It’s a new year so time to check in with our habits + see what should stay + what should go.

Over the last few years I’ve crafted these 12 habits + activities that bring joy into my life. There’s nothing magical about them. They’re just things I do that bring happiness into my life in one way or another. The key is that I’ve spent the last few years fine-tuning them and sifting out what works and doesn’t work. Today I thought I’d share them with you.

Which of these do you do? If you specifically don’t do some of these, why not?

I invite you to try implementing one per month in 2016 and see what impact they have. Feel free to join my free Bliss-Seekers 2016 community to share your experience.


1. Make exercise a habit and get it out of the way

I’ve been someone who resisted regular exercise for a lot of my life. I didn’t realise at the time how sluggish I felt. Part of the problem was I would always leave it to the end of the day to do and then talk myself out of it because I felt tired. So I was sluggish and then tired, going round in a loop.

In the last few years I’ve flipped my day around and started doing my exercise in the morning. Every (OK, most) morning(s) by 6am I am doing a 30 minute work out. I motivate myself by choosing a monthly challenge which gets harder as the month goes on while I, in theory, get better at it. At first I would talk myself out of it, but over time it’s become my new normal. If I don’t get out of bed and work out most mornings then I tend to feel like I haven’t started it in the best way.

Of course, there’s no requirement to exercise in the morning if you aren’t a morning person. My point here is simply that making exercise a habit is, unsurprisingly, a fairly key component of a joyful life. If you plan it into your day in an unavoidable way – whether that’s doing it first thing before the day gets away from you, or by integrating it into your daily life by doing something like walking to work – then it becomes part of the fabric of your day.

For me, once I’ve done my workout then any further exercise I do that day is for fun or a bonus.

Play with this idea and see what your new normal could be.

2. Never miss a Monday

This is one of my favourite mantras. If things go a bit off piste at the weekend then I always reset on a Monday. I might eat or drink more than is ideal or not get enough sleep towards the end of the week – so ‘never miss a Monday’ reminds me to bring my ideal habits back into swing and press the reset button.


3. Drink plenty of water

This is so obvious. We get told to do this all the time. I’ve known it forever cerebrally and never quite managed to fully engage. I’m not sure if I didn’t completely believe that I needed it or that it would make any difference.

Recently I decided to commit to drinking 8 glasses of water every day just to see what would happen.

I’m not going to sugarcoat it. I needed to go to the ladies a lot more than usual!

Then I realised over time that I actually felt better. Less hungry. More satisfied. I had a clearer head. Fewer headaches.

This drink plenty of water thing is an actual thing. It’s true. It’s real. So just do it.

4. Use ‘dead time’ to inspire yourself

I use the term ‘dead time’ as pockets of time where it’s not really clear what you should be doing. It might be in between appointments. You might be travelling from one place to another. It can be a state of limbo or a bit of a waste as you wait to get to the next usable moment.

I like to use this time to inspire myself. When I’m driving to work, waiting for a train or eating alone –  I listen to podcasts or mantra music. My favourites at the moment are Tim Ferris and Snatam Kaur. Check them out.

5. Choose a simple menu and stick to it

My biggest weakness is food and drink. I’m at my worst when I have too much choice. Let’s say I’m rushing to get to work and haven’t had breakfast. I’m more liable to choose something unhealthy if I haven’t planned it. Similar to my exercise habit, my evening meal can also head speedily in an unhealthy direction if I’m left to think about it when I’m tired and done for the day.

My way of dealing with this is to choose a fairly simple menu + stick to it. For breakfast, I tend to drink a homemade smoothie. I also have a couple of other options up my sleeve incase I’m bored of the smoothies one day, but that’s my main go-to option.

Lunch is normally a nourish bowl – so I just make sure I get greens, healthy fats, good protein, a good range of veg and complex carbs in one bowl. Normally I put this together myself from the fridge, having already planned my weekly shop to ensure there’s plenty of the right ingredients in there. If I’m out, I try to build one where I am. Simple and healthy, and I’m generally not tempted to have something bad for me because I know what I’m looking for.

