Advertising
Advertising

15 Things To Stop Doing If You Want To Be Truly Happy

15 Things To Stop Doing If You Want To Be Truly Happy

Life seemed so much simpler when we were kids. Don’t you think?

There were much less things to worry about, and more things that could make us truly happy.

It was amazing how some simple things used to put a big smile on our face. I still remember how happy I was when I got my first hula hoop. So much happiness because of one simple toy!

The thing is, as we grow older and our world gets bigger and we gain new experiences, we get overwhelmed and see happiness as something that is hard to achieve, and fail to see it’s been here all along.

Why is it so harder to be happy when you get older? Well, when we were kids, we were completely focused on ourselves, everything we did, we did to make us feel good. As adults, we let the society define the notion of happiness, but we are we in that story? We need to look for happiness inside and stop doing things that aren’t helping us.

What You should stop doing and What You Should Do Instead?

1. Stop ignoring your own needs

Why? Trying to please everybody is a mission impossible. You will never be able to do that. And while you are taking care about everybody else’s needs, who is taking care of yours? No one. If you don’t think about yourself and what you can do to be happy, nobody else will. That’s the hard truth. The sooner you realize this, the better.

What you should do instead? Everyone is different, and nobody knows better than you what you really want and need. So, sit down and take a moment to think about your desires. Tune out outside voices, follow your emotions and they will tell you what you need.

    Source: Pinterest


    2. Stop comparing yourself to others

    Why? There are no two same people. And that is a wonderful thing. Being unique as we are, there’s no point in comparing ourselves to other people. We just end up being miserable and envious of the things we don’t have. We should have faith in our life journey and that everything we want will find its way to us in the right moment.

    What you should do instead? Stop spending hours and hours looking at perfect lives of other people on social media. Their lives might not be so perfect after all, they surely have their share of struggles. Instead, focus on your life and how to make it better. Start making some real changes instead of just staring at computer screen. Don’t just complain how some people have it all, and start working on achieving your goals. Praise yourself for the little achievements and from time to time, stop to think how far you’ve come.

      Source: Pinterest

      Advertising


      3. Stop resisting your fear

      Why? Being afraid stops us from experiencing many great things. It limits us and prevents us from feeling happy. If you are constantly afraid of everything, you will isolate yourself from everything. But if you push yourself into overcoming your fears, you will see there are no limits as to what you can do, and you will realize your life is in your hands.

      What you should do instead? Approach every situation you fear as a step closer on your way of becoming a better person. I used to be afraid of saying “no” to people when I couldn’t or didn’t want to do something. I was so afraid people won’t like me anymore. But, I learned that not everyone can and should like me, and being afraid of saying “no” was doing no good to me – I was wasting my valuable time and energy on something I didn’t want to do. Now, I say “no” and feel so much better.

        Source: Pinterest


        4. Stop feeling bad for making a mistake

        Why? If you don’t make mistakes, there are no challenges and no chances for personal growth. Not wanting to make mistakes means you don’t get to try new things and learn new things. Mistakes are also valuable lessons that will stick with us forever and make us better.

        What you should do instead? Don’t look at mistakes as something bad and embarrassing. When I had my first translation job, I was so embarrassed because of the mistakes I made. But I learned so much, and those mistakes made me more experienced and much confident in my translation skills. Every time you make a mistake, just remember it will be really helpful in the future, and that at some point you will be grateful for it.

          Source: Pinterest


          5. Stop putting your happiness into other’s hands

          Why? If you don’t love yourself and know how to be happy on your own, nobody else can do it for you. Happiness is inside you, not outside. And no one can fill the void if you are not happy. Besides, nobody is in your skin and knows what’s best for you.

          What you should do instead? Take a few days and be on your own, just you and your thoughts. Do something relaxing, and figure out what makes you happy and what you can do to seek happiness without anybody else in the picture. Nobody can make the right decisions for you, because it’s something you live with, not other people.

            Source: Pinterest


            6. Stop trying to take control of all aspect of your life

            Why? Life is unpredictable, and that’s the beauty of it. Trying to control everything in your life is like trying to control the weather – simply not possible. Yes, there is rain and storm, but there is also sun and rainbows. There is no point in stressing out about something you simply cannot change. The trick is to go with the flow and look forward to the unknown. Life would be so boring if everything was planned in advance.

