I’ve been try to break my old habit of getting up really late, skipping breakfast, never ever exercising and keeping eating until I’m about to burst… Change is never easy especial when we are trying to change for better. Sticking to the new good habits for the rest of your life is even harder but change is possible. Don’t forget: you have the ability to create the life that you want, to get the results you desire. Are you struggling with change? Here are a few ways to help make those good habits you’ve developed easier to stick:

  1. Start simple and keep it simple. Don’t be too ambitious with your goals. Don’t try to develop all the good habits at once.  If you do, you’ll probably overwhelm yourself and give up very soon.
  2. Be consistent. Once you decided to change one habit, take action and commit to it everyday. Don’t give up after one attempt and try again a few months later when you feel motivated again.
  3. Stay focused. When it gets hard and you want to give up, remind yourself why you want to change at the first place.
  4. Know the pain. Be aware of the fact that it’ll never be a smooth run. There will be obstacles and challenges along the way. Think ahead about what your potential obstacles will be and how you are going to handle the situation.
  5. Banish excuses. Whenever we want to make consistent effort to change, the lazy part of our brain will come up with plenty of excuses to persuade us to stay in the old ways. Debate with yourself and don’t let the excuses get in the way! If you want to make getting up at 6am every morning a habit of yours, don’t allow bad weather, late night, bad mood etc to be the excuses for you to sleep in.
  6. Regular review. Keeping remind yourself what is important and what’s need to be done. Review your progress and keep going!

keep going

Living your best life possible

Living the best, most inspired life is something that everybody should aim for. However, it shouldn’t surprise you to learn that most people aren’t living their best life. They think the world is out to get them, and that nothing goes right for them. Here are some pointers to help you live your best life, whether you just want to make sure your life is as amazing as possible or you think you need a total life overhaul:

Change Your Mindset

Before you change anything physical in your life, it’s so important to acknowledge how crucial your mindset is to your progress. You can’t expect anything in your life to change permanently or for the better if your mindset is exactly the same. Observe your mindset, and take a look at the beliefs that are holding you back so you can remove them from your conscious and change for the better!

Work On Your Personal Development

Along with changing your mindset comes working on your personal development. There are so many ways you can do this. Try meditation; this practice will reduce stress, make you more creative, improve your sleep, and have so many other amazing benefits on your life. You should also read as much as possible. Read books, world news, articles, and more. The more you read, the more you expand your knowledge and vocabulary. Not to mention the mental stimulation fights off diseases like dementia!

Starting to journal can be a way to release stress and notice patterns in your life so you can change. Don’t forget to exercise either. Exercising in the morning, even for a short while can get your day off to the best start imaginable!

Start Doing What You Enjoy

Start spending time doing the things you enjoy. Carve out time in your regular routine to sew, sell vintage clothing, write – whatever it is you like to do. These things are your passions for a reason, and you never know where they may lead you.

Let Go Of Fear, Worry, And Stress

Living your best life possibleLet go of the things you can’t control. This can take practice, but meditation can help. They never help us to solve our problems, and it’s rare we make good decisions when we are afraid or stressed.

Learn How To Listen To Your Intuition

Your intuition is a calm little voice that always knows the answer. Learning how to listen to it will help you figure out what path to take. Again, meditation is great for this, but making a conscious effort to listen during the day is a good idea too.

Take Chances

Nothing good ever happened from inside your comfort zone. Get out of your comfort zone and take some chances. This is usually where the magic starts!
Do these things as often as you can to make sure you’re living your best life. You don’t need an outrageous amount of money to live your best life. You don’t need to be in a relationship, have designer clothes, or be famous. You simply need to become content with where you are right now, and the rest will follow!

Living your best life possible

A Memento Master Class To A Party You Won't Forget In A Hurry

In this modern age, connectivity is key. We share everything with our nearest and dearest. A lot of the time, we even show them what our meal looks like when we go out. One thing’s sure; this is the perfect age for nosiness. But, while we have plenty of time to document the less important things, we often forget to capture moments that mean the most. In a way, this is a good thing. It means you’re too busy enjoying yourself. Which is what life’s all about. But, that doesn’t help when you have nothing to help you remember those important moments and wonderful events. Of course, we always have our memories to fall back on, but we sometimes need a little more. 

A Memento Master Class To A Party You Won't Forget In A HurryWhen you’re planning a party, capturing memories will be the last thing on your mind. You have food, guest lists, and music choices to cope with. And, when you’re enjoying your party and mingling with your guests, you have no time to capture anything. That means you can have the best party possible and have nothing to show for it. In fact, it might fade from your memory completely. The good news is, there is help at hand. We’re going to look at a few of the ways you can make sure there are party mementos galore, for you and your guests.

