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The Art Of Letting Go That Everyone Should Master

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The Art Of Letting Go That Everyone Should Master

When negotiating life’s twists and turns, it’s easy to get bogged down by our past experiences and things that have gone wrong in our lives. Fear and worry can be the main drivers of our existence and, without us realizing it, they can slowly destroy our happiness and our health.

Learning the art of letting go is the answer to living a fulfilling and productive life. This doesn’t mean not acknowledging the trials and tribulations of our own reality. Quite the contrary. It means reflecting on them in a way that helps us to digest what has happened, extract the life lessons, and then put them behind us.

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Risk is your friend

When you’ve been burned before, whether in a relationship, a friendship, or a job, it’s easy to shun similar situations to avoid getting hurt again. Fear stops us from living a full life. It prevents us from reaching our full potential because we miss opportunities in order to remain safe. We worry that whatever we have suffered will repeat itself and so we avoid taking chances. Risk is necessary if we hope to push our own boundaries and discover what life has to offer beyond the mundane. Wisdom comes from experience and taking into consideration our past helps us to make calculated risks. The art of letting go turns fear into intention. It gets us out of our own head. Often, our fears and worries are just in our mind and letting these go by facing our anxiety head on makes us feel accomplished and courageous. It leads us to greater achievements.

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Learning from failure

Failing means you have tried. Although failure can sometimes have a huge impact on our confidence, security, safety, and even our finances, that doesn’t mean that failure is necessarily a bad thing. Our failures are where our life lessons lie. If we reflect on what went wrong, we are less likely to repeat the same pattern. If we do, or a situation is out of our control and we must, we are better prepared to handle the outcome. We needn’t dwell on our failures to take away the most valuable information that can inform our future decisions. We just need to properly acknowledge them and understand the reality. Then, commit to letting go.

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Living in the moment

Obsessing about the past or anticipating the future too much distracts us from what is right in front of us. It is important to analyze what we have been through so that it can contribute to what we do next and it is always necessary to have some sort of forward planning to guide our life’s trajectory. However, the here and now is the most important, and really the only, thing that we have. Letting go requires us to be mindful about the present; to enjoy each day and each moment as it happens by quieting the noise in our minds long enough to open our intuition. If you have adequately recounted what has been and have suitably deliberated about what will come, then it is time to just be and to surrender and accept life’s inevitabilities.

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Trust is key

Letting go is all about trust — trusting your own decisions and instincts about what is best for you. When you have done all the ground work and developed your perceptiveness about how to strive for your goals and build your achievements, letting go becomes second nature. The hardest thing to do is to surrender control in life. We all want to hold onto the reins of our lives tightly and to be able to steer our destiny in the direction we desire. We like to think that we determine what happens to us and that the outcome of our life’s challenges are our responsibility alone. Letting go feels like losing control, but it isn’t. It is actually assuming complete control, not of what happens to us, but how we survive it. And that is the key to a happy and healthy life.

Featured photo credit: sunsetevansville.com via sunsetevansville.com

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Diane Koopman

Writer, Author, Novelist, Self-Publisher

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Last Updated on November 18, 2021

10 Proven Ways to Judge a Person’s Character

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10 Proven Ways to Judge a Person’s Character

We all fall into the trap of judging a person’s character by their appearance. How wrong we are! All too often, the real character of the person only appears when some negative event hits them or you. Then you may see a toxic person emerging from the ruins and it is often a shock.

A truly frightening example is revealed in the book by O’Toole in Bowman called Dangerous Instincts: How Gut Instincts Betray Us. A perfectly respectable, charming, well dressed neighbor was found to have installed a torture chamber in his garage where he was systematically abusing kidnapped women. This is an extreme example, but it does show how we can be totally deceived by a person’s physical appearance, manners and behavior.

So, what can you do? You want to be able to assess personal qualities when you come into contact with colleagues, fresh acquaintances and new friends who might even become lifelong partners. You want to know if they are:

  • honest
  • reliable
  • competent
  • kind and compassionate
  • capable of taking the blame
  • able to persevere
  • modest and humble
  • pacific and can control anger.

The secret is to reserve judgment and take your time. Observe them in certain situations; look at how they react. Listen to them talking, joking, laughing, explaining, complaining, blaming, praising, ranting, and preaching. Only then will you be able to judge their character. This is not foolproof, but if you follow the 10 ways below, you have a pretty good chance of not ending up in an abusive relationship.

