The 6 Life-Changing Habits I am Sticking to in 2020
Happy New Year! I hope you are starting this year off with a positive mindset and some big hopes, dreams, plans, and goals. As we enter into 2020, I am sure you are hearing plenty of people talking about their big plans for the new year. And don’t get me wrong, I love goals. But being goal-driven means that I sometimes forget about personal development when this time of year rolls around. Most of my goals revolve around numbers (like savings goals) or events (like graduating university or moving to a new apartment). A few months ago I was realizing that although goals like these are fantastic, especially when you are wired to thrive within them, there are other ways to better your life as well.
Having daily habits is something we all love – no matter how free spirited you may be, having daily rituals or activities brings a sense of safety, comfort, and happiness. I wrote a blog post a while ago about how the things we do each day make up our life. Well, I thought about things that I want my life to include and I came up with a few habits to start and hopefully add to as I go. Using my bullet journal and a habit tracker I have successfully implemented 6 daily habits that I am planning on continuing into 2020 that have been slowly but surely bettering my lifestyle.
The 6 habits I have implemented are as follows…
Floss – Right when I wake up I get up, brush my teeth, scrape my tongue, floss, and wash my face. After that I always feel a bit more human and ready for the day.
Greens – I have been eating leafy greens in at least one meal per day, every day. For me, this mainly includes spinach, kale, and sometimes broccoli counts if I am having a low-grocery day. I try to purchase most of these at the Root Cellar in Victoria, B.C.
Water – I try for 6 glasses of water every day. If I can drink 3 of those before 12pm then I am generally set up to succeed for the rest of the day.
Sweat – I am currently obsessed with Rachel Hollis and she always says that 30 minutes of exercise every day will change your life. I am on board! Generally my workouts are done after work at home on my yoga mat, but I want to start doing these sessions in the morning, before work. I use workout videos I find on instagram or I come up with a set of 5 movements and I go through each of them 10-20 times. It takes me around 30 minute each way to bike to work, so if I bike to work that day, I don’t have to do a workout when I get home (which is great motivation for biking to work!)
Thanks – Gratitude is no doubt the thing that has shifted my mindset the most in the past few years. I was struggling to maintain a gratitude journal though, so I found myself a solution! The Grateful app is so sweet and simple and it is so easy to log gratitudes. The basic idea is that you write down what you are grateful for and press “post”, then your post gets added to an instagram-esque feed that you can scroll back through when you are feeling down! It is brilliant and I use mine every day to write three things I am grateful for – and I make them as specific as possible!
Yoga – For the past 2 months I have been doing 10-20 minutes of yoga every morning as soon as I wake up, and I am honestly hooked. Gentle movement to wake up is amazing and I feel much stronger and more flexible than I have been in the past. I generally do a Yoga with Adriene video or I just do my own flow and do whatever feels good to help me wake up.
Implementation & Consistency
As a naturally goal-driven person and a list-fanatic, I knew I had to make use of my need to accomplish written-out goals to implement my habits. Enter, the habit tracker. I added this little chart to my weekly planner layouts and (although it took a couple weeks) I was successful in implementing consistent daily habits. A big part of that was seeing the goals every day right next to my tasks for the day. Something about looking at them written out every day made these activities top-of-mind.
It also became a bit of a challenge and a great reminder. While I was sitting at my desk at work, I would look over at my calendar and see that I still hadn’t checked off water, so I would go fill up my cup. I had to remember to buy greens, and find healthy recipes that includes lots of green veggies. (Check out my green smoothie recipe!)
If you are not as motivated by lists and trackers, I still recommend writing your daily habits down somewhere you will see them regularly so you are constantly reminded of the routine you are building for yourself. The hope is that one day you won’t need the constant reminder, but it takes weeks to build a habit and having that routine nice and visible is so helpful in remembering the kind of day you want to have and what it includes.
I am carrying these habits (and my beloved habit tracker) into 2020 but I am making a few adjustments. I am switching my water goal to include drinking a big glass of lemon water as soon as I wake up, I want to add kissing Josh good morning to my list, and I want to up my gratitudes to 5 per day instead of 3. I hope you take a few minutes to think about your daily habits and what you want to add into your daily life this year. It is a different kind of goal than I usually commit to, but each of these daily practices have been bringing me immense joy and I am so glad I tried something new for these lifestyle-based goals.