Liberate Yourself From Old Habits

It’s not the actual New Year yet, but somehow, September heralds the start of the year in a different way.

I have always found it to be the perfect time not only to dedicate myself to my goals and dreams but also to consider what I no longer want to tolerate in my life.

When I sit down to write my wish lists and consider what I want to manifest more of, I inevitably end up clarifying what I also want to let go of, like habits, tendencies, and thought patterns that don’t serve me.

I found that with age comes a certain confidence to let go of things that I thought were important. These are things like caring too much about what other people think, or making excuses because I was afraid to say no to something I didn’t want to do.

I have spent many years worrying about pleasing everyone, and I often give in to anxiety when I am not able to do them.

It took wisdom, experience, and significant events to free me from those tendencies.

The good news is that you don’t have to wait to get old to get that wisdom. If you want to be wiser, all it takes is self-awareness and a willingness to make changes.

Here are some of the things I let go of and continue to work on letting go of, once I’ve realized they no longer serve the version of who I am today.

I thought I Was Too Shy

I used to be quite a shy person socially, although I have resigned that term. I have never considered myself an introvert; I just need to connect with someone deeply before I can express my true self. Sometimes I found large groups of large people, and I liked it immensely. I wanted to come across as confident and self-assured but I was worried that other people would find me too quiet or boring.

Now I am wise enough to understand that what some people may find too quiet or shy is my strength. I am an empathetic observer and listener, and I forge meaningful friendships with the right people. I am proud to be my own unique self and I am no longer ashamed of marking myself or allowing myself to be marked in this way.

Worrying What Other People Think

This is such a common thing for most of us, and to some extent there will always be people in our lives whose opinions matter. But when it comes to worrying about what other people will think about the way I choose to live, I stopped caring a long time ago.

I realized somewhere along the way that everyone’s opinion is shaped by their own agenda. Whether they realize it or not, their view of you and the way you choose to live is shaped and informed by what they believe is right. It can also be shaped by the way they have been taught to value a certain lifestyle or what they think is an appropriate way to live.

None of this has anything to do with you and your dreams.

If your gut tells you to follow your heart and change career paths or move elsewhere, you should listen to that instinct and not base your decision on what your neighbors, friends will think of high school or your cousins. You can seek their advice or opinion, but ultimately, the final decision must come from you alone.

Second-Guessing My Creativity

I used to think being creative was either for geniuses or kindergarteners. I never thought it could be a daily part of my life. That belief was passed on to me by my family and the society in which I grew up. I grew up thinking that to do a “real job” in this world, ie corporate jobs and whatnot, I can’t be creative.

But when I started to let my creativity flow, things got a lot better for me. I applied it to everything I do and it freed me from the shackles I was once locked in.

Once you realize what turns you on, there can be no stopping you. No one but you can put limits on your creativity.

Too much procrastination

This is something that many struggle with. I battled with procrastination for many years; I even believe I could turn around my procrastination!

Things changed for me when I learned to prioritize my dreams and bring them to the forefront, instead of keeping them in some future area. I made time for them, designated parts of my day to accomplish them, and lived them as a reality.

It only took a while before this became a habit that I wasn’t ready to give up. My dreams became non-negotiable and I learned to leave procrastination (mostly) in the past.

I Say Yes When I Want To Say No

I used to feel as if saying no to invitations would cost me friends and networking opportunities. I thought I had to be available for every event, even if it was the last thing I felt like doing. The truth is that saying no when you want to stay at home and take care of yourself is a mature, strong and wise thing to do. If you really want to succeed and have an incredible and abundant life, there are times when saying no will serve you better.

If you are pursuing a goal, you may even have to say no to social invitations, simply because you want to prioritize your dreams. This may mean that you need an early night, or you want to spend time with your partner and children or you want to finish the book you are reading.

In the long run, these things can serve you much better than going to that party. By all means, say yes when you want! But don’t be afraid to say no for fear of missing out.

I challenge you to create a list of things you wish to let go of this September.

Your list could include things like my list above, or it could be as simple as kicking a vice or letting go of your excuses for not working out.