The whole point of Lent is to give up something you love or maybe take something on.
Ideal things to give up or do this Lent:
The obvious one is Fasting, even if you are non Catholic.
Sugary foods and drinks such as chocolate, crisps, fizzy drinks, alcohol, caffeine, evening sly snacking... the list goes on of unhealthy food and drinks that we try to give up over next 40 days. If you’re craving sugary foods go for a run or walk, exercise always helps the minds cravings!
It’s hard to cut everything out and of course the odd chocolate bar here and there won’t do any harm but it’s better if you try to stick to it(with the exception of St Patricks Day of course), making Easter a lot more enjoyable.
Cursing; try to cut out the swearing , invest in a swear jar so every time you let a word slip pop in a euro , maybe you’ll have enough money for something nice at the end of the month!
Smoking; Talking about how Lent is about giving up something that you love but you know is bad for you, a lot of people try to give up smoking for Lent with the help of Nicotine patches and alternatives. Take one day at a time and be positive. Set yourself the goal of the 40 days and hopefully if you can get through them you can give it up for good!
Electronics; with this day and age it’s almost impossible to give up your phone or the television. Coming home from work or school and sitting down to watch maybe one or two episodes of your favourite show or sit on your phone until you realise time is catching up on you can become a bad habit. Imaginably even for a couple of hours after dinner if you cut out all electronic devices and do something more useful with your time like read a book, paint, spend time with your family, write a letter to someone you have lost contact with, rearrange your room, go for a long run, volunteer to walk your neighbours dogs! Anything to help clear your mind and relax without the use of the internet or the TV screen.
Spending too much money; do you really need that gorgeous top screaming ‘’buy me’’? Or those half price shoes that you know you will never wear? You can really make a change over Lent by cutting down your budget and only spending money on things that you need rather than things that you want. Make use of everything you have and only spend money when you’re in demand of some food shopping. You will be amazed on how much money you can save by not spending your salary or savings on goods that you will rarely use and maybe even stick to it after Lent, treating yourself here and there.
Ditch the makeup and hair utensils; freeing your skin and hair is always hard, especially for woman and teenagers. Over the 40 day period try to give your hair and skin a break, you will really see the difference in how healthy they can both get. It’s always a bad habit of just slapping on some makeup when your off out. Even if you just keep your face a blank canvas until you’re going out somewhere on an occasion instead of just the shops or your mother’s house. Treat yourself to some hair or facial masks or take up some yoga for that fresh feel and look.
Join a charity. Help your local charities by volunteering even once a week; you will get great self-satisfaction by helping those around you.
Go take that driving lesson that you have been promising yourself since last March!
Why not do something not to serious or a little bit out there? Skydive, write a book, go mountain climbing, pay in exact change, wear pink on Wednesdays, walk instead of driving, dye your hair a vibrant colour, Leave a post-it with a positive message on it wherever you go, cancel your magazine subscriptions and donate that money to charity.
Remember Lent is not all about giving up things for lent , it’s also about taking the time to think and to maybe take up something that you have always wanted to do and you hadn’t had the time or space to do it. Well now is the time! The next 40 days is an excuse to do something good that you love.