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New Year Resolution Ideas

Posted on 31 December 2019

New Year New Me! So they say. This time of year is a time of reflection and contemplation. It's a time to reflect on the events of the past year and to contemplate what you will change or improve upon in the year to come. A lifestyle change can occur at any time, but for some reason most people decide that with a shiny new year comes shiny new resolutions. Most people decide they're going to lose weight or better budget their money, and those are great new years resolutions to be sure. They're also the resolutions that get broken the quickest.

A common misconception is that all new years resolutions have to be extreme life changing challenges and that's why they get broken so easily. No one is going to quit smoking over night. It takes time. If you normally get fast food for dinner, opting for a salad everyday is going to get bland and tiring and eventually you'll end up back to where you started. 

A new years resolution doesn't always have to be so extreme, it can be broken down and taken in strides. For example, if you resolve to cut sweets from your diet, you don't have to quit cold turkey, treat yourself in small doses. If you get the large mocha caramel cookie coffee concoction as your go to in the morning, opt for a smaller size, then gradually reduce the ingredients until you have a morning beverage that's not as bad for you. Hint: Take things in steps.

Today we're going over new year resolution ideas that are actually doable and how to keep up with them! But first, a list of the most popular new years resolutions people make:

 

most popular new years resolutions

 

 

While these resolutions are all well and good, we want to explore some new year resolution ideas you may have not thought of before. So without further ado, here are some ideas you can take with you into the new year to better yourself or even the world around you!

 

 

 

New Year Resolution Ideas

 

new year resolution ideas

 Thrift Shopping

Believe it or not, buying new clothes is not only bad for your wallet, but also bad for the environment! Did you know 2,700 liters of water to create just ONE t-shirt? To make a pair of jeans, it takes 6,800 liters! That's 1,800 gallons! To put it in perspective, a healthy person would drink on average one gallon of water per day. This means the average person only drinks about 93 liters of water in a month! You couldn't even drink the amount of water it takes to make your clothes in a solid month if you tried! And that's just water, the amount of resources needed to create textiles for clothing is astronomical. 

The point here is that when you buy clothes new, you're feeding the fire that it takes to mass produce new jeans, t-shirts and every other piece of clothing you see at a store. The solution? Rather than buying your clothes at the mall or local "fast fashion" outlet, visit a thrift store, second hand store, or consignment shop! This reduces the need for mass production of new clothing and puts gently used clothing to good use again! This is also the best way to shop vintage or find that top you passed up on when it was in the window at the mall but is now out of stock for a cheaper price!

Bonus: Second hand stores vary in the products they sell. For example, at a Goodwill you can find just about anything your community has dropped off from old Wrangler jeans to graphic t-shirts. Independent consignment shops or nation-wide consignment shops like Buffalo Exchange will only accept traded or sold items that are certain brands or styles, giving customers a certain aesthetic to expect when they peruse the racks. This way, its not so random when you step in, but isn't finding an old vintage treasure what makes it so fun?

Choosing to shop second hand as a new year resolution not only helps the environment, but also contributes to your ongoing resolution of being kinder to your wallet! That's two resolutions in one act! Yay!

 

 

 

new year resolution ideas

De-Clutter Your Space

Do yourself a favor! Don't just clean, get rid of things! Clutter and mess are not only symptoms of depression but are also contributors! A messy space, whether its your bedroom, desk, bathroom, kitchen or anywhere else can actually affect your mood significantly! All that clutter can make you more stressed, make you feel boxed in, depressed, even irritable! It's been proven that when people de-clutter their environment, it actually improves their mood! So, what are you waiting for? 

Take anything that hasn't been used in years, is collecting dust, or is just honestly and eye sore and get rid of it! If its an item that could still be put to good use in the hands of someone else, donate it! If it's broken, or something that doesn't have much re-use value, toss it out (or if possible, recycle it). This might be a big project, but it will be so worth it! Get rid of your outdated possessions and replace them with things that will make you feel happy in your space! Think scented candles, potted plants, a new area rug, a book shelf to organize your trinkets better etc... 

