post written by: Marc Chernoff

30 Things to Start Doing for Yourself

30 Things to Start Doing for Yourself

Remember today, for it is the beginning.
Today marks the start of a brave new future.

Our previous article, 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself, was well received by most of our readers, but several of you suggested that we follow it up with a list of things to start doing.  In one reader’s words, “I would love to see you revisit each of these 30 principles, but instead of presenting us with a ‘to-don’t’ list, present us with a ‘to-do’ list that we all can start working on today, together.”  Some folks, such as readers Danny Head and Satori Agape, actually took it one step further and emailed us their own revised ‘to-do’ versions of the list.

So I sat down last night with our original article and the two reader’s revisions as a guide, and a couple hours later finalized a new list of 30 things; which ended up being, I think, a perfect complement to the original.

Here it is, a positive ‘to-do’ list for the upcoming year – 30 things to start doing for yourself:

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  1. Start spending time with the right people. – These are the people you enjoy, who love and appreciate you, and who encourage you to improve in healthy and exciting ways.  They are the ones who make you feel more alive, and not only embrace who you are now, but also embrace and embody who you want to be, unconditionally.
  2. Start facing your problems head on. – It isn’t your problems that define you, but how you react to them and recover from them.  Problems will not disappear unless you take action.  Do what you can, when you can, and acknowledge what you’ve done.  It’s all about taking baby steps in the right direction, inch by inch.  These inches count, they add up to yards and miles in the long run.
  3. Start being honest with yourself about everything. – Be honest about what’s right, as well as what needs to be changed.  Be honest about what you want to achieve and who you want to become.  Be honest with every aspect of your life, always.  Because you are the one person you can forever count on.  Search your soul, for the truth, so that you truly know who you are.  Once you do, you’ll have a better understanding of where you are now and how you got here, and you’ll be better equipped to identify where you want to go and how to get there.
  4. Start making your own happiness a priority. – Your needs matter.  If you don’t value yourself, look out for yourself, and stick up for yourself, you’re sabotaging yourself.  Remember, it IS possible to take care of your own needs while simultaneously caring for those around you.  And once your needs are met, you will likely be far more capable of helping those who need you most.  (Angel and I discuss this in detail in the “Self-Love” chapter of 1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.)
  5. Start being yourself, genuinely and proudly. – Trying to be anyone else is a waste of the person you are.  Be yourself.  Embrace that individual inside you that has ideas, strengths and beauty like no one else.  Be the person you know yourself to be – the best version of you – on your terms.  Above all, be true to YOU, and if you cannot put your heart in it, take yourself out of it.
  6. Start noticing and living in the present. – Right now is a miracle.  Right now is the only moment guaranteed to you.  Right now is life.  So stop thinking about how great things will be in the future.  Stop dwelling on what did or didn’t happen in the past.  Learn to be in the ‘here and now’ and experience life as it’s happening.  Appreciate the world for the beauty that it holds, right now.
  7. Start valuing the lessons your mistakes teach you. – Mistakes are okay; they’re the stepping stones of progress.  If you’re not failing from time to time, you’re not trying hard enough and you’re not learning.  Take risks, stumble, fall, and then get up and try again.  Appreciate that you are pushing yourself, learning, growing and improving.  Significant achievements are almost invariably realized at the end of a long road of failures.  One of the ‘mistakes’ you fear might just be the link to your greatest achievement yet.
  8. Start being more polite to yourself. – If you had a friend who spoke to you in the same way that you sometimes speak to yourself, how long would you allow that person to be your friend?  The way you treat yourself sets the standard for others.  You must love who you are or no one else will.
  9. Start enjoying the things you already have. – The problem with many of us is that we think we’ll be happy when we reach a certain level in life – a level we see others operating at – your boss with her corner office, that friend of a friend who owns a mansion on the beach, etc.  Unfortunately, it takes awhile before you get there, and when you get there you’ll likely have a new destination in mind.  You’ll end up spending your whole life working toward something new without ever stopping to enjoy the things you have now.  So take a quiet moment every morning when you first awake to appreciate where you are and what you already have.
  10. Start creating your own happiness. – If you are waiting for someone else to make you happy, you’re missing out.  Smile because you can.  Choose happiness.  Be the change you want to see in the world.  Be happy with who you are now, and let your positivity inspire your journey into tomorrow.  Happiness is often found when and where you decide to seek it.  If you look for happiness within the opportunities you have, you will eventually find it.  But if you constantly look for something else, unfortunately, you’ll find that too.  (Read Stumbling on Happiness.)
  11. Start giving your ideas and dreams a chance. – In life, it’s rarely about getting a chance; it’s about taking a chance.  You’ll never be 100% sure it will work, but you can always be 100% sure doing nothing won’t work.  Most of the time you just have to go for it!  And no matter how it turns out, it always ends up just the way it should be.  Either you succeed or you learn something.  Win-Win.
  12. Start believing that you’re ready for the next step. – You are ready!  Think about it.  You have everything you need right now to take the next small, realistic step forward.  So embrace the opportunities that come your way, and accept the challenges – they’re gifts that will help you to grow.
  13. Start entering new relationships for the right reasons. – Enter new relationships with dependable, honest people who reflect the person you are and the person you want to be.  Choose friends you are proud to know, people you admire, who show you love and respect – people who reciprocate your kindness and commitment.  And pay attention to what people do, because a person’s actions are much more important than their words or how others represent them.
  14. Start giving new people you meet a chance. – It sounds harsh, but you cannot keep every friend you’ve ever made.  People and priorities change.  As some relationships fade others will grow.  Appreciate the possibility of new relationships as you naturally let go of old ones that no longer work.  Trust your judgment.  Embrace new relationships, knowing that you are entering into unfamiliar territory.  Be ready to learn, be ready for a challenge, and be ready to meet someone that might just change your life forever.
