10 Things You Should Stop Saying At Work If You Want To Sound More Confident

If you’ve been out in the working world for any amount of time, you’ve probably prefaced a question to your higher-ups by saying that it’s “probably stupid,” and you’re certainly not alone.

We all have great ideas, and there’s no reason why we shouldn’t communicate them with confidence. And our bosses are human, too. They might not cover every single bullet point in every single meeting, so it’s on us to ask questions! There’s nothing wrong with that. If you feel like your workplace confidence could use a boost, here are a few words, phrases, and speech habits you should totally avoid using in the office.

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1. Unless you’re asking your boss about their opinion on string theory during a marketing meeting, your question probably isn’t stupid. There’s absolutely no way to remember everything your higher-ups have ever said, so ask for clarification when you need it! It’ll help you perform to the best of your ability, and that’s better for everyone involved.

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2. This speech pattern is often associated with Valley Girls, but according to the BBC, both men and women are increasingly guilty of finishing statements with questions in the workplace. It’s probably in an effort to sound relatable, but it ends up reading as insecure. Don’t say, “This positioning would work better on Facebook, you know?” Just make your point, be secure in your response, and keep it moving. Try not to sound like you’re seeking approval.

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3. If you walk by your boss and accidentally smack her in the back of the head, say you’re sorry. If you’re sending her an email asking to use some paid time off, don’t. Don’t be “sorry” for “bothering” your bosses! Part of their job is making sure that all of their employees are good to go. You’re fine.

4. Being met with silence after making a statement can be intimidating, but let that silence work in your favor. Instead of blathering on incessantly until your coworker adds their input, let them sit with your ideas for a second. Doing so is a non-verbal way of saying, “I got this, and you’ll get it, too.” (But if the blank stares persist for more than a few minutes, step back in.)

5. When it comes to sounding authoritative, this common phrase is a killer. Clients don’t want to hear that you think you can help them. Your boss doesn’t want to hear that you think you can nail that big presentation. You know what you’re doing, so make sure you convey that as clearly as possible.

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6. This one is tricky in an increasingly digital world. If you communicate with coworkers via email or through chat services like Slack, it’s tempting to use exclamation points and smiley faces to convey enthusiasm for fear of sounding cold. And this, my friends, is something of which I’m guilty as charged. If you’re still around and getting your work done, your managers like you. Don’t worry so much about coming across as a big ol’ bubble of enthusiasm. (Duly noted, me.)

7. Please, please stop saying “synergy.” Please. If you want to sound like you know what you’re talking about, don’t use any words or phrases that make you sound like you’re resting on verbal standbys. Don’t call a potential client “low-hanging fruit,” and quit telling people how things are “at the end of the day.” The more original you sound, the more worthwhile your ideas will appear to anyone listening.

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8. If any of your coworkers need you to elaborate an idea, they’ll ask (preferably without doing the whole “this might sound stupid” thing). Talk through your thoughts without sounding like you’re second guessing yourself. If you don’t sound confident in your ideas, don’t expect anyone else to get on board.

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9. Just do it. Constantly making lateral moves at work isn’t going to help you grow, so approach each new task as a learning opportunity. Are you a Photoshop novice? Let YouTubers be your guides. Never put together an office newsletter? Google some formatting tips. Learning on your feet is a skill in itself. If you really can’t figure it out, just be upfront about it and go from there.

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10. Ironically, this phrase will inspire approximately zero people to trust you. Remember that confidence and arrogance are not one in the same. Instead of leaving your coworkers hanging, spend time articulating exactly why they should place their faith in you. Knowing what you’re talking about will make you come off as secure, not cocky.

Although we all feel insecure at work sometimes, projecting self-assuredness helps everyone, yourself included, feel better about how things are going. You can do it!

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/workplace-confidence/

10 Dangerous (And Expensive) Skin Care Myths That We Need To Leave Behind Forever

Whenever a new beauty trend hits the scene, I’m first in line to buy every product in sight.

Korean skin care? Way ahead of you. SPF serum? Sign me up. As a true junkie, I pride myself on knowing what’s up, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get sucked in by fads that fail to do a whole lot in the results department.

And that’s mainly because most of us, beauty addicts or otherwise, buy into a whole host of myths that have no evidence to back them up aside from word-of-mouth advice. Let’s take a look at the ones we need to ditch.

1. Myth: Lavender is great for calming irritated skin.

Fact: While that statement in itself is not false, here’s where adding lavender to your routine gets tricky. Although the soothing properties of lavender can calm redness, the plant can also make your skin photosensitive. That doesn’t bode well for anyone looking to spend time outside, especially when beach weather rolls around. To avoid burning and further damaging your skin, slather on some serious SPF if you use these creams, oils, and serums.

If you want to learn more about the pros and cons of using lavender-laden products, check this out.

2. Myth: You should never use oils or rich lotions on oily skin.

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Fact: As someone with an oily face, I can tell you that stripping your skin is never the answer. In fact, using harsh, drying cleansers and toners can actually trick your skin into producing even more oil. A good beauty routine starts with moisturization, so don’t be afraid of anti-aging oils and creams. Just use them sparingly. After a while, your skin will balance itself out. It can only do that if it’s healthy and nourished.

3. Myth: Eating too much of any junk food will make you break out.

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Fact: The association between all junk food and breakouts is a little too general. Instead of pointing the finger at every indulgence, blame high-glycemic foods. Treats falling into this category often contain refined sugars and carbohydrates, which cause inflammation. Studies have linked inflammation to breakouts, so that’s why zits appear after binging on stuff like pizza.

