The term “Alpha” started to appear in the media a few years back to define those people that take control of a room effortlessly; those people who seem to have the command of others’ attention, those people who seem to get the best jobs, the best lovers, the greatest opportunities.
Where does the term come from?
The term probably comes from one of my favourite books, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (1932). It’s actually a dystopian novel, and it’s quite scary and depressing. In it, humans are grown in test tubes away from their parents and raised in communal groups, according to their social and physical standing. The ‘Alphas’ are the smartest, the wealthiest and the ones who are in power. The ‘Betas’ fall beneath them, and they run the general businesses day to day. The ‘Epsilons’ are the lower class; the people are practically dullards with very little sense of self. They exist only to serve.
These three categories of people are created inorganically. To create Epsilons, the foetuses are denied nutrition in the last stages of development, which impedes their development, making them simple and easily controlled. The ‘Alphas’ are taught from birth that they are the leading class via psychological indoctrination. Words and phrases are pumped out to the groups from birth via sound recordings that lead these classes to behave in the way they have been designed.
It’s a very scary book.
The concept of ‘Alphas’ is an interesting one. Brave New World is not using them term positively, but these days, it is something to aspire to. However, we could all use a dose of self-confidence. If you have not been feeling your best lately, here’s a cheat sheet on how to be more Alpha, the responsible way.
Hold your head up high
Good posture makes you feel powerful, and it gives other people confidence in your abilities. Walking with your head held up high can make you look thinner; it’s better for your back and can even prevent women from being targeted by male predators. Don’t slink around the streets, hold your head up high, and walk tall.
Listen to people
So many of us don’t take the time to really hear people. Being a successful Alpha depends on your ability to connect with others, and to do this, you need to get to know them. Take the time to really tune in to what a person is saying, and don’t merely think about what you’ll say in reply. This is a powerful tool that is a valuable life skill.
Don’t gush and babble when you do open your mouth. Take your time when you speak and choose your words carefully. Speak in a lower register as it has more power. Make use of pauses. Don’t rush.
Think before you speak
This is a point I need to heed myself. I am always saying silly things. When I take the time to reply concisely and carefully, I find that I reap the rewards. So often I find myself just babbling on to fill an empty space of silence. Embrace silence: it is nothing to fear.
Walk with your shoulders back
Open up your chest and breathe deeply into your diaphragm. Feel the difference within when you hold your shoulders back, as opposed to keeping them hunched or closed.
Tell yourself you love yourself
A great little trick I am trying to instil. I have written a post on this, and I am trying to incorporate daily affirmations into my life. Nothing tricky, just a simple ‘I love you’ to remind me that no one else will be able to love me until I can give that loving energy to myself.
Take pride in your appearance
When we feel more ‘Epsilon’ than ‘Alpha’ one of the first things to go is our appearance. We stop looking after ourselves; we don’t wash our hair or shave. We overeat or drink and smoke. We forget to dress well, to wear makeup, aftershave or sometimes to even brush our teeth. Looking good and talking care of your appearance adds to yourself worth, and changes how others perceive you.
Have terrific manners
I am a huge fan of great manners, and I don’t always practise them. Wait your turn, say please and thank you. Be polite, be considerate. Let others go ahead of you. Don’t interrupt. Bring a gift when you are invited to a person’s house. Make other people more important than you.
Care about people, genuinely
We all do, in our hearts at least. Remember how much you care for others and try to have empathy for those around you. Learn to put yourself in other people’s shoes and treat others with the respect that you would hope for yourself.
Be organised and in control
Alphas have command of their lives. They plan and they achieve. Look at areas of your life that could be organised? How are your finances? Your sock drawer? Your files? Try to improve areas of your life by enhancing your ability to organise. If you know where things are: you will be able to find them. Things need to have a place; personal or professional.
Think of others first
A true Alpha realises that they are not the most important person in the room. A true Alpha seeks to make others more important than themselves. A true Alpha does not need to scream for attention, a true Alpha commands that by his/her grace and presence.