Lifehacks

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5 Ways You Haven’t Considered to Save or Make Money

Everyone needs money to survive, to grow, and to have fun. And Google turns up with more than 9 billion pages if you search for “I need money”!

In the burgeoning gig economy, we have hundreds of opportunities to earn quick money by running errands, walking dogs, selling artwork, and doing freelance work. You already know about them.

In this article, we will talk about simple actionable tips and frugal living ideas.

Frugal eating does not mean unhealthy eating

Most students in college think eating on a budget means shopping at Dollar Tree or Family Dollar, eating Ramen noodles or peanut butter and honey sandwiches, and drinking energy drinks.

This is not what ‘frugal eating’ means.

The cost of eating unhealthy food is way more than what’s printed on the packaging. If you really want to save money on food, drink only water and buy generic and cheap items. Good examples are potatoes, dried beans, and legumes, eggs, sauce, spaghetti etc.

You might also consider exploring your local Asian and Mexican markets as they offer pretty good deals on buying staples, rice, spices, meat or produce in bulk.

A few simple recipes can save you a lot of time and money and keep you healthy.

See Also: 10 Cooking Tips For Beginners To Help You Master The Kitchen

Try online teaching

One edge that online tutoring assignments have is that it allows you to save up on transportation costs. Moreover, you can choose to teach at any time of the day.

3 easy steps to earn as an online tutor are:

● Register yourself as a tutor on a reputed online tutoring website
● Make a good profile and fill-up as many details as you can
● Take up teaching and assignment help gigs that suit your qualifications, skills, and interest areas.

If you want to teach at odd hours, try teaching international students. It will help you widen your scope and give you better exposure to what curricula other countries are following for a particular subject.

Native English speakers can also make good money by teaching English online as a second language to foreign students since they’re always looking for online tutors for high school and competitive exams.

Sell your notes and old books

Once you complete your course or graduate from your school or college, you hardly have any use for your classroom notes or revision notes you prepared. You can sell them online to students who are about to join the course or the level.

Many websites also allow you to sell your old textbooks and guides and get a good amount of your money back. If you use your books gently, you are likely to fetch more while re-selling them.

Similarly, you can sell old clothes and junk from time-to-time to make some quick money and make your living area clutter-free.

TV/Phone/Social media addictions mean losing money

man watching tv

TV, phones, FB, WhatsApp, Instagram, and YouTube eat up a lot of our time. Most people come back from their college or workplace, switch on the TV, and end up wasting hours doing nothing.

The moment you decide to let go of them, you’ll feel calmer and more relaxed. You will also find a lot of extra time to exercise, meet with friends, take up online gigs at micro-services websites, and do other constructive work.

Hours wasted in watching TV or phone literally mean losing hundreds of dollars per week.

Save your $10 notes

Saving money needs discipline and it’s not an easy trait to acquire. However, you may end up saving a lot of money if you keep saving notes of a certain denomination.

Every time, you get a $10 note, stash it up in your ‘saving’ fund. The loss won’t hurt you immediately and you will be able to see your savings grow as your days pass by.

This only works when you deal in cash. If you make digital payments, you may try another variation of this tip. For example, each time you spend $100 or more, put $10 in a separate saving or investment account.

These days, almost everybody is doing a side job along with a full-time college degree course. These tips can help you alleviate your financial woes as a student and work your way to a happy and contented life.

The post 5 Ways You Haven’t Considered to Save or Make Money appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Balancing Your Lifestyle With Your Pet

With the ever-increasing cost of living, one payslip is sometimes not enough for anything beyond putting food on the table. This is why most people often have to work long hours and even weekends. Consequently, finding the perfect work-life balance is a struggle for most of us, which jeopardizes relationships with family, friends, and even pets.

If you’re one of those people, here’s a 5-point guide on how to balance your lifestyle when you are living with pets.

Exercise With Your Pet

You already know that living a sedentary lifestyle can dramatically reduce your lifespan and predispose you to diseases like cancer and diabetes. So, with or without a pet, you should set aside some time to exercise at least thrice per week.

If your free time is not adequate for both exercising and bonding with your pet, you can combine the two for an even better outcome. Take your dog or cat for a walk around the neighborhood every evening or try to fit in a hike on the weekends. Your bond will grow even stronger.

Engaging in these activities sets you towards living a healthy lifestyle that’s beneficial to your health. If you have an active dog, it’s one way to keep it healthy, too.

Don’t Forget About Your Family

Your family needs your love, attention, and presence just as much as your furry, four-legged friend. So, as you make the necessary lifestyle changes with your pet, extend said changes as far as your family is concerned.

For instance, bring your kids along on walks with your pets and use the opportunity to get up to date with their lives. If you have the means and the time, you can also organize outings as a great way to bring the whole family, including the four-legged members, together.

Consider Switching to a Career with Better Work-Life Balance

Sometimes, what you need is not a bunch of lifestyle changes but a complete switch to an alternative lifestyle. And no, we are not suggesting that you start wearing hippie wigs and all that. Instead, consider changing the way you work and live.

For instance, switching your 9-to-5 job for a freelance career will give you a better work-life balance and improve your relationships with your pet and family. Other examples of best careers with good work-life balance as compiled by Forbes include:

  • Corporate Recruiter
  • Data Scientist
  • SEO Manager
  • Mobile Developer

Notably, you may need to undertake additional studies to get a job with better work-life balance, which admittedly and unfortunately is not applicable to everyone.

See Also: 7 Tips to Happy Coworking with Your Pets

Choose a Pet that Fits Your Lifestyle

Some pets require lots of activities while others can do just fine with minimal exercise. It is, therefore, imperative that you consider an animal’s personality and how it fits in your lifestyle before bringing it home.

For instance, if you have no free time on weekdays, you may want to keep off dog breeds like terriers as they need lots of activity to stay healthy. Similarly, if you happen to travel a lot for work and can’t take your dog along, you’ll be better off looking for a breed with an amiable temperament.

The number of kids you have and their ages should also be considered when selecting pets. If your kids are below 5 years, avoid toy breeds like poodles and chihuahuas as they’re known to be too nervous around small kids. Instead, go for bigger breeds like bulldogs.

Nonetheless, toy breeds are amazing if you live a minimalist lifestyle with limited floor space. You’ll need a much larger house if you like breeds such as St. Bernard and Great Dane.

Assess the Costs of the Required Lifestyle Changes

After figuring out the type of pet that fits in your existing lifestyle, the next step is to consider the amount of time and money needed to maintain it. Remember, the key is to balance your lifestyle and your needs without one overwhelming the other.

The costs to consider include:

  • Food expenses
  • Medical costs
  • Toys and accessories
  • Grooming costs
  • Recommended exercise time

For instance, common breeds like Beagle and Chihuahua are manageable even on a limited income. Others, such as Chow Chow and Rottweilers, are a struggle financially and physically. You may also find that small pets are more expensive and difficult to handle than bigger pets.

Conclusion

We all love pets for one reason or another which is why it doesn’t make any sense for either animal or man to have lifestyles that are not in sync. Whatever your professional life is like, strive to create a balance in your life when living with pets. That’s one way to increase the bond between you and your furry companion while also augmenting your lifespan as well.

The post Balancing Your Lifestyle With Your Pet appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Meal Prep

While many people can access helpful information on choosing a healthy diet, just a few implement the tips. You should realize that acquiring healthy eating tips is futile if your execution is wanting.

We are not here to accuse you; in fact, we understand the difficulties that you undergo to choose a healthy diet for your family amid your busy schedules. For this reason, this article will give excellent meal prepping tips.

Meal Prepping: What Is It?

Meal prepping is the act of preparing all your meals in advance. You’ll have the opportunity to prepare the meals during your free time. Most importantly, you will have all the time to shop for healthy and unprocessed ingredients.

This exercise will save your time. It’ll also ensure that your family feeds on healthy meals, as opposed to the processed and prepackaged foods which could have undesired health effects.

How Do I Start?

While you may be enthusiastic about this exercise, you should be careful not to be overwhelmed. You shouldn’t start by trying all the new healthy recipes you’ve read about recently. Instead, use the recipes that you’re conversant with and you’ll progressively move to the newer and more complicated ones.

Follow the tips below for successful meal prepping:

Pick your Day

You need to determine the specific day that you’ll prepare your meals. We recommend that you pick a day when you don’t have work!

Most people prefer Sunday and Wednesday to prepare healthy meals for the entire week. You should take charge and independently choose a day that you’re comfortable with.

We recommend that you begin by preparing meals for a few days before you can expand the meal prepping to an entire week.

Pick the Meals

You need to select the meal that you’ll prepare first depending on your needs. A person with a family would give preference to dinner, while a single person may choose breakfast. When choosing, you need to ensure that you prepare meals that are easy to prepare in bulk but slow to prepare a day at a time.

After picking the meals, you need to choose the recipe. While you can cook using a similar recipe, we recommend that you use different recipes for each day.

You should never forget to consider the nutrients composition of each recipe. You’re obliged to ensure that your family gets a balanced diet.

Use Good Containers

This is the foundation of a successful meal prepping plan. Ensure you have separate containers for each type of meal to avoid a mixture that may scare your children.

What is a good container?

Make sure that the container is segmented to allow you to place different meals in different sections. This can help prevent cross-contamination. You can save by buying these in bulk around November, when they often go on sale for Thanksgiving.

Below is a checklist for a food container you should have:

  • Divided and air-tight sections.
  • BPA-free. Never compromise on this requirement! Check the bottom of each container. If it has a triangle with number 7 written in it, then you should avoid it. When it’s BPA-free, you can safely microwave your food.
  • Clear containers. This will enable you to identify the contents easily.
  • Reliable and safe. Your container must be stackable, microwavable, freezer safe, and reusable.

In the Kitchen

Before you become an expert in meal prepping, you should start with a few meals. These tips are helpful in achieving success quickly:

Begin with simple meals. Use meals that are easy to prepare, easy to store, and are freezable. Many starters prefer chicken!

Be ready to multitask. Remember that you’re cooking meals for several days. You will have to launch your multitasking skills to achieve this in a single day. You can use multiple ovens. If you do not have enough utensils and ovens to accommodate multitasking, you may need to shop for the items.

Fruits. Including fruits in your recipe is an excellent way of achieving a balanced diet. You will need to wash different types of fruits, cut them up, and store them just like any other meal.

While this is a great idea, you need to research the effect of certain activities on the fruits’ nutritional value. Cutting some fruits can deplete some nutritional components. Some will be oxidized which will cause undesirable color on the fruit’s surface! As such, you should only implement the ideas that will not affect the nutritional value of the fruit.

The Crockpot. While this may appear obvious, many people ignore it. You can use the appliance to prepare some meals for storage. You can use it for cooking as well as for storing the food.

Bottom Line

This guide offers excellent tips on how to start meal prepping. It’s your duty to research the best recipes to try out in your kitchen. However, you should always ensure that what you feed on is nutritionally balanced and healthy.

The post How to Meal Prep appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Effectively Remove Mold From Your House

Molds aren’t just eyesores; they’re a threat to your health and property. Molds can cause allergic reactions which can be dangerous in rare cases. They can also cause damage to your property, including your clothes, furniture, wood, floors, and just about anything else they come in contact with. If left unattended, the damage can be so great that you’ll have to spend a huge amount of money.

Mold Truths: The Real Reasons For Mold Growth

clean dishwasher

Moisture is the main culprit in mold growth and development, this much we know. But what we probably don’t realize is that the very things we do every day can put us at risk for mold infestation. This includes washing, bathing, and cooking.

Even the very act of breathing gets some moisture in the air. The same thing happens with humidity because it allows moisture to form when the air is trapped and unable to circulate well.

Where Molds Lurk: Places and Things In Your Home To Check For Molds

When considering the possibility of mold infestation, the first things you’ll probably be looking out for are leaks. But remember, moisture can develop in any place where there’s a water source. It can happen even if there are no leaks and where there’s too much humidity.

Your kitchen is at risk and so are your bathrooms and your bedrooms. Molds can easily find their way on kitchen counters, chopping boards, shower mats, and even your children’s toys. Attics, cabinets, basements, and other enclosed spaces in your home are likely to become breeding grounds for molds as well.

Large-Scale Mold Infestation: When Professional Help Is Necessary

Mold infestation comes in all sizes and shapes and how you must deal with it depends on how big or small the area infested is. For example, if the area infested is less than 10 square feet, the size is considered small enough that you can do the cleanup yourself.

But if the infested area is bigger than that, it’s a lot wiser to get a professional mold remediation team to do the job. Why?

It’s because a large-scale infestation means a much bigger damage than your eyes can see. Mold specialists can spot problems our untrained eyes can’t. Moreover, they have the right equipment and the right techniques not only to remove all traces of molds but to keep them from coming back. They can repair the damage, too.

Moisture Control: A Key To Preventing Mold Infestation

Since moisture is the reason for mold growth, controlling moisture, therefore, is the most obvious key to keeping mold infestation at bay.

Begin by identifying risk areas in your home. As mentioned previously, these typically include your kitchen, bathrooms, bedrooms, attic, closets, basement, and so on. Keep these areas dry at all times.

If flood is the cause for waters having gotten into your basement, dry your floors and walls as soon as the waters have subsided. If your carpet is soaked in water, hang it out to dry.

After you’re done showering or bathing, make it a habit to wipe the floors dry. In enclosed spaces where ventilation is poor, running a humidifier can help control the humidity and keep the molds out of the way.

Home Products For Molds: Get Rid Of Molds With Stuff You Have At Home

If attempts to control moisture are not enough and molds manage to get their way into your home, don’t fret. If it’s a fairly new infestation involving a small area, a basic cleanup with products you already have at home is usually all it takes to remove the molds.

You can use bleach, vinegar, tea tree oil, hydrogen peroxide, and baking soda to get the molds out and disinfect the area. If you have disinfecting wipes, you can also use them to clean your mold-infested counters.

All these work so well to remove the molds while they’re still small. Remember, molds multiply very quickly. If you take action at the first signs of mold infestation, they’re less likely to cause a bigger problem.

Removing Molds Off Painted Walls: Tips and Tricks

Molds on painted walls are visually annoying. To remove them effectively without damaging your paint in the process, try using the milder forms of cleaning solutions. Rubbing a mixture of vinegar, borax, and water on the walls usually gets the job done.

white-vinegar

Still, you need to exercise caution when doing this trick. Protect yourself by wearing old clothes and using gloves to wipe the molds off. Remember to dispose of them properly once you’re done with them so as to prevent the molds from spreading.

Conclusion

It always pays to keep your home mold-free as much as possible. Be mindful of the early warning signs of mold infestation and take the necessary actions at once to remove them. If doing it yourself is not recommended considering the size, nature, and extent of the damage, don’t hesitate to hire the services of professional mold mediators to handle the job.

The post How to Effectively Remove Mold From Your House appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How Do I Get My Dishwasher To Stop Leaving White Powdery Film On My Glasses?

Do you get that white powdery film on your glasses after you clean them in the dishwasher? Isn’t that annoying?

Well, the good news is that removing white residue on glasses is actually easy. Here are a few things you can do make your glasses spotless after wash:

Dishwasher Cleaning and Maintenance

cleaning dishwasher
Via howtocleanthings.com

The first thing you want to do is to ensure that your dishwasher parts are clean and in good working order. After that, you can proceed with the following steps:

  1. Clean out the dishwasher garbage trap of any old food, hair or dirt particles. There might be clumps of dishwasher soap in there also. Remove the trap screen and wash with vinegar to make for a more thorough cleaning process.
  2. Then, get a towel or brush and manually scrub the interior part of the dishwasher. Remove the parts and clean them thoroughly. Check underneath them for caked soap.
  3. Use the same vinegar solution with plenty of hot water to clean the interior part of the dishwasher. When the powdery soap cakes up, it leaves that powdery film. You want to make sure that all of the soap is liquefied when you wash your dishes.
  4. Wash a small container full of white vinegar by itself in the dishwasher. This will also remove any microscopic particles that you missed. Vinegar is the nemesis of powdery soap. Wipe down all the surfaces once again.
  5. If you want to remove any lingering smells, you can place some baking soda in a container in your dishwasher and wash another load. This will soak up any foul odors.

Clean This Way Every Three Months

clean dishwasher

Now, your dishwasher should be sparkling clean and ready to go. When you do the next dishwasher load, you might want to pre-dissolve the powdery soap to ensure that it is properly liquefied.

You can also shake and bust up any cakes that may form in the soap container when it is not being used. Any humidity could lead to the soap turning into clumps. A higher quality soap might help also.

Regularly clean your dishwasher every three months using this process to remove all of the powdery soap. Do your best to look for caked soap that is not dissolved properly. With regular cleaning and maintenance, you can stop the dishwasher from leaving white powdery film on your glasses.

The post How Do I Get My Dishwasher To Stop Leaving White Powdery Film On My Glasses? appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

5 Super Easy Skin and Beauty Hacks For Lazy Girls

Keeping ourselves camera-ready every day requires money, time, and effort. The usual Korean skincare routine, for instance, even involves 8 full steps. That is definitely not ideal for the naturally beauty-lazy people.

Fortunately, there are beauty hacks for lazy girls you can totally try to look and feel beautiful even without exerting a lot of effort.

