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Therapists Explain 10 Ways to Cope With Heartbreak (+ 10 things to avoid)

Therapists Explain 10 Ways to Cope With Heartbreak (+ 10


Everyone has their unique coping methods for getting over a breakup. However, some may be much more effective than others. It’s essential to go through your grief in the right way to get you back on your feet again. We share ten ways to cope with heartbreak (and ten behaviors to avoid).

10 “Dos” When You Must Cope with Heartbreak

1. Do Seek Support

It’s perfectly natural to want to talk to someone about your breakup. You probably have a lot of feelings festering up inside of you. Look for opportunities to express your emotions in an appropriate setting. Go to the people who are closest to you first. Of course, you want to avoid anyone who may be caught in the middle of the breakup. Venting to them could make them feel uncomfortable.

In the case of life-altering breakups or leaving an abusive relationship, you may want to go to a therapist or support group. The damage inflicted may be more serious than a gab session with your mom or best friend can manage.

2. Do Focus on Your Physical Health

When you treat your body well, you will notice a positive change in your mental health as well. Eat well and exercise. Focus on foods filled with nutrition and not empty calories. Stay away from fried foods and processed foods. You should also make a point to get out and exercise throughout the week. A body in motion stays in motion, so your body will continue to move correctly as long as you work it out.

3. Do Stay Busy

The last thing you need is too much time on your hands. You may end up dwelling on the breakup, causing you to feel bad about yourself. Instead, fill up your calendar with different events to keep you busy. When you are out doing things every night, you won’t have time to think about the person who hurt you.

4. Do Help Others

Breakups tend to bring out the selfish side of us. We wallow in self-pity and talk about ourselves a lot. Instead, it might be more beneficial to go out and help others. Spend time with family members or volunteer at a charitable organization. You will not only be helping others, but it can also make you feel good about yourself.

5. Do Examine Your Dating Practices

While you shouldn’t place blame on anyone (especially yourself), you should take time to think about some of your dating habits. You may be able to make some changes that will help you in your future dating ventures. Do you tend to fall for bad boys? Are you too clingy? Do you flirt with other people outside of the relationship? Look at some things you can change to help yourself succeed in love the next time around.

6. Do Cry

Some people try their hardest not to cry or feel angry about the end of their relationship. However, it’s a natural reaction to feel a certain way. You should not feel bad about your emotions. In fact, it is best to take some time to explore how you are feeling.

Otherwise, you only bottle up your feelings inside of you. Take a night to listen to sad breakup songs with a scoop of ice cream to let it out. When it’s finally all out there, you’ll feel a lot better. Just don’t make it a habit.

7. Do Get a Pet

You may have a lot of love you want to share. Get a cute pet to focus your love on. You can dote on your new cat, dog, or lizard (whatever pet you’re into). Just remember a pet is a big responsibility and commitment.

8. Do Focus on Other Relationships

Your romantic relationship wasn’t the only relationship in your life. Consider all of the family relationships in your life– your parents, grandparents, siblings, friends, etc. Spend some time developing those relationships.

9. Do Find a Creative Outlet

You need to find a way to express yourself in a safe, creative way after heartbreak. Some people choose to start painting, singing, or writing. You can talk about the breakup or a variety of other topics affecting you at the moment.

10. Do Date

You should go out and start dating again–when you are ready.  You may want to give it a couple of weeks or months before going on your first date. Only you know the best timeframe for you, as confirmed by research. But you shouldn’t get too used to staying inside every day. When a new dating opportunity comes up, take it. Take things slowly and casually before you fall in love headfirst again, though.

10 Don’ts When You Suffer from Heartbreak

1. Don’t Overindulge

Some people choose to make themselves feel better by overindulging in certain activities, such as drinking or casual sex. It may make you feel better at the moment, but it won’t lead to long-term happiness. Watch how much you engage in reckless behavior.

2. Don’t Contact Your Ex

Your ex was a large part of your life. It’s hard to entirely and suddenly stop talking to a person who was once so important in your life. When something good or bad happens in your life, your instinct may be to pick up the phone and give your ex a call. You may also want to call just to see how they are doing. Avoid all temptations. Contacting your ex will only lead to a complicated relationship that can prevent you from moving on and even more heartbreak. It’s over. Only talk to your ex when you need to.

text messages
Never send these text messages to your former love.

3. Don’t Talk About the Breakup on Social Media

Social media is an excellent place for people to express themselves. However, you don’t want to tell everyone about what’s going on in your life. Rants about your ex may be entertaining to other people, but it will only make you look crazy and unprofessional.

4. Don’t Stoop to Their Level

Breakups can bring out the worst in people. When someone is emotional, they may do something mean. When your ex starts making your life difficult, you may be tempted to stoop down to their level and retaliate. Don’t do it. You may only make yourself look bad or even get yourself in trouble. Even when your ex goes low, you need to stay high.

5. Don’t Let Yourself Go

After a breakup, you may not shave or do your regular skincare routine. However, you need to keep up on these things more than ever in the case of a new prospect coming along. You don’t want a new potential significant other to see you in your pajamas with no makeup during the day.

6. Don’t Hold onto Gifts/Items

You and your former partner may have gifted each other things throughout the relationship. The items will become a reminder of your relationship when they are gone. You may enjoy a certain pair of shoes or piece of jewelry, but you shouldn’t wear those items if it’s going to be a constant reminder of a failed relationship.

7. Don’t Become a Shut-in

After a breakup, the world may look scary and unfriendly. You may not want to go out and socialize with people. However, you need to overcome these feelings. Some people want some time to themselves after a breakup, but you may start to be depressed staying inside all of the time. You need to go out and experience fresh air. You should also go do things you enjoy and see people in your life. These things will put your life back on track.

8. Don’t Portray Yourself as a Victim

It can be easy to make yourself look like a victim without even trying. This would be especially true if you were cheated on or abused during the relationship. However, you need to make a point to remain strong. You should not lie about what happened, but you do not need to tell your story without provocation.

9. Don’t Stick to Old Negative Patterns

Many people who are unlucky in love may notice that they tend to make the same mistakes over and over again. You need to examine these mistakes and do what you can to make a change. In some cases, you may want to get professional help to assist you through your issues.

10. Don’t Rush Into the Next Relationship

Some people cure heartbreak by rushing into the next committed relationship. While you want to go out and date, you don’t want to jump a long-term commitment with another person right away. Take the time to get to know somebody. Allow things to happen organically. Otherwise, you’ve just headed toward heartbreak again.

Final Thoughts on Coping With Heartbreak So You Can Move On

These tips make it clear for people to make the right decisions for their emotional and romantic health after heartbreak. A breakup isn’t the end- it’s the start of something new and exciting. You just need to see it that way.

Lifestyle

10 Ways to Make Zoom Calls with Friends More Fun

10 Ways to Make Zoom Calls with Friends More Fun


With more people staying home than ever, many people are turning to Zoom to stay connected with family and friends as well as working from home. If your social life seems to have taken a turn and is a bit mundane, then you may be looking for ways to spice up your social interactions.

Thankfully, there are some easy things that you can do to add some variety to these calls since it’s the best way to stay connected right now.

Four Zoom Keyboard Shortcuts

Many quick short cuts can easily make your sessions easier on this conferencing app. Here are some of the best ones to use:

• Record Your Sessions

By merely using Cmd+Shift+R, you can easily record your sessions with ease. (PC: Alt+P)

• Screen Sharing

One of the best features of this video conferencing platform is the ability to screen share. To start page sharing, type Cmd+Shift+S. If you need to pause this feature, type Cmd+Shift+T. (PC: Alt+Shift+S) (PC: Alt+T)

• Mute Your Voice

It’s advisable to keep your mute button going if you’re in a video conference. Use Cmd+Shift+A to mute your voice on this platform. Use Cmd+Ctrl+M to mute everyone in the video conference. (PC: Alt+A)

• Quickly Invite Someone

Cmd+I will allow you to invite someone to your conference quickly. (PC: Alt+I)

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Making Virtual Calls More Fun

When you’re stuck at home with nothing do to the Zoom, virtual parties may be just what you need. If you lack the creativity to enhance these web-based connections, there here are six tips for you.

1. Add Pizzazz with Special Effects

Did you read the story on the internet of the lady from Washington, DC, who turned herself into a virtual potato? The hilarious part is that she had to face her colleagues in an online meeting while being a spud. There are so many special effects on these video apps that can enhance your experience.

While you may not want to be a potato, the sky is the limit when it comes to virtual choices. A few options to consider include giving yourself frog eyes or becoming an extra-terrestrial. You can go to a black and white or sepia tone, or you can even become a ghost. What could be more fun than that?

