21 Things Every 20 Something Needs To Let Go Of To Be Happy

God & Man

1. Other people’s expectations.

When you base your life on what other’s want and expect of you, you’ll never know what it means to find happiness for yourself. When you realize you aren’t happy doing that, you’ll point at them when in reality, you are responsible for your happiness.

2. The race you think you’re in.

The race to find an internship, a degree, a job, an apartment. When you look at others and think you’re competing against someone else, you’ll feel like you never stop running. When you focus on yourself, your path and your goals, you take yourself out of this race. The moment you realize the only person you need to be better than is who you were the day before then people look at you and think they are the ones who have to keep up.

3. Things that hurt in your past.

We all have things that have happened to us. Things that might not have been fair. Things we cling to that aren’t even our own burdens to still dictating our lives. Let go of it all. Forgive yourself. Forgive someone else and stop letting it hurt you more than it already did.

4. Old love stories.

The people in your past who pop up on your phone just to check in. That relationship you wish had a different outcome. The hope that maybe one day. The more you cling to people in your past, the longer you are going to be alone, missing out on someone who could be right for you and right in front of you.

5. Toxic people and habits.

Realizing someone isn’t helping you to get to where you want to be is major. Letting them go and distancing themselves isn’t easy. Toxic people cling to things and people that are the same. You’ll never grow with these people. Realizing you are the one who is toxic to yourself is hard to accept. Your choices and habits have everything to do with your happiness or lack thereof. Realizing you might be the one getting in your own way of your own happiness and success isn’t easy to admit but it is easy to change.

6. The pressure you put on yourself.

Silence that voice in your head telling you negative things like you aren’t where you should be. The world is an ugly and mean enough place you, don’t put yourself down also. Give yourself a little more credit.

7. Gossip.

When people have nothing else going for them they’ll talk about other’s and judge them.

8. Who you used to be.

You will never look the way you did when you were 17. You’ll never have that fast metabolism you might have taken for granted. But you do have now. And if you focus on trying to be the best version of who you are now, it’ll blow away who you used to be, that person you built up in your head.

9. Things that aren’t making you happy.

If something isn’t making you happy, you are robbing yourself of the chance to pursue something that does. When you find that thing give it your all. Happiness will follow doing what you love. And doing what you love will lead to success.

10. Your comfort zone.

That place you always go back to. That person you always turn to when things go wrong. You’ll never grow as a person if you don’t push yourself to and you keep relying on the things that are only supposed to help sometimes not all the time.

11. Fear of failure.

You’ll never know true success if you don’t risk things to get there and with those risks comes failing. You’ll learn more failing something than you will from the things you do well and succeed in. I recommend everyone fail something and do it often.

12. Thinking you’ll be happy when…

You’ll be happy when you get a new apartment or new job or lose that weight you’ve been talking about. When you attach happiness to milestone what you’ll realize is when you do get there, you still aren’t happy. You are chasing something that will always be ahead of you that you can’t catch. When you learn to be happy now, all those things you want will gravitate towards you and that striving to be happy gets replaced with appreciation.

13. Being overly critical of yourself.

The happiest people I know love themselves. I’ve never met someone who hated themselves and could honestly tell me they were happy. When you love yourself it has a positive domino effect for everything else in your life.

14. Your mistakes.

Learn from mistakes don’t dwell on them.

15. People’s filtered lives.

If you want to be happy stop looking at your newsfeed and getting jealous of something that is fake. The happiest people in the world aren’t showing people they are happy, they are simply living their happy lives without having to prove to people they are. They find validation within themselves, not through notifications.

16. Wanting to be liked.

If you want to be happy stop focusing on the people who don’t like you and why. Their opinion doesn’t matter.

17. FOMO

It isn’t about living for the weekend and showing highlights of the ‘best’ parts of your life in a story. It’s about waking up feeling the same way about your life on a Friday as you do waking up Monday.

It is about staying in on a Friday and working on yourself, if that’s where you are at and not feeling bad about it.

18. Something when it’s over.

Don’t water dead flowers. Let go of things when they longer serve you or make you better. When you hold onto things or people in the past it begins to hurt more clinging to that than it would to just let go.

19. Apologizing.

Stop apologizing for who you are, the things you want and saying sorry when you don’t actually need to.

20. Excuses.

Excuses are what you come up with when you don’t want something bad enough. And if you don’t want it bad enough don’t waste any more time on that thing. But if there is something you can’t stop thinking about, then stop thinking about it and do something.

21. Waiting.

We spend so much time waiting when in reality anything you want you can have if you have the courage to go get it.

Waiting for that person to text you.

The phone works both ways.

Waiting for that opportunity.

Opportunity comes to those who aren’t sitting on their ass. And if the opportunity you want isn’t coming to you, go get it or create your own if you have to.

Waiting for your life to happen.

Your life is happening right now and you don’t know how many days you have. It’s your job to learn how to make the most of average days.

If you knew tomorrow was your last day, what would you say or do differently? What would you regret?

Say what you need to. Do the things you keep holding off and live with no regrets.

Happiness has more to do with the person looking back at you in the mirror then it does anything going on around you. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

Kirsten Corley

Writer living in Hoboken, NJ with my 2 dogs.

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