post written by: Marc Chernoff

10 Mistakes Unhappy People Make

10 Happiness Mistakes We Often Make

Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass,
it’s about learning to dance in the rain.

A person does not have to be behind bars to be a prisoner.  People can be prisoners of their own concepts, choices and ideas.  So tell the negativity committee that meets inside your head to sit down and shut up.

When you dream, you better dream big; when you think, you better think big; and when you love, you better love truthfully.  Happiness is a choice.  There are no excuses for not trying to make the very best out of your life.  There are no excuses for living in a way that consistently makes you unhappy.

Here are ten happiness mistakes to avoid:

  1. Thinking that you have already missed your chance. – Your life, with all its ups and downs, has molded you for the greater good.  Your life has been exactly what it needed to be.  Don’t think you’ve lost time.  It took each and every situation you have encountered to bring you to the current moment.  And every moment of your life, including this one right now, is a fresh start.  If you have the courage to admit when you’re scared, the ability to laugh even as you cry, the nerve to speak up even if your voice is shaking, the confidence to ask for help when you need it, and the wisdom to take it when it’s offered, then you have everything you need to get yourself to a better place.  Read The Power of Habit.
  2. Using failed relationships as an excuse. – Life doesn’t always introduce you to the people you WANT to meet.  Sometimes life puts you in touch with the people you NEED to meet – to help you, to hurt you, to leave you, to love you, and to gradually strengthen you into the person you were meant to become.
  3. Changing who you are to satisfy others. – No matter how loud their opinions are, others cannot choose who you are.  The question should not be, “Why don’t they like me when I’m being me?” It should be, “Why am I wasting my time worrying what they think of me?”  If you are not hurting anyone with your actions, keep moving forward with your life.  Be happy.  Be yourself.  If others don’t like it, then let them be.  Life isn’t about pleasing everybody.
  4. Putting up with negative people and negative thinking. – It’s time to walk away from all the drama and the people who create it.  Surround yourself with those who make you smile.  Love the people who treat you right, and pray for the ones who don’t.  Forget the negative and focus on the positive.  Life is too short to be anything but happy.  Making mistakes and falling down is a part of life, but getting back up and moving on is what LIVING is all about.
  5. Focusing all of your attention on another time and place. – This day will never happen again.  Enjoy it.  Cherish your time.  It’s often hard to tell the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory.  Someday you may discover that the small things were really the big things.  So learn to appreciate what you have before time forces you appreciate what you once had.  Read The Power of Now.
  6. Overlooking what you have to focus on what you haven’t. – Most people end up cheating on others and themselves because they pay more attention to what they’re missing, rather than what they have.  Instead of thinking about what you’re missing, think about what you have that everyone else is missing.
  7. Dwelling on the things you can’t change. – If you hadn’t fallen down, you would never have learned how to get back on your feet.  If you hadn’t been forced to let go and move on, you’d never have learned that you have the strength to stand on your own.  If you hadn’t lost hope, you would never have found your faith.  The best often comes after the worst happens.  You can either move on, or you can dwell on the things you can’t change.  Either way life does move on with or without you.  So learn from the past and then get the heck out of there.  You will always grow stronger from the pain if you don’t let it destroy you.
  8. Constantly sacrificing your own happiness for everyone else. – Never let your own happiness wither away as you try to bring sunshine to others.  Life is not about making others happy.  Life is about being honest and sharing your happiness with them.
  9. Losing track of your own goals and ideals. – Knowing who you are is one thing, but truly believing and living as yourself is another.  With all the social conditioning in our society we sometimes forget to stay true to ourselves.  Don’t lose yourself out there.  In this crazy world that’s trying to make you like everyone else, stay true to your awesome self.  Read The Art of Non-Conformity.
  10. Dealing with the stress of deceiving others. – If you say you’re going to do something, DO IT!  If you say you’re going to be somewhere, BE THERE!  If you say you feel something, MEAN IT!  If you can’t, won’t, and don’t, then DON’T LIE.  It’s always better to tell people the truth up front.  Live in such a way that if someone decided to attack your character, no one would believe it.  Live so that when the people around you think of fairness, caring and integrity, they think of you.

And remember, life will never be perfect, no matter how hard you try.  Even if you pour your heart and soul into it, you will never achieve a state of absolute perfection.  There will always be moments of uncertainty; there will always be days where nothing goes right.  But as time rolls on you will learn that even the most imperfect situations can be made better with a little love and laughter.