Purchase multi-purpose products

When buying beauty products, it’s a great idea to stick to those that target more than just one skin or beauty problem. For example, you can choose a lip tint that can be used as a blush whenever you are in a hurry.

These days, beauty balms are not only infused with skin nutrients but they also offer better coverage and a wider range of shades. With that, you can also use them as a foundation.

There are many other beauty products that can serve more than one purpose. Most of them require no more than 3 minutes to apply. Find one that will suit your skin type.

Keep hair oils handy

hair oils

Essential oils are no longer just for treating ailments. They also work great for fixing messy hair and dry skin problems.

If your hair has split ends, make it a habit to apply argan oil. It coats your locks perfectly. The oil can also double as your moisturizer when your hands or arms get too flaky.

More so, some essential oils have empowering scents. Use them and you won’t need to constantly reapply your perfume.

Keep a brown eyeliner

Eyes are your face’s focal points. You most definitely need a brown eyeliner, preferably the pencil-type, to hide your tired eyes without being obvious.

Brown is also a very versatile color. It can be worn for a casual look for a daytime event or a bolder look for a nighttime affair. If you forgot to bring your eyeshadow and eyebrow powder, you can use your brown eyeliner to fill in your lids and brows for a sultry look.

While others prefer the lighter shade of brown, you can experiment and go for the darker shade. It’s relatively more flexible and visible.

When applying an eyeliner as eyeshadow, you can either just draw thick lines following the shape of your upper lids or you can draw a criss-cross pattern on your outer eye area and smudge the color for a smoky look.

Carry a toner everywhere you go

Most people fail to realize the magical importance of toner. Ideally, you wash your face first with a cleanser before applying a toner. However, during lazy nights and mornings, you can skip the lengthy process of washing your face and just apply your toner directly.

A toner cleanses, refines, and freshens up your face as easy as 1-2-3. It can also be an alternative to a makeup remover.

You can carry a bottle of toner and a small pack of cotton with you wherever you go. That way, you can clean your face as you wish or in the absence of water. This especially holds true when you have a long-haul travel and your entire beauty set is packed in your checked-in luggage.

As a recommendation, use an alcohol-free and paraben-free toner so you won’t end up damaging your skin. Toners, unlike wet wipes, are specially formulated for facial application. You can be guaranteed that the ingredients are safe and effective.

Invest in a good facial treatment

facial treatment

Skin becomes easily unhealthy with today’s lifestyle and heavy use of makeup. Add that to the lack of time and effort for self-care most women are guilty of. Well, here’s the ultimate life hack– go to a trusted beauty salon and indulge in a good facial.

These days, facial treatments only last for about 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the kind of treatment. It’s basically the perfect treat for time-pressed women.

After a single session, your face will feel significantly rejuvenated, hydrated, and plump. And you won’t have to spend a lot of money just to enjoy a quality facial.

There you have it, 5 easy hacks to keep yourself looking well-kept and healthy every time. They’re super easy beauty hacks for lazy girls. They are not time-consuming so you’ll definitely enjoy trying them out.

 

The post 5 Super Easy Skin and Beauty Hacks For Lazy Girls appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

The Alternate Life Commandments

Most humans are in challenged pursuit of (near) universal desires and setting and achieving their ultimate life goals.

Religions, societies, cultures, and individuals apply varying classifications to each. But distilled to their core, most of us lead a life-long pursuit of the following:

  • Physical well-being
  • Clarity of the mind
  • Passion
  • Success
  • A positive legacy
  • Continuous self-improvement
  • Love & acceptance

Commitment to each should come easy in theory. Physical well-being supports a long healthy life. Success generates status and financial wealth to purchase incredible things. And passion infuses elusive meaning and fulfillment into our lives. You get it…sign me up!

So, why do people struggle so mightily to sustain diets, a driven work-ethic, exercise routines, and hobby generation/practice?

Life is remarkably difficult

It’s dynamic as hell and pulls our attention in every direction imaginable day to day. And when we’re not distracted by external forces, hard-coded mental and physical habits (many undesirable) dominate our daily routine.

On autopilot, we often make decisions that are not aligned with the intentions of our “ideal self”. We, as humans, are painfully shortsighted when it comes to our ability to consistently find present-moment motivation to embody a lifestyle that leads us towards the attainment of long-term aspirations.

I fancy myself an expert on the matter. Not at all because I’ve cracked the code and am the self-actualizing master. No, kind of the opposite actually. My specialty to date, rather, is in committing to, starting, stopping, and ultimately missing lofty goals. I’m like a spark factory without anything laying around to catch fire.

I adore self-help materials and philosophies that address the tricky science of habits. I aspire to join the front-line ranks of the biohacking self-optimization movement that’s swelling in popularity around the world. But, as with my unreliable meditation practice, my commitment is spotty. I remain largely unchanged at age 28 despite having what I thought were all the right intentions…

Time to radically shift my mindset. I know that habits form in response to a consistent reward. So, I considered how I can tweak the Action-Reward relationship to tap into “purposes” that are more inherently motivating to me. To create rewards that are attainable in the short-near term. To enjoy rewards that are more consistently tangible and that fortify the richness of my personal legacy. The Alternate Life Commandments represent where I’ve netted out on this thought process. According to these, I defined a clear purpose that holds me accountable to aggressive self-actualization goals:

The Alternate Life Commandments

Exercise to activate deeply memorable experiences

exercise

  • Strong fitness allows us to consistently pursue and conquer life’s epic “summits”.
  • Many of the most memorable places/experiences on earth are far off the beaten path. Never allow physical shortcoming to hold you back from greatness.
  • Anecdote: Fatigue thwarted my first summit attempt of Mt Shasta. Not only did I forfeit the experience, but it weighed negatively on me for years. Last year, I trained hard and blitzed it a decade later. Redemption was so sweet.

Exercise so your body is not a physical limitation to experiencing your dreams.

Meditate to fully internalize life’s wonderful moments

  • Mindful peace and presence gift-wrap our memories. Inversely, a hyperactive mind or addiction to social media spoil them.
  • We cannot fully appreciate a beach chill, sunrise summit or a simple walk in the park unless our minds are engulfed in the present moment.
  • Mid-experience meditation may amplify a moment’s serenity, but we must practice mindfulness regularly to win the battle against our subconscious.
  • Anecdote: When training for a triathlon 2 years ago, I biked across Golden Gate Bridge to Hawk Hill regularly. Every morning, overlooking an identical view, I pulled out my iPhone to capture a few SnapChat panos. This habit was a result of my weak mindfulness. It literally pulled the world into my personal moment, tainting the experience.

Practice mindfulness so your life experiences are pure and deeply memorable.

See Also: How to Meditate When All The Other Techniques Don’t Work

Create career success to pursue and master amazing hobbies

  • One of my favorite quotes, from Jerry Seinfeld, frames the importance of owning strong hobbies: “A person’s coolness is determined by the extent to which they’re about what they’re about.”
  • Success, managed properly, generates leisure time and disposable income to support hobbies and continued learning.
  • We earn days off. We’re promoted to the role that calls the shots. We’re permitted to work from home and we build a business (or team) under our success that is self-sustaining.
  • Success-enabled-passions ultimately generate fulfillment in life.
  • Anecdote: I’m exploring the world for a year while maintaining my job because I earned it through dedicated grinding.

Work hard to ultimately spend more time doing the things you genuinely love.

Purge social media to fortify relationships with those you love

  • Research suggests that humans can maintain 5 intimate relationships at once. This limit is dependent on the time an individual has to invest in deep and consistent connection.
  • Psychology experts confirm that relationship quality is far more important to our well-being than relationship quantity.
  • Next time you pick up your phone to troll social media, call a loved one instead or a friend that feels increasingly distant. The time needed to otherwise check in on 1000+ “friends” across 3+ networks is ample, trust me.

Trade poisonous time spent on social media for relationship-enriching moments with those you love.

Practice frugality to reduce stress

  • Notorious BIG had it all wrong… at least for the consciously frugal. It should absolutely be “mo money less problems” or perhaps corrected to ”mo things mo problems.”
  • Everything we buy/own is something to damage, lose, regret, or neglect. All of which creates a combination of stress, disappointment, and more spending.
  • Focus on the essentials and make select quality purchases (from your basic black T to your first home).
  • Build a rainy day fund to easily brush off the flight rebooking fee, phone dropped in the pool or taxi from the airport because you just want to get home.

Be frugal to simplify life and eliminate crippling financial stress.

Travel adventurously to break the habit of being you

travel

  • We love to travel because it forcefully turns our tired routines inside out.
  • Fresh sites, cultures, and perspectives paired with experiences that push the limits of our comfort zone put us in personal growth mode.
  • Time away from the rat race gives us moments to reflect deeply on the status of our lives and set a corrected course moving forward.
  • Introduce yourself to the local, join the expat couple going on a mountain bike, and chart a course far off the beaten path. Push the boundaries of your habitual self.

See Also: 6 Ways Traveling Alone Makes You Stronger

Pursue international adventures to accelerate self-actualization.

Eat well for a healthy body and mind. Fuel success in each practice.

Drink less for alcohol poisons the well of each practice.

Finally, there you have it, the Alternate Life Commandments. Which, if any, resonate most strongly with you?

The post The Alternate Life Commandments appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

4 Sure-Fire Steps That Will Make Your Home Shine for Selling

Whether you’re trying to sell your home or you want to spruce things up, a little bit of effort can go a really long way. You could either spend a lot and have someone else do it all for you or you could muster a little bit of elbow grease and do some home improvements to make before selling.

Either way, here’s a list to help you out.

Take Care of the Exterior

Not many people will start here but addressing the exterior of your home is pretty significant. Impressions matter and the outside is the very first thing visitors and potential buyers will see. Invest a little bit of time to take care of little details.

If you have a yard, this may be the best time to mow it. After this is complete, check on the overall health of the lawn.

Does it have a mostly uniform appearance? Are there brown spots or has crabgrass begun to take over?

Buyers who have maintained a lawn before can quickly spot an unhealthy lawn, so you may have no other option than to kill these weeds rapidly.

In addition to the lawn, trimming other plants like shrubs, bushes, and hanging tree branches can make a huge difference.

After addressing outside greenery, start looking into cleaning the exterior. One of the best tools you can turn to is an industrial style power washer which you can rent at a decent price.

Power washers that utilize pressurized, hot water are the most effective way of removing impressive amounts of stains and dirt. These machines are best suited for blasting away stubborn stains on concrete.

Driveways and walkways are the best places to start but be extremely careful when using a power washer on the actual exterior of the house. They are quite powerful and have the ability to cause unintended damage.

See Also: 10 Important Home Features That Home Buyers Want

Easy Cleaning Hacks

cleaning hacks

Of course, if a listing is squeaky clean, it has a better chance of selling than a “kind of clean” house. This isn’t groundbreaking but you need to visit every single room to be entirely sure that the rooms are spotless. At a minimum, every separate room should be as clean as possible to entice buyers.

Don’t go crazy with cleaning supplies. Here are a few cleaning hacks to tackle some problems you may run into:

  • Grimy showers: Residual soap scum isn’t exactly the best way to sell a bathroom. It looks terrible and is painfully apparent on showers with glass doors. Combine ten parts water to one part muriatic acid. Then, pick up some steel wool and you can wipe away soap scum with ease.
  • Cleaning mold: Mold is both unappealing and potentially unhealthy to be around. By combining one part water with one part bleach, you can effectively wipe down surface mold. If you aren’t the biggest fan of bleach, you can also try a blend of vinegar, sugar, and water to clean surface mold.
  • Mr. Clean Magic Erasers: One of the most useful and innovative cleaning products ever released is the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. Able to scrub away stubborn stains better than traditional sponges without being as abrasive, it’s a must for any deep cleaning job. Strong enough to tackle wall stains like scuffs, crayons, and markers, they’re pretty cheap if you get them on Amazon.

See Also: The Six Best All-Natural Cleaners for Your House

Treat Bathrooms with Care

Like it or not, bathrooms are a huge deciding factor for home buyers. This may come as a shock to first-time home sellers, but it is one of the most important rooms to address.

Upgrading bathrooms is an investment of both time and funds. The good news is that there are a few easy ways to maximize your investment without sinking too much cash.

  • Replacing hardware, fixtures, etc. – A sure sign of a dated bathroom is how old the toilet and other fixtures look. Painting is easy but updating the stuff future homeowners will be using on a daily basis will not go unnoticed. You don’t have to get the best available but this investment will pay off nicely.
  • Mirrors and other small upgrades — Replacing cabinets and countertops can be an expensive, exhausting job. You can look at other cosmetic upgrades instead to save some money. Your best bet is to shop around for stylish, contemporary mirrors to replace what is in the bathroom right now. These mirrors – as well as towel bars – can be easily mounted to the wall for a fresh, modern look.

Strategic Painting & Staining

home improvement

Your ambition may get the best of you when considering what to paint. There’s no sense in going overboard when you can be strategic with your painting targets. With intelligent application and just a few coats, the impact new paint can have on a room is impressive.

Before diving face first into painting the exterior or large rooms, consider a few smaller jobs to try out first.

  • Kitchen cabinet revival: This could potentially save tons of money, removing the need to replace older kitchen cabinets. By stripping and staining old cabinets, you can spruce them up at a low cost. The trick here is to also swap out any cabinet hardware (knobs, handles) with contemporary selections.
  • Minor cover-ups: Keep your eyes peeled for areas of the house where minor touch-ups can be applied. It may seem superficial, but you never know how detail-oriented buyers might be. In particular, try to find opportunities to cover up cracked or chipped paint. Bonus tip – paint the garage door! If you think about it, this isn’t necessarily a huge undertaking unless you’re trying to take on a six-car garage. With some fresh paint, you may be blown away at how much of a difference it can make.
  • Ugly fireplace: Fireplaces can be a great feature to promote. There are times where an existing fireplace has become outdated and unattractive. One remedy for unappealing fireplaces is to slap several coats of paint to the surrounding room. Another option is to paint the fireplace with a contrasting color to make it stand out.
  • Ceramic tile painting: No matter how you slice it up, replacing tile can get pretty expensive. Not to mention it’s a labor-intensive endeavor. As a significantly cheaper alternative, consider simply painting over old tile. It does require a special technique, so make sure to do it right.

Final Thoughts

Preparing a home for sale doesn’t have to be a costly effort. By making these home improvements to make before selling, you can whip your home into shape in no time.

You could go to the extreme by taking on substantial renovation projects or buying brand new appliances since these activities will always pay off. Just make sure that you put into account what you can afford and get a feel for the local housing market.

Even if you aren’t selling your house, these tips will make your pad shine and instill a sense of pride. Putting in just a modest amount of effort will prime your home for guests, future homeowners or for your own satisfaction.

The post 4 Sure-Fire Steps That Will Make Your Home Shine for Selling appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

10 Easy Money Hacks to Improve Your Finances

Personal finance doesn’t have to complicated. With the right mindset and commitment towards a better financial life, you can make big improvements effortlessly and quickly.

The following are 10 easy money hacks that can take your personal finance management to the next level:

Online Shopping

online shopping

One of the best ways to save money is to shop online as frequently as possible. This is because there is a slew of reliable and useful online portals including Amazon, Walmart, etc. where you can enjoy attractive discounts and cashback offers.

By making purchases at the right time and from the right website, you can easily save up to 30% or more than you would otherwise spend at your local store where you have limited options and limited time for research.

Refinancing

Is your mortgage or car loan giving a hard time? If your answer is “yes”, then refinancing can be a good solution to look into.

In refinancing, you essentially take a new loan to repay the current one. The advantage of this is that you can get a lower interest rate and a more flexible repayment structure with the new loan.

Increasing Credit Score

Your credit score will play a huge role in your life as far as the finances are concerned. So, if you have a high score, then not only you can get a personal loan, home loan, etc. rather easily, you can also negotiate and get a lower interest rate than the standard. This way, you can save a lot of money on the interest.

There are many easy and simple ways to improve your credit score. You don’t even need the help of a professional to succeed in this endeavor. You can just refer to authority websites and blogs such as the Dough Roller Blog for tips and advice. By taking the recommended credit-building measures, you can make decent improvements in a short period and enjoy more financial freedom!

Avoiding Minimum Payments

minimum payments

Credit card issuers often market their products with the “minimum payment” feature. As you can imagine, it’s an option for a credit card user in which they can choose to pay only a small portion of their credit card bill i.e. the minimum payment to avoid penalties. However, it’s something you should stay away from as much as possible.

When you make a minimum payment, your account is saved from fines and penalties. However, the remaining amount i.e. what’s left on your bill after you have made the minimum payment is carried over to the next month and added to the next bill. In addition to that, this balance continues to attract interest. Thus, always pay your bills in full to avoid paying interest and to protect your credit score.

Buying Used Items

There is nothing wrong with buying used products, especially when they cost a lot when bought new. However, the key is selective purchase.

For instance, items like furniture, expensive college books, hardware tools, musical instruments, etc. can be easily bought online with websites like eBay, craigslist, wallapop, and letgo etc. This is because these items age well and their quality does’t degrade too much over time if they are well taken care of.

