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15 Things To Cleanse Your Life Of Now So They Don’t Follow You Into 2018

1. The trendy clothing item that you bought multiples of despite looking like shit in. (Straight-leg “mom” jeans: Not For Me.)

2. The few items you always roll over to the next day’s To-Do list without ever actually doing. Things like scheduling your annual at the gynecologist, or calling your cable company about that weird thing you saw on your bill last month, or getting your car serviced, or getting a teeth cleaning — all the stuff that can wait a tiny bit longer, so you just let it. Don’t let it roll over into 2018 — start the year clean with no outstanding tasks to accomplish. (There will always be more things to be done, and you’ll fill up a new to-do list in no time. Sigh.)

3. YouTube subscriptions to channels/creators that just make you want to spend money and buy stuff. (Lest we forget: your lifestyle isn’t sponsored by Topshop or Nordstrom like theirs, so you shouldn’t be shopping like them. It isn’t normal.)

4. Aspirational books — if you didn’t read them this year, you probably won’t next year. Donate them to a library where they’ll get some real love instead of cluttering up your home, and go borrow them from there if you ever do feel inspired to read them.

5. Whatever bad habit you got into once it started getting chilly out. (I haven’t gone to the gym in two months — my hypothesis is that if I start going back now, before New Year’s Day, the habit will stick and I won’t become a failed New Year’s Resolution statistic.)

6. Your lazy cooking routine. The second it started getting dark at 4 pm, you (like me) might have given up on cooking dinner after work because it was cold and it felt like midnight and you might as well *shrug* eat cookies and go to sleep. But here’s the thing: the drab weather is even more of a reason to fill your cold, sleepy body with warm, energizing foods so you don’t get slowed down by the chill.

7. The stuff in your closet that you’re keeping “just in case” but never touching. We talk about this a lot at TFD, and I still don’t practice what I preach. A chunk of my wardrobe is just crap I keep because I don’t want to shell out for versions I’d like more. But, repeat after me: a sparse wardrobe is much better than a vast one that contains nothing you actually like.

8. The cable package you don’t use, or the Netflix subscription you over-use, or the Hulu subscription you never used. The point of having all these options is figuring out what works best for you — you’re not locked into a subscription service just because you signed up for it on a whim when you wanted to see what all the hype around a certain TV series was about. (Similarly: if you don’t order from Amazon enough to justify the price tag of your Prime account, it is okay to cancel it.) 

9. Aspirational grocery items that you never end up eating but somehow remain staples on your shopping list. (Why do I keep buying bananas? I literally never eat bananas.)

10. Relationships that cost you money, energy, and time without returning the value. One of the most important things to learn in life is that you don’t need to remain friends with someone just because you have been friends in the past. (Not saying you have to delete them off Facebook middle-school-style and tell them to piss off. But don’t make the plans or take the time out to spend with people who make you feel unhappy — it is literally never worth it, and chances are, they feel similarly.)

11. The bad professional habit that you know is holding you back. (I’m sure you have one, and I’m sure you know what it is without even thinking too hard about it.)

12. People on social media who annoy you/stress you out/make you feel weird or inadequate in some way/anger you — basically anyone who prompts you to take a screenshot of their Tweet or Insta-pic and text it to your best friend saying “ugh.” If they’re not an IRL friend or a person who you genuinely value and have a relationship with in some way, they don’t need to be there clogging your feed. (This goes for everyone from beauty gurus to racist great-uncles to high school acquaintances.)

13. Your obsession with the weird aesthetic thing you hate about yourself even though you know it looks fine and no one even notices and it is totally irrational. (I don’t like my hands, and in a weird way, it consumes me. Why are they too small to fit in any gloves? Am I even human? Anyway, I’m dropping that thought this year. Your hands are fine, little Mar.)

14. Your obsession with the weird personality thing you hate about yourself. Other people probably find it quirky or charming or endearing in some way.

15. Actually, in reference to #14: If you truly do have a shitty personality trait that you are aware of and hate about yourself, try to leave it behind in 2018. You’re not perfect, you’re still building, and you get to be whatever kind of person you decide to act like when you wake up in the morning. Make the necessary changes, build a life you love and are proud of, and check yourself everyday to make sure you’re on track for being the best version of you possible — mentally, physically, spiritually, financially, and otherwise.

Mary writes every day for TFD, and tweets every day for her own personal fulfillment. Talk to her about money and life at mary@thefinancialdiet.com!

Image via Unsplash

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  • Wolf

    #2: can’t skip the gynecologist. Getting the subscription for the pill requires a (insurance-paid) checkup and cancer screening every year.
    And the health insurance also makes us Germans go to the dentist once a year. The checkup is free, and doing it reduces our copayment if we need any dental work done.

    • Magda

      On one hand I love it, on the other I hate it. It sounds like a great motivation, but I probably would end up just desperately trying to squeeze my appointment somewhere on the very day I run out of pills. Luckily, in Luxembourg, any doctor can give you a prescription 😉 But I love this list in general – will try to follow 😉

  • piccola

    When I don’t feel like eating the bananas I bought, I make a chocolate banana milkshake 🙂

  • Erin C

    I did a major social media “unfollowing”. Anything that made my blood pressure go up went first.

    Also, you realize that skinny-jeans won’t be in style forever, right?