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19 Ways To Make 2018 Infinitely Better Than 2017

by Sally Tamarkin

Please join me in resolving to make 2018 actually great.

Here are a few ideas for making 2018 really damn great without requiring you to take up habits or routines that will feel like a chore.

Schedule mental health days in advance.

Schedule mental health days in advance.

Don't wait till you've been ground into a fine dust (emotionally speaking) to think about taking some time to recharge. Whether it's taking time off from work (if you're in a job or financial situation that makes it possible to do this) or just using a weekend afternoon to hardcore indulge your need for sleep, alone time, and relaxation, I've found that it's far better to anticipate when I'll need this and plan for it in advance, than to get halfway through the day and realize that I'm basically nonfunctional because I'm so drained. If you know that spending time with your family is difficult or that a certain time of year is busier at work than usual or that you're always exhausted after traveling, consider planning down time for right after.

@bujo.dots / Via instagram.com

Get involved with a fandom.

Get involved with a fandom.

If you're like me, you know fandoms are a thing but always thought, "Eh, not for me." That was me, too, until I discovered Game of Thrones about six months ago. (I don't like to rush into things.) I've since watched the series, read three of the books, read COUNTLESS Reddit threads, listened to a couple recap and analysis podcasts, paid way too much attention to fan theories, and followed GoT accounts on Instagram. It's been awesome.

Whatever you've ever enjoyed solo, whether it's Harry Potter or Game of Thrones or something niche, there's absolutely an online community of people who love it, too. You can get into fanfic and fanart (whether that means consuming, creating, or both), ~discourse~, theories, etc. Get into it!

@kizuki_cosplay / Via instagram.com

Post love notes to yourself on your mirror.

Post love notes to yourself on your mirror.

It's a great way to say something nice to yourself every time you see yourself.

@georgezachariades / Via instagram.com

Master one incredible party dish.

Master one incredible party dish.

Creating a delicious meal to share with others (or to eat yourself throughout the week) makes you feel super accomplished, and also is just simply enjoyable. I recommend Food Heaven Made Easy's roasted vegetable lasagna recipe.

@foodheavenshow / Via instagram.com

Work on your "happy list."

Work on your "happy list."

Taking some time to mull over and then list out the things that really light you up is fun to do, and it can really help you get to know yourself better. Hear me out: On the recommendation of a friend, I listened to the audio version of Gabrielle Union's book, We're Going To Need More Wine (which she reads and which you should listen to ASAP). In the book, she talks about her life coach challenging her to come up with a list of things that make her truly happy. The exercise makes her realize that she isn't even sure what makes her really, deeply joyful. So, she takes a while (like, months) to think about it, and starts making a list. Sounds like a worthy endeavor to me!

@saythegood / Via instagram.com

Use "do not disturb" more.

Use "do not disturb" more.

I'm pretty into my phone, so I'm not going to sit here and tell you that you shouldn't be tweeting and 'gramming and texting all the time. BUT sometimes it's nice to have a break from emails, texts, and notifications. You don't have to spend your "do not disturb" time meditating or journaling (though if you do, NICE). You can just be like "I need some me time to watch these five Parks and Rec episodes without being interrupted."

Getty Images

Change your voicemail greeting to "please text me instead."

Change your voicemail greeting to "please text me instead."

I mean, why not, right? Let's make 2018 our year.

@bluestlove / Via instagram.com

Start saying yes...to not making plans you'd rather not have in the first place.

Start saying yes...to not making plans you'd rather not have in the first place.

In the moment it feels less awkward to accept an invite and then bail later, but bailing later — especially if you knew all along that you would — doesn't always feel awesome, OR SO I'VE HEARD. Plus, you deserve to spend your time however you'd like. Here's to politely declining invitations in 2018!

@thomfoole / Via instagram.com

Try doing some stuff alone and see how you like it.

Try doing some stuff alone and see how you like it.

Doing things alone that we typically do with a partner or friend changes the experience in a cool way. Making, plating, and serving yourself a killer candlelit dinner, taking yourself out for a meal, and going to the movies solo are three amazing ways to hang out with yourself. Bonus: If you hate it, you never have to do it again.

@pea1812 / Via instagram.com

And try sharing things you usually do solo with a friend.

And try sharing things you usually do solo with a friend.

Just to mix it up and do something other than meeting up for a meal or a drink. Try doing a puzzle, cooking a meal, going on a hike or walk, etc.

@claudispuzzle / Via instagram.com

Identify three go-to looks that make you feel amazing.

Identify three go-to looks that make you feel amazing.

We all have days where confidence is elusive. Choose three specific outfits ready and waiting for you when you need an I Am Powerful AF costume. You can have one casual thing, something for work, and something for going out. Or three different sets of pajamas — you decide what makes you feel best.

@jujubeeonline / Via instagram.com

Master a crock pot meal.

Master a crock pot meal.

Having a slow cooker recipe up your sleeve comes in really handy when you're having a really busy (or really lazy or really sad) week.

Here are a bunch of great slow cooker recipes.

@crockpot / Via instagram.com

Set up a monthly $10 donation to a cause you care about.

Set up a monthly $10 donation to a cause you care about.

If $10 feels like too much, choose a smaller amount and an organization that will benefit from whatever you can give. Some of my favorites, with their own mission statements, are:

Anti-Violence Project:
AVP empowers lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and HIV-affected communities and allies to end all forms of violence through organizing and education, and supports survivors through counseling and advocacy.

Groundswell Fund:
Groundswell Fund supports a stronger, more effective US movement for reproductive justice by mobilizing new funding and capacity building resources to grassroots organizing and policy change efforts led by low-income women, women of color, and transgender people.

United We Dream:
At United We Dream, we transform that fear into finding your voice. We empower people to develop their leadership, their organizing skills, and to develop our own campaigns to fight for justice and dignity for immigrants and all people. This is achieved through immigrant youth-led campaigns at the local, state, and federal level.

Jim Collins Foundation:
The mission of the Jim Collins Foundation is to provide financial assistance to transgender people for gender-confirming surgeries.

@todd_spence_geek_art / Via instagram.com

Learn how to make vegetables actually taste amazing.

Learn how to make vegetables actually taste amazing.

Here is why vegetables are counterintuitive. They can be total culinary downers that taste like punishment, BUT they can also be transformed into magical flavor nuggets that also happen to be really good for you. All you need to do is get to the bottom of how to prepare them so that they taste really good. Here is a whole pile of ways to make vegetables delish.

