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The Number One Reason You’re Still Single

The Number One Reason You’re Still Single
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I hate to be the one to break it to you but if you’re still single and don’t want to be there is really only one reason why. Now, you might need to sit down for this one. Are you ready? Here we go!

The number one reason is …

You just haven’t found the right one yet.

OK, let that sink in for a minute.

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My guess is that you were probably expecting a different answer, right? Like something that is wrong with you? Maybe you’re not pretty enough or masculine enough, not funny enough, not smart enough, not [insert your own negative criticism here].

Well, that’s not actually the truth; the truth is that you just haven’t found them yet.

I know we haven’t met before, but I’m guessing you’re pretty awesome, that there is nothing wrong with you and that you are possibly your own worst critic. Don’t believe me? Check out this video: What do strangers think of you?

So do yourself a huge favor, cut the negative thoughts, get happy and start loving yourself and your single freedom. The right one will come along in their own time. In the meantime, here is my list of eight things you can be doing while you wait for Mr or Ms Right. The best part is that it’s all about you, so get creative and add your own in – I’d love to hear what you’ve included.

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1. Stop waiting for them and start living in the now

It’s a good idea to know what you are looking for in a partner. If you don’t, how will you know when you’ve found him or her? But, if you are spending every waking moment day dreaming about them, then there is a big chance that you are wasting your valuable time right now. Instead of thinking about them, why not think about you? What goals do you want to achieve in the next 12 months? What places do you want to see? Which people you want to visit? Dream them up and then make a plan to achieve them. Because guess what? You’re single and you can do whatever you want!

2. Learn to love yourself

There is only ever going to be one of you. You are unique and special. Be proud of who you are and all the things you have achieved. You don’t need someone else to make you feel loved and you don’t need someone else to make you feel whole. You already have everything you need right now to live a happy, healthy and full life. So don’t be hard on yourself, learn to love yourself exactly the way you are.

3. Learn to love your single freedom

Dr Phil said it best: “It is better to be happy alone than sick with someone else. The most important relationship you have is the one you have with yourself.” I can’t agree more. Being single has so many benefits; it’s your chance to be selfish and do all the things you want to do. So get out there and enjoy it! Not sure where to start? Try these: 10 Things You Must Do When You’re Single.

4. Listen to the story you’re telling yourself

I recently wrote a blog post about listening to the stories that we tell ourselves. Anything you say that’s really negative is not helping you. If you call yourself a “freak magnet,” or tell yourself “all the good men/women are taken,” or that you are “never going to find someone,” then your chances of this happening are very high. We attract what we put out there to the world. So change that story and attract something new.

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5. Make time for your friends and family

When the time comes and you do find someone amazing, chances are you will have less time for many of your favorite people. So make time for your friends and family now by planning holidays to see them or trips together. Hang out and do things with the people who are closest to you.

6. Get out and try something new

Have you been wanting to try something different lately? Is there something you’ve always wanted to do but haven’t had a chance to do it yet? Well, go out and do it! No doubt it will make you feel incredible. Don’t stop at one thing either. Make up your bucket list and start crossing things off now.

7. Set yourself a big goal and spend some time each day making it happen

It could be a career change, it could be overseas travel, it could be starting your dream business. Don’t hold yourself back. Write down that big goal and then work on it each and every day. Who knows what you can achieve. How exciting!

8. Trust the process

Have you ever listened to your friends who are married or in a relationship? Often they have a story about all the losers they met prior to finding their loved one. That’s because we all need to go through the process, to learn our own lessons and meet a few oddballs before the universe brings us the one we’re meant to be with. You are exactly where you need to be right now, so trust the process.

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“Someday, someone will walk into your life and make you realize why it never worked with anyone else.” – Unknown

 

Stop looking for the negatives and start loving all the positives that come with your single freedom. Chances are when you get a little bit distracted and start achieving some big goals, the right one might just come along.

What would you like to add to this list? I’d love to know in the comments below.

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You might also like: 7 Reasons Why You Are Still Single

Featured photo credit: mírame – look at me/ruurmo via flickr.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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