5 Ways To Improve Yourself In Your Spare Time

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As people, we love to grow. From childhood, to teenager, to adult, we grow physically, but as humans we love to grow personally. We are a species that pushes the boundaries to learn new things about the world, each other and the way things work. The digital age has rushed upon us and we are making new discoveries all the time thanks to the developments in technology and the web. It makes sense that while we are developing and improving everything from the mattresses we sleep on, to the televisions we watch, that we want to add ourselves into the mix.

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The human potential can often feel limitless and when you know how to push your own boundaries, you can really harness and maximise your own personal growth. Improving yourself doesn’t just mean within business, although it’s a good place to start and build your confidence. Your personal wellbeing and relationships matter, too, and if you are spending time working on your own development, you can become a happier, more secure individual. We’ve put together five ways you can use your personal time to work on yourself and make improvements in your self-esteem.

  • Learn More. When you are working hard in your career, you can often forget your overall goals or pathway to the top. Take the time to enrol on an Online RN to BSN Degree Program. Doing this in your spare time literally adds to your brainpower and can help you develop into other future roles. This type of development can work with your confidence and self-esteem, as well as make you satisfied with your daily life at work.
  • Read More. Different from the above point, literature isn’t just about self-help and learning. Devour a book a month and challenge yourself to new genres. Expanding your horizons can open up so many doors into conversations with new people, and reading is diving into the imagination of someone else. Appreciate it and embrace it while you learn what you love.
  • Talk More. You don’t have to be the most confident person on the planet to learn a language, but learning a language can unlock different cultures and appreciations for other civilisations across the globe. Opening your mind to new experiences with languages is important and it’s a great way to build your confidence talking to new people.
  • Paint More. Look around your home and make a list of all the decorating changes you could make. The inspiration you find from the world around you can be implemented into your home and you can make as many changes as you like, as it’s your space. Let your creativity ooze out around you!
  • Sleep More. One of the biggest things that people forget is to sleep enough. We need at least six hours sleep a night to function well, so teach yourself to sleep and feel your mental health improving.

Self-improvement starts with you and your own desire to push yourself to the max and once you start on that train, you never have to get off!

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A Guide To Creating The Perfect Bucket List

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Have you made your bucket list? The process is simple. Basically, it is a list of everything you want to do before you die. Sounds a little morbid, we know, but as we only have one life to live, the bucket list is a great tool to inspire us to live this life to the fullest. One of the most famous examples is this bucket list created by John Goddard. Sadly, he is no longer with us, but he checked off 109 of his 127 goals. Truly incredible. So what about you?

We can’t tell you what to put on your list. It is entirely dependant on your tastes and lifestyle, so you need to take the time and brainstorm, writing down your ideas on a piece of paper or your computer. Admittedly, it’s difficult to know where to start, so consider the following headings.

New experiences – is there anything you have never done before, but would really like to? This may be playing a particular instrument, taking part in a daredevil activity, or driving a fancy sports car around a race track.

Travel – is there anywhere in the world you would like to visit? From sailing the British Virgin Islands to exploring the Australian outback, think about the places you are desperate to see.

Relationships – for many people, getting married often rates highly on a bucket list, as does having a family and making new friends.

Career – we spend most of our time at work, but this can still feature highly on your list. You may want to progress up the career ladder, make more money, or even change your job and work somewhere that has more meaning to you.

Physical endurance – most of us resolve to spend more time keeping fit at the start of the new year, but your list should be more adventurous. You might want to climb a mountain or take part in a marathon, pushing your endurance to the limits.

Don’t be limited to our examples. As we said, you may have ideas of your own, whether they are big or small in scope. However, making the list is the easy part. Many people’s bucket lists go unfulfilled, for one very simple reason. They aren’t achievable. Items such as ‘going to the moon’ or ‘become a famous movie star’ are possible, but not within most people’s reach. You need to make a list of items you intend to do, rather than a fanciful wish list which is mainly fantasy.  Consider the following:

Be realistic – think big by all means, but choose things you actually intend to do, and not a list of daydreams.

Don’t be vague – writing down items such as ‘getting healthier’ is okay, but it is rather vague. Be specific, and include items of relevance, such as exercise ideas or particular foods you want to try.

List your passions – don’t write down anything because you think you ‘should,’ such as reading every play by Shakespeare or watching the entire directorial works of Ingmar Bergman. You want to be excited by the things on your list, and not be put off from doing them.

Don’t worry if your list changes over time. You can add or take away from it as appropriate. Your life will change, which may mean you won’t be able to do certain things, or you may replace items according to your lifestyle as you get older. It doesn’t matter. The key is ensuring you get to achieve as much as you can over your lifetime, living a life where you can be proud to say “I did that” and be glad about it. The rest of your life begins here. What do you want to do? We wish you every success and happiness.

