Series: How to Be Resilient: Good Habits for Changemakers — Eight “Bad” Habits That Are Actually Good for You

Photo Credit: Drew Beamer | Unsplash

My new series for Changemakers (and anyone else who wants to be resilient and motivated, even in crazy and anxiety provoking times like these) starts today.

I have found that a great deal of my resilience is based on the firm foundations that my daily habits create! So this series will look at a whole range of habits and mindsets that help create that all important ‘bounceback-ability’ that is a lifeline in these times.

And — weirdly — I am going to start with some so called ‘bad habits’! I’m doing that just to shake things up a bit and get everyone thinking outside the box. That is another characteristic of resilient people.

Believe it or not, some bad habits are really good for you. Sadly, our parents usually tried to talk us out of doing these things when we were young. And, of course, everything in moderation, right? But let’s take a look at eight “bad” habits that are actually good for you so that you can relax and enjoy them from now on.

1. Fidgeting — If you tend to wiggle a lot, your mum (and your teachers) probably tried to stop it. However, fidgeting is really good for you because it burns more calories and keeps your body moving and actually helps you process and problem solve information. This is especially true if you have a job that requires a lot of sitting when your brain goes to sleep unless you give it some wriggle and move time.

2. Gum Chewing — Sugarless gum is really good for you. If you have the right dental work or your own teeth, chewing gum strengthens the tiny muscles and tissues that anchor the teeth and can stimulate the production of digestive juices if done shortly before a meal.

3. Video Games — While there may be some games that haven’t got much added benefit, playing video games helps with developing fine motor skills, keeps the mind nimble, and by some reports can help give relief for chronic pain conditions by taking your mind off the problem.

4. Daydreaming — Finding a way to allow your mind to wander and woolgather enough to be able to daydream is very good for your mind as well as for your goals in life. You cannot create amazing goals for your life if you can’t daydream.

5. Swearing — Everyone has a swear jar growing up, either for parents or the kids. Swearing is considered socially inappropriate, but studies show that people who learn to swear appropriately (and often silently) tend to have less stress in their lives. They save up their socially inappropriate word until it is really effective as a release for them when they eventually use it. Remember that swearing is completely different from a slur. A slur is something unkind you say about a person, whilst a swearword is just a curse word — otherwise known as an expletive.

6. Messiness — If you are a naturally messy person, take heart; you’re likely also a very creative person. Messiness is sometimes a sign of creativity. If you want to be more creative, don’t purposely become messy but realize that sometimes being messy is required to be creative. There is a period of chaos that happens in a creative process which is the point at which everything changes and a new pattern emerges out of the chaos.

7. Sleeping in Late — They say that “the early bird gets the worm,” but do they? Sleeping well and enough each night is important to your health and brain function. If you stayed up late and need to sleep in and it won’t cause you to get fired or miss something important — go for it.

8. Passing Gas — Everyone farts and burps every single day. Passing gas is good for you because it’s a normal activity that is getting rid of built-up gas from your digestive tract to prevent bloating and pain. Allowing yourself to do this discretely helps.

Of course, you don’t want to do some of these things when other people are around, but it’s okay to accept some of these things as part of who you are and part of living life. That is a great start!

This article is part of my July series on Good Habits For Changemakers: How To Develop A Resilient Mindset … so watch this space for more ideas and support.

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