New Year’s Resolutions

Welcome back from the holidays! Hope you had a wonderful, relaxing time. Also, I’m curious: Are you making any New Year’s resolutions?

Here are my five resolutions this year:

* Write regular letters to my grandmother in England

* Practice blow drying my hair well, like they do in salons

* Stop biting my nails like a five-year-old (have you heard of this stuff?)

* (Try to) get over my elevator phobia

* Learn to tell a great joke

What about you? Alex jokes that his resolution is to spend another year talking about starting yoga. I think he can do it!

(Photo of a snow crystal by Mike and Doug Starn)

  1. I quit biting my nails after taking a microbiology class. We had to culture under our nails and watch the germs grow :/ I quit cold turkey.

  2. Hi Joanna! I just wrote about my totally unexpected progress in managing my fear of heights thanks to the formerly-dreaded last leg of my bike commute in Portland, OR. Writing it made me recall this post and your New Year’s Resolution.

    Thought you might find it encouraging.

    Good luck letting go! — Annette

  3. I’m going to have more fun! I’ve already gone ice skating and sledding with my 9-year-old niece, and yesterday I made snow angels/dogs with Lucy, my choco-lab.

  4. For me, I haven’t put the resolutions on paper yet. I’ve got a few in mind, the usual resolutions have reared their ugly head…eat less, drink more water, exercise more. I am actively working on these as I type. Someone else said to pay more attention to posture…I love it..doing it now.

    I started following your blog about the time I moved to New Jersey (6 mos ago-from down south), I love going into the city. I work from home, so I am able to jaunt around during the day if I like. Having said that, the SUBWAY FREAKS ME THE HECK OUT. Glad to see I am not alone. I’ll walk a zillion blocks to keep from getting on that sucker. The train into the city is fine, the subway…nope, it makes absolutely no sense. I can’t explain it. Maybe that should be my resolution.

  5. my new years resolution: get off all the junk email lists which are just cluttering my inbox, and consequently, my mind. ta-da! one very, very achievable goal.

  6. I had a great hair stylist. I could never recreate the looks she did so she had me bring he products I used, my brush and hair dryer and she had me do whatever I did at home. She stood behind me and watched. I held the brush wrong. There were a few things that were still hard to do – i have stubborn cowlick ridden hair – and we came up with solutions that would help at home such as using clips etc. it is so much better but alas she moved away! I still use the techniques she taught me.

  7. I have a solution for your nails.
    All you need (like always) is love!
    Ask collaboration to your husband and take 2 or 3 days to wrapp-up your nails with a light paper adesive.
    Ask him to help you change them. it works, really!
    I definitely stopped to torture my nails by this way.
    Now my hands are fabolous!
    Bye and kiss

  8. Instead of making New Years resolutions I can’t keep I’ve decided to do and try to do 200 things that I’ve never done before but I’ve always wanted to. For example, drive a tractor, try frog legs, learn archery, make cola bombs etc. I’ll try to scratch them off my list throughtout the whole year (:
    I even made a website to keep myself on track: :)

  9. I find that I bite my nails when they have no polish on them, but don’t when they do. So, keep them polished is my advice!

  10. Have you ever heard of EMDR therapy? It can totally help you with your subway phobia! It generally takes 1-3 sessions and works wonders. You can look up a therapist in your area on the main EMDR therapy website. It’s the main type of therapy used in our military to treat PTSD & trauma & phobias… Anyway, check it out!

  11. Since you are mentioning good resolutions, there is something I would like to ask you, as a loyal follower of this blog. There is a thing that you do not mention, or, maybe I have missed you mentioning, and since you are a woman, it got me curious …. What is your relationship to weight and appearance ? I would love to read an article from you about it. I wish I could but I unfortunately don’t believe there is a woman on earth who doesn’t think about it at least once a day. Starting a diet is probably on the new resolutions list of most people. I’m also curious to read what others readers have to share about it :)
    May you and your family have a great year :-)

  12. Resolutions are always so hard to maintain! This year, I decided to focus on ways to make life more enjoyable… that way I may actually look forward to doing them. For me, that means taking more pictures, planning more date nights, and throwing some fun parties this year!

