“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible” — Tony Robbins
News flash: It doesn’t need to be a new year to set out some life goals.
While some may be ready to jump into a juice cleanse on January 1st, you might still have work to catch up on, errands to run, cleaning to do (the list goes on), all before you get ready to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Adding one more thing, like a new year resolution, to your to-do list might not be on the cards this very moment. And that’s ok!
Here’s a quick guide on how to create realistic goals — whenever you feel ready — to help you with self-care, mindfulness, travel and exercise.
Step 1: Dream big and filter with reality. The size of the goal doesn’t matter but the achievability of it does.
Step 2: Think about why you want to achieve your goal, how it will benefit your health or lifestyle, and what you need to do to get there.
Step 3: Break down your goal(s) into smaller steps that are specific, measurable and time-based.
Step 4: Write down your goals and put them where you’ll see them to increase your chances of sticking to them.
Practice self-care more often
Self-care can be anything that benefits your mental and emotional health. But the more obvious options, like a massage or mani-pedi, might not always be the easiest to do. The way to make self-care a regular part of your life is to carve out a small window of me-time to do the things you love. Here are a few easy wins:
- Take a bubble bath and enjoy a glass of your favorite drink.
- Don’t miss your favorite exercise class or go for a run.
- Put your headphones on and listen to an artist you love.
- Pick up a pen, brush or pencil and write, draw or paint.
- Set a date in stone to go for a walk, coffee or lunch with a friend.
Set aside time for mindfulness
Mindfulness can help us to understand ourselves better and enjoy our lives a little more. When we practice mindfulness, we are fully engaged with what we’re doing in that moment.
The most common form of meditation is a technique called focused attention:
- Start by focusing your attention on your breathing, particularly the rise and fall of your chest.
- Return your focus to your breath whenever you get distracted or your mind starts to wander.
- Try this for three minutes twice a day whenever you need a boost.
Travelling is wonderful, but with your busy agenda it can be difficult to fit it in. The benefits, however, can help you break away from your unrelenting routine. A few easy steps to getting yourself (and the family or friends) away from home are:
- Saving: Try to set aside a few extra dollars per month into your savings account for a travel fund. Don’t be lured into spending it on anyone or anything else (easier said than done, we know!)
- Research: Dedicate some time to finding cheap flights, package deals or rentals.
- Spending Money: If you’re travelling with friends or family, make sure costs are split equally when feasible. Don’t forget to save some money for yourself to indulge on your favorite activity.
We all know that regular exercise can combat stress, increase your energy levels, improve your sleep and boost your immunity. So, here are a few ways to keep your exercise schedule on track and regular.
- Subscribe to online exercise classes. There are loads of free subscriber channels for you to do quick and easy workouts at home.
- Set aside time. Work your exercise around your busy schedule by writing it down on a calendar. It will soon become apparent that you might have a spare 30 minutes for you to close your bedroom door and get your workout done.
- Get a workout buddy. One of the most motivating ways to make your exercise regular is to be held accountable by a friend, colleague or partner. Plan with them and stick to it.
- Replace your workout. If you’re not going to able to make your workout one day (let’s face it, this is going to happen from time to time), try to replace it with a short walk, a quick cycle or a yoga session.