Lent is the season of time in the Christian church that we take for reflection as we journey up to Holy Week and Easter, which is the week on which the entire Christian faith is built. For many Christians, it is traditional to give up something for Lent, something that isn’t easy to give up, as a form of fasting to grow closer in a relationship with God. Most years, I do this as well. Typically, it ends up being some food-related thing because this woman loves food. I’ve done coffee, Starbucks, chocolate (many times), and I’m pretty sure I gave up cheese one year. As I’ve grown older, giving things up has grown beyond the spectrum of sacrificing a favorite food for the 40 days. Truthfully, there are so many better things to give up. Choose to give up things that will truly help you grow as a follower of Christ and as a human being. Sure, giving up chocolate is fine, and for many, it feels like a true sacrifice, but I encourage you to dig a little deeper and give up things that will truly help you grow.
As an example, and inspired by the 40 days in Lent, here is a list of 40 (yes, a long list) things that I will do my best to give up this Lenten season.
40 Thing I’m Giving Up For Lent
- Not setting an alarm – I need to stop sleeping in. It doesn’t happen too often, but it’s been happening frequently enough that I feel like it’s messing with my productivity.
- Hitting snooze – Imagine the time we’d gain in our mornings if we didn’t hit snooze.
- Procrastination – In all things
- Prioritizing other things (TV, social media, mobile games) over spending time with God. My prayer life could use a boost.
- Complaining – Instead, I need to choose positivity.
- Gloom and any “woe is me” mindset – Instead, positivity!
- Jealousy – Instead, practicing contentment for what I have and feeling happy for the person that might be causing the jealous feelings
- Consuming things that aren’t good for my body or soul – Let’s be honest, sometimes a piece of chocolate is just good for the soul and 100% okay, but I need to stop eating things simply to eat them. If it isn’t truly beneficial in some way, it doesn’t need to be in my body.
- Youtuber gossip websites – This is such a guilty pleasure of mine, and I really should be spending my time elsewhere.
- Impatience – Instead, choose patience
- Avoiding eye contact with people I walk by on my errands – It’s okay to see people and even smile at them as we pass. *gasp*
- Excuses – I try and make excuses for a lot of things: why I can feel certain things or do certain things, why I don’t need to go to the gym today or don’t need to get that task done. Just stop with the excuses, Brianna.
- Fear – of failure, of success, of being wrong, of putting myself out there, of the scale (it’s real), etc
- Trying to talk myself out of a workout – why do I do this? I have never regretted a workout, so why do I always try to talk myself out of going. Instead, I need to talk myself into them.
- Approaching household chores with resentment and dislike – It is not only a blessing that I have a nice home that needs care, but I’m also blessed enough that I don’t have to leave the home for work. Chores are in the housewife job description. I should be doing my job with joy, not resentment.
- Lashing out at my husband – let’s be honest, sometimes we speak a little too quickly or too harshly at our spouses.
- Clicking on political posts shared on Facebook – It doesn’t matter what side of the spectrum its on, I’m not clicking on it. I don’t need that kind of hate and media manipulation in my life.
- Negative self-talk – Instead, positive self-talk!
- Laziness – Get up, do the thing, whatever it is.
- Going to bed late – This messes with my body, mind, and my morning. Turn off the tv and go to bed.
- Criticizing myself
- Criticizing others
- Being upset with my husband for having to work late or on the weekends – Instead, be so thankful for his gainful employment and his amazing work ethic. My husband is one hard worker and works to provide for me. Let him. Show appreciation and be grateful.
- Ignoring my dog when she wants to play – She doesn’t ask for much (most days), so I need to take 10 minutes and play when she wants to play.
- Shopping for things that I don’t absolutely need
- Alcohol – I don’t drink much to begin with, but it’s a good thing to refrain from completely for a while.
- A day without opening my Bible
- Biting my nails
- Picking at my skin
- Messiness – Take pride in a clean, organized home. Always tidy up.
- My Diva attitude – I still see this come out in myself, especially in places where it shouldn’t, like church. I’m leaving it behind, friends. God is regularly giving me lessons in humility, and I need to embrace them even more than I already have.
- Placing blame
- Excessive non-work related screen time – As a blogger and Youtuber, I can’t really give up screen time, but I can give up mindlessly poking at games for stupid amounts of time. I can spend my time doing better things.
- Taking things for granted
- Procrastination – because it needs to be on here twice. Trust me.
- Wasting food – I have this bad habit of buying a little too much and then it goes bad and has to get tossed.
- Getting angry at and frustrated with my body for things it struggles with or can’t do – Instead, accept and embrace the challenge, strengthen and grow, and celebrate all that this body can do.
- NOT treating my body like the temple God meant for it to be.
- Weighing myself – Yes, this Weight Watcher is giving up the scale for Lent. Life is about SO much MORE than the number on the scale.
I actually wrote these out and will be putting them in a place I can look at them each and every day as a reminder of the mindset I should be in this season. These are all things I want to give up for good, but Lent is always a good time for me to get focused and work on myself.
Are you giving up anything for Lent?