More than 74 percent of all Americans who set New Years Resolutions feel they will accomplish their goals next year.
It’s natural to feel there is no better time to start fresh and develop positive habits with the new year. But sometimes, the hard part is narrowing down these goals.
With so many options, how does one pick what to focus on?
It’s best to take it one step at a time. First, think about what category you most want to improve on, then narrow it down from there. It’s okay to pick more than one, as long as you stay as realistic as possible.
Keep reading for a list of New Years Resolutions ideas that are most popular heading into 2021.
Physical Fitness/Wellness New Years Resolutions
Physical fitness-based New Years Resolutions are some of the most common new year goals every year. Though they require consistent effort over many months, there are several benefits to taking on these lifestyle changes.
1. Lose Weight/Exercise More
The traditional fitness center setting may not be an option in the early months of 2021.
However, there are plenty of alternatives. You can sign up for virtual classes or watch free videos to guide your workout in the comfort of your home.
You may also find comfort in more low-impact exercise, like yoga or long walks. Keep in mind you can build up to a long run — don’t expect to run a marathon on day one. Take it slow to avoid burnout and giving up prematurely.
2. Eat Healthier
While it may seem scary upfront, there are many small changes you can implement to achieve this goal. For example, try swapping out sugary drinks for water or tea alternatives.
Look for cookbooks or online recipes with healthier options. There are a plethora of resources available for creating healthy yet delicious meals. Eating your vegetables does not have to be a chore anymore!
3. Drink More Water
There are many health benefits to staying hydrated, including:
- Feeling your best physically
- Avoiding dangerous effects of dehydration
- Increased energy
- Treating and preventing headaches
- Avoiding constipation
- Treating kidney stones
- Preventing hangovers
- Helping lose weight
This is one thing many people overlook, yet it can have such lasting effects on your health. Setting yourself on a hydration schedule is one easy way to ensure you are drinking plenty of water throughout the day.
4. Drink Less Alcohol
Cutting down alcohol consumption can help in more ways than one. One common trend after the holidays is to do a “dry January.” This is where you avoid alcohol during the entire month as a post-holiday detox.
This can help build momentum. From there, you can stay sober all year. If not, you can take the opportunity to practice consuming in moderation moving forward.
By cutting back on drinks, you can lose weight and save money, in addition to preventing more serious health conditions.
5. Quit Smoking
2021 is the time to kick a bad habit to the curb. Another popular new years resolution is to quit smoking. This can apply to cigarettes, vapes, or other tobacco products.
There is no better time than this New Year to stop this harmful habit.
6. Follow Up On All Doctor’s Appointments
Something as small as sitting down to schedule all doctor’s appointments for the year — and actually showing up to them — can have profound effects on your health.
Book all the appointments up front, and avoid that anxiety creeping up throughout the year. Double-check if there are any screenings or lab work you are due for.
It doesn’t matter how long it has been since your last visit. Now is the time to make a change!
7. Get More Sleep
Going to bed on time helps you feel rested for the next day. It can help with reducing stress and providing greater mental clarity to tackle the day ahead.
Putting the phone down and creating a bedtime routine to help you get into sleep mode is one of the best ways to achieve sleep-based New Years Resolutions.
8. Develop a Skincare Routine
Developing a nighttime routine is something small that can have lasting effects on your skin. This doesn’t have to be expensive, either. There are many high-quality and low-cost products on the market to make this process as inexpensive and effective as possible.
It’s important to whittle this down to a realistic process that you can see yourself following through with. The routine does not need to have a million steps. Do some research and find a process that works for you.
Your skin will thank you!
9. Wear More Sunscreen
We don’t realize how much damage the sun can do, even when we aren’t sitting at the beach. Simple things like driving our cars — no matter the season — can cause sun damage.
Putting sunscreen on before leaving the house is one of the most simple New Years Resolutions that can have the biggest results.
Mental Health New Years Resolutions
After such a crazy 2020, it’s safe to say many of us are struggling with mental health. Taking care of ourselves mentally and emotionally should be a priority in the new year. Check out these tips for putting plans into action in 2021.
10. Try Therapy
If you do not feel comfortable in the traditional therapy setting, there are a variety of resources for virtual therapy that can be just as effective. With so many different avenues, trying therapy in 2021 is one of the most important New Years Resolutions ideas out there.
11. Try Meditation/Intentional Breathing
Meditation and intentional breathing are ways to use smaller, daily changes to ultimately achieve your New Years Resolutions goals. This can start at five minutes per day, or go all the way up to hour-long sessions.
In addition to helping reduce stress, daily meditation helps to calm and recalibrate the nervous system. After such a stressful year, everyone can benefit from trying out this practice in the new year.
12. Focus on Gratitude
If we have learned anything from the craziness of 2020, it’s that nothing is promised tomorrow.
Take the time to focus on being grateful for what’s in front of you and shift your perspective in 2021.
13. Set Boundaries
Do you feel like you are taken advantage of by those who are close to you?