SAY CHEESE!

Nothing’s better for capturing a moment than taking a picture. Most of us take at least one picture a day, and as such, we have a comprehensive history of our lives. And, nothing beats looking back over what we’ve done. That’s why it’s important you ensure there are plenty of pictures from your party. The good news is, you can be sure your guests are taking pictures, even if you don’t get the chance. Incorporate photos even more by providing a basket full of disposable cameras. Encourage your guests to take a camera and return it to the basket at the end of the night. Not only will this be a fun activity to keep your guests amused, but it’s also the perfect way to capture the night. Using film instead of digital will ensure that the pictures you get are candid and authentic. People won’t worry about ensuring everything looks perfect in the viewfinder. The fact that the pictures are going back to you means people won’t worry too much about finding a perfect shot.

You could take things even further. Hire a photo booth to incorporate photos in a whole different way. This fun addition to your party is sure to go down well and give you an edge. Though you may not get such an accurate representation of your night this way, your guests will have a lot of fun. And, you can make sure to get a few snaps of yourself, too. Incorporate props and dressing up clothes to ensure everyone gets stuck in.

GET YOUR ARTIST FRIENDS INVOLVED


If you know any artists, it might be worth giving them a call. Even if you don’t know anyone suitable, you could get online and see if you can find someone to hire. Look for writers and portrait artists who can capture the evening in a different light. A poet could offer your guests an improvised poem relating to the night. And, a portrait artist could draw guests who are willing to sit out for a while! Photographs are everywhere, so it’s a good idea to find different ways to capture the mood of the evening. Your guests will love having these fun mementos to take home with them. Make sure, too, to get a portrait and poem for yourself. This is your big night, after all. You have more reason to remember it than anyone! It might be worth asking the artists to come along a little earlier and getting yourself out of the way first. That way, you won’t have to worry once things are underway.

If you know any budding filmmakers, it might be worth asking them to come along, too. Having a video of the night will be a fantastic way to keep things fresh in your memory. As photographs grow in popularity, home video seems to be taking a back seat. Change that by getting a home video of your party. You could even offer the filmmaker the chance to sell copies of the video to guests. Either that, or you can put it online for everyone to see!

party you never forgetImage Source
MAKE THE MOST OF SOCIAL MEDIA

In this day and age, it would be silly not to make the most of social media. Allow connectivity to help you build a significant collection of memories. Chances are, your guests will be putting their photographs online. Encourage them to share. You might want to create a hashtag on Twitter which people can attach to their photos. Or, you could set up a group on Facebook and encourage guests to post their top pictures there. That way, all your guests can see the best highlights of the night without having to search too hard. This could also be an excellent way to connect guests who didn’t know each other beforehand. They’ll see pictures from that person they got talking to and add them as a friend.

If you opted for the disposable cameras, this would be a fantastic way to show your guests the pictures. It wouldn’t be fair to keep them to yourself, after all. Of course, they won’t get the hard copies. But, if you have a scanner, you could upload them to the group for everyone to see. They’re sure to want to have a look, and it’ll be an excellent way to keep the party vibe going long after the night itself.

So, there you have it. A simple guide to creating a party you can remember. Of course, it’s important we enjoy moments as they happen. But, there’s nothing wrong with wanting a memento once they’re over!

Entertaining friends and family in your own home is one of those simple pleasures that can really make life living and show your loved ones you really care. However, in the 21st century, we all have so much to do that there is little time left to plan the perfect event and this can lead to ‘party planner’s stress’ and a damp squib of an event if we aren’t careful.

So, if you’re planning to host a party anytime soon, and you want it to be sophisticated without being stressful, check out these simple tips for party success:

Send Elegant Invites

Just because they’re your friends and you have all their cell numbers doesn’t mean that you can do away with invites.  No sophisticated hostess would deem it acceptable to send text or email invites rather than the real thing. Sure, it will take slightly more effort to go to the store and pick out some pretty invites, but it will set the tone for the whole party, so it’s pretty essential.

Keep the Menu Simple

Instead of trying to cook an elaborate multi-dish menu, bring out the classics and cook that one pot dish that you love. Something like beef bourguignon can be whipped up pretty quickly in advance, but it is also a very impressive, rich dish that your guests will love, and if your dress up your table with monogrammed napkins and your best silverware, your guests are guaranteed to be impressed by the elegance and sophistication of the evening, so much so that they won’t even question how much effort you put into the meal.

