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20 Things To Do Well at Work

Developing positive work habits is essential for anyone who wants to excel at their job and make impactful contributions at work. Knowing what you do well at work can help you understand what value you add to the company. Identifying your strengths is especially important when you’re applying for jobs because it allows you to clearly articulate how you will succeed in the role and how you can benefit the organization. In this article, we discuss 20 habits you can develop at work you excel at your job.

Why is it important to know the things you do well at work?

It’s important to know the things you do well at work so you can understand the specific ways you contribute to your team, department and organization. Knowing what you do well also helps you recognize areas for improvement. There are several key qualities and behavioral patterns attributed to success across many industries, and they are often the same qualities employers seek in prospective employees.

Things you can do well at work

Here are 20 habits and skills you can develop to excel at your job:

1. Have a positive attitude

Having a positive attitude contributes to a happier and more productive work environment. Being enthusiastic encourages those around you to embrace a similar mindset, which can lead to more engagement from team members who support one another. This can increase the likelihood of successful project outcomes.

2. Take criticism well

Constructive criticism helps you improve your skills, performance and relationships. Noticing any areas for improvement provides you with the opportunity to better meet expectations and enhance your overall performance. This practice can broaden your perspective and help you grow as an employee and as a person.

3. Practice self-motivation

Being self-motivated can show your determination to produce high-quality work. Self-motivated individuals strive toward clearly defined goals and tend to be engaged in their work. Being driven shows that you can deliver optimal results without constant supervision.

4. Learn from your mistakes

How you approach and address your mistakes demonstrates your level of professionalism. Using your mistakes as points of reflection can help you understand what happened and develop a plan to prevent similar situations in the future.

5. Develop strong communication skills

Communication skills allow you to appropriately respond to others, including your coworkers, clients and supervisors. In order to exchange information effectively, share ideas and identify goals, it’s crucial to convey your intended message clearly. It also ensures that people have a full understanding of any expectations.

Related: 10 Communication Skills for Career Success

6. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

Asking questions when you’re unsure about instructions or a particular task helps you eliminate mistakes and use your time effectively. This also demonstrates your desire to produce quality and accurate work. Your colleagues likely have valuable insight and perspectives on how to approach certain situations or tasks, which can help you improve your overall performance.

7. Be adaptable

Adaptability is the skill of altering one’s approach to a situation when unexpected changes occur. Being adaptable prepares you to face challenges productively. It can also show that you’re receptive to alternative ideas.

Read more: Adaptability in the Workplace: Benefits and Importance

8. Be an effective teammate

Significant achievements are often the result of team effort and collaboration. Being an effective teammate can inspire creativity, promote learning, increase efficiency and cultivate strong workplace relationships, which can have a direct impact on the collective performance of your organization. Sharing ideas, holding yourself and others accountable and being receptive to new perspectives are great ways to be an effective teammate.

Read more: 6 Qualities That Make a Great Team Player

9. Pay attention to detail

Employees who exhibit attention to detail generally produce quality work. Many employers seek this quality in prospective employees because it ensures that they’re able to successfully complete tasks and meet goals and expectations.

10. Be solution-oriented

Solution-oriented individuals take a multi-step approach toward resolving issues, which includes evaluating information and analyzing options. These employees are less focused on the mistakes someone may have made and are more focused on developing preventative measures for the future, which makes these people great teammates and thinkers.

11. Demonstrate a willingness to learn

Having the willingness to learn and improve is an invaluable trait because it shows potential for growth in the future. Showing an eagerness to improve indicates how you might advance in your role and within the company.

12. Be reliable

Reliable employees are punctual and prepared. Being reliable allows your managers and coworkers to trust in your ability to complete tasks diligently.

13. Display honesty and integrity

Integrity means that others trust you to make the right decisions. By being honest, even in difficult situations, you cultivate trust with your coworkers and clients.

14. Practice active-listening

Active listening skills play an important role in promoting respect, heightening comprehension and boosting productivity. It requires you to pay close attention when someone is speaking to ensure that you’ve understood their purpose and intentions. Active listening can also enhance collaboration because it makes it easier for all sides to feel understood.

15. Demonstrate leadership abilities

Leadership includes various traits such as determination, initiative, compassion and wisdom. Taking on leadership roles for projects or programs allows you to further develop these skills, which is helpful if you want to advance in your career.

