Life

11 Easy Habits That Start Improving Your Life Immediately

Whether you’re looking to be happier, more interesting, more healthy, or have a more dynamic life, these 11 habits will help you get closer to all of that today.

  1. Meditate for 15 minutes. Regular meditation has been shown to reduce stress, reduce anxiety, enhance self-awareness and attention span, and reduce age-related memory loss, amongst many other benefits. These days there are countless apps and classes that guide you through the process, but really, all you need to to do is sit in silence and focus on your breathing. Simple and you can reap enormous benefits from zero effort.
  2. Read at least 10 pages of a book. If you want to make yourself more interesting, read 10 pages every day. Some quick math: 10 pages works out as 3650 pages a year. Given the average length of a book is bought 250 pages, that’s at least 14 new books worth of knowledge you’d be taking on a year. That could be 14 books on psychology, history, philosophy, biographies, whatever. Think about what you could do with that kind of new knowledge to leverage. Whether it’s becoming more charismatic by having more things to discuss or simply learning for personal development’s sake. This is one of the easiest, and most important habits you can ever build.
  3. Even better, read 10 pages of classic fiction. The classics have stood the test of time for a reason — they have the most to teach us about being alive. Whether it’s confronting questions of morality, relationships, happiness, or just how to live, we still have countless things to learn from the likes of Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, and George Eliot. Reading classic fiction has even been shown to help increase your ability to empathize with others, which to many of the great authors, was seen as the chief strength of the medium itself. If you want to learn more about people, and yourself, pick up a classic today.
  4. Exercise. Regular exercise has an innumerable number of benefits. In short, when done properly, it helps your body physically in just about every way imaginable. But most importantly of all, it’s been shown to make you happier. Exercise in whatever way you choose—run, box, climb, swim, lift weights. Whatever you want. It all helps. Take care of your body, and in return, it’ll take care of you.
  5. Stretch. Our body adopts the shapes we put it in, and most of us put it in the shape of a chair. Hunching our shoulders forward, tightening our biceps, slouching forward from the waist up. This seems harmless, even comfortable at the time, but with age, quickly becomes painful back problems that are very hard to remedy. Fix this by stretching your tight muscles. Not only will you get ahead of the game aging, but you’ll also gain increased flexibility and circulation.
  6. Eat a meal that doesn’t promote inflammation. Cut down on the booze, sugar, trans fats and refined carbohydrates and instead stock up on some fresh vegetables and (not processed) meat/fish. Doing this will reduce inflammation in your body, which basically means your body will be better at combating infections. But most of all, by cutting out the foods above, you’ll also lose weight. An incredibly simple win-win.
  7. Go for a walk, preferably in nature. Everyone from Tolstoy to Freud has spoken about the value of walks, and now science is catching up. Regular walking has been shown to boost immune function, ease joint pain, and counteract the effects of weight-promoting genes, to say nothing of the clarity it lent the great minds of the past. Try going for a walk every day. And to make it even better, get out into nature when you do it. Studies show it helps improve mental health – particularly stress and mood.
  8. Instead of thinking about everything you want, consider how little you need. The more you compare your life with others, the less happy you will be. For some reason, we’re innately wired to think about more. More money, more girls, more muscles, and we constantly seek out (and are presented with) examples of this kind of lifestyle. We’re usually told the alternative to this is gratitude, but I think I better way is to just pay attention to how little you need. When you do, gratitude falls into place. When you pay attention to how little you need, what you soon notice is that it isn’t the money, girls or muscles that make you happy, but instead the small, every day “boring” moments that you used to never pay attention to.
  9. Invite a friend to do something. Spending time with people whose company you enjoy is better for you than almost anything else. In fact, it’s been shown to help with mental and physical health, particularly when it comes to combating dementia. And its also, y’know, fun. Take charge of your social life and make sure you’re seeing someone every week.
  10. Talk to a girl you haven’t talked to before and ask her out. Arguably the hardest of the bunch but also the simplest. In whatever method you can find – online, at a bar, in a store – talk to a girl you haven’t spoken to before and ask her out. If you make this into a habit, everything in your dating life will fall into place as you gain new and more frequent experience. Don’t overthink it, just do it every day. If you find it too hard to approach people in person, try online dating first.
  11. Push your comfort zone in some new way. The more you expand your comfort zone, but within your mind and within your life, the more you will open up new and interesting opportunities within your life and within your character. It’s a simple, everyday habit that has you bringing an awareness to the moments in which your avoiding “trying new things” or are hiding from your anxiety – and once you have that awareness, you do the opposite of what you normally do. In doing so, you bring a new life in being.