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9 Daily Practices Of Women Who Love Their Bodies

9 Daily Practices Of Women Who Love Their Bodies
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Many women tend to criticize any imperfection on their bodies, worrying more about what others think of their looks than how they feel about themselves (inside and out). Constantly pointing out flaws leaves women feeling worse and often deflated. Women who love their bodies practice at least one of these suggestions below:

1. They are open.

Instead of avoiding pool parties, social events, or random adventures; women who love their bodies say “yes!” They do not feel the need to hide; they are open. They are confident in their skin, so they’ll find something that fits for the occasion and go for it.

One way to move forward is to think to yourself, Do I avoid events due to my body? This can help you become aware if you’re holding yourself back. You are allowed to enjoy life and have fun; your body will love you more (and in turn, you’ll love it more). Giving yourself permission to be out with friends and family increases your happiness and confidence as well, getting you out of the cycle of avoiding future awesome activities.

The next time you have the urge to say “no!” to a girl’s trip, remind yourself that your body wants to have fun, and in order to show it love you must go enjoy life!

2. They buy and wear clothes that fit.

Women often keep clothes that are too small thinking they’ll wear them again (and considering the rest of their clothes “fat” clothes until they do fit). This is truly setting yourself up to feel terrible about your body (instead of loving it up!) every time you open your closet.

One simple way to start loving your body more is to get rid of one or two of the clothing items that have not fit for a while. If you’re feeling up to it, go out and replace those clothes with something that fits you in the body you’re in right now.

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By doing this, you’re instantly relieving yourself of the stress of “having to be a certain size” and helps you get rid of thoughts that keep you trapped in thinking your current body isn’t good enough.

Get rid of some clothes that haven’t fit for a while and you will instantly feel a weight lifted from your shoulders. This shows your body that it is deserving of clothes that make you feel good right now, in this moment.

3. They give other women genuine compliments.

Women often find themselves giving compliments that are either:

  1. Leading the receiver of the compliment into returning it. For example, you see a friend at the mall and say, “Oh my goodness I love that shirt! I could never pull it off.” Then that friend says, “Oh my gosh, yes you could! You’d look amazing in it – better than I do!”
  2. Filled with jealousy. For example, “You would be able to pull that dress off!”

Women who love their bodies give ones that they mean and aren’t expecting anything in return.

One way to work on this is to think about how you want to feel when people talk to you (Appreciated? Respected? Loved? Cared for?), and then try giving a compliment that will result in one of those feelings for the receiver. The amazing thing about practicing that is you will instantly feel as if you’ve received a compliment. It’s a reciprocal process.

4. They ask themselves how they want to feel.

Most women have the urge to tell themselves they should do this, eat that, finish that, or buy that. Women who love their bodies naturally ask how certain things are going to make them feel (without using the word should). They might ask:

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  • Will it be worth doing if they end up feeling terrible?
  • Will I feel great after this workout?
  • Does this sound good to me right now?
  • What am I craving?
  • What do I need right now?

If you hear yourself saying the word “should,” try to ask yourself how you want to feel. This helps you to honor your body by giving it what it needs, and showing it love and respect.

5. They redirect body bashing.

Being with a group of women, it is almost expected to hear someone say, “I’m feeling so fat! Look at me you guys!” Often times, others will join in echoing the same feeling.

What women who love their bodies do differently is listen to the comment, and then redirect it with a positive. They know it’s not necessary to continue that course of conversation because it only leads to people feeling worse about themselves.

Next time you’re with a group of women and you hear a body bashing comment resist the urge to join in. Redirect the conversation by asking a random question, or (if that seems uncomfortable for you) simply disengage with that portion of the conversation by sitting back. Doing that is better than egging it on.

During this moment you will ultimately feel incredible. You’re starting to set a positive example, respecting your body, and letting your friends know where you stand on this topic.

Even though it’s easy to join right in with others who are talking poorly about themselves, by getting rid of that negativity your body will thank you.

