Year after year, the most common New Year’s resolutions are:
❏ Enjoy life to the fullest
❏ Lose weight
❏ Spend more time with family and friends
If you’re a scuba diver, go ahead and check all those boxes. Diving by its very nature helps you be more active, spend time with others, and enjoy everything this blue planet has to offer.
So let’s chat a bit about New Year’s resolutions for scuba divers and how to stick to them. Here are some ideas:
Get your dive equipment serviced, and replace gear that’s worn out.
If your regs haven’t been serviced in a few years – that’s not good. Don’t put off something that’s important to your health and safety. Contact your local PADI dive shop straightaway.
If you’ve not been diving because of old gear, it’s time to invest in your own comfort. Maybe you’ve been freezing your nudibranchs off in an old wetsuit – get a new one! Wetsuits compress over time and lose their ability to insulate you properly. You’ll be much happier with new gear.
Become an underwater ambassador.
The ocean needs people to speak up on its behalf. Spread the gospel of Neptune, and have fun doing it:
- Research opportunities to do a presentation about diving at your child’s school or to a local outdoor photography club.
- Volunteer at a local aquarium.
- Encourage a friend to try scuba diving. Many dive shops offer a Discover Scuba pool experience.
- Host a movie night and show the PADI® Open Water video. Just kidding. Here’s a list of films that featuring scuba diving.
- Participate in a Project AWARE event near you, or use crowd-funding tools to raise money for Project AWARE® in conjunction with an athletic event.
Learn a scuba trick, or try a new type of diving.
Remember the first time you saw someone hovering mid-water like a genie? That could be you! The Peak Performance Buoyancy specialty can help.
Your local PADI Dive Shop can help you improve your skills and guide you in new diving adventures. Some popular options include:
- Diving with a full face mask
- Sidemount diving
- Getting better at identifying fish
- Taking a refresher course
- Improving air consumption
- Learning to shoot underwater photos or video
If you’re already a photographer or videographer: find a contest to enter and challenge yourself. Knowing your work will be evaluated by professionals will motivate you to up your game.
Try a new dive site, or make a dive travel bucket list.
Make a dive travel bucket list and resolve to use all of your annual leave this year – and next year. Get a scratch-off world map and hang it somewhere prominent to remind you of your goal.
How to Keep Your New Year’s Resolution
Making your resolution…that’s kind of the easy part. Sticking to it is the real challenge. Here are a few suggestions:
Don’t make too many resolutions: it’s easy to make a diving bucket list as long as your regulator hose. Start with no more than three so you can feel a sense of accomplishment by checking them all off.
Consider choosing resolutions that go together. For example:
- Learn to hover like a genie
- Try drift diving
- Visit Cozumel, Mexico
Make realistic goals: if you don’t have a lot of diving experience, The White Sea may not be the best choice for your first international scuba adventure. Similarly, earning your deep diver (or even tec) certification should precede a trip to Truk Lagoon.
Track progress and create a challenge: finding time to do the things you want can be a challenge – even if they’re things you really love. One in four people fail at their resolution every year, and half report “infrequent success” year after year. Here’s a scientifically-proven way to prevent failure:
Think of something you really don’t want to do, a disincentive for not sticking to your resolution. This could be a chore like having to haul all the tanks for a weekend, kiss a cod, or let the Divemaster play a prank on you. The important thing is to choose a penalty that’s quite unpleasant, but not dangerous.
If you’re still unsure about what New Year’s Resolution to make, ask the community of divers on PADI’s Facebook page. Whatever you resolve to do, we wish you the best of luck in achieving your goal.