As we get to the end of another year we begin to start taking stock. What went well in 2015? What didn't go so well? Even if you had the best year of your life, we ultimately always want to get better. Humans are wired for growth and we have an insatiable need to believe that we are improving our lives with each turning of the calendar.
Regardless of how great the past year has been, here are 6 ways that you can be better in 2016:
1. Rid yourself of one bad habit at a time.
Make a serious commitment to change one bad habit. Re-wiring habits requires discipline, planning and commitment, so give yourself at least three dedicated months to do it. Focus on one bad habit at a time for success, and get a plan in action. There are plenty of apps that can help you stay on track, and you can enlist accountability and support from your friends or family. Once you have made it past three months, that new habit should be solid, and you can go into maintenance mode.
2. Get control of your negative mental chatter. Follow these steps.
First, notice the negative message that seems the loudest. Pause and listen to your mind and what it is saying to you; identifying the loudest negative message will happen over time, as you listen more and more closely.
Next, track how often you are telling this to yourself. Is it happening every day? Every week? What are you doing that triggers these negative messages?
Then, reverse that message. Write down a new message to tell yourself that is a more positive version of the negative message. This new positive message should be realistic--you can believe it just as much as the negative one. Repeat the positive message whenever doubts come up.
3. Focus on loving yourself more every day.
There are two great methods for developing more self-love. First, tell yourself out loud that you love yourself. Just as powerful as hearing these words from someone else, saying it yourself can make you feel the same way. And you can do it as often as you like.
Second, commit to a new activity that is something that you absolutely love and feel wonderful doing. Do it alone, and think of it as a gift to yourself for being you.
4. Expand your intelligence. Pick one of these three mind expanding exercises.
#1: Listen to Baroque and Classical music--especially Mozart. This type of music typically has a tempo of 60 beats a minute. When someone hears one beat per second, their heart rate and pulse relax to the beat, blood pressure decreases and the entire body unwinds. In this relaxed state, the brain is able to concentrate more easily.
#2: Drink more water, especially non-fluoride water. Magnetic water helps your body more easily take in vitamins and other nutrients.
#3: Use your peripheral vision: When you are looking at the world with peripheral vision, you immediately access alpha brainwaves and the right hemisphere of the brain. This is much more relaxing and allows the subconscious to come into the equation for super learning.
5. Get moving
Commit yourself to being more active. Find something that is fun and a great workout, like dance, yoga, DVD videos you can do at home, walking, running, or skiing. There are so many options and opportunities to get out and move your body.
More and more research is pointing to the benefits of meditation. In the future, meditation will be so prevalent and accepted, it will be as natural as showering or brushing our teeth. If you don't meditate, start now. It will change your life and your health.
Pick one or do them all. With these strategies in place, there is no way you can't make 2016 the best year yet!