There are many disadvantages to feeling anger. It’s a quick way to damage relationships. It also disengages the part of your brain that’s used to make rational decisions. We often do and say detrimental things when we’re angry.

How many times do you wish you could take back something you said? It only takes a few seconds to cause a lot of damage and pain. Avoiding this type of situation is a good enough reason to work on your anger management skills.

The ability to manage your emotional states is a valuable skill that will serve you well throughout your lifetime.

Practice these strategies to become a master of your anger:

1. Monitor your mental state. Notice when you’re starting to feel agitated. Anger is much easier to control if caught early. Once you’re in the middle of an episode of full-blown rage, it becomes more challenging.

* Monitor all your negative emotions. They’re all easier to manage when they first appear. As they gain strength, the tools available to manage them become less likely to work.

2. Learn to let go and avoid holding a grudge. Grudges are a great way to keep yourself primed to feel angry with little provocation. Let go of your anger and forgive. You’ll feel better and life will be more enjoyable. You’re only hurting yourself when you hold a grudge.

3. Take a deep breath. In fact, try taking 10 deep breaths. A slow, deep breath while thinking the word “relax” can make a difference.

* The quicker you can catch your anger, the better this technique will work. As soon as you feel yourself becoming angry, take a few deep breaths. This requires practice.

4. Give yourself a timeout. You don’t have to be a child to take a timeout. You have the luxury of giving yourself a timeout regardless of your age. A few minutes of alone time can be just the ticket to managing your anger successfully.

5. Think. Consider the long-term ramifications of what you’re about to say. This is incredibly challenging. Anger makes it much more difficult to think and be rational. Again, the quicker you catch yourself becoming angry, the more likely you’ll be able to use the technique.

6. Be more flexible in your views. What causes anger? It’s caused by others failing to do what you think they should do. They’ve said or done something that fails to meet your expectations. The more open minded you are, the less likely you are to get angry.

7. Be a good listener. It’s hard to become angry if you’re doing a good job of listening. It’s only when you take your attention off the other person that you have the opportunity to think and generate anger. You’re also less likely to jump to the wrong conclusion if you’re listening intently. Work on your listening skills.

8. Learn to share your thoughts and feelings in a calm manner. Assert yourself and let people know what you’re thinking without becoming more emotional than necessary. Start by being more assertive in common matters of your daily life.

9. Get professional help. If you’ve tried everything you can think of and you’re still struggling to manage your anger, get help from an expert. You hire experts to fix your car and manage your legal issues. There’s no reason not to hire someone to help with your anger issues.

Taken to the extreme, anger can be dangerous to those around you and yourself. Even mild anger can be harmful to relationships and your career.

Avoid allowing anger to make your life more challenging. There are many tricks and tips you can use to manage anger yourself, but seek professional assistance if you’re failing to make sufficient progress.

Do you ever feel like you just got up on the wrong side of the bed? Or maybe you started out the day great, but then something happened that spoiled it for you. You might be thinking that the day is shot. But you don’t have to let that ruin your whole day!

Luckily, you can uplift your mood – without drugs or other substances – just as quickly as it went downhill.

Try these methods to turn that frown upside down:

1. Find something to fix. Do you have some household chores that can be done? Is a faucet leaking in the kitchen or bathroom? Physical activity combined with fixing something around you can be a powerful way to lift your spirits.

* Whether you fix a broken door handle, leaking faucet, or sew on a button, these simple fixes matter. They’re distracting, easy, and fulfilling at the same time.

* Even changing a lightbulb can make you feel accomplished and boost your mood quickly.

2. Reach out to an old friend. Talking with an old friend can bring back positive memories. Get in touch with a friend online or over the phone.

* Catch up with them and talk about your past. Relive some of the memories you had together.

3. Cross something off your to-do list. A long to-do list can feel intimidating and weigh you down. Try to cross off at least one thing on the list and be proud of what you’ve done.

* Start by picking the easiest and fastest task on the list. Finish it quickly.

* Then, cross off the task with a bold marker or pen. This physical act can help boost your mood.

4. Watch a comedy. Do you have a favorite funny movie that always makes you feel better? Consider having a comedy night at home. Turn on your favorite movie or TV show and relax. Turn it into a real movie night with fresh popcorn and dimmed lights.

5. Spend time with pets. Research studies have shown that simply petting a cat can calm you down and make you feel better.

* Take your dog for a walk at a local park or around the neighborhood.

* Spend time cuddling with your cat and rubbing its stomach.

