If you’re always unhappy, say goodbye to these 16 bad habits

16 bad habits to get rid of?! That’s quite a lot, isn’t it? Don’t worry. I’m sure you aren’t doing all of them now, right? 


The truth is, if you eliminate a fair amount of the following destructive behaviors, you’ll be in a much better place very soon. 

You’ll spend much more time on the things that matter, and you’ll have an optimistic outlook on life. 

So let’s dig in. 

1) Negative self-talk

Constantly criticizing yourself and focusing on your flaws easily corrupts self-esteem and confidence. 

When I was at the lowest point in my life, my mind constantly went into the past and reminded me of all the mistakes I’ve made. 

I also thought I’d never accomplish anything with my life, so why even bother? 

If you’re doing similar things, it’s key to practice self-compassion by treating yourself kindly, just as you would a friend. 

Challenge negative thoughts with evidence of your strengths and achievements. And most importantly, don’t dwell on past mistakes. 

2) Comparing yourself

Apart from negative self-talk, comparing yourself to others is another bad habit that will make you feel terrible. 

Even the most successful and wealthy people out there compare themselves to others. 

Case in point – Mark Zuckerberg training martial arts because he probably thinks he isn’t manly enough, or billionaires like Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, and Richard Branson, all making space rockets.  

If you continuously compare yourself to others, you end up with feelings of inadequacy and envy. Focus on your own progress and accomplishments. 

Celebrate your own journey and set personal goals based on your aspirations, not other people’s.

Okay, let’s switch the gears up a bit. 

3) Lack of exercise

You know how important exercise is, but if you still aren’t exercising regularly or playing sports that don’t include sitting down, that’s a red flag honestly. 

Physical activity is closely linked to mental well-being. Engaging in regular exercise releases endorphins, which uplift your mood. 

Yes, exercising can be demanding, especially if you dislike physical pain, discomfort, and sweating. 

But it’s also incredibly gratifying. 

Find an activity you enjoy and make it a part of your routine. For example, I started skipping rope fairly recently and haven’t looked back. 

It’s a great fit for my lifestyle, doesn’t take long, and isn’t boring. 

4) Unhealthy diet

What I said about exercising is also true for your eating habits. 

Poor eating habits affect your energy levels and overall health, impacting your mood as well. 

Although I ate healthy most of the time, we were ordering pizza way too much now that I look back at it. We also ate cheese with almost everything.

Sitting behind a laptop for work and eating as mentioned earlier, landed me high blood pressure and high cholesterol.  

Since I started prioritizing a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, I made a complete 180.

5) Lack of sleep

Inadequate sleep impacts mood, cognitive function, and overall well-being. If you get under six or seven hours of sleep regularly, you won’t be able to think clearly.

Prioritize a consistent sleep schedule, create a calming bedtime routine, and make your sleep environment conducive to rest.

I think we’re already making progress here. If I stopped the article now and you implemented the points I made above, you’d be at least 60% better off. 

But let’s move on to some relatively finer points. 

6) Neglecting self-care

detach negative thoughts If you’re always unhappy, say goodbye to these 16 bad habits

When you put family, partners, work, or friends first, you put your needs last. 

This often results in burnout and unhappiness. Yes, all of the above are very important, but so are you and your needs.

Prioritize self-care activities that regenerate your mind, body, and soul, whether that’s reading, taking walks, or practicing hobbies.

7) Perfectionism

Some people don’t think something’s finished until it’s perfect. Although that’s a very admirable trait, it can also hold you down in many ways. 

Striving for perfection sets unrealistic standards and leads to chronic stress and anxiety in some people. 

Embrace a growth mindset, valuing progress over perfection. Learn from mistakes and see them as opportunities for learning and growth.

Would you rather build 10 okay houses for the homeless or one villa? 

8) Negative news consumption

This is something we almost can’t escape anymore. You can’t turn on the TV, YouTube, or open a news website without seeing extremely negative news and talking points.

If they aren’t covering real and pressing issues like climate change, they’re blowing up small things out of proportion dividing the country even more. 

