This year has been a whirlwind year of ups and downs, new opportunities opening and old chapters closing.
The one thing I’ve learned over the year is the positive impact a few free, daily activities which I’ve integrated into a daily routine. These are not just steps I’m writing in an article to post on the internet, but my tried and tested activities that I’ve built into my day-to-day.
This routine has kept me sane, centred and appreciative during times when I felt stressed, resentful, forgotten, vulnerable or angry. It’s brought me a great deal of happiness, personal and financial success over the past 9 months.
Even if I fail to complete all 10 steps in the day, I try my best to tick off as many as possible. It still amazes me how something so simple (and free!) can have such a positive effect on my outlook on life, and I hope it does the same for you.
10 free habits for success and happiness:
- Get up early
- Read the newspaper
- Eat well
- Learn something new everyday
- Be grateful
- Have a positive attitude
- Always end the day on a high
- Face your fears and learn to conquer them
What do these steps mean?
The above steps sound pretty vague, so I’ll help you out by giving you my view on each.
- Get up early.
I aim to get up at 5am everyday. Once I started to get up early, I had a kick-start on my day. I stopped waking up feeling groggy and feeling rushed to get to work. I had time to breathe, relax and had time to myself before the city was awake. I wake up to stillness and birds singing instead of peak-hour traffic.
Meditation is something I dismissed and thought was a hippy initiative back in the day. However, during stressful months, I tried meditation apps to clear my whirring mind, reduce stress and stop my sleepless nights and it worked wonders. Meditation isn’t about blocking out those negative thoughts. It’s about observing your emotions, acknowledging them then letting them pass by. I use the Headspace app, which is a good and free introduction to meditation. I try to spend 5 minutes meditating or just being still, either after waking or before I go to bed.
- Read the newspaper.
Simply put, I read the paper to keep informed with what is happening around me. It’s also a reminder that there are bigger issues in the world than those in my small world.
This is similar to mediation, and often doubles as both stretching and mediation in my morning. I do 10 minutes of yoga to wake both my body and mind up in the morning. I don’t go to a yoga studio, I just have a yoga mat at home and roll it out in my room while watching youtube yoga videos.
- Eat well.
The better I eat, the better I feel. Even though I may feel like eating take-away after I’ve had a big night out and have no food in the fridge, I know that I’ll always feel better if I make the effort to stick to healthy options. My body and wallet always thank me for having the discipline to eat well.
- Learn something new everyday.
The only person I try to compare myself to is who I was yesterday, so everyday, I try to learn 1 new thing. I end the day feeling accomplished and like I’ve made progress towards my future goals.
- Be grateful.
This is a big one. Every night, I write 5 things that I am grateful for that day. It’s hard to feel resentful, angry, or bitter when I focus on the positives instead of the negatives, and compare my situation to those who may not be as fortunate.
- Have a positive attitude.
Wake up and face the day with a smile. The world is so much more beautiful through a positive outlook on life.
- Always end the day on a high.
Regardless of how tough or horrible my day was, I try to end it on a high. Even if this means something simple like having a cup of tea and biscuit at the end of the night after a long, stressful day.
- Face your fears and learn to conquer them.
This is a new one for me and still the hardest to overcome. Someone once told me that we miss out on the beauty of life when we are shrouded by fear. When I can face my fears, mountains go back to being molehills and the best adventures in life begin.
xx Miss Piggy