10 Resolutions Every Twentysomething Needs to Make This Year

THE ULTIMATE TWENTYSOMETHING GUIDE
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Glitter! Sparkles! Champagne!

There are so many wonderful things that go along with New Year’s Eve. And even though a lot of the parties end up a little disappointing compared to the expectations you had for them, it’s still a magical time that is bursting with potential.

The past year is over and you need not dwell on those 2am texts you sent to your ex or the less-than-glamorous Tinder dates you found yourself on…

Now is the time for a fresh start! And what’s the best way to start a brand new year?

With resolutions of course!

So, we give to you ten resolutions that every twentysomething needs to make this new year:

  • Drink water

Water, man. It’s the most important substance in existence. From improving your complexion to curing or preventing a hangover, H₂O is the way to go. Basically anytime you’re feeling crummy, it probably means you need to hydrate with this magical molecule. Make a habit of drinking it. Drink it all day long. If you must motivate yourself with a super trendy accessory like a Hydro Flask, so be it!

  • Learn a skill outside of your field

You’ve probably had your nose to the grindstone—whether you’re in your first year as a law student or figuring out the best way to write a press release at your first “real” job as a publicist. That’s all fine and dandy, but this year, pick up a skill you wouldn’t necessarily associate with your chosen career path. If you’re a developer, try your hand at writing. Maybe take a creative writing course or just start journaling. If you’re a financial planner, take a public speaking or improv class.

And don’t just limit yourself to academic skills. Take a wilderness survival class or start knitting!

Not only will you feel more well-rounded (and we can all admit well-rounded individuals are the best individuals) but you might be surprised with how much you can relate your new skill to your current industry.

  • Create better Snap stories

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I think we can all admit that Snap stories are pretty awesome. Instead of having to scroll meticulously through your list of Snapchat buddies, you can just click the little “add to story” button and post for everyone to see!

But please, this year try to Snap with some creativity and thought. I think I speak for the entirety of the Snap population when I say that we don’t care for those blurry up-close shots of your breakfast…

If you need some inspiration just head over to BuzzFeed and take notes from the people who are really doing Snapchat right.

  • Read, read, and read some more

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Replace at least one hour that you’d normally be connected to social media or the television/Netflix to read. And don’t read the same kinds of books or articles. Try to explore different types of literature or essays. If you normally read young adult novels, pick up an essay by Joan Didion. Or find a blog that talks about what you’re interested in or gives advice about where you want to go next.

You might try reading more posts here on the AfterCollege Blog or others like Twenty Something Living or GenTwenty or NewsToLiveBy.

Take your mind to places it wouldn’t normally go. Read different perspectives! Argue points in your head. Challenge what you’re reading but also learn to respect where the ideas are coming from. Read for fun. Read silly stories and books. Just read!

  • Make a rememberlution (or your own version)
Decorate "rememberlucian" jars to hold happy memory of 2015

Decorate “rememberlution” jars to hold happy memories of 2015

Remeberlucians back

My friends and I decided to make these this year and I think everyone else should follow suit. Although a “rememberlution” is technically a replacement for resolutions, that doesn’t mean you can’t do both.

“Rememberlutions” are crafted jars that are designed to hold memorable moments and quotes and feel-good situations that occur during the year. So when 2016 rolls around, instead of thinking about all of the resolutions you just couldn’t seem to keep, you open your jar and remember all of the awesome times you had during the year.

And you don’t have to make a “rememberlution” jar to do this. You can create your own design for collecting the best snapshots of your year. Maybe write them down in a journal or create a collage of concert tickets, photographs, and coasters from hilarious happy hours. Just create something that holds memories that will bring you joy at the start of next year.

  • Make sure the day after “happy hour” is just as happy

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It seems like ever since we turned 21, happy hours have been a large part of our agenda. This is nothing to be ashamed of. We all enjoy a good drink with good people and these happy hours can be a great way to make new friends. But I think we twentysomethings should start to make mature drinking decisions this year. It’s time we looked into the future instead of just the present.

This year, let’s work on making the day after happy hour just as happy as the hour itself. Recognize your limit, drink water (ahem point number one!), make sure you have enough to eat beforehand. Not only will you feel the physical benefits of this decision, but also the mental ones. There’s no chance of embarrassing yourself in front of the boss with this increased awareness of your happy hour choices.

  • Ask people about their lives

Be curious. Learn about other people and their stories. This can be an informational interview or just talking with friends you haven’t seen in a while. Humans are incredible and there are never two career or life stories that will be the same. You never know what you’ll find out.

Believe me, when I interviewed Pauline Bailey about being a human resource manager, I never thought I’d hear the incredible career/life story she told me.

Who knows, you could even discover an interest in a field or hobby that you never thought you’d be drawn to.

  • Moisturize

It’s good for you! Enough said.

  • Take time to be grateful

This year, let’s not wait for Thanksgiving to reflect on what we’re thankful for. Instead, let’s designate one day a week to really think about who or what we have in our lives. Then don’t just leave it at that. Express it! You don’t have to thank the same person over and over again each week, but you should choose at least one way to say “thank you.”

Did someone introduce you to a hiring manager or informational interview candidate? Did a neighbor help you carry something to your apartment? Thank them! Send them a note, a text, an email, even a Facebook message. Or you can let them know you’re grateful for them by doing something nice like endorsing a skill of theirs on LinkedIn.

If no one in particular helped you that week, say what you’re grateful for out loud to yourself. Just make sure that you’re appreciating everything that you have in your life right now.

And if you want to “get the most bang for your gratitude buck,” make sure you’re saying thank you the right way. Yep, there’s a right way to be grateful and Marie Forleo explains it here.

  • Figure out when to say “yes” and when to say “no”

We’ve talked about the benefits of saying “yes” but we’ve also talked about the trouble that comes along when you never say “no.”

Use this year to really figure out when you should use each answer. As Sheryl Sandberg says, “If you are offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat. Just get on!” But if that rocket ship is headed to Mars and you’re trying to get to Mercury, you probably shouldn’t board.

Start putting things in perspective and getting a view of the big picture. Will a “yes” lead to a new adventure or skill set or will it take you straight to burn-out?

Don’t be afraid of a challenge, but understand that it’s okay to say “no” when something is going to hurt you or your career.

Have any other New Year’s resolutions to add to the list? Share them in the comment section below!

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