A New You in 2020?

A long-standing New Year’s tradition would have us resolve to be a better version of ourselves in some important aspect of our lives. Will you undertake a new “best practice,” or break a bad habit for 2020? Jamestown Community Library can help with a variety of resources to help you stay on track to reach your goals.

In the waning days of December each year, following our holiday celebrations and our overindulgences, many of us take stock of our personal situation and resolve to do better. The turning of the calendar (or the getting of a new one) reminds us that while none of us are getting any younger, there’s always time to change for the better. This is the time of year when we are reminded by our televisions, our radios, our social media, and even our libraries that the New Year brings a great opportunity to clean the slate and start anew. Everyone, it seems, makes a New Year’s resolution to change something for the better.

According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the practice of making New Year’s resolutions goes at least as far back as the ancient Babylonians. They used a completely different calendar based on the equinoxes, with a new year beginning each spring.

So what are the most popular New Year’s resolutions in America? In 2019, the Vitagene Company conducted a nationwide survey of 1,450 adults across the country. The most popular resolution in Ohio was “diet to lose weight.” The most popular resolution nationally was “exercise to get in shape” and was number one in 18 states. 39 out of 50 states selected one of three health-related resolutions as their top choice, those being: “exercise to get in shape” (18), “diet to lose weight” (16), and “eat healthier in general” (5). Other top choices were to “save more money,” “do something for self-care,” and “learn a new skill.”

Whatever your goals, the library has you covered. With a variety of books and videos, you can find inspiration and instruction related to any new undertaking you can imagine. Our health section covers such topics as physical fitness, nutrition and healthy eating, yoga, weight training, and even getting better sleep. Want to get organized and declutter? Check our home section. Want to improve your personal financial situation? You can learn more about budgeting and personal investing with materials from our business collection.

A self-evident fact to anyone who has made New Year’s resolutions in the past is they’re often hard to keep. The Vitagene survey also looked at the length of time people reported keeping their resolutions. South Dakota, Alaska, and Minnesota reported the highest percentages of respondents who were able to keep their resolution for more than a year. If you’ve got the determination to keep at something new for a year, it’s likely to become a habit and we’re here to help. Beginning January 10th, Jamestown Community Library will have a monthly Health and Fitness Accountability Group for those who decide to pursue a healthier lifestyle in 2020. When you’ve got others you can share your personal successes and setbacks with, you’re far likelier to stay on track and meet your goals. You can also learn from others how they keep motivated and learn what works best for them. Come join us for a healthier 2020.

Recommended picks from the Jamestown library collection:

Exercise and Wellness

How to Be Well: Not just a fitness book, this is a primer on overall health and well-being.

Eat to Live: A proven diet regimen from a board-certified family physician.

The Women's Health Little Book of Exercises and The Men's Health Little Book of ExercisesThe basics of workout exercises, most of which require little or no equipment. From a contributing editor at Men’s Health and Women’s Health magazines.

Yoga: Well-illustrated volume on the basics of yoga. Teaches you how to do the postures safely and correctly.

Financial Well-Being

7 Timeless Principles of Investing: A rational approach to investment centered on seven commonsense principles.

Why Didn't They Teach Me This in School?: Divided into topical sections (Spending, Investing, Housing, etc.) this book contains concise statements and rationales to help you conserve and grow your financial resources.

Organizing and Decluttering

Real Life Organizing: Introduces you to your cluttering “style” and gives you effective organizing tips based on that style. Little by little, you can become more organized and decluttered.

Lose Your Stuff, Find Yourself: Local organizing guru Lori Firsdon writes about the emotional attachments we have to our clutter, breaking this bond, and decluttering your life.

The RealSimple Method to Organizing Every Room: How to get organized, room by room. Includes tips on cleaning and quick shortcuts to keeping each room looking good.