Read more: Leadership Skills: Definitions and Examples

16. Develop organizational skills

Organizational skills include time management, project coordination and thorough planning. In situations where you have to multitask and manage multiple deadlines, it’s crucial that you’re able to plan, prioritize and achieve your tasks or goals efficiently.

17. Practice critical thinking

Critical thinking is the basis for problem solving and innovation. It entails analyzing problems and coming up with targeted solutions. Every organization faces challenges, so being able to come up with meaningful ideas allows you to contribute to successful outcomes.

18. Perform regular self-evaluations

Depending on your employer, you may receive limited performance reviews, so it may be helpful to assess your own performance. Recognizing your strengths and areas of improvement can guide you in making necessary changes in your work habits. Regularly evaluating your own performance signifies your commitment to success and can help you steadily grow in your role.

19. Be creative

Creativity is a valuable skill that isn’t limited to certain fields or industries. Being creative in the workplace can allow you to act in situations that require innovative solutions. Creativity can also encourage a mindset that is open to seeking additional information and learning new and better ways of doing something.

20. Show kindness and empathy

Kindness and empathy play an important role in cultivating stronger and respectful relationships in the workplace. When you exhibit kindness, it becomes easier for others to trust you. Kindness can also help those around you feel supported and valued, which contributes to an encouraging and collaborative work environment.

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Airplane facts: 20 cool facts about planes and air travel

Times are tough for travellers. But with the world preparing to reopen in 2021, we’re here to keep you dreaming and planning for your next adventure – whether that’s a staycation or flying off to parts unknown. Until then, we’ve got the latest COVID-19 travel advice and updates to keep you up to date and ready to go.

If you’re a fan of travel, there’s a huge chance you’ve been in a plane. But no matter if you’ve flown once, ten times or a hundred times, we’re convinced there’s more you can learn about planes. We’ve collated our favourite 20 airplane facts to pull out at trivia night or to share with your seat mate the next time you fly.

1. When was the first plane invented?

If you are interested in airplane facts you’ll want to know the answer to this one. The first airplane, the Wright Flyer, was flown for a sustained period and under control by Orville Wright and Wilbur Wright in December 1903. The first flight lasted about a minute long, covered 260 metres, and had a top speed of less than 11 kilometres an hour. By 1905, the Wright brothers were flying their third iteration of the plane, the Wright Flyer III, over quite long distances. Aviation was never the same again.

2. What’s the world’s oldest airline?

The world’s oldest airline is the Dutch carrier KLM, established in 1919. Connecting the Netherlands to the Dutch East Indies was one of the greatest motivator for forming the airline. In 1924, KLM operated a flight from Amsterdam to Jakarta (called Batavia at the time), the longest longest route of its day. Qantas formed just after KLM in 1920.

3. How much does a passenger plane cost?

Passenger plane prices can vary greatly depending on the type, the design, the engine choice and how an airline wants the plane customised. Boeing planes cost between US$89 million for the 737-700 and US$442 million for the 777-9. Airbus planes cost between US$81 and US$445 million, with the A330 costing around US$259 million and the A380 priced at around $445 million.

4. What’s the largest plane in the world?

The heaviest plane in the world is the Antanov AN-225, which weighs around 640 tons. The longest plane by wing span is the Stratolaunch, which was unveiled in February 2018 by a company linked to Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. It has a wingspan of more than 117 metres, which is much wider than the maximum width of a soccer pitch (90 metres). When it comes to passenger planes, the Airbus A380 can carry up to 850 people, making it the largest plane in the world for passenger carry capacity.

5. What’s the fastest plane in the world?

The fastest plane ever was the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird, which reached a speed of 3,530 kilometres per hour. The fastest commercial plane in operation today is the Boeing 747-8i, which is operated by Korean Air, Air China and Lufthansa.

6. How fast does a commercial passenger jet fly?

Commercial passenger jets usually cruise at a speed averaging 740 to 925 kilometres per hour (460 to 575 miles per hour). This speed has remained fairly consistent over years and even decades as it provides good value for money. This means planes at 30,000 feet are flying beneath the speed of sound, above which a change in design, materials and fuels costs all add up to a more expensive journey.

