With 2018 having clicked over we begin a new year and with the whole end of year chaos chances are you haven’t had much time to reflect – let alone relax – after a busy, stressful year of work and travel.

It’s somewhat ironic that the holiday season falls right at the end of the year, causing a mad rush to the finish line filled with last minute shopping, frantic party rounds, and ‘vacation’ time that can feel like anything but.

In order to truly unwind and take stock of the year gone by, it’s crucial to carve out some time for true reflection and relaxation so you start the new year refreshed.

Here are 7 easy ways to relax and recharge for the New Year.  

1. Schedule Nothing Days

If you’ve spent the past year plane hopping, taking back to back meetings, and working impossible hours, it can be difficult to simply turn all of that off.

Since you’re still in work mode, ease the transition by scheduling relaxation time into your day. Putting at least a few hours of “me time” into your calendar will encourage you to follow through on some much needed down time.

2. Splurge on yourself

Over the last few weeks you’ve probably spent a great deal of time buying gifts for family and friends, don’t forget to splurge on yourself! Reward yourself for a year of hard work by treating yourself to a new toy, a spa treatment or just a completely frivolous experience.

7 Ways to Refresh For the Year - The Wise Traveller

3. Take a travel break

Whether it’s for business or pleasure, travel is quite often both invigorating and draining. Recharge your batteries by taking a break from travel for a few weeks. Let yourself settle into one location, take lots of deep breaths, and savor the feeling of being grounded in one place for a minute.

4. Start your taxes

Sounds strange we know but there is no better way to get a jump start on 2015 than to start your taxes now. Spend 15 minutes a day during your break calculating deductions and collecting receipts, you’ll be surprised how much this relaxes you knowing you have a head start. You’ll feel like a business Zen master who’s fully organized and fully prepared to hit the ground running.

5. Do A Goals Analysis

What were your 2019 goals? Did you meet or exceed them? What worked and what didn’t?

Taking an honest look at the past year will help you make strategic changes in the New Year and make fresh goals that much more achievable and focused.

7 Ways to Refresh For the Year - The Wise Traveller

6. Set First Quarter Goals For 2019

Instead of making New Years’ resolutions, choose one goal you’d like to accomplish during the first quarter of 2019. Planning 12 months in advance is overwhelming and unrealistic. Breaking goals down into manageable chunks is the fastest way to achieve success in the New Year.

7. Do Something Fun

If you do nothing else on this list, make sure to do one fun thing before the end of the year. Choose an activity or experience that is not related to work in any way, and that gives you a sense of pure joy – go ice skating, take a painting class, bake cookies with the kids, or revisit an old, long-forgotten passion.

Sometimes it’s little inspirations like these that give us the greatest insights into our careers and our lives.

Happy New Year!

How do you unwind at the end of a busy year? 

Rebecca Anne Nguyen is a freelance writer and the Founder of TheHappyPassport.com, an inspiration site for solo female travellers.