Life can move pretty fast. When early morning subway rides meet late dinners, one too many cups of coffee, and a work day that’s not-so-9-to-5, it’s hard to find the time to put in some Leslie-Knope level effort into yourself.
With New Year’s resolutions peering into our near future, now is a great time to recommit to simple habits that will help you achieve your life goals.
Here, I’ve rounded up five simple habits that don’t take much effort, but they will help fulfill some major life goals:
1. Make time for breakfast
Don’t be the typical twenty-something living on ice pops and cigarettes. If you want to start following your dreams of achieving life goals, you’ve got to give your mind and body the energy it needs. Research has shown us eating breakfast not only reduces weight gain and diabetes, but it also enhances cognitive functions (memory, creativity, learning, & more!). Jack Dorsey, Square CEO and Twitter co-founder, enjoys two hard-boiled eggs with soy sauce. Kelly Ripa eats yogurt and granola for breakfast. It’s time to limber up and leap over that hurdle seven times a week.
2. Embrace change
Some people have the life and career they’ve always wanted. But, if you’re one of the many not enjoying your current status, it’s time to change your direction. It’s time to shape your life in a way the makes you happy. We set life goals to change our lives. Design a path that leads to your life goal that allows you to enjoy the journey along the way. From travel, activities, and friends, what do you want out of life? Figure it out and make the change.
“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” – Charles Darwin
3. Take a moment to enjoy the small things
Forging down the path of one of your life goals can be intimidating. Stop in the middle of the day to catch your breath and appreciate the small things. Dedicate one hour a day (preferably the morning or when you’re feeling overwhelmed) to reflection and meditation.
Think about what you would like to accomplish for that day, and then get started. Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.com, has practiced meditation for over ten years. Oprah Winfrey, CEO of Harpo Productions Inc, believes in the “stillness” of meditation, and it allows her to cope with her hectic world. Meditation will help structure your time and be more productive. You will be ready to take calculated risks and experiment in bold new directions.
4. Invest your money
What do all millionaires and billionaires have in common? They invest. You don’t have to skip your daily latte or spend your Sunday clipping coupons. Think like a mogul and start investing. Don’t rely on your employer for financial security, take control and begin building a stake in your future. Saving alone won’t get you there. Set yourself up to have the financial freedom to enjoy your life goals with ease. Over time, investing will grow wealth and give you the strength to pursue an entrepreneurial path.
“Always invest for the long term.” – Warren Buffett
5. Live within your means
Embrace your humble habits and get into the habit of spending minimally now and it will help you have much more later. A 2013 study suggests that adults who grow up with fewer financial resources are more likely to be heavy spenders during times of economic crisis, whereas those who grew up wealthier will respond to tough times by cutting back. If you want to achieve life goals, live within your means.
Take a look at Sam Walton, Walmart founder, who drove 1979 Ford F150 pickup truck. Or, look at Ingvar Kamprad the Ikea founder, who always flies commercial. Although, both are millionaires, they both live well below their means. Next time you’re in danger of hurting your bottom line, ask yourself: Have I saved up for this? Do I need this? Will this delay me from meeting my life goals. Living smartly below your means and saving your money rather than showcasing it will help you achieve life goals faster and with less stress.