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How to start up this 2019 with the right feet!
How to start up this 2019 with the right feet!

Can you believe another year has come and gone? It seems like only yesterday we were ringing in 2018, and now we are welcoming 2019 into our lives. A new year means you can be a new you, so here is a list of things to do on January 1 to make the most of this fresh start.

You've got two ways you can play January. One is to sit around on your coach and lament the winter weather; the other is to step up, stay active, and get yourself in gear for the rest of the year. You don't need much to accomplish the former, but here are some ideas to help you get started on the latter. Your fresh start won't know what hit it.

According to inspirational posters everywhere, any old day can be ‘the first day of the rest of your life.’ Sure. Yes. But don’t you think the first day of a new decade is just a bit luckier than any other day? Let’s start fresh this year! How’s a human to do that?

 

Take the last chance and hit the last Holiday Sales!

One of my favorite post-holiday activities is to hit up the after-celebration sales to stock up on decorations and other useful items (think scissors, tape, wrapping papers, bags, and more) that by this date will probably be anywhere from 75% to 90% off the regular price. Pickings will be slim, but you're saving 25% to 40% more than you would have if you went the first few days after Christmas. When you're shopping, remember to think outside the holidays, too. Some of the discounted items are useful year round. Keep that in mind when you're in retail renegade mode.

 

Give a cleanup and a new image to your home

Now that you've tackled some of the more time-consuming small areas of your home that require specialized attention, it's time to do the dreaded deep clean. This often means getting down on your hands and knees to scrubs toilets, and floors and baseboards, and on ladders to clean ceiling fans and blinds — but you can do it. Besides, it's freezing outside; would you rather be cleaning the gutters?

Besides giving your living space a fresh feel, there are bonafide psychological benefits to rearranging your furniture. Move a chair here; put a lamp there. You might be surprised at how much this simple fix can improve your mood — which might be a much-needed pick-me-up this time of year.

 

Check your debts/Taxes and get it right up

Unless you're going into the New Year completely debt free, now is the time to take a good, long look at your finances and make a solid plan to improve your situation. One of my friends recently told me that she always makes this a part of her New Year's to-dos.

"We look at what we saved last year, areas we need to improve on, any debts we need to knock out this year, and big expenses we might need to plan for also," she says. "By no means is this the only time we talk about finances, but it prepares us mentally for what we want to accomplish."

Nobody wants to do this. Ever. But I've found that by getting this out of the way sooner rather than later, I stress a whole lot less in a shorter amount of time. In fact, if you wrap it all up by mid-February, you could have your refund (if you get one; my fingers are crossed for you) before the federal tax-filing deadline even arrives. Spring vacation, anyone?

 

This is the present, so live TODAY!

Often, we live in the past or future tense. Often, we’re so caught up in what took place or what might happen that we lose sight of what is happening. Start living where life actually takes place: here and now.

Use your senses to become present: feeling, hearing, seeing, tasting, and touching. Say yes to what you’re doing, no matter how insignificant it might seem.

When you’re washing the dishes, make that the most important thing in your life. When you’re transporting yourself, make that the most important thing in your life. When you’re speaking to someone, make that the most important thing in your life.

 
To get to where you want to be, you have to start walking in that direction. Don’t see it as a sprint, but more as a marathon. How can you create a manageable and enjoyable year where, not pressure, but pleasure is leading the way?

Don’t overwhelm yourself by setting too big goals or expecting things to be perfect. (They never are). Instead, choose to focus on one to three things from the list. Then once you feel comfortable with one area, move into another. Remember, consistency beats intensity.

Let this be the year you set yourself up for success!
 
 

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