New Year – New Things to Try

With 2023 firmly in the rear-view mirror, it’s time to shift your sights on the upcoming year. While many common resolution examples focus on goals such as creating a new workout routine or trying to lose weight, we suggest a more simple resolution: try something new. Sure, for many of us, the past year may have meant a lack of opportunities to travel or enjoy our favorite pastimes. But this year can be the start of experiencing new things and setting achievable goals, whether you choose to do things by yourself or with others. Instead of focusing on restrictions, experiment with new hobbies to try or bucket list ideas that you have been putting off. After all, there is no better time to try new things than at the start of a new year! Here are some examples to think about:

Create A New Budget

Admittedly, money and finances are something that most people would attest to struggling with, especially as we head into economically uncertain times. If this is you, the start of the year makes for the best time to create a budget to set for yourself in the new year. This doesn’t mean forgoing all your favorite activities, but it can encourage you to take a look at your spending more in-depth and see if there are unnecessary expenses hiding on those monthly statements.

Become A Plant Owner Plants can not only provide a bit of greenery to your home aesthetic, but they can be potent air purifiers, too! If you don’t have a green thumb, consider getting a low-maintenance houseplant. These are the perfect options for poorly lit rooms or those who forget to water. Not only that, but plants have been shown to influence your mental health. Bringing houseplants into your home, could help create a calming environment and allow you to increase focus and concentration, while reducing stress and anxiety.

Use Your Phone Less Technology is an ever-evolving landscape and, as a result, we are more connected to our phones than ever before. But the incessant notifications and endless alerts means that we are always on edge. Instead, consider putting your phone on “Do Not Disturb” during the day or setting your push notifications to only alert you for important phone calls or texts. At night, make your bedroom a “No Phone Zone” to allow you to fully relax without the temptation of late night scrolling.

Make Your Bed In The Morning A quick productivity tip for each day? Make your bed each morning. Although a quick task making your bed is the first thing that you can check off that to-do list each day and it immediately makes your room feel cleaner.

Commit To Moving At Least 10 Minutes Per Day

Move. Take a walk in the morning before your day gets started. Get in a short workout. 10 minutes can be a tiny fraction of your day but can be just what you need to shake off an afternoon slump.

Practice Self-Compassion

Have you ever noticed that you are your own worst critic? Or, have you noticed that you don’t take the same advice for yourself that you give to your friends? Self-compassion is about reaching through the “be strong and be tough” exterior to ask ourselves what is really wrong and what is really going on. It’s about focusing on being kinder to ourselves—not just by practicing self-care, but also by changing our internal narrative. Think about the last time that you’ve had a negative talk track running through your head. What if you could spend time this year rewiring those thoughts to stop criticizing yourself and instead, start uplifting?

Create A New Habit (Or Break An Old One)

The new year is most often symbolic of a fresh start, with many people setting resolutions that they will ultimately break. But, just like large and small goals, you can also start and end habits in the same bite-sized pieces. Not all habits are bad; not all habits are good. But, if there is something that you have been wanting to incorporate into your daily/weekly routine, or something that you wish that you could change about your current self, then using a habit planner is a great way to write down the steps towards actionable goals and your pathways to succeed in starting (or quitting) a habit.

Live Fearlessly

While there may be many tangible goals on this list, there’s one that will always be true: living life to the fullest. With so much uncertainty in the world, and the next day never promised, it’s important to soak up each and every moment—visiting with a loved one, calling a friend on the phone, or spending time with your dog. So, this year, set yourself free from limitations. Set yourself free from fear. Give yourself permission to truly live.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

– Tammy C. Vaughn, Aging Services, Inc.