  13. Me and my family are going vegetarian for a month!

  14. Joanna if you move to Brooklyn you will have to take the subway!

  15. A hair tutorial on blow outs would be amazing!

  16. hilarious, my boyfriend has been talking about doing yoga for YEARS but I think this will be the year I finally drag him to class!

  17. My New Years resolution is to not spend any money on non-necessities for myself (mainly clothes!!) until my birthday in April, to save money for our vacation in May :)

  18. I resolve to do yoga once a week, the gym twice a week, learn to ride a road bike, hang out with my girlfriends more and paint and craft more. I drink plenty of water and watch too many movies already ;)

    Wait…one more: Learn how to make fancy cocktails!

  19. I made a bit of a resolution when we moved to the US a year ago, which I’m keeping this year, and it’s just to ‘be the person I want to be’. I want to be a good friend, so I will do things that I think a good friend does. I want to enjoy my time spent at home with my toddler, so we’re having fun together and I’m not worrying about the future.
    I’m actually making time to learn to do things (like knit) that I’ve always wanted to learn how to do… so basically my resolution is to stop talking and start doing. :)

  20. I never really make resolutions. Instead goals; I know what’s the difference really! I do like your resolution of stopping the nail biting. I do the same thing, and you’d think at age 45, I would have outgrown it by now! My friend Kellie Little (not promoting) invented a killer hairbrush – I never thought I’d love a hairbrush – it helps with the styling of your hair. I have frizzy hair, and have not used a flat iron since using her brush. Now it is straight and shiny all the time. Truly amazing!

  21. I usually try to keep it simple:
    – Floss Daily
    – Watch a movie at least once a month (maybe even on the big screen)
    – Drink more water
    – Kiss my love ones often
    – Read non-work related books

    The only more challenging one I choose this year:
    – Do a 3-day Juice Cleanse

  22. I like the idea too of having more than one resolution. This year I did the 7 Things x 2013 challenge at Day Zero Project.

    It seems like a nice mix of aspirations and actionable goals.

  23. This one is for Alex really… I am not usually one for resolutions but I also am tired of saying that I’ll ‘get into’ yoga, so this year… I’m jumping on this bandwagon: Digital 40 days!

    40 days of yoga! I know, it’s hardcore and a big jump from maybe once a week…but the fact that’s it’s extreme is what is getting me pumped. My mom and boyfriend are on board too :)
    Lately I’m LOVING this site: and classes come as short as 15 minutes! So I think 40 days is doable… we’ll see how I do! Join me!

  24. ops! *wont


  25. Hi Joanna! I follow you since long time but it’s my first time I write a comment on your blog! I have your same problem with the Tube.. one of the reason because I’m moved away from London it was even this.. I was so scared every time!.. I feel pretty much the same with the lift! I’m hopeless!!
    About my resolution for this year.. I have many ideas.. find a job that I love!!
    Have an amazing year!! :)

  26. If Alex decides he wants to break his resolution and actually try a yoga class, some friends of mine own a studio near you guys (I think) at 10th street and 6th ave. They are super sweeties and great teachers. The studio is called Moksha Yoga NYC. If he wanted to try I’m sure I could hook him up with a free class or two – just let me know!

  27. What a wonderful post!! Thanks so much for sharing it!

  28. Haha @ the yoga thing – I’m afraid I’m guilty of the same resolution.. I even posted it on my blog. But I really *REALLY* want to get serious about pilates. I hope 2013 will be my HEALTHY year!

    I also want to read more books.. I feel like I’m spending so much time online but it’s not a very productive time. :-/

    Happy New Year! xx

  29. Years ago we tried the bitter nail varnish and after a while, we just got used to the taste! :D

    Try putting a drop or two of Tabasco – hot is better than bitter! ;)

  30. Oh man, I’ve “quit” biting my nails twice now but always end up starting again! It helps me to have a nail file on hand, so that instead of biting them I file them, which at least is better than having them raggedy! I didn’t bring a file with me for the holidays though, so I started biting again! Curses! (I’ll have to give that polish a try :)

  31. Nails – I am a nail polishaholic. I paint my nails every other day and have an insane collection of polish, so much so that I have not worn the same manicure twice in years! I don’t have a biting problem, but I have several nail biting friends that have kicked the habit by indulging in some really amazing nail polish and have worked on making their nails look and stay pretty vs gnarled and chewed up. Their nails look so nice, they can’t bring themselves to bite, but now have polish habits that getting close to rivaling my own!