You can find more information about high-glycemic foods and their relationship to acne here.

4. Myth: All products labeled “hypoallergenic” will work for sensitive skin.

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Fact: Much like the term “organic” has turned into an unregulated mess in grocery stores, the term “hypoallergenic” tricks consumers with sensitive skin into thinking that products labeled as such will not cause irritation.

According to the folks at Paula’s Choice, “We’ve seen hundreds of products that are said to be good for sensitive skin that contain seriously problematic ingredients like fragrances, which are capable of triggering allergic breakouts or sensitive skin reactions.” Be on the lookout for ingredients like alcohol, menthol, and camphor. For further details, follow this link.

5. Myth: Using products from the same line will yield better results.

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Fact: You can chalk this up to clever marketing, people. While every brand under the sun claims that there’s a special relationship between ingredients in products from the same line, you can save some serious cash by doing your research. If you love an expensive lotion but can’t afford the serum that supposedly goes along with it, check the ingredients and look for them elsewhere on sites like Amazon and Dermstore.

6. Myth: Facial exercises can prevent and counteract the signs of aging.

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Fact: According to Dr. Frederic Brandt, the mastermind behind Dr. Brandt Skin Care, “The muscle contractions used in facial exercises can actually contribute to wrinkling.” Just think about how smile lines form. Over the course of a lifetime, those pesky parentheses on either side of your mouth become permanently etched into the skin. Repeatedly performing the same facial exercises can have similar effects.

7. Myth: Natural ingredients are always better than synthetics.

Fact: There’s a reason why businesses like LUSH (which is an amazing brand, by the way) do so well. They give consumers the option to swap out harsh synthetics for natural alternatives. The researchers at LUSH know exactly which processes their ingredients need to go through to make them safe and effective. For that reason, not all natural products are created equal. Citrus juices and coconut oil, for example, can actually harm and irritate your skin if they’re not processed correctly.

To learn more about which natural ingredients will actually help your skin, check out the LUSHopedia.

8. Myth: It’s best to use products that contain collagen and elastin.

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Fact: While all those claims about bioengineered collagen and elastin penetrating the skin and fusing with the collagen you already have sound great, they don’t hold up on a molecular level. The fact of the matter is that the particles found in these products are way too big to penetrate the skin, let alone bind with pre-existing collagen.

9. Myth: High-end products are way more effective than anything you could possibly find at the drugstore.

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Fact: According to most experts, the active ingredients in anti-aging products across the spectrum are pretty much the same. Even if concentrations of these ingredients in drugstore products are lower, you’ll still get similar effects over time. (And while we’re at it, I’d like to point out that no anti-aging lotion is going to make you look like you just had a facelift, even if you spent a small fortune on it.)

10. Myth: Baking soda is great for exfoliating and detoxifying the skin.

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Fact: This one is particularly maddening, since beauty gurus, DIYers, and even major brands claim that baking soda is something that you should be using on your face. In fact, Biore just came out with a face wash based on the harmful trend. You absolutely should not use baking soda on your skin.

Not only is it too harsh to use as an exfoliant, but it’s also way too basic. The PH level of baking soda can throw your skin totally out of whack — so much so that you could rob your skin of its natural ability to fight bacterial infections. Click here for more details.

The fact of the matter is that everyone’s skin is different.

(via Real Simple)

What works for me might not work for you, and that’s totally fine! While it’s important to acknowledge the shortcomings of beauty fads and call out problematic myths, the pros of using lavender oil may outweigh the cons for you, or you really might break out after eating any form of junk food. Just figure out what works (and doesn’t work) for you. Before starting any new regimen, it never hurts to do some digging online and consult a dermatologist!

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/skin-care-myths/

These 12 Products Prove That Looks Can Be Awesomely Deceiving

Ah, packaging. It’s the necessary evil that stands between us and the products we can’t wait to get our hands on…and it’s usually really, really annoying. With all of those nasty adhesives and seemingly impenetrable plastics, it’s like packaging designers want to drive us insane.

But some companies enlist the help of designers who actually want to sell us a packaging experience instead of a scissor-ruining nightmare. Businesspeople everywhere should take a page or two (or twelve) out of this clever design book.

1. Pencil shavings don’t usually belong in salad…

…unless they’re made out of cheese.

2. You stuck the label on upside down. How edgy.

Wait a minute…

3. I feel like they’re trying to tell us something…

Yeah, subtlety isn’t really their thing.

4. Enjoy a little light reading.

Or don’t.

5. Give your wine-snob friends two choices.

Hint: “Something oaky” is not one of them.

6. The early bird gets the worm…

…and the cute little pair of kids’ shoes inside.

var OX_ads = OX_ads || []; OX_ads.push({ slot_id: “537251604_564eb8297dd03”, auid: “537251604” });

7. Convince skeptical coworkers that you absolutely did not buy cupcakes for this year’s company cookout.

See? Straight out of the oven.

8. Veggies are good for you.

Aaaaand so are condoms.

9. Housework is a bore.

Drinking isn’t.

10. If you think your favorite chocolate is the best…

…you haven’t seen this yet.

11. If you have enough time on your hands to be bored with your dish towels, don’t worry.

These exist.

12. Hanging clothes is the best way to avoid wrinkles.

So keep your teas in the closet. (Or, you know, in a mug.)

(via BuzzFeed / Creative Guerilla Marketing / Behance)

I’d rather not deal with shrink wrap and cellophane if at all possible, so coming across products like these in stores would be a nice change of pace. I guess packaging designers aren’t all bad…at least twelve of them aren’t, anyway.

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/epic-packaging/