Buying used items can help you save as much as half of the original price. However, always be sure to inspect the products before you hand over the money.

Availing Tax Benefits

Do you pay the exact amount of income tax that’s applicable to your profile? There are ways to lower your taxable income which means you can save money that you would otherwise pay in taxes.

For instance, Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) allow you to put money into an account tax-free and withdraw it tax-free when used to cover medical costs. Similarly, you can deduct interest from your student loan payments on your tax return.

Taking up Freelancing

There are many easy ways to make money online. For instance, if you are good at writing, photography, video editing, etc. then you can take up related gigs online from SMEs and individuals looking for help.

There are a number of reliable and high-paying freelancer websites like Upwork and Freelancer where you can create an account to bag gigs and earn some decent money on the side. This will also allow you to use your free time during weekends or holidays for something productive and financially beneficial.

See Also: 5 Freelancing Tips That Will Make you Successful

Setting up an Emergency Fund

emergency fund

Life is uncertain, and if you lose your job one day or aren’t able to work for some other reason, then your savings can deplete quickly, thus leaving you vulnerable. You may end up taking a personal loan at a high interest rate being short of options. However, you can prevent this kind of situation by setting an emergency fund for the rainy days.

Ideally, an emergency fund should be enough to cover your expenses for at least 3-6 months.

Using a Mobile App for Tracking Expenses

We have all heard that creating a monthly budget, monitoring the expenses, etc. is important. However, who has the time to note down all the expenses and do the math? Fortunately, there are a number of free apps that can help you track your spending.

The best personal finance apps in the market are capable of reading your emails and SMS for automated tracking, creating detailed reports, suggesting payment methods and credit cards that offer discounts, etc. Thus, these can help you save money in a variety of ways.

Reconsider Recurring Expenses

A lot of times, one-time expenses such as car repair, dental treatment, etc. can’t be avoided. However, the recurring expenses which are also the biggest burden on your finances can be looked into and altered for saving money.

If you find that there are more affordable alternatives to your current recurring expenses such as insurance premium, Internet connection charges, cable bills, etc. then you can make a switch. Maybe you can find a cheaper Internet plan, or replace your home’s light fixtures with their energy-efficient versions at to lower your utility bills, etc.

So, these were some of the best ways to improve your financial health. Do try them out and see how you get the benefits in just a short period! Good luck!

The post 10 Easy Money Hacks to Improve Your Finances appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Four Surprising Yet Effective Ways To Tune Into Your Soul

I’m going to ask you a question which you may or may not have ever asked yourself.

Does your life actually feel like it’s in alignment and in flow with what your soul needs and desires?

If you take a trip down memory lane right now and re-visited everything you did over the past week, is there anything that stands out as feeling heavy or wrong? Maybe there’s something you felt an unusual amount of resistance around or something that simply sucked your energy dry? Maybe it was more obvious and screaming out as a ‘Hell No’ or as being undeniably out of alignment and flow?

When life gets on a roll and one thing leads to another, it’s so easy to begin taking action or making decisions which are not truly in line with what your soul really desires and requires.

Those little choices add up and gradually, little by little, a feeling of uneasiness begins to creep in. You can’t quite seem to fully relax or settle. You’re restless and there’s something you can’t quite put your finger on. If only you could just figure it out, you’re quite certain you’d be able to relax, enjoy your life, and feel in the flow!

The good news is that it’s quite possible. Take a day to slow down, breathe, and look within.

Choose a day where you give yourself permission to not have to do anything- not even your normal daily non-negotiable tasks. And after, try using these four tools below!

Meditate

meditate daily

This can be as simple as having a search on YouTube for a guided meditation video that resonates with you and then listening to it!

You can spend 5 to 30 mins or whatever feels right for you. Just breathe, relax, and be with yourself. See and feel whatever comes up and allow yourself to just be with it.

After you’ve listened to your guided meditation or practiced your own mediation, finish off by asking yourself:

If I was living a life aligned and in flow, what would that look and feel like for me?

See what comes up!

See Also: How to Meditate When All The Other Techniques Don’t Work

Journal

Find yourself a quiet place. It can be your favorite cafe, park or maybe it’s in the bath with a glass of Bordeaux! You can choose any place as long as you feel relaxed, not rushed, and there are no distractions.

Take your time and work through these journal prompts.

Remember your soul always knows. It’s because everything is already written and all available choices have already been mapped out. All you need to do is to know how to get in touch with your soul and ask:

  • What does my soul have to say right now?
  • What would my soul have me do?
  • In all honesty, what does my soul desire?
  • What does my soul require?

See Also: 5 Benefits of Journaling To Inspire and Motivate You

Sweat it out

walking exercise

Allocate some time during the day to move your body. This might be a hot yoga class, a fast-paced walk, a gym session or a stretching routine.

The aim is to move your body and ideally, break into a sweat.

You can use this time to not only detox physically through sweating but to detox emotionally as well. Just set an intention before you exercise that you are releasing what needs to be released. Having this time to exercise is rejuvenating for the mind, body, and soul.

Soul aligned action

I’m a big believer that life should be fun, flow-based, and easy!

Take some time to do exactly what it is that your soul needs and wants. It can be something that you find enjoyable, fun, and naturally drawn to doing. This should feel almost effortless and it should come from within.

Maybe it’s a phone call with a soulmate, playing with your kids or binging on a TV series. Maybe it’s taking a long bath while you talk to a loved one or dancing around the lounge to your favorite playlist.

You get the idea!

Use these four tools as much as you need to help bring you back to YOU.

These are four simple but powerful ways to help you know how to get in touch with your soul. They can also highlight what’s not aligned for you.

Eventually, it will become clear if there are any changes you may need to make so you can live more in alignment and flow with your soul.

When you tune in and say yes to what your soul desires, life will then say yes to you!

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How to Begin Celebrating Small Wins to Start A New Life

Starting a new life is not easy. You have to get rid of any bad, old habits. However, letting go of any habit or behavior is not easy, either. That’s why you have to set the goal you want to accomplish.

On this journey, you need to identify the small wins that indicate that you are accomplishing something. These accomplishments motivate you to keep moving in the right direction.

If we focused only on the big wins, we would never feel like we will ever get any achievements. A new behavior is not formed overnight. You have to work for it.

Here’s how you can start celebrating small wins every day.

Start small

start small habits

Many people make the mistake of doing too much at once while trying to achieve a given goal.

Maybe you want to start an exercise program or any other new habit. If that’s the case, you have to start small and progress gradually.

For instance, if you are used to waking up at 10 a.m and want to change to waking up at 6 a.m, then you need to make the transition slowly since this is a huge change. You could start by waking up at 9 a.m for a while, then 8 a.m, until you become comfortable waking up at 6 a.m.

Also, try to create a ritual by doing the same things at the same time each day. Doing this helps your body adjust and adapt to the new routine.

Change one habit at a time

You made a grand plan to start leading a healthy lifestyle when the year started and want to start working on it. You are filled with enthusiasm to get started. You want to start a new diet, exercise daily or any other new habit right away.

With such a huge goal, you feel tempted to do all of them at once. However, this is similar to multitasking and you will end up failing.

To avoid this, focus on working on one habit at a time and only move on to the next when you have gotten used to the previous one.

See Also: 4 Bad Online Habits That Are Killing Your Work Productivity

Group your big habits into chunks

As you continue gradually adjusting to your new habits, you will find yourself swamped with things you need to do at some point. For instance, if you decide to start exercising and gradually increase its level of difficulty, a time will come when you can’t increase it any higher.

You should divide big habits into smaller sections and do them continuously throughout the day. For instance, if you need to do 60 squats a day, you can divide them into 3 sessions and do 20 squats in each.

Remove your barriers

When starting new habits, it is easy for you to change directions when the initial plan doesn’t go as expected. However, if you really want to achieve your goal, you need to keep them close for ease of access. You have no excuse for not doing it.

For instance, if you want to start reading a few pages of a book before going to sleep every day, you could keep your Kindle or hardcover book on your nightstand. Change is uncomfortable but it has to happen.

change habit

See Also: 5 Barriers That You Need To Cross To Achieve Success This Year

Get back on the horse

It is not easy to go through a change in behavior. There are times you will slip and go back to those practices that were not good for you. The problem is if and how you bounce back from it.

If you are set on changing, you should get back on track quickly whenever you trip to avoid dropping off altogether. You should never make the same mistake twice.

For instance, if you miss a workout once, don’t miss it the next day. The aim is not for you to be perfect but to be consistent.

Stack habits on existing ones

It is easy to stick to a habit if it is added onto one that already exists. Thus, doing one habit leads to you doing the other. For example, if you always brush your teeth after eating, it is easy for you to start a flossing routine. Whenever you are brushing your teeth, you will always remember to floss.

Conclusion

Developing a new habit is not easy. Start by making small changes and gradually progress to bigger ones. You can’t change your habits in one day. The time it takes to form a long-lasting one varies.

Accomplishing it and getting it to stick is a big win for you. Remember that just because you were able to form the habit does not mean it can’t fall apart. You need to be patient and consistent to achieve your goal. Keep in mind that new habits result in a new life.

So, start celebrating small wins and you’ll be starting on the right track.

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Squeaky Clean: How To Clean Up The Different Types of Carpet Stains

Every awesome house has a carpet inside it somewhere. Whether it’s in the living room or the bedroom, a rug is there to provide safety, beauty, and charm. A lot of times, a carpet faces a lot of roughing up as it puts up with a lot of factors that can gradually increase its deterioration.

One of the most dreaded things that can happen to your carpet is a horrible and stinky stain. You and your guests won’t see it immediately, but you will surely notice it eventually. And when you do, it’s important that you know how to approach it.

Below are the different types of carpet stains and how to effectively remove them.

Wine Stains

wine spill

Hosting a house party is a common event that a lot of us do. A party is fun especially when it has music, food, and drinks. However, all the fun goes away when it ends, especially for those who have to clean up after.

Imagine this: You wake up and walk around the house, seeing the aftermath of an epic party. You then look down at your carpet and see the biggest stain.

How to get rid of em’:

Most wines are red or purple and are hard to miss once it stains your carpet. Time is of the essence when dealing with wine stains.

It’s better to deal with them when they’re fresh by using a small rag wet with hydrogen peroxide. Rub it vigorously, being careful not to spread it even more. Afterward, use a spray bottle with warm water and some detergent to finish the job.

Writer’s Note: You can apply the same steps when cleaning up blood stains.

See Also: A Quick Guide on How to Clean Up Blood Spills Properly

Pee and Poop

pet pee and poop

The poop that our furry friends leave behind is always a huge and smelly mess. Sometimes, poop isn’t the only problem because our pets also pee on the carpet or any furniture. When their pee dries up, it forms yellow botches and is quite pungent.

And it doesn’t stop there. Pets can also throw up on your carpet leaving a similar stain and smell behind.

How to get rid of em’:

If the stain or mess is still wet, try blotting it with white paper towels until the stain and moisture are absorbed. Be careful not to rub it in as it can quickly spread if done the wrong way.

Keep blotting it carefully until the stain is gone and the area becomes dry. If the stain is all dried up, try moistening it so it’ll become softer and smoother to clean up. Whether it’s dry or wet, a stain will smell.

To eliminate the odor, try using vinegar mixed with warm water and spray it on the stain. You can also substitute vinegar with detergent, lemon juice, etc.

Bubblegum

bubblegum stain

Most kids and some adults love chewing gums which could mean a bad sign for your carpet. When bubblegum hits your carpet, be ready for a sticky situation. Gum sticks to the fibers of your carpet, which mean carelessly removing them can damage your rug permanently.

How to get rid of em’:

One of the most popular methods of removing gum on your carpet is to put a ziplock bag full of ice cubes over the gum. When it’s cold or frozen, use a sharp object such as a knife to scrape away the gum carefully.

Another method is to use cleaning solvents and applying it on a cloth. Rub the cloth on the gum and slowly remove it by rubbing vigorously. Be careful in using solvents as most solutions will stain certain fabrics.

Takeaway

No one wants a carpet that has a large, visible stain on it. And for sure, no one wants to notice a carpet that reeks of poop and pee. However, although it may sound horrible, staining your carpet is a reality that most of us face.

Don’t lose hope. Whether it’s poop, wine or an annoying piece of chewing gum, rest assured that there are methods that can quickly remove the stain and stench away from your carpet. You just have to know the different types of carpet stains so you can properly address them.

The post Squeaky Clean: How To Clean Up The Different Types of Carpet Stains appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Eight Best Ways to Get Rid of Fleas On Dogs

When it comes to fleas, prevention is much easier than trying to get rid of an infestation once they take hold. Fleas can spread rapidly from your dog to the surrounding environment and this makes it that much harder to get rid of them.

A single flea can lay up to 40 eggs per day and the majority of the flea population thrives in grass and carpet. Only around five percent of the fleas present get on your pets.

There are several preventative measures you can take to ensure that your home, pets, family, and yard stay free of fleas.  But, what is the best way to get rid of fleas on dogs?

Do Regular Checks

regular checkup

You want to routinely check your pet for fleas at least once a week. Check under your pet’s legs, in and around his ears, and close to his skin. If you see small black moving dots, it’s a good indication that your pet might have fleas.

Groom Your Pet Routinely

Whether your dog has a long or short coat, you’ll want to set up a grooming routine. You can do it for 10 to 15 minutes once or twice a week. This should be enough time for you to check your pet’s coat for fleas that may be hiding under its coat.

This routine grooming can give you time to bond with your dog, too.

Clean up Your Yard

Your yard or garden may be the root source of your flea infestation problem. Take steps to get rid of fleas in your yard and ensure that it’s a clean and safe place for your pets.

Fleas like moist and warm shaded areas with a lot of organic matter, like dead leaves or compost. Mowing your lawn and picking up debris will give fleas fewer places to live.

Get Regular Veterinarian Checkups

Not only are regular checkups good for your dog’s health, but they can also help to catch any flea problems early on. The earlier fleas are detected, the earlier treatment can get started.

Don’t Use Old Flea Preventative Products

Certain preventative products can be expensive. This extra cost is why people like to hang on to them past their expiration date. However, once a product expires, it can lose its effectiveness.

Treat Fleas All Throughout The Year

Although fleas like warm and moist environments, they can survive all throughout the year. A good preventative measure is to give your dog an oral flea medication like Comfortis for dogs. A lot of these products last one month, and they come in a soft chew so your dog won’t have a problem digesting them. They help to prevent fleas and they also kill any current infestations.

Use Citrus to Repel Fleas

If you don’t like the idea of using a medicated product to help protect your dog from fleas, try the natural route. Did you know that citrus is a natural flea repellent?

You can take a freshly squeezed orange or lemon and rub the juice into your dog’s coat. This will be safe for them to lick off and it’s effective in repelling fleas. Simply reapply it as needed.

Use Essential Oils

You can make a flea deterrent spray to put on your dog and to spray around your house using essential oils. All you have to do is mix one cup of apple cider vinegar with one quart of fresh water and four or five drops of essential oils.

Flea repellent essential oils include lemongrass, cedarwood, lavender, thyme, and citronella. Spray this around your home and on your dog to repel fleas and freshen the air.

Three Ways to Get Rid of Fleas

If you find fleas on your dog or in your home, there are several easy things you can do to get rid of them.

1. Do a Deep Clean

You can deep clean your home to help control any fleas. Make sure you pay special attention to carpets, furniture, and areas where your pet likes to play or sleep. Using a citrus-based cleaner is a good idea.

2. Bathe Your Dog

flea prevention

Fleas don’t like water as it makes it difficult for them to hold on to your dog’s coat. Bathing your dog at least once a week can help you control the flea infestation. You can also add a few drops of essential oil to their shampoo or buy medicated shampoos.

3. Spray Your Yard

When you’re taking care of the fleas inside of your home, you also want to make sure you treat your yard. You can buy specialized sprays and apply them to your yard and around the outside of your house to kill any fleas. This can help prevent your dog from bringing them back inside and undoing all of your hard work.

Fleas can be a big problem that you need to prevent in any way you can. Our eight flea prevention tips can help ensure that you don’t have to go through all the hard work of stopping an infestation. This also ensures that you enjoy a happy home and a healthy dog.

The post Eight Best Ways to Get Rid of Fleas On Dogs appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

8 Genius Fashion Hacks for Men

Dressing sharp and looking smart doesn’t always mean having to burn a hole in your pocket with brand names. It’s actually useless without the proper know-how on how to style and carry yourself. Check out these very simple and doable fashion hacks for men that will have you looking extra dapper in and out of the workplace.

Love the Blazer

Although a suit is always a good choice, a blazer is an essential piece to any wardrobe because it’s so versatile. A well-fitting blazer is a fast way take a plain outfit to business casual, and the dark blue, smokey charcoal, or gray blazers are perfect for sitting and doing desk work. You do want to make sure you have a good fit and that your blazer’s shoulders align with yours.

Pro Tip: Make a fist and put it between your buttoned blazer and your stomach. If it fits properly, you shouldn’t have any problems. If it’s too large, you’ll have a lot of extra space, and if it’s too small, you’ll have trouble making a fist.