@fitmencook / Via instagram.com

Get really into a topic.

Get really into a topic.

I've been known to attack a new topic from several angles — listen to a podcast episode or series about it, read its entry (and linked entries) on Wikipedia, watch documentaries on it, then any feature movies or TV series, then read the books. I just really enjoy immersing myself in a historical event and learning everything I can about the players involved, the social context at the time, etc. You learn A LOT, have a ton of great factoids to share, and get to feel productive while filling your head with interesting shit.

In 2017 I went sort of bonkers trying to learn more about the OJ Simpson trial. Here's what I consumed:

• Watched OJ: Made In America (documentary)
• Watched The People vs. OJ Simpson (FX series)
• Read Without a Doubt by Marcia Clark
• Read In Contempt by Christopher Darden.
• Read "An Incendiary Defense" by Jeffrey Toobin for the New Yorker
• Read Dominick Dunne’s Complete O.J. Simpson Trial Coverage for Vanity Fair
• Listened to OJ Made In America filmmaker Ezra Edelman on two podcasts: WTF with Marc Maron and Longform

I also highly recommend getting into cults (as in, learning about them) and England's royal family.

Twitter: @sapna

Learn to tell an amazing joke.

Learn to tell an amazing joke.

You can learn a super long-form one with an extended AF windup and a killer punchline or you can build an arsenal of little quick jokes. This Reddit thread, What's the one joke you always tell when someone says "Tell me a joke?," is a great place to start.

Here a fave of mine (because I'm very much a dad) to start you off:

A man walks into a library and orders fish and chips.
The librarian says, "this is a library."
The man, says, "Oh, sorry." Then in a whisper: "I'd like some fish and chips."

goodbadjokes.com

Create a simple but powerful motto for the year.

Create a simple but powerful motto for the year.

This is something my friend Julie does, and it's one of my favorite ways to be more intentional in the new year without getting super intense and setting myself up for a bunch of shit I'll never follow through with. Basically, she comes up with a motto for the year. She explains: "I like to mark the new year with a new theme for myself. It's sort of like a resolution for the mindset that I will use to approach the world. Some of them are more successful than others. (For example, this past year’s — 'keep it light' — turned out to be utterly inappropriate.)"

Here are a few more of her mottos and what inspired them, in her words:

1999: "Guilt free in '99." This was my first motto and it was inspired by an awkward encounter I had at a party. I was feeling bad about it but I resolved (unsuccessfully) to forget about it.

2010: "Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good." I had a baby and I was trying to get things done.

2016: "We got this." I was starting a new job, and we were planning to move. There was a lot going on.

@michelangelos_david / Via instagram.com

Add this to your Pinterest board.

Ever seen those cute little signs people put next to their babies to show their age and how big they are?

Ever seen those cute little signs people put next to their babies to show their age and how big they are?

Torres / BuzzFeed

Well, pull up a seat and grab a sandwich because that's all about to change...

Well, pull up a seat and grab a sandwich because that's all about to change...

Universal

This Philadelphia dad figured out an ingenious way to chart his son's growth: a Philly cheesesteak sandwich.

This Philadelphia dad figured out an ingenious way to chart his son's growth: a Philly cheesesteak sandwich.

strangework.com

Brad Williams, who named the project ~Cheesesteak for Scale~, began posting pics as a joke on his blog of his son Lucas next to the iconic sandwich, starting when Lucas was 2 weeks old.

Brad Williams, who named the project ~Cheesesteak for Scale~, began posting pics as a joke on his blog of his son Lucas next to the iconic sandwich, starting when Lucas was 2 weeks old.

Williams told BuzzFeed, "It was very random. My wife and I ordered takeout when Lucas was 2 weeks old, and I quickly realize he was almost the same size as my cheesesteak."

strangework.com

Williams said, "I took a picture and posted it on Facebook. Our friends and family thought it was hysterical so we kept the tradition going each month!"

Williams said, "I took a picture and posted it on Facebook. Our friends and family thought it was hysterical so we kept the tradition going each month!"

Williams said, "At first my wife thought I was ridiculous, but she started to really love it after the first couple pictures. It was a fun way to track our son's growth and everyone really enjoyed it!"

strangework.com

So, for the next year, little Lucas was photographed every month next to a warm, neatly wrapped cheesesteak.

So, for the next year, little Lucas was photographed every month next to a warm, neatly wrapped cheesesteak.

strangework.com

Then, after a year of monthly photos, Williams decided it was time to stop. "As Lucas grew older he began to dislike cheesesteaks. That's why I'm holding him in the one-year picture — because he wanted nothing to do with it," Williams said.

Then, after a year of monthly photos, Williams decided it was time to stop. "As Lucas grew older he began to dislike cheesesteaks. That's why I'm holding him in the one-year picture — because he wanted nothing to do with it," Williams said.

"I was worried I would scar him for life against cheesesteaks, so we decided to make it an annual tradition after the first year. The last thing I want is my son growing up hating cheesesteaks!"

strangework.com

You can watch this hilarious video of his son rejecting the sandwich on his blog.

You can watch this hilarious video of his son rejecting the sandwich on his blog.

strangework.com

Hopefully the little man will learn to love them just like his dad!

Hopefully the little man will learn to love them just like his dad!

major_aesthetics / Via instagram.com

Cheesesteaks and babies. Who'd have thought?

Cheesesteaks and babies. Who'd have thought?

CBS

Only A Sleep Expert Can Get 10/12 On This Quiz

by Sally Tamarkin

Do you get an A+ on Zzz’s?

Black hair > Picasso.

First of all, get into these perfectly sculpted edges that are LEGIT leaving us speechless.

First of all, get into these perfectly sculpted edges that are LEGIT leaving us speechless.

Follow @filthyrichtresses on IG and YouTube for the most satisfying pics and tutorials.

@filthyrichtresses / Via instagram.com

And these FKA Twigs-esque baby haaaaaairz!

And these FKA Twigs-esque baby haaaaaairz!

@joyjah / Via instagram.com

The subtlety, the delicacy. Perfection.

The subtlety, the delicacy. Perfection.

@thatgirldami / Via instagram.com

The time sis put into these handlebar hairs is noted and appreciated.

The time sis put into these handlebar hairs is noted and appreciated.

@halssaa / Via instagram.com

Slicked edges and locs are our new favorite couple.

Slicked edges and locs are our new favorite couple.

