Forget those January sales and toss aside a night of drinking and merriment in preparation for YOUR year.
Okay, that’s too much to ask. But after the clock strikes twelve and you’re done desperately clamouring for a midnight kiss just to say that you did it and pretending like fireworks are a miraculous anomaly, you can read this list for tips on how to clear your head in preparation for 2019.
These resolutions are universally applicable to every year- they’re a cheat sheet to human perfection, a one track road to robot-hood. You can’t expect to achieve them all or even come close. But if you adopt this positive mind-set and read these tips every so often, you can motivate yourself to resiliently endure a gym, health and beauty regimen which will compliment an even shinier mind set.
At the end of the day (and obviously the year) the most important thing is to do as Samuel Beckett told us: dance first , think later. It’s the natural order.
- Laziness isn’t a good enough excuse to avoid recycling or minimising meat consumption. Convenience is a first world problem that you shouldn’t give yourself the privilege of satisfying.
- It takes literally a second to turn off devices you aren’t using.
- Watch documentaries like Earthlings and Cowspiracy to educate and motivate yourself into being environmentally conscious.
Relationships and Social Life:
- You can’t rely on other people, events or external circumstances to dictate your mood. Create your own happiness and entertainment when people don’t suffice. Truly love and look after yourself. Be comfortable being alone and isolate yourself when necessary to take a break from the pressures of the external world. . Everyone, whether an introvert or extrovert, requires time to re-charge in isolation and enjoy the moment.
- Demand more from people- don’t let them degrade or use you, especially if they make minimal effort with you. Don’t get upset, but rather just ignore them and pay attention to the people that do care about you.
- Look at things objectively and be grateful for the things that people do for you- a lot of the time, people have acted way more selfless than you have towards them when you needed help.
- Be assertive. Don’t give people too many chances and, at least temporarily, cut them off or take a break from them if they start to negatively impact your life.
- Try not to be too passive aggressive and just say things directly.
- Don’t take on the problems of other people that transform into liabilities. You are not their mother. Be supportive, kind and offer help but extract yourself from the situation if someone refuses to change or take your help/advice. You have your own problems to worry about.
- Don’t lower your standards just because the people around you have low standards- set your goals high and don’t be influenced by other people’s dreams or opinions. Remember yours and how you have effective, organised plans to achieve them.
- Look after yourself first. Don’t drop your plans to hang out with people or get distracted by flaky people who don’t care about you. Don’t let other people prevent your day plan or your attempts to succeed at something- you have the potential, motivation and drive to achieve your goals.
- Don’t be too stubborn to apologise when you’re in the wrong.
- Even if you feel lonely, look towards the people you trust and spend time with yourself. You don’t need irrelevant people, only those that you love. Stop checking if meaningless people have read your messages, seen your story etc…
- Leave rude, annoying people (and those who don’t make effort with you) on ‘read’. Don’t reply.
- Don’t be afraid to say no,
- Go along with new situations confidently until you figure them out (as long as you genuinely want to do something).
- Don’t fear new situations but be safe and always avoid risks. Ask yourself: is it worth it? Let loose and do what you want but also be safe, aware of yourself and your actions.
Disposition, Perspective and Attitude:
- Remember- you can’t control other people’s actions or your external circumstances but you can control your reaction.
- Be loving to your internal monologue – its basically your best friend.
- Be positive and optimistic: look on the bright side of things and don’t assume the worst.
- Bathe in gratitude, love and care for everything you have. You were born and blessed in blissful privilege compared to other people. Your problems and your feelings are valid, but you have also been given so much by God, the universe, fate or whatever you believe in.
- Don’t panic over ideas of scary, future situations as your imagination does not reflect reality- all you know is this present moment, which is usually one of content and happiness. Things can always get worse than they are. Whatever situation or predicament you find yourself in, it can always be salvaged before it gets worse.
- Do not get jealous or stressed over material things that you lack or the expectations of a dream life which has been instilled in you falsely by the modern media. You know how amazing your own life is, especially compared to other people- even those who you find yourself envying. Envy is a mere illusion of how things could be, which no one genuinely has- not even Instagram flexers who ‘rise and grind’ or cookie cutter celebrities. Your life has already been filled with (and will continue to be imbued with) so many perfect memories. You can only know your life and perspective; everything else is just an assumption which should not have the power to upset you.
