Life is hard, but lucky for us it doesn't always take something major like winning the lottery, an elapsed 35 years and at least a half dozen 80's-movie-montages featuring Steve Guttenberg to make things better. Every now and then a simple little act can change everything, or an improvement happens so fast it makes your head spin.
Reddit user JesusChrist18 asked:
A guy I know constantly looked so tired and napped all the time during the day. He would nap so hard that you would have to shake him to wake him up, and he could fall asleep anywhere super fast. I asked him about it and he told me he felt tired all the time because he couldn't sleep at night, he figured he just had insomnia or something but refused to go to a doctor about it. One day he had a legit mental breakdown after a few drinks, we basically had to babysit him all night and I'm convinced it was because of his constantly exhausted state.
Not long after that incident he went to the doctor about his sleep and it turns out he had been living with severe sleep apnea for years. The doctor told him he was basically on the verge of a heart attack or stroke because of it. Now he sleeps with a special mask at night and he has completely changed for the better. He visibly has way more energy and his performance in school went through the roof.
My lifelong friend went down the heroin/jail path in his early 20's. His personality was always to "Go with the flow", for better or worse. He became part of a terrible group of people that routinely did awful shit in order to score. Imagine robbing your own grandmother, that caliber of desperation. After a stint being locked up and getting clean he stopped talking to anyone from that group. No communication whatsoever, cold turkey. Lived with his mom, found a job he could walk to since his driver's license was long gone, and started getting in shape physically. He did counseling, broke his heroin habit, got into martial arts as a positive outlet for his energy. Talking to him now, he says breaking contact with all those people was the only way he made it out.
About 5 years ago I started doing this little mental trick... if there was some small thing I needed to do I just counted to 3 in my head and did it. Stuff like "1,2,3: put on my workout clothes", "1,2,3: empty the dishwasher", "1,2,3: answer that email", "1,2,3: turn the TV off".
I promised myself that every "1,2,3" would be something I could achieve in less than 10 minutes, and that I would never fail to do something once I finished the countdown. I was amazed at how many of life's problems were solved by overcoming those little moments of inertia during the day.
My level of motivation before and after that shift was night and day. It made a huge different in my health, career, financial state, etc. I know it probably sounds silly, but my life made a massive and quick change for the better once I adopted this strategy.
Don't want to sound boastful, but I can't think of anything better than my last 6 months. I went from ~275 to 180 lbs. Never dated anyone in 26 years, and now I feel like I can find a date if I wanted to. Life is very different when you aren't fat
I quit my minimum wage job and stopped talking to my abusive dad. Some 9 months later I got hired into my current job, got my driver's license, bought a brand new car, and have started losing weight gradually. It's been 2 years and my car is a little over half paid for and my dad has no idea how awesome my life is. I plan to keep it that way.
One week in high school I decided that I would go for a bike ride every day after school. Massive improvement in attitude and motivation. I began to like school more, got my homework done earlier, and I also got into shape which was an added bonus.
Might sound weird, but...they spent a night in jail.
A friend of mine had been a little bit of a s***head the past few years. Good kid at heart, but had a terribly addictive personality and was hanging out with shitty people, in debt to all his friends because he was buying way too many drugs and way too much alcohol, lost one of his two jobs for showing up high too much, you get the idea. He just sucked at saying "no" to people and his self-control suffered for it.
Well, he ended up getting a DUI, and as part of the punishment he had to spend the night in jail. I never used to believe in the whole "scared straight" thing, but it seriously worked. I picked him up the next day and he looked like he'd seen a ghost. Just kept saying, "I never want to end up like the people I saw in there, man" and shaking his head.
It's been almost a year since then, and he's been totally on the straight and narrow. Got a promotion at work, is making rent on time, I haven't seen him have more than a couple beers in a sitting in that time. He hasn't really elaborated on what he saw that night besides a couple stories about some real tweakers, but whatever it was, I guess it set him straight.
Getting into a routine. Growing up with school and odd work hours, things just seem hectic. Working a set schedule has really helped me in life.
A very close friend of mine decided to call me at 3am, sobbing uncontrollably, word vomiting about all of the problems he was facing.
