You have high hopes for the new year. And you should! You’re a total rock star, and we are fully confident that you’re going to make some seriously cool stuff happen in 2020.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of setting New Year’s resolutions for the year ahead, it doesn’t change your rock star status.
The truth is that when you have big plans for a new year, it can be that much harder to hone in on the specific goals you want to work toward.
But don’t stress, bulldoggers, because we are here to help.
These Ten New Year’s Resolutions are Sure to Set You Up for Your Best Year Yet.
Keep scrolling for all the details… then go ahead and tackle 2020!
1) Focus on mental health.
There’s no better way to set yourself up for success in reaching all of your other goals and resolutions than to make sure that your head and emotions are in the right spot… which is why this is a good place to start. This is also a great New Year’s resolution because there are a lot of ways to achieve it, so you can practice some trial and error and figure out what works best for you.
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, you can start taking better care of your mental health by taking care of your physical health, making time for yourself to recharge, avoiding guilt, noting all of the positives in your life, sharing your thoughts and experiences with others, and seeking support from friends and loved ones.
2) Perfect the morning routine.
Guess what? Morning routines aren’t just for morning people anymore.
They can honestly benefit pretty much everyone.
“People who don’t have any type of routine are more likely to suffer from stress, poor sleep, bad nutrition, and ineffective time management.”
Morning routines, in particular, are important because they can help get you motivated for productive, positive, healthy days.
Take some time early in the year to experiment with different aspects of a consistent morning routine — different wake-up times, different breakfast, different workouts, different forms of down time, etc. — and see what makes you feel your best. And since perfecting your morning routine is an ongoing process, you can’t technically “succeed” or “fail” at this one. It’s all about progress!
3) Read (or listen) more.
We all love our screens, but in our obsession with devices, many of us have lost our relationship with other kinds of entertainment — like reading. In fact, according to a September 2019 study from the Pew Research Center, more than one-quarter of American adults say they haven’t read a book (in whole or part, in any form) in the last year.
We understand that reading isn’t for everyone, but when you consider the fact that reading was one of the sole forms of available entertainment prior to the rise of the screen, that’s a pretty wild statistic!
In 2020, we encourage you to dip your toe back into the reading pool. And before you tell us that you dislike reading, pause and consider some other ways you could experiment with it. Have you tried audiobooks? Or reading on a device? It all counts!
4) Explore new perspectives.
We all have opinions. And that’s totally cool!
It’s also totally cool if you’re pretty stubborn about those opinions. It’s your right! But that doesn’t mean that you should shut down opportunities to learn about different perspectives so that you can have more respectful conversations with people who don’t share your viewpoint. You don’t have to agree with those other perspectives… but it doesn’t hurt to open your mind now and then.
Check out a new podcast, read some different kinds of articles, or simply engage in conversations with people who aren’t so quick to agree with you. If you can do that a little more frequently in 2020, you’ll have succeeded at this New Year’s resolution.
5) Rethink phone boundaries.
There’s no one size fits all set of phone “rules” that will work for everyone. Plenty of people rely on their phones for work, others need to be available to family members 24/7, and still others can maintain a pretty healthy relationship with their screen even if they are tied into social media all the time.
Because everyone interacts with their phone differently, we’re not here to suggest that your New Year’s resolution should be to have phone-free weekends, to charge your phone outside the bedroom, or to limit phone use to a few hours per day.
Those restrictions might not work with your life!
What we would recommend is that you take some time this year to think about the healthy and not-so-healthy ways that you use your device so that you can make some more personalized goals around how you use it.
If you need extra motivation to follow through with this resolution, it’s worth noting that there is a significant link between phone use and mental health, according to a study published by the National Institutes of Health. As mental health improved among participants in the study, phone use decreased.
6) Feel better in your space.
In your dream version of 2020, you might be remodeling your kitchen or knocking down those walls in your house so you can get that trendy open floor plan. But let’s get real — taking on major home repairs or updates might not be in the budget or at the top of the priority list for the new year.
That doesn’t mean that you won’t have the opportunity to spruce up your space, though, so don’t get discouraged. Instead, think about smaller, more manageable ways that you can simply feel better in your home. Move your existing furniture around, pick up a few new throw blankets on sale, or clear out the clutter in your kitchen so it’s easier to navigate while you cook.
It might be easier than you think to be happier and more comfortable in your space in the new year!
7) Give back.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, there is such a thing as a “helper’s high” — a set of health benefits that you get from helping and giving back to others. Giving lowers blood pressure, improves self-esteem, lowers chances of depression, lowers stress levels, increases longevity, and makes you generally happier.
We will gladly take that helper’s high, please!
Giving back to people, communities, and causes that you care about is also… fun! There are plenty of ways to be generous and so many cool opportunities for community service wherever you happen to live. So get in on that! Why not work on making a difference as part of your New Year’s resolutions?
8) Learn something new.
It’s never too late to learn or try something new. Who says you can’t teach an old (and still vibrant) (bull)dog new tricks?
Shake things up in 2020 by exploring a new hobby or learning something new. Take a class, read about something new online, or ask one of your friends to include you in one of their favorite activities in the first part of the new year so you can see if you like it, too.
9) Make fun a bigger priority.
It’s great to make resolutions that lean a little more serious, but we’re also big believers in the importance of fun! Just as you schedule out new routines and milestones as part of setting New Year’s resolutions, you should give yourself permission to put some fun on the calendar!
(And, yes, if it’s on the calendar, it still counts as fun.)
Before we get too far into 2020, make sure you have some fun things to look forward to this year. Organize an unforgettable road trip, invite friends you haven’t seen in a while to visit, or plan a date night with your S.O.
The more fun you have, the more motivated you’ll feel to work hard at the rest of your New Year’s resolutions.
10) Move more.
Move that body, bulldoggers! You already know that exercise is good for you, so we won’t lecture you with the details, but… do it. Add some new arm workouts to your routine, talk more walks with your family, do some stretching while you watch TV at night, or explore different kinds of full body workouts.
While there’s no right or wrong way to work out, we would like to remind you that bulldog yoga is an excellent way to move more in the new year, especially since you can stream bulldog online classes wherever you are!
Consider any of these New Year’s resolutions for the best 2020 possible.
1. Take care of your mental health! Use whatever method works best for you.
2. Develop a great morning routine. Set yourself up for success every day.
3. Read more, including audiobooks. You can start with a few pages a week!
4. Stay open to other perspectives. Feel free to hang on to your viewpoints, but don’t be afraid to engage in healthy conversation with people who don’t share them.
5. Think about how you use your phone. If you have unhealthy habits, consider what changes you can make.
6. Make small changes to your space. Sprucing things up doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive!
7. Give back to others and your community. Chase that helper’s high!
8. Explore a new hobby or interest. A great way to shake things up in the new year.
9. Get some fun on the calendar. You deserve it!
10. Move your body. Getting active will set you up for a happy and healthy new year.
We support any New Year’s resolutions you want to set, but think these ten are a good place to start! You’ve got this, bulldoggers.
Featured image: Jamie Street/Unsplash; Mental health image: Natasha Spencer/Unsplash; Reading image: Fabiola Peñalba/Unsplash; Phone image: John Tuesday/Unsplash; Learning image: Thought Catalog/Unsplash
Start Your New Year Off Right!