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6. They fuel their body with healthy food while allowing themselves to eat treats without guilt.

Magazines, TV, and social media make it seem like in order to love your body, you must be on an extreme diet. Limiting yourself from chocolate chip cookies and pizza stresses your body out, can often leave you with food issues, or lead you to overeat on those foods. Women who honor their bodies know, and practice, the importance of moderation. They eat by listening to their bodies, enjoying healthy foods, and indulging so they never feel deprived.

If you are struggling with an extreme diet, check in with yourself by asking the following questions:

  • Is this diet realistic and maintainable?
  • Do I stress about foods?
  • Can I enjoy treats I love in moderation?

Become aware of how your relationship to food is currently and start to incorporate some of the foods you love throughout your week (instead of restricting them). When you give yourself more freedom around food, your body thanks you. Too much deprivation and your body will want to rebel against you.

7. They express gratitude to their bodies.

Gross, fat, ugly, short, too skinny, not enough muscle, small, and large are all, sadly, terms that women use to describe their bodies. Women who love their bodies continually express gratitude for what their bodies are capable of. They thank their bodies for helping them be active, hold their kids, work, and many other reasons.

In order to change your mindset with your body (to start loving it more), give your body some love. Come up with one or two reasons you’re thankful for your body and repeat that in your head often. As always, if you show your body love; it will love you back.

8. They value sleep.

Women know the importance of sleep, but often put it on the backburner thinking other things “must get done.” Women who love their bodies value sleep because of the benefits their bodies receive from it. They consistently make sleep priority so they can wake up with energy each day.

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How do you make sleep a priority? Take baby steps by going to bed 20 minutes earlier each day! Overtime this adds up, and when you’re feeling ready go to bed even earlier.

When your body is well-rested it can function at it’s highest potential.It’s becomes easier to make healthier decisions and get important tasks completed throughout the day while being able to be alert and loving with those around you. Giving your body the sleep it needs sends a signal to your brain that your body is deserving and being honored.

9. They takes break from technology.

Have you ever found yourself scrolling through social media for 20 minutes only to feel awful about yourself? Let’s be real, it’s hard to unplug. Constantly looking at Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and so on . . .leads to comparison. Thoughts like:

  • I’m not good enough.
  • Why isn’t my body like hers?
  • Their life looks so perfect.
  • I wish I was fit like her!

And those thoughts push us further from genuinely loving our bodies. Women who love their bodies effortlessly set their phones aside at least once a day. They do this because they cherish time to be still with themselves without feeling bogged down by other people’s lives.

Honor your body by setting your phone down for a solid 30 minutes per day. This can be hard at first, but you will reap the benefits (and may find yourself leaving your phone more and more). You’ll start to feel free, listen to your body more, and be present in the moments that matter.

Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com

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Last Updated on July 20, 2021

How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)

How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)
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You’re standing behind the curtain, just about to make your way on stage to face the many faces half-shrouded in darkness in front of you. As you move towards the spotlight, your body starts to feel heavier with each step. A familiar thump echoes throughout your body – your heartbeat has gone off the charts.

Don’t worry, you’re not the only one with glossophobia(also known as speech anxiety or the fear of speaking to large crowds). Sometimes, the anxiety happens long before you even stand on stage.

Your body’s defence mechanism responds by causing a part of your brain to release adrenaline into your blood – the same chemical that gets released as if you were being chased by a lion.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you overcome your fear of public speaking:

1. Prepare yourself mentally and physically

According to experts, we’re built to display anxiety and to recognize it in others. If your body and mind are anxious, your audience will notice. Hence, it’s important to prepare yourself before the big show so that you arrive on stage confident, collected and ready.

