ProductivitySelf-Care

20 Ways To Reset, Reflect, And Refresh For The New Year

A guide to help you reset your frame of mind, reflect on what happened in the past year, and recharge your batteries so you can start the new year with a solid plan of attack! Dream big and go get 'em!

How are you feeling that the year is practically over? Excited, overwhelmed, indifferent? Despite the rush of the holidays and madness to tie up loose ends before year-end, I’m a big believer that you can still ring in the new year with a sense of calm and preparedness in order to tackle new goals and big dreams.

A guide to help you reset your frame of mind, reflect on what happened in the past year, and recharge your batteries so you can start the new year with a solid plan of attack! Dream big and go get 'em!I’m actually pretty dang excited for the new year because I’m planning to make it adventurous, fulfilling, and thoroughly enjoyable. This past year was great and all, but I wouldn’t credit it with being the best year ever.

Also, I know I’m in need of a break because I honestly forgot the other day whether we were in the year 2015 or 2016. Halp.

To avoid getting foggy brain (see above) and ensure you feel calm instead of overwhelmed during this hectic time, I’ve come up with 20 ways you can reset, reflect, and recharge so you can start the new year with a solid plan of attack.

So grab a notebook, your planner, and a cup of tea, and write down anything that comes to mind while you’re reading this post. Bring it on, 2016!

Reset Your Buttons

A guide to help you reset your frame of mind, reflect on what happened in the past year, and recharge your batteries so you can start the new year with a solid plan of attack! Dream big and go get 'em!

1. Unfollow and unsubscribe

Get rid of excess baggage by decluttering your social media feeds and unsubscribing from uninspiring newsletters. Use Unroll.Me to see how many email lists you’re actually signed up for (you’ll be shocked) and say bye Felicia to any that don’t help you out.

2. Decide what to let go of

Which commitments, bad habits, and maybe even relationships are causing you more stress than enjoyment? Think of 1-3 aspects of your life that you could let go of to create more balance and contentment.

3. Reduce decision fatigue

The main reason I choose to live a simpler life is because my brain goes into overdrive if I’m faced with too many choices. Marie Forleo has a great video about decision fatigue and how simplifying your options can really help give your brain a break.

4. Declutter your inbox

Take 20 minutes or so to go through your email account(s) and delete anything that you don’t need anymore. Organize the rest into categories or folders. And make sure you haven’t forgotten to follow up on anything important so you can go into the new year without any unwanted surprises!

5. Healthify your pantry

If you want to start the year on a healthier note (like the majority of people do), slowly start getting rid of the junk food in your cupboards and fridge so that you can replace it with healthier options in the new year. Snacks are a great place to start making the switch – check out this list of healthy snack ideas if you need help getting started!

6. Organize your digital files & back them up

Now is the time to get rid of those files and graphics that you saved to your desktop but aren’t actually going to use. Delete them or start organizing them. Also take the time to back up important documents (and your blog if you have one) because losing all of your hard work ain’t fun.

7. Recharge your batteries

In order to get closer to making your big goals a reality, you need to make time to relax in the midst of the craziness. If you’re constantly pushing yourself to the point where you lose sleep and neglect your health, the outcome of your work will never truly be the best you can produce. Take a step back, stop rushing (here’s how), and give yourself time to breathe before the New Year.

Reflect On The Past Year

A guide to help you reset your frame of mind, reflect on what happened in the past year, and recharge your batteries so you can start the new year with a solid plan of attack! Dream big and go get 'em!

8. Reflect on your accomplishments

Take some time to reflect on what you’ve accomplished in the past year and what you’re proud of. I’ve found that keeping a one line a day journal helps me remember both the little things and bigger life events.

Answer this: I am proud of myself for ________

9. Ask if you treated yourself with respect

Did you give yourself credit for everything you accomplished? Or did you doubt yourself one too many times? Reflect on how you can treat yourself like you would a dear friend, and strive to be kind to yourself more often.

Answer this: I will treat myself with respect by ________

10. Reflect on your productivity & time management

Do you feel as if you were on-top of your projects and tasks or were you always struggling to catch up? Is your current productivity strategy working for you or do you need to try another method in 2016? Here are 3 different ways you can manage your to-do list!

Answer this: I am most productive when I ________

11. Think about how you express gratitude

Most of us tend to reflect on what we’re grateful for when the year comes to an end, but have you expressed your gratitude to others? Share how you feel by writing a letter, making a phone call, or sending a gift to someone to tell them how grateful you truly are.

