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20 Things You Should Insist on No Matter What People Say

20 Things You Should Insist on No Matter What People Say

Life can get pretty crazy at times. Sometimes we forget how important it is to actually listen to ourselves instead of others. Happiness is dependent upon ourselves, and there are some things in life you should always insist on doing- no matter what others have to say about it. Here is a list of 20 things you should always do.

1. Insist on chasing your dreams

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    To some people your dreams might sound far-fetched, completely unobtainable, or downright silly. No matter what other people say to you, always insist on following your dreams. If you give in, or rather, give up on your dreams, you will never know what could have happened. You only have one life to live, so you might as well give it everything you’ve got. Forget the haters.

    2. Insist on being the bigger person

    All situations and arguments are not created equally. Being the bigger person will ultimately make you feel better. Other people might disagree and say you should have fought back, or whatever else you should have done, but they don’t have to live with the consequences. Be the bigger person in life and move on. Trust me, you will be the one who wins in the long run.

    3. Insist on forgiveness

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      Forgiveness is not an easy thing. However, insisting on being forgiving will make you a happier person. Once you forgive someone you feel a weight that is lifted off your shoulders. Forgiving someone doesn’t mean you go back to the way things were before, but it does mean letting yourself move on in a positive direction—and that’s never a bad thing.

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      4. Insist on seeing the glass half-full

      Screw that glass-half-empty view. Positivity is a powerful thing. The more positive a thinker you are, the more positive outcomes you will see in your life. Keep those negative thoughts out, and those negative people out too. There is almost always a bright side to a situation, and focusing on that will help get you through.

      5. Insist on staying true to yourself

      be yourself

        No matter what other people say or do, you should always be true to yourself. Throughout our lives people will try to shape our ideas, or even try and get us to do things we don’t believe in, which is why you should always be true to yourself. Make decisions for yourself, and never compromise who you are.

        6. Insist on only being around those who make you a better or happier person

        Cut out those in your life that bring you down. Only surround yourself with people who care about you just as much as you care about them. Don’t give in to being someone’s fall back plan. It can be hard to cut people from our lives, but it is also necessary. Surrounding yourself with people who make you happy will only benefit your life.

        7. Insist on learning from your mistakes

        Mistakes

          No matter what people say, you will make mistakes in your life. Life is a learning process in itself. Some people will make you feel bad about your mistakes, or insult you for making them. However, don’t let that stand in your way from learning from them. Accept your mistakes fully and really figure out what went wrong. Knowledge is power.

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          8. Insist on sticking up for what you believe in

          We will all be tested at some point in life to go against what we believe in. Our morals are a strong part of who we are, and it is important to stand up for what you believe. No matter what other people say or try to influence you with, stand tall against them.

          9. Insist on discarding all the drama from your life

          no drama

            When we are younger we all gossip and focus on the drama that goes on in the world. Growing up we learn that drama isn’t exactly as exciting as we though it was. It brings us down and actually makes life more difficult. It’s time to grow up and cut out whoever and whatever drama is taking over your life. Drama-free is the way to be!

            10. Insist on letting go of the past

            It’s hard to let go of the past sometimes, but it can really be affect your future. No matter what anyone has to say about it, insist on letting go of your past and previous grudges, and focus on the here and now. The past might have made you who you are, but the future holds the power to change you into who you want to be. Let go and feel the freedom that comes with it.

            11. Insist on embracing change and creativity

            change

              A popular aphorism is,”You cannot solve a problem in the same state of consciences that created it.” Not everything can be solved in a traditional way. Change and creativity are vital in today’s world. Things are always changing, so why should we be any different? Embracing change will help you grow as a person, and bring you opportunities that you would have otherwise missed out on. Creativity allows your mind a chance to think differently and more freely. Don’t listen to what others say about how change is bad, instead make something out of it.

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              12. Insist on paying it forward

              Not everyone is as fortunate as you might be. Try to remember that everyday. Take some time and give back to the community that you live in. Giving back will boost your mood no matter what you are going through. No matter what people might say to bring you down, just remember that you have the power to brighten someones else’s day. Always pay it forward.

              13. Insist on honesty

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                Being honest isn’t always the easiest thing to do, but it is definitely always the right thing to do. No matter what people say you should always be honest with yourself and others. Being honest will help you stay true to yourself, and you will be a better person for it. Lies can get you caught up in bad situations, relationships, and even cause inner conflict. It’s best to always insist on honesty.

                14. Insist on being dedicated

                Today we see a lot of those get-rich-quick scheme and lose-100-pounds-in-a-day pills. Things in life aren’t always what they appear to be, and we all know that. However, being dedicated to something will pay off. Whether you are dedicated to getting healthy, following a dream, or getting a better-paying job, we all know that time will be involved. Good things don’t just happen overnight, they take time and effort. Insisting on putting your all into something and being dedicated to the outcome you want will help you achieve your goals.

                15. Insist on appreciating what you have

                thankful

                  We can forget to take a step back and enjoy what we have in life. This can take away from our happiness. Sometimes you just need to sit back and be happy about where your life is right now, and what you have to show for it. Sure people might tell you it’s not good enough, but don’t listen to them. It is good enough, and it gives you a sense of pride when you can enjoy the things you already have in life.

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                  16. Insist on listening to your heart

                  Sometimes you just need to follow your instincts and do what your heart tells you. There are some situations, like relationships, that rely more on your heart than on your head. People will surely tell you differently, but you should always insist on listening to what you want and feel. Again, you are the one who lives with your choices, and you are the one that has to live with  the “what ifs.” Sometimes you just have to follow your heart.

                  17. Insist on making time for yourself

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                    We get so tied up in everything that’s going on around us, and how busy our schedules are, that we forget to make time for ourselves. No matter how busy you are in your daily life, make sure to set some time aside to focus on you. You deserve it.

                    18. Insist on kindness

                    Too many people experience being bullied. It’s amazing what a small act of kindness can do for someone. Make yourself a better person and insist on being kind. You never know what someone else is going through. Being kind will also keep you more grounded in life and more positive. All these things have a positive impact on you.

                    19. Insist on living in the moment

                    life is short

                      In this crazy world we can all get caught up in everything except what’s happening in the moment. Take a step back and really enjoy the memories you are making. It’s nice to look back on picture of moments you had in life, but its even better to remember how you felt in that exact moment. Life your life to it’s fullest and embrace the moments.

                      20. Insist on finding time for pleasure

                      I said it before, and I will say it again: we get so caught up in everything around us that we forget to take a break—or even a breath sometimes. No matter how busy you are make sure to find some time and do something that you really enjoy. Whether that’s catching up with a good friend, reading a new book, or even watching your personal guilty pleasure on TV, just make sure you make time for it. Life goes by way too fast to not bring yourself some pleasure everyday.

                      Featured photo credit: John via flickr.com

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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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