Make Signature Cocktails

cocktail-house party

Instead of spending a stressful evening mixing up all manner of cocktails for your guests, choose 2-3 of your favorites and let your guest know that they’ll only be able to choose from those. That way, you can mix up a few pitchers beforehand and spend more time socializing with your friends, which is the whole point of having a party really.

Itunes some Classy Tunes

Usually, listen to hip-hop or have a secret love of Justin Bieber? That simply won’t cut it at a sophisticated soiree, so before the party, download a classy playlist that will increase the elegance of your party immediately. Classical music and soft jazz work well, but feel free to play it by ear.

Buy Dessert

Buying a nice dessert from a local bakery will save you a lot of time and stress, and your guests will enjoy it just as much as anything you could make yourself. Just don’t buy a dessert from a regular store – they’re never as nice, and they’re rarely sophisticated either.

Raid Your Wardrobe

If you don’t have the time or money to shop for a new outfit, it is almost certain that you will have something suitable sitting in your wardrobe. You can rarely go wrong with a little black dress, providing it isn’t too little – this is a fancy party after all. The key is not to stress about your outfit. Pick something, wear it and forget about it.

How do you remove the stress of throwing a cocktail party for your friends?

 

There is nothing quite like the feeling of new things in your home – be it clothes, dinner sets or furniture.

You unwrap the packaging, revelling in the smell, delighting in the excitement in how you will feel when wearing or using them. They are pristine to the touch, yet to be filled with the general grime of everyday life. It is a world of potential at your fingertips.

Okay, so that might be a little overly-romantic – but there’s still something to it. When things are new they are at their best… the unfortunate reality is that they will inevitably degrade.

When they begin to lose their new lustre, they begin to lose what makes them special and unique. They just become part of your everyday life rather than something special. That’s fine for general clothes that you just wear around the house, or for everyday crockery. For special items, you want to retain that feeling of them being special for as long as possible.

It therefore makes sense to practice good maintenance and management. So what exactly does that entail?

  1. Roll, don’t fold.

Furniture encourages us to treat our clothes badly. It’s all the furniture’s fault, Fashion Police! They made me do it!

Drawers are useful, but folding clothes into drawers is not so great for the clothes. If you fold in the same way every time, they can develop crease patterns which eventually become weaknesses in the fabric.

It therefore makes sense to roll your clothes when storing them in drawers. Not only will you diminish the chance for creasing, you’ll also find with a bit of practice that you can fit more into the available space. And when is more storage not a good thing?

roll clothes

  1. Check your washing appliances.

A washing machine that isn’t functioning properly can quickly become a torture chamber for clothes. Similarly, a dishwasher that is running out of steam can ruin your best dinner set. 

Also think about the cleaning products you’re using in the machine. For example, fabric softener may make clothes feel new, but it’s rarely doing anything for the clothes. Instead, it’s just coating them in a very thin layer of softener that makes them feel soft to the touch rather than actually changing the state of the fabric. 

  1. Be careful of hangers.

Since drawers can be perilous, why not just switch to hanging all your clothes?

Because nothing in life is ever simple, this can be fraught with problems also. If you hang clothes in the same way, you can soon find weaknesses developing along where the hanger comes into contact with them. Soon, the force of gravity alone will stretch and misshape the material – especially if you leave them for long periods of time without being worn. Flocked or padded hangers will keep your clothes in better condition for longer.

  1. Use lining paper in cupboards

Merely being in storage can leave traces on your tableware. Being in contact with a surface through extremes of heat can lead to condensation settling and in time, bacterial deposits. By using lining paper on the shelves of your cupboards, you reduce the amount of maintenance you will need to do, and ensure that when you have company, a quick polish with a cloth will be all they need.

milk + honey

Most of us know how easy it is to put on weight but there are people struggling at gaining weight. Of course eat fattening food while leading a sedentary lifestyle is not the way to go. How to gain weight quickly in a healthy and easy way then? The answer is really simple: Do 20 deep squats a day and have a cup of milk with honey at night, preferably around 10pm.

For people who wants to loose weight, don’t have milk and honey after 8pm at night.

 

I’m very diligent in my work and all matters that involve people other than myself. I’ll make plenty of notes, plan & schedule and make a thorough check list to ensure everything is done properly in a timely manner. I always made sure that my employers, clients and friends are happy with what I’ve done for them. In summery, I’m a total yes (wo)man and people pleaser.

