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Want to Lift Yourself Up? Instant Mood Boosters

Want to Lift Yourself Up? Instant Mood Boosters
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What if I told you that you could instantly change your life and the lives of those around you by simply paying attention to the universe and embracing opportunities to spread good energy? Don’t believe me? I challenge you to give it a try!

Acts of kindness and spreading good energy will absolutely bring you immense joy and happiness and will lift your spirits and change your mood instantly. An act of kindness given freely with absolutely no expectation for anything in return can truly change another person’s day as well as your own. Here are 10 simple ways that you can spread good energy and lift your mood instantly. In helping someone, you will experience mood boosters for yourself.

1. Pay attention

The universe is constantly presenting us with opportunities to be kind. Are you paying attention to these mood boosters? From assisting someone with carrying groceries, to standing back and opening doors, to allowing someone to go before you in a queue, there are events occurring around you and in front of you that will offer you the opportunity to lift yourself up as well as someone else. In today’s busy world, practicing courtesy has gone by the wayside. Start paying attention to who is around you. Expand your energy out and shower kindness to the people you encounter over the course of your day. A single act of kindness sends out a blast of positive energy that spreads further than you could ever imagine.

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2. Pay it forward

Practice random acts of kindness as often as you can.

For example –
Pay for a stranger’s coffee if you have spare change.
Cook a meal for someone who is struggling and needs a hand.
Send someone a beautiful hand written letter – YES handwritten! The art of hand writing a beautiful letter has been replaced with emailing and texting so take the time to create a personal letter to let someone know how important they are to you.
Wash someone’s car.
Clean someone’s house.
Tidy up someone’s garden.
Buy someone flowers.

I could keep going with this list as there are just so many ways to pay it forward. Giving your time, your energy or a small gift can lift someone’s spirits and warm someone’s heart as well as your own.

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3. Be compassionate

Practice compassion with everyone. When someone is struggling, if you really listen to them and offer words of support and encouragement, you will naturally shine light in what is often a dark place. Having a positive, compassionate, and forgiving outlook will recharge your soul and provide you with mood boosters.

4. Reconnect

Take the time to really connect with your community. When you step outside and start engaging with the people around you, sharing their stories and embracing what they are contributing to the world, you will create all sorts of positive emotions. Take the time as well to reconnect with old friends who you have lost touch with and make sure you check up on people who may be experiencing hard times. I can assure you, the energy exchanged between you and someone else when you reconnect is powerful.

5. Volunteer

Volunteering is an investment into your community as well as the people who live in it. Investing pretty much always offers a return right? So imagine the return you will get when you volunteer your time and energy and focus on having a positive impact on someone else’s life instead of your own.

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6. Listen

Make someone else feel valued by listening. When you next meet with someone, turn off your mobile phone and put it away. Give them your undivided attention. Be mindful, present, and engaged and really take in the whole conversation without the distractions.

7. Create your own movement

Inspire people around you to follow your lead. Maybe there is an opportunity for you to create a community event or activity that could change lives for the better. Recruit like-minded people and find a way to share some positive action in your community. Nothing is more uplifting than throwing yourself into a project that is based on giving from the heart.

8. Give genuine compliments and smile

Take the time to give a genuine compliment to someone in your circle. Expressing a real, heartfelt compliment to someone connects and creates a bond of pure uplifting energy between you and the recipient. And while you are at it, smile more. Smiling instantly changes your mood. It is like flicking the on switch to feeling happy. Smiling has all sorts of positive effects on your body and when you smile at another person, that feel good energy is nothing short of contagious.

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9. Shine your light

Spread good energy and don’t be afraid to really be yourself. Have you ever met someone who “lights up a room”? They energize everyone around them with their positive attitude. You can choose to uplift and inspire people and in return you will be rewarded with even more positive energy and fuel for your soul.  Remember, you do not need anyone’s approval to be yourself. Now more than ever we need more unique, authentic, people willing to shine their light on the world.

10. Repeat the above list daily

Keep your eyes and your heart open and embrace the opportunity to uplift someone else.

We can all make a difference and share more joy and more positive energy with the world. For every act of kindness you do, you give out an abundance of warm, uplifting energy to the universe. There is no act too small or too big. Even the simplest of gestures can affect many lives for the better. The healing powers of kindness are plentiful and I implore you to open up your heart and give generously to be kind and courteous. It will lift your spirits, change your life, and the lives of so many around you.

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Featured photo credit: Ed Gregory via stokpic.com

More by this author

Jo Ettles

Jo Ettles is a published self help author, international writer, speaker and extremely gifted intuitive life coach.

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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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