After reading Elite Daily’s post on New Year's resolutions, I was inspired to put together my own list. I thought a lot of them were fairly superficial but a few were actually worth investing in.
How we treat our own time is an interesting reflection on how we feel about our lives. There are those days and weeks where we are just counting down to the end. We wish the day would be over sooner or the weekend couldn’t come soon enough.
Rather, we must learn to appreciate the little things to make the most of the time we have.
There is so much to live for, yet -- year after year -- I see so many people joking about how they won’t bother with New Year's resolutions because they know they won’t keep them.
If you discount yourself right out of the gate, then yes, you do not stand a chance.
Hopefully some of these things will resonate with you, a lot of these points make up the foundation for the life I like to live.
1. Don’t neglect yourself. You are the one person you can neither leave nor escape, so invest in your relationship with yourself. Take yourself out for coffee, sit yourself down and get to know yourself.
2. Stop being so mean to yourself. We say some terrible things to ourselves we would never say to others. Learn to be kind to yourself.
3. Leave the country or go somewhere you’ve never been before. If you don’t have money, look into doing charity work abroad, some programs will sponsor you, otherwise you would be surprised where you can get with a bus ticket.
4. If you hate your job, quit your job. Love what you do, and you will never work another day in your life. If you think you can’t quit your job, think about all the reasons. You may surprise yourself and realize there is a lot more you can appreciate.
5. Don’t focus on losing weight, just focus on being healthy. Think about what you are putting into your body and make time to exercise. Your body is your greatest asset, take care of it.
6. Invest in your relationships. If there is something you’ve been meaning to tell someone or a relationship you wanted to repair, just go ahead and do it. There is nothing worse than just thinking about what could be, find out.
7. Cut bad people out of your life. These are the people that are always taking from you, whether emotionally or physically. You deserve reciprocity. You need to surround yourself with people that make you feel awesome, so you can be awesome. Every person around you is someone that you chose to keep around in your life, and it will always be your decision to keep them away. Letting go is difficult, but you can always find people that lift you up.
8. Learn a new skill. There is always room for you to improve, but it doesn’t always have to be life changing. Don’t ever feel limited in your growth potential.
9. Meet new people. We all like meeting new people, but not everyone has it in them to strike up conversation. You never know who you will meet or how they will impact your life. Whether you make a new friend or uncover a new business opportunity, meeting new people will open up new paths.
10. Live without regret and never look back. Remove “I could have, would have, and should have” from your vocabulary and stop living in the past. What’s the worst that could happen?
11. Stop caring about what other people think of you. Live the life you want to live, not anyone else’s.
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other's opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” - Steve Jobs
Don’t compare yourself to other people, just do you.
12. Cross something off your bucket list. These are the things you actually want to do so go do it. You can always say you don’t have time, but you will only have less time as you get older.
13. Learn to cook. Eating out every day is only going to make you wonder where your money went. Eventually, you will have to learn to take care of yourself, but it’s also a skill you can use to impress that special someone.
Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.
14. Keep a journal. Writing about things that made you happy in the last 24 hours lets you relive the happiness. Otherwise, being able to look back on how you were feeling and reading what you were thinking at any given time is something you can appreciate down the line.
15. Put family first. I thought about how I would feel if I didn’t have my parents or brother around and if there is anything I would have wanted to say. It gave me every reason to strengthen relationships with family members. Your family cares a lot about you, no matter how much you don’t think so.
16. Help others. “Share it forward,” do good things for the world, even when you have nothing to gain. I read this every morning when I wake up:
“Today I am fortunate to have woken up, I am alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others, to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings, I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others, I am going to benefit others as much as I can.” – H.H. The 14th Dahlai Lama
Making other people happy and successful will make you happy and successful. If you are not adding value to other people’s lives you are wasting your time.
17. Conquer a fear and learn to embrace failure, remember it is a part of the process. The only time you’re not allowed to fail is when you have not exhausted all your options. If you failed, you did something most people won’t ever do. You tried. If you have trouble starting, stop making excuses and start again. If there is something you want to do, just f*cking do it.
18. Stay off your phone in the company of others. If you can’t appreciate the time you are spending with that person, re-evaluate if that person is even worth your time.
19. Shop locally, eat locally and recognize where your money is going. Support your local small businesses, they are the life line of your community. Imagine if every town in America started to look the same. These mom & pop shops add the character and personality we’re proud of.
20. Take the stairs. We all have to take some small steps to make bigger changes. Being conscious of your most basic habits can start to help you realize areas of improvement.
21. Wake up early. You will fall in love with just having quiet time for yourself. At 6 AM, there is no one to bother you so you can invest some time in yourself. It’s ridiculously hard at first, but it gets easier.
22. Go to sleep earlier. Make it easier for yourself to wake up earlier, you aren’t missing out anything. Nothing good comes after 2 am.
23. It’s okay to express how you feel, it’s not healthy to just bottle everything up. They say those that cry are the ones that have been strong for too long.
24. Read. If you were to write a book today, what would you write about? You would put everything you know into that book. People spend years writing some books but you can read it in a few hours. Reading is one of the best forms of mentorship, you have access to all the knowledge you need.
25. Establish a personal mission statement for how you want to live your life. This should be based on your principles and values, not around other people. Everything around you will always change, however your character and your beliefs are something you can be grounded in. It focuses on what you want to be (character) and to do (contributions and achievements) and on the values or principles upon which being and doing are based.
26. Practice meditation. Meditation is not about thinking of nothing. It helps build your awareness of your own thoughts and how you think about and treat others. With every distraction we have in this world, meditation helps you practice focus so you can appreciate being in the present.
27. Figure out the areas of your life where you want to improve, and ask for help. There are plenty of benefits to having mentors, but make sure you are ready before you start looking.
28. Be proactive, not reactive. Remember, you have the ability to choose how you respond to certain events. It is always your decision to empower any negativity and invest your energies in things that bring you down.
29. Do first things first. We do a lot of things that are not urgent and not important to us but it’s often where most of our time goes. Think about everything that you do and how much it contributes to your overall happiness. If it isn’t helping your cause, don’t do it.
30. Be happy. Life is not about the pursuit of happiness, realize that you have plenty to be happy about. We often think that success will bring us happiness, but you need to be happy with yourself in order to be successful.
31. Start your day by expressing gratitude for what you have. Giving thanks and appreciating what you have allows you to scan the world with a positive mindset to uncover opportunities.
32. Start posting about things that actually matter on social media. Stop posting reactions to celebrities doing stupid things and commenting on things like the injustice of the Trayvon/Zimmerman case. Raise awareness on things where you can make a difference and focus on moving closer to taking action. Expressing disapproval is different from empowering change.
33. Share it forward. You always know more than someone else. If you can share that knowledge to save someone from a world of struggle, why wouldn’t you do it?
34. Drink more water. It is easy to forget how important water is to living. Skip the sugary drinks and make water your new favorite beverage, you will live guilt free.
35. Live in the moment: laugh, chew and taste your food, focus on your breath. Sadly, only a tiny percentage of the people in this world will actually experience their lives today. So many of us will be stuck on another day, another time and place that troubled us and caused us to spiritually stumble, and thus miss out on life as we’re living it.
36. Stop procrastinating. The hardest part is starting. Just commit to two minutes to actually start, and you would be surprised how much further along you will be.
You always hear that life is short, but it is the longest thing that you will ever know. Why should you be anything other than happy?
Do you have anything you want to add to the list?
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