The New Year is now upon us, meaning it is a time to instill positive changes with revived motivation. However, in order to make 2015 your best year yet, you need to create the positive changes yourself. Here’s a list of non-negotiable things to do in 2015 in order to make this year, the best year:
1) Do that one thing you’ve always been meaning to do.
If you have always wanted to travel international, make this year your year to do so. Understandably this may not be in your budget, but even just getting a passport and creating a savings plan for a foreign trip is a great start. If you have always wanted a college degree but have other commitments requiring your time, start small by attending one class, or even taking one online. Baby steps lead to great strides, don’t forget that.
2) Be a little bit more kind than necessary.
For many of us, all it takes to completely brighten our day is a compliment from someone. Why not be that nice person who randomly gives out such compliments? Making others feel happy helps you feel happy as well, so get the good energy flowing this year by doing what you can to help others smile.
3) Work towards achieving your dreams.
Even if you are working a placeholder job now, do the work to the best of your ability in 2015 in order to build up a positive resume and portfolio. Then use this positive mind-set to start accomplishing your own personal dream. If you want to start writing, create a blog or website to help you get started. If you want to be a personal trainer, start by applying to local gyms to get your foot in the door. Putting yourself out there may be scary, but it is also needed for an even bigger payoff.
4) Gradually create a healthier lifestyle.
Eating healthy and exercising have benefits that are far beyond a nice body. These two actions have direct connections to your mood and overall mental health. And just imagine: If you are constantly fueling your body with soda and pizza, and you still look and feel alright, just think about how awesome you would look and feel if you took the time to fuel your body with healthy food and drink options. I’m not saying do a complete U-turn overnight, but just take small steps one day at a time to get yourself on the right track.
5) Stop talking: Start doing.
How many Summers have passed where you have wanted to go to a music festival, but haven’t found the time? How many breaks have passed where you couldn’t find the money that was needed in order to travel? Well, use this year to curb those occurrences in order to achieve these goals. Start by requesting the appropriate day(s) off in advance, then working on holding yourself accountable for having some fun. So often we hold ourselves accountable only to deadlines and responsibilities, why not hold ourselves to the same high standards when it comes to actually enjoying life?
6) Travel. Absolutely Anywhere.
Take it from someone who rang in the New Year thousands of miles from her home in Pennsylvania to the wonderfully exciting and overwhelming city of London. Traveling gives you a sense of complete independence and the belief that anything is possible. Give yourself this gift in 2015.
7) Fall in Love…with yourself.
This year treat yourself with the same kindness and patience you would to an old and cherished friend. You deserve the happiness that accompanies self-love. Tell yourself how awesome you are each day, and then roll with it. Do your thang, honey.
8) Let go of what, or who, is hurting you.
Sometimes in order to reach greater happiness, we need to relieve ourselves of things that are no longer serving their purpose. This sounds harsh and cruel, but you are not doing anyone, including yourself, any favors by staying in a job position, or in a relationship, that brings you no fulfillment. Fortune favors the bold, so this year make the bold move to let go of what is not serving you positively, it may hurt at first, but you will be glad that you did. (Trust me on this one).
9) Spend more time with your family members.
This year is your blank space. Even if you have downright terrible relationships with members of your family, use this year to slowly mend broken relationships and start fresh. If you have good relationships with most of your family members, continue to let them know how much they mean to you throughout the year (not just on Mother’s or Father’s Day). Remember: your family gave you this wonderful opportunity that is life, don’t take that for granted.
10) Do something that terrifies you.
In the past, the simple act of driving has paralyzed me to the point of nervous breakdowns and anxiety that soared each time I sat behind the steering wheel. Then one day, in January of 2011, I told myself I was not going to let that fear get the best of me, and I got behind the wheel, and passed my driver’s test. It was only the first month of the year and already I had accomplished my biggest resolution. You deserve this sense of accomplishment as well. You got this. Now go for it.
11) Develop a new hobby.
If you have always thought learning how to cook seems awesome, use this year to find a class, or simply have your closet friends teach you how to make their best dishes. If you would love to learn how to play guitar start browsing different music stores until you find a make and model that fits your lifestyle and budget. This seemingly small step opens up the door to new interests and new people that can have tremendously positive impacts on the year to come.
12) Spend more time outside.
This year, take time to appreciate the outdoors and all the beauty that surrounds you. Have a picnic in the grass with friends, and actually stop to smell the roses. Appreciate each season without rushing it, and just enjoy all the beauty nature has to offer.
13) Let go of the past.
The past is just that, the past. So in 2015, work towards letting what you cannot control go in order to be more receptive to all the glorious things that are happening in your life right now.
14) Enjoy the present.
This is the only 2015 you are going to get. Enjoy each day as it comes and reflect on something that has made you happy daily. This will allow you to see all the great things that can happen each and every day.
15) Set a positive foundation for the future.
If you follow each of these steps during 2015, you will have all you need in order to set a positive foundation for years to come. Nothing is completed without a game plan, so use this year to get organized and create a game plan that will allow you to be your healthiest, and happiest self.
Remember: There is so much love, adventure, and happiness that can be found in 2015. It is up to you to go find it.