@foreverflawlyss / Via instagram.com

*sigh* To whom shall we hand in our snatched wigs?

*sigh* To whom shall we hand in our snatched wigs?

@filthyrichtresses / Via instagram.com

The detail got us SHOOOOOOOOOOK!!!

The detail got us SHOOOOOOOOOOK!!!

Filthy Rich Tresses / Via youtube.com

The nerve of her to slick down these coily-curly strands and then make this cute-ass face. We weren't ready!

The nerve of her to slick down these coily-curly strands and then make this cute-ass face. We weren't ready!

@jazznicole / Via instagram.com

And the audacity of her to serve soft baby wisps as if the flawless complexion and red lip didn't already take us out.

And the audacity of her to serve soft baby wisps as if the flawless complexion and red lip didn't already take us out.

@sudanidoll / Via instagram.com

This cutie gave us two crescent moons and ended things with an actual "S." THIS IS NOT A DRILL!

This cutie gave us two crescent moons and ended things with an actual "S." THIS IS NOT A DRILL!

@eristheplanet / Via instagram.com

*Saves image as "Afropunk 2018 Inspiration"*

*Saves image as "Afropunk 2018 Inspiration"*

@flossynubian / Via instagram.com

Hold up. Feelin' a little seasick from all the waves.

Hold up. Feelin' a little seasick from all the waves.

@_assiiyvh / Via instagram.com

This is the face you make after you just blew out your tight coils but slayed your baby hairs for a bomb-ass texture contrast.

This is the face you make after you just blew out your tight coils but slayed your baby hairs for a bomb-ass texture contrast.

@halfricanbeaute / Via instagram.com

Braids fleeky, parts clean AF, and edges straight thriving.

Braids fleeky, parts clean AF, and edges straight thriving.

@tinkher / Via instagram.com

When you don't wanna do too much, but you still wanna let 'em know your lay and slay skills are real.

When you don't wanna do too much, but you still wanna let 'em know your lay and slay skills are real.

@thatgirldami / Via instagram.com

We've seen lace fronts that could NEVER lay like homegirl's au naturel hair.

We've seen lace fronts that could NEVER lay like homegirl's au naturel hair.

@razorempress / Via instagram.com

Big ups to the universe for making black girls so dope! *Toothbrush and gel sold separately.*

Big ups to the universe for making black girls so dope! *Toothbrush and gel sold separately.*

Bustle / Via giphy.com

Trust. It’s 100% possible to be single and living a happy, fulfilling life.

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

@ifwsako / Via Twitter: @ifwsako

First off, remember that loneliness isn't something that ONLY single people feel — people in relationships can feel it too.

First off, remember that loneliness isn't something that ONLY single people feel — people in relationships can feel it too.

Single people feel it, sure. But just because you have someone to call your partner, it doesn't mean you can't feel lonely. Your partner might not listen to you when you talk about your interests. They may not get certain parts of your personality, and may be low-key condescending when you express that side of it. Maybe they are just never actually present because they're working too much or always distracted. You get it.

"Almost all people experience loneliness from time to time," Snyder says. "If you happen to be single, sometimes that feeling can result in the thought, If only I weren't single, I wouldn't be lonely." But the truth is you really don't know that, and you don't want to end up in a relationship that doesn't feel right deep down. So just remember that lonely feelings come and go, Snyder says. "When they come on, just observe them — like any other feeling. Don't give feelings of loneliness special privilege."

NBC / Via wifflegif.com

If you're feeling lonely, it could be because you're not connecting with friends/family as much as you could be.

If you're feeling lonely, it could be because you're not connecting with friends/family as much as you could be.

Romantic relationships are really only one way to have those close connections with people that make you feel happy and fulfilled. You can also feel those things by cultivating strong, meaningful relationships with friends or family, Taitz tells BuzzFeed Health. (She recommends having at least five close relationships.) Remember, loneliness is a state of mind, so if you're spending your time hanging out with close friends, you won't be worrying so much about when you're going to find your next boo.

Look, we know these aren't romantic connections, so they'll feel different. But if all your friends are going out without you and you're always just chillin' at home, that can also stoke feelings of loneliness — especially if you see social media posts where they seem to be having fun. Btw, if you do notice your friends are getting together, don't assume that they didn't invite you on purpose or that they like each other more than they like you. These unhealthy thoughts are called maladaptive social cognitions, says Taitz, and they'll just keep you from creating deep, fulfilling relationships.

"These thoughts contribute to the lonely feeling,” she says, and by targeting them, you can engage in behaviors that will free you from loneliness. One of those behaviors? Take charge. Reach out to these people and coordinate a time when you can get together and do something you all enjoy.

Fox / Via wifflegif.com

You should also get more involved in both activities that you enjoy and activities that fall in line with your personal values.

You should also get more involved in both activities that you enjoy and activities that fall in line with your personal values.

Sometimes these might be one and the same — for example, you might realllly have fun volunteering at a soup kitchen — but they don't always have to be. If you like going to the movies, ice skating, hitting up museums, hiking, etc., then do it! Don't wait for a relationship to get you out there living life. "I hate this idea that being single is like waiting in an airport for your life to take off," Taitz says. "You could do those things by yourself, and that's not settling — that's living your life, and it's actually going to increase the likelihood that you're going to meet that partner."

Participating in activities that are in line with your values can also help you feel better about being single, because they'll give you a sense of purpose, which can be really fulfilling, Taitz says. Just think about how accomplished you feel when you ace a class or get a promotion or leave the gym after an AWESOME workout, and it makes sense. "It should be a mix of pleasure — things that you enjoy or used to enjoy and that are passive and easy to do — and things that involve mastery — things that are difficult but possible," she says. "We need to balance work and play."

With all these activities, try to be fully present in the moment. (Yep, we're talking mindfulness.) "If you're going to see Hamilton, but you're comparing yourself to everyone else who's there with a loved one, you're not going to feel connected to your life, connected to the show, or connected to the moment," says Taitz.

youtube.com

No matter what, always treat yourself through small gestures of self-compassion.

No matter what, always treat yourself through small gestures of self-compassion.

This could mean self-care in the sense of treating yourself, but it also goes deeper. You want to treat yourself with kindness and love, just like you'd treat a partner or your closest friends. So if you always have food in the fridge when your friends come over, then you should also have food in the fridge when you're alone, Taitz says. Don't deprive yourself of the joys in life because you're single — hold yourself to the same standard of care.

