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11 Things You Need to Forgive Yourself For

11 Things You Need to Forgive Yourself For

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” –Gandhi

Grudges and bitterness are like poison: if you let them, they will fester and hold you back until you don’t even recognize yourself anymore.

Humans are prideful beings, which is one of the reasons why it is so difficult to let go of wrongdoings, rejection, and hurt. However, the moment you allow a hurt to fester, you give the circumstance greater control over you than you have over yourself.

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Hence, we should always choose forgiveness. Here are 11 things you should always forgive yourself for.

1. Forgive yourself for your past.

It is very easy to let past mistakes fester and clog the present moment; however, this is the fastest road to depression and unease. It is important to remember that everyone makes mistakes, it’s all about how gracefully you can learn from them and brace yourself for future experiences.

2. Forgive yourself for your failed relationships.

Matters of the heart are no easy matter. If you let them, they will hold you back from future love opportunities and living life to your potential. The trick is to focus on the present – not the past mistakes you have made – so that you can build yourself an even better future.

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3. Forgive yourself for your weaknesses.

Day could not exist without night; nor light without dark. In the same way, we would not know our strengths without our weaknesses. We should embrace our imperfections, and learn to accept ourselves for all that we are. Acceptance is key.

4. Forgive yourself for your insignificant mistakes.

Did you accidentally cut someone off today on your commute to work? Snap at your significant other? Trip over your shoelace? Relax. There are worse things that could happen – find the humor!

5. Forgive yourself for the people you have judged.

People are so different, from introverts to extroverts, to hippie art freaks to conventional Joes. These differences make it ever so easy to misunderstand and judge another person for a trait that may just be different from behaviors that fall within your norm. Everyone does it, so don’t sweat it.

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6. Forgive yourself for your lost hopes or dreams.

There is always time to invest in dreams even if you have not invested in them a whole lot yet. Let go of the regret on what you could have or should have been doing and take those first steps towards your goal.  No matter how tiny your steps are, as long as you’re putting in a little work, your hopes and dreams never die.

7. Forgive yourself for your self-criticism.

At times we can be our own worst critics, but fear not, we all do it. Instead of dwelling on this fact, learn to recognize negative self-talk and stop it in its tracks.

8. Forgive yourself for burned bridges.

As people change, relationships often change. Sometimes burned bridges are necessary for mental health.  But even when they are not, there is almost always a way to mend teetering relationships.

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9. Forgive yourself for your shortcomings at work.

No one can be good at everything; it’s high time that we recognize this, not only in our personal lives, but also at work. Instead of focusing on what you are bad at, put your focus on your work strengths instead.

10. Forgive yourself for times of selfishness.

Everyone needs to be selfish sometimes, whether this is in the process of pursuing dreams, self-development, or career change; this is nothing to feel ashamed about.

11. Forgive yourself for moments of laziness.

No one can be productive all the time.  If there are times (like say, on a Sunday afternoon) that you can’t help but lounge around in your PJ’s watching reruns of How I Met Your Mother, let go of your guilt and relax with no shame.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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