With 2017 coming to a close, it’s the perfect chance to take stock of how the year has been and what changes you’d like to see in 2018. The New Year heralds the unique opportunity to start fresh and create a game plan for improving who you are and pushing your life in new directions. New Year’s resolutions are a great way to help you do just that, however, there are 2 major challenges that stand in your way of seeing them through.

1. Knowing which resolutions to go for
2. Having a plan in place to actually stick to them!

Luckily for you, there are answers to all of these challenges below. Keep reading for 8 creative New Year’s resolutions and a plan on how to stick to them.

8 Creative new years resolutions

1. Become more peaceful

We all live in such a fast-moving world and have so many things to prioritise that it’s easy for our minds to constantly be racing from one thought to the next. Bringing peace into your life means finding ways to slow down your mind and appreciate the here-and-now. You can start practising mindfulness on a daily basis and use yoga and meditations to hone your focus and concentration.

2. Boost your EQ (that’s your emotional intelligence)

We’re all aware what IQ is, but becoming a better person often comes down to awareness of boosting your EQ instead. Improving emotional intelligence means improving the way in which you deal with and manage others. You can practice being aware of the thoughts and emotions of others around you and help support them and their troubles. This is a key skill to develop if you are in any kind of managerial position.

3. Use less technology

Surely this is one that everyone can relate to! That’s not to say that technology isn’t a fantastic addition to our daily lives, but it can make you feel like you’re overly dependant on your devices at times. Why not commit to turning back the clock and focusing less on technology and more on traditional forms of communication? It’s as simple as turning off your phone after 7pm or even switching in your Kindle for a good ol’ fashioned paperback.

4. Write your own book

Now it’s time to get really creative with your New Year’s resolutions. Writing a book is a romantic idea for many, but something we never get round to doing. You don’t even have to be a great writer, as writing a book has more to do with letting your own thoughts spill out, rather than publishing a New York Times bestseller. Your book could be fiction, non-fiction or even a draft of your own personal memoirs. At the very least, it would be wonderfully therapeutic.

5. Give back to your community

Maybe 2018 is your time to think less about yourself and more about giving back to others. There are so many ways to be active in your community, and becoming a regular volunteer would open up your mind to the trials and tribulations of those living around you. Think about a cause that is close to your heart, and find ways you can help contribute to that cause by simply sacrificing just 1 hour a week.

6. Strengthen your relationships

With so much going on, it’s easy to neglect those close to you or to fail to appreciate how special they are in your daily life. Make 2018 your chance to focus on building and strengthening relationships with those closest to you, be they your children, parents, partner or spouse. If you’re still single and have been putting relationships aside in favour of your career, perhaps 2018 is your year to pursue finding true love.

7. Become a more active person

The whole “lose weight and get healthy” resolution is a bit cliche, but being more active doesn’t mean you need to commit to 2 hours in the gym every night. Being a more active person means considering all of your daily activities and finding ways to spice things up. Maybe it’s time to stop driving to work each day and switch in your car for a bicycle. Or how about joining a club and playing a sport you’ve always enjoyed but never made time for?

8. Get more rest

On the flip side, with so much to do and so many responsibilities, you may be neglecting your health in another way, by not getting enough rest. You could commit to winding down a little earlier each night or having more of a lie in on the weekends. You could even start offloading those mundane time-consuming tasks like cleaning your house each week. The added rest and rejuvenation will be great for you mentally and physically. Surely this is the best New Year’s resolution ever?

Your 5 step guide for sticking to your New Year’s resolutions

1. Decide on one or two New Year’s resolutions

The biggest mistake you can make is trying to fix all of your problems all at once. It’s simply not possible to alter all aspects of your life. So instead, you need to prioritise by deciding on just one or two resolutions to stick to.

2. Create a plan

If you decided to drive from one side of the country to the other, you wouldn’t just get in your car and get going, you’d map out a route first. Apply the same logic to your resolutions. Set a clear start date, with milestones throughout the year that you’d like to achieve. This could be ‘write “x” pages of my book by this date’ or ‘attend “z” yoga sessions this week’. You can then better motivate yourself and track your progress.

3. Talk about it

Talking openly about your resolutions with your friends and relatives makes them more tangible and real, as well as boosting your motivation to stick to them. You are holding yourself accountable, and everyone will be aware if you fail to stick to what you agreed upon.

4. Reward yourself

Remember that plan we talked about in step 2? Well, every time you hit a milestone throughout the year, give yourself a reward! A physical reward is a great short-term motivator to help make sure you stick to your resolution throughout the whole year.

5. Anticipate mistakes

The fact of the matter is, that at some point or another you’re going to mess up and miss a target or fail to stick to your promise. This does happen, but it’s not worth beating yourself up about it. Instead, take note of the minor setback, understand why what you’ve done is wrong, and then get back on track.

Final thoughts

If you are truly committed to seeing a change in your life, then there really is nothing stopping you from making 2018 your best year yet. Decide on some resolutions you truly believe in and then follow the 5-step plan to craft your own strategy for seeing them through. Then this time next year, check back in with us to help prepare for 2019!