Tips to Live By

How to Make Lasting Lifestyle Changes This New Year

Dec. 30, 2019 - Kari Kooi

This New Year's Eve, plan to spice things up with how you approach the New Year. Instead of focusing on making a list of lofty "resolutions," shift your mindset to setting intentions about what you want to cultivate more of in your life for 2020.

Setting resolutions doesn't always put you in the right frame of mind to make lasting change, and that's why New Year's resolutions often fade.

What's the difference?

Intentions come from your heart and help move you toward your goals and dreams because they evoke purpose. Your intentions don't have to be measurable and could be aimed at increasing qualities such as gratitude, patience, kindness and openness to new experiences.

This New Year's Eve, use these simple steps to get you started with setting intentions for this fresh and sparkling New Year:

Be specific. Instead of making a blanket statement such as, "I will lose 20 pounds this year," be specific by reflecting upon where that desire comes from. An intention statement could be, "I intend to treat myself with respect by making positive choices that nurture my body and mind."

Write down your intentions. We tend to remember what we write. When you write something down it links more strongly in your brain. After you write your intentions down, practice repeating them out loud. This will create more passion and will help your intentions come to pass. Consider the following clear intentions for the New Year:

  • I intend to regularly practice self-care habits that help me feel renewed.
  • I intend to have more patience with myself and others.
  • I intend to have an attitude of gratitude.
  • I intend to be open to new possibilities with excitement.


Take action steps. Once you set your intention, support it with measurable action steps that you can realistically commit to such as:

  • I will add a serving of fruit to my breakfast.
  • I will take at least a 15 minute energizing walk during my work day.
  • I will go to bed by 10 p.m. so I can get the rest my body needs.
  • I will try a new vegetable recipe each week.


Choose a power word. Find a meaningful word to help you stay focused on your intentions for the year. This word will serve as a quick reminder to come back to the intentions you set and will guide your actions.

Balance, blossom, calm, elevate, flourish, simplify and thrive are just a few fantastic words to choose from. One word can make a big impact. Have fun thoughtfully selecting your very own special word for the year.

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