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LIFESTYLE & CULTURE

Stop wasting time with these terrific tools

Whether you want to stop wasting time checking your social media profiles when you should be working, you want to boost the productivity of your business or you simply want to use your time as efficiently as possible so you can do more of the stuff you enjoy, there are countless tools to help you achieve your aims.

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Whether you want to stop wasting time checking your social media profiles when you should be working, you want to boost the productivity of your business or you simply want to use your time as efficiently as possible so you can do more of the stuff you enjoy, there are countless tools to help you achieve your aims.

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Below, you will find some excellent apps, tools, and hacks to make scheduling easier, enable you to track where your time is being spent and boost productivity. Use them and you’ll never waste time (or be short of it) again…

SUNRISE

Sunrise is a fantastically simple calendar app that seamlessly connects to other services such as Google, Facebook, and Evernote, so that you can more easily schedule your appointments, keep track of your meetings and ensure that you’re using your time as effectively as possible. It’s great for business people and freelancers, but even those of you with a busy social life should be able to get something out of Sunrise. Best of all, it’s totally free.

RESCUETIME

If you’re one of those people, who spends so much time staring at your computer screen that you hardly even know what ‘outside’ looks like anymore, and yet you never seem to know what you’ve been doing with all those wasted hours, RescueTime is the app for you. It will keep track of all the websites you visit each day so that you can get a glimpse of the bigger picture, work out where you’ve been wasting your time and start changing your habits, so that the time you do spend online is time well spent. Maybe when you see that you’ve been spending 4 hours a day aimlessly scrolling through Facebook, it’ll even encourage you to go out and get some fresh air once in awhile!

EXCELLENT IT SUPPORT

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If you run a business, one of the best hacks I can possibly recommend is that you take the time to find a good IT support team who are able to quickly meet any IT challenges thrown at them. Why is this so important? Because in this heavily connected world, businesses are increasingly losing money and wasting time trying to put out IT-related fires. Disasters like servers going down and data being lost can cost companies thousands of dollars and tens of hours, and it is so unnecessary when all it takes is the number of a good IT support team on speed dial to stop the waste.

MINIMALISM

Another excellent hack you may wish to consider in either your personal or professional life is the practice of minimalism. On the face of it, you might not think that minimizing your possessions and learning to live with less could save you time; in fact, it might take you a lot of time to actually get rid of stuff! However, the fewer things you have to worry about, the more free time you have. Think about it; you don’t need to spend so much time dusting, cleaning, moving, maintaining or trying to find things when you have very little in the first place. It certainly isn’t for everyone, but if you think you could live with less, it’s a fantastic way to claw back time.

TIMEWASTE

If you’ve tried and tried, but you just can’t stop logging into Facebook every five minutes, consider using Timewaste – an app that actually charges you money for using Facebook for in excess of one hour each day. Losing money from your bank account each day might just be the kick you need to get some perspective and work on ridding yourself of this annoying, time-stealing habit once and for all.

FREEDOM

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Freedom is another great app for those of you who just can’t stop visiting your favorite websites when you really should be doing something else entirely. It enables you to block those websites that you are most drawn to so that you can’t visit them. You can opt to block them entirely or only at certain times of the day, so if you want to focus on work, you can block your access from 9-5, for example.

USE THE TWO-MINURE RULE

The two-minute rule is simple, if there is a task that needs to be done, and it can be done in two minutes or less, do it now. That way, you won’t end up procrastinating to the point all of those little tasks add up into one big one which will suck up entirely more of your time than is actually necessary.

TAKE A FIVE

Take a Five is a browser-based app which turns your tabs into self-destructing pages, which will disappear once your time is up. This can really help to cut down on the amount of time you spend browsing news sites or Facebook because the page you’re reading will disappear and you’ll lose your place.

OUTSOURCING

Another great hack for business owners is hiring freelancers to complete tasks. If you, for example, need to call 10 clients just to confirm appointments, that could take you 30-60 minutes or more, and that is time that could be spent growing your business. By outsourcing for a small fee to a freelancer, taking into account the value of your own time, you’ll probably be up financially, and you won’t be wasting your own valuable time.

