We like to act like we’ve got life all figured out; most of the times though, we barely have any idea what we’re doing. Check out this article for a list of foolish lies you should stop telling yourself, along with a few tips on how to improve your overall behavior.
Our mindset guides our actions. When we say something over and over to ourselves, we start to believe it-- even if it wasn’t true to begin with. It’s surprising how much people manage to limit themselves by thinking that something is impossible to achieve. At the same time, a lot of people overlook serious problems, telling themselves that they’re not that important.
It’s no secret why we lie to ourselves: to feel better. However, if you want to reach your true potential and get rid of your inner demons, you’ll have to stop with the nonsense. In order to live a more content life, start by recognizing the most frequent lies you tell yourself. Here are a few of the most damaging examples.
I Don’t Have Time
This is by far the most common lie we tell ourselves on a daily basis. It’s trendy to be busy nowadays. Nonetheless, the truth is that you’re the one in charge of how you decide to spend the day. You set your own priorities. You probably don’t work more than 9 hours a day– so where does the rest go? Watching TV while lying on the couch? Spending evening after evening at the pub? We all need to relax every now and then. If you want to really excel, though, you’ll have to be willing to spend some of your spare time more productively. Take a class, learn something new, watch an inspiring documentary instead of that mind-numbing soap. Invest your time in things that actually matter.
A lot of people say that they want to start their own business, get in shape, or learn to play an instrument. But when it comes down to making their goals come true, they’re not really inclined to put in the effort. Figure out if you’d really want to achieve that life-long dream, or if you simply like the idea of it coming true. Being too busy isn’t a good excuse. You can always choose to value your dreams more than everything. Have to eat ramen noodles for months to afford financing your startup idea? Do it, if you think owning a business will make you happier. If you’re not sure it will, maybe being an entrepreneur wasn’t such a perfect dream after all.
Money Isn’t Important
You didn’t get that raise you were after. It’s all right, you say to yourself, money isn’t everything. Well, money may not make your happier, but it provides a certain level of comfort and significantly decreases your everyday stress. Not having money leads to staying up all night worrying about how you’ll pay your bills; and if you’re unhappy anyways, might as well have some money to go with that.
The truth is that we all care about money. It’s normal to want to be comfortable. A solid savings account, enough money in our IRA, an emergency fund to rely on when an unexpected expense pops up – all these financial securities matter. So maybe you should reconsider your initial dismissal and work a bit harder to really earn that raise in the near future.
I Don’t Care About the Environment
We only have one planet to live on – using up its resources without worrying about its future is foolish, to say the least. If you regularly tell yourself that your contribution isn’t significant anyway, you’re doing more harm than good. Even the slightest change in your lifestyle can have a positive impact on your surroundings. By saying you don’t care about the environment, you basically state that you have no regard for your home. Often, the truth is that you’re too lazy or comfortable to make an effort to lower pollution and waste.
Start small. Turn off the water when you brush your teeth and use public transportation more often. Also, reduce your plastic waste. Opt for reusable water bottles and bring your own bags to the grocery store. Billions of pounds of plastic waste end up in the world’s oceans every year, polluting the atmosphere. According to an article published on the Metabolix blog, all this plastic waste breaks down over time, becoming a source of fine plastic particles that linger and float in the ocean. These carry chemicals and other pollutants that may enter into the food chain upon ingestion by marine organisms. You can read more on the subject here.
I’ll Be Happy When I’ll Have X
It doesn’t matter what X stands for – getting married, landing a great job, losing 20 pounds. If you really think about it, it’s silly to assume that reaching one single goal will suddenly solve your happiness problems permanently. When you think like that, you keep yourself from appreciating what you have now. Stop believing that an external factor can have such a huge impact on your well-being. As a matter of fact, self-help books get one thing right: happiness should come from within.
Instead of focusing about how much better you’ll feel once you do X, figure out why you’re not feeling so good in the present. Sit down for a minute, pull out a piece of paper, and write everything that you’re thankful for: your home, your family, your friends, your strength, your resourcefulness. You’ll see that there’s no need to postpone happiness. In fact, you have enough reasons to be happy right now.
Most of us don’t like liars. As a matter of fact, we’re often deeply offended when we find out that someone lied to us. So stop doing it to yourself. Stop engaging in thought patterns that limit your personal growth. Be true to yourself for a change. There’s a better chance you’ll be happy.