1. Letting that new journal/stationery set/yarn and needle/pull-up bar collect dust.
We all have good intentions when it comes to picking up a new hobby. And there’s something to be said for taking that first step! But if you still haven’t gotten around to it, or you started but quickly found out that your interest level plummeted, don’t sweat it. This is supposed to be a pastime, not a chore.
2. Acting like you’re 21 again.
So happy hour turned into something of a rager, and you woke thinking, Ugh I am TOO OLD for this, wondering if you did anything embarrassing. Most people have been there. The people you were drinking with are probably there right now. One night revisiting the habits of your younger, wilder years doesn’t negate all of the maturity you’ve gained. It’s just going to hurt more than it used to. (Disclaimer: This isn’t to encourage regular, excessive drinking, and obviously if you feel like these crazy nights are getting in the way of your life it’s time to re-evaluate.)
3. Canceling plans (with warning!).
This, like failed hobbies, is about (sometimes) having overly optimistic ideas of our future selves. It may feel like future you will be pumped to check out that band with your friend at 10 on Thursday night, but sometimes your Thursday self is like, Ugh this is a weekday, what was I even thinking. Most social plans are made with the assumption that there’s, say, a 30% chance of cancellation. Your friend might be disappointed, but they’ll forgive you. They’ve probably done the same to you.
4. Relatedly, you don’t have to go out just because it’s Saturday.
Saturday is a day that can ruin your Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, if you let it—it’s then that you start thinking about what you’re doing on the weekend, and possibly worrying if the answer is “nothing.” But spending a Saturday in to read or watch like five hours of TV can feel both relaxing and rebellious. Don’t let Big Calendar determine how you spend your free time!
5. Not having as much money in your savings account as you’d like.
Are you paying your rent? Getting your bills in on time? That is honestly a feat in itself. Yes, it’s never too soon to start saving, but sometimes it’s just unrealistic to put aside quite as much as the recommended percentage of your paycheck. You’re thinking about saving, and that’s something.
6. Skipping the gym to read. (Or whatever.)
There are days on which you wake up or reach the end of work and feel like exerting a single extra ounce of physical effort might actually kill you. While this is almost definitely not true, that doesn’t mean you have to fight that feeling EVERY time. Working out is good for you, but so is knowing when you need a day off to read or sleep or lie on a blanket in the park.
7. Losing touch with someone whom you don’t want/need a close relationship with anymore.
We may have an increasing number of tools at our disposal with which we CAN stay in touch with old friends and acquaintances and people whom we no longer see as much, but that doesn’t mean we HAVE to: Sometimes it’s just not meant to be. If you and an old connection are fading out, and that feels right, that’s OK.
8. Having coffee every morning. Sometimes twice.
Occasionally you might read a news item that suggests you’d be better off without coffee, and you know it’s probably true, so you think briefly about trying to quit cold turkey anyway, even though you love it and really only drink a cup or two a day. Just don’t. Withdrawal can be horrible. Coffee isn’t so bad for you, and maybe even good; quitting is not worth the pain.
9. Needing to make an ice cream/cupcake/coffee/fancy cookie trip.
We are of the opinion that any item that costs between $2-7 which does not hurt anyone, gives you an excuse to take a short walk or drive to pick it up, and brings you happiness in the form of sugar and/or caffeine is practically free, when you think about it.
10. Quitting a book/TV/movie you hate, even if everyone else loves it.
Just because seemingly everyone you’ve ever met tells you that no, you would REALLY love “Friday Night Lights” if you gave it a chance, or that you HAVE to read The Goldfinch because everybody else is and it’s amazing and if you don’t like it you must not “get it,” does not mean you have to keep watching that show or reading that book if you’re not into it. Just put it down. We won’t tell.
11. Not online dating just because you’re single.
You are allowed to be a single person, who wants to eventually meet someone, who doesn’t want to do it using dating websites or apps. People in couples love to tell single people they should “get online!” Ignore this so-called advice at will.
12. Overusing social media.
There have been roughly a million thinkpieces written about our modern dependency on social media: how it’s narcissistic and it’ll ruin interpersonal relationships forever and ever. Maybe you’re starting to question your own use of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, et. al. Here’s a foolproof way to figure out if it’s good or bad: Does communicating with friends/family/strangers on these networks feel good? Then it’s good! You now have permission to chill out.
13. Having an unproductive day (or week) of work.
We know it can seem like every single one of your colleagues is a paragon of efficiency, but the reality is that no one can be on all the time. If you find that you’ve lost a day or two to fruitless “brainstorming,” that’s kind of par for the course. You’re good at your job — that’s why you have it — and chances are, your boss isn’t spending the day focusing on (AND BEING SO DISAPPOINTED BY) your output.
14. That dumb thing you said at that social gathering.
No one thought it was dumb. Literally no one even remembers you saying it. You can stop reliving the moment in your head at night and just go to bed.