How many times in your entire life have you heard: “Don’t let things bother you?” In fact, you hear it almost every time you get upset. 

Well, wouldn’t it be perfect if you had a switch in your brain that helped you turn off every possibility of stress?

Sadly, things don’t work like that in real life. In reality, figuring out how to not let things bother you is a journey.

It is a process that takes a lot of devotion, introspection, self-control, effort, time and energy. A process of making yourself happier. 

Well, luckily for you, we’re here to show you the way. Here to give you some great tips and to help you learn how to not let things bother you. 

Embrace the art of letting go

woman with open arms standing on cliff

The number one step in the process of not allowing yourself to be bothered by every little thing in this world is by getting rid of all the emotional baggage that’s been weighing you down. 

First and foremost, you need to let go of the people who are doing you harm. Everything that is hurting you has its source and it’s your job to remove that source from your life. 

Often, it’s incredibly hard to cut ties with one close to you and this is especially true when it comes to your good friends and family members.

Sometimes, people have been next to you for as long as you can remember so you are scared of cutting ties with them. You form codependent relationships and you assume that you’ll be lost without them.

Well, if those people are the ones who are making you feel bad, you need to go no contact with them. 

You shouldn’t do it to make a point or in order for them to become scared of losing you.

Instead, you need to clear your life of everyone who doesn’t have a positive impact on you. Of everyone who has a bad vibe and who spreads negative energy. 

Another thing you have to learn how to let go is everything that was not meant to be. Accept that some people had to leave you and that you had to lose some things and opportunities. 

There is really nothing you can do about it now, so there is absolutely no point in wracking your brains about it. Trust me; letting go is the only path toward moving forward. 

Don’t hold on to the past

woman in white dress sitting on fence

In most cases, when little things bother you, they’re not happening as we speak. In fact, you’re overwhelmed by a lot of people from and events that went on in your distant past. 

You can’t help but replay your entire life history back and forth in your head. Could you have reacted differently in some situations?

Why did everything happen the way it did in your past relationship? Why did your ex leave you without closure?

Could have you said something else while you were fighting with your best friend a few months ago? Should have you acted differently in that situation last week?

Every night, before you fall asleep, these and similar questions consume you. You think that all of your problems would magically go away if you had the ability to change the past.

Well, let me tell you something: there is absolutely no way for you to do this so what’s the point of holding on to it?

Analyzing yesterday is in vain. You can just learn from it and leave it behind you, where it belongs.

Holding on to the past means putting your present life on hold. It brings you unnecessary worries and it destroys your emotional and mental health. 

Each day you spend contemplating the past is a day you steal from your future. Accept that it is unchangeable and that this practice serves no purpose in creating a better today. 

When you think so much of the past, you’re just wasting your precious time and you’re not living your life right now.

As much as you dissect it, you won’t come to a different conclusion or make any difference. 

Instead, shift your focus and enjoy the present day. Concentrate on the future and make sure not to repeat your mistakes.

Sort your priorities

man with backpack and woman sitting on ground

When you’re trying to figure out how to not let things bother you, one of the crucial things you have to start doing as soon as possible is sorting out your priorities. 

Look, I’ll be honest with you. There doesn’t exist a person in this world who doesn’t worry about something.

All of us are bothered by some things, whether we admit it or not. In fact, it’s completely normal to feel this way; after all, you’re a human being and not a robot.

However, the difference between those who overworry and the rest is in the fact that the latter choose their battles carefully and this is exactly what you should do.

Of course, there are a lot of people who deserve for you to be bothered about them. Nevertheless, you can’t give the same amount of energy to your closest family members and your coworkers

Everyone has their own priorities, they know what is important and what is completely irrelevant. Your problem is that, in most cases, you can’t tell the difference.

You stress out over the fact that you ruined your favorite shirt or that you spent too much money last night or even over the nasty look your neighbor gave you this morning when you crossed paths.

I’m not saying that these exact examples have to necessarily apply to your life but you see where I’m going with this.

You lose your patience over irrelevant things that shouldn’t be anywhere near the top of your priority list.

Before you know it, you’re exhausted and you have no energy left to tackle what really matters. 

Take some time to think about what your priorities are and focus on them only.

Use the 5 by 5 rule

woman with hat standing outdoor

There is this interesting rule that can apply to anyone in your situation. It’s called ‘the 5 by 5 rule’.

Basically, it says the following: If something won’t be important in five years, don’t waste more than five minutes bothered about it. 

Don’t misunderstand me here. There will definitely be some things you’ll get over in less than five years that are worth your trouble now. However, you will still be affected by these things in half of a decade now. 

I’m not here to tell you not to worry about losing your loved one, getting a divorce or losing your job for more than five minutes.

Yes, it would be ideal not to be so upset about these things either since you can’t change them but this is not how we humans work.