Answer this: I will express gratefulness by ________

12. Ask yourself how you can be more calm

If you’ve been stressing out and wondering how you’ll ever manage to get everything done on your to-do list, it’s important to encourage yourself to calm down and take a breath. The never-ending to-do lists are probably not going away anytime soon, so you’re going to have to schedule in frequent ‘calming down sessions.’ Try adding more mindfulness into your everyday with these tips.

13. Consider how you could improve your relationships

How have you been a good friend, child, sibling, and co-worker lately? Maybe you haven’t and need to reflect on how you can improve your relationships with others. Think about those you spend the majority of your time with (significant others, co-workers) and those you rarely see (faraway grandparents, friends from college).

Answer this: I will nourish my relationship with (name) by ________

Refresh and Prepare for Epicness

A guide to help you reset your frame of mind, reflect on what happened in the past year, and recharge your batteries so you can start the new year with a solid plan of attack! Dream big and go get 'em!

14. Set three monthly goals

Instead of New Year’s resolutions which aren’t exactly a recipe for success, try setting yourself three goals at the beginning of each month. I’ve been doing this for a year now, and while I haven’t always followed through with every goal I’ve set, I’ve gotten a better sense of what my priorities are (for example, I can write every day for a month but not meditate).

15. Plan one nerve-wracking activity

Everyone has at least one thing they’ve wanted to try but have been too afraid to make it happen. I’ve been wanting to try circus classes for a while (you know, swinging on the trapeze), but maybe you want to try pole dancing or a running a marathon. See if there’s a groupon deal and just go for it!

16. Bring ease to your daily routine

How can you make your days just a little bit easier? Maybe you need to find a balance between scheduling and spontaneity or perhaps you need a formula for getting you out of bed in the morning. Also think about what you could start automating and delegating to other people in order to lighten your workload.

17. Decide which things you will make time for

Which activities, commitments, and people do you want to make priorities in your life? Think about how you want to feel every day (calm, energized, fulfilled?) and whether they will contribute to or deprive you of that feeling.

18. Define or revisit your core values

Your core values are basically the guiding principles for everything you do, and knowing your top five can help you make tough decisions more easily. Here’s a list of 500+ to choose from (sounds daunting, but you’ll see that many of them don’t appeal to you).

Wanna know my core values? Genuineness, mindfulness, inquisitiveness, practicality, and simplicity. I try to make sure that each blog post I write and every decision I make reflects those values in some way.

19. Think of one place you’d like to visit & schedule it

Instead of keeping a city or country on your bucketlist, take one step toward making it a reality and schedule it into your calendar. Once it’s scheduled, you can start to figure out how the heck you’re going to make it work!

20. Choose your word for the year

For the past two years, I’ve been using Susannah Conway’s Unraveling The Year Ahead workbooks to reflect on the past year and decide on a word to guide the next year. My word for 2016? Possibility. A lot of time I talk myself out of things because I imagine the worst outcomes, but this year I want to think more about the possibility that things could go well and how great opportunities arise when you just put yourself out there.

How are you going to reset before the new year?

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Catherine Beard
Hi, I'm Catherine! The Blissful Mind is your guide to being the calmest, healthiest, most productive version of yourself. Whether you're trying to slow down, de-stress, or feel more content, I’m here to help make life a little less complicated.
  • Rachael Kable

    Great article! I especially love the idea of setting three monthly goals… It can be so easy to lose track of the overall picture without heart driven goals! I also love the concept of choosing one place to visit and actually scheduling it in. I’ve been meaning to take a trip to the beach for about 2 years now and it just hasn’t happened! Time to stop “intending” and start planning:) Rach xx

    • Thank you so much, Rachael! I’ve had a couple of places on my bucketlist for a while now, and I know I just need to narrow it down and make it happen!

  • This was exactly what I needed to read today! I’ve been thinking about what I want for 2016 and the steps I want to take to simplify my life and just be more mindful about, well, everything. These are some really great actionable tips that I’ll definitely put into practice. Thank you so much for sharing!

    • I’m so glad this came to you at the right time, Manda! And I love that you want to simplify your life for 2016 xx

  • Les @ The Balanced Berry

    I so needed to hear this today! Lately I have been feeling incredibly down about everything, and am really hoping to start the new year off on a better foot. Thanks so much for the great tips – I can’t wait to try so many of them! (especially the monthly goal setting and inbox decluttering)

    • I’m sorry you’ve been feeling that way, Les! I really hope you get your mojo back soon because I’m excited to see what you do in 2016! xx

  • Such an informative one! Gotta start from declutter my inbox and massively reduce my subscription list. Thank you Catherine :)

    Real Life Nerd // http://www.vivienekok.com

    • I think it’s going to be such a good feeling to start the new year with a clean inbox haha. Glad you liked this post, Viviene! <3

  • Great post Catherine. I just signed up to unroll.me and found 78 subscriptions! *gasp* Let the unsubscribing party begin. Bye Felicia!

