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10 Things You Can Do Today To Be A Gentleman

10 Things You Can Do Today To Be A Gentleman

Some guys never grow-up. Don’t be one of them! If you want to become a confident man who is capable of catching a female’s attention, check out these ten ways to be a gentleman.

1. Take a trip.

You can’t expect to have much of a perspective about the world if you confine yourself to the limits of your hometown. Traveling doesn’t have to be expensive; you could hop in your car and start driving without a destination in mind, explore a nearby town you’ve never heard of, split the cost of a beach trip with a group of friends, or take your partner on a discounted tropical cruise during an off-season.

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2. Adopt a pet.

If you ever feel lonely, please don’t fret, because I’m about to share the best cure for loneliness ever: pets! As a single guy who lives by himself, I am thankful for my dog (a beagle named Dixie), who serves as a cute little shadow that follows me around and makes me feel needed. Being a pet owner will teach you to be more caring and compassionate. That said, don’t even think about adopting an animal unless you’re 100 percent willing to take care of it. As an added bonus, dogs are scientifically proven to be lady magnets. Don’t believe me? Take Fido to the park during peak hours to test that theory.

3. Read a book.

While there isn’t anything “wrong’ with playing video games, you definitely don’t want to spend all of your time in front of a television screen. No woman (or man) will be impressed by how quickly you made it to the final boss battle, so you might want to read an interesting book or thought-provoking article that arms you with knowledge that could prove useful if you ever find yourself having an engaging conversation with a person you are attracted to and would like to invite to dinner.

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4. Find a hobby.

Life can get pretty boring in a hurry if your days consist of waking up, going to work, watching TV, sleeping, and eating some food in between. Do your friends often compliment your sense of humor? Combine your funniest jokes that seem to elicit the best reactions in a stand-up routine and perform it at an open mic night. Do you have a knack for giving speeches or presentations? Audition for a community theater play, take an acting class, or join a local toastmaster’s club. You could even learn something new like a foreign language, instrument, or technical skill like carpentry.

5. Throw a party.

I’m not suggesting you should hang flyers everywhere, especially if you’re a college student who could end up with a bunch of strangers showing up and making a mess. Instead, choose five or 10 of your closest friends, ask them to all bring a single dish or bottle of wine (coordinate this together so you don’t all end up bringing the same thing), and have a fun time together. If it’s a hit, you could make this a recurring occasion where a different person hosts the event every week or month.

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6. Learn to cook.

If you’re a grown adult, there is no excuse to be completely clueless in the kitchen. Having to rely on prepackaged foods and restaurants isn’t only bad for your health and expensive for your wallet, but also something a child would do. Get started with something basic like chicken tacos or a ham and cheese omelet. Keep practicing with a single dish, adjusting your recipe every time until you’re finally pleased with the result (when you think it might impress a female). Repeat this process consistently, moving up to more difficult recipes as time goes on, and you’ll be a master chef before you know it.

7. Keep a journal.

There is nothing “weak” or “sissy” about confronting your feelings. Letting the things that trouble you build up inside will only make them harder to deal with later, so it’s best to find an emotional outlet that allows you to express yourself without a filter. Reflecting about your struggles in a journal (or blog if you’re feeling brave) will help you better understand your personality, get over your struggles, and figure out what you hope to accomplish in the future.

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8. Meet new friends.

The best way to feel happy and positive? Simple. Surround yourself with happy and positive people. The impact of our social setting on our quality of life cannot be overstated. If you spend all of your time hanging out with people who judge you and complain about everything, don’t you think it might hard to stay positive yourself? This concept might sound too simple to be true, but the hard part is having enough courage to walk away from a friendship that isn’t worth having.

9. Pursue your passion.

It’s wonderful to have someone to love and share your life with, but it’s also insane to expect any person to be your single source of happiness. People who put all of their emotional stock into a relationship often end up with a broken heart that takes a long time to heal, because they foolishly invested all of their time and energy into that person (and as you know, not many relationships last forever). Besides, there aren’t many people that would appreciate having so much pressure placed on them — they would probably feel a lot better if you had an interest outside of your relationship — so it’s in your best interest to find something else to care about.

