6 Things to Stop Doing Immediately If You Want to Be a Happier Person

The days are getting shorter and the news is getting heavier with each rising and setting of the sun. It can be all too easy to slip into a funk and lose track of how long you’ve been traveling in it as time wears on.

Yet, these funks can be reversible. We can climb out of them one rung at a time by dropping the excess weight of some unhelpful, everyday activities. Take a moment to examine your routine—can some of these elements be reduced or eliminated? Would you be a happier person because of it?

1) Getting in to social media arguments

I know, I know… sometimes we just can’t help ourselves. Unfortunately, most Twitter wars or Facebook back-and-forths do not result in productive change or warm, fuzzy feelings that we’ve made the world a better place. If you see something truly upsetting online that is crying out for a response, take a moment to ask yourself “Would my energy be best spent responding to this? Or could I channel it elsewhere?” Redirecting our energies elsewhere might result in better self-care and real-life positive change.

Related: When to Walk Away From a Social Media Argument

2) Saying “yes” too much

We all know someone who is guilty of putting too much on their plate. If your happiness is taking a hit because that person is you, step back and re-evaluate what you can actually handle. Chart out your available time, cross-reference that with what you absolutely need to be doing to stay afloat, and settle on where your boundaries are. And then – this is the most important part – stick to them.

3) Choosing the couch over a walk outside

There are absolutely nights where crashing on the couch in front of Netflix is a preferable method of unwinding. Yet, if there are other things you could be doing that might promote a more healthful frame of mind or physical state, why not consider them, instead? Take a walk, write in a journal, call a friend, paint a painting, play with your fur-baby, lift some weights or pick up a musical instrument. Unwind in ways that are nourishing.

4) Staying up past our bedtime

It cannot be stressed enough how important getting a good night’s rest can be for our health. The sooner we can establish a regular sleep schedule, the sooner our body will catch on to our rhythm an we can rise without grogginess. Reaching 7 to 9 hours of sleep is often the target that can ensure we are well-rested and our brains are at peak functioning. Set an alarm on your smartphone for when it’s time to pack it away and hit the hay.

Related: Top 10 Sleep Mistakes and Their Solutions

5) Trying to live up to Pinterest-level expectations

The more unrealistic our expectations are, the more disappointed and unhappy we will ultimately be. Fatigue from continuously “failing” to meet these expectations is the ultimate bummer and can lead us to think negatively about ourselves and our abilities. Is what you strive to accomplish each day or week simply not in the cards? Then deal yourself a new hand! Maybe it isn’t realistic to make a home-cooked meal from scratch every weeknight, to hit the gym 5x per week, or to attend every extracurricular meeting or event that ends up on your calendar. Redefine your expectations to reflect what is realistic for you.

6) Dealing with family members who are insufferable

They say we can’t choose our family, and while that may be true in some regards, we can certainly choose how much of our brain space is taken up by family members who may not earn it. There are some people in our lives who, when we interact with them, provide the opposite of a healing effect on our hearts and minds. If we have reached a wall with how much we can continue to interact with these people, it is okay to say “no more” and either reduce or cut off contact. Toxic relationships can exist with friendships, romantic partnerships and familial relationships. You do not have to risk your mental wellbeing just because someone is “family.” Take care of yourself.

Related:
5 Harsh Truths Nobody Tells You About Happiness
Which Foods Increase Happiness?
10 Tips to Start Living Your Best Life 

Photo credit: Thinkstock

103 comments

Stephanie s
Stephanie s7 hours ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie s7 hours ago

Thank you

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Sarah Hill
Sarah Hillyesterday

thanks

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Kathryn I
Kathryn I25 days ago

Stay off Social Media; it's a total waste of time! Thanks for the great ideas!

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Kathryn I
Kathryn Iabout a month ago

Kudos to Amanda M for her remarks about what can be encountered on Facebook! She has left nothing out. There are endless scammers, trying to rip you off from every last cent you've ever earned, plus engaging in cyberbullying is good for nothing but to raise one's blood pressure, as evidenced by my own experience. Facebook is really a total waste of time overall.

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Amanda M
Amanda Mabout a month ago

Care2 is the only social media site I get involved with, and as you guys might have noticed, I'm not on it (to say nothing of ONLINE!) every day! And despite getting bugged about it from just about everybody, I refuse to get a Facebook account, or any other type in that ilk. For one thing, I don't have time, and for another, there are simply too many trolls, cyberbullies, spammers, hackers, phishers, scammers, and haters online for my taste. Until people learn to be civilized, the above types I mentioned are actually caught, punished, and BANNED for their actions, and there are oversight measures in place to confirm a person's actual name and age (among other items) that also prevent them from simply coming up with another online identity as soon as they get booted (call it a cybernetic Whack-A-Mole from hell), my position on social media is not likely to change anytime soon.

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Gino C
Gino Cabout a month ago

Thank you

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Kathryn I
Kathryn I1 months ago

I find myself getting caught up in Facebook wars regarding politics, but not so often as I did when I was younger. I have tried to refrain more often because it only gets me upset, and it's just not worth it. My daughter and I are mutually toxic to one another; as such, we have become estranged, but I've ironically managed to get more accomplished as a result. Thanks for sharing.

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Leo C
Leo C1 months ago

Thank you for sharing!

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Danuta W
Danuta W1 months ago

Thanks for sharing

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