Good habits will provide the foundation you need to reach your goals.
After all, it’s hard to set a goal to write every morning, if you don’t have an established morning routine in the first place.
Small, micro habits prepare you for bigger goals by developing your discipline and confidence. When you meditate every morning, you feel good about yourself. When you feel good, you’ll use that momentum to pursue bigger things. Even Olympic athletes stress that maintaining daily habits is the cornerstone of their success.
Developing healthy, supportive habits is also a smart way to maximize the end of your year or kick off the new year. By laying down the groundwork and developing positive habits, you’ll be setting yourself up for success in the long run.
Below, we've rounded up ideas for healthy habits that you can incorporate into your day that will have you feeling more energized, productive, and ready to tackle your goals.
Create a cozy morning routine
Do you feel stressed or rushed in the mornings? Try creating a cozy morning routine to start your day off on the right foot.
A morning routine helps us look forward to our days and sharpens the focus of those first early hours. It’s a time that’s just for you. The world feels like it’s still in slumber, so you can do as you please. Don’t feel pressured to use this time to go to the gym or do something productive (unless you want to!). The idea is to pick one or two elements that would add some comforting touches to your day.
Some ideas include:
- Writing in your journal with a cup of tea or coffee
- Going for a morning stroll
- Meditating for 10 minutes
- Writing in your gratitude journal
- Taking a long, leisurely bath
- Coloring in a coloring book
- Reciting a positive mantra or reflecting on inspirational quotes or journal prompts
You can find even more ideas for morning routines here.
A cozy morning routine can get you in the right mindset for the rest of the day, and help you easily integrate habits like meditating and journaling. We may not always have the time to do our entire routine, but if you can try to set aside two or three mornings a week just for you, it can still make a difference. Not a morning person? Consider creating an evening, wind-down routine instead.
Create a seasonal self-care routine
Want to make your self-care routine feel more special? Try catering your self-care activities to the season. Drinking apple cider in autumn or clearing out your home in spring. Incorporating seasonal elements to your usual self-care routine will help you feel more mindful as the year progresses. Plus, taking the time to recharge your spirit and well-being will make you feel ready to take on your responsibilities.
Here are some ideas for seasonal self-care activities:
- Taking a long hike to admire fall foliage
- Collecting leaves
- Making an apple pie from scratch
- Making a nourishing meal with fall produce
- Watching your favorite Halloween movies from when you were a kid
- Picking up a relaxing hobby like knitting or crocheting
- Sending thank you cards to loved ones and letting them know how much you care
- Going out for a walk and taking in the crisp, winter air
- Watching feel-good movies with popcorn and treats
- Lighting a pine tree scented candle and cozying up with a gripping mystery novel
- Clearing out the clutter in your home and donating items you don’t need
- Going out for a run or biking in your neighborhood
- Buying colorful flowers from the farmer’s market
- Wearing a bright outfit that makes you smile
- Making a travel wish list or a vision board
- Sending Friendship Maintenance Cards to your pals
- Making a fruit tart with summer produce
- Collecting seashells and seaglass
- Drinking iced coffee outside
- Doing watercolors or a mindful activity in the park
- Having a picnic with friends
Creating a regular self-care routine will help refresh and re-invigorate you so that you can pursue your personal and professional life with success.
Walk for 40 minutes, no matter the season
Walking for at least 40 minutes a day is good for your brain.
It’s so tempting to stay at your desk in the name of work and productivity, but you’ll actually be more efficient if you take a break. Still not convinced? Taking a long walk supports your brain and boosts memory retention. So take that lunch break and go for a long walk afterwards. Or set a timer every hour to remind you to get up and move around. Do a set of jumping jacks. Or go outside and get some fresh air. Or walk to your next meeting instead of taking a car. Just start moving.
Conduct a weekly planning session
If you need support in kickstarting your goals or making sure they stay on track, get into the habit of weekly planning sessions.
Set aside twenty to thirty minutes on a Sunday or any day that’s free. Together with your paper planner, take stock of your yearly or monthly goal. What can you do this week to help you get closer to that goal?
Next, review the previous week and take note of what you accomplished and what you didn’t get around to doing. Now’s the time to see if you’re hitting your benchmarks. So if you set a goal to run 30 minutes a day but you noticed that in the previous week you’ve been skipping your runs, it’s time to readjust. Set realistic targets so that you’re more likely to pursue your goal.
Afterwards, take a look at your upcoming week. Record any deadlines, meetings, tasks, or errands. Then, schedule in time to work on your goal. If you schedule it, you’ll do it.
Conducting a weekly planning session can help you measure the progress on your goals. After all, they say that a goal that can’t be measured is just a wish. So take advantage of this planning session to create measurable targets and see how you are performing.
Use your weekly planning session to tweak your strategy as necessary, celebrate your wins, and encourage yourself to keep going. You’ll be reaching your goal in no time.