New Year’s Resolution Ideas – Bucket List Goals to Make for 2024

New Year’s Resolution Ideas - Bucket List Goals to Make for 2024As the clock strikes midnight, many of us are eager to begin a fresh year and focus on creating new goals and memories over the next 365 days. The first of January is the ideal time to sit down and contemplate what it is you want in life and whether the last year provided you with the joy you expected. It’s almost like you’ve been given a clean slate, so why not make the most of it?

We know not everyone is a fan of New Year’s, but hopefully we can change your mind. Why not leave the last 12 months behind you and start planning the incredible year ahead. Choosing what you want to change, or the goals you want to reach can be difficult, so we’re eager to help with our New Year’s Resolution Ideas. These are the more popular goals that people strive for in the New Year. We’ll even provide you with some tips on how to stay committed to achieving your goals, which many people struggle with as the months roll on.

Yes, we love bucket lists, but we also love New Year’s Resolutions, because essentially, they’re the same thing. There’s no time limit on when you begin, how long it takes to achieve the goal or how you do it. The key is that you prepare for your resolution, commit to the change, and then celebrate the achievement.

Here’s to a New Year, new you!

What is a New Year’s Resolution?

The best way to think of a New Year’s Resolution is a goal, promise or change we want to make at the start of a year. They can signify a fresh start for many people and an opportunity to focus on growth and to leave the old habits behind you. Because of this, many people choose the 1st or 2nd of January to begin their resolutions.

Where the idea of a New Year’s Resolution comes from isn’t exactly clear. Some believe the practice dates back to the Babylonians who would make resolutions every year as part of a twelve-day ceremony. By keeping their promise, it was said they would be rewarded with good favour.

Another connects it to the Ancient Romans, more specifically the God of January who was named Janus. This two-faced god is said to represent new beginnings, ends and transitions. Because they have one face looking forward and one looking back, the Romans felt Janus or January was a symbol of reviewing the previous year and focusing into the future. As such it was said that you would be given forgiveness for the previous year if your achieved more in the year to follow.

Thankfully people are still making resolutions, but the problem many have is keeping them. On average 38% of people will make a resolution each year, but only 9% will have stuck to them at the end of that year. Many want to get fit, lose weight, quit bad habits such as smoking, and yet most are forgotten by the time February comes around.

Tips to Help You Maintain Your New Year’s Resolutions

Tips to Help You Maintain Your New Year’s ResolutionsIf you’re planning on joining the 38% then our advice is to view your resolution as self-improvement and not a to-do list. Think about why you want to make that particular change? For many years growth has been an important part of mindfulness and isn’t life boring if we don’t create new aspirations and challenge ourselves.

The desire to get comfortable with the uncomfortable is the perfect foundation to begin. As you achieve your resolutions, you tend to want to pursue more goals, which can only be a good thing.

So here are a few tips on how to stick with those resolutions, because sometimes you need to have a strategy to ensure you achieve the desired results.

  • Baby Steps – We have made many changes since starting our bucket list, some easier such as taking up a hobby and some more difficult. The one thing we have found that helps you stay consistent is to start small. Many find big changes overwhelming, so focus on smaller more measurable steps. The important thing is to slot it into your daily habits and make it accessible. So, if you’re quitting smoking or drinking then get the things you need such as support from charities or patches and alcohol-free drinks. If it’s a hobby make sure it’s accessible, for example it could be you’re learning the guitar, keep it within your room so you can grab it for a few minutes a day. You may want to get into a fitness routine, then why not keep a set of dumbbells in the kitchen and use them whilst you’re waiting for the kettle to boil in the morning. Each of these things are small steps, but daily practice will lead to long term success.
  • Recruit a Friend for Support – This person could be making the changes with you or simply offering their support and keeping you accountable. Having someone to hold your hand through the process can really increase your chances of success. You can pass tips onto each other and talk through any difficulties you may be having. If you’re not sure of who to ask, then why not find new friends who are making the same resolution via groups online. This is especially helpful for those giving up something such as alcohol or smoking.
  • Create Daily Rituals or Strategies – We’ve mentioned it a little above, but preparation and strategy can really help you stick to your resolution. Depending on what it is, make it accessible and research your new habit so you know what to expect.
  • Remember You Don’t Have to be Perfect – Making a resolution isn’t about perfection, it’s about the small moments of progress you make. We’ve taken up a number of hobbies such as juggling and learning to play an instrument, and we know that with just a few minutes every day you can progress far. Some days will be better than others and change can take time, so take the pressure off yourself and simply enjoy the process.
  • Make a Record of Your Progress – Keeping a journal is a great way to record how you’re doing and what progress you are making. Writing down your goals is the ideal way to ensure they happen, mainly because success gives you a dopamine hit which spurs you on. But even better than that is the joy you feel when you realise how much you’ve advanced since you began your resolution, simply by looking back through the record you’ve made.

