15 People Share One Small Thing That Changed Their Life

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One small thing: sometimes that’s all it takes to give you a new perspective on life. It might seem insignificant at the time, but it can drastically alter someone’s existence.

These AskReddit users revealed the one little thing that made a huge impact in their lives.

1. Get it checked out

“Going to the doctor early. Lump felt like barely anything, but I worked up the courage to ask the doctor if he could check it out. That led to a second opinion, surgery, and no more cancer within 3 days. Waiting longer could have led to months of chemo or worse.

Get to know you body (what normal feels like) and check yourself boys and girls.

Edit: thank you for my first internet coins, kind redditors. This happened when I was 24, in the US. A year before getting dropped off my parent’s family insurance plan, which saved me about 12k. I realize that was an extremely fortunate situation compared to basically the rest of the US. Since some asked, it was about half the size of a pea, and difficult to feel through the ballsack skin. Got a physical exam, then an ultrasound.

Surgery went in through my abdomen and removed the entire left testicle just to be safe. I’ve had follow-up imaging done of my abdomen to be sure it hasn’t come back since. After surgery recovery, sex is no different than before and you only need one to be fertile. I stopped noticing anything different after a year. Getting checked was scary/embarrassing but the best decision I could have made. Peace of mind or treatment > embarrassment or death.”

2. Find something you love

“I love playing basketball. I joined a gym with a basketball court so I could play whenever I wanted. I go in every morning and play. Go back sometimes in the evening and play with whomever is there. High school kids, old dudes, dudes that can’t play. I don’t care – I love basketball. I’m 44 and it’s one of the first times in my life I’ve done something for me because I love it.

Maybe basketball isn’t your thing. That’s not my point. Find something you love and do it. Do it because you want to. Do it for fun. Keep it fun. Find others who do it too. It doesn’t matter who they are, just enjoy what you’re doing with others.”

3. Be honest

“I have depression, and being honest about how I feel when people ask how I’m doing has genuinely helped me feel less crummy. I don’t tell people I’m fine anymore because I’m usually not. I don’t go into any details, because that’s more than most people actully want to hear, but I’ll say things like, “Man, I’m worn out!

Can’t wait for the day to be over!” or “I’m wishing it was break time!” or “It was really hard to leave my dog this morning.” I do my best to act cheerful, especially at work, but I got sick of telling people I was “fine” or “doing well” when I wasn’t. You get more of a connection with people when you’re honest and when you give them a way to empathize and extend the conversation.”

4. A couple things…

“Telling my wife, after a rough time between the two of us, that I really wanted to have a wild, exciting affair and I’d prefer it be with her. That was about 25 years ago. Turns out we have a lot more fun treating each other like lovers than we did as spouses.

Also? Getting a Fitbit. That’s really motivated me to walk more. So there’s that, too.

Adding: Thanks for the Reddit gold, kind strangers. I shall use it wisely and only a little frivolously. Or the other way around, One of those.”

5. Name tags

“I started to pay attention to peoples’ name tags.

It started to matter to me that I thanked “Tom” for his great service. That I thanked “Cassandra” for her help checking out my groceries. That “Toni” was there to answer my questions or that “Gladys” showed up at 5 am on a cold morning so I could have a coffee on my way to work.

Paying attention to name tags led to me paying better attention to peoples’ names when they told them to me. Like they were trusting me and inviting me into their lives in some small way. That they cared that I knew who they were, and I recognized that there was responsibility in that. So, over time, this made me a better listener in general, which takes practice.

Pretty soon, it started to matter to me that I was a listener, and not a wait-to-talker. It started to matter to me that if I had something to say, that I better have good reasons to say it. And so it then mattered to me that I had good reasons and good information which informed my beliefs, which led to it REALLY mattering to me that I was literate and adept in the tools of skepticism and to always remember, perhaps assume, that I could be wrong.

To question what I took for granted was true, be willing to change my mind and assess my opinions/stances with a confidence derived from why and how I believed what I believed. It became very important to know how to best determine true things from false things, to believe that which is true and discard that which is false. Forget for a moment that this has revolutionized my personal ethical and existential philosophies, on paper it has led me to pursue and achieve a master’s degree in science education and empowered me – a self-described prolific procrastinator – to complete a formal master’s thesis and publish articles.

So…. Thanks name tags!”

6. Diet changes

“Comitting to eating fruits and or vegetables with every meal and drastically reducing my consumption of red meat. It was my New Years resolution, and has changed my life for the better. I have struggled with IBS since I was a teenager, and now it’s almost nonexistent.

Unless you’re a vegetarian, you most likely don’t have enough fiber in your diet. I tried to limit my response since OP’s question is about “one little thing”, but I also eliminated soda from my diet for the first time since I was very young, that was a BIG thing. Soda is seriously liquid crack.”

7. Night and day difference

“I used to always say “No problem” when people asked me to do things. Overheard a conversation about how using negative words (both “no” and “problem”) despite meaning that I would do whatever they needed help with, would cause negative thoughts in other people subliminally and they would tie that to you.

(Even if they don’t realize it, they have negative emotions and thoughts when they think or see me.) so I changed to saying “Sure thing” when people would ask me to help them with stuff. Night and day difference people.”

8. Kid gloves

“Not arguing or fighting with my mother.

She isn’t gonna try to change or accept any new information. She’s just gonna get emotional, take it as an insult, and insult me back, which just gets me yelling out of anger.

I just treat her with kid gloves and we actually get along pretty well now. She’s kind of dumb, but not an evil person. Her deficits, also, are not deficits of mine, so I don’t have to fix her to fix me.”

9. Don’t give a sh*t

“Stopped giving a sh*t at work. Literally stopped giving 110% and started to give maybe 50% and no one gave a sh*t and my evaluation stayed the same. I guess one day I figured that finance can wait another day to get the report but my child will remember me playing Monopoly with him on Wednesday night.”

10. It’s up to you

“Realizing as I got older that nobody really cares much about what you do, and most things that are good or bad in your life are up to you. It’s a much more worry free life.”

11. Same time every day

“I leave my alarm on every day. I get up at the same time every day.

Honestly makes me feel much better. I have more time on the weekend, and Mondays aren’t so rough.”

12. Wake up!

“Keeping a glass of water by my bed and drinking it as soon as I wake up. It kills the morning grogginess in seconds.”

13. Calming

“Meeting someone you mentally click with. It might not work out, but knowing there’s people out there that you just feel at peace with is a calming feeling.”

14. Truth

“It’s a lot harder than it sounds, but be truthful with people. You don’t need to embellish your stories, your accomplishments, your jokes, anything… just be truthful.”

15. This is important

“Cutting out the “friends” who were not really friends at all.”