“Your outside world is a reflection of your inside world. What goes on in the inside, shows on the outside.” – Bob Proctor

Exercising lightly before a presentation helps get your blood circulating and sends oxygen to the brain. Mental exercises, on the other hand, can help calm the mind and nerves. Here are some useful ways to calm your racing heart when you start to feel the butterflies in your stomach:

Warming up

If you’re nervous, chances are your body will feel the same way. Your body gets tense, your muscles feel tight or you’re breaking in cold sweat. The audience will notice you are nervous.

If you observe that this is exactly what is happening to you minutes before a speech, do a couple of stretches to loosen and relax your body. It’s better to warm up before every speech as it helps to increase the functional potential of the body as a whole. Not only that, it increases muscle efficiency, improves reaction time and your movements.

Here are some exercises to loosen up your body before show time:

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  1. Neck and shoulder rolls – This helps relieve upper body muscle tension and pressure as the rolls focus on rotating the head and shoulders, loosening the muscle. Stress and anxiety can make us rigid within this area which can make you feel agitated, especially when standing.
  2. Arm stretches – We often use this part of our muscles during a speech or presentation through our hand gestures and movements. Stretching these muscles can reduce arm fatigue, loosen you up and improve your body language range.
  3. Waist twists – Place your hands on your hips and rotate your waist in a circular motion. This exercise focuses on loosening the abdominal and lower back regions which is essential as it can cause discomfort and pain, further amplifying any anxieties you may experience.

Stay hydrated

Ever felt parched seconds before speaking? And then coming up on stage sounding raspy and scratchy in front of the audience? This happens because the adrenaline from stage fright causes your mouth to feel dried out.

To prevent all that, it’s essential we stay adequately hydrated before a speech. A sip of water will do the trick. However, do drink in moderation so that you won’t need to go to the bathroom constantly.

Try to avoid sugary beverages and caffeine, since it’s a diuretic – meaning you’ll feel thirstier. It will also amplify your anxiety which prevents you from speaking smoothly.

Meditate

Meditation is well-known as a powerful tool to calm the mind. ABC’s Dan Harris, co-anchor of Nightline and Good Morning America weekend and author of the book titled10% Happier , recommends that meditation can help individuals to feel significantly calmer, faster.

Meditation is like a workout for your mind. It gives you the strength and focus to filter out the negativity and distractions with words of encouragement, confidence and strength.

Mindfulness meditation, in particular, is a popular method to calm yourself before going up on the big stage. The practice involves sitting comfortably, focusing on your breathing and then bringing your mind’s attention to the present without drifting into concerns about the past or future – which likely includes floundering on stage.

Here’s a nice example of guided meditation before public speaking:

2. Focus on your goal

One thing people with a fear of public speaking have in common is focusing too much on themselves and the possibility of failure.

Do I look funny? What if I can’t remember what to say? Do I look stupid? Will people listen to me? Does anyone care about what I’m talking about?’

Instead of thinking this way, shift your attention to your one true purpose – contributing something of value to your audience.

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Decide on the progress you’d like your audience to make after your presentation. Notice their movements and expressions to adapt your speech to ensure that they are having a good time to leave the room as better people.

If your own focus isn’t beneficial and what it should be when you’re speaking, then shift it to what does. This is also key to establishing trust during your presentation as the audience can clearly see that you have their interests at heart.[1]

3. Convert negativity to positivity

There are two sides constantly battling inside of us – one is filled with strength and courage while the other is doubt and insecurities. Which one will you feed?

‘What if I mess up this speech? What if I’m not funny enough? What if I forget what to say?’

It’s no wonder why many of us are uncomfortable giving a presentation. All we do is bring ourselves down before we got a chance to prove ourselves. This is also known as a self-fulfilling prophecy – a belief that comes true because we are acting as if it already is. If you think you’re incompetent, then it will eventually become true.

Motivational coaches tout that positive mantras and affirmations tend to boost your confidents for the moments that matter most. Say to yourself: “I’ll ace this speech and I can do it!”

Take advantage of your adrenaline rush to encourage positive outcome rather than thinking of the negative ‘what ifs’.

