How to be happy with yourself. Five things women need to stop doing now.

“The one thing you can control is how you treat yourself. And that one thing can change everything.”

 Leeana Tankersley

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By Terry Arzt

Sometimes we get so caught up with our day to day routines that we lose sight of what is really important to us. We stay in a job that is no longer giving us satisfaction.  We devote ourselves to relationships that we know are not good for us.  We put others needs and wants before our own.

What if we could just step back and reevaluate what is going on in our lives and to create something different as we go forward?  What if we decided to take care of ourselves first?

If you are looking to start something new in your life, here are a few things that you should stop doing to yourself starting today.

Stop looking for your happiness outside of yourself

Happiness is a choice.  It is an inner way of relating to the world around you, no matter what.  It is a declaration and an internal commitment to a certain way of thinking and being.

Many women would say something like, “how can I be happy? (and now fill in the blank) “my husband and I are having problems “or “I just lost my job”.

But the truth is that inner happiness has nothing to do with outside circumstances.  When you choose happiness, you leave room for other possibilities.  You are at peace with yourself and your life.  Your happiness is not contingent upon other people’s behavior or external events.

So what if something awful happens that has an overwhelming impact on your life? You have to grieve. You have to process it and deal with it.  Just know that while you are going through it, that you will be happy again, that your life will go on and you are going to be OK. 

Stop living in the past

We all know that the past is gone, both the good and the bad events are behind us.  Yet, we spend a great deal of time and energy reliving the past. We go over past hurtful experiences and past grievances in our mind. By doing this we are keeping it alive and hurting ourselves.

We relive past events and we give it too much importance and by doing this we are keeping ourselves in victim mentality and we don’t move on. This prevents us from moving forward and to be able to find new meaning and a new purpose in our lives.

The moment we let it go and forgive others and forgive ourselves we will begin to find joy and meaning in the present. We will be able to create something new for ourselves.


Stop doubting yourself

Self doubt is based in fear of not being good enough, not being able to succeed and it is rarely based in fact. It will stop you in your tracks from doing those things in life that you really want to do. So decide to stop criticizing yourself and stop listening to the disapproval of others.

At some point we all question our decisions, but the more you doubt yourself, your abilities, and your choices, the more you give power to negative thinking and it will hold you back

Have some self compassion and stop telling yourself that you are not worthy.


Stop scattering your energy

 How often do we do things that we really don’t want to do?  How often do we say yes when we really want to say no? If we orient our lives around those things that have purpose and meaning to us, life changes dramatically.

Take time to find what those things are and identify what is no longer important.  Create space for yourself to do this. You deserve it.

I believe in living your life with intention and by deliberate design

Your design should be based around your values, your passions your interests and those things that you think are meaningful and give your life purpose

This means surrounding yourself with people and experiences that have a positive impact on your life and will pull you forward and to minimize the interactions that you have that are bringing you down.

Not everything is important so don’t spend the majority of time doing those things that zap your energy. Stop putting yourself last and stop overloading your schedule with busyness and obligations.

Stop trying to control everything

The need to control is the result of being attached to a certain outcome that we feel would serve us best.  We have preconceived ideas of how things should be in our lives or in the lives of those we care about. So we manipulate circumstances. We worry about possible problems that will occur and we do what we can to keep things on an even keel.

We try to control the world around us to limit our risks and to keep ourselves safe.

Wanting to control is rooted in fear and worry and our need for security and certainty.

So what do we do about it?  How do we release the need to control what is going on around us? Just let it go the best you can.  The truth is we really don’t have control over anything or anyone but ourselves.  Just remain receptive and allow things to happen and unfold. Relinquishing control will feel like personal freedom.  The sooner we learn this, the easier life will be and the more we allow the unexpected to occur in our lives.

originally published in

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