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self-esteem

Stay Active

How Staying Active Can Benefit Your Work

1024 576 Rachel Le Feuvre, Reset Button

Running

Finding the time to keep fit while doing a busy, sedentary job is something that many find tricky, if not impossible, to do. However, exercise is easier to build into your routine than you may think.

It is all about getting into the habit of doing something every day whether walking/cycling to and from work, jogging or going for a brisk walk around the block during your lunch break, skipping, walking up stairs instead of taking the lift, playing a game of tennis after work ……… it doesn’t matter what you do but try and do something!

Exercise has many proven benefits. Here are ten particularly relevant to the workplace:

1. Improved memory & concentration levels – numerous studies have found that regular exercise helps improve both memory and concentration.

2. Better Sleep Quality – exercise has been proven to help you go to sleep faster, sleep better and wake up feeling properly refreshed.

3. Improved Self-Esteem – helps improve our sense of well-being, personal value and self-esteem.

4. Boost in Energy – regular exercise will help increase your energy level – very helpful when it comes juggling between work, home and everything else a busy life throws at us! Experts have found that low intensity exercise (for example a leisurely walk) will result in a drop in fatigue as well as increasing energy levels by 20%.

5. Stress Reduction – exercising helps to dissipate hormones and other chemicals that build up during stressful periods.

6. Prevention of Cognitive Decline – regular exercise, especially between the age of 25 to 45, helps boost the chemicals in the brain that support and prevent the degeneration of the hippocampus (memory and learning).

7. Greater Brain Power – studies have shown that cardiovasculor exercise can create new brain cells and improve the overall performance of the brain. A tough workout will increase levels of BDNF (a brain derived protein) believed to help with decision making, higher thinking and learning.

exercise

8. Decrease Anxiety & Depression – it is well known that exercise releases endorphins that create feelings of happiness. In fact, in many cases exercise can be as effective at dealing with depression as anti-depressant pills. And, for anyone prone to anxiety it will help them to calm down.

9. Increase in Creativity – a good workout will boost creativity for up to two hours afterwards!

10. Less Long Term Health Issues & Diseases – exercise has been proven to lessen the chances of having long term health issues and diseases. In fact, studies have found it will even help to lengthen your life by as much as 4 years when you do five hours of exercise per week.

Hopefully these ten benefits will encourage you to keep active and enjoy a productive, happy and long life. If you would like more information, advice or help in putting together an exercise plan please get in contact with the fitness experts at The Reset Button via www.theresetbutton.co.uk

Why not try our Mindfulness Mini-Course : ‘Calm Your Mind’ available FREE on itunes: Calm Your Mind

confidence-words

Is Your Lack Of Confidence Holding You Back?

1024 825 Susan Carr

LowConfidence

Lack of confidence may not be something that is usually linked with lawyers. However, there are many reasons and ways in which confidence can be knocked and even when you are confident in one area of your life, there may be other situations where you feel uncertain. Confidence can be fluid so there may be times in your life when you feel more or less confident.

Low confidence may be due to an underlying issue linked to low self-esteem, shyness or socially anxiety, or come about as the result of illness, depression or anxiety – it may also be in response to a particular situation, such as bullying or harassment.

As a lawyer, you may have been attracted to your career because you enjoyed the academic side of legal research, but you are now expected to attend networking events and promote client relationships, particularly as your career progresses. Furthermore, although legal training develops competence in analysis, reasoning and other technical skills, there is less emphasis on personal skills and so you may not have received any training in public speaking, confidence or assertiveness.

How can you tell if you struggle with self-confidence?

Some signs that you may have a lack of confidence are that:

• you avoid expressing your opinion or contributing to discussions

• you avoid public speaking

• you try to please people and find it difficult to say “no”

• you are afraid of trying new things or taking on challenges

• you doubt yourself and seek reassurance

• you engage in negative self-talk e.g. “I’m ugly”, “I’m useless”, “I’m a failure”

What can you do to increase confidence?