Photo by: Heather

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  • This entry couldn’t have come at a better time in my life. Thank you again, for the truth!

  • Kudos to this short read! Keep your mind moving and keep seeking beyond what you see.

  • This is wonderful and so well timed for my current situation. Been doing a lot of thinking lately about making some changes in the pursuit of long-term happiness. Thank you.

  • More than the list you have, this is what struck me most: “When you dream, you better dream big; when you think, you better think big; and when you love, you better love truthfully.”
    We tend to create our own unhappiness, cause our own pain, and do things that lead to regrets. It’s time to be more proactive!
    Thanks for this post!

  • A very great post. Glori, those first few lines struck me most too. Thanks guys for sharing. Your posts are just wonderful.

  • A very welcome reminder, at a time when I need the tough love.

  • There is another mistake that people make when they love to be loved, but don’t understand the importance to give love in return. Once there is no love, they understand what they could do when he or she was being offered true love by someone.

    It creates sadness and people become unhappy for their unsuccessful relationships. If someone is unhappy for a bad relationship experience, it is always not a mistake of the person who doesn’t love you anymore. It is your mistake as you have not been able to keep love in your relationship.

    A nice suggestion about this would be :

    Being with the person you love might make you happy for some time. But being with the person who loves you will make you happy for all your life. If you are extremely careful about yourself, you would be more careful about finding a person who loves you, not about finding a person whom you can love.

  • Some solid advice for tuning a frown around. Unhappiness is usually the byproduct of poor choices. And while not always an easy fix, we all have the ability to do something about it.

  • This is a mini self life plan we would all do well to heed.
    Thank You

  • Simply marvelous and definitely right on time!!
    Thank you!!

  • Thank you for writing this. I needed it.

  • Thank you. This came on the day after a weekend that I needed to read such a post.

  • Excellent words of wisdom. I’m going to pass this on to my son who recently lost the job that he loved and is feeling pretty hopeless. This might jolt him into looking ahead instead of dwelling on the past.

  • Perfect timing for words I needed to hear. How do they know what I need to hear and when is beyond me….

    Thank you for the effort and look forward to the next engagement into reality and truth.

  • Wow! This is really a hand full. I feel like I struck gold. These are awesome suggestions, but I wish I knew all of this twenty years ago. Oh, Well! The important thing is that I know them now.

  • Great Advice. I thought I was doing pretty good until the last two. They hit home.

  • Excellent stuff.

    Good to feel that I’ve acknowledged and moved past some of these - and some that I have work still to do.

    I especially like and work daily with #1 - even in my late 50s!


  • I am also in my late 50s, and I had to “reinvent” my life, a few years ago, when I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I’ve found myself wavering between pursuing my goals, and hearing that doom-and-gloom voice that says, “It’s too late.” Thank you for reminding me that it’s never too late. Onward I go…

  • I love reading your blogs, they make so much sense.

  • I’m not an unhappy person and don’t want to be for I think it’s a waste of time and energy. If everyone followed your advice they would certainly have a happier life and they would be more fun and interesting to be around. Question - I find myself around negative thinking people who I love and regardless of what I do,they seem to enjoy staying in the negative mode. How can this be changed????

  • Another empowering read from you two. Thanks for keep the good vibes coming.

  • Great list! Many of these things I notice my husband and sister doing, and both of them are often unhappy.

  • I didn’t read this until Memorial Day- Thank you for helping me focus on my own freedom from the personal wars that have been going on for way too long in my life!

  • This is a great list. I especially like #9 and #10.

  • I’ve been trying to strike that balance between changing my life for the better and being present in the moment. I’ve been trying to look for future circumstances for happiness. The inner dialogue was going: “I can’t be happy until I’m financially independent, until then I will sacrifice all of my fun times”. Problem is, I’m feeling a little depleted, I need to get my fun back

  • #5&7 was a big one: I regretted something I said to a school buddy back in 1984 or so and constantly was revisiting that moment over and over and cringing, thinking that he was still thinking me a jerk….I finally reconnected with him through facebook and apologized for this comment…and of course he’d completely forgotten about it about a week after I said it…

  • I needed this today. I’ve been focusing on the negative for the past week and I have way too much to smile about.