But when it comes to my personal matters, I’m very absentminded. I leave my shopping bags behind in the shops after paying very often. I’ve forgotten to bring my house keys with me a few times and had to call locksmiths (each costs $200+ per call out) to open my door for me. One time, I left my wallet in the post office after posting a parcel. Though the wallet was recovered later, all the cash in it was gone. It happened I had a few hundreds in my wallet that day. The other time, I withdrew $1000 cash from the ATM and left the machine without taking my cash. Ok, enough embarrassing examples – you get the drift. My personal life can be a little very messy. I’m not a forgetful person, my memory is rather good, but my mind is too preoccupied with something else.

 Stop Being AbsentmindedAs I’ve never paid enough attention to this problem and suffered plenty from the consequences, learn to stop being absent minded has becoming increasingly important. Why can’t I apply the same degree of diligence to my personal life? It’s time for a change. In this week’s self motivation instalment, I’m sharing my 7 steps of stop being absentminded:

Make daily, weekly, monthly and yearly To Do List & Checklist for personal matters 

To do list and check list don’t only belong to your workplace. They help immensely with your personal life too! Write down everything you need to do as soon as you think of them. Schedule them in your diary. Follow through your to do list to get things done according to your schedule.

Stop aimlessly daydreaming

Some people are born focused and driven, some people are born daydreamers. I’m definitely the latter. It’s good to have a dream then take actions to achieve your dream. But daydreaming without a purpose is purely a waste of time and huge distraction to your everyday life. Be careful not to daydream while you are doing things like reading, driving or listening to others during a casual conversation.

Always focus on what you are doing

Give 100% attention to your task on hand. If you are dealing with an important task that has a tight deadline, don’t allow yourself to be distracted until you finish what’s needed to be done. Switch off your phone (at least put it on silent mode). Do not check or reply emails. Don’t serf on the internet. Shut your door or put a “do not disturb” sign if necessary.

Double check if you’ve got everything you need before going out

I have a list of 4 essential things I need to bring every time I leave home: House key, phone, wallet and glasses. Also make sure to bring things you need for your particular agenda for that trip.

Take a minute to check your belongings before leaving a place, taxi or plane

Do not leave your shopping bags at the check out after paying for them or your cash at the ATM like I do. I’ve lost numerous pairs of Ray Ban sunglasses because of my absentmindedness. Buying $5 sunglasses so I can’t lose them freely is not a proper solution. The right way is to stop being absent minded and be present.

Have a fixed spot for everything and always put things back to where they should be.

Do you sometimes forget where you put your keys and phone? Do you spend a lot of time looking for things? Always leave your bags, keys etc at the same place. Make it a a habit of yours and keep it forever.

Always be mindful of your absentmindedness and learn to control your mind.

Check in with yourself regularly: are you pay attention to what is happening right now? As soon as you notice that you are loosing focus, bring yourself back to what you are doing right now.

Absentmindedness really is a mental condition. Without proper cure, it can affect our daily life severely. The good news is, you can overcome this habit and stop being absentminded. Just keep trying!

 

Is it possible to loose 2kg in just one day? The answer is yes! I didn’t believe it until I did it myself, without the intention of losing weight because all I wanted was to get rid of bloating.

Yes my tummy puffs up easily and regularly. Sometimes it looks like I’m hiding a balloon underneath my long top. That’s why I’m wearing stretchy pants most of the time now since it’ll be difficult to button up my jeans when I suffer from bloating.

Ok, back to the story of how I lost 2kg in one day.

The other day my tummy was again bloating to the full effect. No matter how hard I sucked my stomach in, it still looked like a very pregnant woman in the mirror. The thing is, I really wan’t. So after a long time of suffering from full bloating, I decided to try something to beat it the next day.

The day started with a glass of warm water followed by a cup of coffee. I had smoothie for breakfast. The smoothie was made of half of one big banana, half of one huge avocado, 1 apple with skin, a few almond kernels with skin, 1 heap of table spoon of chia seeds and 2 glasses of milk.

Just as you thought I’m eating healthy all the time…

My mum prepared Chinese buns for lunch which were made of flour with meat and vegetable fillings and she expected me to have at least 10 of those. Usually I could because the buns are delicious. Yes, that’s totally disgraceful. Did I mention that I’m a big eater? You see, big meals are the cause of bloating. So are lots of white flour, and sodium inside the filling. In order to have a smaller portion, I had 1 more glass of water before lunch with a few drops of apple cider vinegar. And ate very slowly. As a result, in stead of eating 10 of those evil buns, I had 5 and some salad, and a small piece of fish. Now as I writing this down, the total portion still looked quite big! Maybe there’s still a lot room for improvement?