  15. Start competing against an earlier version of yourself. – Be inspired by others, appreciate others, learn from others, but know that competing against them is a waste of time.  You are in competition with one person and one person only – yourself.  You are competing to be the best you can be.  Aim to break your own personal records.  (Read The Road Less Traveled.)
  16. Start cheering for other people’s victories. – Start noticing what you like about others and tell them.  Having an appreciation for how amazing the people around you are leads to good places – productive, fulfilling, peaceful places.  So be happy for those who are making progress.  Cheer for their victories.  Be thankful for their blessings, openly.  What goes around comes around, and sooner or later the people you’re cheering for will start cheering for you.
  17. Start looking for the silver lining in tough situations. – When things are hard, and you feel down, take a few deep breaths and look for the silver lining – the small glimmers of hope.  Remind yourself that you can and will grow stronger from these hard times.  And remain conscious of your blessings and victories – all the things in your life that are right.  Focus on what you have, not on what you haven’t.
  18. Start forgiving yourself and others. – We’ve all been hurt by our own decisions and by others.  And while the pain of these experiences is normal, sometimes it lingers for too long.  We relive the pain over and over and have a hard time letting go.  Forgiveness is the remedy.  It doesn’t mean you’re erasing the past, or forgetting what happened.  It means you’re letting go of the resentment and pain, and instead choosing to learn from the incident and move on with your life.
  19. Start helping those around you. – Care about people.  Guide them if you know a better way.  The more you help others, the more they will want to help you.  Love and kindness begets love and kindness.  And so on and so forth.
  20. Start listening to your own inner voice. – If it helps, discuss your ideas with those closest to you, but give yourself enough room to follow your own intuition.  Be true to yourself.  Say what you need to say.  Do what you know in your heart is right.
  21. Start being attentive to your stress level and take short breaks. – Slow down.  Breathe.  Give yourself permission to pause, regroup and move forward with clarity and purpose.  When you’re at your busiest, a brief recess can rejuvenate your mind and increase your productivity.  These short breaks will help you regain your sanity and reflect on your recent actions so you can be sure they’re in line with your goals.
  22. Start noticing the beauty of small moments. – Instead of waiting for the big things to happen – marriage, kids, big promotion, winning the lottery – find happiness in the small things that happen every day.  Little things like having a quiet cup of coffee in the early morning, or the delicious taste and smell of a homemade meal, or the pleasure of sharing something you enjoy with someone else, or holding hands with your partner.  Noticing these small pleasures on a daily basis makes a big difference in the quality of your life.
  23. Start accepting things when they are less than perfect. – Remember, ‘perfect’ is the enemy of ‘good.’  One of the biggest challenges for people who want to improve themselves and improve the world is learning to accept things as they are.  Sometimes it’s better to accept and appreciate the world as it is, and people as they are, rather than to trying to make everything and everyone conform to an impossible ideal.  No, you shouldn’t accept a life of mediocrity, but learn to love and value things when they are less than perfect.
  24. Start working toward your goals every single day. – Remember, the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.  Whatever it is you dream about, start taking small, logical steps every day to make it happen.  Get out there and DO something!  The harder you work the luckier you will become.  While many of us decide at some point during the course of our lives that we want to answer our calling, only an astute few of us actually work on it.  By ‘working on it,’ I mean consistently devoting oneself to the end result.  (Read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.)
  25. Start being more open about how you feel. – If you’re hurting, give yourself the necessary space and time to hurt, but be open about it.  Talk to those closest to you.  Tell them the truth about how you feel.  Let them listen.  The simple act of getting things off your chest and into the open is your first step toward feeling good again.
  26. Start taking full accountability for your own life. – Own your choices and mistakes, and be willing to take the necessary steps to improve upon them.  Either you take accountability for your life or someone else will.  And when they do, you’ll become a slave to their ideas and dreams instead of a pioneer of your own.  You are the only one who can directly control the outcome of your life.  And no, it won’t always be easy.  Every person has a stack of obstacles in front of them.  But you must take accountability for your situation and overcome these obstacles.  Choosing not to is choosing a lifetime of mere existence.
  27. Start actively nurturing your most important relationships. – Bring real, honest joy into your life and the lives of those you love by simply telling them how much they mean to you on a regular basis.  You can’t be everything to everyone, but you can be everything to a few people.  Decide who these people are in your life and treat them like royalty.  Remember, you don’t need a certain number of friends, just a number of friends you can be certain of.
  28. Start concentrating on the things you can control. – You can’t change everything, but you can always change something.  Wasting your time, talent and emotional energy on things that are beyond your control is a recipe for frustration, misery and stagnation.  Invest your energy in the things you can control, and act on them now.
  29. Start focusing on the possibility of positive outcomes. – The mind must believe it CAN do something before it is capable of actually doing it.  The way to overcome negative thoughts and destructive emotions is to develop opposing, positive emotions that are stronger and more powerful.  Listen to your self-talk and replace negative thoughts with positive ones.  Regardless of how a situation seems, focus on what you DO WANT to happen, and then take the next positive step forward.  No, you can’t control everything that happens to you, but you can control how you react to things.  Everyone’s life has positive and negative aspects – whether or not you’re happy and successful in the long run depends greatly on which aspects you focus on.  (Read The How of Happiness.)
  30. Start noticing how wealthy you are right now. – Henry David Thoreau once said, “Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.”  Even when times are tough, it’s always important to keep things in perspective.  You didn’t go to sleep hungry last night.  You didn’t go to sleep outside.  You had a choice of what clothes to wear this morning.  You hardly broke a sweat today.  You didn’t spend a minute in fear.  You have access to clean drinking water.  You have access to medical care.  You have access to the Internet.  You can read.  Some might say you are incredibly wealthy, so remember to be grateful for all the things you do have.

