We all have bad habits. Those who say they don’t, well, they aren’t to be trusted. The word bad is quite subjective and obviously some bad habits are much worse than others [i.e. cocaine addictions are a bit harsher than, say, nail-biting]. But a bad habit is a bad habit, and no matter what your vice may be, your life will inexplicably get better and healthier if you cut out these habits and replace them with good ones.
My bad habits are on the less extreme side, but they are still not good for my mental or physical health. So my mini-lution for days 22-24 was to break some of my bad habits.
Bad Habit 1: Sleeping with my make up on
Sleeping in your make up is not going to kill you, per say, but it will kill your complexion! After a long day, your face is full of debris from the day [smoke, dirt, sweat] and make-up can trap these pesky elements in your skin. If you don’t wash your face or remove your make-up, your face becomes a breeding ground for bacteria, which leads to break outs, black heads and oily skin. If you forget to take it off [we all have, hello late nights with the girls!] don’t fret yet. Washing your face first thing in the morning can help to remove some of the built up bacteria caused by make up and the night.
Bad Habit 2: Binging on weekends
Now, I don’t nearly drink as much as I used to [thank god for growing up!], but I do tip the bottle more frequently on weekends than I do any other time during the week. The weekends, for many people my age, are the only “free nights” they have to go out and unwind from a stressful school/work week with a few drinks. Well, the word few is very subjective, and one person’s few may be two drinks while another’s few may be 7. Mine falls somewhere in the middle. Binging on anything is hazardous to your health, but binging on alcohol can be fatal, not to mention can lead to serious weight gain in your abdomen.
So, if you are like me, and don’t want to completely cut your ties with alcohol, stick to one or two drinks on the weekend and drink moderately throughout the week. A study published by the Harvard School of Public Health found that drinking moderately helps to regulate insulin in your body, could prevent your joints from rheumatoid arthritis, and those who drink report higher levels of physical and mental health than those who don’t! To feel better, have just one drink instead of three and you’ll see some real health benefits!
I am not saying that those who choose not to drink should for health benefits. This is merely for those who enjoy drinking. This is in no way advocating the use of alcohol, just providing some recent facts.
Bad Habit 3: Biting my nails
Nail biting is one of the most common habits around and doesn’t affect just one particular age group. People ranging from age 3-89 can be nail biters, male or female, black or white. I am a nail biter, tried and true. Nail biters are said to be stressed, nervous, hungry and anxious. [I certainly fit the mold of an over stressed, nervous wreck who's always on a diet!] Not all nail biters have these commonalities, but most do wish they didn’t have this habit. Nail biting is not only an unsightly bad habit, it can be rather painful if you aren’t careful.
In the medical world, there is actually a name and tag for this irritating habit, it’s known as onychophagia, which affects nearly half of the teenagers in the world and more than 30% of children. Many doctors argue that children begin this habit early on because of their oral fixation growing up that comes from weaning them off bottles and pacifiers. Many also argue that teenagers, who are often very high-strung and going through hormonal changes, nail bite to help ease nerves. Either way, nail biting can be hazardous to children, as there has been a proven link between children who nail bite and those who suffer from lead posioning. So knock this habit out the door and run, work out, or chew gum to ease your anxious mind.
Bad Habit 4: Not eating breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day…so why is it so easy to skip? Even though I’m not skipping everyday like I used to, there are still some mornings when I run out the door with nothing more than a cup of coffee. And by lunch time, I am so ravenous I end up eating my lunch and then some, stuffing myself to uncomfort for the rest of the day. Not only does breakfast fill you up and prevent you from derailing your entire diet at lunch, breakfast also provides us with many other benefits.
Researchers have found that people who eat breakfast have a better chance of losing weight and keeping it off than those who do not. Studies have also proven that people who eat breakfast are more alert and do better on tests and work assignments than those who skip it. Eating breakfast works to improve memory loss and positively affects the way the brain absorbs and uses new information. Many breakfast foods, like whole wheat toast, eggs, yogurt and cereal are also very high in fiber, protein, calcium and vitamin D, which have mind and body boosting powers. So break your habit of skipping the morning meal for a slimmer waistline and healthier bones!
Bad habits don’t have to define you, so instead of giving into your impulsion to bite your nails, kick that nasty habit to the curb and replace it with a healthier habit, such as working out when your stressed or allowing yourself a few extra minutes in the morning for some toast. You’ll be shocked at how much better you feel [and look!]