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7 Simple Tricks to Jumpstart Major Lifestyle Changes

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7 Simple Tricks to Jumpstart Major Lifestyle Changes

Nowadays, there are a lot of people who feel unhappy. They seem unsatisfied with their lives in general and, although most of them can actually change that all on their own, as there are no other factors that hold us back but ourselves, they somehow choose not to. But, how can you blame them? Turning your life around is not a simple thing.

It takes dedication and persistence. You have to learn to love yourself more in order to be happier. For most people, the problem lies in their tendencies to enter their comfort zones and never ever step out of them. Additionally, they don’t really think about their lives, and they never try to analyze what bothers them; to pinpoint the exact things that have a negative effect on them or those that work in a good way.

Making the first step is usually the most difficult thing, and once you get that done, everything will go easier from there. In this post, I will try to talk about the things you can do to motivate yourself in order to stick with the new things in your life.

People are complacent, and we all need a spark to jumpstart progress and to keep us motivated during those first few months, while you are still getting used to all the changes. Here are the things you can do to make this process easier and finally make the changes you want.

Before you start doing anything, the first thing you should do is to set your goals.

1. Don’t think too much, but act

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    One of the biggest reasons why a lot of people don’t go through with their changes is that they overthink everything. Sometimes, simplicity is essential. Just think about it. When was the last time you thought about doing something but decided not to go through with it? Did you think that it was a good idea, but then you started to dig deeper, and suddenly a lot of obstacles started piling up and, soon enough, you gave up on that idea?

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    Picturing the obstacles in your head can be a good thing if you do this for the sake of preparation, but a lot of us just put stress on ourselves. We invoke negativity that ultimately drives us away from actually doing something. Every drastic change that seriously affects our lifestyle takes time, and we tend to go through all the possible scenarios in our head, all at once.

    This becomes overwhelming and a person can easily get scared when they realize the volume of the work and effort they must put in. Additionally, when a person is unsatisfied with their life, chances are that there is not much motivation there for doing new things. By overthinking, that person will only get negative results.

    Instead of doing this, you should immediately get to it and start doing the things you think are good for you, without putting in much thought. Bit by bit, you will accomplish a lot. These small victories will motivate you even further. No one can predict the future. Things simply happen, and it is out of your control.

    2. Creating a morning routine

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      Every day starts by getting up in the morning (like you didn’t know that already…); but seriously, it is important that you start your day right so that you can build on it with a winning attitude. You might not think that this is so important (neither did I), but once I started doing exactly what helps me wake up and get a positive flow running first thing in the morning, my everyday challenges became a lot easier.

      Regardless of your current occupation, a good morning routine will help you do better. Now, don’t be scared thinking that “a morning routine” is something terrifying and serious. No, it’s just defining the “rituals” that have a positive effect on you in the morning. For example, turn on some music straight away, open your windows to feel the sun, do some exercises, etc.

      Simply put, whatever helps you wake up your mind and body without annoying you is a good thing. If you have a partner or a spouse, a quickie in the morning to get the blood flowing through your body is an excellent choice. It will most definitely improve your mood. There’s nothing better than some sweet lovin’ in the mornin’.

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      3. Make a deal with another person

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        Usually there are certain lifestyle changes that your family members, friends, or partners want to make as well. If you have somebody who has the same issues as you do, it’s generally a good idea to try and do this together. By partnering up, you will support each other and find it easier to make that essential first step.

        A lot of people can’t make a change because they haven’t done something new for a long time and they have barriers in their head that seem too great to overcome. However, when you share the same troubles with someone else who is in a similar position, both of you will have an easier time making the important first step.

        However, it’s essential that you first make a deal with each other and agree on the exact date when you’ll start doing the activities you both share a passion for. This is your safety net, and it directly reduces the chances of you changing your mind. Why? Simply because we tend not to have much against being dishonest with ourselves, but most good people try to do their best to honor the deals they’ve made with others, especially if they are close to them.

        4. Get the Pocket Yoga app

        I think that the name itself explains pretty much everything. Pocket Yoga is an app which connects practicing yoga with your mobile device. This simple tool features pretty much all the yoga exercises you need. You can choose exercises based on the time needed to finish them, their difficulty level, and type.

        Yoga is one of the best ways to get the exercise you need for a strong posture, a healthy body, and to absorb the positive energy that will fuel your everyday success. It has all the instructions you need, and if you haven’t done any yoga in the past, there are simple exercises to start with.

        With this app, you can incorporate yoga in your busy schedule.

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        5. Cherish your life

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          The modern lifestyle we live can make us forget about how great it is just to be alive, and because of the fact that we have so much information available to us, we focus on other people’s lives instead of our own. Take a moment to sit down and think about your life and focus on the things you have instead of thinking about what others have.

          Looking at the options you have and the things that make you happy can stimulate you to build on them. No matter who your role models are and what they have, they also got there by putting in the effort. It’s important that you adopt a winning mindset and accept challenges instead of sitting back and thinking about how things would have gone if your life had been different.

          6. Accept failure as a normal thing

          Freedom Young beautiful woman stretching her arms into the sky enjoy and happy with fresh air at grassland.

            The first thing you should do is to accept all the failures that you had in the past and deal with them. Nobody is perfect—we all make mistakes—but those who do manage to accomplish their goals are the ones who keep moving forward, who learn new things, and who don’t let their defeats drag them down. This might sound like a cliché, but it’s true. Things don’t always have to be complicated. After you’re through with this, focus on the future and the goals you want to achieve.

            Accepting failure is also important. You might wonder “why should I plan for failure if I’m trying to accomplish something?” This is a good question. By accepting failure, I don’t mean that you should give up on your goals, but to accept the fact that there will be difficulties along the way. If you fail with one method, try a better one, or learn from your mistakes and don’t let them happen to you again.

            By preparing for failure, it will be easier to move on and you won’t be so scared of it, meaning that you will have more courage to invest yourself in changing your lifestyle.

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            7. Get out into the world

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              Sitting at home in front of your computer or TV won’t do you ANY good if you are frustrated with your life. The longer you do this, the more difficult it will be for you to get out there and do something for yourself. Get out, spend time with your friends, meet new people, organize camping trips in nature, climb mountains…Experience life and share stories with people.

              Sometimes all you need can be given to you by another human being and all the answers you seek might be next to you, but you have to be willing to listen. Sometimes it’s just better to stop worrying about the changes you haven’t made. Will and motivation will come on their own. Clear your head, especially when leaving the city and experiencing the calming ways of nature.

              If you do at least half of the aforementioned things and try to understand them completely, I guarantee you that you will start to make serious steps towards achieving the life you want to have. The important thing is to break the procrastination cycle you locked yourself into and to change the way you think.

              Featured photo credit: https://www.pexels.com/u/leah-kelley-50725/ via pexels.com

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              Nemanja Manojlovic

              Editor at MyCity Web

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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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