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A New Year. A Chance to Reflect and Renew.

By January 14, 2022April 6th, 2022No Comments

3 Inspiring ways to make 2022 your best year ever!

As the old year becomes an increasingly distant memory, many people use this time to reflect on the past twelve months. What went well? What didn’t go so well? What lessons can be learned from both the good and bad experiences of the year gone by?

This process of reflection is an important part of personal growth, and it can help set the stage for a successful year ahead. Here are 3 inspiring ways with some inspirational tips to make sure that 2022 is your best year yet!

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Take a step back

It feels like every person I talk to is in constant disbelief at how quickly time seems to fly by these days. More so these last two years with all the challenges that COVID 19 has introduced to the world. Now that things are starting to open up again and getting back to some kind of normality a lot of us are evaluating what’s most important to us and what lessons we learnt from this testing time.

However, to move forward, it’s important to take a step back. To get some distance from your past experiences in order to gain a more objective perspective. By taking a step back, you can view your experiences from a different angle and gain new insights that’ll help you grow as a person.

Don’t Forget About Your Resolutions

The feel-good holiday cheer is all-around, you’ve got a little break from work reminiscing with friends and family about last years’ promises to yourself you couldn’t keep. Then between sips of wine, you decide, “This year I’m definitely going to make those New Years resolutions stick.” Sound Familiar?

We’ve all done it! And most of us have failed, repeatedly. The reality is no matter how good your intentions are when you make them, New Year’s resolutions are hard to stick to. In fact, a research study conducted at the University of Scranton found that 23% of people quit their resolution after just one week, and only 19% of people are actually able to stick to their goals long term, and some don’t even start.

Well, it’s time to change all that. The trick is to make your resolutions essential and ultimately, sustainable. Think of it as a weekly grocery list of things you absolutely need to buy.

  • Write them down on a piece of paper.
  • Carry it in your wallet or purse.
  • Post it in your calendar or schedule reminders.
  • Whatever it is you do to make sure you don’t forget or ignore important tasks.

If your goal is to read more, stop by a bookstore or download an impressive pile of page-turners you know you won’t be able to resist diving into. If it’s to lose weight or get in better shape stop by the gym and pay for your membership upfront.

We all hate wasting money so the thought of not getting your money’s worth might be just enough to drag you along to that spinning class or open a book when the time-sapping comfort of Netflix comes calling.

Quit A Bad Habit

Our habits in themselves can have well… a “bad habit” of shaping us into people we don’t necessarily want to be, if we let them. We’ve all got them so don’t fret. Whether you’re telling yourself that you need to quit smoking, stop biting your nails or become more productive (for me it’s slouching), a new year offers a literal fresh start to the year. It’s a chance to leave those bad habits behind us and become better versions of ourselves.

A healthy lifestyle needs to be practised every day. So the trick is to realise that you are consciously making a positive lifestyle choice, not a “one-day” wish list of lofty intentions you know you won’t follow through with.

Research has shown that it takes 66 days to break a bad habit so keep going and push through the hard times. You have to be ready to commit to the change, to the growth.

The great news is, once your new positive habit becomes part of your lifestyle, it’s much harder to break.

Have A Clear Vision

Creating a vision or dream board is a popular and powerful self-actualisation exercise and a great way to kick start your new year feeling motivated.

If you’ve never made one before, basically a vision board is a visualisation tool made up of pictures, words, clippings, inspirational quotes and other things, usually on some kind of posterboard, that visually affirms your deepest goals and dreams.

The power of visualisation is incredibly powerful, so if you haven’t given it a go and made your own board yet, I suggest you give it a shot. You can make a traditional real-life board to pin inspiring images on to keep you motivated or try a virtual one you can set as your screensaver to keep you reaching for those dreams all year through.

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Discover Yourself

So yes, a new year is a time to set new goals and resolutions for the year ahead. But what if we could do more than just reflect on the past? What if we could use the New Year as an opportunity to reconnect with who we are at our core? This is what self-discovery is all about. It’s about taking the time to explore our innermost desires and passions and using them as a guide for creating the life we truly want.

Every person has dozens of wonderful hidden talents just waiting to be explored. Why not take the time to explore the different parts of your unique personalities? Paint, learn an instrument, take up paddleboarding. Whatever makes you happy. You might find you won’t just discover yourself, you may even surprise yourself too.

Be Inspired! Do Something Creative

We all get that feeling of being overwhelmed, stressed out and unable to think creatively because of work or other life stresses. There are plenty of ways that we can nurture our mental health by finding activities that inspire us.

Pick up a paintbrush or guitar, find a peaceful spot in nature for meditation. Finding something creative to do is one of the best ways to destress and should be part of your New Year plan.