* Talk to your pets and forget your troubles.

* Get out your pet’s’ favorite toys and play together.

6. Change your diet. Sometimes small changes in the diet can have a big impact on your mood.

* Talk to your doctor and get tested for nutritional deficiencies. Find out if you need to take supplements such as calcium, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, folate, chromium, or vitamin D. They can all influence your mood.

* Eat some carbohydrates or chocolate (in moderation, of course).

* Whole foods such as vegetables and fruit can also help your brain.

* Eat more fish. Salmon, sardines, tuna and other types of fish can improve your mood. Research studies show that they have omega-3s that affect the brain. They increase the levels of chemicals that make you feel happy.

* Drinking more tea is also linked to a better mood. Black, green, and other varieties of tea have been connected to happier moods. They can also help you focus and feel more alert.

You can boost your mood quickly with these tips. Try them and find your favorite method. You can make this your go-to strategy for whenever you want to uplift your mood.

The mere thought of personal growth is enough to make many of us feel discouraged. It’s challenging to make meaningful changes. But if you want to make a difference in the world, or even just your own life, you’ll have to try something new.

Live your life to the fullest and make the most of your time and energy with these personal growth strategies.

Stimulate your personal growth and attain a new level of success:

1. Spend time with a new group of people. When you spend time with the same group of people all of the time, you aren’t exposed to new thoughts, ideas, or conversations. Get a fresh perspective by interacting with a new group.

2. Read. There’s more information available than you’re likely to ever need. Why reinvent the wheel when someone else has probably already walked the path that interests you. Investigate what’s available to you and learn from those that have already been successful.

3. Learn to take action quickly. You’ve had the experience of being excited for a moment about a new idea, only to talk yourself out of it within the first 15 seconds. The key is to take action before you give yourself a chance to think about it. Make a list, a phone call, or sketch out a quick plan.

4. Learn to embrace discomfort. One of the characteristics of successful people is they don’t allow discomfort to derail their efforts. On the other hand, underachievers are easily discouraged by discomfort.

5. Avoid changing too much at once. Your brain cringes at the mere thought of change. You’ll have better luck if you go slowly and strive for consistent progress. Think how much progress you would have made over the last three years if you had just spent 20 minutes each day on a single project.

6. Write. You experience a different perspective when you write your thoughts. It also makes a greater impression on your brain. If you want to do something, think it, say it, write it, and read it.

7. Eat nutritiously. Garbage in – garbage out. Give yourself effective fuel for your efforts. Your body and mind run better when you eat healthy foods.

8. Learn from your experience. The truth is that we are all our worst enemies. We commit the same mistakes over and over. Learn from your past.

9. Evaluate each day. At the end of the day, take a few minutes and write down what you did well and what you could have done better. Over time, you’ll find yourself taking more effective actions and fewer actions that don’t support you.

10. Set a few goals and review them each day. Write down your goals and read them a couple of times each day. Ask yourself at the end of the day what you’ve done to move yourself closer to your goals.

11. Exercise. Your brain functions better if you get some exercise each day. Without exercise, your brain falls into a rut. Use your muscles and get your heart beating for at least 20 minutes each day.

Life is easier if you learn something new each day and avoid repeating your mistakes. If your life hasn’t changed for the better over the last few years, that might be a sign that you could use some more effective strategies.

Personal growth is challenging. In fact, any change is challenging. But you can overcome the challenge and step onto a path that takes you where you want to go.

A new level of personal growth is around the corner. Use these tips as a way to get started on your quest to grow yourself and enrich your life.

Low self-esteem is a common challenge, regardless of your age, background, or socioeconomic status.

We all know that high self-esteem is a good thing, but how does one go about developing it?

There are a plethora of programs and books designed to raise your self-esteem, but it’s still a challenge. Try these top 10 tips to give your self-esteem the boost you seek.

Increase your self-esteem and feel great about yourself with these strategies:

1. Get support from your greatest fan. You probably have a friend or family member that always finds a way to lift you up when you’re feeling down. Pay them a visit and let them know you’re struggling.

2. Remember that self-esteem is a symptom of detrimental thinking habits. Anything that was said or happened in the past is over. You can only keep those things alive with your thoughts. Uplift your thinking and your self-esteem will begin to rise as well.

3. Learn how to take a compliment. Compliments are hard to take when your self-esteem is low. Ironically, that’s when you need them the most. Smile and thank the other person for the compliment. Resist the urge to dismiss compliments you receive.

