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3 Aspects of Well-Being That People Dismiss – When They Shouldn’t.

Humans, as a whole, tend to be a rather skeptical species. In some ways, that’s beneficial; our ancestors who were sceptical about being able to survive a fall off a rock, for example, did humanity a huge favour.

In other ways, our skepticism can cause real and genuine harm to the way we live our lives in the modern age. We demand proof of everything, which is definitely beneficial to our survival, but also rather limits us.

One only needs to mention anything that sounds remotely “New Age-y” to a certain section of society, and they will recoil in horror, and immediately insist they would never try that. Of course, this helps to protect against true quack therapies, but it also means they cut themselves off from practices and treatments that offer a genuine benefit to their physical and mental well-being.

Below are three such options that are dismissed, even scorned, as nonsense – but that, in actuality, could greatly improve your experience of life.

Meditation

Balance, Meditation, Health Wellness, Alternative Therapy

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Meditation is often derided; “it’s just sitting doing nothing!” the critics will cry, insisting that any improvements are circumstantial, insisting that meditation is a waste of time and energy.

The reality is very different. We know, because it’s been tested, that meditation has a seriously positive impact on the human brain. This isn’t quackery; these conclusions have been reached via fMRI brain imaging, showing the literal physical benefits of meditation.

If you suffer from stress, anxiety, or just want a little more time to relax, then meditation is a wonderful option to pursue.

Counselling

You don’t have to look too hard for counselling to be dismissed by critics. These critics argue that emotions just have to be pushed to one side, rather than wallowing in our feelings with counselling– this is the despite the fact that “pushing feelings to one side” is not considered to be effective emotional control.

Counselling has been shown, time after time, to be hugely beneficial for human mental health. It helps to ease problems, come to conclusions about your behaviour, and focus yourself on the direction you ultimately want to travel. The likes of Sunset Community Counseling can help to ensure you live the best life possible by providing the emotional outlet we all need.

Counselling is beneficial for your mental health and your emotional well-being, and the positive effects can last for years.

Acupuncture

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Acupuncture sounds like a stereotypical quack remedy, but it’s not. There is scientific support for the efficacy of acupuncture, especially when handling long-term chronic pain conditions.

If you say this to a skeptic, they will say that it’s “just a placebo”. However, isn’t an improvement — even one due to the placebo effect — still a benefit? Anything that lessens pain or eases anxiety is beneficial, surely?

Acupuncture is a useful tool that is worth considering for physical, mental, and emotional health.

In conclusion

Hopefully, the above will allow you to embrace the possibilities and give you the tools you need to enjoy your life to the fullest.

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Dealing With Stress When Life Becomes Too Much

Stress, Dealing With Stress, Therapy, Get Grip of Your Emotions

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I think if you manage to live life without feeling any stress, then you’re a superhuman and should be showered with medals and awards. It’s near enough impossible not to be overcome by stress in the modern world. There’s always something to worry about, something to make you anxious at all times. Your stress can build for months, even years, on end before you eventually just crack and it all becomes too much for you.

How can you deal with all the stress in your life before it takes its toll and pushes you towards an imminent breakdown? It’s tough, but you’ll be glad to know some ideas can help you lower your stress levels and cope with life before it gets too much for you. Here are some ideas I think you’ll benefit from.

Find Your Happy Place

Everyone has a happy place. It’s that place where they just feel more relaxed and happy than usual. For some people, their happy place is lying in bed listening to music. For others, it’s spending time with their children or going outside to exercise. We’ve all got that place where we feel comfortable with life. It’s crucial that you find your happy place and retreat to it as often as you can. It gives you a break from the stressors of life and lets you feel happy for periods every day. Even a brief stint in your happy place can clear your thoughts and help you live a more peaceful life.

Go To Therapy

The mere thought of therapy gets some people recoiling and puts them on the defensive foot. I think there’s this misconception that therapy is for people with severe mental problems or something. But, if you’re stressed, it can do wonders for you and your mind. There are many different ways you can go to therapy, as it shows on this site, you can have group sessions as part of a partial hospitalization program. Or, you can go to a specific therapist on your own and talk to them. Either way, speaking about your feelings and getting advice is one of the best ways you can relieve stress.

Stress, Therapy, Anxiety, Peace, Inspiration, Lifestyle
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Let Your Emotions Go

Possibly the worst thing you can do when stressed is bottle up your emotions. So many people do this to try and hide the way they’re feeling. Young men are particularly guilty of this, but it applies to us women too. The more you bottle things up, the bigger the emotional explosion will be when you have a breakdown. Instead, don’t be afraid to let your emotions go. If you feel like crying, have a good cry and let it all out. If you’re angry, then let your anger out on a punching bag or pillow. Just don’t keep everything bottled up, it will do more harm than good.

I truly hope that the advice here will help anyone that’s feeling a bit down and stressed. By actively trying to deal with your stress, you’ll go a long way to avoiding a big emotional and mental breakdown.

