UMMM can you believe January is almost over!? How is this possible!?
Whether you made resolutions, set new goals, created a mantra for 2020 or none of the above, there’s something about a “fresh start” that inspires us to do a little better than we did before.
Little steps can lead to big changes. Small accomplishments and slow progress eventually lead to achieving those larger resolutions, so in the spirit of fresh slates, Kendall and I rounded up 20 easy “to-do’s” that you can easily check off to make you feel WAY more accomplished, organized, lighter and more focused in 2020!
1. Unsubscribe from unwanted emails
You’ve probably gotten so used to deleting a handful of promotional emails each morning, but imagine how lovely it would be to open your inbox and only see emails that you actually want to see. Comb through your inbox and unsubscribe from newsletters that no longer serve you. Have a lot to tackle? Use Unroll.Me to see and opt-out of all of your subscription emails at once.
2. Opt-out of unwanted mail
Even more annoying than unwanted email — unwanted physical mail. (I HATE MAIL.) From the environmental waste to the irritating clutter in your mailbox and home, it’s important to opt-out of all of those catalogs and mailers you don’t wish to receive. You can contact individual companies or go through the Direct Marketing Association’s consumer website for $2.
3. Update your phone contacts
Up next: Swipe through your phone contacts and remove anyone you no longer need. Old vendors, former coworkers or people you met at a bar and don’t even remember. 🤣
4. Organize your tech
Whose desktop is still a cluttered mess from the holiday madness? 🙋 Take the time to remove irrelevant files and organize important ones, remove unused apps, free up space on your Google Drive, delete photos on your camera roll that don’t need to be saved forever, and most importantly, back everything up. (Dropbox is a great way to back up important items!)
5. Physically wipe down all of your tech
Once you’ve cleaned up digitally, make sure to clean your tech surfaces, too — ear buds, keyboards, laptops, tablets, phones, etc. For computers, you’ll need rubbing alcohol for the exterior, a microfiber cloth for the screen, canned air for the keyboard and cotton swabs for small spaces and stubborn marks. Check out this consume reports article for directions on how to clean your specific ear buds.
6. Throw out expired food
WOW do I need to do this one. Neal will concur. It’s a new year — let go of the food that you know will never get eaten in your fridge, freezer and pantry. I’m talking frozen peas you’ve had for years and expired spices, condiments and food. I promise you won’t miss them.
7. Get a car wash and oil change
If you have a car, chances are you’re due for an oil change. (It’s so important for the long term maintenance of your car!) Get a wash while you’re at it and you’ll be feeling v. accomplished!
8. Schedule outstanding appointments
January is a great time to schedule ALL the appointments and get them out of the way for the year. Doctors, dentist, eye exams, chiropractor, acupuncture, and any outstanding hair and beauty appointments. Better yet, try and make any appointments at the same time so you can always plan around them (I.E. save the afternoon of second Tuesday of every month) to make them easier to plan around and more likely to get accomplished!
9. Then automate subsequent appointments
Touch this task just once by automating all the subsequent appointments that you can! Schedule a reoccurring appointment in your Google Calendar so you never have to worry about missing anything or falling behind on your appointments — everything from bills, health & beauty appointments, car services, etc. You can also ask the office you’re working with if they can automatically schedule you or send reminders.
10. Buy new workout shoes
How old are your workout shoes? Experts say running shoes that are used regularly should be replaced about every six months. If your shoes feel flat, the soles are worn, and you’re getting more aches and pains than usual, it’s time for new shoes! Need a new running shoe? Check out Jess’ Favorite Running Shoe review!
11. Go to bed 30 minutes earlier and wake up 30 minutes earlier
So simple, so powerful. Think about how much more productive the first 30 minutes of your day is compared to the last half hour of your day. Try it out and see how much more you accomplish each day.
12. Stretch and plank
Need an instant pick-me-up? Set a timer and hold a plank for as long as you can — this is a fast and effective way to engage every muscle in your body. Afterward, stretch to relieve muscle tension and create emotional mindfulness. Bonus points if you incorporate this into your workout routine to build up strength and increase flexibility. (Highly recommend incorporating CBD into your routine for muscle recovery!)
13. Call someone you haven’t chatted with in awhile
Whether they live down the street or states away, call someone you haven’t caught up with in a while! It’ll fill you up for the start of the year!
14. Go through your recurring expenses
Take a look at your bank account and find out what recurring expenses you have. Chances are, there are a lot of subscriptions you pay for that you have totally forgotten about! Once you’ve cut out one (or more!), allocate your savings for a specific purpose, whether it’s for a major purchase, vacation or simply building up your savings account.
15. Rearrange your least favorite area of your space
You know that corner that never looks right or that chair that only serves as a dumping ground for laundry? Or your messy snack cupboard? Consider what it is about the area that isn’t working for you and rearrange, purge and redecorate until it brings you joy!
16. Make a plan to tackle that outstanding task/project that you’ve been putting off
We all have one (or dozens!)😩 of these! Whether it’s creating a photo album from the vacation you took six months ago or tackling a project around the house, pick something that’s been on your list for forever and make finally make a plan to get it done. (Or, even consider outsourcing it by hiring someone on Task Rabbit to do it for you!)
17. Donate clothes and household items you no longer love or use
Who doesn’t love purging? January is a great time of year to evaluate what you haven’t worn or used in a while and determine if you still need it. Drop off gently used items and you’ll instantly feel lighter and happier.
18. Change out your air, water & ice filters
When was the last time you replaced your air, water and/or ice filters? Do it now and you’ll remember you updated everything in January. Bonus points: set up a reoccurring reminder so you know exactly when to switch them next. Hint: Air filters should be changed every 20-45 days if you have more than one pet or allergies, 60 days if you have 1 dog or cat and 90 days if you’re pet free.
19. Set a time limit for screen time
Guilty of mindless scrolling? Monitor your screen time and set up time limits on your most used apps to create more time for the things you want to spend on in 2020. Need an app for this? Check out OffTime.
20. Make a new playlist
Whether you need a new motivating workout playlist, want to create a relaxing night time list or want to mix up your usual work playlists, creating a new set of songs that inspire and calm you is a great way to dive into 2020! (Or there is a ton of great playlist inspo in this Real Women Approved Playlist Roundup!)