Monday, September 12, 2011

10 Relatively Easy Things To Give Up

Chuck the Chewing 

We appreciate fresh breath as much as the next person, but gum chewing has its downsides. In large amounts, the artificial sweetener aspartame is rumored to have negative health side effects. Another sweetener, sorbitol, is often used in hospitals -- as a laxative. Plus, gum chewing puts strain on the jaw and facial muscles, and causes you to swallow excess air, which can result in bloating and gas. 

Pass on the Plastic (Bags)

If you don’t already, start shopping with a reusable canvas bag (or two) of your own. (Bonus: People will think you're smart and listen to NPR.) You’ll never re-use all those plastic bags under your kitchen sink anyway, and even if you did, they're no good for the environment.

Lose the Snooze (Button)

You always wake up before your alarm. (If not, consider letting more natural light into your bedroom. It makes waking up much easier.) So get up and use those extra minutes you’d normally be lying in bed not sleeping to eat breakfast, tidy up, reply to emails, read the paper, or concoct a plan for the day.

Say "I Don't" to the iPod

This may not be music to your ears, but sometimes you just need to be quiet. When you find yourself in a situation where you’d normally listen to music – on the ride to work, walking around town, at the gym, traveling – ditch the headphones and just be. You may just become more in tune with yourself and your environment.

Bye-Bye to Your Ba-Ba

Drink water, but not the bottled kind that costs money. Bottled water is no friend to your wallet or the environment, and it’s actually not any safer than tap water. (In fact, most bottled waters contain tap water.) Instead, refill a BPA-free plastic or metal reusable water bottle throughout the day and drink to the impending resurrection.

Quit Lunching With Your Laptop

Follow the advice of author and productivity expert Tony Schwartz and "Take Back Your Lunch." Eating while preoccupied by a TV or computer screen has unsavory consequences: It can be messy; it takes the pleasure out of eating; and it often causes us to overeat. Abandon your desk, even if it's just for an empty conference room. If the weather's nice, get outside and repair to a bench. Actually talk instead of emailing.

Forget Facebook (at Least During the Workday)

Social networking’s a time suck, especially when we’re on the computer also trying to complete other, more important tasks -- like the ones for which we get paid. Research also suggests that the constant happiness our friends project on Facebook may actually make us depressed. Set ground rules for checking Facebook twice every weekday – like once before you leave for work in the morning and once before you make dinner. You’ll be surprised by how much more you really got done. (And by how much you really didn't miss.)

Reign In (Reality) TV

We all do it, whether it’s snarking on a Bravo reality show that makes us question all of humanity, or rolling our eyes as we devour the toxic text of a celebrity gossip blog. And really, what do we get out of it? It’s the equivalent of eating Marshmallow Fluff: Tasty in theory, but nauseating in practice. Spend your time engaged with information (remember literature?) that’s actually interesting and beneficial.

Exorcise the Elevator

The Good Lord (or someone) gave you those legs for a reason. Get some exercise by taking the stairs instead of the elevator at work, home, the train station, gym, department store, and anywhere you go for an appointment that has stairs. You’ll burn calories, tighten your butt, and won’t have to engage in awkward elevator small talk. (And you won't be the person who rides the elevator up one flight. That person annoys everyone. Are we right?)

1 comment:

  1. Aww man.... you have too many things on this list i like. Ugh.... :=)


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