Congratulations! You survived 2016. Let’s be honest, it was a tough year, and while I can’t predict that this year will be any better, there are little things that you can do to make positive progress in our world. We’ve learned many things in 2016, so here are some ways to apply those lessons to daily life:
1. Stop the hate
If 2016 taught us one thing, it’s that hatred against minorities is ignorant, stupid, and if you ask me, ruining humanity. Hatred against anyone for any reason is ridiculous, but when it is due to someone’s skin color, sexual orientation, or religion, it is disgusting. So many unnecessary crimes occurred last year, and innocent people lost their lives. Let’s pray we don’t see any of this in 2017, or ever again.
2. Be kind to everyone
Say hello to a random stranger, buy the person behind you a coffee, take a moment to talk to the person sitting next to you on a bus. Everyone has a story, and often they are going through something difficult. Random acts of kindness can really make a difference in someone’s day whether they’re having a good or bad one.
3. Stop hiding behind the internet
Ah, the internet troll. They’re the people who go on and voice their unnecessary opinions on social media. It is easy to say anything behind the safety of a screen, but how about stepping into the real world? If you really want your voice heard, may I suggest creating an informed position, and speaking up face to face with someone instead of via Twitter or Facebook?
4. Educate yourself
By this, I don’t mean in school; I mean out in the real world. Learn about other cultures, and gain a better understanding of what the world has to offer. If you love to travel, try going to a remote country with a unique culture and see how the people there live. Talk to village folk and learn how they get through tough times. By being educated about life outside the first world North America, maybe it will inspire you to begin to make a difference, even if it’s in a small way.
5. Be grateful for everyone in your life
As you all know, there were many tragedies in the last year, and the entertainment world lost so many people. Hearing about all of these deaths really got me thinking about my loved ones and what I would do without them. That said, never take anyone for granted. Tell the people you love that you love them on a daily basis. Visit the people you care about without a reason. Family is the most important thing in life, and they always come first.
6. Stop with the dieting
I think it’s safe to say that there is always some sort of new and fabulous diet, whether it’s a “teatox” or just a really strict calorie counting regime that all the celebs are doing. “Dieting” is not necessary. What is necessary is eating real and fresh foods and exercising. It is important to get outside for a run or walk every day, eating the daily intake of fruits, veggies, nuts and protein, and feeling good about yourself. I think it’s worth it to be healthy the natural way and do what is best for your body.
7. Be the best version of you
While all of the above things are important, they are only going to count if you focus on creating a version of yourself that keeps you happy and healthy. Resolutions may only last a short time, but if you stay determined and work at the little things in life that make a difference, you will notice more positivity in yourself, and hopefully the lives of others.
This year, take chances and be bold with your life. Instead of dwelling on the past, take the time to reflect on everything you’ve learned and add positivity to your life. I’m no expert, but I promise if you think about these ideas, you will forget about the negativity in your life. Here’s to you 2017, I hope you kick our butts in a good way.