New Year Resolutions to Make the World a Better Place

At this time of year, it seems like everything you read is about setting New Year resolutions; how to make them, how to keep them, etc. This article is the same, but different. To me, it doesn’t make much sense to write down a list of ways to improve your life if you don’t care enough to follow through anyway. So I got to wondering, what if we made resolutions that will not only help you but will help make the world a better place? What could be better than that?

So here’s a list of resolutions that are easy to make, easy to keep, and worth their weight in platinum. And, as an added bonus, I’ve already written them down for you!

  1. Put virus checking software on your computer and keep it updated. The majority of virus’s that are being passed around via email are known and can be easily detected and destroyed. They continue to live on because many people don’t do this simple step.
  2. Don’t open email attachments if you’re not expecting them and you don’t know what they are. For those few virus’s that are new to the world, the vast majority are spread through email attachments. If you don’t open these, you’ll decrease your odds of infection dramatically.
  3. Email: To Forward or Not to Forward? Feel free to forward the cute email you receive to all your friends, but keep two things in mind: First, they might actually read it. Second, they might not want it. Generally speaking, I’m in the first camp. I read most of the forwarded emails I receive and I occasionally enjoy them. But I do wonder about what it tells me about the sender. Which leads me to…
  4. Don’t cajole, threaten, or demean. If you choose to forward all of that email, take 30 seconds to remove the part at the bottom that tells me I’ve lost touch with my friends, my nose will fall off, and I’ll be hit by a bus if I don’t immediately forward it to ten other unsuspecting, generally innocent folks.
  5. Get to know Snopes. The Urban Legends Reference Pages are the internet gold standard of debunking myths and urban legends. Barbara Mikkelson spends a great deal of time hunting down the facts behind the majority of the legends that pass through your inbox. So before you continue spreading dubious information, take another minute to find out if it’s true. The Urban Legends pages are the best place to start, but if they haven’t covered your particular email yet then you should try to verify it before you pass it along. Sometimes all this takes is a quick search for the topic of the email on Google.
  6. Buy a shredder. This has nothing to do with the topic and everything to do with protecting your identity. Small personal shredders cost about $20 now, so you’re running out of excuses. Believe me, it’s worth the investment: it can cost thousands of dollars and take years to restore your credit once your identity has been stolen.


  1. AMEN! Especially 3-5.Catt

  2. Speaking of identity. I would add secure your wireless network. Don’t transmit those credit card numbers so everyone can see. You never know when I…Uh I mean someone may be watching!

  3. I’m appalled at the number of people who still don’t use either current anti-virus apps or firewalls. That’s nuts.With respect to email attachemnts, I never open them without confirmation. If it comes from someone I know and trust I still write back asking for confirmation. You never know, it could have been sent out without that person’s knowledge.

  4. You have a beautiful family. sorry to be off topic.. but I didnt think you would mind.

  5. I wholeheartedly agree with you about Snopes. I’ve tried to explain Snopes to most of my friends and family, but have had limited success. I’ve had some family members email things to me to check out for them, because they don’t understand how I “do it”. Some people should not be allowed to use email.One last thought, I’d like to add another resolution to your list — when forwarding, use the copy and paste feature to cut the text you’d like to forward and then create a NEW message and paste your text there instead of hitting the forward button. This will help keep more email addresses private.

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