10 Bad Habits That Are Ruining Your Quality of Life - This is the Life! - Build the Life of Your Dreams

10 Bad Habits That Are Ruining Your Quality of Life

March 14, 2021

Happy lady hiking and living her best life

If you're on a journey to improve your life, you should probably start by implementing positive change and removing or at least reducing whatever may be harming your happiness.

Forming better habits for yourself is the way to go. 

To find out what changes you need to make in your life, you need to analyze it objetively.

What is it that's frustrating you? Is it lack of time or energy? Is it not advancing or achieving your goals as quickly as you want?

If you're ready to audit your life, I'm here to help you figure it out. Let's take it step by step. 

But first things first:

What is quality of life and what contributes to it?

According to the World Health Organization, quality of life can be defined as:

"An individuals’ perceptions of their position in life in the context of the culture and value systems in which they live, and in relation to their goals, expectations, standards and concerns."

In addition, the WHO states that a person's quality of life is affected by their "physical health, psychological state, level of independence, social relationships and their relationship to salient features of their environment."

What this means is that living a good life is all about having a good balance between all the factors that affect our overall happiness.

It's not by accident that the countries where people are the happiest are the ones where people enjoy greater work-life balance and have more freedom and autonomy.

And because there are so many factors that go into it, it's very easy to fall into patterns of behavior that can have a negative impact on our happiness and the overall quality of our lives - if one piece is out of balance, sooner or later you'll start feeling like something is off.

The most common culprits are the bad habits that we pick up and that start throwing our life out of balance. 

They are the reason why we sometimes start feeling unfulfilled or even trapped in a life that isn't satisfying all our needs.

If you want to find out what might be hurting your life satisfaction:

Here are 10 bad habits that might be ruining your quality of life.

1. Putting Your Career Above Everything

A bad work-life balance is the most common bad habit in today's world. People are suffering from burnout and general dissatisfaction with their lives because they're working 7+ hours a day.

It's important to have healthy boundaries. Working for long hours hinders your productivity and it takes away from other important areas of your life that you should also be focusing on.

More often than not, it's detrimental to personal relationships because you end up ignoring your family to take calls from work or you postpone get-togethers because you have to work late.

If you think this is happening to you, try to be really mindful of your work schedule and make it a point to clock out when it's time. There is always more work the next day so either you stop yourself or it never ends.

At the end of the day, be sure to turn off or put away your work phone (if you have one) or refrain from answering work emails after-hours.

Another crucial thing to do early on is to set clear boundaries with your colleagues and even your managers. You don't want them to get the idea that you're more than happy to be taking calls any hours of the day and weekends. It doesn't mean that you're less committed to your job - your personal time should be respected. Know when to say no - if it's not an emergency and it can be solved another time, you don't have to make yourself available.

2. Wanting To Achieve Your Goals Too Fast

It's very common to want to see results quickly. 

Usually, when we set a goal for ourselves, we start working towards it (sometimes at full speed, even obsessively), then we quickly become exhausted because of all this effort we've put in and we start feeling discouraged for not seeing results right away. 

It's not long before we end up quitting the pursuit of that goal and decide it's not for us... 

This obviously means that we're not taking care of ourselves properly if we're obsessing and overworking ourselves towards this goal. It can also lead to feelings of frustration for not being able to achieve anything. 

If this tends to happen to you, just remember that the world wasn't built in a day!

Success will come if you are consistent, so it's better to reign in that initial spur of energy and put in healthier doses of effort so that you can enjoy the journey and stay committed to your goals.

3. Being Too Much of a Perfectionist

Perfectionism can do more harm than good.

If you're too much of a perfectionist, you are never ready because you're always waiting for the right moment or for things to be perfect and you will always be less than satisfied with what you have done.

You will also put so much pressure on yourself that you can hinder your well-being.

As a rule of thumb, you should always try your best but don't go overboard. 

Once again, it's all about balance...

4. Caring Too Much About What Others Think

Have you ever not done something you wanted to because you're embarrassed that people will see it or of what they might think? Have you ever told someone about your goals and got discouraged when their opinion was negative? Do you tend to ask other people's opinion before you decide for yourself and then feel limited by it?

