It’s 2019, time to make every resolution count. We’ve selected our ten favorites for seniors – or anyone wanting to see an improvement in their life. No matter your age, no matter your background, there’s always something new or different to aspire to.
Ten Popular (And Do-Able) Resolutions:
- Walk 10 minutes every day. This is a realistic goal and one that can enhance your overall wellbeing. If you already have an exercise plan, add 10 minutes. You naturally boost energy levels and may even see a decrease in food cravings. Exercise also releases endorphins which are essential to mood enhancement and keeping depression at bay.
- Learn something new. (Or excel at something you already love.) There’s nothing better than accomplishing a new feat, learning a skill or taking up a hobby. Self-improvement is uplifting and increases confidence levels. It also enables you to make new friends and look differently at the world.
- Read a book each month. (If that goes well, try for two or join a book club!) It may sound cliché, but reading does open doors to the world. Pick a genre you enjoy. Or better yet, try a new genre. Many individuals also enjoy audio books for a change of pace or to listen and discuss with a group.
- Make time for brain games. Much can be gained by taking part in games such as Sudoku, crossword puzzles and other stimulating activities. Brain games are enjoyable but can also enhance cognitive skills and inhibit certain types of memory loss and dementia.
- Eat right. Try cutting back on empty calories or adding at least one “super food” (those abundant in vitamins) to your diet every day. Super foods include berries, nuts, kale, salmon, dark chocolate and red wine. The adage, you are what you eat, holds true. By eating the right foods and enjoying goodies in moderation, you’ll find it easier to maintain a healthy weight and feel better about yourself.
- Sleep tight. Get the recommended eight hours of sleep every night. Experts also encourage good sleep habits, such as turning off your TV, phone or other devices, and going to bed at the same time every night. A good night’s sleep should leave you refreshed and ready to face a new day’s challenges.
- Review your finances and legal papers. The new year is an excellent time to do a financial review. When you’re in control of your money, you rest easier and feel more optimistic – and can make better spending decisions. Also ensure legal documents, such as a will or medical directive, are up-to-date.
- Try a new technology. One idea is to learn more about the functions on your smartphone. Or maybe download a new app you’ve wanted to try. The options are endless nowadays and can match virtually any interest – shopping, cooking, exercising and more.
- Volunteer for your favorite charity. Nothing is better than giving back. And when you can help someone else, you feel inspired yourself. It’s also rewarding to make a difference to a cause you’re passionate about. If you’re not as mobile as you used to be, there are ways to volunteer by phone or even online.
- Quit something that is bad for you. This can be smoking, overeating, drinking too much or even worrying. But there are smaller things to conquer as well, such as improving your posture or even smiling more. Any time you eliminate a bad habit (or improve on something) is a positive!
Keeping Your Resolution
According to Lifehack.com, only 12 percent of resolutions succeed. But there are ways to improve your odds. The best way is to pick a resolution you’ll keep. But seriously, keep things realistic. For example, don’t go overboard and try to reform your entire life in 30 days.
Ways to bolster success:
- Take your time. Rarely is there instant gratification when it comes to a New Year’s Resolution. If your goal has multiple steps, write them down. If it includes an extended timeline (for example, losing weight), map out periodic goals with dates.
- Give yourself some credit, be kind to yourself. Even if you take a step back in your goal, don’t fret. The worst thing to do is to let your inner critic get the best of you and undermine your efforts. Stay confident!
- Focus, recommit and adjust accordingly. If you take more than a step backward, it may be time for a reality check. Is your goal attainable or have you bitten off too much? If you need to realign your goal, that’s okay. It’s better than throwing in the towel altogether.
- Reflect on your priorities. If resolve is waning, perhaps the goal you had in mind isn’t the right one for you. Or, maybe you need to find a new approach to reenergize, like seeking an accountability partner, an online support group or maintaining a log. Rest assured that any progress you make is a good thing!