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Trying To Be Wonder Woman? Here’s Why You Should Be A Wise Woman Instead

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It’s only natural, and you’re definitely not the only one, but as women, we often feel like we have to do it all. Have it all. Experience it all. It’s not just enough to do one thing or be one person. We have to do everything and be everyone. But when you’re trying to do just that, you may find that you’re heading down a slippery slope to burn out. Or, you’ll start to age. Because trying to be Wonder Woman and have it all can make you ill. Instead, you need to start shifting responsibility and ask for help – for the sake of your own sanity. It’s so much smarter that way.

House Chores

So, you’re a mom, an employee, a wife, and also a cleaner. Aren’t you exhausted? Wouldn’t you prefer to drop at least one of those titles? Namely, the cleaner! When you’ve got a full-on schedule, and you’re a busy working mom, you could use house cleaning services to help you breathe a bit easier. And even if you’re house proud and enjoy the cleaning process, just think about the extra time you’ll be able to spend with your kids when you’re not vacuuming and scrubbing. You may even get to take a candle lit bath once or twice too!

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Parenting

Okay, so it’s highly unlikely that you’re going to want to actually hang up your mom uniform, but at the same time, you might want to loosen your leash a little. If you’re at home with your kids 24/7, or even if you’re the primary caregiver, you may need to take a break every now and again. You might not want a full-time nanny, but a babysitter twice a week or one of your own parents taking the kids off of your hands and hour here and there could give you a moment or two to get yourself together.

Work

Work is called work for a reason. And even if you love your job or even run your own company, you might want to think about stepping back or balance things out a little. When you’re a mom, your kids will always come first. You may have loved the long hours once, but now’s the time to commit to your family. So offload some of your workload onto others, cut your hours, or even hire an assistant and give yourself a break.

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Running Errands

If you constantly feel like you’re running errands, you’re not the only one. Sometimes, they can even take up the entirely of your day. And when you’ve got a lot going on, this is the one thing you could often do without. So do without it. Get someone to run your errands for you instead. You’re probably wondering why you didn’t think of this sooner!

Cooking

And then, of course, there’s also cooking. Now, you may love it (you may also hate it), but with everything else you’ve got going on, trying to come up with incredible, tasty, and healthy meals, shop for them ingredients and then cook these delicious dinners is often too much for the modern family. So, go for a home recipe box instead. You get the ingredients, the recipes, and more often than not, everything is super easy to make too!

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Growing Old Gracefully: Bathroom Tricks To Help Your Parents Keep Their Dignity

When we’re young, our parents do everything for us. They are the supports on which we lean. Which is why it can be confusing for everyone when the tables turn. Inevitably, we all end up caring for our parents at some stage. Sadly, that is the circle of life. But, when the time comes, it can be challenging to strike the right balance. You’ll want to offer the best care possible, without imposing or taking your parents freedom. Thus, you may find that you’re treading on eggshells, or failing to provide the care they need.

To help everyone move forward, it’s worth having a conversation about the part your parents would like you to play. They may try to hold onto their independence for as long as possible, and there’s nothing you can do about that. Or, they may accept that they need help, but express a desire to keep their dignity. If this is the case, it’s important to consider how you can provide dignified care, specifically when it comes to the bathroom. And, to help you settle on a plan which works, we’re going to consider some of your options.

A bathtub for ease

The most substantial issue to consider is that of bathing. When mobility starts to fail, your parents will find it difficult to get in and out of the bathtub. They may even do themselves an injury by trying it. But, they may be reluctant to let you lift them in and out. It would involve exposure that they may not be comfortable with.

So, find a compromise. By helping your parents choose a tub which opens at the side, you can ensure they can get in and out without worry. An option with a seat included would even allow you to rest easy that they can remain in an upright position. Or, if their mobility isn’t that bad yet, you may want to browse modern bathtubs which are freestanding. Options like these often dip in the middle, making them easier to get into. Plus, their freestanding nature will allow you ease of access once they’re already in the water. That way, you can help them wash, then leave them to it.

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Installed rails

It’s also worth installing grab rails in showers, and around the toilet. These will prove a huge support, and will mean that your parents can hold themselves up. Thus, you won’t need to lift them onto the toilet and so on. Again, these will go a massive way towards helping your parents keep their dignity. Often, toilet issues are the most embarrassing of all. Dealing with them in this way could be the best of both worlds.

Urinal in Hong-Kong on the Lung Fu Shai Fitness Trail, with handles for the elderly.

