Today’s Extra for Jan. 9: 10 Simple 14-Day Challenges to Try This New Year

10 Simple 14-Day Challenges to Try This New Year

Making a list of New Year’s resolutions come January 1st is a tradition that feels as old as time. Unfortunately, many of us (half to be exact) fall off the wagon within a matter of weeks as motivation wains and old habits reappear.

One of the reasons New Year’s goals are so easy to break is that, even with the best intentions, committing to a year-long endeavor is pretty monumental. We also have a tendency to make our intentions far too vague (for example: “lose weight” or “drink more water”), which only bites us in the you-know-what later on.

Sick of committing to wishy washy New Year’s resolutions? Why not go against the grain and take on something a little more manageable: a 14-day challenge! Each of these ideas below are meaningful but lighthearted, and will help spur the positive habits you’ve been trying to cultivate since…2003. Enjoy!

1. Keep your phone out of the bedroom for 14 days.

Keeping your bedroom a phone-free zone is actually really beneficial for both your physical and mental health. Also, social media is a major time suck…now might be a good time to throw off the chains for a bit.

2. Make a to-do list every morning for 14 days.

This one’s easy. Cut the overwhelm by writing out your goals every morning for two weeks. Getting into the habit will help you keep your head on straight and actually achieve your goals.

3. Eat a serving of vegetables with every meal for 14 days.

Whether you’re slimming down or just trying to stay healthy, veggies are your friends. Plus, they’re delish. Need to get those wheels turning? Check our recipes section for some inspiration!

4. Call your representative or sign a petition every day for 14 days.

Telephoning your legislator’s office is a great way to communicate your opinions on everything from climate change to protection of local lands. Just follow this step-by-step guide from the Union of Concerned Scientists if you’ve never called your representatives before.

5. Pay someone a compliment every day for 14 days.

Some days there’s nothing better than hearing “You’re doing a great job” or “I love your taste in music.” Share a compliment or two and spread the love!

6. Cook breakfast for yourself every morning for 14 days.

Breakfast may not necessarily be the most important meal of the day, but it sure can start your morning off on the right foot! Commit to making breakfast for yourself every day, even if it’s just a bowl of oatmeal or a quick smoothie you can eat on your way out the door.

7. Add more citrus to your grocery cart every time you shop for 14 days.

When you wander by the citrus display in your grocery store, indulge! Grab up those clementines, grapefruits and pomelos and enjoy how they brighten up your fruit bowl and your belly.

8. Spend time with your hobby each day for 14 days.

Are you a painter? Do you crochet? Enjoy recording music? Whether it’s five minutes or an hour, spend a little time with your hobby every single day for 14 days.

9. Don’t buy a single piece of plastic for 14 days.

Plastic is killing our planet, contaminating our water and overwhelming our lives. Skip it for a while. See how it feels. Who knows, maybe you’ll discover that going plastic free isn’t so bad after all.

10. Find something to let go of every day for 14 days.

This can be either a physical item (old books or clothing that doesn’t fit) or something internal (guilt or an addiction to busyness). Whatever it is, let something go day by day for 14 days. You’ll feel lighter by the end of it!


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