Gabrielle Bernstein, life coach, motivational speaker and author

Gabrielle Bernstein is a life coach, motivational speaker and author of #1 bestseller “Add More ~ing to Your Life” and the newly released “Spirit Junkie.” Dubbed as the “next generation guru” and a role model for young women, Gabby co-founded the Women’s Entrepreneurial Network, a non-profit professional organization that connects female entrepreneurs, just one year after graduating college. In 2008 she launched her social networking site for young women to find mentors. Learn more about Gabby here and follow her on twitter @GabbyBernstein

Each New Year brings awesome blogging opportunities for self-help junkies like me. I love offering up tips for making positive change, especially when readers are committed. This year I’m going to take advantage of the resolution bandwagon and throw down some tips for bringing more HAPPY into your new year.

Now is the perfect time to make powerful change—your willingness is at an all-time high. Check out my top twelve happiness tips for 2012. Apply these principles and you’ll kick off the New Year with a happier approach to life.

Spirit Junkie Tips: Top 12 in 2012

Tip 1: Let go of 2011 baggage. It’s likely that 2011 brought many ups and downs. This year, resolve to focus on the good stuff. Choose to let go of what went wrong last year and commit to what will go right this year. Be grateful and appreciate all that you have. When you appreciate what you do have, you create more of what you want. Stop focusing on lack and let the energy of gratitude create a more abundant life.

Tip 2: Change the conversation. Make a resolution to change your dialogue about fear and negativity. When you think, talk and act from a negative place, you attract negativity into your life. Commit to a new conversation. Begin the New Year talking and thinking about what you love about your life rather than replaying the same old negative story. You might just be surprised by the results.

Tip 3: Give. Being altruistic not only benefits the person you’re helping but greatly enhances your own life, too. This year, commit to the mantra “How can I give?” rather than “How can I get?” Giving produces endorphins, which make you feel great! Plus, giving to others helps you get out of your own way. When you focus on giving you can stop focusing on what you’re not getting.

Tip 4: Take a ME break! Commit to a ME break at least once a week. Take time out to focus on yourself. This is a powerful habit to create early in the year. Need some suggestions? Take a long yoga class, prepare a nice meal for yourself, or creating an evening ritual. One of my favorite ways to take a ME break in the evening is to give myself a facial. This January, Bliss Spa is offering the Youth As We Know It Night Facial using their new the Youth As We Know It Night Cream. This ME break treatment involves a soothing facial massage, calming cucumber eye pack, paraffin pack to soften hands and feet, and a groovy hand/arm and foot massage. Bliss suggests enjoying this facial after 5 p.m., served with a cup of tea!

Tip 5: Get naked! This year, make a commitment to be authentic. Get naked with your truth, offering the world your greatest gift: your authentic self. Begin a practice of being yourself on dates, in the office or even in your home. We all thrive on true connection—so this year, get naked with your truth! Don’t deprive the world of your authentic gifts. Even if it feels uncomfortable at first, go with it … you’ll feel liberated in no time.

Tip 6: Get creative. This year, I commit to spending more time painting. This creative hobby takes me out of my daily patterns and ignites my inner spirit. Pledge to engage in a creative project as often as possible. You’ll find that time spent in creativity heightens your happiness and gives you more energy for the other areas of your life.

Tip 7: Do innovative exercise. Each New Year, millions resolve to hit the gym and lose weight. This year, make your physical resolutions fun! Rather than locking yourself up in the gym for days, find cool ways to shed the pounds. I am a huge fan of Hoopnotic, a rockin’ workout with a hula hoop! When I hula hooped as a kid, it was just a fun thing to do. I never would’ve imagined doing it as a killer (and totally addictive) workout! For a fabulous deal on your own Hoopnotica Travel Kit, check out my discount offer on OpenSky.

Tip 8: Practice the F word. Carrying resentments into the New Year will only recreate the patterns from the years prior. This year, vow to let go of resentments by practicing the F word and forgive. Become conscious of whom you need to forgive (including yourself) and be willing to let go of your resentment and turn it over daily. Each morning when you wake up, set the intention to forgive. This daily intention will ignite a consciousness of forgiveness and provide you with the necessary tools to allow the F word process to set in.

Tip 9: Eat mindfully. To keep your Spirit Junkie mentality intact, you must feed your soul superfoods. This New Year I’ve committed to kicking the coffee. Rather than go nuts trying to eliminate everything bad in your diet, keep it simple and choose one thing to let go of. My spiritual running buddy Kris Carr offers amazing tips for cleaning up your palate in her book Crazy Sexy Diet. Let Kris’s book inspire you to keep it simple and wholesome. There’s no need to kick it all at once. Small shifts create powerful change.

Tip 10: Get romantic—start MediDating. Many people carry disastrous relationship experiences from the past into the present moment. Holding onto anger about your last date (the one who didn’t call you back) inevitably transfers negative vibes to the next one. This anger sabotages the possibility of creating a healthy new relationship, keeping you rooted in your past instead of the now. Romantic love is an inside job that requires you to change your mental outlook if you want to let go of your fears and grab hold of the love you desire. This month, I’m launching a new meditation album called MediDating: Meditations for Fearless Romance. Enjoy the process of activating your romantic power through breathing exercises, visualization, and awakening your love energy. Begin MediDating today.

Tip 11: Sit back and receive. I work hard to balance my go-getter mentality with my “sit back and RECEIVE” approach to life. This year, welcome stillness and receptivity. Through a daily meditation practice you can begin to transform your need to control outcomes and learn to sit back and receive. Begin a meditation practice today. You’ll come to understand that stillness is sometimes the greatest action. For my guided meditations click here.

Tip 12: Expect miracles. Kick off the New Year with a miracle mindset. Begin each day with a prayer for peace and happiness. Say out loud or to yourself: Thank you, inner guide, for reminding me of all of the love and light in my life. I welcome positive support throughout this day. I expect miracles. This daily prayer will jump-start your day with a miracle mindset and awaken your consciousness to the greatness around you.

Take these twelve steps into your daily practices and enjoy the positive results. Trust the Universe has your back, expect miracles, and be happy!