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An alarm by the toilet

Bear in mind, though, that an alarm chord by the toilet could be a huge help in ensuring your parents safety. That way, you can be on hand if they do need you for any reason. Without this, there’s a risk they’ll be stuck on the toilet for extended periods, which would undo your efforts at modesty. The chances are that they’ll never need to use it. But, it’s not worth the risk. When you know it’s there, you can rest easy. And, though they may not say it, your parents will also feel much better for its presence.

A sink with a seat

Standing by the sink could also become a real challenge for your parent’s. Even brushing their teeth for two minutes could prove too much. So, it’s worth getting a seat installed near their sink. If possible, you could have one built into the same cabinet that their sink is on. This will look like part of the decor and means they can have a quick sit down if they’re struggling.

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Or, you could carve a space underneath the sink, and slip a chair there, instead. To guests, this will look like a vanity-style sink setup. But, it could be a real dignity saver for your parents. Plus, this option has the benefit of allowing them to sit while they do what they need to.

A final word

As you can see, there are any number of ways to help your parents keep their bathroom dignity. While there may come a time when you’ll need to take a more active role, these steps will ensure that time is a long way off. Of course, you’ll need to check with your parents before putting anything in place. But, once you’ve explained, they’re sure to be on board.

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5 Simple Ways To Take Care Of Your Elders

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With today’s super fast-paced, digitally hyper-connected world at our fingertips 24/7, it’s easy to feel the generational gap more acutely than ever. Modern society is almost geared up to give us a laser focus on the self, and it’s no wonder that many younger people feel out of touch with their grandparents generation. But there’s so much that we can learn from our elders – life lessons that are just as relevant today as they ever were, even if the world outside looks very different. Many people find that once they put effort into developing a connection with their seniors, it enriches their lives in ways that they never imagined. So how can you best look after your older loved ones? Here are five ways to do just that:

Organise their medications

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One thing that usually happens as relatives age is that they take increasing amounts of medication or have more medical appointments. A real, practical way to take care of elders in your life is to make sure that these drugs are in order. It can be as simple as helping them set up reminder alarms on a cell phone specifically designed for senior use, or it could be making sure their pills are organized into a storage container clearly labeled by date. Ensuring nothing is missed helps reduce damage to health in the long run.  Helping them to stay on top of this area is essential to their health –and your peace of mind.

Help them take control of finances

It’s an area that many of us don’t like to talk about, but helping our elders ensure that their financial affairs are in order can save a lot of confusion and stress for them, and their families. A typical state of affairs is that when an older woman becomes widowed, they suddenly find themselves dealing with all sorts of financial matters that had previously been handled by their husband. Elderly relatives may have little idea about modern banking procedures that could save time and money, like automatic direct debit payments, or even comparing energy suppliers to make sure they have the best deal on their utilities. A few minutes spent guiding them through a process online can be a beneficial gift of your time, in return for all the life experience they can give to you. The vital part is not to take over – involve them in the process too.

Look after their health

Whether its mental health or physical, younger relatives can do a lot by ensuring their older family members have good health in both respects. Are they taking part in enough social activities? Help them find clubs and societies in their local area to join in with. Do they take regular exercise? Invite them out for a walk at the weekend. It’s also vital to watch out that they stay clear of any illnesses that hit the elderly harder, such as kidney infections and pneumonia. Check out these tips from CaregiverConnection to see if they may be coming down with something. The earlier things like that are treated, the less overall impact they will have on health.

Find shared activities to do together

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One of the most significant joys that older people seem to provide is encouraging us to take it slower sometimes. When we step out of our busy lives and match ourselves to their pace for a while, it can make a world of difference to wellbeing. Instead of thinking about that their age limits them from doing, think about what you can do together. A sponsored walk to raise money for a favorite course can be enjoyable. Or is there a craft they are expert in that you’d like to learn? From crochet to jam-making, homespun skills are all the rage again now – and the older generation often have considerable talents in these areas!

Think about their environment

Relatively small changes in the home environment of an older adult can change their daily life for the better. So spend some time thinking about how to adapt their home to their changing needs, and you could help them out.Cluttered interiors with unused pieces of furniture can make navigating on their own harder – perhaps it’s time to introduce them to making money on eBay! Installing support bars in the bathroom is low-cost but can make elders a lot safer in their own homes – as can installing and monitoring new fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors and helping them to prepare their home for winter. Even just purchasing a cable tidy to keep trailing electrical wires tucked away can prevent an accident.

