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20 Beliefs All Happy People Share

20 Beliefs All Happy People Share
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Everybody wants to be happy; no matter what your age, background or location, the pursuit of happiness is a universal goal. Even with different definitions of what “happiness” is, there are core beliefs that all happy people seem to have. These are not always conscious thoughts; in many instances, it is their outlook on life and the highs and lows that are part of living that are the most profound beliefs. Here is a collection of twenty beliefs that can help guide you to find the happiness you are seeking – whatever that may be.

1. They believe that anything is possible

Happy people don’t make the mistake of putting limits on what they think can be accomplished. Putting up emotional barriers by stating “it can’t be done” is a sure fire way to limit the ability to act, imagine or dream. Believing that what is desired can be achieved enables a sense of purpose and, in turn, creates a positive mindset that can carry someone through challenging or difficult times. This is more than just positive thinking but an affirmation that they will not let their happiness be limited by the perception of others that there are limits to dreams.

2. They realize that happiness does not have a monetary value

It has become far too commonplace in today’s world to measure happiness in terms of the material acquisitions, the size of an investment portfolio, or dollar amount in the bank. Happy people have long realized that how little or how much one has is a purely transitory state; true wealth, like true happiness, is measured much differently. Studies of other cultures, such as those in Latin America, have shown that the level of happiness and positive outlook doesn’t have to correlate with material goods. Understanding that happiness doesn’t have (or need) a price tag is a major step toward becoming a happier person.

3. They don’t sweat the small stuff

Getting caught up in trivial arguments and issues can be a real blockage to happiness becoming part of daily life. Keeping the bigger picture in mind is an important tool in maintaining a perspective on keeping the focus on those things (and people) that truly matter. Allowing oneself to get hooked by superficial issues creates frustration and, ultimately, a sense of futility about life in general. Happy people understand that, in the end, most of life’s issues are the small stuff and that which matters most is what the heart and spirit are drawn to.

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4. They believe that, in life, there are no accidents

Accepting that there is a connection within the universe and that there is a reason for things that happen, is an important belief of happy people. Whether it is called fate, destiny, synchronicity or other similar terms, recognizing that each encounter, each interaction, that happens fulfills a purpose provides a sense of calm even in the middle of chaotic times. Trusting in their own process and abilities to follow the clues they are being given is part of transforming oneself from feeling like a victim of fate into an intrepid adventurer seeking the future. Life, then, becomes a joyous journey of discovery, rather than an emotional slog.

5. They accept ownership of the past without being bound by it

Happy people have learned that in order to have a true present, there has to be a willingness to acknowledge the past -good and bad- and to own it as part of the path that has lead to this point. Trying to reject or ignore the lessons learned by what has gone before can take too much time and attention from the important task of living in the now. The past cannot be undone; however the missteps and confusion of the past does not control the present, nor is it a predictor of the future. Acknowledging fully where one has been is a crucial part of understanding and appreciating where one is now and where the path of the tomorrow may lead.

6. They don’t allow negativity a place at the table

With the constant barrage of dire information a part of the 24/7/365 connected world, it can be a daunting task to try and remain positive. Yet this is precisely what happy people have committed themselves to doing. The external world is not something that can be controlled; the impact of the negative energy coming from it is something that can be managed. The choice is simple: Should these waves of external negativity be allowed to dictate one’s outlook in terms of personal goals, relationships, and dreams? Happy people answer this question with a resounding “NO!” Maintaining a positive individual outlook can be a kind of spiritual umbrella during the downpour of negative energy from the outside.

7. They embrace the power of “paying it forward”

Unforced giving can be a profound emotional and spiritual booster. Putting that kind of positive energy out into the universe adds a dimension to living in the present that enhances the outlook on tomorrow. Happy people understand that by paying it forward they are investing in a brighter future and, at the same time, making life in the present have more meaning-both  for the recipient of the act and the one who is doing the giving.

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8. They recognize and accept the reality that no one is perfect

When one expects another person to constantly meet a set of expectations, there is a great chance for disappointment and heartache. Human beings, by the very nature of being human, are not perfect and to expect otherwise is naïve and stressful. Happy people accept that perfection is not a part of the human make-up; that applies to themselves as well as those who they are involved with. Ironically, it is precisely this imperfection that makes relationships so compelling. Working together to find a harmonious middle is one of the happiest things two people can do.

9. They understand the importance of time

Time can be a thief, to be sure, and it can be far too easy to let it slip away. Happy people have learned that time is precious and not something to waste. Making the most of time is a largely overlooked part of achieving a happier life. The old phrase “time well spent” is not just an idle observation but an acknowledgement that time itself is a finite commodity for everyone and that making the most of the time one is granted can be one of the most satisfying and pleasurable activities that a person can pursue.