Not only will clearing out your space clear your head, but donating unwanted items such as old furniture and clothing gives back to the community and the environment! Your home should be a place of relaxation and calm, a getaway from your busy work life. Purging all that unnecessary mess and bringing in things that improve your mood will bring significant change and even inspire you to accomplish other things, like finally buying that treadmill you didn't have space for, or getting your carpet professionally cleaned!

 

 

 

new year resolution ideas

Reduce Social Media Usage

Social media truly has changed the way the world communicates. And with this virtually unlimited method of communication and storytelling comes its pros and cons. You can keep up to date with the lives of your old college friends or your family out of state. You can stay up to date with current events being updated almost every second of the day. We've developed internet humor in the form of memes. It's pretty amazing how connected we are today compared to how we were over a decade before. But with this abundance of information and constant status updates, tweets, and shares, surprisingly...it can be bad for your mental health. 
 
Studies show that an overhaul of social media intake can not only be draining on your eyes, but can take a toll on your mood and your self esteem. This phenomenon is precisely why Instagram recently removed the number of "likes" shown on a single image or video, to erase the illusion that likes mean success. Reading through the comments section or even just your general Twitter feed can be toxic to your health. The constant onslaught of bad news, negativity, and unrealistic beauty or health standards can do a number on an individual and they may not even realize it. Constantly seeing articles about the state of the nation, corrupt politics, and extremely enhanced selfies of conventionally attractive people can incite a sense of self doubt and depressive behavior. 
 
It is important on some level to stay in the know about the nature of the world, but sometimes too much information can be...well, too much. To resolve this issue, it may be in your best interest to reduce the amount of time you spend on social media. The average time spent on social media apps is about 2 hours and 22 minutes per day. That's about 68 hours and 82 minutes per month! That's a lot of time to take in a lot of bad news and negativity. Start slow, reduce your time spent scrolling through your news-feed to maybe an hour a day, or make it a point to delete one of the apps that brings the most negativity into your life. If its not there to easily access, you're less likely to go out of your way to download it and check. 
 
If reducing your time or removing an app isn't something you can see yourself doing, then try unfollowing any pages, accounts, or people that bring negativity into your view. If you have a Facebook friend that only posts hateful or offensive statuses, unfollow or unfriend them! You don't need that in your life! Reduce the amount of politics you read about, unfollow accounts that make you feel bad about yourself and replace them with pages or people that promote wellness or self love! You have complete control over the content you subscribe to, so eliminate anything that doesn't benefit you or doesn't inspire you!
 

Above all, remember to take breaks. Live in the moment. Be kind to yourself and understand that social media for the most part is a fantasy. All the glamorous people you see for the most part aren't like that all the time and its not fair for you to set unrealistic expectations for yourself. The less time you spend absorbing all the toxicity of the internet, the happier you'll be.

 

 

 

new year resolution ideas

Spending Time Alone

This might sound odd, but alone time is more beneficial than you realize. We're not saying that you shouldn't spend time with your friends and family or significant other. Just that there should be a fair balance of time spent. We understand that no two lives are the same and its easy to get so busy you can't remember the last time you stopped to smell the roses. We have jobs, kids, spouses, friends that want to hang out with us, side hobbies...the list goes on and on. Everyday life can get a little overwhelming. Even when we binge watch three or four episodes of our new favorite show before bed we're still being stimulated by someone else's story and not thinking about ourselves at all.

But what does alone time even mean? For some, it could be taking the time to sit quietly in a room and meditate...completely unplug from all distraction such as television or social media. It could be taking a day to do something you love but haven't had time for, like a hike or getting a massage. Even taking a nap in the middle of the day is a great usage of alone time and self care. 