 

3 Reasons Bad Debt Will Always Let You Down

financials, worrying, debt-free, money savvy, get out of debt, live free

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In our materialistic society, it is ever more difficult to resist the lure of stuff. We want our houses to be beautiful and filled with beautiful things; we want to go on holidays so that we can upload snaps to Instagram and show off our worldliness; we want everything and we want it now.

Unfortunately, this attitude can lead to some serious money troubles. High-interest loans might sound tempting but they can saddle you with far more debt than you thought possible and truly ruin your lifestyle.

Bad debt will always let you down and you should break up with it sooner rather than later.

Interest Quickly Racks Up

Bad debt is usually high-interest with a long repayment schedule that threatens your ability to make ends meet each month. Essentially, it is a debt that the customer won’t be able to repay. These debts are often in the form of credit cards, personal loans or payday loans.

Unfortunately, all of these loan types are marketed to people like you who want a better lifestyle now and don’t want to have to wait. And once you are on their list, more loan companies will market to you and encourage you to take on more debt making the problem worse and worse as your interest costs get higher and higher.

You Feel Stressed all the Time

Money is fundamental to living and if you are constantly worrying about whether you will have enough to do a food shop or pay your bills, your stress is going to increase dramatically. This will also have a knock-on effect on the rest of your health making you feel unwell and more susceptible to infections.

Even when your debt has brought you lovely things, the real effect is that you will look at those things and worry more about them being taken away than enjoying having them. You will probably regret that you stretched your finances so far in the first place. No amount of stuff is ever worth risking your health for and if you are worried about your financial future, you need to deal with the problem as soon as possible.

A Debt-Free Life Feels Impossible

When you are spiralling into further and further debt, it might seem that living a debt-free life is now completely out of reach. Don’t give up. However bad your debt problem is, there are government credit card debt relief options that can help find the best way to manage your finances and reduce your debt to zero, essentially helping you to get a fresh start.

These options range from financial counselling to help you create more sustainable spending budgets to bankruptcy. Whatever you choose, always ask a financial advisor for help and look for companies accredited by either the NFCC or the FCAA to help you out.

Reaching your debt-free goal will take time and determination. It can take years of effort to get back to a debt-free lifestyle that is sustainable and stress-free. But it is well worth it.

Start today.

So, how deep is your beauty?

Feminine Beauty, The definition of beautiful

What does beauty mean to you? Feminine beauty has been construed in many ways and from varied perceptions of the world. It has been depicted through images and concepts that penetrates and rests in our minds, but one simple definition of beauty which we seem to fail to focus on is that beauty is happiness that glows from within.

This line of thought came to me as I stood before my bathroom mirror for several more moments than usual, undertaking an intimate survey of my body. With critical eyes, I noted the tiny indelible laughter lines beside my lips, little spots left by an acne or two, liberal trails of cellulite, jelly-belly from childbearing; the inevitable southbound movement of ex-perky body parts and the countless greys peeking out here and there.

Nonetheless, I also took note of the fact that as detracting and as imperfect as those marks were, the times I’ve felt most beautiful such as I feel at this moment in time are not the times when my skin shone flawlessly, when my body is as tight and svelte as ever or when I was impeccably dressed to suit any standard.

I stood beautiful with my messy locs sticking in all directions. I love the beauty of my washed face, devoid of any makeup, the battle scar of my appendicectomy, the precious blemishes from skin stretched to accommodate the growth of each child borne of my womb, all the lines etched by time; I pulsate with life.

It’s these indescribable sensations of inner joy, respect and acceptance of every inch of who we are that ignites the flame of confidence and beauty that radiates. We are all unique individuals with experiences and memories that form the fabric of who we are and make us our own version of beauty.

As I stood before my mirror in all my personal glory subconsciously performing tweaks, I understood how powerful our perception of our body image and beauty inadvertently affects us. The results in front of our mirrors are not just as simple as they may seem but portray deeper perception of the viewers’ eyes.

Stretch marks, Beauty, Body Image

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We live in a world where body image matters. We live in a world where people find it comfortable to body shame others who fall short of their measuring tape especially when it pertains to the feminine beauty. We live in a world where many are consumed with portraying the right image that in a bid to ‘be that perception of beauty’ they become destructive of both the external and the internal and this makes me wonder; what is the depth of one’s beauty? Is it skin deep or surface shallow?

How critical are you to yourself? Do you feel that as you age you lose your beauty because your body has gone all national geographic heading for different directions and you are losing elasticity due to the force of nature’s gravity that no Wonderbra and Spanx can keep in check? Does the fact that you are ageing affect your confidence? What would you do to keep your perceived reflection of yourself the way you want it?

Ageing is not a permission to let ourselves fall to pieces, however, the older I get, the kinder I am to myself and less critical of those who choose to go the extra length to look after themselves and being happy doing it. I know that body image matters a great deal but in the larger scheme of all things beautiful, it should be about striking the right balance. I understand the attempt of women who refurbish their feminine bits through surgery, breast implants, and other procedures.

