Outdated habits

“Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.”  ~ Jim Rohn

Sometimes things don’t turn out the way you want.

Despite your best efforts to cultivate an attitude of success, to develop yourself, to pay attention to your results, to plant and nurture the seeds of your dream life, you’re still struggling and not making much progress.

The easiest thing in the world would be to give up. Many do. Who could blame them?

But to have the patience, persistence and determination to keep going, despite everything, is the true measure of success. Real magic occurs once you decide, no matter what, you’re going to do something that your future self will be grateful for.  You’re going to carry on.

But first you have to stop allowing outdated habits to interfere with your progress and steal your dreams. It’s high time to pay attention to the things you’ve accepted or permitted to get in your way.

You keep expecting the worst to happen

Learn to trust yourself. Listen to your intuition, your gut. One of the greatest mistakes many make is to try and make things happen whilst expecting nothing. How often have you heard expect nothing and you won’t be disappointed? Believe it.

Life fully in expectations. Expect to have a great day, every day. Expect things to fall into place easily. Expect light and love to fill your life.

You have unlimited creative power in an infinitely boundless universe and once you’re clear in your requests, the desires of your heart will come to you. Don’t accept a poverty of riches for lack of a wealth of clarity.

You haven’t stepped off the easy path

There’s a strong possibility that there’s something in your life you’d like to change. Change will happen for us all, growth only for those willing to step off the easy path of the comfortable and the known.

The truth is, your greatest moments are likely to show up when you’re feeling unfulfilled or unhappy or dissatisfied with life the way it is. View those unhappy moments as opportunities to step out of your rut and look for another path.

Don’t ever give up, even if it seems you have a mountain to climb. If you don’t keep climbing you’ll never enjoy the view from the top.

As you relax your resistance to what is, you create a stronger and stronger belief in your ability to handle adversity, making it easier and easier to manage difficult moments.

You’re too willing to settle

In less time than you image you’ll be sorry that you didn’t choose your life, your partner, your career but that you settled for what was available.

First you have to decide what it is that you want. What it is that you deserve so that you don’t end up wondering how the heck you got here.

Decide you’re too good to be someone’s back up plan. And don’t be willing to settle for second best. If you don’t value yourself, you can’t expect to be valued.

You can live half a life if you like, but why would you when the whole of it is there for the choosing. Empower yourself; remember you have control over every choice you make and you have a responsibility to make the best choices possible.

You keep avoiding problems

Life doesn’t have to be a serious business. It’s a joy and a celebration. You should be having fun with it. If something isn’t working. Stop it. Change course, change lanes, change anything and everything.

Part of growing up is dealing with some of the challenges life has on offer. Don’t run away from them. Treat them as part of the celebration. Your problems create the courage and wisdom you need to truly succeed.

Problems don’t go away. You have to work through them or they’ll sit deep within you, stunting the growth and development of your spirit. You mustn’t allow that to happen.

A huge part of growing is your ability to deal with the difficult things in life. You don’t have to go it alone, you weren’t designed to do it by yourself. Alone you may go fast, but with another you’ll go far. Talk to a friend or loved one, seek help or guidance.

Don’t let problems make you miserable for ever. In my life, when a problem persists, I’ve learned to say, ‘so what, something wonderful will come out of this.’ It’s amazing how often that happens.

You have a profound misunderstanding about love

It’s easy to be seduced by the apparent fairytale of other people’s lives. You could be in awe of your friends’ apparent settled bliss, which they might be desperate to escape because they’re being stifled and undermined.

We never know what goes on behind closed doors.

Love that doesn’t nourish growth and is used to trap rather than allow freedom destroys relationships and partnerships. Don’t be fooled by what looks like love from a distance, it might be far from it.

Love is not being dependent on someone or having them be dependent on you. Don’t seek to receive, seek instead to live in give and take, ebb and flow.

Remind those you love that you love them. Good relationships are built on open communication, trust and being present with one another.

Be there. Listen deeply, with no agenda and no time limits. It’s a gift that will be remembered the most.