Twitter: @AngiNicole722

If you're actively dating, then schedule your dates around the aforementioned activities — not the other way around — and keep them short.

If you're actively dating, then schedule your dates around the aforementioned activities — not the other way around — and keep them short.

Because if you're tired of being single, it can be easy to get carried away with dating. You might try to spend a whole day with someone you think you'll really like, but it's actually not a great idea because it’s your first time going out. Or you schedule three dates in one week (maybe even with three different people). Spending all this time focusing on your dating life can lead to burnout if they end up not working out, Snyder says. "Most people feel miserable going on too many bad dates. It's a good idea to not date too much, and to make it a quick meeting for coffee rather than a major event," he says. "With a shorter, casual meet-and-greet date, there's not as much of an investment of time, money, and emotional energy."

HBO / Via giphy.com

And if you've been turned off of dating because at this point it just feels like a waste of time, don't give up.

And if you've been turned off of dating because at this point it just feels like a waste of time, don't give up.

It's fine to take breaks from dating here and there. But if you're nervous about going on more dates because they just rack you with anxiety and never turn out the way you want, then you might never feel ready, Taitz says. "If you're scared about it, you don't need to wait to feel better. Go on a date, be really nice to yourself, and acknowledge how hard it is. Accept that it's OK to be anxious, and you can still go out anyway," she says. "The thing that's going to feed your anxiety is avoidance. You deserve to have the life that you want, and you don't need your emotions to dictate your readiness."

Starz / Via shape.com

Allow yourself to be vulnerable, and never go into a date with any kind of assumptions.

Allow yourself to be vulnerable, and never go into a date with any kind of assumptions.

It's no good to be a pessimist, and having that attitude can tarnish the possibility of a date actually turning out well. "Sometimes we make predictions based on the past, and that's really not helpful or accurate," says Taitz. So try to avoid making assumptions like "I went on a bad date, so apps don't work for me." Take it a moment at a time and avoid gross generalizations that affect your ability to connect with people, she says. "To meet the people that we most connect with, we need to experiment and open up, and being pessimistic can get in the way of that."

DreamWorks / Via giphy.com

But also be honest with yourself about what you're looking for, and do your part.

But also be honest with yourself about what you're looking for, and do your part.

Don't forget: People in relationships can be lonely, too, so don't settle for someone just because they look good — they could still be an asshole and you know it. It's always better to focus on your values when deciding if a person could eventually be your partner. "It's about what you want your life to be about, and what do you need in a partner — what values really matter to you," Taitz says. So, for example, if you care about kindness and advancing your career, then you should be looking for a partner who cares about those things too, she says. That said, these values should also be a part of your daily life. "It's easy to say that you want someone who communicates well and then struggle to have a courageous conversation with them. So in addition to looking for what we want with other people, I think we really need to look inwards and do our part as well."

MTV / Via Twitter: @BombshellBf

Lastly, remember that finding your ~person~ is about luck and perseverance. If you haven’t found someone, it doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you.

Lastly, remember that finding your ~person~ is about luck and perseverance. If you haven’t found someone, it doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you.

It's fairly common for people to think of being single as not being "fully adult," Snyder says, and there are so many reasons for why someone might feel like that. One example: They might feel pressured by family to be set in their career and married (perhaps with kids, too!) by a certain age. And if it's not this belief, then there's also the stigma that people who are single are unhappy. "If I told you that Mary lived in San Francisco, she works in real estate, and she's single, you would make certain assumptions that she's less happy and more lonely than if I just said that Mary lives in San Francisco and she works in real estate," Taitz says.

Always remember, she says, "it's about luck, not because there's something wrong with you." And speaking of luck, both experts say there are more single people today than anytime in recent history, so hey, you're not alone and it looks like there are plenty of potentials out there.

NBC / Via gifrific.com

Now get out there and live your best single life!

Now get out there and live your best single life!

Warner Bros. / Via popkey.co

Follow along at BuzzFeed.com/NewYearsRevolution from Jan. 1 to Jan. 14, 2018.

Follow along at BuzzFeed.com/NewYearsRevolution from Jan. 1 to Jan. 14, 2018.

BuzzFeed News

Lifting weights can make you physically stronger, sure. But Brooklyn resident Shannon Wagner believes it can also help you to fight oppression, survive challenges and emotional upheaval, and build community.

In early 2017 Wagner founded the Women's Strength Coalition in the belief that being stronger is necessary in resisting oppression, and the theory that strength training can be personally healing and politically transformative for marginalized people and communities. Today, less than a year later, WSC is a small but robust network of 50 lifters with affiliated gyms in eight cities. They're a community of women (cis and trans) and nonbinary people who lift weights not only to get stronger physically, but to build personal and community power. Many of them also compete in the three lifts that make up the sport of powerlifting — bench press, deadlift, and squat.

BuzzFeed Health asked 12 WSC members to tell us how lifting has changed their relationships to themselves and their bodies, and supported and enhanced their passion for social justice.

"All the fears and anxiety I felt towards my mother’s condition disappeared each time I raised and lowered the barbell."

"All the fears and anxiety I felt towards my mother’s condition disappeared each time I raised and lowered the barbell."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

I began powerlifting because I needed strength to fight the greatest battle of my life — losing my ma. It was late February 2017. I was nine months into my fitness journey. My mother was dying. I needed something rough. So, my coach taught me how to deadlift. All the fears and anxiety I felt towards my mother’s condition disappeared each time I raised and lowered the barbell. Each week, I would hit a personal record (PR). Each week, my ma overcame a health challenge. Her doctors stood around her bed, amazed at both of our feats. She would scribble on her notepad, “It’s mind over matter.”

One day I jokingly asked her if I should enter a deadlift competition. She scribbled on her notepad, “Do it! It’s mind over matter.” She winked at me and tried to make a muscle with her left arm while the four IV lines dangled around her wrist.

I lost my ma on Mother’s Day. Her final text message to me was instructions to continue exercising. The day of the competition was two weeks after my mother’s funeral service. I wore her necklace and channeled her mantra: “mind over matter.” I pulled a personal record of 253 pounds on my final attempt.

—LaToneya Burwell, 37, Brooklyn, call center manager and trainer, 84kg powerlifter

Those tangible moments of growth are what make me confident when I approach the platform on competition day, or when I head into a business meeting with a client, or when I'm making a decision at home as a family.

"Come competition day, you are the only one on the platform. No one else is lifting that weight for you."

