How to Raise Eco-Conscious Children

In today’s hustle and bustle world, it’s easy to get caught up in the “single-use” mindset, especially when convenience threatens to prevail over eco-friendliness. From disposable flatware to fast fashion and even planned obsolescence in technology, it almost feels as though the cards are stacked against the planet. As a parent, how can you show your children how to maintain the same values that you have, when it already seems so hard in the first place?

Fortunately, teaching your child how to be eco-conscious does not have to be an impossible task. While there may be a little bit of pushback from them, especially in older children, you can still help shape and mold their behaviors to be more green. By starting at a younger age, though, you can help ensure that your children are both eco-friendly and proud to be so!

 

Introduce Them to the Great Outdoors

One of the best ways to teach your children how to love the environment is to help them become more acquainted with it. If they’re cooped up indoors all the time, how can they grow to fall in love with the beauty of Mother Nature? Instead, invite them to explore the outdoors with you. Whether you take them hiking with you or just on a stroll around the block, these are great ways to teach them how to love the planet they live on.

 

Take Them Shopping With You

Many children don’t realize where food comes from. As far as they’re concerned, a magical fairy refills the fridge with their favorite things to eat, and then you cook it for them. Not only should you be showing your kids how to prepare easy, eco-friendly, and healthy recipes, but you should also educate them about where their food comes from. While taking them to your local farmer’s market is ideal, even a trip to your grocery store is a step in the right direction.

 

Show Them How to Recycle

Kids learn by watching their parents, and your role as a sustainably-minded parent is extremely important. If they see you using paper plates and plastic silverware, then chucking it when you’re done, they’re going to emulate that. Instead, teach them the importance of recycling. Not only should you try to minimize your carbon footprint, though, but you also need to take the time to educate them about waste and recycling.

 

Help Them Live a Clean Life

Unfortunately, adolescence is generally the time that most people start experimenting with illicit drugs. Not only can substance abuse start your child down a dangerous path, not only possibly affecting their future but also your household, but it’s also not environmentally sound, either. Illicit drug manufacturing is terrible for the environment and can leach into our groundwater, poison innocent animals, and cause toxic byproducts in our waste. If you’re struggling with substance issues with teens, then it’s essential to get them the help they need right away.

 

Teach Energy Efficiency at Home

Most of us probably have memories of our fathers chiding us for leaving the lights on in rooms we weren’t in, asking if we were trying to light up the whole neighborhood. While it may have seemed like a joke at the time, the fact is, there’s a lot of merit to your dad’s complaints. To help shape your child into an eco-conscious adult, you need to show them the importance of energy efficiency while they’re still young. They should be taught to not waste water or electricity, and if possible, you may want to upgrade to more greener appliances in your home, as well.

 

Instill the Love of Walking and Biking

What child doesn’t love riding their bike around the block? Not only can teaching your child to ride their bike give them hours of enjoyment, but it can also help teach them about reducing their carbon footprint when traveling, too. If you’re just going to the shop around the corner, why pile into the car and needlessly waste fuel? Instead, lace up your walking shoes and have your kids tag along with you, either on bike or foot. This is also a great way to get gentle exercise as a family, too!

As you can see, showing your child how to be more environmentally friendly doesn’t have to be overly stressful or lead to needless tears. By employing actionable, simple ways to make your family more green, you can help teach your child to be smart, eco-conscious adults and instill good habits that they can carry with them for the rest of their lives.

Tips to Transition to Veganism

When you decide to explore veganism, there can be a number of health benefits that come with it. For example, you may lose weight and have improved heart health. A vegan diet can also be nutrient-packed, as long as you’re relying primarily on fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and beansto fuel you.

There’s research showing that going vegan can lower your blood sugar and improve your kidney function, plus there’s the possibility it can reduce your risk of developing certain types of cancers.

While there are many health benefits that come from a vegan lifestyle, it’s not always easy to make such a big leap into plant-based eating. You don’t have to go all-or-nothing.

Instead, there are ways to transition to veganism gradually. Some of those are highlighted below.

