As we wave goodbye to 2022 and enter 2023, many people will be hastily writing out a long list of New Year’s resolutions. While there’s nothing wrong with creating a list of goals and sticking to them, New Year’s resolutions bring a huge amount of pressure year on year.
From overly ambitious resolutions to unsustainable expectations, you’re often left feeling a huge sense of guilt and sadness if you don’t achieve the goals you set for yourself. But you’re not alone, as only 9-12% of people keep their resolutions.
As most resolutions surround getting fit and healthy, setting resolutions that can improve your health and wellbeing are easier to stick to and have a better impact on your physical, emotional and mental health. Wellness encompasses many different things, and it’s the act of practicing healthy habits like sleep, yoga, self-care, meditation and more.
So, if you want to improve your lifestyle in the New Year but don’t want to put too much pressure on yourself, I’ve found 6 wellness-themed resolutions that you can actually stick to throughout the year.
1. Get quality sleep
One of the easiest resolutions to stick to is getting quality sleep night after night. Sleep is so important and if you’re getting the right amount of hours and the right quality of sleep, it can have a positive effect on your mood, concentration, recovery and health. If sleep is a main resolution for you in 2023, start by updating your sleep set-up. If your current mattress is uncomfortable or you’re getting neck and back pain, you’re unlikely to get a good night’s rest and you may have health problems in the future. By investing in the best mattress, the best duvet and the best pillows, you’re setting yourself up for success and giving your brain and body the rest it needs.
Other simple (and less expensive) ways to improve your sleep quality is by setting yourself a bedtime routine, sticking to a certain number of hours sleep, cutting out caffeine and reducing screen time. Check out our sleep hygiene tips for more.
2. Daily movement
Every year, weight loss is the number one New Year's resolution for most people. While there’s nothing wrong with wanting to change your physical appearance, dieting resolutions often have the least success which can have a negative impact on people’s physical and mental health. So, instead of putting yourself through a horrible restrictive diet and feeling crushed when the weight isn’t shifting, concentrate on daily movement as your New Year’s resolution.
Daily movement can include running, weight lifting, going for a walk, taking the stairs at work, exercise classes, and whatever kind of movement you like. This goal is easier to stick to than ‘go to the gym 5 times a week’ and isn’t all about weight loss but instead enjoyment. Not only does this resolution help you stay active, but it also gets you outside, socialising and means you’re not sitting down at a desk all day. For fun fitness resolutions and tips, check out our guide on how to get fit in 2023.
3. Learn something new
Do you have an activity you’ve always wanted to try? Then do it! This New Year’s resolution is the best thing to put on your list as it opens you up to different hobbies, people and experiences. As we get older, schedules and responsibilities get in the way and the first things that get pushed to the side are our hobbies. This New Year, make them a priority again and say ‘yes’ to new things. If you’re not sure what to try, I came up with a few ideas: go to a yoga class, enroll in a language course, visit a different country, cook meals from a different cuisine, try pottery, give meditation a go, and so on.
4. Practice self care
Self care gets a bad reputation sometimes but it’s a great resolution as it’s something enjoyable that doesn’t really feel like a chore. Self care is all about looking after yourself and your space. It doesn’t have to be too elaborate but should be something that you take the time to enjoy and indulge in. When you feel like you need a bit of TLC, try running a bath, reading a book, doing a face mask, cooking a healthy meal and giving yourself a pamper. ‘Sunday resets’ have become a big thing recently, where you clean your home and get yourself organised for the week ahead, so doing this every week is a productive form of self care and looks out for your future self.
5. Eat nutritious meals
Eating healthy is a common resolution that’s often failed every year. The reason why is because people overly restrict themselves or go on a crazy diet which just isn’t sustainable and can have negative effects on your body image and mindset. Instead of doing this, make small changes to your diet by drinking more water, adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet and getting adventurous in the kitchen. If you like challenging yourself, add a vegan meal into your diet each week (or try Veganuary), get all the colours of the rainbow on your plate or try a different cuisine.
6. Limit screen time
If you’re trying to get better sleep or you heavily rely on your phone, cutting down on screen time is a good resolution to stick to. According to Healthline, spending too much time on electronics is linked to depression, anxiety and loneliness but completely cutting it out will be a struggle for many. To cut down screen time, go through your phone or tablet and remove the apps you don’t use, set time limits on the apps you use the most and make your bed a phone-free zone.