These aren't habits you should trudge through and eventually resent having to do around the house. These are things you should do because they are the ultimate way to show kindness to yourself, your home and those you share with. No matter how many resolutions you've set for yourself or goals you're aiming for, this year, be kind to yourself in these ways — and make your home a more pleasant place to be in.
1. Face problems head on
Ignoring anything — the dishes, paying the rent, fixing the roof leak, apologizing to your roommate — makes it worse. That's universal. Nothing gets better the longer you ignore it (save maybe like, whiskey). And you know what grows the longer you wait to tackle something? Fear, stress and your aversion to actually tackling the problem. Find whatever method you need to face your issues head on, whether it's finding support, breaking the problem down into more manageable tasks or going for a run first. Don't tuck things into the backs of drawers and close doors while you walk away slowly this year — dive in instead.
2. Make mistakes and fail
How many brilliant discoveries have been missed because of someone who didn't try something because they were afraid of making a mistake? Okay, so like, finally painting your living room that bold shade of magenta isn't going to cure world hunger, but when you dare yourself to try things, big or small, and either succeed or fail, you strengthen yourself and your character. When you do more than just give yourself permission to make mistakes — when you encourage them — the person you are when you walk out your front door is the best version of you, and that's what the world needs more of.
3. Be grateful for absolutely every single thing
Your front porch crumbling? You have the most gorgeous natural light that pours through giant floor to ceiling windows? You should be grateful for every.single.inch. of your home, the "good" and the "bad." Because of course, good and bad are only relative. Cultivating gratitude for everything around you means living in the present, and you might find you see more good than bad after you start practicing being grateful for all of it.
4. Don't assume the worst of those around you
Come home to your kids' toys all over the stairs when you've asked them to pick them up a million times? Did your husband not take the trash out again? We're not suggesting you start ignoring things you don't like — speak up, communicate and work through the inevitable problems that spring up when you share a living space with other humans. What we mean is, don't assume the worst — don't presume that anything anyone does (or doesn't do) has some larger meaning than it does. That they're trying to get back at you or that they don't like you or that this is the way it'll always be. Sometimes those things are true, but most of the time people just forget to do things. But approaching them with gentle reminders and not assumptions of negative intent will reshape your relationships in a profoundly simple way (and at the very least, it'll re-frame your perspective and make your life a little more positive).
5. Indulge in your home's pleasures every moment you can
No, you shouldn't live like today's your last — who would ever vacuum on their last day on the planet? But you shouldn't live like you've got an infinite amount of days ahead of you, because the future is unknown to us all. Don't leave those candles un-burned. Spend those few extra moments snuggling with your dog under your favorite blankets. If your life doesn't leave a lot of room for indulging in these small but meaningful pleasures, make more room.