10 .They love without fear

To truly dare to love, without reservation, can seem to be almost a monumental task. The fear of rejection, concerns about a failure in the relationship, even doubts about deserving love, can all stand in the way of the happiness that being with someone should bring. Happy people accept the risk gladly. To experience the glorious victories and, yes, the glorious defeats, is all part of a spiritual reminder of how good it is to be alive and to be able to feel the warmth of the emotional connection with another person.

11. They avoid the clutches of the “green-eyed monster”

There are few emotions that are more destructive to happiness than jealousy. Being envious of another’s achievements ends up consuming time and energy that could (and should) be better spent on making one’s own dreams come true. Even more detrimental is allowing jealousy to cloud the reality of a situation, creating issues where none may exist. Happy people have learned that envy is emotional cancer that can eat away at the spirit and heart. Rejecting these feelings and resisting the negativity they contain can be a truly supportive step towards finding a happier reality.

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12. They accept themselves for who and what they are

It has often been said that the first step to true happiness is loving and acceptance of oneself. There are few things in life less satisfying than trying to be something other than what one is. Truly happy people have long accepted themselves for who they are and those elements within them that make each of them unique. From this starting point, working towards a better future, or making improvements, becomes a task of joy rather than chasing an illusion that one can never hope to reach.

13. They know that you can’t please everyone, so make sure you please yourself

Trying to make everyone in one’s life happy is, truly, an impossible task. Since each person has their own individual opinions and standards, pleasing one person is just as likely to result in the displeasure of another. The resulting frustration ends of leaving a person feeling ineffective and, somehow, to blame. For those who are truly happy, this is no longer a problem; their focus is on pleasing themselves first. This does not mean to do so at the expense of others; rather, this is acknowledging that by creating happiness internally, first, it can become easier to spread that joy to others.

14. They appreciate the necessity of change in order to grow

It is not in human nature to stay stagnant and still find satisfaction and happiness in daily life. The need to look ahead and to want to discover new vistas is the underpinning for the importance that change plays in living. Yet, many people resist and even fear change. Those who have embraced happiness understand that change is an essential part of living and embrace the challenges that change may bring with joy. When fear of the new no longer exists, the pleasure of the unfolding future can be truly appreciated.

15. They are never too busy to “stop and smell the roses”

Appreciating the beauty of the natural world and of life in general is often overlooked in the rush to get things done, get ahead, etc. This obsession with schedules and artificially constructed destinations rarely leaves time to pause and remember exactly what all of this frenetic activity is supposed to be for. Happy people are never too busy to take a moment and enjoy the world’s treasures. The pleasure of a stunning sunset, the smell of fresh cut grass, or just taking a cleansing breath while walking can provide the emotional tonic that is so needed in today’s style of living.

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16. They have learned to be still

Sometimes it is necessary to rein in the racing thoughts and feelings brought on by the near constant bombardment of information and sensory overload that one encounters during the day. The sheer volume of all of this noise can drown out the important internal voice that helps maintain direction and stability in both an emotional and spiritual sense. Learning to be still -to allow the mind and heart to gently disengage from all of the external pressure- is an important practice happy people include in their routines. That mental pause that refreshes restores the ability to smile and know that things are alright after all.

17. They comprehend that happiness isn’t everything

While being happy is certainly important, truly happy people also recognize that happiness, in and of itself, is only one piece of the great puzzle known as life. There will be times that obligations, circumstances, or the press of the moment, may leave one feeling somewhat dismayed or uncertain. Yet, it is precisely in these moments, that lessons are learned that can lead to growth and a greater appreciation of the gifts that life has in store. It is these times of challenge that add to the value of happiness and the knowledge that what may be empty at the moment will fill again in the future.

18. They are grateful

Embracing the joy of living and being grateful for the experiences life bestows is one of the hallmarks of truly happy people. This gratitude is not just lip service but a spiritual thankfulness of being alive and part of this amazing, complex, and sometimes frustrating place that humanity calls home.

19. They focus on what goes right instead of what goes wrong

When something happens, it can usually be viewed in terms of whether something went according to plan or whether things just went off the rails. Yet, in the realm of spirit, there are no absolutes. This is what happy people have learned. It is just as easy to pay attention to the things that have gone as planned and work on those areas, than it is to bemoan things that may have come up a little short.

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20. They believe that you are always at the starting gate

Happy people intrinsically understand that in a true spiritual and emotionally sense, one is always at the beginning. Even when there is a transition or failure, this marks a new starting point. As a popular song once noted; “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” These beliefs that truly happy people have embraced are not exclusive. Trying them out is the best way to see if, in fact, a fresh breath of happiness will appear.

Featured photo credit: boy-524512_1280/TaniaVdB via pixabay.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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