- Trust karma.
But when you do something good, be genuine and do it from your heart, not because you’re expecting something good to happen to you later.
That one hour you spend talking to that pregnant teenage mother or that one hour bonding with that orphan might (just might) change the course of their lives more than you could ever imagine.
- Embrace your emotions (So long as you’re not hurting others).
We’re meant to feel happiness, fear, sorrow, anger, disappointment, jealousy, passion, love… the full spectrum. I believe it’s what makes us more humble, human, more accepting and patient.
- Count your blessings… Every. Single. Day.
Never take anything for granted. There’s always someone out there in circumstances far worse than yours. So stop pitying yourself, pick yourself up, and be the fighter you know you are.
- Cherish every moment with loved ones as if it was the last.
I tell my parents and little brother that I love them as often as I can (we’ve all lived in separate continents for almost 10yrs now so it’s not easy). I’ve had too many friends who’ve lost loved ones without having the chance to hold them one last time or say “I love you” one last time; scars like these take a very long time to heal.
- Judge less, accept more.
No one is perfect. Everyone has a story, a battle of some sort, that no one else knows about. Keeping this in mind has helped me tame my (previously unstable) temper!
I’ve never been more in tune with my own body and learned to take care of myself emotionally, mentally and physically until I learned to meditate properly.
- Lists and more lists!
I know this sounds a bit ridiculous but this has changed my life in ways you cannot image. I’ve become so much more organized and focused. I forget less. And believe it or not, it’s helped me gain more confidence and get over breakups easier!
- Find an outlet to your emotions.
Your body is nothing but a medium, a vessel; and it can only handle so much. Embracing your emotions is important but releasing those emotions is just as important (yes, even the good ones)! Find an outlet that helps you use your emotions constructively. Mine is writing in the diary I’ve kept since I was 11, listening to music, singing, dancing and sketching.
- Last but not least, follow your heart but take your head with you.
Ask yourself twice if you really need that new pair of shoes you say you love when your shoe-rack is already crumbling under the weight of two dozen pairs. Ask yourself twice if you’re really dating him/her because you genuinely like them or because deep down you’re feeling lonely. Life is short. Don’t waste your time on mistakes that could’ve been easily prevented by thinking twice and having an honest conversation with yourself!
This question originally appeared on Quora: What are 10 (or fewer) good habits that changed your life?
See the 10 Healthiest Cities to Live in America
Colin Anderson—Blend Images/Corbis
Jim Wilson—The New York Times/Redux
Celin Serbo—Aurora Photos/Corbis
Misty Keasler—Redux for TIME
K.C. Cohen—Courtesy of Boston Children's Hospital
1 of 10