Dumb Little Man

Body Image Awareness: How to Talk to Your Kids About Body Image and Health

Did you know that your children might already be thinking about dieting and feeling insecure about their bodies?

Cultural influences are strong and in a world where social media creates unrealistic body image standards, children as young as six years old can be sensitive about their weight. Eventually, this can lead to severe problems, like low self-esteem and even eating disorders.

With that said, it’s important for parents to encourage their children to maintain healthy habits. That means teaching them to respect their bodies, have a healthy relationship with food, and encourage regular physical activity. It also means setting a good example by modeling a non-judgmental attitude toward your own body while maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Talking to your kids about body image and health isn’t always easy. Modeling healthy behavior can be even harder. But making an effort to do so is absolutely crucial to their long-term mental and physical health.

Here’s what you need to know when it comes to talking about body image awareness and healthy habits.

The Obesity Problem in America

body image awareness obesity

At this point, most Americans know that the childhood obesity epidemic is reaching crisis levels. The Centers for Disease Control classifies over 20% of the U.S. youth population as obese. Factors like poor nutrition, lack of physical activity, and too much sugar are playing a role.

States like Mississippi, West Virginia, Kentucky and Louisiana have some of the highest rates of childhood obesity. Some of the largest causes of obesity for high schoolers in Louisiana are lack of a healthy diet with vegetables, excessive soda, and lack of sustained physical exercise.

Childhood obesity sets kids up for a huge number of health problems that can affect their growth and future health. Additionally, children who are overweight are often bullied or excluded by their peers, often leading to isolation, low self-esteem, and mental health disorders.

American adults are also struggling with obesity, which can eventually lead to chronic health problems and a shorter lifespan. There are also social stigmas attached to being overweight, leading many people to develop eating disorders or extremely unhealthy behaviors in an attempt to control their weight.

Body Image Awareness: Addressing the Topic With a Sensitive Touch

Talking about weight, health, and body image requires a sensitive touch because kids can easily interpret your words to mean that you think they should focus on losing weight.

It’s important to emphasize health and body positivity over numbers on the scale. Always keep the conversations positive and monitor your language to ensure that you’re not unintentionally creating feelings of shame around weight, food, and exercise.

When addressing health and body image with your child, think about approaching it as a “we”-focused initiative. It shouldn’t involve simply ordering them to get off the couch and get moving. It should include creating family-focused activities you can do together, like hiking, yoga, cooking, and gardening.

Body image, weight, and health hover in a delicate balance, especially when it comes to kids. They will pick up on cues from you and detect any negativity in your words. Take some time to prepare for the conversation to ensure that you approach the topic with sensitivity.

Having the Conversation

Before you can move on to addressing topics such as spending less time online and more time outdoors, you’ll have to make your case. Instead of attempting to convince your child with logic, recognize that you need to have a two-way conversation where you’ll likely listen more than you’ll talk. The idea is to get your kids thinking about their health.

They might not realize that they eat more when they’re upset or how many hours they spend staring at screens. You can start the conversation by asking questions that will help them really start to think about their own habits. Then, talk about ways you can improve your health as a family. Don’t talk about weight loss. Instead, talk about how you can all be healthier together.

If your child is already saying things like “I feel fat”, it’s important to address the issue right away. Ask why they feel that way and try to get to the bottom of the issue.

Have they been bullied or have they seen something that made them feel ashamed?

Once you know why they’re making negative comments about their body, you can start to reverse the damage.

Opening Up Communication and Making Habits Sustainable

awareness body image

Communication is key when it comes to creating healthy habits and body image attitudes as a family. Making habits sustainable when your child is young will help set them up for a positive, healthy future. Serving healthy food and encouraging regular exercise from a place of positivity is crucial for both physical and mental health.

It’s also important to remember that treats are fine occasionally, and can even help make habits more sustainable long-term. A kid who is completely deprived of sweets or never gets the chance to stay inside and watch TV might feel resentful and rebel against their healthy habits when they get a bit of freedom. Moderation is what’s key.

Weight and health are emotionally-charged subjects in our society. As parents, we have the difficult job of helping our children to build a healthy lifestyle while ensuring that we don’t damage their body image and unintentionally teach them to associate food and exercise with negative emotions. It’s a tall order, but caring parents can rise to the occasion and set their children up for a happy, healthy life by promoting proper body image awareness.

See Also: A Parent’s Guide to Healthy Eating During the Holidays

The post Body Image Awareness: How to Talk to Your Kids About Body Image and Health appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Develop Property Listings that Make Purchasers Take Action

After discovering a property representative, preparing your home for sale, and staging the house, you and your realty representative require to create remarkable real estate listing descriptions.

The initial step that 42% of purchasers require to buy a home is to look for listings online. 95% of purchasers utilize the web to eventually discover a home in their search.

You might lose these purchasers permanently if your listing pictures and story do not mesmerize home hunters browsing online. One research study revealed that listings with one image took over double the time to offer than listings with 20 pictures.

That’s why you and your realty representative need to develop the very best property listing in your location.

Here are some of the best ways to do that:

No Smart Device Pics Allowed: Your Photos Should Be Sensational

Imagine that you’re really in the market for a brand-new home. There are two homes on the very same street, comparable flooring strategy, and rate point. However, they have hugely various pictures.

According to CBS News, homes marketed with a leading quality expert listing images offer for 47% more than homes with low-quality photos. Images can likewise assist your home sell 32% faster.

Online users invest 60% of their time taking a look at the pictures on a realty listing page, and 20% on residential or commercial property information and the listing blurb. That indicates that if your images do not blow purchasers away, then there’s a likelihood they’ll never see your home.

How to Get Great Listing Photos

real estate listing description

Whatever you do, don’t take your listing pictures yourself.

Your property representative must contract out your listing images to an expert photographer who will modify and improve every photo or take the pictures themselves.

To find the right contractor for the job, you need to do your research. Inspect websites with impartial evaluations like Yelp or Angie’s List to discover leading professional photographers near you or you can just delegate the task.

Whatever is in the image ought to be brilliant and noticeable

For interior shots, you must be able to see the view out of all windows. Professional photographers can accomplish this using specific techniques.

The picture needs to make the area look big as possible

Do the images all look cropped or was a large-angle lens utilized? All photos must be shot with a large-angle lens and the space must never feel confined.

Images need to be straight

All images must be level. Your photographer can go free-hand or he can use a tripod as long as he’s able to make every shot appear straight and perfect.

The order of your listing images is crucial. You should go first with the dining space, living space, and household space. After those areas, you can cover the master bedroom and the other rooms in the house.

Another smart method to encourage a prospective purchaser to come to see your home personally is to leave “Easter eggs” or little within jokes or concealed messages of home functions in the listing description. These should not be noticeable in pictures.

Tips for Composing the Perfect Listing Description

creating real estate listing descriptions

The listing description is your only chance to discuss anything about your home that purchasers can’t see in the images. For that, you need to:

  • Utilize words most likely to appear in search engine result
  • Display high-end and brand-name functions like your Viking range
  • Point out superb features of your community
  • Promote special services

Your representative will compose the listing blurb for you. However, you can ask to see it before the listing gets released online.

How to Compose a Fascinating Listing Title

Some property representatives will publish your home on sites like Craigslist. These sites use a “list view” which suggests that you’ll require an appealing title for your listing. Many property representatives will do this for you as part of their marketing strategy. However, it never harms to come up with some recommendations.

Unlike other marketing platforms that arrange by image, a list view sorts just by the listing title. It’s less likely that potential purchasers will click through to your listing if your claim is not as good as the other titles before and after yours.

One method to do that is to use power words in your listing title. We’ll compose 2 noting titles together, one with power words and one without.

Title A: Good home for sale in SF Bay Location.

Title B: New: Zen Retreat With Sensational Views in Laurel Heights

Can you think which listing title has the power words? That’s right — Listing B is a terrific example of what your listing title should look like.

We utilized the power word “brand-new” to get the attention of the purchaser. If a listing is brand-new, it’s most likely something she hasn’t seen before. It produces a sense of seriousness.

We utilized the power word “zen” to stimulate harmony and serenity. This power word falls in the “joy” classification, which is what every potential purchaser ought to feel when she discovers an appealing brand-new listing.

We utilized the power word “sensational” to stimulate a sense of splendor and to make the purchaser wish to click through to see pictures right now. “Spectacular” falls under the “charm” classification.

How to Utilize Buzz Words in the Listing Blurb

Buzz words or power words appeal more to purchasers than other generic words like “relaxing” or “adorable” since they paint a picture of your home. Inspect out these listing descriptions from an expert real estate copywriter if you ‘d like a couple of examples of well-written listings.

If you desire your listing to stand out in search outcomes, you’ll wish to utilize local keywords.

Prevent Buzzkill Words

Throw away words like “charming” or “relaxing” and expressions like “priced to offer.” These words have ended up being white noise in property listings and do not suggest anything to potential purchasers.

Instead, be as particular as you can about your home. Even if you do have a comfortable den, consider what makes it healthy.

Do not state: The home has a relaxing den off the living room.

State: The den is the ideal area to unwind with a cup of tea as the sun shines in through brand-new Pella windows.

You also need to check the listing blurb over and over to get rid of any spelling or grammatical mistakes. Any error in spelling or grammar can suggest that the real estate representative invested little time producing the listing.

Leading representative Caponigro informed us that terms like, “this will not last” are absolute no-nos. It appears that any listing that has 100 or more market days!

Keep a careful eye on different terms like “en suite”, “wrought iron fence”, and other similar terms. They might quickly (and incorrectly) be noted as “on suite” or “rod iron fence”. These little mistakes can send out purchasers running for worry of more significant errors in your home.

Your listing should never break the Fair Real estate Act which indicates that there shouldn’t be discrimination in gender, race, background, color or specific location.

Display Community Distance

Throughout your listing blurb, you need to make it clear that your home is located in a secure area.

Walkscore is a tool you can utilize to assist in determining what hotspots are instantly available to your home. The machine has a brand-new function called “Time Travel Map” which reveals to you how far you can stroll, drive, bike or take public transit in your location within 20 minutes. It will likewise show you how walkable the place is and the popular areas close by.

Other good ideas to keep in mind are: pure beach gains access to, fast highway gain access to, charming coffeehouse, and hassle-free shopping mall near to the property.

Reference Swanky Appliances and Cool Style Characteristics

This is among the locations in your property listing where you can best assist your realty representative. Caponigro asks all of her customers to supply her with a “function sheet” that details whatever the home needs to provide.

You can produce a function sheet for your real estate representative. It may consist of details regarding restrooms and spaces, lot size, square video, and so on. You may also want to include unique functions, like a double automobile garage, white wine cellar, kitchen area island, and any upgrades you have done.

Purchasers value high-end home appliances in a house, so you need to drop high-end brand names regularly.

If you have any high-end cooking area devices, windows, lights, home security systems or heating/cooling systems, make sure to include them in the listing.

Did a well-understood designer style your home? Current upgrades are as essential to your home’s worth as they are to purchasers. Market brand-new marble or granite countertops, a rejuvenated restroom, cooking area, yard, and any other high-end touches you included.

See Also: How to Decorate Your Home

Your Remarkable Property Listing

Above all, make sure that the listing records what you enjoy most about the home. The more distinct the description is and the more eye-catching the images are, the quicker it will be for your home to sell.

See Also: A Simple Guide to Selling A House in New York State

The post How to Develop Property Listings that Make Purchasers Take Action appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Develop Property Listings that Make Purchasers Take Action

After discovering a property representative, preparing your home for sale, and staging the house, you and your realty representative require to create remarkable real estate listing descriptions.

The initial step that 42% of purchasers require to buy a home is to look for listings online. 95% of purchasers utilize the web to eventually discover a home in their search.

You might lose these purchasers permanently if your listing pictures and story do not mesmerize home hunters browsing online. One research study revealed that listings with one image took over double the time to offer than listings with 20 pictures.

That’s why you and your realty representative need to develop the very best property listing in your location.

Here are some of the best ways to do that:

No Smart Device Pics Allowed: Your Photos Should Be Sensational

Imagine that you’re really in the market for a brand-new home. There are two homes on the very same street, comparable flooring strategy, and rate point. However, they have hugely various pictures.

According to CBS News, homes marketed with a leading quality expert listing images offer for 47% more than homes with low-quality photos. Images can likewise assist your home sell 32% faster.

Online users invest 60% of their time taking a look at the pictures on a realty listing page, and 20% on residential or commercial property information and the listing blurb. That indicates that if your images do not blow purchasers away, then there’s a likelihood they’ll never see your home.

How to Get Great Listing Photos

real estate listing description

Whatever you do, don’t take your listing pictures yourself.

Your property representative must contract out your listing images to an expert photographer who will modify and improve every photo or take the pictures themselves.

To find the right contractor for the job, you need to do your research. Inspect websites with impartial evaluations like Yelp or Angie’s List to discover leading professional photographers near you or you can just delegate the task.

Whatever is in the image ought to be brilliant and noticeable

For interior shots, you must be able to see the view out of all windows. Professional photographers can accomplish this using specific techniques.

The picture needs to make the area look big as possible

Do the images all look cropped or was a large-angle lens utilized? All photos must be shot with a large-angle lens and the space must never feel confined.

Images need to be straight

All images must be level. Your photographer can go free-hand or he can use a tripod as long as he’s able to make every shot appear straight and perfect.

The order of your listing images is crucial. You should go first with the dining space, living space, and household space. After those areas, you can cover the master bedroom and the other rooms in the house.

Another smart method to encourage a prospective purchaser to come to see your home personally is to leave “Easter eggs” or little within jokes or concealed messages of home functions in the listing description. These should not be noticeable in pictures.

Tips for Composing the Perfect Listing Description

creating real estate listing descriptions

The listing description is your only chance to discuss anything about your home that purchasers can’t see in the images. For that, you need to:

  • Utilize words most likely to appear in search engine result
  • Display high-end and brand-name functions like your Viking range
  • Point out superb features of your community
  • Promote special services

Your representative will compose the listing blurb for you. However, you can ask to see it before the listing gets released online.

How to Compose a Fascinating Listing Title

Some property representatives will publish your home on sites like Craigslist. These sites use a “list view” which suggests that you’ll require an appealing title for your listing. Many property representatives will do this for you as part of their marketing strategy. However, it never harms to come up with some recommendations.

Unlike other marketing platforms that arrange by image, a list view sorts just by the listing title. It’s less likely that potential purchasers will click through to your listing if your claim is not as good as the other titles before and after yours.

One method to do that is to use power words in your listing title. We’ll compose 2 noting titles together, one with power words and one without.

Title A: Good home for sale in SF Bay Location.

Title B: New: Zen Retreat With Sensational Views in Laurel Heights

Can you think which listing title has the power words? That’s right — Listing B is a terrific example of what your listing title should look like.

We utilized the power word “brand-new” to get the attention of the purchaser. If a listing is brand-new, it’s most likely something she hasn’t seen before. It produces a sense of seriousness.

We utilized the power word “zen” to stimulate harmony and serenity. This power word falls in the “joy” classification, which is what every potential purchaser ought to feel when she discovers an appealing brand-new listing.

We utilized the power word “sensational” to stimulate a sense of splendor and to make the purchaser wish to click through to see pictures right now. “Spectacular” falls under the “charm” classification.

How to Utilize Buzz Words in the Listing Blurb

Buzz words or power words appeal more to purchasers than other generic words like “relaxing” or “adorable” since they paint a picture of your home. Inspect out these listing descriptions from an expert real estate copywriter if you ‘d like a couple of examples of well-written listings.

If you desire your listing to stand out in search outcomes, you’ll wish to utilize local keywords.

Prevent Buzzkill Words

Throw away words like “charming” or “relaxing” and expressions like “priced to offer.” These words have ended up being white noise in property listings and do not suggest anything to potential purchasers.

Instead, be as particular as you can about your home. Even if you do have a comfortable den, consider what makes it healthy.

Do not state: The home has a relaxing den off the living room.

State: The den is the ideal area to unwind with a cup of tea as the sun shines in through brand-new Pella windows.

You also need to check the listing blurb over and over to get rid of any spelling or grammatical mistakes. Any error in spelling or grammar can suggest that the real estate representative invested little time producing the listing.

Leading representative Caponigro informed us that terms like, “this will not last” are absolute no-nos. It appears that any listing that has 100 or more market days!

Keep a careful eye on different terms like “en suite”, “wrought iron fence”, and other similar terms. They might quickly (and incorrectly) be noted as “on suite” or “rod iron fence”. These little mistakes can send out purchasers running for worry of more significant errors in your home.

Your listing should never break the Fair Real estate Act which indicates that there shouldn’t be discrimination in gender, race, background, color or specific location.

Display Community Distance

Throughout your listing blurb, you need to make it clear that your home is located in a secure area.

Walkscore is a tool you can utilize to assist in determining what hotspots are instantly available to your home. The machine has a brand-new function called “Time Travel Map” which reveals to you how far you can stroll, drive, bike or take public transit in your location within 20 minutes. It will likewise show you how walkable the place is and the popular areas close by.

Other good ideas to keep in mind are: pure beach gains access to, fast highway gain access to, charming coffeehouse, and hassle-free shopping mall near to the property.

Reference Swanky Appliances and Cool Style Characteristics

This is among the locations in your property listing where you can best assist your realty representative. Caponigro asks all of her customers to supply her with a “function sheet” that details whatever the home needs to provide.

You can produce a function sheet for your real estate representative. It may consist of details regarding restrooms and spaces, lot size, square video, and so on. You may also want to include unique functions, like a double automobile garage, white wine cellar, kitchen area island, and any upgrades you have done.

Purchasers value high-end home appliances in a house, so you need to drop high-end brand names regularly.

If you have any high-end cooking area devices, windows, lights, home security systems or heating/cooling systems, make sure to include them in the listing.

Did a well-understood designer style your home? Current upgrades are as essential to your home’s worth as they are to purchasers. Market brand-new marble or granite countertops, a rejuvenated restroom, cooking area, yard, and any other high-end touches you included.

See Also: How to Decorate Your Home

Your Remarkable Property Listing

Above all, make sure that the listing records what you enjoy most about the home. The more distinct the description is and the more eye-catching the images are, the quicker it will be for your home to sell.

See Also: A Simple Guide to Selling A House in New York State

The post How to Develop Property Listings that Make Purchasers Take Action appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry

Unless you’re currently in high school or taking an English class in college, chances are that you don’t read much poetry. After all, lots of people find it boring, unfathomable, too erudite or pointless.

However, there are loads of great reasons to read poetry. Before you dislike something without trying it, consider these:

Poetry Doesn’t Take Long to Read

Most poems are short (though “epic poems”, like Milton’s Paradise Lost and Spencer’s The Faerie Queen can be longer than novels). You can easily read a short poem or several poems during your coffee break. You can also read them while standing in line at the bank or while eating a sandwich at lunch time.

If you “don’t have the time to read”, try switching to poetry instead of novels. For a lot of people, it does the trick.

Poetry Improves Your Vocabulary

Reading poetry is a great way to improve your vocabulary. If your usual reading material consists of magazines, newspapers, and blogs, you’re unlikely to be encountering any new words.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve come across these unusual words in poems:

  • Amnion- the thin membrane that surrounds a fetus in the womb
  • Skedaddle- scram or hurry away (familiar to Americans, but more unusual over here in the UK _
  • Chongalolas- a chongalola is a type of tree found in Africa

If you’re studying English, especially as a foreign language student, the vocabulary-boosting benefits of poetry are well worth the time you’ll invest reading it.

Poetry Gives You New Ideas

Like any great writing, poetry can open up your mind to new ideas. You might read a poem from a completely different culture or written by someone much older or much younger than you.

A poem could give you insight into a problem you’re struggling with. Poems use symbolism and subtexts to sneak under the rational mind. They can help you access the power of the subconscious which responds strongly to images and metaphor. 

Poetry Shows the World In a New Light

Poets want you to see some aspects of the world in a new light. They can give you an unusual turn of phrase or image that focuses your attention on something in a completely new way. Commonplace objects and events take on a new meaning when tackled by poets.

I choose to ignore my instinct for the sky’s
warning – the way each light flicks out
the strange smell in the air, a herbal brew;
you are crying to go out and the four walls
of the villa are coming in like a fast tide.
– First stanza of “Summer Storm, Capolona” by Jackie Kay 

Poetry Makes You Think

If you find poetry hard, be heartened. Reading it stretches your mind and forces you to think. When something challenges, surprises, and even offends you in a poem, that’s helping you to question pre-conceptions that you might have. It allows you to move beyond your comfort zone.

Even if you come across poems you dislike, you can at least figure out what it is you hate about them.

Poetry Is Fun

My ultimate reason to read poetry is simply to enjoy it. Whether you’re drawn into the story, engaged by a fascinating character in a poem, delighted by a beautiful turn of phrase or laughing out loud at a joke, there’s a lot of fun to be had from reading poetry.

This complete poem by Carol Ann Duffy made me laugh. It’s not very different from a joke.

Mrs Darwin
7th April 1852
Went to the Zoo.
I said to Him –
Something about that chimpanzee over there reminds me of you.

If you’ve not yet found a poet who you love, keep looking. Try asking for recommendations at your local library or bookstore. And if you do have a favorite poet or favorite poem, tell us in the comments!

See Also: 13 Ways to Get More Reading Done (Even If You Don’t Have the Time)

Written by Ali Hale who runs Alpha Student, a blog packed with academic, financial and practical tips to help students get the most out of their time at university.

The post Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry

Unless you’re currently in high school or taking an English class in college, chances are that you don’t read much poetry. After all, lots of people find it boring, unfathomable, too erudite or pointless.

However, there are loads of great reasons to read poetry. Before you dislike something without trying it, consider these:

Poetry Doesn’t Take Long to Read

Most poems are short (though “epic poems”, like Milton’s Paradise Lost and Spencer’s The Faerie Queen can be longer than novels). You can easily read a short poem or several poems during your coffee break. You can also read them while standing in line at the bank or while eating a sandwich at lunch time.

If you “don’t have the time to read”, try switching to poetry instead of novels. For a lot of people, it does the trick.

Poetry Improves Your Vocabulary

Reading poetry is a great way to improve your vocabulary. If your usual reading material consists of magazines, newspapers, and blogs, you’re unlikely to be encountering any new words.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve come across these unusual words in poems:

  • Amnion- the thin membrane that surrounds a fetus in the womb
  • Skedaddle- scram or hurry away (familiar to Americans, but more unusual over here in the UK _
  • Chongalolas- a chongalola is a type of tree found in Africa

If you’re studying English, especially as a foreign language student, the vocabulary-boosting benefits of poetry are well worth the time you’ll invest reading it.

Poetry Gives You New Ideas

Like any great writing, poetry can open up your mind to new ideas. You might read a poem from a completely different culture or written by someone much older or much younger than you.

A poem could give you insight into a problem you’re struggling with. Poems use symbolism and subtexts to sneak under the rational mind. They can help you access the power of the subconscious which responds strongly to images and metaphor. 

Poetry Shows the World In a New Light

Poets want you to see some aspects of the world in a new light. They can give you an unusual turn of phrase or image that focuses your attention on something in a completely new way. Commonplace objects and events take on a new meaning when tackled by poets.

I choose to ignore my instinct for the sky’s
warning – the way each light flicks out
the strange smell in the air, a herbal brew;
you are crying to go out and the four walls
of the villa are coming in like a fast tide.
– First stanza of “Summer Storm, Capolona” by Jackie Kay 

Poetry Makes You Think

If you find poetry hard, be heartened. Reading it stretches your mind and forces you to think. When something challenges, surprises, and even offends you in a poem, that’s helping you to question pre-conceptions that you might have. It allows you to move beyond your comfort zone.

Even if you come across poems you dislike, you can at least figure out what it is you hate about them.

Poetry Is Fun

My ultimate reason to read poetry is simply to enjoy it. Whether you’re drawn into the story, engaged by a fascinating character in a poem, delighted by a beautiful turn of phrase or laughing out loud at a joke, there’s a lot of fun to be had from reading poetry.

This complete poem by Carol Ann Duffy made me laugh. It’s not very different from a joke.

Mrs Darwin
7th April 1852
Went to the Zoo.
I said to Him –
Something about that chimpanzee over there reminds me of you.

If you’ve not yet found a poet who you love, keep looking. Try asking for recommendations at your local library or bookstore. And if you do have a favorite poet or favorite poem, tell us in the comments!

See Also: 13 Ways to Get More Reading Done (Even If You Don’t Have the Time)

Written by Ali Hale who runs Alpha Student, a blog packed with academic, financial and practical tips to help students get the most out of their time at university.

The post Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry

Unless you’re currently in high school or taking an English class in college, chances are that you don’t read much poetry. After all, lots of people find it boring, unfathomable, too erudite or pointless.

However, there are loads of great reasons to read poetry. Before you dislike something without trying it, consider these:

Poetry Doesn’t Take Long to Read

Most poems are short (though “epic poems”, like Milton’s Paradise Lost and Spencer’s The Faerie Queen can be longer than novels). You can easily read a short poem or several poems during your coffee break. You can also read them while standing in line at the bank or while eating a sandwich at lunch time.

If you “don’t have the time to read”, try switching to poetry instead of novels. For a lot of people, it does the trick.