Shoes Make the Man

The wrong pair of shoes can derail a well-put together outfit very quickly. The trick is to strike a balance between good-looking and comfortable. After all, you’ll wear them for hours at a time. Depending on the environment, a boot can be your go-to if you’re not wearing your dress shoes. A good boot can handle different weather conditions, and it pairs very well with most business attire.

Pro Tip: Make sure that your boots don’t have scuff marks in them. Contrary to popular belief, people do look at your shoes. Take a few minutes and condition your boots with shoe conditioner or leather conditioner if they’re made of leather. It’ll remove the scuff marks and make them look new.

Use Moisturizer Instead of Hair Gel

Gel works wonders for helping your style your perfect hairstyle, but it comes with two pitfalls. It’s very easy to use too much and get hair that feels crunchy and looks unnatural. Gel can also strip your hair of natural oils leaving you with a dry, damaged mess. Swap it out for hand or face moisturizer. It’ll still give you styling help and holding power while protecting your hair’s natural oils.

Pro Tip: You may be tempted to use a handful of the moisturizer to get it to hold, but less really is more. You need a pea-sized amount or a dime sized amount at most, and you want to rub it between your palms and then apply it to your hair for a frizz-free, natural look.

Don’t Underestimate a Good-Fitting Pair of Pants

good fitting pair of pants

You may be tempted to live in jeans, but most business professionals have to have several different pants styles at this disposal. Whether it’s a pair of dress slacks, green chinos, or a wool slack, a good fit is essential. Your pants should fit snugly around your thighs and hips and end short enough so you can show off most of your shoe. They should also fit snug to your groin area without constricting you.

Pro Tip: When you’re shopping for pants and you’re not sure if they’ll fit well or not, measure with your elbow. If you can fit from your fist to your elbow inside the waistband of the jeans without them being too large or small, they’ll most likely be a good fit.

Use a T-Shirt

Did you know that a t-shirt with a blazer tossed over the top is considered casual business wear and it’s suitable for a lot of offices and professional settings? Make sure your t-shirt’s bottom falls between the middle of your belt and the middle of your zipper and that the shoulder seam lines up with your shoulder.

Pro Tip: If your t-shirt shrinks, you can restore it to it’s original fit quickly and easily. Take the shrunken t-shirt and place it in a bowl or bucket of warm water and a few teaspoons of hair conditioner. Wait five minutes, take it out and stretch it back to the original size.

Have a Power Tie

men fashion hack tie

We recommend having several different ties on hand, but if you only want one or two, go for darker colors with subtle patterns or a solid color. It’ll work well with anything you match it with, and this includes busier or brighter patterns. It lets you dress it down by adding a leather jacket over your dress shirt, so it’s versatile as well.

Pro Tip: Your tie should reach your belt buckle and go no lower when you tie it. Also, be aware of your tie’s width. If you want to be safe, go with the modern 2.5-inch width. However, it has to be proportionate to your lapels, so if they’re wider, your tie can be as well.

Match Your Socks

Yes, your socks are mostly hidden for view. Yes, it’s rare that anyone will see more than a flash of them as you go about your day, but that small flash can undo all of your fashion-conscious efforts. Pick out socks that complement what you normally wear, whether it’s in everyday life or at the office.

Pro Tip: When you’re trying to decide what color socks to wear, consider your pants and what color they are. Generally, you want to match your pants or go a shade darker or a shade lighter. If you’re good, a contrasting color that compliments your shoes and pants is a safe bet.

Stay On Top Of New Styles

new styles

Sign up for a men’s clothing subscription. Box subscriptions have been flourishing awhile now ranging from beauty products to sweet treats to meal deliveries. In similar manner, you get a box of clothing goodies especially curated for you. You’ll get clothing items ranging from shirts, jackets, pants, and accessories. On one hand, you’ll get clothes that fit your style, and on the other hand, probability is high that you’ll stumble on a new style you’ll like. It’s win-win.

You can also discover new styles that fit your taste and lifestyle by keeping an eye on social media like Pinterest and Instagram. These two platforms are an excellent source of styling inspiration.

Pro Tip: Use hashtags to come across new ideas. Want to try out a navy blazer? Try searching with the #navyblazer hashtag.

These eight fashion hacks for men are easy and quick ways to keep you looking sharp and well-dressed. They can help you make a good first impression and give your confidence a boost all in one go.

The post 8 Genius Fashion Hacks for Men appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

8 Easy Snow Removal Tips For Your Garden

There’s nothing wrong with having snow in your garden. It makes a great insulator and can provide just the right water to your dry plants during the winter.

However, once snow builds up and causes trunks to bend and break, it’s a totally different story.

Here are some of the best tips you can use to deal with snow in your garden.

Shovel frequently

shoveling snow

If you want to stop snow from accumulating in your garden, there’s really no better way than to shovel often. If you delay removing snow until the next day, you’re simply making your job a lot harder. Remember, snow can stick to the ground and freeze.

Be mindful of the shovel you’ll use. Make sure to use a quality shovel to avoid straining your body, particularly your back.

As much as possible, skip the cheap shovels. Although they can save you some money, they can make the job harder. They can even leave you with arm stiffness and back pain. They break easier as well and that means a repurchase.

Get a snow blower

using snow blower

If shoveling sounds like a lot of work for you, get a good snow blower. It can make removing snow a lot faster and less tedious.

Here’s the catch.

If you are going to buy a snow blower for the first time, consider getting one that’s maintenance-free. An electric snow blower is a great choice because you don’t need to change oils and fill it up each time. You just need an electrical outlet and extension cord and you’re good to go.

Now, if you are looking for the most efficient and powerful snow blower, a three-stage snow blower is one of the usual top picks. Although it’s probably not the cheapest blower you can find, it can save you a lot of time and energy.

Tip:

If you’re going to use a snow blower, don’t point it to any plant to avoid breaking or damaging it.

Sweep gently

To get rid of snow on your shrubs and plants, remember to be really gentle and careful. With a broom or just your hands, sweep upwards to loosen the snow on your plants. Avoid sweeping downward as that can completely break any bent branch.

Don’t shake your plants, too. They are already stressed and very brittle. Shaking them will only make things worse.

As for the ice, just leave it and wait it out. If you try too hard to remove ice, you are liable to break branches off your plants.

Apply cooking oil to your shovel

This might sound weird but it definitely helps.

Using cooking spray on your shovel makes it easier to move the shovel through the snow since it prevents sticking. Just remember to completely wipe the oil off before storing your shovel in the garage to avoid creating a mess.

Choose the right form of ice melt

You actually have tons of options to get rid of a slippery driveway. You can get a calcium magnesium acetate, urea, calcium chloride or salt to get the job done.

Take note, however, that those ice melt forms aren’t the same. So, be sure to do your homework and really consider your choices. Some of them can be damaging and harmful to plants, floorings, and animals.

If you’re on a tight budget, go with salt. It’s readily available and cheap. It’s best applied to driveways and walkways but never directly on your garden.

Choose Magnesium Chloride if you’re looking for something that’s gentle on vegetation and most surfaces. It’s pet-friendly, too.

Be careful where you pile your snow

snow piling

When you’re removing snow from your roof, garden or driveway, make sure you’re not piling it up near your house. This can create problems in the foundation of your home, like frozen pipes and cracks.

Avoid creating a huge pile along your driveway’s edge, too. This can cause chunks to fall back into your driveway, forcing you to clear the area twice.

Stay safe

The equipment and tools you’ll be using for snow removal aren’t the only things you have to worry about. Since the process requires a lot of effort, you need to be physically ready, too.

Wear the right gear and dress properly to protect yourself. Dressing in layers can help keep your body warm while you’re outdoors. Avoid long winter coats and wear insulated vests instead. This will ensure your flexibility while working.

Remember to protect your hands and head as well. Wear a warm hat and a pair of earmuffs to prevent heat from escaping through the head.

As for your hands, wear gloves that will allow you to grip your shovel well without letting your hands get cold. If a pair of gloves isn’t enough, get a pair of heated gloves. They will keep your hands and fingers warm as you shovel through the snow.

Don’t forget to do a bit of stretching prior to shoveling, too. This will warm up and stretch your muscles to prevent injuries.

You don’t necessarily have to do a long and complicated routine. Stretching for about 5 to 10 minutes can be enough to prep your body for the hard work.

Consider getting salt-resistant plants

If you struggle with snow accumulating on your driveway every year, it’s probably the right time to get salt-resistant plants. Having them in your yard means you’ll be able to use salt and deicers without having to worry too much about killing your entire yard.

Some of your best choices are bee balm, peony, yucca, sedums, and butterfly weed. Century plant, rosemary, oleander, and rugosa rose are good options as well.

In conclusion

Most people look forward to seeing snow but feel dreadful once it’s time to get rid of the snow in their yard. If you are one of those people, knowing the right tips and tricks can greatly help. Investing in the right tools and equipment can make the process a lot easier, too.

The post 8 Easy Snow Removal Tips For Your Garden appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Ikigai: The Japanese Secret To A Happy Life

The pressure to find happiness can lead to a sense of inadequacy and disappointment.

In fact, the pressure to be happy can make you unhappy.

Instead of forcing yourself, try Ikigai. It can get you out of bed in the morning.

In the culture of Okinawa, Japan, Ikigai (pronounced “eye-ka-guy”) roughly translates to “reason for being.”

In a 7-year study involving about 43,000 adults, it was found that those adults who were able to find their Ikigai were alive 7 years after the study.

This was even after taking other factors, like diseases, into account.

Ikigai is similar to “happiness”.

ikigai happiness

The difference is that even if you are miserable now but have a goal in mind, you may still feel Ikigai.

Have you ever been so absorbed in doing something that you forget to drink and eat?

What were you doing?

You may find your Ikigai in those moments.

If you can find out what you are good at, what you can be paid for, what the world needs and what you absolutely love doing, then you have your Ikigai.

ikigai
Via leftbrainrightbrain.blog

Let’s break it down:

1. What you love: It’s going to be something that you do because you enjoy doing it. Make a list.
2. Be good at it: If you enjoy it, you’re likely to be good or at least decent at it. Make a list.
3. Can be paid for: For it to be Ikigai, you should be able to make a decent living off of it. Is there a niche for it? Make a list.
4. The world should need it: It should be something people find useful. Make a list.

By now you should have four lists.

Is there anything that exists on all four of them?

That’s a really good contender for Ikigai.

Also, consider the things on the “I love doing it” and “The world needs it lists”.

Are you suddenly going to start loving doing something that you don’t enjoy doing?

Not likely.

It’s easier to get really good at something you enjoy or figure out a way to make a living from.

Ikigai may be an answer to the Millennial frustration

I want my life to have meaning and consequence. On the other hand, I want to enjoy the lifestyle that comes with money.

Whether it’s Ikigai or what Chris Myers calls Enlightened Entrepreneurship, find your passion and then the medium through which to express your passion.

Ikigai isn’t about working harder and longer.

In fact, only 31% of Japanese say they’ve found their Ikigai at work, which means 69% of people find it elsewhere.

Ikigai is about feeling that your work makes a difference in people’s lives.

Unlike the English term “purpose in life”, it need not refer to dauntingly large or spectacular projects.

It doesn’t need to be grand or showy.

You can find your Ikigai in doing one small thing as well as you possibly can.

The post Ikigai: The Japanese Secret To A Happy Life appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Maximize Space in A Dorm Room

Most dorm rooms are really tight. Without the right strategy and failure to know how to maximize space in a dorm room, you’ll have a hard time fitting everything you need in your space.

If you are about to transfer or you’re redecorating your room, here are some great tips you can use.

Utilize the Storage Space Under Your Bed

storage under the bed
Via Pinterest

Many students looking for more space to store their belongings will just stuff things underneath their beds. If you are like those students, consider getting more organized by using storage containers. They are effective in conserving and maximizing space at the same time.

Before you actually place your items in their respective containers, make sure to do vacuum packing first. It can take away the excess space your things will occupy, allowing you to keep more items in your containers.

Tip: Store your seasonal items you won’t need to clear up more space.

Use Your Dorm Room Door

If you are like most students who like to bring several pairs of shoes to college, you can get a shoe rack which you can hang near your doorway. Most of those shoe racks can keep around 9 to 12 shoes at a time, saving you a lot of floor space.

You can also get storage bins which you can attach to your door. Those bins can give you enough space to store your miscellaneous items.

Tip: You may have two doors in your dorm room. Use both of them to get more space to keep your things.

Keep Things On Your Walls

Using a small area on the wall for a coat rack will allow for more space. However, most college dorms won’t let you nail or screw anything into their walls. If that is the case, you can use sticky hooks which you can buy them from your local stores.

You can also find sticky baskets which you can stick to your wall. You can use those baskets to keep your keys, coins, or even small pens. The more organized and easier it is for you to find them, the less likely you’ll have to scramble for them when you’re running late for your class.

Tip: Tuck away your coats and jackets you won’t need for the season under your bed. Put them in your bins after they’ve been vacuum sealed.

Declutter Your Deskorganized desk

Most students have desks that look like a bomb hit them. This is especially true with students who are in the middle of preparing for exams.

Now, how to keep your desk more organized?

Consider investing a desk lamp with little compartments for your paperclips, pens, and scissors. This can greatly reduce the clutter on your desk.

Installing a file sorter can also help. You can use it to store all of your files and papers. You can use the other drawers for your books and other miscellaneous items.

Utilize Your Sitting Area

If you frequently have friends dropping by, consider getting ottomans. They aren’t just great for comfy seating but they can also serve as storage boxes. Ottomans have removable tops which you can take off if you need to keep things inside the boxes.

In Conclusion

These are just some of the things you can do to maximize the space in your dorm room. If you are still having problems fitting everything into your space, sit down and go through each of your items. Find out which of them are really necessary to keep and which ones you don’t really need.

The post How to Maximize Space in A Dorm Room appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Get Flawless Skin: The Best Tips You Should Know By Now

Your skin gets exposed to harsh conditions every day. There’s pollution, UV rays, dirt, and harsh weather conditions. If you don’t take care of your skin the right way, you can end up with a lot of skin issues, like acne, wrinkles, and sunspots.

So, how to get flawless skin?

On this article, you will learn ten easy beauty tips to keep your skin smooth and elastic.

Do regular cleansing

Cleansing is one good way to make sure no dirt, dead skin cells, and makeup residues can clog your pores. In choosing the right cleanser, it’s a good idea to consider your skin type.

If you have oily skin, go for oil-free cleansers. In case you are dealing with acne, you can use medicated soaps but make sure that they aren’t strong enough to irritate your skin. As much as possible, avoid cleansers with perfume, artificial colors, and chemicals as they can cause allergic reactions.

Wash your face twice a day. Do it in the morning and before you go to sleep.

Moisturize your skin

moisturize-skin

Most people tend to forego moisturizers, particularly those with oily skin.

The truth, however, is that moisturizers are essential in making sure your skin doesn’t get dry and dehydrated. Once that happens, your skin will produce more oil than necessary and that can spell problems for your skin. Excess oil can cause acne, clogged pores, and dull skin.

Apply your moisturizer right after cleansing, while your skin is still damp. This will ensure that you seal in as much moisture as possible.

Exfoliate regularly

This is another important beauty tip that you should include in your skincare routine. Having too much dead skin cells can make your skin look dull and it can also make you prone to clogged pores. It can even lead to acne.

When exfoliating, make sure to use something light. Skip exfoliators that contain highly abrasive ingredients as they can only cause more problems. Use gentle, circular motions when scrubbing and limit exfoliation to once or twice a week.

Apply a face mask

Every time you take your skin through the exfoliation process, follow up with a good face mask. However, since they can be expensive, you can try creating your own natural face mask. You can use papaya, lemon, or even honey to bring back your skin’s natural glow.

Put on sunscreen

If you’ve been skipping sunscreen because it feels greasy, you’re probably using the wrong product. The right sunscreen should feel light and natural on the skin without compromising protection.

Apply it every single day. Even if it’s a cloudy day, UV rays can still cause damage to your skin. It can make you prone to wrinkles, sunburn, and even skin cancer.

Watch your diet

develop healthy eating habits

Healthy eating can benefit your skin, too.

If you have oily skin, then you must avoid eating too much junk foods and sweets. Eat one fruit a day and drink at least eight glasses of water to flush out toxins. Include veggies in your meals, too.

Observing this kind of diet will eventually regulate the amount of oil produced by your skin. This is one of the ways to remove warts as well.

See Also: 10 Best Skin Foods For Healthy Glowing Skin

Use an alcohol-free toner

Alcohol-based toners can work on any skin type. Daily toning eliminates dirt and excess oil from your skin. If you can’t access rosewater, you can use other alcohol-free toners to regulate sebum.

Apply ice cubes

Ice cubes help to shrink pores, hydrate your skin, remove puffiness, and improve blood circulation. Rubbing ice cubes on the oiliest parts of your skin will regulate the oil generation and tone saggy skin temporarily.

Steam

Steam is another beauty tip you shouldn’t miss. It helps open skin pores, making it easy to free your pores.

Steaming your skin daily with mint leaves or margosa leaves in hot water for approximately three minutes allows minerals from the leaves to penetrate through the pores and extract extra oil.

Bonus tip: Choose the right serums and makeup

Use the right skin serums for your skin type as they can guarantee dramatic results. You can apply them after toning and before you apply your face creams and moisturizers.

