It is that time of the year again, when our optimistic selves begin with a conquest of self-improvement. With the dawn of another year, we find ourselves making long lists of New Year Resolutions, in hopes of changing our chaotic lives into a more productive life, wistfully expecting to never revert back to our old, negative habits.
With the popular culture of #newyearnewme, we start hitting the gym, drinking more water, using our smart phones less, or even quitting our long-held addictions. Holding onto it till it gets the best of us, only to significantly dislocate our lifestyle.
These paramount of flighty motivations curl up under the huge rock of stubbornness, which we usually fail to conquer throughout the year, whereas self-discipline is a constant state of mind. Fighting it will never be easy, but a slight shift in our day-to-day behaviours can tremendously change our personality, here are 15 subtle ways to ease out on the intense self-conceit we are prone to in the name of resolutions:
1. Wake up early in the morning
Even if you are not a morning person, waking up even half an hour early dramatically alters your energy levels and improves overall mood. You would not have to rush through to get your chores done. Morning after morning, you will eventually feel better with the new habit kicking in for good. Set the alarm 15 minutes early tonight for a change.
2. Drink a glass of water right after waking up.
Even if staying hydrating feels like a task in these intense winters, waking up with a warm glass of water enhances metabolism and flushes out toxins.
3. Maintain a journal.
From all the self-help books, motivational speakers out there, if there is one minimalist habit you can learn, then it is journaling. Humans have always been fond of capturing patterns, which is exactly what a journal is made for. From keeping track of your productivity, to-do lists, emotional and physical wellbeing, a ten minute journal entry can massively help in becoming self aware.
4. Keeping a Habit tracker.
As mentioned above, being able to track and decipher your mental and physical health as well as goal tracking is the inherent nature, there are hundreds of apps, printables etc solely for bolstering your esteem as you stick to your resolutions with Apps like StickK, Habitbull, 42 goals. It must be a satisfying feeling to finally see your progress at the end of a day, a month, an year!
5. Dedicate to a 10 minute workout.
Instead of going fully intense for a month and then not hitting the gym for the rest of the year, just because ‘you do not feel like it’ will not garner results. A 10 minute HIIT workout is just enough to keep your cardiovascular mechanism pumping you with energy throughout the day and simultaneously burning fat. It does not require any equipment and can be done at home, so there is no excuse for not going to the gym! If you are looking for a good workout, you can.
6. Cutting out sugar.
Sugar cravings are something we all find hard to deal with most of the times. A lot of them are quite unnecessary and quietly goes away, once you make this little habit. Sugar spikes up energy for a short amount of time, but lathers up other health concerns in the long run.
7. Replace morning coffee/chai with warm water.
Now that waking up early, exercising is your routine, you probably will not require stimulants as the first thing after you wake up. Skipping caffeine will improve your natural sleep-wake cycle as your body will be refreshed without it.
8. Reading one book per month.
Now that your morning routine and your exercise habits are set, its the time for your brain cells to be in their fullest potential. Reading a 300 page book won’t cost dear to your time, but over an year at a stretch, you will be well-read than you were an year ago.
9. Reading a newspaper.
This may sound the most cliché thing on our list, but reading newspaper has been the trusted and well tried for the most well informed people out there. Not only it does provide you with the current events, it makes you have your own opinions over a range of topics, this skill has to be so well-pronounced in these captive times, while enhancing your vocabulary manifold.
10. Reading articles.
Instead of passively running through your social media feed in your free time, subscribe to some productivity articles, which aligns you when you feel de-railed. Facts, quotes, motivational pick me ups make a great pastime read, and there is always something new to learn.
11. Save YouTube for good.
While being on the productivity track, watching a Ted-Ex video instead of cat videos might do the trick as well. The key is to let your brain believe that it can stay focused for longer!
12. Pen down negative self-talk.
So many of us feel the urge to blurt out the feelings of annoyance, guilt, anger, while not fussing over the consequences. A notebook is a safe haven to vomit out all the negative emotions you feel leaving a trace behind to assess why you feel a certain way about some circumstances. On the journey of being more self-aware, a diary and a pen in your hand are essential where EQ triumphs IQ.
13. Write down your goals.
Be honest about it. Grab a pen and jot down ten of your long term goals. Keep it in an accessible place where you can be reminded of the bigger purpose you want yourself to be working in. We all are made with the potential of achieving something worthwhile, and to make a lasting change which is why stimulating your environment for a more effective effort is important.
14. Networking with people.
Connecting with people has been easier than ever in the Internet Age. Reach out to people who inspire you and motivate you. Be exposed to an environment which makes you push out from your sedentary state, seek out experiences which excite you. Collaborate in projects and issues you believe in. Who knows the person in front of this screen can be the next biggest influencer?
15. Pace down.
While you have been busy prioritising your goals and the resolutions, step out from the haze for a moment. Sit back for two minutes (not tracking or assessing anything) to shift your perspective. Silence your activities and breathe-in the sole joy of being alive. There is nothing your mind cannot attain, all great ideas have been conceived here. Trust your timing, things will fall in place gradually.