Start the New Year out right with one of these tools (Day 2)

Make the most of the year ahead. How about deciding on one new habit to try or area of your life to improve each month of the year?

This is the second in a series of posts with different ideas of how to set your coming year up for success. How about deciding on one new habit to try or area of your life to improve each month of the year with this tool?

A Happiness Project

Named for the book by the same name, Gretchen Rubin spent a year trying different things each month to improve a certain area of her life. I tried my own far simpler version this past year as I wrote about here (and each month – search ‘happiness project’ on my blog for more). I recommend the book and the experience. I am not going to carry it over for my coming year, but I am glad I did it and may pick it up again. It pushed me to do and try some things within a focused period of time to decide if I wanted to keep up the practice. As with the time set for projects and reading, these were personal experiments or behavior changes that I would not have otherwise done. Examples of items in this category include doing something out of my comfort zone or routine every day, keeping a gratitude journal, and doing something kind for someone else every day. I enjoyed all of these months and more. However, many months weren’t so positive. I pretty much universally failed each month where I had planned to learn something new. This included focusing on swimming, learning how to garden, and writing a book in 30 days. If I were to do this again, I would probably leave such things out and focus on the habits, practices, and routines that do not take much time but that I want to try out to see if it has an impact on my overall happiness. As for the bigger things like gardening and swimming, I think those are better as an overall year goal instead of just a month! They also clearly are not as big of a priority for me.

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