How to Make 2017 Your Best Year Yet


Happy 2017! If you’re anything like me, this changing season has you feeling inspired to be more productive and creative than ever before. I love the new year because it gives me an excuse to break out the to-do lists and do some serious thinking about my plans and goals for the coming months. (You could say I’m a bit of a self-help nerd.)

With all the hustle and bustle of January, however, it’s easy to forget our initial enthusiasm and change up the plans we have set. Today I’m sharing my best tips for mapping out, and sticking to, your new year’s resolutions. With a concrete plan and some dedication, we can move onward and upward together this year!

Think big picture…but don’t forget the short-term.

It’s important that your goals reflect long-term priorities and align with your values, but they also need to be broken down into measurable steps. Trying to land your dream job? Work out the specifics for how you plan to get there: people to meet, applications to fill out, etc. The more explicit you can be about your plan, the more likely you’ll be able to achieve it.

Envision the objective.

Along the same lines as specificity, I find that the more I can envision myself accomplishing something, the more real it becomes for me. Let’s say you’re looking to wow everyone with a chapter program you’ve put together for next month. Picture yourself in the moment and think about what success would look like before, during and after the presentation. Before you know it, you’ll be standing up there speaking like it’s no trouble at all!

Take time for people.

Whether it’s your sisters, colleagues, friends or family, make a commitment to spending time with the people in your life who matter most. Since I’m traveling for work this year as an LC, I’ve made a habit of scheduling phone calls with friends from home to stay in touch and hear about their lives. It’s a small step that has made a big difference for my well-being, and I know it helps my friends feel appreciated too.

Take time for YOU!

If you’re anything like me, you know that when life gets busy, you tend to power through everything and forget to take time for yourself. Think about what you love doing most: reading, running, cooking, even sleeping! Make that a priority and an essential part of your everyday routine. Doing something intentional for yourself each day will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to take on the world.

Remember that small things matter.

Taking time to appreciate little moments in life can do wonders for your morale. Whether it’s a study date with sisters, a stellar exam grade, or a hot cup of coffee, remember to acknowledge the things that bring you joy. Sometimes the simplest occasions are what make life worth living, and it just takes a bit of extra thought to seek them out and admire them.

At the end of the day, your year is up to you! Embrace the possibilities these next twelve months have to offer. Here’s to a year of growing, learning and experiencing new seasons!


Sarah Ellis,

Leadership Consultant

Theta Tau—Belmont University

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