Throughout my young life, one of the most important things I have noticed is that the smallest decisions we make each day tend to have some of the most profound consequences on our overall state of being.
However, sometimes unhealthy habits become so routine, we forget to take a moment to think about the value these choices have on our futures, and even our day-to-day lives.
Below are seven decisions from which I have chosen to refrain. The benefits have become clear almost immediately in my attitude and overall wellbeing.
1) Excessive Social Media
One of the first things you do each morning is roll over and unlock your phone. Someone you barely remember from that party freshman year announces her engagement on Facebook, and soon, you’re 20 profile pictures deep into her past, questioning why you’re still single.
You then proceed to scroll through every missed Instagram picture until you’re at the exact same snap of any one of the Kardashians’ multiple selfies, right before you turned the lights out.
Instead, silence your alarm and pull yourself out of the sheets. Stretching every morning reduces muscle tension and increases energy levels. Eating protein within 30 minutes after waking up accelerates the metabolism and speeds up the weight loss process.
Changing up your morning routine could transform your entire day.
2) Worrying About Nothing
Don’t feel the constant need to make sure everything will fall perfectly into place in life. Let events, changes and new experiences shape you without being preoccupied with the future.
Know that, sometimes, things are just completely out of your control. Worry less about making more and more money (if you love what you do, this will come naturally).
Understand that events in life occur in processes, and while difficult times will happen, they will ultimately end, as well. It will all work out fine — I promise.
3) Becoming Complacent
When was the last time you tried a new dish at that same restaurant you’ve frequented since moving into your apartment? I get that the buffalo chicken wrap is out of this world, but the second page of the menu may unlock secrets you’ve never even imagined.
Go out into the world and try something you’ve never done before, like yoga, rock climbing or improv classes. Google how to thank the barista who speaks a different language at your local coffee shop.
These small, new choices you make in your life will not only shape your perspective of life and its different meanings, but also help you to discover new interests and passions.
4) Bumming It To School Or Work
Rather than straightening your hair, you throw it up in a bun. Instead of hitting the gym bright and early, you throw on last week’s sweats and rush to catch the train.
Doing this sets you up for failure. Opt for some clothes that will stand out during your morning commute or at the 9 am meeting with the general manager. If you dress for success, no setback will make you feel any less than perfect.
Remember that Beyoncé only has 24 hours in a day, too. If Bey can look that good every day, can’t we?
5) Binge-Watching Netflix And Skipping The Gym
You discovered there is a season two of “Orange is the New Black,” but that does not mean you have to watch it all in one day, no matter how hard it may be to refrain.
As easy as it is to cuddle up to your laptop and a bottle of red, the satisfaction of hitting the gym for just one hour each day will have limitless effects on the body and soul.
Besides, Piper and company isn’t going anywhere. You might as well space out your weekly programming so you can look forward to treating yourself after some hard work and sweat, rather than feeling left without a purpose in-between seasons.
6) Caving Into Temptations
Whether it’s losing five pounds, saving up for a new pair of boots or acing a final exam, humans set their minds to goals on a daily basis.
Immediately after placing these goals, the world seems to throw us boundaries and obstacles that inhibit us from gaining what it is we truly want. For instance, your roommate ordering a pizza, or your friends going out for happy hour.
Endless distractions, cravings and temptations stop us from sticking to what it is we set our minds to. Learn what these challenges look like and conquer them.
Treat each day like a challenge, and congratulate yourself each day you become one step closer to your goal. If you do fall off track, get back up. Don’t let one bad day make you feel incapable, or anything less than worthy.
The saying your fourth grade teacher had still holds true: If you can dream it, you can achieve it.
7) Building Someone Else’s Dream Instead of Your Own
George Bernard Shaw once wrote,
Life is not about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.
Humans are not born on a track. We aren’t just given paths to take and lives to exist in, whether we like it or not. This will limit you from focusing on your life’s deeper meaning.
If there is any aspect of your life you are not happy with, you need to take the steps in order to change it rather than remaining idle. Change has to come from you. Do something about it; cause hell and fight for what you deserve because nobody is going to give you anything in this world but you.