Instead, I’m referring to the stuff which you really won’t remember five years from now.

I promise you that your crush not liking your selfie or your friends hanging out without you won’t even cross your mind after a while.

Therefore, these kinds of things don’t deserve you to be hurt about them now either. 

I know that at first glance, this is easier said than done. Nevertheless, if you try hard, you will make it a habit of yours to act this way; it just takes some practice. 

So, the next time you catch yourself being bothered about something or someone, ask yourself whether this rule applies to this inconvenience. If it won’t affect your life in five years, do your best to brush it off. 

If you have a problem doing this easily, just picture yourself half of a decade from now. There is no sign of this issue, is there?

Practice mindfulness

woman meditating while sitting on dock

Simply put, mindfulness is one of the best ways to clear your mind of all the stress and negative energy. Simultaneously, it is also a way to preserve your emotional and mental health. 

Basically, it is a state in which you’re fully present in a given moment. A state in which you are not overwhelmed by the world around you.

Mindfulness helps you increase awareness of who you are and what you need and feel. It helps you get a better perspective on things and gives you an insight into your own mind. 

Among other things, it is also a practical way to deal with overworrying and being overly bothered by small things. 

There are numerous types of mindfulness practices and the most popular one is definitely meditation.

If you haven’t tried meditation before, start with short sessions, five or ten-minutes’ long. For starters, you don’t even have to buy a meditation pillow or chair; instead, just sit back and relax.

woman with eyes closed sitting on rock

Find the position in which you feel most comfortable, close your eyes and breathe deeply. 

The point is to shift your focus away from negative thoughts that overwhelm you.

You can concentrate on the rhythm of your deep breaths, you can count to ten or put some relaxing music on. 

You may feel a tingling or you might become thirsty or hungry. This is nothing but your body’s reaction.

After so many hard times, you have got used to stressing out to the point where you can’t stand being still even for a few minutes.

When that happens, just ignore this sensation. On the other hand, when you do feel a certain emotion taking over you, recognize it, name it and let it pass right through you without giving it a second thought. 

You might think that this will serve you no good. However, trust me that after a while, you’ll see this practice as a reset and you’ll see significant progress.

Develop ‘big-picture thinking’

woman with scarf standing on balcony

“Big-picture thinkers realize there is a world out there besides their own, and they make an effort to get outside of themselves and see other people’s worlds through their eyes.

It’s hard to see the picture while inside the frame.” – John Maxwell

The problem with being too bothered about small things is that you have a habit of observing everything from your perspective only.

Don’t beat yourself up about that because sadly, this is how most of us function.

Well, this kind of thinking will bring you nowhere. In fact, in your situation, it will only make you worry even more.

For example, whatever happens in your life, you see it as a tragedy. Every bad day or bad mood is the end of the world for you.

Little things bother you, you dwell on the sadness and anger and you assume that you’ll keep on feeling like this forever.

woman in striped top looking at mountain

When you waste a whole day being upset about something, you think that this is it and you act like there is no tomorrow. 

Well, once you develop ‘big-picture thinking’, all of this will change. Once you stop focusing on the details and open your mind to different perspectives, you’ll change your point of view. 

What you need to do here is do your best to observe your life as objectively as possible.

Is the thing you’re bothered by really worthy of your worries? Are you jumping to conclusions? Is there a real solution to your problem? 

Can this be fixed and if so, what you can do to resolve it? What would someone on the outside tell you to do? Is this really such a big deal or is it a minor concern that doesn’t really impact your life that much?

Once you get answers to all of these questions, I assure you that you’ll also find the answer to the question: “How to not let things bother you?”

Utilize grounding exercises

woman with eyes closed sitting on ground

Every time you feel anxious about something, you’re actually trapped in your own mind. Every time you’re overly stressed and don’t see a way out, this is your brain playing tricks on you.

Well, since you’re the one in control of it and not the other way around, it’s time to find a coping mechanism and that is exactly what these grounding exercises are. 

For example, when you’re in a bad mood, you can create a so-called ‘happy thought’.

Whenever you feel like you’re about to be overly upset by something or when you’re just having a bad day, imagine yourself in a happy place, outside all of this mess. 

Visualize the moment when your problem will be resolved.

A good piece of professional advice is to picture yourself in your bedroom, where you feel the safest, in your favorite vacation spot or in your childhood home.

Another way to practice these exercises is to have a grounding thought.

blonde woman in black top sitting near water

For example, if you’re stressed out with your job environment, tell yourself that soon enough, you’ll find another job and that all of this will be long gone. 

If you’re out of money, tell yourself that a year from now, your financial situation will improve and you’ll get rid of all of your debts. 

It functions the same way for every possible cause of stress you might have.

Simply put, these grounding thoughts are a way for you to comfort yourself.