"Come competition day, you are the only one on the platform. No one else is lifting that weight for you."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

Barbell sports have illuminated traits and approaches about myself that I love, and even more exciting to me are the ones that I know I have an opportunity to test and fine-tune with people around me that I trust.

Come competition day, you are the only one on the platform. No one else is lifting that weight for you. For me personally, it's the process of getting to the platform that I love the most. I can easily label each training cycle I've had with themes of self-growth. Those tangible moments of growth are what make me confident when I approach the platform on competition day, or when I head into a business meeting with a client, or when I'm making a decision at home as a family.

—Kayleigh Collins, co-owner, OpenTent, and powerlifter, Murder of Crows Barbell Club

The experts who treated me told me that I would never powerlift again, but this only strengthened my resolve to get back to the gym as fast as possible.

"Powerlifting boosted my happiness and confidence, proved my inner strength, and delivered me from my obsession with weight loss."

"Powerlifting boosted my happiness and confidence, proved my inner strength, and delivered me from my obsession with weight loss."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

In late 2012 I found a barbell-training program, and hired a personal trainer to teach me how to safely execute the exercises. In summer 2013, I joined the South Brooklyn Weightlifting Club (SBWC). That December I was hit by a car as I walked in a crosswalk. The experts who treated me told me that I would never powerlift again, but this only strengthened my resolve to get back to the gym as fast as possible.

And it was just about a year later in November 2014 that I decided that it was time for me to start powerlifting again. I joined a gym and tried to squat the empty barbell, but I was too stiff and it was too painful. A coach offered to train me, promising that she could get me under a barbell again. True to her word, I got strong and flexible enough to resume powerlifting. In summer 2015 I continued lifting and competed in my first USA Powerlifting meet in September 2015, less than two years since the accident.

I say God and powerlifting saved me. Not only did powerlifting develop my muscles and protect my bones, but according to one of my neurologists, it helped me heal from the traumatic brain injuries I sustained in the accident. It also boosted my happiness and confidence, proved my inner strength, and delivered me from my obsession with weight loss.

Stephanie C. Baker, attorney and competitive powerlifter

Being an openly queer woman of color in the powerlifting community is quite the experience. I never step away from my identity as a brown queer woman or my LGBTQ rights and feminist advocacy. That does not turn off the moment I step into the gym.

"Powerlifting helped me reclaim ownership of my body, taught me to take up space, to feel safe in that space, and not to derive self-worth or value from the number on the scale."

"Powerlifting helped me reclaim ownership of my body, taught me to take up space, to feel safe in that space, and not to derive self-worth or value from the number on the scale."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

Women are taught to take up the least amount of space as possible, whether that be vocally, in both the public and private realm, or physically. Of course, you still see a social media bias in favor of the slim/toned white women and, real talk, body shaming is ridiculously prevalent in the powerlifting community. Even so, there is a large part of the female-identified powerlifting community that fights to take up all that space we were taught to feel embarrassed about and reject. I think that is powerful to witness and be a part of. Powerlifting helped me reclaim ownership of my body, taught me to take up space, to feel safe in that space, and not to derive self-worth or value from the number on the scale.

Being an openly queer woman of color in the powerlifting community is quite the experience. I never step away from my identity as a brown queer woman or my LGBTQ rights and feminist advocacy. That does not turn off the moment I step into the gym.

Breanna Diaz, 29, Washington, DC, legislative counsel at Human Rights Campaign

The opinions expressed here are Diaz's own and do not reflect those of her employer.

​Building physical strength is an extension of what happens inside.

"Training with barbells makes me feel like a badass who broke from ​expectations."

"Training with barbells makes me feel like a badass who broke from ​expectations."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

Strength training and having muscles makes me feel spiritually and emotionally stronger. ​Contrary to the media fitness hype, ​I don’t work out with the goal to get smaller and ​smaller. I ​choose to create strength and I embrace the evidence of it!

As an Asian woman, the ​Old World cultural goal is to be petite, quiet, and ladylike. Training with barbells makes me feel like a badass who broke from ​expectations.

Building physical strength is an extension of what happens inside.

—Tina Tang, 46, jewelry designer and personal trainer

We have taken this concept even further by building a community of empowered, body-positive, and strong individuals through our company Beefpuff Barbell.

"Focusing on strength and growth with this body-positive crew was a healthy space to work on my eating disorder and body image issues."

"Focusing on strength and growth with this body-positive crew was a healthy space to work on my eating disorder and body image issues."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

Before I found powerlifting, I had been a gymnast for 15 years. I was frequently picked on for being larger than my teammates. I developed mental toughness on the exterior, but I was emotionally broken. I had also developed an eating disorder.

Finding the powerlifting club in college was my saving grace. It was a vastly different environment where you go to the gym and put some weight on the bar. Negative body talk is minimal. Food is valued as fuel. Focusing on strength and growth with this body-positive crew was a healthy space to work on my eating disorder and body image issues.

Back in 2015, in response to social media trends, two powerlifters and I started referring to ourselves as "beefpuffs.” It was our way of reclaiming the bodies of women in powerlifting. The concept caught on. People liked how we came up with a way to revere our not-so-lean-but-really-fucking-strong bodies that we grew to love and appreciate.

We have taken this concept even further by building a community of empowered, body-positive, and strong individuals through our company Beefpuff Barbell.

—Chelsea Savit, cofounder and coach, Beefpuff Barbell, international elite powerlifter

Getting used to the gym environment was not always fun. Guys would take a squat rack I was using. They would even take weights off of my bar when I would go to get a drink from the water fountain. It was like I was invisible.

"Lifting has given me an outlet for my frustration, a way to tame my anxiety and a break from the stresses of medical school and motherhood."

"Lifting has given me an outlet for my frustration, a way to tame my anxiety and a break from the stresses of medical school and motherhood."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

I got into powerlifting in 2012, after my partner finally convinced me to go lift with him. He had been trying to get me to lift since we started dating in 2009, but I told him I didn't want to get bulky. When I first started, I actually hated it. I could barely squat the bar, and I definitely couldn't bench it. I was embarrassed by how weak I was and thought I looked stupid. For some reason, I kept going to the gym with him.

