Just like that, 2019 is over and a brand new year has begun! I love a fresh start. The month of January always makes me feel motivated to create positive changes in my life. But if you’re anything like me, you know that motivation fizzles out within a few months. So I thought I’d try to simplify my resolutions for this year and maybe help you come up with some ideas, too!

1. Drink More Water

This one is pretty common amongst resolution setters. Instead of trying to cut out soda this year or choosing water with every meal, figure out how much water you need to drink per day. The most common answer is 8 ounces of water, 8 times a day. That’s a minimum of 64 ounces. This is a good start, but everyone is different. The amount you need depends on your height, weight, activity levels and your environment. It’s a good idea to ask your doctor what their recommendation is next time you see them. Once you know the number of ounces, keep track with a water bottle or tumbler. There are even apps that can help you stay on track with hydration! Don’t forget to try these tips mid February when your motivation begins to wane:

  • Add some fruit and veg to your water to boost vitamins and change up the flavor! You can even add mint for a fresher taste!
  • Try out different hot or iced teas made from tea leaf blends.
  • Make your own frozen fruit ice cubes to spruce up your water bottle!
2. Less Clutter, More Organization!

In one way or another, organization has been in my resolutions almost every year, and it usually ends up with me feeling overwhelmed. I think a great way to prevent this is to choose one small thing in your home or at school to clean up each week. It could be your locker, your notes, your folders, your closet or under your bed. Even clearing off your bookshelf could be a great way to let go of old materials and make space for new ones. Here are a few ways to get cracking:

  • Color code your notes to be more successful during spring finals. Use highlighters to label important info, test materials, etc…
  • Make a place for everything in your locker to keep it organized. Which items do you use most? Keep these easily accessible in their own spot, so you can find them in a flash!
  • Consider your daily routine and how organization could help you. Is your dresser a mess? Is it hard for you to find matching socks or a hairbrush when you need it? Small improvements make a big difference! Tackle these smaller tasks without seeking perfection.
3. Set a 2020 Reading Challenge

No matter how much you read (or didn’t) in 2019, there’s always a reason to keep finding books. Reading is proven to reduce stress, expand your vocabulary and improve your memory! You just need to decide how many books you want to finish in 2020, and start keeping track! Don’t feel like you need to read 50 or even 20 books if that seems far-fetched to you. Choose a number that feels reasonable and allows you to feel excited about reading, not intimidated. Start with a manageable number. You can always go beyond your goal!

  • If reading a certain number of books sounds a bit too bland for you, search for more specific reading challenges. There are dozens and dozens of lists that include goals like: read a book written by a woman of color, read an anthology, read a fiction or nonfiction work about a world leader and so on. Or create your own challenge! The possibilities are endless!
  • Check out our other blogs posts to get some recommendations and browse our catalog to see what books you can get your hands on right now!
  • Take a look at all the pathfinders we have in the Vortex with book lists just for you! And of course, you can always ask a librarian to recommend a book for you based on your favorite genres, interests, or authors!
4. Try Something New

A few years ago, when everyone on the internet was learning how to ‘arm knit’ scarves, I knew I had to learn. But I quickly realized I mostly just wanted to learn how to knit for real. Unfortunately, I gave up pretty quickly. A new year is a great time to figure out which hobbies you truly want to learn. Start out by making a list of all the hobbies or skills that have peaked your interest. Choose ideas with varying difficulty. It can be anything from knitting to learning how to code Java! Then choose a few from your list to focus on this year. Just like a book challenge, keep your choices manageable, and don’t feel like you have to perfect every single one.

  • “Try something new” doesn’t mean become the best quilter in the nation, it just means give it a try!
  • Allow yourself to move on when you’re ready. Who knows, you might just find your new favorite activity. If you don’t like the hobby, at least you’ll have room on your list for more!
  • Include some simple ideas like a new, healthy lunch idea or only thinking positively for one full day.

 

Hopefully this short list gave you a few ideas for resolutions of your own or inspired you to try a few! Here’s to a healthy and happy 2020!