2019 is here. But, rather than the usual resolutions, I’m shooting for the strangest New Year’s resolutions this year. Here in Florida, it’s really nice during the first week of January. There’s a crisp breeze, but nothing extreme. I tend to do well on my resolution until the third week in January when the temp gets back up to the ’90s. And then it’s too hot to go out again till the next year. So, I’ve been thinking about abandoning the fitness plan this year. I don’t really have the time, anyway. Regardless, the point is, while broad, life-altering resolutions are easy to come up with, they’re, frankly, too hard. My plan is to attempt smaller, more specific, improvements. If you’re looking for bite size, and kind of weird resolutions, you’re more than welcome to steal one of mine. Some might be a little odd, but we’re living in odd times. Personally, I think that makes them appropriate. Here are the strangest New Year’s resolutions you should consider.
If you spend any time in an area with heavy foot traffic, there’s a good chance you been offered a large amount of flyers, inviting you to comedy shows or club meetings of some sort. It’s extremely tempting to put in your new, rich person AirPods, avoid eye contact, and scurry away. Resisting that urge is an easy way to open yourself up to new experiences in the new year. Even if none of the events peak your interest, you’ll probably be doing a big favor to the person passing the pamphlets out. Most of the time, they’re paid to stay outside till all their promotional materials are gone. They won’t care if the flyer goes directly into the garbage, no matter what they’re closer to going home.
Finish "Infinite Jest"
A lot of people will promise to “read more” in the new year, but I think getting a little more specific will increase odds of success. If you’re going to push yourself through a book this year, swing for the fences and choose something notoriously difficult to get through. Every English major on the planet has walked around with a copy of “Infinite Jest,” but it’s about time someone actually read the whole story. If David Foster Wallace isn’t your thing, there are other options to impress your less educated friends. I’ve heard great things about “Atlas Shrugged” and “Ulysses,” even though everyone tells me they’re only “like almost halfway done.”
Stop Killing Businesses
This one is mostly for my fellow millennials. It seems we’re blamed for the death of a different decades old industry every day. I don’t have a lot of sympathy for Sears, or the diamond industry, but there are some good companies we could do a better job supporting. Find local book stores. Skip a mediocre superhero film and go see community theater, instead. It can be tough to find, but there’s great stuff out there that’s not being sold by a company with a cartoon mouse mascot.
Get Better at English
Here’s a fun fact about me, the person writing this article; the other day a friend asked what the difference between effect and affect is, and I had to look it up. If you share this deficiency with me and my buddy, it’s probably worth fixing this year. Little grammar and spelling rules are bound to come up on a job application or professional email at some point. Personally, I think I’m one group chat typo away from being disowned by my English teaching mother.
Leave Your Pet Alone
This obviously doesn’t apply to all pets. There’s plenty of furry friends out there looking for attention 24/7, and they absolutely deserve it. From personal experience though, it seems like I need my cat’s company a lot more than she needs mine. This year, I’m going to try and give Lucina her alone time. If you have a more social pet, bring them to a park so they can make new friends. Everyone deserves a diverse friend group.
Let Kids Enjoy Things
Twilight, Justin Bieber, and Fortnite dances are easy targets. Even a basic insult will net you a ton of accolades from internet strangers. However, 2019 should be the year we let go of that low hanging fruit. It’s the easiest way to drop some negativity. I’m mad about how awful the new “Kim Possible” movie looks too, but if kids are in to it, let’s just ignore it.
Smile and Nod
It’s tough being the smartest person in the room. You visit List25 often, so you understand the struggle. Sometimes people aren’t very receptive to learned advice. That can be okay, though. Often, just giving friends and family an ear to vent to is all they really need. Save yourself some time and frustration this year. Stop explaining “Interstellar” to me, just let me talk about how bored I was.
Stop Talking About Your Novel
This also applies to screenplays, symphonies, Shark Tank pitches, really anything you’re actively working on. I’m sure all those ideas are incredible, but telling people your plans releases endorphins that are incredibly similar to those released when you finish projects. By holding everything back, you’ll force yourself into grinding out the product. You can show the world your brilliant, fully fleshed out idea, instead of just giving an elevator pitch.
Try Weird Food
I tried sea urchin for the first time on New Year’s Eve a few years ago. It was awful. But if I leave my reaction out of the story, I sound very cultured at parties. Besides the appearance of worldliness, trying new foods can also help with any new year fitness goals you might have. Sticking to a diet is hard when all you really want is Chick-Fil-A, trust me, but that’s not going to stop my hunt for a healthy replacement. It shouldn’t stop yours either.
Need ideas for weird food? You should check out 25 Super Weird Japanese Foods.
Watch Television with Commercials
This is not a pitch for commercialism. Ads are annoying and I want to avoid them as much as anyone else. Commercials force you to take breaks from your binge. Use that time to do push-ups or read the newspaper. Making a resolution to cut TV will likely fail before Groundhog Day. Spending half your screen time accomplishing small tasks is a good way to compromise with your lazy side.
Pick the Restaurant
I assume you are all familiar with the Mexican standoff that comes with choosing a restaurant for two or more people. We’re breaking that cycle in 2019. It’s our year. We’re going to have strong opinions on where we want to eat, and we will be vocal about them as soon as the conversation arises. I think people will appreciate it. If you happen to be reading this with a significant other or family member, decide right now who the designated decider is. Rock, Paper Scissors or something. No procrastinating.
Gas Station Gifts
Did you decide? Good. We can move on.
A common resolution is something broad about being nicer to people. It’s an admirable resolution, but it’s pretty tough. People are often difficult. If you’re looking for an easy way to demonstrate your charitable spirit this year, look no further than your local gas station. Whenever you’re filling up with passengers in the car, pay inside and pick up little gifts for your travel companions. Candy is cheap, but random weekday gifts go a long way with people.
Read Full Articles
If you’re like everyone else in the world, you’re cutting down on screen time time for your New Year’s resolution. But I’m going to urge you to do the opposite, and not just because I write articles.
We’re all walking around with all the knowledge in human existence in our pockets, but people barely read past headlines. Instead of abandoning social media this year, try to use it as responsibly as possible. Check sources. Read opposing points of view. It just takes keeping your phone out a little longer.
Call Your Mother (Part 2)
I know I’m stealing this from the “Heartwarming Ways to Pay it Forward” article. I wrote that, too, so it’s cool. Just because you called her one extra time around Christmas, it doesn’t mean you called her enough. Call her a lot more all throughout the year. She deserves it.
Cut Yourself Some Slack
You don’t have to pick one strict, specific way to improve yourself this year. Do a little bit of all these things. Think of your own mini resolutions. You don’t need me to tell you what to do. It’s your year. Probably. Whatever you want. Next year is fine, too.