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5 Best Islands To Definitely Visit In 2017

5 Best Islands To Definitely Visit In 2017

Traveling is one of man’s given gifts. Like birds migrating, we definitely enjoy the joys of traveling. We enjoy the sight of a new view and the taste of a new culture. Often times, we explore a place that is completely different compared to our usual lifestyle. These adventures become part of our sweet memories.

Islands have always been one of the famous destinations to just wind down and kick off our shoes. Off goes those pinching shoes as we snuggle our feet beneath the warm sand. It’s the time where we enjoy the sight of the never ending blue waters and be mesmerized by all the marine life it preserves.

However, how do we choose the best islands to bask in? What are the best islands?

It can be a huge dilemma which this article is going to narrow down for you. Now you can easily arrange your travel plans.

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    Temple, Credits: Bangkok Portals, Bali Indonesia

    1. Bali, Indonesia

    Bali has been a tourist hotspot for years, however, there’s more to Bali than the edges of it. The traditional massages and the usual spas are definitely perfect for relaxing or for a long honeymoon, however,  take the chance to explore the smaller islands around Bali.

    With a niche for temples and a mixture of culture, you’ll definitely find hidden treasures there. You’ll be surprised by the friendliness and the welcoming attitude by most of the locals on the smaller islands. If you love to fish, enjoy experiences with the locals and a great bargain for amazing fish, Bali as well as its surroundings are perfect for you.

    Although keep in mind that the monsoon period ends in the beginning of March hence if you’re planning to head there it’s wise to keep track of your calender.

      Google Images, Maui Hawaii

      2. Maui, Hawaii

      Maui is the third biggest islands in Hawaii. With it being both the financial as well as the traveling hub, this island is acclimated to all travelers’ needs. An island that hosts two amazing volcanoes, you’ll have the chance to take a peak at the Haleakala crater—an experience that not many has had the opportunity to enjoy.

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      Maui also hosts one of the vastest varieties of marine life. Since the marine habitat is an important part of the Hawaiian culture, they’re protected and respected hence you’ll have to keep in mind not to destroy the corals or litter around the water. On the other hand, you’ll have the opportunity to surf, enjoy the finest fish and mingle with the locals as well as understand and participate in their culture.

      Maui has its own weather: it usually rains in the night as well as the early morning. If you’re planning for a nice surf, be sure to ask the locals for the best spots as well as the best weather during the week.

        Happy Couples,Google Images, Canary Islands

        3. Lanzarote , Canary Islands

        Lanzarote is one of the smaller islands in the cluster of the Canary Islands. A rather gated island, it’s famous for travelers or tourists who are looking for a spot that isn’t populated and touristy. A fancy island wonderland, Lanzarote offers visitors to embark on different adventures. Its crystal clear water makes it perfect for snorkeling and or diving. One can describe the experience as a feast to the eyes, especially watching the multi-colored corals.

        It’s a perfect place for couples who are looking to spend their honeymoon or rekindle their romance. You can enjoy a beautiful fine dining experience during the night and in the day you can take a walk down the vineyards and sip on your favorite glass of red wine.

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        Lanzarote is also famous for its hospitality and international crowd, hence you might end up making some amazing friends during your vacation there.

          Kayaking, Credits :Borneo Beach Villas, Borneo Malaysia

          4.Borneo, Malaysia

          An untouched land, that’s what one can describe Borneo. It’s situated and surrounded by rainforests, caves, and water. Its crystal clear water makes it perfect for divers to discover marine life while it also makes a perfect place to swim with the sharks. If you’re an adventurer by heart, then Borneo would be perfect for you as you can constantly enjoy different activities throughout your trip.

          Borneo is also the home for the world largest flower, the Rafflesia. It’s a flower that smells like rotting flesh, but looks beautiful.

          As prices there are rather reasonable, you won’t have a problem enjoying your time there. Be sure to always enjoy the local delicacies, as it’s the pride and joy of Borneo. If you’re invited to stay in the long houses of the locals, always keep in mind of their tradition and culture, as in that part of the world respect can take you a long way.

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            Snorkeling , Credits : Pacific Holidays , Viti Levu ,

            5.Viti Levu, Republic Of Fiji

            Viti Levu is the largest island of the Republic of Fiji. Although in comparison it’s smaller than Connecticut, USA. Its small land allows it to retain its uniqueness and the Fijian culture. Due to it rarely being a famous tourist destination, it’s kept its beauty and travelers are accustomed to adapting with the locals instead of being an outsider.

            Viti Levu would be the perfect destination for friends to celebrate or meet up as its close knit community encourages bonding and enjoying each others’ company. It’s said that the island of Viti Levu has been submerged and covered in lava many times that the rugged terrains and the aftermath of those incidents still remain.

            Native Fijians strongly believe in their culture and heritage, even though the island’s small you’ll definitely discover treasures that will always keep that island close to your mind and heart.

            Therefore, if you’re planning to travel to an island soon, take these places into consideration; you’ll definitely have an adventure.

            Featured photo credit: Google Images via travelobservers.com

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            Last Updated on January 15, 2021

            7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

            7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

            The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

            Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

            Posture

            First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

            • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
            • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
            • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
            • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

            All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

            Facial Expressions

            Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

            • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
            • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
            • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

            If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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            1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

            A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

            The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

            This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

            2. Relax Your Face

            New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

            The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

            To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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            3. Improve Your Eye Contact

            Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

            The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

            To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

            3. Smile More

            There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

            Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

            4. Hand Gestures

            Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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            It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

            5. Enhance Your Handshake

            In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

            “Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

            It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

            6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

            As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

            Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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            Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

            Final Takeaways

            Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

            If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

            More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

            Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

            Reference

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