The New Year always seems like a time where everyone is filled with so much hope that they can achieve all their dreams and change anything about their lives. From resolutions about relationships to jobs, health to happiness, it's the best time of year to take stock of life and decide if there are any particular areas that may need some extra attention and resolution.
However, the vast majority of New Year's resolutions flop, year after year, and there's a reason for that—people just aren't smart about their goals. When January first rolls around, it's easy to feel as though anything is possible, but in reality, people almost always make goals that are either too general and vague or goals that are way too big and intimidating.
So, in honor of 2019, here are a few resolutions that everyone needs to stop making, as well as a few they may want to consider to help achieve the best 2019 possible. After all, would it really be a New Year if people didn't at least give one or two resolutions a shot? There's just something fun about making those grand plans for the first month of the year—and hey, if they work out, even better!
10 New Year's Resolutions We Need To Stop Making:
20 Join A Gym
There's a reason that so many gyms are absolutely packed in January every single year—resolutions related to health and wellness are always some of the most popular ones, and everyone's answer to their health goals is to simply join a gym.
However, the vast majority of people end up joining, paying membership, and then never going.
It's because the goal is too general! Sure, you may have the best of intentions, but you need to be a bit more specific. Perhaps you sign up with a friend and make a pact to go three times a week in the morning. Or, perhaps you sign up for a class every Saturday morning to motivate you. Either way, you need something more specific than a mere membership.
19 Be Better With Money
Sure, pretty much everyone on the planet wants to be a little better with money and improve their financial status. However, as a resolution, this one really isn't the best. Again, it's because it's way too general. In order to achieve success, you need to be a little bit more specific with your plans. For example, if your main priority is to build up your emergency fund, perhaps your resolution should be to save $500 a month. Or, if you're looking to pay off debt, perhaps there's a specific amount of your paycheck every month you want to reserve for that goal. It's important to really clearly outline what you want to achieve.
18 Focus On A Number
Every single year, countless people resolve to focus on a transformation in the year to come. It's definitely one of the most common resolutions, year after year, and it certainly doesn't help that everyone's pants are feeling a little bit tighter after all the holiday treats!
However, as a resolution, it kind of sucks because you'll just end up feeling discouraged.
Sure, you can absolutely make a goal—but focusing on a specific number is just a recipe for disaster. The scale isn't the only measuring tool—and it's the one that's most likely to discourage you if you don't see the results you want.
17 Eliminate Carbs/Fats/Sugar/Etc.
Many people eat whatever they want over the holiday season, and then resolve to kick off a super strict eating plan in the New Year where they eliminate major food groups like carbs, fats, sugar, dairy, etc. Now, there's nothing inherently wrong with eliminating things that don't serve your body well—perhaps you truly don't love the way you feel when you eat a lot of sugar or dairy. However, going on a crazy elimination plan is basically just going to set you up for flubbing it up. You can resolve to make healthier choices with your eating, but don't immediately cut out entire food groups—that's just not sustainable in the long term.
16 Ban Splurges Entirely
Many people end up spending more than they want over the holiday season, from gifts to parties to little treats they buy themselves.
So, it makes sense that many people would resolve to ban any splurges in the New Year and really get their spending in order.
While this is definitely a good goal to have, it's way too extreme. Sometimes, after a long week, you need to loosen up a little and buy yourself a delicious coffee or a new pair of shoes. It's not something that should happen every day, but if you eliminate every single splurge from your life, you'll end up totally miserable.
15 Meditate For An Hour Every Single Day
Noticing a pattern yet? Most of the people who end up with flopped resolutions don't mess up because they can't do it—they give up because they try to take on too much, too fast. Take this resolution, for example. In today's stressful world, it's definitely beneficial to take some time to relax and meditate. There's a reason so many successful people include meditation in their daily routine. However, it's a bit too much to go from not meditating at all to vowing to spend an hour a day doing it. You'll have trouble carving out that much time, and then you'll stop before you even really get started.
14 Enjoy Life More And Find Balance
Again, with the general resolutions! There are many people who want to introduce a bit more balance into their lives, and a little more happiness.
However, that kind of thing doesn't just happen accidentally because you write it down on a piece of paper on January 1.
You need to be a bit more intentional. Perhaps your resolution is to add one fun thing to your calendar every single week or to only stay late at the office three out of the five workdays. Whatever you think will help you achieve your goal, resolve to do that specific thing (or two) rather than creating a large, general goal where you won't really know where to start.
13 Get More Organized
Everyone wants to lead a more organized life, but again, this is a task that can be a little bit overwhelming if you've been slacking on the organization front for the past year or more. Suddenly, when faced with the huge list of tasks you'd need to do to achieve your organized dream space and dream life, it becomes way too much to deal with. That's why you need to make smaller, more specific resolutions. Perhaps your filing cabinet is out of control, and you resolve to create a new system to deal with all the paperwork in your life. Perhaps your garage is filled to the brim, and you resolve to spend 30 minutes a week sorting through things. Just make it more manageable and you won't skip it.
12 Travel More
Many people vow that they'll travel more in the year ahead, but it doesn't end up happening because it takes a fair bit of planning and thought to come up with travel plans.
Unless you're a super spontaneous person without many responsibilities in life, you likely can't simply head to the airport and take off for a month.
That's where incorporating more manageable steps helps you achieve resolution success. Perhaps you end up breaking it down by month—first, decide where you'd really love to go, figure out what it would cost, how much you'd need to save over the next few months to make it happen, etc. Before you know it, you'll be on that plane to your destination!