Poetry Improves Your Vocabulary

Reading poetry is a great way to improve your vocabulary. If your usual reading material consists of magazines, newspapers, and blogs, you’re unlikely to be encountering any new words.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve come across these unusual words in poems:

  • Amnion- the thin membrane that surrounds a fetus in the womb
  • Skedaddle- scram or hurry away (familiar to Americans, but more unusual over here in the UK _
  • Chongalolas- a chongalola is a type of tree found in Africa

If you’re studying English, especially as a foreign language student, the vocabulary-boosting benefits of poetry are well worth the time you’ll invest reading it.

Poetry Gives You New Ideas

Like any great writing, poetry can open up your mind to new ideas. You might read a poem from a completely different culture or written by someone much older or much younger than you.

A poem could give you insight into a problem you’re struggling with. Poems use symbolism and subtexts to sneak under the rational mind. They can help you access the power of the subconscious which responds strongly to images and metaphor. 

Poetry Shows the World In a New Light

Poets want you to see some aspects of the world in a new light. They can give you an unusual turn of phrase or image that focuses your attention on something in a completely new way. Commonplace objects and events take on a new meaning when tackled by poets.

I choose to ignore my instinct for the sky’s
warning – the way each light flicks out
the strange smell in the air, a herbal brew;
you are crying to go out and the four walls
of the villa are coming in like a fast tide.
– First stanza of “Summer Storm, Capolona” by Jackie Kay 

Poetry Makes You Think

If you find poetry hard, be heartened. Reading it stretches your mind and forces you to think. When something challenges, surprises, and even offends you in a poem, that’s helping you to question pre-conceptions that you might have. It allows you to move beyond your comfort zone.

Even if you come across poems you dislike, you can at least figure out what it is you hate about them.

Poetry Is Fun

My ultimate reason to read poetry is simply to enjoy it. Whether you’re drawn into the story, engaged by a fascinating character in a poem, delighted by a beautiful turn of phrase or laughing out loud at a joke, there’s a lot of fun to be had from reading poetry.

This complete poem by Carol Ann Duffy made me laugh. It’s not very different from a joke.

Mrs Darwin
7th April 1852
Went to the Zoo.
I said to Him –
Something about that chimpanzee over there reminds me of you.

If you’ve not yet found a poet who you love, keep looking. Try asking for recommendations at your local library or bookstore. And if you do have a favorite poet or favorite poem, tell us in the comments!

See Also: 13 Ways to Get More Reading Done (Even If You Don’t Have the Time)

Written by Ali Hale who runs Alpha Student, a blog packed with academic, financial and practical tips to help students get the most out of their time at university.

The post Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry

Unless you’re currently in high school or taking an English class in college, chances are that you don’t read much poetry. After all, lots of people find it boring, unfathomable, too erudite or pointless.

However, there are loads of great reasons to read poetry. Before you dislike something without trying it, consider these:

Poetry Doesn’t Take Long to Read

Most poems are short (though “epic poems”, like Milton’s Paradise Lost and Spencer’s The Faerie Queen can be longer than novels). You can easily read a short poem or several poems during your coffee break. You can also read them while standing in line at the bank or while eating a sandwich at lunch time.

If you “don’t have the time to read”, try switching to poetry instead of novels. For a lot of people, it does the trick.

Poetry Improves Your Vocabulary

Reading poetry is a great way to improve your vocabulary. If your usual reading material consists of magazines, newspapers, and blogs, you’re unlikely to be encountering any new words.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve come across these unusual words in poems:

  • Amnion- the thin membrane that surrounds a fetus in the womb
  • Skedaddle- scram or hurry away (familiar to Americans, but more unusual over here in the UK _
  • Chongalolas- a chongalola is a type of tree found in Africa

If you’re studying English, especially as a foreign language student, the vocabulary-boosting benefits of poetry are well worth the time you’ll invest reading it.

Poetry Gives You New Ideas

Like any great writing, poetry can open up your mind to new ideas. You might read a poem from a completely different culture or written by someone much older or much younger than you.

A poem could give you insight into a problem you’re struggling with. Poems use symbolism and subtexts to sneak under the rational mind. They can help you access the power of the subconscious which responds strongly to images and metaphor. 

Poetry Shows the World In a New Light

Poets want you to see some aspects of the world in a new light. They can give you an unusual turn of phrase or image that focuses your attention on something in a completely new way. Commonplace objects and events take on a new meaning when tackled by poets.

I choose to ignore my instinct for the sky’s
warning – the way each light flicks out
the strange smell in the air, a herbal brew;
you are crying to go out and the four walls
of the villa are coming in like a fast tide.
– First stanza of “Summer Storm, Capolona” by Jackie Kay 

Poetry Makes You Think

If you find poetry hard, be heartened. Reading it stretches your mind and forces you to think. When something challenges, surprises, and even offends you in a poem, that’s helping you to question pre-conceptions that you might have. It allows you to move beyond your comfort zone.

Even if you come across poems you dislike, you can at least figure out what it is you hate about them.

Poetry Is Fun

My ultimate reason to read poetry is simply to enjoy it. Whether you’re drawn into the story, engaged by a fascinating character in a poem, delighted by a beautiful turn of phrase or laughing out loud at a joke, there’s a lot of fun to be had from reading poetry.

This complete poem by Carol Ann Duffy made me laugh. It’s not very different from a joke.

Mrs Darwin
7th April 1852
Went to the Zoo.
I said to Him –
Something about that chimpanzee over there reminds me of you.

If you’ve not yet found a poet who you love, keep looking. Try asking for recommendations at your local library or bookstore. And if you do have a favorite poet or favorite poem, tell us in the comments!

See Also: 13 Ways to Get More Reading Done (Even If You Don’t Have the Time)

Written by Ali Hale who runs Alpha Student, a blog packed with academic, financial and practical tips to help students get the most out of their time at university.

The post Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry

Unless you’re currently in high school or taking an English class in college, chances are that you don’t read much poetry. After all, lots of people find it boring, unfathomable, too erudite or pointless.

However, there are loads of great reasons to read poetry. Before you dislike something without trying it, consider these:

Poetry Doesn’t Take Long to Read

Most poems are short (though “epic poems”, like Milton’s Paradise Lost and Spencer’s The Faerie Queen can be longer than novels). You can easily read a short poem or several poems during your coffee break. You can also read them while standing in line at the bank or while eating a sandwich at lunch time.

If you “don’t have the time to read”, try switching to poetry instead of novels. For a lot of people, it does the trick.

Poetry Improves Your Vocabulary

Reading poetry is a great way to improve your vocabulary. If your usual reading material consists of magazines, newspapers, and blogs, you’re unlikely to be encountering any new words.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve come across these unusual words in poems:

  • Amnion- the thin membrane that surrounds a fetus in the womb
  • Skedaddle- scram or hurry away (familiar to Americans, but more unusual over here in the UK _
  • Chongalolas- a chongalola is a type of tree found in Africa

If you’re studying English, especially as a foreign language student, the vocabulary-boosting benefits of poetry are well worth the time you’ll invest reading it.

Poetry Gives You New Ideas

Like any great writing, poetry can open up your mind to new ideas. You might read a poem from a completely different culture or written by someone much older or much younger than you.

A poem could give you insight into a problem you’re struggling with. Poems use symbolism and subtexts to sneak under the rational mind. They can help you access the power of the subconscious which responds strongly to images and metaphor. 

Poetry Shows the World In a New Light

Poets want you to see some aspects of the world in a new light. They can give you an unusual turn of phrase or image that focuses your attention on something in a completely new way. Commonplace objects and events take on a new meaning when tackled by poets.

I choose to ignore my instinct for the sky’s
warning – the way each light flicks out
the strange smell in the air, a herbal brew;
you are crying to go out and the four walls
of the villa are coming in like a fast tide.
– First stanza of “Summer Storm, Capolona” by Jackie Kay 

Poetry Makes You Think

If you find poetry hard, be heartened. Reading it stretches your mind and forces you to think. When something challenges, surprises, and even offends you in a poem, that’s helping you to question pre-conceptions that you might have. It allows you to move beyond your comfort zone.

Even if you come across poems you dislike, you can at least figure out what it is you hate about them.

Poetry Is Fun

My ultimate reason to read poetry is simply to enjoy it. Whether you’re drawn into the story, engaged by a fascinating character in a poem, delighted by a beautiful turn of phrase or laughing out loud at a joke, there’s a lot of fun to be had from reading poetry.

This complete poem by Carol Ann Duffy made me laugh. It’s not very different from a joke.

Mrs Darwin
7th April 1852
Went to the Zoo.
I said to Him –
Something about that chimpanzee over there reminds me of you.

If you’ve not yet found a poet who you love, keep looking. Try asking for recommendations at your local library or bookstore. And if you do have a favorite poet or favorite poem, tell us in the comments!

See Also: 13 Ways to Get More Reading Done (Even If You Don’t Have the Time)

Written by Ali Hale who runs Alpha Student, a blog packed with academic, financial and practical tips to help students get the most out of their time at university.

The post Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry

Unless you’re currently in high school or taking an English class in college, chances are that you don’t read much poetry. After all, lots of people find it boring, unfathomable, too erudite or pointless.

However, there are loads of great reasons to read poetry. Before you dislike something without trying it, consider these:

Poetry Doesn’t Take Long to Read

Most poems are short (though “epic poems”, like Milton’s Paradise Lost and Spencer’s The Faerie Queen can be longer than novels). You can easily read a short poem or several poems during your coffee break. You can also read them while standing in line at the bank or while eating a sandwich at lunch time.

If you “don’t have the time to read”, try switching to poetry instead of novels. For a lot of people, it does the trick.

Poetry Improves Your Vocabulary

Reading poetry is a great way to improve your vocabulary. If your usual reading material consists of magazines, newspapers, and blogs, you’re unlikely to be encountering any new words.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve come across these unusual words in poems:

  • Amnion- the thin membrane that surrounds a fetus in the womb
  • Skedaddle- scram or hurry away (familiar to Americans, but more unusual over here in the UK _
  • Chongalolas- a chongalola is a type of tree found in Africa

If you’re studying English, especially as a foreign language student, the vocabulary-boosting benefits of poetry are well worth the time you’ll invest reading it.

Poetry Gives You New Ideas

Like any great writing, poetry can open up your mind to new ideas. You might read a poem from a completely different culture or written by someone much older or much younger than you.

A poem could give you insight into a problem you’re struggling with. Poems use symbolism and subtexts to sneak under the rational mind. They can help you access the power of the subconscious which responds strongly to images and metaphor. 

Poetry Shows the World In a New Light

Poets want you to see some aspects of the world in a new light. They can give you an unusual turn of phrase or image that focuses your attention on something in a completely new way. Commonplace objects and events take on a new meaning when tackled by poets.

I choose to ignore my instinct for the sky’s
warning – the way each light flicks out
the strange smell in the air, a herbal brew;
you are crying to go out and the four walls
of the villa are coming in like a fast tide.
– First stanza of “Summer Storm, Capolona” by Jackie Kay 

Poetry Makes You Think

If you find poetry hard, be heartened. Reading it stretches your mind and forces you to think. When something challenges, surprises, and even offends you in a poem, that’s helping you to question pre-conceptions that you might have. It allows you to move beyond your comfort zone.

Even if you come across poems you dislike, you can at least figure out what it is you hate about them.

Poetry Is Fun

My ultimate reason to read poetry is simply to enjoy it. Whether you’re drawn into the story, engaged by a fascinating character in a poem, delighted by a beautiful turn of phrase or laughing out loud at a joke, there’s a lot of fun to be had from reading poetry.

This complete poem by Carol Ann Duffy made me laugh. It’s not very different from a joke.

Mrs Darwin
7th April 1852
Went to the Zoo.
I said to Him –
Something about that chimpanzee over there reminds me of you.

If you’ve not yet found a poet who you love, keep looking. Try asking for recommendations at your local library or bookstore. And if you do have a favorite poet or favorite poem, tell us in the comments!

See Also: 13 Ways to Get More Reading Done (Even If You Don’t Have the Time)

Written by Ali Hale who runs Alpha Student, a blog packed with academic, financial and practical tips to help students get the most out of their time at university.

The post Six Reasons You Should Consider Reading Poetry appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Personal Loan vs Credit Card vs Debit Card: When to Use Each

You’re working hard every day to provide for your family and you’ve got a steady source of income. Frankly, you know you’re doing everything you can to get by, but you’ve also got personal necessities to buy, a pantry to restock, and hungry mouths to feed. The bills just keep piling up every month!

When is the best time to get a personal loan, swipe a credit card or use a debit card to consolidate debt? How do you manage your finances without hurting your pocket too much?

Understanding the differences among these three options will help you confidently manage your expenses and become more financially literate.

Choosing whether to get a personal loan or credit card depends on your spending habits, the status of your credit score, the amount of money you need, and the time it will take for you to repay the debt.

For instance, your credit score highly influences your chances of loans, credit cards, or mortgages getting accepted. It reflects how likely you are to pay back your loan or credit within a certain period. If your credit score is high, your credit card or loan application will likely be approved.

Below is a look at the differences between personal loan, credit card, and debit card, as well as when you can use each of them.

Personal Loan or Credit Card

Getting a credit card sounds like taking out a personal loan. Both types allow you to borrow money and pay it back in a certain period.

You can pay a personal loan in installments. You receive the whole amount and then make fixed monthly payments for a specific period. It can take anytime from 12 months to five years.

Lenders that provide personal loans generally place interest rates that range from 6% to 36%. Borrowers with good credit score, however, may qualify for lower interest rates. The limits of a personal loan can be up to $100,000, depending on the borrower’s credit score.

Meanwhile, a credit card is a revolving form of credit that allows the owner to repeatedly access funds. Unlike a lump sum of cash, a credit card has a credit limit you must abide by. If you choose not to pay it back immediately, you will begin to carry a balance.

The minimum amount of monthly payments is about 2% of the balance. However, if you pay back the credit in full on or before the due date, you can avoid getting charged with interest rates.

The difference here is that a personal loan is a better option for financing a large expense or settling high-interest debts while a credit card is good to use for smaller expenses. A personal loan is a fixed loan that you need to pay back in equal installments for a certain period, while a credit card is a line of credit that you can borrow from at any time. It needs to stay within the credit limit.

When to Choose a Personal Loan

When should you choose to get a personal loan?

If you need to finance large expenses or pay off debts, choosing a debt consolidation loan with fixed payments is the best option. It will even be better if you can get a lower rate on the loan than the rate for the existing debt.

What makes personal loans a good option for borrowing money is that interest rates are low and borrowing amounts can be high, with fixed repayment terms. The rate you receive will depend on your credit score. Your credit history, income, and debt-to-income ratio will also be assessed by lenders.

See Also: Personal Loan Approved? Here’s What To Do Next!

When to Choose a Credit Card

credit card

If you need to pay off a smaller amount of debt, a credit card is the best option for you. Since credit cards have higher rates and risks of carrying a high balance, they are best used for short-term purchases that you can pay off in full. This can include daily expenses and monthly bills for gadgets, appliances or furniture.

With credit cards, you can max-out your credit limit, which could keep you stuck in debt. On the other hand, with personal loans, you can be certain that your balance is at a fixed amount. You can’t keep borrowing money unless you’ve already paid off your loan.

See Also: 9 Valuable Credit Card Perks

Credit Card vs Debit Card

What’s the difference between credit and debit? Both debit cards and credit cards are accepted when purchasing in-store and online and they both offer the same convenience. However, the difference between these two cards is the source of the funds.

A debit card is connected to a checking account or savings account. It usually requires a PIN number or signature for every transaction.

When you make a purchase, debit cards draw money directly from your account and place a hold on the amount you purchase. The merchant sends the amount you bought to their bank and it is then transferred to their bank account.

Some people may argue that it’s best to use a credit card because of the credit card reward programs. However, this could only work if you pay off the balance in full every month. If you don’t, whatever amount you borrow will incur interest charges and fees.

Still, using a credit card has its benefits. A credit card is safer to use for online transactions than debit cards because it offers more protection against unauthorized transactions. When travelling, it’s also best to use a credit card for bookings, flights, and hotel accommodations. You could even enjoy travel perks such as air miles, travel assistance, travel insurance, and airport lounge access.

When to Use a Debit Card

debit card

If you want to keep your finances in check, it’s best to use a debit card. To make sure that you don’t overdraw your checking account, it’s better to keep a record of your running balance. A debit card isn’t advisable to use when traveling because you may end up short of money for your daily expenses. However, it’s the best option to use when buying small purchases like medicine or groceries.

Whichever of these three options you choose, it’s important to avoid drowning in credit card debt or else, you might experience financial ruin. With that, a debit card with limited balance can help you develop financial discipline and curb bad spending habits. With a debit card, you won’t be spending money that you do not have.

The post Personal Loan vs Credit Card vs Debit Card: When to Use Each appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

A Parent’s Guide to Healthy Eating During the Holidays

Adults aren’t the only ones who have to worry about growing festively plump during the holidays. People, including kids, typically gain 1 to 2 pounds over Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day.

You can commit to losing weight after the holidays or, better yet, not gain it in the first place. By committing to healthy holiday eating, your family can avoid the 5 to 10-pound weight gain that most people experience every five years.

Obesity Is a Growing Problem for American Kids

unhealthy eating kids

Obesity among kids has jumped from a little over 6% in the ’70s to over 20% in relatively recent years. This outcome is especially problematic because overweight children face cyber-bullying, lowered self-esteem, and chronic health issues.

Furthermore, children who are obese are more likely to remain so through adulthood. This makes them face additional risks such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. For parents, it can prove challenging to figure out what to do about the problem.

Sometimes, children grow obese due to an eating disorder and lack of physical activity. However, environment, genetics, metabolism, and poor sleep habits can also promote excessive weight gain. In some households, easy access to candy, snacks, and other food items with empty calories can make it harder to maintain a healthy weight.

Together, parents and physicians can develop safe interventions to prevent obesity among family members. Furthermore, the best way that parents can prevent childhood obesity is to lead by example, which means staying active and eating healthy.

Healthy Eating Tips for Kids During The Holidays

healthy eating tip for kids

During the holiday, parents can deploy a few tips and tricks to keep kids from gaining extra weight, starting with balance and moderation. For instance, if you’re hosting a family gathering, you can pair kids up with partners to share holiday staples that are high in sugar, calories, and fat.

This way, you won’t deprive your children of their holiday favorites. They’ll consume fewer empty calories by splitting shared portions.

Limit the availability of sugary holiday beverages, such as hot cocoa and eggnog. Also, keep plenty of cold water around for friends and family members. It’s a good idea to fill a cooler with ice and make a case or two available so that everyone can access water easily.

Finally, stay active! Plan activities that involve going outside, enjoying the cold weather, and moving around. Cold air curves appetites and boosts energy.

Additionally, plan rest periods for the entire family. People tend to eat to compensate for feelings of tiredness. A rest period can consist of watching a holiday movie or another activity that doesn’t require substantial exertion.

Most of all, strike a balance between epicurean festivity and healthiness. Some holiday food staples are a must but substitute food items and ingredients that are lower in calories, fat, and sugar as much as possible.

Obesity in the United States: A Kid’s Point of View

If you’re not careful, your passionate pleas for healthy eating can send the wrong message to your child. Today, children are sensitive about their weight. The proliferation of media messages made possible by the internet has compelled schoolgirls as young as six years old to start expressing concern about body image and weight.

The way that you talk to your children about their weight can have lifelong implications. To start, remember that it’s a two-way conversation. Also, you’re a step ahead if your child starts the discussion.

If they do, allow them to share their thoughts about the issue whenever they desire. During talks about weight, acknowledge your child’s feelings about the topic.

If you struggled with weight in the past, it helps to share that experience with your child. Also, your child must understand that you love them no matter what their size is.

Whatever you do, avoid judging and negative comments. This kind of language can have a harmful and lasting emotional effect on your child.

Finally, move the conversation beyond talk – take action. Kids learn by example, so show them how to eat healthily and stay active by doing the same.

Parents must protect their children from a host of threats, from food allergies to excessive internet content. Weight gain is an additional threat that can negatively affect the welfare of your child.

When taking steps such as changing family eating habits to ensure the welfare of your loved ones, it’s always a good idea to consult with your family physician and pediatrician. Furthermore, try not to make radical changes in the family diet.

Start with a plan and make small changes until you reach your goal. This list of healthy eating tips for kids can help you.

And remember, every family is different. Change takes time, so remain observant, patient, and positive.

See Also: Foods That Will Help You Keep Your Family Healthy

The post A Parent’s Guide to Healthy Eating During the Holidays appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Increase Productivity by Switching Off and Getting Cozy

The working world is in a constant state of flux. We have come a really long way in the last 150 years or so in terms of employment law and workers’ rights. In the grand scale of human history, we’ve barely stopped sending our children to work in factories. The 40-hour week was only adopted in the USA in 1940. Despite all this progress, why are so many people feeling burned out?

As quickly as we industrialized, we’ve digitized. We no longer work menial jobs en masse. Over 80% of Americans work at a desk, sitting down in air-conditioned buildings. Despite that, there’s still an underlying feeling of exhaustion, sadness, and a lack of work-life balance.

Technology is a double-edged sword

Computers and the internet were instrumental in securing a 40-hour week as they reduced the time it took us to do our work. 60 hours of work can now be easily done in 40 with computers. At the same time, the omnipresent tentacles of technology means that it’s harder than ever to switch off.

Being successful in your career and working hard is a virtue. But you can increase your output and your health by learning how to switch off from work properly and creating a safe retreat for yourself.

The concept of switching off is quite ingrained in some cultures, while others still promote the idea of constant work. Some people are suited to that always-on, always-working lifestyle, but for most of us, this is a fast track to burnout.

Setting Up Your Home for Success

switch off from work

To be more successful in our lives, it’s easy for us to look at productivity gurus and sleep-hacking entrepreneurs for answers. But for a great deal of the workforce, what works for these people won’t work for us. Perhaps the most important place to start is at home, because a cozy home has associated health benefits.

Unless you’re in a senior management position and above, you’re unlikely to have much say over how your office is set up. You can make suggestions, but there’s no guarantee these will be obliged. For example, lots of office workers want more ’breakout’ spaces, informal work areas, and access to green space whether that’s just a view of a park from the window or an actual place where they can take a time out and regroup.

You can make changes at home to foster a sense of belonging, calm, and restoration. You need a space to return to that is entirely separate from work.

If there are any similarities between the two places, it becomes harder to disassociate the two. We’re not talking exclusively about the interior design as it’s unlikely your home’s interior looks anything like your office. Rather, it’s how you spend your time at home and steps you can take to create a greater sense of peace.

So, How to Switch Off From Work?

The first thing you can do is to stop checking work emails outside of work. Technology has created this ‘always-on’ work culture. There are some roles where you do have to be accessible at all times, but for most roles, you shouldn’t be expected to be always on.

A good way of doing this is not linking your phone to work emails. You can only look at them when you’re at your desk. Leave the work emails at work because your personal time is your personal time. You’re not receiving extra salary to check those emails and reply to them outside of work.

This isn’t possible for everyone though. We can easily feel pressured to be available outside of work. So what else can we do?

Other countries have downtime ingrained into their cultural fabric. Let’s discuss a few examples.

Everyone knows the Danish art of ‘hygge’ now. A word to describe a unique cozy and special moment. This can be something as simple as having an open fire going, putting on your favorite pair of thick socks or playing a board game with loved ones.

The Spanish have something called ‘sobremesa’. This refers to being at the dinner table, having finished your meals, just sitting and chatting with your family and friends. Spaniards have perfected this art. This social behavior is key to their national identity with Spanish diners often talking into the early hours of the morning. The key thing here is family time.

‘Tech Sabbaths’ are being advocated by the Jewish faith and more, where all screens and tech are put away for 24 hours a week. The Japanese have an expression that translates to “too little tea,” referring to someone too busy to stop and drink a cup of tea now and then. In Croatia, they have a word — “fjaka” — which refers to the joy of doing absolutely nothing.

Some things you can do to embrace these qualities is setting some time aside to have a hot drink in the evening, without your phone or a screen. Just take 10 to 20 minutes to sit and enjoy your drink.

Candles and open fires, these foster a sense of relaxation. If you work at a computer all day, read a book in the evening. Staring at screens isn’t good for our health.

See Also: How Your Home Affects Your Mood (And What To Do About It)

How To Make Your House a Home

to switch off from work

What you do in your downtime is one thing, but the settings you do it in is another. Here’s how you can make your house feel like more of a retreat:

  • Personalize – Make your house feel like a space that’s catered to you. Lots of modern design trends have created these minimal spaces that don’t have an identity, like your home has been copied and pasted from Pinterest. Put your stamp on your space with treasured pictures, memories, and things that reflect your values and your personality. It gives more a sense of ownership and strengthens your sense of personal identity. Being in touch with yourself can improve your mental health.
  • Declutter – Organizing our homes is one of the most tangible steps you can take to decluttering your mind. It’s so easy to put off but every time we do it, we feel so much better. The Marie Kondo effect has seen people embrace a decluttered life. Let go of things you don’t need. Let go of things that serve your home no purpose. This brand of minimalism isn’t about living by your bootstraps, but only bringing things into your home that add value to your life.
  • Snuggle – Make your home a retreat. Comfort is key to this. Get candles and warm lighting to create ambiance. Pillows, blankets, slippers and warm, comfy clothes to wear create this stark difference to the office that we mentioned earlier. You want work to feel like the furthest place in the world when you get home. This helps you to switch off and reclaim some work-life balance.

See Also: 5 Features to Achieve a Peaceful Home

These are just some things you can do to reclaim your time and add value to it. This isn’t about shying away from duties and work. This isn’t about rejecting the working world, either. This is how to switch off from work so you can make yourself a better and more valuable worker.

