Home Alone! How To Live The Freelance Life Without Going Crazy!

One of the best things about the modern world is that there are more ways than ever that people can take control of their lives and live them the way that they really want to. Rather than having to get up at 6 AM every morning to drive to a job that you don’t care about, you have plenty of alternatives that you can choose from in order to help you live a happier, more fulfilling life. One of the most popular of these alternatives is that of the freelance life. Rather than going to the same job every day, as a freelancer, you get to pick and choose exactly who you work for. One of the main things that draws a lot of people into freelance work is the fact that you can do it anywhere, including from home. This makes it the perfect choice for those who aren’t able to get around as much as well as people who have families to take care of. However, as exciting as this career path might sound, that doesn’t mean that it’s entirely without its own challenges. Here are some of the things that you need to be prepared for if you choose to live the freelance life.

 

It’s time to get organised.

 

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One of the most immediate things that you’ll find when you start working freelance is that you don’t have a boss breathing down your neck every moment of the day. The freedom that this offers people can be incredibly exciting, but you need to be careful not to let that get out of hand. Sure, staying in bed all day working in your PJs might be fun for a while, but it’s hardly the most productive way to work. Make sure that you have a home office area set up with a desk to work at and storage racks for important documents. Otherwise, you’re going to find yourself constantly stressed over where things are and what you’re doing.

 

Get ready for uncertainty

 

One thing that standard employment definitely has over working as a freelancer is a sense of security. When you’re an employee at a company, you can pretty much feel safe in the knowledge that you’ll have a job tomorrow and the day after that. However, when you’re a freelancer things are often a lot more uncertain. Whether or not you get to work depends entirely on whether or not someone wants to hire you at any given time. If that seems like it would simply be too much stress for you to handle, then there’s a decent chance that the freelance life simply isn’t for you.

 

Keep an eye on your finances

 

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Since there’s a chance that you might not always be working, that means that you could end up going without an income for short, or possibly long, periods of time. The only real way to avoid letting this become a serious problem is to be incredibly cautious with your finances. Not only should you make sure that you’re setting money aside in the event that you aren’t earning for a while, but you also need to make sure that you’re always putting money away for tax. If you fail to keep money aside for your tax returns, then you could end up in some serious trouble down the line. Never spend money that you don’t absolutely need to and always put as much away as you can.

Posted in Working Moms

What Does an Alzheimer’s Diagnosis in the Family Mean for You?

Alzheimer’s is one of the most dreaded health conditions out there. And when your family is hit by a diagnosis, it can shake the family badly. But what does it mean for the family? And how can it cope? There are so many things to consider, and here are a few of the things you should know before going any further.

 

It Doesn’t Have to be the End of the World

 

The first thing to point out is that many people live for a long time with this kind of condition. It can be managed and treated for a long time, and it’s certainly not an imminent death sentence. Of course, it’s a nasty disease that leads to eventual decline. But that doesn’t have to mean that you need to start worrying about that just yet. Think about what it could mean for you and those around you, and deal with the here and now. It’s important to stay grounded and deal with each day as it arrives. That’s always the best course of action.

 

Care Arrangements Will Need to be Considered

 

There are many different forms that Alzheimer’s care can take. And it’s important to start thinking about how you will manage this as a family. There are care professionals will be able to help you with these decisions. You might be able to cover much of that person’s care yourselves as a family. But there are external providers that can offer the specialist care that you are not able to offer too. Combining these things and making sure that the balance is right is always important. It’s something that can be discussed with their doctors.

 

 

Dependent Dementia Old Age Woman Alzheimer’s

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It’s Worth Meeting Other People in a Similar Situation

 

It’s easy to feel isolated when you have a close family member going through something like this. And they might feel pretty isolated as well. That’s why it’s a good idea to meet other people who are going through a similar thing themselves. When you know other people who know what you’re going through, everything can feel so much easier, and you can learn a lot from these people. It’s good to have that support network full of people who have an understanding of what you are experiencing. It’s not something that should be underestimated.