7. How many planes are in the air at any one time?

How many planes are in the air right now is not a mystery. In 2017, there was an average of 9,728 planes in the sky at any one time, carrying around 1.2 million people. This can go up to 20,000 during peak times, but we’ve seen a dip since late 2019 due to flight restrictions brought on by COVID.

8. Do pilots eat the same food as passengers?

Normally, pilots eat the same foods as passengers, although they are allowed to pack their own food if they’d like. While passengers are generally given multiple choices of airline meals, the pilot and co-pilot will never be given the same option to reduce the chance of food poisoning impacting the cockpit.

9. How can I upgrade from economy class to business class?

One of the only ways to upgrade from economy to business class these days is to have a high ranking on an airline’s frequent flyer program. By the way, Qantas invented Business Class in 1979. Some airlines also have features like blind bidding that allows passengers the chance to get an upgrade for a cheaper price.

10. Can a lightning strike damage a plane?

Lightning strikes on airplanes are quite common. Usually lightning will strike the wing tips or the nose of the plane and will then travel around the airplane’s fuselage before leaving the plane again. Sometimes, a lightning strike can cause a little damage, or burn, to the plane’s exterior, but generally a plane is unscathed.

Around one person in every five million commercial flights is killed. And it’s getting safer all the time. For example, 2017 was the safest year for commercial airplanes ever, with no fatal crashes. In comparison, 2005 saw more than 1,000 people killed on commercial flights. You are more likely to be killed by lightning on the ground.

12. How far can plane wings bend?

You might recall looking out a plane window and seeing the tips of a plane’s wings oscillate in the wind. Planes are put through rigorous tests before they’re given the green light to fly passengers, and often have to pass tests under conditions that would rarely, if ever, occur naturally. On most passenger planes, the plane wing can flex nearly 90 degrees before breaking.

13. How many people have a fear of flying?

According to the Victoria Department of Health, about one in six people suffer from some form of aviophobia, or fear of flying. If you are scared of flying, you certainly aren’t alone. The fear of flying can be overcome through education about aviation, information about anxiety and fear, and by experiencing safe flights.

14. How common is turbulence?

Turbulence is common, and it’s an airline fact that even people who don’t have a fear of flying can get very nervous when the plane begins to shake. What causes turbulence? Well, turbulence is caused by bodies of air moving at different speeds and in different directions. It can be uncomfortable, but it is rarely dangerous. Usually turbulence is mild, or sometimes moderate in intensity. Passenger planes usually fly around areas where the pilots suspect there might be turbulence, for example where they see thunder clouds, or when they receive reports from other pilots. However, clear-air turbulence can occur without warning.

15. How common is severe turbulence?

Severe air turbulence is rare, and commercial pilots might experience it only a couple of times in their career. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, around 35 passengers in the U.S. get injured every year by turbulence, usually because they didn’t have their seat belt buckled once turbulence occurred.

16. I have a fear of flying and I’m worried about turbulence, where’s the best place to sit on a plane?

The most comfortable place to sit on a plane, according to pilot Patrick Smith, is in the middle of the plane near the wings. This is where you’ll be closest to the plane’s centre of gravity and lift. Seats closer to the rear of the plane will experience more movement—one of the most practical airplane facts if you’re looking for the best seat to pick.

17. How long does a pilot fly the plane for?

A pilot on a passenger plane usually flies the plane for the first few minutes during take off and again just before landing. During the rest of the flight the autopilot is in charge, although pilots are usually monitoring the instruments.

18. Do pilots fall asleep on passenger planes?

Pilots do sometimes fall asleep on planes, but most passenger planes have an automatic warning system that sounds an alarm if a pilot hasn’t moved for a while. On long flights, pilots will be given designated rest times, alternating with their co-pilot.

19. If a plane has to dump fuel what happens to it?

In an emergency, a pilot might have to turn back, or head to a nearby airport. If there is too much fuel onboard to land safely, the pilot might choose to dump the plane’s fuel before landing. Most of this fuel evaporates and doesn’t reach land or the ocean.

20. What percentage of the world’s population has flown in a plane?

Knowing this figure for certain is difficult, as there is no official database recording who has been on a plane. But, informal surveys and industry experts reveal some guesses. Former Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg states that less than 20% of the world’s population has ever flown in a plane. Other estimates put it at less than 10%. If you’ve taken a flight, you’re one of the few people in the world to experience flying at high speed, thousands of feet up in the air.

