Want to Live a Happier Life? Stop Doing These 5 Things
It’s great to have long-term goals for self-improvement. But sometimes those long-term goals can feel so, well, long-term. So, don’t just think about where you want to be five or 10 years from now; ask yourself what’s getting in the way of making your life better right at this moment? Sure, there are some things you have no control over and can’t change. But, as Improving Lives Counseling Services explains, here are some self-sabotaging practices you can quit today, for better confidence and overall satisfaction.
What are you doing, right this minute? Are you putting off some minor task you ought to be working on, like paying bills or tidying up? Did you promise yourself you’d do a workout today? Are you putting it off? Entrepreneur Roman Randall notes that the problem with procrastination is that the longer you put something off, the harder it can be to get up the energy to finally do it. But, if you get up right now, stop procrastinating, and complete even one little item on your to-do list, you will feel better. You will realize that you don’t need to dread the things you’ve been putting off. Once you’ve completed them you will feel so much better, too.
Stop fixating on the past.
Keeping recollections of the past alive can be healthy and good. But lingering nostalgically on the past for too long can get debilitating. If you are stuck in a past version of yourself, fixated on holding onto your youthful idea of yourself, or bitter about dreams that didn’t come true, you will stagnate. You may even fall into self-destructive habits. It’s so much better to let the past be the past, and think instead about who you are today, the challenges you’ve met, the obstacles you’ve overcome, and the wonderful gifts you’ve developed along the way.
Stop comparing yourself to others.
Just as fixating on a past version of yourself can be unhealthy, fixating on other, alternative versions of yourself can hold you back. Don’t look at others and think “if only I had that” or “if only I looked like her” – this isn’t helpful. There will always be someone richer, better looking, more successful, and – seemingly – happier than you are, so if you live your life via comparison, this is a recipe for misery. Instead, try to make the most of what you have and be grateful that you can!
Stop saying “yes” to everyone.
It’s great to be open to new opportunities, and generous to friends and loved ones. And sometimes saying no isn’t an option, due to your responsibilities to others around you. But if you’re always accepting invitations and agreeing to things you don’t really have time for, you are going to get exhausted. This includes tasks and requests at the workplace. If the workload or a specific project is pushing you to the edge of sanity, it’s time to just say no. It’s part of maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
Remember, being friends with people doesn’t mean you signed a contract saying you’d agree to everything they wanted from you. Real Simple suggests getting comfortable with setting boundaries and saying no, when you are asked to do things that aren’t an enjoyable or valuable use of your time.
Stop feeling like change is impossible.
Again – you can’t change everything, but if you’re stuck in a rut, maybe you don’t have to be. If there are few opportunities for socializing where you live, maybe it’s time to move. If your job has gotten dull, maybe it’s time for a career change. Even if you have duties to work and family, you can enroll in an online program and pursue a variety of degrees that will open new doors for you. If you love detective stories, maybe a criminal justice degree is right for you. You may even feel like starting your own business.
It can feel great when you decide to make even a tiny change. Putting just a single, unhelpful habit behind you makes a difference. You may feel better about your life, happier about the day you are having. And that positivity may just give you the boost you need to keep making changes that will enhance your overall happiness.
Improving Lives Counseling Services helped thousands of children, teens, adults, couples & families achieve their goals and reach their full potential. Now let us help you. Reach out today! (918) 268-3690