By Mike Kubas
It’s that time of year again. Time to recommit to all those healthy habits that get lost over these holiday laden months. I don’t typically indulge in New Year’s Resolutions, I usually recommend “yesterday” as the best time to start any new habits. But recently with all the unpredictability in life and the world, I think New Year’s Resolutions can be very motivating this year more than ever. It gives a clear starting point to begin new habits during a time that is anything but predictable or clear. Here are some unique New Year’s Resolution ideas that might motivate you or inspire you to commit to your own!
- Prioritize Your Mental Health – Now more than ever we’re seeing what can happen when individuals are not prioritizing their own mental health. Try to objectively assess where you feel you’re at and identify ways to put yourself in an improved place mentally. After improving on your own mental health, many of the challenges you might be facing begin to seem more attainable.
- Get More Involved in Your Community or Gym! – Get active in the community. Could be as simple as attending a cookout, volunteering somewhere, attending networking events, going to a workshop, or trying a new fitness class you haven’t previously been to. Getting more involved in your community is never a bad thing and can be a very motivating way to start your new year and build new relationships, both personally and professionally.
- Identify A Training Performance Goal – Specifically NOT a weight loss goal. Establish a performance-based training goal of getting to the gym 3x/week or to deadlift your bodyweight for x amount of reps. Don’t make the goal about getting lbs off, make the goal about creating beneficial habits and improving your training performance!
- Replace Social Media Time With Other Things – I’m informed almost immediately anytime I’m spending too much time on my phone. I believe there are apps to monitor this, but a toddler seems to serve the same purpose. “No phone Dada, no phone,” is a refrain I quickly get tired of hearing but is incredibly effective. Now not everyone has a toddler, but I’m sure most people could afford to cut out some social media / phone time. This ties back into #1 and improving your mental health. I’ve yet to see a study that raves about the benefits of spending several hours on Twitter or TikTok. Make it a priority to spend less time on social media and more time doing things in the present. Take up a new hobby (not app related), spend more time at the gym, improve yourself, spend more time with friends and family, read more, or just tweet about it (just kidding, don’t do that).
- Develop A New or Existing Skill – Make it a longer-term goal to develop a new skill or actively try to improve upon an existing skill. It could be to become a better public speaker, take a self-defense course, learn to surf/ski/snowboard, take a painting or cooking course. This skill could be just about anything, but ideally, it’ll be beneficial to you in multiple ways or at the very least enjoyable for you! Pursue it with a friend who’s an expert for guidance, or with a friend who’s a novice to motivate each other. Either way you’re spending less time on social media (unless your new skill is computer programming) and more time improving yourself and building relationships.
I think too often we set resolutions that involve NOT doing things or doing LESS of certain things. I find it’s much more beneficial to set active, forward moving resolutions that promote action and require engagement. When reducing certain things, those things can easily get replaced with an equally unhealthy or detrimental activity. I once knew a guy who swore he would get his 7 day/week, 5-hour/a night, video game habit under control. And he did just that, he successfully cut it down to only 3 days a week. On the surface that’s a very positive accomplishment. He did that part well, but his solution to not playing video games was to go to happy hour for drinks and bar food and then see where the night took him (hint-hint he could’ve developed a gym habit 😉).
This is a pitfall we can avoid when we set a resolution that is more action oriented. I don’t think he intended to set his resolution as hitting the bar 5 nights a week, but in essence that’s what it devolved into. So, these are a handful of simple, forward moving resolutions that might help you in the coming year. Lastly, whatever your resolutions or new goals may be, you’ll most likely have more success if they’re action-oriented and enjoyable. Don’t make a resolution that’s going to make you miserable, make it something you can add to your routine that will help improve you in one way or another. Whether it’s a new skill, better mental health, or just more gym time, make it a challenge and experience that will make you better regardless of the outcome. Happy New Year!