New Year’s Resolutions: 16 good resolutions for the New Year & how to achieve them

Written by Kerstin Lakits, Dec 14, 2023

A new year is approaching and it brings us many new opportunities! The majority of people resolve to live a healthier life in the new year. This includes more sports, healthier diet, less fast food and no smoking. Saving money, protecting the environment, more time for friends and family as well as mucking out are also some of the most popular goals for the new year. However, most people give up after a short time or lose sight of their goals.

How can you reach your goals and keep your New Year’s resolution? In this article, we not only provide you with ideas for great resolution for the new year, but also tips on how to stick to them.

Table of content:

The most popular and most common New Year’s resolutions and goals for the new year are about a healthy life, mental health, new habits and saving money. Do you want to do more sport, eat healthier, eat fewer sweets, drink less alcohol, quit smoking, start meditating, save money or spend more time with your family?

Physical Health: Diet and Sports

Healthy habits allow you to feel good in your body and stay in shape. They also boost your immune system, improve your sleep rhythm and contribute to your general wellbeing.

1. Get rid of bad habits

Smoking, excessive alcohol or too many sweets… All these bad habits are detrimental to your health. Take this new year as an opportunity to work on getting rid of your bad habits. It is understandable that you cannot get rid of them in a matter of a few days.

What is the reason for your bad habit? Are you stressed and use cigarettes, alcohol or sweets to calm down? Are these bad habits a result of your procrastination? Has it become a routine to smoke a cigarette, eat a chocolate bar or drink a glass of wine after dinner? Try solving these underlying problems.

2. More movement

More movement and more sports will be good for your body and mind. What is your movement goal for this new year? Be specific and clear with your goal: How often and for how long do you want to work out? Which sports do you enjoy? Yoga, running, resistance training, tennis, football… Come up with a routine that you can adapt to your daily life. During stressful and hectic times, you can stick to your routine by choosing a short workout at home!

3. More veggies

The motto for the new year: “Eat the rainbow!” by implementing different sorts of vegetables and fruits in your diet. To make it easier to keep your resolution, you can pick out some easy recipes for every day. Here are the best student cookbooks!

You can support your brain with your diet. Include brain foods into your daily diet!

4. More water

The human body consists to 70% of water and therefore the average adult should drink 2 to 3 litres of water every day. This is great for your skin, your digestion and even your concentration! You could put a glass of water on your nightstand in the evening, so you can drink some water right in the morning.

Mental health: emotional detox

In addition to your physical health, your mental health is also really important. Even small rituals or new habits can improve your mental health. If you encounter some problems this year, it is a great option to get professional help. You can find psychological support and help centres for students!

5. More time offline

How much time do you spend on your phone? Try to reduce this time in the new year and invest the time you won into something else. Meet up more often with friends and your family to enjoy this time and eat dinner together. This digital detox will be beneficial to your social life and your mental health.

6. Gratitude

What are you grateful for? A resolution that will greatly improve your life is taking time to look inward and being thankful for everything you have. Gratitude will brighten your perspective and bring more joy and happiness to your daily life. You can also start a gratitude journal where you write down 3 to 5 things you are grateful for.

7. Meditation

Meditation will bring more calmness, relaxation and clarity into your daily life. It can also improve your concentration and memory. Even a few minutes a day will work wonders for you. The best aspect is that you don’t need any equipment and you can implement your meditations into your daily routine. Here are tips for meditation beginners!

Thinking of others

8. Doing something good for others

No matter whether you invest time or money, this resolution will not only make you happy, but also the people around you. Make dinner for your family or flat mates, take over their tasks or leave them a card with a compliment or some nice lines. There are many possibilities to do something nice for others.

9. Environment and sustainability

The planet needs your help. There are many small things you can do to reduce your ecological footprint.

  • Use reusable water bottles, packaging or shopping bags
  • Eat less meat
  • Use public transport or ride your bike
  • Buy second-hand

Here is more information on zero waste!

10. Donations

After going through your wardrobe or old toys from childhood, you can donate those to a charity. Charities are always happy to receive donations in form of products or money. Caritas, the Red Cross, WWF or the Animal Shelter will be happy about your support.


11. Save money

Especially students have limited financial resources. Try to save some money in your daily life. Oftentimes it’s the little things or aspects of everyday life that allow you to save money. Here is a list of tips:

12. Budget

You can come up with a budget for the new year. Plan how much money you want to spend on vacation, hobbies, gifts, etc. Examine your financial situation: income, fixed expenses, etc. This will give you an overview of how much money you have at the ready.

13. Saving up for the future

It is important to have a financial backup and save up money for the future. These resources can help you during times of financial hardships or when you want to follow a dream, for example a great vacation. If you made a plan for your budget, you can also include how much money you are going to put aside each month. A saving’s account or a piggybank could be helpful!

