5 tiniest (yet seriously impactful) strategies to upgrade your life in 2022
You don’t need new year’s resolutions. You need strategies to reach your goals.
New year resolutions are a time waster. They look glamorous and achievable. But, hey, whom am I kidding! As the year progresses, those resolutions start to fade away into oblivion.
According to research from the University of Scranton, only 19% of people actually achieve their New Year’s resolutions, with most people giving up by the middle of February. This fact proves there is nothing wrong with us; the fault is with the tradition as a whole.
I don’t make New Year’s “resolutions” anymore because they excite you for a short time due to the hype and pressure surrounding them. And then, they vanish..
Resolutions sound “demanding” and convey a sense of urgency — “You have to do this!” It’s an artificial and unwanted pressure we put on ourselves that leaves no space for error. And when we fail, we feel embarrassed and dissatisfied in ourselves — even humiliated. Instead, I adopted certain micro changes that led to macro results.
I would be lying if I said that I succeeded in every micro change I planned to execute. But, at least failing in small tasks didn’t pinch as hard as failing in a monstrous new year resolution.
So, here are 5 small ways you can easily practice to upgrade your life in 2022. In addition, you don’t need gargantuan willpower or commitment to practice them.
1. Every day, get rid of only “three” items
We, humans, tend to amass a lot of unnecessary clutter.
Your attitude and drive to achieve your big aspirations might be affected if you have an overly crowded home. But, getting rid of items frees up space in your life for the new things you desire (both literally and figuratively).
So, begin by getting rid of only two-three things a day if you have excess clutter. Remember to surround yourself with things that make you feel good to be your most productive and creative self.
Marie Kondo’s book, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” is all about innovative cleaning methods — I learned many unimaginable ways to purge the clutter.
If you aren’t a book reader, check out her Netflix series — “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.”
2. Amp up your bedtime routine
Morning routines are outdated, overrated, and extremely challenging.
I say this because we have been using the wrong productivity key. What you do in the evening dictates your next day’s productivity.
Regardless of your way of living, your nightly routine may greatly influence the quality of your sleep and hence your following day’s productivity. Your nighttime activities greatly influence your capacity to fall asleep more quickly and recharge your energy tank for the morning.
Success is not how you start; it’s how you end.
What can you do at the end of the day to make your next day more positive?
If you’re plagued by worry and insomnia, creating a bedtime routine might be a lifesaver for you.
Having a nighttime routine is just as important as having a morning routine since it may help you relax and wind down for the night.
A regular bedtime can also help promote early mornings and give you a boost of energy after waking up.
What you can consider for your bedtime routine:
- A 5-minute reflection: Consider what went well today and what made you proud of yourself.
- Breathing exercises: Take a deep breath for four counts, hold it for seven, and exhale for eight. Dr. Andrew Weil created the 4–7–8 breathing method as a “natural tranquilizer for the nervous system.”
- Journalling: A brain dump is a great way to cleanse your thoughts and achieve better quality sleep if you suffer from worry.
- Read a little bit, but not too much!
- Adopt a “no phone after 9” policy.
You can briefly read about how a perfect bedtime routine sets you up for a successful and productive morning here.
3. Use the 1st of each month to unlock your high performing version
The first day of a new month is a terrific opportunity to start fresh and re-energize for the month ahead. The first day of every month is an unmissable time to invest in yourself — halt, reflect, reconnect with yourself, and set key goals for the upcoming month.
“A goal without a strategy is simply a wish” is a well-known saying.
If you’re a couch astronaut who fantasizes about going to space but never takes action, it’s time, to be honest with yourself. Y-O-U is all that stands between you and the life of your dreams.
So, set out a few minutes on the first day of each month to plan and set shorter goals.
Using a series of successful rituals that I follow on the first day of every month, I’ve been able to maintain a sense of organization, productivity, and control over my life!
What you can do:
- Add reminders and tasks to your phone calendar: The recurring reminders ensure that they’re done without procrastination.
- Take on any 30-day monthly challenge — fitness, cleanliness, journalling, reading a book, no phone after 9 p.m, limiting screen time to 30 minutes a day, etc.
- Introspection: Reflecting on the past month’s gains and losses enables you to make a controlled improvement plan.
- Make a monthly meal plan: It saves time and money and prevents frequent grocery visits!
- Organize the digital media: Taking backups, deleting unwanted junk, unsubscribing to useless newsletters, etc.
You can read more about it here.
4. Ask yourself these open-ended questions every day
Asking provocative open-ended questions and writing your guts out may help you explore your hidden self.
Even though it may be awkward at first, you are the best person to assist you in figuring out what’s going on. Despite what you may believe or want, no one else has the answers.
What questions should you ask yourself to stay controlled?
- What makes me happy and puts a grin on my face?
- What do I hope people will remember me for after I’m gone?
- What drives me forward?
- At the moment, what’s stopping me?
- How am I now feeling about my life? What makes you happy?
These questions will help keep things in perspective when adversities strike. You’ll also be able to track better what really matters!
5. Prioritise self-care
Self-care is free!
Self-care routines do not need a significant time or money commitment. Self-care doesn’t work at all if it causes us to worry about missing out on work and spending money.
A self-care practice is an activity that you can do anywhere and at any time that involves minimal effort yet provides significant benefits in terms of peace, relaxation, vitality, and enjoyment.
If you take care of yourself, your relaxed self will take care of your life!
What You Can Do to Regain Your Physical, Mental, and Emotional Wellness:
- Go to a pleasant place by closing your eyes and using imaginative powers
- Take a stroll in nature
- Stretch out a little bit
- Watch a funny video
- Watch some motivational content
I have elaborately explained some other self-care practices that require $0 investment yet yield high returns here.
A final word
We’re at the beginning of a new year, and it can be easy to get stuck in making resolutions for erasing old habits.
But if you think about how this coming year could be different than all the years before, you’ll realize that resolutions are not the way to upgrade life!
We didn’t grow up in a day — We underwent many phases of life: infancy, the toddler years, childhood, puberty, older adolescence, adulthood, etc., taking micro-steps. Likewise, your life also improves when you take baby steps each day for 12 months.
That might sound crazy now, but taking micro-steps every day will look drastically different when January 1st rolls in 2023!
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