Now that we’re well into January, most of us have finally gotten used to writing the date as “2018” rather than “2017” and have either finished (or at least started) undecorating from the holidays. We’re beginning to settle into the new year. Before the new year is no longer new, though, we should all spend some time taking specific steps to ensure that 2018 is the best year yet!

Think of Them as Boxes to Check Rather than Resolutions

A New Year’s Resolution has a feeling of heaviness to it. Making resolutions sets us up to potentially fail. Beginning the new year with stress and self-imposed pressure isn’t really a positive way to ring in a new year and make the most of a fresh start. If you must resolve to do something, resolve to tackle some very do-able tasks that will remove obstacles and put you on a path of smooth sailing into the rest of 2018.

  • Declutter! Your closet, your car, your desk. You’ve heard the saying “out with the old, in with the new.” The more “stuff” you can get rid of, the lighter you will feel. The more room you will have for things you actually need, like, or want. And the more breathing room you will have. Now is the ideal time to purge whatever is not useful, valuable, necessary, or dear to your heart. Say goodbye to gum wrappers, gas receipts, ill-fitting pants, holey socks, etc.
  • Clean Out Your Pantry and Fridge. One of the most common New Year’s resolutions people make is to lose weight. That’s pretty vague and general. Something you can manage to do in a short amount of time, and that could potentially cause you to lose weight, is to declutter your pantry and refrigerator. Remove foods that are not beneficial to your health or that undermine your desire to lose weight. Replace those foods with a variety of healthy options. If it’s not there when you crave it, you’re less likely to give into that craving because doing that would be inconvenient.
  • Start Saving Money. If you don’t have a savings account or emergency fund, you’re certainly not alone. You can change that, without having a big chunk of money to invest. There are apps that can help you start saving money easily and effortlessly. One example, is Acorns. At its most basic level, you simply link your debit card to the app, and the app will round your purchases up to the nearest dollar, and then invest that change. Every time you shop, you’ll also be saving! Over time, all of those nickels, dimes, and pennies add up to dollars!

It’s a new year (still) and the perfect opportunity to make a fresh start. Small changes can lead to big results!