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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Wise Moves To Make Growing Old A Little More Comfortable

None of us can escape the physical impacts that time will have on our bodies. Frankly, those deteriorations are sure to erect new obstacles and challenges as you get older. While you cannot stop the effects, you can at least reduce their influence on your daily activities.

They say we get wiser as we get older. Prove it once and for all by taking these simple steps to a more comfortable future. You will not regret it.

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Adapt the home: Once you reach retirement age, there’s a good chance that you’ll be spending more time in the home. Even if this isn’t true, bathroom upgrades and other jobs built for your comfort can make a world of difference. In some situations, you may find that relocating to a ground floor apartment is best. Alternatively,y downsizing to an easily managed property could be the answer. The solid foundation of a good home environment truly can set you up for a far brighter future.

Look your best: Growing old will take its toll on your skin and natural features. But this shouldn’t be an excuse to ignore your looks. Adding a little color to your skin with the right makeup can work wonders. A winning smile, natural or otherwise, can have an equally telling impact. Meanwhile, the fashion choices available on the market are far greater than ever before. Looking good makes you feel good no matter how old you get. Do not forget it for a second.

Get the right help: Retaining a sense of independence is high on the agenda. Nonetheless, there is nothing wrong with seeking a helping hand in life. This could range from finding the right hearing aid to gaining financial support. Assistance is often available, but you must take the first steps by actively seeking it. Those little pieces of help could make everyday life a lot less stressful too. After the amount of people you’ve supported throughout your days, it’s the least you deserve.

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SPOKANE, Wash. (Aug. 8, 2008) Rear Adm. James A. Symonds, commander, Navy Region Northwest, visits with a resident of the nursing home care center at Spokane Veterans Administration Hospital. Symonds is in Spokane to celebrate Spokane Navy Week, one of 22 weeks planned across America in 2008. Navy Weeks were designed to show Americans the investment they have made in their Navy and increase awareness in cities that do not have a significant Navy presence. (U.S. Navy photo by Senior Chief Mass Communication Specialist Gary Ward/Released)

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Stay social: Loneliness is a major problem among older citizens, especially when far away from family members. Thankfully, there are plenty of opportunities to meet new people. Whether it’s signing up for local community events, attending bingo events, or connecting online doesn’t matter. Furthermore, it’s never too late to fall in love, which is why you should always remain open to this. Whatever you do, human interaction is a key ingredient in the recipe for health and happiness.

Learn to rest: Taking care of the body and staying active is great. Nonetheless, the body cannot do the things it used to do. Following exhausting days, it’s especially important to get a good night’s sleep. Creating a bedroom fit for royalty should be a key item on your home upgrade list. Meanwhile, getting to bed a little earlier gives your body and mind a chance to wind down. The reward of waking up fresh and ready to take the day ahead will surely vindicate those decisions.

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4 Genius Ways You Can Relax At Home

Relaxation is something everyone can do with now and then. Our society seems to be built around stress, stress, and more stress. The cost of living is on the up, meaning we have to stress about having enough money to survive. There are terrorist attacks and tragedies every month, which causes us to stress about our safety. And we have the normal stressors in life such as children, education, work, weight, health – the list goes on and on.

To put it simply, the more time we have to relax, the better. One of the best and most effective ways of relaxing is getting a nice deep tissue massage. Alternatively, you can visit a spa and spend the day having a detox to cleanse your spirit. Unfortunately, you can’t do either of these things every day. Some people can’t even afford to do them ever, so there needs to be other options.

Have no fear, there are a lot of ways you can relax, and most of these things can be done without leaving your home. So, if you’ve had a stressful day, or you just have some free time and want to de-stress, here are a few genius ideas you can steal:

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Gaze At The Stars

This is a wonderful way of relaxing at home, and there are many ways you can go about it. If the weather is nice, you can sit outside or lie on a mat and gaze up at the stars from your garden. In fact, if you have a sunlounger or deck chair, then that’s even better. Doing this is so effective because you can lose yourself in the sky. You get to stare at all the stars and see them twinkling. It gets your mind racing as you think about what else could be out there or you attempt to draw things with the stars. Factor in the fresh air filling your lungs and all your stress seems to fade away.

This is the best way of doing it, but you do have two other options. The first is to get a telescope so you can look at the stars from inside. This is really fun as you can try and identify certain stars or planets, and you get a better view of everything. The second alternative is to get a virtual reality space game or app. I think there’s one on the Google Play store for Android devices, it basically gives you a tour of space, but you feel like you’re there because it’s virtual reality.

I don’t know why, but the stars and space are just a very relaxing thing to think about. Maybe it’s because we concern ourselves with things that are millions and billions of light years away from our own problems on earth.

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Chill Out In A Bean Bag Chair

Relaxation is all about letting all tension leave your body and just getting comfortable. You want to be able to sit down, stretch out, and hear a huge sigh leave your body. Some people have a favorite armchair that they sit in to relax, but I find conventional chairs and sofas to be a bit hit and miss. Instead, you should get your hands on a bean bag chair. If you visit Fombag online, you’ll see a huge range of bean bag chairs that are filled with foam. This type of chair is ideal for relaxing in, as you get maximum comfort levels. With bean bags, you pretty much just sink into the chair and become part of it. You melt down into the bag, and it’s incredibly relaxing.

