Why Confidence Is Key To Happiness

Why Confidence Is Key To Happiness

We need to be comfortable enough to walk into a room without feeling the need to compare ourselves to the other people there.
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As a woman, I have struggled with being confident in who I am in all of the stereotypical and very real ways, such as body image, bad skin break-outs where I have some acne scarring and not feeling like I am pretty enough according to some unforeseen standard.

And of course I believe that men can and do struggle with these same appearance judgements and unrealistic standards. But what I really want to talk about right now is the deepest, most hurtful form of lacking self-confidence that I have constantly struggled with.This is the acceptance of who I am according to my personality, what I am interested in and even the way I am around groups of people.This may not make sense to some people, but I tear myself down by comparing myself to other people's behavior and personality.

To describe myself, I would say that I am not very shy, because I know that I am an extrovert, yet when I am around other people I tend to not be the loudest one in the crowd and often compare myself to those people that are more outgoing than I am and feel that I am not good enough.When I am around people that enjoy doing things that I don't enjoy doing, I tend to criticize myself and believe that I am not a fun person and I need to be more like them or else no one will like me. I can be a perfectionist about certain things, so when there is something I feel I am particularly good at doing and somebody else does that exact same thing, I compare myself to them and make myself think that they are better and that I have failed.

Let me tell you friends...my mind is my own worst enemy and I am my harshest critic. I definitely hold myself up to unrealistic standards that I myself have set because I make myself believe that those things are what people believe about me. And these things are truly hurtful and are complete and total lies that I have to stop believing. I believe that our mind is our most powerful weapon, and it can be used for us or against us. I also believe that by viewing ourselves in any negative way, we diminish one of the most important things we can have: confidence. I don't mean that I think we should all walk around big-headed thinking that we own the world, but I do believe that having confidence in ourselves is essential to living a happy and healthy life.

A quote I saw on Pinterest basically said that being confident does not mean walking into a room with your nose in the air thinking you are better than everyone else, it means you aren't having to compare yourself to anyone in the first place. This may sound super cheesy or maybe a little teenager-ish, but I believe that quote has it all right! We need to be able to walk into a room, any room, and not feel the need to compare ourselves to other people, whether that be body weight, how gorgeous the person beside you is or even our own personalities. When will we learn to be comfortable in our own skin?

Hey, don't worry guys I am still figuring this out to. I struggle daily with thoughts of doubt and even the tiniest of comparisons that can drag my confidence down, but I want to leave you with some hope that you will not always be stuck feeling bad about yourself and that your confidence can be restored. I have no idea who Barrie Davenport is, but I read this quote by him on the internet (yes, I Googled quotes about self-confidence): "Low self-confidence isn't a life sentence. Self-confidence can be learned, practiced, and mastered--just like any other skill. Once you master it, everything in your life will change for the better." And I couldn't agree more!

Learn to be comfortable in your own skin.

Learn to be happy in who you are.

Cover Image Credit: Joshua Miller

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Top 5 Tips for getting your music discovered online

A musician’s guide to SEO
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  1. Pick a unique band name

Usually, I’d say the name of a band doesn’t matter; but, in the cyber world, this can make all the difference. Picking a name that is easy to rank for on Google is essential for new fans to be able to find you! Ranking for keyword searches on google is very easy when the keyword or long tail keyword (combination of words) isn’t something many people search for. Let’s take the band “Real Estate” for example. This band has over 1 million monthly listeners, and over 40 thousand Instagram followers. With a quick google search of their name they rank…nowhere on the first 5 pages. Now let’s look at my high school band “Olympic Formal” (this isn’t me trying to plug my music I swear). With just over 50 followers on SoundCloud, and less than 700 followers on Instagram, all our sites pop up at the top of the first page. You think anyone is searching for “Olympic Formal” and not looking for us? PICK A GOOD BAND NAME! 

2. Stop using hashtag music 

When people are searching for new music, a lot of times it happens on Instagram or twitter, but #music has over 180 million posts. You are not going to rank for that hashtag. I promise. Instagram’s new algorithm discourages people from using a ton of hashtags, and doing so can lead to you even being “shadow banded”. So pick 5 or 6 relevant hashtags that are more niche than the umbrella terms people usually use. It’s a lot easier to rank for something like #bostonhiphop than #hiphop. 

3. Make a WordPress

Many people think Blogs are a thing of the past…and they’re kind of right. The likelihood of getting people to engage with a website that’s not a major social media platform isn’t nearly as high as it was in the early 2000’s. However, using a site like WordPress allows you to repost all your pictures and videos from Instagram and Facebook and add “alt text”. Alt Text is the description that is behind the photo that no one sees. Having the name of your band or other keywords in the alt text of your WordPress allows you to show up for searches on google images. 

4. Links are key

Google uses things called “Spiders” to search every page on anything that is relevant to your search. One of the things that these siders look for is internal links to relevant content. So if you want your Bandcamp page at the top of a Google search, be sure to post links to all your social media pages and websites, as well as have other sites (personal accounts/blogs and professional blogs) link your sites within their posts.

5. Content is king

The days of just putting out music are over! Musicians have to realize they are not in the music business, but also the entertainment business! The single best way to get your music discovered is by having something that lots of people engage with. It’s a hell of a lot easier to have 1000 people watch 1 minute Instagram video of a jam session than it is to get 1000 Spotify streams. It’s all about that content baby!

