13 Simple Ways to Improve Your Life
The pressure is officially on. It’s time to set those goals for 2019. For the next month or so your timelines will be flooded with fitness and health goals, diet changes, mental health focuses, materialistic wishes, family and relationship goals, and so on. It can be quite daunting to figure out which goals you’d like to focus on when there are endless options. Not only that, but often we’re guilty of setting way too many expectations for ourselves all at once, leaving us feeling absolutely overwhelmed and wanting to give in as early as February.
No worries, I’ve been there! That’s why I don’t want you or anyone else to feel lost or overwhelmed this year with goal setting. I want you all to succeed in achieving your goals!
If you’re looking to make some lifestyle changes but are a little overwhelmed and stuck with the whole process, then this list is for you! Below you’ll find 13 simple lifestyle changes you can focus on in 2019 and thereafter.
1. Choose a Workout Plan that Works for You & Commit
Whether you are beginning your fitness journey or have been working out consistently for years and are looking to spice things up, it is always beneficial to commit to a plan that works for YOU and your current situation. Are you able to go to the gym everyday? Do you need to workout at home? Maybe a combination of both. How many times a week do you want to work out? If you’re just starting out, I suggest 2-3 times a week and then building from there. Don’t demand yourself to workout 5-6 times a week if you are not used to that. Start slow and build from there. Be realistic with yourself and what will work for you.
2. Commit to Weekly Goal Writing
Become obsessed with writing weekly goals! What do you need to get done this week? What would you like to get done? Include goals for everything: career, family, health, self-care, etc. There is nothing better than marking things off of your to-do list. You have a clear picture of the progress and achievements you are making every week.
I have to-do lists at work and at home, so whenever I have an idea I can write it down right away. It is also super helpful to use the notes section in your phone.
3. Commit to 10 Minutes of Meditation Daily
Meditation is the habitual process of training your mind to focus and redirect thoughts to the present moment. The benefits of meditation are well worth 10 minutes a day of your time. Studies have found that medication reduces stress, controls anxiety, promotes emotional health, enhances self-awareness, lengthens attention span, may reduce age-related memory loss, and so on.
Choose a time that works for you. I suggest early morning before starting your day or in the evening if you’re able to find some piece and quiet.
4. Engage in Weekly Self-Reflection
Every Sunday, sit down with a journal and pen, and get ready to write down everything: what did you accomplish this week and what would you like to in the time to come, what mistakes did you make and how can you learn from them, in what ways would you like to grow as a person, what was the biggest lesson you took away from this week, what were you grateful for, and so on.
Sometimes, baring your heart and soul or even just writing for the heck of it feels damn good.
5. Commit to Weekly YOU Time
There is no one in this world more important than yourself. I know this may sound cliche but it’s true. The craziness of life can make it difficult to focus on yourself when you’re so committed to everyone else. Try to do little things for yourself daily and something large for yourself weekly.
Daily things you can do may be as simple as sitting and having a cup of coffee alone before chaos strikes your home, using a face mask, reading a book, working out, etc.
Weekly things you can do may be getting a mani/pedi, going for a hike, going out for drinks with the girls, going shopping, etc.
6. Choose a Skill to Learn or Improve
Is there something you’ve been wanting to learn or a skill you’ve been wanting to improve. Set aside an hour or so a week to focus on this skill: read about it, research it, practice it.
7. Practice Gratitude Daily
Practicing gratitude daily helps clarify the positivity in your life that you may have overlooked due to your daily demands. Although a lot is asked of us every second of every day and sometimes it can feel nowhere near positive, there are positive things that occur every day.
As you lay down for bed try to list 5-10 things you are grateful for.
8. Try Something New
Is there something you’ve always wanted to do but talked yourself out of? Do that thing! Really, do it. You will be so glad you did. I have always wanted to try jiu jitsu but convinced myself I wouldn’t be good at it. This year I tried it and am so thankful I gave myself that push.
9. Spend Less Time on Social Media
That’s right. Get off of instagram, facebook, twitter, snapchat, and hardest of all Pinterest (at least for me anyway). Even if it is for an hour a day or a day a week, give it a try. It feels pretty freeing to not have to look at your phone. When you first start you’ll want to look at it but over time it will get easier and easier.
10. Start a Budget & Savings Plan
Starting a budget and savings plan for the year will help you achieve your financial goals. You’ll gain a picture of exactly where your money is going, what you need to cut, how much you’ll be able to save, and see how much wiggle room you have for starting funds for travel, toys, baby, etc.
11. Choose One Positive Mantra to Practice Daily
Your relationship with yourself is one of the most important. You have to be loving and kind with your self-talk. Whatever it is that you need to tell yourself everyday to remind you of your strength, should be your positive mantra. Some examples:
I am deserving of the best life has to offer.
I am strong, I am beautiful, I am enough.
I am physically, mentally, and emotionally ready to enter a new phase in my life. I am ready to grow and get better.
I am powerful.
You get the gist! Find something that floods your being with strength and lights up your mind.
12. Buy a Water Bottle & Carry it Around with You
If you’re anything like me, you don’t drink nearly enough water. I found it helpful to buy a specific water bottle to carry around with me every where and focus on drinking as much water as possible. Start each day with a goal and slowly start increasing it until you get used to drinking the daily recommended amount on a regular basis. The daily recommended amount is eight 8-ounce glasses or 2 liters.
13. Commit to Eating Healthy in a Way that Works for You
If you’re looking to improve your eating habits I would find something that works for you, is realistic, and then start small. Just like working out, eating healthy is extremely difficult to do and you do not want to jump in 100% for some drastic diet like the keto diet. As a matter of fact I would stay away from fad diets completely. They’re almost impossible to stick to and more often than not, if you’re unable to maintain it, the weight you lose will pile back on once you stop.
Instead I’d first start to focus on eating daily recommended fruits and veggies, while cutting out “most” of the extra junk (processed foods and sugars). Myfitness pal is also an awesome app you can use to track the macros you should be eating. You’ll be able to see exactly what you’re eating and where you need to cut things.