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10 Creative New Year’s Resolutions That Don’t Involve The Gym

Thinking of New Year’s resolutions can be depressing sometimes. You keep coming up with goals like, “I’ll exercise more” or “I’ll read more.” But then suddenly, it’s the end of the year and you haven’t done any of those things.

That’s because it’s really hard to commit to something outside of your routine, especially to something so unspecific as “exercise more.”

Here are 10 concrete, outside-the-box New Year’s resolutions to choose from that could help you have a better 2022.

1. Visit at least one new place.

Whether it’s a completely different country or just a part of your city you’ve never explored, explore it. It’s much easier to commit to seeing one new place rather than to the usual, non-committal “I’ll travel more” New Year’s resolution.

2. Have one new experience you’ve always wanted to have.

Have you wanted to get a tattoo for ages? Or maybe you’ve always wanted to go ziplining? Skydiving? You don’t have to pile all these experiences into one year, but make a resolution to do at least one.

That way you’re not stressing about all the things you haven’t done yet and can make a more concrete plan to achieve one of the things you’ve always wanted to do.

3. Take a language class.

“Learn a new language” is a very common New Year’s resolution. It’s great in theory, but it can be hard to commit to in practice. If you sign up for a class, it will force you to keep up with the language every week.

I started Ukrainian lessons this year, and I’ll admit I’ve had my burnout moments. But having homework to complete each week has helped me to keep practicing even when I’d rather be lying on the couch watching YouTube videos.

4. Try out at least five new recipes.

If you’re not into cooking, it can be hard to begin. But starting with a small goal of five recipes in a year helps you dip your toe into the water. Before you know it, you’ll be a pro chef!

5. If you have any health concern you’ve been avoiding, get it checked out.

If you’ve been putting off a doctor’s appointment, make it a New Year’s resolution to schedule it. Your body will thank you later.

6. Consume more media set in different countries.

Whether it’s TV, film, music, or books, there is a whole world of undiscovered media hiding behind a language barrier. Don’t let it scare you, and expand your horizons! You might just find your new favorite band is from Sweden or Japan.

When looking back at all the books I’ve read, I realized 99% of them are set in the U.S., U.K., or a fictional world. So I’m making it a resolution to try reading books set in different countries. Feel free to steal that one if you like the idea!

7. Schedule more time with the people who love you.

And I don’t just mean telling an old friend “we should talk more,” then not talking for another four months. Instead, schedule a time for a call! Catching up with friends or family you haven’t talked to in a while is incredible.

8. Dedicate at least an hour a week to self-care.

Whatever you do for self-care, make time for it. It’s very important to avoid burnout.

9. Write more cards.

There’s nothing like hand-writing a card (or even crafting one yourself!) and sending it via snail mail to someone. It’s a great meditative practice in appreciating your loved ones.

I sent Christmas cards out for the first time this year, and it was way more fun than I thought it would be! I recommend giving it a try.

10. Go outside in the fresh air at least once a week.

This is similar to the self-care one but equally important. In COVID-19 times — especially if you work from home — it’s easier to go days without leaving your home.

Try to make a conscious effort to get more fresh air, whether it be a stroll around the block or a full-on hike.

What are your new year’s resolutions for 2022? Let us know in the comments!

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