Where can I go?

Making plans to get back out there? Find out which borders are open with our interactive global map, and sign up to receive email updates when your top destinations reopen.

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How To Be Genuinely Happy In 15 Easy Steps

It’s the elusive quality that we’re all looking for, but are never exactly sure how to find. Everyone has their own definition of happiness, and everyone measures their happiness levels differently, but there are some specific actions and attitudes that, no matter what exactly we’re seeking, will help all of us in our quest to become truly, genuinely happy.

1. Always live in the present. 

It’s so easy to get caught up in the stresses and pressure of the future looming in front of you, and to constantly be planning for the future instead of fully appreciating what you have now. If you want to be genuinely happy, always take the time to look around you and appreciate what you have, at this very instant. Take a deep breath, do yoga, say a prayer, go for a jog, hug a friend, or do one little thing each day to make sure that you really are taking some time to live in the moment.

2. Never compare yourself directly to another person. 

You may think you have a good sense of what the other person has, but in reality you have no idea what they’re going through or what their own personal struggles are. To compare yourself to someone else is comparing apples and oranges. You both have different paths in life, and it’s important to embrace the fact that everyone is on their own unique and personal journey. Stop comparing yourself to others. 

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4. Surround yourself with people who make you feel good about your life. 

Negativity is contagious, but so is positivity. Stay away from the people who bring you down or who feed into your complaining about the negative aspects of your life. Instead, choose friends who encourage you to share your accomplishments, help you work through your problems instead of just commiserating with them, and remind you to count your blessings even when you’re feeling like nothing is going your way.

5. Actively practice being grateful.

Always say thank you to people who help you out, and make sure they know that you really do mean it. Also, at the end of each day, go through your day and identify things that happened throughout the day that you’re thankful for. By actively seeking opportunities to show gratitude, you’ll become more aware of the good things that fate has thrown your way and develop a more positive outlook on life.

6. Remember to treat yourself sometimes. 

You’re worth it. A little pick-me-up can go a long way, sometimes. You don’t always need an “excuse” to get a massage, take a trip, take a vacation day, or buy yourself something new.

7. Remind yourself that no matter how little you feel like you have, you always have something to give to others. 

Maybe you don’t have a lot of money to spare, but you don’t need to be rich to be charitable. You have other options: donate your time or donate your talent. Find a way to volunteer and help others in your community. Not only will it start a circle of good karma, but often the positive feelings you get from being generous are enough a reward on their own.

8. Always tell the truth. 

Happy people know that if they want to be comfortable with themselves, they need to present an honest an open version of themselves. Lying or exaggerating in order to make yourself look better will keep you in the mindset that what other people think is more important than what you think, and that never works out well.

9. Stay far, far away from gossip. 

Gossip is completely contradictory to a happy, healthy lifestyle. It hurts your life and it hurts your career. Not only does it bring you down to a base level where you get pleasure from bringing others down, but it also forces you to worry that people are also judging you when you’re not around. If you refuse to indulge in gossip, you’ll find that people respect you more and you’ll feel better about yourself.

10. Find something meaningful in life. 

It can be religious in nature,  but it certainly doesn’t have to be. Maybe it’s praying, maybe it’s taking care of animals, or maybe it’s working with the homeless. Whatever it is, it should remind you that life is more than just a day-to-day slog but a spiritual journey.

11. Always practice hospitality. 

There’s something special about opening your home to friends and family. In a world where so many of our get-togethers take place in restaurants, coffee shops, or other public locations, sharing your home is like sharing a piece of yourself. It’s more personal, and those who visit will feel like they know you better and will open up more, leading to stronger friendships.

12. Spend your money on experiences instead of physical possessions. 

By buying experiences, you’ll create memories that will give you warm, positive feelings whenever you reflect on them. Those benefits will last a lifetime.

13. Give hugs generously. 

Not only does it create closer friendships, but it literally gives you an emotional high. Humans are made to be physical, and our brains are programmed to release feel-good chemicals when we touch. Trying fewer handshakes and more hugs will be enough to enhance your mood.

