Be a BETTER You in 2018 – How To Conquer New Year’s Resolutions

Ah January! It is such a hopeful month- a whole year of wonderful experiences ahead. The start of a new year is for many of us a time of change, an opportunity for self improvement, a chance to rethink our habits- a new beginning, really. We are given a restart- all of our past mistakes seemingly forgiven. Many of us choose this moment to make resolutions, essentially promises to ourselves  but come March, most of us don’t even remember what they are despite the fact that we desperately want to make changes to our lives. How can we make them stick? Behavioral change is difficult but there are a few things you can do to set yourself up for success.

How you set up a goal is just as important as the goal itself. First of all, record your goals. Write them down in a notebook, make a list on your phone, put a post-it note on your fridge- whatever works. Seeing them in writing makes the goal more real and your commitment to them more important. Secondly, make sure the goals are specific. For example, rather than making a general promise to exercise more, commit to a spin class two times a week. Finally, your goals need to be realistic. If you have never picked up an instrument, then starting a band may be a little too ambitious. Small, manageable changes are key to long-lasting change.

What you choose to change in your life and how you want to improve is highly personal to you but we have a few simple resolutions to share with you, in the hopes that one of them might spark your fancy and make YOU a happier, fuller, more conscious version of yourself in 2018!

Plan one exciting trip…

from your travel bucket list for midway through the year-somewhere really special that you have always wanted to visit, somewhere brand new. Read guidebooks, research the culture, study the history- really immerse yourself into the planning. Looking forward to new adventures is proven to be as or more satisfying than the trip itself.

Pick up a hobby…

you have been neglecting. Whether it’s crafting, knitting, picking or the sport you have loved since high school, doing an activity you love and finding a community of others to share this new activity with is a rewarding part of life that many of us Hong Kongers overlook, overly busy and constantly working as we are. In Germany, hobbies are a serious matter. Activity clubs have their own term, “verein, ” and there is a verein for every interest imaginable. The majority of working professionals are part of a verein and it is one of the secrets to their work-life balance. So do like the Germans do, they seem to have some things figured out.

Take 30 minutes to be by yourself…

once a week and think. Just 3o minutes. Nothing more, nothing less. Whether’s it is during a relaxing foot massage or whilst you are taking a walk around your neighbourhood, put your phone away, stop reading and let your mind wander. This is how our brains regenerate and we make room for new, potentially groundbreaking thoughts!

Cook a delicious, involved homemade meal…

one Sunday a month. Pick your favorite restaurant meal or a special dish you tried in a foreign country and recreate it a la maison! Involve your loved ones, make a big to-do about grocery shopping and take your time with the preparations. Cooking is incredibly therapeutic and most of all, fun. Putting aside a little time once in a while is a valuable habit to form.

Remove just one bad habit…

that can have a large impace on your health. Cut one of the following out of your diet: white sugar, soda, caffeine, processed foods, alcohol or fried foods- whichever one you overindulge on a too regular basis. Being overly restrictive makes it difficult to stay committed to new eating habits so go slow.

Choose a new skill to learn…

like an instrument or a language (Cantonese would be a useful one!). It’s never too late to start and the point is not to become an expert- just to open up your mind and exercise a new part of your brain.

Whatever you choose to do, we wish you an incredible, wonderful and fulfilling year ahead. Here’s to 2018!


This article has been update.

Image credit: pexels.