Fourteen 2014 Resolutions:

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A new year has come. Here are some resolutions based on lessons learned in 2013 that we should put into practice for 2014.

1) Measure yourself not on the size of your waist, but on the depth of your kindness and understanding.

2) Do not compare yourself to other people— be it in size, struggle, or achievements.

3) Practice mindfulness. Just as you might practice mindful eating, try living mindfully. Savor each small moment: a smile from a stranger, a rainbow after a thunderstorm, the tranquility of awaking without an alarm.

4) Don’t be afraid to say “no. Maybe you believe you can handle a million tasks at once. Maybe you like helping others by agreeing to their requests. Whatever the reason, not being able to say “no” is a sure way to burn out quickly. Ask yourself first if: 1. Is this something I want to do?   2. Do I have the time and resources to complete it?

5) Find something you belief in. Live is much more satisfying when you live it with passion.

6) Open yourself up to love. I don’t even mean the romantic love. Every interaction you have with someone should come from a place of love and respect. Being vulnerable and open to others ultimately leads to more personal happiness (see: @BreneBrown ‘s studies on the matter. http://brenebrown.com/my-blog/ )

7) Make more wishes. You may not believe in luck, but wishing on a star/11:11/etc helps you check in with what you really desire. When you are reminded by what you find meaningful, you can better pursue it.

8) Take a deep breath before yelling. Impulsivity causes the most hurtful and overdramatic comments. Before you say anything, take a second to put things in perspective. What might the other person been thinking? How much does it really affect you? If the incident is very impactful, by all means, speak up. More often than not, you may find yourself burning less bridges.

9) Start more sentences with “I feel.” “I feel” is one of the most versatile phrases. Your feelings are indisputable and can never wholly be felt by another person. For this reason, starting sentences with “I feel” often leads to deeper, less argumentative discussion. Try it next time you find yourself forced into a conversation about religion or politics.

10) Judge less. This is secretly the number one piece of advice, in general. Sure, office gossip has been shown to increase bonding and add additional social worth, but it is toxic to your soul in the long run. Being critical of others will only serve as a reminder that they are just as critical of you. Accept the fact that people make different choices.

11) There is no such thing as good or bad foods. There is no such thing as good or bad people. We value all food for the sustenance it provides. Similarly, there are good attributes in everyone. Yes, even that co-worker who always shows up late and that professor who gives a pop quiz right after a holiday.

12) Don’t be afraid to reinvent yourself. At the end of it all, you are the one who has to be satisfied with who you’ve become. Holding back on who you are just because you worry about what society may think is a travesty. Free yourself before it’s too late.

13) Remember, this year is not guaranteed. Find the good in each day; some will not be able to see another.

14) Remember that a year is only 365 days. When things get rough, take every day one day at a time. In times when things are truly overwhelming, there’s no shame taking a day hour by hour either.

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