WEEK PLAN

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Week Plan is a great Chrome app that helps you keep track of all of the deadlines and due dates in your life. So, if you’re someone who has a lot of work deadlines to meet, essays to complete, events to attend and goals to meet, it can really help out. It works by letting you assign chunks of time to each task so that you don’t end up wasting too much time on one thing to the detriment of another.

Use these tools where applicable to your life, and you will soon see that you waste less time and have more time free at the end of the day/week/month. Also, take the time to see what other tools are available – there are lots of them, and they can be pretty transformative.

Health & Wellness

Lesbian women less likely to receive birth control counseling, prescription

While lesbian women were less likely to report receiving a birth control prescription or birth control counseling compared with heterosexual women, they were more likely to report having received sexually transmitted infection (STI) counseling, testing, or treatment.

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Lesbian women were less likely to report receiving a birth control prescription or birth control counseling compared with heterosexual women. However, they were more likely to report having received sexually transmitted infection (STI) counseling, testing, or treatment, after adjusting for sexual partners in the past 12 months.

This is according to a new study that used data from the National Survey of Family Growth 2006-2015, and published in Journal of Women’s Health, a peer-reviewed publication from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

Bethany Everett, PhD, University of Utah (Salt Lake City), and colleagues from the University of Wisconsin (Madison) and the University of Chicago (IL), investigated sexual orientation disparities in the use of sexual and reproductive health services and receipt of contraceptive counseling in clinical settings in the past 12 months.

In the article titled, “Do Sexual Minorities Receive Appropriate Sexual and Reproductive Health Care and Counseling?” the researchers also explored whether having male sex partners influenced sexual minority women’s use of sexual and reproductive health services and the types of sexual health information that they received.

The researchers found that, in a clinical setting, lesbian women were less likely to report receiving birth control counseling at a pregnancy test and lesbian women without recent male sex partners were less likely to report receiving counseling about condom use at an STI-related visit compared with heterosexual women. 

“This new research emphasizes the importance of considering both sexual orientation and recent sexual behaviors when addressing the sexual and reproductive health needs of sexual minority women,” said Susan G. Kornstein, MD, editor in chief of Journal of Women’s Health and executive director of the Virginia Commonwealth University Institute for Women’s Health, Richmond, VA. “Using inclusive sexual and reproductive health counseling scripts may facilitate the delivery of appropriate sexual health-related information.”

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Health & Wellness

Transmasculine adolescents, teens who don’t exclusively identify as male or female at greatest risk for suicide

50.8% of transmasculine adolescents between the ages of 11 and 19 have attempted suicide at least once, while 41.8% of nonbinary adolescents – those who don’t identify as exclusively male or exclusively female – have attempted suicide.

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Transgender adolescents are at greater risk for attempting suicide than cisgender teens who identify with the gender they are assigned at birth. This is according to a study from the University of Arizona, which takes a deeper look at who within the transgender adolescent community is most at risk.

More specifically, transmasculine adolescents – or those who were born female but identify as male – and teens who don’t identify as exclusively male or female are at the greatest risk for attempting suicide.

The research, done by Russell Toomey and his colleagues and published in the journal Pediatrics, is consistent with findings on transgender adults and could help inform suicide-prevention efforts for transgender youth.

In the past, research on transgender adolescent suicide behaviors focused on comparing transgender youth as a whole group to cisgender youth as a whole group, rather than looking for any within-group differences that might exist.

Toomey and his co-authors found that 50.8% of transmasculine adolescents between the ages of 11 and 19 have attempted suicide at least once, while 41.8% of nonbinary adolescents – those who don’t identify as exclusively male or exclusively female – have attempted suicide. The next most at-risk adolescent groups were transfeminine – those who were born male but identify as female – at 29.9%, and those questioning their gender identity, at 27.9%.

Risk was lower for cisgender teens, or those who identify with the sex they were assigned at birth. Among females, 17.6% said they had attempted suicide, while the number for males was 9.8%.

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The findings are based on an analysis of data from the Profiles of Student Life: Attitudes and Behaviors survey, a national survey designed to provide a snapshot of youth behaviors, attitudes and experiences. The survey focuses on 40 developmental assets know to be associated with healthy development, as well as risk behaviors, such as depression and suicidal behaviors. Data was collected over a 36-month period between 2012 and 2015, and from 120,617 adolescents, most of whom identified as cisgender.

