Monday, May 27, 2013

# Life # Mild-Mannered Mondays

5 Ways To Get a New and Improved Life

Looking for a way to kick off a "My New and Improved Life" season right along with the current season? I know I need a bit of a shake up every now and again. Let me share five tried and true ways I've found to kick off a better life season:

1. Shake Up Your Diet.

This or item #2 is almost always the first thing I do to start the new awesomeness rolling. I usually do a major overhaul, but even one basic change can make a huge difference. Decide you'll finally kick the caffeine habit or cut out the mid-day vending machine runs at work. Vow to desert the drive-through this summer or try that cleanse you've been reading about. (I went paleo myself, and I'm loving it.)

2. It's Called Feng Shui...Look Into It.

It's also called cleaning, but Feng Shui sounds so much more impressive and zen, doesn't it? I can't stand clutter, since it always makes me feel like my life is out of control. Yet clutter has a way of creeping up. So a ritual for me when kicking off a new and improved life involves  a supply of giant garbage bags or boxes and tackling one room (shelf/drawer/closet) at a time. Give away or pitch out what's broken or not being used. Reducing clutter gets rid of stale, blocked energy and gives such a mood boost! Plus the calories burned doesn't hurt if your diet shake-up includes shedding a few pounds.

3. Give Up Something Stressful.

We all have things in our schedule that add stress rather than value to our lives. Maybe it's a commitment someone asked that seemed doable at the time but quickly became a burden. Or maybe you're putting extra workload on yourself. Either way, take a hard look at how fast your wheels are spinning and make an effort to put on the brakes. Pick one item on your schedule and get rid of it. No ifs, ands, or buts. My Give Up this time was daily/nightly writing. I returned to my prior schedule of three days per week, and life's already smelling rosier.

4. Reclaim Something You Like To Do.

Remember when you had time to do That Thing You Like? Maybe it was taking a weekly bubble bath with candles, hot tea (or champagne), and a favorite book. Maybe it was swimming, tennis, or shopping with a friend. Go get it back. Yes, you do too have time--you just gave something up that sucked the fun out of life. Now you're putting it back with something you know you will love. I'd given up on my garden many months ago for a number of reasons, and I recently started digging in the dirt again. Hallelujah! And by the way, doing NOTHING AT ALL can count as something you like to do. If you never had the time to just sit still, take some of that newly earned time from #3 and chillax.

5. Start Something New That's All About You.

(Hey, that rhymes!) No fair launching a playgroup for the kids or signing up to run the charity banquet. I'm talking something enriching that is about you and for you. Have you always wanted to learn a new language? Try your hand at sculpting? Improve your cooking skills? Now's the time. If budget or time is an issue, don't put off your New Thing because you can't take formal classes. Use library books, web sites, or YouTube videos instead. I'd been saying for years that I wanted to try Tai Chi, and I'd be saying it for several more if I hadn't finally decided to get a book and instructional DVD to get started with. If I'm still enamored with it when time and budget permits, I can enroll in classes then. But in the meantime, I don't have to deny myself something I enjoy.

I challenge you to kick off the season with me! Put these five things in place and have fun with it. A month from now, life will be very new and improved. 

On Mondays I gab about, well, pretty much whatever I want!

I'm J. Rose Allister, wife, working mom, and the author of over twenty-five books. Somewhere in between one and the next, I love hanging out here on my blog and over on Twitter. Give me a comment or follow-I love chatting with people! And if you enjoyed this post, consider sharing with friends and subscribing for updates.


  1. Nice post! I've been hearing a lot about Paleo. I'll look into it. And the Feng shui? As I sit looking at my cluttered desk. Oh my... Yep. :-)

    Good luck with your new and improved. :-)

    1. Thanks so much!! I'm already feeling more new. LOL

  2. A wonderful list of 5.:)awesome learning. To just add to the list of my own, "Spending time with young people makes one feel young too"


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