Instead of making another batch of new year's resolutions that you're probably going to break before January comes to a close, consider the following 10 bad habits and which of these you might want to let go of in the coming year.
Jealousy is the first one. The way I look at it, jealousy can arise when someone has something that you want. Instead of being jealous, however, you could just decide to go after what you want. That's not to say you should steal someone's partner, job or money, but that you go out and work on getting your own.
Comparing yourself with other people is another bad habit worth letting go of in the new year. There's never a good reason to do this because there will always be those who have more than you, or those who have less. Instead of constantly comparing yourself with others, a better idea is to recognize that happiness comes from being the best version of yourself that you can be.
Another bad habit to break free of is avoidance. We tend to run away from things that are difficult or uncomfortable, but the problem is that sooner or later these things catch up with us. The longer you avoid things, the more time there is for them to get worse.
Whether it's a financial problem, an issue with your health or your relationship, the sooner you deal with it, the sooner it'll be resolved and the less you'll have to deal with the consequences of having left the problem to fester for so long.
Fourth on the list of habits to let go of in 2012 is Facebooking your ex. No matter how curious you are about what your ex is up to, there's never any good that can come out of scrolling through his/her Facebook page. You really don't want to know how happy and successful your ex is or who he/she is involved with today.
Even if you see that your ex isn't doing well, it won't make you feel any better and besides, it's not good for you to maintain a psychological connection to them. It's best to resist indulging your morbid curiosity and spare yourself the upset feelings. Let go of this bad habit and let go of the ex so that you can move on to better things.
The fifth habit to get rid of in 2012 is denial. Just like with avoidance, when we deny what's going on around us or what's happening to us, whether in our health, our relationships or our work, we give the problems a chance to get worse while we're denying their existence.
Facing the truth about yourself and your life will give you the opportunity to deal with things as they arise, so you can nip them in the bud instead of waiting for them to become an even bigger problem down the road.
Sixth on the list of habits to ditch in the new year is rudeness. Yes, life can be stressful and people can be unpleasant, but that's no excuse for you to be rude. If more of us were to let go of this nasty habit, more people would be polite and then good manners would become the norm.
Imagine how pleasant life would be if people were helpful, agreeable and accommodating. Imagine how much easier things would be if everyone behaved courteously. If you want this to be the way things are in 2012, recognize that politeness starts with you.
Number seven on the list of habits to leave by the wayside in the coming year is a bad attitude, as this can poison your entire existence. Being irritable, self-pitying or touchy can turn life into a battleground where you see yourself as the victim and everyone else as a potential competitor or adversary.
Instead, you can work on cultivating an attitude of equanimity and self-trust so that you aren't automatically imposing your own negativity onto every circumstance. You can believe in your own ability to take care of yourself, drop your angry, defensive victim stance and life will immediately become easier and more enjoyable.
The eighth bad habit to leave in the dust in 2012 is complaining. This will never make you happy or bring you success. All that complaining accomplishes is to remind you of your problems and to reinforce your sense of helplessness in the face of them.
Complaining is the opposite of dealing with things. If you sit and wallow in indignation and self-pity, nothing will improve; in fact, everything will get worse. Instead of spending 2012 complaining, you can make it the year to take action and successfully resolve your difficulties.
A terrible habit that really needs to be ditched in the new year is gossip. When you sit around talking about everyone else, it's not only hurtful but it's a colossal waste of your time. Instead, you could choose to be productive, improving your life and the lives of those around you.
Instead of gossiping about other people, you could be discussing interesting ideas, finding fulfillment through creativity, focusing on getting healthy, or simply relaxing and recharging. Any one of these activities is preferable to gossip, which fosters a narrow, mean-spirited and superficial existence.
The tenth and final habit to be free of in 2012 is co-dependency. Instead of being a needy child in your relationships, where each person is looking to the other for emotional healing and nurturing, you can be an empowered adult and take responsibility for your own happiness and success.
You can see your partner as a companion in your journey of life, rather than an instrument of emotional healing. This attitude shift will enable you to shift from being in frustrating, unsatisfying relationships to enjoying meaningful, fulfilling ones.
New year's resolutions are almost always a bust, but making a conscious choice to give up one or more self-defeating habits is not only possible but will pay excellent dividends throughout 2012 and in the years to come.
Follow Marcia Sirota on Twitter: www.twitter.com/@rcinstitute