  32. Yay your back! We’ve missed you! My Husband and I had a nice and relaxing break. I had two ideas to help you with your nail biting (I’m a licensed nail tech, not that that matters) 1. There is a product called “Bite It”. It tastes terrible, so when you put your nails up to your mouth, you think again! 2. I tell clients, to keep polish on their nails, as this deters the nail biting. Hope this helps.

  33. I was also in a habit of biting Nails in crucial times.I like it because a lot of Pakistani Women do that.LOL.Your resolutions are nice

  34. Happy New Year!, wish you the best with your resolutions, specially i loved the one of writing more to your grandma, lovely!
    I have tons of resolutions for this year :)

  35. Writing letters…how sweet! I’m sure your grandmother will love them!

  36. Nail biting advice: do it one nail at a time, just like I did in
    Grade 11 in 1972. Stop biting one nail; next month, give up biting another nail; and so on and so on.

  37. Hey I’m going to quit biting my nails too! Hopefully :) I’ve been doing it since 4th grade – terrible. Thanks for posting that product, I think I’ll give it a try!

  38. When I was a kid, my parents bought me a similar nail polish, only it was spicy instead of bitter. Better not scratch your face/nose/rub your eyes!
    (It seems like we didn’t stick with it for very long.)

  39. I quit biting my nails after taking a microbiology class. We had to culture under our nails and watch the germs grow :/ I quit cold turkey.

  40. I don’t like the idea of “traditional” resolutions in that so many people focus on things that they think that they “should” do – lose weight, work out more, etc. I think the reason most people break them is that they didn’t really want to do them in the first place. I like to think of resolutions as things that will make you happier or more fulfilled, or an excuse to carve out time for something that you’ve always wanted to do. In 2012 I finally learned to sew, and made some new friends.

    I just had a baby a few months ago, and while it’s the best thing I’ve ever done, it’s also turned our lives upside down! My husband and I sat down and each created a list of what would make us happier/less stressed in the new year, and formed an action plan.

    My list:
    – Revamp my post-pregnancy wardrobe (without feeling guilty about spending money on myself!)
    – Take a friend up on her offer to babysit once a month
    – Look into cleaning services so we can spend less time on housework and more time together
    – Make one day a week TV and Internet-free
    – Have biweekly family adventures around town

  41. I used to bite my nails until I spent years with braces. Good luck breaking the habit! And, Happy 2013!!

  42. I love your resolutions! Mine are just to eat more plant-based meals, spend more time outside with my little boys (it’s cold, so it’s hard to get out there!), and to stick to a weekly budget a bit better (you know with all the present-buying and entertaining, December was a bit of a spender!).

    Happy New Year, Joanna!

  43. I’m so glad you asked, Joanna! I love your blog, especially checking out your Friday round-ups over breakfast on the weekends. I always think, “I would love to be included in that”. So I resolve to ask you to take a look at my art and design blog, in case you think your readers might be curious about a dressing room inspired by Grace Kelly’s style or a little girls’ room inspired by Hemingway’s adventures. Thanks so much for looking, I hope you enjoy!! xo Natasha

  44. Love these resolutions! I can totally understand the hair one, it seems so simple when the salon does it! Why can’t we do it as well, I might just have to add this my list of things to learn! Happy new year!

  45. I have tried that no bite type product but it didn’t work for me. I quit biting my nails finally when I was 22. What worked, (but made me look like a crazy person) was wearing band aids on all of my fingers for about 2 weeks!

  46. My mom used to put that nasty nail polish on my thumb because I sucked it until the second grade. Except… I would just suck it off and then keep sucking my thumb!

