30 Habits In Our Lives That Are A Waste Of Time

30 Habits In Our Lives That Are A Waste Of Time

Life is too short!

After the life-changing experience that was cancer, I’ve decided to no longer waste time on habits that bring nothing good into my life. I made a short list with just 30 of these common habits… because I don’t want to waste your time, either. But if you wish to add something to this list, please do it in the comments. I’d love to know what common habit is, in your opinion, a waste of time.

1. Being in a relationship that isn't going anywhere.

I’m sure you’ve been in one. We all have. Dating someone you know isn’t right for you, a person you’re not planning to marry, or someone you don’t really love is a waste of time. 

Instead of being in a relationship that’s making both of you miserable, you could be out there, falling in love with your true soul mate. It’s often more comfortable to stay in that relationship, but you’re only wasting your time.

2. Spending time with people who don't bring anything good into our lives.

We often keep people in our lives because we’ve known them a long time, we’re afraid of being lonely, or we fear others might not accept us.

However, the people we choose to allow in our lives have a great influence on where we’re heading. And if someone isn’t helping you grow, if they’re holding you down, if they only bring trouble and negativity into your life, you’re better off without them. 

3. Fighting about politics.

I wish people would understand that arguing about politics won’t change anyone’s mind. We insult each other, we conclude that the other side is wrong, and we put ourselves in a bad mood because the world isn’t going as we’d like. It’s such a waste of time. 

If you want to make a difference, get involved in politics and do your thing. But stop wasting your time arguing about it with people who see things differently.

4. Holding grudges.

Reading a book, eating ice cream, and dancing to your favorite song are just a few better things you could do instead of resenting others. It’s a waste of time and energy. Forgive them and forget about them. Life is too short.

5. Stressing about everything that could go wrong.

When you live with anxiety, stressing about all the things that could go wrong takes up a lot of your time and energy. I sure know that. But I’ve decided to do my best and enjoy life. Some days are harder than others, but I try to spend more time doing what I like with the people I love.

6. Doing things you hate just because everyone else is doing them.

I’m no longer getting involved in random activities just because other people are. I barely have enough time for my hobbies, so why would I waste time attending events or doing things I don’t really like? Just because I’m expected to? No thanks. Even if I had no hobbies, I’m behind with my naps, and I could always spend more time with my family.

7. Staying upset with someone you love.

That’s such a stupid thing to do. We’re humans, which means we’re not perfect. Occasionally, we will hurt each other’s feelings, even when we love one other to the moon and back. 

Say sorry, forgive each other, and move on. You know you’ll make up eventually, so don’t waste any more time. Something really bad could happen while you’re trying to teach them a lesson. Move on, and enjoy your precious love and time together.

8. Counting on others to make you happy.

Counting on others to make us happy is a waste of time because it’s never going to happen. We are responsible for our own happiness.

9. Waiting for the other person to make the first move.

It’s easy to wait for the other person to make the first step. To say ‘Hello’. To say ‘I’m sorry’. To say ‘I love you’. To say ‘Let’s try again’. To say ‘Let’s put this behind us’. But what if the other person is waiting, too? If so, that first step will never be made, those words will never be said, and all the wait will be in vain. 

10. Settling for less than what you deserve.

We settle. We do it because we can’t imagine that we deserve as much as others. Our mind tells us that this is it, this is the most we can ever have. Where am I going to find a better relationship? Where am I going to find a better career? Where would I ever find the resources to get a better house? 

So, we settle for less instead of fighting for a better life. And when we do realize we could’ve had better, we also find that we’ve wasted years being miserable. Just because we didn’t think we were worth it. And we are worth it. We all are.

11. Being bitter.

The truth is that in life, no one has it easy. Some lack money. Others lack health. Some lack love. We all struggle in our own way, and that’s just life. There are obstacles, there are challenges, and there are ups and downs. So many downs. But we can’t let them suck the joy out of us. 