Do you want to hide the clutter of your home? Then you can put a new background on your screen so that it appears that your sitting beachside rather than in your home office. Another option that you have is to distort your image.

The options are limitless and easy to do with the click of a button. You should play around offline to see what kind of effects you can add. Remember, you must turn these effects off when you switch from personal to business roles. You don’t want to be a spud like the lady from the capital city.

2. Send Super-Imposed Videos

It can be quite annoying to send video links when you copy and paste them into a taskbar. Then, your friend must follow the link and open it in a new window.

Using Zoom or another popular app, you can send videos in real-time. Add a bit more to your videos, and you can super-impose your body over the ones in the production.

What would your friends think if they see you on an underwater diving adventure in a foreign land, or you can saddle up a horse and ride in the Wild West?

You can immerse yourself in all the video chat options that are available to you on this app. The Intel® RealSense™ technologies are changing the way people communicate with one another, and it’s all for the better.

3. Make It a Virtual Game Night

Children and adults alike have become bored with social distancing and not being allowed to venture far from home. However, why not use Zoom to bring your friends in on your virtual world? You can create game nights right from the comforts of home.

You can play video games together, or you can opt for other fun classics like Charades or Win, Lose or Draw. The key to making this a success is to get as many people together as you can. Since you are connecting via an internet server, you can see and hear them.

These new game playing sessions can become so real that you might have to remind yourself that you don’t have a house full of friends. Sure, it’s not going to be just as fun as having them in your home, but think of the mess that you won’t have to clean up when the night is through.

4. Take a Trip Down Memory Lane

Do you have boxes of old photographs stored in your closets? Are there are old films that have family gatherings recorded for the later generation to see? Zoom is the perfect way to put on a display and have the family take a walk down memory lane.

Since you are connecting with them in a manner where they can see and share videos and photographs, you can all bring your offerings to the table. Years of generational pictures can be shared with ease. Plus, you will learn a few remarkable things about the family you probably didn’t know.

Today’s generation uses digital platforms for their photos. However, back a decade or so ago, there weren’t the options that we have now. Make sure to record these sessions so that you can hear the stories time and again.

While the present seems to be wavering, why not look to the history of your family to bring you comfort. Plus, the elderly members of your clan would probably enjoy a stroll down memory lane with you and their loved ones.

5. Have an Old-Fashioned Bake Off

There is nothing better than the smell of freshly baked goodies wafting throughout your home. Do you love to cook? Do your friends, or family members also enjoy this past time? Why not have a virtual baking contest?

You can show off your culinary skills when you whip up a few fantastic dishes to entice everyone in your meeting. Teach some tips and tricks that you’ve learned over your cooking career, as well as take advice from those who’ve been baking up goodies for decades.

There are so many things that you can do with this tip if you only let your mind wander. You can charge a small fee and teach cooking classes, or you can have a hang out on Zoom for fun. Your perception only limits the options.

Just think you can show everyone what a great cook you are, and you won’t feel the pressure of having people breathing down your neck. Additionally, you can hide the mess when you’re on camera too.

Have you ever wanted to run a cooking show? Do you see yourself as one of the great chefs of our day like Rachael Ray, Julia Child, or the Frugal Gourmet? Since you’re already on camera, you might as well record these sessions. Who knows, you could be what one of those popular food networks is looking for as the next big thing in cooking.

6. Have a Virtual Dinner Date

Why talk when you can eat? Virtual parties should always begin with food. While going on a traditional date when restaurants are closed may make dating difficult, there’s nothing that says you can’t sit and dine with someone on the world wide web.

The best part about virtual dating and having these online dating sessions is that you can log off if things aren’t going as you planned. With the touch of a button, you can disconnect from Zoom.

Grab a glass of your favorite wine, a plate of delicious food, and sit in front of your computer ready to chat the night away. Thankfully, Zoom has a mute feature where you can mute your side of the conversation should you need to burp or have some other gaseous explosion. You may find that you like internet dating way better than doing them in person.

Use some of the other techniques talked about in this article to jazz up your date. Change the background to a tropical scene, or you can become an avatar with a made-up persona. It’s utterly amazing what the power of the internet allows you to do and grow when you feel that your options are limited.

While nothing is as enjoyable as holding hands, snuggling, or kissing under the moonlight, internet dating can be made possible with online apps.

leave the houseFinal Thoughts on How to Make Virtual Calls on Zoom More Fun

Video calls can be fun, especially if you’re both working and socializing from home. However, you can make things better using the power of technology. When you use your creative side and explore all the possibilities the internet offers, then you can see how much enjoyable the virtual world has become.

Lifestyle

12 Ways to Live a Sustainable Lifestyle (and save money)

12 Ways to Live a Sustainable Lifestyle (and save money)


We live in a modern world where most people consume and pollute. Instead of wasting at such vast degrees, we should make a point to be as sustainable and self-reliant as possible. This effort is an excellent way to both help the earth and saves money. Here are 12 ways to live a sustainable lifestyle (and save money in the long run).

12 Tips for a More Sustainable Lifestyle

1. Grow Your Own Food

Instead of getting into the car to go to the store and putting toxins in the air and buying food that needed to be transported and possibly packaged, grow your fruits and vegetables at home.

Do your research to learn what foods grow best in your area and how to grow them. When the time comes, you’ll have the freshest vegetables possible. Plus, you will know exactly how they were raised and what they were treated with since you were the one who grew them.

sustainable
Are you planting a victory garden to live more sustainably? Here are 15 plants to try.

2. Recycle

Recycling is the process of taking used material and repurposing it instead of adding to the already overfilled landfills in the world. Not everything can be recycled, but the items that can go to a recycling center which helps bring it to a new, reusable form.

Place plastic, paper, and glass in a separate container specifically for recyclable materials. In many cases, the city will provide a recyclables bin for you. In some cases, you may even be able to make money off of your recyclable materials. The following states offer money for bottles and cans:

  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Iowa
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Vermont

If you live in one of these states, collect your cans and bottles. The recycling center will typically offer a nickel per item. You can help the environment while also earning some extra money. Talk to an employee at the center to learn about any other materials they would pay you for.

3. Ditch Your Car

Cars are a significant source of air pollution, especially in metropolitan areas. Many people drive to work or the store when they could easily take an alternative method of transportation. If you can take one car off the road every day by walking or biking to work, you are making a significant difference.

However, you should consider public transportation if walking or biking is not a reasonable method for you. If that also doesn’t work for your commute, create a carpool at your work.  You can save gas money by taking turns driving with other people at the office. It will reduce the number of pollutants in the air, too.

minimalist
Read the benefits of living a minimalist lifestyle.

4. Install Solar Panels

One of the most exciting new sustainable inventions in recent years is the solar panel. You can place these on your home to generate your electricity. Of course, you still have backup power from the electric company. However, since you are producing your electricity most of the time, your electric bill will be significantly reduced or even nothing.

The solar panels collect the sun’s rays and turn it into electricity. When you need to use it, it’s distributed throughout your house. Since this method requires the sun, it works best in sunny locations.

The solar panels generally go on top of your current roof. However, Tesla has invented a roof made of solar panels. It’s expensive, but it’s attractive and saves you money in utilities.

5. Shop From Environmentally Responsible Companies

You have a lot of options as a consumer. It’s your job to make responsible decisions about who you buy from. You shouldn’t only focus on price. You need to pay attention to the way the company packages its products and their manufacturing practices. There may be a reason that a particular product is cheaper than the competition.

These items probably won’t last as long as other options, meaning you’ll spend more when you need to be a second product. Also, specific packaging and manufacturing processes are bad for the apartment.

6. Shop With Reusable Bags

Think of all of the plastic bags used when people go out grocery shopping or shopping at the local pharmacy. Even though they are plastic, these bags can not be recycled. In fact, some countries are even banning the use of plastic bags when shopping. Think ahead and bring your reusable bags.

There are sustainable bags designed to use over and over again. This habit will eliminate the need to use plastic bags. Just don’t forget to bring them with you when you head out to shop.

7. Drive an Electric Car

If you can’t possibly get rid of your car, that doesn’t mean you can’t make responsible decisions about the vehicle you drive. Some vehicles are known for being “gas guzzlers.” They consume a lot of gas. This moniker means you’ll be stuck going to the gas station more often and spending more money. Common gas guzzlers include Hummers and large trucks. Compare vehicles before buying.

Luckily, there are electric vehicles and hybrids now that don’t require as much gas. These vehicles rely on electricity or a combination of both electricity and gas. You won’t be stopping for gas as often or putting the same amount of pollution into the air.