For dinner I had salad, and a glass of warm milk with one tea spoon of honey. An hour after dinner, I skipped rope for around 30 minutes. After that, I had a glass of lemon water. The next day when I woke up, my tummy was less bloated and I was 2 kg lighter. What a pleasant my surprise.

So I had a small win with my battle with bloating this time. It’ll be a life long battle to get rid of bloating, hence I’m noting down all the 9 effective ways to get rid of bloating from my research and personal experience:

Get rid of bloating1. Eat smaller portions.

First of all, don’t eat too much at a time. I usually only stop eating after it feels like I’m going to explode. Now it’s time to change that.

2. Eat less carb.

It’s hard for Chinese to eliminate white rice and white flour from their diet completely. However, if bloating problem bothers you, carb consumption needs to be reduced. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a promoter of cutting out carbs completely, because there are so many healthy benefits from eating good carbs.

3. Be prepared for PMS.

That time of the month is unpleasant. Most likely you’ll be even more bloated than usual because your body thinks you are pregnant. You tend to eat more and sleep more before and during that time. Be mindful of those symptoms and stick to smaller food portions any way.

4. Eat fruits with skin on.

Fruit skin contains a lot fibre, therefore it’s really good for digestion. As a result, you’ll have more chance to get rid of bloating by eating fruits with skin on.

5. Drink green tea.

Tea drinker or not, give green tea a go if you suffer from bloating regularly. Green tea is great for general well being and a wonderful aim for digestion.

6. Drink lemon water.

Similarly, lemon water will aim digestion and reduce symptoms of bloating.

7. Avoid food with way too much sodium.

Sodium certainly doesn’t help get rid of bloating. However many of us, me included love the taste of sodium. Consuming too much sodium especially at the the night could cause serious bloating problem.

8. Eat foods that help get rid of bloating.

Here are some examples:

  • Banana
  • Eggs
  • Tomato
  • Salmon
  • Grapefruit
  • Oat meal
  • Brown rice
  • Almond
  • Blue berries
  • Asparagus
  • Steak (lean)
  • Parsley

9. Eat less foods that can cause bloating.

Of course, there are foods that can cause bloating. So consume less of them will help get rid of bloating. Sadly, some of super healthy food made the list.

  • Cabbage
  • Broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • Garlic

As you can see, to key to get rid of bloating is eating right. Get to know your body and look after it. In return, your body will look after you:) Do you suffer from bloating too and how do you get rid of it? I’d love to hear from you!

 

 

 

 

 

My Grandpa died of Colon cancer. I had a long, good cry on the bank of a river thousands miles away, wishing I’d had the chance to see him the last time. Sure, his departure was partly due to old age but Statistics show Colon cancer causes more than 50,000 deaths in the United States alone every year. The American Cancer Society estimates that around 96,830 new cases of colorectal cancer for 2014. In most cases, poor nutrition causes digestive problems, which may eventually result in colon cancer. Thankfully there are ways to keep your colon healthy in natural ways.

How Effective Is Colon Cleansing

The late Princess Diana was one of the first to bring Colonic irrigation to public’s attention. It’s reported she spent thousands of pounds a year on the treatment. Stars like Goldie Hawn and Demi Moore are also said to be fans. Cleansing helps to eliminate harmful toxins and restore balance in the body. For best results, the colonic irrigation therapy should be carried out from a reputable wellness centre like New Jersey Colonic. Medical experts recommend that colon cleanse should be taken at regular intervals to keep the digestive system healthy. It’s likely to experience positive results right after the first session. Regular treatment can help get rid of low energy, arthritis, poor immune system, migraines, acne, acid reflux, and irregular bowl movements. Cleansing can even be tailored to your exact needs. For instance, you can choose to undergo colonic irrigation for weight loss. Some people report eliminating up to a kilo of waste after a colonic treatment.

Colon flushing is a popular process used for eliminating waste materials accumulated in the colon for years. Care must be taken when choosing a therapist. Look for a centre that provides treatment under the guidance of experienced hydro-therapists, and make sure that your chosen wellness centre undergoes colonic hydrotherapy in a safe and hygienic environment.

If the thought of Colonic hydrotherapy sounds too scary to you (and me in this case), there are some doctor-approved, natural ways to improve colon Health.