A happy employee is a productive employee. Taking yourself as far away from the working world as possible, outside of office hours, is a way of making yourself more productive, more personable, and more satisfied during office hours.

The post How to Increase Productivity by Switching Off and Getting Cozy appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How To Identify A Narcissist At Work: Nailing Down The Key Factors

Crossing paths with a narcissist is not rare. In the USA alone, 6% of the general population has been diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder. That is not a small number. Now apply the same number to the estimated population of the world and you have 450,000,000 people having the disorder.

So, tell me, how common would it be to encounter a narcissistic coworker? Quite common, no?

Dealing with a narcissistic individual at work can be mentally taxing. It will begin to take a toll on you alone since the mental condition of the narcissist will never waver.

However, knowing who the narcissist is at your workplace involves a lot more than your gut feeling and the uneasiness you feel when being around them. Since identifying a narcissistic coworker can be a real ordeal, here are some signs you can look out for.

They are control freaks

Pathological narcissists crave control. They would never let go of a situation where their ‘leadership’ tendencies are compromised. Such individuals are prone to controlling and leading operations, especially when they know they will be in the spotlight.

And no, it is not always your manager. Hunting for a narcissist using this trait can be confusing. However, know that there is a difference between leading and dominating. Once you know how to differentiate between the two, you will know who is a narcissist and who isn’t.

They love to blame

the narcissistic coworker

They are never wrong. When narcissists are called out for their noxious attitude, they tend to shift the blame to the offending party.

To them, life works like the UNO reverse card. Whenever they are stuck facing a situation where they have to face criticism, they start playing the blame game. They would come up with the most ridiculous of excuses to prove they aren’t wrong.

If a co-worker gives them negative feedback or criticizes them, they believe they are entitled to lash out and blame them for feedback, not themselves. That’s because they can never be held accountable for their actions.

Toxicity surrounds them

Passing judgmental remarks, throwing tantrums, and ridiculing others in the workplace — for what? Only to hide their measly self-conscious selves. But they don’t showcase what lies at their core.

They indulge in criticism and personal attacks to hide their own insecurities. It only creates a toxic environment for the entire workplace.

If you see a narcissistic co-worker trying to put you down and shoving their ego in your face, you should not give in but stand strong against their toxic nature. The moment you give in to their emotional attacks and threats, you will forever stay a victim of their abuse.

See Also: 5 Really Useful Tips For Dealing With Toxic Bosses At Work

They exploit and take advantage of you

It is common for a child to toss away the toys he gets bored of. But for a grown-up working in a prestige organization to do the same? How would it feel?

Well, narcissists will only approach and befriend you if they seek some sort of benefit from you. Soon, they will set you aside or just walk over your good deeds. They only ask for help because they have an ulterior motive.

Once you are of no use to them, you will be treated like a nobody despite your help and care for them. Narcissists never feel guilty to behave as they do and there is no possibility for them to feel bad about it.

The world revolves around them

a narcissistic coworker

It’s all about them. The pleasure of narcissistic people lie in their need to enjoy talking only about themselves. That satiates their narcissistic tendencies. Your opinions and contribution at work won’t matter.

Bombarding others with their achievements and disregarding what others have to share is a common trait as well. If you think your coworker is not giving you enough space and suffocates you during meetings, then you are likely working with a narcissistic coworker.

When they feel someone is more vocal and interesting than they are, they will sever ties immediately. Only they are meant to be in the spotlight and nobody else matters.

Do these red flags ring a bell and seem a lot similar to your situation at work? Now that you are well aware of their narcissistic traits, you will know how to ignore them and pave a separate path. Always remember, never feed a narcissist’s ego.

The post How To Identify A Narcissist At Work: Nailing Down The Key Factors appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Navigating The Job Market Before Earning Your Degree

It’s never too early to prepare for your future or consider the steps you’ll need in building a successful career. We’re asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up,” from the time we enter primary school. However, the system isn’t quite set up to guide us to where we envision ourselves. It’s no secret that the job market comes with a rigorous map to navigate. To put this into perspective, in 2017, 53% of newly graduates are underemployed and having a tough time finding the right job.

It’s your career

You are the one going to work everyday. The job is yours. Timing and preparation for your future career is completely in your hands. To ease your scares, there are simple ways to start building a successful career for your future right now.

“College students are enjoying the longest run in job growth since the late 1990s,” Phil Gardner, Director of the Collegiate Employment Research Institute says, “but that doesn’t mean navigating the job market is easy.” Available wages for young college graduates has been on a steady incline since 2012. This year, graduating seniors were offered 1.10 jobs on average. It’s considered a 12-year high.

build a successful career

Understanding your options

From 2000 to 2018, college graduates experienced a 1% increase in unemployment and a 4% increase in steady underemployment. 2014 to 2018 brought on the difficulty of college graduates finding successful internships. This meant that there was a 5% less chance of students being offered a position upon completing their internship and a 6% less chance of students being hired on full-time.

See Also: Can Vocational Training Help In Redefining Success?

Moving forward, deciding your future path comes with understanding the job and college markets. When picking a major, keep in mind that 4 in 5 employers look at applicants with a wide knowledge of liberal arts and sciences. About 93% of them find soft skills really important.

Considering investing in a liberal arts education will provide you with the critical thinking, communication, and problem solving skills to help you succeed in the workplace.

Furthermore, you’ll need to select a major during the decision-making process. 88% of 2017 high school graduates considered the in-demand jobs before making a decision regarding their major.

17% of high school students planned to chase the business path, 87% planning on a STEM career path. Although 8 in 10 of the fastest growing jobs for college graduates are in STEM, many graduate-level STEM programs do not require a related bachelor’s degree. STEM careers do require the soft skills learned through liberal arts.

See Also: Top Jobs You Can Get With A Math Degree

What you can do

On the other hand, there are simple steps for a high school student to take in the beginning phases of building a successful career. For example, if you are interested in the arts and medicine fields, consider seeing a career counselor or visiting a job fair. Business minds could benefit from collecting letters of reference and building an online portfolio to let employers see your creative work by hosting your projects digitally.

building a career successfully

Upon graduation, it can take about 6 months for you to find your desired field. Building experience in the field beforehand is always a great step to take. The same goes for applying for positions 3 to 4 months before graduation. You can do this by looking online. Handscape, WayUp, and Indeed are great platforms to job hunt on.

If you have a passion for going to great lengths, you may benefit from starting a professional network on LinkedIn. It’s what I consider “social media for professionals.”

Don’t let this frighten you, however. Essentially, everyone is qualified to be a professional. LinkedIn is a great platform to network on since nearly 9 of 10 recruiters use it when conducting an online search for job candidates.

The initial step in establishing a successful career begins with oriented planning. Continue down to the infographic below for specifics on how to find key influencers on Linkedin, what a professional headshot looks like, how to create meaningful content, stay memorable, and maintain a professional presence.

64% of American graduates are employed or engaged in further study. Don’t let yourself be a potential victim to the 36% of graduates struggling from under or unemployment.

College to Career
Source: Bellarmine University

The post Navigating The Job Market Before Earning Your Degree appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

The Effects of Being In A Sexless Marriage On Your Mental Health

What is a sexless marriage? Can it affect your mental health?

Research suggests that being in a sexless marriage doesn’t mean that you and your partner are never intimate. It means that you are only having sex once or fewer times a month.

When sex is lacking in a marriage, both partners suffer. It’s more than just having an orgasm and feeling great (though that doesn’t hurt either). It’s about connecting with your partner in mind, body, and soul. It is about feeling secure in your relationship.

When these important aspects of love are taken out of the marital equation, trouble is soon to follow.

Here are 7 studies that prove that a sexless marriage can hurt your relationship and your mental health- and there’s nothing shallow about it.

Sexless Marriage Causes Depression

Research proves that marital satisfaction is significantly associated with being satisfied in bed. Not only does sex feel amazing and lower your stress levels, but it also connects a couple on a romantic and emotional level.

Another study highlights that increasing sexual activity from once a month to once a week can raise happiness levels as much as making an extra $50,000 at your job.
When you do not have the emotional connection and the flow of beneficial oxytocin running through your body that comes from having sex, you may begin to feel depressed.

Here are some signs that your mental health has taken a turn toward depression:

  • Feeling helpless, sad, and alone
  • Experiencing feelings of worthlessness
  • Constant fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Constant pessimism
  • Feeling unmotivated
  • A significant change in appetite or eating habits
  • Irritability
  • Digestive issues
  • Scattered thoughts or difficulty concentrating

See Also: 7 Ways You Can Start Coping With Depression Naturally

Reduces Marital Trust

cope with a sexless marriage

Studies done by Northwestern University and Redeemer University College found that trust is important to a happy marriage.

The precious oxytocin hormone released during intimacy has been shown to cause a substantial increase in trust, allowing people to feel braver, more trusting of their spouse, and more willing to take emotional and social risks together.

When you are in a sexless marriage, you may feel less physically and emotionally trusting of your partner, which can damage other areas of your relationship.

Straying Thoughts and Hearts

Couples who spend time together are happier than those who don’t and it doesn’t have to be special. Studies show that anything from washing dishes side by side to romantic date night can boost happiness and lower stress. And sex certainly contributes to happiness.

Studies also suggest that the oxytocin released after sex is responsible for feelings of monogamy – particularly in men.

When you are not feeling emotionally or sexually satisfied in your marriage, you may have thoughts of looking elsewhere for such satisfaction. This may cause you to feel guilty or worse, follow through with your desire to cheat and possibly ruin your relationship.

See Also: Tips For Happy Marriage: 7 Simple Ways To Maintain A Loving Relationship

Stunts Communication Skills

When you are no longer intimate with your spouse, you may feel uncomfortable opening up and being vulnerable with one another. This can severely stunt your communication skills.

We have all heard that communication is the backbone of a healthy marriage, but did you know communication also contributes to a healthy sex life? Research proves that couples who are willing to talk about sex enjoy higher relationship satisfaction and increased orgasm frequency in women.

Couples need to discuss their sex life. Communicate about what feels good in bed, what kinks you’re into, and what you and your spouse can do to make sex feel more satisfying for you. It is also essential that couples be open, honest, and kind about what may be stopping them from enjoying a healthy sex life.

Studies show that stress can negatively affect your libido. Hurt feelings from past relationship mistakes, marital boredom, and certain medications can also play a role in a lowered libido.

You Become Easily Irritated

Sexual satisfaction predicts heightened emotional intimacy for couples. The more satisfied you are in bed, the closer you will feel to your partner. When this intimacy is lacking, you may find you are growing apart or becoming irritated with one another.

Because oxytocin makes you feel calmer and less stressed, a lack of this love hormone can do just the opposite. As your mental health and relationship happiness decline, you may start to feel annoyed with your spouse over small things. Arguments become more frequent and you may even hate being in the same room with them.

Lack of Intimacy Hurts your Emotional Connection

Is it normal for your sex life to take a dip? Yes and no. Research shows that later life couples (ages 70-86) were more likely to choose emotional intimacy over sexual intimacy as they age. But those same studies also indicate that midlife couples (ages 50-69) often become distressed by changes in their sex life.

So yes, your sex life is sure to change and go through ebbs and flows the older you get. However, a complete lack of sex or only having sex once a month is sure to create problems in your marriage and with your mental health. Instead of favoring your emotional connection, you may feel like you are growing apart.

Resentment Snowballs

coping with a sexless marriage

When you are not being regularly intimate with your spouse, it can cause resentment to build. You may start to wonder why your spouse doesn’t care about your sexual satisfaction. More importantly, you begin to question why they are giving up on the emotional connection you share or overlooking the wonderful benefits that sex brings to your marriage.

If you have discussed your sex life at length and your spouse doesn’t seem to want to change or communicate about why they are resistant to intimacy, it can cause you to feel neglected, hurt, and angry.

If a lack of intimacy is causing you to have thoughts of straying, you may even start to resent your spouse for making you feel the need to look outside your marriage for pleasure or validation.

Are you living in a sexless marriage? If so, this can affect your fidelity and self-esteem. It can weaken the love you once felt for your partner. There is no doubt that a lack of sex can hurt your mental health, your feelings, and in some cases, even your physical health.

The post The Effects of Being In A Sexless Marriage On Your Mental Health appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Nikola Tesla: The Man Who Defeated The Prediction Fate

In today’s world of advancing technologies and innovation-obsessed cultures, there are a number of technological heroes we should be thankful for. The new gadgetry made feasible for every day use has since reverberated with billions of people across the globe.

One of those original superstars of inventions was Nikola Tesla (1856-1943), who is responsible for nearly 300 patents and numerous breakthroughs in technology. His fame fluctuated significantly during his lifetime while it reached to a well-deserved peak in the recent times.

Today, Tesla’s name has already graced one of the most reputed and newsworthy technological companies. Also, his reliable predictions have made him a bona fide inspiration of all time. He also collaborated with Thomas Edison, another prominent inventor.

Nikola Tesla had correctly predicted the birth of smartphones, internet, Wi-Fi, and every type of wireless communication. Along with that, he had invented a great number of innovations developed in the 21st century.

Without Tesla, it is hard to even imagine what it would look like if he had not influenced them. We may not have the TV, the radio, AC electricity, fluorescent lighting, Tesla coils, and radio-controlled devices. We wouldn’t have neon lighting, x-rays, microwaves, robotics, radar, and hundreds of other useful inventions, too.

Wondering what we have done without this genius? Let’s have a look at these Nikola Tesla predictions.

Wi-Fi

Prediction: “Present wireless receiving apparatus will be scrapped for much simpler machines; static and all forms of interference will be eliminated, so that innumerable transmitters and receivers may be operated without interference. It is more than probable that the household’s daily newspaper will be printed ‘wirelessly’ in the home during the night. Domestic management—the problems of heat, light and household mechanics—will be freed from all labor through beneficent wireless power.”

Undoubtedly, a person who was obsessed with wireless technology can easily envy Wi-Fi and can gladly predict how a wireless device can be beneficial for future generations.

See Also: How WiFi6 Will Make Your Home (And Business) Better

Smart phones

nikola tesla predictions smartphone

Prediction: “When wireless is perfectly applied, the whole earth will be converted into a huge brain, which in fact it is, all things being particles of a real and rhythmic whole. We shall be able to communicate with one another instantly, irrespective of distance. Not only this but through television and telephony, we shall see and hear one another as perfectly as though we were face to face, despite intervening distances of thousands of miles; and the instruments through which we shall be able to do his will be amazingly simple compared with our present telephone. A man will be able to carry one in his vest pocket.”

The above description by Tesla may quickly sound like the prediction of a smartphone to the current generation. Nikola envisioned wireless devices, just like a Wi-Fi, that would be able to incorporate telephonic technology and videos over the rays of transmission like the internet and virtual reality.

See Also: How Do Smartphones Help Business Succeed

Self-driving Cars

Prediction: “As early as 1898, I proposed to representatives of a large manufacturing concern the construction and public exhibition of an automobile carriage which, left to itself, would perform a great variety of operations involving something akin to judgment.”

After the prediction of wireless technologies, he went on to predict today’s driving technologies. Although it took more than a century to make it into a reality, the effort led a larger than life innovator company making it possible with a timeless imagination.

Wireless Energy Transmission

Prediction: “When the wireless transmission of power is made commercial, transport and transmission will be revolutionized. Already motion pictures have been transmitted by wireless over a short distance. Later the distance will be illimitable, and by later, I mean only a few years hence. Pictures are transmitted over wires—they were telegraphed successfully through the point system thirty years ago. When wireless transmission of power becomes general, these methods will be as crude as is the steam locomotive compared with the electric train.”

As mentioned above, Tesla’s lifelong inventions involved a massive project of wireless transmission of energy across long distances. During a lecture at her research center, Stella Drake (Physicist at Crowd Writer) elaborated that; “Tesla came to know the revolutionary potential of the generation and consumption of energy in 1926. This is the thing our scientists are still struggling as a challenge to understand and implement.”

Since, Tesla worked and, fortunately, got a motivating outcome of the Tower of Power in 1904 in Shoreham, Long Island, New York; however, the tower was destroyed curiously by the U.S. Government in 1917 on suspicion of it being used by the Germans.

Fuel-less Aircrafts

Prediction: “Perhaps the most valuable application of wireless energy will be the propulsion of flying machines, which will carry no fuel and will be free from any limitations of the present airplanes and dirigibles. We shall ride from New York to Europe in a few hours. International boundaries will be largely obliterated, and a great step will be made toward the unification and harmonious existence of the various races inhabiting the globe. Wireless will not only make possible the supply of energy to the region, however inaccessible, but it will be effective politically by harmonizing international interests; it will create understanding instead of differences.”

With the idea of wireless energy transmission, he predicted the ability of rays to transmit energy over great and long distances without wires and even fuels.

The Death Ray

The death ray or mass destruction mutually assured destructive weapon was the last invention of Tesla. He worked on a particle beam weapon in hope to end all wars. He thought that if countries would have these weapons, wars would be endless. The reason was that it can throw out attacks hundreds of miles away.

The death ray was never completed, while the documented plans were lost mysteriously as well. Successfully, the concept was the cornerstone in cold wars. The mutually assured description and countries with nuclear weapons were not daring to attack each other.

Blogging Reporter Scotsman Richard at Premium Jackets confirmed that there was an FBI man charged for searching for Tesla’s notes after his death, concluded that there was nothing useful in his paperwork regarding the death ray. However, it is expected that it’s not the first time an official governmental agency is hiding information and not telling the truth.

MRI

nikola tesla predictions mri

Prediction: “I expect to photograph thoughts. In 1893, while engaged in certain investigations, I became convinced that a definite image formed in thought, must by reflex action, produce a corresponding image on the retina, which might be read by a suitable apparatus…Now, if it be true that a thought reflects an image on the retina, it is a mere question of illuminating the same property and taking photographs, and then using the ordinary methods which are available to project the image on a screen… If this can be done successfully, then the objects imagined by a person would be clearly reflected on the screen as they are formed, and in this way, every thought of the individual could be read. Our minds would then, indeed, be like open books.”

When talking about modern inventions, Tesla expanded outlandish ideas with the above prediction, more like an MRI, serving as the most useful diagnostic tool of the century.

Drone Technology

In 1898, at an Electrical Exhibition at New York’s Madison Square Garden, Tesla demonstrated a remote-controlled boat. He made the antennae-equipped four-feet long boat went through a small pool with flashing lights. Sost of the audiences present were mesmerized with the magic with military officials taking it like a torpedo. In the present, there are a variety of controlled devices the military has made use of. This includes drones and missiles.

See Also: 7 Creative Ways To Use Drones For Kids’ Learning

Flying Cars

Prediction: “I foresee the development of the flying machine exceeding that of the automobile, and I expect Mr. Ford to make large contributions toward this progress. The problem of parking automobiles and furnishing separate roads for commercial and pleasure traffic will be solved. Belted parking towers will arise in our large cities, and the roads will be multiplied through sheer necessity, or finally rendered unnecessary when civilization exchanges wheels for wings.”

Tesla delved into the world of anti-gravity successfully. In 1928, he came up with an electro propulsive flying machine resembling a helicopter. Also, he was reported to have plans for the engine called an anti-electromagnetic field drive or Space Drive as well. This may lead us to his vision of the future with flying cars.

Woman Empowerment

Prediction: “This struggle of the human female toward sex equality will end in a new sex order, with the female as superior.”

This prediction may not be a technological invention. However, Nikola Tesla’s vision of a world where women could be superior and do jobs that only men did before is now starting to actively manifest. Recently, the U.S. Presidential election featured the first-ever female nominee; the prediction may reach an apex soon.

Conclusion

The above Nikola Tesla predictions are some of his most famous statements. There are other multiple predictions that are expected to come true from the veritable oracle. Let’s see where the time takes the vision of the genius named Tesla.

The post Nikola Tesla: The Man Who Defeated The Prediction Fate appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Take The Strain Out of Exercise: A Look at The Best Yoga Apps

Working out for that dream body has since become incorporated into many people’s daily routines. There are many different methods of working out. Depending on the end goal, individual workouts will all be different. For example, those who are looking to body build will do different exercises compared to someone toning. One of the best ways to work out is yoga. The good thing is that there are great yoga apps for beginners available.

Yoga has been around for 5,000 years and offers an enduring exercise program. Doing yoga burns calories and tones muscles. It is also perfect for a total mind-body workout that combines a range of strengthening poses with deep breathing and meditation or relaxation. There are over 100 different forms of yoga. Some are fast-paced and intense, while others are gentle and relaxing.

Yoga has since become a popular type of excise for many. There are different types of yoga, such as Power and Hatha, which are two very different kinds of workouts. However, apps offer individuals the flexibility to work out at home or help beginners get comfortable. Luckily, there are many apps available which can help. Here is a list of the best yoga apps for beginners you can check.

Daily Yoga

daily yoga app
Via 4appsapk.com

Daily Yoga is excellent for individuals who are well-versed with yoga or for those who are just starting. It offers hundreds of class plans for all abilities and users can find many asanas. The step-by-step daily instruction guide will help users through every position and movement when doing yoga. It also helps them safely master challenging poses, which they wouldn’t usually be able to do.

As time goes on, the users’ flexibility increases, allowing them to perfect different positions. The app includes more than 50 plans for working out and will help users get fit with yoga. It also connects users to a global community of people who share the same interests to keep them motivated.

Yoga Studio

yoga studio app
Via technologyguide.com

Yoga Studio is an all-in-one meditation and yoga app. It features over 130 videos for yoga users and meditation videos, which range from 5 minutes to 1 hour. The app offers users a carefully curated selection of classes that are catered and tailored for their needs. This means finding what’s right for them is a breeze.

The app also offers classes based on ability, intensity and duration. This allows users to tailor their workout to meet their requirements.

See Also: Yoga and Health: From Better Mental Health To Improved Sleep Quality

Down Dog

down dog app

Down Dog offers its users over 30,000 configurations. It gives users a new yoga practice every time they step onto the mat. Plus users learn a variety of yoga exercises to avoid getting bored.

Down Dog features a 3-day induction into yoga and practices that are specifically designed to strengthen and stretch the backs. Users can also upgrade a paid feature and gain access to a Boost feature, which targets 12 different areas of practice from seven different yoga instructors.

Pocket Yoga

pocket yoga app
Via healthista.com

Pocket Yoga is like having a yoga instructor inside your smartphone from Smartphone Checker. The app has a very detailed voice and visual instructions that help users and guide them through each pose and every breath.

There are over 200 beautifully illustrated images on the app, which shows users the correct posture and alignment. It also has an included dictionary, which describes the benefits and techniques of different poses. There are 27 sessions to choose from that are designed by experienced yoga instructors. Each pose comes with varying degrees of duration and ability, which makes the app an excellent yoga source.

See Also: Yoga Helps You Love Yourself

5 Minute Yoga

5-min-yoga-app
Via blogs.systweak.com

As indicated by the name, the 5-Minute Yoga app offers users quick and effective 5-minute yoga sessions. They are great because users can reap the benefits of doing yoga while not taking up too much time in their day. Continually using the app daily can help improve flexibility and increase strength. It can also help tone muscles and reduce stress, which clearly makes it one of the best yoga apps for beginners available.

The post Take The Strain Out of Exercise: A Look at The Best Yoga Apps appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

A 10-Minute Guide On How to Ease Neck and Shoulder Pain

Our shoulders often hold a lot of our stress and that causes stiffness and uncomfortable pain. This pain may sound like second nature for someone who works long hours, has a busy schedule or just experiences chronic stress.

While it may be an easy trigger response to relieve discomfort with painkillers, hot packs or secret remedies, the pain can usually manage to find its way back with these methods. Neck and shoulder pain is not new, but how you treat it can change the way you feel.

Instead of spending time and money on medication, Brain Education TV has created a simple 10-minute guide on how to ease neck and shoulder pain. The key to releasing this pain is breathing. It will help you focus and clear your mind so you can release the stuffiness and negative energy that is causing unwanted pain in your neck and shoulders.

Step 1: Breathe out any negativity

neck and shoulder pain

Find a comfortable place and sit on a mat or on the floor. Start by sitting upright with your legs crossed and slowly take a deep breath in and out. Remember to focus on exhaling the negative energy and pain you feel within with every breath you take. While doing this, slowly bring your upper body forward and over your legs. Feel the stretch in your spine.

By stretching your upper body, you are releasing the tension and creating circulation. And by acknowledging your discomfort, you are allowing yourself to focus on it and heal it properly.

Step 2: Rotate your shoulders

From the same position, slowly rotate your shoulders forward. While doing, this make sure that you feel the motion in your shoulders. Try to focus on rotating that pain out with every exhale. Do this for 30 seconds and then rotate them in the opposite direction. You should feel your shoulders loosen up.

Rotating your shoulders allows lubrication for your joints, which help ease the pain and discomfort. You want to make sure that you are doing these movements at a comfortable place to avoid hurting yourself.

Step 3: Stretch your sides

ease neck and shoulder pain

Now, take your left hand, bring it over your head to the right and bring your right hand over your lap to the left side of your body. Feel that stretch and hold this position for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the same step on the other side. You will feel the stretch on both sides of your body and in your torso.

See Also: 10 Stretches To Do Right Now For Back Pain Relief

Step 4: Rotate your neck

Next, place both of your hands on your knees with the palms facing up. Begin to slowly rotate your neck at a comfortable pace. While doing so, you want to make sure that there is a gap between your neck and the base of the skull. Do this for 5 slow rotations and switch directions.

While rotating your neck, remember to breathe in and out. Feel the stretch on both sides of the neck and try to feel your muscles relax.

