By: Megan A. Wilson, Contributing Writer
It’s that time of year again, when people start to think of the year’s shortcomings, and what they can do to improve their lives over the next year.
According to www.about.com, the most popular New Year’s resolution is to spend more time with friends and loved ones.
1. Spending more time with family can be as simple as having a family game night, or spending time together planning meals.
2. The second most popular New Year’s resolution was listed as trying to fit more exercise into the schedule.
“When you decide that you want to exercise, pick something that you like to do, so there is a better chance you will stick with it,” said Amanda Thomas, of Boyne Mountain Solace Spa.
3. The third most popular New Year’s resolution is to lose weight and live healthier.
“You have to make a commitment and decide if you want to feel better and do what it takes to make the commitment, do it for yourself,” said Sue Engstrom, a Pilates Instructor at Boyne Mountain.
4. Following closely behind weight loss is quitting cigarettes.
“The biggest stumbling block for people is deciding that they want to quit for themselves, not because of outside pressures,” said Michelle Hines RT(N), Physicians Clinic of Charlevoix. “Once you’ve decided that you want to quit smoking plan for how you’re going to deal with the side-effects.”
According to the Center for Disease Control, Smoking is responsible for one in five deaths and is the leading cause of preventable deaths.
5. The next most popular New Year’s Resolution is to enjoy life more, whether that means doing recreational activities outdoors, or taking a relaxing bath inside.
6.One of the more popular resolutions—though ranked low on this list—is to quit drinking.
“One of the first things that people have to do is decide why they want to stop drinking,” said Scott Kelly, Executive Director of B.A.S.E.S. Teen Center of Charlevoix. “Then, they have to think of all the positive things they will gain.”
7.The seventh most popular New Year’s Resolution is to get out of debt.
“Come and get your financial picture mapped out,” said Cindi Moore from Boyne City Huntington Bank. “Once the income is situated, then the debt consolidation process can begin; it’s a matter of being organized.”
8.The next most popular New Year’s resolution is to learn something new.
“Our average student age is 30 at North Central Michigan College. We have classes for every situation that people can be in, and they can be taken online or in a classroom setting,” said Wendy Fought, Director of Student Outreach. “To begin the admission process, people can fill out a free application online; or, make an appointment to see an adviser and begin the application process.”
9. Volunteering is the next most popular New Year’s resolution, as people are looking for ways to give back to their communities.
According to www.volunteeringinamerica.gov there are 2.06 million volunteers in Michigan, with each person giving approximately 30 hours.
10.Number 10 on the list of most popular New Year’s Resolutions is to get organized.
According to Melanie Charlton, the author of Shop Your Closet, the key to organizing a closet is to purge it every four months and put clothes in three piles: Keep, Donate, and Throw Away.