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20 Things Every Man Should Learn to Be a Respectable Person

20 Things Every Man Should Learn to Be a Respectable Person

A respectable man is one who not only respects himself, but is respected by the world he lives in. The more you can live as a man whom others actually want to be around, the more respectable you will become. There are no fancy tricks or shortcuts to become a better man, but these 20 things remind you of how you can be a more respected individual, right now.

1. The Way You Dress

I recently read an article on the importance of male dress code and dating. The women in the article stated that it is a turn off to go out with a man who thinks dressing up is putting on a collared shirt. You don’t have to wear the latest fashion trends or expensive clothes, but look presentable, go the extra mile, show you care, and take pride in what you wear.

2. Your Physical Health

You don’t need to be a bodybuilder or marathon runner. A little exercise can go a long way and it’s important to show that you care about your body. If you don’t exercise at all, start by taking a 20-minute walk. Then perhaps join a gym, fitness class or local softball team. Good health also includes going to the doctor, dentist, and eye professional.

3. Your Diet

Like fitness, you don’t have to follow the latest trend or fad, but do your best to eat well. Mostly eat what makes your body feel good — probably more protein than carbs, coupled with fruits and vegetables. Try to eat less junk. Maybe try something new or learn how to cook a new meal. Invite your friends over and offer to cook them dinner. I love trying new ethnic foods and the diverse flavors they offer.

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4. Your Reading Habits

If all you do is play video games and watch TV at night, please pick up a book. Reading fuels your imagination. You don’t have to brag about what you read, but it can be a great way to add value in conversations. Read about topics you love — it shows you have other interests and keeps your mind active. Plus, it’s a good way to wind down at night.

5. Your Awareness of the World

Nobody likes a political snob, or a complete ignoramus. You don’t need to watch the news every night, because most of it is garbage anyway! For some, a comedy news show is all it takes to keep up with current events. It is important to have a basic knowledge of what’s happening in the world, but choose the best way to get the important stuff.

6. Your Passion and Interests

There are some people who live what I call the “extreme life,” which they often describe as “sick,” “gnarly,” or “stoked.” Life is an adventure but we don’t all need to live on the edge (or even appear to be). Simply be passionate about something and be proud of it. Learn something new that you never took the time to learn. Maybe it’s a new language or a new skill.

7. How You Treat a Woman

This ranges from opening doors for women, to speaking highly of women, to never putting women down. Also, make ladies feel special in whatever way that may be. This also means being affectionate towards your girlfriend or spouse and showing her how much you love her because, as men, we often forget to actually communicate how we feel about her. Also, tell your mom you love her!

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8. You Take Risks

I say this with caution. Don’t let your testosterone get the best of you and do more than you can handle. Take smart risks. If we never took any risks, we wouldn’t learn how to adapt to situations and accept defeat. It’s okay to fail when you take risks — look at it as a lesson, rather than detrimental to your ego.

9. You Practice Sound Money Management

A specific dollar amount of money doesn’t matter. What’s important here is actually living within your means — not flashing money around — and understanding the basics of finance. Educate yourself on money and treat it with respect. Be honest with your financial situation and find ways you can make money work for you.

10. You Mind Your Manners

Be polite and be authentic. Remember what your mom told you? Actually say thank you and chew with your mouth closed. Don’t be a bully. Don’t yell at others. Don’t be aggressive. Live the Golden Rule by treating other people the way you want to be treated. This doesn’t mean you are a pushover, but it means that you treat others with dignity and respect.

11. Your Real World Experience

In other words, practice what you preach. Get yourself out there and try new things. Are you just reading about advice or are you actually living that advice? It doesn’t matter if you don’t succeed at everything you try. The point is to experience the world and share that experience with others.

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12. You Get Out and Travel

Get out there and travel somewhere new! It can be a small road trip or can be a trip around the world. When you travel, it gets you out of your comfort zone and you learn something new, every time. Plan your travel around things that really interest you. Again, you don’t have to go extreme. There are tons of ways to travel and it’s a great way to break out of your routine. Plus, it makes for a great story!

13. You Express Gratitude

A respectable man is grateful for what he has in life. For some, spirituality or religion is the path they take. If that’s not you, simply express what you are grateful for each and every day. Try to come up with new things you are grateful for and challenge yourself to let other people know how important they are to you.

