Article Thumbnail

The Simple (and Not-So-Simple) Changes That Might Actually Improve Your Life — According to Reddit, at Least

Time to build a sauna in the basement, I guess

With this hell of a year coming to a close, everyone deserves to reflect on their accomplishments. What better way to celebrate these achievements — and motivate ourselves to keep on keeping on — than by reading through the positive life changes that others made this year. Below, we’ve rounded up passages from this Reddit thread that asks people about the positive adjustments they made over the course of this year (sic, obviously, throughout).

This Person Took a Shvitz

“I put a sauna in my basement,” commenter FormerFireJuggler writes. “I’m thinking about buying a silk robe next.” Later in the comments, FormerFireJuggler explains how his purchase has improved his like in some less-than-expected ways: “I lost 15 pounds, started drinking less, haven’t gotten sick, am less stressed out and my ballsack skin is the softest it’s ever been.”

This Person Moved Into a Shared Office Space

“I switched from working from home by myself to working with other people in a shared office environment,” commenter SerPuissance writes. “It’s so much better for my mental health; I can come and go as I please, the people aren’t my colleagues, and although we help each other, we’re not professionally involved and there’s no politics or drama. It’s like working in a room with all of your mates, similar to how university was in a way. I think that, considering the other difficulties and annoyances of this year, it saved me from a lot of problems and kept me more even keel.”

This Person Started Pilot Training

“I started flight school,” commenter Hurock writes. “Because of a refusal more than 10 years ago — I didn’t get admitted into a government-funded program — I thought that I couldn’t be a pilot. Well, it seems that I can. I mean, I’m not a pilot yet, but I can somewhat fly a plane. The big lesson is that effort and perseverance are damn important. The past doesn’t matter: Just be who you want to be tomorrow.”

This Person Quit Being a Pushover

“I stopped being a doormat (too nice) and started putting myself first,” commenter cherielee writes. “I generally just stopped caring what people think of and expected from me, which is sometimes easy to say and hard to practice. I left a four-year relationship that I was very unhappy in, and lost 88 pounds by living a more active life.”

When commenter Iceman2357 responds by explaining that they can’t muster up the motivation to make the same much-needed changes, fellow commenter awesomeroy comes through with a lengthy Nike-style motivational speech:

“Motivation is a crappy thing to rely on when it comes to changing something in your life, because motivation comes and goes. Just do it. Do it when you’re tired. Do it when you don’t want to. Do it when you have the extra time and money. Make it something that you HAVE to do. Make it automatic. You have to breath every second of every day. You have to eat at least every day. You have to use the restroom once or twice a day. Make the life improvements that you’re striving for as automatic as those biological things.”

“You have to wake up at 5:30 or 6 a.m.

“You have to work out or go for a 30-minute walk every morning.

“You have to meditate and value yourself every day for five to 10 minutes.

“You have to eat a healthy breakfast with protein and healthy fats.

“Screw motivation. Screw courage. Don’t just talk about it. BE about it. Talk the talk, but you also need to WALK the walk. It’s super easy for me to type this, think this and give this advice, but it’s super hard for me to take my own advice. My excuse is that I’m going through a divorce. I don’t have a set schedule for when I get my girls, or if I’m picking them up, or if she’s picking them up. I should just wake up at 5 a.m. then, right? I should do what I need to do, be finished with my morning routine by 7 a.m. If she drops them off, cool. If I have to go get them, cool. Yeah. I’m-a do that. Fuck all this noise.”

This Person Got Rid of Their Useless Shit

“I got into minimalism,” appropriately-named commenter NonNeediness writes. “I downsized my wardrobe from 190 things to 74 things. I downsized my watch collection from 11 watches to two (and soon to be one) watches. I got rid of a bunch of other stuff and decluttered 18 year’s worth of stuff from my room back home. It really helped me move on from the past and recognize the power that I have over my life in general. Plus, the next time I move will be a lot easier. Getting dressed is more efficient, too, because I have less clothes to choose from. I’m also much more motivated to clean my apartment now.”

This Person Learned a New Language

“I started learning Spanish,” commenter andrewTvJW writes. “I have a private tutor who I meet with a couple times a week. It changed a ton of my life: There are several people who greet me every day in another language. One quarter of my life is in a second language. It’s not something I’ve ever experienced before.”

This Person Quit TV

“I dropped the cable service,” commenter xBloBx writes. “I now have more time to cook, clean the house, have discussions with my significant other, go outside and so on. I also saved money. Some people switch from cable to antennas for free stations — Netflix and what not — but I didn’t turn on my TV at all for seven months.”

This Person Starting Pampering Themself

“I started taking better hygienic care of myself,” commenter Darth_marsupial writes. “I started showering more consistently, getting nice haircuts, dressing much nicer — which was helped by losing weight, since I had to get a new wardrobe lol — clipping my nails, using high-quality shampoo and conditioner, not shampooing my hair every day, smelling nicer and so on.”

This Person Moved In With Their BFFs

“I moved in with my best friends,” commenter kaybaby00 writes. “I never knew that coming home to positive energy could change my outlook so much. I find myself smiling more often (for no reason), enjoying hearing footsteps in the mornings and having people who look out for me.”

This Person Did It All

“2018 has been the best year of my life so far,” commenter G-Gscrub writes. “I hit rock bottom last year, so maybe it’s just the contrast. But I did put in a ton of effort to become a better person and made a ton of positive changes. Here are the things I did this year:

  • Stopped going to college for a degree that I had no interest in.
  • Stopped selling weed.
  • Stopped smoking weed.
  • Stopped trying to get back together with my first girlfriend, who moved on with her life while I remained stuck.
  • Started working out every day.
  • Started chasing my dreams instead of girls who didn’t want me.
  • Taught myself how to swim.
  • Started swimming everyday.
  • Got one of my dream jobs (beach lifeguard). I never thought I’d ever get to do something that fun, but man, I got lucky with the lead lifeguard there seeing something in me, and that job meant so much to me that I can’t even describe it.
  • I made peace with my ex and moved on with my life.
  • I got really fucking tan.
  • I joined the Coast Guard.
  • I moved 956 miles from home.
  • I learned hundreds of valuable life skills and how to adult.
  • I have my first apartment, and I’m getting paid enough that I don’t even need a roommate, and I’m not even 20 yet.
  • I met so many good people, and I feel like I’m actually making a difference, and I’m training for the job I dreamed of when I was kid.

“I wanted to die last year. I wanted to fucking kill myself. I was going to do it. I had a plan. I was going to take a dive off of a parking garage. I didn’t do it. Something would always get in the way, or I’d put it off another day (too lazy to kill myself, LMAO). I’d say to myself, Man you’re fucking over your family, and I don’t know, shit just worked out for me. I’m where I’m at today, and my life is 110 percent different, and I’m happy. But fuck, I got lucky with opportunities and good people that loved me. But I also changed my perspective and became sick of being worthless and not actually going for opportunities. No one did that for me. Everyone thought I was crazy and weird for swimming so much until I got the beach lifeguard job. I wanted to be better, and shit just worked out.”