8. Buy Energy Star Appliances

Most modern homes utilize refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers, and other appliances to help complete chores. It’s almost unheard of not to have these appliances around the house. However, these appliances use up a lot of electricity and water. As they get older, they may even require more to complete the same amount of work. Specific machines are designed to use less water and electricity than usual.

These appliances will have an Energy Star sticker on them. This designation lets you know they adhere to a certain standard of efficiency. You will save money on your utility bills. Plus, you will be more sustainable.

sustainable life9. Eat Local

Think about how food gets from where it was made to your plate. In some cases, this involves an extensive long-distance journey. The journey means putting pollution into the air. Plus, the food isn’t as fresh as it once was when it finally arrives at its destination.

Instead of eating at places that require the food to come from all over the country, eat at restaurants and shop at farmer’s markets who only use food from local farmers and butchers. This food is likely less expensive since it doesn’t require travel costs.

Plus, it will be some of the freshest food you can eat. In these types of establishments, the food probably wasn’t frozen at any point. Finally, it was perhaps picked off of the vine that same day!

10. Use HVAC System Wisely

It’s completely unreasonable to assume that people will live in hot summers and cold winters without an HVAC system. This fact is especially relevant if you live in a location with an extreme climate. However, you should use your HVAC system wisely.

First, you should get a unit with the Energy Star sticker we mentioned before. Also, you don’t need to set the unit to extreme temperatures. Instead of setting it at 68 degrees in the summer, try setting it at 78. You want to make yourself comfortable, but you don’t need to overdo it. You should also consider using a smart thermometer.

The smart thermometer can change the temperature when no one is in the home. It can even set it back when people come home for the day. Finally, get regular maintenance from a professional HVAC technician every year.

11. Vote

It’s your job as a citizen to vote about the things that matter to you. Since we can’t vote on particular legislation, we need to vote for people who put environmental issues at the forefront. Research local, state-wide, and national politicians to learn who will support you and others who want to live a sustainable lifestyle.

When it’s time to vote, you should stop by the polls and cast your ballot. Some people only vote during national elections, but it’s important to vote in every election if you expect to see a change in your area. These changes can even result in significant savings for the government.

12. Volunteer

There are a vast number of organizations that work to help environmental issues and help sustainability efforts. Make a point to support and volunteer with these organizations. You may learn things during your volunteer service. You may also be able to make a difference in your community. Look for organizations that make an effort to clean up nature and plant trees. There are also organizations designed to help animals.

sustainable livingFinal Thoughts on Achieving a Sustainable Life That Saves the Planet (and your wallet)

The world needs our help. We tend to make more from the planet than we give. It also doesn’t hurt that being more sustainable can save us a lot of money, too. These tips are a great place to start, but keep looking for new ways to help.

Lifestyle

15 Ways to Feng Shui Your Home and Get More Peace 6 Minute Read

15 Ways to Feng Shui Your Home and Get More


Are you looking to create positive energy in your home? Feng shui has been used for centuries to help balance and promote the flow of good chi in your abode. In Chinese, it is a beautifully blended word that means “wind-water.”

Feng shui uses standard principles that anyone can incorporate into their home. It’s one of the Five Arts of Chinese Metaphysics, and they are beneficial to your entire being. If you are looking to create a harmonious environment, then you should consider practicing this art.

The purpose behind this art of space, light, and color, is to clear all the invisible forces that take away from your spiritual focus. The concept is quite simple. Think about your living space and how your furniture is arranged.

The goal is to create an efficient flow so that you can go into and out of a room effortlessly. However, this Chinese art takes things one step beyond good flow and organization. The good news is that it can be incorporated into any design style with ease.

Many have found that these ancient practices help them to set up their new house or redesign an existing room. The goal is to maximize the use of each space and allow it to add beauty and pleasure to your life. You and your whole family will benefit from the domestic harmony it imparts.

According to wind-water philosophy, chi is the life force of the universe. Your home resonates with you and your family’s chi. When it can flow effortlessly, you can enjoy a tranquil home and a prosperous life.

feng shui

15 Ways of Incorporating Feng Shui to Bring Positivity to Your Home

It may sound a bit overwhelming when you don’t understand this art. While there are many steps to incorporate and tips to follow, it’s all about creating prosperity and a harmonious environment. Try these fifteen things that you can do to help give your Feng shui a jump start.

1. Plant Goodness All Around You

Plants have a special place in the Chinese home as they are the embodiment of life. Bringing nature inside helps you to stay connected, plus it brings along numerous benefits. Feng shui 101 is to strive to have better health and vitality, and when you bring plants inside, it puts you on the right path.

It would be beneficial if you bought foliage that will grow according to your specific environment. Most important is that you don’t buy a bunch of plants and have them die. It’s worse to have a dead plant in your space than to have none. This decor element is a fundamental way to start incorporating these principles that most people can do with ease.

2. Get Rid of Clutter

Do you have piles of books, magazines, and clothes that need to be donated to your local charity? Most people don’t understand that the clutter is stopping the natural flow of energy in their homes. Do you want to disrupt the balance and peaceful calm of the space?

Some things in life weigh you down. If you have a room that is heavy with clutter, then it needs to be addressed. You can enhance the energetic function of space by merely tossing and donating all that extra stuff.

3. Learn Commanding Positions

A commanding position is a feature or piece of furniture in your home that stands for something else. For instance, your couch can be a stand-in for you. Your desk space might be a stand-in for your job, and your dryer might be a stand-in for productivity. The goal is to position these things right so that you can take control of your space and life.

clutter quote

4. Balancing the Elements

Try to incorporate the elements into your peaceful home, which are metal, water, fire, wood, and earth. By having them in your living space, it helps to bring balance. Have you ever been in a room that had wood paneling, wood floors, and wooden accents?

Using too much of one element can be overwhelming to any area. However, when you use wood floors, a stone accent wall on a fireplace, and some metal wall hangings, you will bring the right balance. A room using only one medium is suffocating, but when you have a mixture, they complement each other.

If you cannot use actual elements, such as fire, then you can use the color of fire. A beautiful warm red tone or a bright orange can help to give you the same effect. For water, you can use shades of blue and green. Don’t try to stuff all five elements in each room as it will be too much. However, you should strive to have all five inside your home.

5. Bring in the Light

Natural light is a big part of Feng shui. Have you ever noticed how you feel when the sun breaks after a storm? This invigoration can be created when you let the sunshine in every day.

Never close off windows with blinds and curtains to block your view. Instead, let them bring nature to the inside. Once you expose the windows, make sure to clean them and get off any dirt or debris that can block the flow of sunlight.

If you must have curtains, then choose an excellent opaque style that still allows the light to penetrate. A mirror placed directly across from the windows can also allow the light to reflect throughout the home. Natural radiance lifts everyone’s mood.

6.The Door to Your Spirit

In the system of wind-water, your home’s front door symbolizes the entry to your soul. Practitioners recommend making it the focal point of your home and avoiding using back and side doors for entry. Make your entryway attractive and clutter-free and painted the color of the direction it faces.

7. Points to Forget

Sharp, angular décor, and features don’t have a place in a chi-centered home. They represent broken relationships and cutting words. Instead, opt for soft, sloping lines and rounded edges. Circles are especially encouraged since they embody eternal life.

energy8. Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

Ever since humans first saw their reflection in the water, we’ve had a collective affinity for mirrors. If you want to make a space look larger and more abundant, mirrors do the trick. They represent the water element in your space and enhances its chi.

Remember to use round mirrors and use a large one or a few small ones to create a focal point. As the mirror reflects things before it, so your home reflects your soul. Consider at least one mirror in each room.

9. Keep Your Flooring the Same

Have you ever been into a home that used different styles of flooring in each room? That feeling of unbalance wasn’t just in your head. For chi to flow uninterruptedly, keep the same flooring throughout your house.

If you can, consider using natural floor elements rather than carpet. Not only are they easier to clean, but they bring in positive wind-water balance. It’s best to use wood or stone tile.

10. Fixing Squeaks

Did you know that something as small as a door squeaking when you open it can affect your chi? If your front door is making a terrible creak when it opens, then you need to fit it.

It’s possible that you have become so accustomed to the sound that it doesn’t even bother you, or you may not notice it. However, subtle noises can mess with your vibrations, which means it needs to be fixed. Get out the oil and fix that creaking joint.

11. Use a Water Fountain

A water fountain is an excellent way to incorporate the water element into your home. Finding where to put this fountain can be another problem. It’s best to place any water element near your entry door, but you want to make sure the water is flowing towards the center of your abode.