 

Learning About the Condition Could Help You All

 

Knowledge is power; that’s what they always say. And it really can help you out when you are coming to terms with a family member’s new diagnosis. The more the family understands about the disease and how it all works, the better placed they will be offer the right kind of care and the right environment. This is not always easy to do, but learning really can help. There are groups that can help you, as well as care professionals will be happy to tell you more about it. You might also want to do some reading in your own time.

 

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Finding the right support and getting the right medical help is always key, so remember that too.

Posted in health and fitness

These Big Issues Are Essential for Seniors to Face

People now live longer than they ever have before. That means that people often get more time with their parents and grandparents (and even great-grandparents), but it also raises a number of issues. With people living longer, it can mean they have longer retirements, which means they need more money. A long life also isn’t necessarily a healthy one, and many people find themselves facing health problems in their senior years. You can find yourself helping elderly relatives through these issues, as well as having to consider them yourself as you get older. These are some of the major issues you might need to think about.

 

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Making Big Decisions

 

As you get older, there are some big decisions you might have to think about. They can be difficult to confront, and many people might just ignore them until they can’t any longer. But it could be too late by then. Some of the big decisions you might need to consider include what sort of care or treatment you would want if you’re unwell or unable to care for yourself. You also need to think about things like when to retire, where to live in your senior years, and writing a will. These decisions can all be tough to face, but it’s much better to do it sooner rather than later.

 

Loneliness

 

Feeling lonely is a huge problem that affects many seniors. They can easily become isolated if they can’t leave their home or if they begin to lose their friends. Even couples who live together can still feel lonely because they don’t see anyone else. It’s important for family to help out, but they can’t always be there all the time. Other company is necessary too, whether it’s from neighbors or other seniors. With www.seniorsforseniors.ca, even a caregiver can provide company and socialization. Often it can be hard to connect with a carer as they seem more like an employee than a friend. However, companions who are the same age can offer a different service.

 

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Finances

 

Money becomes a huge issue for many seniors. Firstly, people living longer means that many aren’t saving enough to support them in their retirement. And that’s before they need to consider the cost of care and support they might need if they have any health problems. Thinking about money long before you retire is a smart thing to do. However, if it’s too late for that, it is possible to find financial help. You can find advice at www.bankrate.com.

 

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Loss of Independence

 

One of the things people fear most as they get older is losing their independence. Having to rely on other people to help you do everyday tasks can be devastating for your self-esteem and confidence. There are strategies that can be used to help people feel like they still have their autonomy. Some people might consider different options for their living arrangements, for example, so they can choose one that allows them to be as independent as possible.

 

It’s essential to think about these big issues if you have elderly relatives or you’re contemplating your own aging.

Posted in Education and learning

Making Your Return to Work after Maternity Leave?

One of the biggest difficulties new moms face is going back to work. Even for new moms that want to go back to work, it can be difficult to make the transition. Not only do you worry about leaving your baby, but also you may be anxious about getting back into the swing of things after having so much time off. There is no need to fret, however, as we have some top tips for any mom that is getting ready to go back to work after maternity leave.

 

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  • Make sure you get plenty of sleep – Sleep is often a luxury for new parents, but you need to ensure you are well rested if you are planning on going back to work. Maintaining a healthy work/life balance is even more important for new moms. You can make yourself ill if you go to work with no sleep.
  • Ask for flexibility – You may be worried about asking for flexibility from your employer, as you don’t want to make a bad impression after you have had so much time off work. However, you are a new mom! You haven’t been sunbathing on a beach for the past three months. You know what they say; if you don’t ask, you don’t get, so there is no harm in exploring various options, such as working from home when possible.
  • Consider all of your options – For any new mom, the most obvious choice regarding returning to work is to go back to their old job. But, is this something you really want to do? Now is the perfect time to change your job or further your education if you have a different vision for your future. You would be surprised how many moms embark on a new career path once they have had their first child. You don’t need to go to college or university in order to further your learning. You could take an online MA in Education Technology, meaning you can make your way up a new career ladder from the comfort of your own home. Of course, there are plenty of different online courses available, so there is no end to the new careers you could carve out for yourself.
  • Have a trial run – Don’t leave everything until your first morning at work. Have a trial run a couple of days before. Practice your new morning routine; set your alarm, drop the baby off at their childcare, and take the journey to your office. This may sound like a pointless exercise, but it will help you determine how much time is required and ensure that things go a lot more smoothly the next day.