  

1. Pick a unique band name

Usually, I’d say the name of a band doesn’t matter; but, in the cyber world, this can make all the difference. Picking a name that is easy to rank for on Google is essential for new fans to be able to find you! Ranking for keyword searches on google is very easy when the keyword or long tail keyword (combination of words) isn’t something many people search for. Let’s take the band “Real Estate” for example. This band has over 1 million monthly listeners, and over 40 thousand Instagram followers. With a quick google search of their name they rank…nowhere on the first 5 pages. Now let’s look at my high school band “Olympic Formal” (this isn’t me trying to plug my music I swear). With just over 50 followers on SoundCloud, and less than 700 followers on Instagram, all our sites pop up at the top of the first page. You think anyone is searching for “Olympic Formal” and not looking for us? PICK A GOOD BAND NAME! 

2. Stop using hashtag music 

When people are searching for new music, a lot of times it happens on Instagram or twitter, but #music has over 180 million posts. You are not going to rank for that hashtag. I promise. Instagram’s new algorithm discourages people from using a ton of hashtags, and doing so can lead to you even being “shadow banded”. So pick 5 or 6 relevant hashtags that are more niche than the umbrella terms people usually use. It’s a lot easier to rank for something like #bostonhiphop than #hiphop. 

3. Make a WordPress

Many people think Blogs are a thing of the past…and they’re kind of right. The likelihood of getting people to engage with a website that’s not a major social media platform isn’t nearly as high as it was in the early 2000’s. However, using a site like WordPress allows you to repost all your pictures and videos from Instagram and Facebook and add “alt text”. Alt Text is the description that is behind the photo that no one sees. Having the name of your band or other keywords in the alt text of your WordPress allows you to show up for searches on google images. 

4. Links are key

Google uses things called “Spiders” to search every page on anything that is relevant to your search. One of the things that these siders look for is internal links to relevant content. So if you want your Bandcamp page at the top of a Google search, be sure to post links to all your social media pages and websites, as well as have other sites (personal accounts/blogs and professional blogs) link your sites within their posts.

5. Content is king

The days of just putting out music are over! Musicians have to realize they are not in the music business, but also the entertainment business! The single best way to get your music discovered is by having something that lots of people engage with. It’s a hell of a lot easier to have 1000 people watch 1 minute Instagram video of a jam session than it is to get 1000 Spotify streams. It’s all about that content baby!

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5 Surprising Reasons to Take Up Ice Fishing This Season

Why Ice Fishing is the Best Fishing
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Winter has arrived and since we live in the real world and not in Game of Thrones universe, it won't last for years. That's why instead of being cooped up in your own house, you should make the best of this season. And how can you do it?? Of course, by ice fishing. 

Yes, I am perfectly aware that, when we hear the word 'Winter', fishing is not the first thing that comes to our mind; but it should. 

Ok, I admit that winter is cold, bleak and sometimes boring. However, ice fishing is the best way to spice up our winter. There is no activity that would cheer you up in this gloomy weather more than fishing through the ice. Yet, if you are still skeptical about ice fishing, then below I have given 5 reasons that would certainly convince you to take up ice fishing this winter. 

1. Saves Money

Money matters to everyone, unless you are Bill Gates or his lucky lad. And, you can save a lot of money by fishing in winter rather than in summer. For, during the summer, in order to catch fish, you must own or rent a boat, and a boat requires maintenance, and all of this will cost you a huge sum of money. 

On the other hand, in winter you won't need a boat, and without a boat, there would be no maintenance. This would certainly save you an ample amount of money. Besides, instruments of ice fishing aren't expensive and you can purchase them for less than $100. However, you must make sure that your equipment such as rods, auger, and fishing reels are top notch to ensure that you are fully prepared for any kind of fish. 

2. Perfect for family outing

One thing that I particularly love about ice fishing is that we can do it with our family, unlike fishing in summer, as it is quite difficult to go fishing with 5 or 6 people in the boat. It is also worthy of note that ice angling is extremely popular among kids as a winter activity as they love playing in the snow, and their happy faces will certainly brighten up your mood. Thus, it won't be an exaggeration to say that an exhilarating fishing adventure is the best outdoor activity for family outings in this freezing weather. 

3. No sunburn

Sunburn is a cause of concern for most of the anglers, and rightly so. Because overexposure to the sun can cause us severe skin damage. However, ice anglers don't have to worry about sunburn unless you are one of those who prefer to fish in a state of undress. 

Nonetheless, it would be wise for you to put on some warm and comfortable clothes of high-quality as it would protect you from hypothermia. And, if you are you terrified of cold weather, don't worry, for, with a new technology called ThermoLogic line by NTA Enterprise, you can control the temperature of your own fishing apparel. Therefore, put all your worries into the closet and remember, before embarking on the ice, you must bundle up. 

4. You Don't get bored

It could be quite frustrating when the fish is not biting. But you shouldn’t trouble yourself, as you can try a lot of other activities instead of waiting for the fish to get hooked. For example, you can play cards, hockey (my favorite) or enjoy a hot tub out in the open. Besides, you will have all your fishing buddies alongside you. But if you are one of those who like to fish alone, then divulge in skating or you can try your cooking skills while keeping an eye on the hole for fish. Hence, rest assured, boredom is something that you won't suffer from while ice fishing. 

5. Great for health

I am sure, you have heard this phrase 'health is wealth', but did you know that you can preserve your 'wealth' by ice fishing? Yes, you can. But how??? Well, It has been scientifically proven that being near to water is greatly beneficial for our health, even when the water is frozen. 

An Australian study has revealed that water can have a great effect on our overall fitness. For, it reduces stress (which is vital for our heart), helps breast cancer patient's recovery,and aids to tackle chronic illness or mental problems. Therefore, by taking up ice fishing in this winter you can get both pleasure and health benefits.

So Do You Feel The Itch?

By now, you should feel the bubbles in your stomach for ice fishing. It has fun, adventure and what not! Let me know your thought on taking up ice fishing this season in the comment section below.

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