 

Swap Out Ingredients

One easy way to start dabbling in veganism and make some positive changes in your health and wellness is to swap out ingredients for vegan alternatives.

Maybe your entire recipe isn’t vegan, but instead of using half-and-half or milk for example, you could use cashew milk.

Over time you can work toward having recipes that are entirely vegan.

 

Have Vegan Days

Designate a few days of every week where you commit to veganism, and then eat as you normally do on the other days.

You could start with one day a week, and then gradually go up from there, as you’re ready and more comfortable with it.

Another option is to be vegan during the day, and then in the evening, you could eat animal-based foods if you wanted to.

You could set a limit for yourself where until 6 p.m., you eat only vegan.

These are just ideas that you can consider to find what works for you.

 

Learn Along the Way

You may find the more you learn about veganism, the more committed you become to the lifestyle.

Get familiar with what it means to be vegan versus being vegetarian, for example.

A lot of people find that learning more about where animal-based foods come from and how they’re processed helps them to commit to veganism more fully.

As you learn, you may also be able to find more of a personal motivation, and that can be what drives you toward being more vegan in your life.

For example, you could find that the environmental impact of eating meat is your primary motivation, as you’re learning and educating yourself.

 

Be Mindful of What You’re Eating and Make Sure It’s Healthy

You do have to realize when you follow a vegan lifestyle, it’s not inherently healthy because it’s vegan. You want to avoid too many processed foods, for example, because even though they might technically be vegan, they could still be empty calories.

You also need to make sure that you’re mindful of how much protein you’re getting. There are great vegan sources of protein, and any kind of protein will help you feel fuller and more satisfied, which will lower the risk of overeating.

Vegans need to also consider vitamin B12 and D3 supplements unless you’re sure that you’re getting enough of these from your food.

Some vegans find that it’s helpful to have their healthcare professional monitor levels of vitamins in their bloodwork. You don’t want to supplement if you don’t need it, but if you are deficient in certain vitamins, it can cause serious health effects.

 

Connect with Other Vegans

Veganism can become somewhat of a lifestyle, and people who follow it often find that that it helps them to have support from people who understand it.

Try to connect with other vegans if you can.

Going online and joining social media groups is one simple way to do this.

Then, you have not only social support, but you can learn more about veganism, share recipes and even find out about events.

 

Explore Vegan Restaurants Where You Live

Finally, one other way to get excited about the concept of veganism and to explore it more fully is to go to restaurants in your community that have a vegan menu. Here, you can really get a taste of how good vegan foods can taste, and you might even meet people who are vegan that you can start sharing your experiences with.

Vegan restaurants are a good way to get started because they show you how versatile the menu items can be and give you a basis for getting creative with how you eat.

The more you go at your own pace in your quest to be a vegan, the more successful you’re likely to be at the lifestyle.

7 Simple But Effective Ways to Burn Fat Fast

Losing fat is not an overnight event, and there is no shortcut to it. You need to work hard for it, not just to look good but to gain a healthy body. However, strength training or workout to lose that belly fat may not be suitable for everyone.

If you want simple but effective ways to burn fat fast, read on. Not only that you will become fit with these tips, but you will also gain optimum nutrition.

1. Stay hydrated.

Water is necessary to burn fat. This fluid naturally suppresses appetite and reduces overall calorie intake. Drinking water also aids in flushing bodily wastes and staying at the right temperature. Hydration during a workout decreases the risk of having muscle cramps or fatigue.

When the body is dehydrated, it’s difficult to control the body temperature. Also, the body won’t be able to metabolize carbohydrates or stored fats. So keep those bottles close and drink enough water for your body.

2. Reduce sugar intake.

Are you burning fat or sugar? Not only fats can be burnt but sugar too. When you’re irritable and always hungry after a few hours of eating, there’s a high chance that you’re a sugar burner. That means that your blood sugar increases whenever you eat high-carbohydrate food, and it triggers the release of insulin. This hormone then decreases your blood sugar but stores it as fat; it’s a fat-storage hormone! When your blood sugar becomes too low, you will crave more sugar or carbohydrates to be energized, and that’s a dangerous cycle.

