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12 Things Only Non-Artistic People Would Understand

12 Things Only Non-Artistic People Would Understand

In a lot of ways, non-artistic people are lucky. They might feel like they got the short end of the stick with their lack of artistic abilities, but in my opinion, they often more than make up for it in other aspects of life. Here are 12 reasons artistic souls (like me) should look in wonder at non-artistic people.

1. They understand how to enjoy something instead of obsess over it.

obsessed

    When un-artistic people like a book they read or a movie they watched, they’re just happy to have experienced something they enjoy. Unlike un-artistic people, people who are considered artistic will often try to figure out why they liked what they liked. For example, I’ll often dissect a movie to figure out what was effective and what wasn’t. Sometimes I wish I could just lie back and enjoy the art without feeling the need to break it down, but c’est la vie.

    2. They can live outside their own heads.

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    outside heads

      Artists are extremely self-absorbed. I can say that, because I consider myself an artist. Un-artistic people, meanwhile, know how to be productive and get things done because they don’t have their head in the clouds. That’s an enviable skill.

      3. They know how to be practical.

      practical
        Image by Scott Ableman via Flickr.

        Artists oftentimes excel at the abstract, but struggle with the mundane. They may know how to paint a portrait of you, but might not know how to do their taxes. Non-artistic people should take pride in their ability to handle the stuff that seems basic, but is alien to so many artistic people.

        4. They don’t overthink things.

        brain
          Image by TZA via Flickr.

          It takes forever for artists to make decisions. They go back and forth (and back and forth) before they take action, and even then, they’re still not convinced that action was the right choice. Non-artistic people often know how to make decisions and not worry as much if they made the wrong choice.

          5. They have more time on their hands.

          time
            Image by Ambernectar 13 via Flickr.

            It takes a long time to make art. There’s a common saying that it takes 10,000 hours to get good at something, particularly something artistic. That’s 10,000 hours that could be spent hanging with friends, going new places or just living your life. But time for stuff like that is exclusively reserved for non-artistic people.

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            6. They understand that it’s okay to indulge in junk entertainment every once in awhile.

            transformers

              Artistic people think that they need to only enjoy high-brow art. Non-artistic people are under no such misconception. Sure, Transformers isn’t going to win any Academy Awards, but the first one is a helluva lot of fun, so it’s better if you’re able to appreciate it for what it is.

              7. They don’t need to express themselves.

              south-park-s06e06c02-professor-chaos-is-born-16x9

                Not expressing yourself sounds like a bad thing, but it doesn’t have to be. A lot of non-artistic people don’t feel the need to express themselves through art because they’re happy with who they are. The sad truth is that artistic people are often less happy with themselves and the world around them, and they try to express their feelings with their art. Non-artistic people are free of that burden.

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                8. They understand that there are things more important than art.

                simpsons

                  Sure, art can be good. Great, even. But non-artistic people understand that there are things that matter more. Whereas artists might be recluses only concerned with making their art, the non-artistic understand the importance of things like spending time with friends and family.

                  9. They know the meaning of a real day’s work.

                  hard work
                    Image by Terence T.S. Tam via Flickr.

                    Making art is work—there’s no question about it. But it’s an odd type of work that doesn’t leave you as satisfied as you might be when you clock out of your work shift. Sometimes a construction worker feels more fulfilled than an artist, and oftentimes, they get paid more for their time and effort.

                    10. They’re usually better socially.

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                    socially awkward

                      I’m being honest with myself when I say this: a lot of artists are awkward. They’re more concerned with making something than with relating and connecting to other human beings. Non-artistic people are more likely to cultivate meaningful, life-changing relationships than a lot of artists.

                      11. They just remember instead of reflect.

                      2698708497_4c0000e94e_b
                        Image by Fabiana Zonca via Flickr.

                        Artistic people are likely to focus too much on the past. They get caught in a rut in which they’re constantly trying to figure out what things meant, when they should really just focus on the present and the future. Non-artistic people are less likely to make that mistake, remembering the things that happened to them but not over analyzing them to death.

                        12. They’re better at letting things go.

                        let go
                          Image by Indigo via Flickr

                          Artistic people are prone to hold onto feelings like anger and grief and sadness. They think they need those negative emotions to fuel their art. Non-artistic don’t have harmful thoughts like that. That’s just another reason so-called “artists” should, at times, be jealous of the non-artistic, and not take shame in who they are.

                          Featured photo credit: Alex Eylar via flickr.com

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                          Matt OKeefe

                          Matt is a marketer and writer who shares about lifestyle and productivity tips on Lifehack.

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                          1 5 Real Relationship Goals You Should Actually Strive Toward 2 When You Learn A Second Language, These 7 Amazing Things Will Happen To You 3 15 Things To Stop Doing If You Want To Be Truly Happy 4 7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language 5 How to Apologize When You Have Made a Mistake

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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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