Pickiness is a trait that denotes choosiness and difficulty in making decisions or accepting certain situations and circumstances. In moderation, it can be beneficial, ensuring that you have healthy standards and don’t turn into a total doormat. But it can also cause you to become less content with your life.
In excess, though, pickiness can be non-beneficial, reducing your positive thinking and happiness by making you quickly dissatisfied and disappointed. If you’re a picky person, you probably already know the struggles that come with this behavior! So, how can you overcome it? Here are five ways to be less picky and four ways to be content in life.
Five Ways To Be Less Picky and Become More Content
Try these tips to overcome your pickiness.
It can sound harsh to be told that being grateful is a cure to pickiness, and it’s certainly not something that works instantly. But counting your blessings and utilizing positive thinking have been proven to help change the way you view your options and the world around you.
It’s easy to be picky when you’re never satisfied with what you have. You covet other people’s experiences, belongings, and successes. You obsess over the things that you wish you had. At the end of the day, you can be so blinded by the items you want that you forget to even look at what you do already have! Building gratitude can be tricky. Here are some tips for doing so:
- Write at least three things you’re grateful for every day.
- Make an effort to appreciate and thank the people around you.
- Take note of tiny things and be appreciative of them, even if they seem inconsequential.
- Point out silver linings in all the dark clouds you see.
2. Simplify Your Life
It’s somewhat of a paradox that the more options you have, the pickier you may become. As it turns out, having many different things can make you much more selective in life. It’s good to have standards, but it’s not good to get so caught up in the complexities of life that you can’t make quick, simple choices.
You don’t have to go full minimalist, but there are many aspects of a simpler, cleaner, a less possession-oriented lifestyle that can benefit you. If your pickiness tends to stem from material objects, trying out minimalist concepts may help you tame those tendencies.
Think about all the things you have. Do you need it all? How many go unused most of the time? What can you give away or clear out? What items do you need to buy less because you don’t even use them much, to begin with?
3. Understand Negativity Bias
A negativity bias is a concept that feeds into pickiness. It refers to the tendency to pay more attention to and be more affected by negative things than positive ones. This means that, even if you’re surrounded by positivity, you may pay more attention to the tiny negative details, making you very picky about the things and people in your life.
Focusing on the negative is a natural part of the human experience, so don’t feel bad if you’re strongly swayed by negativity bias! Instead, focus on learning to pick out positive features of the world around you. When good things occur, try to remember them by taking pictures, telling others, or writing them down. You’ll gradually learn to pay more attention to good things, and your pickiness will die down as you see that things you wouldn’t have chosen before seem much more appealing now.
4. Stop Demanding Only The Best
Perfectionism is a trait that only sets unrealistic expectations. You cannot be perfect, and neither can your plans or the circumstances surrounding you. Having high standards for yourself and others isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but you need to understand that demanding the best all the time is just a recipe for failure and disappointment.
When you demand only the best when you’re picky, what you’re doing is insisting on something that can’t happen. You can’t always get what you want, and obsessing over those things you can’t have isn’t productive. Instead of demanding the very best, seek things that are good for you now. You can improve and “upgrade” with time!
5. Take Responsibility For Your Life
There are many things outside of your control, and it’s true that many issues in the world that affect you aren’t necessarily ones you can fight. However, the fact remains that only you hold power over yourself. What you do with your life is your responsibility.
Pickiness often stems from the desire to blame other circumstances and situations for why you’re not achieving a certain goal. Instead of leaning into these thoughts, think about what you can do to get closer to your aspirations. They’re not going to fall into your lap; you have to work for them! Ask yourself:
- What things can I change about my current situation?
- Can I take action on or responsibility for current events in my life?
- How am I behaving unnecessarily like a victim of these circumstances?
- What can I do about this?
- What can I learn from this?
These behaviors can boost your happiness.
1. Live In The Here And Now
If you want to be content, you must focus wholeheartedly on the present. This is because:
- Focusing on the past forces you to revisit old issues and problems, tying you down to past troubles instead of taking their lessons and moving forward.
- Ruminating over the past keeps you grounded in things that are no longer true, causing the idealization of things long past that hold you back from creating happier moments now.
- Focusing on the future can mean worrying a lot about things that you have no control over, as you can’t predict the future at all.
- Focusing on the future can mean getting ahead of yourself and failing to do the necessary work now to get to that visualized positive future.
This is not to say that you should never think of the past or the future. It’s always good to be prepared for what comes ahead and to have reasonable goals for life ahead of you. It’s also good to remember your history and the lessons you learned from it.
But don’t spend all your time ruminating on these timelines that aren’t relevant to where you are currently. You were a different person back then and will be a different person shortly, so why not focus on the version of you that exists now?
2. Focus On Your Strengths
A lot of people aren’t content in life because they feel that they’re not sufficiently capable. The world has loads of expectations, and many of them start to sink their hooks into you as you are raised among such unfair goals. These things can make you feel bad about yourself, making you think you’re not capable.
To fight this, you need to start focusing on your strengths. Pick out your talents and skills and use them in work, hobbies, and your general life. Taking note of your strengths will allow you to apply them to many different situations, giving you the upper hand and proving your abilities to yourself.
Of course, you should still work on other skills that you’re not particularly good at, and every time you learn something new, you won’t be competent at first. Focusing on your strengths doesn’t mean neglecting other parts of your growth; it just means playing into your best abilities to remind yourself of what you can do.
3. Don’t Compare Yourself To Others
Comparing yourself to other people is a surefire way to hold yourself back from becoming content in life. This is because:
- There will always be better off than you, and there will always be people who are worse off than you; it is pointless to try to pinpoint and compare them all.
- Everyone’s journey is different, and it is unfair to ever compare yourself to other people; that unfairness applies to both you and the other people involved.
- The things that work for other people may not work for you, and vice versa.
- You don’t know what goes on behind closed doors; people have a tendency only to showcase the best parts of themselves, and reality is always different than appearances.
- You have no power over other people, only over yourself, so why focus on others?
- Copying other people to be comparable to them will only result in you being a second-rate version of the object of your imitation; strive to be a first-rate version of yourself instead.
- At the end of the day, you are the only person you truly will always be with – no one else’s opinions or situations matter when it comes to your personal life.
The bottom line is that comparisons are unproductive and don’t add any value to your life. If you want to be content, you must find intrinsic motivation to improve yourself for you, not to meet everyone else’s standards.
4. Find Emotional Balance
You can’t be content all the time, and if you’re learning to overcome pickiness, it’s likely not going to come quickly to you at first. It’s okay to put a smile on and pretend to be content at first as you work out the bumps. The act of “pretending” in this manner can genuinely help your progress, as the brain tends to have trouble differentiating your false actions from real ones.
At the same time as you have to fake it till you make it, you may also have to stop and allow yourself to feel your negative emotions. Positive thinking can’t be constant, and repressing your feelings will make them worse. Allow yourself to experience the full sweep of your emotions and be an observer to them. You can learn a lot about yourself and manage your feelings by reflecting on what you feel!
Pickiness isn’t always a bad thing, but all traits in excess are harmful, and this one is no exception. Learning to manage your pickiness can help you to feel more happy and content in life, with the world around you, and in yourself.