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10 Signs Your 30s Are Going to Be Awesome

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10 Signs Your 30s Are Going to Be Awesome

Hey—now is the time to stop dreaming and start accomplishing. Time to grow up and get going. Your exciting 20s will soon be gone and your practical 30s will start.

Your 30s are a special time: There are complications but there are achievements. There are challenges but there are winning moments. There are clichés but there is newfound organization and clarity.

One thing is for sure. If you have the right attitude, your 30s will be wonderful. It’s the phase of life where your personal growth will see its peak. The mistakes you made and the experience you gained in your 20s will only polish you.

Here are 10 signs of happiness and why you should celebrate and welcome your wonderful 30s with sparkling smile on your face.

1. You don’t care as much what other people think about you

In your 20s you rebelled against everything—even things you secretly liked.The message was: stop trying to guide me. You told your folks that you weren’t a teenager anymore. You started making your own decisions about what you want from life in life. There were a lot of things you wanted to say “no” to.

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If that describes you in your 20s, it’s a good sign that you’ll stop seeking approval from other people so much in your 30s. In fact, you’ll find that you have to stop. If you do, you’ll be an independent and confident person in your 30s. Maybe you’ve made your share of mistakes but you’ve learned your lessons.

2. You finally figured out what your dream job is

If you’re not happy in your late 20s with your job or the way things are turning out in your career, it’s pretty normal. Maybe you weren’t clear back in college about the academic path that would resonate with you, or you discovered your passion late. Or maybe you landed a job just because you managed to impress the interviewer. You wanted enough cash to pay the bills, go out, and enjoy your twenties. Eventually—finally—you figured out what/where you actually want to be professionally.

You’ll now strive hard to make that dream come true in your 30s. You’ll learn to plan your career moves and settle for nothing less than your ideal job.

3. You actually care about 401(k)s and savings plans

In your late 20s, you start to repent some of that impulse shopping you did, or the money you exhausted on booze and weekend getaways. Your dream assets are used to be a fancy bike, limited edition designer jackets, high heel stilettos, or a Louis Vuitton collection. Now you want to buy a beautiful house or your dream car. But are running out of finances.

That’s why you’ll plan your 30s fantastically. You’ll be financially more stable by saving a huge chunk of your income to support your dream asset. Maybe you’ll even learn how to manage a 401(k) or buy a retirement plan.

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4. You stop kidding around

You’ve started avoiding clubbing, partying and binge drinking on weekdays. You’re not in the mood to upset your boss with hungover mistakes or with drowsy eyes the next morning.

You are settling into a life track. You now make sure to do certain things (read: partying) only on weekends. Or even better, you decide to spend your weekends doing more interesting things. Once you hit your 30s you’re going to rock in your professional life.

5. You figure out health is the way to wealth

Even in your 20s, with all the fun and bingeing, you might start getting concerned about your waistline. But hitting the gym or jogging every day still looks like something for losers.

Sooner or later though, you’ll start thinking about making your workouts fun. You’ll want to be more fit only because you love your body. Weekend hiking, swimming, sports like baseball, rugby, or roller derby—they all start to sound amazing. You’ll be much more creative about how you exercise in your 30s!

6. You’ll be wise and responsible

Falling short with finances for your dream asset, major considerations on relationships or extending your family, not fitting into your sexy outfits—all these things may have started worrying you but are actually good for your 30s!

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You will slowly but steadily stop draining your pockets. You will do your laundry regularly rather than buying new underwear every month. You will learn to cook yourself healthy meals to avoid extra calories and save some money. You’ll be wiser and responsible winning hearts of your loved ones.

7. You’ll see that hobbies and a career can go hand in hand

Your job, your bills, and your responsibilities have started taking a toll on you. So you’ll look back at that list of passions which everybody suggested to drop since they didn’t earn you money.

You’ll pursue your hobbies, educate yourself about the technicalities, take classes if necessary. Whether it’s a simple hobby like painting, gardening, or learning to cook a new cuisine, or something thrilling like paragliding, mountaineering, or learning a new dance form, you’ll be smart enough to manage your career and at the same time not to leave behind your passion.

8. You’ll see that life is what you make it

Are you like, “Holy crap, I’m gonna turn 30 soon and I’m freaking out because I still haven’t left behind the younger, sillier me”?

Don’t you worry about it! Your 30s will teach you to embrace life. After all, you’re in the realization phase of life. You’ll accept life for what it is (and what it isn’t). It’s only you who can make it interesting and productive. Your life will be what you make it.

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9. You’ll reap the rewards of true friendship

You are a friendly person and love to be surrounded by good people. You’re investing in new friendships and hanging out with new people. You’re really there for them through thick and thin.

Good job! Friendship is not only about emotional satisfaction. It also brings a lot of advantages. You’re not only having exposure to different personalities in the world but also are building a huge network which is essential today. You’ll be a better “people person” in your 30s with a lot of positive connections.

10. You’ll travel the world for insights

You’re traveling east and west, north and south. You’re exploring the world by visiting different countries, looking at nature, experiencing cultures and getting to know people.

Great! You’re only adding to your personal library of knowledge and insights. You’ll be able to understand life and its values. You’ll get a clear picture of your life in your wonderful 30s. A better person, a better parent, a better employee/employer. And more importantly,  you’ll be a better soul.

Conclusion: You might feel like you are going to have terrible years ahead because you’re on the verge of turning 30! But the good news is you’ll actually feel otherwise.

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You will tantalize yourself, you’ll know yourself a little more, you’ll learn to appreciate yourself and also you’ll learn to teach yourself lessons at times. If this is not enough to keep your spirits high while you’re stepping into a new decade, then just keep adding to your already-rich experiences.

Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.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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