Like any other year, 2017 provides us with 365 opportunities to restructure our actions, often referred to as 'resolutions', in order to achieve some hopefully improved outcome by the stroke of midnight on December 31st. For 2017, I've decided to create a list of actions to pro-actively ensure that I continue to explore and find myself in new experiences that build upon my own personal growth trajectory.
The '17 for 2017' is designed to be executed on any budget and adopted by anyone interested in taking a 'Man in the Mirror' approach to the 365 days of 2017.
EVERY DAY I WILL . . .
1. Give someone a hug - We all need em'.
2. Meditate - Whether it's 5 minutes when you wake up or 5 minutes before you go to bed, taking time to slow down and be mindful is important.
3. Drink more water - H20 isn't just for curing hangovers and when you're at the gym. Actively carrying around a water bottle entices you to drink more and generally will make you feel better.
4. Hold doors for others - It's important that we always take into account our surroundings and understand that it's the simple gestures that have the greatest impacts.
EVERY WEEK OR MONTH, I WILL . . .
5. Read a book - If you're a big reader, go for 1 a week. If not, try for 1 a month.
6. Watch a movie, show or series in a language other than my own - Not reading subtitles is lazy and limits you to films, shows and series in only one language. Expand your world, read subtitles!
7. Give to a cause I believe in via my volunteered time or donation - Find a local soup kitchen to help out at, gather coats around the office for a shelter or give money to a charity of your choice.
8. Eat a cuisine or food I've never tried before - This can be achieved by checking out that new [insert nationality] restaurant down the street that you've never tried or sampling your friend's supposedly delicious [insert dish] that you've never tasted. If you've run out of places to eat and friends' cooking to sample, try to cook up something via an on-line recipe. No matter what you chose to do, buen provecho!
THIS YEAR, I WILL . . .
9. Travel to a place I've never been before - This can be achieved by visiting a new neighborhood, town or state on a weekend trip or obviously via jet-setting with your passport. Whether domestic or international, I will try and be a tourist as much as possible.
10. Attend a local government meeting - Being involved in your areas local politics is an important part of being an active and contributing member to society. Voting doesn't count so try and sit in on a town meeting or go listen to a potential local candidate speak.
11. Learn a new language - Go ahead and just download DuoLingo. It's free and learning basic greetings in another language can be very useful.
12. Use airplane mode more often - We rely on our cell phones too much as a means of social support. Cell phones are not humans, so next time you're in the bar with your friends, family or loved one. Airplane mode it and be present.
13. Go to see live theatre - Whether it's improv, your cousin's fifth grade play, Broadway or even stopping to watch a street performer do his/her thing. Take the time to soak in the arts and just be a spectator.
14. Go to a concert - Whether it's a music fest, a free concert in the park or some street performer. Get out and go hear some music. For some, this may move to a once a week or once a month action.
15. Attend a religious service of a faith other than my own - Take part in a different faith's ceremony is an important experience for our own spiritual and religious growth.
16. Work towards becoming healthier - Whether it's Crossfit, doing Spartan Races, Yoga or running the occasional local charity 5k , it's important that we create workouts and diets to reflect the lifestyle with which we would like to lead. Defining what's 'healthy' is an individual endeavor and first step towards creating a 'let's get healthy' plan. So, sit down and outline a personal goal and go get it.
17. Write down my feelings about my experiences - Journaling is healthy and gives you a space to process life events. Looking back now, I'm glad that I've documented a lot of my travels over the past decade and how I felt about them. This might be more of a daily, weekly or monthly action depending upon personal preferences.