For the past three years, I have given up chocolate for Lent. For some people, this may not seem so bad. But for me, this has been nothing short of disastrous. Especially because I'm Orthodox, and our Lent lasts 50 days, not 40. And especially because my birthday always falls during Lent. 

It's no surprise that giving up an "indulgent" food is many of our first options during the fast. But, sometimes doing so isn't the best idea ever, because life is all about balance, even for the indulgences every once in a while. So instead of giving up chocolate this year, I'll be giving up something that isn't food. Here are some ideas for what to give up for Lent, so hopefully you can join me.

1. Gossip

Lent is all about reflecting on your past decisions and attempting to become a better, all-around person. Ever catch yourself talking poorly about someone behind their back? You may want to consider giving it up – hopefully the long Lent season will kick the habit for good.

2. Social Media

candy, chocolate, sweet, sushi
Brittany Arnett

Can't get work done because you're constantly checking Facebook and Instagram? Give it up. You'll be surprised how much extra time you'll have on your hands. Plus, you won't have to worry about "getting a good pic" when you go out or how many likes you've gotten on your latest post.

3. Online Shopping

tea, coffee, beer
Brittany Arnett

This one, I'm guilty of doing. I can't even tell you the amount of times I've ordered a new top or laptop case during my Psych class. Even though it's so easy to just click "buy," do yourself and your wallet a favor and give up this habit.

4. Netflix

tea, coffee, beer
Brittany Arnett

Binge watching, buh-bye. Giving up Netflix may increase your studying, work productivity, and sleep – no more staying up past 2 am watching your seventh episode of Scandal. This one won't be easy, but it will be worth it. 

5. Alcohol 

juice, cider, beer, tea
Renée Wool

Giving up alcohol, especially if you're in college, may seem like a crazy idea – but maybe that's exactly why you should. If you find your weekends becoming crazier than intended or your drinking habits have increased significantly, giving up some booze can help you out. You'd be surprised by what you find out. 

6. Biting Nails

This one is kind of a no-brainer. If you're still chomping down on your cuticles, it's time to cut it out. Emphasis on the cut. Seriously, just use a nail clipper instead. 

7. Pressing the Snooze Button

coffee, spam
Brittany Arnett

You set your alarm at a certain time for a reason: you need to get up and be productive. Because sleep is incredibly important for your health, try going to bed earlier so you stop delaying your wake-up in the morning. Plus, the earlier you wake up, the more time you have for a dank breakfast.

8. People Who Bring You Down

This one is so important – do you have any "friends" that constantly put you down, are always in a bad mood, or don't make you happy? Try limiting your time with them for a few weeks, and see how much better you feel. Negativity only begets negativity – it's time to be positive.

10. Being Late

Are you always rushing for class? Or always have friends waiting for you? Make it your goal for the entirety of Lent to never be late – whether it's for class or just a lunch with your roommate. 

11. Going to Bed Past 12 AM on School Nights

In the wise words of my mom, "nothing good happens past midnight." She always said this to me before going out, but hey, I'm all about living a little on the weekends. So instead, try hitting the hay early when you have class the next day – trust me, you'll be grateful.

These are just some suggestions on what to avoid before the Easter season – hopefully they'll inspire you to carry out a healthy, balanced lifestyle. And you never know, maybe you'll even form a new habit worth keeping.