Lent, a time when Christians go without certain things or take up positive additions to their lives, is here. I am Catholic so for me Lent has always been a time when I am able to give up certain pleasures or bad habits in order to become a better person and grow closer to Christ by the time Easter rolls around.
Now anyone can technically use Lent as a tool to jumpstart their self-improvement and make some positive change in themselves. When deciding what to give up or add, it’s best to think of something difficult, impactful and buzz worthy.
Why not? Spend a few minutes a day acknowledging the Man upstairs and remembering of the blessing you have on the daily. And yes, asking for a parking spot counts.
2. Talk that Thankfulness.
For these forty days, why not reach out to someone who has made a difference in your life and let them know how much they’re appreciated. By Easter you’ll have given forty people props.
3. No Pizza.
Seriously. We love Pizza, it’s a Friday night hang out staple. But take these forty days as a time to learn to actually cook for your friends when they come over.
4. No Shading, But Really No Shade.
The only reading you should be doing is the Bible.
5. No One Night Stands.
Think of all the walk of shames you’ll avoid, the regrets the next morning and the chances at actually getting a relationship you’ll have. When you’re not anticipating going home with someone at the end of the night, it’ll take some of the stress out of going out.
6. Focus On Friendships.
Reboot your squad over these forty days. Plan nights for you and your girls (guys) and do whatever makes you happy. Your twenties are a time when you can form relationships that will outlast most couple’s relationships.
7. Give up Beyonce or Taylor or Sam or Kanye.
Maybe this is harder than going celibate or breaking up with coffee for Lent, but why not? Show some self-control and take your fav out of the playlist for the duration.
8. No SEX.
Take sex out of the relationship equation. By doing this you raise the level of what a relationship needs, it takes so much more to keep someone interested beyond the physical. #BrainsareSexyToo.
9. No More Taco Tuesday.
This is another game changer. Cut out the In N Out burgers, the steaks, the tacos! It’s crazy, but think of how much more you’ll appreciate the meat once Easter arrives.
10. Treat Someone.
Pick up the tab for the person in line behind you at FroYo or pick up some snacks for your roommate just because. Little acts of niceness go a long way.
11. Just No Stalking.
No Insta-stalking. No Facebook-stalking (we all know that’s why you still have one). No hiding in bushes stalking. No asking her/his friends stalking. Focus on you and the person, that’s it.
12. Bye Bye Binge Watching.
Go for a run, read a book, learn how to code, etc. Take those hours you would’ve spent with House of Cards and Olivia Pope and turn them into hours spent being productive.
13. Pick Up The Phone.
Don’t text or message a friend you’ve been meaning to get ahold of. Rather do it like they did in the 50’s and call them. There’s nothing like hearing someone’s immediate reaction.
Genuinely take the time to hear what it is that people are saying and be there for someone. It also helps you become a better communicator, since you won’t be the only one talking.
15. No Alcohol.
I like this idea because as Twentysomethings, we like to go out and have a good time. You’ll find that your Snapchats are less rowdy and your mornings clearer. So why not throw it back to before you were legal (or at least before you drank)?
16. Stop Seflies.
Put away the selfie stick. I don’t care if you woke up #FLAWLESS, keep it yourself. Fill that newsfeed with photos of what you’re thankful for, the people and places, make it about others, not you.
Eliminate the “can’t” and “won’t”. Just go for it and jump head first into the unknown.
18. Snacking In Between Meals.
I hate this, because I really do like food as do you, and you and you! But I know it’s summer benefit. Cutting out the extra calories will not only improve your diet, but it’ll help make you beach ready by June.
19. No Sarcasm.
If you’re like me and are the Chandler Bing of your friends, sarcasm is what keeps you sane. But at least try and cut back on the snark and be more positive. Or not…
20. The Biggest Deal breaker Ever: NO COFFEE.
Breathe. Yes I said no coffee. No shots. No Venti. No light on the foam. Nada. Go without the daily grind of needing caffeine to kick start your day and push yourself to get that high with the beans.
So what will you being doing this Lent? I know I’ll be going meatless and take the big challenge of going coffeeless. It’ll be an interesting forty days for sure. Comment with your ideas for making this Lent a better one for you.