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  • Absolutely perfect list! I found both to be incredibly helpful in evaluating my life. Thanks for another life-changing post!

  • Thanks for the list of positive things I can “start” doing. Esp. #15 resonates with me. I have done a lot in the past 21 months learning life skills, eliminating beliefs, and dealing with day-to-day occurrences. This has increased my confidence in myself and urged me gain more knowledge about myself and the world.
    The past couple of weeks my sciatic nerve has been acting up, I’ve allowed my husband’s bad moods to get to me, and our daughter’s birthday-December 28-(she died in 1989) is coming up. So I fell back a step to that “former version” of myself and was depressed and angry and sad. After reading #15, I realized “I am the one determining how I feel and act.” Thank you so much for the reminder; I’m going to copy and save this! Love and Light to you both

  • I read the first, “Things to Stop Doing,” and LOVED the second,” Things to Start Doing!” Thank you.

  • I really appreciate this complimentary version of “Things to Stop Doing”. I think reframing things positively is the number one habit for happiness and this is a good example of how it works. If we could all format our deep inner brain to automatically process everything in life with a positive spin, we would be well on our way to long lives as happy people. I’m with Megan >> I liked the last post but LOVED the second.

  • Hi, Marc.

    There are so many things that we need to start doing for ourselves and the ones included in your list here all point to caring for our soul. I believe that once we start caring for our soul and loving ourselves, we will stop “doing” so much and start “being”. It is in “being” that we will discover ourselves more and start to see the good things in us, so we will no longer have to compare ourselves with others. It is in “being” that we will finally accept ourselves and who we are, so we can live a better, well-adjusted life.

    Thanks for the list, Marc. I haven’t read your “Things to Stop Doing” post, since I have been away for a while. But will get to it as soon as I have this comment posted.

    Enjoy the holidays! :)

  • I love number 6. The past and future do only exist in our mind. The only reality is what we experience in the present.

    What better than the experience of this glorious present moment can you give to yourself to celebrate?

    Thanks for the reminder

  • Thank you so much!!! This is the kind of positive motivation we all need more of in our lives.

  • I love this. It’s perfect from start to finish. I think I’ll print this and read it daily.

  • Thank you for this list. Every year I attend a class called “Joy of Goals” It meets late in January, in St Louis. About now, I start looking for things to add to my list of 101 goals for the year. This article will help me as I set up 2012. Reading it was a perfect way to start my day today and I again, thank you.

  • Absolutely true and practical to follow and to be happy and contented with what we have.

  • I love this. I actually thought the same thing when I read your previous article so I created my own “to do” list based on “what not to do” and wrote it in the positive present tense - I spend time… I face my problems… I am honest… etc. And I’ve read my list every morning since.

    This new list of 30 things is so awesome. Again, so happy to have come across such a great blog. Love the simplicity, ease, yet POWER of it.

