We’ve all been there. That toxic ex whose Instagram we can’t stop stalking or continuing to buy sneakers online (even though we already have twenty sitting unworn in the closet). It’s time to let go of these bad investments, which aren’t necessarily investments. They’re people or products or services that are holding you back from investing in yourself. Often, our desire to cling on to them is a mental switch that we need to turn off. It will take some self-control, but now is the time to re-evaluate what is keeping you from moving forward. Here are some tips on how to let go:
Cut it Out
Social media can make it pretty challenging to get someone out of your head after a breakup. Add in Find My Friends, Strava, Google, Venmo, etc…there are now a myriad of ways to continue keeping tabs on someone bad for you. And if you’re still checking in on their online presence, that means you haven’t fully moved on. Remember, it’s easier to heal from a clean break of a bone than a fracture. If you find yourself looking at their social media, again and again, block or mute them. If you have an itch to text them, delete their number, or block it altogether. You’ll start to feel freer once you’ve virtually cut this person out of your life.
Quality Over Quantity
It’s better to have a small number of people in your life who genuinely care about you than a large pool of acquaintances who don’t know much about you. Find the time to invest in friends or colleagues who will be there for the long term and stop focusing on those who won’t. Perhaps you already have these friends. That’s great. Make time to call them and check-in. Don’t assume an established relationship doesn’t need nurturing. If you don’t have one or two people you can lean on, start reaching out to people you’ve met that sparked your interest in a deeper connection. Chances are they’re looking for someone too.
Better in Moderation
As with eating habits, it’s best to spend in moderation. You don’t need to keep buying the same sweatpants in multiple colors; you don’t need five to sit on the couch and watch T.V. If you purchased a pair for lounging and want another, make sure it will serve a different purpose. Are you thinking track pants make more sense for walking the dog? As long as you’re not buying crap over and over again.
It’s okay to indulge sometimes! It’s smart to have a Treat Yo’ Self Day, especially in this new normal, as long as you account for everything in your Spending Plan. Think about the little bits of money usually spent on Extras that might make more sense to invest in things that can give you a more significant experience. If vacations to Europe or Mexico won’t happen for a while, that means we can spend a little more money on a day trip or weekend away. Maybe this is the time to invest in a used car if the purchase will give you the freedom to get away with your family whenever you want or to visit colleagues or friends that are not within walking distance. Think about ways to treat yourself that will continue to help you succeed once things feel more “normal.”
Live Your Best Life
Living your best life all about frame of mind, not excessive spending. Once you realize this, you’ll be able to invest in yourself better for now and the future. Find things that make you happy and prioritize spending your time on them. Learning new skills and having memorable experiences will bring more joy than buying junk online. Go on a walking tour of a new neighborhood in the city or have a virtual scavenger hunt with friends. Whatever you decide, make sure it’s how you want to spend your time. Don’t live someone else’s life.Living your best life all about frame of mind, not excessive spending. Click To Tweet
Getting rid of bad investments isn’t just about shedding people or things in your life, but about recalibrating your mindset to focus on yourself first. If you invest in your happiness and financial security, you’re in a better place to make smart choices that benefit you in the long run.
A version of this article was originally published on Forbes.