Be careful how much you let people weigh in on your life and your decisions. 

It's not that people don't mean well, but sometimes they don't realize that it is very disheartening to hear them say that your goals are impossible to achieve or that you shouldn't do something because they think it's a bad idea. 

That can really keep you from doing things that you love or that could potentially change your life for the better because someone thinks it's not a good idea or a realistic goal.

So don't let other people hold you back and do what feels right to you! If you've thought things through and maybe heard an opinion or two and still think you should do it, then do it. You don't want to end up with regrets or hiding yourself away because of embarrassment.

5. Not Taking the Time to Socialize and Strengthen Relationships

We all know we do it! We always say we don't have time but really what it means is that it isn't a priority. 

We go about our lives and keep saying we'll make plans but never get around to it, which does more harm than you might think. 

Social interaction is key to our well-being - we are social beings and we need to feel part of a tribe. It is also great to prioritize these get-togethers with friends and family and make some fun plans because that's how we make memories.

Having a good time with a group of close friends is a great way to get your mind off things and enjoy your free time and be carefree without constantly worrying about advancing in life.

It's also really important that you have a support system that you can fall back on when life gets tough or even to share good news with!

6. Getting Trapped in Lifestyle Creep 

Lifestyle creep is what occurs when you're constantly trying to improve your lifestyle in terms of luxuries and expenses whenever your income increases.

It really is a trap. You get sucked into constantly wishing for more so you can own more and buy newer and more expensive things and it never ends. 

The problem is if you keep increasing the cost of your lifestyle, you also increase the risk of not being able to keep up with it should something happen and your earnings suddenly decrease. 

You will always be worrying about money if you don't take care to avoid lifestyle creep, which can obviously hinder your quality of life and remove focus from other areas of your life that are way more important than money and luxuries. 

7. Being Too Frugal 

On the other hand, being so frugal as to not even enjoying or treating yourself every so often can also be harmful to your well-being.

Everyone needs a reward or to be pampered every once in a while. 

If you're just saving every little penny and you don't allow yourself to spend anything, not even for a holiday or for small things like a manicure every once in a while, you'll end up feeling so suffocated!

If money is tight, you can build up your emergency fund first and then make sure to reward yourself for all your hard work every now and then. 

After all, what's the point of life if not to be enjoyed?

8. Not Taking Time for Yourself

Using your free time for self-care, for enjoying a hobby or investing yourself in a personal project is key to a balanced lifestyle. 

You can't just grind all the time. 

As goal-driven as you might be, you need to take care of yourself and to disconnect. You need to do things that you enjoy as well, without the constant pressure of getting results and advancing in life. 

Taking a break to do something you enjoy will help you feel re-energized and get back to work or to focusing on your goals with renewed strength.

You'll be happy that you're not selling your life away without even enjoying it!

9. Playing it Too Safe 

Most people are naturally risk-averse. We're taught to do everything we can to avoid failure and bad situations but taking chances and going through certain experiences can make for really good learning opportunities. 

Sometimes taking risks pays off

If you never take a risk, for instance, in your career (taking a new job or making a career-change), you might end up feeling unhappy, stuck in your job or like you're not advancing. 

Likewise, if you never take any risk in things such as investments or even relationships, you will never know whether it would have paid off. 

Of course it's important to have a safety net and to take calculated risks but being too risk-averse can really hinder your happiness - you don't want to end up wondering what if...

10. Unhealthy Habits

Even if life is really busy, you should always make an effort to eat healthily, exercise and get a good amount of sleep every day.

If all else fails, at least these habits will provide you with the energy you need to face your daily life and pursue your goals. 

If you're sleeping less than 7 hours every night, you're quickly going to become exhausted and unmotivated which will translate into a bad mood and low willpower. 

Then, eating healthily will provide you with the nutrients you need to make you feel energized and just plain good about yourself, whereas junk food will often make you feel drowsy or even guilty.

Finally, exercising can also invigorate you and give you the strength to deal with an all-too-often demanding lifestyle. 

Try not to skip these key healthy habits and you're already on track to a better quality of life!

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