Our bodies are mere shelters of who we truly are, and no singular image, culture or concept can define our beauty ‘cos our beauty is made of precious moments of being alive and as is commonly said that beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, I would assume that the first and most important set of beholding eyes should belong to the owner of the body beheld.

Feel Good Food For Everyday

Healthy Food, Fresh Foods, Fruits and Vegetables, Grocery, Cooking, Lifestyle, Organic, Raw Foods, Good Food

Food is absolutely fundamental to our lives. We eat every day, cooking different meals, sourcing new foods at grocery stores, trying recipes from around the world. Food brings us together around the table but it can also provide a moment of solitary bliss in the form of a quick one-pot meal alone at lunchtime.

The flavours we go for and the choices we make aren’t just about enjoyment though. What we eat affects every aspect of our lives from our health to our weight and from the money we spend to the times we can save. Food can give us momentary joy, later replaced by frustration standing on the bathroom scales, but it can also help us to get the healthiest body we can.

Understanding foods and the benefits they bring is key to having a healthy, balanced diet that takes in everything from a bit of chocolate here and there to a huge bowl of steamed veg whenever you like. These are the foods that make us feel good every day.

Steamed Vegetables

A completely unsurprising first entry: steamed vegetables are fantastic for your body and will always make you feel good. You can choose from a wide range of flavours so that you can easily eat something completely different every day.

A good rule to go by is to choose from a wide range of colours when you decide which vegetables to eat. Dark leafy greens tend to contain lots of iron, carrots with their vibrant orange contain vitamin A and pulses like peas and bean contain plenty of fibre and protein to keep you fuller for longer.

Steaming vegetables is a good way to cook them as you don’t lose any of the vitamins or minerals to the cooking water. It is also significantly better than frying or roasting because this method doesn’t need any fat.

Sauerkraut

Another way to enjoy vegetables is to pickle and ferment them, as in the case with sauerkraut. The fermenting agent is a bacteria that is particularly good for your gut, allowing you to take in more vitamins and minerals and making you feel generally more healthy.

As a probiotic, sauerkraut does seem to help people who need IBS relief as it improves the functionality of the gut. Though it’s often unclear what causes IBS in each individual, it does seem that an imbalance in your gut flora is a possible cause of the discomfort you experience. Sauerkraut and other foods like kimchi and miso help to restore the balance by introducing new ‘good bacteria’ which allows your gut to function properly again.

One final reason to eat sauerkraut is simple: it’s delicious.

Dark Chocolate

Though milk and white chocolate are often full of sugar and fat, dark chocolate is a bit more forgiving and a little bit each day can be good for you. Lots of people find that dark chocolate is an acquired taste and if you are used to eating the high fat and sugar stuff, anything about 70% cocoa is going to be a surprise with its depth and bitterness. However, if you do like it, there are lots of reasons to love it.

Dark chocolate can help to lower your blood pressure, improve your eyesight and even help to increase your metabolism. Plus as it is sweet once you get past the bitterness, it can be the perfect alternative to a calorific dessert your main meal. Dark chocolate has also been found to help with symptoms of depression, lower cholesterol and seems to help with cognition too.

So if you are feeling stressed, trying to study for an exam and wanting to lose weight, dark chocolate might just help you on your way.

Fruit

Though people with diabetes will need to watch out for eating too much high sugar fruit, for most people, eating fruit is a great way to pile in on lots of vitamins and minerals. Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons and limes are ideal for gaining vitamin C. This is important because vitamin C is shown to increase the absorption of iron, making citrus fruits the ideal companion for green leafy veggies. If you are feeling fatigued or you are trying to work out harder at the gym, up your citrus fruits to really make a difference.

Fruit, like veg, is also a good way to increase the amount of fibre you eat. This will help your digestive system stay regular as well as keep you fuller for longer. Lots of fruits are also good for helping to increase your liquid intake. Though drinking a glass of water is always a good idea, fruit is a simple way to introduce more liquid into your diet, keeping you well hydrated throughout the day.

Flax Seeds

There is a lot of research into the benefits of flax seeds including whether they might help to prevent cancers, lung disease and cardiovascular disease. While this research has not provided any conclusive evidence just yet, there is a wealth of optimism that the flax seed could be ideal for improving your health.

What it certainly does contain is plenty of fibre (a theme is developing with fibrous foods!) as well as omega 3, an essential fatty acid and lignans, which are what researchers are looking into as they may help to protect against cancer.

The foods we choose to eat are vital for our health and well being and finding the best foods can be difficult. As the science around what we should eat changes all the time, it can be confusing to follow the best advice as it changes so frequently.

One thing you can do is listen to your body. Think about how you feel after eating certain foods. Do you feel good and energised? Do you feel happy? Do you regret what you ate? All of these questions will help to indicate the types of foods that you should be going for. And if you are really committed to your quest, keeping a diary will help to isolate the foods that really bring you joy.