29 things to stop doing if you want to be happy

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It’s no secret that we all want happiness. After all, we only get life once and we want to make the most of it.

But most of us find that happiness is fleeting.


Because we believe that happiness means being joyful, or excited.

Yet these are temporary feelings that don’t last forever. True happiness comes from being at peace with who you are and what you have in life.

Yet, a lot of us have habits that reinforce the former idea of happiness that doesn’t really offer much permanent fulfillment to our lives.

Below we’ve gone over 29 habits you need to get rid of you want to be authentically happy.

1. Giving in to fear.

Being scared of fear means you’re not accepting your emotions. Fear is an emotion that’s fuelled by your imagination.

The danger is real. Fear is a choice.

When you become mindful of your emotions and observe them from a distance, you’ll realize that they’re not really you and that there’s nothing to be afraid of.

2. Comparing yourself to others.

There’s nothing more useless or damaging than comparing yourself to others. It means that you’re struggling to accept who you are.

But acceptance is crucial if you want to be happy.

According to spiritual guru Osho, you need to realize that you’re a unique and beautiful human being and there’s no need to compare:

“You are a masterpiece – unrepeatable, incomparable, utterly unique. Respect your uniqueness, and drop comparison. Relax into your being.”

3. Hanging around negative people.

You know the type of person that wallows in their problems and fails to focus on solutions? You need to stay away from them.

It’s simply a ball of negative energy that feeds on itself. It’s better to be around people who are authentic, positive, and non-judgmental.

4. Trying to impress others.

The fact that you’re trying to impress others means you’re not happy with who you are.

You’re seeking validation from outside factors that you have no control over.

And even if people are impressed with you, are you really going to be happy deep down?

The only way to be truly happy is to be impressed with yourself.

5. Complaining.

This only serves to reinforce a negative attitude. Sometimes it can help to take a step back and see life for what it is, rather than assigning a negative label to it.

Instead of complaining, try switching the attitude to one of gratitude and appreciation.

6. Criticizing.

People tend to criticize others because it makes them feel better about themselves. Yet this is a habit that comes directly from the ego.

All this will do is create a spiral of negativity that will make you more judgemental and unhappy with yourself.

7. Blaming.

We need to take responsibility for our own lives to be happy. Blaming signifies that you aren’t walking life’s path yourself.

It’s time to take a step back and look inside yourself instead of blaming others.

8. Isolating yourself.

Yes, it’s important to get away from aggressive and toxic people. But you can’t shut everyone off, even when you feel down.

Human beings are social creatures and we all need meaningful and authentic relationships to be truly happy.

9. Ignoring awe

Awe is an amazing emotion that makes you grateful for life as well as appreciates the present moment.

One of the best ways to experience awe is to get out in nature. It’s inspiring, full of wonder, and reminds us that we’re not the center of the world.

10. Dwelling on the past

The past is gone. The future hasn’t arrived yet. The only thing that matters is the present moment. Happy people realize this and don’t waste time thinking about what can’t be changed.

11. Remaining in their comfort zone.

Progress can’t be made from the comfort zone. Remaining there isn’t a way to fully embrace life.

Instead, a fulfilling life comes from overcoming your fears and experiencing all that life has to offer.

12. Not listening to others.

Unfortunately, our ego has a way of protecting itself from the opinions of others. But everyone has something to offer, even if you don’t agree with them.

Happy people realize that they can learn something from everyone.

13. Keeping a closed mind.

Nobody knows everything. If you keep a closed mind, then you can’t learn anything new. In order to be fully living and flourishing in life, you need to be constantly learning.

14. Avoiding change.

The only constant in the universe is change. Happy people accept this and realize that it’s a waste of energy to fight against it.

15. Letting others make decisions for them.

We need to take responsibility for ourselves. Even though there are powerful forces from society and friends that are trying to make decisions for us, we need to take a good hard look within and ask ourselves what we truly want.

16. Getting jealous over the success of others.

When others succeed, you should be happy for them. It doesn’t lessen your chances of succeeding or affect who you are in any way.

There’s no need to compare, we’re all unique.

In fact, it should only give you more motivation to go out and fulfill your desires in life.

17. Thinking about the possibility of failure.

In whatever we do, there’s always a chance of failure. But happy people don’t look at it that way.

Even if they don’t succeed, they realize that there’s always something to be gained when things don’t go the way they expected.

It’s about taking an optimistic view of life.

18. Feeling sorry for themselves.

We all go through troubles in life. Life is tough. Happy people fully accept that suffering is inevitable, no matter who you are.

However, they also realize that there’s literally nothing to be gained from feeling sorry for themselves.

19. Focusing on their weaknesses.

We all have weaknesses. However, some people can spend so much time dwelling on their weaknesses that they forget that they actually have strengths!

Happy people master a certain skill set and forget about what they struggle at.

20. Trying to please people.

A job well done is a job well done, no matter who is judging the final product. You can’t please everybody, but you can always try your best.

21. Blaming others for things outside their control.

We need to take responsibility for our lives. People will always exert some influence over our circumstances, but there is no value in blaming them.

Instead, it’s far more fruitful to get on with life and focus on what you can control.

22. Being impatient.

I’m sure you’ve heard it before; patience is a virtue.

It isn’t that most people don’t succeed because they aren’t good enough. Instead, most people fail because they aren’t patient and think their time has come before it has actually come.

23. Being misunderstood.

Communication is key when it comes to human relationships. Happy people do their best to be understood and have the patience to clear up misunderstandings.

24. Feeling like the world owes you.

Unfortunately, life is harsh. It doesn’t really look out for anyone. Instead, it’s up to you to shape your circumstances and find what you’re looking for.

25. Repeating mistakes.

It’s okay to make mistakes, but repeating the same mistakes over and over means you’re not learning.

Life is about growth.

26. Giving in to their fears.

We all have fears. Happy people realize that fear is only created in the mind.

How you react to these fears is what really separates happy people from the rest.

27. Acting without calculating.

You need to carefully consider your actions and what the results are likely to be. Doing so will enable you to take calculated risks, which is where the real success in life is.

28. Refusing help from others.

Our ego has a hard time accepting help, but we all need human relationships and companionship.

That’s what life is about. Helping each other so we ALL can live the life of our dreams.

29. Giving up.

We only get life once. Giving up lacks dignity. When it comes to living fully and having no regrets, you need to go all-in with what life has to offer.

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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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