It’s been a while since I wrote a blog post because for the last few months of any given year, I semi-hibernate and start planning for the following year. You know what they say “fail to plan, plan to fail”

A great year is well within your reach, but it won’t happen by accident. There are several things you can do, many of them daily, that will help to ensure that you have a year that brings a smile to your face.

Are you willing to put in the work to have a great year? Here are some ideas to make that happen.

Try these strategies and have the best year of your life:

Drink more water.

Water refreshes. Water hydrates. It not only keeps our skin looking good but it is great for mental clarity.

You might think that drinking diet sodas and juices are just as good, but an increasing body of research suggests that it’s not. Artificially sweetened drinks can affect your appetite and alter the bacteria that live in your digestive tract. Studies have shown links between our gut health and mental health so it makes sense to keep our bodies healthy in order to keep on top of what life throws at us. Water daily = a good day. Lots of good days = a great year.

Create a list of goals.

Having a great year includes accomplishing a few things. We all know how awful it feels to reach the end of the year and regret wasted time. What do you want to do this year? What do you need to accomplish to feel that you had a good year? Make a list.

Get a pet.

Obviously I don’t want to add to your daily to-do list, bu if you have the time for a pet, it can be a great addition to your life. Many people like their pets more than they do other people! They can be a lot of work, but pets can add a lot to your life. There’s a reason PAT (Pets as Therapy) exists. It works!

Spend less.

Financial issues and worries are one of the most common causes of stress. A surefire way to enhance your finances is to spend less. Take a look at your current spending habits and look for ways to cut back. You’ll sleep better knowing that you are on top of your finances and have more money available for the things that matter.

Earn more.

It is said that money doesn’t but happiness but along with spending less, it would be great to earn more. After all, it’s easier to smile with £10,000 in your bank account than a balance of £23.17. Think about raising your prices or increasing sales. Have you considered ways of making a passive income, one that doesn’t involve your physical input day in day out?

Have a healthy breakfast each day.

A healthy breakfast leads to healthier food choices at lunch and dinner. If like me you don’t eat breakfast -due to time constraints and/or intermittent fasting – then make it a point to have a healthy lunch. You’ll feel better, and it’s easier to be happy when you feel good. [Check out these great breakfast ideas from Passionate Nutrition]

Declutter.

Clutter is insidious. It’s easy to rationalise that it doesn’t matter, but it eternally weighs on your subconscious mind. Eliminating the clutter from your life creates a sense of calm and peacefulness. Try decluttering a single room and notice how good it feels to spend time in there. This is the reason why decluttering was included in my SelfCare Advent Calendar.

Visit someplace new.

Explore the world a little bit. You might discover you’re really missing out on some amazing things and places. You don’t necessarily have to go far. The best meal on the planet might be a few small towns away from your home. And if you do want to get away check out Weekend.com for affordable breaks.

Start your day earlier.

Get a jump on the day by getting up early. It’s a peaceful time of day that lends itself to getting a lot done. You’ll have a great year if you accomplish something each morning. I know – BELIEVE ME, I know – how hard this can be. I am a night owl but I do appreciate how much more organised you can be if you get up an hour or two earlier.

Spend more time with others.

With the rise of social media and online networking, our culture seems to spend a lot less time with others than most cultures. This might be a mistake. Spend more time with others this year and see how it impacts your year. But do remember that it is said that we are a product of the 5 people we spend most time with, so choose your crowd wisely.

If you regularly reach the end of the year and wonder where the time went, decide to make this year different. With a few tweaks, you can have a great year that doesn’t leave you filled with regret.

Decide what you want to accomplish this year and get busy. Watch your finances and remove the clutter from your life. Share your life with others.

A great year is easier to accomplish than you think.