100 Ways You’re Making Your Life Harder Than It Needs to Be

Published on: 25 Apr 2018
Woman painting at desk

Everybody’s goal should be to work smarter, not harder. I’m not just talking about work work, but I’m also talking about the little things in daily life that add up, making things a whole lot harder than they need to be. And so, I’ve compiled 100 examples — including many things I’m guilty of.

Hopefully, this list will have you nodding your head and saying, “Uh-huh, yup, I do that!” or maybe even, “Oh crap, I’m doing that RIGHT NOW!” so you can realize some “mistakes” you’re making. Some of them are easy fixes, like, wearing pants two sizes too small. Just go out and get a new pair of pants which you can actually breathe in! But some of them are long-term unhealthy habits that will take time to break — like stalking your ex on social media!

Here’s your chance to be honest with yourself and recognize some less-than-ideal behaviors you should work on. Make small steps and start actively reversing the behaviors, creating better habits, making for an easier life. Who doesn’t want that?

The “You’re Making It Harder” List

  1. Waiting until the last minute to complete a task
  2. Not leaving yourself enough time to get somewhere
  3. Saying “yes” to too many plans
  4. Holding in your emotions
  5. Not letting yourself cry once in a while
  6. Not keeping a first aid kit handy in your house
  7. Not having extra rolls of toilet paper at your house
  8. Staying at a job that makes you miserable
  9. Wearing pants that are two sizes too small
  10. Not getting enough sleep
  11. Not eating breakfast
  12. Staying in toxic and/or abusive relationships
  13. Spending too much time on social media
  14. Spending too much time trying to make yourself seem cool on social media
  15. Not listening when others speak
  16. Being closed-minded
  17. Complaining without taking action
  18. Hitting “snooze” on the alarm 10 times, and running out of time for anything else in the morning
  19. Drinking too much on work nights
  20. Automatically spending all the money you got on your tax refund
  21. Not asking for help when you need it
  22. Telling lies (and having to keep up with them)
  23. Self-sabotaging (in any way)
  24. Falling prey to imposter syndrome
  25. Not telling people how you genuinely feel
  26. Never taking risks
  27. Comparing yourself to others
  28. Not trusting yourself
  29. Having toxic friends
  30. Dwelling on the negative
  31. Not having prescriptions set up for automatic refill
  32. Not treating yourself to something nice once in a while
  33. Not taking your designated lunch break
  34. Not taking your allotted vacation time
  35. Being afraid to say “no”
  36. Never exercising
  37. Leaving bills unpaid until the last minute
  38. Staring at your phone screen too much before bed
  39. Forgetting to breathe (go take a deep breath right now)
  40. Punishing yourself for making mistakes
  41. Forgetting that everyone makes mistakes
  42. Obsessing over a diet
  43. Obsessing over your “flaws”
  44. Letting your credit score drop scarily low
  45. Not keeping a personal hygiene routine
  46. Lacking work-life balance
  47. Not keeping condoms handy
  48. Not getting STD tested regularly
  49. Worrying about things you have no control over
  50. Worrying about things way too far in advance
  51. Keeping up with bad habits instead of trying to break them
  52. Taking yourself too seriously
  53. Holding on to grudges
  54. Checking your email as soon as you wake up (it can wait til you get to work!)
  55. Living in denial
  56. Not going to the doctor when you feel sick
  57. Not going to scheduled check-ups
  58. Worrying about other people too much
  59. Not eating regularly
  60. Being a “control freak”
  61. Renting an apartment that’s way over budget
  62. Developing drug habits
  63. Being passive aggressive
  64. Not dressing for the weather
  65. Never checking your bank account and just praying there’s some money in there
  66. Not keeping snacks on hand at work
  67. Taking constructive criticism personally
  68. Forgetting to practice self care
  69. Missing medication dosages
  70. Stalking your ex on social media
  71. Not deleting your ex’s phone number
  72. Talking badly about your coworkers at work (you’ll get caught)
  73. Talking smack about your friends (you’ll get caught)
  74. Making impulse buys you can’t afford
  75. Not filling up on gas until you’re running on empty
  76. Spending a million dollars on coffee everyday when you could make it at home
  77. Buying a $15 lunch everyday when you could make it at home and pack it
  78. Having a really messy room
  79. Not doing your laundry until you’ve run out of underwear
  80. Waiting for the trash to be overflowing before you take it out
  81. Not checking train delays or traffic reports before you leave home
  82. Not cleaning out your cat’s litter box until it reeks
  83. Not taking your makeup off at night (resulting in future skin problems!)
  84. Not responding to emails in a timely manner (that inbox is gonna build up!)
  85. Not asking for what you want
  86. Not asking for what you need
  87. Not planning important things far enough in advance
  88. Putting off buying holiday gifts until the night before
  89. Not putting your keys back in their normal place
  90. Not bringing a phone charger with you when you’ll be out for an extended period of time
  91. Not getting a haircut or trim for a year
  92. Not deleting unneeded photos and documents on your phone and electronics (gotta free up that space!)
  93. Letting your dirty dishes pile up until they’re overflowing
  94. Not asking your neighbors to be quiet when you desperately need quiet time
  95. Being on your phone while you’re ordering your coffee (or lunch, or whatever)
  96. Not keeping tampons/pads handy
  97. Putting too much on your plate
  98. Believing yourself to be unworthy of love
  99. Falling asleep on the train and missing your stop
  100. Not knowing your limits

If you made it this far, get to it! Choose at least one thing from this list that you do, and say goodbye to that behavior right now. Clear, simpler days lie ahead, my friends.

Talkspace articles are written by experienced mental health-wellness contributors; they are grounded in scientific research and evidence-based practices. Articles are extensively reviewed by our team of clinical experts (therapists and psychiatrists of various specialties) to ensure content is accurate and on par with current industry standards.

Our goal at Talkspace is to provide the most up-to-date, valuable, and objective information on mental health-related topics in order to help readers make informed decisions.

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