This New Year's season, I know many of you will be making New Year's resolutions, whether mentally or on paper. I dare you to add these to your list.

If you already do all of them, right on. If not, it's something we can work on together. These are things that should be tried at least once this coming year.

1. Smile or at least make eye contact with people you pass on the street.

Have you ever sat in a car, looked out at the roads and realized that in every car is a different person with their own lives, and you have no idea who those people are? Well, I have. And it's kind of crazy to think about. But passing people on the street is the same way, except that you can pass on a friendly smile to them, and you never know, maybe they need it.

2. Ask that person whose name you forgot what their name is

I'm sure they've forgotten someone's name before, too! Don't worry.

3. Give to a homeless person

Even $2 or a turkey sandwich may be what they need for a day. If you're worried about what they'll do with your money, it's not really up to you to figure it out. If you're one of the many who thinks that an individual doesn't describe a group, then it should apply to this situation as well.

4. Volunteer somewhere that you weren't required to volunteer

The people you're helping will surely appreciate it.

5. Look at yourself in the mirror and say out loud, "I'm human, and I'm hot."

Or beautiful. Or sexy.

So much pressure is placed on our appearance, but if we could all just realize that every life is beautiful, then we could learn to focus on the innards of what make people human; their personality, their humor, their laugh, their intelligence, their selflessness, etc. What a wonderful world that would be.

6. Tell your parents or role model how good they are at their "job" of being a parent or good role model.

It's a stressful thing having to actually worry about someone other than yourself, so letting them know they're good at it will make their day.

7. Learn about another culture

There's no need to keep asking every foreigner questions like they're Wikipedia.

I just wanted to say that, but honestly, I love to share what I know about my culture, and I know other people do too. I was more aiming towards people who are ignorant through lack of information, and make assumptions about people because they think they know all about a certain culture. Learning about other cultures doesn't only mean asking people about daily life and traditions. It's learning the history of cultures and why they have such traditions— things people turn to books or internet for.

8. Admit to being wrong if you are wrong

This helps you become more open to ideas— ideas that could be life changing. In a good way.

9. Keep working on something if you're able to. Don't quit because you feel entitled to a break.

Saturday morning and you're not tired? Work on homework or a hobby you've been pushing off. You'll be happy you didn't waste your time doing something that got you nowhere even though you might've said "I deserve a break." Only take one when you "need a break."

10. Try a new food.

Being open to different foods can actually make you more accepting to other things.

So many people are closed off to certain delicious foods because they "look weird," but what else will people be closed off to and miss out on just because it seems weird?

11. Listen to a politician speak without saying anything until they're done talking

Let's make 2016 the year of listening, understanding, and then responding in all aspects of communication. Politics was just an example. There is so much ignorance in the world now that I think boils down to people being so into their own opinions that they may listen to other people, but don't seek to even understand what those people are saying. It's okay to learn something new and change one's opinions.

12. Read from the dictionary

It's always fun to learn new words.


Happy New Year and may you have a great 2016!