14. You Practice Volunteerism

This is a broad definition. Simply put, I define it as giving your time without expectation of anything in return. Give some of your time to help a friend in need. Offer to teach someone something for free. It’s not always about money. Do something nice for a stranger or sign up to volunteer for an event. An added bonus to is that you actually do get something in return — it gives you a sense of purpose and it makes you feel good.

15. You Are Capable of Love

This includes yourself. Be capable of loving yourself just the way you are. When you can love yourself first, you can love others more readily. Be open to expressing love to others. Give someone a hug (even if it’s a man hug). Embrace others and act from a place of love, not from a place of fear or hate.

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16. Your Humor

A respectable man can laugh at himself and laugh with others. Make people laugh, but not at somebody’s own expense. I love to crack jokes to lighten up the mood or make someone feel better about themselves. You can also redirect the humor back to yourself to break the ice in conversations. Women love when you can make them laugh and for some it comes easy, for others it takes practice.

17. You Can Negotiate

You don’t have to be a sleazy salesman or an experienced attorney. It’s important to be prepared to get what you want and to know when you are being taken advantage of. The best way to do this is to educate yourself before you need to negotiate. It’s also important to respect the other person involved. Also, think of negotiating as an important skill in any relationship. When you see the other person’s side, it makes it easier to satisfy everyone’s needs.

18. You Smile

They say that a good smile is the window to someone’s soul. Smiling is contagious and people love to see a good smile. That being said, make sure you are taking care of your teeth. The other day I saw this UV teeth whitening product that nobody needs to buy! Just take care of your mouth and go to the dentist regularly, because nobody wants bad breath.

19. Your Ego

It’s often easy for us men to feel threatened by others or have to somehow prove our manliness to the world. We can be respectable, confident men, without always having to be loud, right, and/or pushy. Actually, a bigger ego represents bigger insecurities that others can often see right through.

20. You Think Critically

Yes, it’s important to be able to problem solve. When you workout your brain to solve real-life, complex problems, it’s easier to come up with better ideas when future problems arise. Some use Lumosity and others challenge themselves to come up with new business ideas. It’s important to make your brain ‘sweat.’ Sometimes you might gain a new perspective that can add massive value to an otherwise improbable situation.

The key to these lessons is practicing them every day. There is not one method that is better than the other, but just do more of what works for you. In fact, there are many ways in which we can subtly become a more respected member of society, without acting like someone we’re not. I encourage you to practice more of what works in learning how to become a more respectable man.

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Last Updated on September 30, 2020

How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Future

How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Future

We often hear people talk about the importance of living in the present and the different ways it will benefit us. It all sounds wonderful, especially the lower levels of stress and anxiety, but how exactly can we live in the moment when our mind is constantly worrying about the past or plans for the future?

In this article, we’ll discuss some of the benefits of living in the moment you may not be aware of. Then, we’ll look at some of the obstacles and why we worry. Finally, and most importantly, I’ll show you how to live in the moment and stop worrying using some simple practices that you can easily incorporate into your busy schedule.

The result: a happier and more fulfilling life.

The Importance of Living in the Moment

“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” -Buddha

While it can be difficult to live in the moment, it has innumerable benefits.

Here are just a few that will enhance your life tremendously:

Better Health

By reducing stress and anxiety, you avoid many of the associated health consequences, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and obesity. Studies have shown that being present can also improve psychological well-being[1].

Improve Your Relationships

Have you ever been with someone who is physically present, but mentally s/he’s a million miles away?

Being with unavailable people is a struggle, and building relationships with them extremely difficult.

How about being with someone who is fully present? We enjoy being with her/him because we can make a much deeper connection.

By living in the moment, you can be that person other people enjoy being with, and you make relationships much easier.

Greater Self-Control

You have greater control over your mind, body, and emotions. Imagine how much better your life would be if it weren’t at the mercy of a racing mind and unpredictable emotions. You would certainly be more at peace, and much happier[2].

Why Do We Worry?

Before we answer this question, it’s important to distinguish between worry and concern.

When we are concerned about something, we are more likely dealing with a real problem with realistic solutions. Then, once we do whatever we can to address the problem, we’re willing to live with the outcome.

Worrying, on the other hand, involves unrealistic thinking. We may worry about a problem that doesn’t really exist, or dwell on all the bad things that can happen as a result. Then, we feel unable to deal with the outcome. Either way, we have difficulty dealing with uncertainty, which is a normal part of life.

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Certainly, some of our problems may not have desirable outcomes, such as a serious health issue. Some problems may be beyond our control, such as civil unrest or economic downturn. In such cases, it can be hard to avoid worrying, but not impossible.