12. Keep Your Bathroom Door Shut

You know that keeping your bathroom door shut is good for obvious reasons, but there are also some harmonious reasons for it. Your bathroom is the place where water leaves, which can also indicate wealth being flushed away. You don’t want to lose any wealth that is coming your way.

13. Cover Any Television in the Bedroom

If you have a television in your bedroom, and it’s not the best idea, then you should cover it when not in use. A television is a form of active energy, and it can disrupt the peaceful haven you are trying to create.

14. Fill the Space Above the Cabinets

One of the commandments of Feng Shui is to make sure that there is no empty space above the kitchen cabinets. If you do have space, then it’s a great location for some houseplants. You don’t want your chi to become stuck in dead spaces, so fill it up with life, and it will enhance your energy.

15. Use White Sage for Space Clearing

Finally, once you have redesigned your space according to this Chinese art, then it’s time to cleanse it with white sage. Go through each area of the home, making sure that the smoke from this herb penetrates every corner.

Sage can help to cleanse impurities as well as get rid of old, stale energy. You don’t want anything standing in the way of your new, fresh energy.

feng shui

Final Thoughts on How Feng Shui Fits Everyone

The beautiful thing about Feng Shui is that it fits everyone with a myriad of lifestyles. By simply arranging your furniture and items in a specific method, you can change your entire life.

If you want prosperity and a peaceful home, then why not use some items from this list to change the energy and harmonious balance of your space?

Lifestyle

Therapists Explain 6 Ways To End A Sibling Rivalry »

Therapists Explain 6 Ways To End A Sibling Rivalry »


There is nothing worse than listening to your children bicker and fight all day long. Sibling rivalry can quickly wear on your nerves. Most parents hear iconic phrases like “I’m telling on you,” and “He took my toy.” While you may want to run away and may have got in your car with the keys on occasion, there are ways to combat this behavior.

As your children bicker, it builds tension in your home, making it an unpleasant atmosphere. Thankfully, you can use these experiences to teach rather than to cause discord. Conflict resolution is a part of everyday life.

Using these disagreements, you can teach your children about how to resolve their issues without nasty tones and harsh words. For the parent, consistency is the key. You must set firm ground rules and not allow them to get away with things on the weekend that you don’t permit during the week.

How Do You Stop Sibling Fighting

The resolution for this common problem begins with you. By ensuring there are household rules, well-defined consequences, and you are fair with all the children. Then you can establish expectations. Keep in mind that it’s normal for children to argue.

However, as an adult, it’s your job to make sure it doesn’t get out of hand. You must keep your temper and your children under control. To help you implement a program in your home that allows for less arguing, here are six ways that therapists suggest ending sibling rivalry between brothers and sisters.

sibling rivalry

1. Establish Firm Ground Rules

Most households already have rules in place for arguing. However, if you don’t have these rules established, then take a few minutes to develop a list that your family can use. Call a family meeting and tell the children the importance of following these guidelines.

Consistency is essential. If you don’t give consequences when the rules aren’t followed, then they won’t see the need to obey. Make sure you are clear on your expectations as children love to push boundaries as far as you will allow them.

Remember, some days are going to be better than others, and you must rule with understanding. Kids are going to be kids, and brothers and sisters are going to argue. You are just the referee in their daily encounters.

2. Never Compare Your Children

Did you know that one of the main reasons why sibling rivalry exists is because parents compare children? When one child is doing well, it’s easy to brag about them as you are proud of their accomplishments. However, while the child making the right decisions does deserve praise, there are other children than are feeling insufficient.

Never compare two children against each other; instead, make sure to make a point of good qualities of all. Try to find something to praise each child daily, even if it’s just for helping to bring in the groceries. Remember, that negativity will feed negativity. If you want your children to be positive, then you must set the example.

It’s essential that all your children feel loved and wanted by you. The older your kids get, the harder it is to connect and show your love. It’s easy when they are young and will allow you to hold and cuddle them, but those tactics don’t work on teenagers.

Don’t fall into the trap of comparing your children’s attitudes, behaviors, grades, or general demeanor. When you praise one over the other, you are setting your household up for sibling rivalry. Sadly, most sibling rivalry doesn’t end when children reach adulthood.

children

3. Treat All Children Fairly

Another thing that parents often do without realizing it is that they play favorites. It’s easy to love and be close to that child that is doing well and seems to have it together. However, the tides will turn. It seems children rotate, and one does well for a while, then the other one takes a walk on the wild side.

You must create a trust system among your offspring. One of the biggest causes of rivalry is when one child feels that they are not the favorite. They will vie for your attention and use behaviors, both good and bad, to get it.

You must be fair to all your kids and ensure that the rules are not made for one. The difficulty is that each child has unique needs, and your discipline style must vary. While you may use different tactics, you must ensure that all parties get a fair punishment.

4. Rule with Regularity

In parenting, stability is everything. If your children know your weak spots, then they will use them to their advantage. You cannot bend, adjust, or change the rules for any child. To set a good example for your kids, you want them to learn the fine art of being consistent.

Now, on the other hand, parents must remember if you don’t want your home full of sibling rivalry, then you cannot argue with their mom or dad in front of them. Sure, you will have disagreements, but you need to take them to a private room. So if you want your children to learn to get along with each other, then you must learn to do the same.

If the rules say you must make your bed in the morning, then they must receive a consequence when the bed is not made. Thus, if you don’t punish when a rule is broken, then they will break them time and again. Plus, your child will quickly learn you don’t stick with your word, which is a dangerous position to be in a parent.

kind phrases

5. Allow Them Some Space to Work it Out

Part of being an effective parent is giving your kids the tools to work through conflicts. If your children start to argue, then you don’t always have to step in to assist. Sometimes, you need to lay down your referee whistle and let them figure it out.

You can encourage them to use their words and take turns talking about the issues, but don’t be so quick to jump in with punishments. Teach them to identify the problem, and you must give them the tools to resolve it. However, just because you don’t step in doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be close by.

Things can take a drastic turn at a moment’s notice, and you may need to get that whistle out and put on your referee cap. When parents teach appropriate conflict resolution, then children learn to have respect for one another.

6. Teach Teamwork in Daily Life

One of the best ways to combat sibling rivalry is to teach teamwork in daily life. Rather than making activities about competition, why not teach them to work together? A team is always stronger than one individual. One of the best exercises to teach teambuilding is relay races.

Make the game where the children are against the adults, and you will teach them the importance of working together. You have many opportunities around your home to teach teamwork. Simple tasks such as mowing the grass, folding the laundry, or doing homework, are all examples of when it’s better to have more hands helping.

sibling rivalryFinal Thoughts: Sibling Rivalry is Normal

Raising children is not for the faint of heart. They can be very taxing and take you to the brink of emotional despair. However, while there are so many difficulties in this significant job, they are the best gift you could ever ask for in life.

Remember, you’re not the only parent struggling with the arguing and constant bickering. When you have both boys and girls in the home, it can be an all-out war zone. You must find useful tools to resolve their conflicts.

Another thing that you can do for your children is to make them feel special. It’s so hard to carve out time each day with all the items on your to-do list, but you should give each child 10-15 minutes of your undivided attention.

Let them talk to you about what’s bothering them and make them feel that their voice is heard. Make sure you put down the cell phone and turn off the television. Give your ear to them and allow them to vocalize their feelings.

As parents, it’s easy to think that your children don’t have issues. After all, they don’t have to go to work each day and provide for your household. However, you cannot diminish the problems in their little world.

An argument with a friend at school can be just as much of a catastrophic event in their world as you are being exhausted from working so many hours. If you want to tame sibling fights or arguments, then you must first listen to them. Lastly, you must set a good example for them to follow.

Lifestyle

10 Ways to Keep The Romance Alive During Stressful Times

10 Ways to Keep The Romance Alive During Stressful Times


Keeping the romance alive doesn’t always come easy during stressful times. The current situation in the world feels uncertain, but perhaps we can look at it as a gift from the universe. We have more time to spend with our families, a break from work (depending on your situation), and time to reflect on our lives. With all this extra time on our hands, we can give more time and energy to the people in our lives who matter to us.

Of course, not everyone gets to have time off work, and we understand that everyone’s situation looks different. However, no matter what you’ve been through during this challenging time, you can always keep the romance alive in your relationship. You don’t always have to fly off to an exciting destination or plan an expensive date to rekindle the flames in your relationship.

Most people just want to know that you love and care about them, and even the smallest gesture can make a big difference. Below, we’ll go over how you can keep the spark lit in your relationship during difficult times.