  47. Be a better daughter to my 84 year old mother.

  48. Great resolutions! I’m going to try and eat healthier this year…we’ll see if I can keep it up! xoxo

  49. Hi and Happy New Year!

    My anti-nail biting tip is to think about all the gross germs that live under your nails. My 7th grade biology teacher said under a microscope most people look like they have tiny worms under their nails. Whether that is what it actually looks like, I don’t know, but the visual has always grossed me out so much I have never, ever bit my nails. ugh.

  50. Giving up nail biting is DEFINITELY on my list. I’m going to try your suggestion! Also, going for more drives like this one:

    Happy 2013.


  51. Happy healthy New Year Joanna!! I have just two resolutions: eat well and travel more. I’m keeping it simple… I won’t think that I have to lose weight, I will just try to eat better. And since travelling is what makes me happier, I will try to do it more often. Maybe New York? Who knows!!!

    Lots of love for 2013!!!

  52. Although I am usually against making New Years resolutions, I do love the idea of always trying to improve yourself. This year I am going to try to tackle small goals, like saying “hello” to more strangers on the street.

    Love, Jamie Herzlinger

  53. As a yoga teacher whose first classes of the year were packed yesterday (thank you new years resolutions), I have to say that I love Alex’s new years enthusiasm :)

  54. Joanna! Congrats on deciding to tackle your subway phobia. I too am resolving to work on my elevator phobia (which I know you wrote about before as well! Those darn small spaces!) I would love to see your progress and to know what you do that helps! I’m going to try hypnotherapy- heard it’s effective for inexplicable phobias. Anyone else out there have suggestions? I’m going to be writing about it on my blog, too, and it makes it so much easier when there are people out there that are in the same boat (or elevator, or subway…) Good luck, Joanna!

  55. Emily from Cupcakes and Cashmere has a great tutorial on how to blow dry your hair. I have started doing it ever since I learned! I also have a few of my own resolutions on my blog. Have a great year Joanna. Continue to be an inspiration to many beautiful women like yourself!

    my crisp white sheets

  56. Emily from Cupcakes and Cashmere has a great tutorial on how to blow dry your hair. I have started doing it ever since I learned! I also have a few of my own resolutions on my blog. Have a great year Joanna. Continue to be an inspiration to many beautiful women like yourself!

    my crisp white sheets

  57. From an (amost) ex-nailbiter, when it dawned on me, despite rigorous handwashing, that my recurrent sore throats were from biting nails I stopped. Since then, NO sore throats and it has been 4-6 months. The thought was gross enough to repel me to stop. I tried an acrid nail polish years ago but if you are as determined as I was to bite…

    Love Alex’s resolution!

    Skipping is my new years resolution. And after a year of renovations (2012) we are taking it easy this year.

  58. Writing letters to family and friends is definitely at the top of my list…along with going to the gym five days a week, taking art classes and learning to take better photos with my dslr.

  59. I work for an amazing company and I think that our Power of Intentions goes along with New Year resolutions beautifully. I’m incredibly inspired by it and I’d love to share it with you:

    Where we start is irrelevant. It’s who we are becoming that truly matters:

  60. Writing to my Grandmother is a resolution which i liked most.I also did the same

  61. Alex rocks! If he was in the lotus position while saying it though – then it’s a big fail!!!!! Let me know how you get on the nail biting front – I’m a notorious picker – and every year say this is the year! Maybe 2013 can be the winner for us both?

  62. KT says...

    I’m with Johanna above: please share tricks for blow drying, once you have them. I have yet to master blow drying my hair–and have very little patience for it, which may be part of the problem.

  63. LOVE new years resolutions! i bite my nails too, something that has helped me is getting gel nails every two weeks … they are too thick and pretty to bite.

  64. When you learn how to blow- dry please share!!! I have been trying for at least a year and it is really so difficult and frustrating! There must be a trick!

  65. I’m stealing one of your resolutions but modifying it for me – to spend more time on my hair. In the summer I learned that I can have “bed head” by using a curling serum on my wet hair and letting it dry naturally. I’ve been so lazy lately that my hair has stayed this way. It’s great for busy mornings but not suitable for the conservative office I work at. So I will devote more time to my hair – YAY!

