The New Year is a great time to start fresh with a clean slate. I think it's safe to say happiness is a goal for many people, and these ten things will help you achieve happiness. That's why these ten things listed below should be left in 2016.


1. Any person who isn't serving purpose in your life.

It might sound harsh, but make yourself and the ones who do good for your soul a priority. You only have so much time and energy. Make sure you're giving it to the right people.

2. The negative view of this world.

There are so many horrible things happening. There are some really awful people doing some really awful things, but what would happen if we all started focusing on ourselves and what it is that we can do on a smaller scale to make this world a better place? Simply shifting your focus and changing your mindset might be a good start.

3. The mistakes you made this past year.

Give yourself a little grace. You are not perfect. No one expects you to be perfect. Each mistake has been a lesson that has carefully crafted you into the person that you are today. Be thankful, and give yourself a break.

4. Every image you have of yourself that doesn't uplift you.

We are our own biggest critics. It is so easy to dissect our appearance, our personalities - everything. We all have a list of the things we wish we could change about ourselves and often these lists are quite lengthy. Since when has it become out of the norm to love ourselves? It's time to fall in love with your freckles. It's time to appreciate the extra wrinkles on your face. Stop hating the stretch marks and the extra five pounds you wish you could lose. Embrace the person you are 100% because there truly isn't anyone else who is just like you.

5. The relationship you aren't sure about.

This is your year. There is no room for uncertainty in your life if you plan on charging full force after your dreams. Don't compromise. Commit to yourself and your needs, and recognize that you owe it to yourself to never settle.

6. Every expectation of how you think your life is supposed to look.

This goes hand-in-hand with comparison. Just stop doing it. "Normal" is a relative term, and it means something different to everybody. There is no way that your life is "supposed to" look. There are no deadlines in life. You don't have to be married by 25. You don't need to have a family by 30. You don't need to be making six figures right out of college, or living in your own place. You aren't SUPPOSED to be anything other than striving to be better than the person you were yesterday, taking care of the people you love, and actively seeking happiness each day.

7. The class you got a bad grade in.

I know, it sucks. Don't beat yourself up over it. You might have gotten a "C" in accounting, but who's to say you didn't make a significant difference in your friend's life when she really needed you that night before your exam? Grades and school are important, don't get me wrong, but there are more important things than the percentage you score on a test, the letter you receive on your transcript and the credits you have completed. Above being a student, above being an athlete, above being anything that you are, you are a human being, and what matters most is what kind of human being you are.

8. Self-doubt.

We live in a world that bashes self-confidence and then turns around and shames us for not being strong. Screw what anybody else says, and focus on you. Believe in yourself. There is no one who knows you better than yourself. Stop second guessing yourself. Stop letting doubt prevent you from taking risks. Dive into uncertainty with the belief that you will learn something positive. Quit letting fear cripple your dreams.

9. Excuses.

It's time to start being honest with those around you, but more importantly, it's time to start being honest with yourself. I'm not saying you should do things out of guilt, but you need to recognize when you're being lazy verses when your body is actually telling you it needs rest. You need to be straight forward when you simply don't feel like hanging out instead of explaining this whole scenario of why you want to be alone. Start recognizing things for what they are, and don't over-think it. Be honest, be straightforward, and hold yourself accountable.

10. Preconceived notions.

About anything and everything. Commit to living your life as a clean slate. Don't be naive, but be curious to find things out on your own. Feel things on your own. Form your own opinions. Be your own person, and don't allow others to shape your reality.