If your goal is to be a happier person, say goodbye to these 9 behaviors

Happiness isn’t just about what you do; it’s also about what you stop doing.

And often, it’s our own habits that hold us back from feeling truly content.

We all have them—those behaviors we’ve held onto for years, even though they make us feel lousy.

They’re familiar, so we stick with them, but in reality, they’re doing more harm than good.

If you’re on a mission to be a happier person, it’s time to say goodbye to these behaviors.

Here’s a list of nine things you might need to let go of on your journey. 

1) Negativity

One of the biggest happiness thieves is negativity.

It’s like a cloud that looms over your head, casting a shadow over everything you do.

Negativity can come in many forms – self-doubt, pessimism, criticism, or even just a general sense of dissatisfaction.

And when you let these feelings take hold, it’s hard to see the brighter side of life.

You can choose to dwell on the bad things or you can choose to focus on the good.

The latter is not always easy, especially when things aren’t going your way.

Yet, that’s exactly when you need to make the conscious decision to shift your perspective.

It’s not about ignoring your problems or pretending everything is perfect.

It’s about finding the silver lining, no matter how small.

So if you want to be a happier person, it’s time to say goodbye to negativity.

Make the choice to see the good in your life and watch as your happiness levels rise.

2) Overthinking

Overthinking is another habit that can rob you of your happiness.

Picking apart every decision, replaying conversations in your head, worrying about the future – these are all forms of overthinking.

I’ll share an example from my own life.

There was a time when I would lie awake at night, my mind racing with ‘what ifs’ and ‘should haves’.

I would analyze every word I had said that day, every decision I had made.

It was exhausting and left me feeling anxious and unhappy.

But over time, I learned to recognize when I was falling into this trap.

I started to practice mindfulness, focusing on the present moment rather than dwelling on past mistakes or future uncertainties.

Letting go of overthinking was a game-changer for me.

It freed up so much mental energy and allowed me to enjoy life as it’s happening, rather than getting lost in my own thoughts.

3) Holding onto grudges

Holding onto grudges is like carrying a heavy backpack everywhere you go.

It’s tiring, it weighs you down, and it makes it hard to move forward.

But here’s something you might not know: forgiving others doesn’t just benefit your emotional wellbeing, it can also have a positive impact on your physical health.

People who forgive others tend to have lower blood pressure, better immune function, and less anxiety and depression.

Not to mention that it also helps to improve relationships and overall life satisfaction.

It might be tough at first, but the freedom you’ll feel will make it worth your while.

4) Comparing yourself to others

In our social media-driven world, it’s easy to fall into the comparison trap.

You see the highlight reel of other people’s lives and start to feel like you’re not doing enough, not achieving enough.

However, you need to remember that everyone’s journey is unique.

Your path doesn’t have to look like anyone else’s.

You’re not behind or ahead; you’re exactly where you need to be.

Comparing yourself to others only serves to make you feel inadequate and unhappy.

It distracts you from your own growth and progress.

Instead, focus on your own journey and celebrate your own achievements.

It’s a small change that can make a big difference in your happiness levels.

5) Ignoring self-care

Self-care is not just about pampering yourself with a spa day or a shopping spree.

It’s about taking care of your physical, mental, and emotional health on a consistent basis.

When life gets busy, it’s easy to push self-care to the back burner.

But ignoring your own needs can lead to burnout, stress, and ultimately unhappiness.

For instance, not getting enough sleep or eating unhealthy foods can affect your mood and energy levels.

Similarly, neglecting your emotional wellbeing can lead to feelings of anxiety or depression.

Listen to your body and mind, and give them what they need.

It’s not selfish; it’s essential for your happiness and wellbeing.

6) Staying in toxic relationships

Behaviors a true gentleman will never tolerate in a relationship If your goal is to be a happier person, say goodbye to these 9 behaviors

Relationships should add value to our lives.

They should bring joy, love, and a sense of belonging.

But unfortunately, not all relationships do this.

Some are toxic and can drain us emotionally.

Staying in a relationship that pulls you down more than it lifts you up can take a heavy toll on your happiness.

It’s like being stuck in a dark room, desperately looking for a ray of light.

I know it’s hard.

Letting go of someone you care about is never easy, no matter how bad the relationship is.

But remember this: you deserve to be happy.

You deserve to be in a relationship that makes you feel loved and respected.

7) Not setting boundaries

Setting boundaries is crucial for maintaining a healthy balance in life.

It helps protect your time, energy, and emotional wellbeing.

But for a long time, I struggled with this. I was always the ‘yes’ person – agreeing to every request or demand, regardless of how it impacted me.

I thought it would make people like me more, but all it did was leave me feeling drained and resentful.

Learning to set boundaries was a turning point for me.

It meant respecting my own needs and making sure others respected them too.

It wasn’t about being selfish; it was about self-preservation.

8) Fear of change

Change is a natural part of life.

It’s how we grow, learn, and evolve.

But for many of us, change can be scary.

It’s stepping into the unknown, leaving behind what’s comfortable and familiar.

This fear of change can hold us back from pursuing new opportunities, from taking the risks that could lead to greater happiness.

But remember, every new chapter in your life requires closing an old one.

Embracing change rather than fearing it can open doors to experiences and opportunities you never thought possible.

9) Ignoring your passions

There’s nothing that quite compares to the feeling of doing something you truly love.

It’s a joy, a spark, a sense of fulfillment that goes beyond words.

Ignoring your passions, on the other hand, is like dimming your own light.

It robs your life of color and excitement.

We all have things that make our hearts sing – activities, hobbies, pursuits that bring us genuine happiness.

These are not just optional extras in life; they are essential components of a happy existence.

So if you want to be a truly happier person, don’t ignore your passions.

Make time for them, prioritize them.

They are the things that make you ‘you’, and embracing them is a surefire way to boost your happiness.

Happiness is your own creation

The pursuit of happiness is deeply personal and unique to each individual.

It’s not something that can be defined by a universal standard or achieved through a one-size-fits-all approach.

The behaviors you need to say goodbye to on your journey to happiness are likely those that have been holding you back, causing unnecessary stress, or draining your energy.

Remember, happiness isn’t just about adding things to your life; it’s also about letting go of the things that no longer serve you.

It’s about recognizing that you are in control of your own happiness.

You have the power to shape your thoughts, attitudes, and actions in ways that cultivate joy and fulfillment.

So take a moment to reflect on what behaviors might be hindering your happiness.

And remember, every step you take towards letting go of these is a step closer to a happier you.

Picture of Eliza Hartley

Eliza Hartley

Eliza Hartley, a London-based writer, is passionate about helping others discover the power of self-improvement. Her approach combines everyday wisdom with practical strategies, shaped by her own journey overcoming personal challenges. Eliza's articles resonate with those seeking to navigate life's complexities with grace and strength.

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