 

The Best New Years Resolution’s to Inspire You

1. Eat Healthier

health eating resolutionThis must be one of the most popular new year’s resolutions, especially after the excessive eating over the Christmas period. Most people know if they have a good diet, so if you’re concerned about the amount of processed food you’re eating, then why not make some changes. There is so much information out there and this is the ideal resolution where you can make those small changes. Instead of going all out plant based, you could begin with a smoothie for breakfast instead of your usual cereal. Or reduce the meat and chips on your plate and add more vegetables. The key is to be more intentional about what you eat and opt for whole foods instead of processed.

Our favourite app to monitor our veg intake is the Daily Dozen from Nutrition Facts.org. They make it easier to log your consumption of healthy foods, which will hopefully inspire you to stick to those long-term changes.

The best part of this change is the impact it will have on your physical and mental health. In the long term you’ll reduce the risk of the top diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and strokes, but you’ll also have better mental clarity and mood. Fingers crossed there’s some weight loss in their too, because cutting the junk means drastically cutting the calories.

2. Drink Less Alcohol or Completely Quit

Alike the first one, drinking less alcohol or going completely alcohol free is a popular resolution in January. Again, this is probably because of an over consumption during the Christmas period. But you may be surprised to know that there has been a boom in the number of people choosing sobriety. Many youngsters are choosing not to drink, and people of all ages are promoting the positive effects of an alcohol-free life. Then you have the surge of new alcohol-free drinks available in pubs and supermarkets, with many tasting exactly like the alcoholic versions.

Whether you’re choosing to moderate or quit completely, our advice is to get support by reading sobriety books (known as quit lit), listening to the podcasts, joining the sober communities such as Flamingo AF and trying out those af drinks to see which ones you prefer. If you’re moderating why not set yourself a target number of days a month.

The more you research into alcohol, the more you’ll discover what it does to your body, mental health, and sleep. This will help you to stick with whatever resolution you have chosen.

For those of you ready to go all out and choose the alcohol-free life, then check out our Sober Bucket List.

3. Try Out a New Hobby

Learning a new hobby is a popular item for both resolutions and bucket lists. We love trying out new hobbies and currently have a number of them which we do daily, including learning a language, an instrument and even juggling. There is an immense joy in starting something new and finding that you’re good at it. Most people start a hobby as a way to evade boredom and de-stress, but it’s also a great form of self-expression and creativity. Hobbies can be relatively inexpensive once you get past that initial outlay and depending on what you choose. We have written a full Hobbies Bucket List for those of you who are looking for something new, but you’re not sure what you fancy. Most can be done at home, so if you don’t want anything too social then we have plenty to choose from. Also why restrict yourself to just one, as we mentioned above, we have a few and we’ll certainly keep adding to them because they bring a passion to our life we never expected.

The key to hobbies is preparation and baby steps, no one can master a new skill in a few days or weeks. So, take your time and remember that you’re doing it for enjoyment and not a punishment. Also, if you struggle one day, for example playing an instrument, then leave it and come back to it another day.

4. Begin a Meditation Practice

new years resolution to meditateSadly, we regularly see meditation being portrayed in a negative light, with many viewing it as boring or hippy dippy. But our experience has been very different, and we ensure that we take a few minutes out of each day to practice this mindfulness method.

Meditation is a technique used to help someone focus their mind to achieve a mentally and emotionally clear and calm state. It is a practice which is thousands of years old and has influenced a number of religious practices and traditions, so it must have some impact on mindfulness? We can confirm that from our experience it does, because we have seen significant benefits since we began meditating. By meditating for a few minutes a day you can control anxiety, reduce blood pressure, improve sleep, and brain health.

Starting something like this is never easy and you will get frustrated at all the thoughts that creep in as you concentrate. But they will calm and reduce the more you do it, and you’ll feel an inner peace which will transfer to your everyday life. Our advice is simply start and give yourself the time to focus and relax. Meditation doesn’t require that you sit in a lotus position in yoga gear, you could be lying down on the couch in your PJ’s. The intention of meditation should be the focus, not what you look like.

One of the great things about meditation is that it is free and can be done anywhere, so if you’re stressed and anxious then take some time out. You can google meditation or search on a streaming service such as Spotify. They have lots of guided meditations which are ideal for beginners, but you’ll also find plenty of meditation music to get lost in. Start small, maybe one or two minutes and work your way up. We currently do 10 minutes and use the Headspace guided meditation which helps us focus.

If you’re eager to know more about meditating, then check out our guide on Meditation for Beginners.

5. Learn a New Language

We’ve mentioned it a little above as a hobby, but learning a language is so popular that it deserves a section of its own. The days of learning a new language from a tape are well gone, because now you can access incredible apps such as Duolingo and Babbel. They offer a range of languages and they’re free, so the most difficult part will be deciding which one to choose. We joined Duolingo and chose Spanish because we were told it was easier to master than other languages. But you may choose one based on a country you love to visit, or a destination you dream of visiting one day such as Paris or Rome.

The joy of being able to interpret another language is hard to explain and we have taken great delight when we’ve been to Spanish speaking countries. It takes your travel experience to another level and shows locals how interested you are in their country. What’s great about the new methods of learning languages is that you only need to spend a few minutes each day to progress. We’re not going to pretend that this one isn’t something that will take time, it will depend on how easy you find it. But sometimes the best things in life will take a while and not only are you picking up a new skill, but you’re also improving your mental cognition which is said to help prevent diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

6. Start a New Exercise Routine

Most of us know that January is peak time for people going on diets and joining the gym to shed that Christmas weight. But what if you reframe your resolution and rather than focusing on losing weight, you aim to improve your health and strength. Getting into shape by working out on a regular basis, means that you’ll not only better your physical wellness, but you should feel your mental health improve.

