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15 Signs That You Genuinely Love What You’re Doing

15 Signs That You Genuinely Love What You’re Doing
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You either like your job, or you hate it – right? It’s not really that simple, because you need to genuinely love what you’re doing! Loving your job means you feel like your life has a greater purpose, and you’re not working just for the paycheck – you want to make a difference in the world. Check out these signs and see if you should stay with your current job, or search for something that will be more fulfilling for your life.

1. You don’t struggle to stay focused on the task at hand.

If your mind wanders while you’re at work, you often have to shake yourself out of the daydream and stay disciplined so you don’t forget the task at hand. When you genuinely love your job, this isn’t a problem. In fact, it’s the opposite – you don’t struggle to stay on task, you struggle to decide which task to tackle first! You come in every day, look at your To Do list, and prioritize all the things you have to do, because otherwise you’d jump from task to task trying to eagerly tackle them all at once!

2. You talk about the good things other people do, instead of talking about other people.

Work gossip can be a fun way to pass the time, but it can also turn vicious quickly, and rumors can start to spread, whether or not they are true. Instead of talking about coworkers behind their backs, if you genuinely love what you do, you’re more likely to talk about the good things others are doing. You’re not jealous that a coworker got a promotion and you don’t start spreading rumors about how he got it. Instead, you’re genuinely proud of him for working hard and getting what he deserves. It’s not hard to stop listening to gossip and start spreading praise and good deeds around the office.

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3. You enjoy your time at work.

Sure, if we had a choice sometimes we’d all rather be someplace else than sitting at our desk: at home, on the beach, climbing a mountain. But if you really love what you’re doing, you’re glad you’re at work when you have to be. You don’t spend time hating your surroundings and wishing you were elsewhere – you know you’re at work because you have tasks to do, and you gladly do them.

4. You think about winning instead of surviving.

I know I’ve had days where I think “If I can just make it through this day and go home…” But the better way to phrase that thought is to think “I need to win today.” Feeling like you have to survive through something automatically puts a pessimistic spin on it. It’s better to think that you can win the day — that you can conquer all your obstacles and come out on top.

5. You’re excited about what you’re doing.

If you love what you’re doing, you’re excited about it! You know you’re doing good and making a difference, and you get excited to go in to work and spend your time doing your job. You love telling others all about what you do, and you like getting them just as passionate about it. True excitement is infectious, so if you feel this way about your job, everyone is going to know it!

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6. You hardly ever watch the clock.

There are days when you start watching the clock at 4:00pm, and every minute ticks by so slowly it feels like five. Then there are days when you lose track of time, and they’re turning off the lights while you’re still working! Which days go faster? Which make you feel better? The ones where you lose track of time, right? Right! Because you’re so swept up in what you’re doing that you forget everything around you. Now that’s loving what you do!

7. You view success in terms of fulfillment and gratification.

If you’re happy with your job, you don’t see success as how much you’re making or how many promotions you’ve racked up. You see success as how fulfilled you are with your job, how it makes you feel to be doing something you love, something that will make a difference. You love your job even if it doesn’t pay much, because you want to be doing something that makes you happy as opposed to something that makes you rich.

8. You help others without thinking.

Instead of sabotaging others to try and get ahead and make yourself look better, when you love your job, you just want to do good things. You help others because you’re all working towards the same goal. You feel confident with your position at work because you know you’re good and love what you do, so you don’t feel threatened by helping others, even if you get little or no credit in return.

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9. You have friends at work.

Friends make everything better! When you have friends at work, you have a support system. You have people rooting for you, and people you can brainstorm with you make the work environment a better place for everyone. You have people you can vent to if necessary, and know they’ll understand where you’re coming from. Having friends at work also proves that you’re happy at work, because no one wants to spend eight hours a day with a grump!

10. Your weekends are time to recharge for Monday.

Everybody loves the weekend, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But when you truly love what you do, those two days off are just time to recharge for the next work week. Sure you can have fun, go out of town, spend time with friends, but you’re still getting ready for upcoming work.

11. You hate calling in sick.

This might not be true when you’re sweating out a fever or hunched over the toilet bowl, but overall, you hate calling in sick to work. You want to be there to keep making progress on your projects. You don’t want to miss anything. The day you come back, you’re hounding your coworkers about what happened while you were gone, what meetings, or even new inside jokes you missed! No one wants to be sick, but it’s extra hard for you because you love your job so much.

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12. You find solutions instead of griping about problems.

Encountering a problem is a speed bump for anyone – it might stall you momentarily, but then you decide: do I complain until it gets worse, or someone else takes it away, or do I solve it myself right now? When you’re a proactive worker, problems are nothing to you. You’re excited by the challenge of having an issue to solve, and you jump on it to make sure it doesn’t throw off  the flow of work any more than it already has.

13. You hope to get more work instead of dread it.

Going along with proactively finding solutions to workplace problems, people who truly love what they do always hope for more work. When your boss is assigning new projects at a meeting, you don’t sink down in your seat and hope she overlooks you. You don’t want to keep floating by doing nothing, you want work to keep you busy and give you chances to prove your worth!

14. You’re not bothered by petty things at work.

Gossip is petty, but it can get under your skin whether you like it or not. When you love your job, it’s easy to focus only on your work duties, and let petty office politics and gossip roll right off your back. You don’t acknowledge the rumors and you don’t keep them going – you just stay on your own path and do the best job you can.

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15. You’re working for the big picture.

If you love your job, you know it’s a group effort. You know everyone is working together for a major cause. You know the big picture is more important than you getting credit for one step on the ladder. You love this aspect of the job, because you know everyone is looking out for – not each other – but for the purpose. The big picture is more important than any person within in.

Featured photo credit: Closeup of a young man painting on canvas on studio floor via shutterstock.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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