Do you have any of these toxic habits? If yes, you NEED to quit these toxic habits Today to LEVEL UP your life. I have been guilty of these habits in the past, but I made an intentional decision to cut these from my life to improve my happiness and the quality of my life.
Why are the TOXIC HABITS?
Because they affect your mental, physical, emotional or spiritual health, without you even realising it on a day to day basis. These could be something that you do everyday. And the truth is, breaking bad habits is often difficult, but it’s very much possible. And I believe that it’s never too late to start and we can all learn and grow and be better humans than we were yesterday.
Let’s see what these toxic habits are & how to quit them:
Comparison is the thief of joy.
And it is rightly so. But our lives have become such that we find ourselves constantly comparing our lives with others. With social media being such a huge part of our lives, it’s so easy to fall into the comparison trap.
You are always comparing your life to someone else’s life on social media, which is so curated. All you see on social media is people with perfect bodies, perfect hair, perfect lives, impeccable fashion sense, and a luxury lifestyle.
Everything that they do or wear is #goals. But what you fail to see is the truth and the reality behind it. And you fall into the comparison trap, which is honestly so bad for your happiness that you don’t even realise.
Imagine being back from a nice relaxing vacation and feeling happy about it, but then you see someone’s vacation pictures from Greece, with their luxury yacth, and perfect “bikini bodies” that put your bikini body to shame.
But, here is what you can do about it:
First, You need to understand that whatever you see on social media these days is curated. No one looks like that all the time. But even if they do, then also it shouldn’t matter to you. Taking inspiration from someone and comparing your life to someone’s life and then self criticising every single aspect of your life is self sabotaging in more ways than I can tell.
The only person you should compare yourself to is you.
Try to work on your self worth and try to be better than you were yesterday. Focus on building yourself up, rather than comparing yourself to someone and then determining your self worth. And when you do that, you will find yourself living a much happier life.
Related: A life of comparisons
2.Waiting for the right time:
You promised yourself that “one day” you will:
- Start your own business
- Declutter your house
- Start that big project
- Start a healthy lifestyle
- stop smoking/stop drinking
- Start being comfortable in my own skin
And if you find yourself doing the same, STOP! STOP right now. STOP saying things like “one day I will do____” or “When I do___, then I will be happy” or “One day when I have enough money, i will quit my job and start travelling the world”.
Stop procrastinating now and stop waiting for that “one day”. Your life is happening in front of your eyes right now. Stop waiting for the right time. If you want something, make a plan and break it down into small actionable steps, that will help you reach your Goal.
3. Not setting healthy routines in place:
We are what we repeatedly do; excellence is not an act but a habit.
You set an alarm to wake up early in the morning. But as soon as the alarm goes off, you hit snooze. And then again. You are again late in waking up, then you pick up your phone in the morning and the first thing you do is go on social media, or check your work emails.
Who else relates?
And this is when we all know that checking our phones first thing in the morning or hotting that snooze button multiple times isn’t doing us any good. And the thing with these small unhealthy habits is that they don’t seem too toxic on their own. You think “Oh so what if I checked my phone in the morning one day?”
But they add on. One day turns into two, which then turns into a week. And before you know it, you have made a very unhealthy routine for yourself. And it becomes especially important when it’s about morning routines.
Because your mornings set the mood for the day. If you spend your morning being lazy and spending hours in your bed checking your phone, you feel lazy through out the day.
And when you spend your mornings being productive, work out in the morning, it sets a tone for the rest of your day. But setting these healthy routines isn’t easy. because as humans, we are creatures of comfort.
Now, here is what you can do:
Starting a morning routine doesn’t have to be overwhelming. And no, you don’t need to wake up at 5 A.M. to establish a morning routine. And it doesn’t have to very elaborate also. All you need is, to start with a very simple morning routine and then when you are comfortable with it, add a few other things as well.
Everyone’s morning routine looks different and it totally depends on what works for you and what you find value in. So list down everything that you’d want to get accomplished in the morning, and then make a sequence that is logical and that makes sense to you.
Make sure you don’t make a very long plan, because who has hours in the mornings to spare. Now use this routine as a checklist in the mornings and do it everyday till it becomes a habit.
This is one of my biggest productivity hacks.
4. Seeking perfection in Everything:
While this could sound like it’s a positive quality to have, but striving for perfection in every aspect of your life and procrastinating things because you want everything to be perfect ends up being toxic for you.
I heard somewhere last year “Perfection is for Procrastinators” and it has stuck with me ever since. Procrastinating starting big projects because you want everything to be perfect is getting in your way of achieving big things in your life.
I had wanted to start a youtube channel for years, but I never did because I told myself that I know nothing about video editing and every video I made looked nothing like the ones I see on youtube. You see, I wanted everything to be perfect. I wanted to edit videos like youtubers who had been at this game for years. But one day I finally did.
Same thing goes for my blog. Feeling overwhelmed that I know nothing about blogging made me procrastinate this for years until I finally did. And I am so much better than where I had been, If I had just kept waiting for the right time. Because it never comes.