4. You’re much more interesting than the person you pretend to be. We develop the urge to conform in elementary school.But you’re not like everyone else. You’re unique. You’ll make more friends and have more influence if you’re willing to be yourself.

5. You’ve already accomplished amazing things. Two of the most challenging things anyone has ever accomplished are learning to walk and learning to talk. Think about how long each takes to do well. They both require years of constant practice. Anything else you want to do with your life pales by comparison.

6. You can learn social skills. Many people with low self-esteem struggle with relationships or social situations. You’re not flawed; you’re just not aware of how to do it. Many children learn these skills while others do not. It’s never too late.

7. Other people aren’t thinking about you. It’s hard to believe, but people aren’t talking behind your back or thinking negative thoughts about you. Everyone else is wondering what you’re thinking and saying.

8. Be willing to say “No.” It’s natural to feel bad about yourself when you agree to do things you don’t want to do. It’s disrespectful to yourself. Give yourself the respect you deserve and refuse requests when you genuinely don’t want to do them.

9. Beware of social media. While social media can make it easy to stay in touch with others, understand that most of what you see is misleading. Few people are presenting their lives honestly. It’s a place to showcase the high points of your life. Everyone has challenges, but you’ll rarely see them on social media.

10. Develop your strengths. Are you a great dancer? Take a few dance classes. Are you a good writer? Take a writing course and develop your writing skills further. Run with your strengths and find ways to leverage them.

Imagine what your life would look like if you consistently enjoyed high self-esteem. Imagine how much more enjoyable life would be and how much more you could accomplish. The change in your life would be stunning.

Begin the journey of enhancing your opinion of yourself today. No one else will do it for you. You’ll be glad you did!

You are creative, even if you’ve failed to realize it. In fact, you can’t fail to create. You created the life you’re living right now, even if you don’t appreciate it very much!

However, unless you’ve tried to maximize your creativity, you’ve only been operating at half-throttle. It’s possible to be much more creative than you have been in the past. Being able to access your imagination and then use it to find creative solutions will make life easier, more enjoyable, and bring you greater fulfillment.

Enhance your ability to access your imagination with these strategies:

1. Practice without distractions. Turn off the TV and dim the lights. Have a seat and close your eyes. Allow your mind to wander, but don’t fall asleep. Instead of trying to steer your thoughts, let them run wild. Practice being an observer instead of a director. Do this daily for 15-20 minutes.

* Use all of your senses. You can do more than just see. You have the ability to hear, feel, smell, and touch. Use all of these senses when you’re utilizing your imagination.

* Your imagination will feel stronger if you use it daily. Try not to skip a day.

2. Read something outrageous (for you). Try reading a fictional book about aliens, fire-breathing dragons, or time travel. Expose yourself to new ideas and concepts. The more you experience, the more your imagination will have to work.

* The same goes for movies. Branch out. You can only watch so many action movies or romantic comedies!

3. Take up a creative hobby. Learn to paint, sculpture, or play the accordion. Try writing a screenplay or drawing a monster. Use the creative part of your brain.

4. Explore your passions. Do something you’ve always wanted to try, but haven’t yet. New mental states can increase your level of creativity.

Use your imagination to find creative solutions:

1. Set an intention. Think of an intention as a short-term goal for an activity. What are you trying to accomplish with your imagination? Find a solution for your relationship challenge? Figure out a way to earn more money? Invent a gadget that will change the world?

* It’s important to have an objective for your imagination to focus on.

2. Choose a method of addressing your imagination:

* You can turn off the lights and focus on your intention.

* You could sleep on it.

* You could sit at a clean table with a pad of paper and write whatever comes to mind. Keep going for at least 30 minutes.

* You could ask yourself questions and listen for the answers.

* Take part in an activity that engages your mind, but not completely. This can include activities like cleaning the house, taking a shower, mowing the lawn, or listening to classical music. These activities occupy part of your mind, but leave the remainder to create ideas.

3. Act on what you discover. Creative solutions are worthless unless you act upon them. Reward yourself for being creative by putting your ideas into action. Sort your ideas and choose the best one. Try and see if your imagination was correct! You’ll get better with practice.

Our great creativity is one of the things that separates us from other forms of life. Using your creativity effectively can help you to find better solutions to the challenges in your life.

Creativity can fade with age, but that’s just because we fail to use it regularly.

Your ability to imagine is one way to address your creativity. Instead of mindlessly staring out the window and daydreaming, you can direct your imagination to address specific issues in your life.

