Sunday, 12 June 2022
What makes you afraid? Is it losing someone you love? Or is it having to see your dentist? Maybe you fear thunderstorms or heights or elevators.
Whatever it is, fear is normal. It’s how our body warns us of dangerous situations and that we should be careful.
Yet, sometimes, our fears can become so great that they hold us back from living up to our full potential. They fill us with dread and uncertainty that we soon become constantly stressed and anxious over the smallest things.
Although surprisingly, fear, in its positive form, can actually be good for us. It can inspire innovative ideas and motivate us to reach new heights.
So, we’re here today to help you make fear your friend. Follow the six tips below, and you’ll know how to turn what was once your foe into an ally.
Let’s get started.
Identify the Source
This is probably the hardest step, but it’s absolutely worth it. But first, you need to come to terms with the source of your fear in order to overcome it.
Being aware of the root cause will be difficult in the beginning, but it’ll make you stronger. You’ll no longer live in the shadow of that big, insurmountable fear.
You’ve come face-to-face with your fear. Now, it’s time to embrace it.
But before you do that, you have to actually admit that such-and-such scares you. There are several ways to do this. First, you can either say it aloud, preferably to someone else in a natural setting.
You can also write it down in a journal or diary. The point is to get it out of your head and into real life. That’s when your fear loses its control over you.
It also feels better to get it off your chest and share it with the world. You’ll be surprised to know just how many people are just as afraid as you are.
Fear makes us panic, and panic makes us do stupid things. In fact, studies show that when we panic, our prefrontal cortex shuts down. This is the region of our brain responsible for rational thinking.
So, case in point, learn how to think rationally despite your worries and panic. Make fear your friend, and you’ll be able to go a lot farther in life.
People deal with fear, stress, and anxiety in different ways. Some people like to be challenged and are great under pressure. Others find it better to work at their own pace without any tight deadlines looming overhead.
Whichever way you prefer, the important thing is not to let fear get the better of you. For example, say you’re afraid to speak in public. But then a colleague suddenly got sick and asked you to take over the presentation you’ve been preparing for weeks.
In this scenario, you have to pick whether you’ll let your fear overpower you or whether you’ll rise to the challenge.
The latter won’t be easy, but it’ll definitely be worth it in the long run. Be objective and tell yourself that others have held presentations before and have lived to tell about it. So, what’s the big deal?
Remember, your mind tends to blow things out of proportion. So, find a way to deal with the stress and take stock. It’s the only way you’ll be able to harness your fear and get the job done.
No one ever failed by having a strong support system. Surround yourself with people who encourage you to do better. These are the people who listen to you when you’re venting about your fears and anxiety, and they still choose to love you unconditionally.
A lot of research has been carried out on the benefits of having a support system. It empowers you with good coping skills while boosting your self-esteem and overall well-being.
Moreover, a sound support system can lower stress, anxiety, and depression rates.
Whenever you’re afraid, you’ll tend to focus on negative thoughts and emotions. But then, they fester in your mind and transform into this big, ugly thing that you can no longer control.
Why not try some positivity for a change? Remember, the mind is quite powerful; it just needs a small push in the right direction.
By thinking positively, you can overcome your fears and actually live to tell the tale! All you have to do is believe it, and everything else will fall into place.
You probably know how important networking is for maximizing your career. But it’s not always enjoyable. You can make networking a whole lot less painful by being prepared and by having your personal elevator pitch rehearsed and ready to go.
Here are eight tips to help you polish your pitch for your next networking event.
1. Keep it punchy
A good elevator pitch should be no more than 45 seconds (yes, the average length of an elevator ride). It should be interesting, memorable, and brief, and you should feel comfortable delivering it. It should sound natural and not like an elevator pitch!
2. Keep it focused
You can tailor your elevator pitch to the event. Are you there representing your organization or there to get your next sale or your next job? Keep your two- or three-line pitch focused on that objective. If the person you’re talking to is from the same sector or went to your college, include that to get their attention. If you have an existing connection, you can start to build the relationship there.
3. Mention your career experience or goals
Be clear about your experience or your business goals. Tell them you’ve worked in 3D printing or horse-breaking for however many years, or that you’re an entrepreneur or a human right advocate. Mention any specializations without falling into jargon and make sure to steer away from too much detail.
