Like many others, I made a resolution to exercise more this year. But apparently, many others made the same resolution; when my friend Lisa and I went to our local gym, we found it to be PACKED! There were actually lines of people waiting to use the treadmills and ellipticals. People were taking numbers like in a bakery or at the deli counter. (Alright, I’m making that up. But it was really, really crowded.)

As we all know, even the best-laid plans often fall apart before we even hit February. According to data from Strava, a social network for athletes that analyzed more than 31.5 million fitness records from its users, the second Friday in January is the day when many of those best-laid plans go bye-bye. I hate to say it, but the second Friday in January is today, January 10.

Now I don’t want to bring anyone down … because there are ways to maintain your goals. According to,

  • Set a concrete goal that you truly believe you can achieve. (And don’t try to do a million things at once.)
  • Don’t fret the occasional slip-up. (We’re all human; give yourself a break!)
  • Reward yourself. (You don’t have to achieve something humongous; even small achievements are good.)
  • Figure out what triggered the lapse and try to change it. (If something’s not working, change it and make it work.)
  • Use the buddy system. (Enlist a friend or family member’s help. There’s strength in numbers.)

How to be the best NCP panel member

We hope you set a concrete goal of being the best panel member you can be! Here are some (familiar) tips to help you become an even better panelist this year:

Scan as soon as you can. Whenever you can, scan the products from your shopping trips as soon as you get home. Scanning your products immediately and while you’re putting them away will keep them fresh in your mind, so you won’t miss any of the items. To make it even easier, use your register receipt as a guide.

Scan it all. Scan everything that has a barcode on it. Also, record your purchases of non-barcoded items using the Barcode Reference Booklet if you have a scanner, or if you have the NCPMobile App, the on-board Non-Barcoded Items feature.

Scan purchases from other household members, too. Whether or not you do all the scanning or other household members get in on the act, make sure everyone’s purchases get scanned. If there’s one designated scanner in the house, to ensure no purchase gets overlooked, have everyone leave his/her shopping receipts in a common area, such as the kitchen table. The designated scanner can use them as a guide.

Scan the correct store name or store type. When recording your purchases, it is important to let us know what stores you are shopping at to ensure that your information is accurate. We know this can get tricky with many online stores. So please make sure to use the correct store name or store type!

Happy Anniversary To NCP!
On another note, we have some cool news to share. The National Consumer Panel just celebrated our 10th anniversary on January 2. We could not have done it without you! Thank you for your dedication and cooperation. We really appreciate it. Here’s to another 10 great years!

Have a great weekend, and keep working on those resolutions!

Best Regards,

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