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15 Phrases That Remind You What Life Is For

15 Phrases That Remind You What Life Is For

Life is all about perspective. Your perspective. Life is all about how you frame your experiences and how you choose to physically and emotionally respond to them. Your perspective can make all the difference in your ability to live in the moment with joy, or view each of life’s challenges as a struggle.

This article is inspired by a thought provoking article written by Stephanie Kwong. She encourages us to flip the switch from viewing life’s commitments as “should” and “have to,” into “I get to” instead. Wow! The “I get to” mantra is so much more of a fulfilling and fun privilege.

Phrases like “I get to” keep us mindful of living and loving life. So why stop at just one?

Here are 15 other wonderfully powerful phrases which can inspire you to be present in the moment, to live in alignment with your own life choices, to enjoy life, and keep living it with passion:

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1. The purpose of my life is to be happy.

This is the most important phrase of all. Repeat it to yourself several times a day. The basic reason you are here on Earth is to discover your own inner happiness. When you are happy, that joy and energy you exude will take you to places and experiences you have always dreamed of and more! This is your Big Picture soulful purpose.

2. I’ve got this!

Ahhh, this is all about self empowerment as you move through life. It reminds you to be confident, roll with the punches, and to believe in yourself.

3. I will just “let it go.”

There will be plenty of ups and downs in life. The downs will definitely hold you down. Let it go — the disappointments, the mistakes, the feelings of remorse, regret, guilt, and all those other negative emotions which won’t propel you forward to enjoy the best life has to offer.

4. An Oldie, but a Goodie… I know things could be worse.

When things get tough, put your own situation into perspective. Turn your situation upside down and realize how much worse it could have been. Be thankful for the way it turned out. Practice grateful gratitude!

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5. The only thing holding me back is ME !

Yep, you are in the driver’s seat. With determination, perseverance, effort, attention, and intention you can do anything. Don’t expect a windfall of any sort. You orchestrate every single moment of your life by the way you perceive circumstances and how you choose to respond.

6. Life is not so short to me.

In the United States, the average lifespan for an adult male is 75 years, and 81 years for a female. That’s pretty darn long!  So why does everyone say life is fleeting? Answer: because most people are not living life in the moment. When you are constantly looking behind you or worrying about tomorrow, it seems as if life is passing you by. However, time is actually not moving any faster. When you begin to enjoy each day, each hour, and each minute, the years do not become a blur.

7. My struggles exist to indicate I need to shift.

We all do it from time to time. You have. I have. We all get lost in the struggle — the struggle for more money, more power, more time. We also struggle to have our way be the right way. This inner struggle defeats you and your momentum. It’s a startling reminder that you need to make a needed change in your life (sometimes on many levels). Living without struggle allows for greater freedom. Living freely is the goal of life for us all.

8. There is no wrong turn on my life journey.

Your life path is unique from that of your parents, siblings, children, or friends. It’s creatively designed by a higher force so that you (hopefully) get to learn along the way and uncover your true sense of happiness — your essence! So when you make a choice that didn’t get you where you thought you would land, don’t beat yourself up. That turn you made was one you were supposed to take in order to teach you something you needed to know in order to grow.

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9. All my tears soothe my soul.

Ahhh… tears… your body’s own saltwater! Saltwater heals wounds. Tears not only heal wounds, but they are also the outcome of deep emotions which need to be released — emotions of sadness, despair, frustration, laughter, joy, and bliss. Whether your tears are sorrowful at the loss of someone’s life, or blissful at the birth of your child, or the consequence of a serious belly laugh, they are all meant to soothe your soul. It’s okay to cry.

10. Life is all about my choices.

The life you live is the life you choose. Choices build upon each other. Every single choice you make has implications which will steer you in one direction or another. If a poor choice is made along the way, don’t worry so much. Life is forgiving if you want it to be.

11. I say “Yes” more often.

Growing up, you probably heard more “no’s” from parents, teachers, and caregivers than “yes’s.” So give yourself permission to say “yes” more often, especially to opportunities which will nourish your spirit. Say “yes” to that spontaneous bike ride with your kids. Say “yes” to that massage you so desperately need. Say “yes” to the homeless man begging for that $4 you were going to spend at Starbucks tomorrow morning. A heartfelt “yes” may open your soul to limitless possibilities.

12. I embrace uncertainty.

Most people like certainty. They like a sure thing. Not knowing what’s in store for you can be pretty daunting and scary. That is, if you choose that perspective. The reality is, there will always be uncertainty and randomness. It’s a law of life (and physics). You can’t escape it, so just embrace it. Welcome the change. Welcome the unknown into your life. Get comfy with it so that when things don’t go as planned, you can just go with the flow. Think of how beautiful is it to struggle less.

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13. I put passion behind my purpose.

You are a unique soul in this world and have very special gifts that no one else has. Honing in our your gifts (talents, skills, qualities) will help you identify your life purpose. When you realize why you are here on Earth and what you can contribute, it is essential to put all of your passion behind it. Whether you are an astronaut, sanitary worker, super dad, or the best Lego builder ever, your passion for what you do will drive you toward life happiness.

14. When I’m not learning, I’m not growing.

This is one of my favorite phrases. Your life purpose is to grow, to learn, and to evolve in order to click into your own essence and be happy. The only way to grow is to continue to learn and expand your mind and spirit. I get happy just thinking about how much more I get to learn in my life. Wow!

15. I love you.

The desire to be loved is a human need. To give love to another human or animal is something we hopefully learn how to do along our life path. Love is an extremely powerful energy force. Those three little words (“I love you”) can tear down walls of hatred, halt an attempted suicide, or unite a lifelong partnership. If you haven’t spoken them in awhile, it’s time to begin again. Whispers are allowed. A life filled with love is a life worth living.

Conclusion

These 15 phrases are a little nudge to remind you just how lucky you are to be alive. You have infinite possibilities awaiting you. Live life passionately!

Featured photo credit: www.globesurfer.de via flickr.com

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Last Updated on January 15, 2021

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

Posture

First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

  • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
  • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
  • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
  • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

Facial Expressions

Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

  • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
  • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
  • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

2. Relax Your Face

New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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3. Improve Your Eye Contact

Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

3. Smile More

There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

4. Hand Gestures

Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

5. Enhance Your Handshake

In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

“Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

Final Takeaways

Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

Reference

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