A few years ago I gave up on the idea of New Years Resolutions (because who even sticks to those anyways?) and started setting goals for shorter periods of time. Setting and achieving monthly and daily goals is far more attainable and realistic. These shorter term goals are easier to track and stay invested in.
Just because you haven’t been the best at keeping New Years Resolutions, absolutely does not mean you should give up on goal setting! Here’s a fun fact. NO ONE keeps their New Years Resolutions. Here’s another fun fact. I’ve been setting monthly and daily goals for quite a while now and I’ve seen my life drastically improve. Setting and achieving goals will give you confidence in yourself and your ability to make your dreams become a reality and will also help you stay balanced in life.
When it comes to setting goals, it’s important to remember that your main goal should be to stay balanced. If you only focus on one aspect of your health (like the physical aspect) the other parts of your wellbeing will suffer.
I truly believe that the key to happiness is a balanced life.
So here are 30 of my favorite goals that I’ve worked for and continue to work for that have made a positive impact on my life.
WAYS TO STAY PHYSICALLY BALANCED:
COMMIT TO AT LEAST 10 MINUTES OF EXERCISE A DAY.
If you have time to check your Instagram for (probably way more) than 10 minutes a day, you can make time for 10 minutes of exercise. Turn on Just Dance for 10 minutes, follow along with a yoga or full body workout video on youtube, or make up your own 10 minute workout routine.
Blast your own music and do this full body workout or this 30 Day Squat Challenge!
COMMIT TO GOING TO BED BEFORE MIDNIGHT.
I used to stay up watching tv shows, Pinteresting, and looking at my friends sisters uncles moms cousins dogs Instagram page until 1 or 2 am almost every night. The consequence of that was sleeping in until noon, being exhausted if I had to wake up earlier than noon, and feeling like my life and emotions were out of control. Take control of your life. Get the rest you need and be productive with your time.
GET A MASSAGE.
Massages are expensive but the completely relaxed “in-the-moment” feeling you get during them is so worth the cost (occasionally).
TAKE A WALK OR A HIKE.
Become a tourist in your own city! Take a walk through the streets of downtown. Or look up the best hikes near you and find peace and calm while getting the exercise you need. Explore new neighborhoods, trails, and nearby cities!
GIVE YOURSELF A GUILT FREE PASS TO SLEEP IN SOME MORNINGS.
Stop feeling guilty for giving yourself a much needed break. Sleep in one morning or better yet, take a whole day to be “lazy” without feeling any guilt. Do everything you want to do and forget what you need to do. Just occasionally.
WAYS TO STAY EMOTIONALLY BALANCED:
I can’t stress what a positive impact meditation can have on your life. Meditation reduces stress, improves concentration, grounds you back to the “here and now,” improves physical health, and increases over-all happiness.
This is a guided meditation video that I really like.
Get out your journal, a piece of paper, or the handy dandy Notes app on your phone and write everything you’re feeling and experiencing. All the anger, confusion, stress, and loneliness. Get a journal that you can write unfiltered in- the kind of journal you probably won’t be passing on to your children and grandchildren. You need your own space to write everything. Stop bottling things up. Release your worries onto paper and let your mind get the clarity and peace that it so desperately desires.
WATCH SOMETHING FUNNY.
It’s amazing how instant this self-help tool is and how often we forget to use it. I was in a horrible mood just the other day and my husband wanted me to go with him to see Guardians of the Galaxy. I really didn’t want to watch a stupid cheesy action movie, but I went with him to make him happy. It ended up being HILARIOUS and it brightened my mood up immediately.
DECLUTTER AND ORGANIZE.
Wash those dishes, take out the trash, make your bed, give your old clothes to DI, throw away that stack of papers that’s been sitting on the counter for a year, and scrub that dang toilet! Being in a clean decluttered space can help you focus, have a positive attitude, and bring you peace. And the act of cleaning in itself does wonders too!
Reminisce about great things you’ve accomplished and experienced in your life and recall everything you are currently grateful for in your life. Even though not everything is perfect, think about how much is actually pretty great in your life.
Here’s a book I absolutely adore that can help you get those grateful juices flowing!
WAYS TO STAY SPIRITUALLY BALANCED:
GO ON A GRATITUDE HIKE.
While you hike, name all of the things you see (or don’t see) that you’re grateful for. The other day I saw this tree that looked like something that could be in The Lorax and I thought about how incredibly grateful I am for all the beautiful things in life. Sometimes we just have to make time to stop and “smell the roses.”
ATTEND A CHURCH SERVICE.
Even if you don’t regularly attend any specific church, choose a random church to attend. There are inspiring messages in most, if not all, churches!
READ A BOOK THAT INSPIRES YOU, MOTIVATES YOU, AND BRINGS PEACE TO YOUR SOUL.
Many Christians read the Bible to feel a sense of calm. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints read the Bible and the Book of Mormon to feel calm and ready to take on whatever life throws at them. Try out one of these books or find another book that does this for you. There are so many great books out there!
Some of my favorites are:
Rupi Kaur is an amazing poet. Her poems get me right to my core. I like reading her books whenever I’m feeling alone, lost, or confused about life.
