10 Small Steps Towards Your “New” You

New habits stick through small, attainable steps. Use resources from our online databases in small ways for your self-improvement and exploration endeavors. We offer many online resources from classes to movies to recipes, and so much more. New year, new you, new favorite online tool.

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1. Explore New Music 

New music can be more pleasurable than listening to your old favorite tunes, according to psychology professor Thalia Weatley. Hearing new music creates new neurological pathways in the brain that illicit more intense pleasure responses than listening to music with which you’re already familiar. You can use Alexander Street Press to discover new music and browse over 900,000 audio recordings of America’s musical past. It also offers curated playlists like this one celebrating female conductors.

2. Get Active

Exercising more does not have to be intimidating. Finding the exercise style that suits your stamina will encourage you to exercise more frequently. Take a class with GetSetUp to find a new way to exercise. GetSetUp offers different types of live virtual exercise classes, from tai chi to cardio.

3. Keep Informed

The most compelling news stories involve images that remain with us beyond the article. The AP Newsroom offers the AP Week in Pictures. The weekly round-up covers national and international news. Explore the world and become a more informed global citizen by reviewing their captivating photojournalism.

4. Travel Without Hassle

Explore other parts of the United States without leaving your home through food and puzzles. AtoZ the USA spotlights each state and describes its geography, culture and history. You can skip the flight but still visit Arizona’s mild winter. Get a taste for Arizona’s green corn tamales by cooking the recipe provided or learn about the state by completing a crossword. 

5. Sing Out

Belting out in the shower or the car is not only fun but also good for you. Singing can relieve stress, boost your immune system and improve your lung function. Improve your singing skills by streaming an episode of The Great Courses: How to Sing on Kanopy, a video-streaming service that has feature films, documentaries and educational content.

6. Develop Digital Literacy Skills

Studies show that digital literacy skills can protect you against cybercrime and phishing. Improve your digital literacy skills through DigitalLearn. DigitalLearn offers online classes on a variety of topics. Some spotlight software like navigating using GoogleMaps while others focus on how to safeguard your internet privacy.

7. Calm Down

Meditation training has been linked to reduced fatigue, alleviated anxiety and increased mindfulness. Gale Courses offers an online certificate in meditation. Through the course, you’ll learn about meditation’s health benefits, the different types, as well as the religious history behind the practice. Gale Courses also offers other courses ranging from soft to hard skills training. 

8. Get Creative

Crafting has a calming effect on the mind that is similar to meditation. Relax, celebrate winter and stay warm through these crafts from the Hobbies & Crafts Reference Center. Aggregated from leading hobby and crafting publications, the resource center provides crafting inspiration for a range of skill levels. Challenge your knitting skills with this knitted snow plow pattern or offer gratitude for holiday gifts with a winter-themed "Thank You" card craft.

9. Speak Up

Find new ways to express yourself in a different language through Mango Languages. Mango offers interactive lessons in Levantine Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, and Latin American Spanish. Each lesson introduces you to grammar concepts and provides vocabulary lists focused on daily use.

10. Cash Out

Decluttering offers many stress-relieving benefits. An organized bookshelf will soothe you once you survey your hard work after determining which items you can part with. As you declutter your home, turn your trash into someone else’s treasure. Gale Courses' How to Buy and Sell on eBay will provide you will the skills needed to become an online shopkeeper. Not only will you be as calm as a cucumber, but you will also be on your way to making money.