Getting older isn’t always a bad thing, especially when it comes with maturity and wisdom to lead a more happy and fulfilling life. Here are some habits that I feel we can give up before we turn 30 (or now, if you are already over 30). Let me know what habits I’ve left out in the comments at the bottom.
Relying on other people to make you happy
You might not even realise it, but you may have a dependence on others to make you ‘feel’ happy.
- Do you feel unhappy or agitated when you’re alone?
- Do you suffer serious FOMO when your friends go out without you?
- If you have a partner, are you only happy when they are entertaining you?
- Do you get depressed when you’re not socialising?
If you can answer yes to some of the above, then you might be too reliant on others to make you happy. Here are some tips:
- Practise being alone, and think of the positives. Remember that missing out is only temporary — there will always be another opportunity to socialise.
- When practising being alone, switch your phone off completely. No distractions.
- Play your favourite music, or just some relaxing meditative music.
- Try meditation or yoga.
- Take responsibility for any problems in your life. Don’t blame others — you always have the power to make a change in your life.
- I repeat: you always have the power to make a change in your life.
Going to clubs every weekend
Going clubbing was fun in our early 20’s. And it can still be fun. But going every weekend is an addiction. Working a full day on Friday, then staying up until 3am at a club, sleeping in until 11am on Saturday (functioning less than average due to the hangover), and then repeating it again on Saturday night is not only unhealthy — it is such a waste of a weekend. Instead, you could be meeting new people, enjoying nature and the outdoors, or trying a new satisfying hobby. And you will feel super relaxed by Sunday evening.
Those late night McDonald’s and eating unhealthily in general
Life is hectic, and there is no time for cooking any more. But your health is important, and the later in life you wait to start eating healthily, the less likely it is that you’ll ever achieve a healthy state. While there are so many different and opposing views on diets and what defines healthy, I think very few can argue that late night fast food such as McDonald’s offers anything good for your body. If you must go for fast food, choose healthy options which are available on UberEats and similar: fresh salads, or pure meals such as fresh meats and vegetables.
Oh, and avoid sugar! Seriously!
Being bitchy (having a deliberate nastiness or spite) to others has become synonymous with gay people, but it really should be. You might think that it’s your style to be bitchy, but it is a form of self-defence from others, rooting from a deeper unhappiness. It might seem fun, but other people (gay and straight) will secretly like you less for it.
Money doesn’t bring happiness, but it sure makes life easier. Now is the time to spend some money on your future by saving and investing. Compound interest is a powerful thing, and something that can’t be left too late.
For example, if you start investing R1500 per month for 30 years (increasing your monthly amount with inflation), you could potentially save up to R6 million by the time you are 60.
So, cut back on the brand name clothing, don’t waste money on expensive fast foods, avoid the flashy car, and aim for financial freedom.
Being closed minded
Being gay means you really have no excuse to be closed minded to others. Stop judging other people by race, religion, sexuality, transgenderism, etc. Just remember that each human has their own story, and their own challenges. Open your heart and mind to others, and you might open up a whole new world that you didn’t know existed.
Using your cellphone in front of others and during meals
This is a really bad habit. If you are sitting with others at a table, and you are using your phone — you are addicted. If you have your phone on the table (screen up or down) — you are addicted. Over the years, I have also become addicted to my cellphone. It is the first thing I look at when I wake up, the last thing before I sleep, and it goes with me everywhere during the day (including the toilet). I’m going to try to break the habit by putting the phone on silent when I’m with others, and keep it in my pocket, or even in a cupboard if possible.
Worrying about your age all the time
It’s natural to get older — it is what makes us human. You’ll find that the wrinkles might start to show, it’s a bit harder to keep that slim abdomen, and those pesky grey hairs start rearing their heads on yours. But keep in mind, your friend group is also ageing with you, and they are going through the same changes. Much like puberty, just accept that it is nature’s way of making sure nothing stays the same for too long.
What have I left out?
Share your own habits in the comments below. What else should we give up before we turn 30? What do you think above the habits I’ve mentioned?