- Make the best of every situation and embrace your present situation as every time period in your life can be romanticised. Look at it through rose coloured sunglasses because there’s always beautiful things to cherish. You genuinely only have your life to mould and appreciate, so write it as the novel you want it to be.
- Care about other people but don’t let them burden you or effect your life unnecessarily. Some people simply refuse to be helped.
- Understand and respect other cultures. Don’t be influenced by the unconscious racist/ sexist biases you may possess. Be guided by reason, logic and sensitivity. Listen to other people’s perspectives but always stand up for the loving and egalitarian principles you know are right.
- Stop complaining- it doesn’t do anything except add negativity.
Actions and Treatment of Others:
- Don’t try to hurt others rashly if you feel upset. Ugly words will only hurt you. Ignore them and move on from the situation. You’re the one who’ll have to live with your actions and you’ll feel amazing knowing you acted more nobly than them. People who bully others are weak and sad; they deserve pity more than anything. Arguments are usually pointless, time wasting and dumb- they make you weaker with anger. What really upsets people is knowing you don’t care. You should still stand up for yourself and speak your mind. But do so with a heavy dose of reserved wit and chill.
- When in doubt of how to teach someone a lesson, live your best life, make plans with someone else (or do something to cheer yourself up) and blank the person who hurt you. Even when others act ignorant, daft or plain mean, retreat to superiority by saying something calculatingly right rather than hurtful. Remember: that the most powerful thing to say to someone when you’re angry is ‘leave me alone’.
- Charity and altruism- Don’t be selfish and prioritise giving yourself the best. You already have so much. Rather, help others and do things for them without expecting anything in return. Donate to those that need it and, even though you can’t hand out money to everyone, you can help change lives or even do something as small as making someone’s day better with a kind word, a thank you or a smile.
- Time- Make time for your loved ones and prioritise them because you will never regret it. Watching Netflix won’t keep you warm at night when you’re 90. Make time to call the people you love, spend time with your family, educate little kids who look to you as a role model, and enjoy going places with people that you find yourself dismissing (like your parents or extended family).
- Do everything you can to help those you love and make their lives easier, even if its inconvenient or it means sacrificing yourself or your pride. Be the bigger person and maintain peace if you have a fight with someone close to you. Make your parents’ lives easier by doing things for them like cooking and give small presents to your friends and siblings simply to make their day.
- Radiate positivity and make people feel good about themselves. It’ll reflect back to you. Don’t expect things that people do for you or take them for granted- no one ‘owes’ you anything. So appreciate everything that people, including your friends and family, do for you.
- Don’t be self-deprecating in front of yourself or others. Stop putting yourself down or throwing demeaning words around about yourself People don’t need to know your faults or insecurities, don’t draw attention to them.
- Stare people directly in the eye and walk with your head held high, especially after an awkward or uncomfortable situation.
- Never feel like you’re dressed ‘too extra’- “you can never be overdressed or over educated” (Oscar Wilde).
- Stop seeking validation from other people, especially men.
- Don’t wear makeup when you don’t want to- you don’t need a mask.
- Don’t confuse confidence with arrogance or narcissism.
- Don’t lie to fit in or make fun of/put things down that you believe in just to seem cool.
- Don’t be envious- think about how much you have and how beautiful, smart, funny and kind you are. Stop comparing yourself to other people – even if you think they have some better qualities than you. Don’t focus on your flaws because no one even sees them except you.
- Don’t cringe or feel bad at embarrassing moments or situations – they are never as bad as you think and no one notices- everyone is too preoccupied with thinking about themselves. Be resilient and start afresh.
- Speak up more in every situation and be loud enough to be heard- stick to what you were going to say and wing it if you’re stuck- confidence and speaking about things from a pedestal is the key to looking good. High powered people in charge talk the talk about things they don’t really know about, but they do it with confidence and make everyone respect them.
- Stop being mentally influenced by celebrities and social media – you know those people have surgeries and don’t even look like that in real life.