Although sugar makes you fat, cutting it totally from your diet will not be helpful. Sugar is glucose which is the energy source of your body. It’s needed by your organs to function properly. You also can’t burn that fat without sugar.

To make sure you’re going to burn that fat, eat sugar, but the right kind and amount. Reduce the added sugars in your diet. They are the sugars that when eaten in excess can make you easily gain weight. They’re high-calorie food, and they have low nutritional value. Added sugars are on your cakes, cookies, pancake syrup, candies, fruit drinks and sugary drinks. Watch out.

3. Increase your fibre intake.

If you want a balanced and healthy diet, eat enough fibres. If you don’t want that belly fat, eat more fibre-rich food. It keeps you fuller for a longer period so you won’t need to go unnecessary snacking or eat a full meal again just a couple of hours after.

What’s also good with fibre is that it helps lower blood glucose and consequently insulin. You already know insulin, it makes you crave for high-calorie food. When increasing your fibre intake, make sure it’s gradual so you won’t get bloated.

4. Follow a high-protein diet.

Do you know that eating a high-protein diet is associated with a lower risk of belly fat? This diet also helps preserve muscle mass and metabolism during weight loss.

Protein is an important nutrient when trying to lose weight. Protein-rich food includes meat, eggs, legumes, dairy products and seafood. Increasing your protein intake will leave you feeling full. As a result, it will reduce your hunger and appetite, causing you to eat fewer calories without being too conscious about portions.

Additionally, the body’s metabolic rate increases with the consumption, digestion, metabolism and storage of proteins. This is known as the thermic effect, and it makes you burn fats even while sleeping.

5. Eat more healthy fats.

Not all fats are the same. Fats are also an important part of a healthy diet. Healthy fats like omega 3 can help you burn those harmful bad fats. They are also good for the heart.

Good unsaturated fats help you lower your disease risk and aid in the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins. They are present in nuts, seeds, vegetable oils (olive, canola, sunflower and soy), fish and avocados. If you are trying to lose your belly fat, eat more of these.

Meanwhile, bad fats are trans fats that, even when eaten in a small amount, can increase your risk of being sick. These fats can be found mainly in processed foods. They are also in your movie popcorn, french fries, doughnuts and margarine.

6. Avoid processed food.

Processed food is addictive to eat. It’s engineered that way. What’s more, processed food is very high in added sugars, calories and bad fats. This should be enough reason for you to avoid consuming lots of this food.

If you want to burn that fat fast, throw out all the processed food you can find in your pantry. This kind of food has chemical disruptors that may alter your body’s metabolism and cause it to deposit fat. They can also modify your satiety hormones, and all of these can lead to obesity.

7. Get enough sleep.

Having enough sleep matters when losing fat. Why? Because not getting enough of it can alter your hunger hormones and may give you a higher risk of gaining weight.

Sleeping early may be a bit difficult, but making it a habit will pay off. When you’re about to sleep, turn your phone off as it emits blue light. This light hinders the production of the hormone that controls your sleep-wake cycle, melatonin. You should also avoid caffeine before sleeping.

Why Everyone Needs Dietary Supplements

Natural and herbal supplements can help restore your body to a state of balance when it gets out of whack. They can also help to maintain the body’s natural balance. If there’s a serious imbalance, it may take upwards of seven supplements to return you to your balance, depending on the complexity of the issues. Here’s a quick look at some good reasons for supplements.

 

Rest

Most of us don’t get enough sleep. If this sounds familiar, try an ashwagandha supplement. Although this supplement has been in use for centuries, you may know it better by the names Winter Cherry or Indian Ginseng. This supplement is a great natural source of vitality and energy. It’s a sort of adaptogenic herb known for promoting healthy responses to physical, emotional, and environmental stress.

 

Stress, Stress, and More Stress

It’s no question that all of us lead busy lives. Yet, some of us are arguably busier than others and face more stress! Between things like commitments to your faith, community, work, school, and family, your daily life can be totally stressed and in serious need of some vitamins and minerals. All of the stress we’re under will eventually take its toll on our bodies and can make the immune system weak. Taking supplements can help bridge the nutritional gaps and give the body a few of the building blocks it relies on to function properly.

