Life improvement ideas and hacks
It’s now 2020, and many of us are feeling inspired for personal development and life improvement ideas to increase our happiness & wellbeing.
Luckily, there are many easy-to-implement hacks for a better life. Small lifestyle and mindset changes can make a big difference in feeling healthier, happier, and more peaceful. It’s all about examining the ways we can decrease stress, increase joy, and improve our thoughts.
So please enjoy these 20 life improvement ideas and hacks for a happier, healthier new year.
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There is no better time than the new year to declutter your home. And there is something so satisfying about dropping off boxes of donations to the Goodwill or Salvation Army. Isn’t it great knowing someone else can make use of stuff you no longer need?
Out with the old, in with the new.
2. Going outside every day
It’s all too easy to not go outside on a cold winter day, which is why I’m purposefully integrating a 30-minute walk into my schedule 3 times per week. Talk about a powerful life improvement action! Being outside can really lift your spirits, it’s just a matter of bundling up, (at least here in Maine where I live.) A cold day is still a good day to get outside!
3. Cleaning with essential oils
Essential oils are amazing cleaning hack. They smell great, work effectively, and help you avoid toxic cleaning products. The perfect blend for all-purpose cleaning is:
- 2 cups of white vinegar.
- 2 cups of water.
- 30 drops of lemon essential oil.
- 20 drops of thieves essential oil
Mix all together in a spray bottle and use on countertops, in the refrigerator, floors, and more.
4. Cooking healthier recipes to avoid inflammation in your body
You’ve probably heard how chronic inflammation in your body from a poor diet can lead to weight gain, depression, and other chronic health conditions.
A good way to avoid inflammation is to eat meals centered on meat, potatoes, and veggies. Plus, kids and husbands alike tend to love a meat-veggies-potatoes meal.
Especially in winter, I like to cook like I’m living in the 1950s. Meals may include:
- Mashed potatoes with some sneaky cauliflower mashed in
- Chicken stew
- Pork chops and sweet potatoes
- Peas and carrots
- Sautéed squash
Eating this way reduces your consumption of grains. Grains can be extremely inflammatory and lead to health problems for many people. I used to have severe chronic back pain and 50 pounds of excess weight before swithing to a grain-free diet.
I’m all for sharing my personal story of how I healed myself because I really think it could help others. If interested, you can read more here:
Of course, everyone is different, so you must experiment to see what diet works best for you.
5. Consider anti-inflammation supplements for increased health
Even if you follow an anti-inflammatory diet as I do, you’ll likely have days when you slip up and eat food that causes inflammation in your body. This can make you feel terrible.
For these times, there are two wonderful anti-inflammation supplements you can take: CBD oil, and tumeric.
As you may already know, CBD helps with pain, inflammation, insomnia, anxiety, and many other chronic health problems. CBD has no THC and will not get you high. It works to bring the body back into a state of balance know as homeostasis.
A great CBD company online with high quality CBD products is cbdtru.com. Take note that Amazon does not allow the sale of CBD oil, only hemp oil.
For tumeric, a money-saving hack I’ve discovered is to buy a big bag of organic turmeric root powder, which contains curcumin as the active ingredient. (It’s the curcumin itself that works to decrease inflammation.)
If you don’t mind the taste mixed with some water, a spoonful or so a day is much cheaper (currently under $7 for 1 lb,) than buying curcumin pills.
6. Tic tacs in car or gum
7. Audio books or podcasts while driving
It’s also nice to listen to audio books or podcasts while driving, (or cleaning, making art, or relaxing.)
8. Always having a book on hand.
Having a good book at all times can be challenging. We all get busy and forget how fun and relaxing reading can be. I’m currently reading Super Attractor: Methods for Manifesting a Life beyond Your Wildest Dreams by Gabrielle Bernstein. It’s an inspirational book about being abundant and attracting good things into your life.