Survey respondents were asked, among other things, about their gender identity and whether or not they had ever attempted suicide. Nearly 14% of all adolescents surveyed reported having attempted suicide at least once.

“Nonbinary youth are putting themselves out there every day as not being read by society as male or female, and there hasn’t been much research on this population, but we expect that they’re probably experiencing the highest levels of discrimination or victimization from their peers and from communities, based on their gender presentation,” Toomey said.

The researchers also found that sexual orientation exacerbated suicide risk for almost everyone in the survey. The only population whose risk didn’t seem to be affected by sexual orientation was the nonbinary population.

“Nonbinary youth do not identify as totally masculine or totally feminine, so it complicates an understanding of sexual orientation, which is rooted in a binary, male-female understanding of gender. Thus, for these youth, the combination of gender and sexual orientation may be more complicated,” Toomey said.

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Toomey and his colleagues similarly examined the impact of other factors – including race and ethnicity, parents’ educational attainment, and the types of communities where teens grow up – on suicide risk.

They found that although cisgender teens who belonged to a racial or ethnic minority had a heightened suicide risk, race and ethnicity was not associated with higher suicide risk in transgender teens.

Toomey and his co-authors also found that some factors that seem to protect cisgender teens from suicide risk – such as having parents with a higher level of educational attainment or having grown up in a more urban versus rural community – do not have the same effect for transgender teens.

Suicide ranks as the second leading cause of death among adolescents and young adults ages 10 to 34 in the US alone; and research suggests that between 28% and 52% of transgender people attempt suicide at some point in their lives. As such, trans-specific factors should be integrated into suicide prevention and intervention strategies.

“Transmasculine youth and nonbinary youth are the two populations that often are the least focused on in the transgender community,” he said. “So really reorganizing our efforts to focus in and try to really understand and learn about the experiences of these youth is critical.”

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Health & Wellness

Bullying, violence at work increase risk of cardiovascular disease

People bullied frequently (almost every day) in the past 12 months had 120% higher risk of cardiovascular disease, while those exposed most frequently to workplace violence had a 36% higher risk of cerebrovascular disease (such as stroke).

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People who are bullied at work or experience violence at work are at higher risk of heart and brain blood vessel problems, including heart attacks and stroke. This is according a study – “Workplace bullying and workplace violence as risk factors for cardiovascular disease: a multi-cohort study” – done by Tianwei Xu et al. and published in the European Heart Journal.

It is worth stressing that the study was observational, and – as such – “cannot show that workplace bullying or violence cause cardiovascular problems”. However, it – nonetheless – shows that “there is an association (between the two),” and so the results “have important implications for employers and national governments.”

“If there is a causal link between bullying or violence at work and cardiovascular disease, then the removal of workplace bullying would mean we could avoid five per cent of all cardiovascular cases, and the eradication of violence at work would avoid more than three per cent of all cases,” said Tianwei, the lead researcher.

Bullying ‘follows’ LGB people from school to work

It is worth noting that members of the LGBTQIA community are more exposed to bullying. A study released last April 2018, for instance, investigated gender expression and victimization of youth aged 13-18, and it found that the most gender nonconforming students reported higher levels of being bullied, were more likely to report missing school because they feel unsafe, and are most likely to report being victimized with a weapon on school property.

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Sadly, for LGBTQIA people who are bullied at school, the bullying follows them to the workplace. A study released in November 2018 found that 35.2% of gay/bisexual men who had experienced frequent school-age bullying experience frequent workplace bullying. Among lesbian women, the figure was 29%.

For Tianwei’s study in particular, the researchers looked at data from 79,201 working men and women in Denmark and Sweden, aged 18 to 65, with no history of cardiovascular disease (CVD), who were participants in three studies that started between 1995 and 2011; the participants have been followed up ever since. When they joined the studies, the participants were asked about bullying and violence in the workplace and the frequency of their experience of each of them. Information on the number of cases of heart and brain blood vessel disease and deaths was obtained from nationwide registries.

The researchers also took account of other factors that could affect whether or not the participants were affected by CVD, including body mass index, alcohol consumption, smoking, mental disorders and other pre-existing health conditions, shift working and occupation.

