By now, you may already have set yourself a New Year’s resolution or two. And you may have already broken it. Don’t get yourself down about it – it’s most likely due to the fact that we set ourselves goals that are overly restrictive, or unrealistic, and it’s easy to lose focus. We’re creatures of habit and so instead of setting huge goals, you should focus on making small, manageable changes to your life. One way in which you can do this is by pledging to look after yourself. This doesn’t necessarily mean eating healthier, or working out more – but instead, could mean that you start putting yourself first. Although my goals do include eating slightly healthier and working out again, putting myself first is the main objective.
Putting yourself first can be incredibly difficult. In many ways, society teaches us to put everybody before ourselves – whether that means our children, our spouse or even our employer. As a result, it’s likely that (like I do) you put your own needs and wants last. Well, not anymore! Make 2021 the year you focus on yourself.
Remember, if you don’t help yourself, you’re not going to be able help anyone else!
With that in mind, here are just SOME of the ways you can start focusing on yourself in 2021!
- Practice daily affirmations. Stand in front of the mirror each morning, and recite three positive things about yourself. This can help lift your spirits and elevate your confidence to new levels. Don’t feel like telling yourself? Write them down and don’t undersell yourself! They can be anything from just ‘good job, you had a shower today’ or ‘your hair looks pretty’ – we’re in locked down days still, you don’t have to make it big.
- Find a new hobby, or return to the one you left behind. Set aside a few hours each week which you can dedicate to this. For me, this has been blogging again – something that I lost when I had a baby and had to put someone else first all the time. Getting some ‘me time’ back to write has been so good for the soul!
- Set aside a small amount of time each day that is entirely yours. Whether that means you run yourself a hot bath, or settle down with a good book doesn’t matter – just ensure that you have some time alone. Personally I like to read every night before bed, even if it’s just 20 minutes.
- Develop new interests. For example, if you have always been fascinated by spirituality and psychics, why not attend a reading(virtually at the moment maybe)? Click Here. Or maybe it’s learning to cook or do a new craft!
- Read a self-help book that deals with any issues you may be facing, such as anxiety or stress reduction. This will help you develop new coping mechanisms and tools that can aid you in recovery. I have just bought myself Happy and Calm by Fearne Cotton to help look after my mind as well as myself.
- Consider signing up to therapy, whether that means in-person counselling sessions or speaking to a therapist online. I’m not ashamed to say that I had counselling during the last lockdown and honestly it helped me so much!
- When possible, turn off your alarm and allow yourself the luxury of a lie-in. Although I understand this is almost unheard of if you have children…
- Whenever you hear your favourite song play on the radio, don’t be afraid to sing along. Indulge in the act of being silly and enjoying yourself. Don’t care about what others think of you. Dancing and singing to your hearts content is the best feeling. We do it as a family before bed time for Madison and its so much fun!
- Start saying no to things you don’t want to do or don’t have time for. You don’t have to please everybody – Honestly this has been a major one for me to learn over the last year and one that has had the biggest impact on my work… You are only capable of some much and sometimes saying no or setting someones expectations is way better than letting them down or delivering late.
- Write down a list of things you want from the year, alongside how you plan to achieve them. Work towards these personal goals. I have been doing this for both my life, work, FM and the blog. Set yourself mini, some-what attainable goals that give you a drive to work towards. You feel so much more accomplished and proud of your achievements when you get to tick them off! And if you don’t, don’t sweat it, turn it into a goal for the next month.
- Log out of social media for an entire day, or turn off your phone. Spend some time ‘unconnected’ to clear your mind and truly relax. It’s honestly so good for the soul and something that I did for a lot of last year. Deleting facebook and Instagram may sound barbaric but honestly, not having the apps to subconsciously tap on and scroll through each day is so helpful.
- Unfollow any social media accounts that do not make you happy. Remember that Instagram posts are carefully curated, likely edited and not representative of real life. They can be super damaging to your mental health and that’s never good. Try not to compare yourself to others (easier said than done, I know) and unfollow / un-friend people that don’t bring positives to your life / who bring down your energy whenever you see them post. You owe them nothing.