If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.
What challenge changed you in 2016?
If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.
What challenge changed you in 2016?
If you’re at the beginning of a project, a new study published in Psychological Science shows it's most beneficial to have a messy desk.
Messy environments promote creative thinking and unconventional new ideas.
As you get closer to the end of your project, a clean desk helps your mind focus on order and expectations.
The move away from a messy desk (chaos) will help you finish your project.
With the holidays over, you deserve to take some time to relax and give back to yourself. Here are five tricks for giving back to you.
1. Aromatherapy. Scents have a powerful effect on us because they’re the best and fastest way to reach the mood center of our brains is through our nose! Inhaling essential oils can transform our mood. Essential oils with grounding properties help calm your mind so you can refocus. To calm occasional stress and anxiety try Cedarwood (Cedrus atlantica), Frankincense (Boswellia carterii), Idaho Balsam Fir (Abies balsamea), Idaho Blue Spruce (Picea pungens), Royal Hawaiian Sandalwood (Santalum paniculatum), or Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanoides).
2. Listen to Relaxing Music. You can find relaxing music on YouTube, or music apps like Pandora or Spotify.
3. Take a walk outdoors in the fresh air. When you experience a change of scenery it gives your mind lots of stimuli to focus on rather than what you’ve been stressing about. Give yourself a chance to slow down and admire the flowers or listen to the birds.
4. Massage therapy works wonders but if you don’t have the funds for this on a regular basis, consider simple tools like a foam roller, massage therapy balls, or tennis balls and use the ground or a wall to work on yourself.
5. Allow yourself to be creative. Whether you choose to express your creativity through cooking, painting, knitting, jewelry making or coloring, doing crafts is a great way to relieve stress.
“Drink your tea slowly and reverently,
as if it is the axis on which the world revolves,
slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future.
Live the actual moment.
Only this moment is life.”
–Thich Nhat Hanh
For die-hard tea drinkers, nothing is as relaxing, reassuring or satisfying as a cup of hot tea. The beauty of tea is there’s a different type to soothe any ailment.
Rather than reaching for that pint of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream the next time you’re feeling down, make a cup of orange and lemon tea instead. The scent of citrus is proven to boost your mood and with a high level of antioxidants, tea is a far healthier choice.
Whether you’re fighting to stay awake or craving something sweet, pumpkin spice flavored chai or rooibos tea is the perfect remedy. Chai is a black tea with cinnamon, cloves and ginger. Add in some pumpkin spice for fall flavors. But if you need to de-stress, drink a pumpkin spice rooibos since it is caffeine-free.
Upset stomach? You don’t need Pepto Bismol. Brew some ginger tea instead. Ginger is ideal soother for all types of stomach issues. Because of its ability to prevent nausea, it’s the perfect remedy for morning hangovers.
Need an energy boost without the caffeine crash? Green tea and mint tea are caffeine free energy-boosters.
Can’t sleep? With lavender and sleep-inducing herbs and properties, chamomile tea is known to relax you by reducing stress and anxiety.
“The Artist is not a special kind of person; rather each person is a special kind of artist.” – Ananda Coomaraswamy
Each of us is an artist in our own way. That’s why art is so special. Take time today to celebrate your creativity. Whether it’s coloring in the coloring book you received over the holidays, painting, sculpting, writing poetry, dancing, or visiting the art museum to admire masterpieces, art stimulates our brains and makes us happier and healthier.
Most of us know a well-stocked pantry and fridge is in order when it comes to winter weather advisories, but emergency supplies for communication, safety, heating and cars are every bit as important. Here is a checklist to keep you and your family prepared for winter weather.
· Bad winter storms often bring power outages. Be sure you have a cell phone, portable charger and extra batteries in the event of a power outage. A battery-powered radio with extra batteries will allow you to listen to local stations for emergency instructions. A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) weather radio receiver is ideal so you can tune into National Weather Service broadcasts.
· Have a family communication plan so you know how to contact each other, how you’ll get back together and what you’ll do during an emergency.
· Check in on your elderly neighbors and give assistance when necessary.
· Have extra blankets, sleeping bags, and warm winter coats on hand.
· Have dry firewood ready or a gas log fireplace.
· Have portable space heaters or kerosene heaters (check your local fire department to make sure kerosene heaters are legal) at the ready.
· Make sure your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors have fresh batteries and are in working order.
· Have battery-powered flashlights or lanterns ready.
· If possible, opt for battery powered candles rather than lit candles to prevent house fire.
Depending on the severity of the storm, it’s best to have a week’s worth of food. Make sure you have the following:
· Drinking water
· Canned/no-cook food (bread, crackers, dried fruits)
· Non-electric can opener
· Baby food and formula (if baby in the household)
· Prescription drugs and other medicine
Your family’s safety is important. Snow and ice on sidewalks and driveways are safety hazards. Be sure to have the following on hand.
· First-aid kit
· Rock-salt to melt ice on walkways
· Supply of cat litter or bag of sand to add traction on walkways
In Your Car
If you have no choice and must go out in the weather, be sure to have your car ready with the following items.
· Cell phone, portable charger, and extra batteries
· Windshield scraper
· Battery-powered radio and extra batteries
· Flashlight and extra batteries
· Snack food
· Extra hats, coats, and mittens
· Chains or rope
· Tire chains
· Canned compressed air with sealant for emergency tire repair
· Road salt and sand
· Booster cables
· Emergency flares
· Bright colored flag or help signs
· First aid kit
· Tool kit
· Road maps
· Waterproof matches and can to melt snow for water
· Paper towels
One kind word can change someone’s day, but hugs are remembered for a lifetime.
You’ve been good this week. Worked out every day, avoided sweets, had healthy meals. And then along comes the weekend. Let’s face it, weekends are full of temptations—parties, snacks, going out to eat with family and friends. Then Monday rolls around and we’re frustrated with ourselves for falling off the wagon. That’s why it’s good to have a plan before the weekend starts. Here are some tips for maintaining your diet and exercise regimen on weekends.
· Don’t skip your workout – Treat Saturday and Sunday like any other day of the week and workout, even if it’s an easy walk around the block.
· Eat like it’s a weekday – Eat the same salad or healthy meal at home that you would during the regular work week. Your body will thank you.
· Limit alcohol – Studies show that drinking alcohol prevents persons from getting REMs or deep sleep. When you’re tired, you’re less motivated to work out and more likely to eat to stay awake.
· Increase water –Water helps our bodies control calories, energizes muscles and keeps our skin looking good.
· One cheat meal – Hey, it is the weekend after all and you know what they say, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.”
Nothing is more frustrating than ransacking your cookbook collection for a favorite recipe. Chaos can get even the most creative of spirits in a foul mood. That’s why organizing your cookbooks is so important and a great way to ring in the New Year. Here are some tricks.
Separate your most often reached for cookbooks from the others. Store these in a spot away from your stove where they won’t get greasy, like a cabinet with doors to protect them.
As for the rest of your cookbooks, store them in a place where they are easily accessible so you can pull them out when you want to do some more in depth research about what meals to prepare for family and friends.
Now it’s time to assess all your cookbooks, especially the ones not used on a regular basis. Consider arranging your cookbooks by cuisine. Keep Asian cookbooks together, creating categories by country. For example, Mediterranean could be broken down by Greek, Italian, Spanish and Turkish.
You could also group your books together by theme. Pizza, holiday entertaining, vegan, barbecue, desserts, slow cooker, etc. are all examples.
It’s a good idea to assess your cookbook collection once a year and purge what you haven’t used. This will create more space for future cookbook buys.
“What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.” –Charles Bukowski