Are you looking to find out how to start the new year right? Whether or not you believe in the concept of new years resolutions, it’s still worth making some effort to put your best foot forward – and this article will help you do just that.
Let’s get straight into it.
Go Easy on the Big Lifestyle Changes
If you’re committed to the idea of doing something like Dry January or Veganuary, and feel really enthusiastic about it, by all means give it a go.
But if you’re just doing it because you feel you should, it could be worth a rethink.
It arguably much better just to make small, sustainable changes. For example, there’s little point in quitting alcohol in January if you just end up enjoying “Oblivion February!”
In addition, if you do set yourself a big task and don’t manage it, you’re going to experience failure very early in 2020, which won’t feel good – and that’s NOT how to start the new year right.
A series of small tweaks to your lifestyle is much easier to sustain, and could prove equally rewarding. Give it some thought before jumping on the latest deprivation bandwagon.
Start the Project you Keep Putting Off
Start doing it NOW.
That way you immediately ensure that you’re not going to find yourself a year down the line with the same regrets.
You don’t have to finish it or do it all at once. Just take action.
Learn Something New
Did you learn any new skills last year?
If you didn’t, you can be sure plenty of other people did, and moved that little bit ahead of you in the process.
Learning new things doesn’t mean having to splash out on an expensive course when you’re still recovering from your Christmas expenses. By taking advantage of free trials and inexpensive online learning, you can begin your training immediately. It’s definitely a way to start the new year right.
- Take a look at the courses on Udemy, where there’s plenty on offer for less than $20. (Review here).
- Try LinkedIn Learning – it also has a trial, so you can begin to learn for FREE. (See review).
A big part of making progress is knowing which old things to drop as well as which new things to start.
Do you have TV or gaming subscriptions that are not being used? Are you on email lists where you never read the messages? Do you have a gym membership that you’re not going to use, even though it IS January?!
Cancel it. Cancel it ALL. You can always start it up again, but in the meantime your life gets a big clear-out and you might even save some money in the process.
Try Some New Software
Most of us spend half of our lives glued to our laptops, tablets and phones. So why not “level up” and learn to use something new? Whether it’s a full-sized piece of software or a new mobile app, you can easily feel like you’ve given your tech life an “upgrade.”
Something I’ve found myself recommending to several people over recent weeks is Trello. It’s halfway between a list-making app and a fully fledged project management system. It’s what I personally use to organise everything I do for this site. It’s great, and it’s also FREE.
I have a whole bunch of other software recommendations in this article. I’ll also give a special mention to two things I added to my own software repertoire in 2019. I hope that some of you will get to see the results in 2020!
Teachable: A great course creation system that’s ideal if you want to share your knowledge with the world and make money selling courses.
Camtasia: A wonderful piece of software for creating videos and screencasts, with really fantastic training materials to help you make the most of it.
Find a New Podcast
I was very much a latecomer to the world of podcasts, but they are a faithful companion to me now.
Best of all, they’ve even helped me exercise. I figure an hour spent both hearing a business podcast and fitting in a good, long walk is a very effective way of multitasking!
So try to find a new podcast that both entertains you and helps you learn.
I’m only going to make one podcast recommendation, which is my own current favourite. I listen to it religiously every week and it will be of great interest to anybody thinking of working on websites and blogs: The Authority Hacker Podcast – give it a go.
It’s cheesy to mention exercise in an article about starting the year right.
But, let’s face it, we all know we should move more.
I’m definitely as guilty as the next person of living a sedentary lifestyle. However, I can honestly say I’ve been better in 2019 than I was in 2018. If I can be better still in 2020, that will be good enough for me.
Review your Relationship with Social Media
There are definite, proven benefits to working to release the grip of social media.
In early December, I deactivated my personal Facebook and Twitter. Only a few weeks later, I feel genuinely better for it. It was truly eye-opening (and rather chilling) how many times I instinctively went to open both of them if the first few days – especially Twitter.
I don’t know if this will be a permanent move, and in some ways I feel I’m missing out on what friends are up to, but for now, I feel it’s been life-enhancing.
My own relationship with these social networks will remain “under review.” If you spend a lot of time scrolling, you might want to think about yours.
Choose a Book to Read
Leading on nicely from stepping away from social media, we have something that you can do with all the time you free up – read!
As you can see from the picture above, my bedside pile of half-read, un-read and “in need of re-reading” grows ever taller. It doesn’t bother me one bit, but if I’m to continue to enjoy the fun of re-stocking it I need to start working through it. Every time I go to check social media and remember I’m not doing that at the moment, I try to read a couple of pages.
It feels good.
We all read to varying degrees, but let’s keep it simple for 2020: Choose a book to read in January and make it a priority. I don’t see how you could regret it.
There’s a list of my own book recommendations here.
Get in Touch with Me!
I hope these tips on how to start the year right have been helpful.
I’m going to end on a request…
I love running this site and providing content to help people. The very best way for me to do that is if readers tell me what they want to see.
So, please can you do me a favour: Contact me and let me know any article ideas you may have. Everybody wins: you get to read about the subjects that interest you, and I get to know I’m providing what people want. That’s definitely the kind of mood I’m keen to set as 2020 gets underway.
Happy New Year 🙂