Personal goals

14. Learn something new

Have you always wanted to try a pottery class, but haven’t had the time? Or is there a language that you have been wanting to learn for years? Then your New Year’s resolution could be to invest more time into learning something new. Define specific goals that you can definitely reach. The VHS (adult education centres in Austria) offer language courses or further training. You can attend dance classes or try new types of sports at the university sports institute.

15. Be brave

How often can you challenge yourself in the new year? In which areas of your life can you move out of your comfort zone? Identify challenging situations and take a leap of faith. A blind date, skydiving, making new friends at university, solo traveling into an unknown country or a roller-coaster ride could be ideas for being braver in the new year.

16. Hobbies and free time

Leisure time and time for hobbies can be neglected, especially in hectic everyday life. Make time for fun and relaxation. Playing soccer with friends at the weekend, taking a dance class once a week or spending half an hour in the evening reading, listening to podcasts, knitting or playing computer games. You may also want to try out a completely new hobby.

Made a resolution, but didn’t keep it: Why do we abandon our New Year’s resolutions?

According to the dictionary, a New Year’s resolution is defined as a resolution for a project or habit made on New Year’s Eve, often a lifestyle change considered positive, to last throughout the following year.

Why are we so motivated to change our lives on the last night of the year? There is a psychological dynamic behind it: Because in times of upheaval and big changes, such as the turn of the year, our brains are tempted to take this momentum with us!

However, many people give up in the first week and hardly anyone makes it through the whole year. Why is that? Our brain is the reason, because we make New Year’s resolutions with the prefrontal cortex, where our willpower, ability to concentrate and memory are located. In stressful times or when we have a lot to do, our prefrontal cortex is busy and saves energy by dropping New Year’s resolutions.

Helpful tips for going through with your New Year’s resolutions

There are many tips and tricks that will help you keep your New Year’s resolutions and reach you goals. The people around you, technical support and the right attitude help you reach your goals for the new year.

Better together

It’s easier to stay disciplined and motivated if you have someone by your side who has the same New Year’s resolution as you. You can work on it better together. For example, find a friend or a STUWO roommate who will work with you to exercise regularly or spend less money. It can also be helpful if someone knows about your New Year’s resolution and asks you about your progress from time to time or reminds you of it.


There are many apps that support you in reaching your goals. Depending on your New Year’s resolution, there is technical support for you:

Here are more helpful apps for students!

Failing is fine too!

The goal is not perfection, but gradual improvements for your everyday life and your life. So focus on the small successes and the progress you make. This positive perspective contributes to your motivation and helps you to persevere! Also you need to realize that failure or setbacks are normal. If you lose sight of your resolutions for a while, don’t get angry, just start working on them again. The year doesn’t just consist of the first few weeks, but of 365 days in which you can keep trying.

Track your progress

You can track and write down your interim goals and progress so that you can keep an eye on them. This way, you know which steps you still need to take and you can see how far you have already come. This will help you plan and implement your New Year’s resolutions. It also motivates you!

Step by step guide for keeping your New Year’s resolutions

To keep your New Year’s resolutions this year, you need a good plan and a concrete strategy. That’s why we’ve put together some tips that you can easily implement step by step. It’s sure to work!

1. Set realistic goals

If you set yourself goals that are too big, too vague and too unrealistic, you can quickly lose motivation. That’s why it’s important to set small goals, especially in the beginning. You should also focus on a maximum of a few New Year’s resolutions, as too many changes at the same time can quickly overwhelm you. Decide on 3-5 resolutions that are particularly important to you and determine what exactly your goal is.

The SMART method is a great strategy for setting specific goals. You set specific, measurable, attractive, realistic and terminated goals. This means that you clearly define your goals, set interim goals, make sticking to your plan attractive, adapt a realistic plan and set a deadline. Here is an extensive article on the smart method!

2. Make a plan

Planning is half the battle” and this also applies to your New Year’s resolutions. With a concrete plan, you can set yourself interim goals and incorporate the implementation of your resolutions into your everyday life. Think about when and how often you want to work on your New Year’s resolutions. It’s best to write your plan down and hang it up where you’ll always see it. This will help you to keep track of your plan.

3. Implement your plans

With your concrete plan, you are well equipped to implement your New Year’s resolutions. Implementing them in everyday life is often the biggest challenge, as appointments get in the way, deadlines stress you out or you forget your resolutions. Therefore, think in advance about what problems may arise so that you are prepared for them.

4. Be proud of yourself!

The fact that you have resolved to improve yourself or your life is already a reason to be proud of yourself. The more often you celebrate yourself or remind yourself of how positive your efforts are, the more motivated you will be to persevere and keep trying.

New Year, New Me: Let your wishes and dreams come true with the perfect strategy

Healthier living, less stress, new financial plans, personal development or social commitment – choose a few New Year’s resolutions, plan their implementation and seek support in realizing your resolutions. These tips and tricks will help you achieve your goals in the new year and make your New Year’s resolutions a reality!

STUWO wishes you a Happy New Year!

PS: Still no plan for what you’re going to do at the turn of the year? Here are some tips for the perfect New Year’s Eve party!


We are happy to help!