Incredible Ideas That Will Spice Up Your Valentine’s Day Meal!

The 14th of February only means one thing: Valentine’s Day! Rather than seeing it as a corporate holiday, it’s sweeter if you view it as an occasion to show your partner love. And, there’s no better way to do that than to cook a meal with all the trimmings.

Of course, if you’re going to pull out all the stops, it can’t be a boring recipe. The food has to be extra creative to show your loved one how much you care. Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be a challenge this Valentine’s with these incredible ideas for a show-stopping meal!

Try A Different Cuisine

On the 14th of February, couples tend to opt for the same cuisines. Whether it’s French or Italian, you’ll probably want to go with something that feels romantic, and these two are the leading contenders. However, there are dozens of cuisines that are perfect for Valentine’s Day treat, and you should try one. You can learn how to cook dried black beans and rustle up a Mexican storm, or maybe you prefer to spice things up with Caribbean jerk? Regardless, putting different ingredients on the plate will instantly take your meal to a new level.

But Practise It

A drawback of trying something new is the fact that you’re inexperienced. You’ve never prepared a Mexican dish before, which means there’s a chance it might not work. The last thing you want to do is ruin your Valentine’s Day dining experience by serving slop. Thankfully, you can push the creative boat out and prepare flavors that will wow and amaze by practising them before the big day. Whenever you get an opportunity, you can cook the meal you want to serve for Valentine’s for other people. By the 14th, it’ll be part of your repertoire.

Keep It Simple

Please don’t try too hard and bite off more than you can chew. Attempting to cook a three-course meal that’s out of your wheelhouse will only increase the chances of something going wrong. Therefore, it’s better to stick to the basics. An excellent tip is to use locally-sourced produce – the freshness will enhance any dish, no matter how straightforward. Alternatively, avoid unnecessary add-ons that only make life difficult. Sure, a cocktail is great, but only if it doesn’t take hours to prepare! Remember that food is the essential part of the day, and it deserves the most attention.

But Don’t Skip Dessert

With that in mind, you should try and serve dessert wherever possible. There are several reasons, including that the final dish gives you a chance to redeem yourself if the worst happens. More importantly, however, is that dessert is the most romantic part of the meal. Giving each other eyes across a table while eating chocolate mousse is not only sexy; it’s an aphrodisiac. In fact, there are lots of dessert ingredients that will get the heart racing, which is another reason not to skip your pudding!

How are you going to prepare a meal that is fit for Valentine’s Day this February?

5 Tips For Valentine’s Day

5 Valentine’s Day date ideas for people on a budget.

  • Wake up early, get a single long stem rose, cook a nice breakfast and serve it to your spouse or lover in bed. Let them wake up to a nice surprise.
  • Play their favourite songs all day. If you can find a romantic list of songs that you both love, even better. Keep it light.
  • Write down a list of things you love about the other person.
  • Write down a list of things you want to do them and what you’d want them to do to you
  • Set a romantic dinner – candle lights, roses, dim lights, soft music and serve a home made dinner or order from a nice place that isn’t too expensive. You don’t have to splurge to make it romantic!

And a bonus 6th one – sex it up in the bedroom! Get whatever you need, but do fuck the night away!

Prompt from 28 Days of Writing Prompts for February at The SitsGirls

Could You Become A Financial Trader?

Forex has been one of the fastest-growing financial markets in the world. Never before has a financial market been so accessible to people all around the world. People all over the world are trading Forex in a bid to make their millions. If you scroll down Instagram you will find adverts for trading packages that sell a dream of making people rich. However, understanding how to trade Forex isn’t going to be something that comes naturally. It’s so easy to lose money from one trade gone wrong, such as it is with most trading options. But do you think that you could be the next to master the trade?

Forex trading is self-taught by many of the people who are doing it on a smaller scale. However, this smaller scale is still making people millions a year. It’s just when compared to the banks and the Forex brokers who run their own company, the money made is small. The trends around the world are showing that the Forex market trading platforms are still in their early stages, even though the advancements have been incredible.

These advancements in technology mean that the Forex market is readily available to all of those who want to give it a go. There are even platforms that allow traders to trade offline but in a real-time market. So no real money is being used and strategies can be tested.

