20 Completely Pointless Things That We All Do Without Realizing Why

Have you ever called an elevator, then hammered away at the button to make it arrive faster? Or gone back to check that you actually did lock your door, multiple times? You’re not alone. In fact, there’s a ridiculous amount of things that we all do in our day-to-day lives that, when you really stop to think about it, are ultimately pointless. And yet we do them anyway. Human brains are weird.

20. Stopping the microwave before it beeps

Nobody likes hearing the microwave beep. After all, it’s just so obnoxiously loud and irritating. That must be the reason we all stop it just before the timer hits zero, right? We can’t think of any other logical explanation, anyway.

19. Pushing the walk button a million times

Those lights really won’t change any faster, y’know. It doesn’t matter how many times you push the button. In fact, sometimes it almost seems like the more you push it, the longer it takes. So why do we even do it at all? The human mind is baffling.

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18. Triple-locking your car, just in case

Yes, your car is definitely locked. No, you don’t need to press the lock button 15 more times, just to make sure. But we all know you’re going to anyway. It’s just one of those paranoid tendencies we all have.

17. Repeatedly hitting “clear” on a calculator

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Who really knows what a calculator stores in its virtual memory? Nobody, that’s who. And of course, nobody wants to go through a complex calculation only to find that the device has retained every single addition, multiplication and subtraction you’ve ever put in there. Best keep pressing “clear.”

16. Pushing the remote buttons harder when the batteries are dead

It’s not like your batteries are just lazy and need that little extra push to activate. No, your batteries are dead. And you know full well that squeezing those buttons as hard as you can is going to have no effect. But you do it anyway, of course.

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15. Continuing to suck the straw when the cup’s empty

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You’ve already drained every last drop from your drink, a fact you know only too well. But maybe, just maybe, if you carry on sucking through that straw, you might be able to dredge up a tiny particle of liquid from some unknown corner of your cup. You never know, right?

14. Constantly checking your wallet is still in your pocket, even though you can feel it

If you’re one of those people who keeps their wallet in their rear pocket, then this one is particularly ridiculous. After all, do it enough and you’re just going to look like you have a fondness for touching your own butt. Indeed, it’s probably best just to assume that nobody’s pick-pocketed you, if you can still feel it anyway.

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13. Checking the “sent” folder in your inbox to make sure an important email went through

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Doing this once is fine. After all, you wouldn’t want a technical error to stop an important message from being delivered, would you? But after the 28th time, you’ll probably start questioning your own sanity.

12. Going back to check the door is locked, despite knowing full well that it is

In the grand scheme of things, this is pretty understandable. You wouldn’t want to leave your door unlocked, after all. But when you know for sure that you’ve already locked it? Yeah, going back is just pointless. But we all do it…

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11. Test clicking tongs more than once, every time you use them

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Surprisingly, there isn’t some maniacal tongs demon running around, breaking them after every use. And yet, you know full well that you’ll still stop to test them, every single time you pick them up. Unless a tornado has swept through your house recently, we’re pretty sure they’re still going to work.

10. Pressing the elevator button over and over, in the hope it might arrive sooner

Okay, so you probably know why you’re doing this one. At least on a surface level, you think that you might encourage the elevator to hurry up. But, deep down, you know it won’t make a slight bit of difference.

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9. Giving the gearshift a few wobbles, to make sure it’s actually in neutral

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It doesn’t matter that you’ve literally just shifted into neutral, not two seconds ago. You can’t really be sure that you’ve actually done it until you test it. Right? Sometimes, you just have to wonder whether you really trust your brain at all.

8. Speeding to get absolutely nowhere

Are you really in such a hurry to get home from work, put your feet up and watch TV? Really, when you think about it, there’s pretty much zero reason to break the speed limit and endanger the lives of you and everyone else on the road. But you sometimes do it anyway.

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7. Closing the Facebook app, only to immediately reopen it, just in case

In those few seconds since you last checked, the world could have ended. And you wouldn’t know, unless you read about it on Facebook. Plus, let’s face it: social media addiction is as unhealthy as it is ridiculously pointless.

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6. Hitting the “off” button on your flat iron over and over

Of all the things you wouldn’t want to accidentally leave turned on, a flat iron is probably up there with the likes of a faucet or your stove. And it’s perfectly reasonable: after all, nobody wants to accidentally burn down their house. But we all know you only need to press the “off” button once.

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5. Checking your phone to see if you have any new messages every three seconds

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Even when we’re not actively messaging anyone at the time, all of us are guilty of this. We could have literally just placed our cell phone back in our pocket, and the slightest vibration or hint of a message tone will bring it right back out again.

4. Checking behind the shower curtain for murderers

Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho basically scarred us all for life, it turns out. Why else would we all compulsively check behind the shower curtain for murderers? Even just saying it out loud sounds ridiculous, let alone actually doing it, multiple times.

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3. Hitting the snooze button continuously

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Science has proved that hitting snooze actually makes you feel less rested. Ignoring that entirely, however, we all still crave those extra 30 minutes of sleep, interrupted by a need to hit snooze every ten minutes. It’s no wonder we’re all such zombies during the day.

2. Making conversationally-appropriate facial expressions while on the phone

Y’know, just in case the person on the other end of the phone can somehow see you. In fairness, this one more than any of the others happens on a subconscious level, so we often don’t even know that we’re doing it, let alone why.

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1. Leaning to one side while going round a corner in a driving game

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Never mind the directional buttons on the controller. Indeed, those won’t do anything compared to the power of tilting your entire body, as if you were one giant, human joystick. And before you say anything, real motion controls just aren’t the same thing.

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