5 ways technology is changing human behaviour

 

Despite technology advancements having significant benefits for our lives, the often overlooked consequences are scary.

We now need to always have something electronic in our hands – a technology device that connects us to the Internet. We’re bypassing the real world and spending an unprecedented amount of time socialising, working and thinking with computers.

Think about how different our children will be to our grandparents generation. Children now play with iPads, even before they can talk, what impact will that have on societies to come?

1.The digital wall

A home, at work and outside. People are no longer interfacing with people, instead they rely primarily on technology for knowledge. A common answer to a question is “Google it”. Whilst it may be more efficient to search the internet for knowledge, it also has consequences. With less human to human interaction we stagnate our social skills, it also removes the open ended conversations, with others, that lead to our most creative moments. Technology, has ultimately changed our knowledge collecting forever, arguably for the good but let us not forget the value of face to face interaction and conversations with no objective.

2. We are less patient

Technology has made so many of us, much less patient in more ways than one. With the world at our fingertips, we want to know answers right away – why wait around for a conclusion, when we can find it within a few taps and a swipe. This unfortunatly may give us an unrealistic expectation of success. We have a decreased exposure to waiting for results and as such, may be more inclined than ever before, to take short-cuts. We must be self-aware and realise that fast, does not always mean high quality.

3. Search for the like button – offline

Social inclusion is incredibly important to us – just look at the intense popularity of social networking sites. We are constantly focused on what others think and we post pictures not for ourselves but for others to enjoy. This can be great for our global friends and far-away family but it can also have damaging consequences to our self worth. When we spend too long trying to please others we loose track of what we actually want or like.

4. We can’t focus

Do you ever wonder how many minutes of our day we miss because we are staring at our phones? A scary survey recently quoted that the average person in the US now spends around 5 hours per day on mobile devices. That’s almost half of the waking day for some, spent on their phone and worryingly, most of that time is outside of working hours. Think of all the life that will escape us? We need to incorporate habitual phone free moments, so that we don’t allow life to escape us.

5. Less safety conscious

A small but important behaviour change. At any red light or even whilst driving, we are more inclined than ever before to check our mobile phones. We have actually come to a point, where we would place our tech obsession, above our health and the health of others. What does this say?

 

 

How to instantly change our mindset – controlling our thoughts

Every thought has a vibration 

It’s powerful and also scary to realise that every thought, no matter how small, has an impact on our life. Why? Because our thoughts are an embodiment of our mindset, they shape our world and our actions.

When we feel positive (i.e at our peak performance), we send a matching frequency and we attract positive people, things and events into our lives. Our thoughts are imaginative and our ideas inspire others. Life just seems to go our way.

Conversely, when we feel negative, the world seems to close up around us. We can feel trapped, unhappy or anxious. Our lives become difficult and everything becomes an uphill battle.

Imagine if you could control your thoughts. Well here are 5 science based ways showing you how to instantly change your mindset when it matters most. Never let your thoughts control you again.

1.Practice gratitude

Many successful people practice gratitude daily to remain present, appreciative and positive. By being grateful for what you do have, your thoughts find it more hard to pick faults in your circumstances. Be humble and never forget how lucky you are to be privileged.

The science shows that those who practice gratitude have an increase in confidence and improvements in physical and psychological health.

2.Reflect

Spend time reflecting on your journey. Review photos to remind you of the incredible experiences in your life. Photos are a great reminder of your journey, the changes you’ve made, your achievements and the beautiful relationships you made along the way. Spend a few hours with your thoughts and feel happy for your great experiences.

3.Nature

Immersing yourself in nature has been shown to increase the parts of the brain linked to empathy, love, and emotional stability.It helps you to feel more balanced and come to better resolutions regarding conflicts or problems. It’s also an incredible way to let go off overwhelming thoughts, take them on a walk with you and leave them there.

4. Remember your goals

It’s easy to feel defeated when you loose sight of your goals. But, when we focus on the things that motivate us the most, we ignite ur inner lion and turn into fighters. Never loose that spirit. Success is a constant battle and the most tenacious win.

5. Smile

Smiling, even when you don’t feel like it, improves your mood. Recent studies indicate that smiling more often rewires your brain to create more positive patterns.

The public speaking fear – why it exists and what to do

Public speaking is considered as the number one fear of the average person – number two being death! That means, to the average person, if you are to pick your role at a funeral, you would rather be in the casket than reading the eulogy. WHAT?!

Why is public speaking our biggest fear?

Academic researchers hypothesize that this intense fear of public speaking is a primitive characteristic.

Historically, when humans were threatened by large predators, living as a group was a core survival skill, separation would mean certain death. This may have evolved into our present fear of public speaking — and when broken down – makes sense. The main reason why people fear public speaking is because they fear public humiliation – public humiliation means being ostracised from a group of peers.

What can we do about our public speaking fear?

If you don’t allow your fear of public speaking to prevent you from taking the centre stage then you’re halfway towards winning. But, wouldn’t it be amazing, if you didn’t have to suffer before public speaking with anxiety, racing thoughts and other associated unpleasantries?

The best advice out there is to logically break down your fear. Write down what it is that scares you so much. For example, is it public humiliation? Is it fear of looking stupid?