14. Never give up on your passions. 

As we get older, somehow our hobbies seem to fall by the wayside as we get busier and busier. Where we used to fill our time with activities and extracurriculars we were passionate about, now it’s all too easy to come home from work and just veg out in front of the television. Resist that temptation. Carve out some time for yourself to do what you love; binge-watching Netflix doesn’t count!

15. Know that the only person you have to answer to is yourself. 

In the end, it doesn’t matter if you make others happy and you’re miserable. Do what will leave you feeling good about yourself, and forget about what others think.

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Mindsets Of True Winners In Life

It is no coincidence that successful people have certain qualities in common that set them apart from the crowd. What makes successful people successful? Do they possess some innate traits or do they simply approach everyday challenges in a different way?

Tons of material has been written on the winning formula for success, but success entails a lot more than knowing how to succeed. What’s good to know, though, is that it has to do less with the capabilities people are born with, and more with the attitude they have towards life.

So what do winners do differently? Here are 10 mindsets of true winners that you can adopt to become successful in life.

1. They understand there is no shortcut to success

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas Edison

True winners focus on long-term gains rather than short-term rewards. They understand that success is something that happens over a period of time so they patiently work towards achieving their ultimate goal.

2. They are not afraid to fail

They do not let failures dampen their confidence. They are go-getters. Once they decide what they want, they go get it. Period.

3. They follow their heart

Steve Jobs once famously said, “Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice.” True winners do not let the opinions of others dictate their decisions. Once they set their eyes on achieving a goal, they do not let negative opinions of others sway their determination.

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4. They speak their mind

They are not afraid of calling a spade a spade. Even when they know that their opinion is not the popular one, they guide their response by what they feel and not by the approval of others.

 

5. They constantly push their limits

“There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.” – Bruce Lee

True winners are always seeking new challenges. They are not afraid of treading unfamiliar territories. They enjoy learning new skills while improving their existing skills.

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Signs You Are Winning at Life

1. Gratitude

Gratitude as a life orientation goes beyond the appreciation that arises after help from others. Research has found that gratitude is strongly associated with psychological well-being when it is practiced as a habitual focusing on and appreciating the positive in the world. When you make the decision to emphasize gratitude, there is little room left for feelings of jealousy or envy. As quoted by the Zen Shin practice of meditation, “A flower does not think of comparing itself to the flower next to it. It just blooms.”

2. Relationships

The quality of our relationships does not just impact our daily lives but also our long-term well-being. Dr. Robert Waldinger, Director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, supported this notion with findings from research that began in 1938 with 268 Harvard sophomores but has now expanded to include their offspring and has amassed data from over 1,300 participants. One critical finding was how the role of relationships played in our overall health. The people who were happiest in their relationships at age 50 were the healthiest at age 80. Furthermore, Dr. Waldinger went as far as to state, “Loneliness kills. It’s as powerful as smoking or alcoholism.”

3. Pursuit of Meaning

The Journal of Positive Psychology recently published two studies that tracked 400 Americans who fell into two groups: high happiness/low meaning levels and low happiness/high meaning levels. Characteristics of the “happy” group included avoidance of taxing entanglements. On the other hand, the “meaning” group spent more time helping others and focused on family or relationships. The study explains that the pursuit of meaning lends to a belief that one’s life matters. That purpose can foster life satisfaction. These studies reinforce the important roles that gratitude and quality relationships play in a “winning” life.

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Why martial arts is a great activity for kids

little girl in martial arts outfit and black belt performing a high kick while barefoot and with hair tied back

Children who engage in the practice of martial arts invite an array of physical benefits. Obviously, martial arts is great form of exercise that keeps kids active and promotes overall physical fitness. But more than just a healthy outlet of energy, martial arts training develops athleticism, balance, and discipline. Moreover, for many kids is the first step to forming healthy living habits. Healthy habits start young, and the sooner they’re developed the easier they are to maintain growing up.

Martial arts programs have proven to improve coordination and motor skills and full-body martial arts training methods help children become more coordinated and aware of themselves, improving athletic performance and helping to avoid injury while promoting overall health and fitness.

Beyond physical exercise, training in the martial arts strengthens young minds as well. While elevating physical wellbeing, the martial arts do as much to foster profound mental benefits like focus, memory, and self-esteem.

