New Year’s resolutions are a strange social norm so many of us make, promise to fulfill, attempt to master pitifully, and then give up on with some bravado. The transition from one calendar year to the next is pretty archaic, because the changes many of us often swear by are things we could have easily done before January 1st. Maybe it’s the symbolism of starting over that forces us to sort of self-sabotage at the end of the year with the belief that change is around the corner. Either way, resolutions are have turned into a cultural and social phenomenon.
Creating a resolution is both challenging and also lazy, because more times than not, people choose patterns they are close to achieving already, or reach for something far-fetched enough to know they probably won’t succeed.
But during the middle of the year, the falsities that were New Year’s resolutions fade into the oblivion they were meant to exist in, and new priorities come to light as the summer months approach. For young women in their 20s, the summer is the perfect time to experiment with lifestyle choices, new work experiences, and work on body and mind goals. Here are some of the best and easily attainable resolutions for summer:
1. Download a banking/savings app. Even though many of us are still living paycheck to paycheck and occasionally can only afford to eat grilled cheese for every meal, planning for financial wellness is crucial. You might feel like having a savings account is a distant luxury, and maybe it is, but working on becoming financially literate can make the world of difference in the future. Look for easy to navigate banking apps that will help to monitor your spending, offer tips to balance your credit cards and student loans, and take advantage of the easy to access platform on your phone.
2. Invest in a good skincare routine, and realize the difference between products for summer and spring weather. If there is one area to splurge on, other than good running shoes, its skincare. Think light layers and skin protection: cleanser, essence, facial oil, water-based moisturizer. And SPF! Please do not think you are invincible to the sun. A bronze tan and regular use of sunscreen do not have to be mutually exclusive. Wear. Sunscreen.
3. Connect with other badass women. Join a network for female entrepreneurs, inspiring creators, and brand strategists.
4. Take supplements. But really, find the right vitamins, and take them.
5. Plan with your girls more often than with your partner. Almost always, your friends will stay around for years and continue summer traditions with you, whereas new relationships don’t always keep that promise. When you look back at monumental moments and favorite memories, don’t let the sting of a break up overshadow your experiences.
6. Eat breakfast. Well, really, just maintain a healthy and consistent diet. Summer days seemingly just blend together and we lose track of time and basic habits. Meal prep and create a schedule to follow.
7. Actually use a calendar, whether designed in a bullet journal or digitally. Set daily reminders, organize your events and work schedule, and plan ahead for even the smallest things like trying new restaurants and seeing movies.
8. Explore the culture around your state. Look up city guides for places you’ve never been or look up “The Best Of” food, entertainment, and art around your neighborhood to learn more about the community you’ve grown up with, but maybe have biased favorites for.
9. Read at least one new book release. Stay up to date with new voices and use this time for a little escapism.
10. Stay aware of news, politics, science, and tech. Intelligence is sexy. Intelligence is a necessity. Know as much as you can about your surroundings and do your research.
11. Hydrate and moisturize like your life depends on it. And that’s that.
12. Take more videos and fewer pictures. Social media is an incredible form of documentation, but during the summer months, users typically work in overtime to perfect their brand and aesthetic. Pictures, as lovely as they are, are sometimes unnecessary stressors. Videos, on the other hand, are a growingly misused medium. If you want to document your summer, consider videotaping your experiences to have a more organic, interactive, and engaging set of memories.
13. Find something beautiful and become an expert in it. Seek out traveling art exhibits, food festivals, local art shows, or anything you find unique and beautiful about your community. Visit the space often. Learn as much as you can. Grow your love for something new.
14. Temporarily move. Consider uprooting for a week, if possible, to any entirely new place. If you are from the city, go rural. If you are fond of small towns, spend time in a busier city. Force yourself to nest in a new environment.
15. Enjoy the hustle of your passion. Look for summer internships or brand collaborations.
16. Find a mentor. The summer season is like a totally unique bubble of time, and for some reason, professionals and businesses are in the mentoring mood. Reach out to your favorite brands and pitch yourself to them.
17. Travel to scale. Summer budgets range from small staycations to full blown European backpacking trips, but either way, plan to travel.
18. Develop a morning and nighttime gratefulness routine. The beginning and end of each day is reserved for you and you should treat as special. In the morning, suppress the temptation of immediately reaching for your phone, take the time to make your bed, meditate, enjoy a morning face mask, and curate a “Best Day Ever” playlist. Your night routine shouldn’t necessarily reflect the events of your day, but rather serve as a way to decompress and dissociate from the day’s anxiety. Enjoy applying your skincare routine, list out small moments from the day you are grateful for, journal, read, or listen to a podcast.
19. Do something active that promotes peace and healing. An exercise routine shouldn’t be a punishment. Experiment with movement that feels best for you physically and mentally.
20. Befriend store associates and servers at your favorite spots. Summer jobs are exhausting for everyone, so small acts of kindness and recognition can change their whole shift, and also might come in handy for discounts down the road!