Whatever happens, with all its ups and downs, life still remains beautiful. So, don’t waste your energy being bitter because of something bad that’s happened. After every storm, there’s a rainbow coming up, and you won’t be able to enjoy it if you’re resentful.

12. Talking about others.

We all know that gossiping is wrong, but we still find ourselves doing it occasionally. Especially when we’re in a phase when we’re not feeling very confident or happy about our lives, we tend to point out flaws in others, to make ourselves feel better. It comes naturally, and it doesn’t make us bad people. 

However, instead of talking about other people’s imperfections, it would be a lot more helpful if we spoke about what is going right in our lives. That would make us feel better, giving us that confidence boost we needed. And it wouldn’t be such a waste of time.

13. Trying to get others to like you.

Not fitting in is a terrible feeling we’ve all experienced at some point in our lives. But, hey, fitting in is overrated. If a group doesn’t accept you, they’re not the right people for you. 

You don’t have to be friends with people who don’t share the same values as you. And you shouldn’t change those values to fit in, either. You just have to find the right people, and you’ll fit in without an effort.

14. Putting others first.

I’ve seen this, especially in the women in my family. In their culture, the husband’s needs and wishes came first, then the kids’ needs and wishes, then the grandkids’ needs and wishes, and so on. By the time it was finally their turn, they were already old, tired, sick, and couldn’t even remember what their dream was, to begin with. But it’s not just women, and it doesn’t only happen in families. 

It also happens in school, at work, or among friends. I used to drop everything to serve my boss, always postponing my own plans. We often put others first, thinking that someday, we’ll have time for our own needs. But for some, that day never comes. So, while taking care of others is admirable, it also wastes us precious time and energy we could use to fulfill our own dreams. 

15. Not knowing how to say no.

We sometimes forget that it’s ok to politely decline. It doesn’t make us bad people. We also need time and energy for ourselves, even if it’s just to rest. 

16. Doing things you hate, just to please someone else.

We are so worried about missing out, not fitting in, or losing the people around us. So, we often do things we don’t really like because we don’t want to be left out or to impress others. 

However, the people who love us don’t need to be impressed, and they would never leave us just because we don’t want to see a horror movie. Let’s just do what we love, and not waste any more time on things and people we’re not very fond of. 

17. Bad movies, bad books, bad tv shows.

It’s very much OK to put down a book after five chapters if you don’t like it. It’s fine to stop watching a show after two seasons if it doesn’t make you happy. And it’s perfectly fine to walk out of a movie if it just sucks. 

Our time on this planet is limited, and life is too short to be wasted on bad movies, books, shows, parties, concerts, plays, dinners, or dates. 

18. Feeling sorry for yourself.

Even though I struggle a lot, in the time I’m complaining about it, I could be enjoying what is actually going right in my life. I could spend all day feeling sorry for myself and crying about having cancer, and no one would ever blame me for doing so. However, I’d rather use that time to enjoy my beautiful family, wonderful marriage, and great friends.

19. Complaining on social media.

Now that’s a waste of time! Especially because it never solves anything. If you want to change something about a relationship, your local community, or an injustice, put down your phone first. We can’t change the world through Facebook comments. Get off social media and make the change in real life.

20. Regrets.

Making up scenarios about what could’ve been if we had done things differently is such a waste of time. We all have regrets, but they aren’t doing us any good. Let’s focus on the present, think about the future, and leave the past behind us.

21. Not learning your lesson from past mistakes.

We shouldn’t waste our time on regrets. However, from anything that went sideways in the past, we must take the lesson and store it in our brains forever. Because if we don’t, all the suffering will have been in vain, and we’ll make the same mistakes.

22. Worrying about other people's opinions.

“What will people think?” is a question that’s ruined many lives. I wasted years postponing my dreams because the career I wanted was  ‘unconventional’ at the time. Many people give up on their wishes, on what they love most, on relationships, out of fear of being judged. 

