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8 Important Lessons Everyone Should Keep Learning For Better Life

8 Important Lessons Everyone Should Keep Learning For Better Life

While we all face challenges in life, we are arguably our own worst enemies when it comes to conceiving and pursuing goals. This is because we tend to create boundaries and excuses that limit our ambitions, either due to a fear of failure or a lack of self-belief.

These self-imposed restrictions can be difficult to lift, unless you commit to learning from your mistakes and heeding the meaning of pivotal life lessons. With this approach, you can gradually coach your mind, change your outlook and practice skills that free your mind from inhibitions.

8 Important Life Lessons that we must continually learn for a better life

With this in mind, what are the key lessons that we must continue to learn if we are to enjoy a more fulfilling life? Here are eight of the most important:

1. You are never too old to learn new things

This is arguably the most important life lessons, as we often tell ourselves that we are too old or jaded to accept new challenges. This is a debilitating misconception, however, and one that has been contradicted by a host of famous people throughout history. World renowned fashion designer Vera Lang did not create a garment until she was 39, for example, while the now-deceased Hollywood actor Alan Rickman didn’t land an adult film role until he was 28.

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The lesson here is simple, as quite simply it is never too late to accept exciting challenges and learn new skills for the better.

2. You can turn mistakes into Positive Learning Experiences

On a similar note, we have already touched on the fact that there is a tendency to avoid difficult challenges because of an innate fear of failure. It was Theodore Roosevelt who opined that “the only man who never makes a mistake is the man who never does anything.” This reaffirms that we must take risks and push ourselves if we are to achieve life goals.

It also underlines the importance of embracing our mistakes, turning them into positive learning exercises and using them to shape our future efforts.

3. You can leave the past and move on

Our innermost fears and insecurities are often linked to our pasts, which subconsciously alter our outlooks and change the ways in which we think about the future. Just as you can learn from mistakes and glean positives from failure, you can also heed lessons from past experiences before leaving them behind and moving on with your life. Of course, this is far easier said than done, but the process of altering your mind-set for the better begins with accepting the things that have happened in the past and leveraging them as a springboard for a brighter future. Arguably one of the most important life lessons that you will ever learn, this prevents failures and hardship from hindering your development over time.

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4. You can alter your Outlook through the use of Colour

As we can see, our mood and outlook are extremely important in shaping how we think about specific events. They also dictate our feelings from day to day, meaning that those who are already prone to bouts of anxiety or insecurity can suffer from regular fluctuations in mood and attitude. With this in mind, it is important that you tailor your surroundings to drive positive sentiment and create an environment in which you are comfortable and happy.

One way to achieve this is through the use of colour, as alternative shades solicit different moods and emotions. As individuals, there are also cultural, psychological and physical factors that influence how we perceive colours, so understanding these can help us to create living and working environments that bring the best out of our psyches.

5. You can always make a difference in someone’s Life

When you encounter difficult times or find yourself weighed down with insecurity, it is easy to believe that nobody truly cares for you. This is simply not true, however, as we all have friends and loved ones who care a great deal about us and believe in the unique value that we offer as individuals.

It is important to appreciate this, and maintain a sense of perspective when evaluating our lives. After all, we have an unconscious ability to impact on the lives of those who love us, as they tend to share our sadness and sense of loss. If we are able to recognise our own importance and seek out the positives in this, we can make a huge difference in the lives of our friends and family members.

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6. You are not going to be liked by everyone

Conversely, it is important to recognise that you are not going to have such a positive impact on everyone. In fact, there are some people who will dislike you throughout the course of your life, and this can be extremely distressing for those with insecurities or low-esteem who are desperately keen to please everyone.

You must learn that is OK not to be liked by everyone, however, and that this is an inescapable fact of life. This is a life lesson that can be exceptionally difficult to absorb, but the key is to focus on the individuals who are close to you and learn to appreciate their opinions ahead of others. After all, these people know you better than anyone and offer a far greater gauge of your popularity.

7. You must take responsibility for your own life

This is a tricky one, as blame culture can take hold when we experience hardship or negative events in our lives. This causes us to blame other people and external circumstances for the issues that we have encountered, which just so happens one of the main character traits of those who struggle to cope with the demands of everyday life.

This was evident in the wake of the great recession, when the world’s leading banks were blamed for irresponsible lending. Customers also borrowed more than they could afford to repay, however, and many struggled to take responsibility for their own finances during this time. This is the key to a happy and successful existence, as it creates a more proactive mind-set and enables you to assume greater control over the course that your life will take.