3 Steps to Start to Live in the Moment

Step 1: Overcome Worrying

In order to overcome worrying, we need to do two things:

Calm Your Mind

When you calm your mind, you are able to see more clearly.

The reason some problems seem so daunting is that our mind is racing so fast that we cannot see things as they truly are. Then, we make up a bunch of possible scenarios in our mind, most of which are unlikely to come true.

In addition to seeing more clearly, a calm mind will help us think more realistically. Unrealistic thinking is fueled by confusion and uncontrolled emotions. Calming your mind will reduce confusion and calm your emotions, allowing you to live in the present.

Focus on Solutions Instead of Problems

Some people tend to be more solution-oriented, and others more problem-oriented. Some of the factors that may determine this are gender, upbringing, and education.

People with more education tend to be problem-solvers. That is what their years of education train them to do. In addition, their jobs probably reinforce this way of thinking.

If you’re not problem-solving oriented, don’t worry. You can train yourself to worry less. We’ll discuss that soon.

Step 2: Identify Obstacles to Living in the Moment

In today’s busy world, it can be a challenge to live in the moment. The reasons revolve around how our mind works, as well as outside influences.

Racing Mind

Many busy people have a racing mind that never seems to slow down. Their mind gets so agitated from too much sensory stimulation.

You see, anything that stimulates any of our five senses will trigger a thought, and that thought leads to another, and then another, and so on.

If you have a busy life, all your activities will overstimulate your mind and make it seemingly impossible to slow it down.

Unpleasant Situations and a Troublesome Past

None of us want to be in unpleasant situations, or remember those of the past. They can bring up painful emotions, which we don’t want to feel.

So how do most people cope with painful emotions?

By doing whatever we can to avoid them, we can take our mind to another place and time where things are more pleasant.

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In other words, we avoid living in the present moment.

Some people resort to things that stimulate sensory pleasure, such as food, alcohol, or sex. Others will consume substances that dull their mind and keep them from thinking about unpleasant or stressful situations.

A Wandering Mind

From the moment we are born (likely sooner) until the time we die, our body and mind are active performing some function. Therefore, it’s natural for our mind to have some level of activity, whether conscious or unconscious.

Generally, a wandering mind is unproductive. One thought starts an endless chain of thoughts, and this process can go on until we need our mind to perform a specific function or get distracted with something else.

Now, there are times when a wandering mind can be productive, such as when creating works of art, or trying to find creative solutions to problems. In such cases, we need our mind to explore different possibilities[3].

Outside Influences

Most of us are not fully aware of how our environment and social norms influence our thinking and behavior. People and institutions are constantly competing for our attention. The media draws our attention to the past, and advertising usually to the future[4].

Many people around us who dwell on the past or future try to draw us to their way of thinking. Even the whole concept of the American dream is geared toward the future. It tells us that if we acquire things like a good career, family, and house, then we’ll be happy.

Step 3: Practice Mindfulness

So how can we live in the moment in a world that is constantly trying to draw our attention to the past and future?

Before we get into concrete actions you can take, it’s important to understand what mindfulness is. You’ve probably heard the term before, but may not fully understand what it means.

Understand Mindfulness

The concept of mindfulness is actually quite simple. To be mindful is to live in the moment.

When you are mindful, your attention is focused on what is happening in the present moment, and you are fully in touch with reality[5].

You are aware of what is happening in your body, mind, emotions, and the world around you. This is different than thinking about these things. To develop greater understanding, you don’t have to think about them so much, but rather just observe them.

This may be counterintuitive to many people, especially intellectuals, because they’re so used to using logic to develop greater understanding. With mindfulness, we calm our mind and emotions so we can see clearer. Then, much of our understanding will come from simple observation. When we develop mindfulness, we literally expand our awareness.

To develop mindfulness, we need to train ourselves to observe things more objectively, that is, without our emotions or preconceived ideas influencing our views.

If you’re ready to live a better life, read on for some simple mindfulness practices that you can incorporate into your daily routine to help you live in the moment.

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You don’t have to do all of them, but rather choose the ones that appeal to you and suit your lifestyle.

Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness meditation is the mainstay of developing mindfulness and living in the moment. To practice mindfulness meditation, all you really have to do is sit quietly and follow your breathing. When your mind wanders off, just bring it back to your breath.

Notice how your lungs expand with each in-breath and contract with each out-breath. Let your breathing become relaxed and natural.