    Pete Mattis

  • Another great list from you guys. My wife is going to loooove you for the post - I’m sure she’ll pin it up around the house like the last one. On your previous advice, I did order The Road Less Traveled, and I can second the recommendation. Get this book folks, it will speak new things to you. Well done Marc and Angel.

  • I loved the thirty things to stop doing to yourself article. It really had me evaluate things. It spoke to me like a wise old friend. Honestly, although I understand the desire to create positive statements from the other list, this version lost some of its affect on me. I guess I can see the positive in the negative more and find my own action steps from there. But either way, another good read.

  • Another great list. I especially like number 27 - ‘You can’t be everything to everyone, but you can be everything to a few people. Decide who these people are in your life and treat them like royalty.’ I like the thought of treating my mum like a queen and my husband like a prince…

  • Wonderful… Thank you so much for this list and your time and effort. I enjoy your thoughts and wisdom.

    Be well.

  • Great advice!

    I think it is easy to overlook the value in these points when they are laid out in a list, but if someone was to seriously apply these principles to their life, I think it would certainly make a world of difference.


  • Awesome post! Just discovered your website from your earlier post on 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself and I’ve been hooked ever since. Thanks for sharing these great lessons. I plan on printing these out as a daily reminder.

  • Thanks for this list. A friend posted the previous blog on Facebook, and it made me realize how motivational this would be for me, so I became a subscriber.

    I am looking forward to reading you every week!

  • Perfect!
    Found this on Archie’s Final Project page. Read the “Stop” article and this is exactly what I was going to comment, wish your link to this page was more obvious on that page. Positives always better, thank you.
    I suggest you check out another page -
    Recycling Happiness
    I think you will Like it.

  • Thank you for sharing this wisdom with me. Your site is a gem, and one of my favorites now. I wish you the best this holiday season and always…

  • “You are competing to be the best you can be. Aim to break your own personal records.”

    Love this quote, challenging yourself is the ultimate motivation!

  • Cenaida deJesus Gordon
    December 19th, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Thank you for sharing words that provide insight and direction for positive living. Positive statements and creative ideas are always welcome.

    Best of best,

  • Perfect, Thank You. I appreciated this even more than the “30 things to stop doing to yourself”

  • Very motivational… Thank you.

  • A friend posted this article on Facebook. I loved it. Subscribed right away. I look forward reading your entire archive.

  • Wow, this gave me goosebumps. I came across the “30 Things to Stop…” entry, and while reading I remembered hearing from somewhere that our subconscious remembers only the positive/it doesn’t register action items in the negative. So I started making a mental note on how to ‘positivize’ the list… until I saw this, hahaha! Great blog, great site. Bookmarked! :D

  • Absolutely superb!! Few years ago I was more or less a lazy starter for anything that I am not sure of success even before starting. Lazy in reading much, cursing myself for not being one of the privileged ones so on and so forth. The first step that started turning the way I think and react was the “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” and I haven’t stopped from then. I have changed a lot now. I chose my reading materials focusing more on Motivational and Learning contents and I don’t leave any chance of having something that would feed my brain and mind. This Article definitely gave me a lot of vitamins and healthy foods. This is yet another highly valuable read in my thrust to change myself to a positive person. Thanks a lot.

  • Your blog is AMAZING and inspiring. Definitely adding it to my blogroll.

  • Thank you so much for posting this and the follow up article of things you should do. You have no idea how much these two articles inspired me. I will be applying them to my everyday life and making sure 2012 shapes up to be the best year of my life.

  • Thank you very much. These tips were really helpful to me today.

    Keep shining bright!

  • Thanks so much for the kind words and heartfelt feedback, everyone. Reading your comments always makes us smile. We’re so happy that so many of you were moved by both ‘30 Things’ articles.

    PS: We just started working on next week’s article, so get ready for it. ;-)

  • I had the same reaction to the ‘Stop doing’ list and am delighted to see this new version of ‘things to start doing.’ Our minds respond productively to this type of information when it’s presented positively. Thank you.

  • This was posted by an old but wonderful friend Michelle…I don’t think she knows what she means to me. I will print this out and make it my goal to read this every day in the new year. Your words have made a difference for more than one person(me) I see. I have been writing on my blog about the need to see that we do not ever walk alone in life. Connection to others and ourselves should be the first priority in life. Happiness will follow if we stay true to that concept. Thank you for echoing this sentiment.

  • Number 24, yep that’s the one for me! Thanks for this positive read, refreshing read.

  • Brilliant insight, Marc & Angel–very intuitive & very true!

    Take Care & keep up the AMAZING work; speaking of being “grateful” (see #30)–stuff like this makes us “grateful” for our literacy (and having internet access, too)!

  • Thank you for this lovely list. A perfect holiday present!

  • Amazing post. This is inspiring and incredibly helpful. Thank you!

  • I like how you defined forgiveness. It’s a word i’ve heard people use, but i wonder how many really know what it entails. I have copied your definition in my “good sayings” document that i have, which comprises quotatations that speak to me. Thanks very much.

