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10 Signs You’re Neurotic (And Why It’s Not A Problem)

10 Signs You’re Neurotic (And Why It’s Not A Problem)

1. They’re hyper aware

Being neurotic means you’re constantly aware of everything around you. You pick up on people’s body language and voice inflections, and analyze every word that comes out of their mouth. Because of this, you’re not surprised by ulterior motives or when a person’s true colors show. Ironically, being hyper-aware of everything and everyone around you helps you keep your cool when things go sour.

2. They’re overly self-conscious

Because you’re constantly worried about yourself, you’re more likely to take care of yourself. The student who is scared of failing will spend extra time in the library, leading them to be even more prepared for an exam than they need to be. The person who’s scared of dying of a heart attack in his forties will certainly eat healthier and exercise more often than someone who doesn’t worry about his demise.

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3. They’re self-aware

Neurotic people know they’re neurotic. In fact, they flaunt it at times, saying things like “I know I’m being crazy, but…” While it may be hard to break a neurotic thought or habit, many people go throughout their day with paranoid thoughts running through their head without even realizing it. At least neurotic people are able to recognize it and rationalize it. They might not be able to get past knowing “It’s all in my head,” but at least they can acknowledge it.

4. They’re pessimistically realistic

Neurotic people tend to err on the side of pessimism when it comes to anything in the real world. But this is because they know that good things don’t just “happen,” and that Murphy’s Law exists because there is a better chance of something going wrong along the way than everything going exactly according to plan. The good part about this pessimism is that when things do go right, it’s like Christmas Day for a neurotic individual. Even something as simple as the guy at Dunkin’ Donuts getting your order right and then hitting every green light on the way home from work will be enough to cheer you up. It really is the little things in life that make a difference.

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5. They have a high IQ

A study at SUNY Downstate Medical Centre of 42 individuals showed that those who suffered from anxiety also had a higher IQ on average. The report showed that “high intelligence and worry are linked with brain activity measured by the depletion of the nutrient choline in the white matter of the brain.” High levels of anxiety lead to a mind that is constantly working in some way, which, naturally, leads to higher levels of intelligence. Those that worry too much are actually exercising their brain!

6. They care for others

Neurotic people don’t just worry about themselves, either. They worry and look after their friends, family, and loved ones constantly. They’re always trying to help people through difficult situations and solve other people’s problems. This parental aspect of neurotic people gives them comfort, as it does to those around them as well.

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7. They have high energy levels

Not only are neurotic people always thinking, but they’re always ready for action. They have trouble sitting still, because their mind is always racing. But they also never seem to run out of steam, because they know they could be doing something to better their lives at any given moment.

8. They’re highly productive

Since they can’t sit still, neurotic people might as well be productive. They have many hobbies, and are never content with resting on their laurels. They see every moment as another chance to succeed and do better in life. Because of this attitude, neurotic people often find themselves leaps and bounds ahead of everyone else around them as far as productivity and talent is concerned.

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9. They’re idealistic

Even though most neurotic people are pessimistic, they also work hard to improve their surroundings as well. They understand how good things could be, and will do anything to get there. It’s ironic, but their pessimism drives them to optimize their situation. And while others are thinking things are fine, the neurotic person will constantly be working to make them even better.

10. They avoid bad situations

Obviously, being a worrywart isn’t always a bad thing. Neurotic people avoid dangerous situations. While other people might be tempted to claim “YOLO” as if that’s an excuse to do something stupid, anxious people will be the ones saying “Yeah, you only live once, so don’t mess it up.” Sure, they might never experience the thrill of skydiving, but they’ll almost certainly live a long, healthy life.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm8.staticflickr.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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