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Summary: There is nothing wrong with wanting to be happy in and of itself. However, biblically there is a difference between "happiness" and "joy." Here is a list of things to rid your life of as you seek to find happiness which will hopefully lead to true joy.

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Introduction:

Everyone, believer or non-believer, wants to achieve happiness. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be happy as long as it is not our end all goal. Other than not having a relationship with Christ, the biggest thing that holds us back from accomplishing our dreams is, unfortunately, ourselves. We put limitations on ourselves every day, whether consciously or subconsciously. There are several practical things we can do to overcome these restraints.

“Life can either be something you embrace or something you hide from.” Stop making things more complicated than they actually are and just start living your life. It would be so much easier and more enjoyable if we would learn to just release certain unnecessary and unbiblical limitations.

Let's look at some of the things you need to let go of on your journey to becoming a happier person. I am fully aware of the biblical difference between happiness and true joy, so please don't criticize this work before you begin reading it. My purpose is to simply offer basic instructions for better living. So, with that in mind, things you need to let go of are:

1. The Approval of Others

When it really boils down to it, who cares what other people think? If you are happy with the decisions you have made, and you have sought God's will along the way, then whose business is that but you and God's? Imagine how much you could accomplish if you stopped letting other people's opinions dictate the way you live your life. You do you, don't let them do you. Pray, obey and study the Word, and from there take the actions you discover that might improve your life.

Galatians 1:10, “For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ” (ESV).

2. Anger, Bitterness and Resentment

Anger will eat away at you from the inside. Learn how to forgive those who may have wronged you. This isn't about dismissing the other persons harmful actions; it is about easing the pain that it caused inside of you. Remember that whoever you let anger you controls you. Forgiveness and letting go can actually lead you down the road of healing and peace.

Colossians 3:13, “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you” (NIV).

3. Negative Body Image

This is a big one in the culture we find ourselves living in. Only one person's opinion should matter to you when it comes to your body and that is you. There is nobody out there who can determine what a “correct” body type is. If you are comfortable with yourself, and you are healthy, then that should be all that matters. Do not let others make you feel that you are less than beautiful because if you believe you are, then you are.

Ephesians 2:10a, “For we are his [God's] workmanship, created in Christ Jesus...” (ESV).

Genesis 1:27, “So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them” (NLT).


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