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20 Small Changes to Make in 2020 that will Make you Happier Every Day

2020 is a big year. Forget that I haven’t yet gotten back into a routine and still can’t remember yet what day it is.

TWENTY-TWENTY just sounds big, bold and important.

So we should have big resolutions to go with it, right?

NOPE. Do not fall into that trap.

This is not a post about making New Year’s Resolutions.

Resolutions are such a big topic and then poof, come about January 15th — if you haven’t already thrown yours by the wayside — they’re a thing of the past.

Insert guilt for something you should never have self-imposed guilt for in the first place.

Resolutions sound just as terrible to me as the word diet.

{insert that green barfy emoji guy}

Anyone else notice these similarities?

Diets and resolutions suck, set you up for failure and absolutely no one likes doing them. If someone says they do, they’re fully lying.

First of all, New Year’s resolutions? The worst time to start a resolution. I’m barely able to stay awake after being in a food and winter break coma. Creating some absurd resolutions right now seems like a really bad idea. The only thing I’m craving is a routine.

Want to be successful?

Let’s get real.

Just like a “diet” (ugh, but you get the point), you have to start resolutions — actually, let’s call them life changes — when YOU’RE ready, not when the calendar says. Trying to create real change on someone else’s calendar or clock is a recipe for disaster.

Instead of resolutions, let’s focus on 20 incredibly worthy things you can start doing now to make you feel and look your best — inside and out — in 2020 and way beyond.

Stop procrastinating on what you know deep in your gut you really want to do… or that thing that has bee nagging at you. Both are worth doing now, if only to lighten your mental load.

Eliminate negative self talk. You cannot allow your inner dialogue to talk to you in a way you’d never tolerate from others.

Forget trying to please everyone (fact: it’s impossible).

Prioritize your mental health. I see a counselor and talk often about it. There’s no stigma; I’m proud to prioritize it.

Be kind to yourself, always. You’re worthy.

Take time to figure out what food fuels you and makes you feel good, and what does exactly the opposite. I love cheese and dairy but I absolutely don’t feel great afterward so I eat it sparingly.

Celebrate what your body can do. This is the vessel that takes you through life. From a girl who couldn’t even walk 10 years ago, I promise you your body is a gift, however it is packaged. Go easy on yourself.

Cut down your screen time. We all know it’s not healthy for us — emotionally, physically, and for our relationships — so stop losing time looking at some else’s fake life, and then feeling worse about your own life as a result.

Let go of what you cannot control. It is what it is.

Make it a habit to start telling people the compliments about them you’re thinking in your head. I realized that I’m such a people watcher that I wonder if people see me looking at them and then conjure up some negative story line in their head when in reality I’m thinking only the best. I now tell them. It’s the best gift you can give someone, and it costs zero and takes about five seconds.

Push yourself to move a little each day. Once you start moving, you’ll be impressed how motivated you are to continue. And if you don’t one day? That’s OK too. Your body also needs rest.

Only buy things you really love.

…..And, donate, discard or sell anything that you have that you wouldn’t buy now. If you don’t love it, why keep it?

Make a list of what you want to accomplish this year and refer to it often (I keep this on my phone): think work milestones, travel, running a race or starting a certain new hobby, reading a book a month, paying off a credit card or feeling the sun on your face more often. Let it run the gamut and focus on checking it off the list.

Celebrate even the smallest achievements (instead of imposing guilt for what you did not do… yet). The word YET is powerful.

Treat yourself to fresh flowers. Smile, enjoy and breathe them in.

Start saying no more often. Saying no to one thing really means you’re saying yes to something else (that typically means more to you!).

Start a gratitude journal. You can get one, or get any notebook and list five things daily you’re grateful for. Never going to do it? Before bed, simply make it a habit to list them in your head. It’s everything from that hot cup of coffee, to reaching a goal, to the most amazing hug you received or a friendly text. Don’t overthink it.

Spend more time with people who you love, you enjoy and who appreciate you. Invite them to your home, go for walks with them, send them texts.

Remind yourself that self care is not selfish. Say it again, self care is not selfish. It’s necessary. If you have a tough time doing it, remember you cannot serve those you want in the way you want if you are not healthy and happy.

…. so let’s do this! You can easily start going through this list and implementing ASAP some life changes to lead a happier and more fulfilling life. Anything else you’d add to the list? Share it in the comments section.

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  • Reply
    Sidney Ayers Young
    January 9, 2020 at 6:36 AM

    What a wonderful list!!!! I’m going to incorporate a few much needed ones to my daily routine.

  • Reply
    Kimberly Smith
    January 9, 2020 at 6:15 AM

    Love & whole-heartedly agree with all of these! One that I’ve added to my list this year is to get out & serve more – volunteering is such a great way to give back and I always find that it helps me get out of being so self-focused.

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