New Year’s resolutions are so popular because the new year marks a new beginning and a new chance to meet goals. Resolutions are a reminder that we really should recommit ourselves regularly to personal improvement. We know we need to better ourselves, let go of bad habits, and reach for new and better ways of living.
However, instead of making a list of ten things you want to change about yourself this year, why not commit to lasting and real change that has the possibility to reach beyond the first few months of the year? By focusing on the process of change, rather than the outcome, your resolutions could really make a difference this year in your overall happiness and satisfaction.
Instead of the stand-by resolutions we all fall back on each year (ie lose weight), why not focus on what really matters (feeling healthy), which is the mindset that is holding you back from making real, lasting change in your life? Instead of focusing on the habits this year, try a resolution related to the process of increasing your wellness and overall well-being. Focusing on the process rather than the goal also helps us to become more mindful and in stay in the present.
With a recent downward trend in overall wellness among women in the US, perhaps it is time to return to basics this year with your resolutions? Instead of opting for the same goals you make every year, make this new year the year of living happier. Here are the most important resolutions you can make this year to help you achieve just that.
Focus on Your Mental Health
When you change your focus to working on your mental health, you can improve not only your mind and soul but also your body. Your mental health is what drives your ability to achieve physical health, so focusing on it versus other aspects of fitness or diet could lead to more significant improvements in all areas of your life.
Your mental health includes how you deal with and process emotions, how you handle stress, how resilient you are to changes or obstacles, and your overall outlook and mindset. Focus on this critical aspect of wellness, and you will enjoy significant returns in all areas of your life.
Ideas to focus on mental well being include meditation, journaling, limiting harmful social media, sleeping more, and taking up meaningful volunteer work.
Become Better Connected
Make a commitment this year to spending more time with the people who bring joy to your life. Being in the company of your family and friends can improve your mental health and lower stress levels.
Schedule regular time each week to spend with loved ones, stay in contact with those who live far away, and renew efforts to remain connected to those who have been neglected recently. Real-life connection is preferred to online messages, so pick up the phone or make a date to see your friends soon.
Be More Mindful
When you are mindful, you are living in the present moment. You are aware of what you are feeling, how the environment and others are affecting you, and you can embrace the experiences and opportunities as you live them. Mindfulness teaches you to let go of anxiety about the unknown future as well as anger or sadness about the past, both of which can significantly impact your mental and emotional well-being.
Get Outside More
A commitment to spending more time outside in nature can improve your mental, emotional, and physical health in many ways. Spending time in nature reduces stress, helps you sleep better, enhances your immune system, and can be a wonderful place to get more exercise. Enjoy your local metro parks, state parks, green spaces, and walking paths as much as you can this new year to improve your wellness in many areas. Make it a goal to walk/hike 100 miles in nature this year.
Commit to Self-Care
If you make no other resolution this year, promise yourself that you will prioritize your self-care in 2019. This goes far beyond getting a pedicure or buying a latte. Taking time for yourself is crucial, and this simple promise can enhance your well-being. Self-care can include everything from meditation to exercise. It’s up to you to determine what you need to feel your best and to prioritize these things.