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11 Things That Happen When Your Partner Is Your Best Friend

11 Things That Happen When Your Partner Is Your Best Friend
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Calling someone your partner sounds wonderful, but it becomes even more enjoyable when that person is also your best friend. I discovered the joy of sharing life with your best friend when I married mine. You can find this joy too. Here are 11 things that happen when your partner is your best friend.

1. When You Make Each Other Laugh.

Great friends know how to get giggles out of one another. Because you understand each other’s sense of humor, you enjoy bringing it out. Laughter lightens the worst of days. Best friends don’t laugh at each other, they laugh with one another. You may prefer slap-stick humor or embrace sarcasm as your love language. If you can laugh together, you can also face tough stuff together. Laughter bonds people in an excellent way. Having a shared sense of humor makes life more fun just because you’re with each other.

2. When You Cheer For Each Other.

We all need our own personal cheerleader. Having someone who believes the best in us helps us to aspire to bring out the best in ourselves. Real friends recognize our strengths, even when we don’t. They root for us and encourage us when we feel like pieces of litter crumpled on the street. A great friendship trades back and forth. When one feels down, the other lifts them up. You know your partner is your best friend when they know how to make you laugh so hard you find liquid bursting out your nose.

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3. When They Bring Out the Best In You And Vice Versa.

Some people spark parts of ourselves that we don’t enjoy catching on fire. Then, there are others. When we spend time with them, we feel better about ourselves. Something about their presence makes us want to be better people. If your partner brings out the best in you, you become kinder because of them. You act nicer. You like yourself. This is the sign of a best friend. Because you are friends, you also desire to bring out the best in them.

4. When The Friendship Isn’t About Me Or You, It’s About Us.

Have you ever found yourself starting all your sentences with, “I want,” or “I do,” or “I can?” There are people in our lives that bring out our insecurities. They make you feel as if you need to prove yourself each time you get together. As a result, you become self-focused and always hear the word, “I,” spewing from your mouth. We’ve all been around people like that. Those kinds of friendships don’t tend to last because they always lean one way. Best friends don’t just lean one way, they hold each other up. Being best friends involves teamwork, and as every coach on the planet always says, “There’s no ‘I’ in team.”

5. When You Share Your Inner Nerd, Geek, or Dork With Confidence.

We all have a nerd, geek or dork living inside us somewhere. Many of us hide this part of ourselves, because we fear rejection. It exists none the less. Maybe part of you secretly wishes you could go to Comic Con dressed as a superhero. Or maybe you have a secret fascination with the paintings of Manet. Or you regularly watch the weather channel hoping to observe the formation of a tornado. When you bravely reveal these pieces of yourself, you demonstrate how much you want to develop a closer friendship. If you find out that your partner accepts your hidden side, you will trust them more. You become more genuine. This real friendship draws you closer to one another.

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6. When Chores Aren’t A Chore.

Need to take out the garbage, clean the cat litter, or scrub down the car? Good friends come alongside to lend a helping hand. They don’t complain (unless it’s a joke). They see the need and help to fill the need. As you work together, you discover how much more happens when two tackle the task. And,occasionally you get the extra bonus of having fun while you work.

7. When You Become Totally Truthful. (in a kind way)

When a girl asks, “How do I look in this dress,” many men fear answering this question. Over time, if you’ve built a strong friendship, you can confidently tell her how the dress does or doesn’t bring out the best in her. Because of the genuine love and friendship that’s shared, this isn’t taken as the much-feared insult. It’s one friend confiding in another. When you build trust and respect, you get completely honest with your best friend. Because of kindness and caring, you do this gently. Friends rely on one another for this kind of honesty. After all, who else could point out the spinach caught between your teeth and still make you feel like a million bucks?

8. When Germs Cannot Separate You.

Flu, we don’t like you. This applies to the common cold and many other illnesses too. Bacteria make us feel uncomfortable,even fearful. We wonder if they will leap from one person to another and land firmly on us. No one wants the germs to spread, but when the sick one is your best friend, you’ll take that chance. You’ll bring soup, read books, watch movies, and clean dishes. You’ll get them tissues or whatever it is they need. They matter so much that you’ll risk catching an illness. That’s what best friends do.

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9. When You Fall Fearlessly.

Some of the worst injuries to skiers happen because they fear falling. They fight the fall and end up hurting themselves more as a result. Life is full of times where we fear falling. We fear failure. We fear disappointing ourselves or others. We fear the unexpected. When your partner is your best friend, you know they want to catch you if you fall. You also want to help them. If, for some reason, you cannot save each other, you can at least help one another to get up and try again. This gives you confidence. It’s the sign of a great friendship.

10. When You Want To Listen More Than To Talk.

Most people prefer talking over listening. We long to be heard. And yet, a best friend doesn’t focus only on their own words. They enjoy learning more about their friend. We’ve been given two ears and one mouth, which implies that one should be used twice as much as the other. A best friend longs to listen more than to speak, because everything you hear is something you value. You really care about how your partner’s day progressed. You want to know what they prefer to do when they find time to rest. When your partner is your best friend, you become better at listening than talking. Eventually, you get to share your story too, because your partner also listens.

11. When You Embrace The Power Of Forgiveness.

No one achieves everything on this list all the time. We all falter. As you discover these strengths within yourself and your partner, there will still be days when you fail. They will also fail. The best of friends do enjoy great fun together, but they also suffer through failure together. You continue to be great friends when you develop the skill and power found in forgiveness. When you realize your limits and accept the limits of your partner, you become kinder and more compassionate. This is the real glue of any friendship. No partnership will be complete without it.

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“A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.” ― Elbert Hubbard

Do you know other things that happen when your partner is your best friend? Share them in the comments.

Featured photo credit: pair_of_pears/hotblack via cdn.morguefile.com

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Last Updated on July 20, 2021

How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)

How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)
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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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