Here’s a video of Psychologist Kelly McGonigal who encourages her audience to turn stress into something positive as well as provide methods on how to cope with it:

4. Understand your content

Knowing your content at your fingertips helps reduce your anxiety because there is one less thing to worry about. One way to get there is to practice numerous times before your actual speech.

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However, memorizing your script word-for-word is not encouraged. You can end up freezing should you forget something. You’ll also risk sounding unnatural and less approachable.

“No amount of reading or memorizing will make you successful in life. It is the understanding and the application of wise thought that counts.” – Bob Proctor

Many people unconsciously make the mistake of reading from their slides or memorizing their script word-for-word without understanding their content – a definite way to stress themselves out.

Understanding your speech flow and content makes it easier for you to convert ideas and concepts into your own words which you can then clearly explain to others in a conversational manner. Designing your slides to include text prompts is also an easy hack to ensure you get to quickly recall your flow when your mind goes blank.[2]

One way to understand is to memorize the over-arching concepts or ideas in your pitch. It helps you speak more naturally and let your personality shine through. It’s almost like taking your audience on a journey with a few key milestones.

5. Practice makes perfect

Like most people, many of us are not naturally attuned to public speaking. Rarely do individuals walk up to a large audience and present flawlessly without any research and preparation.

In fact, some of the top presenters make it look easy during showtime because they have spent countless hours behind-the-scenes in deep practice. Even great speakers like the late John F. Kennedy would spend months preparing his speech beforehand.

Public speaking, like any other skill, requires practice – whether it be practicing your speech countless of times in front of a mirror or making notes. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect!

6. Be authentic

There’s nothing wrong with feeling stressed before going up to speak in front of an audience.

Many people fear public speaking because they fear others will judge them for showing their true, vulnerable self. However, vulnerability can sometimes help you come across as more authentic and relatable as a speaker.

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Drop the pretence of trying to act or speak like someone else and you’ll find that it’s worth the risk. You become more genuine, flexible and spontaneous, which makes it easier to handle unpredictable situations – whether it’s getting tough questions from the crowd or experiencing an unexpected technical difficulty.

To find out your authentic style of speaking is easy. Just pick a topic or issue you are passionate about and discuss this like you normally would with a close family or friend. It is like having a conversation with someone in a personal one-to-one setting. A great way to do this on stage is to select a random audience member(with a hopefully calming face) and speak to a single person at a time during your speech. You’ll find that it’s easier trying to connect to one person at a time than a whole room.

With that said, being comfortable enough to be yourself in front of others may take a little time and some experience, depending how comfortable you are with being yourself in front of others. But once you embrace it, stage fright will not be as intimidating as you initially thought.

Presenters like Barack Obama are a prime example of a genuine and passionate speaker:

7. Post speech evaluation

Last but not the least, if you’ve done public speaking and have been scarred from a bad experience, try seeing it as a lesson learned to improve yourself as a speaker.

Don’t beat yourself up after a presentation

We are the hardest on ourselves and it’s good to be. But when you finish delivering your speech or presentation, give yourself some recognition and a pat on the back.

You managed to finish whatever you had to do and did not give up. You did not let your fears and insecurities get to you. Take a little more pride in your work and believe in yourself.

Improve your next speech

As mentioned before, practice does make perfect. If you want to improve your public speaking skills, try asking someone to film you during a speech or presentation. Afterwards, watch and observe what you can do to improve yourself next time.

Here are some questions you can ask yourself after every speech:

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  • How did I do?
  • Are there any areas for improvement?
  • Did I sound or look stressed?
  • Did I stumble on my words? Why?
  • Was I saying “um” too often?
  • How was the flow of the speech?

Write everything you observed down and keep practicing and improving. In time, you’ll be able to better manage your fears of public speaking and appear more confident when it counts.

If you want even more tips about public speaking or delivering a great presentation, check out these articles too:

Reference

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