 

Overcooked Food

As Americans, many of us have a bad habit of cooking foods to death, which results in a considerable loss of its nutritional value, far less when it comes to the vitamins and mineral content, and in enzymes and antioxidants. Even worse is that eating nutrient-depleted foods can create health issues over time. Too much cooking time can kill all the goodness in your food, resulting in a loss of nutritional value. If you’re trying to eat healthy, with fruits and veggies, try to eat them raw or as close to it as possible.

 

Lack of Regular Meals

Many people might know about the importance of regular eating, but they may neglect to do so anyway. Grabbing a doughnut or bagel while you slam down a cup of coffee and rush off to get your day started can’t really be considered a meal. Trying to make up for the lost opportunity a bit later in the day at a buffet isn’t good for your body either. These types of unhealthy habits can add too much stress on your digestive system and might eventually lead to quite a few symptoms that can be uncomfortable, at the least.

 

Long Transit Time

Have you ever paid any attention to the amount of produce that finds its way into your grocery store from various countries? Think about your fave pineapple or mango – more than likely, they come from the Philippines. They were cut at the very acme of their ripeness, then put immediately into a box before being shipped here. However, that’s the best-case scenario. There are times when that food is actually harvested weeks and sometimes even months before it arrives at the grocery stores. So much for getting the very best nutrition. This is why it’s critical to buy from local farmers so that the food’s nutritional value is at its highest.

Nothing will ever replace a diet that’s healthy and good, but taking whole-food-based, high-quality supplements can go quite a long way when it comes to assisting you with maintaining higher levels of health. And if you happen to be working through poor dietary habits, you’ll need them even more!

Taking Charge of Your Life

Do you find yourself constantly trying to appease others? That can you leave you in a situation where you are worn out and no longer living for yourself. If you continue to go down that path, you’ll have a lot of regrets later on. Thankfully, you have the ability to make positive changes that benefit your quality of life. 

 

The Homefront

A typical day for parents begins with getting children ready for daycare or school. It involves dressing, feeding, and driving all under stress. During the same timeframe, the parents are also getting dressed for work and collecting their thoughts for the job. 

That day-to-day chaos can make a sane person crazy. One way to reduce the madness and restore calm is to create a schedule. The organization is necessary to achieve order and a smooth flow of events. Picking out clothing the night before and having the bookbags, coats, and shoes ready will make the mornings uneventful. 

 

Aging Parents

Many adults with young children come face-to-face with where to put their aging parents. They currently live alone and are not able to care for themselves as they once did. Out of respect and gratitude, you may opt to have them move in. 

However, this is a huge undertaking and with children who have needs of their own and full-time jobs, this may not prove the best option. A better choice may be to sign on for private nursing care. A qualified person who works for a company can come a few days to bathe, cook and help with administering medications, taking a heavy burden from you. 

 

Your Health

Whether in your early 30s or approaching 60, maintaining your health will provide a good quality of life. Schedule an annual health checkup and if you feel off, contact your doctor and have them do a thorough physical. It’s also important to take ‘me’ time. Enjoy a day of self-pampering, and schedule a time to do the things you love. 

 

Faith in Your Abilities

Unfortunately, people stay in jobs that offer no incentive for advancement simply because they don’t have faith in their abilities. They figure they have a good-paying job and accept the terms. Taking charge of your life means that you no longer accept the status quo. If you’re not getting promoted within a certain time frame and there’s no room for advancement, you need to seek other employment. By remaining in place, you’re setting yourself back both emotionally and financially. 

 

Positive Energy

There’s something powerful about remaining positive. That is not to say that events in your life can cause you to be temporarily negative. However, when you focus on achieving goals instead of creating an endless wish list, things start to happen. Happy thoughts work the same as exercising. 

