Attaining happiness all starts with the basics: taking care of yourself, having a positive outlook, working toward goals — the usual. When you build that foundation, the rest comes so much easier. Since your personal happiness is very much interconnected with your mental and physical health, it's important to have a holistic view even when trying to improve one of them. To bring more joy into your life, try to free yourself from the eight things below.
- Negative self-talk: Constantly putting yourself down will inevitably affect your self-esteem. And even if you're not directly shaming yourself, self-deprecating jokes can be just as harmful. Try breaking this unhealthy habit and practice self-love instead. You'll notice what a difference having a little more confidence can make.
- Your scale: Progress should be evaluated based on how strong you feel, not a number. A scale will likely make you feel bad about yourself, despite the fact that your weight isn't always an accurate representation of your health. Compact muscle can be heavier than fat, so measure your success in other ways.
- Clutter: You may not realise it but coming home to a mess can add stress to your life. Your home should be a place of relaxation, so pick up your clothes off the floor, toss unnecessary items, and free up as much space as you can. You'll find it much easier to find clarity and wind down after a long day.
- Toxic friends: Negativity is just as contagious as positivity is. If you surround yourself with people who refuse to see the silver lining and those who like to put others down, you'll likely adopt a similar attitude. Instead, recruit friends who can add to your personal happiness.
- Self-doubt: Oftentimes, the only thing stopping you from reaching your goals is yourself. Your mind is a powerful thing, so feed yourself good thoughts and encouraging words. And give yourself some credit! You have no idea what you're capable of.
- Your social media obsession: There's nothing wrong with catching up on news, staying connected to loved ones, or browsing various platforms for fun. But when your relationship with social media grows to include jealousy and self-criticism, it's time to cut ties or at least reassess your habits.
- Pressure: It's great to set high standards for yourself, but don't be too critical if you're unable to meet those expectations all the time. Whether it's related to fitness or your career, know that your best is enough. Celebrate your wins and don't mourn your losses. Having a better relationship with yourself is key to achieving happiness.
- Guilt after indulging: You deserve to treat yourself every now and then — and if that includes disrupting your diet for a cupcake or three, so be it! You shouldn't punish yourself for occasionally straying from your rules. It's not healthy to have a negative association with rewards or indulgences.