At the beginning of the year, I asked those nearest and dearest to me what thing they recommend I do, have, or be in 2018.
At almost the halfway point of the year, it’s about that time for a semi-annual check-in anyways. Initially, I started writing with the idea of writing about each thing suggested, what I tried, and whether or not with it.
Turns out there is a TON that I’ve stuck with and works for me. As always, YMMV, but I hope some of these things work for you.
I’ve tried and stuck with:
- Daily morning meditation: I can’t say enough about the benefits of daily or twice daily meditation. Whenever I start to feel frazzled or even just need a moment to clear my head, I turn on Buddhify, my favorite meditation app. I’ve been with Buddhify since they first launched, and their recent update has been amazing. I love guided meditations as they help me have something direct to focus on when my mind wants to wander. (Pls. note: I receive no compensation from Buddhify; I just love their app so much.)
- Laughed often: I don’t know where I’d be without my sense of humor. From my friend’s darling six-year-old saying quite sincerely, “We had a HELLUVA lot of fun” (and I was SO PROUD she used it correctly!) to my soulmate Tina Fey on “30 Rock” re-runs, to the most hilarious, ridiculous, and fun bunch of people a girl could ask for…thank you all.
- Writerly things: I don’t know why this method works for me better than other things I’ve tried in the past, but I LOVE Tools for Writers and the Get Your Words Out community. I am notoriously opposed to online forums, so I only use the latter to check in. And of course, if I didn’t have a regular writing practice, none of these tools would be worth it. But I’m writing, and writing regularly, and that makes me so happy.
But wait, there’s more!
There are quite a few things that I’ve done this year that weren’t on the original list, but that I use regularly. A lot of these are apps, weirdly, but I use them enough that I think they’re worth mentioning:
- Forest: Stay focused, be present: This app is how I circumvent my natural tendency to look at my to do list and OMG HOW DO I STILL HAVE SO MUCH TO DO. This handy dandy app is a timer that grows lovely digital trees while you’re working. The catch? If you mess with your smartphone, you kill the tree. At the end of a focused day or week you can see the lovely garden you’ve created. Set your timer, select a custom-made tag to remember what you’re working on, put your phone down, and KILL PROCRASTINATION.
- Coach.me: This is a free, simple habit tracker. I’ve used it to floss (almost) everyday, to do my physical therapy exercises, and I’m even committed to writing at least 500 words a day.
Amope™ Pedi Perfect™: Let’s be real. I haven’t walked well for over four months. The idea of letting someone else touch my foot? Ohhhh goodness no. So this little gadget buffed out my callouses and made me and my feet feel pretty.
- Kindle Paperwhite: I was a very lucky gal and received this as a Christmas present. It’s a pretty amazing upgrade to my OG Kindle.
- Airtable: I’ve migrated my digital life into Airtable and it’s amazing. I’ve tried all kinds of digital apps for YEARS to make my digital life organized and easy, but this is the first one I’ve tried and stuck with. I’m still in the process of cleaning out my digital clutter, but this sure helps.
- Regular yoga and stretching: Once you’ve had a locked up Achilles tendon, you never want to experience that again. Daily practice keeps my body and mind limber.
- Scheduled down time: Yeah, this is one that I will probably have to work on for the rest of my life. But it’s getting better. Actively doing nothing – or actively resting – is rather difficult for me. I’m almost always doing something or working on something. Yet I know that the only way I can keep doing as much as I want to and more means I need to take breaks. So, with all the amazing movies hitting the theather, I’ve invested in a MoviePass (Infinity War, amiright?). I take daily time to read a book I enjoy. I’m currently working on a craft project that sat in my closet for two years because I was always making something for someone else. This is ALL ME.
I hope you reading this are taking good care of yourself in 2018. And if not, it’s never too late to start.