Advertising
Advertising

12 Little Habits That Steal Your Happiness Away (When You Aren’t Aware)

12 Little Habits That Steal Your Happiness Away (When You Aren’t Aware)

We all want to be happy at least most of the time, but, unfortunately, that’s not the case, and we end up searching aimlessly to find happiness, and it always seem to eludes us.

We are all creatures of habit, and often we get stuck in a rut because we refuse to make the necessary changes to our lives that will bring us the happiness we yearn for.

Not all our habits are bad, but sometimes we need to look at the things we do continuously and decide whether we need to make some adjustments if they don’t yield the results we need.

Unfortunately, as humans beings we tend not to want to change, and so we fight tooth and nail not to do this.

We suffer the same headaches and frustration time and time again and never do anything about the issues that are causing us such unhappiness.

Remember if you continuously do the same things over and over again not only will you get the same results but you will become the things you do.

So, if those habits aren’t helping you they are hurting you, and you need to change now to avoid being the same way for a very long time.

Advertising

Some of the many reasons you are unhappy are that you:

Hold on to what you know and refuse to budge

Life is about living and learning. When you stop learning, you stop growing and thriving; hence you won’t  be living a fulfilled life. You have to be prepared to venture out of your comfort zone into unfamiliar territory to truly grow and become who you were meant to be.

You need to be challenged and tested because only when you face challenges will you grow and become better. Remaining in one position will only keep you stuck. Being stagnant is not progressing.

Find ways to challenge yourself and do not be afraid of being pushed. Push back when pushed but do not accept the normal as progress. You must hold fast to your core values while you search for your purpose in life.

Keep resisting life and its changes

There is nothing more painful than when you try to resist life and the changes it brings. Change is never without pain and discomfort. There is nothing more painful than remaining where you are for the rest of your life.

Whether you want to change or not you are in fact changing every day. Look back at your life and see the many changes that have taken place, some positive and others negative. That is life, and you must accept it and work with it as it comes instead of fighting to remain stuck.

Allowing other people to decide what is possible for you

Close your ears to all the discouragement and negativity from people who do not know or care about the real you. You know yourself, and the plans you have for your life so do not allow them to use words to discourage you.

Advertising

Most of the time they are only telling you what they think and want for themselves so close your ears and forge ahead. Choose to do things your way and if you mess up, you’ll know at least that you did it your way.

Focusing on others and not your own life

You could spend your entire life focusing on others while they build their lives and enjoy it, and neglect yours, or you could choose to use your time to build your life. Do not sit around and admire the success of others while your dreams fall apart.

Be happy for them but put the focus on building a life for yourself. Do not allow others to use you to build their dreams and life either.  Cut a path for yourself and chart it. Do not be burdened down with other people’s load.

Focusing too much on your problems

You need to change the way you view difficulties in your life. The challenges you face most times aren’t the real problem: it’s how they are perceived. Change your attitude towards the difficulties you encounter.

See them as nothing more than minor infractions in your life; keep maintaining a positive attitude and you will be fine. You have the power to control your mind and how you view things. Use this to help you to keep your mind away from your problems and focus more on your goals. Let go of the stress by letting go of the problems.

Focusing on being right all the time

When you are focused on being right all the time, you are losing valuable insight into things. Not only are you destroying some great relationships but you are allowing your pride to sabotage your future.

Sometimes you have to choose to be wrong even though you aren’t to maintain and keep an important relationship. You must become confident enough to accept when you are wrong, and even when you are right; sometimes, you must be willing to back down.

Advertising

Holding on to someone who is pulling away from you

It is important to build a great relationship, but you need to make sure the persons or person with whom you are building that relationship are offering you the same in return. It doesn’t make sense for you to be forcing yourself to maintain a relationship with someone who doesn’t want a relationship with you. Do not waste your time trying to prove to them how wonderful you are. If they can’t see it, then that’s their bad luck. Use your time and energy to build yourself up and find someone who will treat you right.

Loving others more than you love yourself

It is fine to love others, but you must remember if you do not invest into yourself no one else will. It is alright to give to others, but you need to be giving to yourself as well. There is nothing wrong with loving yourself and taking the time make sure you are being taken care of.

You won’t be able to take care of others if you aren’t well. The only way you can do that and give them your best is if you give yourself the best as well. Do not let anyone make you feel guilty for loving yourself and who you are. You can only be happy if you are happy with yourself.

Being too self-absorbed

You cannot spend your life focusing on you and not take some time to lend a helping hand to someone else. Being kind is what will help to make you happy. Giving to someone who needs it is what is going to make you smile on a bleak day. Being kind is what will make you feel as though you are contributing to human lives.

Expecting that people will always like you

You have to understand that not everyone is going to like you and want to be around you. People aren’t going to be nice to you all the time, and you must accept that and move on. Do not waste your time trying to convince them to love you. Accept the love from people who want to show it to you and forget the others.

Refusing to let go of the past

Letting go of hurt and pain is necessary for you to be happy. You cannot be holding on to things that you no longer have control over while trying to build something new. You must be willing to let bygones be bygones and leave them where they are. They are in the past for a reason; they should no longer be part of your life. Stop picking back up old pain and burdens that have weighed you down for so long. Rid yourself of them and move one.

Waiting for the right time to be happy

Happiness is not an event; nor do you have to achieve any specific goals to be happy. You must be happy where you are while working to get where you want to go. You should not be waiting around for some great accomplishment before you can be happy.

Advertising

If you can’t be happy with little, you will not be able to be happy with much either. Choose to be happy now while working on achieving the goals you set for your life.

Life is filled with ups and downs, and you must be prepared to adjust to make your life as happy as possible and that includes making some changes. Even though you might not want to do so, you must realize that the temporary discomfort is good for you in the long run.

Accept these changes in your life and you will see the results you have always wanted.

What are some of the changes you have made in your life that have served you well?

Featured photo credit: Giedriusok via shutterstock.com

More by this author

8 Ways You Hurt Yourself and Inadvertently Your Happiness 12 Little Habits That Steal Your Happiness Away (When You Aren’t Aware) 12 Amazing Ways We Seem To Stumble Onto Happiness Want To Be Successful? Follow These 13 Things Truly Confident People Do What Price Are you Willing To Pay To Live Your Dream?

Trending in Communication

1 30 Refreshing Routines to Boost Your Morning Motivation 2 Feeling Like a Failure? 10 Simple Things to Help You Rise Again 3 What Motivates You to Succeed in Life and Keep Moving Forward? 4 6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master 5 5 Ways to Turn Around a Bad Day at Work

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Published on September 23, 2020

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

What is Negotiation?

First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

Places We Negotiate

I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

1. Work/Business

This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

Advertising

In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

2. Personal

I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

3. Ourselves

You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

Advertising

Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

6 Negotiation Skills to Master

Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

1. Preparation

Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

Advertising

It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

2. Clear Communication

The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

3. Active Listening

Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

4. Teamwork and Collaboration

To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

Advertising

If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

5. Problem Solving

Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

6. Decision-Making Ability

Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

Conclusion

There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

Read Next