We tend to think of life as the big, stand-out moments, the thrilling milestones, and the devastating losses. Those moments are part of life, sure, and they can change us forever, but life is made up of the shit we do every single day. It's thousands of seemingly unremarkable moments, one after the other, piling on top of each other that form who we are. When you think about it, it's pretty fucking awesome because every day, you have an opportunity to get your shit together and build a badass life through small, doable actions. Here are 16 small ways to do just that. 

Make your damn bed

Just do it as soon as you wake up. It takes five seconds, and for some reason, it will make you feel like a boss who can take on anything. And, if your day goes to shit, at least you made your bed.

Just fucking exercise

You don't have to flip monster truck tires like a cross-fit lunatic, but you must exercise. Don't think about it; do it, whatever you're able to do: a workout class, running, biking, yoga, even walking. It's good for your body and your brain, and you know it. 

Read for 10 minutes every day

We're talking from a book, not a screen. Reading a book is like a pull-up for your brain. It increases your cognitive function and emotional intelligence and can mitigate the risk of developing neurological diseases like Alzheimer's. Plus, it's relaxing. 

Get the fuck outside 

Go for a walk. Drink your coffee on your porch or in your backyard. Garden. Shovel the sidewalk. Literally, just sit outside. Being outside helps you think more clearly, engage with your creativity, and reduce mental stress. 

Limit your scrolling

Seriously, that shit is just so bad for you and you know it. It wrecks your mental health, shits all over your sleep, decreases your cognitive function, and amplifies depression and anxiety. Set screen time limits and remove social media apps and games from your phone.

Stop living in your head 

It might feel nice and safe and cozy in that head of yours, but that isn't where life happens. Bring yourself out of your head. Practice mindfulness, observe your surroundings, and breathe deeply. Stop thinking about shit so much and do it. Make sure the life you're living aligns with the life you dream of in your mind.  

Fuck multitasking

It's not even really a thing. Respect your attention. You'll get more done and have less anxiety if you do one thing at a time. Studies show that multitasking causes interference in various networks, making us less efficient and prone to mistakes. Plus, chronic multitasking can fuck up your working memory and long-term memory. 


Even if someone is saying something you don't want to hear or that you don't agree with, listen. Don't say anything, don't plan your response, just fucking listen. You'll be better informed, develop patience, and grow your emotional intelligence. 

Listen to music that makes you happy

90s Euro dance, Irish folk, psychedelic funk — whatever it is, know what jams lift your mood and keep them on standby. That shit will come in handy when you're having a rough day and need a boost. Listening to music increases blood flow to brain regions that generate emotions and can trigger a good old gush of dopamine when you need it most.

Clean for 10 minutes every day

Set a timer and put stuff in its place, wipe down surfaces, and vacuum. You deserve a clean place, and you can swing 10 minutes, even in your most busy or depressed state. It will keep shit from piling up, and the mere presence of clutter can lead to indecision and burnout. 

Cook at least one meal for yourself

Cooking for yourself shows that you give a shit about yourself. It engages your senses, requires focus and creativity and reduces stress. Studies show that no matter the recipe, home-cooked meals are healthier than take-out meals. You have to eat, so you might as well take the opportunity to do something nice for yourself and make something you really fucking love to eat, whatever it is.

Pay attention to your loved ones

Ask them how they are. Listen. Take mental notes — hell, take actual notes if it helps you remember the things that are important to them. Give your loved ones the gift of being known. They are here right now; they might not be here tomorrow.

Give people the benefit of the doubt

Assume that nine times out of 10, people aren't acting with malice. They're probably overwhelmed, having a shitty day, or hey, they might just be dumb, which we all are now and again.

Fucking laugh

There's a shitload of scientific evidence about laughter relieving stress and improving your mood, even in the darkest of times. Build a cache of funny shit that will always make you laugh. Funny videos may be the best part of the Internet's motley legacy. Bookmark it, save it, open it when you need it, fucking laugh, and soak up that feel-good brain juice. 

Ask yourself what you're reacting to

When big feelings arise — shame, anger, guilt, embarrassment — instead of acting, ask yourself what it's about. Are your feelings really reflective of what is happening at the moment? Or is it old shit that's causing them big feels? The thing is, you already know what it's about. You just have to ask and be willing to accept the answer, but you'll be better for it.


Knowing how to rest is an underrated skill. Rest is when the magic happens — it's when your brain consolidates memories, solidifies learning and processes shit. Learn how to incorporate small and large moments of rest into every single day. Take small breaks throughout the day to read, walk, play with your pets, or talk to a friend. Get enough sleep, say "no," and schedule vacations, even if you don't go anywhere. Take time to just exist. Your life will be fucking better for it.

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