            Advertising

            What you should do instead? Try to not have every step of every day planned. I learned from my experience there are always unpredictable situations, and I just get frustrated if things aren’t going the way I planned. So, I don’t make detailed plans and always have room for improvisation.

              Source: Pinterest


              7. Stop living to others’ expectations or social standards

              Why? We are all a part of a society, and every society will always have standards people should live by. But trying to achieve those standards will not make you happy. Why do you need to get married before 30? Why do you even need to get married if that’s not something you want?

              What you should do instead? You will never be able to please everyone, so just follow your heart and do what feels right to you. Forget what other people expect, and create your own goals.

                Source: Pinterest


                8. Stop aiming for perfection

                Why? There’s no such thing as perfection. You will just waste valuable time and energy and drive yourself crazy if you want everything to be perfect.

                What you should do instead? Put that energy into something more creative. Aiming for perfection is a never-ending battle, so stop trying so hard and do something more fun, like reading a book, or meeting your friends for coffee.

                  Source: Pinterest


                  9. Stop trying to make others happy and forget about yourself

                  Why? You must put yourself first. If you constantly put yourself last, you will be miserable as you will never have time for yourself. Being a little selfish is not always bad. If you are happy and fulfilled, people around you will also feel better.

                  What you should do instead? Every morning when you get up, do something nice for yourself. Forget about everybody else, and do something you like. Treat yourself with something nice every time you finish a demanding task. Spoil yourself, because nobody else will.

                  Advertising

                    Source: Pinterest


                    10. Stop putting off your dream

                    Why? It’s never a perfect time to pursue your dream. The conditions will never be perfect, and the longer you wait, the more difficult it will be for you to start.

                    What you should do instead? If you have a passion that drives you, start pursuing it immediately, don’t wait. When you do something you love, all the pieces will come together. If you want to change your job or quit it to start your own business, don’t be afraid to start now. Even if you fail, you will learn so much.

                      Source: Pinterest


                      11. Stop thinking what makes others happy makes you happy

                      Why? Every person on this planet is unique, and there is no universal recipe for happiness. Someone might feel happy while hiking in nature, but that doesn’t mean you will feel happy doing it.

                      What you should do instead? Forget about other people, and explore what you enjoy doing. Don’t be afraid to try out new things and find what fulfills you.

                        Source: Pinterest


                        12. Stop feeling bad to be alone

                        Why? It is always better to be alone than in a miserable relationship. It is wrong to stay in a relationship only because you are afraid of being alone.

                        What you should do instead? If you are truly looking for a meaningful relationship, you first need to have a meaningful relationship with yourself. So, if you are single, use the time to rediscover yourself and what you really want. Then you will know what you want from your next relationship instead of relying on your partner to make you happy.

                        Advertising

                          Source: Pinterest


                          13. Stop working too hard for the future and forget about the present

                          Why? Nobody knows what future holds and planning too much will only make you anxious. You can never relive the present and you will miss out on many great things if you just live in the future.

                          What you should do instead? Focus on what is around you and what you are doing now. When drinking your morning coffee, don’t think about things you need to do, just breathe in and enjoy your coffee. By focusing on now, you will feel more energized and concentrated.

                            Source: Pinterest


                            14. Stop neglecting small things in your life

                            Why? We often believe that only big things can make us happy, such as buying an expensive car. But everyday small things are the key to happiness, as they can make us feel better at any moment of every day, while big things don’t come so often.

                            What you should do instead? Find at least one small thing that will make you happier every single day, such as eating an ice-cream, watching your favorite TV show, or just sitting in the park in the sun. Cherish and practice those things constantly.

                              Source: Pinterest


                              15. Stop focusing on what hurts you

                              Why? Being hurt is inevitable part of our lives, but it is a passing thing. Focusing on things that make you feel bad will unnecessarily prolong negative emotions.

                              What you should do instead? You need to eliminate the cause of your pain. If a person is constantly hurting you, they probably shouldn’t be a part of your life. Work out why you are getting hurt and try to change something instead of just thinking how bad you feel.