Reconnect with the office – If you do decide to go back to your old place of work, it is a good idea to reconnect with the office. This will make it a lot easier for you to ease back into workplace culture. Meet up with a few co-workers beforehand, and you will feel much more comfortable about going back to work.

Posted in Working Moms

5 Ways To Make Sure Your Garden Is Child-Friendly

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Having a garden that you love is always a lot of fun. You want to make sure that you are able to enjoy all aspects of it, especially in the summer. But, when you have a family, it’s also important that you make sure your garden is good for the kids too. So, how do you do that? When you want your yard to be a place that everyone can enjoy, it’s important to ensure that it’s child-friendly. And this means that you’re going to want to make sure that it’s both secure and fun. To do that, you’re going to want to follow some of these key top tips.

 

Keep It Tidy

 

First of all, you’re going to want to make sure that you’re able to keep your garden tidy. A messy garden not only looks bad, but it can be unsafe for your kids too. So you’re going to want to keep it neat and tidy. This may mean that you have to work on the landscaping maintenance on a regular basis, and be sure to keep tools and toys tidied neatly away.

 

Make It Safe

 

Then you’re going to want to think about securing the garden a bit more. Now, there are two ways that you’re going to need to do this. Firstly you need to think about the ways that you can make sure that the area is safe, meaning that your children can’t escape of that intruders can’t break in. So focus on locks and fences. Then, you should also make sure that it’s safe from causing accidents too, meaning that there are no broken patio slabs or rusty nails sticking out of anything. With these two done, you should feel a little more secure in yourself too.

 

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Have A Play Area

 

But you also want to make sure that your garden is a lot of fun for your kids to be in as well as safe and secure. So, some sort of play area can help with that. You may want to make something yourself with a swing and slides, or even look into pre-made options. You’re also going to want to get flooring that is great for a playground and safe too. Then, your kids should be able to enjoy playing in the garden while you’re relaxing in it too.

 

Have Child-Friendly Furniture

 

It’s also useful to ensure that your outdoor furniture is child-friendly too. You want to make sure that they’re comfortable outside and that it’s okay if they spill by accident – meaning you’re going to want wipeable furniture that won’t get messed up. Or, even better, you could even think about getting kids furniture, so they have their own to play with and sit at instead.

 

Make It Very Natural

 

Finally, you should also ensure that your garden is very natural if you want it to be fun. For this, growing vegetables can be great for your garden and your family. By using organic pesticides, you know your kids will be safe, and the environment will be too. But that’s all; you could also aim to attract wildlife with water features and bird tables, so it’s a harmonious atmosphere for everyone.

Posted in Homes and Garden

Need a Loan for Your Family? Read This.

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These days, getting a bank loan isn’t the easiest process in the world. The recession is behind us, but some of the tight-pocketed sentiment still exists in the financial sector. Although things have improved, banks are still fairly strict in the criteria they want you to fulfil. There is a range of elements to a good loan application. Here are just a few important things to keep in mind when looking to getting a loan approved.

 

What do you need from your loan?

First of all, be fairly certain in what you want from your loan. It really won’t give off the right impression if you walk into your bank and say “Gimme some money!” Make sure you do some homework in advance. Have a set idea of the kind of loan you’re going for, what you can afford, and your plan for repayment. There are dozens of different packages out there. Within each different category, there are going to be a few other options available to you. If you start liaising with bankers, and don’t know what you’re looking for exactly, you’re not going to come off too well! You might already have one in mind which seems perfect. Even so, shop around!

