As is customary with each January, the new year inspires many of us to rethink our lives. It is easy to get swept into the fads of the year and set goals based on what is popular and be less committed to them in turn. Rather than unintentionally setting yourself up for failure, make sure to do your research. It’s not about the quantity but the quality, as cliché as that may sound. In order for you to reach your goals, you should personalize your resolutions to match your lifestyle.
Here are a few examples of small changes you can make, based on the bigger goals you may wish to set for yourself:
1. Fitness/Improving Your Health
Making healthy lifestyle changes is one of the most common new year’s resolutions. The best part about this one is that there are many different routes to take when working towards this goal. Many people find it daunting, and can get overwhelmed. Well I’m here to show you that it doesn’t have to be.
One major aspect of health is what you eat. Taking control over what foods you are consuming and buying will significantly help you in reaching your target. Some ways to work towards this are: creating a shopping list when you go grocery shopping, pre-planning, and meal-prepping for the week, and limiting processed foods in your diet. Working out also goes hand in hand with your health. As you may know, January is one of the busiest if not the busiest month for gyms and crowds. In order to get in your daily activity, consider taking long walks outside for cardio (alone or with a friend), pick a time to go to the gym to stick to on a schedule, and take up a cool class offered at the gym to get you into new exercising techniques.
2. Better Grades/Improving Academically
None of us are strangers to receiving marks we are less than happy with. Perhaps you missed an assignment or slept through a few too many lectures. Regardless of the reason, so many of us would like to get stellar grades in the new year.
Instead of going in with an expectation of immediate change, remember that it takes an entire semester to work towards an overall mark. Making small changes to your daily school routine will add up by the time exams roll around. Throughout the semester, try organizing a daily planner, re-write challenging notes out by hand to get in some extra hours with the material, visit your instructor’s office hours whenever you need help (that’s what they’re there for), and planning blocks of time that are dedicated to that assignment whose due date is looming in the not-so-distant future.
3. Saving Money/Spending Less
I’m sure that there are a number of us who are not in the most ideal financial situation at this point in our lives. Savings quickly dwindle with rent, utility bills, internet, and grocery bills constantly fluctuating our bank accounts. This often leaves us vulnerable in emergency situations with no monetary safety net. If you find yourself in any of these positions, then this may very well be your resolution of choice.
Budgeting doesn’t have to take place at a computer, with a spreadsheet. It can be as simple as writing out a shopping list or cutting out unnecessary monthly expenses. For example, consider subscribing to services you use frequently, like streaming for movies, music or quick shipping. Try looking into family accounts and splitting the cost with friends or family, or canceling a membership altogether if you’re only keeping it “just in case”. These monthly costs add up!
For your consideration…
While working out your own new year’s resolutions, remember that you know your own strengths and weaknesses. You know what works for you in order to stay motivated. Whether your goals for the year ahead include something like finding a new hobby or you’ve set your sites on something life-changing, go at your own pace. January is only the start of your year. There’s nothing holding you back from the next 11 months of progress towards your goal.