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27 Life-Changing Habits All Twentysomethings Should Adopt

Baby steps, people. Inspired by this Quora thread.

1. Give at least one genuine compliment every day.

Etsy / Via

Making other people happy will make you happy. Try it! Emergency Compliment can give you some ~creative~ ideas.

Valentine via ChoBeArtandDesign on Etsy, $3.75.

2. Thank your partner for the small, expected things.

3. Focus on adding more healthy foods to your diet, rather than eliminating the "bad."

4. Learn to say "sorry" to loved ones and friends in a meaningful way.

5. Stop looking at any electronic screens within an hour of bedtime, if you can.

6. Walk outside, even for a short while, every day.

7. Set an alarm on your phone for 45 minutes before you want to be in bed. This way you can force yourself to start getting ready and actually get to sleep on time.


Getting enough sleep is so, so critical for your health and happiness, but so many people have trouble with it. One way to get better sleep is to force yourself to follow a routine every night and every morning.

8. Set your morning alarm to play your favorite song.

Alarm clocks are the worst. Wake up happier, start the day happier.

9. Try to read one book a week, if you can.

Jarry Lee / BuzzFeed

If you're too busy, start slow with this one by trying to read a little bit of a book every day. This can help you learn, help you unplug, and help you detach from the go-go-go always-changing-always-updating nature of the internet.

Need a recommendation? Try the BuzzFeed Books newsletter for some great ideas. Or you can try any of these 24 books you should read based on your favorite TV shows.

10. Keep a to-do list, and get it all set up for the next day as the last thing you do before you leave work for the night.

11. When you lend money, lend with the secret assumption that you'll never see that money again.

Paramount Pictures / Via

And if you feel like you can't survive without getting the money back, think about how you might be able to help in another way.

This small change in mind-set can solve (or help you avoid) a huge number of problems born out of generosity.

12. Go to bed angry.

CherryCute / Via

No fights are ever truly resolved at 2 a.m. anyway. And this allows you to take a break from the argument and come back with a clearer head. More on this here.

Bite Me cupcake necklace via CherryCute on Etsy, $7.50+.

13. Use a financial tracking tool to help you stay on top of your spending habits.

BuzzFeed is a great one — it can help you categorize all your purchases, so you see exactly what you're spending your money on and how you might be able to save. Along those lines:


If you can afford it, configure your bank account to automatically move a certain amount of money from each paycheck into a savings account. It's much easier to dip into savings when you need to than to keep yourself from spending what's right at your fingertips.

15. Help people without expecting things in return.

Getty Images / iStockphoto / sldesign78 / Via

Especially if those things you can do don't cost you anything. Make an introduction that might help a friend out, forward along applications to jobs when you know the hiring manager. Things like that. Read "16 Random Acts Of Kindness That Will Restore Your Faith In Humanity" for some more ideas.

16. Fill half your plate with veggies as often as you can.

People who eat more vegetables live longer and live healthier. Here are "27 Of The Most Delicious Things You Can Do To Vegetables," for some ideas! And recipe for those sesame garlic green beans pictured above here, via Wishful Chef.

17. Get a reusable water bottle, and bring it with you everywhere.

So many benefits: You'll drink more water. You'll drink less coffee/soda/other stuff. And it's good for the environment! The Klean Kanteen water bottle pictured above gets top marks from the Wirecutter. Get it here.

18. Master the art of the power pose.

Watch this awesome TED talk by Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist at Harvard Business School. More and more research is emerging that says that how we hold ourselves can have a big difference in how other people perceive us, and also in how confident we are. Get that raise!

19. Try to see the good in people.

20. Think of your worst flaw. Now think of how that flaw might come with a silver lining.

The Weinstein Company

Like, say you're too damn impulsive for your own good. But that impulsivity definitely means you're more creative.

New research shows that when you believe in the silver lining of your flaws, you'll work harder at being great at whatever that silver lining is. Pretty neat.

21. Do 10 push-ups when you get out of bed (or as many pushups as you can do).

Photos by Lauren Zaser for BuzzFeed / Via Design by Chris Ritter for BuzzFeed

If you start today and do it every day, within a year you will be shocked at how many push-ups you can do. Get instructions for good form here.

22. Keep a phone charger at work and one at home.

23. Make your bed as soon as you get up. Fold your clothes and put them away right when the laundry's done. And do the dishes right after you eat. / Via

These small tasks take no longer than five to ten minutes, and will make a huge difference in how you view your living space. Also, learning this kind of discipline can have an impact on other areas of your life as well.

24. Make sure there's protein and fiber in your breakfast.

25. Exercise a little every day.

Photos by Lauren Zaser for BuzzFeed / Design by Chris Ritter for BuzzFeed / Via

I know, I know, I knowwwww. But seriously, exercise is pretty much the biggest and best thing you can do for yourself. It helps you sleep better. It helps you eat better. It makes you feel better. It helps you think better. It is so tremendously good in so many ways. Just... Just try it. See how you feel.

If you don't know where to start, check out these nine quick total-body workouts you can do anywhere.

26. Every week, write down five things you are grateful for.

27. Remember that most people you meet are probably just as uncomfortable as you are.

Most people are shy. Most people feel awkward at some point. Everyone is stressed. When you reframe your outlook to think about other people's comfort, rather than your own you suddenly feel less anxious and awkward, and more empathetic. Try it!