When you become energized about doing something your body releases endorphins and you instantly feel good. Being optimistic about a possible outcome enables risk. You try something instead of avoiding it because of the possible negative outcome. Reinforce your efforts by keeping a circle of friends with the same positive attitude towards life. 

 

Intuition

Your intuition comes from a lifetime of experiences. When something happens your brain recalls similar situations and causes a gut reaction. You meet someone for the first time and either instantly like or dislike them. Or, you encounter a problem and instead of reacting in a negative manner, you work your way through it calmly. Listening to your mind and body can benefit you. 

 

Prosperity

A mounting pile of bills can cause enormous amounts of stress. In order to take control of your life, you need to get your finances in order. Create a household budget and stick to it. A budget will allow you to realize your dreams of financial prosperity. You will learn how to avoid wasteful spending and establish savings for things like a home, a car, vacations, and retirement.  

You have one life to live. By taking charge of your life you’re promoting health, happiness, and financial success.

Why you should go for platinum bands for your wedding

Men these days are interested in jewelry pieces more than ever before. It is platinum, white gold, Palladium, or others; choosing a metal for the wedding or engagement ring is a significant step. Moreover, selecting the piece of metal and the style of the band plays a crucial role. It will have a critical impact on the longevity of the peace of jewelry. Most men are often fussy with their jewelry pieces. It is because of the limited options they have. Platinum bands are of higher price undoubtedly. However, white metal is the most popular among males. Keep in mind that you pay a high amount for a more robust metal and require less maintenance.

 

Why are platinum bands a better alternative to others?

 In answer to this question, market surveys will be beneficial. There are countless reasons you must opt for platinum bands, as there are some fewer known reasons accompanying this piece of metal.

 

  • The color of the platinum band stays the same: The platinum band will remain the same for a long time. Keep in mind that everything that shines does not stay the same for a longer duration. However, platinum bands are an exception in this regard. Thirty years down the line, you will experience the same shine and shimmer. You may look into mensweddingbands since 2007 to grab an understanding of their evolution. It is a white metal that requires less maintenance. It remains the same in terms of color and glitter.

 

  • You can pass it down to future generations: Another significant piece of justification that you must contemplate that platinum bands are known for their longevity. It is a precious metal that stands the warranty of time. It is a durable piece of metal that you can choose for your wedding band. Keep in mind that when the metal is scratched, only a little bit of metal is lost. Gold, on the other hand, results in a faster metal loss. Moreover, platinum maintains its volume and develops a smooth finish, which improves the character.

 

  • It protects the diamond: Some platinum bands come with a delicate diamond solitaire. The white color of the metal, which does not change over time, gives you peace of mind as you do not have to worry about color reflection. White gold and yellow gold reflect stones and enhance the appeal. The white color of the platinum enhances the overall look and brilliance of the diamond stone.

 

  • Platinum is safest for diamonds: Platinum provides a diamond with the safest setting It is because of the durability and strength of this metal. When you choose platinum, it ensures that the diamond will be safe. The prongs will hold onto the diamond in place with strength. Keep in mind that platinum moves with force and does not break. It is thereby an option to invest.

 

Platinum bands have become a popular piece of jewelry item among men. It provides you higher quality and can give you a sense of prestige. Keep in mind that your investment in this piece of jewelry will stand the test of time.

Helping your Child Stop Thumb Sucking

Most people view thumb sucking as a harmless habit, but if it is continued for too long it can quickly go from innocent to harmful. There are real consequences that can result from thumb sucking, including that of physical, emotional, and social. With a wide variety of impacts that sucking the thumb can have on the child, it is imperative to help your child stop thumb sucking. While it may not be easy—your child will likely resist—it’s necessary to avoid complications that can affect their life into the future. Below are the reasons that you should get your child to stop the habit and how you can get the job done.

Physical Consequences

On the surface, there are physical consequences of thumb sucking. An overbite or an open bite can be the result of the habit. This is called malocclusion. When a row or both rows of the teeth become misaligned when the child closes their mouth, this can result in malocclusion that may require professional orthodontic work. In addition to an open bite, which is when both rows of the teeth are directed outwards, there are physical consequences like skin irritation and speech issues.