The first thing to remember is that it takes practice and also involves stepping outside your “comfort zone”. Initially you may not feel confident so it can be helpful to pretend, as this will give the appearance that you are (even if you don’t feel it on the inside!).

Some other tips for boosting confidence

• Accept that nerves are normal and that even the most confident person can feel nervous – it is just that they have learned to manage their nerves (e.g. an actor who is about to go on stage)

• Have faith in your own ability. Think about your past successes and that you wouldn’t be where you are unless you were competent and knowledgeable

• Eliminate negative self-talk – for example, if you make a mistake or receive some criticism, instead of referring to yourself as a “failure”, recognise that this is part of the process of learning and development.

• Practise positive self-talk. Try to find 3 positive things about yourself everyday and learn to accept compliments.

• Take the opportunity to join in conversations and discussions – remember that you have as much right as anyone else to express an opinion and that what you have to say may be helpful to others or open up debate.

• Consider your body language. Don’t slouch, but stand/sit up straight and make eye contact, as this will make you appear more confident.

• Avoid turning statements into questions. When you are unsure it is common to put an upward inflection at the end of a statement, which has the effect of turning it into a question. Simply by ensuring that you end sentences with a downward inflection will help you to sound more confident

• Use silence. When asked a question or are thinking of what to say it can be tempting to fill the silence with things like “um”, “like” and “you know”, but these can make you sound uncertain. However, silence can allow the listener to hear and absorb what has been said and also shows that you are thinking before speaking.

• Practise! Practise! Practise! If you have an important, meeting or court, then practise in front of a friend or colleague who may also be able to give you some positive feedback.

Confidence

 

motivation2

The Secret To Staying Motivated And Achieving Your Goals

1024 768 iPerform

motivated

Do you set yourself a target to lose weight but soon lose interest once the daily exercise regimen becomes a chore? A recent study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business provides an intriguing insight into how we can all stay motivated to achieve targets we set ourselves.

Enjoyment is the key. That may seem obvious, but it’s the perception of enjoyment in the activity or task undertaken which plays a vital role. Professor Ayelet Fishbach and Booth PhD student Kaitlin Woolley looked at motivation in six different activities such as exercising, conducting lab experiments and even visiting the museum. The participants were then asked to assess the benefit or outcome of achieving a certain task (i.e. exercising to lose weight) and then assessing the experience itself (i.e. doing daily exercise).

Motivation

They discovered that people actually heavily underestimate how important enjoyment is before and after doing an activity. People believe that the goal itself (such as losing weight) is enough motivation to complete an activity and they underestimate the influence that enjoyment of the task has in persisting with it. This means that people tend to regret selecting specific activities as they simply don’t enjoy them enough. You may be motivated to lose weight but if you don’t enjoy exercising as much as you expected, you quickly stop doing it.

The study also discovered that people’s assessment of experiencing an activity (like exercise) differs hugely depending on whether you are currently in the middle of the activity. Asked to evaluate the experience during the activity itself, participants valued it more highly than when asked before or after doing it. When asked about the outcome or goal of the activity (such as losing weight), people value it equally whether during or outside of doing the activity itself. So what should we take from this?

You may have a desired goal but if you don’t enjoy the activity or tasks required to achieve it, you are far less likely to persist with it over a long period of time. Fishbach explains:

“What people value when choosing might be different from what they value later on when pursuing these actions. And if what people care about changes, they may choose activities that they fail to follow through on or that they regret pursuing.”

love work

For employers, it is an intriguing finding as the study also followed a group of people to see if money would be a greater influence on persisting with task. The group were asked to evaluate sections of either a computer manual or joke book, and they would be rewarded financially for each completed task. What they found was that the level of enjoyment in the reading task – rather the amount of money offered – was the only influence on persistence.

So the secret to staying motivated to achieving any goal is to find a goal with an activity you enjoy. Going on a diet if you don’t enjoy the low calorie food you are eating will not last. You need to find healthy food that you enjoy for the diet to succeed. The same principle can be applied in any other aspect of your personal and professional life. iPerform has an entire level of videos dedicated to intrinsic motivation. Why not ask us for a free trial of our programme and app to discover more insights?