Poet and body positive activist Sonya Renee Taylor is so on point for saying this: “I want women to know they can revise the ‘New Year, New You’ mantra to say ‘New Year, Same Me’—and that is more than enough… I want women to see the new year as an opportunity not to become some new person but instead to become more deeply in love with who they are today. We stop waiting to become as soon as we realize we already are.” Say word.
The art of living is not so much about transformation as it is about refinement, and that is not something we do every January 1 but every moment of every day. And as we together traverse the twisted, rocky roads of our unique success journeys, it helps to tear a few pages from the playbooks of women in all industries who have been blazing their own trails to badassery for decades.
1. Watch the sunrise
Not literally, but maybe. Most successful women are up by 6 a.m. Business leaders are said to accomplish more in those early hours than the average person does in days. This means getting to bed early too, since sleep deprivation went out of style along with shoulder pads.
2. Have gratitude
We so easily forget what a miracle it is to be alive. Let each day birth you into a state of gratitude for the day ahead, and give thanks for everything that you have.
3. Position yourself
Arianna Huffington, who champions 7-8 hours of sleep a night, wouldn’t be much good to anybody if she didn’t poise herself for the bustling day ahead. She tells Soulcyle: “A big part of my morning ritual is about what I don’t do: when I wake up, I don’t start the day by looking at my smartphone. Instead, once I’m awake, I take a minute to breathe deeply, be grateful, and set my intention for the day.”
Huffington goes on to say, “The connection that conscious breathing gives me is something I can return to hundreds of times during the day in an instant. A conscious focus on breathing helps me introduce pauses into my daily life, brings me back into the moment, and helps me transcend upsets and setbacks.”
5. Set an intention
Write mantras on our mirrors in fuchsia lipstick or find inspirational quotes that throw gas in the goddess tank. Or, depending on what personal improvements we are aching to make, we can assign internal homework, an example being: “I will be straightforward and kind.”
6. Tune in
The Rich Daily reports that Oprah, after her 20-minute meditation, tunes in by playing Scrabble on her iPad while on the treadmill. What each of us does to tune in is as unique to us as our thumbprint. it could be listening to a favorite song and grinding it out, or singing operatic while fixing breakfast. Going for a dewy morning stroll, recording a snippet of a dream, or sketching.
7. Eat more than one worm
A balanced breakfast with carbs, fiber, and protein keeps us lively and our minds sharp. Say yes to whole-wheat toast with avocado mash and a honey-drizzled Greek yogurt on the side. And don’t forget eggs, those little protein giants.
Coffee, green juice, green tea, rooibos, chai, smoothies, hot chocolate, water with lemon, wine, whatever. Without exception, every badass woman alive begins or ends her day with a drink.
9. Get energetic
Most of us will not spend two hours a day working out like Gwyneth Paltrow, but no matter when we get it in, anywhere between 15-45 minutes of exercise a day releases stress and clears the dome…and let’s not forget to stretch! The world’s most successful women get their best ideas during exercise or right after.
10. Dress to impress…YOU
What if every outfit we pulled out of our closet was our favorite? Or…we can just keep it simple and rock our own signature style. For example, fashion designer Isabel Marant dons a daily uniform of tight jeans, flat shoes, a cashmere sweater, and jacket.
11. To-do list, check
Walking through the day in your mind or writing a list of things you hope to accomplish is incredibly centering, and it’s so gratifying to cross things off as you go along.
12. Be mindful
Artist and social entrepreneur Rha Goddess tells “Gala” that she sees personal transformation everywhere: “In every interaction. Every conversation. Every intention. If we’re awake we recognize we have the opportunity – every single moment of the day – to heal, transform or affirm something about the truth of who we are, and what we say is important,” she states.
13. Write to compose yourself
Journaling to actively engage with our thoughts has oodles of benefits, studies claim. It increases our ability to pinpoint and manage our emotions, increases self-awareness and discipline, unlocks creativity, boosts communication skills, and helps us to heal from the daily disappointments of human interaction. Yes to all of that!
14. Just like water
Swim. Drink eight glasses. Splash it on your face. Dunk your weary bones in a full tub with Epsom salts. Have an ongoing love affair with our world’s most precious resource.