10 Simple Ways to Kick Start the New Year
The end of the year has arrived. New possibilities and opportunities lie ahead. It's the time of setting resolutions and vowing to make the following year the best ever. Before moving forward, tackle these 10 simple tasks and give yourself the gift of a fresh start.
1. Clear the Clutter
Now is the best time to attack the chaos. When you clear out the clutter and junk, you are shedding the past and making room for new and exciting possibilities. Be honest with yourself as you go through everything. Donate gently used clothes and toys, or gift it to a friend or family member who could use it. Toss anything else that you don’t use or need. You could also store items in a box and save them for a garage sale in the spring.
Organize that closet, junk drawer or cupboard. Tackle the attic. garage, and basement. Once you get in the groove, you will want to tackle the entire house. It is incredibly uplifting, inspiring, and it just feels good to get everything organized and tidy. You might even find yourself rearranging your furniture.
2. Deep Clean the House
Nothings says fresh start quite like a clean house. It just makes sense to clean as you are clearing clutter and organizing everything. No need to wait for spring. Wash the windows, dust the ceiling fans, and polish your kitchen cupboards. Set your oven to self-clean. Wipe down the microwave. Maybe clean out the lint in your dryer. Put a cup of vinegar in the washer and run the clean washer cycle. Get your kids involved. Have them clean up their rooms or help you with the rest of the house. I like to crank up music as I clean, singing and dancing while I work. It's silly and makes the time more enjoyable.
3. Social Media Cleanse
Social media is a double-edged sword. It is proven to be addicting; can cause headaches and strife; has the potential to ruin relationships; and sometimes, is a major source of negativity. However, social media has many good points that, in my opinion, tend to outweigh the bad. It all depends on the person behind the technological device. With that said, it's important to review your social media accounts from time to time, take stock of your photos, who your friends are, who you are following, and make some decisions. This is the best time. Start the year fresh and shed some digital weight. Delete photos and untag yourself in the ones that are unflattering. Go through your friends list on Facebook. Unfriend people you don't know, haven't interacted with in a long time, or the ones who are constantly negative. Some view this action as controversial. Personally, I don't think it matters. It's your social media account, it's your life. However, if it's causing anxiety, or there are people you absolutely cannot unfriend, it's easy to click the unsubscribe button. Then, while you remain friends with the person, you won't have to see their updates on your timeline. The same goes for the pages you have "liked." Make this the year that you stop following updates on people or things you don't like in real life, those you simply don't care about, or things that just don't appeal to you. Be sure to repeat the same steps on your Twitter, Pinterest, and any other social media accounts. You may also want to check your security settings. This can be a time-consuming task, but you will feel lighter and happier as a result.
4. Tackle Digital Clutter
Go through your phone, computer, and any other device you own. Delete the files you no longer need. Save photos and important documents to a flash drive or external hard drive. Clean out your devices, check for updates, and run security scans. Be sure to sanitize all your devices as well.
5. Clean the Refrigerator and Raid the Pantry
This is probably one of the most dreaded chores, but there is something so wonderful and satisfying about a clean refrigerator. This is also the perfect time to throw away any expired leftovers or other food you didn’t want to eat. Organize your canned and boxed goods, and maybe set a few things aside for donation. Put some music on, and sing and dance while you work.
Here's a fun tip: to keep your refrigerator shelves clean, put a sheet of Glade press and seal on each one. This way, if something leaks or spills, all you have to do is pull the sheet and replace it. This is a time saver!
6. Clean Your Car
We spend a lot of time in our vehicles. As a result, they can get pretty messy, especially in the winter time. Start your year fresh with a clean car. Toss any trash that has accumulated. Wipe down the dashboard, steering wheel, consoles, etc. It's also important to get into the vents as best as you can. Remove the floor mats and shake them out. Vacuum the seats, floors, and floor mats. Wash the windows. Maybe get a clip in air freshener for your vent. Be sure that you have all the required documentation in your glove box. This would also be a good time to check your fluids and tire pressure.
7. Visit the Library
Stop in to your local library and sign up for a library card if you don’t have one. Chat with the librarians. Browse the shelves. Pick out a juicy novel or try a non-fiction selection to learn something new. Grab a movie or CD. If fitness is one of your goals for the new year, browse the exercise DVD section. Most libraries have a variety of fitness videos available, which makes it a wonderful resource for your fitness goals year round.
8. Practice Yoga
Yoga is great for everyone. It improves health, increases flexibility, promotes a balanced metabolism, can help with weight loss or maintenance, improves energy, and the list of benefits goes on and on. Yoga can be practiced at any level and you can do it in the privacy of your own home. You don't need any fancy equipment and you don't have to make a major commitment.
It is no secret that I love practicing yoga. It has transformed my mind and body in a variety of ways. To help kick off the new year, I love doing detox and digestion flows. They help stimulate the organs and help the body eliminate toxins. They are especially helpful after eating all the delicious, comforting holiday food.
Yoga with Adriene Detox Yoga
Yoga for Digestion from Yoga with Adriene
9. Set Some Goals
A new year lies ahead, with new possibilities and opportunities around every corner. Now that you've shed some weight of the old, it's time to look to the future. What do you want to accomplish this year? Would you like to travel? Meet new people? Visit old friends or family more often? Think about all areas of your life and get specific. Don't take yourself too seriously, remember to be realistic, and have fun with it.
How to Set and Achieve Your Goals from Tracy Campoli
10. Relax and Unwind
You've worked hard. Enjoy your time off. Rent some movies. Netflix and chill. Eat some pizza. Have some hot tea or a glass of wine. Take a bubble bath. Give yourself a manicure or pedicure. Play some video games. Whatever strikes your fancy. Bonus points for staying in your pajamas all day.