                                Source: Pinterest

                                Featured photo credit: https://pixabay.com/ via pixabay.com

                                More by this author

                                Ana Erkic

                                Social Media Consultant, Online Marketing Strategist, Copywriter, CEO and Co-Founder of Growato

                                Who Says All Introverts Hate Socializing? Here’s The Truth About Introvert And Extrovert Every Time You Drink A Beer, Remember To Drink The Same Amount Of Water You’re Exceptionally Creative If You See The Correct Image (Only 1/100 People Can Do This!) If You Have These 6 Struggles, You’re Highly Intelligent Who Can Resist Avocado! It Is One of the Most Nutrient Fruit In The World!

                                Trending in Communication

                                1 How to Think Positive and Eliminate Negative Thoughts 2 6 Types of Fear of Success and How to Overcome Them 3 19 Golden Pieces of Relationship Advice From the Experts 4 Signs Of Low Self-Esteem And The Root Causes You Might Not Know 5 How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

                                Read Next

                                Advertising
                                Advertising
                                Advertising

                                Last Updated on May 27, 2019

                                How to Think Positive and Eliminate Negative Thoughts

                                How to Think Positive and Eliminate Negative Thoughts

                                In a world that is full of external factors that we cannot control, it is becoming more and more important to at least control ourselves.

                                Thinking positively can have a tremendous effect on our lives. By eliminating negative thoughts, we’re able to at least influence the part of our lives that we can control: our own mindset.

                                In this article, you will learn how to think positive and ditch the negative thoughts. Before we dive into the step-by-step guide on how to do so, I’d like to share with you how I learned to thinking positive the hard way…

                                How I Learned to Think Positive

                                At the start of 2019, I was quite stressed at work with multiple tight deadlines. I was constantly worried and the stress was affecting my ability to sleep. Numerous nights in a row, I would experience insomnia, where I had a staring contest with the ceiling because my mind would simply not stop thinking about all the stressful things I had to deal with.

                                I eventually got up and wrote everything down. Every single thought that rushed through my head, I wrote it down in detail. This allowed me to do a couple of things:

                                • It made everything relatable
                                • It showed me that every obstacle that was on my mind was not that big on its own. I was only stressed because these obstacles were big in numbers, while independently, these obstacles were just minor things that I could overcome.
                                • It allowed me to think positively about these little obstacles and how I was going to conquer them one at a time.
                                • Writing down my negative emotions allowed me to wipe them clean from my mind. Think of it as a laptop: after having browsed for a long time, I was able to clear my RAM and start fresh. My mind was finally clear from negative thoughts.

                                After doing this, I was finally able to sleep, and the next day, I slowly started to tackle these small obstacles.

                                This is just one example of how I manage to think positively and eliminate negative thoughts from dominating my mind.

                                Here are other actionable steps you can follow in order to achieve the same thing.

                                Step 1: Turn Every Obstacle into Smaller “Challenges”

                                In the intro, you read that I was stressed because I was worrying about a big number of small obstacles as opposed to one big devastating obstacle. Writing down my worries allowed me to zoom out and look at the bigger picture.

                                Advertising

                                As a result, I observed my problems as single challenges that I could overcome.

                                When you’re currently surrounded with negativity – whether that’s because of a stressful project or problems in a relationship – you should try to dissect that challenge into different sub-challenges.

                                For example, if you have to deliver a huge presentation at work on Friday, try to think of this big task as multiple smaller tasks:

                                • Find sources to support your presentation
                                • Think of interesting anecdotes, introductions or examples
                                • Create a general outline of your presentation
                                • Complete the first 5 slides
                                • Add a small video or puzzle to your presentation
                                • Finish the presentation
                                • Think of a keyword for each slide to remember what you have to say
                                • Practice the presentation in order to finish it within 30 minutes
                                • Deliver a great presentation

                                While this example may not be relevant to you, the message is all the same. You can tackle pretty much any obstacle – no matter how big it may seem – as long as you take it one step at the time.

                                That’s how you can eliminate negative thoughts such as “I can never do that” or “I’ll never be good enough” or “I’ll never reach that goal” from controlling your actions.

                                Take it one step at the time and pretty much any goal becomes manageable.

                                Step 2: Realize That Positive Thoughts Can Be a Choice

                                Happiness is determined as follows:[1]

                                • 50% is determined by genetics
                                • 10% is determined by external factors
                                • 40% is determined by your own outlook

                                This determination has been studied by numerous researchers, and while the details differ, the results all share the same observation:

                                Your happiness can be influenced by your own thoughts.