Natural Ways to Improve colon Health

You can improve your colonic health naturally by growing a healthy food habit. Here are some steps that need to be taken along with the colonic irrigation treatment.

Drink a Lot of Water and Other Fluids

Lack of hydration can cause constipation and hardening of fecal matter in the intestine. This could hamper the natural digestive process. Drink plenty of fluids – at least 10 glasses of water every day. In addition, consider opting for fasting with juice.

Take Fibre-rich Foods

Medical experts recommend around 30 grams of fibre every day. Fibre helps to take out mucus from the intestinal walls quickly. This helps in eliminating hardened waste materials stuck in the wall for years. Some examples of fiber-rich foods include peas, bananas, broccoli, raspberries, prunes, beans, celery, brown rice, and whole-wheat cereals.

Increase Your Intake of Vegetables

Fresh fruits and green vegetables help to extract fecal matter from the lining of the colon. You can also consider taking natural herbs, such as, fennel, senna, cascara sagrada, and garlic.

Stay Physically Active

It is also important to take part in physical activities. Exercising helps to increase blood flow, which eventually stimulates colon cleansing. Depending on your age, you can do morning walk, jogging, or join a gym.

Ensure Regular Bowl Movements

Watch out for any irregularity in bowl movement. If you spot any regularity, consider seeking medical help immediately. Deep breathing when having a bowl movement can help.  Also make sure to chew your foods thoroughly when eating. Another good idea would be to get abdominal massage regularly from an expert.

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pick yourself upHave times been hard lately? Here is a mini guide to picking yourself back up after something knocks you down.

Be kind to yourself

Let’s be honest for a second. There are enough people in the world who have put you down, or will do in the future. This might be somebody with road rage shouting at your at a traffic stop. Or, a total stranger knocking into you in the street and not apologizing. Whatever form this put-down or negativity comes in, it can start to build up. So, don’t add to it with your own harsh words and thoughts. Learn to be kinder to yourself. Not everything can be your fault. You aren’t always the one to blame. Remember these things and ease up on yourself. Tell your reflection in the mirror that you love her once in awhile. Turning negative thoughts into positive thoughts will slowly begin to seep into the rest of your life. A shift in attitude can lift the burden of things like anxiety and depression.

Give yourself some breathing room

You can’t pick yourself up if there is simply too much else still weighing you down. Lighten the load on yourself. Cancel social commitments, explaining to friends that you need some alone time for a while and promising you’ll be back soon. If you usually handle five or six projects at work, ask your boss if you can cut down to just three or four for a while. If you take your kids to a different place each night, look at whether they’re old enough to get public transport on a few of those occasions. Giving yourself some breathing room in all of these areas of your life will make your recovering faster and less painful. You can get back to being a social butterfly, professional multitasker and acrobatic parent soon. Not now.

Ask for help

In this case, it doesn’t matter what has happened to you. What matters is that you learn to ask for help. Despite what those around you may think, you are not superhuman! Every could do with a little support here and there, and you are no exception. So, find help, or ask friends to help you find it! If you have mental health issues, there are specialists out there can pinpoint which form you suffer with. Once this is done, they can prescribe the best treatment. Meanwhile, if you are recovering from something that has already happened, talking it through with a counsellor could be wise.

Get a change of environment

After something bad has happened, we can find ourselves stuck in a rut. Pull yourself out of this rut by finding a new environment to spend some time in. So, it could be that you go and stay with a friend for a few weeks. Or you could book a weekend city break or a week-long beach holiday! A fresh perspective might be just what you need to recharge your batteries and get you back on your feet again.

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If your loved one has a big birthday coming up, then throwing them an unforgettable birthday party could be a great gift for them. There are a number of ‘big’ ages in our lives that we all celebrate, from 21 to 50. The tips in this guide will help you to throw an awesome party, whatever their age!

Send Out Invites Well In Advance

You want plenty of people to turn up to this birthday party, or at least all of the people who matter. Make sure you send out the invites well in advance so that people have time to make arrangements for babysitters and days off work if needed. You can’t complain that nobody has turned up if you haven’t given people enough notice. Chances are that if only a handful of people turn up, your guest of honour may be embarrassed and wish you never threw them a party at all.

Consider Keeping It A Secret

You can always consider keeping the party a secret from the guest of honor, which is sure to make the party unforgettable in the first place, as it’ll be such a surprise! Make sure all of the guests know not to say anything at all, and avoid telling anybody who tends to have loose lips. You want the look on the guest of honor’s face to be that of genuine surprise!