I’ve had to read a lot of marriage books over the years, as my major is Marriage and Family Studies and this is by far my favorite one. I lost my other copy that I used in school so I just ordered a new one for my husband and I to read. It’s important to start healthy habits with your partner no matter what stage of marriage you’re in!
CREATE A CALMING/SPIRITUAL PLAYLIST.
We’re all guilty of spending copious amounts of time on the computer, on our phones, listening to the radio, listening to the latest hits, and even having podcasts/books/tv on in the background at all times.
Even though these things can be great, it’s necessary for your health to get away from all of that noise from time to time.
So either commit to having complete silence every so often and/or create a playlist that is a little more relaxing than your usual background noise- a playlist full of songs that you are able to think and ponder and self-reflect during. It’s a little hard to self-reflect when you’re rocking out to Selena Gomez or Imagine Dragons. (Though it is possible…hence, long car rides while blasting music- still, take time to pause and reflect with some soothing silence or music)
Here are some calming songs:
This one is wonderful. I love how it’s all acoustic (no singing). Acoustic songs really allow me to focus on my own thoughts.
I’m weird and like Regency Era music like this. Sometimes I think I was meant to be born in the Regency Era but then I remember how we have yoga pants, tacos, and The Bachelor.
My all time favorite show EVER is Parenthood. The Parenthood Soundtrack is also amazing and a good soundtrack for those still moments in life.
LIST YOUR VALUES, MORALS, AND BELIEFS.
Last Sunday my husband and I wrote our own personal “manifestos.” We wrote down our values, morals, and beliefs and then discussed what we had written. It was personally rewarding and rewarding to us as a couple to organize our thoughts and gain some clarity and spiritual/moral direction in our lives.
You may think you know what your values and morals are but writing them down is a great way to remind yourself of what’s most important to you. You may even end up realizing something new about yourself.
Ways to Stay Socially Balanced:
COMMIT TO LISTENING MORE THAN YOU TALK FOR A FULL DAY.
Listening is so key in strengthening relationships.
PLAN A SPECIAL DAY OR NIGHT FOR SOMEONE YOU CARE ABOUT.
Plan everything and pay for it, whether you are able to go with them or not. Go out of your way to do something special for someone else.
COMMIT TO SAYING HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO EVERYONE IN YOUR FAMILY FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR.
For some reason I can remember every word to Hollaback Girl and How to Save a Life but I really suck at remembering birthdays. Luckily, there’s a free template for a birthday list on Microsoft Word that I recently printed out that has helped me out immensely. It’s free and will help you stop being that jerk that forgets your little sisters birthday! It’s also crucial that you put all the birthdays that you want to remember in your planner. Thinking you’ll remember or that Facebook will remind you is a great way to completely forget about someone’s birthday. Trust me, I’ve tried those methods.
COMMIT TO WORRYING ABOUT YOUR SPOUSES NEEDS INSTEAD OF YOUR OWN FROM TIME TO TIME.
Every once in awhile commit to forgeting about yourself and think, “What does ______ need right now?” Maybe they’d like a massage, a glass of water, their favorite meal, a listening ear, or a great big hug. This goal also goes hand in hand with The Five Love Languages book. My husbands love languages are physical touch and quality time while mine are words of affirmation and service. We’ve really had to make a special effort to think of each others needs and wants instead of what we would naturally think they would want because of what we want. Of course, you’ll want to think of your spouses needs on a daily basis but it’s also important to put your needs as a priority in order to stay balanced and happy.
SPEND HALF OF THE TIME THAT YOU’RE ON SOCIAL MEDIA EACH DAY WRITING POSITIVE AND ENCOURAGING COMMENTS ON OTHER PEOPLE’S POSTS.
At least do something useful while you’re wasting your time. Shout out to grandparents, aunts, and most likely your moms friends who are usually really great at this one!
Ways to Stay Mentally Balanced:
WRITE DOWN 10 NEW HOBBIES/SKILLS YOU WOULD LIKE TO LEARN SOMEDAY AND START LEARNING/PRACTICING ONE NOW.
Do you wish you could paint like Bob Ross or give speeches like your favorite Ted Talk speaker? Well, start practicing today!
PREPARE FOR YOUR DAY THE NIGHT BEFORE
Not only does this help you look forward to the next day which will increase your over-all happiness, this will also help you focus on your work, classes, homework, children, etc.
MAKE USE OF YOUR PINTEREST.
Stop pinning things when you’re bored so that you can start doing things when you’re bored! Cook something from your food board. Craft something from your craft board. Heck, even go buy an outfit that’s inspired by your clothes bored. Start making your dreams become a reality instead of just pinning them all up on boards.
TAKE A CLASS AT YOUR LOCAL RECREATION CENTER OR COMMUNITY COLLEGE.
You’re never too old to learn and make your goals a reality.
RESEARCH CURRENT EVENTS.
I know that looking at or reading the news can be dreadful but imagine actually being in the position that some of those people are in. Have empathy for the horrible things that happen to people and better yet, do something about it. You can’t make the world a better place if you have no idea what’s going on in the world.
Welp- that’s all I’ve got for you today. I hope you’ll commit to setting goals & following up with your progress and improvement throughout your goal process so that your life can be full of balance and bliss.
Until next time,