11 Whatever Last Year's Resolutions Were
We know, we know—you had the best of intentions last year, and you had some great resolutions that you still really want to achieve, so why not just put them on your list again for 2019? Well, there's a reason you didn't achieve your resolutions last year—it's because they weren't good resolutions! And, it's definitely not a great idea to start off the year with baggage from your previous year's mishaps. Take a look at the resolutions you never ended up mastering, and instead of adding them to your list again, find new resolutions that allow you to tackle some of those same goals in more manageable ways.
10 Resolutions You May Want To Consider:
10 Get More Sleep
Okay, if you're an adult in today's world, chances are you're skimping on sleep from time to time. There's just always so much to do, and so much stress in life!
So, one of the best resolutions you can make for your health, your productivity, and your relationships is to simply get more sleep.
When you're well-rested, you're a better person to be around, period. Perhaps this means being more strict with the time you go to bed, or eliminating that latte you sip every afternoon, or even upgrading your bed a little to make it a place you want to spend time. Anything that helps you get a little more shut-eye!
9 Eat More Meals At Home
Food at restaurants can seem really delicious, and there's a good reason for that—it's usually absolutely packed with butter, oil, salt, and all those ingredients that make things taste amazing! While there's nothing wrong with treating yourself from time to time, a great resolution is to simply eat more meals at home. You'll know exactly what's going into the food you're consuming, it's a lot friendlier on your wallet, and you'll be fuelling your body with a ton of nutrition. And, if you're not a chef, don't worry—there are plenty of really easy recipes you can whip up with just a few ingredients.
8 Step Away From The Smartphone From Time To Time
It's no secret that smartphones have become an integral part of our lives. They're how we communicate with one another, how we plan our days, how we get our news. However, being constantly on call, constantly checking the notifications that pop up on your screen, even if they aren't really that important, is absolutely exhausting!
We're not saying you need to lock your phone in a drawer for an entire weekend, but from time to time, it's really beneficial for your health and well-being to leave the smartphone somewhere else and take a bit of relaxed time.
Even just an hour or two a week would probably make a huge difference for most people!
7 Set Aside One Day A Month For Pesky Administrative Tasks
When you're an adult, it can seem like paperwork and boring administrative tasks are always at the back of your mind. from that bill you need to pay to those e-mails you need to delete to clear your inbox, there's always something that you could be doing. Instead of resolving to deal with that type of stuff in one big chunk and then ignoring it for another year, break it down a bit into a more manageable resolution by setting aside one day—or even just an hour or two, if that's all you need—a month where you deal with all those tasks. That way, it won't constantly be in the back of your mind—it'll be dealt with until the next month comes around.
6 Make Plans At Least Once A Week With Someone Important
At the end of the day, one of the things that matters most to people is, well, the people in their lives. Unfortunately, with work stress and other obligations, the people in your life can end up coming last in your schedule.
That's why a great resolution is to make plans once a week with someone important in your life.
Your plan could be just about anything, from going for coffee with an old friend to calling up a relative on the phone for a quick chat. Just make sure to add it to your schedule, or it probably won't happen.
5 Find A Workout To Love
Being active is key in any healthy lifestyle, but let's be honest—there is absolutely nothing worse than dragging yourself to a workout that you absolutely abhor. And, there's just no need for it! There are so many types of workouts that you could try out, from boxing to yoga to HIIT training. It may seem intimidating to bounce from thing to thing, but that's exactly what you should do—try a whole bunch of styles of workouts until you find one that you genuinely enjoy. Then, being healthy and active will suddenly feel a whole lot easier—it may even become fun!
4 Add More Vegetables And Whole Foods
When people make resolutions related to food, they almost always start from a place of negativity, resolving to eliminate certain things, from calories to entire food groups. That's not the way to approach life!
Instead, look at things from a more positive perspective, trying to figure out what you can add into your meal planning.
Instead of resolving to eliminate all the butter and fat from your meals, perhaps just add a side salad to your plate of fettuccini alfredo. Instead of eliminating your beloved nacho night, just go for baked chips instead of fried chips, and maybe add a few more vegetables into the mix.
3 Incorporate A Practice That Helps With Stress
In today's day and age, just about everyone is stressed for some reason. However, everyone's reactions to things are very different, and their stress tolerance is very different, meaning you really need to find an individual solution for yourself. Perhaps your approach to stress management is making sure you schedule a workout class four times a week where you can get your sweat on, and make it a priority. Perhaps it's taking your Saturday morning and turning it into a routine filled with your favorite things, from a cup of coffee at your favorite place to a trip to your favorite park. It's just finding what works for you, and incorporating it in an intentional way.
2 Spend Less Time Watching Television And Find Other Passions
Watching television can be fun from time to time, and we all have shows that we enjoy binge-watching, but let's be honest—there are definitely other ways you could be spending your time.
There's absolutely nothing wrong with vegging on the couch from time to time, but it doesn't bring you the same level of happiness that being more intentional with your free time can.
Perhaps there's a hobby you've been meaning to take up, but you can never seem to find the time. Eliminating a few hours of television from your weekly schedule will suddenly help you find that extra time you need.
1 Give Back To The World By Helping Others
It's absolutely amazing to make resolutions that involve bettering yourself as a person, but instead of always looking inward for your resolutions, why not look to the world at large? Many people get very philanthropic during the holiday season but then forget about that type of thing when the New Year rolls around. In addition to all the resolutions you want to make about your own life, why not resolve to help others improve their lives as well by giving back a little bit? How you choose to do it depends on your schedule and skill set, but there's pretty much a limitless amount of things you can do to give back.