1. Is anger a frequent occurrence?

All too often, angry reactions which may seem to be excessive are a sign that there are underlying issues. Do not think that every person who just snaps and throws his/her weight around mentally and physically is just reacting normally. Everyone has an occasional angry outburst when driving or when things go pear-shaped.

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But if this is almost a daily occurrence, then you need to discover why and maybe avoid that person. Too often, anger will escalate to violent and aggressive behavior. You do not want to be near someone who thinks violence can solve personal or global problems.

2. Can you witness acts of kindness?

How often do you see this person being kind and considerate? Do they give money to beggars, donate to charity, do voluntary work or in some simple way show that they are willing to share the planet with about 7 billion other people?

I was shocked when a guest of mine never showed any kindness to the weak and disadvantaged people in our town. She was ostensibly a religious person, but I began to doubt the sincerity of her beliefs.

“The best index to a person’s character is how he treats people who can’t do him any good, and how he treats people who can’t fight back.”

Abigail Van Buren

3. How does this person take the blame?

Maybe you know that s/he is responsible for a screw-up in the office or even in not turning up on time for a date. Look at their reaction. If they start blaming other colleagues or the traffic, well, this is an indication that they are not willing to take responsibility for their mistakes.

4. Don’t use Facebook as an indicator.

You will be relieved to know that graphology (the study of that forgotten skill of handwriting) is no longer considered a reliable test of a person’s character. Neither is Facebook stalking, fortunately. A study showed that Facebook use of foul language, sexual innuendo and gossip were not reliable indicators of a candidate’s character or future performance in the workplace.

5. Read their emails.

Now a much better idea is to read the person’s emails. Studies show that the use of the following can indicate certain personality traits:

  • Too many exclamation points may reveal a sunny disposition
  • Frequent errors may indicate apathy
  • Use of smileys is the only way a person can smile at you
  • Use of the third person may reveal a certain formality
  • Too many question marks can show anger
  • Overuse of capital letters is regarded as shouting. They are a definite no-no in netiquette, yet a surprising number of  people still use them.

6. Watch out for the show offs.

Listen to people as they talk. How often do they mention their achievements, promotions, awards and successes? If this happens a lot, it is a sure indication that this person has an over-inflated view of his/her achievements. They are unlikely to be modest or show humility. What a pity!  Another person to avoid.

7. Look for evidence of perseverance.

A powerful indicator of grit and tenacity is when a person persists and never gives up when they really want to achieve a life goal. Look for evidence of them keeping going in spite of enormous difficulties.

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Great achievements by scientists and inventors all bear the hallmark of perseverance. We only have to think of Einstein, Edison (who failed thousands of times) and Nelson Mandela to get inspiration. The US Department of Education is in no doubt about how grit, tenacity and perseverance will be key success factors for youth in the 21st century.

8. Their empathy score is high.

Listen to how they talk about the less fortunate members of our society such as the poor, immigrants and the disabled. Do you notice that they talk in a compassionate way about these people? The fact that they even mention them is a strong indicator of empathy.

People with zero empathy will never talk about the disadvantaged. They will rarely ask you a question about a difficult time or relationship. They will usually steer the conversation back to themselves. These people have zero empathy and in extreme cases, they are psychopaths who never show any feelings towards their victims.

9. Learn how to be socially interactive.

We are social animals and this is what makes us so uniquely human. If a person is isolated or a loner, this may be a negative indicator of their character. You want to meet a person who knows about trust, honesty and loyalty. The only way to practice these great qualities is to actually interact socially. The great advantage is that you can share problems and celebrate success and joy together.

“One can acquire everything in solitude, except character.”

Stendhal

 10. Avoid toxic people.

These people are trying to control others and often are failing to come to terms with their own failures. Typical behavior and conversations may concern:

  • Envy or jealousy
  • Criticism of partners, colleagues and friends
  • Complaining about their own lack of success
  • Blaming others for their own bad luck or failure
  • Obsession with themselves and their problems

Listen to these people talk and you will quickly discover that you need to avoid them at all costs because their negativity will drag you down. In addition, as much as you would like to help them, you are not qualified to do so.

Now, having looked at some of the best ways to judge a person, what about yourself? How do others see you? Why not take Dr. Phil’s quiz and find out. Can you bear it?

Featured photo credit: Jacek Dylag via unsplash.com

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