Moisture from the mouth can cause irritation on the thumb and even lead to infection. While risking infection is one thing, on the other hand, thumb sucking results in peeling of the skin, cracking, bleeding, and ingrown nails. It isn’t good for the skin of the child and infection can even infect the mouth.

Finally, speech issues can arise from thumb sucking. This is when the child sucks their thumb so much that they develop a lisp or have trouble pronouncing certain sounds. When a child has a speech impediment, professional speech therapy may be required to alter their way of speaking. This can also lead to emotional and social issues.

Emotional Consequences

The emotional consequences of thumb sucking can’t be ignored. When the child sucks their thumbs for an extended period, it can be difficult for them to create new coping mechanisms and ways to deal with their emotions. Since thumb sucking is a comforting habit, the child may revert to it when they should be expressing themselves or dealing with their emotions in an introspective way. Kids must form healthy habits of coping emotionally and thumb sucking doesn’t help them do that. It will not just affect their emotions, but their social relationships as well.

Social Consequences

In addition to physical and emotional consequences, there are social results of thumb sucking. One example is that the child may be made fun of and ridiculed by their peers. It can make them feel inadequate. Furthermore, the speech issues that result from thumb sucking make it difficult for them to communicate themselves. With coping through thumb sucking, the child doesn’t develop the mechanisms to be able to freely and effectively communicate how they feel. All of these reasons are why you should help your child overcome this bad habit.

How to help them Stop

There are a few different methods to help your child stop the habit of thumb sucking. One is that you can use a thumb guard. This is a product that wraps around the child’s wrist and covers the thumb with a plastic guard, preventing them from sucking it. Another way to prevent thumb sucking is to use thumb sucking nail polish, which is a product that tastes bitter. Children hate the taste of bitterness so it will stop them from wanting to suck their thumbs. Furthermore, there are also thumbsies, which work a lot like thumb guards. They are the cloth alternative that makes it so the child doesn’t get the comfort or enjoyment from thumb sucking.

With so many consequences and ways to help your child stop sucking their thumbs, there is no excuse. It isn’t easy for any parent to get their child to stop, but it is absolutely necessary when it comes to helping them develop new habits and coping mechanisms. If you really can’t get your child to stop, take them to a professional who can determine if they are developing more slowly than they should be. Whatever the solution, helping them stop is imperative to cultivating healthy habits.

Times Are Tough, But Together They’re Going to Get Better

One of the unfortunate impacts of our shared experiences in 2020 and beyond is a growing economic uncertainty. More and more families have to tighten their belts and adapt to a new standard in the way they live their lives. 

Even though things have become problematic, they’re not impossible. In fact, if you can just take a moment, focus on all that you have available to yourself and your family, and find a perspective of gratitude, there’s a lot to be optimistic about in your life. 

Leadership is a skill that requires taking the objectives needed for everyone’s success and making those the foundations for your operations. 

Effective leadership is learning the art of listening and using that input to refine your team members’ foundational keys. 

Understanding that many of your team members may be experiencing different levels of anxiety and stress, whether economic concerns, food uncertainty, or adapting to all the changes that our current situation requires, is crucial for effective leadership. 

Model The Behaviors You’d Like To See

Leaders aren’t just in the workplace. Leadership at home is just as crucial, if not more, than it may be at work. Setting the tone as it were, establishing positive habits, and continuing to move forward in life are all traits that you can model for your family.

One of the specific areas you can model positive behaviors in the home and workplace is taking control of your health and wellness.

Making substantial changes in what you eat, how much you consume, and getting regular exercise will establish healthy behaviors that you can show and others can model after. 

Keto Diet Basics

One of the more popular formats for improving health right now is the Keto diet. The keto diet is shorthand for a ketogenic process that focuses on the body burning fat over carbohydrates and is a popular trend for weight loss. 

A keto diet works because it focuses on getting the body to produce ketones that make fuel by having the liver release and burn stored fats. 

