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If Your Mind Is Always Filled With This Thought, You’ll Be More Successful

If Your Mind Is Always Filled With This Thought, You’ll Be More Successful

Can you think about the last time you felt really nervous about something important to you? Maybe you needed to speak publicly in front of a room full of people, run a big meeting at the office, or interview for a job with other applicants you feel are much more qualified than you. Whatever it may be, there are countless situations throughout life that will make you feel as small as an ant.

It’s normal to feel inferior from time to time. It’s a struggle that many face. However, there are many people around you who encourage you to stay strong, focused, and positive, and to stand firmly behind what you believe in. If you can hold on to those things, you’re more likely to be successful.

Superiority could be your downfall

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    It’s true, for the most part, that we’ve all been conditioned to believe that having feelings of inferiority is bad, but I think just the opposite. Many of us have a strong sense of superiority, and that can cause many problems. The root of the problem begins with someone thinking, “I’m superior to others.” It endorses a defective model of being that’s “self as an object.”

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    The thing is, only objects can be assessed and compared. That is essentially what the mind is doing when it comes up with the notions of superiority and inferiority – it forms fixed ideas about “I am a certain way,” and about how others are. A human cannot be compared; it’s one of those “does not apply” operations, just like dividing by zero.

    Continued feelings of superiority can become roadblocks when it comes to furthering progress and reaching a higher level of success. It’s like walking through life with blinders on, unable to see what is going on around you. Having this mindset can really stand in the way of self-improvement.

    Inferiority can be a tool for growth

    I get it though; feeling inferior just turns a day into another painful experience. We feel inferior when we engage in comparison. It comes from an ego-based perspective where we find ourselves or others lacking in some way. Quite honestly, this doesn’t benefit anyone involved. You can lose motivation and the desire to become more successful. It can even cause you to become unnecessarily hostile.

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    One must realize that it isn’t so much the comparison that is unhelpful, but rather how you approach it. The act of comparing isn’t the problem, it’s the meaning you attach to what you find when comparing.

    When you feel that envy is on the horizon, you know how uncomfortable you’re going to feel. Here is where you have to make a decision: You can either beat yourself up over the space between where you are currently and where they are, or you can ask yourself, “What can I learn from this person to get myself closer to where I want to be?” These options are based on ego gratification and validation, the other is based on self-compassion with the strong desire to live the best life you can. Of course, making a decision like this isn’t easy to do when you’re in the moment, but it is very possible.

    When you feel inferior and “not enough,” try and look at it as a chance for growth. If you’re comparing yourself to someone you aspire to be like, take the opportunity to reach out and ask them for advice and/or tips on how they’ve reached their level of success.

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    Embrace the rocky road you travel

    It’s hard for anyone to see the positives when it comes to feeling inferior, but they are there. It isn’t abnormal to feel envious of those who are more successful than you. It happens, and it’s okay to feel that way.

    What isn’t okay is to let yourself fall into a rut that is really hard to get out of. Today, people want all the benefits that come with success without having to do the hard work that comes along with it. A lot of people feel they deserve things handed to them on a silver platter. That’s where the superiority comes into play. It can make one very ignorant.

    You can be confident while still remaining unsure of yourself. You can feel satisfied with your level of success and still have the desire to reach higher ground. You can feel both superior and inferior when you have a healthy combination. It’s important to feel that you are doing a great job, but are still aspiring to be more to reach your fullest potential.

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    The choice is yours.

    More by this author

    Erica Wagner

    Erica is a passionate writer who shares inspiring ideas and lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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    Last Updated on October 9, 2020

    Find out How to Study Effectively With These 6 Tips

    Find out How to Study Effectively With These 6 Tips

    Learning is a lifelong endeavor and one that we can all hopefully learn to enjoy. One way to boost learning is through effective study techniques and habits. Once you learn how to study effectively, learning will get significantly easier, both in the classroom and out.

    There are several study habits that are pivotal to know in order to study effectively and properly. These techniques could be the deciding factor as to whether you pass or fail or, more importantly, learn. These 6 techniques will help you learn how to study effectively.

    1. Take Notes

    In order to study, a person is required to understand what he or she is learning. A great way of understanding/learning is by making notes of the content you are reading[1]. Note-taking may including making linear notes, diagrams, charts, etc.