  66. Go to Asheville for a restorative yoga weekend (maybe go out of the country! perhaps in 2014) and do Camel without feeling like I’m going to pass out.

  67. I want to try to do a little bit of yoga every day–even a 5 minute YouTube video or child’s pose for a couple of minutes counts. And I want to pass my PhD language exams, which means starting from scratch to learn French and revisiting my Spanish.

  68. Welcome back and Happy New Year!
    I will try to go to my Zumba class every week and even twice if I can!
    Good luck for the joke resolution!

  69. Go to Asheville for a restorative yoga weekend (maybe go out of the country! perhaps in 2014) and do Camel without feeling like I’m going to pass out.

  70. I love the blow-out idea! I’d love to learn that as well!

  71. I still nibble on my nails when I get nervous sometimes. It’s a hard habit to break good luck! This year I am going to GO EASY ON MYSELF. This means I will cut myself some slack when the house is a mess, dinner isn’t ready and the baby is running around like a maniac. I will sit back and TRY to enjoy the chaos instead of trying to tackle everything at once.

    MERRY 2013

  72. LK says...

    I always say I will stop biting my nails but I’ve never had success, so I just ordered that nail polish. I have tried literally everything so hopefully this works. I think I just want to be better all around. Eat a little healthier every day, take the dog for more walks, organize my new home, stay on top of things at work. Just a little but at a time but I think I’ll see a huge improvement in myself.

  73. K says...

    My goal is to try something new–join a club, take a class, something like that, though not sure what yet. I’m craving a change! Unrelated–I’m wondering how you live in NYC and avoid the subway. Doesn’t it cost a ton and take you forever to get anywhere? It seems like it would be impossible!

  74. I’ve got goals to really hone my craft this year (writing) and make lots and lots of headway on positioning myself as an expert in the content creation field.

    A lot of marketing mumbo-jumbo! But basically, I’m kicking asses and taking names on making my career dreams come true! No more dead end job crap.

  75. great.totally achievable.think Alex’ s is the best.I also want to write more letters and …run a marathon,as well as do more on working week nights

  76. Hey, Jo! Glad you’re back! Love Alex’s resolution… seems very familiar to my brand of resolutions :)

    I’m switching careers and planning my wedding, so I decided that instead of making any sweeping declarations, I would set up little goals for myself monthly in the hopes of making them habitual. For January, my four goals are: make the bed every morning, start each day with an intention, avoid reading/watching the daily news (it inevitably makes me upset), and create a calming bedtime routine.

    When those things become a habit after a month or so, I’ll move on to new ones! I’m all about the baby steps.

  77. Since weve moved across the country, away from all of our family and friends, one of my goals was to keep in touch with regular correspondance as well. It seems so mucb better than wall posts on facebook and more personal. :)

  78. So agreed on the joking part… unfortunately women are not so good at it. :)

  79. Just jumped over to amazon and bought the product…this is my year to look like a grown-ass woman!

  80. I bit my nails for 18 years, and none of the spicy/yucky stuff to put on them ever helped. I just finally looked at my nails one day two years ago and was so disgusted by them, that I stopped (but it was still SO hard!). Something that always helped me every time I was tempted to bite was just thinking about all the things I touched during the day (railings on stairs or escalators, doorknobs, public transportation), and how those germs were getting into my mouth. Also, carry a nail file with you to take care of hangnails so you aren’t tempted to bite them off.

  81. Margaux – About this time last year, I found a lump in ol’ righty. It ended up being nothing, but I had to get a biopsy and everything. Oh, and I was still in my 20’s. O_O

    Joanna, how do you live in NYC and not take the subway?! Cabs? Seems so pricey (and slow)!

    I’m not one for making resolutions. I really want to get my shit together, so does that count? You know, like, be an adult: have decent savings so that having to buy a new tire doesn’t reduce me to tears, know what’s going on at work, keep up with laundry. That last one is definitely the scariest.