Here are ten ways to keep the romance alive during stressful times:

romance

  1. Show your love in little ways.

Studies prove that small gestures in relationships mean more than even verbal expressions of love. Researchers found that people showing compassion topped the list of what made people feel the most loved. So, if you want to keep the romance alive during these stressful times, try these things out:

  • send them a loving text saying you miss them while they’re away at work
  • make them breakfast in bed on the weekend (pancakes are always a winner!)
  • do chores for them after they’ve had a hard day at work
  • make their coffee before they wake up in the morning
  • hear them out after a long day, and put away all distractions

You can make these gestures at any time, but they mean so much more when stress creeps up in life. Showing love helps to lower stress levels, which will help you both ride the waves of life more smoothly.

  1. Ask your partner if they need anything from you.

Sometimes, the best way to keep the romance alive during stressful times comes down to asking questions. People just want to feel heard and understood, and they may not always tell you upfront how they think. Be willing to dive deep and ask your lover the problematic questions. Open the conversation up so they feel comfortable sharing any concerns and worries they may have.

You may feel like you know your partner inside out, but you can always learn something new about them. Simply asking if you can do anything for them during this challenging time can make them feel extra loved and cared for, especially if they’ve recently lost a job or had other difficulties.

Your partner will especially appreciate that you’re willing to go the extra mile for them and help carry some of their burdens. You can ask some of the following questions to open up the dialogue:

  • Do you need any extra help with anything during all this?
  • I know this is a stressful time for everyone, but I want you to know I’m always here for you.
  • Is there anything you want to get off your chest?

Also, make sure you share your feelings with your partner as well. You should practice open communication at all times with your partner, but especially now as the whole world deals with this unprecedented event.

  1. Keep the romance alive by connecting physically.

When life gets stressful, connecting physically doesn’t always cross people’s minds. After a long day of work, sometimes you just want to lay in bed and have alone time to recharge. However, physical intimacy will help keep the romance alive in your relationship as well as lower stress levels. You don’t always have to have sex to foster a physical connection, either.

Here are some other ways to connect physically:

  • Kiss
  • Cuddle on the couch
  • Hold hands while doing errands/taking a walk.
  • Give each other a massage.
  • Take a trip down memory lane together.

Thinking about the happy memories you’ve shared can help strengthen intimacy and connection in your relationship. During stressful times, it helps to disconnect from the situation for a bit and pull out some old photo albums or laugh about the good times.

By reminiscing on the good times, you’ll remember that nothing bad lasts forever and that better days lie ahead of you.

relationship

  1. Plan a date night (this can be inside the house as well).

Since many of us have extra time together, why not plan a fun date with your partner? You don’t have to go to a fancy restaurant or have a wild night on the town, either. Even though you already eat dinners together most nights, make sure you spend time connecting and helping each other relieve stress by talking things out.

You can always make it fun by bringing out a white tablecloth and creating a romantic setting with candles and roses. You could also do it old school and pretend you’re kids again – make a blanket fort, bring out some fun snacks like popcorn and candy, and cuddle together while you watch your favorite show.

Get creative! When it comes to date ideas to keep your romance alive even during stressful times, the possibilities are endless.

  1. Make dinner together.

Nothing feels more romantic than creating something together, especially when you can eat your creation! Pull out some recipe books or look up ideas online, buy the ingredients, and have a fun night making the perfect dish together. No matter what kind of cuisine you prefer, you can find endless ideas on recipe blogs, foodie Instagram accounts, or YouTube channels.

This makes the perfect time for everyone to enjoy meals more at home together, just like the good old days. Plus, you’ll probably save money and calories by cooking at home, so it’s a win-win for everyone!

  1. Have a board game night.

Everyone loves board games, and figuring out puzzles or solving silly riddles helps relieve stress as well. If you want to keep the romance alive, try pulling out those dusty games from your closet and get lost in a fun night of laughter with your partner. Whether you enjoy card games, physical games like Twister, or classic children’s board games like Chutes n’ Ladders, make it fun by offering a prize for the winner.

leave the house

  1. Go camping together.

You can choose your backyard or your living room, but either way, make sure to get all the essentials. Make smores over a fire or your stove, tell scary stories, cuddle up in the tent with Netflix, and if you’re outside, you can stargaze together. Keeping the romance alive doesn’t have to cost a lot of money or involve anything complicated; just make it fun and enjoy your time together. Camping makes an excellent opportunity to connect with your loved one, and being cozy in the tent together will make it feel like all the problems in the world just melt away.

  1. Plan a vacation.

Just thinking about sipping cold drinks on a beautiful exotic beach will lift your spirits and make your problems seem a million miles away. Why not use the downtime to plan your next fun trip together? You don’t have to plan something extravagant; it can even be a camping trip an hour away or a stay at bed and breakfast in a town near you.

While you’re stuck inside, use your imagination to propel you to better days and create fun memories with your beau in the future. Sometimes, planning the trip is even more exciting than going on it, so throw all your ideas out there and choose something you will both enjoy!

  1. Create a private spa in your home.

You don’t need all the expensive equipment they have at spas; you can just use what you have at home. Give each other massages with a massage oil of your choice (rose or lavender works well), take a warm bubble bath together, and pull out the champagne or wine for full relaxation.

Massages help lower stress, so this makes a perfect way to keep the romance alive and induce feelings of relaxation.

romanceFinal thoughts on keeping the romance alive during stressful times.

It doesn’t take a lot of money or resources to create beautiful memories with your partner. You can have a fun time even while being stuck inside: have a home movie night, go camping inside, play board games, or make dinner together. You can also plan a future vacation, have a spa night, or just cuddle up on the couch.

Make sure you connect with your partner emotionally during this time as well, because talking out the problems in your lives will make them a lot easier to deal with. We hope these tips help you keep the feelings of romance alive!

Lifestyle

10 Ways to Make Fingernails Healthier and Stronger at Home

10 Ways to Make Fingernails Healthier and Stronger at Home


Properly caring for your fingernails is a simple thing you can do to improve your appearance. You don’t have to go to a nail shop to maintain healthy nails. Proper nail care at home can enhance the look of your nails and support cuticle health, too.

Nails are made of keratin, which is a fibrous protein. You can improve nail and hand health by eating healthier and keeping nails neat and clean.

This article will focus on practical things you can do at home to optimize cuticle health. You will also learn some tips for obtaining healthier hands.

Ten Ways for Healthier, Stronger Fingernails (from the comfort of home)

You can skip the time and money you spend at the salon by caring for your nails at home. Here are some tips.

pop meme

1. Trim Nails Neatly for Healthy Hands

Neatly trimmed nails are attractive. They also show others that you care enough about your appearance to stay well-groomed.

However, according to the Centers for Disease Control, it’s essential to keep nails trimmed for health reasons, too. Your fingernails can house germs, dirt, and bacteria.

If you wear your nails too long, you run the risk of spreading diseases from your nails to your mouth whenever you eat or touch your face or mouth. Long nails can also spread germs from one person to another.

2. Avoid Synthetic Nails

Gel manicures make nails look shiny and pretty. A gel manicure is also long-lasting and doesn’t require much maintenance.

However, according to the American Academy of Dermatologists, gel nails can cause long-term damage to your nails. Constant use of gel nails could raise your risk of skin cancer and cause your hands to age prematurely.

Other side effects of gel nails are as follows:

  • Nails become brittle
  • Nails may split or crack.
  • Peeling nails

Also, allow periods of rest for your nails in between gel manicures. You should also perform essential maintenance on your nails, especially when you’re getting gel manicures.

Here are a few tips if you still choose to wear gel nails from the salon:

  • Request that your manicurist sterilizes all equipment.
  • Do not allow your manicurist to cut or push your cuticles back aggressively. Light pushing of the tissue is okay, but if you feel pain or discomfort, ask your nail tech to stop. Damaged or cut cuticles makes you susceptible to infection.
  • Apply sunscreen to your hands before your manicure. SPF 30 or higher helps prevent premature aging, and it reduces the risk of skin cancer.
  • Do not peel off your gel polish. Instead, ask your nail technician to have the polish professionally removed.
  • While removing gel nail polish, soak just your fingertips in the acetone. Placing your whole hand or entire fingers in acetone can irritate the skin.
  • You could use cotton balls dipped in acetone to remove the polish. Press the cotton to the nail only, and then wrap each fingertip in aluminum foil. This wrap ensures that only the nailbed soaks in acetone. Wait about fifteen minutes, then peel off the foil.
personality
What doe your fingernails reveal about your personality?

3. Take a Break from Nail Polish

The right nail color can brighten up any outfit or fit perfectly with a particular season of the year. However, wearing nail polish all of the time can weaken your nails and jeopardize your healthy hands.