We’ve all heard about affirmations. Using them sounds like a great idea, but how do you actually create an affirmation and use it to your advantage?

Affirmations can be a powerful tool to enhance your thinking and results. It might seem silly to repeat statements that you view as essentially untrue, but give it a try for a month and measure the results for yourself.

It can take time to see the benefits. A few days aren’t enough. Give yourself a full month.

Create a new life and way of thinking through the power of affirmations:

1. Determine your negative beliefs. The best way to create positive affirmations that work for you is to determine where your current thinking is holding you back. Spend a day and focus on your self-talk. Make a note of all the negative thoughts you think throughout the day. Write them down.

2. Create your affirmations based on your negative beliefs. Affirmations should be stated in the present and in a positive manner. For example:

* “I don’t have any friends” becomes “I make friends quickly and easily.”

* “I can’t get in shape” becomes “I find it easy to eat well, exercise, and lose weight.”

* Spend the time to create affirmations that address all of your negative thoughts.

3. Record your affirmations so you can listen to them. You’ll want to be able to listen to your affirmations in the car, at home, or on the go. Record them into your cell phone or iPod-type device. Whatever works for you is fine.

4. Have a written record of your affirmations, too. Keep a copy with you and post other copies where you’ll see them: at work, in the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and your locker at the gym. Choose places that make sense for your lifestyle.

5. Never pass up the opportunity to listen to or read your affirmations. Stuck in line at the store? Pull out your iPod or list of affirmations and listen or read. Use your spare time to recite your affirmations to yourself.

6. The times right before falling asleep and right after waking up are most important. Your brain is more receptive to suggestion during these times. Use them to your advantage. It only takes a few minutes. You might even find that you sleep better.

7. Notice your successes. The changes you experience will be very subtle. You probably won’t even recognize them unless you’re looking for them. Once a week, sit down and think about your life. Ask yourself how things are improving. What positive changes are you seeing?

8. Keep a list of your successes. Keep a journal so you don’t forget about the progress you’ve made. You’re already good at keeping track of your failures, so do the same for your successes. Review your successes to keep them fresh in your mind. Success leads to more success, so keep track!

9. Repeat the entire process as needed. Over time, you’ll develop new, negative self-talk. Use it to your advantage. Add new affirmations to your list and use them. Your self-talk will become less negative as you become more aware of it. This is a process you can use throughout your lifetime.

If you’ve never given affirmations a try, you’re in for a surprise. As simple as affirmations can be, it can be challenging to get started. Avoid allowing your resistance to stop you.

Forge ahead and give affirmations your best effort for just a month. Affirmations are a simple method to tame your self-talk and use it to your advantage.

Maybe finding your life purpose is easy if you have special gifts like Picasso or Einstein. On the other hand, if you’re way past 21 and still asking yourself what you want to be when you grow up, the process starts to seem less clear.

Even if it takes some effort, it’s still a question worth answering. Numerous studies suggest that finding work that aligns with your purpose is more motivating and satisfying than any pay increase.

If you’re still searching, it’s time to discover your mission!

Use this checklist to help you find and fulfill your purpose.

Finding Your Life Purpose:

1. Calm your mind. Ease yourself into a creative state of mind. Meditate or take a long walk through the park. Soak in a warm bath or read poetry. Your thoughts become more expansive when you take a step back from daily concerns.

2. List your passions. Ask yourself what you value. What would it take to make you excited about getting out of bed in the morning?

3. Identify your strengths. Focus on what you do well. Think about the kind of compliments you receive or tasks that come easily to you.

4. Analyze flow. Recognize the activities that create a flow experience for you. When do you lose track of time and find that your work becomes effortless?

5. Focus on service. Your purpose takes on more meaning when you look beyond yourself and think about how you can have a positive impact on others. Try to find an underserved need that you can help fill.

6. Do research. The internet makes it easy to learn more about any topic related to your purpose. Look up information on careers in education or take cooking classes.

7. Talk with others. Learn from others who are already working in the fields that you find interesting. Attend networking events. When you’re at parties, ask other guests what they do and follow up with relevant questions.

8. Keep a journal. Writing about your search can help you organize your thoughts. Over time, you may spot patterns that will guide you in moving forward.

Fulfilling Your Life Purpose:

1. Be flexible. You may be surprised by some of your discoveries. You may even find that you have more than one purpose. Try to keep an open mind.

