By: Meaghan Shaw

For most of us, a new year is the chance to clean up and start over. January first feels like a blank slate – but the prospect of an entire year of possibilities can be intimidating. I’ve always thought that we make resolutions to give ourselves an idea of what we can to do with the next 365 days, and more importantly, where we want to be at the end of them. Here are a few ideas for New Year’s resolutions that you won’t find yourself abandoning in a couple weeks.

1. Take baby steps with your goals.

Though we rarely hear this as college students, step back from the big picture for a second. Do you want to make an A in your hardest class? Focus on acing your first quiz of the year. If you’re trying to lose the Freshman 15, start by just switching up your diet. Deconstructing your year-long goals into smaller, achievable goals will not only be less stressful, it will make you feel more fulfilled. Celebrate every step!

2. Exercise!

As Elle Woods once said, “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy.” Countless studies link exercise to increased happiness, so start 2019 by finding what works for you. Increasing your daily exercise can be as easy as walking to your next class instead of riding the bus. The Ramsey Student Center hosts Fitness & Wellness Free Week during syllabus week each semester, offering students the opportunity to take exercise classes for free. Just move, and your body (and endorphin levels!) will thank you.

3. Build your brand.

Creating a strong personal brand is a necessity for PR students, especially in 2018. We have so many platforms through which to establish ourselves – portfolios, blogs, social media – that it’s almost overwhelming. Pick the platform you are most comfortable with and establish your voice; it might just help you land that internship you’ve been wanting.

4. Pick up a book.

In 2019, make a promise to yourself to read more. It can help you to expand the way you think, make you sympathetic towards others’ experiences, or just provide a welcome escape from everyday life. If you don’t know where to start, ask anyone for recommendations. Your friends, a favorite professor, the librarian – each person will have a different version of what they believe worth reading. Personally, I recommend wandering the aisles of a bookstore until something jumps out at you.

5. Do more of what you love.

This is possibly one of the easiest, and one of the most worthwhile, resolutions to keep. Find something that makes you happy and just do more of it. Make 2019 the year you decide to go after your photography habit, or the year you finally start your own blog. Hold yourself to the fact that you won’t postpone following your passion this year.