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8. You can do anything that your mind is able to conceive

If there is one trait that distinguishes positive people, it is an ability to think positively. More specifically, they understand that they are capable of achieving anything that their mind is able to conceive, so long as they are willing to showcase determination, work-ethic and a forward-thinking outlook.

Take the example of Nick Vujicic, for example, who was born with no arms and legs and yet has gone on to become a globally-renowned evangelist and source of inspiration for millions of people across the world. He has achieved this through the power of faith and positive thinking, which has enabled him to absorb his experiences and leverage them for good.

With this type of outlook, you can eliminate the inhibitions and limitations that often close your mind to new and exciting opportunities.

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Last Updated on January 16, 2020

12 Simple Ways to Boost Your Confidence Right Now

12 Simple Ways to Boost Your Confidence Right Now

The way you feel about yourself greatly influences how you live and interact with others. If you are confident about yourself, you tend to see yourself positively and actually enjoy spending time with and around people. You don’t feel self-conscious or awkward around others, and that allows you to live your fullest and happiest life.

However, if you’re drowning in a sea of self-doubt, hesitancy and shyness, you often withdraw and isolate yourself from others and avoid interacting and connecting with people. That anxiety you feel in the pit of your stomach when you are around people is holding you back greatly and it is not good for your emotional health and overall well-being. You need to do something about it if you are low in self-confidence or have friends or family members who are not confident.

“Confidence isn’t walking into a room thinking you’re better than everyone, it’s walking in not having to compare yourself to anyone” – Anonymous

Here are simple, practical tips to boost your confidence right now and make you feel and act your best.

1. Stop labeling yourself as awkward, timid or shy.

When you label yourself as awkward, timid or shy, you sub-consciously tell your mind to act accordingly and psychologically feel inclined to live up to those expectations. Instead of labeling and entertaining negative self-talk, visualize and affirm yourself as confident and strong. Close your eyes for a minute and visualize yourself in different situation as you would like to be.

Be your own cheerleader. Experts believe that positive affirmation and good mental practices like picturing yourself winning or achieving a goal can lead to greater feelings of self-assurance and prepare your brain for success.[1] As the saying goes, “seeing is believing.” Picture yourself as confident and soon enough you will begin to manifest behavior that gives evidence to this new ‘fact.’

2. Recognize that the world is not focused on you (unless, of course, you are Kanye West).

That means you don’t have to be excessively sensitive about who you are or what you are doing (or not doing). You are not on the center stage; there is no need for preoccupation with self and perfectionism. As rap music star Rocko sings, “You just do you and I will do me, aight?”

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Forget about trying to please everyone or being perfect. Trying to be perfect and being a people-pleaser puts too much pressure on you and creates unnecessary anxiety. Besides, people are too preoccupied with their own issues to pay much attention to your every move unless, of course, you are a mega famous, super celebrity like Beyonce or Kanye West.

3. Focus on other people as opposed to yourself.

If you are low on confidence, self-conscious, nervous and shy in social situations, focus your attention on other people and what they are saying or doing instead of focusing on your own awkwardness.

For example, think about what it is that is interesting about the person who’s the centre of the party or the guy or girl you are talking with. Prompt them to talk more about themselves and be genuinely curious and interested in what they say. You will instantly come across as confident and warmhearted.

People generally want to talk about themselves, be heard and understood. They will love it when you’re eager and willing to listen to them and really hear what they have to say.

This habit of focusing more on what you love in others as opposed to what you dislike in yourself will not only help you become more assertive and comfortable in virtually all social situations, but also instantly make you feel great about yourself.

4. Know (and accept) yourself for who you are.

Chinese military general, strategist and philosopher Sun Tzu, author of the internationally acclaimed book The Art of War, said, “Know yourself and you will win all battles.” Even in the battle with lack of confidence, you will need to know yourself to win.

Knowing yourself starts with understanding that people are not all the same, neither are all social situation suitable for everyone. You might not be confident in large gatherings, but you could be bold and confident in one-on-one and small group interactions. We all have our own unique gifts and unique ways of expressing ourselves. Embrace yours!

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Introverts, for example, have a quiet confidence that is, unfortunately, often confused for shyness. They are naturally low key and prefer to spend time alone. However, this natural disposition affords them certain unique gifts, such as an ability to listen better than most people and notice things that others don’t.

