16 Things To Leave Behind This January If You Want To Have A Happier February

Woman walking over bridge in forest
Aaron Birch


Searching for problems and things to worry about simply because it’s what you’ve always done.


Staying up late for a reason that is not worth it.


Rushing yourself when you don’t even have anywhere you have to be yet.


Mindless newsfeed scrolling.


Stupid things you’ve done or said in the past that are totally irrelevant now but that you keep thinking about.


People who only talk about themselves.


Finding validation through other people’s approval.


Excuses for things you should have done but didn’t.


Negative self-talk.


Food that tastes good for two minutes but then makes you feel sick or lethargic for the rest of the day.


Not getting enough sleep.


Procrastinating on something that only stresses you out with each passing day that it doesn’t get done.


Assuming you deserve something just because you want it.


Putting yourself down every time someone says something nice about you.


Blaming other people in order to avoid thinking about your own necessary self-improvement.


Convincing yourself that someday you’ll be able to please everyone. TC mark

Kim Quindlen

I'm a staff writer for Thought Catalog. I like comedy and improv. I live in Chicago. My Uber rating is just okay.

Trace the scars life has left you. It will remind you that at one point, you fought for something. You believed.

“You are the only person who gets to decide if you are happy or not—do not put your happiness into the hands of other people. Do not make it contingent on their acceptance of you or their feelings for you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if someone dislikes you or if someone doesn’t want to be with you. All that matters is that you are happy with the person you are becoming. All that matters is that you like yourself, that you are proud of what you are putting out into the world. You are in charge of your joy, of your worth. You get to be your own validation. Please don’t ever forget that.” — Bianca Sparacino

Excerpted from The Strength In Our Scars by Bianca Sparacino.

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Image Credit: Aaron Birch

16 Things To Leave Behind This January If You Want To Have A Happier February is cataloged in