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Which Countries Can You Go On A Couples Retreat During Autumn,

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Which Countries Can You Go On A Couples Retreat During Autumn,

Autumn is a season of joy, a season where the leaves fall in golden brown, decorating the skies and the streets. You pull out the exquisite scarf you’ve saved all summer, to brag in the autumn. You walk out with your umbrella envisioning yourself as Kate Upton, strutting down the streets. For some, Autumn is the best season, a season where Starbucks starts serving Pumpkin Lattes and a season where love and romance linger in the air.

For couples, you enjoy that warm cuddle and cozy companionship and for singles, it’s the time to find romance. A summer fling is something wild and crazy, while a fallen love is a beautiful pain like Romeo and Juliet. However, modern day’s Romeo and Juliet’s have enjoyed traveling since meeting each other isn’t such a hazardous attempt anymore.

However, Autumn always proves a challenge to travel, so where can couples travel during Autumn? Is there a place where one can wine, dine and relax? Fortunately, there are tons of countries that offer a memorable travel hence I’ve put together the top 4 countries that would definitely be a wonderful Autumn travel.

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    1.South Korea, A Cultural Soul.

    South Korea is a land known for its unique culture towards plastic surgery and it’s love for modernization. It’s a culturally interesting and friendly world compared to their brother North Korea. It’s a country filled with culture and old school heritage, where the old try to keep their belief’s alive, while the young try to keep their modern integrity run wild. Visiting South Korea in Autumn is the best way to start this beautiful season.

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    Start with exploring the modern city of Seoul and embrace the skyscrapers. Walk towards the sauna’s and enjoy a steam and spend the whole day there. Seoul has one of the largest markets for Sauna’s, if you enjoy shopping then walk through the gigantic Sauna malls and treat yourself with some great products. You’ll be able to find everything from make-up to exquisite skin care. Once you guys are done pampering yourselves, head up to the Gwangjang Market, one of the food paradises of South Korea. For all foodies out there, the long stretched market offers more than what beholds the eye, I’m pretty sure you and your partner might find some exquisite Kimchi and Bibimbap on that street.

    However, don’t stop there because South Korea has a lot more to offer and one of it is the exquisite Jeju Island. Jeju Island is the South Korean’s wonderland, it’s amazing beach and wonderful nature gathers people there despite the season. Take a nature walk and hike up its wonderful mountains, you and your partner will find relief in the midst of all the chaos.

    If history and a sense of thrill are what you and your partner seek, then South Korea is the perfect place. You’ll be able to find tons of palaces and might even stand a chance to visit the DMZ borders. It will be a couple trips that you might not forget.

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      2.Canada, Where Smiles Are Something Free.

      Land of Smiles, the land of the patriotic mix of colors, culture, history and finally the land of beauty. It’s a country where romance, history, and adventure comes together in one country. It’s a country where the moose’s, as well as all wildlife animals, are protected and cared for the same way as humans. Hence, for you romantics out there, Canada is definitely the perfect place to start this fall.

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      Take a trip to Quebec, to enjoy the fine French History where you wine and dine with a great glass wine.  Stroll around and enjoy the beautiful architecture and indulge in the finer aspects of the UNESCO heritage. For cheese lovers, this city will definitely be paradise, as every store you walk pass, you’ll definitely be able to indulge in the smell and taste the tang of the pungent cheese. Imagine Quebec is the mini Europe of that continent. However, don’t stop there and take a chance to visit Victoria and Vancouver Island where you’ll find yourself indulged with the English Counterparts. Enjoy a stroll along the harbor to watch whales and you’ll be able to find various places to enjoy a delicious cup of tea, crackers and let the English person in you presents itself.

      However, if you’re a nature lover then hike up to the Niagara Falls bordering America and enjoy that beautiful man-made view. While you’re up there, you’ll also stand a chance to view the Rainbow bridge and enjoy its beautiful scenery. However, there’s more Canada can offer to bring a couple closer together from its harp seals to its delicious food.

      So if you ever find yourself envisioning moving there, don’t be afraid to take that chance.

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        3.South Africa, Watch The Wildlife from A Competition.

        Recently, many organizations have opened up volunteer opportunities for many wildlife sanctuaries. People from all around the world are heading to South Africa for its nature and to watch wildlife’s live in their own comfort. It’s an opportunity that many don’t take lightly due to its uniqueness. It’s beautiful beaches and aquatic life preserves are also something to be admired and enjoyed.

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        For couples who are passionate and Princess Diana by heart, then South Africa is the best place. South Africa is a challenging place for couples because it never is a typical vacation, that’s where you actually challenge yourself and challenge your unity. You will have to work and strive together whilst volunteering, which would definitely challenge your teamwork with one another. Take this chance to get to know your relationship better by volunteering and indulging in the scenic wildlife.

        In life a relationship can take a toll when it’s under stress, therefore if you are looking to challenge your relationship and share your futures with one another then South Africa will be the best place to start. If you’re there this fall, then enjoy the awesome markets in Cape Town and indulge in the South Africans culture.

        HAVANA, CUBA, FEBRUARY 16, 2014 : Stilt dancers in the streets of Havana. Havana is the largest city in the Caribbean and its center is inscribed on Unesco World Heritage list.

          4.Cuba, Dance, and Salsa All Day All Night.

          When you hear music, dance and salsa the one thing that comes to mind is Cuba. Beautiful beaches and the happiest of people is what Cuba is all about. It’s filled with people who are in love with just happiness and dance, hence it’s one of the biggest reasons Cuba was nominated as one of the world’s happiest countries in the world. Despite its economic turmoil, it’s one of the most socially connected countries in the world.

          For couples who are just looking forward to bond, replenish their tired souls and their relationship, then Cuba would be the country to do so. You can enjoy the beautiful beaches and dance all around the four corners. The embrace of what is the leftover of communism and take a ride in those classic American cars. For dancers and non – dancers, Cuba opens up a new journey to a new hobby and a different lifestyle.

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          If you’re from a city filled with loud noises and stress, then Cuba will be the place where you can unwind and be attracted once again. A romantic and fun city are what you need before getting back to a cold winter season.

          In Conclusion

          Our world is a great place to take adventures and for couples, it’s a wonderland. You have someone amazing by your side to share every experience with, so take this season to treasure it and embark on a mesmerizing journey. Take time and enjoy Autumn to the fullest before beginning the winter journey.

          Featured photo credit: Google images via previews.123rf.com

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          Last Updated on July 20, 2021

          How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)

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          How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)

          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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