By Dan Johnson

As 2014 ebbs away, many people mark the occasion by making resolutions for the New Year ahead of us. Some swear off various vices, while others vow to exercise more, eat right or otherwise improve their health.

For my part, few resolutions could do more to boost one’s spirits and well-being than setting a goal to enjoy more time in the great outdoors with family and friends.

During nearly three decades of writing about fishing, I’ve spoken with countless anglers from all walks of life. Many shared the same thoughts on the benefits of breaking away from the everyday grind to savor time on the water or ice.

When asked to explain why they fish or what they enjoy most about it, many have confided that the sport’s most healing aspects include peace, quiet and a chance to spend quality time with people they hold dear.

What better way, then, to set your sights on a great new year than making a resolution to fish more often?

True, many resolutions fall by the wayside, and folks today seem busier than ever with work and other commitments. But if you shoot for a realistic, attainable goal such as taking one extra trip a month—even if it’s a short outing after work—making it happen is infinitely possible. Simply keeping your gear ready to go, and reclaiming time from other pastimes such as watching television, can also help make it happen.

In the end, whatever your resolutions and dreams may be for the year ahead, here’s wishing you the best of success in making them come true.