Hello, 2015! It’s nice to meet you. Normally, I greet you by rattling off a list of unrealistic New Year’s resolutions (Work out every day! Stop eating candy!) and beat myself up when I inevitably fail to follow through after the first month. Sound familiar? Let’s change that.
Instead of setting ourselves up for a downward spiral of guilt and self-loathing when—shocker—we can’t commit to 365 days straight of yoga, what if we focused on tackling a list of New Year resolutions that are actually enjoyable? Things that don’t just effect numbers on scale, but that stimulate our imagination, encourage us to dream, and entice us to try new things. Maybe we’d actually want to follow through?
1) Live in The Now
Itching to get married, have babies, and buy a house in the Hamptons? Awesome. It’s great to have goals, but if you’re constantly living your life two steps ahead, you’ll miss all of the beauty and magic happening right in front of your eyes. Practice living your life in the present. It’s pretty great, too.
2) Get More Massages
Turns out, massages are good for more than just relaxation. They can improve sleep, digestion, mood—and even help you recover from muscle injury in a fraction of the time. For centuries, individuals have relied on the practice of massage to cure chronic diseases and ease pain by increasing circulation, stimulating lymph nodes, and releasing endorphins.
3) Travel More
It’s a pretty big world out there, do yourself a favor and see it. There’s nothing like surfing down steep sand dunes in Abu Dhabi or hand-feeding monkeys in Bali to help you boost your mood and get a fresh perspective on life. Bonus points if you turn off your cell phone for the whole trip.
4) Stop Dieting
Crash diets don’t work. Period. Instead of depriving yourself of sugar or carbs, trying eating a little bit of everything in moderation. Even, cappuccino caramel brownies. Instead of eliminating certain food groups entirely, which can slow down your metabolism and deprive your body of much-needed nutrients, try eating a well-balanced diet comprised of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and yes, dark chocolate.
5) Have More Sex
Want to improve your relationship? Spend more time in bed. According to a new study by the happiness training app, Happify, people are 55 percent more likely to report higher levels of happiness when they have sex every few days.
6) Step Outside Your Comfort Zone
Try a new workout, embrace a new fashion trend (we hear fanny packs are making a come back), or head to a new spot for dinner. From aerial yoga to frozen s’mores, there’s no shortage of options in a city as vibrant as Manhattan.