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11 Qualities That Women Should Crave Other Than Beauty

11 Qualities That Women Should Crave Other Than Beauty

From a young age, girls are surrounded by images and words that tell them they should focus on their physical beauty.

According to the Center for Media Literacy, we are exposed to over 2000 ads a day. Many of these are for products encouraging us to have longer eyelashes, poutier lips, less leg hair, bigger boobs and blonder hair. When you add this to the pressure of social media and wanting to “fit in”, it’s easy to see how girls grow up putting such an emphasis on physical beauty.

While there is nothing wrong with wanting to look and feel good, there are many other qualities that have much more permanent and lasting effects on our lives.

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These are the traits we want to demonstrate for the little girls watching us and embrace for our own happiness.

Here are 11 qualities that women should crave other than beauty:

1. You Are Brave and Courageous

There are few truly brave and courageous people in this world. Stepping out of your comfort zone and facing your fears in order to help a friend, chase a dream or support your family takes guts. You will achieve more in life when you are willing to be brave.

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2. You Are Confident

When you are confident, you don’t need someone to call you “beautiful” to feel beautiful. You know your individuality is special and that shines through in your posture, words and actions. When you are confident, other people will want what you have.

3. You Show Kindness To Everyone

People want to feel that someone cares about them. When you smile at your waiter, give up your seat on the subway, remember a friend’s birthday or bring cookies to your neighbor who lives alone, you are making someone else feel important. We all need a little more of that in our lives.

4. You Are Physically Strong

If you’ve ever done a push-up, run a marathon, been through a Pilates class or pushed that double stroller up a hill, you know the power you feel from your own strength. Showing your kids and peers that you prioritize your health is much more awe-inspiring than putting on the right eye shadow in the morning.

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5. You Are Witty In Conversations

When you are at a party, would you rather hang out with the guy who has nothing to say or the guy who keeps you laughing and on your toes with interesting conversation and one-liners? Being witty means you are both smart and funny, two characteristics shown in surveys to be more important than physical beauty.

6. You Love Encouraging Others

Maya Angelou said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” When you give others encouragement, you will become someone they enjoy turning to and feel supported by. Being a true friend and better person involves encouraging others.

7. You Are A Reliable Friend and Partner

When you are reliable, you do what you say you are doing to do when you say you are going to do it. You don’t change who you are at the drop of a hat. The biggest difference between close friends and acquaintances is their reliability. When you are reliable, people know they better step up their game because you are going to get things done. Showing up for your friends and loved ones means they will show up for you.

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8. You Are Honest

When you live and speak an authentic life, you are showing others you have nothing to hide or apologize for. You demonstrate that you are proud of yourself and the life you are living. Being honest in all of your relationships shows you respect both yourself and the people in your life.

9. You Know How To Be Resourceful

Resourcefulness is defined as the ability and creativity to cope with difficulties or unforeseen situations in your life. When you are driving down a deserted road and run out of gas, you will definitely want to be with a resourceful person. When you are resourceful, you get things done with what you have in front of you.

10. You Are Calm In Stressful Situations

Researchers at Caliper Talent Management recently wanted to find out if there are certain personality traits that are associated with women’s success in the workplace. They found that the more a woman is tolerant of the stress around her, the better she performs. When you are wiling to let go of control, stay calm and just go with the flow, you will be a better leader at work and in your families.

11. You Are Giving

You can be giving of your time, your thoughts, your money, your skills or your words. When you give without asking for anything in return, you show people you don’t need something from them to make the relationship valuable. You give simply because you want to.

Featured photo credit: Jakob Montrasio via imcreator.com

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

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