10 ways to live better

By on January 23, 2018

After years of failed and forgotten new year’s resolutions, I decided to shy away from large, unattainable goals this year. Instead, I have chosen to incorporate 10 smaller intentions into my every day life that can guide me towards a happy and healthy new year. I encourage you all to join me in the journey of self-improvement this 2018.

1) Practice open-mindedness

One of America’s biggest problems today is that everybody thinks their opinion is the opinion. The country is divided into red, blue and shades of each. (George Washington is probably rolling in his grave right now. Sorry George). Is it even safe to share your own views without someone trying to put theirs on you? Opinions are not facts. You do not have to believe in everything your friends and family do; but you should respect their right to their own beliefs if you would like that in return. Hearing other people’s views allow you to think and challenge your opinions as well, which certainly isn’t a bad thing.

2) Treat yourself

Money is tight these days for college students, but if you have a little to splurge on yourself, I say go for it. Rewarding yourself is a nice mood-booster if you’re having a bad day and a token of self-love to yourself.

Go on. Get yourself that $6 almond milk latte and don’t let anyone make you feel bad about it.

3) COMMUNICATE!

Can everyone stop playing that game where we expect people to read our minds to know what we actually want or feel because we never actually say what we want or feel? You miss out on so many potential opportunities when you don’t speak up about what you want in your personal life and in the workplace. For all you know, the person you’re in love with loves you back and that raise you’ve been yearning for is within reach.

4) Recognize your goals and stick to them

Do yourself a favor this year and write down all the things you want to accomplish this year and hang it somewhere where you will look at it every day. The more you are reminded of your goals, the better chance you have of achieving them. The more you achieve this year, the better you will feel about yourself (not to mention, you will be surprised at how productive you can be by keeping organized).

5) Appreciate the small stuff

When the person in front of you in the Starbucks drive-thru pays for your coffee. When a stranger compliments your hair. When the rain starts to fall as your head hits the pillow, making for the perfect sound soother. When the waitress is bringing your food out at a restaurant. Life can be complicated, but it can also be really simple too. Don’t overlook the simplicity.

6) Let go of the past but take lessons learned with you into the future

One of the hardest things to grasp in life is that not everything and everyone is meant to stay in our lives. Sometimes it’s our fault, sometimes it just happens. Either way, you can’t move forward if your head is stuck in the past. Our whole lives we are going to outgrow things that no longer benefit us. You’ve probably done it and don’t even realize it. But if you can identify a piece of your past that can make you a wiser in the future or help you cope better in less than ideal situations, you are able to let bad experiences make you better, not bitter.

Forgive yourself today for bad yesterdays and you are headed towards a better tomorrow.

7) Workout for your mind

Exercise is more than just burning off the entire buffalo chicken pizza you had hours before stepping foot in the gym. It’s a great stress reliever and gives your mind a break from all of your college worries from homework to boyfriends. Making time to go for a run or go to a yoga class may allow you to perform better on tasks after taking time away from them for a little while. As a graphic designer who has dealt with creative blocks before, I can attest that staring at a screen for four hours instead of taking a break has never benefited me.

8) Accept that you can only change yourself, not others

In a world that is sometimes unkind to us, strength comes from choosing to act with love anyway.

9) Stop comparing, start accepting

You are special, a one of a kind human being, and no one will ever be you. So use that to your advantage. Spend your life figuring out your strengths and weaknesses, your likes and dislikes and be proud and accepting of whoever you turn out to be. Fall in love with yourself and you can achieve just about anything.

10) Embrace change

To be completely honest, change is scary. Going outside of our comfort zone and into the real world to do adult things is terrifying but: 1.) we can’t escape change 2.) it could lead to something really great. Don’t hold back from new opportunities because you are comfortable where you are now. Change can make us smarter, wiser and happier, so it is a risk we all should take.

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About Christina Popik

Editor-In-Chief
Graphic & Interactive Design Major
Twitter:@Christinapopikk
Class of 2019