adults. I like the adult coloring books, but I still love a good Scooby Doo or Lisa Frank coloring book. I received some coloring books and pencils for my birthday, and it is nice to take a few minutes or an hour and just color. Somehow trying to stay in the lines and picking a color really does relieve stress.
The greatest way to get your New Year started off right is to get a good system started for keeping up with your appointments and schedules. Laura and I both are all about using physical day planners as well as our digital calendars, so we won’t tell you one is better than the other. However, we will tell you that everyone needs some form of a planner or calendar to help keep track of your life. By keeping track of your daily schedule you gain so much time and energy back and alleviate a lot of stress that comes from having too many plans.
I am not a gym person. I say I’ll do it and then I never want to go. So, I’m not saying you need to rush out and buy a membership, but there are tons of ways to exercise without having to go to the gym. There are apps, YouTube videos, DVDs, and fitness classes, like Zumba or Yoga. You can also do something as easy as going for a walk, jog or run at your local park or in your neighborhood.
Are you always uptight or stressed? It’s time to work on relaxing, and as a very uptight person I know how difficult it is to just let everyone go and relax. This means that you need to shut your mind off from those problems with friends, family, work or school and just breathe. While you are relaxing work on relieving stress by focusing on yourself and doing a personal inventory. What’s causing you stress and how can you alleviate that stress? Once you pinpoint the stressor you can work on finding ways to relax and feel more confident.
I read a lot of articles and blog posts, especially on topics related to health, wellness and stress relief. One thing that seems to be popular among those articles is the idea that you should turn off your electronics around 9pm. I know, difficult to do when the best shows come on during the primetime slots of 8pm-11pm. However, do you really need to watch those shows when they air? We have On Demand, Hulu and the TV station apps for the major stations like CBS, ABC, NBC, FOX and CW available to us and the freedom to watch whenever we want. My advice is to consider not watching those primetime shows every night and instead turn off the TV, plug your phone and tablet in, and pickup a paperback, magazine or a notebook journal as I mentioned earlier.
And the key to keeping it all together?
This goes hand in hand with my earlier tip of planning. But this time scheduling is more about scheduling personal time than keeping up with your day to day schedule. Do you make personal time a priority everyday? Most of us probably will answer no because it can be hard to have personal time when we have so many obligations, like school, work, etc. Personal time is really important to feeling like you’re succeeding. When you have time to reflect and do something nice for yourself it improves your mood and how you feel when you complete your obligations.
My final advice is to schedule time tonight to recharge and relax by journaling or coloring and plan some exercise for the tomorrow!