This doesn’t mean that you’re running away from your problem; you’re just calming your mind and calming yourself down. 

Other people develop grounding mantras. Every time you find yourself in an overwhelming situation, you can count backward or just force yourself to take a few deep breaths. 

Know that overthinking will ruin you

woman in black top standing near plant

Usually, the ones who overworry also overthink. You don’t let things take their own course and instead, you analyze everything to the core.

Before you take any step in your life, you think of all the possible outcomes, with a special focus on the negative consequences. In this scenario, it’s perfectly normal that you’re upset most of the time.

The same goes for your social relations. You dissect every move the other person makes and consequently, you end up finding something to be bothered about. 

For example, when your best friend or a family member doesn’t return a phone call, you automatically assume that they don’t care for you enough or that they want you out of their life without any explanation.

Who wouldn’t be bothered about that?

This is especially true when it comes to your romantic relationships. Whatever your partner does, you conclude that they don’t love you enough and that they’re planning to break up with you.

woman sitting near window looking outside

Naturally, you continue to worry about this possibility. 

Well, let me tell you that all of your overthinking is ruining you and besides, it is completely in vain.

I hate to break it to you but bad things will keep on happening to you, whether you like it or not.

If they are meant to be, they will be and you overanalyzing and overworrying won’t prevent anything. 

Instead of enjoying the present moment and living every day like it’s your last, you spend most of the time caged in your own mind.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m not claiming that you should let your mind completely loose and that you shouldn’t think anything through. However, please don’t exaggerate. 

If you continue living like this, your overthinking will ruin you. It will help you create different scenarios in your head and you’ll end up paranoid. 

Don’t be a control freak

two women talking while sitting at table

Actually, the number one cause of one’s overthinking which usually leads to worrying or being bothered is your desire to control everything and everyone around you.

Well, I hate to be the one to burst your bubble but here is the truth: As much as you try, you will not succeed in doing this. 

The only person you can control is yourself. You have the ability to control your own emotions and your reaction to the world around you.

Therefore, when someone insults you, you can’t change their opinion of you. You can’t give them manners or force them to be different; that is up to them.

On the other hand, what you can control is your reaction to all of this. It’s your choice whether you’ll be bothered or upset or you’ll just brush it off. 

Please, accept this and stop fighting windmills because you can’t win. You can’t take command over every situation, nor should you try doing so.

Besides, remember that things will always turn out the way they’re meant to be. 

Know that complaining never makes things better

two smiling women sitting on swing in park

Whenever you’re bothered or upset by something, your mind’s natural reaction is to talk about it. 

You will go around complaining about your problems to anyone you encounter, thinking that this approach will make your situation better. However, you’ll only achieve the opposite.

No, I’m not saying that you should keep everything bottled up and pretend that things are in perfect order, while your life is falling apart.

In fact, you should definitely ask your closest ones for their opinions or even seek professional advice. 

However, going on and on about the same events and people, no matter how much time has passed, will bring you no good. Instead, complaining will only reopen your wounds.

Every time you talk about something or someone who hurt you, you’re only reminding yourself of the pain you went through.

You’re not allowing your scars to heal and you’re reliving the same situation all over again. 

woman with scarf standing near tree

This way, you remain upset about this issue. You are not allowing your mind to move on and you’re the one preventing yourself from getting over your traumas. 

In fact, you are magnifying your problem that would probably have gone away by now. You’re deepening it and end up making a big deal about every little thing that has happened to you. 

Trust me; complaining will never make things better. Therefore, what you need to try hard to do is find a balance between whining and venting.

For example, when you deal with some inconvenience, talk about it to someone you trust or go through the entire situation with yourself.

Once you find some conclusion, stop analyzing it any further and leave it at that. 

You can also try journaling. Write down everything that’s bothering you and find a pattern instead of blabbing about it without any closure. 

Embrace positivity

smiling woman standing near purple flowers

You might already realize that perspective is everything. Whenever something happens, it’s up to you to choose the angle from which you’ll observe it.

Let’s look at a hypothetical situation in which you’re going through a tough break-up. Naturally, you’ll be upset about losing someone you loved so much. However, you have a choice to make. 

You can lament your sad destiny and observe this as the worst thing that has ever happened to you.

You might think that you’ll never love someone again and that you’ll die alone. You might assume that you’ll be lost without this person by your side and even start seeing yourself as not meant to be loved. 

On the other hand, you can see all of this as your chance for something new and better. You can focus on the lessons your failed relationship has taught you.

woman sitting on bench looking at sea

You can choose to be positive about it. You have the choice of looking forward to your bright future and you can consider yourself lucky about the fact that you got rid of your toxic ex.

I’m sure you see where I’m going with this. This is the same situation, observed from two completely different points of view.

The first one is pessimistic and the second is optimistic and it’s up to you which one you will pick.