Wait for your serum and other skin care products to dry or get absorbed by your skin before you do the rest of your makeup. This way, you’ll be able to prep your skin, leaving it glowing and free from breakouts.

See Also: Unlocking Japan’s Secrets to Healthy Skin

The post How to Get Flawless Skin: The Best Tips You Should Know By Now appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

A Step-By-Step Guide On How To Clean Your Camera

Cameras are incredibly expensive. On top of that, their gear is also expensive. With that, you need to take the necessary steps to make sure that you can keep your camera working for as long as you can. But, do you know how to clean your camera? Now, to ensure longevity, you need to take proper care of your equipment and learn to clean it properly. This post will teach you some of the basics.

Don’t Use Your Shirt to Clean Your Lens

This is one of the most common mistakes made by anyone learning to use a camera. They look through the lens and see a speck of dirt and they wipe it off with their shirt. Yes, it technically gets rid of the smudge, but your sweater absorbs dirt and sweat throughout the day. That gunk transfers over to the lens. Your shirt can even scratch the glass, too. Instead of using your shirt, you need to use a special cloth, like a lens tissue or microfiber material, to clean your glass.

Always Use a Lens Cap

camera lens cap A Lens caps keep your camera and its lenses free of dirt, gunk, and scratches. Whenever your camera is not in use, you should have a lens cap on it. Whenever you take a lens off your body, a lens cap should go on both the body and said lens. You’d think this would be second nature, but tons of photographers forget to do this.

Take Care of Your SD Card

SD cards store all the photos and videos you’ve taken. They’re necessary to transfer that data over to a computer for editing and properly caring for them is essential. Your camera has a blinking light near the SD card slot. When blinking, that means data is being written to the SD card. Too many users rip their SD card right after turning the camera off. This is wrong and it can ruin all the shots you just took. Make sure to wait at least five seconds after turning the camera off to eject the card.

Cleaning the Rear Area of The Lens

This part gets overlooked a lot but it’s a big deal when it comes to keeping your equipment working. The rear area of your lens is the part that attaches to the body of the camera. Any dirt or gunk on it can get into the sensor and ruin the body of the camera. The best way to address that is to use compressed air or a cotton tip with a small amount of alcohol on it.

Cleaning the Camera Body

Take a clean paintbrush and run it through the outer body of your camera. Once done, take some compressed air and puff it around as well. Make sure not to let the dust blow into the body. Cameras such as Nikon or Canon make it simple to clean. Both companies have manuals and videos to guide you.

Camera Sensor

Your camera’s sensor is the most expensive part to replace and an essential piece of your camera. Shooting outside almost always guarantees getting something stuck in the lens. That lens then transfers the dust over to the sensor and those specks of dirt can ruin every single photo. There’s almost no way to clean it when out and about, either. Sensors need special care, though there are a few ways to do it by hand: Auto Clean: Every single DLSR on the market comes with an auto-clean function. This option “shakes” the sensor with the intention of knocking the dust off. However, this only works with very light specks and will do very little to a very dirty sensor. Swabs and Fluid: You can purchase swabs designed to clean your sensor without damaging it. Pairing them with a specific cleaning fluid means you can wipe it clean almost instantaneously. You can even get swabs that are the exact size of your sensor so you can get it done in one swipe. If your sensor is still dirty after all of this, you need to bring the camera body to a cleaning expert. They have the tools and will take the time required to clean your sensor correctly. Also, be careful not to overexpose the sensor whenever you’re switching lenses. When changing lenses, do it as quickly as possible. Remember to face your camera downwards when making the switch.

In Usage

camera usage When using your camera, always make sure to hold it securely. Using a strap helps keep the device safe and holding it with two hands ensures that even more. This prevents it from bouncing around when walking and it also makes for a steady shot when capturing images. If you invest in cameras and extra equipment for them, it is vital that you go the extra mile to take care of them. Spend on cleaning equipment. Read about taking care of the device and make sure to take all the steps necessary to prevent damage. In doing so, you’ll have a camera that stays working for years to come.

See Also: 7 Tips For Amateur Photographers You Need To Know

The post A Step-By-Step Guide On How To Clean Your Camera appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

A Quick Guide on How to Clean Up Blood Spills Properly

Blood is one of those substances that are tricky to clean up. It can seep through porous materials, bind to anything it comes in contact with and stain fabrics and surfaces. Apart from those things, you also have to worry about the things you can’t really see.

Blood can carry disease-causing microorganisms that can put everyone in danger. Because of this, it’s only essential that you know exactly how to clean up blood.

Blood Spill on a Non-Carpeted Floor

blood spill on non carpet
Via brooksremediation

The most common place for a blood spill to occur is on a non-carpeted, hard surface. The list includes cement, wood, metal, linoleum, vinyl, ceramic, and tile. It can also happen to any type of non-absorbent flooring, like a pool deck.

It is easier to clean up blood as well as other types of body fluids from those surfaces compared to absorbent surfaces. However, there are still some important steps that you need to take into consideration.

A spill on a hard surface will frequently spread over a larger area, so the spill needs to be contained right away. The following are the procedures that should be taken for cleaning spills up on those surfaces:

  • Block the area off until the disinfection and cleanup process have been completed. No one should be allowed to access the area, particularly unprotected staff members or visitors.
  • Put disposable gloves on.
  • Wipe the spill as much as you can with an absorbent material, such as a paper towel.
  • Pour a bleach solution (9 parts water to 1 part bleach) to all contaminated areas.
  • Allow the bleach solution to soak those areas for around 20 minutes before wiping off any remaining bleach solution.
  • All non-disposable cleaning materials, like rags, brushes, and mops, should be disinfected by saturating them with a bleach solution and then letting them air dry.
  • Take your gloves off and put them and any other dirty cleaning materials into a garbage bag.
  • Double bag and tie the garbage bags securely.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with water and soap.

Blood Spill on a Carpeted Floor

blood spill on carpet
Via aftermath

Due to its absorbent nature, a blood spill on a carpeted floor is one of the hardest to clean up. Most buildings have at least some carpeting which is why it’s essential to know how to clean up blood on such surface.

Since there is no way for you to completely disinfect your carpet, you need to know how you can thoroughly sanitize it as much as you can. Here’s how you can do that:

Work Fast: Blood and other body fluids can quickly set or harden on carpeting and that can make them harder to clean. So, respond fast and make sure that all safety precautions are followed.

Use The Right Products: Bleach and other types of decontamination products may destroy or damage carpets. Using manufacturer-approved carpet cleaners and shampoos is the best way to get the contaminated areas clean.

Steam Clean: Depending on the size and nature of the spill, it is recommended to steam clean the carpet. A steam cleaner can clean, sanitize, and remove debris from carpets more thoroughly than conventional washing can. Although there are added expenses with steam cleaning, it’s the best way of preventing blood-borne pathogens.

Now that we got those things out of the way, here’s how you can clean blood from carpets.

  • Put Disposable Gloves On: No matter what kind of surface you are cleaning, you should first put on gloves.
  • Contain the Spill: Following a spill, it is critical to keep the affected area as contained as possible to prevent it from spreading further.
  • Initial Disinfect: After the area has been contained, spray it with the proper carpet detergent to help kill pathogens.
  • Blot Excess Fluids Up: Use disposable rags or towels to blot as much excess fluids as possible. Then, secure your soiled rags by placing them in a sealed bag.
  • Extract Any Absorbed Fluids: Carpet does absorb some fluid so the next step is to remove it. Use a wet-dry vacuum and wet the carpet thoroughly before applying suction. Repeat the process as necessary.
  • Re-disinfect: After you have vacuumed, re-saturate the area thoroughly using the right disinfectant. Repeat this step twice.
  • Let Sit: Let the disinfectant sit and work for around 20 minutes.
  • Rinse: After completing the final disinfecting round, rinse the area a final time so that any remaining disinfecting solution or detergent is removed.
  • Dry: Thoroughly dry the area with rags so that any remaining moisture is drawn out.
  • Wrap: Once the area is clean, secure all your PPE and rags in a bag.

Blood Spill on Furniture

The material of your furniture will determine the method you can use to clean up a blood spill.

For example, if you have an upholstered furniture, you need to treat the affected spots like you would treat a blood spill on a carpet. You have to disinfect it, allow the disinfectant to sit for a couple of minutes, and then wipe everything off.

However, if you have a piece of fabric covering your furniture, the best thing to do is take the fabric off and wash it on a warm wash cycle using the right detergent. Check your furniture for any stains that may also need to be cleaned.

Outdoor Blood Spills

Cleaning blood spills from grass or dirt is much more difficult than cleaning stains from your furniture at home. One good reason is its accessibility. Anyone can get into the contaminated area, so you have to work fast and be strategic in cleaning up.

You can begin by blocking the affected area off. Make sure that no children can get near the contaminated area until you are done cleaning and disinfecting it. If there are children playing nearby, find another spot for them.

In disinfecting the area, make sure to disinfect as thoroughly as possible. You can use a bleach and rinse it thoroughly with water after. Remember to wear the right PPE when cleaning up.

See Also: How To Clean A Blood Spill: Safe and Proper Blood Cleanup from Workplace Accidents

The post A Quick Guide on How to Clean Up Blood Spills Properly appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

10 Brilliant Camping Tips To Make Camping Easier

What are the campgrounds near me? What should I bring to a camping trip? Are there camping hacks I don’t know about?

If you’re asking yourself or the all-knowing Google these questions, then you’re most likely new to camping. Camping is fun but it can take a lot of planning, patience, and work, particularly if your family is big. Without the right strategy, it can easily turn out as one of your worst outdoor experience. Fortunately, there are a lot of ways to make camping more fun and less stressful.

Below, we’re sharing with you 10 of the most useful camping tips you can use to make your life in the campsite a little easier.

Use sage to keep bugs away

sage camping

Admit it.

Although camping is a great way to explore nature, it’s not always the best idea, particularly when bugs start bugging your campsite.

So, to keep those annoying insects from ruining a good campout, you can toss a bundle of sage into your campfire every now and then.

Now, you’re probably wondering: What if I’m not allowed to create a fire in your campsite?

There are other fragrant plants you can use to keep bugs away. Basil, lemon balm, and citronella can repel mosquitoes once crushed and rubbed onto the skin.

Make a Swedish torch

swedish torch camping
Via pinterest

Now, if you don’t want to create a huge campfire, you can just create your own Swedish torch. It makes an excellent and efficient campfire for cooking.

You just need a log and make three crisscrossing cuts that are almost to its core. Pack some fire-starters inside it and once it’s lit, you can practically forget about it. The cut you created through the log will allow air to naturally ventilate your fire, allowing the log to burn from the inside out.

And you know what else?

A Swedish torch can also double as a cooking surface. You can use it to hold cast iron pans.

swedish torch
Via thehomestead.guru

Do a makeshift lantern

makeshift camping lantern
Via adventuretogether

Camping lanterns are great in keeping your camping area well lit. But, once you place them inside your tent, it’s a whole different story. Most of them are way too bright, which can be blinding to look at.

To diffuse the light and make it softer, you simply strap the light to a gallon of water. Make sure to point the light towards the water to make this hack work.

Make DIY fire-starters

When you’re camping, it only makes sense to bring at least two types of fire starters to the trip. You wouldn’t want to spend the night at the campsite without a fire to keep you warm or cook your food, right?

One of the easiest DIY firestarters you can make involves just a few pieces of cotton pads. Dip them in wax and allow them to dry on a piece of wax paper. You can tear or cut them before lighting.

diy fire starters camping tips
Via preparednessmama

Another great way to create your own firestarter is to gather a few pieces of old cardboard. Cut them into 3×3 pieces, dip them in wax and then let them dry. They are easy to stack, so you won’t have any issues packing them inside your bag.

Pack your own emergency kit

mini camping emergency kit
Via pinterest

Accidents can happen anytime, so make sure you are prepared. Instead of packing a big kit, prepare a smaller one which you can take with you anywhere you go. Make sure it can fit a small compass, pain reliever, whistle, adhesive bandages and flint and steel.

You should also pack a few antibiotic ointments in your kit. You can cut up a straw and fill its pieces with the ointments. Seal their ends with a heat sealer or use a lighter to melt and close the ends.

mini first aid kit ideas for camping
Via pinterest

Put your eggs in a mason jar

eggs in a mason jar camping tips
Via khnutrition

The idea might sound bizarre but it’s actually one of the most brilliant camping tips, particularly if scrambled eggs are your favorite breakfast.

Before leaving for the trip, crack your eggs into a mason jar and keep it in your cooler until it’s time to cook the eggs. Just remember to shake the jar vigorously before you pour its content into your pan. Enjoy a no-fuss scrambled eggs in the morning with less work and less mess.

See Also: Five Clever Tips for Stress-Free Family Camping

Store your spices in Tic-Tac boxes

tic tac boxes spices
Via Good Housekeeping

Now, if you worry about your scrambled eggs tasting a bit off, you can keep a few spices in tic-tac containers. These boxes are just the right size to hold enough spices to make your food taste like it just came out of your own kitchen. Plus, they also have snap-tight lids which keep the spices from getting all over your camping tools.

Protect your toilet paper with an old coffee can

camping hacks toilet paper inside coffee can
Via pinterest

If your toilet paper gets soggy, it’ll be practically useless and having a roll of toilet paper you can’t use is a lot worse than not having one at all.

Agree?

So, instead of relying on a paper bag to keep your toilet paper fresh and dry, take an old coffee can and use it to hold your toilet paper. It’s the perfect size and it comes with a lid for extra protection.

Hang up pots and pans using a belt

camping tips pots and pans
Via experienceonstar

Since there’s not much space on your table or in your tent to keep all of your camping tools, you have to be a bit more innovative. Get a belt and wrap it snugly around a tree. Attach a couple of S hooks and use them to store some of your essential kitchen tools.

Make individual coffee bags

Listen:

If you are one of those people who can’t function well without a cup of coffee, this is one of the most helpful camping tips you can’t really miss.

With just a coffee filter, dental floss, and ground coffee, you’ll be able to get your daily fix of caffeine even if you’re in the middle of camping.

individual coffee bags camping tips
Via inspiredbarn

How?

First, you need to get a coffee filter and fill it with about 2 ounces of ground coffee. Hold the bottom of the coffee filter (where the coffee is) and twist its top part to create a pouch.

Secure it with a few inches of dental floss.

Each time you need to drink coffee, you simply need to place your coffee bag in a mug and add in water. It’s actually similar to how you prepare your tea.

See Also: Camping Outdoors: A Perfect Health Booster

We hope the above camping hacks will prove useful to you on your next trip. To find out the best place for your next adventure, check out an online campground finder like this one.

 

The post 10 Brilliant Camping Tips To Make Camping Easier appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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How To Control Negative Thoughts: A Practical Approach On How To Suffer Less

It is well-known that thoughts create emotions. But, the full consequences of this fact are largely misunderstood.

Thoughts create emotions. Then, those emotions guide our behavior. For example, the thought “I’m never going to succeed at school, why should I even study?” creates emotional distress. That emotional distress can easily trigger coping behaviors, like binge-watching House of Cards or mindlessly refreshing Instagram every five seconds.

That’s just the beginning of the spiral, though. That where learning how to control negative thoughts become difficult.

After you’ve been binge-watching TV or staring at your cell phone for an hour, you’re going to have a new thought, “Damn, I shouldn’t have wasted an hour on my phone. I’m so stupid. I’ll never pass that class.”

These thoughts create more emotional distress and that leads to more coping behaviors.

But, wait a minute!

Shouldn’t that thought help motivate you to study? Isn’t calling yourself out in an honest way helpful? Don’t you have to fight your way out of stress? If we were completely logical creatures, you’d be right.

Our thoughts don’t directly lead to behaviors. They create emotions which lead to behaviors. This creates a trap that is exceedingly easy for us to fall into.

The first step in this example is the thought, “I should be studying right now.” This creates the sense that we aren’t being productive enough and that we are screwing up. The emotion we feel because of this thought isn’t motivation, but distress.

What do humans do when they feel distressed? Cope. What are the most common coping behaviors used in 21st-century life? Electronic media, food, and drugs.

This is a counter-intuitive idea, but it has very important implications.

In her best-selling book, The Upside of Stress, psychologist Kelly McGonigal writes: “When I speak with physicians, I sometimes ask them to predict the effects of showing smokers graphic warnings on cigarette packs. In general, they believe that the images will decrease smokers’ desire for a cigarette and motivate them to quit. But studies show that the warnings often have the reverse effect.

The most threatening images (say, a lung cancer patient dying in a hospital bed) actually increase smokers’ positive attitudes toward smoking. The reason? The images trigger fear and what better way to calm down than to smoke a cigarette? The doctors assumed that the fear would inspire behavior change, but, instead, it just motivates a desire to escape feeling bad.”

This pattern is a lot like psychological quicksand. As soon as we have a negative thought, like “I should be studying or I shouldn’t be eating this pint of delicious Cherry Garcia Ice Cream.”, our instinct to fight it gives that negative thought more emotional charge. That emotional charge is expressed as an increased feeling of distress which makes us think even more negatively. And, before long, our head is beneath the sand and we’re suffocating from what was originally just a relatively benign negative thought.