  • Ok, I’m back. The rollup feature on unroll.me?! Epic! I love this. Thanks Catherine!

  • I love everything about this. I’m definitely in need of resetting, reflecting and refreshing. Last week, I turned up to work with two different shoes on. Seriously. I am 23 years old, and incapable of putting matching shoes on. I blame my university deadlines, I had serious brain fog last week. Now my deadlines are over, I’m winding down and I will definitely be using this tips.

    • HAHA Rosie, I am so sorry for laughing but that’s hilarious. I hope things are a little less foggy now that your deadlines are over! xx

  • Thank You for this post. It came at exactly the time I needed it. I will try my hardest to put all 20 ways to use in 2016.

  • Such an awesome post, Catherine! I love your ways to reflect on the upcoming year. I love that you said reevaluate core values. I’m excited to go through the list and really define mine. Also, I would love to schedule visiting someplace new. I like that idea of just putting it on the calendar! The problem now is figuring out the place haha! Thanks for all these tips, friend!

    • It’s a long list, but it’s really interesting to see which ones resonate with you! And I’m totally in the same boat – I don’t know where to visit first haha. Berlin, Vienna, and Prague are at the top of my list right now!

  • These are all really helpful! Love that unroll me app, such a genius idea to get rid of all that spam! x

    Jasmin Charlotte

  • Chrissa – Physical Kitchness

    Oh my gosh I love all these tips. Totally unique and seriously so true – I would relieve so much stress and clutter following these. ON IT! Thanks girl!

    • Haha thank you, Chrissa! I’m glad you think they’re unique because I always try to come up with tips that aren’t too overdone!

  • Great post dear and great reminders to think about!

  • I really need to go through and unfollow a lot subscribed email You’re so right! It’ll make a difference in my day to day life because I check my email constantly!

    • I turned off email notifications on my phone because I would always check as soon as I heard the noise! So distracting. Especially when it’s an email that I’m not even interested in! Haha.

  • What genuine and fresh goals / intentions to set for the new year. I definitely plan on visiting that website to manage my email subscriptions and evaluate the relationships I want to hold onto and those I plan to move on from. Thank you!

    • unroll.me is amazing! It feels like you’re letting go of baggage when you unsubscribe from all those emails haha. Thank you so much, Cayanne!

  • I am so eager to welcome 2016. I don’t know, for me it means I can start over, even if I know that I can ‘start over’ whenever I want. I wrote your tips in my notebook and I will definitely do most of them :) But first, I need to find time for myself ahah :)

    • I agree – it feels like a fresh start! But yes, find time for yourself first! That’s the most important thing :)

  • I also do Susannah’s workbooks to choose a word each year! I haven’t chosen mine for 2016 yet though … need to get started!

    There are so many great tips here. I love the journal prompts, and I love how you talked about core values (I’m a little obsessed with values because they have so much power to change your life!) Ooh – and I love you monthly goals of course. I think I will be stealing this idea for next year (with a bit of a twist). It’s so easy to lose sight and become scattered brained if you don’t have focus on your priorities.

    Have a happy holiday and thanks for sharing so much wonderfulness (as always!) xx

    • I’m totally obsessed with core values too. I printed them out in a huge font and stuck them in the front of my binder so I always see them! Happy holidays, my dear!

  • amz

    I’m so thankful to have stumbled across your page last week! I have devoured your site and I literally CAN NOT WAIT to use Susannah’s workbooks and your tips to really plan for 2016 and make it the best year possible.

    Seriously, your blog is fantastic. It’s like a little dose of hope and help every time I visit <3

  • Ooh, thanks for the core values link! I remember reading about this concept on Simply + Fiercely a while back and have been meaning to think about it more.
    I love the practical suggestions here too, like cleaning out old digital files. It’s amazing how much of a difference that can make in one’s psychological state! :) Also, can I ask what backup system you use? I’ve been meaning to do this for a while but have been putting it off. I’ve heard Backup Buddy is good but if you have another suggestion I would be interested to hear it!

  • Just put my email into unroll.me and found out I’m subscribed to 100 lists. Glad to be letting some of those stay behind in 2015!!