January has come and gone, the simultaneous warmth and stress of the holiday season is in the rear view. Are you struggling to continue the momentum that was built with the refreshment of the much-needed break from routine? Luckily, you are not alone. While the holidays and start of the year may symbolize an end and fresh start, often by the time we make it to February we wonder where the time has gone. Have no fear, you can get back on track. There is no concrete timeline for creating the changes you want in your life. There are a few simple, but not easy, ways to refresh your motivation for this new year. These tips are not exhaustive nor are all of them necessary for your success for the year. Some may resonate with you more than others, you have the opportunity to choose what makes the most sense for you.
- 1. Clear out the clutter: Clearing out the clutter applies to both your physical space and your mental space. It can be difficult to feel refreshed or even know where to start when you have a messy physical or mental space. A way declutter physical space in a gradual way is to pick one area a week to intentionally interact with and donate items that no longer serve you. When looking not “declutter” your mind spend some intentional time each day (5 or so minutes) to take in the moment where you have nothing to think about other than being present without judgement.
- 2. Move your body: Exercise is a loaded term that may bring up a variety of reactions based on your past experience. When we try to be too rigid about movement or exercise goals, these things can feel like a chore or something that has to be done to achieve a physical goal. Focusing on moving your body at intervals that make sense for your lifestyle takes the pressure off your external goals and focuses on how you can support your physical needs. Movement can be whatever you want it to be, focus on something that you enjoy. Movement can be a gift if you are doing something active that you love.
- 3. Relax: This sounds counterintuitive for wanting to tackle the new year with motivation and achievement. Interestingly, humans are not built to be going non-stop. This can lead to burnout which in turn makes us even less productive than we would be if we took breaks and honored our own needs. Relaxation looks different for everyone, find an activity that rejuvenates you and incorporate it into your daily life for 30 minutes. This could be reading a book, watching an episode of a television show, going for a walk, etc.
- 4. Connect: Coming off the holiday season, depending on your personality, there may be a reaction to retreat after so much connection. Humans are social beings and it is important to connect with people who feed your soul. Make a concerted effort to seek connection with others and spend time with the people you care about.
- 5. Be gentle with yourself: It may be tempting to set many long-term goals and work toward them simultaneously. Unfortunately, this can lead to overwhelm which is the opposite desired effect. There is a beauty to imperfection and an opportunity to grow and learn. Instead of spending valuable time and energy putting yourself down, try to acknowledge the effort and try again later. Imagine how accomplished you will feel when you finally achieve your goals after working so hard.