4. Mention your qualifications
If you have a diploma of jurisprudence or an MBA, mention them. If you’ve just graduated, you can specify your college major. You might want to include any significant achievements, leadership skills, or standout strengths.
5. Highlight what makes you unique
Think of what makes you stand out. Do you speak other languages? Have you worked or volunteered overseas? What unique qualities or experiences make you memorable?
6. Include a question
Your elevator pitch isn’t a party piece that just finishes, and that’s it. It’s an invitation to continue the conversation. You should consider including an open-ended question, perhaps asking about the other person’s company or an opportunity to speak again.
7. Slow down!
In your eagerness to get your elevator pitch across, it’s easy to speak too fast or even appear desperate to impress. Remember to breathe, slow down, and smile! Make eye contact and allow the other person to respond.
Above all, once you’ve written your elevator pitch, you should rehearse and refine until it’s second nature. Practice repeatedly with your partners, a friend, or even your dog. Practice in front of the mirror and observe your expression and body language. What image are you projecting? You want to look calm, confident and engaging.
Making a great first impression isn’t always easy, but it’s well worth attempting as much as you possibly can. To help you make it happen more often, here are three simple rules you should always follow. While they are not the only great advice on making a good first impression, they are the things that will have the biggest impact – whether you get them right or wrong. I suggest you get them right :)
Rule #1 – Dress To Impress
Pay attention to what you’re wearing. This may seem very superficial, but that’s what first impressions are all about. They are a first, quick judgment based on things like appearance. Overdress just a little if it’s an important first meeting like going to a job interview or meeting the future in-laws for the first time.
At the very least make sure that what you’re wearing is neat and flattering. Don’t go crazy and when in doubt go for something somewhat conservative. You can always let your personality shine after you’ve made that great first impression.
Rule #2 – Be On Time
Another very important thing to remember is to always be on time. It makes you look prepared and reliable. But there’s another important reason for this. The world is made up of two types of people. The first group is a stickler for time. Being late is one of their biggest pet peeves. The other group has a more looseinterpretation of being on time and doesn’t mind waiting for someone for a few minutes, or being late themselves.
The problem is that you never know what camp the person you’re about to meet will fall into ahead of time. So be prepared and make sure you get there on time or even a little early. It’ll look good no matter how the person you’re meeting will feel about time and it will definitely keep you from making a bad impression with a time stickler.
Rule #3 – Think Before You Speak
Last but not least, think before you speak. It’s easy to get nervous and just prattle on about anything and everything. It makes you look nervous and silly. Even worse, if you don’t think before you talk it’s very easy to put your foot in your mouth. Trust me, I’ve done it plenty of times. It’s not a good feeling and definitely a quick and easy way to ruin that first impression.
Do you ever feel disconnected? Maybe you're so preoccupied with everything in your daily existence that you hardly even have time to realize what's going on around you.
Perhaps the only moment you observe nature is when the weather meddles with your to-do list. Perhaps you can't recall the last time you were inclined to simply inhale and sit outdoors.
There is indeed a great deal of proof that spending time in nature has a considerable beneficial influence on both mental and physical health. Strolling in a green space has been demonstrated to help with mental health issues such as depression and ADHD.
According to VeryWellMind, “On days when you’re struggling with negative thoughts about your body, many different coping mechanisms can help. But new research suggests you should get outside and spend time in nature to soothe those feelings. Negative body image is a risk factor for behaviors like disordered eating, which can have disastrous consequences for one’s body, mind, and relationships. Nowadays, it can be harder to avoid negative body thoughts when navigating social media."
Time spent in nature is a wonderful way to focus oneself in addition to treating particular mental health challenges and enhancing mental and physical wellbeing.
For some of us, it is the start of a meditation practice or a heightened spiritual understanding of how we are all related. For others, it is simply a fantastic method to relieve tension.
Here are a few excellent techniques to get started bonding with the natural world around you, no matter where you want your time outside to take you.