 

Father and teenager signing loan contract

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Managing expectations

You should know what to expect from the process overall. Applying for a loan in a hurry, unless it’s absolutely necessary, isn’t a good idea. The people in charge of approving your loan are going to have some strict rules to follow, both in the approval and getting the money to you. Be sure to talk to an advisor, or someone at the bank, about all the different phases of the process.

 

Some loans can be pre-approved in advance. This is essential with mortgages; if you don’t get a mortgage pre-approved, you might miss out on some of the best homes for sale! With others, it can take a matter of weeks or even months between the approval and transfer. If you’re left waiting around, ask your loan officer about the process of following things up. Go about this the wrong way, and you’ll only hurt your position. If you apply repeatedly to loans, and barely get any of them approved, it can be extremely detrimental to your credit score.

 

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What you can and can’t do

While you’re browsing all your different loan options, be aware of what you can and can’t do. This may require you to check your credit report. Consider your history and your current score, and anything you can do immediately about it. The state of a credit score often means the difference between approval and denial.

 

Because of this, it’s not only important that you try to improve it, but also check that it’s accurate! If your credit rating upholds that you have an unpaid debt you paid years ago, act quickly to have this removed. I know that something so weighty and official has a “set in stone” air to it. Don’t be fooled though! You’d be shocked at how often there are discrepancies in credit reports.

Posted in finances

3 Ways To Mend A Messy Garden!

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Gardens, for any home owner, is a point of pride; everyone wants to keep their garden in a good condition, whether it’s the grass, the fences, the flowers or the trees! Everything goes hand in hand together, and if one part of your garden is lacking then it immediately drags the look of your garden down, so here’s 3 ways you can stop your garden from being messy!

 

Look After Your Grass!

 

Arguably the plainest part of your garden is grass, however it’s aesthetical importance should not be understated. Grass is the plain building block of your garden, it covers the biggest amount of space in your garden and therefore it needs to be kept in a good condition! If your grass looks unkempt or damaged, it will have a negative impact on the view of your garden. Websites like https://www.scotts.com/en-us/products/lawn-food sell lawn food which gives your grass the nutrients it requires to grow well and live long, giving it a lovely colour and reducing the amount of damage that it takes!

 

Trees, Take Care Of Them

 

Trees are a big part of any garden, regardless of where they are situated they are always a huge focal point for the garden. Whether you have a line of them across your back fence, or a few dotted around the place, you need to make sure that your trees are in good order. Like humans, trees do get ill and have to be looked after, services that websites like  http://www.treeservicefortworth.org/ offer. They are able to conduct an analysis on your trees to see if they’re in a healthy condition or not. If they are not, it is advisable that you do whatever you can to cure them of their ailments! Replacing a tree can be very expensive, especially if the tree is quite large or of an expensive variety. It also takes a lot of time to replace a tree, especially if you try to do it on your own, so it really is worth saving yourself the time and effort by just looking after your trees!

 

Choosing The Right Flowers

 

Picking out the right species of flower to place in your garden can be a nightmare. Firstly, you need to decide what kind of look of flower you want, a hard task in itself! But then you need to think of their hardiness and survivability in cold and warm weather depending on what climate your part of the country has, determines which flowers you should buy, there’s no point buying flowers that won’t survive in the environment you’ve put them in! Websites like Home Depot offer a large selection of flowers to buy, one for every kind of environment!

If you follow these 3 simple tips, you will avoid the big problems that people encounter whilst gardening! You’ll avoid big disasters and avoiding the big waste of money that could befall you if you don’t take proper care of your garden, so it’s definitely recommended that you do them all! However, flowers and trees aren’t the only thing you can do with your garden, if you’re looking for something to spruce it up a bit more, read this.

Posted in Homes and Garden

The World Is Your Oyster: How To Narrow Down Your Travel Options

The world is your oyster. While it’s incredible to be able to travel to every corner of the globe these days, the sheer range of vacation options can make it difficult to narrow down your choices. Most of us only have the time and money available for one or two trips a year, so it’s essential to choose wisely. If you’re weighing up options for your next family vacation, here are some tips to help you make the right choice with minimal stress.

