Aging isn’t something to be afraid of, nor should it be feared. It means you’ve survived on this earth long enough to be able to experience the amazing things that come with age, like grandchildren; or the wisdom you desperately needed in your 20’s, and how about all the time off that comes with retirement that you can use to see the world! However, there are a few things that aren’t so great about the process too, like the aches and pains that just seem to be getting worse and worse or the fine lines you’ve started to notice around your eyes.

There are definitely some bad habits that actually speed up and intensify the not so good parts about getting older, and we’re here to warn you about them–and you’re going to thank us. In fact, most of America–let’s get real, most of the world–is guilty of bad habit #15 (and number one will have women rethinking their beauty routines).

Who doesn’t want to look and feel younger, anyways? Slowly eliminating the next fifteen bad habits can drastically improve your quality of life, and they’re not actually that hard (they just take a bit of discipline). You’ll be surprised by how many seemingly minute tasks you may be doing every day that age you. I can assure you that you’ll be glad you took a second to check this out, as I’ve already had great success with number two…

15. Binge Watching Netflix

Binge watching may be all the new rage, and I can personally attest to how satisfying and addicting it can be, but research suggests it may not be all that good for you–despite what your brain is telling you right now. The Journal of the American Heart Association published a study suggesting that adults that watch more than three hours of TV per day are at double the risk of premature death than their counterparts who watch less. You may even lean into your antisocial behaviors; research shows 56% of binge watchers like to do it alone, which can lead to anxiety and depression (both of which prematurely age the mind).

14. Staying Up Late

Sometimes, staying up late is inevitable (like throughout your college career or during the early days of child rearing). Making a habit out of getting less than five hours of sleep a day not only physically ages you by giving you dark under-eye circles and preventing your skin from rejuvenating, but it has been linked to premature death–according to Dr. Casciari, an expert in sleep. Doctors suggest getting seven hours of sleep a night, but it’s important to listen to your body (it knows best). Getting sound sleep is also important, so try to leave your phone on a table and not near your bed.

13. Staying Inactive

Staying inactive can also be a really bad habit because of the negative effects it has on your body. Studies have shown that people who are inactive, including those who sit at a desk all day with minimal movement, are at higher risk of all sorts of diseases ranging from heart disease to cancer. If you’re in a position where you spend a lot of time sitting at your job, try getting up every hour or so and walk around to get a good stretch and some blood flowing through your body. Research also suggests people who work out 150 minutes a week live on average ten years longer than people who don’t.

12. Believing You’re Old

Aging happens to two parts of you; to your mind, and to your body. There are things to do to improve the negative aspects of the aging body, and there are also things you can do mentally to keep your mind sharp. The most important thing is not to convince yourself that you’re getting old (which, to you, must mean life is getting worse–if you keep your mind young, YOU stay young. The mind is capable of some pretty extraordinary things and it’s time to let yours work for you, not against you.

11. Refusing To Meditate

Meditation can be key to keeping your mind young and your energy aligned with what type of life you want to lead. However, many people feel that meditation is too strange of a concept to undertake and fear they won’t know how to do it correctly. Keeping your body healthy is only the first part; meditation helps with the second part by keeping your mind young and clear. It’s known to help with emotional issues, such as anger, by lowering stress, as well as helping lower the risk of stroke and heart disease.

10. Sleeping On Your Belly


Sleeping on your stomach may be comfortable, and even natural, but it puts pressure on the skin of your face for long periods of time (and this can cause wrinkles). It also impairs the skin’s ability for rejuvenating circulation, which is important in the healing process. The friction between your face and the pillow case can actually increase this “trauma” and over time can make your skin appear rough, so satin or silk cases can help eliminate this problem.

9. Not Trying Yoga

Yoga is one of the best activities an aging body can participate in as it gently increases muscle strength and flexibility without too much stress. Many people who participate in yoga regularly also admit to having respiratory improvements and more energy, overall, allowing them to get back to the things they love. To add to the long list of benefits, yoga also helps with weight reduction, circulatory health, and can even help you meditate by connecting your breath flow and tempo with your mind and body.

