We all do things that are not always in our best interest. Some of these behaviours or habits, if allowed to continue, can be harmful to us over the long term.
Oftentimes, the things we do may not be obvious to us but clearly visible to others. Once we’re aware of what these things are, we have the choice to replace them with new behaviours or habits that will support us in getting closer to what we want.
One of the habits I have formed in recent years has been starting off my day on a good note, especially the first hour of the day. Previously, my first hour would be extremely chaotic, disorganised and unplanned, which often caused me to feel rushed, scattered and reactive.
By changing how I start off my day, I find I tend to have way more productive days than unproductive days.
Each one of us can do things better or differently in order to improve our results. Here are ten harmful things we must get rid off in order to reach the level of achievement we want, and experience more joy and happiness. If we apply these consistently, we will soon see a dramatic improvement in our performance, productivity and effectiveness.
- Feeling sorry for yourself for not being as successful. One thing we tend to do almost unconsciously is fall into the comparison trap — comparing our results to others. If we look at someone who is starring in a particular area in which we are not as successful, we may end up generating negative emotions.
It is best to stop comparing our results to others; instead we should evaluate our results based on where we were, where we are now and where we are heading.
- Pretending to be someone you’re not. While we may think that we’re impressing others by trying to be someone we’re not, the truth is most people can see right through us. It takes courage to be our true, authentic self, and that is what will attract the right people to us. We are drawn to people like us so it is okay to be ourselves.
- Berating yourself for being the person you are. We tend to be our own biggest critic. Unless we can fully love and accept ourselves first, it will be difficult to fully love and accept others. A simple self-evaluation question to help move past this is, “Would I be friends with someone who treated me the same way I treat myself?”
- Falling victim to the captivity of negativity. It is so easy to get caught up in negativity because it is all around us. We must intentionally choose who we spend time with, the type of conversations we have, and what we give our attention to. If we don’t cultivate positivity in our life, by default, we will get caught up in negativity.
- Hanging onto regrets from the past. No one can go back and change the past although we can always give a different meaning to experiences we’ve had in the past. If we still hang onto things like regret or resentments, they will affect how we deal with the present and what our outlook will be for the future.
- Judging others who do not live up to your expectations. It is often said that when we judge someone else, it means that we haven’t accepted that very thing we’re judging within ourselves.
For example, if we judge someone for being arrogant, it means that we are not accepting that part of ourselves which may come across as arrogant to others. The key is to be able to accept people for who they are and be okay with not connecting with everyone we meet.
- Worrying about things you cannot control or change. It may be surprising to know that we cannot change or control most of the things that happen to us. However, we can take full ownership of our results and our life, and act as if we are fully responsible for everything that happens in our life.
Just with this simple distinction, it should allow us to let go of the things we cannot change or control. Examples may include what happens in our local or the global economy, other people’s behaviours, or the choices people make.
- Lowering your standards in order to make things easier. The standards we set for ourselves determine how we behave, what we will accept, tolerate or reject in life. Once we start accepting a lower standard, especially when no one is watching, it can easily lead to poor performance, lower productivity and poor results. One simple example of lowering standards is skipping routines or rituals.
- Settling for less than what you really want. Our dreams, desires, passions and goals are what makes life interesting and exciting for us. They can be the fuel we need to continually improve and raise our awareness.
Once we start settling for less, especially when things get tough, we start programming ourselves to not expect the best out of life. Our objective should be to follow what we believe is in our best interest.
- Doubting your ability to make a difference. We all have been given gifts and talents, which are all part of our greatness. There is no one quite like us which means there is something special or unique about us. Given that we are unique, it means we have something important to contribute to the world. We have the ability to make a difference in our own unique way.
If we’re able to eliminate these things from our every day experiences, pretty soon we will start seeing different and better results. Things will seem effortless rather than effortful. All it takes is a commitment to make a change for the better.
Question: Which of these things did you find most useful for the situation you’re in currently?
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