Not only will creative activities make you feel more relaxed, happier and improve your thinking outside the box, but it’s just good old fashioned fun!

Build On Your Life Experience

American poet Maya Angelou wrote “You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot – it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.”

With this in mind, instead of settling into our usual daily grind shouldn’t we instead be looking for the new year to bring with it new experiences?

Every month look to bring a little “new” into your life and plan something different and exciting to do that maybe you haven’t done before. Adventure somewhere new, meet new people, discover new things.

If we are indeed the sum total of our experiences, surely making them good and plentiful, is the path to a happier healthier life. Even if that path takes you off the beaten track from time to time.

Treat Yourself

A new year is synonymous with a fresh start. So for it to be fresh, you have to be. I mean properly pampered, well-rested, and inspired! Basically, you must learn to treat yourself, and for good reason.

“Treating” yourself and others is scientifically proven to boost happiness, health and mental wellbeing. And this doesn’t just apply to splashing out on that must-have item you’ve been looking for an excuse to buy, “treating” in all shapes and sizes yields the same feel-good benefits.

  • A soothing candlelit bubble bath and a glass of wine after a long day.
  • A weekend retreat to the country to escape from the hustle or work-life.
  • That “low fat” chocolate dessert to reward your gym dedication.
  • A good deed for a friend or stranger.

Research has found that when someone performs a good deed, those around them are likely to follow their example. So treating is not only good for the soul, it’s contagious!

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Reconnect with loved ones

Many people find it challenging to juggle their daily commitments and responsibilities with a healthy social life and it’s easy to lose touch with the people we care about. Spending quality time with friends and family is so important to our overall happiness and wellbeing, to the point that research shows that social connection makes us happier than just about anything else.

So increasing our communication and reconnecting with loved ones should be a priority as you head into this new year. With COVID 19 forcing us into isolation it’s made it easy to lose touch with valuable friends and faraway family. But it’s never too late to reconnect and get back in touch.

Make Time For Family

In today’s busy and distracting society it’s rare for families to get together daily and emotionally check-in. Simply talking about your day – What frustrated you? What inspired you? What made you laugh? Sharing these experiences will only help strengthen your bonds that may have weakened over recent months.

So, start this year with a focus on reuniting with family members. Take the time to catch up in the morning or at the end of the day. Schedule video calls to connect with extended family members. Make plans to meet up or go away on holiday together.

You’ll be surprised at how joyful and rewarding sharing these experiences together are and how they strengthen your relationships.

Start A New Tradition

A fun way to make time for family is to start a new tradition. Traditions are a big part of celebrations and can make them memorable. Why not turn spending time with family into a celebration and start your own family tradition?

Start a treasured memory chest or happiness jar – this is where everyone shares the happiest moment of their week, writes it down and puts it in the chest. Then at the end of the month or year, pull them out and read them back while you smile reminiscing about your year’s very own highlight reel.

Take weekly family walks together – A short walk or adventure hike every week is a great way to get out of the house, stretch those legs away from screens and get back to nature. The same principle applies to going for bike rides or a trip to the swimming pool or local loch.

Have an annual family or friends reunion – with most friends and families these days scattered across the country and parts of the world, seeing loved ones regularly is difficult and in a blink of an eye, it can be years between catching up in person. A friends or family reunion getaway is a great, fun way to get everyone in one place, reconnect and make treasured memories.

Whatever your new tradition, it is sure to be fun and memorable.

Say “Yes” More Often

When a new year starts we tend to look back on all the things we didn’t do or opportunities we may have missed due to hesitation. If you’ve felt this way and want to avoid regret when you look back next year make sure you set a goal of saying “Yes” more often.

One of my favourite quotes is “We regret more the things we didn’t do than the things we did do.” I’ve always found this to give me the courage I needed to take that last scary step into the unknown.

Of course, being cautious is a key element of survival, but taking some risk also holds its own rewards. It can open up whole new doors of opportunity!

If you think you’ve perhaps been playing it a little too safe and it’s not working, maybe shake things up a bit and say yes next time an opportunity comes knocking.

Yes to change. Yes to more adventures. Yes to more positive experiences.

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New Year. New You.

Although we don’t ever want to get stuck in the past it is important to reflect on your experiences last year and think about ways that you can renew your goals going forward.

By taking a step back and assessing what’s most important to you, you’ll discover the inspiration behind your happiness and reconnect not only with your loved ones but with yourself.

These are some of my ideas on how to start the new year strong and make 2022 your best year yet. Which of these life-changing actions will help you make a fresh start and keep going all year through? Have you got any of your own inspirational ideas to share? Leave a comment below.

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