Intermittent Fasting Basics

Another new dietary trend is intermittent fasting. The intermittent fasting process doesn’t specify what to eat, preferably the best times to eat, with a fast of 16-hours for a day or a full 24-hours on a twice-a-week schedule. 

The Truth About Resolutions

You can model good behaviors at home and work, create an exercise schedule and personal time for meditation or reflection. 

The goal should not be to make a significant change in your health all at once. Studies show that resolutions have a high failure rate because making a behavioral change is too broad and too extreme. 

Regardless of what you’re trying to change, as a leader, whether it’s as an employer or parent, effective leadership requires you to set a course of action, give your team members tools to succeed, becoming a better communicator, and modeling the behavior you want others to adopt. 

And if parenthood is a struggle for you right now, there are alternative ways to be acting as a parent. Whether it’s adopting or fostering children, there are alternative options for people who would like to parent but may need assistance. If you need to look for alternative ways to become a parent, seeking adoption services and foster care agencies are a good option. 

Whether you are one of the many struggling right now or can help others out, how you model your behavior helps educate others in your sphere of influence to learn what is expected and acceptable behavior. 

Lead By Example

Leaders set an example both in their words but, more importantly, in their actions. Making a behavioral change is a clue to others that you’re able to seek out and act upon personal improvement and helps those team members adopt the same self-improvement philosophy. 

It’s easy for leaders to lose sight of what matters, they are busy, have to examine the short and long-term objectives, and focus on personal concerns. 

By focusing your attention outward, elevating others to succeed is a process that requires a leader to set up the steps needed for success, show how it benefits those in your influence, and make lasting positive changes in your own life is a great way to lead by example. 

The saying, “everyone is going through with something you don’t see, be kind,” has never proven to be more accurate than it has lately. Whether you’re the leader of a big organization or your family, being kind to each other is advice we can all use in our lives.

Improving Your Quality of Life

While there are no guarantees in life, there are things you can do to promote health, happiness, and a bright financial future. Listed below are a few tips for achieving a better quality of life. 

 

Advancing Your Career

Living paycheck to paycheck can cause an enormous amount of stress. You remain at a job that offers no room for advancement, limiting your ability to increase your earnings. Changing your current financial status is something in your control. For instance, if you work in construction, taking online classes to earn a master’s in construction management will put you in the position to improve your earnings. 

 

Learning to Save Money

Some people have a knack for saving money. They work hard and live a frugal lifestyle, reaping the benefits of their smart money management. Others develop reckless spending habits that prevent them from financial independence. Learning how to save money will allow you to achieve set goals. If an unexpected expense comes along, you’ll have the funds to cover it. Budgeting your money provides a means to save for the things you need and the things you want.

 

Positive Energy

Things will happen throughout your life, some good some unpleasant. Viewing the glass as half full instead of half empty will let you work through any misfortunes. Remaining positive calms the mind and gives you the skills to tackle difficult problems. Surrounding yourself with those who think positive is also beneficial. 

 

Stop Procrastinating

Procrastinating brings about unnecessary stress and can lead to many missed opportunities. By putting things off you’re only extending your to-do list. This can cause overwhelming feelings of anxiety, exhaustion, and lower self-esteem. You may miss job-related deadlines that prevent a promotion or lose the faith of a loved one. If your procrastination results from too many promises made without the time to keep them, learn how to say no when you cannot commit.

 

Plenty of Rest

If you get up early each day and stay up late each night, you might be burning the candle at both ends. A lack of sleep can have a negative impact on your health and your emotions. You wake in a fog that never leaves. You have reduced focus and patience, and mood swings. When you drive, you’re endangering yourself and others on the road. You may also put yourself at risk for diabetes, high blood pressure, and weight gain. 

 

If you have trouble falling asleep, eliminate caffeine and sugar a few hours prior to bedtime and try taking a hot relaxing bath with sleep-inducing fragrances like camomile or lavender. 

 

Maintaining a Healthy Weight

Even a few extra pounds can cause emotional and physical problems. The good news is you can get your weight under control. Eating a well-balanced diet and limiting your intake of salt, sugar, and saturated fats is necessary. Along with eating healthy foods, regular exercise for 30 to 40 minutes, 3 to 4 times weekly will keep your body strong on the inside and outside.  