You don’t have to do it perfectly. The idea is to start spending time away from the constant sensory stimulation of all your activities, and just allow it to settle down naturally. Start with about 5 to 10 minutes per day and work your way up to about 20 minutes or longer.

This practice is highly effective, and can have both short-term and long-term benefits.

If you want to learn more about mindfulness meditation, take a look at this article: What Is Mindfulness Meditation? 7 Ways to Start Meditating

Mindful Breathing

While this may sound the same as mindfulness meditation, all you’re really doing is taking short breaks occasionally (10 to 15 seconds) to observe your breathing. Stop whatever you’re doing, and take a few mindful breaths, then resume your activity. That’s it.

You can do mindful breathing at any time of the day during your busy schedule. What it does is interrupt the acceleration of your mind. It is like taking your foot off the accelerator while driving. It’s a nice refreshing break you can take without anyone noticing.

Here’re some breathing exercises you can try to learn: 5 Breathing Exercises for Anxiety (Simple and Calm Anxiety Quickly)

Mindful Walking

Walking is an activity that you perform several times throughout the day. We often think we’re being productive by texting or calling someone while walking. But are we really?

Instead of getting on your cell phone or letting your mind wander off, why not use your walking to train yourself to live in the moment and focus on the task at hand?

Mindful walking is similar to mindful breathing, but instead of focusing on your breath, focus on your walking. Pay attention to each footstep. Also, notice the different motions of your arms, legs, and torso. When your mind wanders off, just bring your attention back to your walking.

You can even make a meditation out of walking. That is, go walking for a few minutes outside. Start by slowing down your pace. If you slow down your body, your mind will follow.

In addition to paying attention to your walking, notice the trees, sunshine, and critters. A mindful walk is enjoyable and can really help your mind settle down.

You can discover more benefits of walking in nature here.

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Mindful Eating

Eating is an activity that most of us perform mindlessly. The reason is that it doesn’t require your attention to perform. Therefore, many of us try to multitask while we eat. We may talk on the phone, text, watch TV, or even hold a meeting.

The problem with not eating mindfully is that we don’t eat what our body and mind need to perform at an optimal level[6]. We may eat unhealthy foods, or too much. This can lead to various health problems, especially as we get older.

Live in the present with mindful eating.

    Mindful eating has many health benefits, such as reduced food cravings, better digestion, and even weight loss[7].

    So how do you eat mindfully? Start by slowing down, and avoid the temptation to distract yourself with another activity. Here are 3 different aspects of eating where you can practice mindfulness:

    • Eating itself: Focus your attention on choosing a portion of food to insert into your mouth. Notice the smell, flavor, and texture as you chew it; then finally swallow it. As with following your breath during meditation, pay close attention to every aspect of eating.
    • Choice of foods: Although you’ve already chosen your food before you have begun eating, you can still take the opportunity to contemplate your choices. Think about the nutrients your body needs to sustain itself.
    • Contemplating the sources: Most of us don’t think about all the work it takes to provide us with the food we eat. While you’re eating, consider all the work by the farmer, shipping company, and the grocery store. These are real people who worked hard to provide you with the food necessary for your survival.

    You can find more tips about mindful eating here: 7 Simple Steps to Mindful Eating

    Mindful Activities

    Choose an activity that you perform regularly, such as washing dishes. Focus all your attention on this activity, and resist the temptation to let your mind wander,. When it does, just bring your attention back to washing dishes.

    Notice some of the specific movements or sensations of washing dishes, such as how the soapy water feels on your hands, the circular motion of scrubbing the dish, or the rinsing. You’d be surprised at how such a mundane activity can truly expand your awareness.

    You can choose any activity you like, such as ironing, folding clothes, mowing the lawn, or showering. Over time, you will begin doing all these activities with greater mindfulness.

    Final Thoughts

    Practicing mindfulness is like regularly putting small amounts of change in a jar. They will all add up over time, and this will add up to greater peace and happiness, as well as get you closer to achieving your goals.

    Remember, you don’t have to do the mindfulness practices perfectly to get the benefits. All you have to do is keep bringing your mind back to the present moment when it wanders off.

    Practicing mindfulness may be a bit challenging in the beginning, but I can assure you it will get easier.

    The benefits of living in the moment are well within your reach, no matter how much your mind is racing. If you stick with these mindfulness practices, you too will learn how to live in the moment and stop worrying. When you do, a whole new world will open up for you. This is what Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh calls the ultimate reality.

    More About Living in the Present

    Featured photo credit: Smile Su via unsplash.com

    Reference

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