Break Free

break free

Negative thoughts create negative emotions and that leads to negative behaviors.

This is an extremely frustrating pattern that can easily affect our behaviors and the quality of our lives. The solution isn’t to learn how to think more positively or to learn how to control your emotions. The solution is much more obvious than the traditional approaches, yet it is also more elusive.

To escape the vicious cycle of negative thinking, you must accept the negative thought as it is. Just like in a quicksand, to stop sinking, you must stop fighting it and be still. With negative thoughts, you must learn to compassionately accept them as they are.

Once you learn to accomplish this effectively, you will still have negative thoughts. However, they will drift away like clouds on a gentle breeze instead of darkening into a storm of emotional suffering.

See Also: 5 Steps To Release Bottled Emotions And Live Happier

The root of our suffering is our belief that we can (or even should) eliminate negative thoughts and emotional pain. The thought that suffering is ‘bad’ or ‘negative’ is already a negative thought by itself. This way of thinking makes stress a trigger for more stress.

To escape this spiral of stress and suffering that we get trapped in, we must learn to relate to our thoughts differently. Modern psychologists have developed effective strategies to accomplish this.

In Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, cognitive fusion is a state in which we become entangled with our thoughts and we lose the ability to distinguish between thoughts and objective reality. Author Russ Harris says, “In a state of fusion, a thought can seem like: 1. the absolute truth 2. a command you have to obey or a rule you have to follow.”

The solution to cognitive fusion is learning cognitive defusion. According to Harris, “This is where we can observe our thoughts and see them for what they are – just products of our busy minds.”

There are numerous strategies that can help us achieve cognitive defusion. Here, I’m going to focus on one that is both easy-to-use and highly effective.

Labeling is a mindfulness technique that allows us to defuse from our thoughts. It helps us identify our thoughts as subjective opinions, instead of objective facts. I recommend practicing labeling as a dedicated daily meditation practice (5-15 minutes to start). This will help you build it into a natural thought habit.

How to practice labeling

practice labeling

Either during a sitting meditation or anytime throughout the day, notice your thoughts. For example, you might notice you have the thought, “I don’t want to be meditating right now, I have more important things to do.”

To label this thought, simply tell yourself, “I am having the thought that I don’t want to be meditating right now.”

If you are having the thought “I am too tired to work right now”, label it by telling yourself, “I am having the thought that I am too tired to work right now.”

Labeling also works with sensations and emotions. For example, “I am having the sensation of tightness in my neck,” or “I am having the feeling of anxiety.”

The practice is fairly uncomplicated and making it into a habit won’t take long. Of course, the more you practice this during dedicated meditation, the more you will naturally label your thoughts in your day-to-day life.

Labeling won’t eliminate your negative thoughts or emotional pain and it doesn’t have to. The point of labeling is learning to become aware of your thoughts so that pain does not need to become suffering.

Have your efforts to eliminate negative thoughts or emotional pain ever panned out? After years of struggling against pain, has it become clear that the traditional approach of coping through escapism or self-punishment doesn’t work? Maybe fighting pain just creates more pain.

Experiment with this technique and notice if it affects how you relate to your thoughts. Do they become louder or quieter? More invasive or easier to manage?

You may find that once you start to create distance from your thoughts (without trying to change them), that they affect you less.

You may notice that you still have the thought, “I’m never going to succeed in school, there’s no point in studying,” and that thought may still be painful. But, the thought isn’t you now. It’s just a thought and the pain is just pain.

You may notice that you are now able to accept stress as something that happens. Now, you can experience it without needing to avoid it through coping. You may notice that your thoughts and pain no longer spiral into stress and suffering. As a result, the quicksand no longer sucks you in. You’re able to surrender to it and you can finally be free.

See Also: 3 Simple Steps to Balance Your Emotional State

The post How To Control Negative Thoughts: A Practical Approach On How To Suffer Less appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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Choosing The Perfect Handmade Diamond Ring For Your Engagement

Knowing how to choose an engagement ring is tricky and buying it is quite a challenging task. You would not like to go wrong on any count since it has a lot of emotional significance. It is a symbol of your deep love, dedication and bond with your life-partner-to-be.

Before stepping out to buy the best engagement ring ever, you must have a crystal clear idea of exactly what you are looking for. As a guide, here’s how to choose an engagement ring.

Determine Your Budget

You need to consider several important factors when buying an engagement ring. One of these factors is your financial capability. As much as possible, do not go overboard.

Apart from that, you should also choose the ring style that will perfectly complement your partner’s personality and lifestyle.

Start by Browsing the Web

You could browse the Internet and go through the latest collections online to draw some inspiration. This way, you could visualize the ring style and diamond shape that’s just right for you before getting your diamond ring customized.

By going through an extensive collection online, you’ll be able to find out if you are attracted to square or round shaped diamonds. You can check out multiple stone settings, contemporary designs or vintage ones. You could choose from a stunning collection of handmade rings that are designed to perfection.

Look for Real-Life Inspiration

You could solicit advice from your friends and family. You could draw inspirations from utter strangers, too. Many of them would be happy to let you try out their rings. This could be a great way to start your engagement ring shopping.

Check Out the 4 Cs for the Best Diamond

If you want to know how to choose an engagement ring, you must learn how to check the clarity, cut, color and carat of the diamond.

The cut of a diamond determines its brilliance. A diamond with a better cut would dazzle more. If your diamond seems to be more colorless, it would imply higher quality grade. Color grade depends on the actual lack of color.

Almost all diamonds are known to have some imperfections. Diamonds that have negligible or no imperfections are given the highest clarity grades. Carat, on the other hand, refers to the real measure of a diamond’s exact weight. It is, however, not the only factor that determines the brilliance and value of a diamond.

Keep these 4Cs in mind while choosing the diamond for your engagement ring. Examining the certification is important, too, so buy a certified diamond.

Choose the Right Shape

The shape refers to the form of a diamond from the top view. Rather than the cut, it identifies the genuine geometry, edges and features of the stone. You could get a diamond that has a round, emerald, princess, square, pear, oval or heart shape.

Choose the Best Metal

There are endless metal options. You could choose from the usual yellow gold or the popular rose gold. You could also get your ring made with a platinum, silver or palladium metal.

Choose a metal as per your own personal preference. If most of your ornaments are made from yellow gold, you could stick with the same material. If you are more used to silver accessories, you could opt for platinum.

Choose a metal that looks great on your specific skin tone. With regards to the band, you have an assortment of metals to pick from. One prominent decision is platinum as it’s strong and particularly immaculate. It makes a great decision for ladies and grooms with delicate skin.

There’s gold, too. It typically comes in an assortment hues, including white, yellow and even green. Past platinum and gold, you may likewise consider palladium, which has a grayer shade than platinum. You can also consider a reused metal band, which may incorporate a blend of platinum and gold.

Conclusion

Apart from your personal preferences and unique specifications, you also need to make sure about the ring’s size. It needs to fit your finger snugly and comfortably. Choose a perfect fit so that you could flaunt your engagement ring all your life.

The post Choosing The Perfect Handmade Diamond Ring For Your Engagement appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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10 Mind Exercises That Will Teach You How To Build Self Confidence

Are you a confident person? Do you know how to build self-confidence? How can you tell?

Is it because you value and love yourself? Is it because you make sure you have all your ducks in a row all the time so you know what to expect?

Back in the day, if you had asked me, I would have said “Hell, yes! I’m smart. I know my worth and I know I’m an awesome person so yep… I’m confident.”

But, like most folks, I would have been confusing self-esteem with self-confidence.

See, self-esteem is your evaluation of yourself and your worth. I knew who I was, and I didn’t allow any man, woman or child to treat me any less than I deserved. So, self-esteem? Yep, I had tons of that.

But, self-confidence is a whole different story.

It’s not bravado or cockiness as those relate more to insecurity. It’s not throwing your weight around or talking over everyone in a ‘look at me, look at me!’ type attitude.

Confidence is quiet and more subtle than that. It’s that trust in yourself and your abilities that move you to action.

And I didn’t realize I was missing that until I punked out on a chance to be the registered badass expert during a system outage at my job. All the big wigs and my peers were trying to solve the problem and I had a possible solution.

But, I froze.

“What if they think it’s stupid?”

“What if they think I’M stupid?”

“Better to have no opinion than having a wrong one and look like a fool, right?”

I’m wishing I could tell you that I stood up and spoke my idea, but you already know how that ended.

I kept my mouth shut because I was scared to be wrong. I doubted myself,  knowledge and abilities. And I felt like a jackass for being scared to open my mouth- like I’d die if I did.

Maybe this has happened to you, too, and you can relate to the missed opportunity of greatness because of self-doubt. Or maybe you already know that your confidence can use a boost.

Wherever you are, know that this doesn’t have to be you. It doesn’t take much to stop doubting yourself. In fact, it just takes a few tips and constant practice so you can get to the place where you can let your badassery fly and just trust yourself and your ability to blow the mind off those around you.

Here’s how to build confidence.

Get Physical

1. Spend a day being decisive

Try spending one day where everything you say is prefaced with a decisive tone.
For that one day, banish unsure phrases, like ‘I’m not sure’, ‘I think’ and ‘Maybe’ from your vocabulary.

Removing such wishful tones from your speech is incredibly powerful, positive and affirming. It forces you to be sure of your decisions, opinions, and choices. Even if you aren’t totally convinced, saying something out loud with a commanding tone helps convince you of your own ideas.

This isn’t some fake-it-until-you-make-it trick. It’s removing your fear of what others may think- a common cause of self-doubt.

You already know what you want and what you think. Sometimes, we just need a cheerleader to tell us that our idea isn’t too crazy. This exercise will teach you to become more decisive and your own personal cheerleader.

2. Take care of your body

When you work out, feed your body well and get good sleep, your body gets flooded with endorphins. You know, those feelings of accomplishment that flood over you when you do something kickass and your body is feeling happy, relaxed and unstoppable.

back pain exercises

When your body is running at its optimal level, you are more productive, able to absorb more experiences around you and more capable of proving to yourself that your body can accomplish more today than it did yesterday. And that’s what builds confidence – collecting successful experiences and believing you can do more than you did yesterday.

3. Rock a Gangster Lean

Did you know that certain poses, like standing with a wider stance, are argued to increase testosterone, lower cortisol and make you feel more powerful and confident?

Sometimes you just need a little nudge. Just like speaking with power and decisiveness, you just need to ‘deliver’ with boldness so you can stop worrying about the impression you’re making on others.

And there is real science behind it. Harvard Psychologist, Amy Cuddy, teaches that power poses can help liberate us from fear in high-pressure moments. They can help us perform at our best and connect with and empower others to do the same.

So, try smiling, standing up straight with your shoulders back and chin up and with a more open relaxed pose to help put on more confidence.

Change Your Motivations

4. Aim to fail every day

Most of the time, we never try anything because we are afraid that we’ll fail. We worry what people will think and what they’ll say. We fear that we’ll be ridiculed.

But, here is a little secret.

No one is watching you or waiting to see if you are going to fail. No one is waiting to laugh at you.

Why?

Because people are worried about the exact same thing! They are too busy worrying about themselves, chasing their own fears and running their own insecurities in their mind.

So, what would you try if you knew that no one would be watching you? The best way to overcome that fear is to aim to fail every day. Aim to fail at least once every day because failure is the real evidence that you’ve tried something new.

Order that Tai Latte from Starbucks you’ve been wondering about. Wear heels to the office or call about that house you’ve been eyeing. Walking around with little fragile hearts avoiding failures means we are avoiding action and life in general.

Failure and mistakes are needed and expected if you want to move on with life. They are lessons that can teach us to look inward, refine our goals and affirm our desires.

5. Reach your bliss point

Ever notice that when you are in a good mood, everything seems to fall into place? It’s not that suddenly the universe opens and people want to give you good things.

When you’re happy, your perspective changes. You become more positive and, instead of seeing difficulties in opportunities, you see opportunities in difficulties.

Your boss asks you to work on a project outside of your given skill set? While others see that as a frustration, you see it as an opportunity to learn.

Think about your bliss point and try to reach it. It’s your sensory profile where you optimize your ‘feel good’ vibes.

The way to do that is to give yourself little pleasures. Stop waiting for the weekend, your success or retirement and start giving yourself a taste of what’s to come.

Whatever you like that can change your perspective, do it.

De-clutter your space, add a fresh coat of paint to your walls, rearrange your furniture, wear a new scarf, get your hair done- whatever blows your skirt up and makes you happy, do it.

The sillier or more frivolous, the better. Happy people are hopeful people. Hopeful people are fearless people.

6. Build your competence

If you want to stop doubting yourself, then you need to have a reference to draw your knowledge from. You can’t speak on what you don’t know. And if you aren’t sure, you are less likely to speak anyway.

So, if you want to build your confidence and improve the delivery of your message when you interact with others, then you must have competence. Go deep spending time studying your craft and go broad when improving yourself.

Whether it’s parasailing, candle making or outdoor hiking, develop new interests and skills that can improve your life and make you interesting.

We are not binary individuals that have natural strengths and weaknesses. We can grow and improve in anything at any stage of our lives.

If you are uncomfortable with public speaking, then read a book, take a class or join a club. Continue working on improving yourself and that’s one of the best ways you can start learning how to build self-confidence.

Mold Your Mind

7. Disappoint your parents

If you are wondering when you turned from fearless to fearful, then look at your childhood. Try to recall how your parents or guardians responded when you did something great or when you failed at something.

Seriously, you can totally pull the ‘blame your parents’ card for this one.

In their effort to protect us from sadness and disappointments, they taught us what they knew and how the world works by their standards. It is usually to lower your expectations and avoid risks.

Years later, you probably noticed that little voice in your head, giving you all the reasons/excuses why you can’t do or try what you want. That is a clone of your parents.

But, don’t be fooled! Your beliefs are incredibly powerful!

If you always wanted to be a writer and the people around you all told you that you can’t write books because you were too young or too dumb, then you might believe that and never even try to write the book of your dreams.

But, what if you hear the stories of J.K. Rowling, Oprah and Les Brown who are wildly successful despite facing difficulties, you might start changing your own beliefs and exploring new experiences.

Think of all the reasons why you ‘can’t’ do what you want and reflect on whether it’s true or not. If it’s not true, then choose to change your thinking and create a new narrative. If it is true, then determine what you need to do to change that.

So, how about we plan to disappoint our parents by dumping many of their teachings to form our own beliefs? Don’t worry, you have my permission.

8. Be child-like

When you were a kid, anything was possible.

Chocolate milk comes from brown cows. The moon is made of cheese and if you climb a ladder high enough, you can get there and see for yourself.

Get that mindset again and adopt the attitude of “why not”.

What’s the worst that can happen if you give it a try? I mean, really?

Most of the things we imagine won’t happen and, if they do, it won’t be as bad as we think.

So, take the pressure off. You don’t know and can’t control what anyone might think, so why not just see how far you can get? Instead of spending your energy thinking of why something won’t work, focus on gaining experiences.

You literally cannot go wrong, because, no matter what the outcome is, you are on the right path to where you need to be.

See Also: Why We Should Look at the World as a Child Again

9. Ride the rainbow

When you succeed, bask in the awesomeness that has occurred from your hard work.
Smile, think about it and remember how hard it was to get here. Post it on Facebook or just tell your friends. Whatever you do, don’t underestimate your success or shrug it off as luck or chance.

Like Spencer Johnson says in Who Moved My Cheese, “Smell the cheese and celebrate the cheese often!”

Each victory helps you to win another and is a testimony you can use to renew your spirit when doubt creeps back in. It also provides evidence that you can achieve if you stay persistent.

10. Renew your mind daily

Confidence isn’t built in a one-time activity. That’s because doubts and fears are likely to creep in all the time. They are like weeds you must pluck every day.

So, bear this in mind:

Continuously taking risks, learning from failures and reaping rewards is how confidence is made.

Get Ready for Awesome

Just imagine not being shy about voicing your ideas – even if it’s not fully formed. Imagine never feeling fearful of what people think and doing what you want because you want it. Imagine waking up tomorrow morning feeling empowered as your feet touch the ground, looking forward to the day ahead and not dreading it.

Sound impossible? No, they’re not.

These simple tips on how to build self-confidence have dramatic effects on your belief in yourself. Do the work, try a new tip every day and flush out the stories that say you are any less than awesome.

You’ve got your road map. Now, all you need to do is follow it. Your new life of being a badass awaits.

The post 10 Mind Exercises That Will Teach You How To Build Self Confidence appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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How To Maintain Your Privacy Online

Threats to online privacy seem to grow every day so make sure you know how to protect yourself. There are a lot of things you can do to stay safe online. Unfortunately, not all of them are guaranteed to work.

Clearing your browser history, for example, can’t really do anything. Installing an ad blocker won’t get the job done, too. If you really want to protect your online privacy, here are the things you need to do.

Use secure passwords and usernames

It seems so convenient to just use the same usernames and passwords for every site. That way, you can remember them even without writing things down.

But, consider this:

If you use an easy-to-guess password for your social media and use the same one to log in to your bank, you’ve just made it super easy for someone to gain access to your bank account.

