2021 New Year’s Resolutions: How to Make Up for the Worst Year Ever
Hopefully, you aren’t waiting on the new year to start your list of 2021 New Year’s Resolutions. You want to be ready to go from day one. That means planning ahead and having a clear strategy in place as the year rolls over.
If you have yet to do the planning, don’t fret too much. We’ve got you covered with some great starter suggestions, and we’re about to go into the importance of each one in more depth. First, however, it’s important to understand why we do this and need to keep doing this year after year.
Why Resolutions Are More Important Than Ever Before
Coming up with Resolutions is a time-honored tradition, even though the same is not necessarily true when it comes to keeping them. A great number of people will abandon their fitness goals each year or set goals that are too easy to reach and then become lazy after hitting those marks.
Ideally, you want your New Year’s Resolutions to “fix” your existing fails, mistakes, or misfortunes. And 2020 was a year with plenty of those! To get back on the right path, you have to go beyond your limits. That means setting rigorous goals specific to your life. While what we’re about to share will help, try to customize and create some of your own goals for 2021 as well.
1. Spend Less Time on Social Media
At this point, can anyone outside of a million-dollar business say that social media is doing anything for them? It’s basically a place where rational thought goes to die, and you discover that your friends have some pretty warped ideas and are easily misled by poorly researched articles or news stories.
There also have been studies to back up the deterioration of mental health one experiences through too much social media consumption. It seems that being surrounded by carefully curated accounts of people living their best lives while you’re not has a tendency to make you depressed. The reality, of course, is that no one’s life is perfect regardless of how they present that life on Facebook.
So, do yourself a favor and avoid social media as much as you can in the new year. Instead, spend more of your time creating experiences for yourself that are worthy of being shared.
2. And More Time With Your Thoughts
The time you spend in the endless scroll of social media is time you could be spending reading a book, praying, meditating, or taking a nap. You could be learning a new hobby or talking to someone who is an expert in their field. Maybe even learn from the best of the best with a MasterClass subscription?
People have an unusual fear of silence and being alone that they don’t like to admit. Nevertheless, it’s there. The social media lure doesn’t help resolve the issue either. But with awareness, you can start to do something about it. Start by making time to be alone. Just 10 minutes per day can make an enormous difference in the quality of your thinking and your work.
3. Make Time for Workouts
Working out is not an optional aspect of a happy existence. Hate working out? Better find a way that you can learn to love it because life doesn’t get happier when your health deteriorates. Exercise helps stave off deterioration of muscles and bone density, and that keeps you healthier for longer so you can get every last little bit out of life.
You should be doing something strenuous every day of your life. Thirty minutes of exercise is not a lot to ask, especially when you can focus on a different muscle group each day or alternate major muscle groups to give them a rest. Light cardio is a good way to start if you haven’t hit it in a while. You can always gradually increase rigor from there.
4. Wear a Darn Mask
In 2020, millions of Americans contracted the novel coronavirus. Millions also contracted a bad case of the stupid by taking the one simple thing that could be done to slow the spread and turning it into a South Park “dey took our jerbs” moment that made a half-baked nonsensical argument that wearing a mask was tantamount to letting the socialists win.
Look, no one wants to wear the mask. But logic dictates that if everyone does wear one, germs will not spread as far as they would otherwise. Slowing the spread of germs slows the spread of the disease. And even though a slow rollout of COVID-19 vaccines are now underway, it’s going to be at least the first half of the year before life can return back to “normal.” (At least until the next pandemic.)
So whether you want to wear the mask or not, do it for the people who have underlying health conditions. Can’t be a good enough human to do that? At least wear the mask when you go into a business that requires it and don’t put any poor, underpaid store workers at risk of a) catching the disease, and b) having to confront you because you have a stupid point to make.
Bottom line: wearing the mask will get us back to normal sooner in 2021. That alone will improve the misery of 2020.
5. Avoid Political Hangovers
One of the most divisive elections in our nation’s history is now over. There is the temptation if your side won to rest on your laurels and think the other side will go away quietly. That is not the case. And if your side lost, there is the danger of doubling down on the things that lost it for you so that you get further away from what you’d like to see America become.
Malaise is normal after something like what we’ve just experienced. But it would be a mistake to think the division and conflict is over. You have to fight even harder for your values now, and if you don’t, then you’ll be caught in the stupor of a political hangover that could last a decade or more. Stay involved to keep this from happening to yourself and what you hold dear.
6. Read 100 Books
One hundred books in a year’s time is not impossible to accomplish. It’s a big enough goal to be challenging as well as something you can be proud of when you reach the end of it. It’s a small enough goal to achieve. The only thing you’ve got to come to terms with is this: what constitutes a book?
Do you count your copy of How the Grinch Stole Christmas as a whole book? Or does a book have to be 300 pages or more? The answer, of course, is it depends on what you’re used to. If your reading skills are advanced, chances are good you’ll be too bored and ashamed to count the low-hanging fruit books as you would a novel or nonfiction study.
Our advice: count anything bound as one book, but use the honor system as you’re only cheating yourself when you read 100 children’s books and then mark the task as done. Read short, read long, read books of short stories and count them as one, novellas as one, etc. Diversity of reading selection creates a scenario where things tend to even out.
Also, the more you read, the better off you’ll be in 2021. That’s because the pandemic of 2020 slowed production or caused a number of your favorite shows to shut down. If you’re the type of person who enjoys watching new things, reading more will help the void.
7. Be More Selective With TV Time
Don’t zone out in front of the television. Be choosy with how you end up spending your time. Make content work for your attention by channeling most of your time into something productive. You can always slow down and watch more television when you’ve made your first few million dollars.
8. Start a Business or Side Gig
One of the best things you can do with the lapse in TV time or if you don’t want to take the 100-book challenge is to start a side gig. Keep your startup costs low. Try to find something to do at the nexus of what you are good at and what requires the smallest amount of overhead. Then, start marketing your product or services and see where it goes from there.
You probably won’t get rich off a side gig like freelance photography, starting your own blog, or writing articles, but you will get some extra spending money in your pocket, and, depending on the gig, you might even end up doing better than the minimum wage. Not bad for not having a boss!
9. Recommit to Your Studies
Finally, you need to ensure that your 2021 New Year’s Resolutions leave a place for your studies. Many campuses were forced to go virtual for 2020. This might add a measure of convenience for students, but most will suffer from not having that one-on-one time with an instructor.
Now more than ever, it’s important to be vigilant and recommit yourself to your major and the classes you have to take to get through it. Pay close attention to online posts and assignments. Stay in frequent email contact with your instructor. See if you can schedule some time to speak with him or her if you’re concerned about something. You have to take control.
These 2021 New Year’s Resolutions Can Erase the Memory of 2020
Have you taken time yet to decide what your 2021 New Year’s Resolutions will be? We hope that you will. If not, use the nine we’ve shared above to get those creative juices flowing and piece together a real strategy for a year ahead that will almost certainly be better than the year behind us. Best of luck!
[Featured Image by Pixabay]