New Year’s Resolutions: How’s it Going?

January 8, 2014    |    By +
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Whew—we made it! 2013, done and dusted. 2014: beautiful blank slate. I always make a New Year’s resolution (or three. Why stop at one?). But I’ve wondered whether they really work—so I asked clinical psychologist John Norcross, author of Changeology: 5 Steps to Realizing Your Goals and Resolutions. Norcross, who has been studying the science of New Year’s resolutions for decades, told me that we resolution-makers are the right track: research shows that just the act of making a New Year’s resolution makes you “ten times more likely to change” than someone who has the same goals but doesn’t take that extra step. Support is also important to making it across the finish line, says Norcross. Here at, we’re cheering you on, so here are resolve-bolstering gifts for five of this year’s most popular resolutions.

Get fit.

Monitoring your progress makes success much more likely, says Norcross—but keeping track can also be time-consuming. Enter the FitBit Zip Wireless Activity Tracker ($59.99), which records every stair climbed, mile walked and calorie burned. If you already have a good habit, like yoga, make it even more fun with the right gear. A RedEnvelope professional style yoga mat ($69.95) keeps you comfortable until the last om.












Eat right.

With juice cleanses abounding and juice bars springing up on every corner, I’m sure somebody has declared 2013 the Year of Juicing. Bring all that virtuous deliciousness into your own kitchen with the Breville Juice Fountain Plus ($149.95). And even a confirmed omnivore like me should make space for something like The Complete Vegan Cookbook ($15.34), which contains 200 excellent recipe ideas created for beginners, on her shelf.







Be smarter with money.

Remind yourself to think harder about your asset portfolio—or just to save your pennies—with Kikkerland’s Brain Bank ($14.20). Bonus: it’ll also make you smile, and smiling is good for your health (see Resolutions 1 and 2).




brain-bankGet organized.

Organizing my home workspace is my biggest challenge, so when I saw the I Could’ve Been A Geometric Wall Organizer ($49.00), which gets all those little doodads off your desktop, my heart soared. Something else I needed as soon as I laid eyes on it: the Cordito Cord Wrap ($39.95), which tucks away the electronic tangle of portabilia that follows me everywhere into a simple, artisanal leather roll.



Travel more.

A good bag—one that holds all our stuff, stays in one piece and never lets us down—is a traveler’s best friend. Here’s a great candidate from RedEnvelope: a sturdy  leather weekender with a distinctive racing stripe. And not all of us can become platinum fliers, but a personalized passport cover ($29) in a custom color can help you feel like one.













Visit for more health and fitness gifts, great new cookbooks, travel gear and gifts for any occasion.

Lavonne Leong lives with her husband and daughters in Honolulu, where she writes about arts, education, science, families, and yes, shopping. She’s the editor-at-large for San Francisco-based Red Bridge Press, and her first children’s book, Up in the Hawaiian Sky, was published in 2013. This year, she resolves to clear her desk and her inbox, and to spend less on caffeinated drinks.


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Kathryn D.W.
Kathryn Drury Wagner is the senior manager of content at She was formerly the executive editor at Honolulu Magazine, and is the author of The Ultimate Guide to Shopping on Oahu. Her career has included staff positions at Country Living Gardener and Power & Motoryacht. Her latest book is "Hawaii's Strangest, Ickiest, Wildest Book Ever!"

Gwen P.
Gwen is the Editorial Curator at In addition to writing blogs, she creates gift guides, curates the site, and produces content for our social media channels. As a freelance writer, she created blogs on fashion, art, travel, health and lifestyle. A talented jewelry designer, she's also a yogi and a hospital volunteer with her therapy dog, Lilo, a Pomeranian.