Amy’s 2017 New Years Resolutions

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via Health.com

In keeping with tradition, I’ve compiled a list of resolutions I’d like to keep in 2017! Keeping these resolutions can definitely be a struggle, but nothing’s more fun than thinking of all of the amazing (or simple) things you can accomplish in the new year. I haven’t always been successful in following through with my resolutions, but I’m hoping that if I’m more specific and practical with my goals, I’ll be able to keep most of them.

1. Read at least 1 book every 2 weeks.

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via GoodReads

When I was younger, I read several books a week. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to keep up with my ambitious younger self in the past few years due to work and school. My best friend has read so many books in this past year alone and has even started her own Bookstagram. Her love for reading really makes me miss the days when I would lose myself in a book at the first chance I got, and it’s inspired me to try to incorporate more reading into my daily routine again.

To help me with this resolution, I’ve revived my Goodreads account and plan to take part in a Reading Challenge. If you’re interested in taking part in a reading challenge for this year, I’d recommend taking a look at Popsugar’s 2017 Reading Challenge. For those of you interested in incorporating more diversity into your reading choices, check out Der Vang’s 2017 Womxn of Color Reading Challenge! I’ll be posting updates to my reading challenge on a separate post and posting full versions of my reviews on my blog!

2. Exercise at least twice a week.

No, this does not include my daily walks to and from classes and work. By exercise, I mean actually going to the gym or hitting the track for a good 1- or 2-mile run. It would be great to be able to run a race longer than a 10k in 2017, and training for those long-distance races requires work. My roommate is health nut, so she’s always waking up extra early to hit the gym. She’s urged me to come along with her quite a few times, so I hope she’ll be open to having a gym partner next year (maybe not at 5am, though).

To help me out with my exercise goals, I’ve subscribed to Blogilates and plan to use their Beginners Calendar for the first month or two before trying to tackle their monthly calendars.

Other exercise options to consider: Yoga, Zumba, and Ballroom dancing.

3. Pack lunch at least 3 days a week.

I have a bad habit of grabbing lunch on campus and, as a result, spending more money than necessary. Eating out also usually leads to making unhealthy choices in order to compensate for price– options like pizza and Panda Express are usually cheaper, whereas a delicious Cobb Sandwich at the food court is pricier. Waking up a bit earlier in the morning or meal prepping on Sundays would make it easier to achieve this goal. I got a new set of Tupperware from my family’s White Elephant gift exchange, and I’m super excited to put that to good use!

A quick search on Pinterest gave me a ton of new ideas for packing lunch next year!

4. Have at least 1 meat-less meal a day.

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via Buzzfeed

Yet another resolution inspired by my super-healthy vegetarian roommate. I honestly love me some steak or chicken, so this just might be my most difficult resolution to keep. Luckily, I also love me some salmon, so it looks like I’ll be learning to cook more meals incorporating fish this year! I considered making this “at least once a day for at least 3 days a week”, but I thought that allowing myself to cheat on 4/7 days a week would be setting the bar too low for myself. I will hold myself to higher standards this year, and I will push myself to eat healthier.

5. Learn to cook at least 1 new recipe every 2 weeks.

At the end of this year, I’ve been inspired by various Buzzfeed and Tasty videos to explore the culinary arts. Surprisingly, I really enjoy cooking! I’m hoping to continue cooking more this year. You can keep track of my favorite recipe ideas on my “Recipes” board on Pinterest!

6. Get at least 8 hours of sleep each night. 

For as long as I can remember, I’ve had trouble falling asleep at night. This year, my goal is to improve my sleeping habits. Step 1 is making sure “lights out” happens before 11pm. Despite this being my last semester of senior year, I have the misfortune of being enrolled in an 8am class that meets twice a week (be right back– sobbing). So for those days, I’ll have to sleep earlier if I want to meet my goal.

7. Be more punctual!

Punctuality is a hugeee issue for me when it comes to getting to class. And while it hasn’t been too much of a deal lately (most professors start class or arrive late anyway), it’s definitely a habit I want to break before starting law school next year. A couple of articles I’ve scanned have given me some tips for how to be on time.

  1. Prep for your day the night before. Get your materials, food, etc. together early so that in the morning you can easily grab-and-go!
  2. Leave for events early. Because I live about 20 minutes away from where most of my classes are located, this means leaving at least 30 minutes in advance so that I can be sure to make it on time (with a few minutes to spare!)
  3. Wake up early! A large part of why I’m usually late for classes is because I end up laying in bed long after my alarm goes off. I’ve already brainstormed ideas for how I will transform my morning routine, so keep a lookout for a new blog post on that sometime this month!

8. Volunteer at least once a month.

In the last few years, as an undergraduate student, I’ve had the privilege of volunteering for many community events, sometimes as part of an organization or merely on my own. I’m hoping to look for more opportunities to give back to my community, whether that be by volunteering at the Joint Education Program at school to tutor younger students at local schools, at a local senior center, or at a food bank.

9. Set up a budget and stick to it.

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via Mint

I have an account with Mint, which is a cool little website that allows you to create monthly budgets for yourself. I’m planning to readjust my budgets for the new year and work hard to keep my spending within my budget.

The food resolutions I set for myself above will hopefully help me save money on food by reducing the number of times I eat out.

One of my sister’s resolutions is to limit spending on clothing to only what she can afford with gift cards she receives from Christmas or birthdays, which I think is a great idea that I’m going to steal (hehe).

I like to use ValoreBooks for cheap textbook rentals or purchases. Their prices are usually cheaper than Amazon, and shipping is typically cheap or free.

My best friend just recently introduced me to a couple of great websites for books: BookOutlet and BookDepository. I recently ordered a few books from BookOutlet and saved $70+! It was amazinggggg! With my new resolution to read more frequently in the next year, these websites are going to be my new best friends.

10. Identify at least one thing I’m grateful for every day.

A few years ago, I was inspired by the 365Grateful Project, which aims to encourage people to take a picture of something they’re grateful for each day. A few years ago, during my freshman year of undergrad, I attempted the project and made it to Day 214 before losing track. This year, I’m hoping to revive my mini-blog and see the project through to completion (although, I think I might keep it private for now).

11. Publish at least 1 blog post every month. 

I’ve felt so guilty with disappearing from and reappearing on my blog at random times throughout the year. I want to make it a resolution to post at least once a month on this blog, whether that be an update with my life, a list post like this one, or a book review.

My list was inspired by the following articles. Check them out for more inspiration!

What are your New Years Resolutions? How are you planning to keep yourself accountable? Share your plans for 2017 in the comments below!

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