Dec 17th, 2017, 04:03 PM

New Year, New Start, New Resolutions

By Vitalia Ort
New Year's Resolutions
Image Credit: Shutterstock/Creativa Images
7 productive things to do before the New Year.

The New Year is quickly approaching. With the holiday season already upon us, many are reevaluating the past year and choices they made.

New Year’s resolutions are the perfect opportunity for all those who have failed to start making the changes that they said they would make throughout the year. It is the time of resetting and the opportunity of a fresh start.

The last two weeks of 2017 are the perfect chance to sit down and set your mind up for important lifestyle changes you want to make. New Year’s resolutions are something that we all are familiar with. To keep up the endurance and discipline throughout the spread of 12 months can be quite challenging, and oftentimes it is difficult to know what goals to pursue altogether. For that very reason you will find below seven recommendations that will help you to stick to your resolutions and achieve your goals.

Keep in mind that these tips are applicable anytime of the year to help you regain perspective and kick-start a life change.

1. Review the past year

At the end of a year, it is satisfying to review your successes by looking at things that went well in 2017. What have you done right? What destinations did you travel to? What milestones have you reached?

In the process of reviewing positive occurrences, you likewise have to take a look at the challenges and failures encountered in 2017. It is important to analyze these in order to prevent them from reoccurring in the New Year. Lastly, review whether you are (still) on track with your life map. Meaning, whether your life is moving in the right direction? Reviewing the past year is the baseline for planning ahead for the coming year.

Image Credit: Shutterstock/Roobcio

2. Plan major goals for the next year

Make a list of things you want to pursue, learn and achieve during the coming year. Having a list helps you to track the level of achievement of the latter throughout the year. At any point in time, you can revise your list and check whether you are still on track.

You can write down individual goals or relationship goals including your significant other or your family members.Once you are aware of all the things you want to approach in the new year, you need to prioritize them. What is the most important thing in your life?

What are the things that you need to work on in order to achieve that goal? Your time in 2018 should be aligned with your prioritized goals.

3. Clean out your closet

The beginning of the new year is a good time to muck out your wardrobe. With fast changing trends, we accumulate a massive load of clothes throughout the year. Removing old items that you no longer wear, allows you to reorganize your remaining items and this makes dressing in the mornings more efficient and quickly. In order to make this tedious task more fun, you can invite friends over and make an event out of it. Remember not to throw the sorted-out clothes away, but donate them to a charity instead.

4. Start a list of books to read

Books are an excellent way to expand and gain knowledge on a variety of topics. Reading sparks your creativity and grows you intellectually. It’s not that difficult to go through 20 or more books in a year if you know the right techniques to apply.

Some of the busiest people in the world are also avid readers; the lack of time is thus not a valid excuse. Start your list now and you can add books to it throughout the year, this way you have a good overview of what you have read during the whole year.

Here are some of the books on my list; Esther Perel “The State of Affairs,” Bernard Roth “The Achievement Habit,” Paulo Coelho “The Alchemist,” Marie Kondo “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing,” Daniel Kahneman “Thinking, Fast and Slow.”

Image Credit: Shutterstock/ESB Professional

5. Update your profile picture on social media  

The importance of social media has increased drastically over the past few years. More and more headhunters and companies find their future employees on social networks. Therefore, it is important that your profile picture represents the latest version of you. Think of it as an annual picture date, like the ones your parents took of you when you were a child.

6. Unsubscribe from email lists you don’t longer need

We get bombarded with customized advertisements through search engines online and newsletters that fill up our inbox. Having a full inbox of advertisements can distract us from important emails and is quite exhausting. The end of the year is a good time to review whether the newsletters that we signed up for are still bringing value to us. Such inventory can be very helpful in clearing out your email inbox and customizing it to your personal needs.

7. Make a list of people you want to reconnect with

Despite social media helping us to stay in contact with people around the world, the saying “Out of sight, out of mind” oftentimes holds true. Colleagues and friends change jobs and move to other cities, leading to a change of our circle of confidants that we interact with on a regular basis. Although you can follow your friends on social media, personal interaction in the form of a phone call, visit or simple sending a postcard is something special. Thus, use the holiday season to reconnect with people you are “missing” in your life. It is the perfect time of the year to reach out to former colleagues, friends or acquaintances with warming New Years Eve greetings without sounding dull.