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5 Reasons Why Hardworking People Are More Blessed (And Luckier)

5 Reasons Why Hardworking People Are More Blessed (And Luckier)
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Luck is such a lovely word and we would all like a piece of it every now and then. But what if I told you that luck doesn’t exist? The problem with society, and more importantly the media, is that we only tend to see the finished product. We see musical artists come out of nowhere, or we see a blog post go viral via a ‘lucky’ retweet; however what doesn’t get shown is all the groundwork that has been done behind the scenes leading up to this pivotal moment.

“It takes 20 years to become an overnight success” – Eddie Cantor

Whether you have noticed it already or not, individuals who tend to be blessed and luckier carry with them a unique work-ethic. You may only see the outcome of their success, but what goes on behind the scenes may make you question what it truly means to ‘work-hard’. You may have previously questioned why certain individuals seem to possess more luck than you. However, the fact is that these individuals have created each and every opportunity by following a precise process — and there is nothing stopping you from reaping these same benefits.

Instead of hating on these so called ‘blessed’ ones, let’s congratulate them — and analyze how these individuals achieve their luck:

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1. They Never Stand Still

“You won’t go anywhere standing still”

A cliche, yes. The truth? Even more so. Hardworking individuals are always on the move — and that doesn’t always mean physically. These types of individuals are always thinking and always trying to position themselves in the right places so that they don’t miss opportunities. Being in the right place at the right time may seem lucky to most. But remember that every decision a person makes up until that point is a choice.

2. They Remain Positive at All Times

Luck is most definitely seen as something positive, but what people often forget is all the hard times leading up to that moment. Hardworking individuals will never give up, even when times our tough. When in search of success (whatever that may be for you), there is no doubt you will approach some hurdles along the way. But it’s how you respond to them that defines your future success. Hardworking individuals will never say, ‘I’m so unlucky’. Instead, they accept that problems are part of the process and swiftly move on so they don’t miss the next opportunity, which is just around the corner.

While others worry about what went wrong, these individuals are already seeking their next chance.

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3. They Aren’t Afraid to Fail

It’s one thing being positive when things go wrong. But way before that, you mustn’t be afraid of failing. Hardworking individuals seem to have no fear when seeking opportunities.

When was the last time you did something that scared you? I don’t mean going and getting the latest Halloween costume. I’m talking about doing something new for the first time or calling someone you don’t know to arrange a business meeting. Hardworking individuals get out of their comfort zone on a daily basis and it doesn’t have to relate to the thing you are doing. Think of a professional athlete, such as a weightlifter. They fail hundreds of times before finally breaking a world-record. If they were afraid to even try to lift a heavy weight, then they would have never reached the heights that they did. These individuals understand that by consistently putting themselves through pain and sacrifice, they will grow at a much greater pace and attract more opportunities. Hardworking individuals aren’t afraid of making mistakes — because when they do, it just means they’re one step closer to finding the correct solution.

“I haven’t failed. Ive just found 10,000 ways that won’t work” – Thomas Edison

4. They Have a WHY

Hardworking individuals don’t just work hard for no reason. They have a clear purpose for why they are willing to sacrifice all the time and effort for results that aren’t guaranteed, and this is called their ‘WHY’.

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You’ve probably heard it before but your WHY is what’s going to separate you from the average Joe. Individuals that seem to have a lot of luck only attract such opportunities because they are willing to do what others are not. Many individuals have enough motivation to attract some opportunities but motivation will only take you so far; in contrast, hard-working individuals have a lifelong purpose that they believe in and will do anything they possibly can to make it a reality. For this very reason, these individuals won’t just seek instant results and won’t cave in when things don’t go their way. Their purpose is far greater than any materialistic thing, which is why they will continue to attract more opportunities day-in and day-out.

5. They Show Up…Every Day

If there were two words that could be used to advise every young person growing up, it would be these two: Show up.

Show up! It’s a simple distinction between someone who would like success compared to someone who is so desperate for success that they can’t even put it into words. Hardworking individuals show up, not just for one or two days; they show up every single day and it’s for that very reason they are blessed and lucky. There will be some days they are tired or don’t feel up to it but they will still give 100%. What people forget to realise is that your 100% will change, but as long as you give your 100% for that day, then any external factors won’t matter because you have done everything you possibly could.

‘Unlucky’ individuals tend to give up when they don’t feel at their best and will wait until tomorrow; but, unfortunately, opportunities don’t wait around. To ‘show up’ means to be present in every single moment. It means to be available so that the universe knows you are ready to receive opportunities. If you can only do one of these five points, then please let it be this one. Individuals who are hardworking forget about the past and what isn’t happening, and focus only on what IS happening at this very moment — because at the end of the day, that’s all ‘Luck’ cares about too.

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Instead of hating on individuals that seem to attract more luck than others, maybe we could learn a thing or two by studying them. Luck doesn’t have to be unique to certain individuals. Adopt as many of these five traits of hardworking individuals as possible and you will soon be attracting more opportunities in your daily life. I look forward to seeing your goals become a reality.

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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