And here is something that put things into perspective for me:
If you are perfect at something you just started, it means that you have started way too late.
5. Not forgiving yourself:
We are all humans. We all make mistakes every now and then and it’s important that we forgive ourselves for those mistakes. Instead of being too hard on yourself when things don’t go according to the plan, it’s important that we practice self forgiveness.
We should acknowledge that we are all humans, accept our mistakes, learn from those mistakes and not be too hard on ourselves if we want to preserve our mental peace.
You are not perfect, No one is. And we all make mistakes. But what you need to learn is to not associate your self worth with those mistakes.
6. Not sleeping enough
I am so guilty of this one. Ever since I started working for myself and had my own office times, my sleep routine took a hit. I had no set time of sleeping and no set time of waking up. And that meant my sleep quality was very poor.
And on some days, I felt like I could get more work done and tick off things from my to-do list if I sacrificed on a few hours of sleep, and I did.
But not getting enough sleep is so toxic.Your body needs to rest to work properly. Just like you need breaks from workouts to give your body time to heal, you need proper sleep to re-energise for the next day. Having a good night’s sleep is in fact one of the most important things when it comes to having a productive day.
But I understand that some times, we are too anxious that we don’t get good sleep. On other days, we are binge watching a show on Netflix and push our sleep time by a few hours. And if you do this too, then you need to STOp doing that right now. Netflix can wait for the next day, it’s not going anywhere. You NEED your sleep and you shouldn’t indulge in these self sabotaging habits.
7. Wasting money on things you don’t NEED:
I think we are all guilty of this one. These days we have more stuff than we ever used to have in our homes. You fill your home and your life with stuff that you don’t need, your wardrobe is literally overflowing with clothes and yet you feel like you don’t have enough clothes. You feel like you need to buy that one more cute summer dress.
Because our social conditioning has been such. We have grown up seeing advertisements that tell us that we need to buy more stuff to be happy.They make it seem like our happiness has to be conditional. “If you buy this, then you’ll be happy” and it never seems to end.
And we end up collecting all this stuff that we think we need, but don’t really. Then our houses are more cluttered than ever before, we aren’t even happy and we don’t have as much savings in our bank accounts either, and then we get stressed and perhaps buy something else but shopping is therapy right?
And when you look at this as an outsider, the solution becomes clear. We need to change out Mindset.
We do not need to buy more stuff to be happy. What we need is a mindset shift and to learn to not base our happiness on material things and seek it within ourselves. What we need is to work on our health, physical and mental, to work towards achieving our goals and to spend more quality time with our loved ones to be truly happy.
8. Not putting your plans into action:
Making great plans is one thing, but actually getting around to doing them is another. And if you are guilty of just planning and not doing enough, it’s time to make a change.
More often than not, when you plan out things so far in advance, you get this feeling that you have actually done it. You have actually achieved all those things. While the reality is that you haven’t even started. And a lot of times you also tell yourself that you could start next week, because you already have the plan. you know what you need to do and you will do it.
But I hate to break it you, your plans won’t get you anywhere in life, not unless you actually do something about them. And you also need to understand that doing 1 task is still better than planning 10. You get the point, right?
9. Skipping breakfast:
Again one of those things that we all know we shouldn’t be doing and yet we do anyway. Prioritising everything in the morning, maybe even checking emails before you leave for work and then skipping breakfast has become such a norm in a lot of millennials’ lifestyle.
Your body is such a beautiful machine, but like all machines, it needs fuel to work efficiently throughout the day. And skipping breakfast is not good for you. When you skip breakfast, you tend to feel hungry at an odd hour and you tend to go for a sugary snack or drink for an instant energy spike, which is so bad for you.
10. Not putting yourself first:
I hate to say this, but a lot of us have this habit of not putting ourselves first, especially ladies. We care for everyone and take care of everyone’s breakfast, their needs etcc that we forget our own.
We put everyone’s happiness before ours and often make sacrifices too, for our families. And in this zest to be a good mother, a good wife, a good daughter or a good sister, we forget that we need some self love as well.
At times we need to put our needs and ourselves first.
After all, you can only make someone happy if you are truly happy yourself. And if you are not caring for yourself, for your mental and physical health, chances are you will find yourself lacking in other aspects of your life.
And instead of putting more energy into those aspects, sometimes all you need is to take time out for yourself. Take care of your physical and mental health before you think about others.
I suggest that you put this self care and self pamper session on your calendar. Make self care a priority. That’s really the only way around it. I usually make it a point to take time our for myself on Sundays, where I do not use social media, I just take time out for myself. Maybe put on a hair mask, a face mask, put on some music, give yourself a mani-pedi, oil your hair etc, whatever you want to do. And take things slow. Spend time with yourself and acknowledge your thoughts and emotions.
I hope that you found this post useful and if you recognise any of these toxic habits, then the suggestions will help you make a change. And if it takes time, that’s okay. You didn’t develop these toxic habits overnight. And it will take time and patience to get rid of these toxic habits and replace them with good one. But it’s possible and you can do it.