Come Up With A Fun Theme They’ll Like

Having a birthday party theme can make the party so much more fun and exciting. Whether you’re throwing the party for a child or a fully grown person, a theme is always an option. You could make it a free for all fancy dress, or choose a specific theme to run with.

Find The Perfect Venue

Having the right venue is really important for a party. If the party is just going to be close friends and family, then you could potentially hold it at a house. However, for most parties you’ll need to rent or book a room. Some rooms are free with a certain number of guests!

Research Different Caterers For Food

Finding the right caterer means wowing everybody with the food. Everybody knows that food is one of the best parts of any party, so make sure you take your time with this bit. Spit roast catering is really popular and all guests should enjoy a hearty meal. Alternatively you can just serve finger food.

Make Sure It Suits Their Personality And Tastes

Of course you want this party to suit the guest of honor’s personality and tastes down to the ground. They’re not going to want a huge ball thrown in their honor if they don’t like attention on them. Consider them and what they’ll enjoy before anything else.

Hopefully these tips help you to throw a brilliant party for your loved one. You’ll both be able to look back on it forever and have amazing memories! Leave your own tips below, I’d love to hear them!

I’ve been working on keeping my home clean and tidy but when my mind is focused on work or other major issues in life, old messy habits would come back to haunt me. So, I must continue learning how to make keeping a clean home as my second nature.

clean home

Photo: Archer Interiors

Recently, I came across this article: Ten habits of people who always have a clean home. Here are some very useful tips/reminder to stay ahead:

  1. They make their bed every morning
  2. They always put clothes away
  3. They clean as they cook
  4. They empty the dishwasher in the morning
  5. They wipe down surfaces after every use
  6. They do a load of laundry regularly
  7. They put things away where they belong
  8. They don’t procrastinate
  9. They dust and vacuum regularly
  10. They straighten up before bed
Life Skills



We all want our kids to be happy. And we want them to grow up to be happy, healthy and independent adults. There are lots of things we can teach our children over the years. But there are certain life skills that will stand them in good stead, no matter what life throws at them.

7 Essential Life Skills to Pass onto Your Kids

  1. Always Look After Your Health

First and foremost, always look after your health. Take them to visit a paediatric dentist regularly, so they get used to the experience. Make regular appointments to see the doctor and ophthalmologist. Let them learn how important good health is.

  1. Eat Well

Involve your kids in cooking and food decisions. Teach them how to make healthy choices and avoid foods that lead to poor health. Encourage them to help with grocery shopping, food preparation, and baking. If possible, grow food in your garden so they can see the process of planting to plate. If you have a small outdoor area, consider growing herbs or tomato plants indoors.

  1. Communicate

Communication is a vital life skill and will impact on all areas of their lives. It is likely to affect the jobs they get and the relationships they build. Expose them to lots of people from an early age. Encourage them to make friends and help them to navigate these relationships. As well as children, ensure they are comfortable speaking to adults.

  1. Good Manners

Good manners are part of your child’s communication skills. Teach them how to respond to different people and to say please and thank you. Foster a respectful and polite environment where kindness is key.

  1. Problem Solving

To be independent, children need to work out how to solve problems for themselves. A good way to encourage this is when they come to you with a question. For example, if your son or daughter tells you they can find something, don’t just locate it for them. Ask them where it should be and whether they have checked there. Then ask them where else it could be and suggest that they check. This will encourage them to find solutions themselves.

  1. Budgeting

As your children get older, they will need to learn the value of money. Don’t just hand money over if they ask for it. Provide an allowance in return for them completing chores. If there’s something they want, show them how to save up for it. They will appreciate the item far more if they have worked for it.

In later years, teach them how to set up a household budget. Show them how to enter the money coming in and the bills.

Life Skills

  1. Empathy

Empathy is an important life skill, but it is often overlooked. The best way to teach this is to demonstrate it. When a situation arises, ask your children to consider it from the other person’s point of view. Ask them how they think that person feels.

  1. Exercise

Show your child the importance of physical activities. Make activities fun so they want to get involved. Let them see you exercising and explain why you’re doing it.
With all life skills, the best way to teach them is by demonstrating them. There’s no point in telling a child to behave one way and then do something different yourself. For the message to be effective, you need to model those skills.