The best place to start is by picking a new exercise routine, and that could be anything from Pilates, yoga, cycling, lifting weights, swimming, and running, to simply walking ten thousand steps a day. Most people stick to this type of resolution by finding a fitness programme that they love, so maybe try a few online classes first.

What will really encourage you is seeing your body change over time, as well as the strength you gain. Remember alike the other resolutions, you don’t have to spend hours working out or buying expensive gym gear. Just take some time out of your day, even if its 10 minutes, because that will go a long way. Having small intermittent goals will also help you stick to your exercise plan; in fact you could give yourself a set money amount for every workout you do and when you reach a certain financial amount you can then treat yourself to something new.

7. Spend More Time Travelling

make a resolution to travel moreThis is a resolution we make every year because travel enhances your life in so many ways. The more we explore this beautiful planet, we found it has created a passion and joy that we could never have imagined. We have a greater sense of adventure, increased confidence, and a better knowledge about the incredible places we have visited.

Where you travel is completely dependent on your free time, money and where you want to go. It could be a road trip where you take in the sights of your own country or another. What about that dream destination you’ve always wanted to see, or a new experience such as a cruise?

Make this your year and plan a trip to somewhere new, do your research using travel blogs such as ours and take plenty of pictures when you go; you only live once.

If you decide to book a cruise for the first time, then check out our Cruise Ship Bucket List which has all the things you’ll want to tick off during your vacation.

8. Work on Your Sleep Habits

We think of sleep as something we do to restore our energy supply after the day’s activities, but in reality, it is so much more than that. Without sleep we cannot function effectively, because this is the time when our bodies ramp up their efforts to restore and heal. An example of this is the cleaning of our brains through the glymphatic system, which predominantly occurs as we slumber.

If you’re like many people out there who spend the build up to bed time staring at TV and mobile screens, then maybe your new year’s resolution will be working on your sleep habits. By doing this you can ensure that you enjoy more restorative sleep for the recommended eight hours. There are a variety of ways you can do this such as reducing your screen time, not drinking caffeine after 2pm, getting black out curtains and blinds, setting an alarm for bedtime, and using specific pillow scents to trigger your brain to know its bedtime.

By prioritising your sleep you’ll find a number of things will occur in both your physical and mental health. You’ll be able to focus, learn and retain information, maintain a healthy weight, reduce stress and your immunity will improve. All of this simply for getting a good night’s kip, sounds wonderful to us.

We have worked on our sleep patterns after reading Dr Matthew Walkers book, ‘Why We Sleep’. One of the steps we took was buying this eye mask which is incredibly comfortable, and we have found it helped.

9. Learn to Cook

If your go to meal is beans on toast, then maybe your resolution will be learning to cook. You don’t need to be a Michelin star chef to enjoy cooking and making great food. For those not sure where to begin then our advice would be to check out Google for beginners’ recipes and see what you fancy. Once you discover a passion for the culinary, then you can always book a cooking course to take your skills to the next level and possibly explore more diverse cuisines. Cooking at home will always taste better than takeaway, and as your technique improves, you’ll probably prefer home cooked anyway.

10. Adopt a Pet

Adopt a PetThere’s a joy to adopting a pet, firstly because you’re saving them from a shelter and secondly because you’re giving them a home and adding a member to your family. What you may not know is that there are many health benefits to owning a pet, including physical such as better immunity, and decreased blood pressure. Then add in mental health as they can help reduce loneliness and depression. Of course, it is a huge responsibility and will impose some restrictions on your life, but the joy that is brought into your house will bypass all of that. Most people want a cat or dog, but it may surprise you that most rescue shelters have a variety of animals looking for a good home, including rabbits, gerbils, birds, and reptiles.

So that you’re fully aware of the commitment, you will have costs such as food, health insurance, training if required and toys or additional supplies. Our advice is to visit the animal rescue shelters and spend some time with the pet of your choice or ask a friend who has that specific animal if you can babysit for the day. It is better to realise in the beginning that you’ve changed your mind, then bring them home and decide having a pet was more than you expected. Even smaller pets such as hamsters and fish require a lot of work, but most people don’t mind because of the pure love you feel for them. So maybe having a fur baby will be your new year’s change.

11. Dream Bigger with a Vision Board

Resolutions don’t always have to be things you do immediately, they can also be working out where you want your life to go. There is a joy to imagining what you want and dreaming about your future, because positivity can lead to success.

If you dream of bigger things in your life, then a vision board is the perfect way to set target specific goals to work towards. Many people set up a vision board to help direct them, on the things they want to own or achieve.

The process of making your board is relatively easy, you simply need a place to gather objects or images which represent your future goals. This could be a cork or magnetic board for your wall which should be placed where you can see it often.

