5 good habits to adopt for a productive 2023

Eating well and sleeping enough can be life-changing.

Seif Umar

Published: 10 January 2023, 1:22 PM

The dawn of a new year is when many of us make plans to improve ourselves.

Before the school semester or work year gets really hectic, now is a good time to develop some healthy routines that will set us up for success. 

Here are five good habits to work into your life at the start of a new year.

1. Say no to late nights

Living in Singapore’s fast-paced society can be physically and mentally exhausting, especially if you prefer staying up late and not getting enough sleep.

Studies have shown that we should sleep seven to nine hours per night. Any less results in complications like fatigue, poor mental performance, and increased risk of chronic illnesses.


According to HealthLine, individuals who do not get enough sleep tend to suffer from fatigue, poor decision making and lack of creativity. PHOTO CREDIT: KETUT SUBAYANTO VIA PEXELS


Fixing your body clock takes time, as your body needs to get used to the new sleep pattern. 

So take a while to form this habit, and you may soon feel more energetic during the day.

2. Control your social media screen time

Many of us simply love to kaypoh and keep up with our friends, family and the latest happenings on social media. However, we may not realise how much time we are spending on such platforms. 

In Singapore, the average daily time spent on social media is around two and a half hours. This is five times higher than the recommended duration of usage, which is merely 30 minutes a day.


According to the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, those who spend more than 30 minutes on social media were at greater risk of diabetes, certain cancers, and heart complications. PHOTO CREDIT: ALEXANDER SHATOV VIA UNSPLASH


So how do we manage our screen time on social media? Android and iPhone users can set a time limit for any app from your smartphone’s settings. TikTok also has a similar feature, which enables users to limit the time they spend on the app. 

3. Plan a well-balanced diet

When we hear the term “healthy eating”, most of us would immediately relate it to eating salads and drinking water on a daily basis. Some may even think it is absolutely forbidden to consume our beloved McSpicy burger if we want to be healthy.

Thankfully, that is not true. Although overconsuming certain foods and beverages may not be healthy, this does not mean the solution is to just replace these foods with healthy ones.


According to HealthHub, a balanced diet has key nutrients like carbohydrates, protein, fruits and vegetables. PHOTO CREDIT: BROOKE LARK VIA UNSPLASH


The idea is to find balance between consuming healthy and unhealthy foods. There is no harm in having a cheat meal, so long it is done in moderation, taking up about 20 per cent of your total diet. 

This lets you eat healthier while still getting the chance to satisfy your cravings.

4. Adopt a suitable workout routine

Working out does not mean you have to be lifting weights in the gym, as that is just one of the many ways you can exercise.

Whether you enjoy high-intensity activities like playing street soccer or taking long calming walks by the beach, any form of exercise can have benefits to your body.


According to Healthline, the benefits of working out include improving your body’s physique, strength and circulation of blood flow. PHOTO CREDIT: KEIJI YOSHIKI VIA UNSPLASH


With the prevalence of workout apps and easy access to public fitness zones in many HDB estates, there are countless convenient options to incorporate exercise into your routine. 

With discipline and proper commitment, your workout routine will not only let you feel healthier, but also boost your productivity.

5. Find the right social circle

Friendships have a significant impact on our mental health and happiness, but some of us may not realise the importance of choosing who you hang out with.

There are good friendships that last a lifetime, but some can be toxic and stressful.


Our friends play a huge role in influencing how we think and behave. PHOTO CREDIT: COTTONBRO VIA PEXELS


There are many advantages of having good companions. They are the ones who will support you through your low points, appreciate you and encourage you to challenge your limits. 

At the same time, it might be time to cut off or avoid forming relations with those whom you know have a bad influence on you, such as those who may have addictions to high-risk activities like overly consuming alcohol and gambling. 

If you are looking to grow into a better version of yourself, take your time to decide who goes on the journey of life with you.

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