5 Habits We Need to Leave Behind to Be Ourselves

October 7, 2016

Each year, at the beginning of the year, we make goals. We review personal habits that we’d like to change. And we set goals that may have to do with our work, our family, our education, our health, etc.

We swear that we will abandon rather negative habits, ones that we have identified as hindrances – more or less small – that push us away from a goal, a dream, or an optimal state.

If we have been doing this for several decades now, these goals can come along with the pessimism that arises from noticing that we have done the same thing in previous years and not achieved some of those goals.

However, we must not confuse this pessimism with the idea that we do not have control over our lives. We may have the sensation that our boat is now drifting wherever it likes, but that does not mean that we do not have any influence on its course. It also does not mean that the past is a good predictor of the future; the fact that we have tried and not achieved it once, twice, three times, four times, etc. does not mean that we cannot get it the next time.

To get a bit closer to achieving our dreams, today we share five habits that we need to leave behind to be the best version possible of ourselves.

“It is necessary to run risks, to follow certain paths, and to abandon others. No one can make a choice without fear.”

-Paulo Coelho-

1. Stop punishing yourself for what you could not accomplish

Time heals all wounds, but it can also put an end to your chance of experiencing what you long for, your dreams and goals. Life is precious because it teaches us to adapt at all times. Unexpected surprises can lead us to become better people and to overcome challenges.

Sad Woman Staring Out Window

We must accepting that we cannot take on everything and that we partially depend on the universe. We are not superheroes, and even if we are the masters of our own destiny, this does not mean that we have to be overly strict in our judgments and forget that there are many circumstances that affect us. That we cannot control everything.

Love, unpredictable situations, and surprises happen for a reason. If you could not carry out your plan of action, admit that you have the gift of imperfection. Believe me that it is one of the best virtues and habits that we can enjoy, as it allows us to value the beauty of life.

2. Stop constantly hoping for praise from those around you

We are, without a doubt, social beings, which implies sharing and learning from our surroundings and from the people that we love. Their trust guides us along the path that we have made, but it is also true that constantly depending on this does not make it easy to be ourselves.

Relying on the opinions of others for all our decisions pushes us away from our inner voice. This prevents us from moving forward and giving the best of ourselves to life. We develop our inner voice by trusting in ourselves.

Trust yourself and listen to the many things your heart has to say, the heart that knows you perfectly and knows your virtues. Remember that if you made a mistake, that is natural. This is why we are humans, because we are unique and irreplaceable. Therein lies the greatness of our souls, learning from our mistakes and continuing to trust.

“Thus he has always believed that there was such a thing as fate, but such a thing as free will also. It is exactly this balance of apparent contradictions that has been the whole buoyancy of the healthy man.”

-Gilbert Keith Chesterton-

3. Take off the false masks that protect you

In this new stage of your life, at the moment that you want to start, value yourself, stop and watch yourself, taking a different side of your own prism as reference. Understand that, as I said in previous points, our greatness lies in being unique and irreplaceable, imperfect and wise at the same time.

Create a strength that emanates from you, not one that protects you like one of your fundamental habits. You do not need anything to defend you, because even your weakest points can grow. Start being yourself.

4. Let go of all the negative things that took place

Discover and strengthen your virtues, honoring what you consider to be defects, but do not forget that these make you who you are. Many people appeared in your life, giving it value. Realize how lucky you are to enjoy the company of people whom you trust.

Arm with Bird Tattoos

Realize that everything, absolutely everything, even the most negative event, has a good side: accepting and valuing the lesson discovered. All of those difficult times that might bring up uncomfortable emotions: accept them. You were lucky enough to learn from them, and to be alive to enjoy them.

5. Do not hold onto those thoughts that make you doubt yourself

As the extraordinary people that we are, we have a duty to fulfill our destiny, to be the masters of our own destiny. This task draws on the inner wisdom that everything depends on us and we can choose what actions to perform along our life path.

Doubting your courage only leads you to be pessimistic and defeated, even before you have moved into action. You have everything you need within you, and you are lucky enough to have extraordinary qualities that only you have the power to awaken and use to be yourself.

“Act instead of asking. Make sacrifices without hoping for any glory or compensation! If you want to see miracles, do them yourself first. Only in this way can you fulfill your personal destiny.”

-Ludwig van Beethoven-