Creating and gathering your goals and desires is the part which can take some work, so it’s worth giving yourself the time for reflection. Find images online of the things which represent your vision and add them to your board. It can be as simple or as artistic as you like, but the key to a vision board is that it will help you immerse yourself in those goals, which should focus your actions on making positive changes within your life. Producing a vision board is cheap, but the ambition and drive it can give to a person is priceless.

12. Write a Letter to Your Future Self

Where do you see yourself in the future, what do you aspire to be, and how do you want your life to turn out. Picture your future self reading a letter from you now and knowing that everything you wanted to achieve, you made it happen. We can imagine the pride would be unbelievable.

By sharing your feelings on how life is now, and your current thoughts on the main elements such as your family, career, love and so on. You can see how much you have changed and developed over the years. The length of time you keep the letter hidden away is completely down to you, it could be 5 years or 10 years. We’d gauge it on how long you think those dreams and goals will take to be fulfilled.

The best part of something like this is that you can drill down on what you want in life and have more focus to help achieve your ambitions. Sometimes when it comes to knowing what we want, the hardest point is the start. Once you have worked out where you want to be, then you can create the steps to getting there.

13. Start a Gratitude Journal

Start a gratitude journal as a new years resolutionMost of us take stock of our life in the new year, by focusing on what we want to change and what we’re grateful for. Focusing on gratitude is scientifically proven to enhance mental health and wellbeing. Studies have found that having a sense of positivity and gratitude can aid sleep and lower blood pressure, whilst improving your immune system.

Starting a gratitude journal is incredibly easy, all you need is a notebook and pen. We bought one for a couple of pounds which we use as both a gratitude book and a journal. How many gratitude’s you write every day is completely down to you. We chose three because it is enough to make us think about how lucky we are, but also not enough to be a chore. The best part of this is that you can grab a brew, sit, relax, and really focus on what makes you smile.

What you’re grateful for is again a personal thing and it will change daily. We have written down a huge variety of things, a beautiful meal, our friends, family, a cup of coffee, watching the sunset, technology, or your health. It’s the perfect way to remember how beautiful life is and that there is always something to be grateful for.

If you are struggling to think of things to be grateful for, then check out our article on 100 Things to Be Grateful For – What Are You Thankful for In Your Life?

14. Create a New Year Playlist

Music is not only good for the soul, it’s also great for your mental and physical health. Did you know that research links listening to music with reduced anxiety, blood pressure and pain. But it also improves mood, sleep quality, mental alertness, and memory. So, making a playlist seems like a great idea to help you start your year off in the right way. The list of songs could be focusing on happiness or relaxation, or you could combine a myriad of genres to create an emotional rollercoaster. There are so many songs which remind us of important moments in our lives, the song we heard when we met our true loves, our wedding song, the song we associate with a first crush and break up. But also, a song that reminds us of our children or parents. They can each ignite different emotions and that is a beautiful experience. You’ll not only have the joy of working out what songs to add to your list, but also the pleasure of listening to it over and over throughout the year. But the best part is that you can always add more songs with new experiences.

15. Drink More Water

This probably isn’t the first new year’s resolution that springs to mind, but it could make a huge difference to your day-to-day life. Did you know that we are made up of about 80% water and that our tissues, organs, and cells need it to function properly. This is why there are official recommendations that we drink six to eight, eight-ounce glasses of water every day.

If you don’t get enough water you can suffer from fatigue, dull skin, a lack of concentration, abdominal issues and it even impacts our sleep patterns. So why not turn your attention to drinking more water and make it your resolution. The best way to do this is preparation, so make sure you buy yourself a water bottle which can help you measure your intake. You could even put some fruit into your water bottle to add a little flavour, such as lemon or lime.

If you’re concerned about spending all night peeing, then try and drink the majority of your daily intake during the earlier part of the day. You could also add in things like smoothies and juices, or simply eat more water dense fruits and vegetables such as berries, cucumber, and melons.

In reality this is an incredibly small change to your life, yet it can have such an impact on your overall health, so it’s certainly bucket list worthy.

16. Quit a Bad Habit

We’ve mentioned a couple of bad habits above that you may want to change, such as eating healthier and quitting alcohol, mainly because they’re big enough to deserve their own section. But there are so many bad habits that we’d be remise not to mention them.

Your bad habit could be anything, whether it’s nail biting, smoking, caffeine, eating sugar, or something a little more obscure such as procrastinating, comparing yourself to others, avoiding perfectionism and stopping complaining.

Now resolutions aren’t meant to be easy, it’s the reason why we have to mentally prepare for them in the first place and why so many people don’t keep them up. Again, alike many of the other items, the best way to approach any habit is by making incremental changes. Make a record of the steps you want to take to change or quit the habit so that you have tangible goals to aim for. But also look for online groups or gurus who can provide support on how to go about the change.

17. Make a Movie List and Watch Them Through the Year

Make a Movie List for the YearThere are so many incredible movies released every year, which makes it hard to watch them all. If you’re a big fan of new and old movies, then why not make a list of all the ones you’re eager to see and work through them as part of your resolution.

Fulfilling this resolution is much easier in the age of streaming, where you have a huge number of genres available. The types of movies you watch, when and how you do this is completely at your discretion, but our advice is to pace it throughout the year so you’re not leaving it last minute and rushing.

