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10 Things To Do To Be A Superhero For Your Child

10 Things To Do To Be A Superhero For Your Child

Everyone has a role model or a superhero they admire. Some have actors, a sports person or a politician. But the real magic happens when a child says something like, “My dad is my superhero” or “My mom is my superwoman”. Every parent wishes that their child look at them as a good human they admire. But it doesn’t happen over time. They are watching you and modelling you as they grow up. And for them to learn best from your behaviors and actions, do these 10 things:

1. Respect and show love for your partner.

You may not think even once before talking to your spouse but your children are watching you and they will apply the same behaviors when they grow up. If you constantly fight with your spouse, they may think that marriage is a bad thing and always brings trouble. While if you are loving and caring with your spouse, it makes them feel that they should do the same when they grow up.

2. Instill positive values in them.

Values like respect for elders and their peers, helping others in need, and welcoming guests are very important and are being lost in young generations. They are too busy with video games and internet. Show them how these values help them when they grow up and they’ll thank you when they are older.

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3. Let them make small decisions according to their age.

Let them order their food and talk to the waiter; let them decide which subject to study; let them decide which place to go for an outing. By allowing them to make these decisions in their day to day lives, they’ll feel more independent and this will increase their self confidence. Moreover, they’ll learn if they make any wrong decisions.

4. Listen to them.

Listen to them before acting when they complain, when they talk to you or to others, and even when they are not speaking. Their behaviors will also tell you a lot of things. And this listening will help you in making better decisions about their future which will help them.

5. Gift your time. Every day.

Spend some time with them every day. When they don’t get your time, they turn to TV, junk food, unhealthy friendships and toxic behavior. Don’t let this happen to them. Talk to them regularly and tell them it is okay to share any problems they are having.

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6. Involve them in social gatherings.

When you go out in a function, let them stand beside you. Introduce them to other people. Let them see how you meet and talk to people. Let them know what to talk about when you meet people. Don’t keep them home and think that their studies will be disturbed. What they’ll learn in this social environment will be much more important than the bookish knowledge they learn in one hour.

7. Teach them how money works.

Don’t just give them the pocket money. Assign them some work and give them money based on their work done so that they’ll know at a very early age that one has to work to get money. Also tell them to invest a part of the money they get so that they can use it when they need it most.

8. Tell them the importance of following their dreams.

Not everyone follows their dreams because they realize them too late or no one told them when they were young. Don’t take a chance that your children might say this when they are old. Encourage them to dream big, support their ideas and help them in case they need it. This way they’ll get the courage to try new ideas when they really want to.

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9. Encourage them to play indoor/outdoor sports.

Sports teach us a lot. While indoor sports help in developing our mind, outdoor sports teach us leadership, teamwork and keep us physically fit. When your children are actively involved in sports, their physical as well as mental well-being improve dramatically over age.

10. Keep them away from TV/junk food.

Junk food and TV are the most popular relief places when one is stressed or not happy. Do all the above things to keep your children happy. Always eat home-made food and watch less TV. Give them a book or encourage them to do something different.

All these things done daily over years will make your child stand out among the competition these days. And when they excel at whatever they do, they’ll thank you for paving the path when they were young.

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Featured photo credit: child via photopin.com

More by this author

Dhaval Gajera

Author and Speaker.

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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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