Plan now and create your best year yet!

University of Leeds
5 min readDec 17, 2020


2024 - a new year! The year ahead is still full of promise and hope, and yet we know we need to be patient.

New Year Resolutions already long forgotten and failed? Don’t worry! There are a number of things we can all do right now to change our lives, develop ourselves as people, and make us the best version of ourselves.

Look after your body

The last few years have shown us the importance of health — and devoting time to being healthy is never wasted. At this time of year, there’s always a huge push for increased fitness and yet by February, many of the best intentions are long forgotten. Here are some practical (and real) tips to get you going

  1. Find something you actually like doing. This could be the gym or online class, but it could also be finding a club to join. Many have ‘give it a go’ (GIAG) sessions (look for them on LUU’s What’s On website), so why not try a few different ones?
  2. Cycling is a great way to get fit, and also get outside. If you don’t have your own bike, check out the Bike Hub on campus, where you can hire bikes, fix yours and get advice and tips.
  3. Get out, Get active is a great way to meet people and get moving.
  4. Walking has been proven to be one of the best ways of looking after your body — and the city has so much to offer. Here’s our guide to getting outside in Leeds
  5. If you’re fed up with your cooking and feel like 2024 is the year you’ll add more to your repertoire than your go-to favourite — “mushy peas on crumpets”, Great Food at Leeds often have recipes and cooking demonstrations available to attend in person and online.
Get out, get active! Make a plan to get outside and walk, run or cycle. (Gledhow Valley woods lake, Leeds)

Look after your mind

There are a number of things that you can do which are worth actually planning into your daily routine, which can make a big difference to your mental health. Often, it’s the planning that makes it happen — get things actually put in your calendar.

Sometimes, the small things can make a big difference — a walk before breakfast, setting time aside to do something for you or making time to talk to friends and family. It’s easy to forget about these things when you’re busy, but if they’re in your daily plan, then get it done.

There’s a lot of University support and wellbeing available, and in Leeds too.

Without planning, it’s easy to drop things like a daily walk, or a phone call to friends and family. Make sure that it is in your planner.


If there’s one thing on this page that the future you will thank you for, it’s giving your time as a volunteer. We’ve tried really hard to narrow down our list of why it’s an amazing thing to do to just four— so here goes…

  • It’s a highly rewarding and enjoyable experience which gives back to the local community.
  • It offers you a chance to help support a cause you feel passionate about.
  • It can enrich your time here in Leeds and connect you to projects, places and people in the Leeds area which whom you wouldn’t otherwise come into contact.
  • It offers you a chance to find out what you’d like to do as a career, or if you already know you’re career path, help to give you the skills and experience to give you a head start.

Here are some useful links to get you started.

Meet new people and try different things

All of us have had to be creative in the last years when it came to meeting new people and trying different things. One of the benefits of joining a club or society is that immediately you’ve got something in common. LUU has designed a Find your Fit website, which tells you which is the club best suited to you after you answer a few questions.

You can also find the best match on their clubs and societies' webpage, or if you don’t see the thing for you, you could even start your own!

Learn new skills or subjects

Improve your employability skills with your free LinkedIn Learning account. Discover over 15,000 courses anytime, anywhere and learn on the go with the LinkedIn Learning app, available for your phone or tablet from Google Play or the Apple Store.

You could also learn a language as part of your degree through our Languages for All programme. You can also access support and resources at the Language Zone.


The conversation regarding our planet is getting louder, and 2023 is the year when you could make your biggest difference yet. Sustainability at the Uni is everywhere — have a look at how you can get involved.

Did you know the cooling pond at the Roger Stevens building is part of the Living Lab.

Ever thought about being a rep?

Maybe you were interested but didn’t do anything for a variety of reasons. Why not have another look? Whether it’s school, course or LUU reps, there’s a surprisingly large number of different ways you can be a representative, speak on behalf of others and get involved in making things better for everyone.

Attend Leeds University Union events

Sometimes a new hobby or interest can come from the most unlikely thing, can’t it? A conversation with someone, following recommended links on a website or something on the news. If you’re looking to switch things up a bit in the new year, then Leeds University Union (LUU) put on lots of events. Here’s where to sign up for something that might change your life (or at least be an entertaining hour or so).

Leeds University Union, home of over 300 clubs and societies. Which will you try next?

A final word from us — a huge list of resolutions for the new year rarely works, and can make you feel like you’ve failed a few weeks into January. So always be kind to yourself. This isn’t setting yourself up to fail. It’s about having a plan, something that can change and adapt to your circumstances.

Find one or two things that inspire and motivate you, and work at them. And in the end, this is your personal development — don’t ever compare yourself to anyone else!