The truth is constantly consuming negative news increases anxiety and distress, whether you’d like to admit it or not. 

Be aware of how much news you consume and balance it with positive and uplifting content. 

This goes perfectly hand-in-hand with my next point. 

9) Excessive screen time

Spending too much time on screens reduces face-to-face interactions and physical inactivity. 

You’re also more exposed to social media, which isn’t great for your self-image. 

Set limits on screen time and assign time for offline activities like hobbies, exercise, and socializing.

Go out into nature more. You’ll be much happier. 

10) Living in a state of constant busyness

Being too busy all the time is another habit that can lead to exhaustion and a lack of time for self-care and meaningful connections. 

Yes, we need to work, do chores, and deal with a hundred other more or less important things, but you have to draw the line somewhere.

Prioritize activities that truly matter to you and create space for relaxation. Organize your week upfront and schedule “me time” in advance and let others know of it. 

11) Overthinking

Constantly replaying scenarios and worrying contributes to anxiety and hopelessness. 

I mean, I worry about my kid and his future, and I also have anxiety about dozens of other things out of my control. 

Although I’m aware of these things, I don’t spend much time thinking about things that are out of my hands.

I solely focus on things I can directly and indirectly impact. Simply said, I do my part and act as an example. 

12) Living in the past

Dwelling on past mistakes or regrets prevents you from fully engaging in the present. Accept that you can’t change the past, and focus on what you can control in the present to create a positive future.

Nothing else I can add here.

The problem with living in the past is also that you aren’t willing to change. 

13) Avoiding change

small changes to improve life 2 If you’re always unhappy, say goodbye to these 16 bad habits

Staying within your comfort zone limits personal growth and transformation. Embrace change as a chance for new experiences and learning. 

Gradually challenge yourself to step outside of what feels familiar.

Pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, even in small ways, will give you greater accomplishment and happiness.

I want to start a YouTube channel about the region I live in, highlighting the food, wine, and people. 

This requires stepping out of my comfort zone in more ways than one. I have to start talking to the locals more (I don’t know the language that well yet), use the camera to film, edit the footage, and do dozens of other things I’m not comfortable with. 

Will that stop me? Of course not. 

14) Isolation

Getting out more and talking to others, even strangers, is beneficial. 

Withdrawing from social interactions, which happened en masse during the pandemic, led to people feeling lonely and sad. 

People finally understood how important it is to cultivate and maintain relationships with friends and loved ones. 

Start engaging in activities that allow you to connect with others. If that means starting a YouTube channel, so be it. 

15) Procrastination

Delaying tasks is good only for heightened stress and anxiety. Although some people do their best work under pressure and the constraints of deadlines, it really isn’t good for them.

It’s not a coincidence that journalists die relatively young. Stress, anxiety, and depression are silent killers. 

Break tasks into smaller, manageable steps and use techniques like the Pomodoro method to stay focused and productive.

16) Clutter

A cluttered environment contributes to mental clutter and stress. If you look around you and see mostly useless things you don’t need or use, maybe it’s time to eliminate at least some of them.

I heard one good piece of advice a long time ago: you should throw or give away ten things daily.

That way, you’ll get rid of many things without really noticing it and make your space much more livable and easier to maintain. 

By decluttering your living and working spaces, you create an organized environment that promotes calmness and clarity.

Final thoughts

That’s it. “Only” 16 bad habits to eliminate and go from unhappy to satisfied and content.

Although I’m not unhappy and generally very satisfied with my life, I think I’ll start working on more than a few ASAP. I can definitely spend less time in front of a screen, which will eliminate news and social media too, and declutter my living area. 

Plus, I’ll probably go to sleep earlier too. 

Picture of Adrian Volenik

Adrian Volenik

Adrian has years of experience in the field of personal development and building wealth. Both physical and spiritual. He has a deep understanding of the human mind and a passion for helping people enhance their lives. Adrian loves to share practical tips and insights that can help readers achieve their personal and professional goals. He has lived in several European countries and has now settled in Portugal with his family. When he’s not writing, he enjoys going to the beach, hiking, drinking sangria, and spending time with his wife and son.

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