    • Oh, and I still need to finish last years: Cook just one meal a month. So hard for a girl that lives alone!

  82. oh thx God i am not biting my nails but i agree on that learn a cool joke to learn and share:)
    my plans more blogging
    more crocheting
    more reading
    more and more year for me!

  83. 1. complete monthly breast self-exams. i’m woefully delinquent at this considering my family history.

    2. keep a daily gratitude list. i always feel so much more content about my life when i do this on a regular basis.

    3. write (at least) 1 sentence a day about my daughter.

    4. dress up more. wear the red lipstick. the heels. i always feel and behave better when i do.

    5. sign up for a weekly dance class. dancing is one of the few activities which brings me pure joy.

  84. They are fun, your resolutions! I love the one where you say you want to write regular letters to your grandmother. I also live far away from my grandparents( in Denmark) and also write letters the old fashion way from time to time. I also wrote an article about my resolutions, one of them is to read 1 book per week or every 2 weeks.Hope I can keep up with the challenge! Happy New Year!xo

  85. Sally Hansen Nail Growth miracle was the key for me to kick my lifelong nail biting habit! Crossed off a few majors in 2012:
    Coming into the city this weekend & loving your ideas in your city guide! Any further info on those massage spots? Particular location you know is good?

  86. Love these! I have a few – make my bed every day (why do I spend so much on pillows and never arrange them properly), start wearing LOTION – I’m really bad about it. Read 13 books in the new year, and get back into my normal workout routine. Heavy load! =|

    Happy New Year!

  87. My New Years resolution started out as a bad joke. In 2005 my NY resolution was to not get pregnant (my daughter was born in 2004 when I was 18). So every year since then, its been a bad running joke. However, this year, my resolution is the exact opposite. To be healthy and happy and get pregnant. Maybe not a real resolution but Im excited about the chance to have a baby with my husband.

  88. Happy New Year! Stopping biting your nails is one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done and still struggle with every day(not to sound too dramatic). The icky tasting polish helps at first and now (it’s been like 5 years) I must keep my nails painted at all times to deter myself from taking a nibble. At least I always have fresh polish and neat hands! Good luck!

  89. PS I’m with you on the subway though – that thing is a disaster waiting to happen (I avoid the Tube as much as possible.)

  90. Just wrote a post about this! Mine are to throw a favorite things party, read all the books I received at Christmas, save money for a summer cruise, and learn how to meal-plan. I’m doing a 2013 Bucket List Challenge where bloggers post their resolutions and do follow-up posts. Here’s the link:

  91. The only way to stop biting your nails is to have manicures in bright colours (and deal with the fact it looks ridiculous on bitten nails.) I’ve just stopped after 36 years and it’s nearly been 6 months now -I’m also have those long last shellac or gel manicures which last for two weeks. That horrible nail stuff doesn’t do the trick.

  92. I’m with you Joanna on the hair blow outs. I wish I had the patience to do my hair every morning. My backup is always the “natural” look/wavy hair.

    My INTENTION for this year is to: work with more clients who are wanting to take charge of their health.
    I also intend to eat more at Breakfast and Lunch than supper.

    Holistic Health Coach

  93. In 2013, I want to master the art of whole foods, plant-based cooking (more on that here…

    I’ve been eating vegan for over a year and half, but have consistently relied on packaged or processed foods to “assemble” dinner. This year, I’m going to learn to love cooking fresh, whole foods that are nourishing and delicious!

    • thumbs up to that! i made the switch during 2012 and it was hard at first but then i found myself getting so into the preparation and cooking process. good for you!

  94. Oh.. I love the blow out resolution! I’m actually starting a hair journal project because I’m convinced I wore my hair in a bun nearly everyday last year. Some of my other resolutions are to put together a panel on design issues with homeless housing and develop an intern program in my office.

    Happy New Year!

  95. I stopped biting my nails two or so years ago– I saw someone biting their nails and I had this moment of revulsion regarding the behavior. I got some cuticle creams, even Chap Stick, and every time I felt nervous/wanted to bite my nails, I applied that stuff. I replaced one behavior with another :) In a couple of months: great cuticles (nice smelling hands too), healthy nails, and the ability to get manicures!

