New Year’s resolutions you can actually achieve

Margaret Dougherty, Staff Writer

With a new year – and a new decade – upon us, many see 2020 as an opportunity for a fresh start. Regardless of any past lack of success, people approach their New Year’s resolutions with boundless optimism, confident that this time things will be different. There’s no shame in setting lofty goals for ourselves, but there are plenty of feasible options that may be better suited for college students. From freshmen finding their place on campus to seniors preparing their post-graduation plans, everyone at Iona can benefit from making improvements to their lives. Here are five simple resolutions that anyone can follow this year.

  1. Stay updated on current events.

It can be difficult to keep up with the constantly shifting social, political and economic climate of today’s world. With a loaded college schedule, reading a lengthy article on the latest news from the impeachment trial or the coronavirus outbreak may seem unappealing. However, it is important to be an informed and engaged global citizen. With modern technology it is easier than ever to stay up to date. There are newspapers and media outlets provide succinct breakdowns of the biggest news of the day that arrive directly in your email inbox each morning, like theSkimm.

  1. Discover new music.

If you’re tired of listening to the same old playlist every day, make it your goal to find a new artist or genre of music that inspires you this year. With millions of songs available to stream at our convenience, it can be overwhelming to begin the search for new music. Luckily, there are multiple tools at our disposal. Spotify uses your existing listening patterns to set up a weekly “Discover” playlist to suit your preferences. If you’re looking to go in a different direction, search for online “best of” compilations from Rolling Stone or NPR that will help you check off the seminal works everyone needs to know from your music bucket list.

  1. Find a new hobby.

Trying a new hobby can provide an excellent creative outlet, introduce you to like-minded people and may even generate a new passion. Focus on your interests and see if a friend would like to join you.

“I am learning to play the guitar,” sophomore Ryan Murphy said. “My friend motivates me to continue and stay focused when we practice.”

In addition to trying a new instrument, other possible hobbies include scrapbooking, yoga, cooking, photography or painting. Even with limited time and resources, there are endless options for new hobbies.

  1. Keep a journal.

Writing for just a few minutes a day has numerous benefits. It can help organize your thoughts, spark creativity, reduce stress and even improve your memory. There doesn’t need to be a specific topic for a journal; it can be about your dreams, your day-to-day experiences or things that make you grateful. It can also simply be a valuable outlet for your thoughts and reflections. Use your journal as a dedicated space for your uncensored self.

  1. Don’t worry about what others think.

This resolution may prove to be the most difficult, but it is a worthwhile goal that is applicable to everyone. We can often become preoccupied with how we come across to others and this fear can stop us from being our authentic selves. Without unnecessarily worrying that you are being judged, you’ll find that you can enjoy the little things in life much more.

Whether you decide to follow one of these resolutions or come up with your own, try your best to make 2020 the year you stick to it. Take it one step at a time and by 2021, who knows how much you will have accomplished.