Top Tips For Improving Your Memory

Everyone wants to have great memory, but not many people know how to achieve it. A lot of people fall under the illusion of believing that memory is a given. People think that you are either born with a good capacity to remember, or you are not. But nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, anyone can have great memory. Even if you feel that you have never had good memory, that doesn’t have to be the case. There are some basic steps you – and anyone – can take to improve your memory. The beauty of the mind is that the more you practice something, the easier it gets. This is true of memory, just as it is with everything else. If you are keen to learn how to improve your memory fast and without drastic changes to your life, then read on. Here are some top tips from proven studies.

Top Tips for Improving Memory

First: Understand It & Know It’s Possible

Memory relies upon various functions within the brain. It’s true that these all need to be working properly in order to enjoy good working memory. However, if these aren’t working, you would probably know it! Memory works in an interesting way. It relies, in part, on a neurotransmitter known as acetylcholine. Choline is converted into acetylcholine, and this helps with cognitive ability, including memory. This is the basic framework, regardless of age or any other factor. So anybody with a functioning brain can learn to improve their memory – and that includes you.

Brain Workouts

The main key to improving your memory is to give your brain a good amount of practise. This doesn’t have to be particularly strenuous. Just a little each day will more than suffice. However, you must ensure that your brain workout has some basic elements if it is to be productive. First, it needs to be challenging – otherwise, your brain won’t workout! It is great to improve your communication skills by trying to connect with different kinds of people or take courses such as a masters in tesol, if you love teaching. Teaching is one of the best ways to keep your brain functioning

It also needs to include something novel, so that your brain learns something new. What’s more, ensure that it is rewarding. This way, you are more likely to do it again in future. Exercises of this nature can boost your memory in the long run.

Physical Exercise

Tips for improving memory

To keep your brain in peak condition, you also need to look after your body. Your memory will not function at its peak unless your body is operating well. So, make some time to get in some decent physical exercise, as well as the brain workouts. A couple of high-intensity sessions a week is more than sufficient. As long as you are looking after your body, your brain will benefit from it. Also ensure that you get a good amount of sleep. That way, your brain is sure to be firing on all cylinders.
With these simple steps, your memory can improve in no time at all. You will find, too, that the more you practise it, the easier it becomes. Start with simple exercises, and gradually build up. If you also keep a memory diary, you will be able to chart your progress. This will encourage you to continue.

It’s common knowledge that we women are more prone to depression than men. The reasons for this are unclear, but more women are diagnosed than men each year.

Right now scientists are investigating what factors lead to depression. They hope that if they understand the causal links, they’ll be able to fight the diseases. They also hope that it will explain why women seem to be at greater risk than men of developed the disease. Here’s what we know so far.

Hormonal Factors

Whenever women have a particular health problem, it seems as if the hormonal factor is trotted out. But now scientists are wondering whether women’s hormones put them at much greater risk. Imaging of the brain shows that people with depression have a different brain structure than those that don’t. Many scientists believe that chemical neurotransmitters affect the structure of the brain. And so it’s not much of a leap of faith to then suggest that hormones do too.

Female hormones can actually affect the brain chemistry that controls mood. And this might be why women experience greater levels of depression during times when their hormones are changing. We see more depression and anxiety during puberty and pregnancy, for example.

There isn’t all that much that can be done about the hormones themselves. But the trick here seems to be to avoid situations during pregnancy and puberty that could exacerbate mental health problems. Of course, that’s easier said than done.

Stress

stress at work

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that stress is a precondition for a bout of depression. Stress changes the way your body responds to stimuli. And prolonged stress can cause its structure to change in ways that hurt, not help.

For women, primary sources of stress involve work and caring for children. A stressful episode at work can quite easily trigger depressive symptoms. So too might the stress of caring for children while in poverty.

One possible solution is to join an online mental health community. Psychiatry articles and personal support can help give perspective. This, in turn, can reduce the propensity to feel depressed or stressed.

Other Disorders

Many women who experience depressive episodes often have other longstanding mental health issues. Depression often coexists with other mental health problems like eating disorders. And eating disorders tend to be a lot more common in women than in men.

Eating disorders aren’t the only potential disorder that can aggravate depression. Obsessive-compulsive disorder is one. Post-traumatic stress disorder is another. Even social phobia can increase chances of depression. Getting a handle on these problems is an important step towards preventing depression. It’s so important to deal with issues before they become entrenched. Hospital clinics and community mental health carers are important sources of help.

But it’s not just psychological problems that can increase the risks of depression. Physical problems can also increase the chances of becoming depressed. And medical problems often take longer to resolve if a person is depressed compared to if they aren’t.

The solution is to deal with both issues simultaneously. Dealing with one will improve the likelihood of recovering from the other.