Here’s 20 Things To Do In 2020

It’s a new decade and I think it’s going to be a decade that will be all about empowering the individual. And I say, it’s about time.

Predictions say that this decade, we’ll get back to focusing on the needs of individuals and families — you know, we the people — the people who pay all the bills to keep this country running. Here’s twenty things you can do to empower yourself and live a better life in this decade:

1. Get rid of cable. It’s no longer necessary to spend $200 a month on television anymore. (Remember when it used to be free?) Buy yourself a Roku for $29 and hook it up to your TV. Then decide which channels you want to subscribe to. I recommend YouTube TV ($49 a month) which gives you live television with all of your local and cable channels, and a host of others. This is called internet TV or streaming, and once you get the hang of it, you’ll never go back. YouTube TV allows up to six accounts for that $49, so split it with your neighbor or your children. Make sure you download YouTube TV and not just YouTube.

2. Stop going to the movies (if you haven’t already) until Hollywood makes films that value our intelligence and recognize our desire for movies with meaning. I don’t care if I see a man in a cape for the rest of my life. Start watching and appreciating old movies on your new Roku streaming device.

3. Read. Two really great books on history have recently been released and they’re not dry history books; they’re riveting. One is about the Alamo and the other is about homo sapiens. Join a book club. Or vow to read a book a month.

4. Take control of your peanut allergy. A new drug called Palforzia won’t eliminate the allergy altogether, but it will train people’s immune systems to help avoid serious reactions to accidental exposures.

5. Take that trip now. Trendsetters say there is going to be a lot of guilt put on consumers for flying on airplanes in the future. “Green pressure” will become a thing throughout the next decade. Also, hotels are forecasted to be cheaper this year due to a softening in the industry. Look for deals.

6. Take an online class just for the heck of it. Browse free online courses in a variety of subjects at Harvard University by visiting their website. Get a free Harvard education.

7. Rest is the new thing. Everyone’s talking about mental and physical well-being. Rest when you need to. Prioritize it.

8. By now the demonstrated effects of exercise — even just walking — are indisputable.

9. Hobbies! Our brains need food. Hobbies are like candy for our brains.

10. Get up 15 minutes earlier. Even if it only gives you time for a cup of coffee, it’s worth it.

11. Check in with your boss. New state and federal employment laws went into effect on Jan. 1. By raising the standard salary level from $455 to $684 a week, this rule will make all employees who earn less than $35,568 annually eligible for overtime pay of at least time-and-a-half under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

12. Free workouts online. The NHS website has a virtual fitness studio with a range of free workouts ranging from 10-45 minutes, across aerobics, strength training, pilates, dance and more. Can’t afford the gym this year? No worries!

13. OK, you know you need to eat more veggies. Try harder. They’re good for you.

14. Head to the attic and find your old clothes because the 1970s are making a comeback in fashion in 2020. And we’re talking wide lapels, double-breasted styles, and flared hemlines. Oh, and bell-bottom pants will be coming back, too.

15. We may not be able to fight the future, but for now, buy a hardcopy of your local newspaper, shop at real stores and go to local restaurants. We keep our neighbors employed this way.

16. Clean your cellphone. The New York Times just announced our cell phones are 10 times dirtier than a toilet seat.

17. It might sound trivial, but outer order contributes to inner calm so happiness can be as simple as a clean kitchen bench or a decluttered shelf.

18. Helping others may seem like a circular way of boosting your happiness, but even small gestures, like carrying someone’s groceries to the car or checking in on a neighbor, releases oxytocin in the giver and receiver. It’s a win-win for everyone.

19. Cook one new thing each week.

20. Be nice to yourself. People spend so little time cultivating their own happiness and doing nice things for themselves. Take a bath, treat yourself to lunch, go fishing, reconnect with an old friend.