But if you’re not sure where to start, then check out our Top 100 Bucket List Movies of All Time, which includes a number of epic titles. Just make sure you’re prepared with plenty of popcorn, snacks, drinks, and blankets to make it a cosy experience.

18. Try To Grow Something

If you’re anything like us, then anything you bring home which requires a green thumb, will swiftly die. Although we have managed to grow a decent sized pumpkin in a competition with friends. Other than that, our house is filled with lots of fake plants. If you’re similar in your lack of plant knowledge, then why not make it a resolution to grow something. It could be an indoor plant, bedding plants for your garden or take it a step further and try to grow vegetables.

You don’t need lots of money or a big garden to grow something, sometimes a simple window box is enough; especially if you have chosen to plant herbs in it. Buying the seeds to begin is inexpensive, just make sure you do the research on the best place to grow your chosen plant or vegetable. Who knows, you may find yourself getting a little addicted to gardening and deciding to grow more.

19. Do a Random Act of Kindness

One of the best things you can do to improve your own mental and physical health, is to serve and help others. It doesn’t have to be a huge thing; you don’t need to commit lots of time or money. Random acts of kindness will not only add joy to the person’s life, but they will also enrich your own. You could give yourself the resolution of doing one thing a week or month. What that will be is completely up to you, but some examples include donating to a food bank, planting a tree, buying flowers for a care home, paying for a coffee for the person behind you, or letting someone cut in front of you in the queue. In reality it can be anything which will brighten someone’s day, including giving them a compliment, so don’t think you have to go extravagant. We love this one because it’s a beautiful way to add a little love into the world and in turn it will brighten up your day too.

20. Donate Blood

We all know that blood donation is important, with slogans such as ‘give blood and save lives.’ Donated blood is essential for many reasons but more specifically by women who have complications during pregnancy, children with severe anaemia, accident victims and cancer patients. So why not add it to your new year’s resolution bucket list?

We have given blood a few times and can remember our first donation very clearly. We felt extreme anxiety, so we totally understand why people are scared to do it. The reality is it’s far easier than you think, and at the end you are given a drink and normally biscuits for the sugar, so it’s a win win. Make sure you drink plenty the day before your donation and on that morning, it helps with finding a vein. You will have a small finger prick test to check for iron levels and then if that’s ok, you’re ready to give blood. The needle in the arm is a small pinch and then you get to lie down and close your eyes and relax, sounds heavenly doesn’t it. You’ll leave the donation centre feeling euphoric as you know what your blood will mean to someone. Most countries have donation websites, simply Google ‘how can I donate blood’ and it should pop up.

21. Take Time to Read More Books

Read a New BookThe majority of people love to read, because there’s a joy to becoming engrossed in the life of a fictional character or world. But finding time to read can be difficult, life gets so busy with endless tasks and chores. So why not make a resolution and focus your attention on finding time to read more books.

The choice of which book to read is vast, so ask friends for recommendations or why not check out the classics; they’re called that for a very good reason. It doesn’t matter where you read, or whether its paper based or on a Kindle, as long as you give yourself the time to get fully absorbed into the world of the story. We’re huge fans of the romances such as Pride and Prejudice or Wuthering Heights, but then we can also recommend Fantasy genre classics such as Lord of the Rings and the more modern Harry Potter series.

If you’ve seen a movie you love, then look online to check if it originated from a book and maybe give that a try. You’ll find the books add much more depth to the story and characters than a movie ever could.

Remember that if money is a little tight after the holidays, then you could always get your books for free from a library and there are many free options to download to your Kindle. Or head to charity shops to see what second hand books are available.

22. Donate Something You No Longer Need

We tend to build up so much junk we no longer want, so why not give it to someone who does. Christmas is a time for giving and receiving gifts, but the hardest part is finding where to put your new treasures. Why not spend your new year going through cupboards and draws, and getting rid of anything you no longer want. You can ask family and friends whether they want the item you’re donating or give it to a charity shop. The best part is that you get to declutter your home, whilst giving to others which will make you feel good.

23. Start Volunteering

Resolutions are always special when they involve helping others, and volunteering is ideal because it gives you a strong sense of pride. It will cost you one thing and that is time, but the fact you’re improving someone’s life is priceless. There are so many options, and it can be a one off or a regular thing, with examples being giving blood, picking up litter or helping in a care home. Think about what you’re passionate about, then Google volunteering and see what pops up.

24. Do a Charity Walk or Run

Add a Charity Walk or Run to your new years resolutionMost of us look at getting active in the new year, so why not give yourself a challenge for a good cause. There are thousands of charity runs arranged throughout the year, so take a look at a charity which is dear to your heart and see what they have available. Obviously if you’ve never ran before then you’ll need to train, so maybe choose a race which is in a few months’ time, and you can get yourself prepared for it. If you have physical issues which prevent you from running, then what about a charity walk? Again, there are plenty around, with some even being moon walks at night, which is pretty cool. This type of resolution ticks every box because you’re getting healthy and giving back.