    “[Forgiveness] doesn’t mean you’re erasing the past, or forgetting what happened. It means you’re letting go of the resentment and pain, and instead choosing to learn from the incident and move on with your life.”

  • I am, sincerely, looking toward 2012 as a year for change. I’m looking to change jobs and I’m hoping that all 30 of these things will be a part of that transition. I’m trying to create a happier life for me, my partner, and my new daughter (10 months old). There has to be more to life than just existing.

    Thank you for this entry!

    - Alicia

  • This is another phenomenal list from you Marc. I wish you an absolutely amazing holiday season. Thank you.

  • Valuable list. So practical and applicable. Thanks!!

  • Truth AND inspiration in this uplifting post. Thank you so much. I will be sharing this with loved ones.

  • Thank you for this list. Number 29. struck a chord (Start focusing on the possibility of positive outcomes). Especially the first sentence - The mind must believe it CAN do something before it is capable of actually doing it.

    I’m starting something new, trying to fulfill a life long dream of writing a book. And this really helped today when after flipping through some of my favorite books, I started doubting that I could be as great as anyone of these admired authors. But they all had to start from somewhere and to paraphrase Thoreau - I can’t go to the grave with a song in my heart.

    So thanks for the list, I’m going to make your blog my new homepage. Bye-bye Huffington Post and the constant barrage of bad news..

  • What an inspiring post. I have a blog where, last year, I kept a weekly update of my life. Not wanting to do the same for 2012, I wanted to do something each week to better myself. I am absolutely going to weave these 30 ideas into my 52 week transformation. Thank you!!

  • A ready list for the New Year resolution :)


  • Hi Marc and Angel,

    I am new here. Found you guys through Steven Aitchison’s site where your site was selected by him as a Top 50 Personal Development Blogs.

    Well done, and I love the point format you use here to write for us to learn.

    I love all these 30 positive personal to do things. My main ones are listening more to my inner self and pursuing my dreams. I guess I have grown in 2011. Beyond this year, I think the other points in this post will be good starting points for me to work on.


  • I really enjoy both lists. I think knowing what to “stop” is very important. Our minds work in that way. If we can remind ourselves to “stop” doing something that is not healthy, it makes us halt during that moment. Yes, the “start” list is awesome too - - - but we do not start things as well or fall off the band wagaon on those things. I actually find the “stop” list better for me. I am reading one a day till I have them all memorized. My husband and I are very motivational, and we are very excited to have come across your website / page and facebook!

  • Wonderful Post. Marc and Angel- I have stumbled upon and actively read many of your post and cannot begin to convey how grateful I am for them.

  • Again some beautifully illustrated and illuminating advice and thoughts. I admire your work and hope mine can mature to the point your is at.

  • Loved this one too!! Having good habits to replace bad ones….easier than just stopping a habit!!

  • Thought-provoking. And I like the positive spin.

  • This is exactly what I needed to make a fresh start in 2012!

    Thank you!

  • Thank you, I will check this list again, just before I formulate my goals (not resolutions) for 2012.

  • Just ordered “7 Habits.” Thanks for the nudge in #24.

  • I really enjoy your posts. This one is no exception. Many have been temporarily set as my web browser start page over the past couple of years. Keep it up.


  • What a positive list of ways to better ourselves! Thank you for writing!

  • Good read! People spend a lot of time on the wrong things, trying to be something they’re not. Try to concentrate on what works for you (and makes you feel good). It’s the first step to a productive life.

  • There are a lot of really useful points here - too many for me to take in in one go. I’m going to print the list out and read one point a day then keep that one point in my head and try to act on it throughout the day. I like the positive spin of things to do rather than not do :)

  • Thank you for a great article. I find some of this hard, but I’m doing my best to adopt these habits in my own life.

  • I so enjoy your writing and wisdom. It’s just the kind of motivation I need these days. So much fun to read and try to apply. Thank you!

  • Incredible article, thanks for sharing! I will be re-visiting your site many times this very for more productive tips and motivation.

  • best thing i’ve read in a long long while.

  • Thank you for this post. You don’t know how much it is helping me. I’ve been reading it everyday, taking action and making noticeable progress.

  • Love this thoughtful post. Thank you for sharing these ideas… I look forward to reading more of your posts in the year ahead.

  • My wise daughter sent this to me… I am humbled and thankful, and just a teensy bit proud. She turned out to be one of my best friends in life. I am blessed to have her, and glad she turned me onto your blog. I guess when the student is ready, the teacher appears.

  • What an awesome discovery! I’m so excited to follow your blog- it is the perfect complement to my overall ‘wellness’ program and to the wonderful changes I am making in my life at this time. Everyone should see this site because everyone can take something positive from it!

  • Another inspiring, practical article worth printing & sharing. Great job!

