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7 Things You Should Do To Stay Balanced And Happy When You’re Busy

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7 Things You Should Do To Stay Balanced And Happy When You’re Busy

What comes to mind when you think about living a balanced and happy lifestyle when you’re busy? For those who have a busy lifestyle, it’s difficult to stop and answer this question. It seems like we live in a society where we are constantly moving around, needing to do things. But all this moving around leaves us exhausted at the end of the day.

With this in mind, answering the question above is crucial for your personal well-being and happiness. The more complex society becomes, the more we must focus on our internal world. This internal world is what we can control. The external world will constantly be changing, but our internal world is what will help us stay centered with all the external movement. Below I share with you seven simple things that you can do so that you can live a more balanced and happy lifestyle.

Set Priorities

Focus on what is important

We live in a society that is filled with distractions and temptations. These distractions not only take us away from what is truly valuable to us, but it has us wasting time on what is not important it. Setting priorities will allow you to stay focused on what is important in your life. Ask yourself this question, “What truly makes me happy?” Now, when I say happy, I mean internal happiness. What drives you to wake up every morning? Think about it and reflect upon it.

The way in which you set priorities is to focus on what is most important in your life. If your spouse and children are most important to you, then setting the priority of spending quality of time with them is top on the list. If staying at work after 5 p.m. is not important to you, make sure that you either go to work early or skip your lunch break so you can go home early. Whatever is most important to you, focus your attention on that.

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Write down on a piece of paper everything that you can think of that is important to you. Then prioritize each starting with #1 being your top priority. This will allow you visually see what is most important in your life in numerical order.

Nourish Your Inner Being

Develop your internal world

Being able to take care of your inner being is crucial in living a balanced and happy lifestyle. If you stop and think about it, how can you possibly perform to your greatest potential when you are constantly tired and exhausted? This is why it’s important to focus more on your internal world instead of your external world. Nourishing your inner being will not only allow you to recharge but you will feel better. This may be walking in the park or reading on the couch with your spouse. Only you can decide what your inner being yearns for. Answer the following questions to help you:

  • What activity or hobby excites me? (even just thinking about it)
  • If I can choose one place to be right now, where would that be?
  • After a long day of work, what calms my stress?
  • On a beautiful summer day, what do I enjoy doing?

Answering these questions will create clarity in your mind. With this clarity, you are more aware of what nurtures your inner being. Along with setting priorities, taking the time to nourish your being is another great way to stay balanced and happy when you’re busy.

Set S.M.A.R.T Goals

Be as specific as possible

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Have you ever heard of S.M.A.R.T goals? Let me first define what S.M.A.R.T stands for:

  • S = Specific
  • M = Measurable
  • A = Attractive
  • R = Related to vision
  • T = Time frame

When you clarify and define your goals, it’s important that you refer to S.M.A.R.T. Do you know someone that says he or she will do something but never ends up doing it? It’s because it’s easier to do the “talking” part of goal setting than it is to do the actual “doing” part of goal setting. Next time you want to set a goal, remember to refer back to S.M.A.R.T.

Establish A Personal Statement

Define who you are

This would have to be my favorite one. If you are serious about staying balanced and happy when you are constantly busy running around, you must be centered at all times. Establishing and referring to your personal statement will allow you to do this. No matter what storm comes your way, you know how to handle yourself. A personal statement describes the person you want to become – not who you currently are, but the person you plan on becoming. This will help you focus on developing yourself rather than focusing on what you don’t like about yourself.

For example, part of your personal statement is that you are a great cook and loving wife. You may not feel like you’re a great cook and loving wife but because you have established your statement in a way that focuses more on the type of woman you want to become, you’re energy will start re-directing itself from negative to positive.

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Take Time To Self-Reflect

Be in a quiet place

“Step away from the crowd and step within your mind” is one of my favorite quotes, especially when it comes to living a balanced life. How can you possibly stay balanced when you are constantly in a noisy environment? Taking the time to self-reflect is necessary for your personal well-being and self improvement. Without a quiet place for you to reflect, you’ll constantly be all over the place.

Ever heard the saying,”Run around like a chicken with your head cut off?” So many of us are too busy to take the time to reflect but the majority of us are not happy and are not living a balanced life. Choose a section of your home where you can spend some quiet time to yourself, away from your family so that you can focus on listening to your inner being. If you can’t find a quiet place in your home, you can always go to the park or into the forest and sit on a log. Do whatever works best for you, as long as you find a quiet place to reflect on where you’re going in life.

Grow From Your Adversity

Challenge yourself to learn

You are constantly facing challenges and difficulties in your life. Whether it be running out of gas in the middle of the highway or finding out one of your family members has cancer, this is an opportunity for you to grow into a stronger and wiser individual. Not only do you gain wisdom from your adversity but you can use this wisdom to inspire others to do the same. Constantly challenge yourself to learn from every situation you face in life.

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It’s easy to “move on” after adversity especially if you don’t take the time to reflect upon it. God wraps his greatest gift for you in the center of your biggest problems. When one experiences a traumatic situation such as sexual abuse or drug addiction, God is presenting you the opportunity to discover your greatest gift. If you look closely within your adversity, you may just find your gift. When you discover your gift in life, you are more likely to stay focused and centered rather than just floating around. Your gift will be the light that will lead you to living a life filled with love, joy and freedom.

Re-Evaluate Your Life Map

Always think with about where you are heading

We all have the opportunity to create a life map. The only difference between a person who knows where he or she is heading in life is how detailed his or her life map is. Think about this – imagine you just found out that you have to go to Manila. You’ve never been to the Philippines so what do you do? You probably look online to find out more information about Manila and how to get their via an airplane. The more you do your homework, the more confident you are for traveling. This is the same when it comes to your life map.

When you are constantly updating and re-evaluating your life map, the more confident you will be in life. When you experience a hard day at work, you are more likely to shrug it off because you know where you’re going in life. If you have no map to refer to, stressful days will become even more stressful and eventually you become exhausted.

Create a life map that is in alignment with your deepest values in life. Imagine yourself on your death bed and you’re reviewing how you’ve lived your life without the words “woulda, shoulda, coulda” mentality. What do you envision? What does your life map look like?

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Living a balanced and happy lifestyle while constantly running around is a challenge. But like I’ve shared with you, challenges and difficulties will only make you into a stronger and wiser individual – as long as you grow and learn from it. Implement these seven pieces of wisdom into your own life and start living a more balanced lifestyle.

More by this author

Tiffany Mason

Tiffany is a life coach empowering women to unleash their feminine essence & design a meaningful life & marriage.

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Last Updated on July 20, 2021

How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)

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How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking (A Step-by-Step Guide)

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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