Happy Friday Everyone! Welcome to our 5th and FINAL day of “New Year, New You” Week! Today is a fitting end to our week-long discussion of the TOP FIVE NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS that people make each year because we are talking about how to LIVE YOUR LIFE TO THE FULLEST!
It is very common these days for people to feel as if their lives are passing them by. You wake up, go about your routine, go to work, take care of your daily tasks, and before you know it, it’s time to go to bed and start the whole cycle over again. You might find yourself wondering if you’re really living the life you want. Perhaps you’re one of the many people who added “Live life to the fullest” to your list of resolutions for the new year.
Fortunately, living a full and happy life is not nearly as daunting as is sounds. Here are a few simple changes you can make that will increase your happiness and satisfaction with your life in the coming year.
1. Increase your mindfulness
When we aren’t being mindful (that is to say, when we aren’t engaging with the present moment) it is easy to go into “autopilot” and let our muscle memory and habits carry us through the day. If you often find yourself going into “autopilot” and tuning out during your day, draw your attention back to the present by focusing on your breathing. In and out, slow and steady. Let your breathing be your “anchor” to the present moment. After you have focused in on your breath, try to think about the other sensations you are experiencing, such as taste, sound, and touch. Making mindfulness a habit will help you to feel like more of an active participant in your daily life!
2. Take time for your hobbies
We often let go of our hobbies because we feel they aren’t a good use of our time. But if there is some hobby you do that brings you inner peace or happiness, you should MAKE time for it! Research indicates that spending time on enjoyable activities stimulates the parts of the brain associated with our outlook on life and encourages us to be more creative and to think positive!
3. Put yourself out there
This advice has two parts. The first part is to put yourself out there situationally. Research has demonstrated that being outside of your comfort zone creates a level of “optimal anxiety” which maximizes your productivity and performance. Pushing your boundaries once in a while will make you a more productive, adaptable, and creative person. Getting outside of your comfort zone doesn’t have be a huge event, like bungee-jumping or getting a dramatic haircut. You can find variations to fit into your normal routine, like taking a different route to work, or seeing a new movie without reading the reviews first.
The second part is to put yourself out there geographically. Travel and seeing new places is the best way to broaden your perspective on people, cultures, and the world as a whole. And you don’t necessarily have to travel the world, you can still see new and amazing things in your own backyard! Traveling is the perfect way to learn more about the world and make lasting memories at the same time.
4. Devote time to your friendships
Make some time to grab coffee with your girlfriend, or set up a night out with your college buddies. Our friendships and social interactions outside the home can help us destress and feel happier. Additionally, healthy friendships can provide a sense of fulfillment that is separate from work or family, which is important to be able to fall back on.
5. Learn something new
Learning shouldn’t end after graduation! Being mentally “fit” and sharp will benefit you in many ways throughout your life. You’ll not only increase in knowledge and wisdom, you’ll be more adaptable to change, have more stimulating conversations, be more independent, and feel more satisfied with your life. So if you’ve been wanting to learn how to change the oil in your car, do it! Find a tutorial video on YouTube or ask your mechanic neighbor to teach you. Or read a book about a subject that interests you, like popular science or history. Never stop learning.
6. Give what you can
Being giving of your time or resources is an easy way to feel more fulfilled in your life. You will feel happier (which will make you healthier), and you will feel more grateful for your own life and the things that you have. Think of a cause that is important to you, and find an organization that needs volunteers!
7. Practice positivity
Positivity is one of the world’s most undervalued resources, in my opinion. There are few things more physically and emotionally draining than negativity, whether it is spoken or simply felt. Negativity causes stress, which can lead to mental and physical health problems. So devote yourself to positivity this year. Spend less time with the “Negative Nellys” in your life. Make your home or office a more positive place to be with decor or plants. Leave positive affirmation messages on your mirror. Cultivating positivity is an easy way to improve your outlook on life.
There you go! Seven SIMPLE ways to help you to get started LIVING LIFE TO THE FULLEST. Your life is what you make of it….let’s commit to make it AMAZING this year!
How do YOU live life to the fullest?