We already feel like 2018 might top 2017. Our wills are getting stronger, our tastes are improving and, in general, we’re more aware of what we want and what we need to do to get it, just as long as we don’t need to give up chocolate, at any point, ever. With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of all the resolutions we think you could possibly make. In case you haven’t yet – accidents do happen – use this as your reference for some inspiration.
1 Become vegan
We might have tried this for about the last four years (and failed miserably) but what’s important is we’re not giving up. With all the vegan and organic products that are increasingly showing up on supermarket shelves and fully vegan cafés such as Evergreen Organics, we’re officially running out of excuses to not stick to this resolution.
Evergreen Organics: open daily 7am-10pm. Qanat Quartier, The Pearl Mercato, Plazzo 1 (4472 0437).
2 Buy a car
The good news is that Qatar is one of the few countries where buying a car is fairly easy, and completely possible for almost anyone. With barely three percent interest payable on car loans, pretty much any car can be yours. After you choose your model, check for financing options. Most of these options allow equated monthly installments for as low as QR800 per month. So although it might sound like a really complicated process, we assure you it’s not and your bank should be able to take care of everything.
CBQ (4449 0000).
3 Cut the carbs
The common enemy needs to go. As much as we love carbs, the whole world is stepping into fitness and whether we like it or not, we’re increasingly under pressure to cut down on those evil carbs. Luckily, companies such as Diet Delights and Amazon Diet Center are preparing healthy meals for the entire day and delivering them to our doorsteps. The box does have dessert, too. As a result, cutting carbs might be the easiest resolution to keep up this year.
Diet Delights (4016 3040), Amazon Diet Center (4468 6289).
4 Dance a lot
We’ve heard about people dancing like nobody’s watching (unfortunately, we’ve seen it too) and while we completely encourage it, we also encourage getting some training, maybe? You can get belly dancing lessons, learn a few Bollywood moves or beat it like MJ. Whatever you choose, just stick to it.
IAID (4432 0974), Music and Arts Atelier (3300 3839).
5 Do more DIY
Do It Yourself crafts are big in Doha these days and so many little initiatives are promoting, and teaching, it. Hobby House Qatar, for instance, always has a bunch of interesting classes from painting to gardening. Stitch Studio, meanwhile, teaches DIY fashion and also collaborates with local designers.
Hobby House Qatar, facebook.com/hobbyhouseqatar. Stitch Studio, email@example.com.
6 Explore new cuisines
Doha is a true melting pot and you can find some of the best and most exotic cuisines here. So Ethiopian food and Korean barbecues are not a distant dream anymore. Souq Waqif is actually a great place to try a variety of cuisines for reasonable prices. There’s everything from Sushi and Thai to Turkish and Lebanese.
Promise Ethiopian Restaurant (4451 3642), Yee Hwa (4441 9898).
7 Join a gym
This is the ultimate resolution that creeps onto our refrigerator list every single year. So this time, we’re taking matters into our hands (eventually turning them to muscle) and paying a gym membership. Whether it’s an independent gym, or the fancy five-star hotel ones, waste no more time and sign up. Minus 15kgs later, you will thank us.
Anytime Fitness (4414 4999), Shangri-La Doha Hotel (4429 5000).
8 Get some personal training
It’s great that you joined the gym. But we see you looking like a lost kitten amid big and scary looking equipment. Not only is it unsafe to try curling your biceps by yourself, it is also pointless. Get a personal fitness coach and train happily ever after.
Craig Bunting (6604 9291).
9 Learn a musical instrument
If you were not born with the talents of a Jimi Hendrix or an Eric Clapton, chances are you can’t completely perfect playing the guitar just by using a stream of YouTube tutorials. The will is strong, though, we know, and Fifty One East has an entire section dedicated to music. The Music Square not only sells a full range of musical instruments from drum kits to flutes, it also offers piano and guitar lessons, among others. So if you have a D sharp listed in your 2018 resolutions, sign up now.
Fifty One East (4436 1111).
10 Learn a new language
If the Cyrillic script has caught your fancy, or you just want to share family gossip in Mandarin with your childhood pen pal from China, there are so many ways to learn a language here. The Translation and Interpreting Institute now teaches some seven languages (including Mandarin). You can even have some Arabic lessons for a very small fee at Fanar – the cultural centre.