Your uniqueness is where your strength and advantage lies. You won’t be comfortable and confident in all situations all the time. Albert Einstein said,

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

5. Crack a smile.

If there is one sure way to instantly boost your confidence, it’s cracking a smile. Christine Clapp, a public speaking expert at The George Washington University, says that flashing those pretty, pearly white teeth will immediately make you appear both confident and composed. But, the effect of smiling is not just external. Studies show that smiling can also help nix feelings of stress and pave the way for a happier and more relaxed you.[2]

Not a bad return for something seemingly so trite, wouldn’t you agree?

6. Break a sweat—with exercise.

Working out is another great way to make yourself feel amazing and confident. Science has shown that exercising increases your endorphins, helps reduce stress, tones your muscles and makes you feel happy and confident.[3]

And hey, all you have to do is take a walk a few times a week and you’ll see the benefits. What seems to matter—as far as your confidence goes—is whether you break a sweat, not how strenuous your session is, which is pretty cool. Start working out now.

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7. Groom yourself.

This might seem mundane, but it’s amazing how much of a difference a shower and shave can have on your confidence and self-image. And when you spritz on a scent, the boost on confidence and self-esteem is incredible. As it turns out, your favorite fragrance does more than make you smell oh-so-nice.

A study found that a fragrance can inspire confidence in men. Interestingly, the study also found that the more a man likes the fragrance, the more confident he might feel. Another study found that 90% of women feel more confident while wearing a scent than those who go fragrance-free.

8. Dress nicely.

Another one that might seem trite, but it works. If you dress nicely, you’ll instantly feel good about yourself and give your confidence a real boost. That is largely because you’ll feel attractive, presentable and sometimes even successful in nice clothes.

While dressing nicely means something different for everyone, it does not necessarily mean wearing $500 designer outfits. It means wearing clothes that are clean, that you are comfortable in and that are nice-looking and presentable, including casual clothes.

9. Do activities you enjoy.

Whether it is reading a book, playing a musical instrument, riding your bicycle or going fishing, do what you really enjoy and what makes you truly happy often. It will boost your self-esteem, soothe your ego and allow you to identify with your gifts and talents. That will in turn bolster your self-belief and grow your confidence exponentially.

You might not become popular for doing what you love, but you might not even want to be popular at all. Being popular doesn’t make you happy; doing what you love does.

10. Prepare for the possibility of rejection / setback.

Late World No. 1 professional tennis player Arthur Ashe said, “One important key to success is self-confidence. A key to self-confidence is preparation.” You need to prepare for the possibility of rejection and setback.

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Why?

Everybody suffers rejection and setback at one point or another. You are not exempted. The question on your mind, therefore, should not be if you will be rejected, but how you will handle rejection when it comes.

Prepare yourself adequately in every situation to minimize the risk and effect of rejection and so that your confidence is not broken. For example, learn public speaking and rehearse what you are going to say beforehand if you have landed a public speaking engagement. That way, you are sure of yourself and confident you have what it takes to hack it. If you are rejected, don’t take it personally.

Rejection and setbacks happen to the best of us. Take it as a learning experience. Learn from your mistakes and move on.

11. Face uncomfortable situations square in the face.

Don’t run away from uncomfortable situations. Running away from people or situations because you feel scared, shy or timid only confirms and reinforces your shyness. Instead, face the situation that makes you uneasy square in the face. For example, go ahead and talk to that person you are afraid to approach, or go straight to the front of your yoga class! What’s the worst that can happen?

Prepare and be ready for any eventuality. The more you face your fears, the more you realize you are stronger than you thought and the more confident you get. This simple, yet admittedly courageous, act makes you unstoppable. You get comfortable being uncomfortable and begin to feel like you can take on the world. And that is the hallmark of someone destined for great things.

12. Sit up straight and walk tall—you are awesome!

Yes, sit up straight and believe you are awesome. Don’t slump in your chair or slouch your shoulders. Experts say the right stance can not only keep your self-esteem and mood lifted, but also lead to more confidence in your own thoughts.[4]

The way to sit is to open up your chest and keep your head level so that you look and feel poised and assured. And when you get up, stand tall and walk like you’re on a mission. People who sit up straight and walk tall are more attractive and instantly feel more confident. Try it now: you’ll feel fierce and confident just by sitting up straight and walking tall.

Featured photo credit: Freshh Connection via unsplash.com

Reference

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