2. Change your assumptions. If you’re hesitant to act on your ambitions, you may have self-limiting beliefs that are holding you back. Remember your past accomplishments and focus on what you have to gain.

3. Make realistic plans. It’s okay to aim high, but you want your targets to be feasible. Not everyone who loves opera can sing soprano, but there are plenty of other roles in the same industry, from costume design to fundraising.

4. Set a daily intention. Keep your purpose fresh in your mind. Figure out something you can do each day to bring you closer to your goals. Consistent effort builds momentum, and small victories add up.

5. Evaluate your progress. Assess your development on a regular basis, so you can devote your efforts to activities with the highest payback. Weed out distractions and make adjustments as needed.

6. Find balance. Give equal attention to contemplating your purpose and taking action. Otherwise, you can wind up overlooking your top priorities or missing opportunities.

7. Seek support. Pursuing your purpose is rewarding and challenging. It helps to have partners on your side. Ask your friends and family for the assistance you need. Team up with others who share your vision.

Being driven by purpose will make you happier and more successful. Examine your experiences and discover how to share your unique gifts.

There’s a lot you can do to keep you mind sharp or even enhance it. There are a variety of ways to exercise your brain, from learning something new, to exercise, to quitting unsupportive habits.

Your brain eventually ages just like any other part of your body, but there is much you can do to slow, or even reverse, the aging process. It’s never too soon or too late to work on keeping your mind sharp.

Try these suggestions:

1. Learn a foreign language. Learning a new language is challenging! Between learning new vocabulary and grammar rules, you’ll give your brain a full workout. You’ll even become a better listener. Pick a language that interests you. Hopefully, it will be one that you find useful, too.

2. Meditate. Meditation is all about focus. With age, it can be more challenging to concentrate. Daily meditation feels good, helps you to relax, and gives your brain a workout. Develop a daily meditation practice and notice all the benefits you gain.

3. Exercise your brain and body. There are many ways to exercise your brain. Listen to classical music, take a math class, do a crossword puzzle, read a challenging book, make a list of random words and try to remember it. Play bridge or poker.

* Exercising your body can help your brain, too. Avoid exercising to exhaustion, but exercise enough to give your heart and lungs a workout too. Find an activity you love to do. See your doctor if you have any concerns or questions.

4. Avoid smoking and excessive drinking. Some studies show that a drink a day is healthy. That’s one drink. There are no studies that support smoking as a health booster. One of the ways to keep your mind sharp is to stop doing the things that damage it.

5. Learn something new. Learning creates actual structural changes in your brain. Take a class at your local community college. Teach yourself sign language or how to play the piano. There must be something that you’d like to know more about. Now is the time to indulge yourself a little.

6. Get enough rest. Less than seven hours of sleep has been shown to impair cognitive function on multiple levels. Decision-making and memory are just two examples. Get enough sleep and your brain will function at a higher level. Start tonight.

7. Do things in a new way. Take a few everyday tasks and try doing them in a new way. For example:

* Eat with your opposite hand.

* Get dressed with your eyes closed or with only one hand.

* Wear your watch upside down.

* What ideas can you come up with?

8. Turn the volume on your TV down a notch. Set the volume to a comfortable level and then turn it down one click. See if you can follow what’s being said. When that becomes easy, turn it down another notch. Repeat. These steps help your brain’s ability to process auditory information.

The best time to work on maintaining your brain health was 20 years ago; the second best time is today.

Get started immediately and challenge your brain in new ways. Part of the reason we lose mental sharpness is routine. Middle-aged and older adults do the same things each day and rarely do or learn anything new. Dare to be different. Stretch your brain and reap the rewards.

Learning a foreign language can be a great way to spend your free time. It’s certainly more productive than watching television. Even if you have no interest in traveling abroad, knowing an additional language has many benefits. You’ll gain a new perspective on the world, challenge your brain, and make new friends.

With all the language programs available online, many of them for free, there’s no reason not to begin learning a new language today!

Learn a new language and take advantage of these benefits:

1. International travel is easier and more enjoyable. While English can allow you to get by in many countries, that’s not true everywhere. Even countries with a reasonable number of English speakers can be more thoroughly enjoyed if you can speak the native language. The local culture is more accessible to you.

* You’ll also feel less intimidated about getting on that plane in the first place. Even the simplest of activities, such as asking for directions or reading street signs, is a challenge if you don’t speak the local language.