Nine percent of participants reported being bullied at work and 13% reported experiencing violence or threats of violence at work in the past year. After adjusting for age, sex, country of birth, marital status and level of education, the researchers found that those who were bullied or experienced violence (or threats of violence) at work had a 59% and 25% higher risk of CVD, respectively, compared to people who were not exposed to bullying or violence.

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The more bullying or violence that was encountered, the greater the risk of CVD. Compared with people who did not suffer bullying, people who reported being bullied frequently (the equivalent to being bullied almost every day) in the past 12 months had 120% higher risk of CVD, while those who were exposed most frequently to workplace violence had a 36% higher risk of cerebrovascular disease (such as stroke) than those not exposed to violence, but there did not appear to be a corresponding increase in heart disease.

1-in-4 girls, 1-in-10 boys report self-injury or attempt suicide due to fighting, bullying or forced sex

“Workplace bullying and workplace violence are distinct social stressors at work. Only 10-14% of those exposed to at least one type of exposure were suffering from the other at the same time. These stressful events are related to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease in a dose-response manner – in other words, the greater the exposure to the bullying or violence, the greater the risk of cardiovascular disease,” Tianwei said. “From this study we cannot conclude that there is a causal relation between workplace bullying or workplace violence and cardiovascular disease, but we provide empirical evidence in support of such a causal relation, especially given the plausible biological pathway between workplace major stressors and cardiovascular disease.”

The effect of bullying and violence on the incidence of cardiovascular disease in the general population is comparable to other risk factors, such as diabetes and alcohol drinking, which further highlights the importance of workplace bullying and workplace violence in relation to cardiovascular disease prevention. For Tianwei, “it is important to prevent workplace bullying and workplace violence from happening, as they constitute major stressors for those exposed. It is also important to have policies for intervening if bullying or violence occurs.”

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Other interesting findings from the research included the fact that bullying in the workplace occurred mostly from colleagues (79%) rather than from people outside the organization (21%), whereas violence or threats of violence at work originated mainly from people outside the organization (91%), than from within (9%). This, combined with the fact that those exposed most frequently to workplace violence were not more likely to suffer from heart disease, suggests that workers may have received training about how to deal with violence they encounter as part of their jobs and may be better equipped to deal with it and avoid long-term consequences.

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LIFESTYLE & CULTURE

Choosing the right area for your new home

When looking for a new home, it is important to do your research and look into various aspects of the area you are considering. This will help to ensure you make an informed–and correct–choice.

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Moving to a new home can be an experience that is both exciting and challenging. Even finding the right property for your needs can be difficult. In addition, you need to ensure you choose the right area for your new home. It is important to do your research and look into various aspects of the area you are considering. This will help to ensure you make an informed–and correct–choice.

Fortunately, there are online tools that you can use in order to help you make the right choice about the area you move to. This includes PeopleFinders, which enables you to conduct everything from a cell phone number search to an address search. This means that you can find out more about the area you want to move to before you make a firm decision.

Some of the Factors to Look Into

So, what are the key aspects to consider when you are moving to a new home and area?

One of the first things you should look at is what the area is like in terms of crime and whether there are any dubious characters (such as sex offenders) in the area. This will, of course, be especially important for those with children.

In addition, you need to ensure that the property itself is suited to your needs in terms of features and size. For instance, if you work from home you will want to make sure there is a suitable room you can use as a study.

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You need to ensure that the property itself is suited to your needs in terms of features and size.
Photo by Cindy Tang from Unsplash.com

Another thing you can do by using the PeopleFinders online search tool is to find out more about your neighbors. It is important for people to get along with their neighbors if they want to avoid unnecessary stress and enjoy a peaceful life. The ability to learn more about them through people searches and public records searches will make it easier for you to learn more about them.

There are other important factors that you need to consider if you are deciding whether the area is right for you. First of all, you need to find out more about the local facilities and amenities in the area. There are specific  amenities and facilities that may be important to you, including nearby elementary schools and colleges, medical facilities, shops, and entertainment venues.

Finally, you also need to look at the transportation options in the area to ensure you can get around with ease. If you drive, you will want to make sure  you can get to and from work, college, or any other places to which you have to regularly travel. If you do not drive or do not have a car, you should find out more about public transportation options in the area.

