The Digital Peace Now Guide to Keeping Your New Year’s Resolutions in Cyberspace
Even under normal circumstances (any year pre-2020), sticking to a resolution is no easy feat. According to a study by the Journal of Clinical Psychology, only 46% of those that set a New Year’s resolution were actually successful. With much of the world feeling the residual side effects of 2020 and still facing COVID-19-related restrictions, this year will likely be anything but “normal.”
Lucky for us, we are digital citizens. We can always rely on our digital world to help us achieve our goals. To help ring in 2021, here’s our guide to sticking to your New Year’s resolutions from the comfort of our shared digital space—no excuses!
Resolution #1: Exercise more
Solution: The ‘Jerusalema’ challenge
Ready to get lean and mean in 2021? Shake off that weight with the dancing phenomenon known as the Jerusalema challenge. What started with an Angolan dance troupe dancing to DJ Master KG’s “Jerusalema” became a wildly popular viral challenge that circled the globe. With countless Jerusalema Dance Challenge videos online and a catchy-as-hell song, you’ll be on your feet and on your way towards your physical peak in no time.
Notable Figures: Beatrice Mtetwa and Douglas Coltart
Prominent Zimbabwean human rights lawyers who teamed up with their colleagues to have some fun and take on the Jerusalema dance challenge.
Resolution #2: Stick to a diet
Solution: Watch mukbang
Stay-at-home orders had many of us feeling a bit soft around the middle, so it’s no surprise dieting is a popular resolution pick. To make it easier on yourself, instead of watching what food you eat, watch others eat food for you! For those who don’t know, Mukbang is an online eating show that features a host (also known as mukbanger) sitting at a table covered with copious amounts of unique and interesting foods, interacting with the audience while slowly consuming every last morsel. The mukbang trend originated in South Korea in 2010 and gradually spread across the world through online streaming platforms such as Afreeca TV, YouTube, and Twitch. Mukbang proves eating vicariously can be just as satisfying as raiding your refrigerator.
Notable Figure: Min Ga-in (aka Dorothy)
A famous Korean YouTuber best known for eating incredible amounts of Korean food and wildly spicy dishes.
Resolution #3: Get organized
Need to improve those organizational skills but cleaning out your closet seems a little too daunting? Try warming up with wiki-editing! Wikipedia is great, but there are wikis for nearly any special interest you can think of, such as gaming and gardening. Since wikis are online resources that can be publicly edited, many can be cluttered, confusing, or downright incomplete. Help clean up the mess by bringing your expertise online and tidying up your favorite wiki-site.
Notable Figure: Justin Anthony Knapp
The first person to contribute over one million edits to Wikipedia.
Resolution #4: Start a new hobby
Solution: Internet sleuth
Hobbies come in all shapes and sizes. Some involve knitting. Some involve planting. And then some crack unsolved cases. Internet sleuths are people committed to solving crime and finding missing people using the web. Between collecting information about mysteries and collaborating with other Internet sleuths, it won’t take long for this hobby to become a passion. Do these sleuths actually solve cases? See for yourself.
Notable Figure: Deanna Thompson
Featured on the Netflix documentary series “Don’t F**K with Cats: Hunting an Internet Killer,” Denna Thompson is an Internet sleuth that helped track down Canadian killer Luka Magnotta.
Resolution #5: Spend more time with family/friends
Zoom calls are so 2020. Reconnect with your family and friends by setting up your very own group chat in virtual reality. VRChat gives you the chance to hang out in the digital world using your very own lip-synced custom avatar. If your family starts mentioning awkward childhood stories, VRChat offers multiplayer games, like bowling and capture the flag, to help you switch topics. See why we need to protect cyberspace?!
Notable Figure: HeyImBee
A popular Australian streamer that joined VRChat in 2018, known for her use of full body tracking, going on pretend dates, or doing just about anything silly to entertain others.
Resolution #6: Improve mental health
Solution: Marble rallies
With all things considered, it’s a little harder to find moments of joy these days. But who knew you could find them with marbles? Marble rallies are online videos featuring competitive marble racing paired with an exciting announcer and an intense background score. Serving as a lighthearted and engrossing way to create a little mental space, marble racing quickly gained widespread attention. Don’t knock it until you watch it!
Notable Figures: Jelle and Dion Bakker
The Netherlands-based creators of Jelle’s Marble Runs, a well-known YouTube channel featuring marble racing competitions.
Resolution #7: Explore more
Unlock your inner traveler by exploring the secret world of geocaching! Created in 2000, geocaching is an outdoor treasure hunt to find cleverly hidden containers (called geocaches) using GPS-enabled apps. Yes, you can use GPS-enabled devices too. But, as digital citizens, we find geocache-based apps much more effective. Even if you can’t venture too far away from home, geocaches are everywhere (there are roughly 3 million geocaches scattered throughout the world). So, what exactly is in a geocache? Geocaches can contain unique prizes like small toys, a gold ring, a puzzle, and even ancient artifacts! Once you start the hunt, you’ll never look at your neighborhood the same way again.
Notable Figure: Richard Allen Garriott de Cayeux
An American British video game developer and private astronaut that placed a geocache onboard the International Space Station.
Resolution #8: Make a difference
Solution: Digital Peace Now
We saved the best for last. As digital citizens, we care about our shared cyberspace. It is a unique and cherished place for us to connect with others, express ourselves, and improve lives around the world. Unfortunately, not everyone agrees with us. Some believe our digital world is the perfect place to wage war. We cannot allow that to happen. That’s why if you want to make a difference and defend our online community, continue to fight alongside us and demand digital peace. With our combined efforts, we can call on our world leaders to end the deadly tit-for-tat game of cyberwarfare and keep our digital world safe.
Notable Figures: Gurmehar Kaur and Raj Burli
The Digital Peace Now global ambassadors committed to educating people about the dangers of cyberwarfare and galvanizing support for protecting our shared cyberspace.
Happy 2021 everybody!
Have a cyber solution in mind for your New Year’s resolution?
Let us know on Twitter!