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Benefits of Being the Middle Child

Benefits of Being the Middle Child

Middle children have a reputation for often getting lost amid the noise made by their other siblings, since they do not get the attention associated with the firstborn, nor are they spoiled as the baby of the family often is.

Middle child syndrome is a term that often is used to describe negative feelings, symptoms and experiences associated with this conceivably undesirable birth order position, including: lack of motivation, feeling like they do not belong and negative feelings towards life in general. Children who are in the middle of the sibling lineup should not be written off, since there are some benefits of their unique position. Here are a few:

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We weren’t ever expected to be as responsible as the oldest sibling was

Being the middle child, we escaped the close scrutiny that often was experienced by our oldest sibling. Our parents often put pressure on the oldest child to get good grades, have a strong extracurricular schedule and take any type of additional educational enrichment courses available. We are glad that that kind of intense pressure did not get passed down along with the hand-me-downs. By the time we came around, our parents were much more relaxed and were more willing for us to do our own thing.

We are really independent

We lack our parents’ undivided attention, but this allows us to learn how to do things for ourselves and forge our own path. We memorized the public bus routes by the time we were in middle school, since our parents were more lenient about letting us go out on our own than they were with the oldest child. We were not babied like our young siblings, so we developed a keen sense of direction that has never led us astray.

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We are great leaders

Due to our strong independent natures, we often turn out to make great leaders. Past U.S. notable leaders that were middle children include Martin Luther King Jr., Susan B. Anthony, Bill Gates and Abraham Lincoln.

We like to think outside of the box

We often have a creative mindset, since our parents let us pursue our creative passions, like drama or art. Our older siblings were signed-up to do more traditional activities like sports or music and we are glad that we escaped that requirement.

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We work hard to establish ourselves

Having to constantly fight against our older and younger siblings for our parent’s affection has allowed us to develop a strong work ethic. We do not give up easily, whether it’s for a job or learning a new skill. This also translates to personal relationships- whether we place importance on maintaining a long-term friendship or kindling a new romance.

We have strong personalities

When you do not have a distinct role within your family, it is important to make one up for yourself. We often have a killer sense of humor or have an extroverted nature that comes in handy at social events.

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We are great at being selfless

We never knew what it was like to be an only child like our older sibling, or what it is like to be spoiled like our youngest sibling. The only world we are familiar with is the one where our possessions are passed down by our older sibling and where we often had to share a new toy with our youngest sibling. This translates into being humble as a grown-up and not taking anything for granted.

We are great negotiators

We are used to not getting our own way, so we have a finely developed ability to negotiate just about anything. This skill comes in handy in the workplace when negotiating a salary, and we are able to cope well in travel situations that call for being assertive.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

If I was a super hero I’d want my super power to be the ability to motivate everyone around me. Think of how many problems you could solve just by being able to motivate people towards their goals. You wouldn’t be frustrated by lazy co-workers. You wouldn’t be mad at your partner for wasting the weekend in front of the TV. Also, the more people around you are motivated toward their dreams, the more you can capitalize off their successes.

Being able to motivate people is key to your success at work, at home, and in the future because no one can achieve anything alone. We all need the help of others.

So, how to motivate people? Here are 7 ways to motivate others even you can do.

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1. Listen

Most people start out trying to motivate someone by giving them a lengthy speech, but this rarely works because motivation has to start inside others. The best way to motivate others is to start by listening to what they want to do. Find out what the person’s goals and dreams are. If it’s something you want to encourage, then continue through these steps.

2. Ask Open-Ended Questions

Open-ended questions are the best way to figure out what someone’s dreams are. If you can’t think of anything to ask, start with, “What have you always wanted to do?”

“Why do you want to do that?”

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“What makes you so excited about it?”

“How long has that been your dream?”

You need this information the help you with the following steps.

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3. Encourage

This is the most important step, because starting a dream is scary. People are so scared they will fail or look stupid, many never try to reach their goals, so this is where you come in. You must encourage them. Say things like, “I think you will be great at that.” Better yet, say, “I think your skills in X will help you succeed.” For example if you have a friend who wants to own a pet store, say, “You are so great with animals, I think you will be excellent at running a pet store.”

4. Ask About What the First Step Will Be

After you’ve encouraged them, find how they will start. If they don’t know, you can make suggestions, but it’s better to let the person figure out the first step themselves so they can be committed to the process.

5. Dream

This is the most fun step, because you can dream about success. Say things like, “Wouldn’t it be cool if your business took off, and you didn’t have to work at that job you hate?” By allowing others to dream, you solidify the motivation in place and connect their dreams to a future reality.

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6. Ask How You Can Help

Most of the time, others won’t need anything from you, but it’s always good to offer. Just letting the person know you’re there will help motivate them to start. And, who knows, maybe your skills can help.

7. Follow Up

Periodically, over the course of the next year, ask them how their goal is going. This way you can find out what progress has been made. You may need to do the seven steps again, or they may need motivation in another area of their life.

Final Thoughts

By following these seven steps, you’ll be able to encourage the people around you to achieve their dreams and goals. In return, you’ll be more passionate about getting to your goals, you’ll be surrounded by successful people, and others will want to help you reach your dreams …

Oh, and you’ll become a motivational super hero. Time to get a cape!

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Featured photo credit: Thought Catalog via unsplash.com

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