22 Ways to Become Happier, Healthier and Wealthier in 2022
These simple habits of people who live well, laugh and love life are easy to make your own.
As we approach the New Year, we look forward to all the wonderful possibilities and ways to manifest the life we’ve always imagined. No need for a complete overhaul — adopting some new habits can give you a wellness and financial reset that’s especially useful at this stage of life when cliché resolutions just won’t cut it. Whether you’re seeking economic stability or trying to gain mental clarity, possibilities lie ahead.
- Say yes to new experiences. Stepping outside your comfort zone can lead to new friends, new passions and new perspectives. Shonda Rhimes famously committed to an entire year of saying yes to everything. “I am only just beginning to understand that the very act of saying yes is not just life-changing, it is life-saving,” she wrote in her 2015 memoir.
- But get better at saying no. Save your time and energy for people and things that feel like fun, not a chore.
- Compliment a stranger. Kindness (given or received) boosts our levels of a hormone called oxytocin and releases dopamine and serotonin, which are naturally occurring chemicals that help to regulate our mood. If someone does you a solid, pay it forward.
- Crank up the music. A recent study found a correlation between listening to music and improved cognitive functioning. Play an instrument? This pastime can help stave off dementia, according to research.
- Protect your peace. Between new variants of COVID-19 and the ongoing fight against racial injustice, it’s easy to feel anxious. Know that it’s perfectly fine to avoid triggering news when needed, especially right before bedtime.
- Think like a millionaire. Ownership builds wealth. Fractional investing allows you to own part of a company whose share price might put it out of reach. The Public app makes it easy and fun to buy and sell stocks with no fees and various themes (e.g., home and garden) to choose from. You can join with as little as $1. Similar micro-investing apps are Acorns, Robinhood and SoFi Invest.
- Count your blessings. Writing down the things you’re thankful for may help to lower stress levels and boost immunity, which is especially important during a pandemic.
- Try a new fruit or vegetable. Don’t settle for the same old salad or smoothie. Try dragon fruit, persimmon, purple sweet potatoes, kumquats or other fruits and vegetables in your diet. You’ll enjoy new flavors, textures and colors while fighting inflammation and lowering your risk of heart disease.
- Mask up and go to your annual checkups. This isn’t the time to ignore mammograms, Pap smears, colonoscopies and other preventative health screenings that could save your life.
- Create multiple streams of income. Flip your passion, like photography, cooking or event planning into a side hustle. Who knows? It could even lead to a career change.
- Check your withholding. Consider boosting your 401K contributions, especially if you’re anticipating a pay increase. The labor shortage will boost raises for many this year.
- Be gentle with yourself. Perfectionism keeps us from embarking on new adventures for fear of not being good enough. Striving for whatever your best is given the present reality is a much healthier option.
- Break up with your snooze button. Waking up and going to bed at a set time every day can help you sleep better.
- Talk to yourself. Improve your mindset through positive affirmations. Take it a step further by tailoring each statement to suit your own life.
- Reach higher. Setting new goals can provide a sense of purpose, fulfilment and momentum, which is especially important as we age.
- But be flexible. The quicker you can pivot when things don’t go as planned, the less likely you are to dwell on the past.
- Avoid late fees. Many companies offer a small discount when you enroll in automatic payments, which may also help improve your credit score in the long run.
- Share a good laugh. From increased blood flow to improved memory and reduced stress relief, laughter really is the best medicine.
- Celebrate you. Instead of rewarding yourself only occasionally with a designer purchase or lavish vacation, treat yourself more often with an affordable bottle of wine, a relaxing massage or takeout from your favorite restaurant.
- Trim grocery bills. With soaring food prices, consider store brands. Though cheaper than brand names, generic products are often equal in quality.
- Care for your crown — and your coins. Sisters spend a pretty penny on our hair with monthly and even weekly salon visits. While cuts and color should be left to the pros, deep conditioning and hot oil treatments, which usually cost extra, can be done at home using products from your kitchen.
- Connect to mental-health resources. Apps like Talkspace and BetterHelp make it easier to access therapy and feel less alone, even when you’re stuck at home.