If you’re scared of feeling humiliated during public speaking, then you need to realise the audience are on your side. They don’t want you to fail, fall, hiccup or forget your words. But even if you do, is it so bad? Think of the worst case scenario and become comfortable with it – prepare what you will do if you have to face your “worst case scenario”. Furthermore, relax in the knowledge that your audience can rarely ever tell if you are nervous unless, you make it really obvious by telling them or crying on stage.

If your fear is looking stupid – this requires digging a little deeper. This kind of fear stems from an insecurity that you are not good enough to be in your job. You need to start believing that you can handle the public speaking situation otherwise, why would you be picked to speak? If you have nominated yourself to public speak and you’re getting cold feet – you should know that public speaking is a core characteristic of leadership and those “less capable” would not have the courage to nominate themselves in the first place.

The moral of the story is “failure is having a goal and allowing your fear to prevent your first step”.

Be proud that you are pushing yourself out of your comfort zone.

Self awareness; why we do what we do

 

Self awareness is the key to unlocking your full potential.

We can either discover our deepest motivations, deliberately through self evaluation or, instead float around, like an atom, unaware of our motivations and wait for success to fall in their path.

For those who believe in creating their own reality, the first step is self awareness. With concentrated effort and focus, and the right methods for self evaluation you’ll realise, with upmost clarity, the reasons behind your thoughts, words and actions.

Obligation

This derives from Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and refers to things like food, water, sleep and shelter which we need in order to simply survive. These can come from the government, other providers or ourselves.

Whilst in the west’s comfortable society, we may be less aware of this underlying objective, our senses are primitavly attuned and aware of it. We do, what we have to do, to survive, out of obligation to our needs and the needs of our dependants.

Passion

Do what you love and never work a day in your life. Passion is often the biggest and most powerful driver – it becomes an energy or a fuel in itself. Find the people and things that light the fire inside of you and run towards that light.

Love

I’m not intending to open up the “altruism debate” here but we are, to varying degrees, motivated by a desire to support, love and give to those we care most about. Whether it be financial or emotional support, these people drive us to get up in the early hours of the morning, drive through the rain and slog all day at work – just to see a smile on their face.

Childhood beliefs

Sigmund Freud believes that we all create an idea of who we are as people from a very young age. It can be as simple as courageous,  honest, successful or as specific as the type of career you desire. Whatever it may be – this childhood identity doesn’t escape us when we become adults. Freud’s theory is premised on the idea, that if we stray from this childhood image of ourselves, we become depressed, whereas those who live in accordance with their childhood image live fulfilled lives.

Pride

Pride is a sense of duty which derives from our ego. However ego is not all negative, it drives us to complete tasks to the best of our ability because we know we are worth it. We have a sense of self, a high standard, that we won’t compromise.

We study to better ourselves and our families. We work to put food on the table. The fruits of those efforts become our work products and client satisfaction. We take pride in what we do. We strive for success.

Vice

These are motives which disguise themselves as being in our best interest, often masked as needs, when in fact, they merely offer temporary pleasure and long-term pain. Vices are purely selfish. They don’t help us. They are the actions we should avoid. Yet we are human and like the kicks of excitement a vice can bring. Who would voluntarily choose a future outcome of long-lasting suffering in exchange for one night of fun? It’s important we understand and monitor our vices – self awareness is becoming aware of the good and the bad.

 

Visualisation techniques for success

 

Visualisation of your goals (a.k.a daydreams of you being a superstar) actually gets you to your goals, faster.

Grounding breaking research shows that visualisation significantly improves performance, across all disciplines, from brain surgery to music.

The Visualisation Studies

The power of visualization was explored in one notable study that appeared in the North American Journal of Psychology in 2007, whereby athletes who mentally practiced a hip-flexor exercise had strength gains that were almost as significant as those in people, who actually did the physical exercise (five times a week for 15 minutes) on a weight machine.

Visualisation can be applied to physical and mental challenges – for instance, public speaking. The same 2007 journal reported that those who mentally rehearsed maintaining assertiveness or composure, before a public speaking slot challenge reported equal attainment in public speaking goals, to those who physically practiced. Envisioning composure during public speaking may also decrease physical symptoms of stress, like an increase in heart rate or stress hormones just before the big presentation.

How Visualisation Works

We experience real-world and imaginary actions in very similar ways, explains Aymeric Guillot, Ph.D., a professor at the Center of Research and Innovation in Sport at University Claude Bernard Lyon, in France.

This is because when we visualise doing an action we activate many of the same neural channels that we use when we physically perform the action. For example, simply envisioning a movement elicits nervous-system responses and causes increases in heart rate, breathing, and blood pressure – i.e your body is tricked into thinking you are physically practising said task.

Therefore, when you repeatedly imagine performing a task, through visualisation, you condition your neural pathways and the action becomes familiar when you go to perform it; it’s as if you’re carving a groove in your nervous system.

Finally, if the hard science isn’t enough to persuade you about visualisation, on a purely psychological level, envisioning success enhances motivation and confidence. So, what are you waiting for?

**Caveat – visualisation on its own will not help you to reach your goals. All studies direct that visualisation works as a complimentary tool – not a substitute to physical practice.

 

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