9. The shift to creativity- a mindset practice to de-stress
One mindset practice I’m trying to remember to implement more is what I call “the shift into creativity.”
Whenever I’m feeling stressed or overwhelmed at all I have to do, I shift my mindset left into creativity. A creativity hack!
Instead of overwhelm, you can practice feeling excitement or inspiration about the tasks at hand. You can think about ways to make things fun. This way your energy flows in a lateral, chill direction, as opposed to that climbing-up-a-mountain stressful feeling.
10. Art journaling
Have you tried art journaling? It’s a fun, creative, relaxing activity to make time for this winter. Also, it’s a great activity to do with children.
You might like: How to Start an Art Journal For Beginners.
11. Embracing hygge
Speaking yet again of this cold winter season, it helps to shift your mindset to embrace a hygge wintertime experience. Hygge is a Danish word that describes a cozy and content feeling or way of living.
Some examples of hygee living in the winter are:
- Going out for hot cocoa with a friend.
- Reading under the bed covers.
- Wearing warm fuzzy socks while having a long phone conversation.
- Making homemade soup.
- Writing in your journal snuggled up in your favorite chair.
- Taking a luxurious bath with epsom salts and essential oils.
12. More laughing and having fun with friends
There is nothing better than getting together with your best friend, a bottle of wine, and some good music. Am I right ladies?
One health hack I use for drinking wine but not getting too intoxicated is to buy low-alcohol percentage wine. Or simply drink seltzer instead.
13. Go out and do something cultural
Comedy shows, art galleries, window shopping, going to the theatre, and going out for coffee are all fun indoor activities to keep you happy and busy indoors in the winter. Fun activities are vitally important because they help you beat stress and depression. Why not make a list of 10 fun cultural activities you can do this winter.
14. Actively increase intelligence by being more empathetic
Being more empathetic, especially with people we find difficult, can help increase our intelligence levels. When we practice being empathetic and open-minded, we learn more. We can choose to replace frustration with curiosity, and thus grow.
15. Noticing and appreciating all the beautiful people in the world
- The overly talkative 20-something girl checking you out at Home Goods.
- The rough-cat-looking old man smoking while fixing something on the wall outside the grocery store.
- The grumpy bear secretary at the office.
- A stylish older couple walking in the park with coordinating scarves.
- The new dad carrying his infant in a baby pack.
16. Gratitude journaling
Spending a few minutes once or twice a week journaling can help to focus on the good in life. Simply note what you are grateful for overall in life, or for this week, or on this day.
17. Practice being cool, calm, and collected
One huge goal of mine is to practice being cool, calm, and collected.
As a Virgo with an Aries moon and Leo rising, I err on the uptight, harried and hurried side. I’ve got what they call “big emotions.” Can you relate? I know I need to chill out, but it’s not always easy. So, I repeat the words: cool, calm, collected.
18. Being a great host
My mother-in-law Angie is a Georgia peach, and she inspires me to be a great host.
Angie always makes a lovely snack tray for guests. She has cozy blankets for everyone when we’re sitting on the back porch at night. She never runs out of conversation or wine. She is one of the most welcoming people you could ever meet. I try to channel her when I host a party.
19. Being extra kind to grumpy people
If we can practice kindness and compassion instead of reacting with defensiveness or rudeness, we’ll be better for it.
20. Embrace being “extra.”
We all have unique qualities that make us a bit “extra.” And thinking of yourself as “extra” is such a great mindset shift away from other, potentially negative self-talk. For example:
- Too sensitive? Extra perceptive.
- Too loud? Extra personality.
- Unfocused? Extra imagination.
- Emotional? Extra heart.
- Feeling lazy? Extra relaxed.
- Got fired? Extra life experience.
- Not making enough money? Extra incentive to learn how to make more.
That’s all for now, I hope you enjoyed these 20 life improvement ideas and lifestyle hack ideas for 2020.
Please let me know what you think in the comments!!
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