 

Most parents would note however that children’s attention spans seem to have narrowed over recent years. The lessons rooted in focus and discipline championed through martial arts programs are indispensable in cultivating concentration and attentiveness not only to tasks at hand, but to overall attentiveness and instruction and . Kids with this capacity for focus often apply it by listening more attentively and making more well-thought positive choices in their daily lives.

Lessons learned through martial arts training encourage healthy social interactions as well. The concepts of respect and teamwork are a key factor to our programs and as goals are met and progress is made. And martial arts training has proven to result in lowered levels of anxiety, increased sense of responsibility and an increased level of self-esteem social intelligence.

The benefits of these programs apply themselves to daily life well after a course has concluded. From physical fitness to mental development and social orientation, for children who need a way to stay fit and active during these times, programs promoting the martial arts deliver practical and rewarding lessons for children of all ages.

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14 Things About Flight Attendants You Definitely Don’t Know

Photo by Yahoo Finance Canada via Flickr

Considering longer-than-long security lines, baggage check fees, and prickly customer service, it can be hard to imagine that people once looked forward to flying. But in the early 60s, catching a big metal bird was a romantic notion that few people, outside of the wealthy or business-minded, actually got to experience. If you ever caught an episode of the short-lived ABC series “Pan Am,” you would see that the high-flying life of flight attendants equated to a romanticized, coveted, and respected career, even making a somewhat celebrity status. (Yes, the series was at least historically accurate about that point.)

Cut to today, and most people would opt out of the “more complaints than compliments” job of storing your bags, handing out your meals and headphones, and oh, keeping hundreds of strangers safe on a large object flying through the sky. In fact, being a flight attendant consistently ranks among the worst-rated jobs.

We wanted to know what we didn’t know about the often misunderstood job of being a flight attendant in today’s travel world. So we headed straight for the source. A former flight attendant, Annie Kingston, dished the good, the bad, and the ugly on exactly what it means to be a steward of the sky. And you know what? Respect.

Here are 14 things that will change your view on the career forever.

 

 

1. They Aren’t Just There To Serve You Snacks and Drinks

Photo by dingram_kiwi via Flickr
Photo by dingram_kiwi via Flickr

We found that the most misunderstood bit about being a flight attendant is exactly what a flight attendant is. Annie says that the biggest misconception that people make about flight attendants is considering them as “just waitresses in the sky.” Sure, that’s part of the gig, but next time you are constantly dinging your overhead bell, keep in mind that the real reason a flight attendant is on board isn’t to be your person waiter, but to keep you safe. Yes, imagine how stressful it must be to know you are responsible for a plane full of jet-lagged, hungry, cranky, and sometimes drunk passengers’ lives. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t happy to help. “While I really don’t mind giving you a double vodka or finding you an extra meal,” Annie says, “what I really want is for nothing seriously terrifying to happen to any of us while we are on board.” We’ll drink to that!

2. They Have to Abide by Strict Rules on Their Appearance

Photo by Maureen Veras via Flickr
Photo by Maureen Veras via Flickr

For anyone who has lamented having to wear business attire to work instead of those comfy jeans and T-shirt combinations, consider that flight attendants not only have standard uniforms, but, as Annie notes, many — especially in the Middle East and Asia, where appearance is everything — are also given “strict rules on how you can keep, color, and style your hair and makeup. Nails must be painted a certain way, and jewelry kept to a standard minimum.”

3. And Weight

Taking it even further, Annie tells us that the rules and regulations on appearance don’t stop at clothes and accessories. Some airlines have weight and body-fat ratios that their flight attendants must adhere to, which we think sounds a bit offensive — let alone hard to follow when you are constantly on the go. We know we tend to eat worse when we travel. Regardless, Annie admits “the reality is that you’re weighed once a year and must have a healthy BMI.”

4. They Are Responsible for Your Life

Tying things back to number one, Annie tells us that “one thing you really don’t understand about being a flight attendant, until you’ve become one, is that you’re about to join a team of people responsible for taking care of 300-plus lives at 35,000 feet.” So, it sounds like it’s not just the passengers who have a slightly warped reality of what the flight attendant’s main purpose is. The fact that these men and women are responsible for your safety — and could possibly save your life — well, that’s one big reason to be sweet to your airline staff.

