31 Simple, Miniscule Resolutions to Improve Your Life in January

published Jan 3, 2020
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By this point, you’re probably really ready to stop seeing “new year, new you” articles. January is a month that many industries thrive off of when it comes to marketing, and can you blame them? The start of the new year means a fresh start for everyone, and many people look at this as a way to revamp their personal or professional life. But sometimes the biggest mistake anyone can make going into a brand spankin’ new year is to think too big.

There’s nothing wrong with reaching for the stars when it comes to goals, but sometimes these massive goals can hinder people once they get further into the year. It can feel overwhelming to tell yourself you’re going to cook every meal at home if you’re used to eating out every single day. And if you’ve never run a mile in your life, then making your first running goal a full marathon can be a recipe for disappointment (or worse, injury). But there are ways to feel just as refreshed and accomplished that don’t include changing every aspect of your life overnight.

Here are 31 teensy, tiny resolutions for each day of January that may help you feel good day-to-day, or even better, develop positive habits that extend throughout the entire year.

Organize Your Underwear Drawer

And throw out everything you don’t wear. This will revolutionize your life and your morning getty ready routine. Trust me.

Call an Old Friend Once a Week 

Take some time today to map out your calendar for a month, and for one day each week, schedule a time to call an old friend. Maybe they won’t even pick up, but odds are if they do, you’ll both feel great to have reconnected afterwards.

Credit: Leslie McKeller

Learn to Cook a Meal from Scratch

Cooking a meal from scratch is easier than you might think, so take the time to teach yourself one recipe that you can whip out whenever you want to impress someone (or yourself). 

Train for a 5K—No Matter What Your Experience Is 

Whether you’re an avid runner or you haven’t in years, consider signing up for a 5K. It can be a great way to bond with someone who might want to run it with you, and it’s a goal that feels attainable. 

Set a Year-Long Reading Goal 

How many books do you want to read this year? You don’t have to start today, but try picking a number that seems doable and working towards that. Not a reader? Maybe try audiobooks or podcasts instead. 

Change One Tiny Part Of Your Daily Routine

Today, try switching up the smallest part of your daily routine. Usually get black coffee? Treat yourself to a latte. Typically work out in the evening? Give a morning run a go.

Credit: Maskot/Getty Images

Introduce Yourself to One Neighbor

Make an effort today to introduce yourself to one person (or family) that lives near you. 

Start Saving Your Loose Change in One Place

We’ve all likely been guilty at one time or another of losing loose change all over the place. Pick one place to put all of your loose change today and you’ll be surprised how it adds up over the year. 

Set a Monthly Savings Goal 

Look at your finances and choose a monthly savings goal that feels realistic. You don’t have to hit it every month, but just thinking about it is a good financial health exercise.

Credit: Joe Lingeman/Apartment Therapy

Clean Out Your Closet 

Top to bottom. And if you don’t have time for that, try putting an empty box at the bottom of your closet to toss clothes you don’t wear into it on a daily or weekly basis. When it’s full, donate everything.

Map Out a Bucket List for the Year

Sit down and plan out a handful of bucket list items for 2020 — list the restaurants you want to try, the places you want to visit, the books you want to read. Whatever you’ve been meaning to do, but haven’t. Put the list on the fridge and cross off the items as you go.

Clean Out Your Entire Email Inbox

Depending on your email inbox style (I’m looking at you, person with 8,000 unread messages), this may be quite the task. But you will feel like a brand new person afterward, trust me. 

Set Year-Long Calendar Reminders

Go through your calendar and mark down important dates and reminders. This includes that cousin’s birthday you always forget and any sort of milestones for goals you’re aiming to achieve. Hoping to save a certain amount of money in six months? Make sure you mark on your calendar exactly when six months is. You’d be surprised how easy it is to miss it.

Actually Make Yourself Breakfast for Once 

If you never make yourself breakfast or usually skip it, try finding something you love and seeing how it affects your energy levels. 

Try a Brand New Restaurant or Type of Food 

Make yourself try that restaurant you always walk by but are unsure about — you might be surprised at how much you like it. 

Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn

Clean Out Your Junk Drawer 

We all have THAT drawer. Take 20 minutes and clean it out, and if you’re really feeling ambitious, then order some drawer organizers from Amazon to keep things tidy throughout the year.

Write Down Three Good Things Every Evening & Keep At It 

Write down three good things at the end of today and try to make an effort to keep this up for as long as you can. Even just jotting things down on a note on your phone could be a difference-maker.

Start Checking Your Bank Account Every Single Day

If you don’t already do this, you need to. It will completely change how you feel about your income and savings.

Credit: Leandro Crespi / Stocksy

Stop Sleeping With Your Phone Next to the Bed 

Move that charger. Set the alarm. And get in bed… without your phone nearby. Note how your sleep patterns change if at all. 

Choose One Book to Read Each Month

Or podcast. Or film. Or anything you want. Make it a point to choose one creative thing to consume each month, and check them off as you get to them.

Try Standing at Your Desk Instead of Sitting for One Day

We all know that sitting is one of the worst things for our bodies, and yet we do it all the time. Try standing at your desk for a day instead of sitting, just to see how it goes.

Deep Clean Your Phone (Inside and Out)

Go through your phone and delete everything you don’t need – photos, apps, text messages, etc. Sanitize the outside as well. You (and your storage) will thank yourself later.

Choose a Word to Focus On for the Year 

Choose a single word to focus on for 2020. Not a goal or a milestone, but just one word. Focus, passion, power, strength, and peace are all good options. 

Write Out Everything You Accomplished in the Last Day

Take a few minutes today to think about everything you accomplished yesterday. Write it all down. Feel proud of yourself. 

Change How You Do Your To Do List for One Week

If you usually write out every single thing you have to do in a day, try only writing the big things. Or the opposite. Maybe you’ll find a more efficient list-writing system that works for you. 

Take the Stairs Instead of the Elevator or Walk the Long Way to Work 

If there’s a small way to get a tiny bit of movement into your day, today is the day to try it out. Keep it up once or twice a week and you’ll end up with thousands of more steps at the end of the month. 

Drink Double Your Usual Water Intake

Sure, you’ll pee a lot, but hydration is always a good idea.

Donate $5 (or Another Small Amount) to a New Charity

Find a new charity that you like and donate $5 (or another small amount that feels doable to you) just because you can.

Ride a Bike Somewhere

Anywhere! Riding a bike is fun, great for the environment, and way to easy to forget to do when you get into adulthood. So make some time for it today.

Cook Every Meal You Eat For One Day (or Week)

If you’re notorious for getting pre-made meals or eating out, make it a goal to cook every single meal you eat in a day — or, if you’re feeling ambitious, a week. 

Write Out 28 Small Goals for February

Now do the whole thing again. Write out your own list of tiny goals for February and check them off each day.