Being happy is one of the main goals that we humans have, that’s why many studies have been done to find out what makes people happy. Well, science has it clear: there are activities, thoughts, behaviors, attitudes that determine how we feel.

Many times, without realizing it, we do not manage to be happy because we make mistakes or carry out toxic habits that affect us negatively. Happiness consists, in part, in giving up .

Things we must give up to live happily

In the following lines you will find a list of thoughts and behaviors that we must correct in order to enjoy greater well-being and be happier.

1. Renouncing perfectionism

Perfectionism may seem like a positive thing because we can associate it with the idea of wanting to do things in the best possible way. But perfectionist beliefs cause great discomfort in people , since they cause us to have too high expectations, often unattainable. Extreme perfectionism and happiness are not compatible, because this way of thinking produces anxiety, depression, low self-esteem…

You can learn more about this phenomenon in this article: “Perfectionist Personality: The Disadvantages of Perfectionism”.

2 Renouncing hatred, anger and revenge

It is normal to feel hate and anger at some point in our lives, for example, when a partner leaves us. But this feeling, which can be part of the phases of a break-up, cannot control our life. There is nothing positive about feeling hatred towards others and wanting revenge, rather it can complicate things and make us feel even worse. Don’t let hatred and anger control you.

3. Give up on others deciding for you

Human beings are social beings, and many times we want to make a good impression on others. But you cannot let these thoughts dominate you, for they will make you tremendously unhappy. Happiness is achieved by knowing yourself and by fighting for what you like.

4. Renouncing to always possess the absolute truth

As hard as it may be to admit sometimes, we are not always right. If we want to be happy, we must be tolerant of others and respect their opinions and freedoms, which creates a climate of tolerance necessary for everyone to be able to express themselves without becoming frustrated. We must also be self-critical , in the sense of recognizing our own mistakes when we have them.

5. Renouncing the past

To be happy it is necessary to connect with oneself in the present moment. We can no longer live the past, so there is not much point in living anchored in previous moments of our life if we do not learn from them. Being in the here and now with all your senses is crucial .

6. Renounce being too hard on yourself

It is also normal for many people to be very hard on themselves, to blame themselves for everything and, in the face of failure, to rejoice in what may have gone wrong. It is possible to learn from mistakes, and things will not always turn out well for us. Being sure that there are ways to get up after a fall is what will help us be happy.

7. Renouncing negative thinking

When we do not accept that we can sometimes fail, negative thoughts invade our minds. We value ourselves negatively and our self-esteem and self-confidence are shaken. This causes us to become paralyzed instead of moving .

8. Waiver of complaint

Complaining about habit doesn’t solve anything. If we don’t like something about ourselves or a situation, we have to do our part to address the problem. Simply complaining is a way of not facing reality and therefore makes us unhappy.

9. Give up your need for control

People who are obsessed with controlling all the events in their lives suffer from what is known as generalized anxiety, which is that you cannot be happy if you want everything to be perfect. Imperfection is important in our lives and, therefore, it is necessary to let go of excess control.

10. Renouncing Fear of Uncertainty

Excess control can lead us to fear uncertainty, to be uncomfortable in those situations where we are far from our comfort zone t. If we want to grow as people and be happy, we need to take a step forward and not be afraid of uncertainty.

11. Reluctance to avoid facing problems

Resistance to facing problems is one of the characteristics of a weak personality, because it is easier to blame the environment or others than to assume that perhaps something we did could have made our situation worse. Coping with problems is key to being happy and to getting on with solving them.

12. Give up thinking about what others think of you

Spending the day thinking about what others will think of you can be very tiring, so you should avoid being constantly thinking about giving a great, flawless image to others. For example, uploading photos from your holidays to get other people’s admiration.

  • This behavior can be negative for many reasons. You can check it out in this article: “Tips to Stop Thinking About What Others Think of You.

13. Renounce the barriers you impose on yourself when it comes to change

Resistance to change is a phenomenon that people can experience and which is also closely related to the comfort zone and the anxiety produced by uncertainty . Likewise, low self-confidence is also related to resistance to change. That is why you can take a series of steps to improve your self-confidence and empower yourself to face the transformation of your life.

14. Refusing to blame others

Excusing yourself by blaming others is a waste of time, because does not allow you to move forward . When you blame others for your failures you do not take responsibility and do not direct your life in the direction you want. To be happy you must take charge of your life, and this means possessing the ability to be responsible.

15. Waiver of self-blame

Just because you don’t blame others doesn’t mean you should blame yourself and crush your self-esteem. You should be aware that there are good and bad moments in life , that will allow you to adopt a positive attitude towards change.

16. Renouncing emotional attachment

Emotions have an adaptive function in our lives, and that is why they are and have been useful for the development of our species. But not knowing how to manage these emotions correctly can have a negative influence on our well-being. That is why it is necessary to know how to identify and regulate them , so that we can live in harmony with ourselves and with others.

Emotional attachment in itself is not bad , but we individuals not only become attached to other people, but also to objects and, worse, to our own narratives, which is called the “conceptual self”. Knowing how to detach from emotions is possible if we have the capacity to observe, live the present, adopt a non-judgmental mentality and treat ourselves with compassion.

17. Renouncing Fear

Fear is a very adaptive emotion, but when it is irrational it can be disabling and cause tremendous distress. Overcoming fears is necessary to be happy.

18. Renunciation of procrastination

Procrastination is the opposite of the phrase “don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today”. It is an excuse and therefore makes you an unproductive person . This can cause problems for your well-being. For example, when you feel stressed out because you have accumulated tasks by not doing them at the right time.

19. Renouncing prejudice

Prejudice can make you miserable, especially when you are sexist, racist, etc. According to a study by researchers at the Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH), people with prejudice are socially disadvantaged , they do not learn anything new and often miss out on opportunities.

21. Refusal to judge others

Some individuals spend a lot of time worrying about what is happening in other people’s lives. This behavior is harmful and a waste of time. Better to spend time on ourselves and on our happiness, as well as on developing as people.

22. Renouncing irrational expectations

If living in the past is bad, so is living in the future. Moreover, if we have irrational expectations the consequences for our emotional health can be devastating. Now, having goals in life is motivating , as long as they are realistic.

23. Renunciation of social impositions

Social impositions (not laws) can cause people a lot of suffering. The canon of beauty, marrying almost out of obligation, not being able to have liberal relationships … are some beliefs that predominate in society and that are catalogued as “good”. The behaviours associated with these beliefs are socially accepted. But social impositions do not let us be ourselves and can affect our well-being. As long as you don’t do anything to anyone, you reflect on these beliefs and act on your true desires.