4 Empowering Ways to Become Proactive

Make things happen.

by Anna Dixon | Wed, March 14, 2018

Looking at the year ahead is a big task, especially when you’re part of a family. You want to make sure you get the most out of those valuable 365 days, and planning how to do that can make you want to curl up and take a big nap.

But being proactive about plans and how to spend your time can give you a real sense of control, which is extremely empowering.

Here are some top tips from us on how to be proactive, passionate, and positive about the year ahead!

Plan big things and small things

We know how important family trips and vacations are, and living where we do, we can get to some of the most beautiful places in the world in a matter of hours. Use Shanghai as a springboard to see Asia, traveling to countries like Indonesia and beyond. You might not have the chance for this kind of travel ever again!

The only downside to booking a fabulous holiday is that you can find yourself counting down the days until you board that flight. Instead of this, plan small things each week that you and the family can look forward to! Regular movie nights or trips to the cinema, excursions around the city, staycations and classes are all great ways to ensure quality family time that’ll keep you in the here and now.

Plan projects

Having a project to pick up is a sure-fire way to make sure you don’t sit around doing nothing. Here are some fun individual and family project ideas to sink your teeth into:

Family Calendar

1. Make a movie as a family – get the kids to think of a story, write a script, go and buy costumes or better yet, make them yourselves, and film your masterpiece! This isn’t just a brilliant project to keep you all having fun, but it’s a lasting memory that you’ll have forever.

2. Learn something new – like knitting or crochet. Both can be surprisingly therapeutic and you can give what you make (no matter how it turns out) to your family and friends as gifts!

3. Improve your Chinese – how many of us can honestly say, hand on heart, that our Mandarin language skills are as good as we’d like them to be? So do something about it! Hire a tutor that can come and teach you as a family, and make sure they give you homework so you can keep studying even when they’re not there!

4. Get the kids to write a letter – or better yet, spark up a pen-friend relationship with a relative or neighbor! It’s a little heartbreaking for us oldies to think that our kids rarely even pick up a pen or pencil these days, so make sure they handwrite their letter and make decorate it too.

Prioritize the really important things

This is a skill that takes some time to fully get right; prioritizing what’s really important vs what’s important right at that moment. If the house is a mess but the kids are playing nicely together and you have the chance to join in on their game – do it. The house can wait. Be part of that moment.

Children Playing

If you’re working late a lot and always seem to have one more super important email to send, don’t do it. You could probably work all night and not get everything finished. Give yourself a cut-off time (of course this will differ day-to-day) and try your best to stick to it. Your family wants to see you.

We have to make decisions every day, every hour that have an impact, and a lot of the time, you may end up making the wrong decision, or putting the wrong thing first. That’s OK – we all do it. But pick and choose carefully. You don’t want life to pass you by and for you to be the person that says “Wow. Where did those years go?”

Be proactive rather than reactive: make things happen

This little mantra actually applies to most aspects of life – whether it’s home, work or relationships. 

New Friends

Don’t wait for things to happen or go wrong – get on top of stuff and push for change. Feeling a little lonely? Go to a class where you don’t know anyone and meet new people before you get into pity-party territory, AKA, sitting around waiting for the kids or your partner to come home. Beginning to feel like you’re stuck in the same routine? Change things up before you get into a rut! Why not do something that scares you a little? Take a singing or standup comedy class and surprise your friends and family with your bravery!

What about ways of being healthy or being available? We've got the perfect tips for you.