Get yourself a bean bag, and just sit in it while listening to music, reading a book, or watching TV. The effect will be instantaneous. The only bad thing is that you might struggle to get back up because you’ve relaxed so much your body now feels part of the chair.  

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Take A Long Bath

Don’t worry if you can’t make it to a spa, you can give yourself some spa treatments in your bathroom. One of my favorite ways of relaxing is running a nice hot bath. Sometimes, I drop in a bath bomb, so it smells and looks really nice. Then, I turn the lights off and have my bath in candlelight. Bring in a radio or some speakers, and you can listen to some relaxing music as well.

The warmth of the water helps with circulation and can soothe any tight spots in your body that have built up through tension. It’s a good way to help relax your muscles and get yourself ready for a long night’s sleep. If I could, I’d do this every night before bed. Those of you without children should do this as often as possible before it becomes hard to do regularly!

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Stretch Every Morning And Evening

Staying on the topic of relaxed muscles, tight ones can be a source of stress for everyone. When your muscles become tight and knotted, they develop trigger points that cause pain and soreness. It means you wake up every morning with a stiff back or neck, and this soreness stays with you throughout the day.

Getting into the habit of stretching can help you get rid of a lot of tension in your body, and relax a lot more. My advice is to find a stretching routine online and do it every morning and evening. It will be the perfect way to start the day by getting your body moving and loosening up all your tight points. Then, a stretching session in the evening can relax your muscles and get you ready for bed. It doesn’t have to be a long routine, I say five minutes minimum and maybe thirty minutes max.

As you can see, there are plenty of genius ways you can relax at home. The best thing about all these ideas is that they’re easy to fit into your routine. Everyone can find a spare ten minutes or so to relax in a bean bag chair or do some stretches. We’ve all got time for a bath once or twice a week, and you can stare at the stars whenever you like. Give everything a try, and you can relax more and see so many health benefits as a result.

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Reduce Your Road Rage

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We all have moments while driving that irritate us, no matter how good we think our driving is. It might be something that another driver does, the feelings of irritation we feel when we encounter roadworks, or just the simple fact of having a bad day coupled with negotiating busy roads. While we might all know in practice that cool heads should prevail when we’re behind the wheel, in practice, that’s not always the case.

If you find your irritation with other road users to be a frequent occurrence, then there’s a chance you’re suffering from road rage. While not a diagnosable medical condition, road rage is nevertheless a mental state that has the propensity to cause serious harm– to you, and other road users. Given that safety should be your number one priority every time you drive, it’s worrying to consider that road rage may make you less safe– so it’s definitely a topic worth diving further into.

Below, let’s explore some of the most common questions people have about road rage– and how you can manage yours, to ensure an extra layer of safety when you’re behind the wheel.

What Is Road Rage?

Road rage is a feeling of anger or frustration when driving. It is often explosive, resulting in serious altercations between motorists. There have even been murders attributed to road rage.

Road rage can be a chronic problem, which occurs every time you enter your car. Or it might be acute, only happening occasionally. Both are problematic, though there is a particular urgency to seek assistance if you have a chronic problem. Not only does road rage endanger you on the road, but constant exposure to stress could cause you real health problems in the future.

Why Does Road Rage Happen?

There are two possible reasons:

  1. The need for control that many people experience while driving can lead to road rage if something unexpected happens. People feel they have been threatened by another driver’s behavior and react disproportionately to the stimulus.
  2. Road rage is also a manifestation of fear when driving. For example, drivers get angry with cyclists, but it’s more from fear of causing harm than irritation.

Who Does Road Rage Happen To?

Anyone. Road rage is often seen as a male problem, but there are plenty of cases of female drivers engaging in typical road rage behaviors. Even if you’re the most placid person in the world, there’s still a chance you could succumb to road rage once behind the wheel.

What Situations Are Likely To Cause Road Rage?

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Roadworks are a major irritant for any driver, which can potentially put you in a bad enough mood to experience road rage. If roadworks tend to set your teeth on edge and make you drive more aggressively, then it’s worth going to the effort to modify your route until the work is complete.

The majority of road rage incidents involve the behavior of another driver. If you’re already in a bad mood — due to roadworks or just having a bad day — then another driver making an error can send you into a frenzy of annoyance. Being cut off, overtaken, or someone driving aggressively can be enough to make you see red. Other drivers ignoring stop signs or properly observing who has the right of way can also be triggered. Often, the event that causes the anger is relatively small, but is blown up out of proportion due to your existing irritation.

Sometimes, road rage doesn’t really have a cause; it’s just a driver in a bad mood, looking for somewhere to vent their frustrations. Driving when you’re in a bad mood is generally a terrible idea.

Why Is Road Rage Such A Bad Thing?