  • What an amazing post. Such wisdom! Bookmarking this blog for sure.

  • I saved the previous “stop doing” list, but I really love this version better - feeling more comfortable and POSITIVE!!! thank you for posting.

  • This is the perfect list to guide one’s life- thoughtful, comprehensive, affirming and provocative. Thanks for the inspiration and the challenge.

  • What a great website that I am grateful to have stumbled upon! I particularly love this post and think every single word is so true. I do also like the fact that you reframed the post in the positive…good job!

  • Number 30 hit home for me!! Thanks!!

  • I’d like to thank you for publishing such inspiring words. I want to remain positive as you guys are, thanks for this :)

  • Thanks heaps guys, your article is perfect as this year I have decided that it is going to be a “ME YEAR”. So your words of positivity couldn’t of had better timing :)

  • I wholeheartedly agree with #30. People seem to completely disregard that wealth is a state of mind!

  • I love both of these pieces (Start Doing and Stop Doing) - so much so that I’ve started sharing them with my clients.

  • Great list! I’m new to your blog… Although I feel life slapping me hard sometimes, your article gives a spot of hope somewhere in me. Thanks again.

  • I love it when the most simple words can alter your bad mood and refocus you again…Thanks!

  • Such and inspiring read. It was totally great!

  • I totally agree… what a great list! Am printing this out right now :-)

  • I loved this article. I shared it with everyone in my office and on my Facebook page. Thank you!

  • I loved this article, a lot to think about I really needed to read this!!

  • Thank you for sharing these awesome ideas; you don’t know how much it is helping me!

  • By sheer happenstance I stumbled across your site. I just wanna say you’re doing a great job with this blog. After reading a few of your articles, you’ve reassured me of the changes I’m doing w/ my life. I’m inspired. I’ve been in quite in a slump for the past couple of years so…

    thank you for existing. :)

  • I just found your site 2 days ago and I can’t help but smile… I’m inspired by all your writings. I’ve been on the down-side in my life right now, but everything I read on your blog seems to lift my spirits and push me forward.

  • Great read! Inspiring, sound advice.

  • Great post! Wow! So helpful for where I currently am in life. Thank you very much.

  • Innovativemomma
    March 15th, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    I read both posts and found them very helpful. I have been trying to please everyone and make my life perfect in the eyes of others. All while being a full time mother, full time employee, and full time online student. I burned myself out and I now have to repair the damage I did to myself before I can focus on those that feel I let them down. After reading these posts I started dancing. It was a release for me. It released me from those who placed me in a glass box and expected me to perform. I am not obligated to please everyone. I can breath better now. I now I have a hard road to travel in order to reach the complete release from the control of others but I am ready to run it. I know that my feelings do matter and I don’t have to make excuses for wanting to be happy. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  • I really enjoyed reading this article. Thanks.

  • I really enjoyed reading this article. Thanks.

  • I really appreciate this complimentary version of “Things to Stop Doing”. I think reframing things positively is the number one habit for happiness and this is a good example of how it works. If we could all format our deep inner brain to automatically process everything in life with a positive spin, we would be well on our way to long lives as happy people. I’m with Megan >> I liked the last post but LOVED the second.

  • Just read this right article at the right time - from disillusion to feeling hopeful and more confident. I appreciate the advice and caring words.

  • Wow, lots of good ones on this list.

    Entering into relationships more consciously. A big YES on that one. When I look back on the relationships I used to have, there was no rhyme or reason to them, they seemed to “just happen” and often not in satisfying ways. Now it’s just the opposite. My vision for my life is so clear, and I don’t embark on a relationship unless it fits with my vision.

    I want to add to your list, start enjoying beauty in your life now. What I mean is, book that spa treatment, drink the nicer bottle of wine, take that quiet time for yourself, that vacation to the mountains. And do it now. Life is today. Make every day part of your spa retreat or vacation. That’s my philosophy now.

    Thanks for the article :)

    - Erika Awakening

  • I really enjoyed reading this article. I just wish a lot more people could live by this. Once you start making positive changes, even more positive changes come along naturally. The key is to START!

    John Russell

  • Just discovered your blog and site… blown away! Definitely gonna be back to visit regularly! Sharing this post on FB with all my friends/family!

  • I absolutely LOVE this post. It gave me lots of great things to think about and a couple new books to check out :)

  • Great read! Really inspiring and helpful.

  • Great post! I’ve been struggling with actually living in the present because I’m so focused on the future. Reading this post has really inspired me to live life to the fullest.

  • Great article!

  • Chef de Party
    May 9th, 2012 at 6:43 am

    Loved this! You had me at #4.

    Now I must make it until I’m number one!


  • Thanks so much for the fabulous list of inspirational ideas! I plan to share it with the students I teach. Sadly…..I had to make alterations to #30. There are times when my students do go to bed hungry, don’t have more than one change of clothing to wear and don’t have a place to sleep. These are the same kids that need to hear the 29 other thoughts the most…..I’m hoping it will make an impact…..