10. Stand for something.

I encourage you to live according to a set of ethics or principles that guide you in business and relationships. Those principles shouldn’t be governed by gender roles, societal standards, what your parents expect of you, or anything like that. Instead, they should be based on the lessons you have learned during this adventure called life. Don’t get too attached to whatever you decide, because you will evolve as you learn and grow and change your mind, but you should nonetheless follow a personal code that helps you act confidently and decisively when faced with difficult decisions.

If you’d like to help the men in your life be a gentleman, pass this article along by clicking the share button.

Featured photo credit: Barney Stinson from How I Met Your Mother/QuoteKo via quoteko.com

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Daniel Wallen

Daniel is a writer who focuses on blogging about happiness and motivation at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on August 12, 2020

When Should You Trust Your Gut and How?

When Should You Trust Your Gut and How?

Learning how to trust your gut, otherwise known as your intuition, can keep you safe. Your gut can guide you and help you build your confidence and resilience. My own gut instinct has saved me on more than one occasion. It has also guided me into making sound career choices and other exciting, big decisions. I’m also aware of the times when I’ve gone against my instincts and really regretted it later, wondering why I didn’t tune in to that valuable internal voice that we all have within us.

In this article, we’re going to explore why and how you should listen to your gut, as well as some concrete tips on how to make sure you’re making the most out of your gut instincts.

How to Listen to Your Gut

The key when making any big decision is to always take a minute to listen well to yourself and your inner compass. If you hear your actual voice saying yes while inside you’re silently screaming no, my advice is to ask for some time to think, or simply take a breath and pause before the yes or no escapes your mouth.

Use that moment to breathe, check in with yourself, and give the answer that feels congruent with who you are and what you want, not the one that always involves following the herd. Trusting your gut means having the courage to not simply go with the majority. It can be about holding your own. Here’s how to hone that skill for yourself and reap the rewards.

1. Tune Into Your Body

Your body gives you clues when you’re faced with a big decision. There are many visible and obvious symptoms that we feel in uncomfortable situations. Our body’s reaction is often something that we might try to hide, for example, blushing, being lost for words, or shaking. There are things we might do to try and hide that physical reaction, whether it’s wearing makeup, having a glass of wine or coffee to perk us up a bit, or learning to control our nerves.

However, paying attention to your body when you experience these feelings of anxiety can teach you so much and help you to make sound choices. Some people will experience an actual “gut” feeling of stomach ache or indigestion in an uncomfortable situation.

Ask yourself what’s really going on here, and explore what is happening behind your body’s response to the situation. What can your reaction or instinct teach you? Understanding that can be a clue and can help you either learn something about yourself, the situation, or other people. The answers are often within us.

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Sometimes we’ll get this “something’s not right here” feeling and cannot quite put our finger on it or explain it. That can still be incredibly useful and really guide us away from danger, even if we don’t know the reason.

In his book, Blink, Malcolm Gladwell also argues this, making the point that sometimes our subconscious is better at processing the answer we need, and that we don’t necessarily need to take time to collect hours and hours of information to come to a reliable conclusion[1].

2. Ensure Your Head Is Clear Before Making a Decision

Energy, sleep, and good nutrition are so vital to nourishing our minds, as well as our bodies. There are times when your instinct could lead you astray, and one of these is when you are hungry, “hangry” (angry because you’re hungry!), tired, or anxious. If this is the case–and it may sound obvious–do consider sleeping or eating on it before making an important choice.

There is, in fact, a connection between our gut and our brain[2], which is where terms like “butterflies in the stomach” and “gut-wrenching” originate from. Stress and emotions can cause physical feelings, and ignoring them might do more harm than good.

3. Don’t Be Afraid to Say What You Think and Feel

Listening to your gut and really paying attention to it might involve standing up and being counted, calling something out, or taking a stand. As someone who works for myself, I’ve become used to following the less-travelled road, and that’s given me the chance to strike out on my own in other ways, too.

As they tell you in the planes, “put your own oxygen mask on first,” and part of that self-reliance is knowing what you really want and like and what is safe and good for you, including what resonates with your personal and business values. Making good decisions with this in mind means making choices that do not go against your own beliefs, even when it may mean taking a stand. This is part of trusting yourself and trusting your instincts.

This does not always mean taking the “safe” option, although keeping ourselves safe is an important part of the process. This is how we learn and grow, by following our own inner compass. When you do take risks, go outside of your comfort zone, or choose the less popular option, spending some time researching the facts can stand us in good stead, too.

