September is Self-Improvement Month, which brings an opportunity to start working on ourselves after the incredibly challenging year and a half has been. What is self-improvement? Merriam-Webster defines self-improvement as “the act or process of improving oneself by one’s own actions.”
Whether you’re looking to make significant changes to your life or taking baby steps toward improving, KPG Healthcare has got you covered.
KPG Healthcare’s seven ways to celebrate Self-Improvement Month:
It’s no secret setting goals for yourself can be the push you need to accomplish life’s aspirations. Setting a personal and/or professional goal is a simple way to kickstart self-improvement.
Create a plan on how you are going to accomplish each goal but make sure it is something you can measure and is also timely. Creating a plan forces you to hold yourself accountable, or have a friend, family member or partner help keep you focused.
These goals can be long-term or short-term. Regardless, these goals should help guide you to whatever it is you wish to achieve in this lifetime.
Learn a new skill, activity, or hobby
Have you ever thought about taking up a new hobby? Or you saw something online and thought, “I can do that!”? Now is the time to do it!
Let self-improvement month be the opportunity for you to pick up that thing you saw and go for it. Just remember, no one starts a master in anything they do. Practice makes perfect – trust the process. Don’t be too hard on yourself!
Develop and implement a new habit
Habits…there are healthy habits and not-so-healthy habits. For self-improvement month, we want to focus on healthy habits, whether that’s creating new ones or refining old ones.
We are creatures of habit. Habits can be a challenge to develop and then implement into our lives. According to a 2009 published study in the European Journal of Social Psychology, it can take a person 18 to 254 days to form a new habit. However, it depends on what kind of habit you are trying to develop and implement.
According to this New York Times article, the best way to form a new habit is to tie it to an existing habit. “Look at the patterns in your day and think about how you can use existing habits to create new, positive ones.”
Once you have identified where to tie in a new (easy) habit, it’s time to start practicing it daily as you implement it into your life. Just remember, implemented habits will take time to see any results. Patience is key!
Eating healthy can be exhausting, expensive and sometimes boring, especially when we have so much going on in our lives. It’s easy to go to quick-service restaurants after a long shift but eating healthy has many benefits beyond the physical body.
Eating healthy, which can mean many things from whole grain to organic, lean proteins to fruit and vegetables, has many benefits for the body. Eating healthy foods can improve heart health, reduce cancer risks, improve moods, improve gut health, improve memory, aid in weight loss, manage diabetes, build strong bones and teeth and sleep better.
Changing a diet isn’t an overnight thing, but sticking with it will have better long-term effects for you. Trust the process.
Develop Self-care routines
Self-care comes in many shapes and sizes, but it’s important to start implementing some form of self-care in your daily routines to help relieve stress or to take care of your mental health.
But Self-care is more than just taking care of our mental health. Studies have shown it can boost your physical health, improve emotional health, helps you be kinder to yourself and more. Self-care can be saying “no,” exercising, reading a book, going for a walk, binge-watching a show, cleaning up or even sleeping a full eight hours. If the activity sparks joy for you then that’s all you need to start implementing self-care routines.
Read personal development books
Reading isn’t for everyone, but if you’re looking for the chance to start you should consider personal development books. These books are meant to ignite your critical thinking skills and think hard about how you want to implement any changes in your life.
It’s important to take notes or bookmark pages or paragraphs that speak to you. Elaborate on how these books relate to you and how you want to either change a behavior/habit or try to eliminate it.
Here’s a link to a list of the best self-improvement books.
Write in a daily journal
Writing in a daily journal can be a tricky habit to start – not knowing what to write or when. Start off easy by writing down how you’re feeling in a particular moment or thought that came up during your morning coffee. Journaling allows you the freedom to fully express yourself healthily when emotions can be overwhelming.
Journaling is used to manage stress, reduce stress and cope with emotions such as depression. It can also help prioritize different aspects of your life, recognize any behavioral patterns and provide the opportunity to reflect on positive or negative thoughts.
Journaling is for you and you only, so make it as you see fit.
Self-improvement isn’t an overnight success. Improving oneself is a process and as we continue through life, we will always be looking for ways to improve ourselves. Start small and work your way up. Don’t get discouraged from lack of results or rewards. Trust the process.