- Don’t tolerate bitchiness- call people out rather than being passive aggressive.
- Emulate all your girl crushes, inspiring women and idols (in terms of how they carry themselves).
Productivity, Positivity and Motivation:
- Time management- prioritise the most important things at hand if you’re running out of time. Focus on your high priority tasks to increase productivity. You can do more in an hour than in a day if you focus. Stop being late and rushing to places or things- leave extra time to spare and get the most out of your experiences. But also realise when to relax and not participate to avoid being overwhelmed.
- Don’t view special events solely through a filter or a camera lens; stop trying to ‘do it for the gram’ and savour the special moments, after you’ve documented them on film of course.
- See every new day and week as a fresh start- the concept of New Year is an insignificant illusion. It’s never to late or too early to start doing something you need to do or living your life how you want it.
- Stop going to sleep really late in order to be productive and work- its better to rest and wake up early.
- Don’t look at your phone or social media when you immediately wake up- do your morning routine straight away.
- Read or listen to music before bed rather than going on your phone- don’t sleep next to your phone or fall asleep while watching something because its both dangerous/unhealthy and will probably cause insomnia.
- Don’t let a lack of attention from someone you like effect your mood.
- Control your moods- catch yourself when you’re in a bad mood and stop being in one. It’s usually over petty things and isn’t worth it. Sometimes you need a good cry (it’s therapeutic), but most of the time this just puts you in a worse mood. Analyse the reasons for why you feel a certain way and either improve the situation somehow or realise that stressing over it is meaningless. Do something creative or organise your room/life to feel productive and energised.
- Start a diary, school planner, to do list and calendar to commemorate and organise your life.
- Stop pitying yourself and playing victim in situations where you know you’re the one to blame.
- If you fail at something , keep trying by giving yourself a blank slate and fresh start until you achieve it or it becomes a habit. For example, if you eat something unhealthy, don’t feel bad but just use this guilt to avoid it in the future. Accept times when things don’t go according to plan (such as a slightly disappointing grade). Let that motivate you to move forward. You will never fail at something if you’ve learned from it and tried your best. You’ve succeeded at so many things at life and no one can take away your past successes. Stop forgetting your achievements as soon as you stop celebrating or feeling happy about them- think back to the good times for motivation.
- Always remember how good motivation makes you feel- if you feel down, clean or sort your life out and do a face mask. The more idle you are, the worse your mood will be and the less things you’ll want to do.
- Brush your teeth 3 times a day and floss daily- gum disease isn’t fun.
- Drink a minimum of 3 litres of water a day- few fizzy/sugary drinks and try to limit alcohol intake. Recognise if you rely on intoxication to have fun.
- Get at least 8 hours of sleep daily- it’s better to wake up early- and read or listen to music rather than staring at a screen before you go to bed.
- Eat your 5 a day.
- Eat less carbs, sugar and fat- don’t excuse cheat weeks with the idea that you’ve ‘been good’. But also treat yourself.
- Avoid frozen, packaged, microwavable, or ready made food like Ramen noodles.
- Don’t avoid visiting the GP if anything is wrong with your body. Better safe than sorry.
- Minimise stress by listening to meditations and affirmations. Try yoga.
- Stop using plastic and opt for reusable options.
- Don’t be afraid to be yourself- stop confining yourself to society’s standards or fearing that people will judge you for showing too much skin or expressing yourself.
- Try going to the gym 3 times a week and make a detailed gym routine/plan.
- Exfoliate your skin once a week. Cleanse and moisturise twice daily.
- Experiment with new looks – don’t hold yourself back.
- Be vigilant and careful when lending people money – and think whether they would do the same for you.
- Stop wasting money on drinks, clothes and other pointless things- take out a certain amount in cash to prevent yourself from spending more and restrict yourself to a budget.
- Start a savings account.
- Minimise eating out- make food and bring it to work/uni.
- Apply to jobs routinely- have a thick skin and don’t get discouraged.
- Write down everything you spend weekly on your notes app to control your habits.
- Be a bad b at all costs xoxo
Images sourced from Instagram.