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    How to Argue Better and Cope With Conflict—Without Losing Your Cool

    Perhaps you had a few conversations in the past year you regret. Maybe your friend, neighbor, or family member went apocalyptic, and you matched the intensity. Rosalie Puiman, leadership coach and author of The Mindful Guide to Conflict Resolution, says that doesn’t have to be the case. Here are her top tips on how to argue better and cope with conflict.

    1. Drop Your Ego
    “If you’re having a tough discussion, especially around politics—and you want to be constructive—let go of the old paradigm of winning and losing,” Puiman says. Don’t argue to win, but rather to explore the intricacies of another person’s perspective. Shifting the narrative lowers the stakes.
    2. Be Curious
    “A great way in is to ask what the other person’s experiences have been. Be sincere, and share yours, too.” When you disclose something personal and make yourself vulnerable, it can make a divisive topic feel like less of a debate on moral mandates of right and wrong.

    3. Tap Into Unsaid Emotions
    Polarizing issues can automatically trigger anxiety and defensiveness. “The other person might be scared, angry, hurt, or they don’t feel seen. Identify that and say: ‘Wow, I sense so much pain in your words.’ ” Empathy can steer dialogue into neutral territory.

    4. Know When to Walk
    It’s okay to cut bait when things aren’t going well. “Say, ‘I think we’re touching on subjects we absolutely disagree on, and I don’t think it’s helpful to our relationship if we continue this.’ ” Changing the topic isn’t copping out.
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    Why Group Therapy May Be the Best Type of Therapy for Men

    By now, every guy knows that talking about the things you’re going through—be it a divorce, job loss, or plain ol’ unexplainable anxiety—can help with processing emotions. But that doesn’t have to look like chatting one-on-one from a couch: Group therapy is a great option for men who aren’t comfortable talking about themselves, who like to learn from listening and observing others, or who are currently missing that feeling of community support, says Rachel Kazez, therapist and founder of All Along, a consulting firm that pairs people with therapists. Group therapy may be the most approachable form of talk therapy. Without any of the personal pressure, it’s like having a beer with your buddies, except some people talk about their feelings.

    These days, group support often looks like anywhere from four to 15 people (all men, if you like) hopping on a Zoom call, talking through current struggles and recent wins. These sessions are usually led by a licensed counselor or therapist, and there’s no need to share if you don’t want to. But many people find that watching others work through hardships helps them figure out their own tribulations, Kazez says.

    She adds that if you’re looking to process a specific trauma or want a place where you can talk non-stop, then personal sessions might be more beneficial. But a group can act as a bridge if you’re not quite ready to divulge your biggest qualms one-on-one yet. (Bonus: It’s usually cheaper, too.)

    Of course, it’s all about finding the right one, Kazez adds. The attendees and leaders set the tone, so shop around until you find a good fit.
    Illustration of men in group therapy Illustration by Kagan McLeod
    There are great virtual sessions offered by online platforms like EVRYMAN and Hims & Hers. If you want the option to meet in person, ask local clinics or therapists about groups currently meeting remotely. Don’t know where to start? Tap a service like Kazez’s All Along or MyWellbeing, which emails personalized matches, to help you navigate and narrow down the possibilities.
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    How to Get Smarter and Be a More Informed Citizen

    With each year, your habits, beliefs, hell, even your vocabulary can seem to grow stagnant. But with a little effort, you can keep your mind malleable, get smarter, and be a more informed citizen. Try these strategies and apps.

    Expert Ways to Get Smarter and Be More Engaged Citizen
    1. Break Out of Your Bubble
    “We’ve become strangers to each other in sadly dangerous ways,” says learning and development consultant Paula Green. “Set aside time to talk to someone who voted differently or who lives a different lifestyle from you, and really listen. Ask them, ‘What’s important to you?’ Be curious, not cajoling. You might find that your needs are not that different from theirs.”

    2. Volunteer
    Lend your energy and expertise to those who need it, and you’ll pull back the curtain on a different slice of life—and feel valued for your efforts. Luckily, it’s easier than ever to find a volunteer opportunity that suits your availability and expertise: Peruse sites like VolunteerMatch, Catchafire, and HandsOn Connect.
    Illustration of a man reading on subway Illustration by Kagan McLeod

    3. Keep Learning
    Your dorm days might be in the rear view, but that doesn’t mean you need to rely on a stash of edibles for mind expansion. Thousands of college courses are available for free online—including over 500 from Ivy League schools like Harvard, Cornell, and Princeton. Whether you’re looking to learn coding, go deep on Bitcoin, or tackle Shakespeare again, you’ll likely find a lesson plan for you. Bonus: Most are self-guided and taught virtually. To narrow down the offerings, use Class Central.

    Stop the mindless scrolling and bolster your brain with this trio of apps: Climb makes it easy to expand your vocabulary via fun, personalized quizzes with clues that include animated GIFs. Lumosity trains your brain through memory, multitasking, and focus challenges, sharpening skills that have real-world applications. And Memrise is like TikTok for learning a second language. Instead of memorizing awkward, outdated textbook phrases, you learn common phrases and slang from native speakers in snack-size videos.
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    How to Be More Efficient With Your Time and Energy

    Remember in March when we thought that working from home would give us the opportunity to learn an instrument, get super fit, or renovate the basement? Yeah…most people are apt to dawdle away gained time. It takes a lot of work to be efficient with your time and energy.

    “The biggest mistake is not having a plan,” says Craig Jarrow, founder of Time Management Ninja. The foundation of time management is a to-do list. That’s not some 50-task monster checklist. Every day, try to home in on your top five priorities.
    “What stops people from being productive isn’t that they’re not doing enough, it’s that they’re trying to do too much,” says productivity coach Grace Marshall, author of How to Be Really Productive. Instead of giving anything 100 percent, you’re giving everything 10 percent.