 

Image sourced from https://pixabay.com/en/photos/family%20vacation/

 

Start planning early

Spontaneous trips are great, but when you have children, it often pays to be organized. Start thinking about possible locations a few months before you plan to travel. This way, you have time to research, find out more about places that take your interest and get an accurate idea of costs. You can also start putting money aside or adding to your savings pot. Have a chat with your partner and the kids about destinations, and see if there are places that appeal to everyone. If you’re open to ideas, read some guides online to find out more.

 

Consider travel time

Travel time is a factor that many parents bear in mind when they’re planning a holiday. The distance may affect your choice, especially if you’re only going away for a short break or a week. If you’re spending 10 hours on a plane, you’re going to use up a considerable chunk of your vacation. If you’re going away for 2 or 3 weeks, travel time may not be such an issue. If you have kids that are at a difficult age in terms of traveling, you may also want to think carefully before booking long-haul trips. Some children love going on planes, but if your kids are at the stage when they get bored very quickly, and they want to explore at every available opportunity, shorter journeys may be a more attractive option. If you are braving a long flight with toddlers, read these tips first https://www.roughguides.com/article/20-tips-for-travelling-with-children/.

 

Image from https://www.flickr.com/photos/juhansonin/13804668974

 

The type of vacation

When you’re choosing a location, think about the type of vacation you want. Do you want to spend your days touring museums and galleries? Are you desperate to chill out by the pool and get down to the beach? Are you looking for action and adventure? If you have a destination in mind, do some research online using sites like www.myconcierge.com to see what kinds of activities are available. It’s also really useful to read reviews left by people who have already visited the area or the hotel to get an idea about facilities, amenities, and things to do.

 

Set a budget

The cost of a vacation can vary from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, so set a budget before you start exploring possibilities. You don’t want to discover the perfect trip to find out that it’s way out of your price range. Once you’ve got a figure in mind, you can work with this to get the best deal. Shop online, compare prices from different agencies and operators, and look out for flash sales. It’s worth registering with travel websites to get news of promotions.

 

If you’re trying to pick a perfect destination for your next vacation, hopefully, this guide will set you on the right track.

Posted in travel

Eyes And Ears: Look After Them And They Will Look After You

When you are younger it is usual to take your senses for granted. You breeze through life with perfect hearing and eyesight and give no thought to what life would be like if something should go wrong with them. As you get a little older, you start to realize that you have to look after your senses. The more you care for them, the better they will serve you as you reach midlife.

Here are some tips for looking after your eyesight and your hearing. Once they are damaged, the consequences could be more far reaching than you are aware of.

Looking after your hearing

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The main way that you can protect your hearing is to prevent it from being exposed to loud noises. This is most likely to happen at work. It is estimated that around 15% of Americans have some form of noise-induced hearing loss. This is nearly always caused by the work environment but leisure activities do play a role.

If your occupation involves any form of loud noise, your employer should carry out a risk assessment to determine what hazards you are exposed to. Your methods of working may need to be altered to reduce the risk. You should also be offered personal protective equipment such as ear defenders to protect the delicate structures inside the ears. Loud noises can cause permanent hearing loss. People who work with noisy machinery, vehicles and in the music industry are most at risk.

However, it is not just the workplace that causes the problem. You could be causing damage to your hearing at home. The World Health Organization has estimated that up to 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults worldwide are putting their hearing at risk when they use audio devices to listen to music and videos and to play games.

There is a simple rule for all age groups to protect their hearing. When you are using headphones, you should listen at no more than 60% of full volume for no more than 60 minutes a day. Over-the-ear headphones are safer than ear buds as they are further away from the eardrum. If you are hosting a party, you can help by keeping the volume at a level where people can have a conversation without shouting.

If you have started to notice a deterioration in your hearing, this is not something that you have to put up with. An Otofonix Elite hearing amplifier is an advanced open-fit behind the ear digital personal hearing amplifier. It is perfect for social situations where you struggle to understand soft speech and have difficulty hearing conversation above background noise.