Will you focus on the things that are bothering you or will you concentrate on everything that is going great in your life?

Will you focus on your losses or will you embrace positivity and look at everything you have and will gain?

Will you think of yourself as miserable and unhappy every time something you don’t like happens? Or will you count your blessings and be thankful for each one of them? The choice is only yours. 

Understand that a lack of boundaries invites a lack of respect

woman with black hair sitting near window

Even though in most cases, your dissatisfaction comes from within and from your reactions to the world around you, there are also times when you have no other choice but to be upset and bothered. 

There are times when you can’t seem to figure out how to not let things bother you because you’re being treated in a way nobody in this world could handle without feeling frustrated or distressed. 

In that case, you’re probably surrounded by the wrong people or by people who deal with you wrongly. 

The key here is to set healthy boundaries. Be clear about what type of behavior you’re okay with and what are the things you won’t put up with.

You see, all of us have different levels of tolerance. While a certain comment or a behavior pattern might be funny to your friend or coworker, you might find it insulting. 

That is why it’s crucial to have enough self-confidence to be verbal about what you find acceptable and what is bothering you.

Engage in some introspection and make an effort to understand what you find comfortable and what upsets you.

Once you do that, make sure everyone around you is aware of your boundaries.

Have enough self-esteem to not be scared of letting them know every time they hurt you or do something you don’t like. 

Don’t worry; this doesn’t make you weak. Actually, it is a sign that you’re strong enough to stand up for yourself and take care of your mental health. 

Don’t let your loyalty become slavery

woman in pink shirt looking through window

You have strong empathy skills that make you an amazing person.

However, just because you have the ability to sympathize with others, it doesn’t mean that you should take on the burden of their problems onto your shoulders. 

Nevertheless, this is exactly what’s been going on lately. You’re concerned about everyone else’s hard times and they bother you to the point that you’re constantly stressed out. 

You’re a loyal friend, there is no doubt about that. However, that doesn’t mean that you’re not allowed to put your own well-being and emotions in first place. 

Helping someone in trouble is great. Nevertheless, once it becomes too much for you to handle, it’s perfectly okay to walk away in order to preserve your own sanity. 

I’m not saying that you should be selfish but you can’t allow everyone else’s concerns to become yours as well. You can’t keep on wasting all of your time and energy on the people around you. 

It’s not okay for you to feel constantly drained and exhausted about someone else’s issues. 

As much as you want to help out a good friend, a coworker or a family member, you don’t have a magic wand that will chase away all of their troubles. 

Remember, you’re under no obligation to save others. You’re not responsible for finding solutions for each one of their problems. 

Know that forgiveness is the key

two persons holding hands indoor

It’s perfectly normal to be upset and hurt when someone you care for does you harm. However, you shouldn’t be feeling like this forever. 

Therefore, the trick to getting rid of these negative emotions is forgiveness. You see, as long as you hold a grudge, you will be bothered by the way someone treated you. 

You don’t have to forgive those who have done you wrong for their sake. In fact, you don’t have to welcome them back into your life either.

However, it would be nice for your own sake to get rid of this resentment that’s been eating you alive. Trust me; it’s the only way to liberate yourself and to clear your energy.

Nevertheless, the most important thing here is to learn to forgive yourself. Be gentle on the person you used to be.

Forgive yourself for all of your wrong choices and for all the bad people you let into your life. Forgive yourself for all the bad moves you made in the past and remember that we all make mistakes. 

Only once you do that will you stop being upset about the things you can’t change. Your past traumas will stop haunting you and you’ll become much happier and more relaxed. 

Retake the power over your life

smiling woman in gray coat crossing the street

Finally, it’s time to stop being bothered about what others might think or say about you. You’re a grown-up and you can’t allow someone’s nasty comment or insult to ruin your whole day. 

Remember, you depend on nobody but yourself. Whatever someone tells you, it shouldn’t affect you in any way whatsoever. 

None of these people have walked a mile in your shoes. They had no impact on your life so they shouldn’t affect your inner state either.

Your life is in your hands and you’re the only one who can make yourself happy. You have the power over your thoughts and feelings so don’t let others dictate them. 

Instead of letting things bother you, work on your self-esteem. Why not start with a 30-day self-love challenge? Remember your self-worth and don’t allow anyone’s comments to impact you. 

To sum up…

woman looking at sea while sitting on rock

Figuring out how to not let things bother you is a long and difficult process. However, it can be done.

I won’t lie to you; it’s unlikely that you’ll succeed on your first try. Nevertheless, practice makes perfect and before you know it, you’ll have saved yourself a lot of trouble. 

Once you achieve the peace of mind in which you’re completely unaffected by other people’s words and actions, you’ll see that all of this effort was worth it. Just be persistent and don’t give up.

How To Not Let Things Bother You (15 Proven Ways)