    A paper to-do list is super visible, and gives you the satisfaction of crossing things off, says Jarrow. “But apps have superpowers paper does not.” Apple’s Things app lets you create individual tasks (like errands), or larger projects with sub-tasks (like vacation planning), and assign deadlines; then it integrates your calendar to show you what’s on deck.
    Illustration of man juggling fitness, cooking, hobbies, work, and relationships Illustration by Kagan McLeod
    Just note, “if you overestimate how much you can get done in a day, you can under-estimate how much you can do in a year,” says Marshall. That’s how fitness, self-care, and time with friends and family fall by the wayside. Plan for those up front by scheduling vacation time in the beginning of the year, or penciling in workouts every other day.

    “People see stopping in the moment as a waste of time, but making space for these things over the course of the year actually makes you more productive, because it prevents burnout,” Marshall explains.
    It can also make you more accountable. Maybe you have a coworker you check in with every morning to share your plan for the day, or a running buddy you text every time you pound the pavement. Even a free app like Habit List can track healthy behaviors (like reading daily) so you can build momentum and get that same sense of accomplishment as crossing something off a to-do list.

    The most important thing: Stop living in your email, says Jarrow. Tools like SaneBox can filter your inbox so you stop experiencing that Pavlovian response to react to every single notification the second it pings. “
    Try only checking it three times a day,” he says. You’ll be shocked how quickly you forget what it’s like to be chained to that “new message” alert.

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    5 Ways to Be Happier Now, According to a Life Coach

    In the pursuit of happiness Austin, Texas, life coach Bryan Daigle helps people see big life changes more clearly—from career jumps to relationship overhauls. Here’s some of his sage advice—free of charge.

    How to Chase the Pursuit of Happiness
    “There are two types of energy,” Daigle says. “The energy to move away from something, and the energy to move toward something else.” Say you want to relocate across the country because your wife just filed for divorce. Is this a catalyst for change you’ve been too complacent to act on, or are you running away?

    “You’re capable of more change than you think, but that voice in your head inspiring a revolution will get only quieter the more you suppress it.” Heed that internal monologue, and don’t shy from shifting gears. Give yourself permission to ditch your current track to pursue your real passion, or reconnect with someone with whom you’ve lost touch.
    Not to get too morbid, but think about your life from your deathbed. “What decisions will you be most proud of? What will you wish you had done? What things seem so important now that are actually inconsequential?” This can shuffle your priorities in a big way.

    Fear is one of the biggest roadblocks to change. “By naming it and putting it in front of you, it can’t sabotage you from behind. Afraid of not making as much money in a new career? Say it out loud, then you can assess it.”
    When making a big decision, you want to be in the right frame of mind. “Sometimes that means going into nature or embarking on a road trip. Find something that grounds you, so you’re not coming from a place of high emotionality.”

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    Matthew McConaughey Is on a Mission to Just Keep Livin'

    I had dismissed the news as clickbait, but here McConaughey is, Zooming in the same wood-paneled room that he appeared in on Colbert—except this evening, a tall, gold-fringed American flag stood behind his shoulder.
    Matthew McConaughey driving his car in Texas Photograph by Camila Alves McConaughey & Levi Alves McConaughey
    I ask, “So, you’re really not going to run for Texas governor?”
    “I said, I have no plans to,” McConaughey replies, sipping.
    “OK, so what about the White House?” I chuckle; McConaughey doesn’t.
    “Listen, I think everybody should at least entertain the idea. It’s a form of actually defining your values: ‘What if I was president of the whole world?’ You’re forced to consider your priorities.”
    Just hypothetically speaking, I say, what would his campaign slogan be?
    “Ha, ha, ha. Oh, I get sent a lot of ’em. I love it. There was one I really liked: ‘Make America All Right, All Right, All Right, Again.’ That’s a fun one.”
    “But for me…” he pauses a second. “It’s ‘Meet Me in the Middle—I Dare You.’ ” He held up his thumbs and fore-fingers, and mimicked reading the campaign slogan on a bumper sticker. It’s the same type of social pragmatism that fills his book: When facing any crisis, I’ve found that a good plan is to first recognize the problem, then stabilize the situation, organize the response, then respond. (Folks, he’s running.)
    Matthew McConaughey relaxing at home Photograph by Camila Alves McConaughey & Levi Alves McConaughey
    “You can’t have unity without confrontation. And to have confrontation, you have to at least validate the other’s position. We don’t even do that. So I’d say, I’ll meet you in the middle. I dare you. It’s a challenge, a radical move. You come this way, I’ll come your way. That’s how democracy works.” More

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    Go Full McConaughey With the Actor's Favorite Unorthodox Workouts

    Struggling to get a consistent workout regimen at home? Matthew McConaughey’s workouts are anything but traditional, but they’ll boost your mood, health, and the monotony of isolation. Is it any surprise the actor’s got some unorthodox tricks up his sleeve to make movement a movement?
    1. Run From Home
    “Like any mammal, we’re always gonna make it back home. I like to run 20 minutes out, turn around, and drop and do 20 pushups 10 times during the run back.”
    2. Dance All Night
    “I could and should probably do it more often. It’s my favorite cardio. I don’t mind having a cocktail during some of my workouts.”

    3. Have Some Sex
    “The original exercise,” McConaughey writes in Greenlights. “It makes our companion see us in a more flattering light, which psychologically makes us feel like we look better.”

    4. Wrestle…or Not
    “I love it, but blew my ACL during a match. So now I spend a lot of time on the elliptical instead.”

    5. Just Schedule It
    “You don’t have to actually work out, just plan on it, that’s enough.”
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