Yes, that’s right, you’re not going crazy, I am still banging on about this book! In case you missed my little review in a recent blog post, The Happiness Project is a light-hearted read in which the author, Gretchin Rubin, attempts to inject a little more happiness into her everyday life. We’re not talking a complete lifestyle overhaul or anything, but by setting and tracking monthly resolutions she was able to enhance her existing life with positive new habits.
I do usually jump onto the New Years resolution bandwagon, with varying levels of success might I add, but this continuous, year-long resolution system seemed a little more promising than vowing to eat better, join a gym, travel, get a better job, save more money and clear out my wardrobe all in one go… just because it’s January 1st.
Instead, each month will have a focus, and resolutions to help achieve the end goal. This month I decided to establish a daily routine, because let’s face it; regular exercise, sensible eating and any hope of an early night went out the window over Christmas!
January’s resolutions are as follows…
Go to sleep earlier. For me, the difference between a happy and productive day and a 12 hour disaster day (those days where everything goes wrong from the moment you wake up until the moment you get ready for bed,) can be as simple as a getting enough sleep. And getting good quality sleep too!
With the recommended 8 hours of sleep under my belt it should be a lot easier to keep my other resolutions.
Make the bed every morning. This should be such an easy habit to introduce… I love the look of a neatly made bed and it really only takes a few minutes, but still I often find myself coming home to a crumpled, uninviting mess. Hopefully after a month of gentle daily reminders (courtesy of my chart,) making my bed will become second nature and I’ll just do it automatically upon getting up…. Hopefully.
Exercise daily. Weirdly, it’s often easier to do something every day, than once every few days, and with my current ‘festive food baby,’ I think daily exercise is definitely necessary.
I developed a bit of a love hate relationship with running in 2014. I loved the idea of being a runner but I rarely enjoyed my daily runs. Instead I thought about exercise that I truly love, (because it’s going to be a lot harder to keep a resolution if you’re trying to make yourself do something you don’t even like!) It was a bit of a no brainer really. I love cycling and yoga and I think the combination of the two will set the foundation for an active new year!
Get up at 7am on weekdays. Over the past year I’ve discovered myself to be quite the early bird. I love the silence in my house when I wake up before everyone else, and it’s amazing how much you can get done in a morning. Over the Christmas period though, I have definitely become accustomed to a long lay in and even when I do get up, I’m often sleepily wandering around in my onesie until midday. However with my new, earlier bedtime and after a good sleep in a cozy, well made bed, getting up at 7am shouldn’t be too much of a struggle!
Have dinner before 7pm. I won’t bore you with all the scientific research (but here is a link to some comprehensive, interesting information if you are interested http://www.livestrong.com/article/440180-what-are-benefits-of-not-eating-before-bed/ ) but the benefits of not eating late at night are endless.
Of course every day wont be a full house, but by the end of January I hope to see my chart littered with ticks (or gold stars if I get round to buying some!) and will be nicely prepared to take on February’s resolutions thanks to my daily routine.
How do you feel about resolutions and what do you think about ‘The Happiness Project approach.’ Comments on a postcard please.