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10 Bomb Messages Students Hide In Essays To Get A+

10 Bomb Messages Students Hide In Essays To Get A+
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What is the worst nightmare of your college life?

Exams? Strict educators? Tons of books to read?

Have another think coming.

Essays!

“I am a master of academic writing! Give me a topic, and I will write your essay like a boss!”, said no student ever.

Your humble narrator is not an exception.

When a student, I hated writing essays. I didn’t like the rules of academic writing, aka particular structure, style, references, and arguments. Agree, it’s hard to love writing when they say what to write, how to write, what words to use, and what pals to cite. My essays made me sound unemotional, and they didn’t let me express myself in writings. The thing is, I wrote essays to please professors and get high grades. (I bet, most students have the same motivation.) My essays were award-winning from professors’ perspective, and they were not difficult to write, following one and the same structure.

To write an essay, they ask you to:

  • choose one topic from several given ones
  • do research
  • write an outline
  • write an introduction, three paragraphs with arguments and counterarguments, and a conclusion
  • follow APA or MLA styles
  • make a list of references.

The problem is, such essays can play Old Harry with students who don’t want to lose their creativity. Some fellows kick against the rules and hide secret messages in essays to express their individualities, awesomeness, and creative natures.

And here comes the paradox:

These hidden messages help those students please a teacher and get A+ in spite of breaking rules of academic writing. For instance, once I’ve written the one-line essay on the topic If You Could Live in a Different Country:

“If I could live in a different country, you would not read or understand this essay, because I know vous ne parlez pas français.”

Yes, it’s stupid. You won’t believe but I’ve got an A for it. And yes, don’t try writing anything like that every time you get a dull topic to discuss.

You better try hiding some less stupid messages in your essays to express yourself, develop your personal writing style, but still get high grades from your academic professors.

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1. Use Power Words

Your professors want you to sound intelligent, don’t they? Okay, let’s please them and hide several power words in your essay.

What does it give you?

  • You focus on using language effectively.
  • You avoid using the same words over and over again.
  • You toy with teachers’ emotions.

What are power words? They are words that trigger emotions. Just take a look at Winston Churchill’s writing passage, and you’ll see power words causing fear and hope. Their mix toys with our emotions, making us feel, sympathize, and react somehow.

power-essays-words

    Hide power words in your essays, and they can help to get on the right side of your professor.

    2. Change Your Tone

    Your professors want you to sound academically in your essays, don’t they? To please them but still express yourself, you can change your tone of voice a bit. Yes, essays are formal, but it doesn’t mean they should be boring.

    What does it give you?

    • You stand out from your fellows.
    • You don’t hide your personality.
    • You make a professor see you have a voice.

    i-have-a-voice

      Use a confident tone of voice, make sure to write clear words and short sentences to express your thoughts, and don’t sound like a dictionary of unpronounceable terms.

      3. Start Essays With Inspiring Quotes

      Your professors want an essay hook from you, don’t they? Consider hiding a quote to create the initial impact on them. Make sure this quote lays the foundation to the main idea of your essay.

      What does it give you?

      • You make an essay more interesting and promising.
      • You demonstrate your erudition.
      • You give a point to your essay.
      • You establish credibility.

      Make sure you hide inspiring quotes in your essays, as they help you go up in professors estimation.

      Example:

      Mahatma Gandhi once said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

      4. Try K-rule

      And here comes a trickier message for you to hide in essays. The so-called K-rule assumes that k-sound words are perceived as the funniest ones. It doesn’t mean you should write a funny essay, but hiding some k-sound words in it might play for your hand.

      Don’t you know that comedy writers use the K-rule to create texts for amusing their readers? The trick is, you consider the text cool but you don’t understand why. So, why not to try practicing this rule to your works?

      P.S. Re-read the last paragraph. You haven’t even noticed how many k-sound words I used to write it ;-)

      5. Makeup Your Language

      Some students go further. They hide messages written in foreign languages, when appropriate.

      Like this guy:

      “There was a section where you were supposed to listen to a song and answer a free response about the form of the piece. The song was a freakin’ kpop anthem. So, I wrote the free response half in made-up Korean, along with translations underneath (which resembled entries in a bad Asian restaurant menu, grammar and all). Which is even funnier because my AP music teacher is Korean … still got a 5.” Source: Reddit

      Not legit enough? What about this essay in elvish?

      elvish-essay

        Not sure if that dude got A+ for it, but you could try the same trick to please a professor with a sense of humor or the one with languages as a hobby.

        6. Add Humor

        Students become so creative when it comes to boring subjects. Instead of begging custom services for help, they use humor in writings to surprise those reading them.

        What does it give you?

        • You stand out.
        • You match wits with fellows.
        • If your professor reveals a message, you’ll get an A by all means. If not, you still can become an Internet star. Like this guy, for example:

        funny-essays

          Physics has never seemed so exciting, hasn’t it?

          7. Break Essays Structure

          No guts, no glory. Who else but students understand that better than others? With an academic essay expecting a strict structure, it might seem strange to risk and break it. But big chances are, the result will be worth an effort.

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          What can you do to break an essay structure but still please professors?

          Write your essay as if it was a blog post:

          • It will oil the path but still let you express thoughts and arguments.
          • It will make your essay easy to read and understand.
          • It will make you love writing (well, probably), as you blog a lot on social media and online communities anyway.

          8. Change Font

          We all know that texts are perceived differently when online and printed. With that in mind, students change fonts of their essays depending on a version their professors need.

          Thus, if you print your essay then use Times New Roman or Georgia.

          If they ask for mobile version then Verdana, Arial, or Colibri will be your best choice.

          Or, you can express your individuality by choosing exotic fonts for your essay, unless otherwise stated. But make sure it looks well when printed. Otherwise, you’ll get something like this:

          essay-font

            When handwriting essays, some students use the following trick to hide a knowledge gap:

            “When I took AP US history I couldn’t remember which amendment abolished slavery, so I made the number look like really bad hand writing. I got a 5.” Source: Reddit

            It’s up to you to decide if it’s worth trying.

            9. The Rule of Three

            To stand out from others, hide a message following the rule of three.

            What is that? It’s when you pair two like ideas and suddenly add a third, incongruent one.

            Why three? It’s a number most people can easily remember.

            What does it give you?

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            • You’ll get a clever way to establish a pattern.
            • You’ll misdirect readers, hooking them at the same time.
            • You’ll make a professor see your individuality.

            i-have-a-voice

              Examples:

              “I can’t think of anything worse after a night of drinking than waking up next to someone and not being able to remember their name, or how you met, or why they’re dead.” – Laura Kightlinger

              “Losing weight is simple: eat less, exercise more, and pay NASA to let you live in an anti-gravity chamber.” – Unknown

              “I celebrated Thanksgiving in an old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.” – Jon Stewart

              10. Sharpen It

              Writing like a boss doesn’t mean writing like a crazy typist ready for everything to reach a words limit. Hide shorten words in your essays to vary language, sharpen it, and show a professor that you deliver more of the nuts and bolts than simple wordiness.

              Examples:

              cut-words-essays

                Impress with meaning rather than length.

                Did you ever hide messages in essays? How did it help to impress professors, stand out from fellows, and get high grades for academic writing?

                Share your thoughts in comments!

                Featured photo credit: Alifemostordinary.com via alifemostordinary.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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