Subvert these norms for a better life

Subvert these norms for a better life

by Eunice Chua 06 Jan 2020

The “normal” way of life as we know it has changed drastically over the last few decades. Gone are the days when natural light woke us at the crack of dawn and physical activity kept us on our feet all day. Nowadays, life is all about getting entertainment from our smartphones, responding to digital notifications, travelling around in vehicles and worst of all, eating junk food for convenience. These lifestyle habits don’t do anything for our health (or our kids’!) and it’s time to make some adjustments for the sake of a better life – here’s how to start!


1. Be smart about smartphone usage

Smartphones are both the best and worst of modern inventions. While they were designed to make life a lot more convenient, most of us fall into the trap of halted productivity when using our smartphones – simply because we fail to properly manage our phone alerts. The common mistake? Checking our phones every time we get a new alert. Every time we reply to a new message or comment, we often end up scrolling distractedly through our social media feed or chats for a few minutes. This adds up to a lot of precious time wasted, which can be easily resolved by simply having the discipline to check notifications and reply to them at fixed hours during the day. These smartphone curfews should apply to children at home too – don’t let those young minds get addicted to smartphone technology at the cost of their physical and mental health. Furthermore, it’s not just smartphones you have to be careful with. When it comes to kids, instilling TV curfews is just as important. Let the kids enjoy their childhood and keep them away from smartphones and TV as much as you can!


2. Choose active mediums of transportation

Changing how you travel around is one of the most direct ways to change your life for the better. Vehicular transport is convenient when it comes to long distances, but when you are commuting short distances, walking or cycling makes for a far better alternative. On one hand, you get more exercise which is wonderful for your health. On the other hand, you get to save money on bus fares or petrol expenses. Getting young children introduced to the joys of walking and cycling is also a great idea – you’ll be preparing them for a healthy, active lifestyle that will bring loads of health benefits down the road.


3. Cut back on the junk food

We eat way more junk food than we should, from frozen pizzas to packaged snacks and sugary drinks. The allure of junk food lies in its convenience – it’s easy to prepare, has a long shelf life and tastes good. Obviously, junk food is terrible for our health and we should stop constantly indulging ourselves because every instance of temptation we give in to sets us up for more unhealthy eating habits. The same goes for our kids – we can’t keep giving them unhealthy food simply because they like it or refuse to eat anything else. It is the role of the parent to inculcate the values of healthy eating in their children. Ultimately, it’s for their sake in the long run and besides, healthy eating should be something the whole family partakes in together!


It’s easy to become caught up in the unhealthy norms of modern living. Moving away from these lifestyle habits definitely requires a significant amount of effort, but no cost is really too high with health and wellness when it concerns you and your family.