Step 5: Stretch your trapezius

Your trapezius is the muscle that links your neck and shoulders together. Return your neck to the center and tilt your head to the right and touch your right ear to your right shoulder. Make sure that your left shoulder is in place. To get a better stretch, you could use your hand to press down on your head and hold for 10-15 seconds.

Find time in your day to perform these tips on how to ease neck and shoulder pain. You could do it in the morning before starting your day, during a break while at work or after a long day to help you unwind and relax.

The post A 10-Minute Guide On How to Ease Neck and Shoulder Pain appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Simple Money Hacks That Every Millennial Needs To Know

If the media reports, editorials, and advice columns are to be believed, millennials can leave a lot to be desired when it comes to saving and spending money wisely. Living in the moment isn’t such a bad idea when those moments are fast running out! However, using ‘treat yourself’ as an excuse to indulge also isn’t all that great for our bank accounts.

With many of us held captive to large student loans and ever-increasing living costs, it isn’t uncommon to find ourselves with $5 left in our bank accounts at the end of the week and with little to show for it. If this sounds all too familiar, chances are you could use a few simple money hacks to help you turn your finances around.

Let’s get started with these money management tips for millennials.

Look At Your Bank Statements

Do you know where all of your money is going each week? There’s a good chance you don’t. Spending a little here and there may seem harmless — until you’ve spent $500 over the last six months on cute outfits for your dog.

Taking a look at your bank statement might seem scary, but it will help you identify exactly where your spending is going wrong and where you could be saving a little each month. Grab your last few bank statements and a highlighter and start marking everything that isn’t a necessity.

And no, expensive coffees, dining out or going to see live music are not necessities.

Necessities include expenses like groceries, rent, utilities, and fuel. Reduce your highlighted expenses to a few treats a month and save the rest.

Be Responsible With Installment-Based Payment Plans

money management tips for millennial

Laybuy, Afterpay, and other “Shop now, pay later!” payment options make it all too easy to make spur-of-the-moment purchases. While they’re a fantastic convenience, they also tempt you into buying things you wouldn’t buy usually if you had to pay a lump sum or save up.

Upfront payment is always the best option. As my grandparents used to tell me, “Don’t buy something unless you can pay cash for it”. This can prevent you from spending outside your means.

And if you do choose to use one of these options?

At least be responsible with it and limit the number of items you have on a plan at any given time.

Keep Track Of Your Subscriptions

There’s no doubt that most of us have signed up for a subscription service and found ourselves hardly using it. Or, for that matter, signed up for one of those super enticing “First 30 Days Free!” offers and forgotten to unsubscribe.

Cancelling any subscriptions that you no longer use is a great way to save a little extra. Not sure if you’re getting your money’s worth?

Take the monthly cost of the service and divide this by the amount of times you use it per month. If the cost-per-use is pretty high, then unsubscribing is a safe bet.

Write Out Your Financial Goals

It may sound cheesy, but writing out your financial goals can help keep you accountable. It’s a great way to drive you to work towards your goals, whether that’s buying your first home, vehicle or saving for a new piece of technology.

Here are a few examples of how to make saving for large items easy.

  • A $20,000 car every 10 years? Save $38 a week.
  • A $2,500 laptop every 4 years? Save $12 a week.
  • A $1,800 iPhone every 2 years? Save $17 a week.

Setting money aside for big-ticket items you know you’ll need will leave you feeling prepared.

See Also: How to Stick to your Financial New Year’s Resolution

Accumulate An Emergency Fund

Millennials, listen up. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but savings and an emergency fund are not the same thing. I only learned this recently myself!

An emergency fund is separate from your savings. It’s mean to be used to cover medical expenses, family responsibilities, or – as is becoming increasingly common – job loss.

Your emergency fund should ideally consist of 3 to 6 months worth of income so that you can keep your head above water during a financial emergency or unforeseen circumstances.

Save For Retirement

money management tip for millennial

 

Yeah, I said it.

Whether you are busy saving for a new car, a pair of shoes, or a home, retirement isn’t getting any further away. The best way to tackle retirement savings is to start setting some money aside each month and make the most of any retirement saving schemes offered by your government. They’ll often include added bonuses and contributions to incentivise the savings process.

Building Your Savings Doesn’t Have To Be Difficult

Learning to separate necessities from luxuries is an important step in not only being able to save money, but also to pay off personal and student loans and credit cards while also being able to put money aside for the future.

As a millennial myself, I know the influence of social media. The seemingly perfect lives of Instagram influencers or Facebook friends can leave you feeling like you’re struggling to keep up. But remember, “If you live fake rich now, you’ll live real poor later.”

Start working on these money management tips for millennials and have peace of mind when it comes to your future.

The post Simple Money Hacks That Every Millennial Needs To Know appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

5 Things To Do After Failing An Exam

“I’m doomed.”

This is probably your thought after failing an exam. It’s just like the world coming to an end. Then, you begin to imagine the worst, like you not being able to graduate or get a better job. You start to think that your dream of going to college is simply kaput or that your dream promotion is never going to be within your reach.

How distressing it truly is if you didn’t make the grade in an exam, especially a major one.

Fortunately, there are ways to pick yourself up if you have failed an exam. Here are the things to do after failing an exam:

Don’t lose your nerve

There is actually no need to panic because failing an exam happens to everybody. It’s basically part and parcel of an individual’s academic life. Losing control of yourself is going to take you nowhere.

Know two crucial facts when it comes to this scenario:

1) You’ve got a great deal of company (of exam “failers”).

2) You have another chance to make a better grade.

Charge it to experience, they say. Failing one exam is just one obstacle to hurdle, one story to tell, and another stepping stone to pass with flying colors.

It’s alright to grieve

what to do after failing an exam

Grieving is one of your basic rights if you have failed. You can even celebrate it, but just for a day. Stay in your bed until lunch time, indulge in eating your favorite chocolates, go shopping with your friends or drink more than you are used to.

Let the disappointment sink in and then throw it to the wind. After that, you tell yourself that you have to move on. You have to get back on track.

Put things in the proper perspective

Analyze the situation and where you are at after your grieving period. Mull over where the circumstances had gone wrong. Look back on your attitude, habits, and approach when you were studying.

Where could you have faltered in your test prep? Did you pick the right books and online study guide? Maybe you didn’t know how to effectively use your practice tests? Perhaps you could have adhered to a better study schedule. Worse, you might have procrastinated many times that you weren’t able to cover all the pertinent topics.

The next time around, you should know what to do to make your test prep more motivating and less boring. Try asking for help as well. Form a study group, join a review class or hire a mentor or tutor. Think about why you might have failed your exam and look for ways to rectify it.

Think about what you should do in the future

This time around, get the future into the picture. Devise a better strategy, such as a better time frame and action plan.

When is the best time to retake your exam? Put that in priority consideration. Decide on a more conducive test prep program at the same time.

Do you go to an academy or study online? What study materials are you going to utilize?

To get ample ideas, you can join a group or community online and interact with fellow test-takers.

Don’t hesitate to ask for help

to do after failing an exam

Humbling yourself and asking for help is definitely better than taking pride in being ignorant. Acknowledging that you need assistance means that you’re smart enough to realize that you need to understand something. If you have the resources, you can hire a tutor or enroll in an online study program where you can avail of the guidance of a mentor.

Organizing a study group works, too. Or if you’re joining a class, don’t be embarrassed to raise your hand and ask your teacher if you don’t understand a topic.

Otherwise, if you’re really uncomfortable, you can ask him or her in private. Even superheroes need help sometimes, and so do mortal test-takers!

There is hope after an academic fall

You don’t stay down after failing an exam. Remember, life goes on. You wouldn’t want to be left behind. These tips about how to recover after failing an exam aims to steer you away from doom and gloom and lead you toward propitious second chances.

See Also: Ace Your College Exams: Tips On How to Study for A Test In College

The post 5 Things To Do After Failing An Exam appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Can Vocational Training Help In Redefining Success?

For decades, the advice was the same:

Get an education, graduate, get a job, get married, buy a house, start a family, work until you are 65, and then retire comfortably.

Over the last 30 years, each stage in life has been under attack, however. Housing prices have surged out of control. The cost of getting a college education has gone out of hand. Student loan debt has become a household staple.

Pensions are disappearing and the stock market is proving too volatile to support private retirement accounts. People are even discovering that it’s too expensive to get married and have children. The cost of living is soaring faster than wage growth can keep up.

These factors are putting people in difficult positions. But what if there’s a way to beat the system by redefining success?

What Is Success, Anyway?

redefine success

Different generations have different criteria for what it means to be successful. Baby boomers overwhelmingly tie their families and their upbringings to their sense of identity and success, but that is starting to shift. The younger generations tie their sense of identity to their schooling and careers. It links their sense of accomplishment to the greater economy.

This means that the sense of reaching adulthood is also tied to the economy and the job market for the overwhelming majority of younger generations. People are seeing student loan debt and dependence on their parents to get a head start in life not just as an obstacle to their independence, but also as a barrier to entry for adulthood.

Many people agree that things like buying a house, getting married, and starting a family are milestones that signal adulthood. However, the difficulty of accomplishing these things in the current economy is actually preventing working adults from feeling like adults.

75% of people say that financial independence is the biggest marker for adulthood, but it seems that reaching that goal is taking longer than ever.

See Also: What Is Your Success Meter?

Is It Time To Start Redefining Success?

Graduating with a crushing student loan debt load is no longer going to work if people want to achieve success and financial independence. Going to college just to get a job that will pay back your student loans isn’t altogether helpful. But there’s one path that has been overlooked by many and that path is vocational training.

Trade and vocational school graduates are finished with their education in a fraction of the time it takes to complete a four-year degree. While they do often start out making less than a college graduate, over a decade, their earnings become almost identical to those of college graduates.

Trade and vocational school students spend a quarter of the money in total that college students spend on their tuition. The average vocational or trade school student graduates with a third the student loan debt load as their college peers. What’s more, vocational and trade grads have half the unemployment rate of college graduates.

All this translates to getting into the workforce sooner, paying off student loan debt quicker, and moving forward with their lives quicker than those who choose the college route.

While a college grad may take 20 years or more to pay back student loans, that first ten years of higher earnings doesn’t provide them with the ability to actually get ahead.

Vocational grads like plumbers, electricians, HVAC contractors, and more are in a much better position to start their lives and work toward success at an earlier point. After paying student loans, college graduates are actually making less money than vocational grads.

There Is A Shortage of Tradespeople

how redefining success

As the Baby Boomer generation retires, contractors are having difficulty finding HVAC, electricians, plumbers, roofers, and more. Hospitals are having trouble finding LPNs, CNAs, and lab techs. Metal workers say that a shortage of qualified talent is the biggest threat to their workforce today. Skilled tradespeople are all but guaranteed a path to success in the current economy.

Are you ready to redefine success and take control of your life?

Stop listening to what society tells you it means to be successful and create your own path in life. Learn more about the benefits of a vocational school education from the infographic below!
How to Become Successful
Source: Vocational Training HQ

The post Can Vocational Training Help In Redefining Success? appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Find the Best Nail Shape for You: A Quick Guide

Playing with different kinds of nail colors is fun and relaxing. But when it comes to truly making your hands beautiful, it’s not all about the color or finish of your manicure. To have beautiful nails, don’t just look at your polish. You also have to know how to find the best nail shape for you.

Each hand, finger, and nail shape is different, and we are all born with various features. However, with the right nail shape, short fingers can look longer and hands can look daintier, edgier or more sophisticated to go with a particular look.

Get the right shape that accentuates those beautiful hands with these tips on how to find the best nail shape for you:

  • Round

round nail shape

This type is the simplest and most natural look that you can do for your nails. It is effortless to maintain, especially if you have time growing your nails.

To achieve this look, simply cut your nails to create an arc similar to the arch of your cuticles. Then, file off any of the rough edges.

A round nail is best when you are after strong nails. If you have visually long nails even after cutting, this makes your hands look very feminine and beautiful. Gel manicure would look lovely over it.

  • Oval

oval nail shape

This shape is quite difficult to execute. The form should be symmetrical, and the point is a little between oval and almond. If you file it too much, you could end up getting either one so it would take time to file your nails to get the perfect shape. It’s perfect for people with long fingernails who want a beautiful, sophisticated look because it creates a more feminine vibe.

  • Almond

almond nail shape

Almond shape looks lovely on glamorous, eye-catching events. It looks a little like an oval, but it is more tapered on the sides to shape more like an almond. To make it noticeable, you have to have longer nails.

To get the perfect shape, make sure to ask your nail salon to do it for you. It is one of the most playful designs you can get because it works for medium length nails. When you get tired, you can turn it into a squoval – a square or even an oval shape.

  • Square

square nail shape

Square nails are the easiest to make. To achieve this look, just file your nails down and make sure that ends become perpendicular to the nail. It is one of the most versatile looks because it works for either short or long nails.

However, if you already have short nails, the square may make your nails look even shorter. If that’s the case, go for an oval, round or squoval to make the shortness look less noticeable.

  • Squoval

squoval nail shape

It seems the most natural because most people are already born with this kind of nail shape. That’s why it is suitable for both long and short nails.

For the nails you currently have now, you only need to file a little bit to get the perfect squoval shape and you’re good to go. If you want the square look but hate how sharp it is around the edges, this would work best for you.

  • Ballerina

ballerina nail shape

As the name suggests, the ballerina is a nail shaped like a ballerina’s pointed shoes. It is a longer version of a square, but it is a little more convex with a straight tip. It is slightly tapered like the oval. Instead of an arc, the tip is flat.

The ballerina works best for people who love growing their nails long or for people who love going to nail salons. It’s ideal for people who love putting on gel manicures or acrylics to achieve a longer nail and avoid damage to the natural nail.

  • Stiletto

stilleto nail shape
Via Pinterest

Stiletto nail design looks intimidating and deadly. Both sides are tapered to create a pointy end. It’s very dramatic, edgy, and can be best left in the hands of professional nail salons.

For this, you need the help of nail extensions or gel overlays to create the look. Your nail techs will shape and design your overlays to create the pointed tip for each nail. It also works best for gel manicure because the polish makes the design look more prominent.

  • Lipstick

lipstick nail shape
Via Pinterest

Going for an out of the box look for special avant-garde events? Choose the lipstick.

The lipstick is like a simple square nail but only longer and asymmetrical, meaning it is just tapered at one side of the nail. It creates an uneven look that is too risky, eye-catching, and highly unusual. It works best for an equally experimental or innovative fashion style.

There are plenty of options for you to choose from, but what would be best would totally be up to you. This guide on how to find the best nail shape for you is just here to help you out.

If you want feminine looks, you can make your hand look dainty and slender by choosing rounder nails shapes like round, oval, almond or squoval. If you want strong, intimidating nails, you can choose between the square, ballerina and stiletto.

See Also: How to Remove Acrylic Nails

The post How to Find the Best Nail Shape for You: A Quick Guide appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Postpartum Challenges: What New Mothers Need to Know

Postpartum is frequently thought of as the first six weeks after giving birth. Six weeks is when many women have their last medical appointment with their doctor. However, those of us that have had a baby or who have treated women postpartum know otherwise.

In 2018, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recognized that there was a fourth trimester of pregnancy, which lasts for 13 weeks postpartum. This was a big step in the right direction.

Postpartum is forever

postpartum challenges for moms

The changes that occur during pregnancy and postpartum can last for weeks, months, years or even the rest of a woman’s life. However, just because the body has changed means that it is any better or worse — just different.

Outlined below are many of the challenges women face postpartum and what to do about them.

Urinary incontinence

Just because you had a baby does not mean you will leak forever. If you have any urinary leakage, then you would benefit from getting help from a pelvic health or women’s health physical therapist. You may be pleasantly surprised to know that you may only need a few visits to prevent a lifetime of discomfort and embarrassment.

The pelvic floor is made up of muscles and can be treated. Many hip, back, and lower extremity injuries that occur years later could be avoided by taking care of the pelvic floor early in the postpartum period.

I often recommend that my patients have a check up with a pelvic health therapist six to eight weeks postpartum. If this is not a possibility in your area, there are many online resources for postpartum women.

Diastasis recti abdominis (DRA)

A split in the abdominal wall is also common in up to two thirds of women during pregnancy and postpartum. It should slowly improve on its own.

However, if the split does not resolve, then there are many nonsurgical options to improve it. A great place to start is diaphragmatic breathing, deep core stability, and Pilates with someone who is well-versed in DRA. If the DRA persists, reach out to a physical therapist.

Postpartum depression

Exercising postpartum decreases the risk for postpartum depression. So, begin exercising as soon as you feel comfortable. You can begin with gentle breathing and deep core exercises and slowly transition to Pilates, yoga, and walking.

When returning to moderate or intense exercise, wait until the postpartum bleeding has stopped or slowed down significantly. If you begin exercising and the bleeding increases, you are doing too much too soon.

Always walk before you run. You are not the same person you were prior to having a baby. Take it slowly and you will save yourself a lot of anguish later.

See Also: 19 Ways to Get Motivated to Exercise

Overtraining injuries and stress fractures

This is because stress is stress and your body cannot differentiate between emotional, mental or physical stress. The stress of having a new baby, not sleeping, healing from birth and much more does contribute to injuries.

Additionally, if you are breastfeeding, the calcium is pulled from your bones to create your milk supply. This is not to say you cannot exercise while breastfeeding — you can!

Should you decide to exercise, make sure you are not doing too much too soon. Always listen to your body.

Lastly, be kind to yourself

postpartum challenge

This is a period of change and growth for you and your family. Remember that despite what the media says, your body is still healing for a long time after giving birth. The better you treat it now, the better it will perform for you later.

The post Postpartum Challenges: What New Mothers Need to Know appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How To Accept Other People’s Differences

Everyone is different and we tend to accept that. However, actually dealing with those differences can be difficult, especially when they inconvenience us. Some might argue that we don’t have to accept or tolerate other people’s differences. But, is it even possible to control, unify, and standardize everyone?

The answer, of course, is no.

It’s impossible to unite everyone. Whether we are talking about religion, personality or pizza topping preferences, people are always going to be different. Chances are that not accepting those differences will make your life a bitter and discontented one. Accepting others for who they are, however, may give you new insights and make your life more fulfilling.

In this article, we’ll take a look at individual differences and how to accept them.

The paradox of individuality and acceptance

Slogans celebrating individuality and differences are everywhere, from A. A. Milne’s quote “The things that make me different are the things that make me” to the general advice to “be you!”.

While a lot of people try their hardest to fit in with the crowd, we are also quick to point out the things that make us unique and special (even when they don’t). Whether it’s liking an obscure band or being outspoken, we often like to think that it’s something unique to us. And it’s no surprise we think like that when individuality and being different is valued in our society, at least on the surface.

But those same characteristics we prize in ourselves can be something we despise, mock or judge in others. When someone likes an obscure band, we may think of them as a poser. When someone’s outspoken, we may find them rude. This, too, is natural.

While individuality is often prized, humans are still social beings who like to feel connected and included. And one of the easiest ways to feel close to someone is to create a common enemy.

Judging a trait in someone else while thinking it makes us special doesn’t necessarily make us hypocrites. Of course, it’s not nice. People may be right to call you out on your double standards.

But in the end, it’s just another type of the self-serving bias. Some psychologists define it as any cognitive bias that maintains and boosts our self-esteem. By branding something “good” in ourselves but “bad” in others, we are able to maintain a positive self-image. And there’s a reason why so much of self-help literature is about raising self-esteem.

Why is it hard to accept differences?

accepting others

If individuality is valued, why is it so hard to accept that people are different? Thinking that we are always in the right and others are in the wrong to maintain our self-esteem is only a part of it.

Another reason may have something to do with the need for control in our lives. As psychologist Lauren Leotti and colleagues write in their paper about control: “…the perception of control is not only desirable, but it is likely a psychological and biological necessity.”

Human beings, especially those who differ from us, are unpredictable and hard to control. And so, our need to control our environment – which includes other people – may make it hard for us to accept people who don’t behave in the way we want them to.

Of course, our prejudices also play an important part. Many people like to think that they are free of prejudices or that their prejudices are justified. But even when our prejudices are based on some first-hand experiences, they aren’t necessarily true and they stop us from accepting other people.

For example, I may think that all blondes are stupid airheads who are only interested in fashion and looks because all the blondes I’ve met are just that. When I meet a blonde who is still interested in fashion and beauty but also excels academically, I will have trouble accepting them because of my prejudice.

Often, our prejudices aren’t even based on first-hand experiences but are passed on to us by our family or society.

The thing is, that on the most basic level, prejudices and stereotypes are simply mental categories. As psychologist Gordon Allport writes in this book The Nature of Prejudice:

“The human mind must think with the aid of categories… Once formed, categories are the basis for normal prejudgment. We cannot possibly avoid this process. Orderly living depends upon it.”

That’s what makes getting rid of prejudices and accepting differences so hard. Those categories and patterns are often so ingrained in our thinking that it takes a lot of conscious effort to change them, even when we gain experiences that dispute our prejudices.

Why should you accept others’ differences?

If prejudices are so natural, why should we go out of our way to accept people’s differences? There are many reasons, but some of the more prevalent ones boil down to a simple fact.

Our societies are getting more multicultural and diverse. It’s always the individual that has to adapt to the changing surroundings, not the other way around. Carrying around the burden of prejudices and trying to bend people to your will in a diverse world can be exhausting and frustrating while learning to accept differences can broaden your horizons and bring you new friends.

At work, I occasionally clash with my colleagues. While I tend to take a softer, more lenient approach to both counseling and teaching, some of the teachers are strict and unyielding. While I rely on videos and 3D models to explain psychological concepts, some of my colleagues are firm believers in pens and papers and long-form note-taking.

And that’s fine because neither of us is right or wrong. While some students prefer my approach, others find strict rules more helpful. A diverse staff means that every student can find someone who they “click with”.

Our world is constantly evolving and our mental patterns can – and should – evolve with it.

How to start accepting others for who they are?

accepting others who they are

So, how do you go about accepting the fact that your roommate likes rock while you enjoy rap and other individual differences?

Here are five simple tips to practice tolerance and acceptance:

Check your prejudices

While becoming aware of them won’t erase them immediately, realizing where your prejudices lie is the first step to combating them.

Remember, while prejudices are almost always negative, stereotypes can be both positive and negative. But even positive stereotypes can be harmful. For instance, thinking that all Asian people are smart or that all women are nurturing may sound like a compliment, but it erases the individual differences inside those groups.

So when you find yourself judging someone, check why you’re judging them.

See Also: Breaking The Cycle of Confirmation Bias

Focus on the person, not the description

While descriptive characteristics are useful for describing people, they can never provide the full picture.

People are greater than the sum of their parts. For example, someone can be a teen girl who likes Euphoria and TikTok, but that’s definitely not all she is. Try to look past the descriptives and focus on the individual.

Give up the (need for) control

The only person who you can change and control is yourself. Remember that next time when you feel frustrated because of someone’s behavior or opinions.

This doesn’t mean that you should accept any and all behaviors, even when they are causing you discomfort. Politely pointing out unacceptable behavior is always encouraged, but take a moment to consider why you find the behavior unacceptable.

Put yourself in someone else’s shoes

Often, our inability to accept someone’s differences comes from our inability to understand it. But what if you tried to put yourself in someone else’s place and understand what makes them tick?

Chances are that if you approach others with empathy, you’ll also find it easier to accept them.

Don’t knock it until you try it

Some time ago, a friend tried to get me to go to the gym with him to try weightlifting. I resisted, because “weights aren’t my thing”. I also didn’t understand what he could possibly see in lifting a barbell and setting it down again several times in a row.

Eventually, I gave in and went along. My first foray into the weight room wasn’t a success, but after a couple of times, I could finally see the appeal.

Try out other people’s hobbies to understand why they like them. Or at least, don’t knock it until you try it.

Wrapping up

Individuality is often valued, but at the same time, we find it hard to accept that people are different. It’s natural to be wary of differences, but that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t try to combat our prejudices, especially in the diverse world of today. It takes a little work, but with some simple tips, you can learn to be more accepting of differences.

The post How To Accept Other People’s Differences appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

7 Steps to Keep Your Home Warm When the Weather Outside Is Frightful

When temperatures fall below freezing and everything is covered in ice, nothing compares to warming up in the comfort of your own home. However, keeping your home warm can be a little trickier this year as forecasters with the 2020 “Farmers’ Almanac” are predicting a particularly harsh winter.

Dubbed a “Polar Coaster”, it’s expected to bring fluctuating temperatures and frequent blasts of ice, sleet, and snow. Plus, the harshest winter weather could arrive earlier than normal.

Start keeping your home warm by taking these steps throughout the fall:

Plug up any air leaks

Air leaks in caulk or weather stripping allow frigid air to enter your house and warm air to leak out. You can save between 5% and 10% on your energy bill by simply plugging these leaks.

While the weather is still warm, check your weather stripping by closing doors and windows onto a sheet of paper. The stripping needs replacement if it slides easily around the paper. Find other air leaks in the home by holding a lit candle around doors, window frames, and wire holes. A flickering flame means you need to insulate the area.

For more high-tech, accurate results, consider using an air leak detector. Once the device is turned on, point it toward the locations where leaks are suspected. A light emanating from the device will scan the area.

If a leak exists, it’ll turn blue if the air is cold and red if the air is warm. If no leaks are detected, the light won’t change colors at all.

Insulate anything and everything

People often avoid insulating their homes because they imagine wrestling with huge pieces of itchy, pink material. Fortunately, insulation has gotten a lot easier to work with. It’s still just as crucial for keeping your home comfortable and efficient.