2. Your listening skills and memory are enhanced when you learn a foreign language. Learning foreign vocabulary is a good workout for your memory. You’ll also have to listen intently to understand what is being said to you. A foreign language can stretch your brain like few other activities.

3. You’ll develop a marketable skill. Many jobs require the knowledge of a foreign language. You’ll have something interesting to add to your resume.

4. Foreign language study enhances your appreciation for other cultures. Imagine how much better the world would be if everyone knew at least two languages and spent some time in another culture.

5. Make new friends. You can greatly enhance your circle of international friends if you learn to speak another language. There are many websites dedicated to pen pals, language pals, and traveling buddies. You can make friendships all over the world.

6. You’ll spend less when you travel abroad. Tourist areas tend to have overpriced food and other items. These areas can be attractive to tourists because English is more accommodated there. You’ll be brave enough to get off the beaten path when you travel and pay more reasonable prices as a result.

* You’ll also be able to haggle effectively. While haggling prices isn’t common in North America, it is widely practiced and accepted in many other countries. It’s hard to haggle if you can’t speak the language.

7. Boost your self-esteem. You can learn to do something that you might believe is beyond your reach. While some languages are especially challenging for native English speakers, millions of kids have learned to speak those languages. You can, too!

8. Your brain will stay healthier. Studies have shown that learning a foreign language can help to prevent, or at least slow the development of, various types of dementia. Bilinguals have been shown to have less dementia than those that only know a single language.

Several studies have demonstrated the cognitive benefits of learning a second language.

But, the benefits go far beyond just boosting and maintaining your brain health. You’ll make new friendships and greatly enhance your traveling experiences. You can save money while traveling. You’ll also increase your self-esteem!

Take a look at the many free resources available online and begin your language study today. It’s never too late to start.

Your parents may have raised you to be accommodating and to put the needs of others first. However, there’s a limit to how accommodating you can be without harming yourself.

Eventually, you start to feel like others are taking advantage of you. At the same time, you worry that others will be upset if you refuse a request. It’s an uncomfortable predicament.

Assertiveness is a part of maintaining good mental health and a balanced life. It’s important to have boundaries and give your own needs the priority they deserve.

Could you get better results by becoming more assertive? Watch for these signs:

1. You can’t say “no.” When you can’t assert yourself, you say “yes” a lot more than you want. You find yourself feeling like a victim, because you feel you’ve been pushed into doing things you don’t want to do. After all, it’s their fault for asking, right? No, it’s your fault for failing to say the simple word, “No.”

* Use your voice and freedom of choice to refuse requests that are too inconvenient or disagreeable to you. No one can agree to everything. It’s okay to consider what is best for you.

2. You fear rejection. You can counter this fear by working on your self-confidence. The less you worry about rejection, the more assertive you’ll become. Ultimately, this is the primary reason most people aren’t assertive. The fear of rejection is among the strongest acquired fears.

3. Your needs are consistently unmet. Are you wishing that others will be as nice as you are and look out for your best interests? It doesn’t work that way. When you’re too accommodating, people lose respect for you. Subsequently, they have little concern for your needs.

* Ensure that you’re meeting your own needs. If you can get others to help, so much the better.

4. Accepting responsibility is challenging for you. Those that struggle with assertiveness avoid taking responsibility. Can you accept criticism and compliments? If not, you’re probably not very assertive.

* Enhancing your self-confidence is among the most effective ways to increase your ability to accept responsibility. The result is a greater ability to be assertive.

5. You avoid conflict at all costs. Are you unwilling to confront someone that is mistreating you? Would you rather have peace regardless of the sacrifice?

* Conflict is a normal part of human interaction and should be expected from time to time. It’s a necessary part of reaching a consensus and resolution. Learn to embrace conflict and appreciate what it can accomplish.

6. You say, “I’m sorry” more than you should. There are times that apologies are appropriate. However, there is no reason to apologize constantly.

* Attempt to go one entire day without saying that 2-word phrase. Notice how challenging it can be. Keep track of how many times you’re tempted to apologize.

7. You’re hesitant to share your opinion. When you’re going out with friends, do you ever choose the bar, restaurant, club, movie, or other destination?

* Let others know what you think. If you’re honest with yourself, you have an opinion on everything. You may not have a strong preference most of the time, but you can still share your opinion.

Assertiveness means sharing your thoughts and opinions. It also means making yourself a priority. Without sufficient assertiveness, your self-esteem and life suffer. Boost your self-confidence and try being more assertive. You’ll find that life is easier and you’ll gain the respect of your peers.