January does strange things to us humans. We get overtaken by an urge to cleanse ourselves with various (often unattainable) New Years resolutions. One year while living in London we decided to try a month without booze or meat. We stuck to our guns for that month and discovered some pretty epic vegetarian restaurants and pretty average mocktails. One night I had the audacity to ask for a mock espresso martini – it’s literally a shot with sugar syrup over ice if you’re wondering. Bleurgh.

Anyway it was a small gesture towards our health and it felt good to reach our goal by the end of the month. Some may scoff at such a short length of time to go without two things that our bodies don’t actually need but it was big for us and worth it for the mental satisfaction.

A lot of people think resolutions are crap and maybe they’re right but if it makes you feel good then I reckon go for it. The only trouble is when you break them and end up feeling worse about yourself which is the opposite of the goal right? I think the key with resolutions is to keep them achievable. Don’t set yourself up for disappointment, instead focus on the little things that you can do without making yourself miserable. Here are some suggestions we reckon are totally applaudable and yet won’t leave you crying into a hideously sweet mock margarita.

DISCLAIMER: By no means are we saying we religiously do ALL these things but we’re trying and we reckon that’s doing enough for a mallowpuff.

  • Say no to plastic straws. This one’s inspired by a waste free workshop we went to where the speaker had challenged herself to do this – such a small and yet significant change.
  • Never pass up an opportunity for a swim. It will always make you feel better – even when you’re 8 months pregnant it turns out.
Ocean swim

Ocean swimming while pregnant is one of life’s greatest little pleasures

  • Smile at strangers. This was my least favourite thing about London – how strangers treated each other. There’s something so nice about giving and receiving a smile just because.
  • Start recycling your soft plastics. Find out if your town has this initiative setup and if so, go for it. It’s the one change that has cut our waste in half I reckon. More info about it here.
  • And on that note, start using reusable shopping bags. You will forget the first fifteen times you try but then it will become a habit – keep them in your boot.
  • Travel. Anywhere. Exploring is like a spring clean for your soul.
Paris travel selfie

In one of our fave places on Earth – Montmartre, Paris

  • Cook a recipe you’ve never tried before once a month.
  • Do nothing for at least five minutes a day. Really nothing. So much of our time is spent consuming media – give that brain a break!
  • Skype your overseas friends and family more.
  • If you’re in a relationship start a designated date night.
  • Eat vegetarian once a week.
  • Start using a keep cup.
  • See more of New Zealand. Go for a walk . The more we see of the world the more we realise how frickin lucky we are right here.
Bach view far North

View from the bedroom of a humble kiwi bach we stayed in on a recent trip to the far North

  • Aim for one random act of kindness a week. It could be as small as letting someone in front of you at a cafe or in traffic (looking at you Aucklanders).
  • Breathe. Set aside time each day to breathe in and out at least three times slowly and deeply. My Hypnobirthing practice included this and it’s made me way more zen so I’m going to keep it up, even after baby is born.
  • Make your bedroom a no phone zone. One we need to subscribe to if we’re honest.
  • Listen more. To your family, your partner, your friends, strangers. Pause that story in your head and reeeeeally listen. People will like you more, fact.
  • Go to more live concerts. It’s good for your mental health.
Us at Paul McCartney concert

Us at Paul McCartney’s Mt Smart gig in December 2017 – one of the best live shows we’ve ever been to