To protect yourself, choose passwords that are at least eight characters long and make sure they contain different types of characters. Use numbers, capital letters, lower-case letters, and symbols. Change your password for every site you frequent, too.

Writing with Computer

Use a password manager

The next step in password protection is to use a password manager. It’s an app that can generate crazy-long passwords that you couldn’t possibly remember. It encrypts not only your password but also your security questions and their answers, your credit card numbers and their PINs and other vital security information.

Now, all you have to remember is the password to your password manager.

Don’t click on the link

You know better, right? So, why do you click on those links you get on your email?

Usually, it’s because the email came from someone you trust. However, what if your friend clicked on a malicious link? Your friend’s entire address list could have been hacked and that includes you.

As much as possible, don’t click on suspicious links, even if they came from people you trust.

Lock down your social networks

Sure, those warnings that pop up on Facebook every month or so about how the platform is going to steal all your data are indeed trollish. But, even though they’re fake news, they actually have a point.

You need to lock down your social media privacy settings which are often defaulted to Public. This setting means everyone can see everything on your wall.

For your online privacy, change your settings to Friends. If you should unlock a single post to Public, make sure you haven’t inadvertently opened up your whole account to the world.

The bonuses here? Real life bad guys can’t see when you’re away from home to break in and steal your non-virtual stuff and your bosses and ex can’t see what you did on the weekend.

See Also: Don’t Get Your Identity Stolen – Here’s How

Look for a secure connection

When you’re about to log on to a site, take a look at the URL. Does it say “http” or “https”?

That “s” stands for “secure” and it means that your data (including your username and password) are being encrypted as they travel back and forth across the web. This is particularly vital when you’re making online purchases or handling other financial transactions.

Often, you’ll see a padlock icon next to the URL to confirm the secure connection. While you’re at it, secure your own devices by setting and actually using the lock screens on each device.

Block cookies

It’s so cute when a brand you’ve shopped with sends you just the perfect ad, isn’t it? Except, it’s not so cute after all.

That brand or advertiser found you by attaching cookies to your browser and now they’re following you — and not in a good way. In some cases, they can even follow you from all your devices to keep track of your online behavior.

Block those third-party cookies. The advertisers will still be able to track the pages you visit, but they’ll have to work a whole lot harder to do it.

Use a VPN

A VPN or Virtual Private Network is probably one of the best and simplest ways to protect your online privacy. With a VPN, your data is encrypted so your internet service provider can’t see your internet usage — and neither can anyone else. VPNs provide protection against hackers and they keep your surfing safe when you’re using Wi-Fi.

Photo credit: indiatimes.com

Use Tor

Head to Tor to anonymize your IP address automatically. With Tor, your browsing experience becomes private — well, as private as you can be, given that you’re still on the internet. It can hide your information from hackers who want your identity, corporations that want your money and data and government that wants who even knows what.

There are a lot of dodgy people on the internet. Don’t let them into your virtual home. Take these basic steps today to protect and maintain your online privacy.

The post How To Maintain Your Privacy Online appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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How To Get Out Of A Rut: 5 Ways To Move On

You may have no idea what your reason for being is. You’re annoyed, dissatisfied and unexcited by everything. It’s monotonous, tedious and frustrating.

And if you think you’re alone, think again.

In fact, you’re part of the largest group of people on Earth. You don’t know what to do with your life and, worse, you don’t know how to find out.

People are not born knowing their role in the world. In fact, we’re all born with endless possibilities and therein lies the problem. How do you even begin and, if you begin, how do you choose?

Can you move past the idea that there must be so much more? What are the ways to move on?

The Future is Yours—You Just Can’t See It

helping others

Life has many things in store for you. Family, friends, health, work, society—all of them change considerably during your lifetime. It’s unlikely that you will enjoy all these changes as not all of them will be positive.

Know this: your life’s journey is your masterpiece.

As you work in life, your purpose unfolds in front of you and your role in the world becomes clearer. Stop trying to meticulously plan your life. Planning is the antithesis to the adventure and improvisation that life requires. You’re in charge and that’s a great thing. A little scary maybe, but still a great thing. Remember that the best way to plan your future is to go out and create it!

Your default mode should be action. Doing [things] is honest philosophy. Stay positive and avoid criticizing others. Above all else, avoid negativity. Work to be helpful and try to look for ways to help other people.

At your job, help your boss. In your community, help your neighbors. For the rest of the world, help those less fortunate. Don’t enter the ugly fray that’s become so prevalent in our society. Always be on the side of positivity.

When you approach life this way, people seek you out and opportunities find you. It’s the law of attraction.

See Also: 12 Mind-blowing Tips for Increasing Your Overall Positivity!

Don’t Do What Makes You Happy

“Do what makes you happy” is a terrible advice from well-intentioned parents and teachers.

In fact, you should embrace discomforts and frustrations and move beyond your comfort zone. This is the only way to learn. To focus only on that which makes you happy means you avoid a great deal of life and the learning that comes with it.

Every time you move outside of your comfort zone, you learn more. Your role in life and your true happiness become clearer and you have more focus. You find out who you are and everything that you can endure. Each period of great discomfort teaches you about your preferences and that your limits are probably lesser than you imagined. Push your mind and body and then adjust. Do that again and again for that is the journey.

See Also: The Call for Change: Time to Step Out of the Comfort Zone

Investment In Your Mentality

ROI or Return on Investment is when you get back what you put in.

You already know about moving beyond your comfort zone – that’s the fun, adventurous part. However, sacrifice is tougher. It is the boring and frustrating part where most people choose to stop.

Note to self: “Don’t stop here.”

You need to understand that there is a long road to travel and that life is a marathon. Chances are you’re just beginning.

Humans are hardwired to want things now. It’s called immediate gratification and it’s a very powerful force. You should be smarter than everyone else, so think! invest in your future and reap your returns as you move forward.

Creating your future most often means sacrificing time with family and friends, working for long stretches in jobs you don’t enjoy, studying and saving your money. We all have limited time, energy and funds, but you must invest those limited treasures so that you can create a future of greater abundance.

Teach Yourself

teach yourself

Stop waiting to be trained! The truth is that you can’t gain knowledge without seeking it. Nobody can teach you anything anyway. They can only help you learn so understand that going through the process alone is one of the effective ways to move on.

When you don’t know something, read about it, work at it or ask questions. Read about new places, research careers that interest you and speak to people with more experience.

The more you explore, the closer you come to understanding who you are and what you’re supposed to be doing. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty because that’s the only way to know if you’re enjoying something. Keep in mind that you are your best mentor.

Big questions that can be helpful:

  • What are you most passionate about?
  • How can you give back to the world?
  • What would you prioritize if money and time were no objects?
  • Can you speak another language?
  • Is travel important to you?
  • What professional experience do you want to gain?

Today, hundreds of companies all over the world will allow you to travel, learn and give back while you continue to explore your passions, develop new skills and discover new interests. Start by helping in disaster relief abroad through All Hands Volunteers, offering your time to provide a better future to the kids in Latin America with Maximo Nivel or help orphaned and abandoned children in Africa and Asia through Orphfund. Your role in the world and your preferences continue to evolve over time, so continue teaching yourself and keep learning!

There Is No Right Time

Time waits for no one, so utilize the time you’ve been gifted. As much as possible, avoid falling trap to time wasters, like TV, social media, people who don’t like you and being negative. Instead, try reading, traveling and being with the people who like you.

Your path in life and your role in the world are only discovered as you work at it. So, work hard! A lot of people miss the idea of fulfillment and happiness because opportunity always looks like hard work.

Instead of thinking that way, engage your mind and body in creating your life’s journey. It won’t be easy and it won’t be perfect. That’s completely fine as it’s not supposed to be.

Thinking about it, waiting, being nervous or scared—these are all personal choices. If you want to move out of a rut, move beyond those choices. You will never regret your adventures if you’re learning new things.

 

The post How To Get Out Of A Rut: 5 Ways To Move On appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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Cure Your Skin Today: The Best Adult Acne Home Remedies

When your face is breaking out, you just want to crawl into bed and not come out all day long. And as you feel embarrassed, you can’t help but wonder: Wasn’t acne supposed to be left behind in your teenage years?

Adult acne is frustrating, embarrassing and difficult to deal with once it develops. Its causes are far more complex than teenage acne which makes it even harder to eliminate.

Fortunately, there are a few great natural remedies for adult acne that you can use to lessen the severity and duration of your acne breakouts. From kitchen herbs to common vegetables, you can help your skin glow again by mixing up a few things at home.

Choose one of these common at-home remedies to improve your skin’s condition!

Crushed Peppermint

crushed peppermint

One great way to treat your skin’s acne is to apply a peppermint paste on the acne-prone areas of your skin. Peppermint is known to have naturally occurring anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.

You can find peppermint leaves at your local store or you can even grow your own!

To make a peppermint paste:

Crush up 3 or 4 peppermint leaves.
Rub the paste on affected or acne-prone areas of your face.
Allow the paste to sit on your skin for about 10 minutes.
Rinse your face with cool or lukewarm water.

Always test this paste on a small section of your skin before using it regularly. Peppermint can be irritating to some skin types!

Zinc Supplements

zinc supplements
Via ods.od.nih.gov

Zinc is often used to naturally help regulate hormones. You see, one of the most common causes of adult acne is unbalanced hormones.

By regularly taking zinc supplements, you may be able to calm down some hormone fluctuations that can be causing your acne problem. Simply put, zinc supplements can help treat acne!

Oatmeal and Honey Paste

oatmeal honey paste
Via jewelpie

Oatmeal and honey are two great ingredients that can do wonders when it comes to treating acne.

As you know, oatmeal can absorb liquids. And just as it can absorb water, it can help absorb oil from your skin, too. Honey, on the other hand, can work to tone your skin. It has antiseptic properties, too.

Here are the ingredients you need to make a simple oatmeal and honey paste:

⅛ cup honey
½ cup cooked oatmeal

Mix these two ingredients together and allow them to cool to room temperature. Then, liberally apply to oily skin for 15 minutes. Rinse off with warm water.

Repeating this technique one or two times a week can help boost your skin’s oil control. This, in turn, can reduce the number of acne breakouts you get.

See Also: 10 Best Skin Foods For Healthy Glowing Skin

Tea Tree Oil

tea tree oil
Via keeperofthehome

Tea tree oil is a very popular and effective way of treating acne spots as soon as they appear.

Tea tree oil is an antiseptic and antifungal. This means that it can keep your skin very, very clear of any bacteria!

Before using tea tree oil on your skin, however, you need to dilute it. Using undiluted tea tree oil on your skin can actually worsen inflammation, so you should use a 5% solution instead.

It’s super easy to use. All you have to do is apply a small amount of tea tree oil directly to the problem spots and leave it on overnight.

This home remedy can help reduce the severity of mild to moderate acne breakouts.

Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has been praised as a miracle acne solution for years now, and there is a good reason for that. This miracle worker is packed with magnesium, acetic acid, and potassium – all of which can help kill bacteria on the skin!

This type of vinegar has many acne fighting properties. It can:

  • Clear up excess oil
  • Balance the pH level of the skin
  • Work against bad bacteria

Thanks to these three properties, apple cider vinegar can provide you with some relief from adult acne.

There are two great ways to use apple cider vinegar.

For one, you can use cotton swabs to apply it directly to the affected areas. Secondly, you can boil one cup of apple cider vinegar with water and use its steam to treat your skin.

Yogurt & Honey Mask

yogurt honey mask

Another great way to make use of the acne-fighting power of honey is to combine it with a great skin hydrator, like yogurt. A simple combination of these two ingredients can do wonders for your acne-prone skin.

When you have acne prone skin, it can actually be exacerbated if your skin becomes dehydrated. Whether you realize it or not, dehydrated skin causes your face to overproduce oil and that puts you at more risk of acne.

Hydrating your skin is simple with this yogurt honey mask. All you need is:

One tablespoon raw, organic honey
One tablespoon of yogurt (preferably organic, but not required)

Mix these two ingredients together and then apply it to the problem areas of your face, paying close attention to where you break out most often. Leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes before gently removing the mixture using a damp rag.

See Also: 6 Vitamin-Packed Smoothie Recipes for Glowing Skin

Say Goodbye To Adult Acne

Don’t spend any more days hiding at home or piling on makeup just to hide those frustrating breakouts. There is no need to hide if you take advantage of these natural remedies for adult acne.

It’s very simple to work with the antiseptic and hydrating ingredients that we already have in our kitchens. In fact, there are many fantastic herbs that can fight acne. You just need to know exactly how you can use them for your skin’s needs.

Whether you choose to combine oatmeal and honey or work with crushed peppermint instead, your skin will surely say “Thank you” for trying these solutions at home! Get glowing, clear skin with these easy at-home remedies!

The post Cure Your Skin Today: The Best Adult Acne Home Remedies appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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5 Happiness Hacks That You Need To Try Today

When was the last time you felt happy? Not just a shadow of the pleasant feeling, but truly happy?

You could say that most of our actions are fueled by our motivation to feel good. Unfortunately, however, it’s not all the time that we feel happy. There are days when we just can’t resist feeling low.

If that is your case today, these simple happiness hacks can give you that extra shot of joy.

Let Your Inner Child Take the Lead

Children’s faces usually light up at the seemingly smallest things.

Take, for example, the silly faces their older sibling makes at them across the dinner table. The big hug they get when their dad arrives home from work and the feeling of flying in the air while they are on the playground’s swing set make them giggle with laughter, too.

If you want to put yourself in a happy place, try doing an activity that you enjoyed as a child. You’ll be amazed at how quickly this can spike your happy chemicals.

Enjoy Strange Interactions

stranger interaction

The “stranger danger” warnings handed down to us during childhood can permanently hinder our interactions with people we don’t know.

However, if you make an effort to push through the discomfort and regularly interact with strangers, you’ll find yourself feeling happier during the day. A study conducted by behavioral scientists in Chicago found that individuals who made small talk with strangers during a ride on public transportation rated their experience as more positive than those who did not.

When we take the time to connect with other people, even when we don’t know them, it tends to increase our happiness.

Take A Risk On Something New

When was the last time you tried something that you’ve never done before?

If it’s been a while, then you may want to give this happiness hack a shot. Taking the time to try something you’ve always wanted to do, like getting a new hobby, is not only stimulating but can lead to increased happiness.

Feelings of accomplishment and boosted confidence can also contribute to the smile on your face. Whether you’ve always wanted to try alligator wrestling, knife throwing, or sewing Halloween costumes for your dog, now’s the time to do it.

See Also: How to Start a New Hobby Without Wasting Money

Hold Onto Those Pennies

Spending money when you feel bad can be an easy way to give yourself a quick high. However, once the initial high wears off, people tend to crash pretty hard, especially if they had a hard time earning it.

Rather than splurging on that new toy, try making a habit of regularly saving a part of your earnings. According to a recent survey, the more often people save money, the happier they tend to be. Saving money is also a good way to enhance feelings of self-control, security, and overall well being.

See Also: 10 Ways To Save Money Without Compromising Your Lifestyle

Celebrate Small Goals

celebrate small goals

By setting and achieving small goals on a regular basis, you will not only be more productive but feel happier as well.

Setting our sight on massive goals often results in feelings of failure and depression. So, rather than focusing on your end goals, try chopping them up into several small goals that you can easily achieve and celebrate. Keep in mind that the more specific you are with your goals, the better.

As you get started with these happiness hacks, try to keep your focus on the positive things in your life and use gratitude to your advantage. As you increase your own happiness, you will notice that the people around you will begin to smile and laugh more often as well.

The post 5 Happiness Hacks That You Need To Try Today appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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7 Ways to Live Within Your Means

Financial gurus often talk about living within your means. You hear it all the time but do you know what it truly means? Have you figured out how to do this?

This advice is all about spending less than what you receive. Another way to put it is to cut back and that sounds no fun at all. However, it is necessary if you find yourself struggling financially.

For the majority, this can be hard to achieve and definitely easier said than done. It is a struggle to battle out bills, rent, food, social life, and maybe travel expenses too. Aside from this, there are credit cards and loans that could tempt us. Unfortunately, this lifestyle is not possible with a limited salary. There are also reckless spending that could catch up and wreck your bank account. This oftentimes causes great stress. It is essential to make important changes to avoid financial ruin.

The question is, is there a way to achieve this without actually changing your lifestyle. Is saving synonymous to sacrifice?

Rather than giving up, there are some tips you might want to take into consideration, although these might require a few sacrifices too.

• Learn how to cook

learn how to cook

Bringing a home-cooked lunch and even some snacks to work can help reduce your food expenses, especially if you tend to splurge on overpriced meals. Just think of how much you could save during the week if you bring your own food!

What’s more is that the food make can be cheaper and healthier if you make it yourself. So from now on, learn to cook even just the simplest of dishes to have more spending money for the weekends and be healthier as well.

• Create a budget

One way to control how much you spend is setting a budget and sticking to it, all while putting your savings to the side. Opening a separate savings account can very much help you, as you won’t be tempted to spend it.

See Also: 5 Powerful Hacks To Help You Simplify Your Budget

• Download saving apps

This is probably the easiest way to save since you’re just on your phone. With several apps to choose from, you’ll certainly find one that suits your needs.