Looking after your eyesight

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As you get older, protecting your eyesight is all about regular monitoring and being aware of what could go wrong. Find out about your family’s health history. If you have or are at risk of diabetes or high blood pressure then you may have an increased risk of sight-threatening eye diseases and you need to regularly be monitored.

If you start noticing any changes in your vision at all, you need to make an emergency appointment to see your doctor. Some symptoms such as double vision, hazy vision and difficulty seeing in low light conditions could be a sign of serious health conditions and need to be checked out. This is also true if you experience red eyes, frequent flashes of light or floaters (dark spots in your vision).

A healthy diet is vital for protecting your eyesight. It has been shown that antioxidants can reduce the risk of cataracts. You can get plenty of these in your diet by eating lots of fruit and colorful or dark green vegetables. You also need a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids which you can get from oily fish such as salmon. Studies suggest that it can reduce your risk of developing macular degeneration.

One of the best things that you can do for your eyes is to give up smoking. Research has shown that people who smoke are much more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. The toxins in cigarette smoke are bad for all aspects of your health.

Eyes need protection from physical dangers too. Wear high-quality sunglasses to protect them from UV light. You should also always wear safety goggles or glasses when you are working with machinery or with anything that could fly towards your face and enter your eye. Where eye injuries are concerned, prevention is always better than cure.

Posted in health and fitness

Here Are Some Amazing Stress Relief Ideas

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You’ve probably read in a few places by now that stress is a big killer in the modern world. A lot of people don’t quite get how stress affects your health, though. Isn’t it just a state of mind? Well, if you’ve ever been really stressed then you know it’s not just something that affects your mind and your mood.

 

Stress causes headaches, stomach pains and high blood pressure. Prolonged stress can lead to problems with the heart. If strong stress is experienced consistently over a long period of time, it can induce episodes of depression and anxiety.

 

Needless to say, you don’t need these things in your life if you want to stay healthy. If you want to relieve stress effectively, follow these tips!

 

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Sleep more!

 

Sleep deprivation is one of the leading factors that exacerbate stress. As I’m sure you’re well aware, a bad night’s sleep makes you more irritable and slow to react come the next day. When you’re at work and dealing with high-pressure situations, those factors make you much more stressed.

 

Talk to someone

 

Getting something off your chest is an amazing way to relieve stress. What I mean by “talk to someone” can be taken in two ways, and you should consider both. One is to simply relax with a friend and have a good conversation. Have a vent and see what advice they have to give (or jokes they can offer to cheer you up!). Some getaway options may have on-site people to talk to; maybe you should find a Christian retreat center. You could also try speaking to your doctor, or even your boss, who may lighten the load for you.

 

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Stop using those harmful “stress relief” substances

 

A lot of people turn to smoking or alcohol when they want some stress relief. I shouldn’t have to spend too long telling you why these substances are bad for your health! Neither of them is a long-term solution. Cigarettes may help you in the short interval in which you’re actually smoking them. But that’s only because you’re satisfying cigarette cravings, which exacerbate your stress. A nice drink can be a good short-term solution, but it’s not going to help long-term stress.

 

Have a cup of tea

 

This one sounds too obvious, almost. Of course, not everyone really has the time to just sit down and have a cup of tea. But you should really consider making the time every now and again. A short break with a hot drink can do wonders for you immediately. A comfortable seat, some premium caffeine-free tea, and a good book will help your body calm down in no time.

 

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Listen to music

Music helps you escape. The same can be said about things like films and video games, of course. These are also great stress-relieving things. But if you’ve got something on your mind, it might be best to think about a solution. And that’s hard to do when you’re engaging in a story or with something interactive. Some nice background noise can help in several ways. Heck, maybe you should just throw on something blood-pumping and have an energetic solo dance in your room. (Seriously, it’s effective. Just, erm, make sure no-one else is around.)

Posted in health and fitness