Advertising
Advertising

40 Things You’d Better Do Before 50

40 Things You’d Better Do Before 50

Everyone lives once only. Though all of us have plenty of dreams and goals, it usually ends up with nothing done. And a number of us end up just fulfilling what others want, but not what we truly enjoy. 50 is a critical age that we’re only left with half of the time, if we’re fortunate enough to live to 100. So why not do what you want and what can make you happy as soon as possible?

Here are 40 inspiring things that worth a try before you turn 50.

  1. Go to see your favorite band.
  2. Forgive someone from your past. Holding on to bitterness is like buying poison and taking it yourself, so forgive them – even if it is only for your benefit.
  3. Cut out any toxic friends you have. They will never change, and you don’t need that negativity.
  4. Go on holiday with your best friends. Even if it is just one night away in the country it will be memorable, hilarious and fun.
  5. Travel by yourself. You can spend the day doing exactly what you want, and you will fall in love with being alone all over again.
  6. Forgive your parents for any mistakes they made while raising you. No-one is perfect, and everyone makes mistakes.
  7. Book a massage after a stressful day. You deserve it!
  8. Buy coffee or lunch for someone who looks like they need it. You will both feel better afterwards.
  9. Read the books that everyone is always talking about.
  10. Go out for a meal by yourself. Wear an outfit you love, order your favorite meal and leave whenever you are ready – bliss.
  11. Volunteer for a good cause that is close to your heart.
  12. Watch your favorite movie once again.
  13. Complete a physical challenge, from a marathon to doing 10 push-ups.
  14. Quit the job you hate.
  15. Make something from scratch. It feels amazing to create something beautiful by yourself.
  16. Learn a foreign language. It will make traveling easier, and it will expand your world perspective.
  17. Find a phrase or quote that moves you and make it your personal mantra. Say it to yourself every day whenever you feel stressed or nervous.
  18. Watch the sunset. It may be a cliché, but it really is beautiful and awe-inspiring.
  19. Conquer a fear that you have struggled with for a long time. Fear only holds you back!
  20. Treat yourself to something you really want, like a pair of expensive shoes. It is okay once in a while – you deserve to own something that makes you feel happy!
  21. Send your parents flowers and tell them that you love them.
  22. Write a letter to your partner or child to tell them how much you love and care for them. Everyone deserves to feel loved sometimes, and they will keep the letter for years to come.
  23. Make the effort to like something you currently dislike, like a music genre or mushrooms – you could find out that you actually love it!
  24. Grow a plant from a seed.
  25. Visit all of your country’s historical landmarks. It will help you to learn more about your country, and you will be inspired by the beautiful things you see.
  26. Apply for your dream job. You never know what will happen!
  27. Be a mentor for someone you know. It could be a work college, a friend or someone in your family – there are people everywhere who are looking for help and advice.
  28. Go without technology for a week. You will enjoy a very peaceful and tranquil week.
  29. Do something that you may regret later. Sometimes the best things happen when we decide to take a risk.
  30. Spend a night camping under the stars.
  31. Start your own business.
  32. Live somewhere that is totally different to your home town. This will broaden your horizons and help you to understand alternative perspectives.
  33. Quit a bad habit, e.g. eating too much at a time.
  34. Email your hero to let them know how much they mean to you. Even if they never read it, you will feel better for writing it.
  35. Make a fool of yourself without feeling embarrassed.
  36. Go for a picnic on your own. You’ll learn to enjoy yourself.
  37. Read jokes and laugh until your ribs hurt.
  38. Print out your favorite photos and put them in frames around your home.
  39. Learn something you’ve never imagined before.
  40. Forgive yourself, for what you’ve regretted doing.

More by this author

Amy Johnson

Amy is a writer who blogs about relationships and lifestyle advice.

Beginners’ Guide To HIIT: How To Choose The Best Moves For Your HIIT Workout Everything Is Going To Be Fine In The End. If It Isn’t Fine, It Isn’t The End. Feeling Trapped? Do These 9 Things to Take Your Life Back 10 Health Benefits Of Avocado This List of 50 Low-cost Hobbies Will Excite You

Trending in Communication

1 5 Real Relationship Goals You Should Actually Strive Toward 2 When You Learn A Second Language, These 7 Amazing Things Will Happen To You 3 15 Things To Stop Doing If You Want To Be Truly Happy 4 7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language 5 How to Apologize When You Have Made a Mistake

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

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.

Advertising

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]

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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]

Advertising

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

Read Next