8. Holding Grudges

Although holding grudges can be easy to do in some instances, it actually does nothing to benefit either party; and, I’d go as far as to say that it hurts the holder’s health. Many studies over the years have actually made connections between forgiveness and physical health, and it has to do with letting go of negative energy and releasing stress. The Journal of Behavioral Medicine published a study that showed that lack of forgiveness was connected to a higher number of medications and decreased sleep quality. Don’t let a grudge get in the way of living a long and healthy life–forgive and forget.

7. Binge Working Out

Working out can increase your life by many years–it’s no secret; but did you know that an unsteady workout and diet regimen can negatively affect your metabolism. When you’re constantly shocking your body by changing eating habits and flip-flopping (going from working out like an iron man to nothing at all), your body can go into survival mode and actually pack on the pounds. Keep a realistic and healthy plan that works for you so that you can make it a regular habit and not something you return to for a month at the beginning of every new year–shoot for at least 150 minutes per week, along with a balanced diet.

6. Indulging In Sugar

Dessert can be the best part of the day so learning to have a little self-control can be a hard task. Sugar actually feeds cancer cells and increases wrinkles because of how it dehydrates the skin. When your body ingests loads of sugar, the sugar attaches to nearby proteins forming AGEs that damage skin’s youthful elasticity.  Not only will sugar make your skin look older, but it will also make you gain weight and have a higher risk of diabetes, which can be deadly.

5. Not Drinking Enough Water

Water is life–I know that sometimes we forget this simple concept but it’s true. If you want to be living a long, healthy life and stay looking as youthful as possible, then you need to hydrate throughout the day. Water acts as a moisturizer and skin will crease and look dull without it. Water also helps bring more nutrients to the skin as well, getting rid of itchiness and dryness. If it’s hard for you to gulp 8 eight-ounce glasses a day, then try eating foods that are mostly water like, for example, grapes, cucumbers, and lettuce.

4. Multitasking Too Often

Multitasking is perhaps one of the most prized skills to have in the workforce because of how much more you can get done if you’re good at it. Multitasking may seem easier when you’re young but it can actually cause you to experience more stress, which can lead to premature aging. Dr. Raymond Casciari says that multitasking actually prevents you from getting things done efficiently and can cause you to feel overwhelmed, and it can even cause chronic stress (which can lead to the disbursement of free radicals). Free radicals have been linked to cell damage of all kinds, from skin cell damage to immune cell damage.

3. You Don’t Moisturize

At the end of a long day, a skin care routine may seem like the last thing you want to do, but you may want to make it a well-ingrained habit. In order to get the best skin possible, it’s important to cleanse with a gentle facial cleaner to get the dirt and oil off from the day; then, you’re going to want to replenish with a moisturizer. The face creams that work best have Retin A, which is a form of vitamin A. Repeat this process in the morning and night for best results and make sure to focus the cream around the eyes, as this part of the skin is thinner (and thus ages faster).

2. You Don’t Make A Habit Out Of Sunscreen

Like moisturizer, sunscreen can help replenish the moisture in your skin after a long day in the sun and, most importantly, protects your skin against UV rays (which cause skin damage and cancer). It’s important to use sunscreen regularly (not just when you’re vacationing) because your skin is exposed to sun damage anytime you’re outside. Getting a moisturizer with sunscreen or makeup with some SPF can really help protect your skin and it won’t add any extra steps to your day. Dermatologists will tell you that almost all signs of premature aging come from sun exposure, so even when you’re just running some errands or gardening–don’t forget the SPF.

1. Wearing Too Much Makeup

Although some foundations are great for getting your daily dose of SPF and making you look perfectly airbrushed, wearing too much makeup can actually age you. Wearing heavy makeup products can clog your pores and build up in fine lines, weighing your complexion down. You also want to be aware of any fragrances and coloring that can irritate the skin or dry it out, as they can cause irreversible damage over time. Stick to natural products, wash your makeup off at night, and don’t over-do it (let your natural beauty shine).