25. Become a Mentor

This is a great resolution if you’re eager to give back and help someone grow, either personally or career wise. You can do it in a more formal setting such as your workplace or with someone you know who you feel needs more guidance. Mentoring is so rewarding, and you’ll probably find that you feel boosted by it.

26. Unplug and Take a Digital Detox

Most of us are aware that social media can have a negative impact on our mental health, as well as becoming an addiction. Studies are finding that more and more people are losing the connections they have in real life, and this is creating depression and anxiety. So why not unplug from all social media and any devices for a period of time such as a week or month and spend more time with family and friends. If that seems extreme, then firstly question whether you have a healthy relationship with digital platforms and maybe start instead by setting daily limits of screen time. What you will find if you try a digital detox is that your mental health will improve, you’ll feel more relaxed and find yourself comparing your life to others far less. But you can also spend more time on things you enjoy, such as your passions and hobbies. It’s amazing how much of our time we waste scrolling, which can be used for better things.

27. Get Outside and Spend More Time in Nature

walk in nature in the new yearLife can get in the way, and normally by the time we get home from work, the last thing we want to do is go outside and walk. But you may be missing out on a myriad of mental and physical health benefits. There are plenty of studies out there which show that being in nature has a positive effect on our bodies, even if it’s for ten minutes. As well as reducing cortisol, muscle tension and lowering blood pressure, you can also decrease anxiety and depression simply by wandering through a forest or field. It’s no surprise then that there is an increasing popularity in forest bathing which is an ancient Japanese process of relaxation (known as shinrin yoku). You simply head to a forest and take in the peace and quiet amongst the trees, as you breathe deeply and observe the beauty of the nature that surrounds you.

The best part of this resolution is that it’s completely free and can be an addition to your day, rather than the main focus. Why not tie it in to other chores such as walking the dog, or other bucket list items such as watching a sunrise or sunset. Not only are you enjoying the relaxation of being out in the green beauty of nature, but you’re also getting in some exercise, so again it’s a winner all round.

28. Focus on Your Financial Situation

This new year’s resolution will be completely dependent on your current financial position. Are you in debt, struggling because you don’t earn enough for your expenses or you’re looking to save for something special. How you do this can vary, whether you get support from a financial advisor, sit down yourself and work out a budget or ask a friend or family to go through your costs.

Sadly, most people don’t focus on saving because they’re consumed by paying for bills. But having some money for emergencies is a good strategy to follow and you’ll find your stress levels will significantly reduce knowing you have some pennies as backup.

To begin, no matter your situation we would advise looking online for budgeting tips. If you’re severely in debt then you may need specific support, so again check online for debt management schemes. The best place to begin is by looking at your expenses and planning a budget. You can also check utility providers and other contracts to see if you can reduce your monthly bills or find ways to cut your food costs at the supermarket (for example changing brands). Other suggestions include cancelling unnecessary subscriptions or searching online for discounts.

Of course, we believe that everyone should treat themselves, especially if you’re ticking off a bucket list item. Just make sure you do it responsibly, because we know you’ll enjoy the experience ten times more if you’ve saved for it.

29. Be an Organ Donor

The reality is that being an organ donor costs you nothing but gives another person everything. It’s not an easy decision to make, so take your time and think about what it will mean for you and your loved ones. Sometimes organ donation happens when the donor is still alive, but most of the time it happens if the donor dies. Most countries have their own organ donor organisations, simply Google and you’ll find all of the information you need before making your decision.

If you are looking for more cheap or completely free things to do, then read our Low Cost Bucket List guide.

30. Decorate a Room You’ve Been Meaning To

From experience we know that the thought of decorating can be overwhelming and get on top of you. So why not take it in stages and simply focus on one room as part of your resolution bucket list. Take your time and pick what colours you like, maybe using online sites such as Pinterest for inspiration. Why not start with your smallest room, because you’ll probably find you enjoy the results so much that you want to do more.

31. Journal Everyday

start a new year of self love with a journalThis is a practice that we do every day, and we find that it helps to create order in a world that feels a little chaotic. But you also have the chance to let go of any unwanted feelings onto the page, rather than store them internally. We bought ourselves a pretty but cheap note pad, so that we could keep it for the specific purpose of a journal. The only cost that you really need is your time and in reality, it’s only 5 minutes or so, because we tend to fill in one page of our journal.

There are many benefits to journalling which include improving mental health, encouraging self-confidence, boosting emotional intelligence, and helping to achieve goals. But if you’re looking to work on your most private fears and traumas, then why not write it down and then tear up the pages. By doing this you can really get everything out in the open, knowing that no one else will find your journal and read it afterwards.

Our advice is to take some time out every day to journal and look at it as personal relaxation time. We’ve journalled for a couple of years and find it a great way to work through our problems and thoughts. If you keep your journal pages, then you can always look back at past entries to see how far you’ve come.

32. Organise Your Life

In reality this item could mean absolutely anything, you can focus it on the things you really need to prioritise. It could be that you need to organise your home and sort through cupboards, desks and draws. You may also want to build habits which will provide a work life balance, but also ensure that you achieve the goals you have set. There are also areas of your life which we’ve mentioned above such as diet, fitness, and general health.