Getting used to the gym environment was not always fun. Guys would take a squat rack I was using. They would even take weights off of my bar when I would go to get a drink from the water fountain. It was like I was invisible. I have my suspicions about why this was. I don't think it was only because I'm a woman. There were times when I would go to the gym and there would be another girl lifting, but the guys would acknowledge her. One time, a girl asked another guy if any other girls lift, and he said, "No, I never see any girls here," right in front of me (and I was a regular). I suspect being a black woman with natural hair, a baggy T-shirt, and no makeup meant I didn't exist.

As time went on, I discovered different blogs and fitness groups to follow. Even some of the ones that promoted a lean aesthetic started shifting to a more body-positive message. Lifting has given me an outlet for my frustration, a way to tame my anxiety and a break from the stresses of medical school and motherhood.

—Mary Nwosuocha, 30, New York City, budding physician, mom, and powerlifter

Our mission is to build stronger communities through increased access to strength training.

"Strength training allows individuals to foster literal and figurative strength. What started as a female-focused organization is evolving into something more."

"Strength training allows individuals to foster literal and figurative strength. What started as a female-focused organization is evolving into something more."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

Powerlifting has shifted the way I interact with my environment and has fundamentally changed the way I experience my physical body. When I first began lifting, it was in an effort to win the approval of others by improving my appearance. As I became stronger, my mindset shifted, and I fell in love with the way it made me feel. Lifting helped me build confidence, so that I don’t need to look externally for validation.

Strength training allows individuals to foster literal and figurative strength. I started Women’s Strength Coalition as a female-focused organization but it is evolving into something more. Our mission is to build stronger communities through increased access to strength training. Our next phase of work is to open the People’s Strength Coalition, our first nonprofit gym space and community center in New York City, accessible to cis and transgender women, as well as LGBTQ individuals.

We want to create new tools for social change to promote different avenues of action and personal development, and to empower communities to advocate for local issues.

—Shannon Wagner, founder, Women’s Strength Coalition

Regardless of how I present now, I continually feel strong, lovable, and comfortable taking up the space my body and feelings need at a given time.

"With each training day, I became less inclined to hide in life."

"With each training day, I became less inclined to hide in life."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

I took up strength sports in 2013. I was 35 and until that moment, I identified as a nonathlete. Growing up, I hated sports. I was last picked in gym class, but the first teased. I was nerdy, overweight, and seemingly unathletic. I equated sports with humiliation.

I stayed committed to the narrative of being a totally unathletic person until I began to work out with my trainer and coach, Ed. I started going to the gym out of medical necessity, but Ed saw the athlete in me. Six years later, I found the confidence I needed. I pointed to some weightlifters and said, “I want to do that.” My training immediately shifted to learning how to really move load.

With each training day, I became less inclined to hide in life. Since 2013 my body has changed shape and size countless times. Regardless of how I present now, I continually feel strong, lovable, and comfortable taking up the space my body and feelings need at a given time.

—Laura Khoudari, 39, New York City, trauma-informed strength trainer and strength coach and mom

The day I planned on going through with my suicide, I deadlifted 185 pounds.

"Powerlifting saved my life."

"Powerlifting saved my life."

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

A few years back, I was suicidal. I felt alone, and I didn't know what else to do. I was going to the gym regularly at the time. The day I planned on going through with my suicide, I deadlifted 185 pounds. I had never lifted that much weight in my life! It was exhilarating and empowering, and I realized I didn't want to end my life because I wanted to see how strong I could become.

Powerlifting saved my life. And I know there are other women out there who feel the same way. When I first heard about Women’s Strength Coalition, I knew it was something I wanted to get involved in. I wanted others to fall in love with powerlifting the way I did, and gain both mental and physical strength from it too. I wanted to be a part of something that fosters self-esteem for people of all ages and creates a community where people can feel both strong and empowered with who they are without having to feel the need to change themselves to fit a stereotype. That's exactly what the Women's Strength Coalition has to offer, and I love that.

—Araliya Ming Senerat, 25, Queens, MPH candidate

When you approach the bar knowing that you are preparing to lift some really heavy weight, you have to approach it with confidence, resolve, and determination.

Mmm, Shrimps & Bananas!

Brb, booking my next trip.

Cheesy Pork Burger (McDonald's Taiwan)

Cheesy Pork Burger (McDonald's Taiwan)

Melted cheese + a fried pork patty + lettuce.

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Pesto Pasta (McDonald's Rome)

Pesto Pasta (McDonald's Rome)

Pasta at McDonald's! Only in Italy.

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Milky Tea Float (McDonald's Thailand)

Milky Tea Float (McDonald's Thailand)

Milk Tea mixed with the classic McDonald's soft serve.

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Fish & Chips (McDonald's Thailand)

Fish & Chips (McDonald's Thailand)

No, no...this isn't in the UK! It's in Asia.

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Spaghetti, Fried Chicken, and a Banana Pie (McDonald's Philippines)

Spaghetti, Fried Chicken, and a Banana Pie (McDonald's Philippines)

Three seemingly random things that you can all get from McDonald's in the Philippines.

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Pineapple Pie (McDonald's China)

Pineapple Pie (McDonald's China)

Pineapple pie, what's not to love?

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Grilled Pork Rice (McDonald's Vietnam)

Grilled Pork Rice (McDonald's Vietnam)

The cucumber here is a nice touch...not to mention that delicious rice patty.

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Greek Mac (McDonald's Greece)

Greek Mac (McDonald's Greece)

A Big Mac, but with a pita.

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Chips & Salsa Burger (McDonald's Taiwan)

Chips & Salsa Burger (McDonald's Taiwan)

So, I'm assuming the chips give a nice crunch to this burger.

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Crispy Onion Angus Burger with egg (McDonald's Hong Kong)

Crispy Onion Angus Burger with egg (McDonald's Hong Kong)

This is a different take on a burger. There's egg, cheese, crispy onion, and what looks to be a special bun.

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Sankaku Choco Pie (McDonald's Japan)

Sankaku Choco Pie (McDonald's Japan)

This is a flaky crust packed with chocolate. This pic might not look the best, but people say it's amazing.

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Teriyaki Burger (McDonald's Japan)

Teriyaki Burger (McDonald's Japan)

A burger smothered in Teriyaki sauce. Yum.

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Melon Fanta (McDonald's Japan)

Melon Fanta (McDonald's Japan)

Melon Fanta, gimme all your sweet, refreshing goodness!

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Deluxe BBQ Chicken Burger (McDonald's Japan)

Deluxe BBQ Chicken Burger (McDonald's Japan)

This is like a modified Big Mac, there's a fried chicken patty, cheese, egg, and lettuce.

