The world doesn’t make you miserable. You make yourself miserable. Your physique, bank account, and happiness are all the direct result of your daily habits. It’s not easy to be miserable unless you consistently do things to create misery.
Fortunately, you can identify and change the habits that are making you unhappy.
Avoid these mental habits and create joy, instead:
1. Making assumptions. It’s too easy to assume you already know something you don’t. Assumptions destroy relationships and prevent you from taking action. Why assume you won’t get that great job? Go after it with everything you’ve got and prove it to yourself. Get all the information you need and do your best. Assumptions are frequently wrong.
2. Seeking approval from others. No matter what you do, some people will think you’re a hero and others will think you’re a bum. A healthy adult makes choices and takes actions that they believe are correct.
- It doesn’t matter if your neighbors, brother-in-law, or your mom approve. Making others happy only leads to misery.
3. Comparing yourself to others. There’s always someone with a nicer car, a more attractive spouse, a better body, or a bigger paycheck. Only compare yourself to yourself. If you’re making progress overtime, you’re winning the game of life. If you’re losing ground, that’s a sign that a few adjustments are in order.
4. Time is the great equalizer. You might not have been born into a wealthy family, possess a 150 IQ, or look like a movie star. But everyone has 24 hours available each day. How you use that time determines your outcomes. Wasting time creates stress and drama that no one needs. If you procrastinate frequently, your life is less than it could be.
5. Indecisiveness is the ultimate form of procrastination. Choosing nothing is making a choice. It’s a choice to remain stuck and allow life to pass you by. If you’re stuck between a couple of options, just choose. One choice will prove to be as good as another.
- If you’ve done the work to narrow your options, the worst remaining option is much better than failing to make a choice.
6. Only being satisfied with perfection. When you’re a perfectionist, nothing is ever good enough. It’s the perfect recipe for misery. Give yourself plenty of ways to be happy, not just one. The need for perfection also creates indecisiveness and leads to procrastination. Determine how well something needs to be done and make it happen.
7. Underestimating yourself. After a negative outcome, it’s easy to believe you’re less capable than you really are. The natural result is the lowering of your expectations in the future. When you expect less of yourself, you live a life that’s less than it could be.
- Focus on your past successes and remind yourself of how capable you can be. Learning to walk and talk are more challenging than anything else you’ll ever accomplish. The hard part is over.
8. Beating yourself up. Mistakes are part of the game. Learn from them and apply the information you’ve gained. How would your life be if you never made the same mistake twice? You might think you deserved to be punished, but how is that helpful?
There’s good news if you’re miserable. You can blame yourself, which means that you can fix it. Poor mental habits lead to misery. A few simple changes can positively affect your happiness and mental health. Determine how your mental habits are impacting your mood and success. Make the necessary changes and enjoy a higher level of happiness.