Our advice to get started is to focus on what is important, write down any long- and short-term goals and prioritise them. To help achieve those goals, think about the time needed to fulfil them and use a planner or calendar to work out when you’ll accomplish the task. If needs be you can always delegate some of the goals, and if you’re struggling then make sure you re-evaluate every so often.

33. Make a New Friend

We get it, after a certain age making new friends is much harder than when you were a kid or teenager. But there are plenty of us who are open to meeting new like-minded people. You may already have a great set of friends, but they may not enjoy all of the same things that you do. There are apps to help you meet new people, but you could also join groups for the things you like, or the hobbies you enjoy and get chatting to people on there. We’ve joined a number of Facebook and Instagram groups over the last couple of years and made some great new friendships from all over the world. Modern technology makes it so much easier to chat and we tend to voice note our new friends more than our own family.

34. Break Away from Toxic Relationships

The assumption is that we mean romantic relationships only, but this could be a partner, family member or friend. Depending on who the relationship is with, will depend on the difficulty of cutting ties with this person or persons. None of us like animosity in our lives and we’re all scared of being alone. But if this relationship is bad for your physical and/or mental health, then it’s worth considering why you’re maintaining it? The reality is that you can only control your own actions, so you’re never going to change that person. But you can make yourself a priority in your own heart and break away from the toxicity. We have done this with multiple friendships and what you will find is that you open your eyes to the other people around you and focus spending time with them instead. There is lots of professional advice online if you are considering ending an abusive relationship.

35. Go Old Skool and Send Cards or Letters

Go Old Skool and Send Cards or LettersMore and more people are choosing to contact their loved ones via some form of technology, whether it’s an email, a Facebook message, or a text message; to name a few. Gone are the old days of passionately written love notes, beautiful birthday cards or ‘Wish You Were Here’ postcards. So why not go old skool and go the extra mile this year. You could even take it to another level and head to a craft store to buy supplies and make your own. Those of us who have received anything like this can truly appreciate getting something so thoughtful.

36. Earn More Money Through a Side Hustle or Passion

When you think of resolutions, it tends to be about ways to save money. Most of us could do with a little extra money, but have you ever considered doing something other than your main job? Having a side hustle is becoming more and more popular, with many tying it into their passions and hobbies. There is an increasing number of home-based jobs, so this could be your initial goal. But think about other areas of your life and the things you enjoy doing, would anyone buy it? Do you make soap, jewellery, cakes, or celebratory cards? Or do you have extensive knowledge in a subject which would assist people, if so what about a blog on the topic?

Your side hustle may not earn enough to become your full-time job, but who knows, we have seen a lot of people do incredibly well from something that started out earning a few pennies.

37. Prioritise ‘Me Time’

We all have good intentions in life to ensure we look after our physical and mental health, so we exercise or book in with a therapist. But do you actually carve out time simply to relax and focus on you. Sadly because of technology we are available to people 24/7, so your first step maybe unplugging from life for an hour or two a day or maybe even one day a week. What you do during your ‘me time’ is completely down to you, it could be simply having a nap, enjoying some self-care rituals such as a new skin care routine, having a bath, and reading that book you’ve been longing to get through. Because we’re always so busy with life it’s important to actually commit to your well being and sometimes that means saying no to all of the people in our lives.

38. Try Something New Each Month

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut of daily routines, so why not use your new years resolution to shake things up a little? Yes, this will take forethought and planning, but sometimes there is a little work in the bucket list life. What you try doesn’t have to be huge, it could be a new restaurant, recipe, or class, such as yoga or Pilates. If you’re really pushing yourself this year, then what about throwing in some challenges and facing your fears. We are terrified of heights and so on occasion we try to add something on our bucket list which will push those boundaries. Obviously, yours will be personal to you, but there are plenty to choose from whether it’s a fear of flying, rollercoasters, swimming in the ocean, or even spiders!

39. Sign Up for A Class

Sign Up for A ClassWe absolutely love this one, because most of us like to learn new things and have an idea of a class we’d love to do. Things tend to get in the way, whether it’s time, money or even a fear that you won’t be able to do it. But in reality, what have you got to lose? Even if you don’t want to go to an actual classroom, you can take classes online for a range of skills.

You may want to go back and study topics such as history, biology, or English. Or you may fancy something more on the crafts side such as flower arranging or balloon design. Then there are those skills such as nail technician, learning a language or instrument. There is so much to choose from and this option not only provides social fun, but it’s great for cognition and mental health.

40. Compliment Someone and Mean It

Most people have a negative view about new years resolutions, and we get it, some changes can seem huge. We love small ones such as this, which don’t take any planning or cost, but they will impact the receiver in such a positive way. You may have a plan to do this once a day, or once a week, and it could be face to face or even a simple text message telling someone how amazing they are. How you do this is completely down to you, but just think about how many people you will cheer up, simply by making this one resolution.