  • Thank you so much! This article is great motivation for me :)

  • Subscribing to your posts was one of the best things I’ve done lately. :) Thank you!

  • Wow, you both are so great! You really pick me up at your writing… you help me to be motivated in life! cheers!

  • So inspiring, and such perfect advice.

  • Wonderfully inspiring!
    And it has a better aftertaste than 30 don’t’s… it makes me want to do things, not think about all I’m doing wrong.

  • All of your posts are so inspiring! Reading these give me hope, and give me the courage to go out and take the risks that need to be taken.

  • Life isn’t supposed to be easy, it is supposed to be worth it. Love this!

  • I love your article. Inspiring and insightful! Thanks.

  • Thanks!

  • Thanks for the beautiful words!

  • Thanks for your post. Your blog gets me off to a great day!

  • Hi
    Thank you for Great info. I learned a lot from this post.
    Very inspiring and informative as well.
    I like every point of advice in this post…in particular “find happiness in the small things that happen every day” is really a helpful tip for happiness.

  • Yes!

    Stopping is hard, starting is easy.

    The reason for that is that the past is fixed and immutable, there is nothing you can do about it. But the future is open and you can make of it what you will.

    So obvious, that it has taken me 68 years to realize that. But realizing it is liberating as all get out.

  • Kefilwe Mpho Mogotsi
    September 18th, 2012 at 5:33 am

    Wonderfully inspiring…thank you

  • Absolutely great post -extremely positive attitudes to ponder. Thanks for sharing your tips!

  • How did you stumble upon all of this great information in your articles… so helpful… bc you experienced it and read all these great books you suggest, or bc you studied it in your own life for so long, or bc you are a great writer?! I am so inspired!

  • This written work is great for anyone looking to improve their life. I will share it with those I care about.

  • Love, love LOVE this!!!
    Thank you :)

  • Such an inspirational post this is. Love it!

  • beautiful message in this post… thanks for writing this inspiring advice :)
    keep it up.

  • Thank you for this great post, so many parts resonated with me, especially 2 3 11 12 16 17 20 26 29 and, most of all, 30. Until the end of this year, I have the opportunity to join my old company, without questions asked - and at times, it is really scary to follow the heart, to do what I love, to keep writing raw food recipes (books), to keep recording meditations, to keep believing that I am not completely nuts for choosing these things over fairly easy money. But I know it’s worth it.

  • Wow, a really awesome list.

    For me the most important point is “Start facing your problems head on.”, because everyone can be great when all the good stuff flows into your palms. But when people really shine is when all is working against them and they can still work a way out!

  • It’s nice to read articles like this when you’re stressed out. To be reminded that it will be OK.

  • I’m amazed on how you come up with these great blogs… they are wonderful. And I’m in awe with how many comments you get. I’m a relatively new blogger. I would love for you to check mine out and give me a few pointers. Just a thought. Either way, keep up the great work guys.

  • I love the quote at the beginning of the post, “Remember today, for it is the beginning.
    Today marks the start of a brave new future.”

  • thank you very much. this is inspiring.

  • This is absolutely brilliant! It fits perfectly in with a speech I did the other month. Everyone needs to stop getting held back by focusing on the bad. Time constantly passes, and if we don’t start doing these things - we will fall behind time! I could ramble on all day about this topic, but I think my speech linked above sums up pretty much exactly my response to these awesome and thought out lists.

    Once again, I would definitely pass this list around to my friends

  • I LOVE this list! The ideas presented here are totally do-able. It inspires me to be kinder to myself and those who I choose to allow into my life. It reminds me that I have choices about how my life plays out. Thanks for the reminder a.k.a kick in the pants to get up, get out and make things happen!

  • Very useful advice within this post! It’s the little changes that produce the most significant changes. Thanks for sharing!

  • I will read one of this 30 paragraphs every day.

    Thank you for sharing this with all.

  • The post is amazing, inspiring and helpful for me. Thanks a lot for sharing.

  • Inspiring list, just enough to kick-start me into gear.

  • Thanks for sharing this with all of us.

  • great article thanks!

  • Thank you for writing this article. It makes me feel much better. I remind myself to be happy everyday by re-reading part of this wonderful article.

  • Yep, I read the first DON’T list and thought to myself, geesh ‘kinda negative.’ So was very happy with the link at the bottom! :)

  • Very much inspired by this artical. Thank you.

  • Love the positive spin on this! This could be a life manifesto. Great job.

  • Thank you for the positive points in this article, it helps me somehow to realize that I’ve got to ’start’ something today. Cheers!

    Spread the word!