Alone time doesn't always mean we have to be in a closed off room completely alone. Alone time can also mean going on solo adventures or doing fun things with the company of ourselves. If no one wants to go to that ramen festival you keep getting updates about, make a date with yourself! That obscure band you want to see live but no one you know wants to buy a ticket for? Put on your band merch and make it an event! Even just doing things like seeing a movie alone or shopping by yourself can be very therapeutic in the sense that you don't have to please or entertain anyone else, its all about you!

We highly recommend you take some time this year to enjoy the freedom of doing things by yourself! Maybe you can even a take a trip somewhere you've never been and adventure into the great unknown! Seize the day! 

 

 

 

new year resolution ideas

Reduce Plastic Usage

The average American uses 100 kilograms or 220 pounds of plastic every year. Most of which ends up in landfills, littered on the street, in the ocean and so forth. It's not breaking news that the over consumption of plastic on our planet is doing more harm than good. While plastic can be a reliable resource, the worst of it comes from packaging. It's quite baffling when you think about how much plastic comes in your day to day life. Everything from plastic single use water bottles, to plastic wrap on things like toilet paper, napkins, paper towels etc... 

Of course there are things made of plastic that are hard to get away from, like trash bags, food packaging, shampoo bottles and so forth. However, while completely eliminating plastic use from our modern lives may be next to impossible, it's not impossible to drastically reduce how much you go through by making a few simple changes.

 

For example:

 

Replacing single use hand soap dispensers with glass and buying hand soap in bulk

Replacing single use water bottles with a glass or dishwasher safe bottle

Buying an electric water dispenser to eliminate plastic bottle use or using the one from your fridge (if applicable)

Recycle plastic bottles if they are used (recycled plastic can be used to make clothing and other useful items!)

Refuse plastic straws at restaurants and use a safe disposal paper straw or a dishwasher safe metal straw

Opt for reusable produce bags when you go grocery shopping. At retail shops, if you can, refuse the bag offered to you.

Rather than using a new plastic bag to bring in your lunch everyday, buy appropriately sized tupperware (this will save you money too!)

Go to shopping-marts where they sell products in bulk like family sized shampoo bottles or larger quantities of toilet paper to reduce the amount of plastic you bring into your home over time.

Opt for reusable tumblers or other reusable drinkware for your morning coffee or other beverages you pick up during your day (This reduces plastic usage and saves the individual companies you frequent a little money)

If possible, try to purchase less packaged foods on your grocery runs, opt for produce and meats you can buy in bulk and freeze (fun fact: tv dinner packages may be cardboard but they are still coated in a layer of plastic!)

Bring your own silverware to work, school, restaurants etc… if you feel weird about bringing a metal fork with you, you can also buy wooden flatware that’s easier to travel with! 

If you anticipate bringing food home from a restaurant, bring your own tupperware as a lot of restaurants still use styrofoam take-out boxes. (Don’t forget to refuse the plastic flatware they give you!)

Speaking of take-out boxes, if the restaurant you go to gives you a microwavable box, keep it! Try to get as much use out of it as you can before you recycle it!

Invest in a juicer! Instead of buying fruit juice or veggie juice in a plastic jug or bottle, make your own! It’s healthier and cheaper in the long run!

Buy a reusable razor with replaceable blades! This way you won’t have to constantly buy packs of razors each month and you’ll reduce your plastic use!

Use matches instead of plastic lighters! Let’s be honest, are you actually going to go out of your way to buy more lighter fluid?

 

 

While it may not be easy to make ALL of these plastic reducing changes in your life, just doing one or two can make all the difference and actually save you some money as well! You'd be surprised how much plastic we use that we honestly can live without!

 

 

 

new year resolution ideas

These are just a few of our favorite New Year Resolutions! Whatever you plan to do, whether its from our list or something else you decided to do, it can be achieved simply by taking everything in small strides. A new year resolution is meant to be an inspiration to be better! To improve on something! To break bad habits! Even if you have a few slip ups going into it, just remember that anytime is a good time for change, and the fact that you've thought this hard about it says a lot about you! 

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Have a safe and happy new year!

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