Aside from tracking your usual expenses, at the end of the month, you can see how much you’ve spent in the past week or month. You can also see where you spend too much, allowing you to see where you can cut down your expenses.

• Avoid splurging

Before buying something, you might want to think about it thoroughly first. Ask yourself, “Do I need it?” “What will I use it for?” “When will I use it?” “Do I have something similar at home?”

Meanwhile, despite the notion that you get what you pay for, there are actually cheap items that are also quality goods. So if you really want to buy something, take a look around for the lowest price or try your best to find promos. These will definitely help you avoid spending more money than you really should.

See Also: 7 Steps To Slow Your Financial Burn Rate

• Review recurring expenses

Take time to sit down and review monthly bills and financial obligations. Check the ones that can be negotiated for better rates. Even insurances are reassessed yearly. Do research ahead of time.

• Utilize financial tools

Aside from apps, there are tools that you can use to find discounts and promo codes. There are best deals available in the market for your disposal.

• Consider doing some DIY projects

painting own nails

Choose DIY projects that can help you save money and those that are within your skill level. This includes painting your own nails, making your own cleaning solutions, and growing your herbs and vegetables.

Saving money and trying to live off of what you have can be extremely hard and would take a lot of self-control. So, just try your best to follow these tips and who knows, everything just might work out.

 

The post 7 Ways to Live Within Your Means appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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Feeling Overwhelmed? 14 Ways To Simplify Your Life

Life moves fast, doesn’t it? It often feels like you’re trying to keep two dozen plates spinning at the same time.

Heaven forbid one of those plates start to wobble. You know, when you have to flat out run to reach it in time before it topples to the floor, taking the next plate and the entire row with it.

Life can sometimes feel like you’re constantly babysitting those darn plates when all you really want to do is experience what’s beyond them. You don’t want to live your life fighting fires and preventing mini-catastrophes on a near daily basis.

How would your life change if you had less plates spinning? It would take the pressure off, right?

See, everything you’re doing right now in your life is a plate that you’re spinning. If you’re feeling burnt out, frustrated and overwhelmed it’s time to simplify, or to keep with our analogy, remove some plates.

Here are fourteen ways to simplify your life.

Assess your commitments

Aside from non-negotiable commitments like work, school, and medical appointments, can you confidently list all the other commitments that are adding to your overall stress?

If you feel like there isn’t enough time in the day and you’re overwhelmed with all those places you have to go and all those people you have to see, consider reducing how many activities you commit yourself to.

This could mean reducing how many clubs you attend, reducing any volunteering activities, and could even mean setting tighter boundaries with that high maintenance friend or co-worker. We all know one of these people and it can be all too easy to get into a situation where you find yourself at the receiving end of their constant demands.

Have a social media fast

How many social media platforms are you signed up to? Facebook? Twitter? Instagram? Pinterest? More? It can be overwhelming trying to keep up with all of them at the same time. You can find yourself scrolling through news feed after news feed and before you know it, a couple of hours have passed.

If you’re like a lot of other people, you have your phone close to you when you sleep and browsing social media is the last thing you do at night and the first thing you access when you wake up.

I challenge you to fast from social media for a full 24 hour period. You’ll be wondering what to do with yourself. This is a perfect opportunity to do something for yourself.

If you can’t stomach a 24-hour social media fast, consider putting your phone on the other side of your bedroom so you don’t feel tempted to stay awake scrolling.

List your three most important things

Write down three things that are most important to you in your life. Now use these to guide future decisions. If you’re engaging in activities and people that don’t support these three outcomes, it might be worth re-considering your commitment.

Schedule non-negotiable appointments

Do you keep your up and coming appointments in your head? That causes unnecessary stress. Keep things simple by pre-scheduling your annual medical appointments and other up and coming events on a calendar. You can use something physical like a diary or your phone. I use Google Calendar. It’s free and easy to use.

Just say no!

say no

This can be uncomfortable for some people but if you don’t get into the practice of saying no more often, people will continue to take chunks out of your time.

See Also: The Courage To Say No

Reduce media consumption

We are bombarded all day with the latest news, breaking news, shock-horror, and general negativity. It can feel extremely overwhelming to be at the receiving end of a seemingly never ending stream of doom and gloom. You can remedy this by reducing your intake of mainstream news either from the television, newspapers, radio, or the internet.

Purge toxic relationships

We all know people who are difficult to be around. People who are chaotic, negative and demanding on your energy supply. If you want to simplify your life, it’s best to distance yourself from these types of people by setting personal boundaries.

Often, this is ill received because these people take it as a criticism of character and feed off drama. It’s best to either distance yourself or let go completely.

Get rid of your ‘stuff’

Have you ever felt you just have too much ‘stuff’? That pile of books stood in the corner of your living room, those impulsive eBay buys, that pile of clothes that won’t fit inside your already fit-to-burst wardrobe? You might not realise it but clutter like this is ‘visually noisy’ and causes subconscious stress.

Make a list of items that you really don’t want or need and either sell them, bin them, or donate them. You’ll really appreciate your new, fresh environment.

De-clutter your digital space

How does it feel when you check your email and see 3,406 emails in your inbox? Whilst a lot of it is spam, you know there are conversations in there from 18 months ago that are no longer relevant.

You probably have apps on your phone or tablet device that you haven’t used in a long while as well. De-clutter your devices of unused apps, old messages and don’t be shy about deleting things if you aren’t sure. Ask yourself if you really want to keep something. If it’s not an ‘absolutely!’ straight away, it needs to go.

Scrutinize your finances

This is a great exercise to be leaner with your spending. Simply take your latest bank statement and skim through it to find any subscriptions or recurring payments. If you haven’t used the service in a while or don’t really want it any more, then cancel. Use the money for something meaningful.

Limit time spent communicating

If you’re like I used to be, you read emails as soon as they hit your phone. You stop whatever it is you’re doing and read them, right? That’s a massive productivity killer and leads to a feeling of frustration that can be overwhelming.

The solution is to check your emails twice a day. Once in the morning and one in the afternoon. That’s it. If you really can’t wait that long, you can check them at lunch time.

Start walking in nature

I don’t know of a better way to de-stress than a good walk in nature, phone on silent, and technology unplugged. It’s a great way to be mindful as you hear the sounds of nature like the brushing of the leaves and the chatter of the birds. You’ll feel calmer, lighter and re-charged.

Start a meditation practice

practice meditation

Setting aside just 10 minutes every day, either in the morning or in the evening, is a wonderful way to bring calm and clarity into your life. If you plan on implementing a social media fast, this is a perfect time to start.

See Also: Questions and Answers: A Beginners Guide to Meditation

Ask yourself this question

“Is this going to simplify my life or make it more overwhelming?”

Asking yourself this question can guide you in the right direction when you find yourself faced with a set of decisions. Follow your gut feeling on this, too, It’s rarely wrong!

Feeling overwhelmed is downright miserable.

It sucks when you have more going on that you can handle.

You don’t want a life like this. You want to feel in control so you can make progress and feel fulfilled.

My challenge to you: Choose one of the tips above and implement it today. Then tomorrow pick another one. See how different you feel after a week of taking consistent action toward simplifying your life.

Let’s see how many spinning plates you can remove from your hectic life!

Starting from today!

I know you can do it.

You’ve got this!

 

The post Feeling Overwhelmed? 14 Ways To Simplify Your Life appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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8 Time-Saving Hacks for Busy Moms

The homemaker has the ultimate career of all. She has regular work hours, makes each day both useful and pleasant, and proves the worth of time by employing it well. Whoever is stuck on the myth that a housewife has no other work to do than cooking for her husband and kids and watching daily soaps has never seen a homemaker for an entire day.

People like you and I, who go out to earn and come back to the comforts of a ‘home’, should not forget that it is a homemaker that makes the house a comfort zone. She is on duty 24 hours a day and 365 days a year. She’s an alarm clock, a cook, a maid, a teacher, a waiter, a nurse, a security officer, a counselor, and a comforter. She doesn’t get a holiday the entire year, and still gets asked, ‘What do you do all day?’

She doesn’t get a holiday the entire year, and still gets asked, ‘What do you do all day?’

Here’s to all the hard-working homemakers. Here are 8 ways you can save your time and energy, and work efficiently.

Have a To-Do List

to do list

Like every other profession, homemaking in itself is a profession that demands perfection, and nothing less. As much as being organized in any other profession is important, homemaking too, should be done in an organized manner. The first step to this is to keep a to-do list ready for every day. Keeping a list ready helps you sort between important and unimportant, urgent, and not so urgent work, and you can plan your day accordingly.

The first step to this is to keep a to-do list ready for every day. Keeping a list ready helps you sort between important and unimportant, urgent, and not so urgent work, and you can plan your day accordingly.

See Also: Todo List Apps for People Who Don’t Like Todo Lists 

Keep Important Things Handy

This is yet another important thing that all homemakers should implement. Keep a copy of your important documents ready, a first aid box readily available, a list of emergency contacts and some extra cash for those contingencies. After all, it is better to be prepared than to panic.

Learn From DIY Lessons

Social media is not just a waste of time. Nowadays, with YouTube, Instagram and Facebook streaming with hundreds of DIY videos and hacks, there are so many lessons that you can learn and put into use immediately. There are cooking hacks, home décor ideas and time-saving tricks that are easy to learn and implement.

Do Easy Cooking

I see people who think that the only thing that a homemaker does is cooking. False. There are so many other things that she does daily. It is just that cooking occupies most of her time.

There is always a solution to a problem. Homemakers should learn easy cooking tricks, start using the microwave often, and learn quick and healthy recipes. These cooking hacks will save you enough time for your hobbies.

Storage Ideas

I’ve seen people who spend a large chunk of their day just cleaning the mess around. This especially becomes tedious when you have kids and guests visiting you very often.

Mums have a tough time keeping things in place and maintaining the house well. This is where storage ideas come into play. Keep light-weight baskets and bins around the house where you can quickly dump the mess when a guest is expected, or a toy basket to stuff all your kids’ toys once they’re done playing. They’re quick as well as less tiresome than cleaning the entire house twice or thrice a day.

Hire Domestic Help

Depending on where you live and if you have the means, you can hire domestic help or outsource some of your daily chores. You can employ a helper or a cook, or even hire an assistant to help you with household tasks.

Shop Online

With so many advances in technology, it is only fair that homemakers also update themselves with the latest advancements in e-commerce and shopping. Instead of standing in long queues at the supermarket or traveling to stores, you can try the convenience of online shopping. It is easier, more reasonable, and you get to choose from a range of products without even moving an inch. This also saves you the extra bucks that you spend on in-store compulsive shopping.

Take Power Naps

power naps

Homemakers work a 24×7 shift especially when there are sick kids. There’s no pause button to their routine. They keep working from dawn to dusk and hardly get any time to stop and relax. This affects both their mental and physical health. It is important that they take at least one power nap, or relax for a short time in the middle of the day. This little break or power nap helps reduce stress and rejuvenates them for the latter half of the day.

See Also: 7 Easy Tips on How to Get the Perfect Nap 

Homemakers work harder and longer than any other class of worker. They go through stress and anxiety just like anybody. By applying these time-saving hacks, the busy homemaker earns some precious “me” time for much-needed rest and relaxation.

 

The post 8 Time-Saving Hacks for Busy Moms appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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What to Ask Your Pharmacist

With so many miracle drugs on the market these days, it’s rare to leave your doctor’s office without at least one prescription in hand. To safely use your medications to their full benefit, there are questions every patient should ask the pharmacist. Whereas your doctor may be limited to the time he can spend with you to thoroughly explain your medications, your pharmacist is trained to counsel you about the specifics of the prescribed drug during the course of your treatment.

All medications are dispensed with written information about the drug, and most of the printed information is easily understood. Occasionally, however, the medication your doctor has prescribed can cause certain conditions or side effects. To better understand your medication, you should ask for a consultation at the pharmacy, especially if you’ve been given multiple prescriptions for your medical condition.

What is it for?

The most obvious questions are what is the medication and why was it prescribed. Along with the uses of the medication, your pharmacist will be able to tell you about the conditions for which it is prescribed and whether the course of treatment will be temporary or long-term.

See Also: 8 Natural Supplements For Reducing Depression 

How to take?

Another important point to go over with the pharmacist is how to use the medication. Your doctor has written out his directions for use, but it’s the pharmacist’s job to interpret it and instruct you in how much to take and when to take it. Most medications should be taken at regular intervals, and some at specific times of the day or night.

What are interactions?

asking pharamacist

Some medications react adversely with certain foods, or can cause dangerous interactions with other medications, both over-the-counter products and other prescriptions. Some combinations can worsen your condition, others can cause serious medical emergencies.

Your first step to safely using prescribed medicines should always be to tell your doctor what others you take and if you have any allergies. It is equally important to your treatment for your doctor to know of any other conditions you have even if you do not take medications for them. Your pharmacist should also be made aware of this information on your pharmacy profile.

What are side effects?

Almost every pharmaceutical drug has side effects. Some are minor, but others can be debilitating. Not all patients will be subject to every medication side effect, but every adverse effect that occurred during testing will be noted on the printed information the pharmacist gives you with your prescription. Routine side effects usually diminish after a day or so of treatment.

The most common side effects of any new medication are drowsiness, dizziness, rash, or itching. The pharmacist can advise what to look for and whether to stop taking the medication immediately and call the doctor to report more serious side effects that persist or worsen, such as slowed breathing, bruising or bleeding, or unusual fatigue.

What is proper storage?

prescription bottles

Certain medications need special handling or storage. Most prescription pills are dispensed in dark bottles or vials because continuous exposure to light will cause them to lose effectiveness. Medicines stored in bathrooms, where it is often damp or humid, can lose their potency. Ask the pharmacist about the best method of storing your particular medication.

Prescription medications can keep disease and illness under control only if we use them properly and know how to avoid medication mistakes. The role of the pharmacist is to help us do just that.

 

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5 Simple Lessons to Break the Shackles of People’s Negativity

The world is a small place and no matter how hard we try to avoid negative people, we will end up running into them sooner or later.

It’s better that you run into negative people sooner because they present a perfect opportunity to practice bettering yourself. With every negativity, there is always a way to turn it around or use it to your benefit.

Now, I’m not saying to go out and start problems with people. Instead, whenever negativity happens to come your way, look for the good you can take out of it.

Below are some tips on how you can break the shackles that toxic people have on you.

An opinion is just an opinion

keep calm

When you’re in the heat of the moment, an opinion may seem more than what it is. You must learn to take a deep breath and calm yourself. If you go through life reacting to every little negative thing that’s thrown in your direction, you’re hurting no one but yourself.

Just remember that everyone is full of opinions, and you can’t let each and every negative one hurt you.

Growth comes from pain

Before I learned to outgrow the issues that would arise in my life, it would take me about three days to get over what people would do or say to me. I was one of those people. A day was the minimum it took to get back to my happy self.

But the more bad situations happened, the better I got at coping. My heart became more resilient and my mind wised up on what to do next.

Life is about learning, so when negative people want to try and bring you down, it may work temporarily, but you should rally and become stronger than ever.

Forgive and let go

People will always do an occasional wrong to you, but what you do about it makes all the difference. Holding a grudge against an old friend, family member, or even some stranger you’ll never see again will bring you more pain than it will bring them.

While you’re caught up on what they did, they have already moved on and forgotten about it. Holding a grudge against another will only turn you into what you hate.

Learn to forgive those that have hurt you and feel the weight lifting from your shoulders. I’m telling you this because, for most of my life, I hated my mother’s boyfriend. It marked the start of my depression and I held on to the hate I had for him for 7+ years before I finally learn to forgive and let go.

I learned to forgive others, but most importantly I learned to forgive myself, and the chains became light as feathers.

See Also: 12 Things To Let Go If You Really Want to Live A Happy Life

Change friends and environments

new friends

Sometimes, it may not be that you keep running into negative people, but that you surround yourself with negative people and hang around toxic environments.

Even childhood friends will have to be let go of at some point. You love the people around you because you feel comfortable, but if all they bring is pain to your life, don’t you think you owe it to yourself to be happy?

Everyone is in your life for a reason. You have to know when their time is up because a greater friendship is waiting for you around the corner.

See Also: 8 Types of Toxic Friends That Are Holding Your Happiness Hostage

You’re doing something right

Some people find happiness by growing and constantly improving themselves, and some find happiness by causing others pain.

You must accept facts, that some people can’t be swayed from who they are choosing to be. Conviction is something that is nearly impossible to change in a person.

So when you start receiving bad vibes from others, it might just mean you are doing something right. Negative people don’t want to see others rise because it reminds them they aren’t doing anything with their lives, and rather than be encouraged and try to climb with you, they want to bring you down to their level.

They need something to compare themselves to when the worst thing someone can do is compare themselves to another.

It’s easy to fall to the levels of people who are toxic, but if you follow these five simple steps you will be able to deal with negative people easier.

Tomorrow is not promised, so enjoy your life and be the best you. Don’t try and find fault in others when things are going wrong in your life. Pain doesn’t last forever, especially when you know how to smile through the hard times and still see light despite shade being thrown in your direction.

Live your life to the fullest and always remember you can overcome any obstacle.

 

The post 5 Simple Lessons to Break the Shackles of People’s Negativity appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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