4 Habits to Try in 2018
Every year we come up with a series of resolutions to improve our lives, like eating healthier, getting in shape, reading more books or spending more time with family. For 2018, why not try some optimistic habits that will improve your life and have a positive impact on those around you? If you see attitudes that you don’t like in other people, then be different. As the saying goes, be the change you want to see in the world.
The Complaint Free Challenge
Sometimes we need to vent out, but constantly complaining drains out our energy and affects those around us. When I was a kid, my dad told me about Will Bowen’s challenge which he explains in his book “A Complaint Free World”.
How does it work?
1) Put a bracelet on either of your wrists.
2) Every time you complain about something, switch it to the other wrist.
3) Try to keep the bracelet on the same wrist for 21 days (hence, do not complain for 21 days).
Beyond completing a challenge, this habit will bring self awareness. We really don’t notice how often we complain about the weather, other people, pain, or transportation until we force ourselves to pay attention to it. Once you decide to stop complaining, you will either become friends with silence or find something good to say. You never know, after 21 days, you might want to keep going on and embrace a positive take on life.
The Motto Bracelet
I have been thinking of certain values that I would like to practice more in my daily life, this can vary from person to person, but some examples are kindness, honesty, and patience.
I thought that a great way to remind myself of this “personal motto” would be to wear a bracelet (just like in the complaint free challenge) that holds that meaning. It can be something explicit, like this bracelet I got at Michael’s that says “Be Kind” or just a colorful beaded bracelet that only you know the meaning of. The objective is that the next time I see someone in need I remember the motto I want to live by, and make my decisions based on that.
Three handwritten pages every morning of anything and everything that is in your mind.
According to The Artists Way, by Julia Cameron, doing this every day will help you clear your head of “cloudy thoughts” and allow you to focus on your creative thoughts. You might write poems or you might write about everything that is wrong with the world, the idea is to write and then move on with your day. This is wonderful for writer’s block or for other creative practices because it forces you to write something even if it is “I don’t know what to write” until you come up with something different. I would encourage you to read this book, learn more here.
Try to listen for at least one day, at work, at school, at home. How many times a day does someone get interrupted while saying something? I have noticed it happens all the time. Listening to what people are telling you without cutting them off, and without putting words in their mouth can be a hard and enriching experience. As weird as it might sound, listening was the most important lesson of my Public Speaking class.