You know who controls your happiness? YOU. No one else can make you feel happy, sad, mad, or inferior without your consent (paraphrasing First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt). So often, we let our bad circumstances dictate how we think and feel, sending us into a negative head space and stealing our happy. I know I have. There are certain things that I have (and still do sometimes) struggle with that I’m attempting to get better with. So here are four things you seriously need to let go of that are taking their toll on your happiness.
Being Jealous / Comparing
Lawd, this was HUGE for me. I constantly see people who seem to be further along than I am, doing big things. In the past, instead of being genuinely happy for them, I selfishly always brought it back to me. “What am I doing wrong? Why aren’t things lining up for me?” That jealousy and comparing myself to others constantly straight killed my spirit and made me want to give up. Honestly, it even made me settle for a bit.
But your journey is your own. What’s meant for you is meant for you, at the exact time it’s supposed to happen. Looking at other people’s lives and happiness and comparing your life to theirs doesn’t help you one bit. Focus on living your best life, outdoing your past and not other people!
Putting Time Restraints on Your Life
I know, I know. We all had plans for this year. A five-year plan. A 10-year plan. You want to be married by 25 or have a house with a picket fence by the time you hit 35. You want to retire by a certain age and all. I get it. We all plan out goals and the steps it’ll take to get there. Plans and goals (with actual execution) are good.
What’s NOT good is when you bank so hard on things happening by a certain time that, if it doesn’t happen, you fall apart. Trust me, I had a mini quarter-life crisis at 25 feeling like I was a bum because I didn’t do certain things by then. It wasn’t pretty. Have goals and execute your plans to get there, but don’t hold so tight to these time frames. You can still be a success at a lot of things and hit many of your goals, as long as there’s still breath in your body.
You know that saying, “Forgiveness isn’t for the other person. It’s for you?” That’s one of the realest statements I know. Holding on to what somebody did to you however long ago, resenting and hating him for it, does nothing but wear on your energy. Nine times out of 10, that person is off living his life, having a good old time, while you’re still walking around angry and upset.
You have to come to a point where you let go and forgive in spite of what happened. Forgiving doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re going to (or need to) be on good terms with that person again, and that’s all good. Your heart will feel so much better, though.
Not Saying No Sometimes
I used to revel in taking on everything that people asked me to do, at the expense of my own energy. I guess it felt good to be a part of different things, and even better that people thought enough of me to handle it. I was a people pleaser for a while, afraid to say not to others out of fear of disappointing them or something. But, after a while, doing everything and running around everywhere is exhausting, and it may even take away from other things that you need to be working on for yourself.
I had to learn how to say no to people sometimes. Even when it feels awkward to. Even when I don’t know who else will handle it. Yes, sometimes I say to no to people just so I can go back to my place after a long day and watch Netflix for a while. Or I’ll say no so I can work on things for the site or my other freelance gigs. It doesn’t mean that you should never help other people, or be a part of different things, but you can’t do it all. None of us can. It’s okay to say no sometimes.
What are some other things that you struggle with that take a hit on your happiness? How will you commit to working on those things? Let me know in the comments!