The New Year stands before us like a fresh chapter in a book.
What will you write for the next chapter of your life? It’s entirely up to you. Take the first step to make sure that it’s a
good great chapter by setting New Year’s resolutions. You’ll find 29 ideas for your New Year’s resolutions, below.
1. Start a Meditation Practice.
There are scientific studies that show the many benefits of meditating. To name just a few, meditating helps to improve your mood, it reduces stress, it lessens anxiety, and it even increases your brain’s grey matter — which is involved in muscle control, sensory perception, decision making, and self-control. In addition, once you get the hang of it, meditating is easy to do.
2. Learn Something New Each Day.
Set the resolution to learn something new every day in order to have a better understanding of the world and how it works. Fortunately, the internet makes it incredibly easy to learn new things. Here are three sites you can try:
- Subscribe to Wikipedia’s Featured Article mailing list – you’ll receive an email each morning containing Wikipedia’s featured article for that day.
- Watch a CrashCourse video on YouTube. CrashCourse is an educational YouTube channel started by the Green brothers, Hank Green and John Green. Each video is about 15 minutes long and they cover subjects such as literature, biology, history, economics, and so on. The cherry on top is that the videos are fun to watch.
- Watch a TED Talk every morning while you eat breakfast. Here are the 20 Best Ted Talks to get you started.
3. Pick Up a Hobby.
Did you know that having a hobby is good for you? Hobbies can lower your stress levels, boost your brain power, improve your ability to focus, and more. Therefore, in 2017, start a new hobby. If you’re looking for ideas for hobbies to try, here are 16 Hobbies That Will Improve Your Quality of Life.
4. Play More.
Play is an important source of relaxation and stimulation for adults. In addition, it can make you more creative and productive. Bring more play into your life by making it a New Year’s resolution.
In case it’s been so long since you allowed yourself to play that you’ve forgotten how, here are 10 Ways to Play More and Have More Fun As an Adult.
5. Eat Fewer Calories.
There are many reasons why most of us should set a resolution of eating fewer calories. The most obvious reason is to lose weight. After all, carrying excess weight puts us at a greater risk of a whole range of serious health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers.
With all of the contradictory information out there on what to eat, sometimes it’s hard to decide what to do when you want to lose weight. I try to keep things simple. When I want to lose weight, I just eat less. I recommend you do the same. If you gained weight in 2016, resolve to eat smaller portions in 2017.
In addition, as I wrote in my post 17 Ways to Slow Down Aging and Live Longer, people eating a restricted diet live longer and endure fewer age-related diseases. Try eating until you’re satisfied, instead of full. Also, eat more slowly to allow your body to send you cues about fullness.
Other reasons for eating less are ethical–that is, social justice, animal rights issues, and environmental concerns–but we won’t go into those here.
6. Write a Business Plan.
Make 2017 the year you stop thinking about starting a business and you start taking action –it’s OK if it’s a small business on the side. The first step to take is to write a business plan. Once you get your ideas down on paper, you’ll be that much more motivated to turn those ideas into reality.
7. Move More.
It doesn’t matter what you choose to do: join a sports team; get a pedometer and take at least 10,000 steps a day; get up every 20 minutes and stretch; or join a dance class. Just move! Living a sedentary life dumbs you down, it makes it more likely that you’ll be overweight, and it puts you at a higher risk of depression.
Think of the following quote from the movie “Madagascar“: “Move it nice and sweet and sassy, alright!”
8. Read More Books.
I read several books in 2016, and I’m glad I did. The time I spent reading was enjoyable, and I feel a sense of accomplishment since all of the books I chose to read are recognized as “literature”.
I’ll definitely be reading lots of books in 2017, and I encourage you to do the same. If you need some convincing on this one, here are 13 Ways Reading Will Improve Your Life. This year, I’m reading the 12 most important books of Russian literature.
9. Be More Grateful.
If you haven’t climbed aboard the gratitude bandwagon yet, this is the year to do it. There are studies that show that gratitude can make you 25% happier. Think about that for a second: 25% happier!
Being grateful will also help you to overcome adversity, improve the quality of your sleep, and allow you to get along better with others. For next year, resolve to be more grateful. Here are some gratitude exercises to get you started.
10. Stop Procrastinating.
If you didn’t achieve your goals this year, procrastination was the likely culprit. Make 2017 the year you stop procrastinating and start getting things