Being annoyed at something that happens while out on the roads is understandable, to an extent. If someone cuts you off or behaves in a way that you otherwise see as problematic, then your temper flaring may seem like a reasonable response to such a scenario.

However, there’s a huge problem lurking beneath this oh-so-justifiable response: the angrier we are, the less likely we are to pay attention to the road ahead. If you get distracted by swearing at another driver, then that means some of your attention is diverted from the road. All it takes is for your road rage to intersect with another driver not paying attention, and disaster happens. You could find yourself in need of a car accident lawyer to help unpick who is at fault for the damage of the resulting crash– because you were too distracted by anger to take evasive action regarding the other driver’s negligence. Road rage is literally that serious; if you fall victim to it often enough, then you’re going to increase your odds of being involved in a collision– endangering yourself and other road users.

How Do You Cure Road Rage?

There is no possible technique that can cure road rage instantly; the process of recovery tends to be more of a work in progress. If you want to try and manage your road rage yourself, then you’re going to need to investigate common anger management techniques and try to apply them to your own experience behind the wheel.

It’s also important to note that a lot of road rage is more a response to fear, rather than actual anger. If you feel uncomfortable while driving, or are not 100 percent sure of your skills, then these are issues you need to investigate. It might even be worth taking a few advanced driving lessons, which can help bolster your confidence and thus reduce your fear experiences while driving. This, in turn, should make you less likely to lose your temper in future– confidence and calmness have a tendency to go hand-in-hand.

If you ever experience road rage, then learning how to cope with the condition is vital. The angrier you get, the more likely it is that your frayed temper will be the cause of an accident. Acknowledging you have an issue with anger while driving is the first step that will eventually lead to a more careful, safer you.

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A Bitter Pill: The Effects Of Giving Your Children Tablets & Smartphones

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It’s a common part of society now, everyone has their smartphone glued to their hands, and people would rather flick of their finger back and forth on a small screen rather than engage the person next to them in conversation. But the biggest place where it’s having an impact is at home with your family, and, more specifically, your children. A lot of young children are already addicted to tablets. And it seems that by the age of two, most children already know how to use a smartphone or a tablet, so is this a little premature? But also what are the negative effects of your child having a smartphone or a tablet at such a young age?

 

It Becomes Their First Addiction

As we all know, it’s very difficult for us to put down or smartphone for any lengthy period of time anymore. Think about this in terms of an infant, where between the ages of 0 and 2 years old, their brain will triple in size. And if their brain space is taken up by an allegiance to this electronic device, not only do they become addicted to it, but it also doesn’t teach them how to control their impulses or to even challenge themselves, both of which are traits of an addictive personality.

 

Your Relationship With Your Child Can Be Fractured

If the tablet becomes their priority, this gets in the way of any young child developing proper personal bonds, which means they will struggle to utilize their emotions, and they will struggle to form bonds with other people down the years. In addition to this, any time you take away their tablet or smartphone, it will result in temper tantrums, which aren’t pleasant to deal with. We tend to think that we are keeping them quiet for 5 minutes by giving them a tablet. However this kind of behavior will self-perpetuate itself, and you may find that you have got into a desperate cycle of pacifying your child with a tablet for an excessive amount of time.

 

The Health And Safety Concerns

It has been widely spoken off that if you go to bed with your smartphone, it will suppress your melatonin, known as the sleep hormone, and therefore it becomes a struggle to have and maintain good quality sleep. Couple this with the all too real concern of mobile phones and tablets catching fire, this is something for every parent to be concerned about. If, heaven forbid, your child fell asleep with their tablet under their pillow, and it caught fire that would be a terrible thing to endure as a parent. There may be some sense of redemption in hiring accident lawyers to fight for a product liability claim, but this would be low on your list of priorities if your child were severely hurt by their tablet. We all think nothing of plugging in our phones to charge at night, but this is the time when you are most at risk.

 

It’s Incredibly Distracting

Children growing up with a smartphone are being distracted in many ways. It is argued that these devices can have an impact on the hands on approach to completing tasks. So, for children in school who are solely relying on their tablet or smartphone, their sensorimotor or visual motor skills may be very underdeveloped. By being distracted by their phones, there’s a high chance that they are not being as creative or imaginative as the average child used to be. In fact, with the wealth of information at your fingertips now, it means that there is less engaging with the brain, and the ability to recall information is not used as much as it used to. A good example is that instead of trying to remember a fact for the purposes of debate, they can simply look up the information. This can be argued as a good thing in one respect, but on the other side of the equation, this means that everyone, not just children, are not using their brain the way it was meant to be used.

 

It’s Stopping Interaction

This is all too obvious to everyone, but if we as adults are not interacting with people more, how is this affecting our children? And if you think back to the playground in school, you actually played; you didn’t sit in the corner on your phone. This lack of interaction and engagement with other people is showing in the increase in obesity in our children, but it’s also a critical signpost of how future generations may be ill-equipped to deal with basic human emotional processes.

 

You may have already given your children that smartphone or tablet, but with these, and many other dangerous symptoms of being glued to a screen, it’s time to take them back. It is, indeed, a bitter pill to swallow.

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