    The key to taking notes when learning how to study effectively is limiting your notes to the most important and complex information, and making it all as simple as possible. Trying to write down everything you hear is a recipe for disaster, as you will simply become overwhelmed when looking back at what you’ve written.

    An exceptional note making style is using summaries. Summaries are a written record of all the important points in a short and concise version. They’re excellent for using when an exam is fast approaching. However, if this doesn’t work for the subject matter or if you’re more creative, try mapping instead[2].

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    Use mind mapping when learning how to study effectively.

      2. Practice

      Studying is meant to enable you to apply your learned knowledge to real life situations, so if you want to learn how to study effectively, focus on practice.

      The best way to study is by practicing with realistic examples and questions. As one TED article points out, “Practice is the repetition of an action with the goal of improvement, and it helps us perform with more ease, speed, and confidence”[3].

      For example, if you have a big interview coming up, how will you prepare for it? You’ll likely study types of questions typically asked in interviews. The most effective next step would be finding a friend to do a mock-interview with you. One article points out that “a mock interview helps you learn how to answer difficult questions, develop interview strategies, improve your communication skills, and reduce your stress before an actual job interview”[4].

      Placing yourself in these kinds of practice testing situations will help you recreate the emotions you’ll likely feel in the actual situation, so you won’t be taken off guard when the time comes.

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      3. Improve Your Study Area

      Often enough, we study in a place that we feel comfortable in, but this has both pros and cons. Make sure that the room you’re studying in is not too cold or too warm. A cold room will make you feel uneasy, whereas an overly warm room will make you feel lethargic and lazy.

      Ensure that it’s not in an area with a lot of traffic that will work to distract you. If there is a lot of distracting background noise, consider putting on some relaxing music to drown it out[5].

      Furthermore, ensure that your study space is free of clutter. Research shows that clutter significantly increases chances of procrastination[6]. Other studies have suggested that having excess clutter can increase stress and levels of cortisol. Therefore, if you really want a productive study hour, make sure your workspace is clean first.

      4. Eliminate Distractions

      You may need to decipher between a distraction and an interruption when learning how to study effectively. A distraction can come in the form of open social media pages or a crying child, whereas an interruption can be anything from a phone ringing to an unexpected visitor showing up.

      While interruptions are nearly impossible to control, it is possible to eliminate the majority of distractions for certain periods of time. Choose a time when you’re alone or it’s quiet enough for you to study. It takes a lot of concentration to study properly, and there’s no guarantee that you can focus again once your train of thought is disturbed.

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      If you have to use your computer to study, close out of all social media pages. If you have small children, ask your partner to keep them occupied in the meantime. There is often a solution for the distractions that each of us have to deal with in life, so get creative.

      5. Set Goals

      In order to make progress with your studies when learning how to study effectively, it’s great if you set mini goals or objectives for yourself. Set out an allocated amount of work you want to complete for a day and make sure you do it. Every time you accomplish a mini goal, reward yourself with some free time. This will assure that you’re properly motivated and certainly won’t suffer from a burn out from over-studying.

      Deadlines can be hugely helpful in motivating us to get things done. One study suggests that “as we approach a deadline, or get near to completing a task, this has the effect of reducing ‘opportunity costs’ – essentially, the lure of all the other things you could be doing instead”[7].

      If you know you have a big exam coming up in a day or two, make a deadline for yourself. For example, tell yourself: “I will read these three chapters before 10 pm tonight.” You can even set a reward for when you complete your goal on time.

      You can read more on creating effective deadlines in this article.

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      6. Follow a Healthy Routine

      When learning how to study effectively, a healthy routine is important to your success. Your body needs to brace itself for intense studying, which is why you should get at least 8 hours of sleep, keeping in mind that the amount of time you sleep before 12 counts the most.

      Have a proper diet, including not living off energy drinks or takeout. A proper diet consists of 3 to 5 meals a day with average portions. If you need energy, opt for whole grains instead of processed grains to ensure your body is able to slowly process the food, offering consistent energy for the study session ahead.

      The greatest obstacle to face is having a balanced lifestyle, as studying is very time and energy consuming, which is why an overall healthy lifestyle is highly recommended.

      Final Thoughts

      Whether you’re studying for a big interview, a final exam, or a certification, learning how to study effectively is crucial to your success. Follow the tips above to ensure that the time you spend studying is time used well.

      More Tips on Studying Effectively

      Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

      Reference

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