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5 Goals You Should Commit to 10X Your Life in 2016

5 Goals You Should Commit to 10X Your Life in 2016
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The new year is almost upon us.

This means a fresh start, new goals, and new opportunities ahead. Every year we revert back to setting the same old, boring goals that we give up on before February. The main reason is that these goals aren’t exciting enough.

We need to set goals that will have a 10x impact in our lives, which gets us energized just thinking about the effect it can have on us.

In 2016, let’s take it up a notch and commit to goals that will 10x your life.

Here are 5 to get you started.

1. Travel Somewhere That Makes You Uncomfortable

Traveling the world itself can expand your mind, but traveling somewhere that makes you uncomfortable can change your life.

Where in the world can you go that you’ve never been before?

When I traveled to South America this year, I knew zero Spanish, zero people, and zero idea on how I was going to get around. But that experience fundamentally shifted the way I looked at the world. From witnessing some of the poorest people on the planet to building a deep relationship with people I would never have had the opportunity to connect with, these are experiences that will transform the way I make decisions for the rest of my life.

Eiffel tower reflection in camera lenses
    Eiffel tower reflection in camera lenses

    It’s part of the reason why we created the 1% program at Rype, where we donate 1% of what we make and 1% of our time to organizations like Pencils of Promise, who are building hundreds of schools in developing nations for children in need.

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    The surprising realization of all this is that we often underestimate our capabilities and what we have the potential to overcome, so as scary as it may be to some of us to travel alone to a place like Colombia or Peru, it’s not nearly as bad as we think.

    2. Learn A New Instrument

    Learning a new instrument like guitar can not only help de-stress you, but it’s a great way to improve your mental capabilities as well.

    With a little bit of dedication and persistency, there are dozens amazing place to learn an instrument at the comfort of your home, such as browsing around Youtube Music. Or you could find a local teacher in your city, which could be a more intimate learning experience when it comes to music.

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      If you’re not sure which instrument you should learn, check out this article.

      3. Learn A New Language

      Of course, we have to advocate learning a new language. We’ve written extensively about the benefits of learning a new language, what are the most effective ways to learn, and where to learn a new language, so we won’t repeat them here.

      However, there’s no better time to start than the beginning of the new year.

      The first step is discovering which language you should learn (if you haven’t already). While we don’t want to set up any limitations, we want you to learn a new language for the right reason, because a weak one will make it easy to quit early on.

      Here are some weak reasons to learn a new language:

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      a. Most number of speakers

      When you pick a language for the sake of being able to speak to as many people in the world, this is not a good reason. The reason is, with nearly every language, you’re going to be able to find enough speakers wherever you go.

      Let’s say you want to learn Mandarin with over 1 billion speakers around the world, there’s no real benefit of learning Mandarin because of this reason since you will never engage in a personal conversation with 1 billion people in your lifetime.

      b. Best for your CV/Resume

      Most jobs won’t require you to know another language, so unless you’re planning to join a company specifically for the sake of using a target language, then it’s likely not going to make a big difference.

      Yes, it is better to learn Spanish, German, or Mandarin if you have the desire to eventually do business internationally, but is one better than the other? Not really.

      c. The one you learned in elementary or high school

      You may have some knowledge embedded in your memory from your younger days, but this shouldn’t limit you from making the decision to learn another language. Let’s say you learned French in school.

      It doesn’t mean that re-learning this language will be much easier than to learn Spanish or Italian.

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        Learn what you plan to use

        As Benny Lewis, from Fluentin3months says, “Spending all your time with books or courses may help a little, but unless you are willing to make mistakes in front of people you won’t get far on improving your spoken abilities.”

        This means that your plan to use the language shouldn’t be too far away. We personally recommend anything below 4-6 months.

        Do you have a family member that speaks Spanish? Or are you going to be travelling to France this summer in a few months?

        Unless you use it, you’re certain to lose it!

        We recommend checking out our free mini-course on how to learn a new language in 90 days.

        4. Get Your Health In Order

        Your health is your wealth. Taking care of your health will not only improve your physical body, but your mental agility as well.

        Like any new habit, we recommend starting small and finding something to keep you accountable.

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        A few examples for fitness could be enrolling into a gym membership, finding a trainer, or joining a kickboxing class. This way there’s something you’ve committed to and you’re much more likely to stick with it.

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          As for nutrition, you could make the commitment to only drink 1 cup of coffee per day or cutting caffeine completely. Or as simple as the decision to wake up earlier to eat a healthy breakfast each morning. You’ll be surprised how many people miss this step!

          5. Spend More Time With Your Loved Ones

          There’s nothing that can replace the time we have with our loved ones, whether that’s your children, spouse, girlfriend/boyfriend, or your close friends. Yes, we can decide to squeeze in more hours of work on the weekends, but is it worth it?

          From history the biggest regret that people have before they die is not that they could have been more productive in their careers, but that they didn’t get to spend enough time with the people they love. This applies whether you’re 17 years old or 50 years old reading this.

          We hope that 2016 is a year full of growth, learning, and love.

          Share Your Thoughts

          What is a goal you have for 2016?
          Do you agree or disagree with some of the goals we suggested?

          More by this author

          Sean Kim

          Sean is the founder and CEO of Rype, a language learning app. He's an entrepreneur and blogger.

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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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