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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Queen's U chapter.

2023, we’re coming for you.

Every time the new year comes around, I hear the same old question: “What’s your New Year’s resolution?”

In all honesty, I forgot resolutions even existed by the time January 1st, 2023 came around. A few of my friends reached out to ask me that very question, and I was baffled—this was probably the first time in all of my New Year’s celebrations that I had no idea how to respond.

I answered with: “I’d just like to continue enjoying life”… I guess? I could’ve responded with the classic “I’m gonna start going to the gym, eating healthier, and working on myself”, but let’s be honest, this response is a bit taboo and overused.

So, what do you say to someone when they ask you, “What are your New Year’s resolutions”?

Here ARE 4 meaningful New Year’s resolutions to spice up your 2023

If you’re gonna work out, do it for yourself.

How many times have you heard that someone will start going to the gym more frequently as a New Year’s resolution?

This resolution is great, but it’s crucial to make sure that you’re going for the right reasons. Instead of going to the gym because someone else thinks you should, do it because you want to! Physical activity can make you feel accomplished, and it is a wonderful way for your body to release endorphins. Endorphins are your body’s natural painkiller—this is a hormone that your body releases during activities, such as exercise, and are made up of stress-relieving chemicals that make you feel upbeat yet relaxed.

Instead of worrying about what people will think of you, following the “body trends”, and what the scale might say, try going to the gym when you feel like it. You’re already rocking that bod babe, don’t change yourself for others.

Go out of your comfort zone this year.

hawaii girl happy explore jacket beach adventure
Tessa Pesicka / Her Campus

Since 2021 and moving overseas, I’ve—in a way—been forced to experience new things. At first it was a bit scary, but after some time, you start to enjoy the thrill and excitement which comes with new experiences.

Exploring anything out of your comfort zone can also be so beneficial to you: you learn new things, get to see new places, meet new people, and more. Stepping outside of your comfort zone is good for your growth as a human. So this year, try something new. Whether that’s going to a new restaurant, trying something you’ve always wanted to, or travelling to a new city or country…

Do it. You won’t regret it.

Work on daily acts of kindness.

It costs nothing to be a good person.

Being kind has so many benefits—not just for yourself, but for others aswell.

Surprising someone with a compliment today might be just what they needed. Spreading kindness and joy are key factors in making the world a better place, and doing these minor acts have shown to boost all the good hormones, such as dopamine, endorphins, serotonin, and more.

Start your day by spreading a smile this year, you may find it becomes a habit.

Avoid checking your phone as soon as you wake up

You’ll find yourself in a better mood and have more energy to be productive if you not only reduce your screen time, but manage when you’re using your phone.

A study released by IDC Research pointed out three simple reasons why you should not check your phone for at least an hour after waking up.

Our phones are distractions, and by starting your day off distracted, it can be very hard to focus as the day progresses. Stimulating your brain with the information you receive on your phone before you are fully awake interferes with your ability to prioritize tasks. In addition to your phone being distracting, it hijacks your sense of time. What starts off as “just 5 minutes” soon leads to 10, 15, 20 and so on (don’t worry, we’ve all been there).

What’s the most worrisome about phone usage when just waking up is the increased (subconscious) feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress. A study conducted by the University of Gothenburg in Sweden looked specifically into the the effects of smartphone usage on people in their 20’s. The study revealed that high phone usage related directly to increased feelings of depression.

Looking at your smartphone and engaging in social media without being fully awake allows for external stimuli to grab your attention, leaving you with no calm way to start off your day.

In 2023, try to put an effort into not using your phone as soon as you get up. It will leave you feeling more refreshed, organized, and calm.

In my defence, these are just some starter resolutions that you could apply to help increase the quality of your life and lead you to live a happier and healthier lifestyle. Remember that health is not just what you’re eating and whether you’re exercising, it’s also about the way that you treat yourself and others. Being healthy is a success which many people forget to celebrate. This year, let’s make our resolutions more meaningful for ourselves and not to fulfill those around us.

Emma Keyes

Queen's U '24

Emma is studying English Language and Literature at Queen's University. She enjoys the arts, and is a sucker for all things romantic.