It doesn’t take much to look after your loved ones, and simple ways to show you care can mean the world. We’ll all become elderly ourselves one day if we are lucky, so it only makes sense to have better relationships with our seniors and set an example to those younger than us.

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Caring For Your Elderly Parents: Don’t Get Overwhelmed

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The day will come when our parents will no longer be able to drive around. They won’t be able to climb the stairs, or walk the dog, or maybe even prepare their own food. As sad of a thought it is, it’s important to prepare yourself for it, because unfortunately, it’s inevitable – it’s just part of life.

It may become your job to make sure that they are looked after and comfortable for the last stages of their lives.

There are many things to consider, but here are some of the most important pieces of advice.

Love your health care services.

When you arrive at this phase of life, your best friends will be the ones who are helping you and your parents. Anyone from the social worker, physical therapist, cleaner, doctor, nurse, and even that caring neighbor that brings round that delicious peach pie. – Whoever is involved in your lives, you will want to make sure they are all uplifting and have positive thoughts, because that’s what’s needed at a time like this. So anyone that does enter your life for the better, keep hold of them. Let them know how much you appreciate them, and hope they stick around.

Ask for help.

As much as you may like to do everything yourself, especially as they’re your parents, sometimes it’s just no longer possible. The stress itself of having to be on the ball all the time while juggling your own life and responsibilities like work, can all become too much to deal with, and you may end up making yourself ill, and if that happens, you won’t be able to care for your parents anyway. It may be time to find an affordable home care where they will get all the care they need while taking the stress off yourself. There are plenty out there; you just need to find the right one that works for you both.

Depend upon your spouse.

Sometimes, your parent may seem to have more of a connection with your other half than you. This is never a nice feeling, and can hurt a little, but it’s never out of bitterness. Usually, this happens because your parents don’t want to put all of their baggage on you, or bring you down, or feel like a burden – even if you’d welcome it. If this is the case, let it happen. If your other half is happy to do so, use this to your advantage, and just be there with them.

Protect your emotions.

The only other people that know how to play on your emotions more than you, is your parents. It’s very wise to do all you can to protect these in as many ways as possible so your parents can’t find them. Of course, you may not be having any problems with your parents, but every now and then it can get rather heated because there’s a lot of anger and frustration up in the air, and sometimes your parents may push certain boundaries to cause a reaction. Don’t let this happen.

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Ensuring Your Parents’ Safety Behind The Wheel

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Parents worry about their kids. So, when you teenager passes their test, the first thing you think of is their safety. But, it isn’t only young and new drivers who need your attention. Older drivers need focusing on, too. Let’s face it; the elderly can turn into bad drivers. That’s not to say that every pensioner shouldn’t be on the roads because that isn’t true. However, they do put themselves in dangerous situations from time to time. Because you don’t want any elderly relatives involved in an accident, it’s better to ensure their safety.

The following are four ways to do that for your parents.

Make Sure They Have Their Glasses

People think that the elderly have a problem with driving because of their reactions. Usually, this is only half of the story because they drive responsibly. For the most part, it is down to their deteriorating eyesight. Because they struggle to see during the day and at night, they take risks which they shouldn’t. Pulling out in front of cars they don’t see, for instance, is something you’ll hear a lot. To help them, try and make sure they have their glasses at all times. They will forget, but you can’t if you want to keep them safe.

Turn Up Their Hearing Aid

It is easy to see why a pair of glasses is necessary, but a hearing aid isn’t as apparent. Surely they can get by without one? Maybe they can, but it’s a bit of a gamble. Driving is not just about eyesight; it requires all of the senses. If your parents can’t hear anything because the aid doesn’t work, they are in a vulnerable position. Anyone can beep to make them aware of their presence and they wouldn’t know. Firstly, they need to wear it just like their glasses. Secondly, they need a hearing aid repair service if it breaks. Finally, it should be on a high setting so that they can hear every sound.

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Check The Car

To be fair, their health might not tell the whole story. After all, the car plays a significant role in driver safety. When it isn’t up to scratch, anyone, healthy or not, is taking a risk by getting behind the wheel. It’s for this reason that the car needs regular checkups. The fact that a driver with no issues could have an accident is scary. But, it’s more frightening for a senior because the odds of an incident are higher due to their health problems. At least when a mechanic gives it a once over you know the car is road legal.

Retake Test

They won’t want to do it, but getting them to retake their test is a savvy move. As people age, they don’t realise they are a danger to other drivers. Only by getting an expert to evaluate their skills will they be aware. Also, if they pass, it’s a sign that they are okay to drive for a while longer. But, you’ll never know until they retake a practical assessment.

The bottom line is that you want to keep them safe on the roads. The advice above will help you do just that.

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