10 Things You Need to Stop Doing for a Happier Life

Don't we all seem to be endlessly searching for happiness? Sometimes we blame circumstances or people for the things that make us feel otherwise, when in fact it all starts within ourselves. It all begins within our own minds.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.


Don't we all seem to be endlessly searching for happiness? Sometimes we blame circumstances or people for the things that make us feel otherwise, when in fact it all starts within ourselves. It all begins within our own minds.

If you feel like your search for happiness never ends, and all you wish for is to finally be happy, look deep inside yourself and examine whether you're embracing any of the traits or thoughts mentioned below. If you are, start working to get rid of them so that you can welcome more happiness into your life.

1. Being jealous

If you are comparing yourself to others as a way to inspire yourself to work harder and become a better person, that's a good thing. However, if you let other people's success become a burning fire in your mind, you will feel unhappy.

Looking up to successful people can be a benchmark for success and an opportunity to learn, grow, and prosper. You can learn from their strategies and cultivate your strengths. But remind yourself not to feel envious. This does nothing but keep yourself dwelling on that envious feeling, which is only a waste of time, energy, and peace of mind.

2. Fearing change

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
- Albert Einstein

Change is scary, because it's not what you're used to. It's uncomfortable, and it doesn't make you feel secure or certain. However, the unknown that comes with change can actually bring excitement and opportunities. Take a leap of faith in yourself and believe that change will lead you to a better place than you were in yesterday.

Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.
- Jim Rohn

Whether it's changing jobs, leaving people, or moving to another country, as long as you follow your intuition and do what feels right, you will be fine.

Remembering you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.
- Steve Jobs

Embrace change. The best is yet to come.

3. Needing to be in control

Many people expect things to go as planned and want to be in control. However, when things don't go as planned, they feel sad, disappointed, and unhappy.

In fact, the most certain thing in life is uncertainty. The only constant in life is change.

Therefore, if you want to be happy, you need to learn to let go. You need to learn to live without trying to control your life. Because the minute you try to control it, you become dependent on the feeling of control - which makes you lose control of yourself.

You can plan for the best. However, no matter how things turn out, you need to accept them. Be resilient. Go with the flow. That's the way to live life with peace of mind.

4. Overworking

Because you want to be successful and rich, you work hard -- sometimes harder than you should. You forget to have a work-life balance. Eventually you will regret wasting the things that you cannot get back, such as spending time with family and close friends. Remember, happiness is only real when shared. Don't forget to cherish meaningful relationships in your life.

5. Blaming others and finding excuses

When problems arise, many of us find excuses or blame external things. Change your perspective. Instead of finding excuses, focus on finding solutions to the problem.

6. Complaining and whining

Instead of complaining, whining, or criticizing things, change your perspective. Start by taking a deep breath in. Be mindful of your thoughts, actions, and emotions. Then look at the root of the problem and think about how you can fix it. If you deal with problems in life this way, you will fill yourself with optimism and positive energy, and you will become a lot happier.

7. Believing that you're always right

No one is a master of everything. No one is perfect. If you're always scared that you're not perfect, you will never be happy. Let it go. Accept all that you are. Understand that you are not and will never always be right.

8. Not believing in yourself

Some people believe in the word "can't." They believe that they are incapable of doing things. They always say: I can't do this. This is all I can do. That's it. I can't do or get any better. This kind of thinking is the biggest obstacle in life. It's the obstacle that blocks you from doing the things you love and from reaching your fullest potential.

9. Keeping bad friends around

Humans are social animals. We are influenced by our environment, whether we are aware of it or not. The important thing to be aware of is that good friends will lift you up and bad friends will drag you down. Pick your friends wisely.

10. Living in the past

Your past is filled with good and bad experiences which shape who you are. However, your head space should not be so stuck in the past -- in past failures and disappointments -- that you cannot move forward. You need to learn to let go and focus on building new beginnings and a beautiful future.

Mo is the founder of The Happiness Planner, a planner/journal for those who want to embrace the power of positive thinking, mindfulness, gratitude, and self-development.

Read more on her blog, BrandMentalist..


Photo source: IG @anthropologie.