Admit it, New Year’s resolutions are often just another to-do list you never quite get to. It lurks in the back of your mind as the months pass and amasses increasing levels of guilt. So instead of making a list and never checking it twice, why not chuck the idea altogether? Here, we propose a radical new idea: just a few items designed to make your life more zen instead of creating more boxes to tick off.
We’ve all heard of it and most of us suffer from it: the disease of being busy. While you may not be able to cut short your to-do list, you can manage your stress level. Remember to be kind to yourself, even if it’s just having some “me” time in a busy day. One of the easiest ways to do that is pranayama, a breathing exercise. The simplest yoga you’ll ever do, pranayama involves sitting cross-legged, taking slow, focused breaths, and clearing your mind. Or, take a short walk around the block sometime during your workday. You’d be surprised at how much more relaxed you feel after some fresh air and exercise.
Being more generous doesn’t always mean buying more Christmas presents. Try a little generosity of spirit at the upcoming holiday family get-togethers. Nosy aunts inquiring after your marriage prospects, uncles and cousins with loudly conflicting politics–instead of letting your blood boil, try being generous with your patience. Getting into yet another heated argument isn’t likely to change things, so practice some generosity of spirit, if only to preserve your sanity. For the rest of the year, helping others may actually be a respite from your own tasks. Offer to supervise a playdate or help plan an event (say, a baby shower). You just might find yourself with some coveted free time when the favor is returned.
Chances are, you’ve noticed that most people around you are constantly staring at screens—unless, that is, you’re too busy staring at a screen to notice. Being totally sucked in by the digital world has robbed us of human interaction, of enjoying our surroundings, and even of our posture.
This coming year, resolve to look less at your smartphone and more at your family gathered around the dinner table, the scenery outside the train, inside at the core of yourself. Soon, you’ll find that days no longer pass you by in a flurry, filled with rushing from one place to another with only a glowing rectangle to accompany you.
Don’t think of the list above as resolutions but just as things to keep in mind so you could live life a little better. Do you have any anti-resolutions of your own for the coming year? Tell us in the comments!
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