Look for areas without adequate insulation, starting with the attic, garage, and any unfinished spaces. Use cellulose and spray in those areas. They provide a superior thermal barrier between your home and the worst winter weather.

See Also: 5 Ways to Become More Energy Efficient with Your Heating System

Show some love to your furnace

A pleasant home requires a fully functioning furnace. Before you have to rely on it daily, a certified HVAC technician should inspect the furnace and give it a tuneup. This affordable service helps avoid breakdowns, improves energy efficiency, and fulfills the requirements of the warranty.

If the furnace is past its prime, have a replacement installed immediately. You want everything to be up and running before the first cold night of the year.

Give the roof a close inspection

inspecting roof

Heat travels upward and if your roof is full of holes, it’s allowing valuable heated air to drift outside. Inspect every inch of the roof for gaps, cracks and leaks, particularly around vents, chimneys, and valleys. Looking for missing, curled or damaged shingles is also important. Unused antennas or satellite dishes can damage your roof in a strong storm, so consider removing them while you’re already up there.

See Also: Roofing Inspection Checklist for Homeowners

Get serious about gutters

Gutters divert water away from your foundation which is just as important in the winter when you face melting snowfall and freezing water expansion. Take action before the leaves start to fall.

Clean the gutters thoroughly. Then, consider installing mesh guards to keep the next round of leaves out. Inspect the downspouts and install extenders as needed. If anything is seriously damaged, replace it in the fall when the work is easy to do.

Prepare your whole lawn

Unfortunately, landscaping doesn’t stop when the summer ends. Even when the grass stops growing taller, the roots are still growing deeper, making fall the ideal time to fertilize. Even more importantly, overgrown trees can be a serious liability in the winter if limbs fall into power lines and leave your furnace disabled. Hire an arborist to preemptively remove anything that could put your power at risk.

Don’t forget to decorate

keep your home warm

A “warm” home is just as much about the atmosphere as the temperature. Even if we have an early, aggressive winter, the season is peppered with exciting holidays, starting with Halloween and carrying all the way through Super Bowl Sunday. If you feel inclined, decorate inside and out. It won’t necessarily keep the cold air out, but it will help turn your home into an inviting place for family and friends to gather.

The post 7 Steps to Keep Your Home Warm When the Weather Outside Is Frightful appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

The Best Cities for Coworking You Need to Check Out

There was a time when going to work meant returning to your same office cubicle Monday to Friday. Fortunately, those days are long gone!

With the ever-growing digital revolution, a new type of worker has emerged. Digital nomads are able to work from anywhere they want as long as they have an internet connection. This has called for the creation of more coworking spaces around the world.

But what exactly is a coworking space?

It’s a shared office environment which is home to internet access and the latest technology. It allows workers to go about their business on a more flexible basis. This also means they can join coworking spaces anywhere around the world. This growing tribe of professionals has seen ultra-modern and cool coworking spaces popping up across the globe.

So, whether you’re a digital nomad, a small startup or you’re considering trying out a more flexible office arrangement, here’s our list of 11 of the best cities for coworking across the world.

London

cities best for coworking

First on the list is London. England’s capital offers coworking spaces as trendy and diverse as the people who live there. With over 30 spaces already in operation, over 50,000 digital savvy professionals across the world are benefiting from this network.

What’s more, shared workspaces in the city offer all the cool amenities you’d expect, from VR studios to mediation yurts. You can look forward to going into the office every day.

Berlin

Germany’s capital is well-recognized as a tech-savvy business hub. It’s therefore unsurprising that this entrepreneurial city has made it on this list of the best cities for coworking.

Filled with beautiful and minimalist coworking spaces for creative professionals, the city was once home to huge brands like SoundCloud and Siemens. These offices allow for ultimate flexibility and collaboration. From Agora Collective to Factory Berlin, these spaces feature relaxing gardens and trendy cafes.

New York

This list wouldn’t be complete without adding New York into the mix. After all, the city boasts in excess of 200 coworking spaces and is an extremely popular city for businesses and ambitious professionals.

Because of the sheer amount of workspaces, there really is something for everyone. Whether you want to work with a wide community that has space all over the world or you’d prefer to work in a small select group, you’re sure to find something to suit your working style and needs.

See Also: 7 Surprising Benefits of Coworking Spaces

Barcelona

Barcelona is considered to be one of the biggest business hubs in the world and a popular place for professional dealings — not to mention it’s a beautiful and vibrant city. This is why it is home to a number of great coworking spaces. These spaces offer the latest technology, cafes, relaxation areas and some even have in-house lawyers offering legal advice to those who choose to work there.

Singapore

cities for coworking

Singapore is currently the number one technological hub of Asia. This makes it an extremely popular destination for digital nomads and aspiring professionals.

Right now, there are at least 24 coworking spaces in the city, though this number is growing all the time. And as with everything in Singapore, you can expect some real glamour and awe when you enter these working areas. Some of them are providing their own pool, spa and even serving oysters for lunch!

Paris

Paris has always been a city of sophistication and innovation. This translates into a vibrant hub of small businesses and exciting creatives. In recent years, a number of coworking spaces have popped up across the city, welcoming professionals from all over the world.

In true Parisian style, there is even a ‘Makers Space’ including laser cutters, 3D printers and food labs, so amateurs from every profession have somewhere to get started.

San Francisco

San Francisco was once referred to as the start-up king of America. This is unsurprising, given that it is home to Silicon Valley. With over 75 coworking spaces already in operation, some beautifully situated along the bay, the city is a hub for budding entrepreneurs and those looking to kickstart their business.

Bangalore

Moving over to India, Bangalore is one of the nation’s busiest cities and a huge technological hub. Perfect for digital nomads from India and from around the world, spaces like the Cowork Cafe make it easy for young professionals to learn, grow, and work closely with one another. In fact, it has been said that the average age of the professionals using these coworking spaces is just 26.

Toronto

best city for coworking

Toronto is very similar to New York when it comes to coworking spaces. It encourages collaboration and innovation across businesses and industries.

However, one of the best things about the city is that you can rent these spaces for relatively cheap prices. What’s more, these trendy spaces come with all the latest amenities and even some added perks.

Lisbon

Along with its great coworking spaces, Lisbon has also made it on to our list thanks to its ‘Lisbon Challenge’ program aimed at supporting and encouraging startups in the city. This vibrant hub is full of creatives all looking to turn their ideas into reality.

There are a range of coworking spaces throughout Lisbon which feature stunning views, full flexibility, beautiful gardens and even the ability to take your dog to work with you every day.

Brussels

Finally, the last wonderful city on our list has got a bit of a bad rep in recent years, being tarnished with a bureaucratic brush. But Brussels isn’t just the political hub of Europe, it’s a very forward-thinking and innovative place for young professionals and upcoming businesses.

In order to accommodate the creatives that use these coworking spaces, these offices offer features like unlimited coffee, organic vegetable gardens, ping pong tables, and even one space which is open 24 hours for complete flexibility.

See Also: How to Increase Your Productivity in a Coworking Space

The post The Best Cities for Coworking You Need to Check Out appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

14 Tips on How to Live A More Active Lifestyle

Most of us know how important exercise is when it comes to staying fit and healthy. Despite that, however, not all of us are moving as much as we’re supposed to.

Even when I have been motivated to get a gym membership and start exercising, it only lasts for a few months. At the first sign of stress and deadlines at work, the gym routine gets kicked off the list.

So, here are a few tricks on how to live a more active lifestyle:

Park far away

Get into the habit of parking a block away or parking at the farthest parking spot. If you are grocery shopping, park in the store’s lot but choose the back row. Clearly, you wouldn’t want to be caught pushing a shopping cart down the street trying to get to your car.

Take the stairs instead of elevators

If it is one or two floors, always take the stairs. If you need to go up or down several floors, then take the stairs to two floors above or below and then take the elevator. As you get used to it, increase the number of floors you use the stairs for. If you park in a level parking lot, always park in one of the higher levels and walk down.

If possible, walk or bike to work

This is not possible for everyone, but if you live in a place where the pollution is less and your workplace is relatively close by, then choose to walk or bike instead of driving.

Skip the stop

If your city has a subway or bus system, skip your stop and get off at the one after (or before) and then walk from there. You’ll get to enjoy the air and neighborhood a little while increasing your heart rate.

Maximize the benefits from your grocery trip

When you go to the grocery store, make it a habit to walk the entire store. Go through every aisle and every nook and corner. Avoid the aisles that could tempt you to pick up junk food though, since that can completely obliterate any benefits of walking a few extra steps!

Take a short walk-break at work

Again, this one depends on your work location, but ours is located outside the city and is on large private grounds. Every afternoon a couple of us go for a short walk which takes roughly 15-20 minutes. It is very invigorating and a nice break from the afternoon routine.

Do your own yard work

This is a good one for summer time when the lawn starts to grow and you need to keep it trimmed. Instead of hiring someone to do it for you, do it yourself. You will not only get some exercise, but save some money, too!

Play with your kids

Kids these days seem to play more video games than outdoor games like we did when we were younger. So, take your kids out to the park and throw the ball around or play tag.

Put on your favorite music and dance

This is not only exercise, but also a great way to unwind at the end of a busy day. And a good trip down the memory lane for those of us who have not done it in a long time!

While watching TV, pace or stretch

Instead of switching channels during the ad break, get up and walk around the house. Do some lunges or some simple stretching exercises. If you have stairs in your house, walk up and down the stairs a few times during each ad break for at least one show every day.

Choose to walk down instead of call or email

When you have a question for a colleague, instead of picking up the phone or shooting an email, walk over to their cube. This will not only provide some exercise but a short break for a quick recharge.

Walk while you talk on the phone

If your job involves talking on the phone a lot, then instead of doing this sitting at your desk, get into the habit of pacing while you talk. Motion creates emotion so you may even become a better speaker by doing this.

Choose active entertainment over passive entertainment

Instead of going for a movie, choose to go play tennis with some friends (or at least bowling). Instead of playing regular video games, play with a Wii. And instead of meeting friends for a cup of coffee, catch up over a sunset walk.

Choose active vacations

walking exercise

When planning vacations, pick something that involves some walking and hiking. While taking in a new city, do it by walk, instead of driving around. If golfing, skip the cart. If staying at a resort, make use of their pool and the exercise facility. Try skiing and white water rafting.

See Also: 5 Tips On Staying Healthy On Your Next Vacation

While none of these will make an immediate difference in your life style, over a period of time, they will get you into the habit of choosing an active alternative to the every day things you do. In the long run, that can set the stage for an even more active life style.

Written by isbf, the author of of Grad Money Matters

The post 14 Tips on How to Live A More Active Lifestyle appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

The Art of Cultivating A Sense of Purpose In Life

There are times in life when we all feel aimless. However, as long as we don’t let those temporary feelings define our lives, we will come out the other side. Knowing your purpose in life is what gets you up in the morning and keep you going when the going gets tough.

But did you know that having a sense of purpose can also prolong your life?

Best of all, a strong sense of purpose is something you can cultivate starting today. There’s no special equipment required.

It’s Hard To Feel A Sense of Purpose When You Are Under Stress

our purpose in life

People are under all kinds of stress, from family issues to work-related problems. It can be difficult to feel you have a purpose in life when it’s all stress from all angles. It’s also difficult to feel like there’s any hope for the future when you have been through trauma.

You see, trauma reshapes the brain to be overly cautious and pessimistic. It can make you fearful of the future and cause intolerance of uncertainty. Trauma can disrupt your daily life and cause all kinds of other mental health problems that prevent you from living life to its fullest.

Fortunately, an exercise known as reframing can help you look at traumatic and stressful events in your life. It will enable you to reshape them as valuable experiences.

See Also: 7 Easy Ways to Remove Negative Energy and Unnecessary Stress

What Purpose Can Do For You

Across all age groups, people who have a strong sense of purpose have a 15% lower risk for premature death. In one study, seniors were followed for several years and had periodic checks of their sense of purpose. Those who reported little purpose in their lives at the start of the study were 2.4 times more likely to pass away during the study. That’s in comparison to those who reported a strong sense of purpose in their lives.

Where To Cultivate Purpose In Your Life

purpose in life

Things like family and career can lead to a strong sense of purpose, but those aren’t the only things you should be relying on. Families have struggles and when children leave the nest, it can lead to a sense of aimlessness.

While it is important to cultivate strong family relationships, it is equally important to cultivate a sense of purpose in other areas of your life as well. The same goes for your career. While it is important to build a career that gives you a sense of purpose in life, it can’t be the only thing or you will reach retirement and not know what to do next.

For some people, religion is a nice way to keep a steady sense of purpose going throughout their lives. If religion isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other things that can give you a strong sense of purpose.

Lifelong learning is a great way to keep your mind active and give yourself a sense of purpose and belongingness. Curiosity and chasing the next big goal can keep your mind from withering away. They can also drive your sense of purpose as there is never a possibility of learning everything there is to know.

Likewise, hobbies and other interests are areas where you can continue to learn and grow for the rest of your life. There are also hobbies that come along with new friendships and meaningful contributions.

Doing inspiring activities, whether they are work, hobbies or something else, can keep you engaged in something even when other areas of your life may be in rapid change. It’s important to keep that balance among the various activities you enjoy. That way, when there is trouble in one area, there are still constants you can turn to for stability in the other areas.

It’s not always easy to feel a strong sense of purpose in your life. It’s something you will often have to put work into. But cultivating that sense of purpose can add life to your years and years to your life. In the end, there’s almost zero downside to cultivating a strong sense of purpose in your life.

Learn more about the art and science of purpose from the infographic below!
The Art and Science of Purpose
Source: Online College Plan

The post The Art of Cultivating A Sense of Purpose In Life appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

7 Inspiring Movies to Watch When You Are Low on Motivation

We have all had days when we have woken up feeling uninspired and listless. Those are the days when we know we have a long list of tasks to do, but are unable to find the energy to get started. All we want to do is lie in bed and binge eat.

At such times, do you know what can help? Watching movies for motivation.

Movies have the power to move us in ways we can never imagine. They compel us to think, introspect, and reconsider our perspectives.

So, the next time you are low on motivation, don’t beat yourself over it. Allow yourself to just be and watch an inspirational movie instead.

Here is a list of 7 inspiring movies to watch when you are low on motivation:

Rocky (1976)

rocky
Via bcmoviediary.com

“Going in one more round when you don’t think you can. That’s what makes all the difference in your life.”

It’s been over four decades since this movie was released but it still manages to have the same impact on people who watch it even today.

Headlined by Sylvester Stallone, Rocky is a boxing drama film that teaches some key life lessons in the process. It speaks about believing in yourself, always putting up a good fight, and, having relentless persistence in the face of adversity.

The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)

the pursuit of happyness

“Don’t ever let someone tell you that you can’t do something. Not even me. You got a dream, you gotta protect it.”

The Pursuit of Happyness is about a man dealing with life’s struggles and how he chooses to go beyond them and fight for his dreams. All this man had was motivation and that was enough for him to rise from nothing and make his dreams come true.

If this isn’t encouraging, then what is?

The Pursuit of Happyness is power-packed with inspiration. It is bound to leave you with a renewed sense of hope and courage to never accept defeat.

Life of Pi (2012)

life-of-pi
Via filmblerg.com

“I was giving up. I would have given up – if a voice hadn’t made itself heard in my heart. The voice said “I will not die. I refuse it. I will make it through this nightmare. I will beat the odds, as great as they are. I have survived so far, miraculously. Now I will turn miracle into routine.”

Life of Pi is about how a sixteen-year old boy finds himself stranded in a lifeboat with a hyena, orangutan, zebra, and a Bengal tiger. He survives because of his undying faith in himself and a better world. It tells us how determination and faith can help us live our best life.

The Diary of Anne Frank (1959)

the diary of anne frank
Via cinemacats.com

“Everyone has inside of him a piece of good news. The good news is that you don’t know how great you can be! How much you can love! What you can accomplish! And what your potential is!”

Here’s a poignant story about a young girl who recorded her experiences in a diary while she and her family were in hiding in a warehouse during the Nazi regime.

Heartbreaking and motivating at the same time, this movie pushes you to see life in a new light. It uplifts you, makes you weep and leaves you inspired as this young girl teaches you some of the greatest life lessons.

Coach Carter (2005)

coach_carter
Via impaled.ws

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people don’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine as children do.”

Coach Carter might be based on a basketball coach, but it delivers critical lessons. Through Carter, we learn about discipline, hard work, humility, respect and fearlessness. From students struggling to find motivation in college to entrepreneurs lacking courage to take risks – everyone needs to watch this powerful movie.

Julie and Julia (2009)

julie-and-julia
Via newonnetflix.ca

“Julia taught me what it takes to find your way in the world. It’s not what I thought it was. I thought it was all about-I don’t know, confidence or will or luck. Those are all some good things to have, no question. But there’s something else, something that these things grow out of. It’s joy.”

Julie and Julia is a heartwarming movie which teaches us how it’s never too late to make your dreams come true, rediscover yourself, and find joy. A must-watch for women, this movie gives you a dose of motivation in the most humorous and entertaining manner.

The Lion King

the lion king
Via bbc.co.uk

“Believe in yourself and there will come a day when others will have no choice but to believe with you.”

What’s impeccable about this movie is that it can be enjoyed by kids and adults alike. Whether it’s the inevitability of life, believing in yourself, forgiveness, learning from past experiences or conquering challenges – Lion King is a powerhouse of valuable life lessons that has something for people across all ages and stages.

See Also: 30 Best Inspirational and Motivational Quotes of the Day

The post 7 Inspiring Movies to Watch When You Are Low on Motivation appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Morning Workout Benefits You May Not Be Thinking about

Waking up in the morning to work out while the rest of the world is sleeping takes a lot of effort. Sleeping is one of the most satisfying human activities, so it’s understandable if you want to snuggle under the sheets instead of working out.

Most people actually prefer working out in the evening. However, after a long day at work, you might not have the energy for an impactful workout session.

So why would you rather workout in the morning and not in the evening? Well, there is scientific proof that working out in the morning is far much better than doing the same at the end of the day.

Begin the Day Feeling Upbeat

Managing to get out of bed and completing your workout session ensures you begin the day feeling upbeat. Waking up in the morning is challenging, and overcoming it gives you the motivation you need for the rest of the day.

Working out your joints and muscles ensure that you have an active day. It’s very unlikely that you’ll have a lazy day after your morning workout. Morning workouts make you feel unstoppable and accomplished.

When you work out, your brain releases a hormone called dopamine which is also known as the happy hormone. Is there a better way to start the day than to fire up your system with a happy hormone? You’re bound to have a positive attitude and have an easy time interacting with people.

Morning Workouts Boost Your Quality of Sleep

benefits of morning exercises

Every person requires quality sleeping time to rest their body and rejuvenate. Working out in the morning guarantees that you won’t struggle to find sleep at night.

When your brain gets the rest it requires, your memory improves, and you get better at retaining information. Who doesn’t want a sharp memory and improved body function?

See Also: A Good Night’s Sleep: The Key to a Happy Life

You End Up Consuming Fewer Calories

Mastering the willpower to get up every morning translates to other aspects of your life. Individuals who are resolute to work out each morning have an easy time, fighting cravings throughout the day. That means that you’ll end up consuming fewer calories as well.

It’s very unlikely for anyone to head for their favorite food joint after working out in the morning. Now imagine another person who prefers working out in the evening. They can easily eat junk food throughout the day with the consolation that they’ll burn those calories in the evening.

A 2012 study carried out by Brigham Young University supports this logic. The findings show that working out in the morning helps individuals fight cravings.

You’ll Get Better at Coping with Stress

benefit of morning exercise

Working out in the morning is known to reduce stress and anxiety. This is because intense workout sessions ensure you begin the day feeling relaxed and refreshed. This way, nothing will hardly agitate you throughout the day.

Exercising ensures that you sweat it all out so that you begin the day with a clear mind. Besides, nothing beats the peace that comes with having time to process your thoughts uninterrupted.

Improve Your Metabolism

Your body is likely to burn more calories after you work out. Exercising in the morning ensures you have fast metabolism throughout the day. You’ll be able to burn calories even when you’re seated at your work station.

Pumping up your metabolism before you eat anything ensures that you stay in shape. The faster the metabolism, the more energy you have to go through the day. A slow metabolism can be risky because the food you eat gets stored as fat. This is how people gain weight and get out of shape.

See Also: Interesting Facts About the Human Body You Might Not Know About

Final Thought

As you can see, the benefits of morning workouts are unlimited. Instead of hitting the snooze button, get out of bed and get your daily exercise.

The post Morning Workout Benefits You May Not Be Thinking about appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Starting Life After Divorce: How to Make the Process Easier

Getting a divorce is not the end of your life. In fact, the process gives you more things to explore, and this article will show you how to reinvent yourself for a new life.

Starting Life After Divorce

When a marriage ends, it leaves people feeling like they failed at something. That feeling, when left unchecked, festers, resulting in a lot of negative emotions that would prevent you from finding out what more life has for you.

Thus, rather than dwell on what went wrong and the life you once had, channeling your energy into finding your new “normal” would help you let go of the past and forge ahead in life.

Divorce does not have to be the end of everything good in your life; In fact, it can be the start of something new.

Here are some tips to help you in starting life after divorce:

Purge Yourself of Negative Emotions

This saying might be a cliché, but a very effective one. In the words of Robert Alberti, Ph.D., and the co-author of Rebuilding: When Your Relationship Ends, “It is common to sweep [your] emotions under the table, but you have to work through them, or they’ll pollute your life forever.”

Thus, let yourself feel all the negative emotions that come with being on your own again. Purge yourself of the feelings of shame, inferiority, the failure that comes with having a failed marriage, and chin up to start your life anew.

See Also: How to Heal From Divorce Through Writing

Take a Moment and Clear Your Thoughts

life after divorce

After ridding yourself of negative emotions, you need to clear and organize your thoughts. One thing that divorce brings to your life is clarity. It helps you get to this “Aha!” moment where the rest of your life flashes before you.

Clarity would help you let go of past regrets and bitterness. You’ll go from feeling like you are never going to get through the pain to a place of inner peace where you are convinced that the pain won’t last forever.

Discover and Rediscover

Another silver lining that divorce brings is the opportunity to discover new things about yourself. You get to rediscover the things you gave up during your marriage.

Getting married and staying that way for years takes a lot of sacrifices. Its end means that you get to either go back to the person you used to be or reinvent into something better.

If the bravest thing you did before is to go over the speed limit, then you might want to go hiking or skydiving. It does not have to be extreme. The vital thing is knowing that you can do whatever you want, as long as it is safe, legal, and within your budget.

Have Social Contacts and Transitional Dates

single life after divorce

Being alone is scary for a lot of people after being with someone for a long time, but it doesn’t have to be. Thankfully, we live in a world where social media thrives. Meeting new people won’t be much of a hassle.

Often, married people keep the same circle of friend. After a divorce, things tend to get awkward, especially if the separation was messy. So, use your newly single status to meet new people, especially those you’ve always admired but couldn’t be friends with because your spouse did not approve.

Also, divorce means you get to date again. However, rather than do the rebound thing, go the transitional way. Transitional dating means going out for the fun of it.

It involves trying to date people outside your comfort zone.

See Also: 24 Ways to Find a Date Offline

Own Your Life and Find Your Inner Strength

People are often stronger than they give themselves credit for, and there’s no better way to find your inner strength than to lose something you thought would last forever.

Discovering your inner strength would help you own your life by taking charge. So, if you used to rely on your partner for most of the things, now, you get to do those things yourself and learn in the process. You might make mistakes, but since you survived divorce, you’ll dust yourself up and try again until you get it right.

Conclusion

As mentioned earlier, a divorce is not the end of life and starting life after divorce doesn’t have to be so hard.

There are vast opportunities to explore as a single person. All you have to do is accept that what’s lost cannot be gotten back. Your life is no longer tied to one person and starting new is up to you.

The post Starting Life After Divorce: How to Make the Process Easier appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Why You Should Ignore Your Horoscope

Do you read horoscopes? If so, you could be wasting not just your time but your precious brain cells, too. Come on, do you really believe that half a billion people in the world are going to have the same day/week/month?

Your horoscope isn’t exactly personalized. It applies to a twelfth of the world’s population. Horoscope writers use a lot of tricks to make you believe what they’ve said.

Here are some of the most common ones:

We Believe A Personality Analysis – Even If It Doesn’t Really Apply To Us

A famous experiment was carried out in 1948 by the psychologist Bertram R. Forer. He gave his students a personality test and gave them the exact same “results” which he’d assembled from horoscopes:

“You have a need for other people to like and admire you, and yet you tend to be critical of yourself. While you have some personality weaknesses you are generally able to compensate for them. You have considerable unused capacity that you have not turned to your advantage. Disciplined and self-controlled on the outside, you tend to be worrisome and insecure on the inside. At times you have serious doubts as to whether you have made the right decision or done the right thing. You prefer a certain amount of change and variety and become dissatisfied when hemmed in by restrictions and limitations. You also pride yourself as an independent thinker; and do not accept others’ statements without satisfactory proof. But you have found it unwise to be too frank in revealing yourself to others. At times you are extroverted, affable, and sociable, while at other times you are introverted, wary, and reserved. Some of your aspirations tend to be rather unrealistic.”

The students were asked to rate the personality profile’s accuracy from 1 to 5, with 5 being the most accurate rating. Guess what?

The average rating was 4.26- despite the fact that every single student had received exactly the same rating. This has been dubbed the Forer effect and it’s been borne out by study after study ever since 1948.