I sat there and talked to him until around 10am. We went that afternoon got him checked into some rehabilitative care.
Fast forward a year to having lunch with him and having him grab my hand, half sobbing, telling me that me answering the phone is what stopped him from shooting himself.
Please, be like my friend. If you are ever struggling, please. Just make a call. To anyone.
Woke up on May 15 flat broke, unemployed, living in a weekly apartment I was about to lose. Today I have a full-time job(with insurance as of 12/1!!!) and am typing this on a computer in my break room. And when I get paid Friday, I'll have money left over from my check 2 weeks ago. Amazing how quickly your life gets better once you stop putting your entire check up your nose. :D
Changing their social circle to people who make them uneasy because they are so far ahead in terms of mindset and comfort zone. Who you surround yourself with plays a huge part in who you are subconsciously.
My dad left my mom and she was solidly depressed for a year and then suddenly she exploded with self improvement. She joined a bunch of volunteer positions, met a bunch of new people, became part of the 'in' crowd in her city, literally goes out every night with her friends and has a lover that pays for her trips to Europe where they travel around on a motorcycle. Also, she joined a gym and lost a bunch of weight, started taking care of her appearance. It's strange to think just a couple years ago I would hear her sobbing in the shower and now she's this powerhouse!
He stopped playing League of Legends.
No, seriously. A friend of mine used to spend basically all of his free time in LoL. If he wasn't sleeping, eating, or in class, he was in a game. And the weird part was that he didn't actually seem to enjoy playing, either, like it was compulsive or something. No matter if he won or lost, he'd be crabby about it. Even in the rare instance where he wasn't playing a game and got invited to a social event, his sleep schedule was so messed up he usually wouldn't make it anyway.
He finally decided to try giving it up for Lent, and just never went back once he realized how much of a negative effect it'd been having on him. He started eating better (because he wasn't just going for whatever microwave crap he could eat while playing), exercising (because now he had time and energy to do so), taking care of his appearance better (because why would he have shaved, showered regularly, and done laundry when he was just sitting in his room all day?), sleeping a normal amount, and actually connecting with people beyond just seeing them in class. The transformation was honestly impressive. He went from one of the most stereotypical depressed neckbeard freshmen I've ever met to a happy, healthy college kid in the span of a couple months.
I failed my suicide attempt and it all went uphill from there. (:
About 10 years ago, a guy walked in to my credit union, sat down at my desk and said, "I need help."
He sure did. Dude had thousands and thousands of dollars in high interest, unsecured debt. This debt was costing him over a thousand dollars a month in payments. He and I got to work. We consolidated, we refinanced, and we had a fun little credit card execution ceremony.
All said and done, we saved him about $500 a month in payments. We put together a plan to use half the savings to continue putting toward the debt for a snowball effect, and to save the other half in an account I would lock up for him.
Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago, I saw him at a community event. He told me he is completely debt free (including his house), and has savings for his children to go to college. We hugged and chatted. he never did give me a secret gold coin or grant me three wishes, but I was beaming like a motherfucker, so that's good.
Last year in school I was making really, really shit grades. Wouldn't have passed if not for the mercy of my teachers. I posted on Reddit about my aversion to work and the intense sense of dread I get just knowing I have to do something for school. Some redditors suggested I might have ADHD.
I got prescribed medication almost immediately after going to the doctors and I am now in my junior year of high school doing great. Last year's GPA was a 2.6. This year's is a 4.2.
Going vegan. My mom's colitis completely reversed. And she had so much more energy and felt wayyy better than she did before. It wasn't as drastic for me but it also helped me turn my life around too.
I've known a trans-women woman for many years, even before her transition. Pre-transition, she was overweight, drinking a ton, sullen, and depressed. She finally made the decision to come out to her family and job and start transitioning. The immediate effects were amazing. She completely quit drinking, lost a ton of weight, and was absolutely bubbly with happiness. It's been about 10 years now and she's absolutely thriving. She really is a completely different person than the person I first met
I got divorced. My life went from being filled with me getting yelled at and being used as an ATM to me now having plenty of disposable income. It was a great change.