Goals & Habits, Stress & Self-Care

31 Things You Can Still Do This Year

Are you ready to wish good riddance to 2020?

Has this year exhausted your patience and zapped your energy?

It’s been tough for most of us, and brutally hard for some. But I think it’s a shame to wish 2020 behind us. Not only is a year a fairly arbitrary measure, but it doesn’t look like the world will magically solve all its problems in time for January 1st. I’ve no idea what lies ahead for 2021 but, given that I live in an earthquake zone, I can’t afford to assume that next year will be smoother than this one. Wishing this year away in the blithe belief that blissful things are ahead strikes me as wasteful, and maybe a touch arrogant too.

31 Things You Can Still Do This Year | Pauline Wiles

But you’re tired, right?

I get it. December 2020 probably isn’t the month you’re going to run your first marathon, publish your epic trilogy, or learn Icelandic. Nonetheless, there are small, meaningful things you can achieve to give yourself a sense of satisfaction and make the world just a little better.

Caution: I’m not for one moment suggesting you do all of these! I’ll probably manage about half a dozen. But even a single one of these suggestions is better than nothing:

31 Things You Can Still Do This Year

  1. Buy a gift made by a small business.
  2. Begin one healthy habit. (I intend to do plank for one minute, every day in December.)
  3. Explore what regular journalling could do for you.
  4. Say hello to someone who might be lonely.
  5. Clear out a drawer.
  6. Light a candle for someone you’ve lost.
  7. Take a pause to review your year.
  8. Make soup from scratch.
  9. Reconnect with an old friend.
  10. Ask me to make a start on your website project. Or…
  11. Learn to build your website yourself, for free.
  12. Go to bed 20 minutes early, 3 nights in a row.
  13. Join the trend and attempt a game of chess.
  14. Write a note to Santa.
  15. Read a book from somewhere you’d love to visit.
  16. Watch the pilot episode of a classic TV show you’ve never seen.
  17. Write a letter to your future self.
  18. Pick one day to eat no sugar.
  19. Find a puddle to splash in. (#31 on this festive list)
  20. Identify 12 good things that you observed in 2020.
  21. Celebrate the solstice.
  22. Organize your photos or recipes.
  23. Donate to a meaningful cause.
  24. Make a list of everyone who’s improved your life this year. Here’s my online thank-you list from last year.
  25. Doodle in your new planner.
  26. Pretend your internet is down for a few hours.
  27. Take a day off social media.
  28. Memorize a decent chunk of Pi.
  29. Hang up some twinkly lights.
  30. Unsubscribe from at least 5 email newsletters.
  31. Learn “thank you” in a new language.

What else did you start the year hoping to achieve, that is still within reach? Pick something small, and enjoy the satisfaction that comes from getting it done. 2020 may not be the best year of your life, but it can still bring progress and a little pleasure.

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4 Comment

  1. Reply
    Jena C. Henry
    December 1, 2020 at 4:53 am

    Happy December Pauline. Thanks for the list. In October, we decided to downsize, so we are selling our hone and vacation cottage- which means I definitely have Number 5 covered. Looking forward to new adventures! Best to you!

    1. Reply
      December 1, 2020 at 8:36 am

      Wow, exciting! Yes, I’m sure you are clearing many drawers, in that case. Good luck with the logistics ahead!

  2. Reply
    Gabi Coatsworth
    December 1, 2020 at 7:20 pm

    Good list, Pauline! One minute plank, eh? Rather you than me!

    1. Reply
      December 2, 2020 at 7:55 am

      Glad you found it useful, Gabi! The plank isn’t too bad. Not sure I’ll get to two minutes though 😉

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