You need to find out more about the local facilities and amenities in the area. There are specific  amenities and facilities that may be important to you.
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Looking at all of these factors will help to ensure you make the right choice when it comes to moving to a new area with which you are not familiar. The ability to do all of this research online means that you can save yourself a lot of time and hassle by doing the research quickly and easily from the comfort of your own home.  

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LIFESTYLE & CULTURE

Health benefits of sexual intercourse

We are always looking for one way or the other to get in shape and have the perfect body. And ways to relieve pain as well as prevent heart attacks. Well, search no more, we found one of the best solutions to all these problems. It’s called… SEX.

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We are always looking for one way or the other to get in shape and have the perfect body. And ways to relieve pain as well as prevent heart attacks. Well, search no more, we found one of the best solutions to all these problems. And you do not need to win from sa online casinos to afford it.

Read more about the health benefits of sexual intercourse.

Lazy to Exercise?

We know how you can be lazy to go to the gym. Well, one of the health benefits of sexual intercourse is that it counts as exercise.It might not be the treadmill, but hey, all we want is the exercise right.Besides, when you start getting into shape, they will still want to know what your trick is.

Sexual intercourse uses about five calories a minute. So depending on how many calories you want to reduce, you can just goal out and time your sexual intercourse session. Instead of gym subscriptions, here is an easier way of getting rid of the excess weight.

Sexual intercourse helps to keep estrogen and testosterone levels in balance. 
Photo by Becca Tapert from Unsplash.com

Reduces Heart Attack

We try by all means to avoid a heart attack. We even stop eating some of our favorite foods because they increase chances of us getting heart attacks. Research, however, dictates that a good sex life can reduce chances of heart attack, however there are other activities that can help you to  reduce heart attach such as playing Top jeux de casino that can be an entertainment

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Other than raising our heart rate, sexual intercourse helps to keep estrogen and testosterone levels in balance.  If one of those levels gets lower, we experience problems like osteoporosis, which is the thinning of bones that can cause fractures.

Pain Reliever

The first thing that we reach for when we are in pain is a pain reliever. However, we can always try out another option, how does an orgasm sound? A top professor from the Rutgers State University of New Jersey says an orgasm can block pain. He goes on to say that having an orgasm releases a hormone that helps raise your pain threshold.

Okay, maybe an orgasm is too much to ask, stimulation without an orgasm has the same effects. For the women, the professor says, vaginal stimulation can block chronic back, leg pain, menstrual cramps, arthritic pain and even a headache at times.

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LIFESTYLE & CULTURE

5 Ways to feel the holiday spirit

It’s that time of the year again when the holiday spirit is all around us. And I say: Why not make the most of it by enjoying it?

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Yes, it’s that time of the year again when the holiday spirit is all around us. In a country like the Philippines, it – in fact – started as early as September (when what is called the -ber months started, covering September-December) and won’t end until mid-January, when Filipinos mark the Feast of the Three Kings. So the holiday spirit is really inescapable, as malls are decked in Christmas-related decors, kids start their door-to-door caroling (for a fee), offices hold once-a-year parties (as bosses hand out annual bonuses to employees), and DJs in radio stations/TV anchors keep counting the days left before we all mark Christmas and the start of the New Year.

This is not to say that everyone is touched by the holiday spirit. Because there are some who feel the stress brought by the season instead of the joys it brings. And so for these people, partaking in the festivities isn’t necessarily easy.

Worry not, though: With the belief that this season should be enjoyed by everyone (not just kids), we have here five ways to help get you in the festive spirit.

1.  Play the right music.

There’s a running joke in the Philippines – i.e. that the moment you hear Jose Mari Chan’s Christmas in Our Hearts being played on air, it must already be Christmas. This makes Chan adored… and admittedly hated by some.

But the thing is, you don’t have to just stick to Chan’s songs because there’s more to Christmas music than Chan and, yes, jingle bells and reindeer. And many of the popularly played music for the holidays are chart-toppers.

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There’s more to Christmas music than Jose Mari Chan and, yes, jingle bells and reindeer.
Photo by Mohammad Metri from Unsplash.com

In the UK, the modern fascination with the race for the festive No. 1 started in 1973, thanks to glam rock bands Slade and Wizzard. Not surprisingly, the Christmas No. 1 has been a feature of the UK Singles Chart since 1952, after the week’s best-selling singles was first published in the New Music Express.