                                Advertising

                                Even though there are things in life that we cannot control, we can still often control how we react to these things.

                                In that sense, we might not get to control 100% of our happiness but we can still influence a big chunk of it.

                                I believe we can learn to influence the 40% of our happiness that is determined by our own personal outlook. Happiness is a choice, and you can learn to recognize these situations on your own.[2]

                                How does this help you to think positive and eliminate negative thoughts?

                                Well, because this shows you that it pays off to learn how to think positively in difficult situations.

                                By developing this skill, you can really increase happiness in your life. It is definitely not always easy, but you can change a bad day into a good one just by focusing on the positives instead of the negatives.

                                This is the reason why I love this quote of Winston Churchill:

                                A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity whereas an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.

                                Step 3: Spend Time with the People That Have a Positive Influence on Your Life and Be Grateful for Them

                                Almost everybody has a small circle of people that they trust and love, whether that’s a partner, family or friends. These people have a positive influence on your life.

                                Advertising

                                I want you to focus on spending more time with these people. When you’re surrounded by negativity, you are more likely to postpone activities that require you to be outgoing. You’d rather be lazy and watch Netflix all day than to go outside and meet up with your friend.

                                You must try to break out of your comfort zone and spend more time with the people who actually have a positive influence on your happiness. These people can act as a support net for the moments when you’re feeling down. This might sound intimidating and scary, but it’s a step that should not be underestimated.

                                Even when you don’t feel comfortable sharing your challenges with these people, there’s another thing you can actively do to initiate positive thoughts; and that’s to be grateful that these people are in your life:

                                • Be grateful that you have parents who support you, no matter what you do.
                                • Be grateful for the friends with whom you can laugh your ass off.
                                • Be grateful that you have a healthy and loving partner.
                                • Be grateful that you have a kid that looks up to you and thinks you are the best.

                                Being grateful might sound like a rather pointless thing to do. Why would being grateful help you in thinking more positively and eliminating negative thoughts?

                                Well, the answer is simple.

                                Being grateful forces you to think of the good things that you already have in your life. This allows you to face your issues with optimism, instead of negativity. People that actively practice gratitude are much better able to deal with toxic emotions.

                                So what do you have to do?

                                Go out there and meet up with the people you love, and be grateful for having these people in your life.

                                To help inspire you to feel more grateful, here’re 60 Things To Be Thankful For In Life.

                                Advertising

                                Step 4: Don’t Give up After a Setback

                                So you had a bad day last week? Or maybe a terrible week in which you allowed negative thoughts to control your life? Who cares!

                                We are only human, so we’re bound to experience a day of negativity every once in a while. It’s important to realize that everybody occasionally experiences negative thoughts in their life. Eternal happiness does not exist. Even the happiest man alive has experienced negativity and sadness on some days.

                                What you need to when this inevitably happens to you:

                                • Don’t let this set you back.
                                • Don’t interpret it as a failure
                                • Don’t let it stop you from trying to think positive

                                You see, even the most optimistic person experiences negativity on occasion. Sure, we can try to be as positive as possible every day, but we have to accept that negativity is something that we have to deal with from time to time.

                                So what if you’re engulfed in negative thoughts today? Screw it and know that tomorrow is a new day and that you can try to work on this again.

                                Take a look at this article and learn about Why Negative Emotions Aren’t That Bad (And How to Handle Them).

                                Final Thoughts

                                In the end, there’s no arguing that we cannot control 100% of our happiness. We can’t stand in front of a mirror, repeat the words “I am thinking happy thoughts only” ninety-nine times and accept to suddenly be happy.

                                It doesn’t work like that.

                                However, there are a number of things we can do to at least improve our mindset in the situations where we do get to choose how we react to external factors.

                                I hope that you have a better idea of what you can do in these situations. Sooner than later, you will influence your own mindset to think positively and to eliminate negative thoughts.

                                More Articles About Positivity And Happiness

                                Featured photo credit: Lucas Marconnet via unsplash.com

                                Reference

                                [1] For a State of Happiness: Happiness: it’s not just your genes, stupid!
                                [2] Tracking Happiness: How Happiness Can Be A Choice

                                Read Next