New Year, New You

New Year, New You

How to Achieve Happiness by Becoming the Best YOU

New Year, New You. That’s my 2020 mantra. The question is, how does one do that? The answer: by becoming the best version of yourself! It’s easy to become the best version of yourself if you follow my 5F plan. I believe these 5 “F” words can lead us to self-actualization.

So, what is self-actualization? In the late 1940s to early 1950s, the great psychologist Abraham Maslow came up with the concept of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. He described self-actualization as “achieving one’s full potential, including creative activities.” Today, we would say that becoming the best version of ourselves is the same concept as reaching Maslow’s self-actualization.

This may all seem a bit more than you wanted to know but let me help break it all down for you. Below are my 5-steps to becoming self-actualized, or as I like to say, the best version of yourself. These five things, in my opinion, help lead us to our purpose, which in turn will lead us to become the best we can be.

The 5 F’s to self-actualization:

  1. Family – Although there may be friction between members of a family, you cannot change the fact that they are your family. Therefore, some members may force us to practice patience and teach us how to love one another. There is no substitute for your family. Get this right and the rest will be easy!
  2. Food – The saying, ‘you are what you eat,’ has more truth than you know. If we fill our stomachs with fatty, rich, salty, processed foods all the time, then we are eating our way to our own demise. Whether it’s high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, or just sluggishness, we make a conscious decision any time we put something into our bodies. Try to make an effort to put more good things than bad into your system. Everyone at work knows I am a donut junky, but I know that if I have one every day, or even once a week, that I am decreasing my chances for a better, healthier future. But hey, one donut ain’t gonna kill me, right? My philosophy is to have what you really love, even if it is not good for you, as an occasional treat, not a meal plan.
  3. Friendships – Friendships are important because they satisfy our intrinsic human nature to want to be seen, valued and ultimately loved for who we are. The right friends challenge us to be better, the wrong friends lead us to unhealthy living. The key here is to recognize and know the difference. Keep good friends close by and they will help you to become your best you, this I promise!
  4. Faith – – Garth Brooks wrote a song titled, “Unanswered Prayers.” In the song, he reminisces about how lucky he is that some of the things he prayed for were unanswered. Faith helps us to grow as humans because it reminds us that there is someone out there who is more important than ourselves. This humility is paramount to knowing who we are in terms of others, as well as who we are not. This is an important key to becoming a better human being.
  5. Fitness – None of the above would be possible if not for our physical health. Being out of shape limits who are meant to be. For example, we couldn’t enjoy our friends or family the way we should if we subscribe to unhealthy living. Believe me, I get it, very few people actually LOVE to exercise, but I have learned that there is something for everyone. For me, if I play a sport, I don’t even feel like I am exercising. So, give me a ball and let me play tennis or golf. These things make me happy and I get to work out. I also enjoy my quiet time, so yoga is another great form of exercise that calms my nerves and works my body out. And what about dancing? I love to dance! Some days I just blast my music and dance for an hour. The bottom line is, there is something for everyone, you just need to find your “something.” Make a plan this year to do some form of exercise every single day! Dance. Play a sport, or join a yoga class or gym, the possibilities are nearly limitless. What you do doesn’t matter. Just do it!

mDesign wants to help you (and me) to become the best version of ourselves! The toughest part is starting, so, let me show you how by breaking each of the above down into actionable steps:

Family and Food

These two naturally go together. For an Italian American like me, who has seven siblings, our close-knit family relationships began at the dinner table. Whether your kids are in diapers or grown adults, dinner is that one time of day when everyone is together. So, why not make it magical? Start by creating a welcoming kitchen and preparing a meal together.

The farmhouse look is popular and inviting. Update your family kitchen to include some of these beautifully appointed new kitchen accouterments, they will give your kitchen a cozy, welcoming feeling.

