So I wrote a little something about New Year’s Resolutions last year, which pretty much had to do with exercising and getting fit, which is generally in the Top 3, if not the #1 New Year’s Resolution. Exercising, eating right, saying fit, etc are a lifestyle change. Granted, they are an excellent idea, however, I realize for me (and I’m sure a majority of the population), that in reality lifestyle changes are very difficult to keep up with. I’m often left feeling guilty and weighed down by the Epic Fail burden I end up dragging around for not being able to carry out the lifestyle change I wished for myself at 12:01am on January 1st while drunk on the festivities , high spirits…and champagne.
But not this year. I’ve realized I’m just not cut out for grand lifestyle change resolutions. However, there are things in my life that need some work and thanks to some ideas I found on Pinterest, I have found ways to realistically take care of some that I’ve been stuck on this past year.
# 1. I’ve been trying to grow my hair out from an old bob for what seems like an eternity now. I’ve tried to let it grow but then it gets all mullet looking and heavy and next thing I know I’m at the salon getting it cut. It’s been suggested that pre-natal vitamins can help but I’m not interested in some of the other possible side effects like the nausea, constipation and abnormal hair growth so I decided against them. However, I saw this fabulous idea on Pinterest and you can bet I’ll be trying this immediately:
“One of the most effective hair growth tips is to use Aloe Vera. Massage Aloe Vera into your scalp. Leave it on for an hour and then rinse with warm water. Amazing for growing long tresses.”
#2. Mail, receipts, bills, cards, etc pile up around my house daily. I’m conflicted about throwing them out because my parents have taught me it’s important to keep old bills and receipts and I love keeping cards from friends and family but I don’t have filing cabinets, or for that matter, any space for one. Instead I have random piles constantly laying around cluttering my desk and tables. When I saw this jar filled with old receipts on Pinterest, I thought..genius! I could put this in a kitchen cabinet, on a bookshelf or just keep them in a jar on my desktop instead of laying in piles.
I also like this one for the bills and cards:
#3. Working out and staying active is hard for me. I’m really more of a lounge around the house watching t.v and reading type. But sometimes I do something extra active like help a friend move, walk (instead of drive) when I go out to eat, walk my parents’ dogs, take a walk through the park, or join intramural sports like volleyball this past Summer. I saw this idea on Pinterest which I’ve decided to try:
Tip yourself $1 each time you workout and after every 100 workouts, buy something you deserve.
Although I’m replacing workout with one of my “exercise-type” activities, and $1 with whatever monetary reward I can find in my purse to put into my jar. My plan is that this will motivate me to increase the amount of these activities in an effort to stay healthy and fit, and I won’t end up losing money paying some gym that I never go to or setting unrealistic goals.
#4. I’m horrible about staying in contact with friends and family. I know it’s important to call to thank them for a gift, card or invitation sent or just to catch up and yet I find myself consistently not doing it. Quite frankly because I don’t like talking on the phone. Not at all. Even in the days before texting, my calls, when it was necessary to make them, were quick and to the point. And I have fewer e-mail addresses than numbers so catching up via e-mail isn’t always an option. However, through Pinterest I found the Red Stamp App. I know it’s not exactly the same as a personal visit or phone call, but it’s sincere. If I see something that reminds me of them or want to wish them a happy birthday (and not the generic kind where you say Happy Birthday on their Facebook page along with 100 others), I can snap a pic, write a personalized message and text them before I forget. I really think this will help me get into the habit of keeping in better contact with family and friends this year.
#5. And finally, the dreaded saving money. Make a budget, plan spending at the beginning of each month, etc doesn’t work for me. People who can do that probably have enough will power to get up every morning and work out as well. That’s not me. However, I found a ton of different articles through Pinterest pins on ways to save money and some things I can certainly do pretty easily which will help me save more than I currently am. One pin that led me to some interesting ideas was through The Budget Diet.
One comment that immediately caught my attention was regarding cable bills. I currently have a HuluPlus account and a friend with a NetFlix account. I could cancel my cable, which is $40/mo and share Hulu and Netflix accounts and pay only $8/mo. I also realized that resolution #3-the tipping myself every time I do en exercise-type activity one-will help me to have extra money at the end of the year, which I can put into savings instead of spending. So right there, 2 easy ways to help save a little extra. Then there’s the $5 savings plan, which I’ve seen a lot on Pinterest:
Here’s how it works: Whenever a $5 bill comes into your possession, you save it in a special jar or envelope. Over time, they will add up. The more you incorporate using cash into your spending habits, the more you will save.
Speaking of saving money, I also found another great tip on Pinterest. This isn’t really one of my resolutions as I have no complaints about the color of my teeth. I do, however, buy teeth whitening products once or twice a year and they’re not cheap, so this alternative method would just be an additional way to keep up with my teeth and save a little money.
Put a tiny bit of toothpaste into a small cup, mix in one teaspoon baking soda plus one teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide, and half a teaspoon water. Thoroughly mix then brush your teeth for two minutes. Remember to do it once a week until you have reached the results you want. Once your teeth are good and white, limit yourself to using the whitening treatment once every month or two.
Thanks to Pinterest I won’t feel like a failure by February. Instead, by the end of 2013 I’ll be a more healthy, organized woman with a little extra money saved, long hair and white teeth who keeps in regular contact with my friends.
What realistic goals are you trying to reach for 2013?
Brought to you by Mills Properties