So, if you have one of those key rings that tells you your personality based on your star sign or name, ignore it.

We Give Too Much Importance To Co-incidences

happy go lucky

You might be reading this and thinking “but, my horoscope has come true on several occasions!”

Well, I’m afraid that’s just an example of subjective validation. It means that you pick up on co-incidences and assign them an incorrect meaning. This particularly happens when it’s something that has personal meaning to you or when you want it to be more than a co-incidence.

Think of it this way:

Have you ever had that experience when the phone rings, you think “It’ll be John” and it is? Spooky, huh? But what about all the times when you think “It’ll be John” but it wasn’t?

You probably forgot all about those.

Horoscopes Use Vague Statements and Generalizations

Here are a few statements taken from typical horoscopes-all from the Daily Mail newspaper:

  • There will be ups and downs financially with nothing going quite to plan.
  • But if you can give yourself space to ponder, you may be able to answer one or two questions which have been bothering you recently. Nothing superficial will really help so you will need to focus and get right down to the nitty gritty.
  • You won’t suffer fools or slow coaches gladly and will express yourself firmly but forcefully at times. Just don’t go a step too far since you may want support when you get into a muddle towards mid month.

Notice anything in common?

These statements could apply to anyone:

Aren’t everyone’s finances up and down, especially during current times?

DLM readers probably know that getting to the heart of tricky questions in life involves focusing and pondering, not just looking for a quick fix. This is good advice, but why on earth would it only apply to one particular star sign?

Do any of us suffer fools and slow coaches gladly? And don’t we all get into a muddle on a regular basis? “Towards mid month” is vague enough to cover at least a ten or twelve day period, too.

The Big Reason You Shouldn’t Place Your Trust In Horoscopes

 

Even if you’re a horo-sceptic like me, imagine for a moment that you do believe every word of a horoscope or personality profile. You could end up hugely limiting yourself because of it.

For example, if your horoscope warns of money problems ahead, you might get anxious or even use it as an excuse to spend unnecessarily, thinking that hard times are inevitable.

One of the horoscopes I looked at included the line: “You’ll occupy yourself happily spending money on all manner of frivolities since you reckon you need pampering.”

Now, how many of us have the self-discipline not to use this as an excuse to think “Yes, my horoscope is right. I should buy that new CD/shirt/game even though I want to pay off my loans”.

You could be subconsciously sabotaging yourself because you believe in a nonsense personality profile.

Perhaps, you think you’re an impetuous and sometimes angry person, because of your star sign. This is preventing you from dealing with your hot-headed nature (which might be half-imagined anyway). Or maybe you think that you’re shy, because your star sign’s always told you so and you’ve never made an effort to overcome this.

None of us are “stuck” with our foibles. We can all improve ourselves, break bad habits, and establish good ones. Instead of reading horoscopes, find some truly worthwhile reading (Dumb Little Man is a great place to start – and the blogs linked to in the Blender) that can actually help you improve your life.

What do you think about horoscopes? Whether you agree with me completely or think I’m an idiot, let me know your views in the comments!

See Also: How to Control Your Luck

The post Why You Should Ignore Your Horoscope appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Prepare for An Office Move: Top Tips You Should Know

Moving premises is an issue that’s likely to come up for most business owners at some point. Although it can be stressful, it’s not something you need to be afraid of.

If you’re moving offices, this is normally something to celebrate. It’s a sign of growth, expansion, and being on a positive path. This is particularly true if you have to move offices to accommodate more staff and clients. An office move makes sense financially and logistically, too.

To help business owners who are experiencing an imminent move, WD Storage made this really helpful infographic on how and when to move offices smoothly. They’ve included some statistics you’ve probably never seen before and offer up some pearls of office relocation wisdom that you may not have considered previously.

There’s one serious downside to moving offices that can’t be ignored, and that’s the stress of it all. It’s likely to have a very detrimental effect on the workload and stress levels of pretty much everyone in the office. Fortunately, there are ways to minimize this stress and make the move happy and prosperous for your business and staff.

When Should You Move Office?

office move

You may toy with the idea of moving offices at various points, but not actually explore it in detail. So, when do you give that idea a serious thought?

  • At the end of your lease
  • When you have available budget to cover all the costs
  • When your business is in a good financial situation
  • At the quietest time of the year for you
  • When you’re expecting to reach or go over your workplace capacity in the next five years

If you’re able to combine several or even all these elements into your moving plan, things will definitely be easier for you. If there are big projects or busy times on the horizon, it may not be the best time to move. Also, be confident that your business is financially sound enough to absorb the cost (the average UK cost of an office move is £40k!).

Don’t just include quoted costs in your planning. Have budget set aside for any unexpected costs, too.

How to Choose a New Office

Moving to a new office will require you to consider and make allowances for a lot of moving parts. The first thing you should do is communicate the plan with your staff as early and as comprehensively as possible. If people know about it early, they can get used to the idea of change and figure out whether they’re going to come along for the ride.

Another thing you have to consider is your current staff. Communicating with your team will give you some idea on areas where people won’t follow you. It will also help you to understand what your team wants from the new office.

Surveys have found that 45% of employees want green space at their place of work, even if it’s just to look at from their window. 40% felt like there weren’t enough informal ‘breakout’ areas in their office. 51% want a place where they can get away from their desk.

Ask your staff what they want from the new office. You will never, ever be able to please everybody. Some people won’t be happy with the move (generally a minority) but mostly, people will be excited for a change. It’s your job to make sure they’re excited about it. It’s also up to you to figure out what to prioritize.

When it comes to size, you should have around 95 square feet for each person. Think ahead about whether your office is future-proofed as well.

Can you see yourself employing more staff in the future? Will your new office have space to accommodate new hires/products/equipment?

Physical location is important, too. If your new office more than doubles everyone’s commute, for example, or is impossible to reach by public transport, you may lose staff in the process. While more remote offices tend to be cheaper, you could pay a price in struggling to attract people to work there.

Think about your clients, too. Will a remote location be conducive to attracting new clients? And if the only way to get to you is to drive, is there enough parking for both staff and clients?

Consider local amenities. Are there places to eat nearby? A shop? A gym? A park?

There are ways in which you don’t have to move to a new office that’s super high-spec to gain some pretty amazing perks. Simply move to an area which has better amenities.

Having restaurants nearby is great for client relationships and your staff. A nearby gym can promote and facilitate a healthy lifestyle. Nearby parks, greens or commons give your staff a place to go to and stroll around. These places will allow them to stretch their legs and clear their mind, fostering a more peaceful and productive work environment.

And of course, make sure your office is accessible. If you have staff with disabilities or who are in advanced age, that is essential. If not, you should still do so anyway. Prospective clients and staff may have those needs. Be thankful that you don’t and provide for those who do.

How to Prepare for An Office Move

prepare for an office move

As mentioned previously, no matter the circumstances, moving offices is going to get stressful for lots of people. 31% of business owners said that moving premises is the most stressful thing they could undertake.

Here are some tips you can take to reduce that stress to a minimum:

Delegate

Don’t take on the workload yourself. The amount of planning, administration, and work that needs to be done is too big for one pair of hands. Designate a project team made up of various highly organised members and let them handle the different aspects of the move.

Let the creative types handle the new office design. Allow the most analytical to handle all the processes.

Do you have an office or facilities manager? This is a great task for them. As your office manager, they’re going to need to have a deep and thorough understanding of the new premises.

You have a team of paid staff. Why not use them?

Delegation will make things easier. It gives more people ownership in the move, making them more enthusiastic and invested in it.

Planning

If you plan everything absolutely meticulously, then you’re giving yourself the best chance of relocation success. There is no such things as over-planning with this. The more rigorous you are in your planning, the more impervious to unexpected bumps in the road you will be.

Planning well will minimize any unexpected tragedies, anyway. From the timescale to where the new furniture is going, get everything planned and visualized.

Budgeting

Decide on and manage a budget for the move. This is going to be a hard thing to do but bear in mind that the average office move costs around £40,000. This should come under your planning, but you’ll need to create a mighty spreadsheet or equivalent for this.

Set yourself a budget target and track how you actually get on with it. That way, you can see how close you are to your budget in real time.

Auditing

An office move is a really good time to review and audit your business in terms of supplies, furniture, and equipment.

Is it worth lugging all those old PCs and musty chairs into your spangly new office? Or is time to invest in something new?

You can also use this time to think about your suppliers in terms of equipment and your utilities.

Communication

We’ve already advised it, but communication at all stages of the move is super important. From your staff to clients to suppliers, let everyone that needs to know what your plans are.

Most importantly, you need to be communicative with your staff. Listen to their wants and needs with regards the move and do your best to try and meet those. You won’t please everybody, but you can give it a good go!

If you’re thinking about an office move for your business, then congratulations! That means things are probably going well. And while moving will be stressful, it is possible to mitigate the stress with plenty of communication, careful organization, and stringent planning. Good luck!

See Also: How to Keep Business Data Secure When Transitioning to a New Office?

The post How to Prepare for An Office Move: Top Tips You Should Know appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

5 Ways VR/AR Technology Integrates Into Your Daily Life

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality aren’t ‘new’ technologies. Both were used in military applications since the 1980s and were later co-opted by the gaming industry.

AR and VR have more to offer humanity, especially now that wearable technology like headsets, data gloves, and other feedback devices continue to improve and go down in price. Additionally, the infrastructure needed to support this immersive technology is slowly finding its place in cities around the world.

As of this writing, there are over 25 metropolitan areas in the US with some access to 5G networks. This includes Dallas, San Francisco, and New York City. The higher bandwidth and decreased latency associated with 5G networks will be like spring rains to immersive tech.

All the crazy possibilities you’ve ever heard about AR/VR are about to sprout up everywhere, such as:

Wearable Heads Up Tech

Yeah, you’ve heard that one before. And yes, Oculus co-founder Nate Mitchell did just leave Facebook, throwing some doubt on what’s going on with the company’s long-awaited smart glasses. But there’s still plenty of buzz on tech sites covering Mark Zuckerberg’s determination to create a cool-looking AR wearable that won’t have to be tethered to a watch or a PC.

Just hope that they come up with a different name than “Orion” before the glasses are released to the public.

A Better First Week At Your New Job

virtual reality application

Pilots have been trained using VR for years. Manufacturing and industrial companies were pretty quick to adopt this type of training as well.

But now, even the guy who makes your sandwich at Chipotle is benefiting from VR training. And in an effort to prepare their staff for Black Friday craziness, Wal-Mart has managed to become the largest corporate investor in VR tech training.

Part of this interest in VR training is driven by the results of studies that show VR training decreases errors, improves task time, and improves information recall. Plus, the immersive quality of the training is simply more fun for new employees than old training methods.

See Also: The Future of XR Technology in Various Industries

Therapy Brain Training

Remember when your therapist told you to envision a peaceful place, such as walking on a green meadow at sunset? No? Just me?

Anyway, it turns out that virtual reality can be used to create immersive experiences. Good examples include walking in a field, interacting with penguins on a glacier, or throwing balls at teddy bears to gain points for toys. It could be any activity that can keep your brain too busy to notice and process pain sensations.

VR is used to foster mindfulness that essentially ‘hacks’ your brain into ignoring the pain signal. With some VR sets are now selling for less than $300, this may offer those with chronic pain issues a budget-friendly option for pain relief. It may also help combat the nationwide opioid epidemic.

A Better Looking Real World

Hate furniture shopping?

Many of us do, but buying furniture online seems risky when you can’t get a good feel for how that piece will integrate into your interior. That’s where companies like Wayfair and Ikea have stepped in. They have AR applications that will help you figure out whether you like that furniture in your space before you pay for it.

And AR is not just for furniture shopping. Sherwin Williams will let you try out paint colors on your walls while Sephora Virtual Artist will let you try colors on your face. You can use AR to shop for shoes, jewelry, and even manicures.

See Also: How Augmented Reality Is Changing The Game

Welcome to the Mirror World

application of virtual reality

That 5G expansion mentioned earlier allows for a significant increase in the amount of data moving back and forth between devices. Some people believe this will lead to a PokeMon Go type secondary platform for all reality called a mirror world.

This world will include augmented information about the real world that may give people details about real places, like “list all spots within 1000 yards of my office that have a bench with east-facing views of the river and shade at 1 pm”.

But it may also create an Alice-in-Wonderland type augmented landscape that interacts with our real one. Imagine looking out your window in the morning, not to the side of your neighbor’s house, but to a school of fish swimming past. Or sitting at your desk in the afternoon, working on that last Friday afternoon action report while wild horses stampede across a desert landscape beneath your feet.

There are visionaries who believe this is going to be a reality — at least a kind of reality soon. As 5G networks expand, so will this augmented mirror world. Eventually, some say, it will cover the entire planet.

Sound ridiculous?

Maybe.

But imagine going back to 1995 and telling someone that soon you would be able to virtually walk down almost every street in the world using an online map service with integrated superimposed images. And yet, today you can visually walk Paris, London or even the secondary roads of Thailand using Google.

Using developing technologies, in the next few decades, you may be able to fly to these places on your own private dragon — if the airlines allow AR in-flight, that is.

The post 5 Ways VR/AR Technology Integrates Into Your Daily Life appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How To Nail Social Media and Influencer Marketing: The SME Edition

I bet you’ve already read about social media and influencer marketing a lot. I bet you’ve already tried techniques that didn’t break the bank but didn’t excite you, either. And I bet you’ve already browsed the internet for answers on how to improve your marketing efforts.

The truth is that social media marketing and influencer marketing are two branches where something can go wrong pretty easily. However, this doesn’t mean it’s difficult to make it nor does it mean that you’ll need to pay a hefty amount of money to lead users further down your sales funnel.

sales funnel
Source: https://www.finteza.com/en/marketing-resources/13-conversion-funnels-must-have-marketing-tool

As you can see, not even 5% of the top of your funnel converts fully. We’re here to make sure that you won’t fall into any traps without having to pay a hefty amount of money for it.

Determine the platform and the target audience first

social media platform

You can’t know what you need to do later if you haven’t decided on who your target audience is first. Your target audience consists of those who will think that your brand is useful and will be positive when it comes to purchasing something.

After determining that, you’ll need to think about the platform they’re using. For example, you’ll need to develop a great Snapchat game if you want Gen Z’ers to notice you. For Baby Boomers, you’ll need a great Pinterest plan.

Two things are for sure though:

  • You’ll need a solid plan when it comes to Facebook and Instagram, regardless.
  • You’ll need a great email marketing and automation tool

The first one, because Facebook and Instagram are the most influential social media platforms and most people check a business online before trusting it.

business graph
Source: https://irishtechnews.ie/sme-utilize-social-media-marketing/

The second one, because email marketing and automation is the most affordable channel with a crazy-high ROI.

What are your goals?

Do you need more leads? Do you need to nurture the already existing leads? What are you after?

If you can’t determine that, you can’t have a strategy. Study all the data you gathered when you went through with step one. This will give you more clarity and insight when it comes to actually understanding the core values of your business, but from a client’s perspective.

Determining clear and achievable goals is what will give you better leverage to pretty much everything, from designing a newsletter template to using a landing page builder down the line.

“But why is that?” I hear you ask.

The answer is pretty simple — because content rules all. However, content that is not consistent with your brand’s tone will, in the long run, damage your goals.

As you see, everything is linked back to your target audience. This leads us to step No. 3:

Use influencers and giveaways

social media influencer marketing

 

You need your name and brand to grow one way or the other and influencers are the perfect people to help you do that. On the other hand, giveaways are the perfect way to give something back to your crowd and perhaps attract more people while you’re at it.

Now, think of combining those two:

Giving something back to an audience that would be interested in you, but is not following you yet.

This is where an influencer comes into play. Again: an influencer. Not a model or an ambassador as this would be a costlier option. Besides, their audience wouldn’t be niche-specific.

For example:

Use a makeup artist if you want to promote your beauty brand. A makeup artist will have followers that will definitely be interested in your product, be it other makeup artists or just people watching YouTube tutorials on how to nail the perfect cat-eye.

That influencer can host a giveaway. It will attract people that will definitely be interested in what you’ve got to give back.

One little tip here:

Your brand tone should match the influencer’s brand tone. Here, you’re the one trying to convert an already existing audience into followers and, ultimately, customers.

Those followers are used to a specific tone of voice and means of promoting a product. So, the best thing to do would be simply leaving the creative aspect up to the influencers themselves — up to an extent, of course.

See Also: The Importance of Storytelling in Marketing

A couple of tips for the road

You wouldn’t want things to go wrong or maybe you’ve already gone through with your first giveaway and it didn’t quite work out.

This is where the following tips come into play:

Don’t make promises you can’t keep. Be very careful about what you’re giving out on a giveaway, what is in your inventory in the first place and about the terms and conditions. You don’t want to have to deal with a case like this one.

Don’t be too vague with the rules. Your followers need to know exactly what they need to do in order to be eligible for the giveaway. Confusion is not your friend.

Don’t make things too complicated for a gift that’s too simple and vice-versa. Nobody will bother with a free sample if they’ve got to tag and tag accounts and people.

See Also: How To Drive Traffic to Your Website Through Social Media

Takeaway

The use of social media and influencers can be of great value to SMEs especially, seeing as everyone takes on to social media platforms in order to check the social proof and the end-value of a business.

Leverage micro-influencers that are niche-specific and you’ll see your conversion rate skyrocket!

So, what say you? Are these tips on social media and influencer marketing enough? Is there something you’ve tried and would like to share with us?

Tell us in the comments and don’t forget to share the knowledge!

The post How To Nail Social Media and Influencer Marketing: The SME Edition appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

What Is Relationship Addiction and How to Recognize It

Most of us would say we would prefer to be in a relationship rather than be alone. However, not all relationships are created equal. There are those that are healthy and those that aren’t. Being alone is actually better in some cases, especially if your other option is being in an unhealthy or abusive relationship.

But there are those who would still choose the unhealthy relationship over being alone, even if it’s detrimental to their happiness and health. Or those that swing from one relationship to the next, refusing to end one unless another has begun. Each of these people very likely suffers from relationship addiction.

Relationship addiction can be difficult to recognize, especially for the person suffering from it. Most of the time, they don’t see their behaviors as unhealthy. They may claim to be in love or to be following their heart. The truth is, however, that there are underlying issues that are pushing them to do all they can to avoid ever being alone.

What Relationship Addiction Can Look Like

what is a relationship addiction

A person dealing with relationship addiction can find it nearly impossible to function without being part of a romantic relationship. Left on his own, he may feel overwhelmingly lonely or incomplete. In his mind, he exists to be half of a whole, rather than being whole on their own.

This addiction typically manifests in one of two ways:

1. Relationship hopping. Relationship hoppers will meet someone, get intensely involved, and then, generally within months, meet someone else and break things off. This cycle will repeat itself over and over as they move from one person to another. The relationship hopper is constantly looking for the “one” who makes their life complete. They are willing to bank all their happiness on someone else’s presence and influence.

2. Refusal to leave an unhealthy situation. The other way relationship addiction can manifest is when a person fails to see and change an abusive or unhealthy situation. These people have their identity so tied to their relationship that the idea of leaving is nearly unfathomable – even if that means they suffer. And when these relationship addicts do find the strength to leave, they will often go back. They don’t feel like they can function normally outside of the relationship. This cycle can repeat as well. All the arguments, break-ups, getting back together, repeat.

People in either one of these categories can have a very limited sense of self and identity. They don’t know how to exist outside of a relationship. They often lose interest and connection to family, friends, hobbies, and even their jobs. Overtime, this can lead to feelings of isolation and depression.

Often they are also prone to confusing sex with love, assuming that sexual interest is the same as real and deep feelings of connection. Unfortunately, for many relationship addicts, this is a mistake. Frequently, their partner doesn’t share the same level of investment in the relationship. When this difference becomes clear, it can have significant detrimental consequences on the relationship addict’s mental state.

See Also: 10 Red Flags to Consider Before Getting Serious in a Relationship

Why Relationship Addiction Happens

relationship addiction

Relationship addicts don’t generally recognize that there is a problem. They feel like their goal of finding love and a happy relationship is the same as anyone else’s. What they don’t understand is that the underlying issues and motivators for their approach are different and unhealthy.

Most of the time, relationship addicts are struggling with self-esteem and intimacy issues. This can be due to things from their childhood and family environment, traumatic experiences in earlier romantic relationships or deeper mental health issues. These circumstances will have defined their idea of a “normal” relationship or given them an inaccurate view of what they feel they need and deserve from a partner.

Occasionally, especially in the case of relationship hoppers, the addict may be a narcissist and continually seeking partners who will validate their feelings of grandiosity and entitlement. In these cases, the addict can cause pain and harm to their partner as well, even to the point of making the relationship abusive.

How you help a person who is suffering with relationship addiction will depend on the factors that caused the behavior. Like any addict though, they may not be able to change without outside help, especially if they don’t recognize the depth of their problem.

Whatever the reasons are, wanting to be part of a relationship at nearly any cost is unhealthy and won’t result in a long-lasting and happy relationship.

See Also: How to Get Rid of Relationship Insecurities

The post What Is Relationship Addiction and How to Recognize It appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Top 10 Reasons For Learning R Programming For Beginners

Planning on learning R programming for beginners? Well, that’s not surprising.

The R programming language is one of the most popular programming languages right now. As such, comparisons are quite often made between R and other popular programming languages, such as R vs. Python and R vs. Matlab.

R has an exhaustive number of packages. It is completely free to use and open source. Active community support for the statistical programming language is also available.

If you’re still thinking twice about learning R programming for beginners, then here is our list of the 10 top reasons to positively influence your decision. They might help you make up your mind.

So, without further ado, off we go:

Backed by a Huge, Active Community

Having a supportive, expanding community is one of the biggest advocating factors for picking up the R programming language, even if learning R programming for beginners sounds daunting.

Finding solutions to complex, real-world problems is a challenging task. While some parts of it, depending on the intensity of the problem, might be easy to figure out, others might seem daunting.

Whether you’re using R for financial applications, realizing data science projects or something else entirely, the R community is always there to help you out. It can assist you with ideas, innovations, and online discussion boards.

Having a supportive community is not only good for helping you tackle problems but it also presents you the opportunity to connect with like-minded people. It can also let you explore possibilities and create new ones.

You can share your ideas with the community and also collaborate to produce products that can help you and other people.

Comprehensive Library Support

learn r programming for beginners

There are over 10k packages and hundreds of thousands of built-in functions targeting different requirements available in the R programming language.

Other than the professional packages offered for data manipulation, data visualization, machine learning, and statistical modeling, there are numerous other packages. You can toy around with them and feed the imagination of other people with bright ideas.

Whatever you want to accomplish with R, there might be more than one package available for you. And if there isn’t, you can create and publish one. After all, R is an open-source digital asset and who doesn’t like a helping hand!

Cross-Platform Compatibility

One of the biggest advantages of the R programming language is its ability to support a wide array of operating systems. It’s compatible with a diverse variety of software and hardware configurations with no modifications.

Despite the different environments the R is applicable to, the programming language gives out a pleasingly seamless operation. This enables providers the freedom to choose different operating systems, hardware and software configuration than their clients and still succeed in delivering stellar results.

Data Visualization At Its Best

Data visualization has always been an important part of processing data and churning out important details from it. In the present data-savvy world, the importance of data visualization has reached new frontiers.

The R programming language is simply a majestic option for visualizing data. Thanks to its high-quality graphics, the R programming language is notably used in the pharmaceutical industry. However, it isn’t limited to that only.

R packages like ggplot2, ggvis, and plotly help in creating elegant and detailed data visualizations. Packages like these create high-quality, print-ready graphs, histograms, pie charts, scatter plots, Venn diagrams, and so much more.

Develop Interactive, Powerful Web Apps With Shiny

The R programming language has a package called shiny that helps you create powerful web applications directly from your data analysis software. To make things even better, you can host any web app created using shiny on cloud services like AWS, Google Cloud, and Microsoft Azure.

With shiny by your side, you can create striking dashboard designs, as well as intuitive web pages right from the R console.

Go-to Option for Statistical Analysis & Data Science

Some of the points mentioned on this list also make up for advocating the programming language’s capacity for data science projects.

There is no scarcity of bankable reasons for using R for data science projects, including having powerful infrastructure support. Now, R can be considered as a statistical software for the statisticians by the statisticians. So, naturally, it is apt for accomplishing statistical analysis.

Ranging from building complex statistical models to finding out simple measures of central tendency, R is the go-to option for one and all types of statistical analysis.
As an added benefit, simple R functions can be used for building complex machine learning models to the likes of Gaussian Process Regression, Poisson Regression, and Random Forest.

High Market Demand with Lots of High-Paying Roles

r programming for beginners

There has been a surge in the demand of data analysts, data scientists, financial analysts, and quantitative analysts nowadays. These are just some of the many career avenues feasible if you add R to your skills arsenal.

According to this Quora Q&A string, the R programming language has become the most popular analytics tool in the world. It also explores the many career possibilities available with the R programming language.

With the increasing focus on data and data analysis, the significance of R may hike over time. That also means that opportunities for the experienced are going to be bigger and better. Hence, it is high time to pick up R and start exploring for better professional opportunities.

See Also: Computer Programming Bootcamp Is A New Way To Change Your Career Practically Overnight

Major Companies Trust the R Programming Language

Anything that is used by famous international organizations is likely to gain attraction from the general public. There is no scarcity to the number of reputed companies that have picked up R to ease their business endeavors.

