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Hack Your Way to Good Looks

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Hack Your Way to Good Looks

“It takes more than just a good looking body, you’ve got to have the heart and soul that goes with it.” – Epictetus

Good-looking people have all the luck. They perform better in sales, are more likely to be approved for a loan and pay lower rates than their average-looking counterparts. They find jobs faster, move up the ladder quicker and earn an average of 3-4% more than the rest of us. That’s $140,000 in a lifetime, not counting the low rates and free stuff. Jealous much?

Does it mean us normals are doomed to work the least interesting jobs for the least amount of money? Hardly. As Supermodel Cameron Russell put in in a recent Ted Talk, “Image is powerful, but it’s also superficial.”

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Beauty is a construction. With the right formula, it’s surprisingly easy to replicate on the job. The world’s sexiest CEOs have something in common above and beyond sex appeal: practiced self-confidence. In an interview or on the job, this is the real key to moving up the ladder and getting the recognition we all deserve.

Self-confidence denotes a kind of take charge attitude that appeals to potential employers. It’s tough to fake. You need to build it over time. Good looks, on the other hand, are remarkably easy to replicate. You can’t transform yourself into Tyra Banks overnight, but you can certainly borrow some tips from her bag of tricks.

HOW TO FAKE GOOD LOOKS

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  1. Dress with an ounce of pizzazz. Ever seen a CEO in sweatpants? Me neither. If only on the day of your interview, wear the best clothes you have. If you are not normally complimented on your attire, get a second opinion before selecting that all-important interview costume. Ask friends. Do a little research.  Be more than just another suit. A well-placed handkerchief or silk cravat could be the thing that takes you from average to unforgettable.

  2. Practice impeccable posture. Good posture is the mark of a confident person. In one study, participants were asked to write down why they were qualified for a particular job, and it turns out those who maintained good posture while writing were more likely to believe the thoughts they wrote down. Not only do you appear more credible to the interviewer, but you become more credible to yourself, which is the most important thing of all.

  3. Exercise. It takes less than an hour of exercise per day to improve your mood and boost your self-confidence. A quick jog or a half hour of yoga will not only add a healthy glow to your cheeks but will also help your body to produce happiness hormones like serotonin and dopamine.

  4. Invest in professional grooming. Estheticians are remarkably affordable, and the modern man need not shy away from such services. A day or two before your interview, get those hands professionally manicured, wax your eyebrows, get a fresh haircut. Those may seem like small details to you, but before you write it off, look at some pictures on Business Insider’s list of the Sexiest CEOs. That’s grooming you can take to the bank.

  5. Get a tan. Sounds silly, right? But if you’re in a profession where you never see the sun, it’s the middle of February and you’re white a sheet, eight minutes in a tanning bed will bring just a little colour back in your face, giving you the appearance of being fresh and full of life.

  6. Be irresistibly charming.  If we were all as charming as Julia Roberts, there’d be no such things as unemployment. Anyone can be charming with just a little bit of practice.  Express genuine interest in the person you are dealing with. Take extra care to remember the name of everyone you mean while in the company of a potential employer. Smile often. Be generous when you give compliments and gracious when you receive them. Listen. Speak well of your former employers.  Look the interviewer in the eye.

Cultivating beauty and self-confidence may start with these simple tricks but eventually it will start to penetrate and become real. Starting each day by dressing nicely and greeting your colleagues with a smile and a laugh will produce long-term effects; eventually people will start seeing you the way you want to be seen whether you wear your cravat or not.

Remember, if beauty were all it took there would be a whole lot more CEOs who look like supermodels. Check out Business Insider’s latest list of CEOs of startups to watch: a nice collection of average looking people doing off-the-wall, amazing things. Success, it seems, is not only the domain of the beautiful people. It’s available to all of us.

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Hack Your Way to Good Looks

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Last Updated on January 27, 2022

5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

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5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

Food plays an integral role in our lives and rightfully so: the food we eat is intricately intertwined with our culture. You can learn a lot about a particular culture by exploring their food. In fact, it may be difficult to fully define a culture without a nod to their cuisine.

“Tell me what you eat, and I’ll tell you who you are.” – Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1825).

Don’t believe me? Here’s why food is the best way to understand a culture:

Food is a universal necessity.

It doesn’t matter where in the world you’re from – you have to eat. And your societal culture most likely evolved from that very need, the need to eat. Once they ventured beyond hunting and gathering, many early civilizations organized themselves in ways that facilitated food distribution and production. That also meant that the animals, land and resources you were near dictated not only what you’d consume, but how you’d prepare and cook it. The establishment of the spice trade and the merchant silk road are two example of the great lengths many took to obtain desirable ingredients.

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Food preservation techniques are unique to climates and lifestyle.

Ever wonder why the process to preserve meat is so different around the world? It has to do with local resources, needs, and climates. In Morocco, Khlea is a dish composed of dried beef preserved in spices and then packed in animal fat. When preserved correctly, it’s still good for two years when stored at room temperature. That makes a lot of sense in Morocco, where the country historically has had a strong nomadic population, desert landscape, and extremely warm, dry temperatures.

Staples of a local cuisines illustrate historical eating patterns.

Some societies have cuisines that are entirely based on meat, and others are almost entirely plant-based. Some have seasonal variety and their cuisines change accordingly during different parts of the year. India’s cuisine is extremely varied from region to region, with meat and wheat heavy dishes in the far north, to spectacular fish delicacies in the east, to rice-based vegetarian diets in the south, and many more variations in between.

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The western part of India is home to a group of strict vegetarians: they not only avoid flesh and eggs, but even certain strong aromatics like garlic, or root vegetables like carrots and potatoes. Dishes like Papri Chat, featuring vegetable based chutneys mixed with yoghurt, herbs and spices are popular.

Components of popular dishes can reveal cultural secrets.

This is probably the most intriguing part of studying a specific cuisine. Certain regions of the world have certain ingredients easily available to them. Most people know that common foods such as corn, tomatoes, chili peppers, and chocolate are native to the Americas, or “New World”. Many of today’s chefs consider themselves to be extremely modern when fusing cuisines, but cultural lines blended long ago when it comes to purity of ingredients.

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Black pepper originated in Asia but became, and still remains, a critical part of European cuisine. The Belgians are some of the finest chocolatiers, despite it not being native to the old world. And perhaps one of the most interesting result from the blending of two cuisines is Chicken Tikka Masala; it resembles an Indian Mughali dish, but was actually invented by the British!

Food tourism – it’s a whole new way to travel.

Some people have taken the intergation of food and culture to a new level. No trip they take is complete with out a well-researched meal plan, that dictates not only the time of year for their visit, but also how they will experience a new culture.

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So, a food tourist won’t just focus on having a pint at Oktoberfest, but will be interested in learning the German beer making process, and possibly how they can make their own fresh brew. Food tourists visit many of the popular mainstays for traditional tourism, like New York City, San Francisco, London, or Paris, but many locations that they frequent, such as Armenia or Laos, may be off the beaten path for most travelers. And since their interest in food is more than meal deep, they have the chance to learn local preparation techniques that can shed insight into a whole other aspect of a particular region’s culture.

Featured photo credit: Young Shih via unsplash.com

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