 

Take a Break

Life can be hectic, especially when you work full time and are raising children. It’s important that you take a timeout to relax and unwind. Meditation and yoga are two excellent ways to relax the body and calm the mind. You’ll feel refreshed and ready to tackle whatever else life tosses your way. 

 

Eliminate Bad Habits

Everyone has a few bad habits. However, annoying someone by leaving dirty clothes scattered throughout the home is not harmful to your health. Bad habits such as smoking, excessive drinking, and doing drugs can take a toll on your overall health and possibly lead to an early demise. Make the choice to kick any of these bad habits as soon as possible. 

 

No one knows for certain how long they will remain on this Earth. However, you can improve your chances of sustaining a good quality of life while you’re here.

Five Must-Have Bags for the Jetsetter

Having the right bag is everything. For avid travelers, a well-chosen vehicle for your must-haves (and then some) can make or break any occasion on a trip. Add to your must-haves these five bags, and you’ll find yourself both chic and prepared. 

 

The Crossbody

For the moments you need to feel freer than a Costco sample. Relieve both your hands and your arm muscles by carrying the bare-minimum that can hang lackadaisically on your person: phone, ID, and credit cards. A crossbody carries all these plus one or two others: a tube of lipstick or sunglasses, for instance. They’re also highly secure and lessen the likelihood of getting pickpocketed. 

 

The Briefcase

For the masculine piece to protect your most professional assets, and for the executive, the writer, the coffee shop telecommuter. Briefcases are simple, straightforward, no-nonse, but not without a style of their own. Nothing says professional and poised like a great leather home for your precious laptop and briefings. Briefcases, by the way, needn’t be men-only (but while we’re at it, a great men’s gift idea is a stylish, modern briefcase among one of these business bags for men).

 

The Backpack

For the bookworm, the writer, the heftier-essentials carrier. If you’re spending an entire day walking, backpacks can carry a book and a laptop (hey, it’s tough not to leave the house with both!), something to eat or drink, and other essentials. With a backpack, your hands remain free, of course, but you’re still prepared to bring shopping bags home with ease or to carry your lunch leftovers from the restaurant back to the hotel. Good backpacks should be built for daily (if not daily) use: choose one with sturdy fabric, like leather or canvas, tight stitching, and strong zippers. And as cute as drawstring-opening backpacks may look on top, beware of their tendency to sometimes spill out its contents.

 

Traveler’s tip: for extra security, place items in your backpack’s inside pockets-not the outside ones-to avoid getting pickpocketed. 

 

The Carry-On

For the fabulous and carefree weekenders, and the strategic and minimal packers. The standard size for airline carry-on bags is 14 by 22 inches. Pack anywhere from a weekend trip to a week-long excursion (yes, it is possible with a carry-on!), and enjoy the satisfaction of carting around your entire life simply, in a wheeled suitcase.  

 

Traveler’s tip: To achieve the minimal packing job, lay out everything you think you need, halve it, then halve it again. It may sound crazy, but you really do need less than you think.

 

The Week-Plus Suitcase

For the traveler that likes her options-no matter where she finds herself. This is really where investment is key. When we’re talking about the shell. out. extra. I’m talking sturdy wheels that can withstand the weight of a larger bag, scratch-resistant exterior, outside and inside pockets, shoe and garment bags, design-savvy internal compartments, and a solid warranty. Quality wheels on a quality bag bear repeating. No one wants to drag a heavy suitcase through cobblestone streets in an unfamiliar area because the wheels on your now-stuffed suitcase weren’t up for the job. 

 

Traveler’s tip: Get real fancy with it by finding a bag that can charge your cell phone. Hello, twenty-first century. 

 

Bottom line: whatever your errand or occasion, there’s a bag for that. Choose wisely, and keep the features important to you in mind. Consider design and practicality-is this something you’re comfortable and confident carrying wherever you go? If so, then click “Buy” and travel in style!