What You Need To Do To Make 2017 The Best Year EVER

Every year starts the same: optimism fills the air and lofty goals are set. But come December (heck, March), those dreams are crushed and life goes back to status quo.

Let’s make 2017 anything but “another year.” Instead, let’s keep the momentum alive and make this the best year EVER.

Here are nine things to do to ensure that 2017 is your year!

1—Sleep. Pulling all nighters and/or staying out until 3 a.m. may seem like the “college” thing to do, but sleeping until noon or literally needing caffeine to live is bad for you for, like, 37 reasons. Try to stick to a bedtime during the week and you will quickly see how much more time you have to be productive and actually do things (instead of dream about them)! (Photo via @biancacanales)


2—Explore Mother Nature. There is nothing more beautiful than Mother Nature. Don’t just experience its splendors from an Instagram photo. I don’t care if it is walk in a local forest preserve or a trip to a national park, unplug and unwind in the fresh air. (Photo via @californiachloe)


3—Write it out. Have big (or little) plans for this year? Keep your dreams and yourself accountable by jotting them down. Plus, who doesn’t love the feeling of crossing things off a list? (Photo via @loramb_)


4—Collect memories, not things. Instead of obsessing over material items, harness that energy into spending time with your loved ones, fostering relationships and connecting with strangers. Those memories will last far longer than any trendy top. (Photo via @jaidabrinkley_)


5—Make later now. How many times have you “saved” an outfit for later and never ended up wearing it? Make every day a special occasion. Feel like wearing a fur to a Tuesday morning lecture? Go for it. Want to wear a floral dress in the middle of winter? You do you! (Photo via @queenhalpal)


6—Set a daily mantra. I know it seems cheesy, but every morning wake up and set a mantra for the day. It doesn’t have to be super philosophical. (A personal favorite of mine is from Miss Britney Spears: “Stronger than yesterday.”) That way, mo matter how stressed you get or what unexpected curveballs are thrown your way, you can fall back on your mantra and power through the situation. (Photo via @melaniebutr0n)


7—Be your #1 fan. Here’s a newsflash: you’re pretty awesome. And this year you are going to do some pretty awesome things. So don’t be afraid to be proud and reward yourself with a compliment, manicure or a sweet treat when the time comes. (Photo via @shannamerceron)


8—Take the plunge. I spent three years contemplating whether or not to chop my hair. So when I finally went under the scissors, I was equal parts ecstatic (because I loved my new look) and disappointed (because I spent so much time angsting over it). The moral of the story? This year try a new look that scares you. Cut bangs, dye your hair ice blonde or, heck, try both! You’ll be surprised and thrilled with the outcome (or at least proud of yourself for giving it a try). (Photo via @mixed.hues)


9—Step away from the screen. I love technology as much as the next person, but dependency and appreciation are two separate things. Take photos with an actual camera. Read a physical book. Step away from the screen and give your thumbs a break while reconnecting with interests and skills you thought were lost to modern technology. (Photo via @haleysimp)