1. Slow down to the speed of nature
Walking slowly causes you to breathe more slowly, making you feel instantaneously more relaxed. Slow down and start seeing the environment around you. It may be a speck of lichen in a crack in the sidewalk or a tree you've never spotted before. Look around you carefully and deliberately to see what you discover as you sink into this more natural rhythm of being.
2. Experiment with barefoot breathing
We people are the only animals that put a shoe between our feet and the Spirit of the Earth. The act of taking off your shoes and standing barefoot on the ground satisfies a primitive urge for connectivity.
Find a peaceful spot outside—a park nook, a quiet spot in your garden, or your favorite wild location. Shut your eyes and take 100 deep, soft breaths while feeling the sunlight on your face, the breeze on your body, and the warm heart of the ground via the soles of your feet.
3. Dine outside
Take your lunch or a book outside to enjoy on a park seat or picnic blanket. While you dine or read, take in the fresh air and natural sunlight (or both).
4. Give a tree a hug
Which words come to mind when you think about trees? Sturdy? High? Statuesque? Tenacious? Primitive? The world's oldest trees have been alive for thousands of years, and we rely on them to create the oxygen we need to live.
Although the term "tree-hugger" is sometimes used ironically, hugging a tree is an easy method to boost your energy levels by mopping up all that energy and oxygen-rich deliciousness! Close your eyes and press your cheek on the trunk. Feel the bark on your flesh as you spread your arms to embrace the tree.
Also Visit a greenhouse or a flower shop. Soak in the aroma of green vegetation and a plethora of flowers. Step into a flower shop's refrigerated department, which is brimming with freshly cut bouquets.
Give heed to the tiny weeds and wildflowers that sprout up in sidewalk cracks. Consider the persistence and perseverance of that small creature to take root and flourish in such a challenging environment whenever you observe this. Take a moment to send your best wishes and consider how you could connect to that type of strength.
One of the keys to getting you to take action and keep you going each day is motivation. You will have times when you feel like you have no drive to do anything at all, no matter who you are. Even the most productive and accomplished people will have periods of low motivation.
The way they cope with this "down" period, on the other hand, keeps them going ahead and allows them to achieve great things. If you find yourself stating, "I don't have any motivation," you'll delay on tasks that need to be completed. You will eventually put things off and abandon your assignment or activity.
Researchers have identified several straightforward techniques to get you more engaged and motivated at work, allowing you to work smarter rather than harder. Some of these motivational suggestions take a few seconds to implement.
Others need you to get up and move about for a few minutes. They're all based on the findings of recent scientific investigations. For some basic motivational suggestions and exercises, check below.
Declare To Yourself That You Are Looking To Begin Over
Have you ever wondered why everyone makes promises on January 1? It is, after all, a new year. It is, however, an arbitrary moment in most people's life. Although January 1 is an excellent day for making new commitments, it isn't significantly better than July 28. Here's the thing: you can restart your life at any time.
You will experience a rush of energy as a result of doing so. According to a study by Wharton School of Business, "intertemporal markers" encourage us in two ways: by making people disconnect from past failures and by promoting a big-picture view of life. These factors make us more motivated to sequester away our losses and get things done."
Grab Some Chocolate – Or Another Dopamine-Stimulating Treat
Another sensible and quick way to boost your motivation is to indulge in some chocolate. Chocolate's benefits on the brain are well-studied, not to mention it's tasty and readily available. It stimulates the secretion of dopamine, which raises your heart rate and boosts your motivation.
It also has a modest antidepressant effect since the stimulants encourage your brain to promote happy feelings.
Remember Why You Needed To Be Motivated In The First Place
According to LifeHack, "If you feel a lack of motivation when you want to type an article, try to think about why you want to do it in the first place. The reasons you do something are the driving force behind everything you do. It is only when your reason is strong and emotional enough that you will do whatever it takes to accomplish the task."
So, what motivates you to accomplish what you do? Do you understand why you desire to attain your objectives? Make sure your justifications are compelling and passionate. When you lack motivation, consider why you want to accomplish it.
There comes a time when the pressure is on. It would be best if you made a decision, but you're afraid to act. There's not a lot of time to figure out the next steps, and you're stalling out because you're suddenly unsure. You're not sure you even can make the right decision, much less act on it. What do you do?