When changing your nail color, you should choose an acetone-free polish remover. You should also go through periods of several weeks in which you don’t use nail polish. This break gives your nails time to heal and strengthen.

4. Don’t Abuse Your Nails

Some people make a habit of doing difficult tasks with their nails. They may use their fingernails to pry open bottles. Some people also use their fingernails to scrape food off of plates when washing dishes.

Doing these tasks with your nails can cause them to become weak and brittle. When nails are weak, they split and sometimes crack. Rather than using your nails to pry into something, either use your hands or use a tool designed for the task.

5. Don’t Neglect Your Cuticle Health

The tissue of your cuticles can become dry and flaky, just like the skin on other areas of your body. Dry skin is especially common in cold climates. Still, regardless of where you live, you should be mindful of your cuticles. Do the following:

  • Rub a regular skin moisturizer on your cuticles daily
  • Do not cut your cuticles off. Doing so can damage your nails or allow harmful bacteria to infect nails.
  • Use an acetone-free nail polish remover on your fingernails.

You should also wear gloves when doing household chores. For instance, exposing your nails and cuticles to water while washing dishes can dry out your hands. This habit makes your nails and cuticles more susceptible to breaking and flaking.

6. Eat a Diet Rich in Vitamins and Minerals

A diet rich in healthy fat, calcium, and protein can help support healthy nails. Lean proteins you to try include the following:

  • Turkey
  • Chicken
  • Salmon
  • Fish
  • Shrimp
  • Beans
  • Soy products
  • Plant-based proteins

To increase your calcium intake healthily, eat the following:

  • Greek yogurt
  • Milk
  • Cottage cheese

To get healthier fingernails, you could also try increasing your intake of healthy fats. Healthy sources of fat include almonds, canola oil, and olive oil.

7. Don’t Bite Your Nails

According to the American Academy of Dermatologists, there are several side effects of nail-biting. For instance, constant nail biting can damage nail tissue and cause nail soreness. Nail-biting also makes nails look unsightly and ragged.

When you put your fingers in your mouth, you can also transfer viruses and bacteria from your fingers into your mouth. This habit makes you more susceptible to illness.

8. Inspect Your Nails for Signs of Infection

Nail fungus is a common problem. It’s more common on toenails because fungus lives better in warm, dark places. However, some people get nail fungus on fingernails, too. To properly care for your nails, be aware of the signs of nail fungus:

  • Yellow or white spots underneath the nails.
  • Your nail(s) turn green, black, white, or yellow.
  • Nails become thicker, making them harder to cut or trim.
  • Nails curl upward or downward.
  • Nails crumble when you touch them.
  • Nails become brittle and break easily.

If you have nail fungus, over time, you may notice soreness in your nails. In severe cases, a person may wince when walking due to nail fungus pain. Some people are disgusted by the sight of fungus.

germs
Here are some ways to protect yourself from germs when you go out.

There are several things you can do to reduce your risk of getting nail fungus. Consider the following guidelines:

  • Only have your nails done at state-certified nail shops. Always ask what the nail salon does to sterilize the equipment.
  • Change your socks daily, especially if you sweat a lot.
  • Do not cut or tear away cuticles. Doing so can let germs into your skin.
  • Do not share towels or nail equipment with anyone who has nail fungus. This practice may spread the infection.

If you do develop nail fungus, you can often treat it at home. Ask your pharmacist to recommend a fungal cream or lotion.

9. Keep Your Nails Clean

Whenever you wash your hands, you should also be sure to clean your nails. Scrub underneath the fingernails to remove dirt and grime. Dry your hands and nails carefully. Be aware that soaking your hands in water causes nails to become brittle.

10. Don’t Bite Your Nails

Nail-biting is considered a nasty habit for some people. It spreads germs to your mouth. Nail-biting also allows you to spread bacteria from your mouth to others when you touch them.

Aside from being an unpleasant habit, nail-biting comes across as a nervous habit. Some people will judge you as being anxious or dishonest based on fidgeting or biting the nails. Constant nail-biting may send the wrong message when you’re being watched closely, such as during a job interview.

Aside from making you appear nervous, nail-biting also makes your nails look ragged and ugly. You can damage your nail bed, too. Your fingertips might even become sore if you bite your nails too close to the skin.

While experts at the Mayo Clinic do not think nail biting can cause long-term nail damage, it can have short-term effects. For instance, it can damage the skin around the nail, which increases your risk of getting an infection. If your nails are hard and you bite heavily on them, you can also run the risk of damaging tooth enamel.

fingernailsFinal Thoughts on Maintaining Healthy Fingernails at Home

Healthy nails are considered attractive. If you want to make yours as beautiful as possible, keep them clean and neatly trimmed. Do not bite your nails. To prevent nails from chipping, do not use them to pry into items or scrape them across surfaces. Doing these basic maintenance tasks can help you maintain neat and healthy nails.

Lifestyle

15 Ways a Guy Friend Reveals His Secret Interest in a Romance

15 Ways a Guy Friend Reveals His Secret Interest in


For generations, young ladies have daydreamed about their future suitors while plucking daisy petals to see if he loves them or not. Maybe you have a guy friend, and you have wondered if he wants to take your relationship from friendship to a romance.

Could he also have a physical attraction to you?

Perhaps, yours is a case of love immortalized by award-winning singer, Bonnie Raitt. If he is having romantic thoughts about you, isn’t it time to give people something to talk about? Was that a sparkle of love in his eye, or are you wishfully thinking?

One may argue that platonic relationships can’t exist. Of course, you may still have men whom you consider friends or “brothers.”

Is there one different guy? How can you tell if he is sending you subliminal romantic thoughts?

Do They Want More? Here are Ways to Be Sure

romance

Trying to guess if someone close to you has a secret crush can be a slippery slope. On the one hand, you don’t want to miss out on romance just because you were too afraid to ask. However, you don’t want to look like a fool and put your heart on the line to discover that you misread his intentions.

What’s a girl/guy to do? Should you be upfront with him, or do you risk losing a good friendship? Is it possible that you are misinterpreting his extroversion for flirtation? If you wish there were more to your relationship, how are you going to know unless you ask?

Just about everyone has been in this dilemma of love at least once in their lives. Secret admiration has been the subject of novels, songs, and art since the beginning. Here are fifteen ways to tell if your guy friend secretly wishes for romance.

1. Does He Call or Text a Lot?

Let’s face it; guys would rather be doing anything than talking or texting. While some men are naturally more talkative than others, his daily texts may be more than friendly hellos. It gets even more apparent when he also calls regularly.

Before you chalk it up to chance or boredom, consider the context of his correspondence. Does he send you corny memes for a laugh, or does his conversation have substance? Maybe his day isn’t the same until he hears from you, which is a good sign that he is having romantic thoughts.

2. Are His Conversations Superficial or Meaningful?

Generally, men are not as in touch with their feelings as women are. Even boyfriends and husbands often find it challenging to discuss the more in-depth, emotional meanings of life. While they are all for love, they usually aren’t comfortable talking about it.

Does your guy friend have long, meaningful conversations with you, or are these talks superficial? Can you tell that he is genuinely interested in what you have to say, and can recall the details in later conversations? Either he is a brilliant conversationalist, or he is digging you.

3. Does He Mention Other Women in His Life?

Sometimes, guy friends use their female friends as sounding boards for their romantic interests and conflicts with other women. If this is your buddy, he might be trying to get a woman’s perspective and feels comfortable discussing it with you. However, you don’t want to be a dating therapist for life.

Does he date often and talk about the other women to you? Do you see him flirting with ladies at work or in public? If the only woman he always mentions is his mother, he is either having romantic feelings for you or you should run the other way.

However, you could be the only one in his eyes, and you have yet to realize it. Listen to his conversations and observe his dating life or the lack thereof. He just may be waiting for you to return his love interest.

love quote

4. Does He Seem Nervous Around You?

It’s a man’s nature to feel intimidated or nervous when emotions are involved, especially romance. He may act like a ditzy teenager in puppy love and be amusingly awkward around you. Most men advance from this phase into relaxed confidence as the relationship matures.

Have you noticed that your guy friend is usually calm and collected until he gets around you? Does he seem a bit giddy, clumsy, and stumbles on his words? It could be that he has a secret crush on you.

5. Is He Unusually Interested in Your Life?

While there are anomalies, guys are not usually overly interested in things that women find essential, unless he has romance in mind. If he hasn’t known you for years, he probably isn’t going to remember a lot of details about your life unless he has feelings for you.

