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Painful Regrets Are Necessary Because That’s How We Learn

Painful Regrets Are Necessary Because That’s How We Learn

An ancient wisdom that has resonated for generations is that when you reach your darkest hour, all is not gloom and doom. You can truly shine. It may sound cliche, but it’s not that the feeling of being ashamed is welcomed or appropriate, it’s a necessary key to open pathways and let go- to start afresh on a new soul journey.

John Jerryson, a banker, came to the awareness that he had lived all his life opposite to his true desires. His dreams and his passions all wasted away when he chose to follow the security of a steady, “safe” 9-7 job. A sleep, eat, and work pattern consumed all energy and precious time of the once robust, energetic, and innovative soul. He strived towards reaching corporate career ladder heights, leaving behind his family, friends, ambitions, and passion. It’s a painful regret for him, but he turned out to realize the greatest lesson in life. He even shared his story on the internet and wanted to remind others about the most important things in life.

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The Benefits of Shame

People usually avoid shame even when it is warranted. However, there can be benefits to shame. Think of it this way. To have an ability of self-reflection to review your own mistakes and analyze how a better path is possible is common wisdom.

The general tendency is for people to fail to accept the consequences of their actions. Take a trip down memory lane into childhood. Remember the wagging fingers with voices droning on about learning lessons as you rolled your eyes? That reaction was not mere parental frustration. Admitting failure is a step toward maturity. No one likes to feel depressed, but all of us can recall the embarrassment from our wrong doings. Maybe we are just pieces on a chessboard in the game of life. We are moving ourselves, and sometimes we make mistakes that we have to live with.

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Psychology Today defines regret as  “a negative cognitive/emotional state that involves blaming ourselves for a bad outcome, feeling a sense of loss or sorrow at what might have been or wishing we could undo a previous choice that we made.”

On the life path of battling our fears and seeking to be courageous, mistakes will invariably be made. We make decisions that are wrong. We misunderstand. Sometimes we suffer serious consequences and deal with the aftermath of disappointment. Regret erodes our efforts to achieve our aspirations.

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The Consistency In Regret

The three areas of life about which there is the most regret are education, romance, and career. People are haunted by what could have been or should have been according to a meta-analysis. It is well known that people regret things that they did not do more than the things they did do.  People regret actions immediately after they happen, but as time passes ideally they undergo psychological immunity by learning from mistakes.

Rejoicing In Regret

Being ashamed is not about being sorry for your existence. Rather it is a quiet reflection with a gradual resolution to take a differing action in a similar circumstance the next time. Seeking true enlightenment is not about running away from your vulnerabilities or camouflaging them to put up a confident image to impress others. It is a moment of stillness from normal life, shutting out the sounds of ego, and focusing on vulnerabilities.

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We are unique in our visualization of opportunities, but what we all have in common is that when an opportunity has passed us by we all lament, “I wish I had pursued what I wanted”;  “I should have seized the opportunity- taken the chance”; “I could have used my talents or skills”; “I wish I had not been afraid to follow my dreams”.

It is never too late to learn from experiences and seize opportunities awaiting us. Do not fear making mistakes. Embrace the learning curve and lay out a new life map.

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Nena Tenacity

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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