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4. Do Your Research If Something Feels Off

As well as listening to our instincts, we can also back up the evidence for our chosen course of action before taking the leap. I had a gut feeling about the need for a learning and development network when I noticed my clients getting stuck with the same problems. I set up and now run such a network, but instead of simply going for it, without evidence, I followed up on my instinct with research.

Having confidence in your gut instinct through these kinds of tests can help to minimize your risks, as well as spur you on. It will encourage you to trust your gut again in the future and trust that you are an expert with foresight and experience. You are!

5. Challenge Your Assumptions

When you look at the assumptions your making, this could be the clue to mistakes you are making.

In order to check that our instincts are wise, we need to ask ourselves what blanks we might be filling in, either consciously or unconsciously. This is true not just when it comes to our own decision-making. It’s also true when we are listening to someone explain a problem or situation, and we’re about to jump in and give some advice. If we can learn to be aware of our own assumptions, we can become better listeners and better decision makers, too.

A useful tool to become more aware of your assumptions before making a final decision is simply to ask yourself, “What assumptions am I making about this situation or person?”

6. Educate Yourself on Unconscious Bias

Unconscious bias is something we all have, and it can trip us up big time!

There is a vital caveat to bear in mind when wondering about whether you can trust your gut and the feelings your body gives you, and that’s having an awareness of your unconscious bias. Understanding your own bias–which is hard to do because it literally does happen in our subconscious–can help you to make stronger, better, decisions instead of re-confirming your view of the world over and over again.

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Bias exists, and it’s part of the human condition. All of us have it, and it colors our decisions and can impact on our performance without us realizing.

Unconscious bias happens at a subconscious level in our brains. Our subconscious brain processes information so much faster than our conscious brain. Quick decisions we make in our subconscious are based on both our societal conditioning and how our families raised us.

Our brains process hundreds of thousands of pieces of information daily. We unconsciously categorize and format that information into patterns that feel familiar to us. Aspects such as gender, disability, class, sexuality, body shape and size, ethnicity, and what someone does for a job can all quickly influence decisions we make about people and the relationships we choose to form. Our unconscious bias can be very subtle and go unnoticed..

We naturally tend to gravitate towards people similar to ourselves, favoring people who we see as belonging to the same “group” as us. Being able to make a quick decision about whether someone is part of your group and distinguish friend from foe was what helped early humans to survive. Conversely, we don’t automatically favor people who we don’t immediately relate to or easily connect with.

The downside of that human instinct to seek out similar people is the potential for prejudice, which seems to be hard-wired into human cognition, no matter how open-minded we believe ourselves to be. And these stereotypes we create can be wrong. If we only spend our time with and employ people similar to ourselves, it can create prejudices, as well as stifle fresh thinking and innovation.

We may feel more natural or comfortable working with other people who share our own background and/or opinions than collaborating with people who don’t look, talk, or think like us. However, diversity is not just morally right; having a mix of different people and perspectives that can be genuinely heard is also a valuable way to counter groupthink. Diversity stretches us to think more critically and creatively.

7. Trust Yourself

It is possible to learn how to truly trust yourself[3]. Like any talent or skill, practicing trusting your gut is the best way to get really good at it. When people talk about having great intuition or being good decision-makers, it’s because they’ve worked at honing those skills, made mistakes, learned from them, and tried again.

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Looking back at decisions you’ve made, what you did, what the outcome was, and what you’ve learned can help you become a stronger decision maker and develop solid self-trust and resilience. Making a mistake does not mean you are not great at decision-making; it’s a chance to grow and learn, and the only mistake is to ignore the lesson in that experience.

If you are in the habit of asking others for their input, then the trick here is to choose your inner circle wisely. Having a sounding board of people who have your best interests at heart is a valuable asset, and, combined with your own excellent instincts, can make you a champion decision maker.

The Bottom Line

The above tips are all actionable and easy to start immediately. It’s simply about switching your thinking around, slowing down, and taking great care of this amazing machine that is your body and mind!

Learning how to trust your gut is one of the most fundamental ways to make decisions that will help you lead the life you want and need. Tune into what your body is telling you and start making good decisions today.

More Tips on How to Trust Your Gut

Featured photo credit: Acy Varlan via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Science of People: Learn to Trust Your Gut Instincts: The Science Behind Thin-slicing
[2] Harvard Health Publishing: The gut-brain connection
[3] Psych Central: 3 Ways to Develop Self-Trust

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