by Darla F

It’s a New Year, so start it with a new attitude. Make 2017 the year you stop planning resolutions designed to fail. The old stand by’s like eating better or getting in shape are generic personal promises that don’t force you to focus and really make improvements. Consider five very specific ways you can look and feel better in 2017.

1. Pick Comfort Over Style

It’s hard to look good when your pants are climbing places they don’t belong or you have to try way too hard to balance on those shoes. In 2017, shift your clothing choices towards comfort, because if you feel good, you’ll look good.

That doesn’t mean you start wearing yoga pants to work each day. Just let go of the fixation that the latest uncomfortable fashions are the only way you stay trendy. Pick clothes that are actually comfortable to wear as well as stylish. Who knows, you might start a new trend with your friends and coworkers by putting your comfort first.

2. Talk About Your Insecurities

Find one or two close friends and make a pact. Promise to talk over all those little daily issues that make you feel ugly or fat. You have a new pimple, but is it really the size of Nebraska?

Use your friend as sounding boards to keep you honest with yourself. How much cover up does that pimple really need? Probably not as much as you think, so let your friends keep you grounded and stop blow things out of proportion.

3. Plan as Many Day Trips as Possible

You live near some of the most historic cities in the world, but how much of it have you really seen? Maybe you’ve been to the Philadelphia Museum of Art one too many times. That’s okay, shift your thinking beyond the tourist sites and get to know the real Philadelphia or Wilmington.

See The Dream Garden at The Curtis Center or check out the latest exhibit at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. Spend at least one day in the artsy Northern Liberties neighborhood, too. You’ll find everything from fine food to soul music there.

In Wilmington, try the Augustine Paper Mill or Hagley Museum and Library, or Rockwood Museum.

A few well-planned day trips are just the stress relief you need for the New Year.

4. Rethink Your Makeup Strategy

Put those close friends to work again as you redo your make plan. Start with a makeup-free look to give your skin a chance to breathe. Add just a few essentials, so you can see what you really need and what you can live without. Try wearing nothing put light lip color one day, for example, and see how you feel and then maybe add a touch a blush the next day. The goal is to go back to the basics to find a healthier or more natural looking makeup style.

5. Cut Just One Thing Out

Pick one thing to cut out of your life in 2017. Maybe you decide to leave the sugary drinks behind or find ways to live without salting everything you eat. If you just pick one thing that you can live without, you can go forward without feeling deprived or doomed to fail. That little change can have a big impact on your health, though.

It’s a new year, so make it a good one by finding ways some practical ways to look and feel better.