And, most of all, be willing to allow love. Don’t believe you have to hide your faults, because you might not be worthy of love. Give the gift of yourself, let someone love you, despite what you see as your flaws and imperfections.

To be consciously aware of love is part of your life purpose and gives greater meaning to living. Let it in.

You’re still afraid of making mistakes

You can’t let your mistakes take over the way you live your life.  Every day living requires courage. Be willing to bet on yourself, knowing you won’t always win.

You will always act like the person you believe yourself to be. You get to choose whether you see a winner or someone who struggles.

Within you is the power to achieve the amazing and the more you see yourself as happy and successful the more you turn up the power to accomplish things you have only so far dreamed of.

If you’re not making mistakes, you’re not doing much and that’s more soul destroying than falling, picking yourself up and starting over.

You confuse today’s experience with tomorrows destiny

Destiny isn’t something you wait for, it doesn’t reside in the stars, it lives in you, it’s something you create. Whatever circumstance you find yourself in today, however painful, know that they won’t last for ever.

Whatever the facts, what matters is your attitude towards them. It’s this attitude that determines your destiny. Many will simply be paralyzed by facts because they think nothing can ever change for them. Don’t accept this defeatist attitude in your life.

By a simple change in attitude you can experience an incredible change in your future.

Years of pain, disappointment and unhappiness don’t disappear overnight, so remember to be kind and patient with yourself and acknowledge every little change you see.

You spend far too much energy in trying to control the uncontrollable

The world can be unpredictable and the unexpected can happen.

You’re free to think, feel and react as you please, and this is the only place you have control, so give up trying to control others or circumstances, they’re uncontrollable.  We’ve all tried. We’ve all failed.

As a retired serial controller I can tell you, trying to control anything other than what goes on inside yourself is a recipe for misery and disaster.

Life is filled with ups and downs, and no matter how good or bad it is right now whether you feel happy or not depends mostly on your focus. Some things are out of your control. Accepting this makes it easier to learn from your past, live in the moment and dream the dreams of your future.

It’s important to accept yourself as a force for change in your life, not by trying to control every experience, but by exercising control of your mind and your imagination, where the real power for change resides.

Cultivate faith in your capability for change, not control. Better to invest your energy in focusing on controlling the areas you can, and stop trying to control the uncontrollables, you’ll live a healthier, more effective life than those who lack the faith in their capacity to make any changes at all.

What’s the biggest insight you got from today’s post? Have you changed any outdated habits recently…what happened as a result? Please share in the comments below. Your story may be just what someone else needs to hear today.

I’m blown away by the insights and encouragement you share…thank you.

Encourage one another.

Love Elle


PS If you enjoyed this I’d appreciate you sharing on your favourite social networks. Let’s spread encouragement and support far and wide.


Elle Sommer is the author of 4 books and a workbook. Her latest publications are a series called The Power of Consciousness, and you will find all three books in this trilogy now available on Kindle. She shares quotes, inspiration and positive vibes on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. And her greatest desire is to encourage and inspire others to create not just a good life, but a phenomenal life.


  1. Hi Elle; Once again you are the voice of sanity. I agree completely that we have to focus on what we can control and let the rest of it go. It is also so important to have a positive outlook on life. You do have to expect the best. I get up every morning wondering what new challenge or opportunity will meet me. It won’t always be fun or be something I want, but I know I can find some good in it if I just search for it hard enough. This philosophy is partly why I wrote the post I did this week. I think it shows my belief in finding the good in all things. Thanks for sharing and take care, Max

  2. That’s a very interesting take on expectations, Elle! On the one hand, hope and fear are the real enemies. On the other, we need clear intentions to move forward. Somehow, there’s a beautiful balance in which we can hold the two!

  3. I like how you say that attitude changes everything, Elle,cause it’s true. We might feel paralyzed and hopeless by a situation but the situation doesn’t make dreams come true. Like you say, we make dreams come true – the power of achieving our dreams is in our hands. I also feel that walking in the dark towards your dream is also a challenge. When you don’t know how far you’ve come or how close you are to the dream you’re pursuing, you get a little discouraged.

