For many of us, we think of the upcoming new year as a new chance to release ourselves of the pains and chains that the previous year trapped us with.
We are always waiting for the new year to change ourselves, reinvent what we stand for, and achieve the dreams we’ve always wanted.
But there comes a point where the new year becomes just like every other year, and like every year that came before, you may begin to regret 2018 and say goodbye to it with as much disdain as 2017.
It’s time for change. Real change. To create a year that you finally won’t regret when you’re standing at the finish line and looking back, you need to live a certain way and do certain things.
Here are 18 uncomfortable things you need to force yourself to experience if you want to leave behind a 2018 you can be proud of:
1) Forgive The Unforgivable
Say goodbye to the grudges, the pent up toxicity. If someone wrongs you, then distance yourself from them; not to punish them, but to protect yourself. Forgive and forget, and move on.
2) Say “No”
Too much value has been placed on the word “Yes”; sometimes, overwhelming positivity and openness can leave you vulnerable to the worst pain and experiences in your life. Learn when you need to step back and prioritize your health and obligations over the expectations of others, and use the word “No” as much as you need.
3) Stay Healthy
Every year you live on this earth is another year you add to your body. And your body won’t stay young and invulnerable forever; soon enough, your immortality will turn into pains, aches, and irreversible sicknesses all over your body. Start staying healthy today.
4) Give Time To Those Who Deserve It
Time is your most valuable asset, but so much of it is wasted on useless things, vices, and negative people. Remember those who matter most in your life—your family and closest friends—and give them your time.
5) Confront Your Anxieties
It’s time to stop running away from your demons. Turn around and face them head-on, and stand your ground: either you fight them now or you run forever. The good news? If you choose to fight, your demons can never win.
6) Learn From Your Mistakes
You’re not a perfect person; no one is. You are bound to make mistakes, so stop worrying about if they might happen. Accept that they will happen, and get ready to learn from them.
7) Work Consistently On Goals That Inspire You
Focus your heart and mind on your goals. Not silly goals or joke goals, but real goals that give you the fulfillment and pride of success. So many people live their lives never having found their purpose; the moment you find yours, spend every moment working on it.
8) Challenge Your Beliefs
One weakness that we have as people is our inability to recognize our own mental failings. We trap ourselves in a world that makes sense to us, even if it doesn’t make sense to the rest of the world. Consider looking at yourself from the outside, and see if your values and beliefs are as fortified as you believe.
9) Keep Moving
Chess grandmasters know that you can’t play chess in one direction. Winning the perfect match and making the perfect play requires moving up, down, left, right, stalling and attacking at the right times, and knowing when to protect and when to eat. Life works the same way—if you stumble, it doesn’t mean game over; it’s part of the game.
10) Find More Happiness In Fewer Things
Money, things, objects—these are all so fleeting and pointless at the end of the day. Stop chasing the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and appreciate the beauty of the rainbow as your cross it. Happiness isn’t at the end of a giant paycheck; it’s at the beginning of your next smile.
11) Protect Yourself From Toxic Relationships
There is nothing more damaging to an individual than the negativity of those around them. If you have the freedom to do it, distance yourself from toxic people and harmful relationships. Learn to live your life without fearing their presence.
12) Ignore Drama
Here’s a fact: you will be tempted more than a few times this year to engage in stupid and ridiculous drama. Here’s another fact: you will grow so much more as a person if you resist that temptation.
13) Choose You
If you never make yourself your top priority, how can you expect anyone else to do it for you? It’s fine to help others reach their success and dreams, but if you don’t look out for yourself, your own life might fall down as you prop everyone else up.
14) Embrace Your Humanity
The 21st century is wonderful in terms of technology, but it has destroyed the humanness that used to come natural to so many of us. Stop staring at your phones, learn to smile in public, and talk to a stranger instead of playing a game. Have a rendezvous with your humanity.
15) Respond Positively
Respond to what, exactly? To everything around you. Give yourself the constant life mindset of living a positive experience. Cut out the weight from your life by saving yourself from the stress of every shaky moment.
16) Be Hard, Do Hard
Life isn’t easy, so stop expecting it to be. Step into the world and fight your walls headfirst. It will hurt and it will cause you pain, and it may take a lot more effort than you could have ever imagined, but that’s life.
17) Invest Energy Wisely
Many of us never find ourselves living out the true potentials of our day because we do not understand the value of energy management. You only have a finite amount of energy every day. The more you waste your time and do things unrelated to your goals, the less energy you have to work on them. Think big picture.
18) Make Room With Goodbye
Don’t always hold on to the past. When people or phases in your life look like they’re about to end, don’t mourn as if it’s the end of a book.
It’s just the end of a chapter, and a new one needs to start growing. Learn to say goodbye to aspects of your life that no longer fit the person you will become, so that you can make room for your next “Hello.”