It’s that time of year again when people are making plans for all the things they’d like to accomplish in the coming year. Making plans and creating resolutions are admirable things, but so many times we set our sights too high. According to studies, only about 8% of people achieve their New Year’s resolution, likely because we make broad, general resolutions without setting smaller, more actionable goals along the way. So, this year why not set some more specific goals? Try one of these 20 New Year’s resolutions for 2020 and be part of that small percentage that can brag about actually achieving their New Year’s goals.
1. Smile more
This should be an easy one, but for some reason, many of us forget that our face speaks for us, often even when we do not intend to say anything. Smiling also uses fewer muscles than frowning and is significantly better for your health. Try to take a moment here and there to think about the things that make you happy, people you’re grateful for, and small, simple things that just make you smile. Smile to yourself or smile at someone else and make their day. Either way, try to smile more this year.
2. Complain less
Plain and simple one here. We all need to vent from time to time, but sometimes it can turn into complaining about everything and everyone. This year, take a step back, have a deep breath, and choose to be positive and vent only when absolutely necessary.
3. Compliment a stranger
Don’t worry, it’s easy, tell the cashier at the grocery store you like her hair, or the person next to you on the bus, their shirt. Compliments can brighten someone’s day immediately, and they’re a free gift to give.
4. Try something new
Too often, as adults, we get into a rut with everyday routines and tasks, and we forget how fun trying new things can be. Why not check out a new type of cuisine, a new workout class or start small and take a different route to work. Mixing it up can be fun, and you never know what new favorite things you may discover.
5. Have dessert more, and don’t worry about it so much
99% of all New Years’ resolutions typically involve some sort of fitness goal. We’re all trying to get fit or lose weight. So, we count calories, join gyms and buy expensive equipment, all in a valiant effort to be healthier. Still, sometimes this can become an obsession and we even feel guilty about enjoying things, like dessert. Naturally, all things in moderation is the best policy, but we need to cut ourselves some slack from time to time and just indulge. Eat that cookie, have a piece of cake or fancy coffee drink and don’t worry about it. Enjoy it and stop chastising yourself for having a treat once in a while.
6. Talk a leisurely walk
Put on your walking shoes, or maybe your snowshoes this time of year and head outside for a walk. It doesn’t have to be long, it doesn’t even have to be strenuous, but a 10-minute walk every day can give you the dose of vitamin D that’s needed and could lead to pounds lost and outlooks improved.
7. Take a class
We, as people, should never stop learning. It keeps our minds and even bodies active. So, why not, mix it up this year and take a class about something that interests you. Maybe it’s painting, philosophy, dance or even engineering. Keeping that childlike inquisitiveness is one key to remaining young at heart.
8. Return calls sooner
Sometimes calling people when you should is harder than it seems. Life is busy, and if we are to believe what we read, Millennials never speak on the phone anyway. This year try using the Bluetooth in your car or some headphones while you wash dishes and let’s make an extra effort to call friends back sooner and stop the phone-tag.
9. Procrastinate less
Just like the previous point, sometimes getting things done in a timely manner is easier said than done. Sometimes it’s life’s activity getting in the way but sometimes it is plain and simple procrastination. Especially when we aren’t excited about the thing that needs doing, it can fall to the wayside and become a nagging task at the back of our minds, a pile of clutter or an opportunity missed. Instead, add that task to your to-do list right away and don’t put it off. Just check it off the list.
10. Practice patience
Being patient as an adult is one of the hardest things to do sometimes. We wait in lines, we wait for red lights, we wait for payday, weekends and slow people. This year make your New Years’ resolution practicing patience. Head into each day knowing that something will likely make you impatient but choose to not let it add stress to your day. Give yourself five extra minutes, take a deep breath and let it roll off your shoulders.
11. Travel somewhere new…in your own city
Did you know that most New Yorkers have never been to the Statue of Liberty? Traveling abroad can be exciting and wonderful, but what about the activities right in your back yard? Take stock of the amenities in your city, make a list of the things you haven’t done yet and try one out.
12. Make a new friend
Making new friends as an adult can be easier said than done, but that doesn’t mean we should be afraid to try. When polled, the average adult stated that they wish they had more friends and find themselves lonely from time to time. If most of us are on that same page, why not solve two problems and make a new friend. Say hello to someone in a yoga class, or strike up a conversation at the library or your local coffee shop, whatever works for you, just be open to new pals.
13. Try a food you think you hate
When was the last time you made yourself try food that you dislike? Most of us determine our tastes early on and stick to them. But, did you know that your taste buds change over time? Try adding a little bit of that something you dislike into a dish or just go for it. Either way, give it a try. You might be surprised.
14. Drink more water
We’ve all heard the recommendation to drink 8 glasses of water a day, but do you know why? Our bodies are made up of 70% water and staying well hydrated can help improve body functions like digestion, skin elasticity, even sleep. So grab your water bottle and fill up.
15. Organize one thing you’ve been putting off
Junk drawers, shoe closets, basements, we all have an area that just seems to attract clutter but never seem to be able to get around to cleaning it. This year make that area one of your New Year’s resolutions. Grab a garbage bag for trash, some storage containers for organizing and some wipes for dusting and get to it.
16. Adopt a pet
Puppies and kitties and birds, oh my! Resolutions can be anything you want. Why not resolve to get that critter you’ve been debating about forever. What better way to begin the new year than with puppy snuggles!
17. Find a new hobby
Did you know that having hobbies is good for your health? Hobbies can not only be stress relievers but mentally or physically challenging hobbies keep your mind and body active. Hobbies can also expose you to social interaction and help to balance the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
18. Use all your vacation time
Only 28% of Americans plan to max out their vacation days this year! That is a shockingly low statistic! Vacations can be so beneficial to your health and happiness. They can help alleviate stress, help you gain perspective and just plain help you relax. So, go ahead, use it all up and enjoy.
19. Do something spontaneous
Being spontaneous can be scary, but it can also have big rewards. Try walking a new path with your furry friend, call an old friend, or go on a spontaneous trip. No matter how spontaneity looks to you, just go for it. You never know where it could lead.
There are tons of volunteering opportunities out there for every skill set, all you need to do it pick one that works for you. Plus, volunteering doesn’t just make you feel good, it truly helps your community. Be it a homeless shelter, community garden, or teen outreach, volunteering can have huge benefits for both you and your neighborhood.
Searching for a neighborhood to call your own? Visit LewisApartments.com to find yours.