Nearly half of Americans make New Year’s Resolutions — but only 8 percent actually follow through. If year after year, you promise to lose weight, save money, and get organized without success, it’s time to mix up your goals.
Here’s a list of unconventional resolutions that you’ll actually want to keep. And guess what? These new New Year’s resolutions have sneaky side effects — come 2016 you’ll find yourself a tad lighter, a bit richer, and more in control of your busy schedule.
Carve Out Me Time: Do you feel guilty for “doing nothing” when there are dishes to wash, kids’ lunches to pack or emails to write? Taking time each day for your emotional health has long-term mental and physical benefits. Resolve to find time at the end of each day to do something just for you — take a bath, watch one episode of your favorite show on Netflix, go on a walk after dinner, or read 10 pages of a new book before bed.
Be Present: If you sit down at a restaurant and immediately whip out your phone, perhaps a worthwhile resolution for 2016 is to power down your electronic devices and live in the moment. Much of this is simply a matter of willpower to say “no!” to another round of Candy Crush. To make it easier, stop carrying your phone everywhere you go. You really don’t need to bring it into the bathroom!
Ditch Fad Diets: Don’t get sucked into crazy crash diets. Strive for a healthy, maintainable balance by following basic healthy eating principles. Eat real food, not processed junk. Cook your meals instead of getting takeout. Read about mindful and intuitive eating. Put a kibosh on mindlessly snacking in front of the TV. Drink water. Eat for long-term health, not for short-term results.
Clean Up: Make your home a peaceful space by eliminating clutter. Instead of dumping the mail on your kitchen counter, immediately sort the junk into the trash. If your kids get a new toy, donate an old one. Go through your closet at the end of each season and donate any clothing you didn’t wear this year. Corral your family’s paperwork with a new filing system. Tackle projects one-by-one so you don’t feel overwhelmed.
Be Kind: Make the world a happier place in 2016 by practicing random acts of kindness. Top up a stranger’s parking meter, surprise a new mom with a box of diapers, leave a sweet note on your partner’s dashboard, spend a weekend volunteering at the animal shelter, or donate money to a local charity. Not only will you improve your community, but you’ll experience a self-esteem boost, too.