The Meaning of Life:Thriving, Not Just Surviving

Happy 2016!

So many of us make New Years resolutions and despite all our best intentions, never seem to succeed at achieving them.

Totally not news, right?

I certainly know that I’ve not been 100% successful.

And as the days start passing by, we find ourselves getting caught up in minutiae, heading in the direction of just getting through the day, merely surviving all of the Everything.

This year, I am taking a new approach. I don’t want to just Survive. I want to Thrive!

To achieve this, I am taking things Month by Month.

When we look at a big challenge, it can sometimes be best to view it in small, manageable pieces. This allows us to control our actions and outcomes by not being overwhelmed by the enormity of the situation. We are laying down a foundation.

Each month, I am going to Add (3) Do’s and (3) Don’ts to my goals.

Just as peeling back an onion allows us to see layer after layer, so too will each month allow me to see more clearly what I need to do for the following month.

And to help with achieving these monthly goals, I have researched some apps that will be assisting me. In days leading up to the New Year, I downloaded and utilized these tools and hope that maybe some of you will find them helpful as well.

  1. Habits Wizard: This is a free app with additional For-Fee upgrades. I admit, I paid $7.99 to upgrade because this kid is committing to  thriving! I can create Habits, Schedule Activities, and Track My Progress. It’s easy to use and it’s rewarding to see progress.
  2. Streaks: This is also a free app that allows you to set repetitive daily goals that help you achieve habits gently. It’s super easy to use and my Streaks are daily goals like Walk The Dog, Meditate, Read for a minimum of 10 minutes, etc. It even syncs with Apple Watch and/or your Health app so it works as a pedometer in achieving your chosen goal for steps per day.
  3. Human: Human won Best of App Store 2014 and makes moving even more compelling. It tracks your time moved, encourages and alerts you when you only have a couple minutes to get your steps in, and tells you how awesome you’re being. And who doesn’t like a soulless app reaffirming your worth?
  4.  CARROT: Sarcastic Motivation for getting stuff done is the best way to describe this app.  Jillian is more your style than Coach Bob?  Then CARROT’s for you!

You will also notice that while my Don’ts are pretty general, my Do’s are much more specific. Research has indicated that the more specific our planning, the better the outcome. Instead of just telling myself to meditate daily, I am setting a specific time to meditate. Because Science. (

So without further ado…


The Don’ts

  1. No Alcohol (#DryJanuary)
  2. No Fried Foods
  3. No Playing Brain Games (Bye Lumosity! Bye Elevate!  Even Bejeweled Blitz didn’t make the cut!)

The Do’s

  1. Meditate (Breathe) and Plank at 7am daily. Some people consider coloring the new meditation. (Recolor!)
  2. Move 5000 steps daily (Steps)
  3. Write a 500+ word blog every Sunday, starting at 1pm. (#GrabLifeByTheRains)

I am also setting a couple goals that will continue throughout the year:

  1. Read a Book a month. (GoodReads Book Challenge)
  2. Enroll and Complete an online course per semester. (Coursera) I am enrolled in this course on Happiness that starts on January 18th if you’d like to join me! (A Life of Happiness and Fulfillment)
  3. Instead of buying gifts, create gifts. Whether it’s the gift of time spent together, a creative work to hang in a new home, a mixed CD of music, or maybe even an act of service, I want to spend less and give more. My favorite gifts received were rarely ones that cost money.

So, I hope this post inspires you. I hope that you can find your own path to Thriving this year instead of just Surviving. It’s not so important to follow in my footsteps or anyone else’s but rather find your own path and make your own new, healthy habits. (The Key to Making New Habits Stick)

And don’t be fooled into believing that you need to wait for a better day. There is no better day. There is only NOW.  Let’s make 2016 our year to THRIVE ON!

“Write it on your heart that every day is the best in the year.”—R.W. Emerson

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s