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Camembert Cheese Bites (McDonald's Oman)

Camembert Cheese Bites (McDonald's Oman)

These are like a modified mozzarella stick. Yum!

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Bubblegum Squash McFlurry (McDonald's Australia)

Bubblegum Squash McFlurry (McDonald's Australia)

This delicious dessert is made with soft serve, marshmallows, and bubble gum syrup.

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Twisty Pasta Breakfast (McDonald's Macau)

Twisty Pasta Breakfast (McDonald's Macau)

So the person who took this photo added meat to it, but my research tells me that this dish consists of vegetables, twisty pasta, egg, and hot chicken broth.

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Hokkaido Burger (McDonald's Japan)

Hokkaido Burger (McDonald's Japan)

There's a salmon burger, some bacon, and all topped off with a dollop of mashed potato.

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Ricotta and Spinach Bites (McDonald's Italy)

Ricotta and Spinach Bites (McDonald's Italy)

Ricotta cheese, and spinach brought into a holy union by frying. Omg.

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McDonald's BBQ Fries and Cheeseburger Royal (McDonald's Zurich)

McDonald's BBQ Fries and Cheeseburger Royal (McDonald's Zurich)

So these are basically just thick-cut fries with a BBQ dipping sauce. The Cheeseburger Royal is a staple in Europe. It's made with Swiss beef, cheddar, onions, pickle, ketchup, and mustard. Basically a Quarter Pounder with cheese.

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Macaroons (McDonald's Belgium)

Macaroons (McDonald's Belgium)

Yes, the desserts at McDonald's are clearly much more lit across the pond.

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Banh McMuffin (McDonald's Vietnam)

Banh McMuffin (McDonald's Vietnam)

Egg and cucumber on an English muffin. Sounds delish.

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Pineapple Cookie Crumble McFlurry (McDonald's Singapore)

Pineapple Cookie Crumble McFlurry (McDonald's Singapore)

Soft serve, pineapple flavor, and cookie bites bring this magical McFlurry to life.

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Bubur Ayam (McDonald's Indonesia)

Bubur Ayam (McDonald's Indonesia)

This is a porridge made with chicken strips, spring onions, sliced ginger, fried shallots, and diced chillies. Get in my belly.

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Kon Gemilang (McDonald's Malaysia)

Kon Gemilang (McDonald's Malaysia)

Kon Gemilang translates to "brilliant cone." The flavor is described as a sweet corn.

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Grilled Pork Banh Mi (McDonald's Vietnam)

Grilled Pork Banh Mi (McDonald's Vietnam)

This local Vietnamese staple gets the McDonald's treatment. It's cucumber, grilled pork, carrots, and a special sauce.

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Sweet Potato Fries (McDonald's Singapore)

Sweet Potato Fries (McDonald's Singapore)

Pretty simple, but you still can't get this in the US.

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Corn Cup (McDonald's Hong Kong)

Corn Cup (McDonald's Hong Kong)

And finally, instead of getting fries you can get a cup of corn at some Asian McDonald's.

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25 Dinner Ideas For People Who Are Trying To Eat Less Meat

by Hannah Loewentheil

Put these in your dinner rotation.

Katrin Davis/BuzzFeed

Mushroom and Spinach Lasagna

Mushroom and Spinach Lasagna

Layers of sautéed mushrooms, spinach, ricotta cheese, marinara sauce, and whole wheat lasagna noodles make this the ultimate comfort food. Get the recipe.

Little Spice Jar / Via littlespicejar.com

15-Minute Veggie Lo Mein

15-Minute Veggie Lo Mein

You could order take out...or you could whip up a big bowl of veggie lo mein just as quickly. Get the recipe.

Kitschen Cat / Via kitschencat.com

Baked Sweet and Sour Cauliflower

Baked Sweet and Sour Cauliflower

Nope, that's not chicken. It's cauliflower that's crispy on the outside and melt-in-your-mouth tender on the inside. Get the recipe.

Le Creme de la Crumb / Via lecremedelacrumb.com

Panko Crusted Zucchini Parmesan

Panko Crusted Zucchini Parmesan

These breaded zucchini cutlets are baked with fontina, mozzarella, and Parmesan cheese, and they're bound to be a hit with the whole family. Get the recipe.

Three Olives Branch / Via threeolivesbranch.com

Buffalo Cauliflower Tacos

Buffalo Cauliflower Tacos

Top these spicy tacos with anything from sliced avocado and jalapeño to sour cream and salsa. Get the recipe.

This Savory Vegan / Via thissavoryvegan.com

Herb Buttered Wild Mushroom Tagliatelle

Herb Buttered Wild Mushroom Tagliatelle

This rustic mushroom pasta gets its flavor from a sauce made of butter, white wine, lemon juice, sage, basil, and thyme. Get the recipe.

Half Baked Harvest / Via halfbakedharvest.com

Smoky White Bean Shakshuka

Smoky White Bean Shakshuka

This hearty Israeli recipe featuring cannelloni beans, whole canned tomatoes, baked eggs, and lots of spices is not only delicious, but it's also super affordable. A serving will set you back just $1.62. Get the recipe.

Budget Bytes / Via budgetbytes.com

Lentil and Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie

Lentil and Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie

Underneath that mound of creamy mashed sweet potatoes you'll find a filling layer of warm lentils, portobello mushrooms, and mixed veggies. Get the recipe.

Minimalist Baker / Via minimalistbaker.com

Spicy Vegetarian Ramen

Spicy Vegetarian Ramen

This savory broth is incredibly creamy without the help of any meat thanks to soy milk, dashi, soy sauce, and miso. You can get creative with your favorite ramen additions like soft boiled egg, kimchi, and bok choy. Get the recipe.

Just One Cookbook / Via justonecookbook.com

Hummus Flatbread with Sun Dried Tomato and Pesto

Hummus Flatbread with Sun Dried Tomato and Pesto

Flatbread gets a Mediterranean twist thanks to hummus (homemade or store bought), spinach, sun-dried tomato, pine nuts, and pesto. Don't forget a sprinkle of feta cheese for good measure. Get the recipe.

The Roasted Root / Via theroastedroot.net

It’s all very scientific.

From roasting white chocolate to grilling with mayonnaise.

BuzzFeed

Here at BuzzFeed, we come across a TON of cooking hacks every year.

Here at BuzzFeed, we come across a TON of cooking hacks every year.