Here are some of the most notable examples:

  • Facebook employs R for accomplishing behavioral analysis pertaining to profile pictures and status updates.
  • Tech mogul Google finds R useful for advertising effectiveness and economic forecasting
  • The American automaker Ford uses R for improving vehicle designs
  • Twitter leverages the R programming language for data visualization and semantic clustering.

Being used by some of the most famous organizations not only adds to its popularity but it also increases the preference received by the same among smaller and medium-sized businesses. Professional individuals that look up to such elite firms benefit from it as well.

Multi-Domain Applications

There are several industries and domains benefiting from R. The list ranges from organizations specializing in data science to pharmaceutical firms. Using R for data science and statistical analysis is natural, owing to the nature of the programming language.

The following are just some of the many industrial uses of the R programming language:

  • Analyzing fraudulent transactions and building econometric models in the financial domain
  • Chum management, personalized advertising, and subscriber profiling by telecom firms
  • Performing genomic analysis in computational biology

Open Source Distribution

The popularity of a software, web technology or a programming language greatly depends on its manner of distribution. While a proprietary paid product brings peace of mind and reliability, it, on the downside, strictly avoids tinkering by the fascinated-minded.

Open-source software and products are always popular among the masses. So, now that we have upgraded to Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 might be around the corner, the popularity enjoyed by open source and free software has also risen to a grander scale.

This is because the Internet is no longer a novelty item. It has become an essential commodity for one and all. Everyone has social media profiles. They like to surf the web, download software and tools, and, if possible, toy with them.

In the present time, any quality product that is available for free and open source is likely to gain traction. This is true in the case of the R programming language. It is also a free open-source commodity that you can modify as per your requirements.

Distribution under the GNU license allows the R programming language to be readily installed and getting started with by anyone. Being open-source lets the tinkers modify the existing code as well as add their very own innovations and catalyze the mushrooming community support.

After Note

So, that was all!

We have successfully completed our list of the top 10 reasons for learning R programming for beginners. However, you need to understand one thing if you haven’t started with R yet.

Although it is not a difficult programming language to learn, it demands a good background in mathematics, machine learning, statistics, and data analysis.

You need to be resolute in understanding and developing competence in the programming language first. Afterward, you are free to explore the endless opportunities that R programming language has to offer.

The post Top 10 Reasons For Learning R Programming For Beginners appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Get A Short-Term Business Loan

Are you a smart businessman? Do you have what it takes to take bold decisions when your company faces the music? Are you aware of the regulations and policies of the top lenders? Do you know how to get a short-term business loan?

If your response is affirmative to the above questions, you know how to sail your company’s ship out of the troubled waters like a champion captain.

Now, before you go ahead and set a meeting with your lender, you must first know your primary purpose.

Basically, such a loan is usually obtained by small businesses when they are in an urgent need of cash. It could either be due to the need for a bigger space to  store your products or fit your growing workforce. They also come across situations where they need extra cash to purchase resources for a big order from a special client.

Such challenges can test an entrepreneur’s ability to handle the pressures of the business world.

Although a short-term business loan can save the day, business owners must repay the loan within 18 months or one and a half years.

Now that you have understood what a short-term business loan is, let’s look into how to qualify for one.

Maintain a Good Credit Score

It all starts with your credit score or the record of your bill payments.

A lender needs to know the status of your finances and how responsible you are in dealing with your debts. If you are able to maintain a clean and reputable credit history, your credit score would allow you to look for different sorts of financing options.

Always keep in mind that lenders check your personal credit score in addition to your business one. It is important because personal debts and mortgages often create problems in the repayment of loans.

This way, your lender will have a 360-degree view of your finances like your credits, debits, and years of business before offering you a loan.

Meet the Minimum Requirements

get a short term business loan

It is essential to know that getting a loan is a two-way deal. You must be equally indulgent and cautious about the whole process as much as your lender is.

If the lender asks for your financial information and reviews your accounts, then it is necessary for you to do your own research as well. Even before approaching a lender, it is wise to carry out research to make things easier and more transparent for you.

You should look into their mission statements and understand the requirements that should be met to get a loan approved. Having all proofs and documents ready will impress your prospective lender. It will make it easier to meet their standards and increase your chances of getting approved.

Get Your Testimonies Ready

Getting a loan is a hectic process. Sometimes, it can take months of rigorous hard work to complete it and a delay in the process can deliver a severe blow to your business.

As a smart entrepreneur, you should be prepared. Before even applying for a short-term loan, make sure that you have read its details and requirements.

Your next task is to collect the necessary documents, like personal and business balance sheets, leases, and bank statements. It will not only improve your loan application’s chances for approval, but will also save your precious time.

The quicker you arrange the required paperwork, the earlier you are going to have an access to that pile of cash for your business.

Make Your Business Strong

short term business loan

The status and prospects of your business are of great interest to the lenders. No lender would want to engage its money in a business that is not doing well. Things may become even gloomy if your company has no future business plan or if it has a flimsy business structure.

You need to have a robust and proactive approach in your business. You must have a detailed picture of where your business started from, where it is now, and where will it stand in the future.

Make sure that your business plan is free from any discrepancies or shady areas. It must be strong and articulate for the lender. Don’t forget to include your company’s origin, background, mission, and vision statement.

It should mention your product or service description. It would be a great idea to also make an industrial analysis, relevant market research, and a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) for your business. These things will make your lender well-informed and impressed with your efforts.

See Also: 5 Ways Business Investment Loans Can Help Your Start-Up

Final Thoughts

Securing a short-term business loan is quite convenient if you know your business and you’re willing to go the distance to inspire its growth. A suitable lender will see through your hard work and reward it with a prompt loan — and with leniency and a lower interest rate.

You have to believe in your business and pitch the idea to your lender with real dedication and conviction. Do not laze around or delay the process. Be active.

In fact, you need to be proactive in both receiving and returning the loan. If you have the qualities mentioned earlier in your business, you will have a short-term business loan approved in no or little time.

See Also: What Are The Advantages Of Business Consolidation Loans?

The post How to Get A Short-Term Business Loan appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Create Effective Infographics to Boost Your Content Marketing Game

A static content is nothing but an onslaught of dead words running the length of a full page. The wordy research might be of high value, but for today’s generation that’s highly off-putting.

Do you know why?

Because present online users have relatively shorter attention spans and are more likely to lean towards visually appealing content that’s logically moving and impels their participation at the same time.

The true mark of a successful business organization is marked by its ability to use different strategies according to the latest trends.

And what’s in hype these days? ‘Interactive’ infographics that are dynamic, colorful, and engaging. It’s the new marketing strategy.

How do you create a perfect ‘interactive’ infographic? How to create effective infographics?

It’s not an easy process. It’s quite a tricky one. A significant amount of planning goes into it. But you need not worry because I’ve delineated the proper steps in a convenient progression below.

Here’s how to create effective infographics:

Examine your brand

Before heading out towards the battlefield, it’s wise to make a thorough inspection of the artillery and inventory, right? To make sure you’ve got the right weapons and defenses?

Similarly, before creating interactive infographics and adopting this new marketing tactic, it’s crucial that you reexamine your brand from top to bottom.

  • Run tests on it and sort out its strengths and weaknesses.
  • Mark the selling points and focus on improving the lags.
  • Plan your pitch and devise techniques to convert consumers into clients.

Once you know what your brand’s true call is, it’ll be easier to project it from the rest of the world.

Double-check the target audience

If an English Literature teacher delivers a lecture on Shakespeare to a class of medical students, that would sound absurd. It’s a total waste of time, energy, and resources, right?

So, it’s absolutely paramount to understand that audience matters greatly. The people listening to what you’re saying and receiving your message get to have the final say about that message after all. A simple yay or nay of the consumers could make or break your brand’s image.

Know your target audience so you can build a productive interaction through an infographic with them. Consider their pains and problems, find out their interests and motivations, and then mold your call accordingly.

Collect convincing facts

create effective infographics

Abstract propositions are a total turn-off for consumers, believe me. It’s like throwing darts haphazardly into thin air and never hitting the bull’s eye. Missing your mark means missing your chance of survival in the long run.

Only with concrete data, hard-core facts, and undeniable logic can you turn disinterested online consumers into potential customers. You need to convince them why they should opt for your brand instead of others.

If they do choose your brand, what’s in it for them?

Relaying everything through an interactive infographic sounds like a wonderful idea, doesn’t it?

Saves everyone time and positively leads to sales.

Craft an interesting narrative

Information explosion is one thing you have to look out for. It’s hardly delectable and not easily digested. If an infographic is filled to the brim with hard-core facts, then the online consumers will find it difficult to relate to it. And if they can’t find a hook, they’ll just drop it and that’s not something you’d want.

So, to make it easy for your target audience to smoothly sail from one point to the next one, you need to:

  • Craft a clever story around your brand which will take the onlookers on a journey and touch them on an emotional level.
  • Include real-life examples, metaphors, cool analogies, voice-overs, and comments in the infographic. This will allow it to actually speak to your potential clients and convert them into buyers.

Incorporate eye-catching graphics

The appeal of a pastry lies in its delicate decoration. Because it seems pleasing to the eyes, we naturally assume it to be tasty and worth eating, right?

The same applies to interactive infographics. If the information is represented visually, it automatically engages the users’ attention. You might think of graphs, pies, and charts, but they’re too mainstream and bore easily.

Animation, on the other hand, is a foolproof attention-grabbing hook.

A wonderful color-scheme coupled with creative doodles and mechanisms like easy transitions, on-click revealing of hidden information, scrolling and hovering is bound to keep the online consumer’s eyes on the infographic through and through.

See Also: 10 Design Rules You Should Never Forget in 2019

Embed SEO-friendly gambits

how to create effective infographic

An interactive infographic is like an open canvas. You can freely throw paint on it, add music videos in it, include links and watermarks, gifs, voice-notes, and so much more.

In addition, you can embed top-ranking keywords in the visual content in more than one SEO-friendly ways. This will allow Google or other search engines to trace it and rank you higher in its result. Crafty, right?

Elicit user response

The most important feature of all is enabling the online consumer to engage with the infographic and respond to it. To this end, you can include a smart ‘form’ or an opinion-based poll in the content, which the user can fill and give his feedback.

This feedback can then be used to inform the firm’s policies. It is a positive call to action which is the main purpose of the infographic.

Because of this, the user will feel empowered and know that his voice matters for the brand. This will encourage him to share the infographic with others and do an indirect advertising for the brand.

Once you’ve taken all these factors into account, creating an interactive infographic should not be a conundrum for you. Just make sure to operate over a stable connection and you’re good to go. Say goodbye to plain wordy content and welcome the colorful interactive one. It’s the way of the future.

The post How to Create Effective Infographics to Boost Your Content Marketing Game appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How to Get Out of Work For An Interview [10+ Fireproof Excuses]

So, you just found a stellar opportunity that might launch your career into the stratosphere. You submitted a well-crafted application and a few days later, you get the callback. The company wants to invite you for an in-person interview.

Woohoo!!

Problem?

You don’t want your boss to know you’ve been going to interviews on company time.

Now, don’t stress as you’re about to learn how to get out of work for an interview.

Get All the Info First

job interview

When a recruiter says he’d like you to come in and do the interview, you’ll want to slap an S on your chest and jump right on it.

But before you throw your entire schedule atop a blazing fire, ask the recruiter these questions:

  • How long will the interview take?
  • How many interview rounds will I have to go through?
  • Any chance you could meet off the clock?

The answers to these questions will help you do better in working the interview into your schedule.

Pro tip: Right from the get-go, tell the recruiter you want to keep things on the down-low. Otherwise, the company might call for a reference and you will find yourself in hot water.

Don’t Over-Complicate It

Here’s the thing:

If you’d like to do an interview, it’s best to take a day off or at least a half-day off.

Why?

First, you won’t have to sneak away from the office and worry you’ll get found out. Second, you’ll have a boatload of time to prep for the interview (e.g., do company culture research.)

So, here’s what you can tell your boss:

Hey John, I’d like to take a day off/half-day off on Friday to take care of some personal matters. Is that OK?

Now, in some companies, you’ll need to submit time-off requests one or two weeks in advance. If that’s the case, tell the recruiter you’ll need to push the interview by some time.

The recruitment process usually takes more than two weeks. So, it won’t do much harm to schedule the meeting for later.

Can’t take a day off or a half-day off? Keep scrolling.

Map out an escape plan

If it’s not an option to take time off, don’t stress.

There are ways to wangle time off work for your interview without sounding the alarms with your boss.

Decide on the best day of the week

First, have a bird’s eye view on your work schedule.

Are there slow times (e.g., fewer meetings) vs. busy times?

You know your job best, so pick a day when you could spin a tale and sneak away without trouble.

Take time off out of your work day

Now, it’s time to figure out when you’ll do the interview.

Below are possible options:

In the morning. Have an interview early in the day, especially if you don’t have to show up at a specific time (e.g., 9 AM). This way, you could stay late to finish work and fly under the radar.

During lunch. It’s a good option if the drive time is short and if your company culture is OK with extended lunches. If not, consider asking for a longer lunch (stick around to see viable excuses.)

At the end of the day. If you can finish work and leave early, it’s your best bet. You won’t have to worry about the length of the interview or that you still have work to do.

Fireproof Excuses for Asking for Time off of Work

calling out of work for an interview

If you need time off, a good manager won’t ask you for details.

Problem?

If your manager was good, chances are, you wouldn’t be jumping ship.

Below are ten battle-tested excuses for why you need time off:

  • I need time off for a personal matter.
  • I need time off to take care of a time-sensitive issue.
  • I need time off to deal with a sensitive situation.
  • I need to go to the bank.
  • I need to pick a friend from the airport.
  • I have a medical appointment.
  • I have a meeting with my child’s school.
  • I have a house issue (e.g., plumbing, AC).
  • I have a financial planning appointment.
  • I have a major purchase delivery.

What Do You Think?

There you have it.

These are the best tips on how to get out of work for an interview.

Now, how do you go to interviews without raising a red flag? Do you feel guilty for leaving work to do an interview?

Let me know in the comments. I’d love to chat!

See Also: 5 Interview Mistakes That Can Get In The Way of Your Dream Job

The post How to Get Out of Work For An Interview [10+ Fireproof Excuses] appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

9 Great Reasons to Drink Water And How to Form the Water Habit

We all know that water is good for us, but the reasons are sometimes a little fuzzy. Even if we know why we should drink water, it’s not a habit that we can easily form.

The truth, however, is that we don’t focus enough on this habit. This is why we end up drinking lots of coffee, soda, alcohol, fruit juices, teas, milk, and a bunch of other beverages. And despite all those fluids, we still end up dehydrated which isn’t good for our health.

I’ve made drinking water a daily habit, although I will admit that a couple of years ago I was more likely to drink anything but water. Now, I don’t drink anything but water, except for a cup of coffee in the morning and beer with dinner once in a while.

Here are 9 powerful reasons to drink water (with tips on how to form the water habit afterwards):

Weight loss

Water is one of the best tools for weight loss. it doesn’t have calories, unlike high-calorie drinks, like sodas, juices, and alcohol. It’s also a great appetite suppressant.

Often, when we think we’re hungry, we’re actually just thirsty. Drinking plenty can help your weight-loss regimen. 

Heart health

Drinking a good amount of water could lower your risks of heart attack.

study published by the American Journal of Epidemiology found that those who drink more than 5 glasses of water a day were 41% less likely to die from a heart attack. That’s in comparison to people who drank less than two glasses.

Energy

Being dehydrated can sap your energy and make you feel tired, even mild dehydration of as little as 1 or 2 percent of your body weight. It can lead to fatigue, muscle weakness, dizziness, and other symptoms.

Headache cure

Another symptom of dehydration is headache. In fact, when we have headaches, it’s often caused by not drinking enough water. There are lots of other causes of headaches of course, but dehydration is a common one.

See Also: Water And Brain Function: How Staying Hydrated Makes You Smarter

Healthy skin

Drinking water can clear up your skin, but it won’t happen overnight, of course. Drink a healthy amount of water for a week and you’ll notice its good effects on your skin.

Digestive problems

Our digestive system needs a good amount of water to digest food properly. Water can help cure stomach acid problems. It can help treat constipation, too.

Cleansing

Water is used by the body to help flush out toxins and waste products from the body.

Cancer risk

Drinking a healthy amount of water has also been found to reduce the risk of colon cancer by 45%. It can also reduce the risk of bladder cancer by 50% and potentially reduce the risk of breast cancer.

Better exercise

Being dehydrated can severely hamper your athletic activities. It can slow you down and make it harder to lift weights. Exercise requires additional water, so be sure to hydrate before, during,and after exercise.

How to form the water habit

So you’re convinced that water is healthier, but you’d like to know more about how to make drinking water a daily habit.

Here are some tips that have helped me:

Know how much water you need

This is a debatable question. What’s clear is that the old recommendation of “eight 8-ounce glasses a day” isn’t right, for several reasons.

That amount includes all dietary water intake, including food and non-water beverages. It also ignores a person’s body weight which is an important factor in figuring the right amount. It also varies if you are sick or exercise.

Plus, it’s also not good to just drink when you’re thirsty because you’re already dehydrated by then.

Best is to form a routine. Drink a glass when you wake up, a glass with each meal, and a glass in between meals. Be sure to drink before, during and after exercise, too. Try to generally keep yourself from getting thirsty.

Carry a bottle

water bottles

A lot of people find it useful to get a big plastic drinking bottle, fill it with water, and carry it around with them all day. I like to keep a glass of water at my desk and I drink from it all day long. When it’s empty, I fill it up again and keep drinking.

Set a reminder

Set your watch to beep at the top of each hour or set a periodic computer reminder. that way, you won’t forget to drink water.

Substitute water

If you would normally get a soda or an alcoholic beverage, get a glass of water instead. Try sparkling water instead of alcohol at social functions.

Filter

Instead of spending a fortune on bottled water, invest in a filter for your home faucet. It’ll make tap water taste like bottled water at a fraction of the price.

Exercise

Exercising can help make you want to drink water more. It’s not necessary to drink sports drinks like Gatorade when you exercise, unless you are doing it for more than an hour. Just drink water. If you’re going to exercise, be sure to drink water a couple hours ahead of time. That way, it will get through your system in time.

Track it

It often helps, when forming a new habit, to keep track of it.

Tracking increases awareness and helps ensure that you’re staying on track. Keep a little log on an index card or a notebook and create a mark for each glass of water you drink.

The post 9 Great Reasons to Drink Water And How to Form the Water Habit appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Is it Ever Okay to Settle Down For Less?

No matter how independent most women are, they secretly (or not so secretly) want to find their Mr. Right to settle down with. This is why majority of us have a long list of the qualities our Prince Charming should have. You probably have written it down in a journal when you were 11 or you might be keeping your secret wish list somewhere else.

Well, it’s natural to have some expectations when it comes to committing our life to someone else’s.

This list of ours is supposed to help us by stating what we want and what we need. With it, we no longer have to tread through any obstacles. We just need to have our eyes on the prize!

But what if, instead of helping us, our high and unrealistic expectations are hindering us? What if it’s preventing us from seeing what or who is right? What if the best thing we can do is to settle down for less?

settling down

Settling gets a bad rap

Let me be the first to say this:

There are some things you should never settle for.

You are worthy of the best and someone who treats you like a queen. This is not the kind of “settling” I’m talking about.

I am, however, talking about when you don’t respond to an online dating email simply because he misspelled one word.

What’s wrong with that, you ask?

Impeccable grammar is on your must-have list. I want you to consider that he may have been typing on his phone or perhaps he was in a rush. He simply made a mistake because he’s human — just like you.

I don’t want you to stop caring about grammar. I just want you to give the man a chance.

If every email you receive is full of misspellings and terrible punctuation, kick him to the curb. However, you must give him a chance.

Think outside the box because people don’t always fit inside the box you’ve constructed for them. Physical attraction is often considered something we absolutely shouldn’t settle on or compromise our wants and desires.

Let me tell you a little story…

There once was a girl who thought tall men were the only men worth dating. When asked what kind of guys she liked, she always said, “They have to be TALL or I could never!”

Dating someone not tall was simply not an option.

Fast forward a few years and the girl is now head over heels in love with a dashingly handsome man. He is caring, hilarious, and so intelligent that he blows her mind on a daily basis.

However, he’s also not exactly tall. She’s even taller than him when she wears heels. It’s something she would have thought was so terrible before.

settle down

If I had turned him away the moment I met him simply because of his height, I would be missing out on everything I love about my life now. So, in a way, I settled but it certainly doesn’t feel like it.

If this is settling, I would hate to know what not going out on my first date with him would be like.

Examine your list of must-haves and wants. Then, toss them aside. If he treats you well, makes you laugh, and turns you on, who the hell cares if he doesn’t dress the way you like?

Remember your deal breakers and never settle when it comes to them.

Everything else? Live a little and allow people to surprise you. Falling in love isn’t a science and you may not get everything on your list. You just might end up with something you never even knew you needed.

See Also: The 3 Important Rules For Happiness You Should Be Following

The post Is it Ever Okay to Settle Down For Less? appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Why Recruiters Shouldn’t Keep The Candidates Waiting For Too Long

An interview is a tiring process both for the candidate as well as the interviewer. This is why they want to cut the long recruitment process as soon as possible.

However, there are times when more than one or even more than two people are involved in the interview process. As the rounds of interview increase, so is the involvement of more interviewers.

In such cases, the candidate has to wait for long periods to complete the interview process. That is, if the initial rounds of the interview go well.

This is absolutely fine from the perspective of the interviewee as he is happy and interested in appearing for the next level of interviews. But, this situation becomes extremely upsetting when the candidate has to just wait for hours to meet the interviewers.

Here are more reasons why the long recruitment process should be avoided:

To close the process as soon as possible

long recruitment

One of the most prominent reasons for reducing recruitment time is to close the complete interview process as early as possible. This will not only benefit the candidate, but it will also benefit the interviewing team as well.

Also, the recruiters will have more time to assess other candidates or work on the various things that they have. From the candidates’ perspective, if the interview closes soon, the chances of getting a response quickly will also increase. The candidate will be able to plan his next step quickly as well.

See Also: Why Your Organization Should Invest In An HR Management System

To leave a good impression on the candidate

No matter how good your brand is, the candidates will still judge your company based on your recruitment process. So, if you want to leave a great impression on the candidates about your company, then make interviews consume less time.

To inspire the candidates to join your firm

recruitment long process

The interview process leaves an impression on the candidate and sometimes, it may play a minor role in his decisions. Therefore, if you want the cream to join your brand, then make sure that you leave a sparkling impression on them.

If the interview process is friendly, quick, and efficient, then the candidate will have similar expectations from the company and his work area. This is a great way to positively influence the candidates to join the firm.

Impression always matters. A positive interview impression can be one of the reasons why the candidate chooses to work for your brand.

Interviews mostly involve long processes. There is a certain amount of time investment which is required from both parties. But sometimes, the candidates have to waste their time waiting for the interviewers because of poor interview planning and long recruitment process. These are things you can avoid.

See Also: Why Interviews Matter (And How To Make Them Better)

The post Why Recruiters Shouldn’t Keep The Candidates Waiting For Too Long appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Ace Your College Exams: Tips On How to Study for A Test In College

You’ve worked hard to get into college and now, you’re faced with a heavier workload than you did in high school. Class participation, assignments, quizzes, presentations, group projects, mid-term exams, and final exams are all challenges you must overcome to finally pass the course.

However, simply passing the course to earn credit hours just enough to get the degree shouldn’t be your goal. You may have observed many college students wondering whether GPA matters. To a great extent, it does matter.

Recruiters often look for people with a degree, but imagine how much of a boost your job application could get if you finished college with an above average GPA. To do that, you need to ace your exams.

Let’s take a look at these tips on how to study for a test in college.

Clear eyes and full hearts can’t lose

That’s Coach Taylor’s catchphrase from the iconic show Friday Night Lights. He led his team of high school football players through inspiration.

Without having a clear picture of why you’re pursuing a college degree and what finishing with a good GPA will get you, you’ll find it hard to do your best. Think of your motivations and imagine yourself as the successful professional or businessperson you will be after you’re done studying.

Know that even if you are doing everything right, success is not guaranteed. But, without doing everything right, success is definitely elusive.

Clear eyes (always stay away from drugs and alcohol under 21), full hearts (be sincere to yourself and others) and you can’t lose!

Focus

study for a test in college

When you’re in class and when you’re studying, resist the temptation to look at irrelevant stuff on your phone and laptop. Snapchat, IG, and Facebook can wait. Funny dog videos on YouTube will still be there when you’re free. Your friends will understand that you are busy when your textbooks are open in front of you.

Carefully listen to the professor in class and get through your academic tasks when in your own space. Just like how a physically fit person never compromises their time in the gym, you can’t let anything else interfere with your studying!

Take notes

It may be obvious, but relying on the professor’s PowerPoint slides isn’t enough. You have to take meticulous notes and place a special mark on points you feel like exploring further later in your own time.

Pay special attention to the unique aspects of the lecture which you won’t find in your textbook or online. The class instructor may also be dropping hints about the exam, so keep your ears open!

Take small breaks

It’s important to give yourself a rest after a while.

For example, if you’ve studied for an hour non-stop, it’s time to take a 15-minute break. Call a friend, talk to your family, play with your pet or check your social media. You deserve it!

Refreshing your mind is important to avoid burnout.

See Also: What Is The Best Time To Study According To Your Peak Mental Productivity?

Participate in group studies

Some people study better on their own while others study better with their classmates.