    Thank you for a dose of inspiration to follow our dreams with this post – I need to hear this today!

  4. Such a wonderful article Elle. The things you mentioned truly are some of the main unproductive habits that rob people of the life they deserve to live. I really appreciate the wisdom presented here, thanks!

  5. Hi Elle,
    I think you’ve said it all with that clincher “Cultivate faith in your capability for change, not control. ”
    This statement is a virtual mirror for a lot of us.We usually want things to remain stagnant.We want progress,without change.We want to advance,without moving.We want fulfillment ,without reaching out.
    Well for any growth to happen the basic essential is the capacity to effect change within us .The willingness to adapt,to make a lemon out of a “cliched” lemonade,to forego the obsession with status quo.
    Real growth is in remembering that “when something happens someone makes
    it happen”.And that ain’t happenin’ if we refuse to adjust to change and also cultivate inner confidence to pull it off.

  6. These are some powerful habits that can sap you of moving forward. I think the thing that stood out was your ideas on expectations. I don’t necessarily agree and at the same time I do. I don’t think it is wise to have high expectations that are outside of ourselves. I think it is wise to have expectations like I’m going to achieve this today or I am going to make sure to do this one day. When are expectations rely on things we can do then they are beneficial when they rely on external events then they will often lead to misery.

    • ElleSommer

      There’s always that balance isn’t there Sebastian. On the one hand that perspective makes sense, on the other, I have a different view. I’m personally a great believer in always expecting great things in life. It sets up a positive vibration and puts me in a receiving mode for great things to appear. And it’s so much better than expecting the worst, or nothing.

      And by great things, I don’t necessarily mean big or huge in size; sometimes the smallest things can be the greatest to me. 🙂

  7. Wow. I love this post and definitely agree with everything that is said. I still wonder why people would expect the worst when they haven’t experienced any problems.

    I agree that love has not just been misunderstood, it’s been abused and confused.

    Thanks for a great post

    • ElleSommer

      Hi Ikechi how lovely to see you here and thanks for sharing your perspective. Good to have you join the community and share your ‘stuff’. 🙂

  8. Yes, we must all learn to focus our energy on things that we can control. For years I tried to “push the river” using way too much of my power on things beyond my control. Great lesson, Elle!

    • ElleSommer

      Hi Dore – yep pushing the river is probably familiar territory for a lot of us. 🙂

  9. Hi Elle,

    I was almost laughing in embarrassment while reading this article because looking back, I was guilty of almost each and every item on the list! And yes, these habits will steal not only your dream but your joy and happiness as well. I’ve been a pessimist in the past and learning about personal development really helped me overcome these bad habits. This article is a great reminder of what to avoid if we want to be happy and successful so thanks for sharing!


    • ElleSommer

      Hi Noel and welcome to the community of like minded – ‘been there, done that’ peeps. I bet there isn’t one of us who hasn’t been guilty of all the above too. How great that you’re finding ways to create habits that serve you better in life than pessimism does. There are some great books about optimism out there and the difference it makes to our physical and spiritual selves. Kudos to you for being there. 🙂

  10. This was a great article!! I love how you touched on getting out of your comfort zone because that is a HUGE mistake people make. I think it’s often hard for people to figure out what they are doing and get off of that track in order to pursue their dreams. They fall into a rut and never even realize they do it. But often this can be conquered when you use all of the advice that you gave. Especially when we need to face our problems because the fear that is associated with it will either create us or destroy us.

    • ElleSommer

      Hi Cody – you speak truth my friend. I don’t know about you, but it’s a constant practice for me, being aware of when I’m getting too flipping comfortable. And we know it isn’t easy to ‘face the fear and do it anyway’ but life rewards us with so much that it’s definitely worth the risk in my book. Welcome to the community my friend. I hope you’ll come back often and share your words of wisdom. 🙂

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