how to develop better habits this year (5/6)

Mind Your Own Business

It’s important that we guard our lives against unwanted intrusions and distractions. If we’re spending too much time on social media and letting the validation that we get from it dictate our happiness, we set a trap for ourselves. We bring up negativity inside us. The ‘comparison’ game conjures up a cocktail of low self-esteem, insecurity and anxiety within us that if not kept in check might take us towards severe depression. Instead of stalking others and the highlight reels of their lives, we need to unplug from the noise. We need to distance ourselves away from news and other sources of irrelevant and negative information. We have to bring focus back to our lives and learn ways to develop ourselves. And we have to stop worrying about other people’s opinions. In words of Regine Brett, “What other people think of you is none of your business”. There’s no point in distracting ourselves by looking at other people and what they’re thinking. If we let other people’s opinions enter our heads, our focus will get shaken and we will lose our calm. All of us have our unique paths that are different from others’. We need to simply focus on ourselves and our lives. As Epictetus said, “If you wish to improve, be content to be seen as ignorant or clueless about some things.” When we mind our own business, we choose a life of self-reliance and freedom. We become more present in our lives and enjoy our life fully on our own terms without any unnecessary interference and interruptions. 

Keep it Simple

It’s easy to get obsessed with the pursuit of becoming our better selves and enhancing our productivity, and thus trying to install multiple habits at once. Instead, it’s much better to cultivate patience and focus on building one habit at a time. For example, working on one positive habit for the next 90 days. Along with that, it’s good to have a given action or behavior doable. And this is why the concept of cultivating ‘atomic habits’ by James Clear is so effective. We have to tap into the magic of compounding and get momentum on our side. Just focus on tiny changes that make a big difference over time and commit to sticking with them, and getting remarkable results will become inevitable.