Participating in a group study is helpful if there are too many lectures to cover for the exam. Each member of the study group may impart value to the group by sharing their knowledge, skills, and their unique perspective.

Academic researchers have found study groups to be an effective method of preparing for exams. Group dynamics affect the learning curve, making it less steep. It allows students to question each other and have concepts explained in easy-to-understand language.

Besides the academic help you can get and give, the group can be a source of emotional support, particularly in dealing with the pressures of college life.

Use online resources

No matter which field of knowledge you’re pursuing, the internet is a treasure chest of useful information for you. Find credible websites through Google to delve deeper into topics. Usually, for any specific keywords, the websites near the top are authoritative resources on the subject.

Many printed textbooks have case studies or information boxes urging students to read more online. Check out those resources as they are directly relevant to your subject.
Your university may have also provided you access to academic journal search engines such as JSTOR.

Make the best use of them by checking out what academic researchers had to say on the subject. You can impress your professor by referencing these published researches in your papers and exams.

Have a good internet connection

studying for a test in college

You have to submit assignments online and you have to check your student email. You have to write your papers after extensive research. For all those tasks, you need a reliable and fast internet connection.

Students today are usually drowning in debt, making it hard for them to secure a decent a internet connection. That’s why it’s imperative to find the best internet deals in your zip code.

Know the syllabus

Remember that sheet of paper you got in the first class you attended which had the course information and syllabus on it? If you didn’t keep it or even refer to it once since the course started, that’s a sign you’re not giving it your all.

Why? Because you can’t revise the entire syllabus without having it in front of you!

When you’re preparing for an exam, you should have the syllabus in front of you to make sure you’ve covered every topic.

Talk to last semester’s students

Do you know anyone who took the same course with the same professor last semester?

Seek them out and ask them what was on the exam. Often times, they will tell you in detail what the questions on the exam were. Many of the same concepts will appear on the tests when it’s your turn to do the exam.

Don’t take just one student’s word for it though. Each may have a personal positive or negative bias about the instructor. Try to talk to multiple people who were in the same class last semester and prepare extra hard for concepts they all said were on the exam.

Consult with the professor

The professors have office hours dedicated to meeting with students. It could be through appointment or a walk-in session.

When speaking with your professor, simply talk about the course and clear any confusions regarding the academic material.

Try to see the course instructor in the office at least 2 to 3 times per semester. If they can put a face to the name and they know you’re trying, they’re likely to give you a better grade.

Good Luck With Your Exams!

Just give it your best shot. Follow these tips on how to study for a test in college and you will most likely end up with a decent grade.

See Also: Ultimate Success Tips For College Students

The post Ace Your College Exams: Tips On How to Study for A Test In College appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

8 Helpful and Effective Strength Exercises For Cyclists

For cyclists, the primary target of doing strength exercises is to train in the same motion as in cycling together with one’s upper and lower body, while improving overall muscular endurance and core strength.

Strength training generates a stronger support system for a cyclist’s prime movers while riding a bike. If you have aerobically stronger core and muscles, you will gain more potential in increasing power and consequently experience less fatigue while cycling.

Now that you understand why strength training is helpful before cycling, you might wonder what those strength exercises are.

Below are the 8 strength exercises for cyclists you can try.

Front Plank

strength exercise for cyclists
Via indianexpress.com

Steps:

  • Lie on your stomach and place both elbows under your shoulders with hands and forearms on the floor.
  • Raise your hips off the floor, straighten your back, tighten your abs, and rest on your toes.
  • Keep this position for 40-60 seconds and do two-three sets.
  • Front plank focuses on strengthening your transverse abdominis or TVA muscle, and upper and lower back. In cycling, the front plank can help you to build both strength and muscle endurance that you need in order to ride in aero position or in the drops powerfully.

Half Squat

half squat with barbell
half squat with barbell via t-nation.com

What you need:

  • Barbell

barbell

Steps:

  • Stand tall while carrying a barbell over your shoulders.
  • Bend your hips and knees until your thighs can form a 45-degree angle.
  • Repeat the sequence and complete 3-4 sets of 10 repetitions.

Here’s one thing to note:

Expect that the last few repetitions during the last 3 or 4 sets will be hard to complete but still ensure that you will make it through the last rep. Half squats work on your glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps. It would build strength for sprinting and climbing.

Single Leg Hip Bridge

single leg hip bridge exercise
Via tfdgym.co.uk

Steps:

  • Lie on the ground (placing a yoga mat would make you more comfortable) with your one leg bent while lifting the other one off the ground.
  • Raise your hips up in the air while contracting your glute muscles like you’re pushing through your heels.
  • Hold the position for a second or two before going down.
  • Do two to three sets of 10-12 repetitions on each side of your legs.

Single Leg Hip Bridge can be done at any time, but it is the best pre-workout to do to wake up your glutes before a strength workout, especially if you have been sitting and inactive for a while. Aside from that, it also improves speed, endurance, and strength used while cycling.

Lunges with Bicep Curl

lunges with bicep curl and resistance band
lunges with bicep curl and resistance band via pinterest

What you need:

  • Resistance band or dumbbell

dumbbell

Steps:

  • Stand in an upright position with either a resistance band or a dumbbell in each hand.
  • Execute a lunge position: straighten your back, step one leg forward and bend the knee to a 90-degree position, while your leg in the back should be straight.
  • While on it, do a biceps curl with both arms.
  • Repeat the same with the opposite leg forward.
  • Start with 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions in every leg.

Lunging with bicep curl is an excellent workout when you want to develop strength in your biceps, quadriceps, glutes, and deltoids. These four muscles are utilized when there is a need to stand and accelerate cycling.

Boat Pose

strength exercises for cyclist
Via yogajournal.com

Steps:

  • Sit with your feet flat on the floor and with your knees bent forward.
  • Execute a V-position: Raise and extend your legs out forward, and lean your upper body backward.
  • Stretch your arms away from you so you can tighten your lower abdominal muscles.
  • Make sure to relax your shoulders and keep your back straight.
  • Hold the position for 10 seconds and do it for 5-10 repetitions.

Boat pose mainly focuses on strengthening your transverse abdominis and lower back. As a result, you will feel less fatigue through strengthening the muscles that can improve your lower back. Also, this workout will allow you to encounter less pain and feel more comfortable while on aggressive cycling positions.

Single Leg Reach

single leg reach with cones
single leg reach with cones via sidelinesoccer.com

What you need:

  • Three water bottles or cones

water bottles

Steps:

  • Place three water bottles or cones in a triangular form.
  • While on a single leg stance, slightly bend your knees to do a squat and slowly reach down towards the left cone and return to a standing position. Do the same with the remaining bottles or cones.
  • Repeat the same sequence with the other leg.
  • Complete a set of 10 repetitions.

Single leg reach workouts focus on your hips and core and improve your balance on the bike, which is essential to develop bike handling and endurance. This strength exercise also works with your proprioception, also called as ‘sense of self,’ or the body’s awareness of movement and position in space.

Single-Arm Row

single arm row with cradle column machine
single arm row with cradle column machine via livestrong.com

What you need:

  • Cable column machine
cable column machine
Via amazon

Steps:

  • Stand across a cable column machine. Make sure your feet are shoulder-width apart, and knees are slightly bent.
  • Take the handle and do a standing row, while keeping your body still as much as possible. Do not lean forward nor backward to lift more weight.
  • Finish 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions.

Single-arm row enhances the muscles of your shoulder, back, and hips. It also strengthens the scapular region, which is a common area of fatigue caused by hunching too much on the bike. As a result, cyclists can avoid injuries and ride longer without discomfort.

Exercise Ball Hamstring Curl

hamstring curl with handle cradles
hamstring curl with handle cradles via pinterest

What you need:

  • Handle Cradles

Steps:

  • Lie on the ground (with yoga mat is recommended) and place your handles in the handle cradles.
  • Raise your hips and curl your heels (almost like pointing your toes) towards your hips
  • Do not drop your hips as you are bending your heels.
  • Finish two sets of 8-12 repetitions.

Exercise ball hamstring curl is one of the TRX routines (Total Resistance exercises) that strengthens your lower back and hamstrings. Strengthening hamstring and quadriceps is significant to enhance upstroke while in a pedaling motion and avoid lower extremity injuries.

Overall, these strength exercises for cyclists can help you prepare your body.

See Also: Can Cycling Actually Change Your Health And Life?

The post 8 Helpful and Effective Strength Exercises For Cyclists appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How To Deal With Pests: A Quick Guide

Las Vegas is known as the Sin City. It’s a home for gamblers and showgirls and a place where you can find a variety of Elvis’ lookalike.

However, it’s not all fun in this part of the globe since there are pests that can ruin the fun. We’re talking of desert creatures that will interact unexpectedly and inflict potential harmful and annoying bites and stings to its victim.

With increases in rainfall in Las Vegas at the start of the year, pest activity is likely to thrive. Find out which creepy crawlers call Las Vegas valley their home and how to deal with pests.

Deadly Scorpions

how to cope with different types of pest

Las Vegas summer is the birthing season of scorpions. These creatures just love the desert heat.

A scorpion sting is painful and itchy. You’ll need to put an ice pack on the affected area for relief.

Go directly to the ER if a victim experiences the following:

  • Puffiness
  • Soreness
  • Fever
  • Extreme pain
  • Increased heartbeat rate or blood pressure
  • Struggles in breathing
  • Muscle weakness and twitching
  • Numbness

Bring the body of the scorpion with you so that the staff will know what anti-venom to apply. As a protective measure, sweep the areas in your home or trap the scorpions.

Infesting Cockroaches

During cold months, cockroaches hibernate and adults emerge at the slightest heat source. Cracks and crevices in the house serve as breeding grounds as well as entry points.

They scavenge for food, mostly spoiled and discards, and water and trip to places that you can’t imagine. All the germs, bacteria, and grime are brought to your place when they visit.

They bite with a stinging pain. Although it’s not alarming, swelling, unbearable pain or puffiness should encourage you to see your doctor.

So, how to deal with pests like them?

Improve sanitation, declutter, and eliminate sources of food and water. The application of cockroach killers can help eliminate a roach infestation, too.

Pesky Ants

During summer months, ant colonies grow and their numbers multiply.

The presence of an ant trail is a nuisance. When they are hunting for food and water, their trail will most likely end in your things.

Although they are small, some ants pack a mean and destructive punch. They can inject venom with their bites, producing a burning sensation and blisters.

There are ways to stop ants from coming in like sprinkling boric acid or flour at entry points. You can use vinegar, pepper or the juice from citrus fruits.

Dangerous Spiders

how to cope with different pests

Male spiders trek buildings and homes for food and insects. They do it to find female partners, too.

Las Vegas is home to the Black Widow whose bite is potentially harmful. You won’t notice the bite until you see it, and it’s not painful at first. However, the venom can cause pain, cramping, and spasms within the hour.

Wash the area with soap and water, apply a cold compress to reduce puffiness, and take a sedative if needed. If pains or cramping are serious, go the ER.

There are natural ways to get rid of spiders like using eucalyptus, cinnamon, lemon peel, and vinegar. They don’t like the smell of these.

These summer, fun-ruining pests may have you scratching some imaginary itch, but it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy what nature has to offer in sunny Las Vegas. You just have to know how to deal with pests.

See Also: Top 5 Things To Do In Las Vegas

The post How To Deal With Pests: A Quick Guide appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

5 Ways to Manage Anxiety in Public Places

After losing my second child during pregnancy in May 2019, I developed what I thought would never fully grip me — anxiety. I had suffered with it before but never to the extent that I had when I lost my son. I found myself having panic attacks in the middle of supermarkets or uncontrollably sobbing when I saw a blonde baby boy. Right there, I knew that I needed to do something and I needed to act fast.

Here are some things that have helped me in managing anxiety in public places.

Choose Your Playlist

I have often seen people wondering around the supermarket in their headphones and laughed at how ignorant they looked. Then, I became one of those people.

Music is a wonderful gift and lyrics have the power to speak directly into our hearts and minds. Whenever I find myself experiencing anxiety in public places, I force my headphones into my ears and listen to music that declared hope, truth, and life.

This is a fantastic way to manage your anxiety as no one knows what you are doing. It really helped me to carry on with ordinary tasks.

Take a Deep Breath

anxiety public places

Breathing exercises have become somewhat ‘trendy’ now with all the mindful apps circling around. Despite that, I have found that deep breathing in a moment of dread has saved me on more occasions than I can count.

I have found that a couple of deep breaths can fully reset my thoughts and bring me back to my present reality. Sometimes I will even audibly say to myself “okay” as I take a deep breath and continue on my way.

See Also: 11 Really Effective Relaxation Techniques to Relieve Anxiety

Remind Yourself of Your Current Reality

Often, when we find ourselves experiencing a difficult season and the weight of our reality is heavy on our chests, we assume that we will always feel this way. The truth is that anxiety can be something that we consistently have to work through, but it will not always be this intense. When I experience a panic attack or a feeling of dread, I try to remind myself of all the times it has happened before and how I am still standing. No one can rush anxiety.

Talk to the Right People

When feeling extremely low, people typically fall into one of two categories.

The first is a complete shut down of any kind of communication as we can become embarrassed of what we are feeling. The second is that we completely overshare with everyone as we are desperate to be understood and to have our feelings validated.

I have found that having two to three people who I can really trust and care deeply about me that I can contact at any time has literally saved my life in certain scenarios. Good friends are like gold dust in seasons of depression and anxiety as sometimes we become a hard friend to keep. Find your nearest and dearest and hold them close.

Just Get Out There

public places anxiety

It is so easy to stay indoors and stay in alone. When anxiety is a very real thing in our lives, it is also incredibly draining. We find that even just looking after ourselves becomes a near impossible task.

I encourage you to get outdoors at least once every day. Sometimes, it is necessary to get out of our own heads. This can only be possible if we physically get out of bed and face the outside world. I have found that even just walking my dog while applying all of the above techniques has helped me to move forward.

In closing, anxiety can be all-consuming but there are things that we can do to manage it. By letting the right people in and applying healthy techniques, we can ensure that we are moving forward step-by-step, day-by-day.

The post 5 Ways to Manage Anxiety in Public Places appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

What To Do If A Doctor Makes a Medical Mistake

Just the thought of going under the knife and having a medical procedure is frightening. But as there is nothing you can do, you’ll listen to your doctor’s advice and have surgery. Unfortunately, surgical malpractice can happen. It can lead to injuries and even death. In other cases, a doctor’s mistake arises to a medical malpractice claim. So, what to do if a doctor makes a mistake?

Types of Surgical Medical Mistakes

surgical mistake

It is not easy going under the knife. A patient will be helpless, relying only on the doctor and the medical staff. He is cut open while unconscious. But having surgery, a patient hopes to get better. Unfortunately, mistakes can occur, even in the simplest operations.

The following are the most common surgical mistakes that can happen during the procedure.

  • Foreign objects left inside the body: This is one of the most common surgical mistakes. Surgeons might leave gauze, pads and even a scalpel inside a patient’s body, causing much pain and infections. In other cases, foreign objects left inside can cause the patient’s death if unattended.
  • Anesthesia mistakes: It is a fatal surgical error when administered excessively. When this happens, the patient won’t receive sufficient brain oxygen, leading to brain damage and eventually, death. In some cases, anesthesia might not be enough, leading to the patient not feeling numb, experiencing pain and waking up in the middle of the operation.
  • Wrong patient: It is another common surgical mistake that can lead to death, happening when the surgical staff and the doctor forgot performing a preoperative verification. As a result, they perform a surgery to the wrong patient.
  • Incorrect surgical site: A doctor can operate on the wrong body part. It can happen with amputations or kidney transplants, leading to a surgical mistake.
  • Nerve damage: This mistake can result in a lifetime of disability or pain. It happens with just a hand tremor or an incorrect flick of the wrist. In other cases, a scalpel slip can lead to nerve damage and lifetime disability.

Other types of surgical errors also include:

  • Failure to detect or diagnose a dangerous medical condition during the procedure
  • Damaging healthy organs
  • Failure to fix or prevent any complication during a surgery
  • Not monitoring a patient well for any issues like internal bleeding or infection following a surgery
  • Mistakes made during an emergency surgery
  • Leaving any instrument in the body of the patient after surgery

What Are My Options After A Doctor Performed a Surgical Mistake?

If you’ve inflicted from an injury following a surgery, you might want to know your options. What should you do next?

Check out the following for what you need to know.

Medical help

Health is always a top priority. If you’re injured due to a surgeon’s mistake or negligence, you should report this issue to the surgeon right away. Then, seek medical help from a physician who can improve the medical error if it’s detected early.

If you have Medicaid plans, which provide health coverage for low-income individuals, you can use it to lower your costs and get health coverage.

Also, you need to find a health specialist for treating the specific injury. But, you must provide the medical provider with your medical history, as well as all information about the medical error. You must be honest and give correct and thorough information.

You might also have to share what your health was like before, during and after the error along with your current condition.

Be sure that the doctor will have access to the medical records that would affect the diagnosis and plan for treatment.

Report

Each state has its own procedure when it comes to filing a complaint with the medical board along with varying requirements and forms. When a complaint is filed, an investigation is conducted by the medical board for disciplinary action against the doctor. However, there is only a small percentage of the filed reports that are given action or doctors that get a disciplinary action.

Legal Action

what to do if doctor makes a mistake

If you want to take a legal action, you should consult with a medical malpractice attorney for advice. However, make sure to ask help from lawyers with specialization in such cases to help you fight for your rights.

You have what you need to know about the types of surgical mistakes and options you have following a surgical error. Learn what to do, especially if you have to file a medical malpractice claim.

The post What To Do If A Doctor Makes a Medical Mistake appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: The Pros and Cons You Need to Know

Nobody in this busy world wants to file for bankruptcy. However, if debt settlement and negotiation are not sufficient to resolve your financial crisis, then you may have no other option.

Calling bankruptcy implies that you have come to the end of your financial rope and have no means to pay your existing debts like car loans. For people facing overwhelming debt because of buying a car, filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy is regarded as one of the few means to initiate a bankruptcy fresh start program, erasing the obligation to repay and giving you a chance to get on with your life.

The decision to file for chapter 7 bankruptcy is a big one and it has its pros and cons, which you need to pay attention to.

Generally, a debtor can select to file for either a chapter 7 bankruptcy or a chapter 13 bankruptcy. But mostly, all individuals file bankruptcy under Chapter 7. It is referred to as a ‘liquidation bankruptcy’ because it involves a gathering of the property and assets and selling them to pay off as much as debt as probable before the remaining debt is discharged.

Ultimately, you can erase your debt with a chapter 7 bankruptcy or even create a repayment plan with chapter 13 bankruptcy when you’re planning to opt for a car loan.

Real Examples of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Example 1:

Mia is a retired educator on a fixed income. She decided to sell her home before moving in with her daughter. She had great credit score because of on-time payments on her mortgage and she never had debt. Later, she agreed to co-sign on a home loan for her granddaughter and a car loan for her grandson. Well, she couldn’t say no!

But 2.5 years later, the house was repossessed when the granddaughter had a divorce. The grandson’s car was repossessed after he lost his job. A substantial amount of debt was remaining after the house and the car was sold at an auction.

Mia, in critical health, was cornered by creditors. She filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy which stopped the harassment and rejected the deficiency claims. Her social security and retirement money were ultimately excused and protected.

Take note that if you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy while paying off a vehicle loan, you’ll need to decide whether or not you’d keep the vehicle.

If you decide to surrender the vehicle, you’ll have to forfeit the sum you’ve paid toward the loan. Nevertheless, the creditor won’t be able to sue you for the balance once the vehicle is sold at the auction.

Pros and Cons of Chapter 7

Declaring for chapter 7 bankruptcy may seem like an amazing idea. It can relieve your debt and offers a chance to rebuild and get a fresh start. Nevertheless, you should definitely also be aware of the upsides and downsides of it.

Upsides

chapter 7 bankruptcy

Bankruptcy is common: There’s nothing to be embarrassed about bankruptcy. It’s quite common and, honestly, the best option in various scenarios. Businesses have a downfall and credit cards spiral as the interest rates increase. Even Donald Trump has filed bankruptcy.

Makes you financially disciplined: If you ever plan to buy a car again, you will require to be economical and accountable about debt. You’ll be able to demonstrate perfect ability to pay those car loans on time even though there might be open lines of credit in the later future.

Eliminate credit card debt: That’s a big one. Credit card use is a common cause of declaring bankruptcy. Individuals often pay off vehicle loans with credit cards when cash isn’t readily available, and debt gradually snowballs from there. Filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy permits you to start fresh without credit card car debt.

See Also: How to Get Out of Credit Card Debt Fast

No effect on your wages: Wage garnishment happens when lenders have a court order that permits for a part of your pay check to get sent to your lenders. However, when you apply for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, it will stop from happening. It can, at the end of the day, improve your income as you’ll be able to keep the money you worked hard for. This doesn’t work in cases of student loans, child support, and taxes.

Downsides

file chapter 7 bankruptcy

A downfall for credit score: Credit rating can be severely damaged when you file for chapter 7 bankruptcy. It lowers the score by 200-250 points, which stays on till 7-10 years. This can make it quite difficult for you to qualify for fresh car loans and credit for nearly 3-4 years.

Won’t erase student loans: Student loans for buying a car cannot be erased with bankruptcy. If it is your debt, then you’ll definitely be on the hook to pay it. However, it prevents creditors from taking aggressive collective action which absolutely helps. Proving that your student vehicle loans are too much of a liability is a very tough task. It mostly requires a separate lawsuit and an attorney.

See Also: 5 Strategies For Paying Off Student Loans Fast

Loss of expensive property: In the process of filing, you will most likely lose some of your assets, especially extraneous luxury items including all sorts of cars. These goods are used in repaying your creditors and depending on your state’s exemption laws, you might be required to give up on material things that you’d rather not.

Six-year filing: Chapter 7 bankruptcy can only be filed every six years. This encourages all those who recently filed bankruptcy to keep their head above the water and be attentive.

Final Thoughts

We would just like to make you aware that the most significant thing is to analyze your own personal financial situation. Compare consumer car debt solutions in order to select the best resolution for your financial situation.

If you have nominal assets and merely require a fresh start, then chapter 7 can definitely help you.

But if you think that your situation is a bit more complex, then it can still be significant for your financial situation. It’s vital to get direction on whether chapter 7 or chapter 13 would be the right option for you. While our brief list of pros and cons may be helpful to you when it comes to opting for car loans, it’s honestly just the beginning.

The post Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: The Pros and Cons You Need to Know appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How To Contain An Oozing Toxic Situation In Your Life

Imagine a container of toxic waste that is oozing out at the top. It is almost boiling over and the lid is barely hanging on.

Wouldn’t you do anything to stop it? Even from a distance?

Once we recognize that a situation is out of control, we should step back, reexamine, and reassess the situation. As much as possible, we shouldn’t start lying to avoid conflict.

Call It Ground Hog Lie Day with A Sprinkle Of Deja Vu

Here is a simple example:

Have you ever told a lie to your friends and it got worse? Suddenly, you have to tell another lie to cover that one up.

I had a friend who told a lie. She made up a story to her boss and said she couldn’t go to work because she was sick. She spent the next few days telling them the same story. After awhile, they told her she might be too contagious and couldn’t come back without a doctor’s note.

The lie she told had spilled in so many directions. She had to cover one lie with another lie. It started to affect her income because she was out for more than a week and her future employment at the job hanged in the balance.

avoiding conflict

It got so bad that she had to fake a doctor’s note. Eventually, she decided to go to a doctor and see if she could get a note explaining her “illness”.

The point is this could have been prevented at the beginning. It could have been more contained. Instead, it got out of control.

Some situations get worse and worse if we let them go. It can be too late!

The same thing happened to me. I got a DUI, went through two trials, and was convicted. It took three years of court cases and appeals to end the case. And that equals three years of anxieties.

Then, during a court appearance, I didn’t go. Instead, I ran away.

A warrant was issued for me. I told my roommates and they told me I couldn’t stay there. I lost my fingerprint card for my job as well.

It became hard to find a job. I ran from place to place and I lost my car for an extremely long time.

This could have all been handled better. What could have been a six-month problem became a 3-year issue. It would have been simple for me if I just took the classes and paid what fees I could. Not trying to whine or make you feel sorry for me, I’m just illustrating how everybody goes through difficult moments.

How we handle adversity in our lives becomes our defining moments.

Toxic Begins To Spread Fast

The toxic situation had spilled into every area of my life and eventually, I had to stop it.

So, my suggestion to anyone else is minimize the damage before it spreads to every area of your life.

Ask yourself:

How can I stop this virus from spreading?

What is your containment plan? Do you just put on a detox suit and walk away? Where will it spill if you just ignore it?

Stop It Before You Become A Zombie, Too

lie to avoid conflict

Where did the spillage begin and what stage is it in? Is it just beginning to spread or has it been contaminating for awhile?

Get help from others. Tell someone when things start to get out of control.

Stop the lies if you did it and come clean. Do it before it affects everyone around you.

There was this horror movie several years ago called Cabin Fever. In the movie, everyone in the town drank and bathed in polluted water until their bodies disintegrated.

They did not contain the situation or realize how bad it was until their limbs literally came off.

Time For That Painful Road of Self Admission

Save yourself and those around you from melting away because of your mistakes and lies. That is a little dramatic but the point needs to be reiterated.

Instead of lying to avoid conflict, save yourself by dealing with the issue. It gives you a better chance of keeping the rest of yourself and those around you intact.

The post How To Contain An Oozing Toxic Situation In Your Life appeared first on Dumb Little Man.