Start with creating a family recipe book. This can be done online by uploading everyone’s favorite recipes and then creating a “Smith” family recipe book that you can proudly display. Use this sleek and simple recipe stand. Add a few coordinating pieces to bring the look together, such as a paper towel holder and an over the cabinet door towel holder. Finish the cohesive look by adding the coordinating dish towels and wine rack. I mean, what Sunday pasta dinner would be complete without a splash of vino, no?

Kitchen Towel Set, Striped Pattern Set of 5 9 Bottle, Metal Wine Rack Storage Organizer Holder Modern Metal Farmhouse Recipe Book and Tablet Stand


It’s a new year, so why not show your friends how much you appreciate them. Several years ago, my friends and I decided to forego buying each other pricy, non-personal Christmas gifts. Instead, we wanted to create a memory together. That’s when “Frunch” was born. Okay, I made that word up, but it does have special meaning. It’s a combination word meaning Friend+lunch=Frunch. Every January, I invite my friends over for a New Year’s Frunch. They usually bring me a small hostess gift, and in turn, I give them a little something personal that I make myself. It’s a great way for me to let them know how much I love them, without breaking the bank. It doesn’t have to cost much to leave a lasting impression. For example, make them a batch of homemade cookies, then display them in one of mDesign’s clear canisters. These stylish jars are perfect for all of my besties.

To add a personal touch, you can monogram the canister with their name or initials, or maybe a “word of the year” they can reflect on, like “Joy.” I have a Cricut, a device that makes personalized items, but if you don’t have one, (you probably know someone who does), just handwrite the message on clear plastic sticky paper and affix to the jar. Then, just fill it up with your favorite homemade goodies! Voila, the perfect “thank you.”

Round Plastic Kitchen Storage Canister Jar


Okay, you’re probably wondering, ‘how can mDesign help with that?’ Welp, I have an idea that I think will inspire you. You have heard of a reading nook, right? Well, why not convert that reading nook into a place of inspiration. Since I am a writer, I have a few of these special places both inside and outside of my home. During nicer weather, I have a beautiful garden that I love to sit and enjoy. It brings me peace and inspires me. But during those cold weather days (did I mention I live in Cleveland?) I needed to replicate that feeling indoors. There is a plethora of things you can do such as create a yoga space, or a prayer corner, or how about an indoor garden?

To help you create that peaceful indoor retreat, start by bringing in live plants. Plants provide oxygen and help us breathe, but they also add natural calming color to a space. Use these mDesign plant stands all around that special space. They come in various sizes and finishes. Don’t be afraid to mix metals, fabrics or textures. Fill the stands with live succulents and lavender plants to make your space beautiful and aromatic. Add a simple end table with a lamp next to a cozy chair. Use these small Hyacinth baskets to hold inspirational reading material. Or use the larger folding cubes to keep some cozy blankets nearby. Just be sure to set aside time each morning or evening (or how about both!) to get yourself centered.

Natural Woven Hyacinth - Storage Cube Basket Bins Midcentury Modern Plant and Succulent Stand Natural Woven Storage Cube Basket Bins Hyacinth


I saved this “F” word for last, and for good reason. I hate it! But what I hate even more is when I feel flabby and unenergized. Even though I feel SO much better when I’m working out, I still need motivation. I have a treadmill at home, but I hardly ever use it. Why? I’m lazy. So, to get me motivated I have asked Alexa to wake me up at 6 a.m. every weekday morning to C+C Music Factory’s “Everybody Dance Now.” Don’t judge, you do you boo. Volume blaring, I jump out of bed, put on my sneakers and grab a cold water, already waiting for me in my fridge. I run-up to my home gym and let it rip! Now if I can just keep this going all year…someone help me please! I honestly don’t think I can listen to that same song for 365 days.

6-Bottle Plastic Wine Rack Storage Organizer Holder

So here’s to a NEW YOU in 2020!

Start the new year off right with Help from mDesign

Check out our full New Year blog series for more inspiration.

Joyce Colovas is a content writer at mDesign
and an avid lover of all things fun and fabulous!

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Posted: Dec 27, 2019