TII (4454 2507), Fanar (4444 7444).
11 Make time for TV
Last year, Netflix had us completely hooked, with some genuinely A-list releases. If your 2018 plans involve a lot of popcorn, leftover chicken legs and long hours of binge-watching shows, we’ve got great news for you. The new year schedule has some great television lined up such as Altered Carbon, Disenchantment and, yes, the third season of Stranger Things.
12 Practise yoga
2018 is the year of the (downward) dog. If you’re planning to get your oms together and let the vinyasa flow, there’s a bunch of exciting options to check out around town from full moon yoga in the great outdoors to personalised studio sessions. Grab your mat and get the good vibes going.
Niya Yoga (4468 2562), Vishnu Swasthi Yoga (7053 8971).
13 Pursue photography
Let’s face it – you’ve spent far too much time taking really bad photos, unknowingly pulling up the saturation to eyesore levels and ultimately being a failure on Instagram. Take a class in photography at VCUarts Qatar or buy a camera to play around with – just please spare us the out-of-focus up, close and personal with your half-eaten burger.
VCUarts Qatar, www.qatar.vcu.edu/community.
14 Read more
We know how hard it is to find books you love around here, but we also know that those generous souls at bookdepository.com deliver books to Qatar, for free. Qatar Foundation’s National Reading Campaign is really encouraging reading and giving avenues to do so. Also, enthusiasts can rejoice because a massive library has opened in QF – the Qatar National Library. So if your 2018 resolution is to become a bookworm, we’ve got you covered.
Qatar National Library (4454 6039).
15 Revamp your house
In most cases, you most certainly can paint the walls of your rented house. You can even add a few interesting touches to give your space a more cosy or brand-new look. Some good paint, a few throws, a rug or two, a couple of frames and you’re sorted. You don’t need to drill the walls (thank you Command strips) and painting is fast and easy. Choose your colours at your nearest Jotun store and hire a painter and decorator (unless you are a distant relative of Picasso’s great grandson’s nephew’s fourth cousin and think you can do it yourself. Good luck with that.)
Jotun Paints (4441 2728).
16 Spend more time outdoors
Let’s admit that we hate the outdoors for 60 percent of the year, at least. So here’s to resolving to getting fresher air, soaking up the sights and sounds of the city and spending as much time as possible outside, excluding July and August, of course. There are no end of beautiful spots in Doha from the Corniche and MIA Park to Aspire Lake and The Pearl-Qatar. Just keep a copy of Time Out Doha handy so you always know where to go and what to do, whenever you want to.
17 Stop wasting food
It is okay to be a glutton. But when you have a plate full of food that you can’t finish, the last thing you should do is throw it away. We realise most of us have been doing this, and we fully support your New Year’s resolution to avoid it. Which is why we’ve found the perfect solution for your impending greed and inevitable gluttony – Wa’hab! Resolve to save food that’s still good and give these guys a shout to come pick it up and distribute it to the less fortunate.
18 Travel more
In the last few years, it’s become unbelievably easy to travel from Qatar. Besides a great geographical location, several low-cost carriers have sprung up making travel for pleasure accessible to pretty much all income levels. What we’re most excited about for 2018 are all the new routes Qatar Airways is opening up. Just FYI, they’ve very recently started flying to Kiev, Chiang Mai and Adana. Pattaya is also one of the routes set to take off this year.
Qatar Airways, www.qatarairways.com.
19 Try a unique fitness trend
Fitness is big this year and we’re burning calories just keeping up with all the crazy new workout trends doing the rounds. We’re not really recommending biryani yoga (yes, that’s a thing), but Doha has its own share of fun fitness initiatives. You can get a bootcamp experience or just look silly and sweat a lot while kangoo-jumping. Whatever you do, make sure it checks the fun and fitness boxes.
OxFitness Lab (4020 6430), Dragon Boat, www.dww.qa.
20 Venture into watersports
We’re not actually suggesting you go out right now in the chilly waters and freeze-surf. But come March, the weather will be perfect for some moderately extreme sports on, or in, the water. There are dedicated beaches for kitesurfing, jet skiing is popular even down on the Corniche and there are several institutes offering diving lessons, too. Go on, dive in.
Poseidon Dive Centre (6608 4040), Flo Kite School (3315 5628).