Be honest with yourself and the people in your life. Set boundaries and explain why they are important to you. Commit to following through with this, so that you can stop carrying this weight on your shoulders into the new year.
14. Let Go of Grudges
Life is too short to hold on to hostility.
In the new year, consider cutting out toxic influences from your life. Work to forgive and forget, as harboring grudges can be harmful to your own spirit.
Career New Years Resolutions
As most of us may be working from home for the foreseeable future, it can be easy to grow complacent with our own habits. Rather, use this opportunity to develop New Years Resolutions that can push your work to the next level.
15. Polish Your Resume
Even if you are happy in your current role, it can be beneficial to explore outside opportunities. Polishing up your resume can help you be prepared if that opportunity presents itself.
Plus, 2021 can be a social year. Take this time to meet new people in your career space. This way, you can develop a network of connections in your industry.
When the time comes that you are ready for a change, you already have a network to turn to with a great resume in hand.
16. Take On New Responsibilities
If you would rather stay in your company, consider adding value by taking on new roles or projects.
This can make it easier to go for that promotion you always desired but perhaps never felt confident enough for. Or, it can help you ask for a raise with evidence to back up your request.
17. Stay on Top of Your Email Inbox
Keeping a handle on your email inbox can help reduce stress caused by the snowballing effect. Take a few extra minutes at the end of the workday to sort through your inbox. Your future self will be grateful!
Monetary/Legal New Years Resolutions
While making New Years Resolutions to support our health is important, financial health is critical as well. To reduce stress and promote positive habits in the new year, consider these New Years Resolutions ideas.
18. Build a Budget and Stick To It
You Need a Budget (YNAB) is one great example of the digital tools available to help you build a realistic budget. Be sure to hold yourself accountable and stick to these goals throughout the year.
19. Make Financial Goals
In terms of New Years Resolutions, this may involve reading up on the stock market and making wiser investments. Or, maybe it will involve calling an accountant to get your affairs in order. Either way, making financial goals is critical to long-term monetary health.
20. Save Money
Write down the big savings goals you have for this year. Do you want to save for a new car, an emergency fund, or a down payment on a home?
Either way, saving money is especially important in such uncertain times. The “rainy days” fund can always use some extra padding.
21. Pay Down Debt
Reducing your debt can lift a burden off your shoulders in more ways than one.
To name a few, reducing debt levels will help to improve your credit score. In turn, this will save you money in the future with lower interest rates. You can stop the scary collections calls and help secure your financial position.
22. Get Insurance In Order
While it may go overlooked, getting insurance in order is one of the key New Years Resolutions to protect yourself and your family. Especially with many losing their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, insurance coverage may be up in the air for some Americans.
Take this opportunity to shop around. Be sure your investments are protected, including:
- Rental properties
- Commercial properties
This can help you save money and reduce stress in the new year.
23. Be a Better Driver
While speeding or distracted driving may seem like no big deal, there are important ramifications to remember.
Start fresh this year. Slow down, focus on the road, and practice better driving skills.
24. Start a Side Hustle
New Years Resolutions that support more financial freedom can go a long way in a prosperous new year. One of the keys to producing wealth is to have multiple streams of income.
Starting a side hustle is a simple way of achieving this. Think about it: Are there any hobbies you can monetize?
Lifestyle New Years Resolutions
New Years Resolutions characterized by smaller lifestyle changes can go a long way. While they often require a more concerted effort to achieve them, consider these beneficial changes as we move into a new year.
25. Set Personal Goals
Think about the small milestones you would like to achieve moving into 2021. These can be daily, weekly, or monthly goals that make the overall resolutions more attainable.
Try journaling, life coaching, or some other way of keeping yourself accountable.
26. Send More Handwritten Notes
Especially just following the holidays, sending thank you notes by hand and snail mail is an easy way to practice a more personal approach.
Emails do not provide that sense of sentimentality that a handwritten card does. Try this out for holidays, milestones, or just to remind someone you are thinking of them.
27. Call Family and Friends More Often
Many of us are struggling in this uncertain time.
In the new year, spend more time trying to stay in touch with your loved ones. Check-in on the people you care about — it can go a long way.
28. Do More Random Acts of Kindness
This can be as simple as paying for the car behind you in the drive-thru line. You never know how much a small act of kindness can benefit someone else. Try this as one of your New Years Resolutions!
29. Cut Down on Screen Time
Between phones, TVs, and computers, pretty much all of us have too much screen time.
Consider a social media detox or setting limits on your device’s screen time to avoid the harmful effects of overexposure to digital screens.
30. Stop Procrastinating
Many of us are guilty of pushing important tasks back until the last minute. Consider making this change as part of your New Years Resolutions to help reduce stress and boost productivity.
If you need help focusing, there are techniques, apps, and websites that can help. Try time blocking, the Pomodoro Method, or programs like Focusmate to hold yourself accountable and get stuff done.
31. Refine Your Personal Style
Use the new year and those Christmas gift cards to refine your personal style now. This way, you can show it off once there are (hopefully) more opportunities for a social year in 2021.
There are plenty of resources online to help identify what best fits your look. Focus on buying timeless pieces to avoid wasting money on clothes that could go out of style the following year.
32. Develop a Morning Routine
Another popular choice for New Years Resolutions is to wake up earlier. This way, you don’t have to run around all morning. If you can develop a routine to start your morning off right, it will in turn promote a positive rest of the day.
33. Set Regular Date Nights With Your Partner
With kids and busy schedules, it can be hard to focus on “us” time.
Try setting regular dates with your partner, as you will be more likely to stick to them. Plus, it provides time to reconnect and reduce stress brought on by our everyday lives.
Organizational New Years Resolutions
When your space is cluttered, the thought of organizing everything can feel overwhelming. Try breaking up this task into smaller, more achievable tasks to become more organized in 2021.
34. Consume Less
It feels like there is always the next best thing on Amazon that we must have. However, these purchases often end up used a few times and then discarded.
In 2021, ask yourself if you really need something before purchasing it. Reducing consumption is one of the most popular New Years Resolutions heading into 2021. It’s good for the earth, your wallet, and your drawer space.
35. Be More Punctual
Punctuality is a very important trait in all areas of life. This can make or break situations like job interviews, appointments, dates, and friend meetups.
Plus, the more on-time you are, the more dependable and reliable you will be perceived as.
36. Remember Important Dates
Don’t be that friend or partner that always forgets birthdays, milestones, and other holidays. Make staying on top of important dates one of your New Years Resolutions — your family and friends will thank you.
Hobby New Years Resolutions
With extra time spent at home during the Coronavirus pandemic, there is more time to try something new. Try one of these fun new hobbies for your New Years Resolutions!
37. Try a New Hobby
Think about it: There must be a skill you have been dying to learn.
Luckily, there are tons of free resources available with the power of the internet. There is a YouTube video for just about any skill!
Plus, you can join a local club to refine your abilities and meet new people who share similar interests.
38. Read More Books
This is a popular choice for New Years Resolutions, as it is clear we will be spending excess time in our homes for the foreseeable future.
You can choose between buying hard copy books, or using programs like Audible to listen to your books if that is more your speed.
39. Cook New Foods
Cooking can be intimidating, but don’t let it scare you. Even just practicing basic cooking skills can help save money on eating out less often.
There are tons of easy recipes you can try. Plus, there are a plethora of new kitchen appliances on the market that make cooking quicker and easier than ever.
40. Become a Plant Owner
Research shows that there are many benefits to having a variety of plants in your home, including:
- Reducing stress
- Lowering blood pressure
- Calming the autonomic nervous system
- Improving air quality
Consider adopting a plant of your own for your New Years Resolutions.
41. Have Some Fun
Sometimes it feels like New Years Resolutions require a lot of work. Who said they can’t be fun?
Make it a priority in the new year to have more fun. This might be as simple as an outdoor whiffle ball tournament, or more complicated like planning a camping trip.
Just looking ahead to fun events can make the winter lockdown more bearable.
Volunteering can help reduce stress by simply making you feel good. Many people are struggling right now, so giving back to the community is more important than ever.
43. Learn a Language
Even spending 20 minutes a day practicing a language can help you develop these new skills. Check out free, highly-effective apps like Duolingo.
44. Get Outside More Often
We have all spent too much time stuck indoors in 2020. Be sure to include getting out and exploring nature regularly as part of your New Years Resolutions.
45. Take an Online Course
There are a plethora of online courses available at no cost. These could include financial literacy, or maybe mastering a skill to help in the workplace. Learn something new this year!
Home New Years Resolutions
Cleanliness has certainly been a major theme of 2020. Keep riding this wave into 2021 and keep your home in tip-top shape with these New Years Resolutions ideas.
46. Keep Up With Home Maintenance
It’s easy to overlook the important areas of our home that must be properly serviced. Make it a priority this year to keep up with home maintenance. Take care of it now before it becomes a problem down the road.
47. Keep Your Home/Car Clean
Keeping your spaces clean is critical now more than ever.
Following a cleaning schedule is one easy way to stay on top of this. But be sure to make it realistic so you can actually stick to it.
48. Reduce Clutter
We all have too much stuff.
Going through and reducing the clutter around your home is one of the easiest New Years Resolutions to complete. Try to recycle or donate items where you can to make the biggest impact.
49. Make Your Bed Every Morning
This simple task can make a huge difference. Simply making your bed every morning can help to kickstart a productive day.
50. Be More Eco-Friendly
There are so many areas in your home where you can be more eco-friendly. Recycling and composting are two low-effort ways to achieve this goal in the new year.
Choosing Your Own New Years Resolutions
It may be intimidating at first to select your New Years Resolutions. But take the time to narrow down those categories most important to you, and select from there.
With any of the New Years Resolutions you decide to act on, we wish you the best of luck. If you decide to tackle any insurance issues, contact an expert advisor to make the most of your new year.