23 Ways Not to Lead a Cookie Cutter Life

We call ourselves Notable for a reason. 

A ‘notable’ designation means going above and beyond the status quo in everything you do in your 360-degree life. 

It means never settling and, very importantly, not falling into a cookie cutter lifestyle. Not that there’s anything so wrong with leading a life of stability, monotony and a safe routine… but we’d rather not. 

Here are 23 ways to do the exact opposite…

1. Make sure next book you read isn’t currently a New York Times bestseller. 
Though undoubtedly quality reading material, don’t stick only to books that every one else is reading beside you on the subway. Old classics, biographies, independent literature… it’s all literally at your fingertips. 

2. Hit your city’s boutiques before the shopping mall. 
If you want to add some individuality to your outfit, try to hit your local boutiques and vintage stores before the local mall.

3. Discover a hidden gem of a restaurant and make it your own. 
By all means, try out each new latest and greatest restaurant that opens in your city. But also make it your mission to find an under-the-radar restaurant and have it become your new favourite place. 

4. Try at least one extreme sport or activity.  
Even if you never end up doing it again, make it a point to try an extreme sport. This could mean kite surfing, parasailing, sky diving, white water rafting, mountain biking… you know, things far beyond Frisbee in the park (though we love that too). 

5. Hit Canadian Tire and Home Depot on a Monday night as opposed to Saturday. 
It’s so typical to hit a Canadian Tire or Home Depot on a Saturday morning, and there’s no worse way to feel like you’ve entered a life of grown-up routine. Go on a Monday night instead.

6. Purchase jewellery and accessories at places other than the usual suspects. 
As opposed to going for the typical turquoise box (though we’d never turn one away), discover local jewellery designers who are creating unique pieces that few others will also own, purchase pieces in your travels or, better yet, make or design your own. 

7. Opt for a documentary over a Hollywood blockbuster. 
Instead of catching an IMAX Hollywood blockbuster, choose a documentary or indie film at one of your city’s independent movie theatres. The same goes for Netflix nights in. 

8. Don’t have your radio permanently set to the ‘top 40’ station. 
As much as we love some reliable top 40, try to have a diverse selection of music on your iPod and radio. This could mean an eclectic assortment of some of your parents’ favourites or even a new-found appreciation for country music.

9. Have one recipe, whether for pasta or a smoothie, that’s entirely unique (even secret) to you. 
And wait for the perfect time to bust it out to impress your friends or date.

10. Switch up your daily routine. 
Life can quickly become monotonous if you don’t switch it up. This could mean trying a new morning class at the gym, ordering something different for lunch every day, or taking a rental bike home. 

11. Truly love what you do for a living. 
Do you want to end up feeling like you’re living in a real life version of Office Space? It’s unrealistic to assume that everyone will be in love with their job… but if you can’t stand the red tape, office politics and soul-sucking grind that is your job now, it’s a long time until retirement.

12. Have a passion. 
Whether it’s writing, playing the guitar, food or fashion, find time to devote to your passions and hobbies. If you don’t have any, it’s time to discover some. 

13. Have a diverse group of friends… 
…from different life stages, interests and even ages. It’s the best way to keep your social life interesting and you can always learn something from keeping diverse company.

14. Travel to places not found in travel books. 
Meaning: the opposite of a Sandals all-inclusive vacation. 

15. Opt for indie theatre instead of that high budget musical. 
There are more indie theatre venues in your city than you’d ever expect. Not to mention, you’ll feel more connected to the performance in a smaller, more intimate venue the next time you crave that theatre fix. 

16. Try a new brunch spot each Sunday. 
Don’t get stuck in a routine of the same eggs Benny each week. Now more than ever, our cities are dishing up some of the best brunches. And it’s more affordable than trying a new dinner spot every week. 

17. Challenge yourself daily at the office. 
You’re there anyway. Why not go above and beyond in the workplace? That way you won’t feel like it’s becoming too routine, and challenging yourself will likely lead to reward once you nail it. 

18. Take risks with your outfit choices. 
Especially now that your body’s still in its prime. Test out an edgier look on the weekends, wear colours you never used to, or show a little more skin than normal. Why not?

19. Switch up your news sources.  
Grab your news from more sources than your local news station and CNN. It will open you up to new opinions, views and information compared to the selectively informed masses. And you’ll have more to talk about.

20. Date someone who’s the opposite of your ‘type’ at least once in your life.
We promise it adds an element of excitement in all areas of your relationship (no matter how short-lived) and, if nothing else, at least you’ll learn something from it. 

21. Make sure your place isn’t furnished entirely from Ikea. 
Do you really want your place to look like thousands of other people’s? Switch it up with everything from refurbished garage sale finds and antiques from your grandparents to higher end pieces you scored when Restoration Hardware had a sale. 

22. Be sexual. 
Mix it up in the bedroom. Always. We’ll leave it at that.

23. Don’t care what others think. 
Cookie cutters seems to play it safe because that’s what everyone else it doing. How boring. Stand out. Be different. And the best way to begin is to stop caring what anybody thinks. 


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