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30 Things To Let Go Of In 2016

30 Things To Let Go Of In 2016

It’s the beginning of the new year, and millions of people are vowing to achieve big things this year. Just as important as the goals you are reaching toward, however, are the things you are intentionally letting go of. A big part of designing a good life is being able to let go of things that hold you back in life and things that are not important to you.

Here are 30 things to let go of in 2016 to make this the best year you’ve ever had.

1. Let go of self-sabotaging habits. Work on being kind and loving to yourself. Click here to learn 50 small things to do every day to really love yourself.

2. Let go of perfection. Waiting to do something until the timing is perfect often means you’ll never do it at all.

3. Let go of saying you’ll do things “someday.” This life is not a dress rehearsal.

4. Let go of trying to please everyone all the time. You’ll never be everything to everyone and that’s okay.

5. Let go of living the life that everyone else has planned for you. It’s time to design your life the way you want to live it.

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6. Let go of the pressure to spend your entire career at a 9-5 job you don’t love. Make a point to find your passion this year. This free workbook is a great start to help you find your passion this year.

7. Let go of being paralyzed by fear. Remember the biggest risk is often doing nothing; the biggest risk is that you’ll wake up years from now and wish you would have acted on your dreams.

8. Let go of neglecting yourself. You can best serve the world when you take care of yourself.

9. Let go of toxic relationships. You deserve to spend time with people who are uplifting.

10. Let go of letting your past define your future.

11. Let go of constantly competing with people. Focus on your path and work on improving yourself every day.

12. Let go of sitting on the sidelines. Life’s too short to sit there and watch it pass you by just because you don’t think you have the ‘perfect’ body, you’re ‘too old,’ you’re ‘too young,’ or you’re too (fill in the blank).

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13. Let go of items you don’t need. Decluttering your life is incredibly freeing.

14. Let go of trying to be good at everything. Instead, focus on being great at a few things that line up with your priorities and strengths.

15. Let go of thinking you can’t make a difference right now. It’s often possible to turn a difficult job into an amazing mission, right where you are.

16. Let go of always saying yes. Learn to say no to certain commitments so you can say yes to what matters most to you.

17. Let go of of excuses. Decide what you want and go get it.

18. Let go of self-doubt.

19. Let go of procrastination.

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20. Let go of blaming others.

21. Let go of negativity. You really can live an amazing, fulfilling life that you love. It’s time to work on having a great mindset.

22. Let go of thinking small. There truly is power in thinking big.

23. Let go of time-wasting activities that prevent you from working toward your meaningful goals.

24. Let go of inaction.

25. Let go of being ‘too busy’ to do what matters most to you.

26. Let go of worrying about what others think of you. It’s time to find your tribe of like-minded, encouraging people, and blaze the trail you want to blaze.

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27. Let go of being closed-minded. Great innovations happen when people dare to dream about possibilities.

28. Let go of refusing to try new things. You never know what you might love. Sign up for a random community ed class, try a new physical activity, or start a new book club. Life is so much richer with new experiences.

29. Let go of feeling unworthy of your dreams.

30. Let go of thinking your dreams are impossible. Set big goals and surround yourself with people who encourage, support, and inspire you to reach them.

It’s going to be a great year!

More by this author

Dr. Kerry Petsinger

Entrepreneur, Mindset & Performance Coach, & Doctor of Physical Therapy

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system”.

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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The power of habit

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being six hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The wonderful thing about triggers (reminders)

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to make a reminder works for you

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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