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30 Things To Stop Doing (And What To Do Instead) In The New Year

30 Things To Stop Doing (And What To Do Instead) In The New Year

Do you want to have a happier New Year? Most people start the new year with high hopes that they will have a successful, productive and happy year, but they are unsure how to achieve them. It is actually very easy – simply swap out your negative habits for more positive ones.

Check out 30 things you should stop doing (and what you should be doing instead) this new year.

1. Stop comparing yourself to other people, especially on social media. Instead focus on your own accomplishments – and remember that social media is heavily edited.

2. Stop talking about travelling or going on holiday. Instead start to save so that you can go on the trip before the year is over.

3. Stop buying expensive coffees every day. Instead buy a thermos and start to carry your own coffee with you to save money.

4. Stop complaining that you don’t meet enough people. Instead actively look for new friends by joining clubs or inviting co-workers out.

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5. Stop putting off things that you want to try, like yoga or martial arts. Instead book your first class.

6. Stop regularly binge-watching television. Instead commit to one night where you don’t turn the TV on – try reading or cooking instead.

7. Stop over-scheduling yourself. Instead, realize it is totally fine to turn down plans without feeling guilty – you can’t please everyone, but you can please yourself!

8. Stop filling all of your free time with social media. Instead look for hobbies that you think you would actually enjoy. There are lots of awesome hobbies out there, from coloring to cooking to jet-skiing.

9. Stop listening to the same kind of music. Instead broaden your musical horizons; listen to Mozart if you love pop music, or try out the top 40 if you only listen to metal. You never know what you will end up liking!

10. Stop ignoring people in your life because you are busy. Instead speak to your parents every week, and always reply to your friend’s messages.

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11. Stop feeling guilty about wanting to treat yourself. Instead, enjoy the treat – you deserve it!

12. Stop complaining about the news and politics. Instead get involved; call your local representative about important issues, attend council meetings and protest if you are unhappy.

13. Stop making excuses for being unfit. Instead do 10 minutes of exercise every day in your home.

14. Stop spending too much money on takeout food. Instead buy a cookbook and learn to cook all of your favorite meals – then freeze the leftovers for a night when you are feeling lazy!

15. Stop not accepting responsibility for your mistakes. Instead hold yourself accountable for everything you do – including the good things.

16. Stop talking about your dream job. Instead write down a 10 year plan that ends in you having your dream job.

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17. Stop not focusing on your mental health. Instead think about the things that bother you and upset you, and consider speaking to someone about your feelings.

18. Stop using social media as the only way to contact your long distance friends. Instead pick up the phone and ring one of your friends for a long chat once a week.

19. Stop buying cheap clothes that you only wear once. Instead start to shop less, but buy better quality pieces of clothing that will last far longer.

20. Stop judging other people (especially on social media). Instead throw out the negativity and focus on your own goals and achievements.

21. Stop spending money every time you see your friends. Instead of always meeting at a café or a bar, start to meet at home for movie nights.

22. Stop drinking the same old drink. Try new drinks whenever you go out until you find your ultimate favorite drink!

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23. Stop washing your hair every day. Instead give it a break and try to only wash your hair once or twice a week – your hair will thank you!

24. Stop putting off washing your dishes. Instead try to wash everything within 24 hours of using it – especially if you live with other people!

25. Stop being ungrateful in your relationship. Praise your partner every day and remind yourself of the awesome things that they do for you.

26. Stop being proud of your flaws. Instead of deciding that you will always be short-tempered, work on becoming more calm.

27. Stop using alcohol as a social buffer. Instead try not to drink on the next night out with your friends so you feel more confident sober.

28. Stop eating sugary and salty snacks every day. Instead make them a once a week treat.

29. Stop going on social media at work. Instead try to stop using social media completely at work – you may discover you appreciate the break!

30. Stop obsessing over bad photos of you. Instead learn to love any picture of yourself where you are happy.

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Amy Johnson

Freelance writer, editor and social media manager.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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