When the year turns over and you are looking to the year ahead you may find yourself contemplating making goals or resolutions. The start of a new year gives you the reassurance of a fresh start or another chance to create the year and life you want. Many of us hope to create changes in our daily habits when the new year hits in hopes that they stick with us for the long haul. Not only can positive habits help you feel better, but it can also result in better (or more stressful, maybe?) parenting! If this is you and you are looking for guidance on what positive habits you can create in the new year, you are in the right place.
These habits are ones that, if implemented, can impact your life in a positive way for a very long time. They are “simple” and doable for most people. And of course, you do not need to implement all of them (at once or ever) so if the list of 7 positive habits overwhelms you, choose 2-3 to work on. Once those are solid in your life, you can come back to grab some more to implement.
7 Good Habits To Start In The New Year
1. Drink More Water
Did you know that 75% of all Americans are dehydrated and 50% of children and adolescents struggle with hydration? (source: Harvard.edu) It’s safe to say, drinking enough water is a huge issue for most people.
In the new year, if you are someone who struggles with drinking enough water, this is a good habit for start implementing. Drinking more water will increase your energy, help your body to function better, and could even clear up any skin problems or other issues.
How much water should you be drinking? I like to aim for ½ my body weight in ounces of water. If you weigh 200lbs, you should be drinking 100oz of water per day. It may seem like a lot so start simple!
- Before every meal, drink a glass of water.
- If you plan on having a cup of coffee, drink a cup of water first.
- Wanting wine when the kids go to bed? Drink a glass of water before you enjoy that vino.
Find a water routine that works for you and your daily life!
READ: Get Your Kids To Drink More Water (plus FREE water tracker printable)
2. Get Outside Everyday
Depending on where you live this one can be challenging. If you are in a colder climate and the snow is not your jam, going outside might be a stretch. This is the category I fall into because I do not enjoy the snowy weather in the midwest. * shrug *
Getting fresh air, sunshine, or even just hearing the world around us is truly key to our health. Humans are made to explore the outdoors. We are not meant to be inside on a computer all day or sitting in front of a tv.
This year, challenge yourself to 15-30 minutes outside every day. Your body (and mind) will thank you for it.
3. Eat More Plant Foods
It’s no surprise that I’ve included this good habit to start in the new year. If you are trying to eat a more plant-based diet or just want to feel better, I encourage you to explore adding more fruits and vegetables to your daily routine. You can start simple by adding one fruit to your breakfast or adding a fresh veggie to dinner.
Our bodies truly thrive when we fuel them with plant foods. Filled with vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients, adding more plant foods to our diet will truly allow us to live a healthier life.
For ideas on plant foods you can incorporate (even if you don’t want to be fully plant-based), this blog post shares 6 foods we ate to transition plant-based.
4. Do Something For Yourself
We all need to do things for ourselves and if you are a mom you may find that you haven’t done anything for yourself in quite some time. Doing something for yourself can be a huge range of things. I’m hesitant to use the term “self-care” because I think we should have a right to do “self-care” labeled things whenever we want and however we want.
Finding something to do for yourself can be challenging to figure out. Anything from going for a walk around the block alone, implementing a nighttime routine that makes you feel good, or committing to learning a new skill. You deserve to pick something to do that makes YOU happy and feel whole.
In the next couple of good habits to start, you will see they play well with this one. As you read through them, see if something jumps out to you as a habit you would like to implement that covers multiple positive habits!
5. Allow yourself to feel
The world has been going through a lot lately and I’m sure, if you’re anything like me, you have experienced a huge range of emotions. In the new year I encourage you to allow yourself to feel how you feel.
If you’re a mom and feel exhausted and perhaps defeated when it comes to raising your kids, let yourself fully feel that way before you pick yourself up and move on. This has been me, 100%, as I’ve been working from home with a 3 & 4-year-old so you are not alone.
Connecting with our emotions and our feelings is important for everyone. Moms, dads and kids should be allowed to feel how they feel and we should all work on expressing these feelings. You can express how you feel in many healthy ways such as talking to a friend or family member, or writing it in a journal.
Remember that you are not alone with what you are feeling, even though it may seem like it some days. If you feel stressed, exhausted, or less than and you don’t have someone to vent to… send me a message on Instagram and I will listen. <3
6. Get Involved
This is obviously something that can be difficult right now BUT not impossible. There are many virtual ways to get involved right now so look in your area to see what options there are. If you are passionate about animals, see how you can help with your local animal shelter. Maybe you have a special skill – see if there is a way you can use this skill to better your local community.
These virtual times won’t last forever so if getting involved virtually isn’t for you, start making a list of how you can get involved once in-person activities begin.
Now more than ever we want and need to feel part of something positive. Something more than a worldwide disaster. Connect with some friends and see how you can support one another or if you can put a group together for when in-person gatherings can happen again.
7. Try Something New / Challenging
I’m sure many of you have done this already in the last year but if you are looking at the new year and wondering “what now?”, maybe it’s time to pick up a new hobby or learn a new skill.
This year, I encourage you to find something new you can add to your daily or weekly routine. If you are not much of a reader, maybe this year you take up reading. If you love dance and have always dreamed of taking a dance class, look up some videos online and commit to doing it once a week.
I’m convinced that this year, more than any year before, it is incredibly important that we try something new or add to our lives in some way. Now more than ever do we need to find things that add to our mental health in a positive way.
What is something new that you might try this year?
For me, I have started a new nutrition course that I’ve been wanting to do for the last few years. I finally bit the bullet and registered! This is exactly what I need as we continue on with this “work from home” routine.
It’s super important to me that you take these habit ideas and implement them how YOU feel they fit into your life. I don’t want you to stress about them or feel like you are less than if you don’t turn them into a lifelong habit.
Even if you try one new thing a month, that is a great way to see a positive impact on your life. You are in control of your life (even though it may not always feel like it) and I want you to know that you have the power to do things that bring you joy, peace, and confidence.
What positive habits are you hoping to implement for the new year? I’d love to hear about them in the comments.