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7 Signs You Are Not Doing What You Want to Do

7 Signs You Are Not Doing What You Want to Do

Did you decide to start hitting the gym but failed to get out of your bed early the next morning? Or maybe, you wanted to start reading a new book but you couldn’t make it past the first five pages. You want to take your classes regularly, hang out with friends more often, give time to your family and go to the mountains on holidays, but nothing is going the way you wanted it to. I know how it feels.

Everyone fantasizes about a lot of things in life and only some of them achieve what they desired. There are times when you are brought down and distressed by hurdles and problems in life, but the one who doesn’t give up is the one who reaches his or her goals in life. Most people go unnoticed of the fact that they are not doing what they wanted to do in life and chances are you are one of them.

Well then these 7 signs you are not doing what you want to do can serve as a warning so that you change yourself and buckle up to progress.

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1. You waste a lot of time doing unnecessary things

Surfing the internet for hours and scrolling your mouse again and again, watching reality television shows repeatedly, playing video games all day and drinking too much. If that’s what you’ve been doing all along, you are never going to complete what you’ve wanted to. Think for yourself. Are things like such going to serve you for good? Will you enjoy success in life through doing these things?

You need to start taking your life seriously and taking time to evaluate yourself, your goals and your dreams. Once you start setting up a perfect routine for yourself, things are surely going to change and you’ll complete what you’ve wanted to.

2. You’re procrastinating a lot

You have a lot of things to complete and your deadline is looming but you find yourself indulged in many things that by no means are important. You are putting off your most important task for the other day, everyday and you just don’t know how to start it. Well, procrastinating is the very first thing that prevents you from doing what you want to do.

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The first thing you need to do is stop checking the same email again and again, stop watching videos that are not related to you in any way, hanging out for no reason or sitting in front of your computer and chatting with your friend about the new designer dress your ex’s girlfriend wore yesterday. You seriously need to start doing things that are in your pending list right from now on and stop procrastinating.

3. You’re complaining too often

You might not be happy with your job, your salary or the people around you and all you do is complain about things in a tea-party with your best friends. If you are one of these people you’re doing it wrong. Complaining about a lot of things will burgeon negative thoughts in your life and it doesn’t help you in any way.

What you can do is start changing things you don’t like and develop a positive attitude. It keeps you motivated and you develop a vigor to complete things that you’ve wanted to.

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4. You don’t sleep on time

Did you hear the morning alarm and you find yourself still awake? Well, all you need to start something fresh is rest. If you stay up late and don’t get proper sleep, your mind does not function well. You feel drowsy the whole day and you just can’t focus. This is what distresses you and keeps you away from doing what you really wanted to accomplish.

5. You don’t feel inspired

You just watched a comedy movie but not even a punch line made you laugh, or you didn’t even care about how fascinating the story of a boy was who saved a dog from getting hit by the bus. There are things people love to do and all you need to do is explore, get to know yourself and find things that excite you. You need to rediscover yourself and your passion to keep yourself motivated in life so that you can achieve your goals that you’ve set before.

6. You don’t have plans

The first step to doing what you want to do is planning things accordingly and setting up a road-map of how you’re going to reach it. If you get lost in the conundrum and start working out without a plan, you’re almost certain to fail. As said, a good start is a job half done, planning is what gives you a perfect initiation to what you’ve wanted to do.

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7. You are not enjoying your life

The first thing you need to do is keep yourself happy. Anyone’s success is measured not by the amount of money they’ve earned over the years or the fame they’ve accumulated to reach their prominence, but by happiness. If you feel discordant or unsatisfied with yourself or the people around you, you’re not enjoying your life and you are sure to fall back. You won’t be able to concentrate on what you want to do if you are not enjoying your life.

If any of these 7 points feel like you, you don’t need to worry. Making good changes is inevitable if you desire success and want to achieve things that you want to do. All you need to do is change the way you think of yourself, make a proper daily routine and start planning things accordingly. Success is not so far!

Featured photo credit: Night Owl Man via picjumbo.imgix.net

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Grishma Giri

Grishma Giri is a passionate writer who shares about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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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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