With the new year now upon us, it’s time once again for resolutions. In the spirit of 2020 — the start of a new decade — this year’s resolution should be a cut above the rest. A new decade deserves a big change, and hindsight is always 2020. Don’t settle for the gym membership, the diet that didn’t work, or the promotion that may be out of your hands altogether. Use these past resolutions as lessons to learn from, signs pointing you towards a better resolution for the next 12 months and 365 days. Once you’ve done that, once you’ve decided which resolutions just don’t fit the bill, it’s time to find your new resolution. Here to help you with expert 2020 vision, our team has compiled a list of 7 new year’s resolutions you haven’t considered. Make a change and start the new decade off right.
1. Practice Excellent Oral Hygiene
When it comes to new year’s resolutions, the first thing many people think of is health. We already mentioned the gym membership and the diet. While these resolutions are well-intentioned, they’re tall orders for many people. And like most tall orders, they’re often left unfilled. To make a lasting impact on your health, try to start someplace small — like your mouth. Practicing excellent oral health will not only make you look and feel better — it will also save you dental expenses down the road. Here are a few quick changes made you can make heading into 2020.
- Pick a better type of toothpaste. Some toothpastes are more abrasive than others, which means they can damage your enamel over time. Choose a toothpaste with low abrasion levels, enamel restoring properties, and protection against acid, which can cause erosion.
- Floss regularly. Flossing prevents gum disease, which has been linked to a number of other conditions, including pancreatic cancer, kidney cancer, and blood-related cancers. When you floss, make sure to reach all the way into your gums.
- Time your teeth-brushing. Next time you brush your teeth, time yourself. Is your brushing session shorter than one minute? If so, you’re going to want to double that time — if not triple it. It takes 2 – 3 minutes to eliminate most buildup and bacteria from a single day. To make sure you’re reaching those times, time yourself with every brush.
- Brush right. Aggressive brushing and damage both teeth and gums. Try to soften up your brushing a take a bit longer to ensure a thorough clean. Also, be sure to choose brushes with soft bristles.
- Drink your coffee quicker. Coffee and other acid drinks like soda can quickly erode teeth. If you’re consuming these drinks, try to finish them quickly to minimize contact between them and your teeth.
2. Start Saving
Money management is something we can all work on, but for many of us, it can be difficult to know where to start. In the context of a new year’s resolution, it’s best not to plunge headfirst into uncharted waters. You don’t need to expand your portfolio, or take on that second job. Instead, start simple by saving. Use a money-tracking app like You Need a Budget (YNAB) or Mint to track your spending and set up alerts to curb bad habits. If the last thing you need is an extra app, simply make it your goal to save a certain amount each month. You can start small, or you can go big. As long as you’re saving, you’re heading in the right direction.
3. Reduce Screen Time to Improve your Sleep
According to the National Sleep Foundation, technology can have a number of adverse effects on our sleep. Blue light emitted by cell phones, tablets, and laptops can suppress the production of melatonin, a hormone that plays a vital role in controlling the body’s circadian rhythms. When these rhythms are out of whack, our sleep schedules become erratic. With less melatonin, it becomes harder to fall asleep. These devices also keep the brain alert. Surfing the web, scrolling through social media, or playing games before bed can reduce relaxation and keep you awake for minutes if not hours after you put them down. Finally, having a device such as a smartphone near your bed can wake you up even after you do finally get to sleep. We all know too well that a late-night text or notification can create light and enough sound to stir slumber. To rescue your sleep routine, take screens out of the equation in the final hour before bed, and try to keep them in another room overnight.
4. Book Your Doctor’s Visits Now
Going to the doctor’s regularly can help prevent major illness and make you aware of any issues you may need to address. Booking doctor’s appointments, however, is easier said than done. There’s nothing inherently difficult about the doctor’s office—it’s more that we all have busy schedules, and some of us have major anxiety about any kind of medical visit. To take care of these issues in one fell swoop, make it your new year’s resolution to schedule all of your doctor’s visits early. (Make all of your calls and emails on New Year’s Day, if you have to.) Start with your general physician and see which screenings you’re due for, then move on to more specialized doctors such as your dentist, dermatologist, and urologist. Get your appointments into your year’s schedule early, so you can plan around them.
5. Buy a Plant — Or Several
Improving your space is always a good idea. It’s an even better idea when it can benefit your health. This interior-design double-whammy can be achieved by buying a houseplant (or several). Houseplants come in a wide range of species, from flowering Chrysanthemums and Peace Lilies to dark and jungle-like Snake Plants and Pothos plants. These green lifeforms not only add a distinctly natural look to any room — they also bring with them a number of health benefits. Studies show that houseplants can provide allergy relief and filter toxins such as benzene, formaldehyde, ammonia, and more from the air. They can also improve humidity and mental health simply by sitting there. Best of all, they’re relatively affordable.
In the context of a new year’s resolution, healthy choices are often harder than simply buying a houseplant. Resolutions like new workout regimens and diets are often too lofty or too difficult to sustain. One that’s neither of those things — and also incredibly important for your body — is staying hydrated. Water keeps all of the body’s mechanisms functioning optimally, and it’s especially important for those who don’t quite get enough sleep. That’s because vasopressin, a hormone that tells the body to store water, is released in later stages of sleep. When you don’t get enough sleep, you need more water. Shoot for at least five 12-ounce glasses of water per day. Up that intake by one or two glasses if you slept poorly or insufficiently the night before.
7. Enroll in a Life-Saving Skills Course
Last on our list of game-changing new year’s resolutions is one that may just save your life, or the lives of those around you. That’s because this resolution literally teaches you how to save a life. Even if you have no prior medical training, you can enroll in a course like Basic First Aid or gain your CPR Certification to become a better citizen, parent, or employee. In these courses, you’ll learn how to administer aid to trauma victims, choking victims, and those who have stopped breathing. Typically lasting only several hours, these life-saving courses can give you the skills you need to help those in need. They’re also great resume boosters.
Learn More and Start the New Year Off Right With Our Team at SureFire CPR
A new year and new decade are here. Don’t settle for a sub-par resolution. Start 2020 off with a bang by picking one of the resolutions above, or making your own based on some of the advice from this article. Need ideas or guidance? Ready to tackle number 7 and enroll in a life-saving course? Our team at SureFire CPR is here to help. Contact us to have your questions answered, and explore our website to learn more about our Basic First Aid, CPR Certification, and other award-winning courses. With us, a better new year’s resolution is right around the corner. Enroll with our team today!
Challenging Ways Technology Affects Your Sleep. Sleep.org by The National Sleep Foundation.
Health Benefits of House Plants. DerSarkissian, Carol. WebMD. September 03, 2019.
“Why the body isn’t thirsty at night.” Hellman, Andrew Bennett. February 28, 2010.