We’re wasting so much energy worrying about people talking. They will talk, and they will judge us, anyway. Someone will disprove your decision, no matter what. That’s just how things work. But it doesn’t matter. The only thing that counts is to make ourselves happy.

23. Looking at your phone all the time.

Today’s technology is so impressive, that it’s become addictive. Social media keeps us stuck to our phones all day. We turn them on just to read the news, but then we read about J.Lo getting married, and then we see that Karen from high school got a divorce. Then someone insults the president we voted for, so we drop a few insults back, and then there’s a cute photo of a kitten which takes us to a nice video. And when we lift up our eyes, it’s 10 PM, so we go to bed. But not before we play Candy Crush for another hour. Meanwhile, life happened without us seeing it, and an entire day was lost doing absolutely nothing.

24. Putting up with toxic people just because they're family.

They’re family members, old friends, or coworkers, so we feel somehow obligated to put up with their toxic behavior. But it’s not worth it. Toxic people steal our time, energy, and joy. We lose so much trying to make them happy, and they still make us miserable. So, you have to find a way to cut ties with the toxic person in your life. Life is just too short!

25. Waiting to be ready.

We postpone so many things waiting to be ready. I wish someone had told me that’s not a thing. You never feel ready. Things just happen, and you realize you had been ready all along. If it feels right, that’s all you need to know. We waited 3 years to move in together, another 5 to get married, waiting to have more money, more stability, to be more mature. A whole lot of bla blas. 

You’ll never be ready to quit your job, start a business, get married, have kids, or buy a house. There will always be doubts because big steps are life-changing, and it’s normal. But if you’re planning to do it anyway, someday in the future, do it now instead of later. Don’t waste time.

26. Not getting help out of fear of being judged.

One of the things we often postpone is getting the help we need. We’re afraid to ask for help. What if we will seem weak? What if they’ll judge us? What if they’ll marginalize us? What if we lose our jobs? What if we get bad news? In some cases, it even kills us. 

Please remember that we all need help. We can’t survive on our own. For some, help comes from doctors. For others, help comes from therapists. For many, it comes in the shape of a loan, donation, or a better job. If you need help, ask for it. Don’t postpone it.

27. Trying to please everyone.

Read this twice: You can’t please everyone. It’s impossible. If you make a right turn, people will be upset that you didn’t turn left. If you make money, they’ll judge you for it. If you don’t they’ll judge you for being lazy. If you make one kid, they’ll say you should’ve made more. If you make three, that’s too many, and you can’t afford them. 

You can’t please everyone, ever, so please the one person in your life whose opinion matters: YOURSELF.

28. Allowing others to choose your life path.

I believe that even if we allow others to control our lives, eventually, we find our own path. It was true in my case, and I hope this is true for most of us. We allow our parents to choose our futures because we think they know better. Peer pressure, what others think, our spouses, bosses, and coworkers all have an impact on the path we choose in life. 

Even though I believe that we eventually find our way, walking in the wrong direction for many years is a waste of time. And in some cases, the decisions others have made for us turn out to be irreversible. I think it’s OK to hear the advice of our loved ones, mentors, or friends, but in the end, we should listen to our hearts and make sure we choose the path we want… and we’re not walking towards something else just to please the people around us.

29. Being around negative people.

Negative people suck the fun and joy out of anything. They always complain about something, nothing ever satisfies them, they point out the flaws in everything and everyone, and you’re never allowed to be excited about anything around them. 

It’s their choice to live like this, and they are free to do it. But life is so short and precious, and it’s so great to make plans, have ideas, and be excited, without someone constantly bringing you down. Enjoy life, have fun, and make the most of it!

30. Comparing yourself to others.

It’s a waste of time. You don’t gain anything from comparing yourself to others. Some have more, others have less, some did better, and others did worse. But the thing is, you don’t know anyone’s full story. You have no idea what really goes on in other people’s lives. 

Don’t waste any more time trying to be like someone else. Instead, do the most of the life you’ve been given. Play your best game with the cards you’ve been dealt.

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