Changing your life is hard, isn’t it? I mean… you have to talk about your feelings and handle real problems like emotional stress… or deal with communication problems in your relationships. You have to exercise and eat healthy. You have to actually do stuff.
Well here’s a simple list of ridiculously easy things you can do right now that will have a dramatic effect on your life. Some of them might surprise you!
1. Buy an incredible bed and an incredible pair of shoes.
You literally spend your entire day in one or the other.
I was reminded of this one today because I woke up with my back killing me. If you sleep better, you feel better. The benefits include better health, a better sex life, less chronic pain, increased muscle growth, clearer thoughts, better memory, you name it — If you don’t have a decent bed you’re totally missing out.
We spend at least 1/3 of our lives sleeping. You might as well spend it well.
The other 2/3 of our lives are spent sitting, standing, walking, running, moving, and it’s not always on sandy beaches or soft jungle paths. Usually we’re on some form of concrete — and if you shoes suck — your body won’t be so happy with you.
2. Make your bed
Speaking of incredible beds, one of the seemingly silliest and simple things you can do to improve your life starting now — is to make your bed.
It’s nice to start your day with a win.
And on tough days it may be the only win you’ll have — at least you can say you were on the scoreboard.
From a psychological stand point it creates momentum for your day, helps to organize your life, gives you a feeling of control, and reminds you that you actually CAN accomplish things you set out to do (no matter how small they seem).
3. Buy a water pick
One of the greatest investments I’ve made in the past year was a $50 water pick from Target. This thing will change your life!
Let’s face it, most people don’t floss unless it’s the day of a dentist appointment.
“See, doc, I flossed!”
Of course without flossing you run into problems like halitosis, cavities, and gum disease… but let me scare the hell out of you with the latest research and why flossing is probably the best thing you can do for your health today:
- A 22-65% greater risk of dementia. Forget to floss? Don’t worry you’ll forget a lot of other things, too. (Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 2012; Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 2013)
- 3x greater chance to develop pneumonia. I’d rather not have to go to the dentist AND the doctor.(Annals of Periodontology, 2003; Journal of Periodontology, 2013; Gerondontology, 2013)
- 53% of men with erectile dysfunction also apparently don’t floss. While correlation and causation are not always perfect, the large majority of men with erectile dysfunction didn’t floss versus the 23% of men who did not have ED. (The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 2011; The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 2012; Journal of Clinical Periodontology, 2012)
- Brain abscesses! Seriously, not flossing can be fatal? As if the erectile dysfunction wasn’t bad enough. (Journal of Clinical Periodontology, 2011)
- Diabetes. (Annals of Periodontology, 1998; Diabetes Care, 2010; Diabetes & Metabolism Journal, 2012; Journal of Applied Oral Science, 2013)
- You’re 4.5 times more likely to have kidney disease. 27 times more if you’re over 60. (American Journal of Kidney Disease, 2008; Journal of Periodontology, 2010)
- Heart Disease! ( Journal of General Internal Medicine, 2008; Current Opinion in Nephrology and Hypertension, 2010; General Dentistry, 2012; Circulation, 2012)
- Pregnancy Complications. Including low birth weights, preterm birth, and inflammation of the placenta. (Journal of Clinical Nursing, 2010; Ginekologia Polska, 2012; Dental Clinics of North America, 2013)
- Ulcers. Yeesh… are we done yet? (Gut, 1995; American Journal of Public Health, 2002; Clinical Microbiology Reviews, 2010)
- Cancer. But to be fair, what doesn’t give you cancer these days? (Dental Update, 2010; South Asian Journal of Cancer, 2012; Cancer Prevention Research, 2013)
I’m going to go floss right now.
4. Drink Water. Now.
Most people think thirst is the first sign of dehydration — and actually — if you’re thirsty it’s already too late.
The first sign of dehydration is fatigue.
If you’re struggling to get through your day it’s time to drink up. You’ll have more energy, vibrancy, and at the very least you’ll start peeing out some of the toxins in your body.
What’s the correct amount? Half of your body weight in ounces per day.
The easiest way I accomplish this is by carrying a huge bottle of water with me everywhere I go. Don’t leave the house without your phone, money, keys, and water. A good buddy of mine keeps a case of waters in the backseat of his car — which is also handy.
(Although recent studies have shown maybe leaving plastic bottles of water in the sun is not the greatest thing to do so… do your your best to mitigate the damage!)
5. The No-Phone Rule
My friends and family instituted this rule around the breakfast/lunch/dinner table and it was absolutely life-changing.
The way it works is when you’re out to eat, everyone puts their phones in the center of the table. The first person to touch their phone pays the entire bill.
What magically happens? No one touches their phone and we talk… actually talk… what a concept!
It’s funny how we live in a world so connected but we’ve never been more disconnected from each other. Get present to what’s happening right in front of you.
6. Close The Tabs
As if it wasn’t bad enough to have one screen with 80 browser tabs open — we now opt for dual screen set ups so we can have 800 browser tabs open… all in the name of “efficiency”.
Just because something is efficient doesn’t mean it’s effective.
The most important trait of any successful person is the ability to focus.
If there’s a task you need to accomplish you can do it in a fraction of the time if you would just close your email inbox, your Facebook pages, that article you’re saving for later, Reddit, and whatever other… pictures… you may be looking at (*ahem* gentlemen?).
This goes for life away from your computer as well. A sure way to make yourself unhappy is to think about family when you’re at work, and work when you’re with family.
When you’re at work, work. When you’re with family, be with family. Close the other mental tabs that are running in the background. You can always pull them back up again.
I think sometimes we forget how the simple things make the biggest difference.
We’re always looking for some trick or revolutionary tactic that will change our lives when really it comes down to a couple of basic disciplines practiced consistently.