41. Spend More Time with Your Family

The weeks fly by so quickly and our focus tends to be on looking after the kids, house and getting through work. But what about your family? Do you spend enough time with your parents and siblings or extended family? Or do you repeatedly think ‘ I need to see them more’. Making memories is an important part of life, so why not make them with the people you love the most. This is the ideal resolution to do with your family, where you can make an agreement that at least once a month you all go out and do something special. It could be a meal, go to a theme park, go bowling or something as simple as meeting up at each other’s houses. This is one resolution that you will never regret starting.

42. Focus on Happiness

We’re sure when you started reading this list you had an idea of the kind of items we’d have here, but we bet you’ve never considered working on your happiness. If you ask people what they want in life, most will say they simply want them and their loved ones to be happy. But do you actually do anything to make it happen? As you can imagine there are plenty of tips on building techniques for happiness and you can always begin to deep dive the wellness gurus. There are masses of podcasts and books available, all focusFocus on Happiness for the new yeared on bringing more joy into our lives.

Many of the ways to help increase your happiness levels we have already mentioned, such as journalling, writing down gratitude’s, meditation, starting a hobby and exercising. But there are some fundamental basics which can really help, including managing your stress levels. Look at your life and work out what brings you joy, what causes you stress and even who causes you stress. Just a few small changes can impact your mood significantly.

Another method is to use humour, whether it’s telling more jokes, seeing the funny side of situations, or paying attention to the things you read and watch, and opting for comedy instead. Choose to socialise with those friends who have your face muscles aching from all the laughter. Being social is a fundamental tool to happiness and you’d be surprised to know that it’s important for health too.

We have mentioned above that lifestyle is important, but as well as upping exercise there are other ways to help boost your dopamine and reduce anxiety and depression which should improve your overall happiness. Limiting or quitting alcohol is a big one, because it’s actually a depressant which will explain the anxiety most people experience the day after a drinking session. Also focus on healthy foods such as fruit and vegetables because they have natural antioxidants which can lift your mood. Finally, and probably the most important thing to focus on is sleep, especially restorative sleep. This is essential for your body and brain to organise all of your day’s thoughts, so what may have seemed like a problem the day before, will tend to feel easier to deal with the next day.

If you’re considering this as a resolution then why not bring in a family member or friend to join you, so that you have someone to talk to about your progress and share any tips with.

43. Reduce That Negative Self Talk

How we talk to ourselves will have a significant impact on our self-esteem, mental health, and the way we view the world. Most people view themselves negatively and can quickly point out the areas of their body or their personality which they hate. You could of course always attempt to make changes to the things you don’t like, but what about instead stopping the negative self-talk. Make it a goal to only talk about yourself in a positive way and compliment yourself in the mirror every day. Many of the wellness experts recommend taking time out of your day to smile at yourself in the mirror, because this will impact how you view and in turn talk to yourself.

The key to this is noticing when you put yourself down, and actively changing what you say to make it positive. Treat yourself as your best friend, what would you say to them? Essentially you are the closest person to you, so treat yourself with kindness.

44. Create a 5 Year Plan

Within this resolutions list we have looked at creating a vision board so you can focus on what you want for the future. Also writing a letter to your future self, talking about where you currently are and where you envisage life taking you. But how will you actually get to where you want to be? This is where creating a 5-year plan can come in handy. Knowing what you want and knowing how to get there are two very different things, so why not focus your resolution on determining how you’re going to reach your goals. This could be going back to school, applying for a job, or even asking out that cute girl or guy from work. Having everything written down will help you focus and stay on track when other life complexities get in the way. It will also give you a real dopamine buzz when you reach all of your goals, and you start adding more.

45. Become More Decisive

We’ve left this one until the end because it’s actually one of the most important resolutions someone can choose. Most people will procrastinate about making changes in their lives and this can mean they never go through with those valuable life altering decisions. Being indecisive is more common than you would think because there is always the worry that your decision could be wrong. But imagine if you started making clear and confident decisions in your life. That business you always wanted to start, the change of job, moving house or even leaving a toxic relationship. This resolution isn’t just for the big life changes either, because you’ll find that the more decisive you are with everything, the better your life will be.

To begin, our advice would be to look online and get some advice on how to be more decisive. You’ll find tips such as making smaller decisions first, finding a mentor, visualising the outcomes, try to not overanalyse and not to chase perfection.

We couldn’t resist one last resolution!

46. Stay Present

Many of these resolutions are focused on improving your overall wellness, which is fundamental to living a happy life. But as well as always wanting to focus on the future, whether it be your goals, dreams, or successes, you should also think about your present. Meditation is the perfect option, because the key to this practice is being mindful and appreciating all you have in your life. By taking the time to stay present, you’ll enjoy moments such as being with friends and family so much more than you use to. We’ve found that our relationships have improved, as well as our overall mental health.

 

New Years Day is such an exciting time because you’re given the opportunity to start afresh, whilst reflecting on the passing year. We’re hoping that our list of resolution ideas will generate some excitement for you and that you’ll at least have one that you want to do. You could always choose more than one, because having goals and dreams in your life will lead to overall happiness. We’ve found that by creating new habits which serve us in a positive way, we’ve not only improved our physical health but also our mental health.

If you choose one from the list, then please keep us updated on how it’s going on our Instagram page. We love to see what our readers are doing on their bucket lists and how they are leading fulfilling, exciting and challenging lives.