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5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Wear High Heels Anymore

5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Wear High Heels Anymore

High heels have been a long time fashion staple in women’s closets around the world. Unfortunately, there have been numerous studies that show the negative side effects that these shoes can have on feet. Luckily, there are plenty of flat-heeled shoes that are popular alternatives that still look stylish and will not leave you with aching feet at the end of the day.

They wreak havoc on your calves and Achilles’ tendon

According to a study done at  Manchester Metropolitan University in England, wearing high heels reduces the group of muscle fibers in the calf and contributes to increased stiffness in the Achilles’ tendon that is responsible for connecting the calf muscles to the heels. This effect is responsible for reducing the range of motion in the ankle. This study was conducted on eleven women who wear heels and nine who do not. The researchers began by scanning the women’s calf muscle make-up with an MRI and noted no differences between each group of women. But in a follow up examination, they noticed that the muscle fibers of the women in high heels were 13 percent shorter and have noticeably larger Achilles’ tendons.

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They can be the cause of lower back pain

Feet are a crucial foundation on which your body relies on. Wearing shoes that do not support them well can create a lot of unnecessary pain, including lower back aches. Wearing high heels also contributes to poor posture and put added pressure on your lower spine. Try trading your 4-inch pumps for shoes with less than 1-inch heels and you will be guaranteed to see a big difference.

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They help support traditional gender ideals

Even in this modern day and age, wearing high heels can be associated with a more traditional female role. This past year in the ultra-glitzy Cannes Film Festival in France, there was controversy over the alleged banning of a group of women who chose to wear rhinestone flats instead of heels. According to the festival’s strict dress code, women are only allowed to wear heels, even if they have a medical condition like some of the women in this banned group did. This archaic view on female beauty is not only present at high-society events, but also in the workplace and every day life as well. Health reasons aside, it is important to think of the message you are sending out if you decided to wear high heels.

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They may be sending the wrong signal

Research has shown that women wearing high heels are viewed as having more sex appeal and gain more attention from both sexes. A study performed by Nicolas Gueguen (2014) showed that women who dropped a glove in high heels were more likely to be notified by a male of the misplaced object by 93 percent in comparison to only 62 percent of the time for women who were wearing flats. In some cases, more attention is not something you want. High heels are known to elongate women’s legs, thus giving them model-like illusion. If you want to be seen less as a sex symbol, maybe it is time to reconsider wearing those sky high heels and trade them in for flats.

They are known to decrease credibility in the workplace

According to an article in The Atlantic, women who are striving to climb to the top in their career should stick to flats until they have reached their desired position, especially in male-saturated industries like tech. Wearing high heels creates a greater divide between men and women in the work place and are reminders of a woman’s femininity. Therefore, it is important to remember when you are planning your work wardrobe to think twice about your footwear and what message it will be sending at the office.

Featured photo credit: Augsburg, Germany. 2013. Crossing lines. / Boris Thaser via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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