America's Top 10 Resolutions and How to Actually Achieve Them.
Forty-four percent of Americans set New Year's resolutions. Only 8% of them actually achieve them each year. If you've ever had trouble following through with your New Year's resolutions, we've got the tips to help you stay motivated throughout the year!
Infographic: New Year's Resolutions
10 Tips on Accomplishing Your New Year's Resolutions:
1. Lose weight.
The #1 resolution Americans make every year is to lose weight and to exercise more. An easy way to get started is to do more of what you love. Find an exercise you enjoy. Whether it be running, lifting, yoga, or biking, start off with doing it for 15 minutes once a week. Increase your frequency to 30 minutes twice a week, then to 30 minutes three to five times a week. Don't forget, you're always allowed to try different activities!
2. Eat healthier.
When you run on a busy schedule, it's hard to make drastic changes to your diet. The key to making lasting change is taking small steps. Replace your junk food snacks with fruits and vegetables. When you're comfortable enough, start preparing more meals at home with healthier ingredients. Keep track of how often you're eating out and limit it to one or two times per week.
3. Drink less alcohol.
Drinking less alcohol can contribute to the first two resolutions. By drinking less alcohol, you'll drop your calorie intake. Cutting back on alcohol also reduces your chances of liver and heart diseases, and cancers. Set a drinking limit for yourself. Keep track of your alcoholic intake and learn when it's time to say no to your next glass.
4. Take a trip.
People always dream about taking vacations. Well, now it's time to take one! Save up those vacation days and pick an affordable destination. Select your vacation date at least three months ahead of time in order to inform your supervisor and colleagues in advance. Early booking also allows you more time to plan your itinerary for the vacation!
5. Quit smoking.
Seven out of 10 current smokers in the United States actually want to quit smoking. Quitting smoking is one of the toughest resolutions to stick to. Because it's such an addictive habit, start by setting a date this year for when you will finally stop smoking. As the date gets closer, cut back on cigarettes until you've finally quit. Let your loved ones know that you are trying to quit and they will give you moral support and help keep you accountable.
6. Get a better education.
In 2014, less than half of those with a Bachelor's degree went back to school for a Master's degree. If you're interested in going back to school for another degree, decide what exactly you want to study, research local schools, and figure out how much it will cost you in terms of time and money. Talk to your manager about your plans to go back to school and discuss a schedule that will allow you to take night and weekend classes while still working as a full-time employee.
7. Manage debt and save money.
The average consumer debt in the U.S. is $5,540 per person. It's difficult to save money while simultaneously managing debt. Set aside enough money every month to pay your groceries, bills, and debts. The rest of the money should go towards a savings fund. In order to keep track of your money, keep a log of all expenses and your income.
8. Reduce, reuse, recycle.
Everyone should be aware of their carbon footprint. Keep three separate bins inside your home in order to easily separate your paper, glass, and plastics. Make plans to stop by your local recycling center every other Saturday morning.
It always feels great to lend a helping hand. If you're looking for volunteer opportunities, research community service projects in your city. There are always occasions to help paint some houses or plant some trees in your neighborhood!
10. Spend more time with family.
It's not about the amount of time spent with family that's important, but rather the quality of time that is spent with family. Spend quality time playing games, interacting, and cooking with your loved ones. Find activities that will engage everyone.
Now it's time to set and tackle those resolutions! We wish you the best of luck.
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This post was written by Linda Cheung, social media intern at BookPal. She is currently reading Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert.