18 Resolutions for 2018

Ahh New Years Resolutions. Each year we all make superficial promises to ourselves to change facets of our life. Truth be told I don’t love New Years resolutions, because when we get down to it, we’re openly admitting the things we’re unhappy with, promising to change them, and then those goals slowly slip away.

After much introspection, I’ve compiled this list of 18 resolutions to live by in 2018. Typically, resolutions are tangible things we can achieve; lose weight, get a promotion, etc. But these resolutions are a bit different; instead of focusing on finite things to achieve in 2018, this list is a culmination of lifestyle decisions I’ve chosen to implement in 2018. Feel free to take any of these for yourself, and Happy New Year!


1. Say yes to the things that scare you

Too often we get stuck in our comfortable bubble of life. Are we happy in our current jobs? Eh… maybe not, but it’s familiar and we like that. When presented with a choice that terrifies you, pause for a second and truly think about the things you could achieve, and the places you could go, if you say yes.

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I —
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Robert Frost

2. Stop waiting for good things to happen

On some level, we all think that if we wait long enough, good things will happen to us. In my opinion, this is just a lie we tell ourselves to shed comfort on the fact that we’re too busy, or tired, or lazy to actively seek out the things we want in life. Stop waiting around for good things to “happen” upon you; actively seek them out. Go after the things you want. Because at the end of the day, you’re your best advocate.

3. De-clutter your space and your personal life

Anything that doesn’t bring you joy should not be in your life. Whether these are material objects, like clothing or books, or people that you keep around in the hopes that maybe your relationship will change, if it’s not enhancing your life, it shouldn’t be in it. Make an effort to surround yourself with things that elicit joy and you’ll become a much happier person.

4. Don’t fret the things you can’t control

Some things in life aren’t worth getting upset over. How many times have you been at the airport, just to have your flight get delayed? And how many people have you seen berating the flight attendants as a result? Flight delays, like other things in live, are inevitable and cannot be changed. Thus, don’t waste your time getting upset about them.

5. Relish boredom

How many times a day do we check our phones? You probably can’t even answer this question. Our generation has evolved to avoiding boredom at all costs; we have to have constant stimulation or we don’t know what to do with ourselves. Red light? Check Facebook. Waiting in line? Upload an Instagram. We forget what it means to be bored, and this is a bad thing.

I watched an amazing TED talk on how boredom sparks creativity; and it’s true. Being bored is not a bad thing. It gives us time to think about problems we have in our day-to-day lives and generate creative solutions. Boredom is a catalyst for creativity, and so we should relish it.

6. Stop half-assing things

How many times have we left things to the last minute only to throw them together as quickly as possible? I’ve done it. But living this way only hinders your growth both professionally and personally. If you say you’re going to do something, put your all into it. Your professional life, and personal life, will thank you.

7. Stop seeking validation

In order to be truly happy, we have to stop looking to others for validation. Do some introspection and figure out who you want to be. At the end of the day, nobody can make you happy; you have to find that within yourself. When we stop seeking validation, we stop relying on others for happiness.

8. Acquire a new skill…or two

I read once that people who are life-long learners tend to live longer. Now, I’m not sure if that’s scientifically true but it makes sense in the grand scheme of things. Vow to pick up one or two new skills that will enhance your way of life. Learn a new language, pick up a new instrument. Learn something that will enhance the life you want to live.

9. Stay positive

I tend to flip flop between the “glass is half full” and the “who drank all my wine” point of view. So this year I’m really going to make an effort to see the bright side of things. Stop harboring negative feelings and remember the things you do have. You woke up today, that’s a pretty great start.

10. Love a little bit harder

We only have one shot at this life, so make sure that the people you love most in life know it. Make time for the ones you love, and don’t take anyone for granted.

Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all.
Alfred Lord Tennyson

11. Be kinder, humbler, and more honest

I think all of us someday would like to be remembered for being an honest, kind and humble person. So let’s be that person today. Go out of your way for a stranger. Share the success of a project with your team members. Be honest and open with the people around you. And through all of these things, you’ll gain respect.

12. Be healthier

We all could benefit from being a little bit more in-tune with what our bodies need. I’m not talking about losing weight or going on a super fancy diet, but be more aware of what you need physically and mentally. Take time to de-stress, drink more water. And with these things comes a slimmer waist line and better mental health.

13. Be present

There are so many things that distract us each day. But I challenge you to be more present. If you’re out with a friend, genuinely listen to the words they’re saying. If you’re in a meeting, turn of your phone and really pay attention to the discussion. Focus on getting the most out of your relationships and career and you’ll reap the benefits.

14. Stop taking things personally

This is one area I struggle with daily because it’s hard to accept criticism at face value. But typically if a coworker or friend gives you criticism, there’s some semblance of truth. So stop taking these bits of advice personally. Instead, learn from them and grow as a person.

15. Don’t waste time being unhappy

If you’re not happy, do something about it. Find a new career, break up with your significant other. There’s no time like the present, so stop wallowing in self-pity and find things that make you happy.

16. Stop multitasking

We all like to think that we’re good at doing multiple things at the same time; we’re all liars. Stop multitasking. Focus on one task at a time, and you’ll not only be more productive, but the quality of your work will be better.

17. Don’t be afraid to fail

We can learn just as many things from failures as we can from successes (if not more). Failure is a part of life, and is often subjective. Just because you didn’t ace your project does not mean you “failed”. Instead it shows you the areas you need to improve upon. No successful person go to where they are today without a few “failures.”

18. Take each day as it comes, with a clear mind

Each day is a new opportunity to start fresh. So forget the qualms of yesterday and try to make today the best day it can possibly be.


Conclusion

Instead of resolving to lose those 15 pounds that have been plaguing you since Thanksgiving, resolve to be more mindful of what your body needs. Instead of vowing to get that promotion, vow to learn ten new skills this year. Focus on being the best person you can be, and good things will come of it. Stop waiting for tomorrow; make the change today.