5. They Are Trained to Deliver Babies on Board

Photo by Joshua Rappeneker via Flickr
Photo by Joshua Rappeneker via Flickr

Yes, you read that correctly. Your flight attendant can deliver your baby. Along with other medical instruction, part of your flight attendant’s training apparently includes helping to bring life into the world.

6. And Perform Hand-to-Hand Combat

If baby delivery isn’t enough to wow you, perhaps the hand-to-hand combat your flight attendant is skilled in may do the trick? Considering that it’s most likely relied upon when dealing with unruly passengers or hijacking situations, we hope we never have to see our flight attendants go Chuck Norris on anyone — but we are sure glad they know how.

7. They Know How to Survive in Extreme Conditions

Photo by Douglas Scortegagna via Flickr
Photo by Douglas Scortegagna via Flickr

Maybe you aren’t as big of aviation nerds as us, but if you’ve seen “Alive,” the true story about the survivors of the 1972 plane crash into the Andes mountains, you know why having someone like Bear Grills on your side is key. Surviving the plane crash was only half the battle; the Andes are a snow-capped mountain range that leaves little for food (ahem) and really tests your survival skills. Don’t have any? Don’t worry, your flight attendant has been trained to handle themselves and the passengers in extreme conditions.

8. And Fight Fire 35,000 Feet in the Air

Did we mention that extreme conditions also means inside the plane? Amazingly, your friendly flight attendant is also trained to fight fire, inside the plane, at 35,000 feet in the air. We imagine this may have been more of a threat back in the dreamy 60s when you could actually smoke on a plane, but given all the weird things that seem to go wrong in the cabin, we wouldn’t doubt an electrical fire or two happens. It makes you wonder how many things happen behind the scenes that we never know about in the cabin.

9. They Are Sick of Hearing about the “Mile High Club”

If you think you’re being funny bringing up the Mile High Club to a flight attendant, you’re wrong. It’s insulting. Annie puts it to you straight: “To be honest, it’s a really tacky topic that makes us roll our eyes and think less of you as it’s not something that you would ever ask any other professional — ever — when they tell you what it is they do.”

10. Your Flight Crew Is Often Flying Together for the First Time

Photo by Austrian Airlines via Flickr
Photo by Austrian Airlines via Flickr

It may not seem obvious in flight, but flight attendants often work with a constantly rotating group of co-crew. For example, Annie’s company had over 35,000 flight attendants flying to over 130 destinations in 70+ countries, “so,” she says, “you had to be good at making friends fast, saying goodbye, and getting over both minor and major cultural differences.” Spoken like a true travel-lover, if we say so ourselves.

11. They Come from All Walks of Life

Maybe it’s the uniforms, but it’s easy to think that since all flight attendants look alike they have some similar background in common. In fact, it’s a highly diverse group of people up there in the sky with you. “Many of my colleagues left their countries to work in the Middle East in order to escape depressing job markets, violent cities, civil wars, and extreme poverty,” Annie tells us. But she also added that, “Many of my colleagues were also lawyers, teachers, doctors, and other working professionals.” So they may be from different backgrounds, but they actually do have something in common apart from the spiffy uniforms; they are all people who “just saw a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and ran with it.”

12. They’re Not Immune to Jetlag

If you think your flight from San Francisco to Tokyo puts a kink in your sleep cycle, imagine zigzagging across the globe nearly every day. Not only that, but also dealing with having the cabin lights dimming during daylight. It’s a miracle that the flight crew is still standing after a few long-haul shifts! Sure, flight attendants on these long flights have bunks where they can nap it off, but it doesn’t mean they are free from jetlag. In fact, Annie says that sometimes crew use their days off to catch up on sleep and time changes.

13. They Often Double As Ticketing Agents (And No, They Can’t Always Throw You a Bone)

Ever think you’ve seen your flight attendant somewhere before? Chances are they checked you in. Several airlines have flight attendants working at the gate of their flights before takeoff, so remember this as you are arguing about seat upgrades and delays. And while we’re on the subject, we asked Annie how much pull gate agents actually have to give you upgrades or other perks. “It really depends on the airline,” she says. But on board, flight attendants have full reign (almost) over what bonuses they dole out — which is why you should pay sharp attention to the last point on our list.

14. “Thank You” Can Go a Long Way

Photo by Jetstar Airways via Flickr
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