    I like easy resolutions: Last year I vowed never to turn down coffee. This year: seeking out all different kinds of fruit.

    • Allison – thanks for sharing that book! i’ve been working through anxiety over the past couple years after it creeped up on me unexpectedly after an incident and then continued to unravel other areas of my life as i went through therapy. i’m absolutely going to check this book out. often, reading about stress/anxiety/fear makes me more stressed out but i think i could really benefit from some concrete materials outside of therapy.

      thanks again!

    • You’re welcome! I read another book “When Panic Attacks” that I also felt like just increased my anxiety… Dr Liebgold’s book has some light humor, and a few concrete steps that you can take and I found them immediately helpful.

  96. My boyfriend is trying to learn how to be a great story teller and a good joke teller! Practice makes perfect! My resolutions resolve around “Less is more” and working on my confidence! =)

    Happy New Year!

    Ergo – Blog

  97. Oh these are good ones Joanna! Can you keep us informed on your blow-out progress? I’d love to learn how to do that as well.

  98. since i was a little girl i’ve had a habit of biting my nails and picking at the skin around my nail-beds. of course, it coincides with my current stress and anxiety level. i swear, there are so many times i don’t even realize i’m doing it. i’ve used a similar product before and it actually did stop me for a time. i’m my best behaved with my hands when i’ve got my nails done – usually a professional manicure that i don’t want to screw up.

    as for me, instead of resolutions i’m working on continuing and strengthening healthy lifestyle focuses (for me at least) that i started in 2012. i’ve found that i’m happiest when these are a focus and priority in my daily life. instead of weight loss or lofty career goals, i’m centering my focuses around the factors that contribute to my happiness and health.

    – eat clean, vegan, gluten-free (the magic combo that has solved health problems that mysteriously popped up in my twenties)
    – daily movement – anything goes: a walk, yoga, pilates
    – dedicated time to quieting my mind to balance anxiety that i’ve been dealing with for a few years after witnessing two suicides in 2012
    – progress on overcoming body issues i’ve had since childhood.

  99. I created a list of 100 things I would like to do this year. And made some resolutions as to what I want to attive this year with my business.

    Happy New Year Joanna, Alex & Toby!


  100. I haven’t totally composed mine yet (I blame it on my nasty cold I picked up in Minnesota), but I really want to stay in touch more with friends & family. I was thinking about your 15-minute phone call idea!!

  101. have you tried gels? it’s pretty darn hard to bite when you have a solid rock for a nail :)

  102. I have two resolutions this year. The first is to cut back on the unhealthy relationships in my life, the past year has been a bit crazy because of them. The second is to practice more yoga.

  103. I hope for Alex’s sake that he tries out the yoga…I think he will adore it. I spent years saying I was going to start and once I did I regret not having began earlier! Makes my body feel really great.

  104. – In bed by 10 p.m. on weeknights
    – Out of the house by 7:50 a.m. on weekdays
    – Ride my bike to work once a week minimum
    – Lift weights once a week
    – Meditate at least twice a week
    – Pay attention to posture
    – Take advantage of cultural opportunities in the city — at least one a month

    Good luck to you!

  105. more letter-writing is definitely on my list too. I am feeling inspired by the site Letters of Note! Also to be more conscious of what I make room for in my life. Choosing people, experiences and activities that inspire and fulfill me and limit those that wear me down.

  106. Joanna I overcame nail biting by cutting my nails myself as often as possible, or whenever I’m home and feels like iv got something on my mind a.k.a. urge to bite/pick.
    I find that short trimmed nails and cuticles are not very inviting to the bite. And getting a manicure means that I don’t get in on the nail fun. So innitially I had extreamly short nails for a constant one year but that was a great far cry from chippy,unkempt nails. But lately iv been letting them grow out gracefully and it looks neat(still don’t feel the need fr a real mani) and the minute I feel the urge to pick/break/bite/fidget with them—if I’m out I remind my self of the dirt prob collected on them so won’t bring them near my mouth…or if I’m home I get out a bowl of warm water and divert my mind with my very own home mani ritual!