Isn’t it odd that he knows all about you without being prompted? Does he know what color your eyes are, your favorite color, or whether you prefer chocolate or vanilla ice-cream? Does it almost seem like he can finish your sentences? He might be a keeper.

6. Is He Jealous of You?

Although jealousy is a complicated emotion to hide, it may be more so for guys. A Platonic buddy wouldn’t care about whom you date and what men you discuss. The only reason a man would get his feathers ruffled would be if he had thoughts of love for you, too.

Does your guy friend seem happy for you when you mention a male love interest, or does he quickly change the subject? Can you see a tinge of the green-eyed monster in his eyes when you are talking to other guys? If he’s jealous, then it may be time for you both to talk.

7. Is He in Touch with You, Literally?

In American society, women are usually the touchy-feely ones. Sometimes, guys misinterpret a lady’s innocent touch on the hand or shoulder as a touch of romance. But if people are attracted to each other, the need to touch is almost irresistible.

The next time you are kicking back with your guy friend, notice how many times he touches you. Does his hand linger on yours, or does he find ways to brush your shoulder, hair, etc.? Maybe he is dreaming of love and touching you as a lover.

8. Is He Often Lost in Your Eyes?

If a stranger continually makes eye contact with you, it is more creepy than romantic. When your guy friend stays locked into your eyes, he may feel a spiritual connection with you. Looking deeply into someone’s eyes indicates trust, honesty, and romance.

9. Does He Truly Notice You?

The bane of many girlfriends and wives is that their men don’t notice things. In the initial stages of romance, guys pay so much attention to their love interest that they often remember the smallest detail. Is he watching you so intently that he knows when something changes, like a new outfit or a different hairstyle?

falling in love

10. Has He Introduced You to His Family and Friends?

Maybe one of your guy friends has always felt like a brother to you, and you already know his family and background. If not, a closer male companion may casually introduce you to family and other friends.

Is he unusually nervous when he invites you to meet his family? He might be eager to see how they react to a possible love interest. Put your best foot forward because these folks may be part of your life soon.

11. Is He More Interested in One-on-One Time Than with Groups?

When people have love in mind, two is company and three is a crowd. Casual male friends may enjoy alone time with you, but they are just as happy in a group activity. Does your guy friend seem to be finding more excuses for private dates?

12. Is He More Than Generous?

It isn’t unusual for a close guy friend to give you a present for your birthday or the holidays. As a friend, his gifts are probably thoughtful but nonspecific enough for anyone. A guy friend who has romance on his mind may give you gifts for no reason, with an unsaid sentimentality.

13. Is He Extra Careful with His Style and Grooming?

A male buddy has no qualms of meeting you in a faded t-shirt and a ball cap covering his un-brushed hair. You’re his friend, so appearances aren’t always essential. If this guy has a romantic eye on you, he will be sure to dress to impress.

14. Does He Go the Extra Mile for You?

True friends help their friends when needed. However, a guy friend who wants more than friendship may be extra helpful. Does yours go out of his way to help you with things so that he can be with you?

15. Look for Yourself in His Life

Does your male friend want to be romantically involved with you? Browse through his social media accounts and notice your presence. Do you see a lot of photos of the two of you together?

romanceFinal Thoughts on Recognizing the Signs of Blooming Romance

Taking a chance on romance can be risky with your guy friend. Is not living with regrets worth the risk? Consider these tell-tale clues and see if they lead you to love. Sometimes, the most excellent relationships start as friends and blossom into more. Don’t let true love pass you unnoticed.

Lifestyle

8 Ways Meditation Rewires Your Brain and Helps You Stay Calm

8 Ways Meditation Rewires Your Brain and Helps You Stay


Millions of people today have taken up the practice of meditation due to its ability to rewire the brain and promote calm feelings in the mind and body. This practice offers a wide range of benefits from easing depression to helping with weight loss. Therefore, meditation can transform the lives of everyone who practices it in some way.

Many people look forward to vacations or time off of work. Indeed, this break gives them a chance to rest their weary minds. However, you don’t need to travel or spend any money to get the solace you seek. Search within, and you can find everything you’ve been looking for.

During meditation, you can detach from the mental chatter and emotional states. You learn how to connect with the soul. Those who delve deep in meditation can quiet all of the senses and experience a peace that most of us couldn’t even fathom. However, everyone can access this realm of pure tranquility by using willpower, concentration, and dedication.

We all can create either chaos or peace in our lives with the power of our minds.

Our thoughts create our realities, so we get to choose what we experience on a minute by minute basis.

Meditation allows us a path back to ourselves. We came from love and peace. Thus, we must find our way back to this place within ourselves. Meditation can rewire your brain and change your thinking patterns, and the best part is, anyone can do it free of charge in their own home.

“To understand the immeasurable, the mind must be extraordinarily quiet, still.”  ~Jiddu Krishnamurti

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Here are eight ways meditation rewires your brain and helps you remain calm:

1 – Meditation lowers your heart rate and stress levels.

In a study from Stanford University, participants who completed an eight-week mindfulness meditation course had more significant activity in areas of the prefrontal cortex that regulate emotions. In turn, this helped lower their stress levels. Another five-year study asked 201 patients with coronary heart disease to engage in transcendental meditation, which involves repeating a sound or mantra, for 15 minutes per day. The meditators had a 48% lower risk of heart disease, stroke, and death following this meditation program. Their blood pressure and stress levels also decreased.

2 – Meditation preserves the brain.

One study from UCLA found that long-term meditators had less brain decay as they age. Participants who’d practiced meditation for around 20 years had more grey matter volume throughout the brain.

The older meditators still showed some volume loss in the brain, but the non-meditators’ brains had much more noticeable signs of aging. Study author Florian Kurth said that the research team didn’t expect to see such distinct effects from meditating, but they observed widespread changes throughout the brain.

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3 – Meditation reduces activity in the brain’s “me” center.

One study from Yale University found that mindfulness meditation reduces activity in the default mode network (DMN), the area of the brain that causes disorganized, chaotic thoughts. The DMN becomes activated when our minds don’t have anything specific on which we should focus. And unfortunately, our thoughts tend to become cynical when left to their own devices. Our monkey minds often focus on the negative because biology wired our brains to scan for threats in our environment.

In our modern world, however, this innate characteristic can lead to ruminating about the past or future, worrying about bills, etc. Meditation can help to quiet this area of the brain so that we can focus on one task and activity at a time.

Meditation causes new synapses to form in the brain so that when the mind does wander, the meditator can easily come back to the present moment.

4 – It helps reduce depression symptoms.

A review study at Johns Hopkins looked at how meditation can reduce symptoms of depression in people who practice it regularly. Researcher Madhav Goyal and his team found that meditation had an effect size of 0.3. That number may sound low, but antidepressants have the same effect size.

“A lot of people have this idea that meditation means sitting down and doing nothing,” says Goyal. “But that’s not true. Meditation is an active training of the mind to increase awareness, and different meditation programs approach this in different ways.”

Meditation isn’t a magic bullet for depression, as no treatment is, but it’s one of the tools that may help manage symptoms.

5 – Meditation can lead to increased thickness in the brain.

In 2011, Sara Lazar and her team at Harvard found that eight weeks of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) increased cortical thickness in the hippocampus, which aids in learning and memory. Areas of the brain responsible for emotion regulation and self-referential processing also showed increased thickness. The team found decreases in brain cell volume in the amygdala, which makes us feel fear, anxiety, or stress.

These changes matched the participants’ accounts of their stress levels, which shows that meditation can alter the perception of our emotions as well as areas of the brain responsible for regulating them.

So, not only can meditation improve learning and memory, but it can help reduce unwanted negative feelings, thus enhancing our quality of life in general.

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7 – It improves concentration and attention.

In our world of constant distractions, it doesn’t come as a surprise that many people have trouble concentrating on one task at a time nowadays. However, meditation gives us the tools we need to retrain our brains to focus. One study found that in just two weeks of meditation training, people scored higher on the verbal reasoning section of the GRE. The average increase in score was a whopping 16 percentile points.

Meditation involves concentration and focuses on achieving desired results, so this carries over into the “real world” as well. Better concentration and attention can improve job performance, test scores at school, and even conversation and listening skills.

7 – Meditation lowers both generalized anxiety and social anxiety.

Anxiety seems pervasive in almost every area of the world today. In our fast-paced culture, this just seems to occur as an unfortunate side effect. However, the meditation we mentioned previously called Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), can help to lower stress and anxiety levels. Research shows that mindfulness meditation can help reduce anxiety symptoms due to the decrease in rumination and reduced activity in the “me” center of the brain. Mindfulness meditation can even help with a social anxiety disorder. A Stanford University team found that MBSR led to changes in areas of the brain governing attention. In this way, meditation helps to calm self-destructive thoughts so that socializing and being out in public doesn’t seem as overwhelming.

