A recent New York Times piece reported on how many of us are rethinking holiday obligations and adjusting our plans to reduce stress and make room for more flexibility. (That could mean forgoing travel, ditching gift exchanges, or trading big gatherings for smaller ones.) As we head into 2022, let’s think about the other habits and mindsets we’ll be leaving in the past to make room for new habits that benefit us more.
We asked our Thrive community to share with us which habits they’re leaving behind as we enter the new year. Which of these habits will you leave in 2021?
Letting our jobs define us
“As a writer, it’s often challenging to separate my self-worth from my job. I know many freelancers like myself struggle to keep our roles from our personas. But, guess what? My job doesn’t define me. As we head into 2022, I’m ready to leave my self-doubts behind me. As I’m gearing up to what’s next, I’m ready to stop doubting myself and start recognizing myself for my value, my progress, and my accomplishments.”
—Geraldine Orentas, freelance writer, FL
Feeding our negative self-talk
“For 2022, I’m embracing my whole body and feeling thrilled to be in my own skin. I’m leaving behind the negative self-talk about my stomach, hips, and thighs! If I’ve learned anything in the last two years, it’s to value my body, strive to improve it and love everything about it. This is a shift that I know will translate into more success and a happier me in 2022.”
—Alison Scott, coach, Seattle, WA
Saying “yes” to everything
“As I plan for 2022, I’m challenging myself to ditch the belief that I need to do everything. That will mean expanding the team within my business in order to delegate, volunteering to bring the napkins to the class party instead of a fruit salad, and sometimes simply saying ‘no.’ Saying yes to opportunities can lead to exciting open doors, but when you say ‘no,’ you’re freeing yourself up to say ‘yes’ to other things that can benefit your business, your career, your family, and your relationships.”
—Becca Carnahan, career coach, Boston, MA
Using time to measure productivity
“I’m leaving behind the belief that productivity is measured in time or the volume of things accomplished and replacing it with the belief that my productivity is measured by the value I produce.”
—Rebecca Morrison, coach, Ashburn, VA
Letting self-doubt hold us back
“The one habit that I want to leave behind in 2021 is self-doubt! I know that I am an awesome woman, however, many times as I proceed into my greatness, self-doubt creeps in. Many times I go to others with my self-doubt, only to realize everyone I ask for advice will have a different set of advice and then my mind becomes discombobulated. As a life coach, I have to talk to myself sometimes. I am learning how to shift intentionally so that I will not have self-doubt in my head. Shifting means that I can remove something that is in the way in order to make room for greatness.”
—Dr. Sandra Wright, speaker, author, customer service, life coach, Atlanta, GA
“In 2022, I’m breaking up with people-pleasing. I’m leaving behind the desire to say ‘yes’ when I really mean ‘no.’ For me, it is a part of people-pleasing and wanting to help others, but I know I can’t do it all.”
—Kristin Meekhof, author and life coach. Royal Oak, MI
Watching the news mindlessly
“As we head into the new year, I’m letting go of the habit of watching the news on tv. I know I’m not alone in following the news a lot more since the start of the pandemic. I’ve noticed the negative impact watching even a short news briefing can have on my overall mood and stress level. I’m at the point now where I only turn the news on now and again, but every time I do, I don’t feel good afterward. So, it’s time to stop the habit altogether. There are many ways to stay informed without turning on the news. That’s my commitment and plan for 2022 — to be mindful of what I consume on television and my devices.”
—Emily Madill, author and certified professional coach, Nanaimo, B.C., Canada
Aiming for perfection
“This year, I realized procrastination is closely related to perfectionism, and I’m deciding to let go of the notion of ‘perfect,’ because it limits my actions and keeps me within an unproductive comfort zone. I want to let go of the habit of procrastination, which has held me back from going for my dream in small steps at a time and making a difference in the lives of the people I reach through my work.”
—Ioanna Vasilatou, life and wellness coach, Spain
Buying everyone gifts
“One holiday obligation I’m leaving in the past is the exchange of gifts among the adults. Different family members are in different spaces physically and financially. The exchange of gifts seemed to only add pressure to our gatherings. Instead, we will enjoy each other’s company. Just getting to the same location will be gift enough.”
—Donna Peters, executive coach, Atlanta, GA
Worrying over things we can’t control
“I am choosing to leave behind the illusion that having control over everything makes us feel more stable, secure, and content. I have had a few hard knocks this year which I have been able to learn some truly valuable lessons from. One of these lessons is turning worry into trust. The more we worry about things we can’t control, the more discontented we feel. If we trust in ourselves, in our ideas, in our contributions, and in the value we add, then opportunities present themselves. Going into 2022 I am turning worry into trust.”
—Candice Tomlinson, life coach and hypnotherapist, Sydney, Australia
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