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With 2016 upon us, I’ve put together a few simple and practical suggestions for how to be fitter, happier, and more productive in the new year. Please enjoy PRAKTICALA’s Recommended New Year’s Resolutions!
I know it is unpopular to say this right now since we are suddenly obsessed with the idea of “loving yourself” and body-shaming-shaming, but the truth is most of us can stand to lose a few pounds. Proof: when I eat more junk and stop exercising, I gain weight. Junk food + sedentary lifestyle = unhealthy. A balanced diet + regular exercise = moderate weight loss for the average American. Get rid of the extra junk in the trunk and you’ll feel the difference.
Be smart with your money. If you are starting out, I recommend opening a Roth IRA, which I describe in a little more detail here.
Stop Clicking on Clickbait
This resolution is really a subversive productivity tip. When you find out how? You’ll be cheering.
Writing should be clear and concise. Any respectable publication uses headlines that, in one line, sum up the contents of the article. Examples: “Dow Industrials Post First Annual Loss Since 2008.” “Crime in Los Angeles rose in all categories in 2015, LAPD says.” “PRAKTICALA’s Recommended New Year’s Resolutions!” It is then up to readers to decide whether they are interested enough to read further.
When headlines from more, shall we say, “pedestrian” outlets state something like “He Screamed at This Waitress for No Reason. Her Response? I’m Crying,” it is usually a lazy and unprofessional way of getting you to click through while disguising the fact that the actual content itself is inane and uninteresting.
Don’t support these losers posing as writers. Resist the temptation to click on this garbage, or worse, to share or repost it, and watch your free time open up like magic. I have a personal blanket policy to ignore all clickbait and I can tell you life is good on the other side. I’m crying.
Exercise Your Word Power
Vocabulary is a widely recognized indicator of intelligence. Writing and speaking well will take you a long way.
The typical New Year’s vocabulary resolution is to learn new words by reading a dictionary or thesaurus, or by subscribing to a “word of the day” email. You can do that, but perhaps an even better strategy is to eliminate words you already know and use that don’t belong in intelligent language. Obvious offenders include “like,” “uh,” and excessive profanity. Others, like “bae” and “yaaasssss” should be self-evident as well. But you might have missed words such as “so” and “OK,” particularly at the beginning of sentences – you’d be surprised how often you start a phrase with these useless filler words. Example: “OK, so how many of you want a margarita?” Neither word has any real meaning here. So ditch ’em.
Check out a comprehensive list of “banished” words here.
Stop Saying “Because Science”
Sort of related to the above resolution. Either you understand why something happens, or you don’t. If you do, explain it properly. If you don’t, here’s another resolution for you to try out: READING. You don’t get to use “because science” as a cover for the fact that you have no idea what the hell you’re talking about.
Pick Up a New Skill
The internet provides an such an overload of information that you have no excuse not to know how to do something if you genuinely want to learn. This year I built a pretty great bed, as well as a pergola for my backyard, having no prior experience or formal training.
A photo posted by Jon Y (@jnyip) on
A photo posted by Jon Y (@jnyip) on
I’ve also picked up safecracking, car and motorcycle repair, and hairdressing, all just by using Google and YouTube. Just kidding about the hairdressing part, but you get the idea.
Yoselin from 6 Mono Media tells me that there is no point in worrying, and to make the most of every day. That’s probably the best resolution I can think of, so it’s the last recommendation I’ll leave you with. I’ll give it a shot if you will!
Thank you to all our readers who make PRAKTICALA possible!
What are your resolutions for 2016? Let us know in the comments?