8 – Meditation can help to fight addiction.

A growing number of studies have shown that meditation can help people recover from addiction due to the increase in self-control one experiences after regular practice. One study, for example, compared mindfulness training to the American Lung Association’s freedom from smoking (FFS) program. They found that people who learned mindfulness had a much higher chance of quitting smoking by the end of the training, as well as at 17 weeks follow-up than those in the FFS program.

Researchers believe that meditation may help people control their cravings better. Thus, they can simply watch the waves of thought pass by without reacting to them. In other words, they can simply observe their desire without having to give into it. However, some different types of therapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, might be necessary as a supplement in some cases.

meditateFinal thoughts on how meditation can rewire your brain and help you stay calm

Meditation offers us such a powerful tool to rewire our brains and help us remain calm even amid chaos. Meditation helps reduce depression and anxiety symptoms, fight addiction, improve concentration and attention, decrease social anxiety symptoms, and reduce aging in the brain.

It also lowers heart rate and stress, leads to increased thickness in the brain, and reduces rumination and negative thinking. Meditation offers mental and emotional benefits. Plus, it can improve our physical health as well.

This shutdown offers all of us an excellent opportunity to slow down, go within ourselves, and start up a regular meditation practice. We all have incredible power within us to assert more self-control and achieve a better balance in our lives.

If you haven’t started a meditation practice of your own, just make sure to find a quiet area that you feel comfortable in. Also, try using crystals, calming music, incense, or whatever else adds to your experience and gets you into a zen state of mind.

Even if you can only spend 10 or 15 minutes before work meditating, that is fine. This time spent can change your mindset for the rest of the day. It can seem daunting at first to just sit alone with your thoughts. But once you start feeling and seeing the results, it will make it easier to incorporate into your daily life.

Lifestyle

5 Ways to Detox an Unhealthy Relationship

5 Ways to Detox an Unhealthy Relationship


Finding yourself in an unhealthy relationship can be mentally, physically, and emotionally taxing. Many well-intentioned friends love to give advice. Some people might just tell you to pack your bags and just get out of there.

Still, others might suggest taking a break. They might advise you to relax for a bit so you can come back to things with a fresh mind and perspective.

Not all relationships are salvageable. But there are a few ways you can help clear your head, calm your emotions, and see things from a new perspective.

Know the Difference Between an Unhealthy Relationship and an Abusive One

It is critical to note there is a difference between a relationship that is just unhealthy and an abusive relationship.

If you find yourself in an abusive relationship, you should focus on getting yourself out of the situation by whatever means necessary.

Purely abusive relationships generally can not be fixed, as the other person feels a need to be in a place of power. Thus, working out those issues would mean giving up that power they have over you.

Escaping an abusive relationship can be extremely difficult due to the manipulative nature of those partners who enjoy physically, mentally, or emotionally abusing others. If you think you may be in an abusive relationship, seek help and guidance from close friends and family. If necessary, seek professional advice.

Leaving an abusive relationship is generally only the first step, though. Prepare yourself for a lengthy healing process. Don’t let your struggles define you and use them to push forward.

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5 Ways to Detox From an Unhealthy Relationship

Here are five ways you can detox from an unhealthy relationship. These tips are handy whether you’re trying to salvage it or if you need an emotionally reset after ending things.

1 – Take Some Time For Yourself

Despite the common assumption that every couple has to be joined at the hip, sometimes couples can get too much of each other. This fact is exceptionally accurate in unhealthy relationships where one person is very dependant on the other.

Worse yet, you see this in codependent relationships. That relationship is where neither feels they can stand on their own without the other. If you feel like you’re in a smothering relationship where you can’t seem to breathe, it might be time to take some time away for yourself.

Try meditating–science proves it has a very therapeutic effect. It helps to clear your head and rejuvenate your body as you escape from all the stresses that come with social interactions.

Here are some solo activities that can help refresh your spirit:

  • Traveling to a new, inspiring place
  • Watching your favorite movie to unwind
  • Treating yourself to a fresh, hot cup of tea while you think
  • Engaging in some pampering self-care
  • Calming exercise, such as yoga or stretches

Even in a healthy relationship, you should take some time for yourself can be a healthy way to recharge.

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2 – Focus on Your Physical Health

When in a toxic relationship, your mental and emotional health can take a massive turn for the worse. Here is what many people don’t realize.

There is a connection between mental health and physical health. So as one deteriorates, it’ll have a noticeable effect on the other. You might notice a lack of appetite, a more sedentary lifestyle, or even just overall lethargy as nothing seems appealing anymore as your mental health declines from the effects of the relationship.

Mental health and stress can also trigger certain habits, which can cause physical problems as well. Eventually, your overall health will be in decline, not just your mental or emotional health.

Therefore, prioritize your physical well being by getting out and exercising, eating right, meditating, and setting a stable sleep schedule.

3 – Celebrate The Small Victories

The negativity that comes from being in an unhealthy relationship can sometimes feel oppressive. It might get to the point of being all-consuming and seeping into every aspect of your life.

Keep yourself from falling into a hopeless depression. It’s important to celebrate your victories in life, no matter how small.

It’s essential to feel good about yourself and your achievements. So if you’re having trouble seeing the positives in life or your self-worth, start small. Whether it’s finishing that home improvement project, turning in that looming school assignment, or even something as mundane as just getting out of bed before noon, celebrate it. Then, reward yourself for your job well done.

This positive reinforcement can do a lot to help combat the depression and misery that often come along with toxic partnerships. And the pat on the back gives you the motivation to push towards meeting your relationship goals. You’ll find the strength to move forward with your day to day life despite how bad things get.

pop meme4 – Enjoy Some Good Company (and Maybe Some Food)

Sometimes simply being in good company can help lift your spirits and help you forget your troubles. And when you pair good friends with nourishing food, you’ll find an ideal escape.

Reach out to those close friends who you can just relax and be yourself around. Find people who you can talk to about your problems comfortably without having to worry about backlash. Surround yourself with those with whom you can just unwind with to forget all your unhealthy relationship.

A change of pace and getting away from your partner for a little while can provide some relief and help calm your emotions a bit. Call up some close friends and organize a get-together, either out in public doing something fun or at one of their homes for some nice peace.

Food also does wonders for your emotional state. There’s a reason people tend to eat more when upset. The taste of good food activates the brain’s pleasure sensors, releasing dopamine, and helping to improve your overall mood.

This is especially true of sweets and chocolate, as it is loaded with antioxidants and acts as a natural stress reliever. Getting out to eat will also help give you a nice change of scenery and a change of pace. You won’t have to cook or clean, and getting out of the house and away from your partner for a bit can be a great way to detox from the relationship, even if only for a few hours.

Take a night to forget about eating healthy, call up some of your closest friends, and splurge on a nice dinner out. Between the food and the company, you will feel much better by the time the night is over.

5 – Finally Have That Much Needed Talk

Sometimes you do need to just get everything out in the open. If nothing fixes an unhealthy relationship, it might be time to confront your partner.

Make sure you create an ‘honesty zone,’ setting up ground rules that you both be open and honest with each other. Then, begin talking it out.

Expect conflicting paradigms and mindsets, arguments, disagreements, and opposing ideas. But despite how heated things might get, don’t stop until you address your concerns. Assess what part you both play in the relationship and work out a solution to the problem together.

Sometimes the source of an unhealthy relationship is nothing more than a difference in expectations. Having an honest talk with your partner can help realign your expectations. And, you ensure neither of you is placing unfair or unreasonable expectations upon the other.

Discovering what each of you is looking to get out of a relationship and what role you both play can help solve a lot of core and fundamental problems with the connection. It can also give you a better idea of how compatible you are with your partner.

Not every relationship is salvageable. But after having a long and honest conversation with your partner, you’ll be able to see what things can be fixed, and what aspects will be permanent struggles in your relationship.

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Final Thoughts on Being in an Unhealthy Relationship

Many things can cause a toxic relationship. These things can range from a conflict of ideas about what a relationship should be and the roles each party should play, to simple misunderstanding the wants and needs of the other person.

Using these five tips, you can spend some time working on yourself, boost your confidence, and evaluate your relationship as a whole. Only you can figure out what is the best course of action for yourself. Taking some time away from the partnership can help you see things more objectively, and help you decide whether things are worth saving or merely letting go.

The right choice depends on the circumstances and your personal feelings on the matter, so take advice from others with a grain of salt, explore and examine your feelings and thoughts on the relationship, and decide for yourself what you want to do.