New Year’s resolutions usually start with good intentions and fizzle with bad follow-through. According to US News & World Report, 80 percent of New Year’s resolutions fail by February. And maybe that’s because these are driven by guilt from the holidays. However, if you start out with mindful practices, you can set up your new year for success.
Self-care is a necessity in the midst of busyness. You need time to slow down and tend to your own emotional, mental and physical health. Protect yourself from burnout this season by ringing in another year with self-care. You can start by checking out the following tips.
1. Reflect on your year
The first step in preparing yourself for a new season of well being is understanding your past. Reflect on this past year to consider your weaknesses and strengths. When you know your triggers for stress, you can predict setbacks and change how you react to them.
Reflection can help you find direction for your future. Evaluating your current lifestyle and consider what steps you need to take to proceed toward a better life. Monitor your behavior and mindset to develop better self-awareness and achieve goals.
2. Celebrate improvement.
As you take steps to improve your habits and overall lifestyle, you should recognize the improvement and congratulate yourself. Celebrate your victories, even if they’re small, because your efforts are pushing you forward. Acknowledging your achievements can give you confidence and strengthen you.
A positive outlook is essential to progress, and 90 percent of happiness relates to your mindset rather than your circumstances. One way to encourage yourself and keep your motivation up is through affirming self-talk. Exchange criticism for compliments and reassurance, and try to build yourself up rather than breaking yourself down.
3. Gather a support team.
Whether you find an accountability partner or surround yourself with loved ones, a support team can make you feel capable of growth. People who keep you on track with your self-care efforts can propel you forward and make the responsibility less daunting. When you share this goal with them, they can appreciate your vulnerability.
Gathering a group of people who bring positivity and non-judgmental help means you should leave behind toxic relationships. Cut out the negative influences on your life that keep you from maintaining your health and stability.
4. Declutter your space.
It doesn’t have to be spring for you to remove distracting objects and messiness from your life. New Year’s is an optimal time to reset your living space. Clear out the belongings you don’t need so you can create a useful and accessible area for yourself.
Cluttered areas hinder your clarity of mind and tire out your brain. But establishing a fresh environment for a new season can push you to maintain your own habits and goals. Clearing out things you have been holding onto can remove negativity from your life, too. You can increase your focus for more success and intentional care in the following year.
5. Prioritize sleep (and other healthy habits).
Setting up your year with a regulated sleep pattern and quality rest can enhance your life. Sleep substantially contributes to your emotional wellbeing, brain functioning and physical health. It should be close to the top of your self-care list because it vastly shifts your mood and performance. If you want to keep your self-care goals going, you need to incorporate designated rest times.
Other healthy habits that you should prioritize in the new year include a balance between work and your personal life, hygiene, consistent exercise and food choices. To choose self-care, you must establish boundaries. Remember that you don’t need to justify your choices and priorities to others, but you have to do what is best for you and your loved ones.
6. Section off future self-care times.
Mark your calendar for future self-care times. You can block off an hour or an evening to spend some time reflecting, evaluating and relaxing periodically — but that means you have to keep allowing yourself alone time. If you have an activity or hobby that you want to do in your alone time, you can section off time in your week to go for a run, take a bubble bath or paint.
It may seem strange to jot down alone time on your calendar, but in the busyness, it’s hard to slow down and recharge. You have to practice intentionality in self-care to make it a habit. Don’t feel guilty spending this time apart from your family or from work. Extend grace to yourself and give yourself permission to maintain your emotional and physical health.
7. Resolve to make yourself a priority—it’s not being selfish!
During the coming year, set yourself up with healthy habits, a fresh setting, an encouraging support group and self-awareness. This New Year’s reflect and celebrate intentionally. Start out the season by bettering your health and mindset through giving yourself guilt-free alone time and grace.