We all have habits we would prefer to kick to the curb. Some of these habits are easy to see, such as; eating when bored, picking cuticles and drinking too much, while others are more clandestine. It’s often those more hidden habits that really get us down and lower our quality of life in many ways. Let’s take a look at some of these habits and what we can do to counter them.
Often, we surround ourselves with people who do not bring out the best in us and we don’t even realize it. It can be a source of pride to have the same friends for 30 years, but it might not exactly be the best thing for your mental health. If your old friends pick out your flaws, complain without end, permanently live under a dark cloud and just make you feel bad, it might be time to reconsider their place in your life.
Now, this does not mean you should end every friendship with people who are having a hard time. We all go through tough times, and it is great to lend a helping hand. With that said, do not stick around anyone who brings you down with offensive comments, insults or anything that brings tears to you.
Surround yourself with people who share your interest and lift you up. Find people who you can support, and who will support you in return.
Being stuck in the past
When we focus on the present, we feel balanced. Being stuck in the past makes us depressed, and over thinking the future makes us nervous. Of course, you have to learn from the past and plan for the future, but more importantly, you have to be present in the now. If you can be aware of the present, and appreciate every moment, you will lead a much more balanced life.
Some healthy competition might give you a little boost of motivation, but in general, competition just brings you down. People win as a team when they see themselves, along with others as a team. People long to contribute, instead of wishing to stick out and be the biggest winner. You will isolate yourself when you are overly competitive.
There is always someone who is better, and someone who is worse off than you. The best way to view yourselves is to aim for personal improvement and development. You will be happy about the achievements you make that help you and others grow.
Comparing yourself to others
Competing leads you to compare yourself to others. This is an absolute waste of time.
You are not on a level playing field with anyone else -ever. You each have your own strengths. If you focus on these and work on developing them, then you can keep your perspective on being productive, inspired, and naturally happy.
Waiting for someone else to make you happy
Far too often, many of us sit in sadness waiting for someone else to come along and save us.
A Phone call from a friend, someone to pick us up and help us feel alive again. But this will not make you stronger or more capable of inner happiness in the long run. You need to figure out how to make yourselves happy and stick with that. Always needing a relationship to make you happy is another habit you want to examine. You need to find the happiness within yourself before you can expect to have joy in the presence of another person.
How often do we let some negative thoughts come to our minds and take over? “What if the car breaks down?” “What if your son gets sick?” Thoughts like these can be hard to put out of your mind. But what good does it do, letting the same thought cycle through? It causes worry. It is better to channel it into something productive and great. It is just taking up mental space, switch to something productive and positive.
It’s so easy to get upset and worry about things in the world. We live in difficult times. We can worry about the future state of the earth, the future state of our children, our jobs, our lives -everything!
If you can’t change something, though, what is the point? It only causes stress.
Take note of what you are worried about, find something you can do to help someone or some cause. Worry causes stress and ages you. It also produces the hormone cortisol that contributes to weight gain.
Worrying about what people think of you
What people think of you is not always something you neither can change- nor should be worried about changing. If people get the wrong idea about you, there is something in their perception that is clouded, not yours. Concentrate on yourself and improving yourself.
Feeling constantly sad
When you start to feel sad, you might reach for food. That is quite common. For others, it is more insidious and hard to detect. You might find yourself spending too much money or spending too much time on the internet or watching television. If you find you are trying to combat sadness with something not so healthy, make a conscious effort to do something healthy. Take a walk, read an uplifting book or meditate, these are all balancing activities that will clear your mind.
Not listening to your inner wisdom
We all have an inner voice of wisdom that guides us. Often, though, stress, self-doubt and sadness get in the way. We can’t hear the voice, or we misinterpret the divine wisdom given to us. Give yourself moments to recharge. Just taking five minutes to close your eyes and tune into your inner world will transform your life.
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