Sometimes the hacks are genius, sometimes they're totally bizarre, but the ones that really excite us are the ones that are a combination of both.

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Roast your white chocolate to transform it into something nutty, browned, and infinitely better...

Roast your white chocolate to transform it into something nutty, browned, and infinitely better...

Just throw it onto a sheet pan, pop it into a hot oven, then watch how it magically transforms from bland, white chips into something golden, nutty, and fragrant.
You'll have to give it a few stirs as it cooks (and make sure you're using real white chocolate), but the technique is totally doable. See how to do it here.

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And roast your grains (like pasta and rice) before cooking them.

And roast your grains (like pasta and rice) before cooking them.

Another thing that people never think to roast (but should) is dried pasta. This simple step makes the pasta nutty and browned, and gives it a more complex flavor. Pair it with a simple sauce that lets the flavor shine and you may never go back to blonde pasta again. Learn how to do it here.

food52.com

Cure egg yolks to create Parmesan-like discs you can grate over salads, soups, and pastas.

Cure egg yolks to create Parmesan-like discs you can grate over salads, soups, and pastas.

Chefs have been grating these bad boys over pasta and salads for a few years now — but making them at home has slowly become more and more popular. You just bury egg yolks in a sandy mixture of salt and sugar, let them hang out for a few days, then pop them in the oven to dry. The result will be firm egg yolks that grate like Parmesan and add a savory pop of flavor to your favorite foods. Learn how to do it here.

Danny Kim / Via bonappetit.com

Cook your pasta in red wine to stain it a beautiful red color and infuse it with tons of flavor.

Cook your pasta in red wine to stain it a beautiful red color and infuse it with tons of flavor.

One of the more controversial cooking hacks of the past year came in the form of red wine pasta. Cooking pasta in red wine gives it a stunning burgundy color and strong, assertive wine flavor. If you're one of the people loving this idea, go ahead and use a full-bodied wine such as cabernet or merlot for this technique. See how to do it here.

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Start smoking untraditional foods on your stovetop — like popcorn, pasta, and chocolate...

Start smoking untraditional foods on your stovetop — like popcorn, pasta, and chocolate...

Smoking foods is not groundbreaking or too difficult to do at home — it's what you smoke that makes it unique. This year, chefs smoked all kinds of unusual things from cocktails to desserts. See how to set up your own indoor smoker here and start experimenting with your own creations.

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And speaking of popcorn, corn — along with several other grains — made a snack-worthy comeback last year.

And speaking of popcorn, corn — along with several other grains — made a snack-worthy comeback last year.

Sorghum, quinoa, and amaranth are just some of the grains that chefs are popping (or "puffing") these days. Many grains will puff into a crunchy snack when you heat them in a hot pan with a little bit of oil — just make sure you don't burn them. See how it's done here.

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Turn your slow cooker into a sous vide machine to save some serious cash.

Turn your slow cooker into a sous vide machine to save some serious cash.

Sous vide cooking made its way into the mainstream last year, but buying the equipment isn't always affordable. To get around this, people have been hacking their slow cookers. The process can be a bit labor intensive, but it's cheaper than buying the actual machine (and, if you're not concerned about ultra precision, you could use your slow cooker without even altering it). See how to do it here.

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Use mayonnaise to prevent things from sticking to the grill.

Use mayonnaise to prevent things from sticking to the grill.

Brushing expensive cuts of meat with mayonnaise might sound crazy, but chef Michael Cimarusti of Providence restaurant swears by it. A thin coating of regular mayonnaise will prevent fish (as well as a ton of other ingredients) from sticking to the grill — and it helps things brown evenly. See the full video here.

Mayo also made its way into several unexpected recipes last year including cakes, pancakes, and cookies. (I was equal parts horrified and intrigued as I discovered this was actually a thing.)

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For the best cookies, "ripen" the dough for several days.

For the best cookies, "ripen" the dough for several days.

I was always under the impression that cookies should be baked immediately after making the dough, but was proven wrong in 2017. The theory is that the dry ingredients get more time to soak up the wet and create a better texture. Not buying it? The inventor of the chocolate chip cookie herself swore by resting her dough for a full 36 hours.

Getty Images

Use your microwave to make instant potato chips.

Use your microwave to make instant potato chips.

I first tried this hack when I tested a recipe for two-minute sweet potato chips. I remembered seeings chefs use microwaves to make herb crisps, so I though it could work for potatoes. Well, it totally did, and it turns out microwaves are perfect for drying herbs and making potato chips in a matter of minutes. See how to do it here.

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Getty Images

Whip canned chickpea water into a magical eggless meringue.

Whip canned chickpea water into a magical eggless meringue.

This fluffy concoction (aka aquafaba) can be used as a vegan-friendly egg replacer in many baked goods, and to lighten things up. You just strain chickpeas, whip the liquid (you can add a bit of cream of tartar to make it easier), and use it in place of egg whites in many recipes. This was a trend that blew up on Pinterest last year, and for good reason. See how to make it here.

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Poach your scrambled eggs.

Poach your scrambled eggs.

This technique combines the best of two techniques to create the perfect scrambled eggs. The gentle heat of the water prevents the eggs from overcooking and makes sure you don't end up with a ton of unwanted browning. Learn how to do it here.

food52.com

Here's to trying new things in 2018!

Here's to trying new things in 2018!

Nickelodeon

“If I forgot to tell you, don’t show your junk to anyone who hasn’t asked to see it.”

When her Instagram account Crazy Jewish Mom went mega-viral, Kate Siegel was getting text conversations messaged to her by the hundreds.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

"Every week I'd get these screenshots of the lunatic convos people were having with their own parents," Kate continued. "Apparently, it's not just my mom who is comfortable giving her daughters' phone numbers to strange men in Starbucks!"

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

"I started posting them to @YourCrazyFamily and the submissions kept coming. It's basically family therapy for the whole internet," Siegel told BuzzFeed.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

"At least we can all commiserate and laugh at how ridiculous our families can be!"

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

...And ridiculous they are, indeed.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

But hey, they keep their word, right?

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They stay sharp while they age.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They try out their new personalities on us.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They ensure group texts stay exciting.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They know your soul.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They troll you on your birthday.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

You can't argue with their powerful maternal instincts.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They care about your love life – although yes, usually too much.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They make sure you know exactly how sick with worry they were.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

They'll never stop supporting your dreams.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

And they know it's never too late to teach you what's right.

Instagram: @yourcrazyfamily

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