When the New Year kicks off, we often feel pressured to make our resolutions and goals a focus and work to accomplish them as quickly as possible. While the new year can be rejuvenating & feel like a fresh start with the right pacing, we’re often so caught up with trying to mark goals off our to-do list that we forget the importance of taking care of ourselves. We forget the importance of taking time after the busyness of the holidays to rejuvenate our energy before chasing after something new. And most of all, we forget to give ourselves credit for all the things we are already doing and instead expect yourself to keep doing more and more.
However, by slowing down and focusing on being present, we can eliminate the expectations we place on ourselves, eliminate our stress, and focus our energy on meaningful tasks rather than taking on as many tasks as possible. This can help us enjoy the start of the new year in a productive way while also helping us maintain a manageable pace that doesn’t feel overwhelming. So, if you’re looking to start the new year off in a calmer, more soul-nurturing way that is sustainable and rejuvenating, my talented daughter is sharing five ways you can practice slow living in the new year to ease stress and eliminate burnout .
5 Ways to Slow the Pace and Live More Intentionally
1. Focus on the now
Many of us struggle with living too much in the future, especially in the new year. We’re so focused on reaching new goals that we forget to live in the moment now and appreciate all of the beauty that it has to offer. So, this year, make an effort to focus on the present. take each day––each moment––as it comes, and fully immerse yourself in it. Take part in activities that ground you such as reading, meditating, or DIY crafting, and just slow down a bit. While planning for the future can be exciting, it can also cause you to miss what’s happening around you. At the end of the day, it won’t be the moments you rushed through that you remember- it will be the moments that you slowed down enough to savor. Slow down your pace and make the most of them.
2. Let go of expectations for yourself
Setting goals can be good, but it shouldn’t compromise your mental health and well-being. This year, let’s go from the idea that you have to reach a certain goal by a certain time in order to be successful. This way of thinking is unfair and toxic to ourselves and can bring resistance to our path moving forward. So, instead, allow a leeway toward your goals this year. Recognize that you don’t need to start something new just because it’s the new year and that you can, in fact, choose to start something new any day of the year if you want to.
This realization is so important to understand when it comes to living more intentionally and can help us release the expectations we have put on ourselves during this time of the year. Take each day as it comes. And if and when the time feels right to start something new, do it. But until then, release the pressure and just focus on being kind to yourself.
3. Declutter your mind and your life
Since the new year is a time to start fresh, this is also a great time to declutter your life. When our minds and our atmosphere are cluttered, it can be hard to be present. As such, start the new year with a detox of yourself and your environment. give yourself permissions to let go of limiting thoughts and habits that are no longer aligned with who you are and the future you want to build. And on that same note – get rid of anything in your physical space that makes it feel too cluttered. Aside from giving you a peaceful state of mind, this can also help you feel productive, present and grounded with yourself and your home.
4. Live more intentionally with your tasks
Instead of focusing on completing multiple tasks at once, choose to live more intentionally with a single task and see it through before starting another one. While the idea of taking on multiple tasks at once may seem good at first, it often leaves us feeling anxious and can quickly lead to burnout. So, this year, choose intentional living over hustling. Celebrate your milestones and efforts, and reflect on the lessons learned along the way. You’ll soon begin to see how much pride, gratitude, and reward rests in a completed task when you fully immerse yourself in it rather than just working to mark it off of your to-do list. Take your time and enjoy the ride, as that’s where the true beauty of life will unfold.
5. Remove the noise
Lastly, if you want to practice slow living in the new year, give yourself permission to enjoy life without constant stimulation. Put the phone down, turn off the tv, and just enjoy the silence of the moment for a while. Allowing yourself time to sit peacefully without stimulation is a great way to immerse yourself in the moment and allows you to gather your thoughts, restore your vision and creativity, and find gratitude for the little things often overlooked. Not to mention, it also helps us to see that productivity doesn’t just have to reflect in our ability to work and accomplished but can, in fact, reflect in our ability to learn to sit peacefully every day. This year, take time to remove yourself from the distractions every day and discover the beauty of stillness and silence.
The new year is an exciting time for all of us, but that doesn’t mean it’s overwhelming. Learning to find ways to slow down amidst the chaos is the key to achieving a happy, sustainable lifestyle in which you can truly thrive. This year, put yourself first, appreciate the moment, and live more for the small, simple things we often overlook. Over time, you may begin to realize that these small, simple things that we rush through year after year end up being the biggest things of all.