The problem isn’t so much about what needs to be decided. Instead, when this happens, you need to figure out how to find the confidence to act. But where can you gain unwavering self-belief fast?
Give Yourself a Pep Talk
Hey, you've been here before. You've had doubts, made decisions, and in the end, things turned out just fine. Remind yourself of a little previous history where you know you did well. Now use a little logic: if you've done it before, it's clear you can do it again.
Choose Your Companions
Do you have a support system? If those around you are more likely to criticize than cheer you on, walk away. You don’t need others running you down right now. Instead, seek out support from someone you know who believes in you and will be encouraging. Give them bonus points if you ask them to help you remember all the good stuff you've done in the past, and they come through for you. Sometimes we need to hear it from someone else.
See Yourself Succeed
Why not try a quick visualization of the outcome? By picturing your success, you’ll find it easier to make the decisions to set yourself in motion and will feel better about the potential outcome.
Let Go of the Dreck
Sometimes you need to get all those thoughts and emotions out of the way so you can do what you need to. Quickly grab a sheet of paper or open a file on the computer where you can type. Now write down everything you’re feeling right now, especially focusing on worries and fears.
Try to explore why you’re feeling this way. Be honest and raw, not holding anything back. When finished, tear up the paper or delete the file to let it go. Once you’ve processed the emotions, you can feel free to settle down to what needs doing. This is the most time-consuming idea on this list, but it’s so worthwhile. If you have the time, go for it!
Finally, it’s so easy to start dithering, especially when you’re feeling a time crunch. Don’t fall into procrastination or stall out entirely. Instead, realize there comes a time when you need to take the plunge. Trust your instincts and jump right in.
You’ve learned some tricks on how to manage your time, whether you’ve learned from a boss, a friend, or on your own. Yet putting those tricks into action is a different story. You have to learn how to make a schedule for yourself, which sounds about as daunting as being your own boss. Take out your self-starter hat and get ready to learn how to manage your time all on your own with these six hacks!
1. Leave Wiggle Room Between your Time Blocks
Friends, meet buffer-time. No one should have a fully stacked calendar with no time in between for a break. Block out buffer-time on your calendar in between meetings and tasks. Your future self will thank you when your days are more productive, and the hours are less exhausting.
2. Organize Yourself
This is a big life change for some people because organization habits don’t always come easily. At first, it may feel like you are spending extra time trying to stay organized, but the payoff is worth it. Here’s a staggering statistic: On average, Americans waste about 2.5 days a year looking for misplaced objects. Don’t be part of that statistic! Find a place for your belongings and always put them back where they belong. This goes for computer files too! Create a simple filing system and save new documents to the correct location.
3. Make Use of the 80-20 Rule
Have you ever heard of the Pareto Principle? Otherwise known as the 80-20 rule, this principle says that you can get 80% of the work done in 20% of the time. Similarly, 80% of the results come from 20% of the actions. It can be applied to many things in life, so it’s a great concept to apply to your usage of time. Get in the habit of noticing what tasks get the most results. Spend more time on those actions and cut out some of the responsibilities that take up time but don’t produce the outcomes you are looking for.
4. Stop Waiting
Every once and a while, you’ll inevitably have to wait for something: at the grocery store, in the doctor’s office, in traffic. Instead of actually waiting, or deferring to your phone for entertainment, do something productive with your time. Listen to a podcast you’ve been dying to try out, read a book on an interesting topic, or write in your journal. Turn waiting time into productive time.
5. Organize Your Tasks in Blocks
Batch all your similar tasks together. For example, don’t check your email every time someone pings you. If it’s urgent, go right ahead, but otherwise, set a time block every two hours or so to plow through all your emails at one time. This keeps you focused, which is a more efficient way to work.
6. Try to Do Less
This may sound like a slacker approach, but it’s not. Believe it or not – we take on way more than we need to, meaning we take on more than is beneficial to our work. If you find yourself planning parties, chatting with your coworkers, and dabbling in another department’s workload, you may have spread yourself to thin. By doing that, you’re not helping yourself or your peers. In the end, you could wind up letting down people because you overpromise and under-deliver.