Don't "new year, new me" me

The new year is all about making new resolutions, but what about making ones that you can actually keep?

For most, the first day of the new year means setting yourself up with a New Year’s resolution after a reflection on how to improve the oncoming year. But when is it a good time to start fresh? A date on a calendar should not dictate whether or not you should make changes. If you are unsatisfied with an aspect of your life, it is never a bad time to begin a transition. We spoke with a number of students about their experiences with yearly resolutions and established a correlation between the broadness of the resolution and the lack of commitment that leads to failure. When a goal is more precise and direct, it makes you more inclined to oblige, therefore easier to follow.

Here is a list of the top five most common resolutions, narrowed- down:

Be healthier: Meal-prep

Eat too much fast food? Order too much take-out? Start cheffing it up in the kitchen. Meal-prepping doesn’t have to take long and is generally comprised of healthy, fresh produce. You get to make it whenever you want and take it with you to eat wherever your heart desires. Tupperware is about to be your new best friend this year. “Following a meal-prep guide was very good for me because it allowed me to have every day planned out as opposed to having to search the Internet for a new recipe each time.”

– Danielle, 21

Lose Weight: Complete a form of daily exercise everyday

“Start going to the gym” is one of the top sure-to-fail resolutions every year. The key to success is to be realistic according to your habits and schedule. A switch from a couch potato to a gym rat is not something that happens overnight. Like any other goal, it takes motivation and commitment. Any form of physical activity to get your heart rate up and body warmed up is a great way to help lose weight. The process will take time but remember you only get as much out as you put in, so you better get started.

Be more confident: Practice body positivity

A goal that requires you to be your own best friend. This goal is all about consistency, the concept of “faking it until you make it” coming true. Confidence needs to be gradually built up as it is a process that takes practice and selflove. Thinking one positive thought about yourself and looking at yourself through your reflection while saying that compliment out loud is one way to get it done.

These praises could be anything about yourself that you would like to feel good about, whether they be your perspective on your body image or intelligence, this goal is not limited to any insecurities. It could be as simple as telling yourself, “you are enough”. “It feels super stupid in the beginning, but the more time you spend complimenting yourself in the mirror, the less you spend tearing yourself apart. It works because I used to have very little confidence. Committing to loving yourself even when you don’t feel like it is important. Just saying the words changes the way you think.”

– Myra, 20

Stop a bad habit: Quit smoking

Habits have a way of creeping up on people in the subtlest ways. It isn’t until somebody notices the attachment to this habit that it is already at a serious stage. Smoking kills lives every day and making the conscious decision to quit won’t happen easily. That is why you don’t have to go through it alone. Anybody with a cellphone can download the “Quit Pro” app that keeps a log of the amount of cigarettes you’ve smoked and the number of days you’ve gone smoke-free.

Spend less money: Apply this to finding deals

As a student, we are offered special student discounts all over, whether it is the 10 per cent off at grocery stores on Tuesday or halfprice movie tickets. We are talking your typical day-to-day purchases. Going hand-in-hand to a goal of eating healthier, another phone app is designed to help you out with your goals. “Shopwell” scans the food item in your hand while in the store and tells you how healthy that item is and if it fits into your health goals.

Sometimes all we need is a little motivation to help us keep committed, whether that be from friends and family, or an app on your phone. Let 2017 truly be the year for a new and improved you!