Try something like this out for  a week and see what it does for you. I love how it frees up my brain power so I no longer have to obsess about food or what I’m going to eat next. I just follow the menu and I’m done.



6. Eat the frog

Brian Tracy coined this term. The idea is you get the most important and challenging things you need to do done straight away. Don’t log onto Facebook and get distracted. Be clear about what the frog is and go ahead and eat it straight away! Every day. Try it for a week and see how it impacts your productivity.

7. Make your work space inspirational

Most of us spend a lot of time working so all the more reason to ensure that our space inspires us. You can really play with this idea and find a style that suits you. I love having quotes up that are currently resonating with me.

I am also inspired by a tidy space so I start my day by making sure my desk is clear and ready for me to work.

Here’s the current inspirational poster that I’ve printed out:


Think about what inspires and motivates you and decorate your work space with it. A good tip is to think about that quote or picture that makes that AAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRGGHHHH feeling disappear when you’re having a bad day. Whatever that is, pin it up so you can see it.

8. Check your inbox at specific times and practice inbox zero

I talk more about this in The Secrets but the idea here is to limit your time processing inboxes. If we spent all day processing email we’d probably manage to fill the day just doing that. It’s not generally a goal-meeting activity. Decide when you are going to check your email and stick to it. If you really struggle with this then at first just choose very regular intervals. Every hour, on the hour – process your email. Then widen the time period gradually until you find a happy medium.

When you are doing your emails – JUST do your emails. The idea is to process them, make a note of any tasks (more on this in The Secrets) and you’ll hit inbox zero really quickly. And then have a lovely sigh of relief.


9. Outsource wherever you can

This is for those of us who feel guilty at the concept of not doing everything ourselves. You know, we all feel like we should make perfect homemade meals, clean the house to a spotless level and run our side-businesses as a one man (or woman) band.

Nup. This is not for me anymore. I am completely liberated by this wonderful idea of hiring other people to do things I don’t need to do. I love it for 2 reasons. One, because I am helping somebody else achieve their dream. Two, because my time is super valuable and I’m freeing it up.

So play with this idea. Outsource where you can. If you are really tight on money then what about a trade with a friend who has a skill you don’t? Maybe you love cleaning and they love ironing? Or simply treat yourself to outsourcing every now and then and enjoy it as a time luxury.

10. Turn your brain off

We all feel like we should be super-productive all of the time. It’s really not possible and it doesn’t make sense. Our brains all need a little holiday so we can rest and absorb new inputs. We aren’t creative when we don’t rest.

To turn my brain off I love to watch an array of TV shows. Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, Lie To Me. Mostly American TV shows. I read magazines I wouldn’t normally ever buy just to go into a different world for a little while. Occasionally I’ll watch a rom com or read a romance novel.

What do you do to turn your brain off? It’s a good idea to have a few things up your sleeve so you don’t turn to vices.

11. Make your Facebook feed inspirational

A lot of people moan about Facebook and how negative it can be but I think it’s just a platform you can choose to customise in your own way. I’m a member of a lot of inspirational, business and how-to groups on there so they probably actually outnumber the interactions I see from my ‘friends’ on my newsfeed. I generally prefer it that way as I love having a place to log on quickly and be inspired or learn.

A few groups I would recommend: Bliss-Seekers 2016 (this is mine!), Create Your World, Women Inspiring Women.


12. Set goals and plan outcomes

The best thing I do for myself is set goals every month and plan how I am going to target achieving them.

They can be your wildest dreams or they can be simple, small and gentle actions and evolutions.

We do this every month Blissful Bountiful and Beautiful community if you want to do this in an encouraging space.


Which 1 of these could you implement this month?

I invite you to try implementing one per month in 2016 and see what impact they have. Feel free to join my free Bliss-Seekers 2016 community to share your experience.

Love light Raeeka (1)

P.S. If you want to delve deeper into some of these then hop into my free Bliss-Seekers 2016 group and commit to finding your joy.

P.P.S. If you want to accelerate that journey then grab a copy of The Secrets or join my Blissful Bountiful and Beautiful community to access your library of happiness resources today.


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