I like the New Year holiday more for the planning and reflection than for the fanfare and parties. However, I never really know if anything from the previous year stuck until about mid-January. After the post holiday slump has passed and routine has carved itself back into the day to day, it’s much easier to notice what things that were new last year are now simply habit.
The beautiful thing about habits is you don’t have to think about them. It comes naturally. You do whatever the action is without having to decide to do it. It’s simple, even if it’s not. When I think of what I was working on at this time last year, I realize a few key things that are second nature now. Habits that are now formed that make my life a little bit brighter.
Last year was the first time since college I consistently attended exercise classes. When the 2018 schedule landed in my inbox the questions wasn’t “Should I do this?”, but “How many classes can I fit into my schedule?”. Attending classes is fun and a great workout. I love that it’s built into my schedule. I don’t have to make any decisions about what exercises to do, or for how long, or how hard. I simply have to sign up and show it. It doesn’t get any easier than that, even if the workouts are anything but easy.
I have always loved quotations, but never took the time to collect them. Last year I decided I needed to start writing down every line I read that made me stop to think. Along with writing them down, I made them into photos to print in a book at the end of the year. It was a fun project that left me with a beautiful little photo book and the habit of writing down lines I love. I found myself marking up and writing down quotes from books and articles even after my official quotation project was done. I’m happy to have formed this habit. I finally found a use for a beautiful leather bound journal I got as a gift over a decade ago.
Falling Asleep to Audiobooks
I’m not a great sleeper. In fact, there’s a whole side of my family that doesn’t really sleep. It’s a gene I work hard to combat, but it’s hard to get enough sleep when falling asleep doesn’t come easy, making me anxious, making it nearly impossible to doze off. In an attempt to make falling asleep less of a disaster, I downloaded the Harry Potter audiobooks and started listening to them as I tried to drift off to sleep. Joy! It worked! When I had something to focus on that wasn’t worrying about how I wasn’t falling asleep, it was much easier to sleep. Shocking. Now, I set the book up to automatically turn off after fifteen minutes. It’s a rare night that I’m still awake when the sound stops. And I’m much happier for being better rested.
How to properly Style my Hair
I know this seems unimportant, but it’s something that has made my life so much easier. I have naturally curly hair. Last March, I went to a new salon that specializes in curls. The cut was great, but the way they taught me to style my hair was - not to overstate the matter - life changing. Instead of drying my hair with a bath towel, then working product in and blow drying, I learned a method that is healthier for my curls, makes them look tons better, AND is less time consuming. While my hair is still dripping wet, I put product in and run my fingers through to get some excess water out. I then wrap my head in an old school dish towel while I put my makeup on. I take the towel off, scrunch out a little more water, spray in some hairspray, and let the rest air dry. So easy!
I can’t believe January is almost done. Time has already gone fast this year. I don’t want to wish away 2018, but I am happy winter is going quickly. I’m ready for the beautiful colors and changes of spring, and to see what things I’m working on that seem hard now will start to stick, making 2018 a little happier than the year before.