  107. No resolutions, but a few goals and big dreams for the new year.

    I’d like to start exercise though, but I’ve said that for a few years, so we’ll see… ;)

  108. That nail stuff works! As a kid, I used to just suffer through the terrible taste but, as an adult it really helps as a reminder to get your hands out of your mouth. Another good mind trick is to think about all the dirty things you touch all day — stair rails, subway poles, your cellphone, doorknobs, whatever happened to fall to the bottom of your bag you dig through! I mean, you would never lick a subway seat so you probably dont want to put your hands in your mouth after touching one.

    – throw away less food
    – learn at least one song on the guitar by spring
    – print and frames photos (instead of just iPhone viewing)
    – entertain friends in my home, even though it is small…

  109. welcome back!
    Hope you had great holidays!
    We missed you a lot!

  110. Great ideas. I think I am going to add a veg or fruit to every meal and read more. Read books I want to read. Do yoga three times a week. And knit a hat.

  111. My resolution last year was to stop biting my nails and I did it! I love getting manicures every week and switching up the colors.

    This year’s resolution is to walk at least 10,000 steps every day…maybe even 20,000.

  112. Regular manicures broke the habit for me! I’m a pro at painting my nails on my right hand now.

  113. A blow out is on my list too. I just returned from a trip to Vegas where I pampered and got the best highlights and blow out at Aria Salon and Spa (thanks Lisa and Lori!) They shared a few tips and I hope it works!

    Like Alex I rollover resolutions that I haven’t embraced yet. It took me three years but I finally incorporated “soup Sundays” into our chilly Minnesota months this year. Mmmm…

    More sleep is on my list this year. The older I get the more I’ve discovered that at least 6-8 hours/night is about as important as the amount of water I drink each day…for heart, skin, mind and spirit!

    Happy New Year Jo!

  114. -travel more
    -drink more water
    -find a new job (that suits me, rather than just bring home a paycheck)
    -and to kick my fear of driving on highways

  115. my resolutions for this year are to start a sunday night supper tradition and to start learning portuguese. good luck with yours!

  116. I’m not one to only make resolutions just because it is January of a New Year….but I like the idea of refreshing myself and after the indulgence of the holiday season it seems to be the natural next thing to do. So, this year I am putting more effort into being a better wife/partner. More flirting! More dates! More s-e-x! More love.

  117. I know about that nail product. When my mum was younger her brother used to always play tricks on her. Since she sucked her thumb in her sleep, one night he crept into her room, took out her thumb, painted that stuff on and put it back in her mouth!! How awful! But she got him back by creeping in while he was sleeping and pouring the bottle into his mouth!

    • Love this – but had a huge lol while drinking tea was a tad bad for the laptop that got strayed with english breakfast! You’ve started my day with a huge smile at the thought of the revenge back firing.

  118. My sister gets a manicure every other week and gets painted with gel color. it helps her so much! My new years resolution is to be more thankful and to grow something! even if it’s just a tomato plant!

  119. Great ones! Mine are to stop saying negative things about my appearance “I’m so fat today” etc, to send more notes/cards to friends in the mail, to read every night instead of watch tv before bed, and to cook one new recipe a week from all of the cookbooks I have and rarely use!

  120. My resolution is to learn how to pop a wheelie on my bike :)

  121. Nice you’re back! :) I have some recurrent resolutions like try to eat as healthy as possible, hit the gym 3 times a week, read more and watch more movies…My new one is to improve my German. :D

    Do you plan to post about your Xmas break? I love your travelling posts! Best wishes for you and your family in 2013.


  122. Sally Hansen makes a version of that nail bite stuff that i’ve known several friends to use to quit biting! my problem is i pick rather than bite … bitter taste doesn’t help with that!

  123. That is the exact product that I used to quit biting my nails last year! It really works. I would also recommend regular manicures, because it’s harder to bite when your nails look great. I still find myself going to bite sometimes, but now I can control the urge. My resolutions are to learn to sew and to find a new workout I love!