  • This is the type of article that readers can print out and hang on their wall for a daily reminder! “Start believing that you’re ready for the next step” is one I should be reminded of. If I spent as much time DOING what I think and talk about… it would be done! It is usually a lack of belief that forms a wall between me and ACTION! - great job

  • I had a horrible worthless feeling today and this helped. Thank you.

  • I have read your posts for awhile now and I love them. In fact, I print off the ones that really touch home with me, and I have a notebook with those post so I can refer back to them. You know how to write what we are thinking.
    Keep up the great writing and advice.

  • It fits perfectly in with a speech I did the other month. Everyone needs to stop getting held back by focusing on the bad. Thank you for the positive, inspiring advice.

  • Trustworthy instinct flows through your list effortlessly. Your list is what should really be meant by the phrase “Mature Subject Matter”. Wise and wonderful. Thank you for doing what you do.
    Regards from Canada.

  • 31. Politely tell your friends and family that you can’t hope to pull off 1-30 if you have to be present every time they grunt and guilt you for time. Don’t even bother trying to make that balance — balance is a warm and comfortable myth.

    People who love you will love you, and time will appear for them in the wake of your work and their supportive love. This will help you cheat a little towards goal #1, and make you realize why you hadn’t done so earlier.

  • I cried when I read item #30. Been reading a lot about those less fortunate than me so that advice really resonates. I am having a tough time right now, but I am so lucky and wealthy compared to many others in the world. Thanks for a wonderful website!

  • Absolutely amazing and inspiring post! Will try my very best to do everything on this list in order to improve my life.

  • Thanks a lot for this post. I feel like I’m only starting to really live life, and all these tips will certainly make the journey more enjoyable and rewarding. :)

  • I love this list. It’s cool because I find that reading it today a few of them really jump out at me. The thing is though, that I’m certain that reading this again 30 days from now a few more will jump out at me. I think it would be the same for each of us.

    Thank you.

  • #24 really jumped out to me. If everyone would just do this once a week, the world would be a better place.

  • “Start believing that you are ready for the next step”. That’s my favorite one for the day. Like one of your readers, Anthony Anderson said, I’m sure another few will jump out at me over the weeks. Thanks so much for compiling this list Marc.

  • Wow! I read this article awhile back, and re-reading it today is still super motivating for me. Thanks Marc for this priceless piece of inspiration.

  • Absolutely beautiful ! What a way to start the new year with such a positive “to-do” list. Well done, very inspirational !

  • Brilliantly written! Thanks for a great motivation right on the first day of the new year!

  • Loved these tips. Definitely valuable in my life. Thank you so much.

  • Very positive things we can all start doing!

  • Thanks for your help guys this changed the way I think to a whole other level.

  • Thank you so much for this list!! I found it on Facebook today. I have been going through some rough times lately (relationship wise) after a 10 year marriage (going to marriage counseling) and have been in a process of inner change. This list affirms most of the things I NEED to remember!

  • joseph boniface
    April 16th, 2014 at 5:34 am

    Hmm! Am gonna apply this to my everyday life, I’ll take it step after step until I get. I’ll also print this out THANK YOU

  • Great article! Keep up the great work!

  • Thank you providing the list! The site is definitely a place for me to go to on a daily basis. Keep up the great work!

  • ishwar das baheti, India
    December 12th, 2014 at 4:06 am

    Thank you for this life changing article.

  • The number that hit me the most was number 12. It is so true that you have to believe for yourself that you are ready for a new challenge.

    I know from my own experience how annying and how tiring it can be to always question your own ability of doing the things you have to do.

    I still have to work on myself and believe that I am ready for success. Then, eventually, I will work towards it.

  • Thank God, I’ve found you guys! I can feel I’ve found my treasure trove.

    I’m finding this blog very helpful. My un-happiness got me landing on one of your happiness page and since then I can’t stop thinking that you’ve got much much more I could learn from your writings.

    Marc & Angel thank you so much!

  • Hi Marc,
    Nice Post..Learn to live in joy. Joy does not exist out in the world somewhere, it lives within us.

  • Hi, just stumbled on your site and that was a great read. And probably welled timed. In 2015 I decided that no excuse was going to be acceptable when looking for change and moving forward. So I have started a lot of your starts (they certainly did confirm I am on the right track), but isn’t it funny because now I am more focused than before, those around me just can’t come to grips with it. It is near unacceptable for those around me to accept that I am on this new track (which is good for me and reaps results), so I have had to start letting go of all junk and negative affirmation and once again it is so odd that those around me just want to keep me stuck. I am shocked by other peoples reactions and they don’t celebrate me but near hold it against me. I am coming up against resistance and I am mindful of it. It is not a complaint, just an acknowledgement that when you start all these new things, people just want to doubt you, want you not to, well in the circles I am in anyway.

  • Amazing post! Learned a ton. Must’ve read 10 articles today and taken a ton of quotes.

    Favourite quote in this one is, “The way you treat yourself sets the standard for others.”

    Thanks for the wisdom.

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