Here are some interesting FYIs:

  • 35% of all Christmas No. 1s are cover songs – meaning originality isn’t always the best way to go when it comes to Christmas singles, given that covers account for 23 of the 66 festive number ones
  • Four acts have ever had multiple Christmas No. 1s: The Beatles, Queen, Cliff Richard and Spice Girls
  • Just 12 out of 66 number ones are actually about Christmas; surprisingly, 33% of Christmas No. 1s are actually about love

But there are numerous holiday-related songs to enjoy.

There’s Do They Know It’s Christmas? by Band Aid (released in 1984), which has gone on to sell over three million copies – more than any other Christmas single. 

There’s Last Christmas by Wham! (released in 1984), the best-selling UK single that actually never reached number one.

Fairytale of New York by The Pogues (recorded in 1987 and released in 1988), which reached the top 20 on 15 separate occasions since losing out to Always On My Mind by the Pet Shop Boys in 1987.

And there’s Cliff Richard’s festive-themed chart-topper Saviour’s Day (released in 1990).

Incidentally, more pop songs (30 chart-toppers) than any other genre scooped Christmas number one. In fact, Ariana Grande (4/9) is the current favorite in the online betting this year. So you may want to consider other genres, too.

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Rock songs account for 11 Christmas number ones, including Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen, which took the title in 1975 and 1991 and is the UK’s third-best selling single of all time with 2.53 million sales.

Easy listening, with crooners claiming number one seven times between 1952 and 1976, the most recent of which being Johnny Mathis’ When A Child Is Born.

Choral songs, which are also chart-toppers, most recently A Bridge Over You by the Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Choir in 2015.

Or you can even consider soul (with two chart-toppers), dance (also with two chart-toppers), instrumental, folk, disco and a cappella.

The point is, if it gets you in the groove, play it/listen to it. This way, you may finally ease into the holiday mode.

2.  Deck the halls… no, make that the whole house.

Put up the Christmas tree. If you manage to get a fresh one (by ditching the plastic trees), so much the better. Because once set up, staying near that tree, sniffing that pine aroma, is certainly going to pull some strings in you and make you feel… Christmassy.

Bring out those flickering lights, hang the parol (Christmas lantern), place that wreath up, ready the poinsettias, hang the stockings…
Photo by Markus Spiske from Unsplash.com

But don’t stop there: bring out those flickering lights, hang the parol (Christmas lantern), place that wreath up, ready the poinsettias, hang the stockings…

All these help make you anticipate that something special is bound to – and will – happen.

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3.  Watch some classics.

Particularly if you’re – say – Netflix- or HOOQ-crazy or is a couch potato, opt to watch some flicks that will remind you why this season is special.

If you’re not keen on a movie that is hard-selling Christmas, there are other holiday-linked films worth considering.
Photo by Sven Scheuermeier from Unsplash.com

Off the head, must-consider include: Meet Me in St. Louis (1944); It’s a Wonderful Life (1946); Miracle on 34th Street (1947); White Christmas (1954); Home Alone (1990); The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992); The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993); and Love Actually (2003).

If you’re not keen on a movie that is hard-selling Christmas, there are other holiday-linked films worth considering, including: Gremlins (1984); Die Hard (1988); The Family Stone (2005); Edward Scissorhands (1990); and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005).

4.  Join the parties.

There’s nothing wrong with flying solo; but the holiday season is really about togetherness. So try to get out of your shell and/or comfort zone and mingle. Consider this as an opportunity to party and not be judged for being overly festive (meaning, yes, you can drink and party all you want).

The holiday season is really about togetherness.
Photo by Mel Poole from Unsplash.com

5.  Share the spirit.

There are many who may not be as fortunate as you and be unable to celebrate the holidays – e.g. forgotten seniors in old-age homes, kids in orphanages, sick kids in – say – a cancer ward in some hospital, homeless families, et cetera.

As someone who may be in a better position, give some joy by reaching out to them. Maybe – just maybe – by seeing that you’re actually in a far, far better position than many others, you’d understand that there are actually things to be thankful for this season.

As someone who may be in a better position, give some joy by reaching out to them.
Photo by David Everett Strickler from Unsplash.com

So, yes, it’s that time of the year again when the holiday spirit is all around us. And I say: Why not make the most of it by enjoying it?

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