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It’s Time To Let Go And Move On When You Experience These 21 Things

It’s Time To Let Go And Move On When You Experience These 21 Things

It’s the sad reality of life that there are times when we just have to let go and move on. This is true not only in romantic partnerships, but in work situations, living conditions, professional relationships, friendships as well. Even investments and tangible possessions can be difficult to let go of despite how destructive or demanding they might have become.

Should I stay or go? Buy or sell? Stick it out or throw in the towel? Tough choices. It’s a kind of balance between perseverance and self-preservation.

What often makes the problem worse is that while we may intellectually understand this life truth, it’s hard for us to practice. Oh, we can easily see and readily point out to others when it’s time for them to move on, but when it comes to ourselves, it’s more difficult to recognize when it’s time to say goodbye.

Signs it’s time to move on

1. When you feel disrespected or unheard

Each one of us has a fundamental need to be respected and listened to.

2. When you repetitively give more than you take

Though we should not be keeping score, there has to be a balance of give and take over the long haul.

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3. When you think about the past more than the present

You can’t live in the past. If thinking about memories of the past is more pleasant than the living in the present, then either you’re glorifying the past or there is something seriously wrong with the present situation.

4. When you feel mentally and physically exhausted constantly

Life is work, and it’s truly exhausting at times, but that shouldn’t be the norm. If you’re always drained, it’s a problem.

5. When you cry more than you laugh

While we are bound to feel pain, and hurt feelings occasionally, laughter and smiles should outnumber the tears.

6. When you feel anger more often than you feel love

Anger is a part of life. People make us mad sometimes, especially those we care about. And life circumstances can be very infuriating, but love should be the default, not anger.

7. When you find yourself hoping that tomorrow will be better, day after day after day

Hope sustains us; life would be nothing without, but if we are perpetually so miserable that we keep hoping tomorrow will be better, then we need to take a look at how we’re living today.

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8. When you find yourself thinking, “Things would be better if only they would change…”

We can’t change other people. Nor can we hang our happiness on someone else’s behavior. We need to accept reality. We are responsible for our own happiness and if we can’t be happy and healthy with the way things are, then we need to move on.

9. When you have to hide who you really are to be accepted or loved

Whatever the situation, if you can’t fully express yourself and be who you truly are then it’s not sustainable.

10. When you are repeatedly rescuing, covering for or fixing messes.

The knight in shining armor gets old eventually. Though you may be the big sister, reliable friend, the go-to one who has it all together, that doesn’t mean that you should constantly step in and fix things. If you let people take advantage of you it becomes and unhealthy pattern.

11. When you have lost all joy and passion that used to be there.

We all go through lulls, periods of dullness or get stuck in a rut, but if enthusiasm and joy is truly gone then let it go.

12. When you are made to feel “less than,” or not good enough.

Never let anyone make you feel inferior, not a boss, a lover, a friend, a coworker or colleague. You are just as valuable as everyone else is. You are inherently worthy and good enough just be being you.

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13. When you become perpetually resentful, frustrated, or bored

Resentment and frustration may not feel like an emergency, but if those feelings are chronic, they can undermine your entire quality of life. It’s like living life with a constant weight on your back. You can’t be happy or healthy until you put that burden down.

14. When you find yourself in a situation that causes more pain than happiness

Pain is inevitable, but it shouldn’t overshadow happiness. When pain is a constant companion, or when it’s inflicted on you deliberately, it’s time to let go of whatever or whomever is causing it.

15. When you realize the only thing holding you back is fear of the unknown

Uncertainty is scary and often because of that, we choose to stay in an unhappy situation because we fear what comes next, what’s behind the other door. But if we’re clinging to what we know because we’re afraid of what we don’t it’s a clear sign that we need to let go.

16. When you stop having fun

Life is not always fun and certainly nothing is fun all of the time. But we can try to find enjoyment in every way we can. If he or she or they or it no longer makes you smile, then it’s time to go.

17. When you can no longer grow as a person

Life is about growth. We are continuously changing, growing, and moving forward, learning, stretching who we are and who we can be. If you feel stunted, stifled, caged in a box of sameness then for your own sanity and wellbeing you need to make a change as fast as you can.

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18. When you have this persistent niggling feeling that there is a better life for you out there

Are you plagued by the thought that there is something more for you, that you deserve better, that you might be settling for mediocre or a substandard life?  Those thoughts, that underlying feeling and desire might mean it’s time for a change.

19. When you repetitively have to justify to yourself and others why you can’t let go

Justifications, making excuses, looking for reasons to rationalize why you’re clinging to something or someone that isn’t working, healthy, sustainable is never good, especially if your reason is because “I’ve already invested so much time…or money…” That’s never a good enough justification to throw away more.

20. When you can’t be the best possible version of yourself

The right person, the right job, good friends and such should bring out the best in you…not the worst.

21. When you feel a tenacious, nagging ache in your gut telling you something is wrong

Your gut usually knows before your brain does…and it’s also generally more reliable. We can sense things with our instincts that our brains either don’t pick up on or refuse to see. So, if you have a sinking feeling in your gut…listen to it…and move on.

Featured photo credit: Walk Away by lo_lozd via flic.kr

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Royale Scuderi

A creative strategist, consultant and writer who specializes in cultivating human potential for happiness, health and fulfillment.

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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)

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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