  • HI, I have tried to print the pages but have no success, only the comments etc will reason for wanting the pages as they will be wonderful meditation tools in our meditation circle as each person would choose one of the quotes and meditate on their particular one.. is there any way this can be done other than writing all these pages out by hand.. thanking you for the wonderful site.. blessings Dixxx

  • I’ve been reading your articles for about a year now. That being said, this one is the one that actually hurt a little to read. It’s a wake-up call for sure. Almost like I have been doing the complete opposite of many of these. Thank you for setting me straight and opening my mind to a better way.

  • Thank you for such a worthwhile and meaningful post. I really needed to read this today. It helps…

  • Perfect! I need to learn to remember to be me no matter what… stay true to myself. Not lose myself in attempting to help others. It is not my fault or my problem if they cannot be helped. And I will not adopt their issues. Remember to love myself first.. always. <3

    Thank you for the reminder of how awesome I am! ;-) And how awesome I can remain if I allow myself to!

  • No doubt these are all reasons people are unhappy. But the one that stands out for me is, “3. Changing who you are to satisfy others.”

    Unfortunately, many of the young people that are trying to find out who they are look at magazines and wish they looked like the pretty ladies. In real life these nice ladies don’t really look as great.

    We have to love ourselves and who we are before others can love us. And this comes down to being happy. Always seeing the positive side of life.

    happiness comes from within the core of a person.
    Get rid of these 10 tips you have outlined and you can find a happy person.

  • Lovely article..
    I swear I am feeling light at heart

  • A nice, inspirational list. Thanks.

  • Thanks so much everyone! We continue to appreciate your appreciation. :)

  • Thank you for sharing. This was a great post.

  • A MILLION THANKS for this article and everything else you write!

  • Lovely post. :-)

  • I love this.

  • Brilliant!

  • When I was in middle of reading this post , I did everything !
    well , I recalled many memories , success and failure , Many people which they where in my life , friends or strangers who I made a dream of them in my life .

    We are humans , we make mistake and we can learn from our mistakes , That’s brilliant , mistakes are the most powerful thing I’ve ever know .

    In order to make no mistake we will stuck in mud .

    Life is a journey , we need to be dynamic to be known as a human , otherwise we’ll be just zombie !

    Thanks for this piece of gold .

  • Everybody keeps saying you just know what we need most and then publish its cure. I was used to agreeing to it, because I felt it also. Today when I read this post, I just lived this truth.
    It couldn’t be posted on a better time for me. The advice rings so true and I just wish I could really follow this path. A lot of work is needed..


  • On “using Failed relationships as an excuse”
    I read somewhere that people actually can experience many “soulmates.” Some of those failed relationships are in your life to help the soul grow. Their failure is your growth and stepping stone to the relationship you were always meant to have.

  • The article is really good. I have heard about another theory from a Buddhist monk. Let me mention it here.

    1.) The nature of the world is “changing”.
    ie. everything is changing sooner or later/good to bad/bad to good

    2.) We usually think that the things/relationships would stay as they are permanently. When they change we become unhappy.

    3.) If someone learn to accept the nature of the world, and realise that everything is “changing” in this world, he won’t be sad. Nothing is permanent in this world. That is a rule in the universe. We have to accept that.

  • No words to say. Perfectly stated.

  • Marc and Angel, you both are angels of great giving. A kind of giving which is helping so many people around the world to better themselves every day. Be happy, positive, determined, successful and moreover find meaning out of their life.

    Thank you so much for your wonderful contribution to the world.

    Take Care

  • Thank you brother, this really helped.

  • I love this piece. Thanks for writing this.

  • I needed this right now, thank you!

  • A very positive list. All of the points make perfect sense

  • This list made me cry because it’s true, and the truth hurts. Sometimes it seems our selfishness knows no limits until we stop and realize the damage we are doing to ourselves and the ones we love. Thank you for taking the time to write this list, it speaks to me in laypersons terms.

  • Thank you so much; I really needed this.

  • This is perfect, I honestly needed this and it fits perfectly with how I’m feeling and what I’m going through in my life.

  • Thank you so much for these beautiful, encouraging words <3

  • Thank you for this short essay, just a perfect timing with how Im feeling right now. Thank you.

  • Thanks

  • Really inspiring. I just believe that just because the past didn’t turn out like you wanted it to, doesn’t mean your future can’t be better than you ever imagined.

    Life is unpredictable..Enjoy every moment of your life.

  • This strengthened me!

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