To better understand how much the Forex market has spread globally, this infographic shows where Forex trading has spread to around the globe.


Infographic Source financial traders globally

Getting More Involved With The Hobby You Love

Most people have some sort of hobby or interest, nowadays. The web has opened the doors to these sorts of activities, giving far more people the chance to enjoy them than ever before. You can learn about the hobbies you like, buy items which make it easier to enjoy them, and can find communities of like-minded people to share your passion with. Of course, though, there will come a time when a lot of people will want to take their hobby deeper. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring some of the best ways to achieve this goal, giving you a range of different paths to take when you’re approaching something like this.

Making

In the past, people used to make a lot more of their own possessions than they do today. This is partly thanks to modern stores making it much easier to simply buy things, but is also down to the fact that a lot of people don’t learn skills which enable them to make things when they are at school. Your hobby is a great chance to turn this around. For example, if you like to go shooting, you could think about pressing your own cartridges for the job. Companies like Diamond K Brass can supply the parts you’d need for this, and there are plenty of resources around the web which can teach you how to make these items.

Teaching

Alongside making things, you could also think about teaching. It is often said that teaching is the best way to learn, and this is especially true for something like a hobby. There are a couple of ways to handle this, with running your own blog being the easiest and most popular. This way you can write and make videos about your field of interest, providing information which will help newcomers to the hobby to get started. Of course, alternatively, you could also think about teaching face to face, though this will probably be harder to organise.

Building A Community

Online communities have been around for a long time, though they haven’t lost any of their popularity. Building a community for your own hobby shouldn;t be too hard, with a forum-style website and social media accounts being the only tools you’ll need to get started. This will feel like an uphill battle at first, though this will quickly change once you start to get more and more visitors to your site. Once you have enough people using your site, you could consider using ads to make money from it, giving you the chance to delve even deeper into your interests and provide more to your community.

With this in mind, you should be feeling ready to take on the challenge of getting more involved with the hobby you love. A lot of people work hard on things like this, only to find that they can’t go much further once they reach a certain point in the future. Of course, though, there are always ways to push this further, and you just need to find the right idea for you.

How You Can Reward Staff: 5 Unique Recognition Ideas

When you own a business, you want to ensure that you keep your staff happy. A way of making sure that your business doesn’t stagnate or fail, it’s no secret that upbeat employees = success. Your employees will perform better if they are happy with their work environment, so as a business owner, you should take the appropriate steps to make sure this happens.

And a great way of doing this is through offering them perks and rewards. Of course, throughout the years you can introduce things such as bring your dog to work once a week, work from home days or flexible working. But there are certain rewards that you can implement if they have done something that particularly benefited the business – such as improving sales with a new marketing strategy they created.

So how can you reward them? If you’re unsure as to where to start, here are five unique recognition ideas that you can take inspiration from:

  • Hire a Food Truck

A great (and delicious) reward is hiring a food truck for your office. Whether this is offering tacos, ice cream or another mouth-watering item of food, your staff will love this reward. This is particularly wonderful in the summer months – as you could arrange for it to arrive around lunchtime when the weather is nice, so that they can sit outside and enjoy their treat.

  • Throw A Party 

Everyone loves a good party. So why not throw your staff a party to help celebrate a special achievement? No matter how big or small this party is, your staff will love the opportunity to socialize, eat some food and dance the night away. During the party, consider making a speech in which you thank your staff personally for their efforts.

  • Organize a Fun Day Out

If you really want to treat and reward your staff, why not organize a fun day out for them? No matter what you organize, whether it’s a day at a waterpark, doing a thrilling activity such as paintballing or a simple trip to the local theatre, it will give them that much-deserved break from the office. Taking the time to plan this will show your staff how much you appreciate all that they do for you throughout the year.

  • Purchase Challenge Coins

If you’re looking for something that’s truly extraordinary, consider purchasing custom challenge coins for your staff – or those who have particularly stood out from a company such as Challenge Coins Limited. A unique gift, they can be customized so that your company logo is on there and are incredibly cost-effective. A technique that the military has used for years, it’s something that your staff will love.

  • Give Them Some Time Off

A perfect way of keeping your staff motivated is rewarding them with time off. Whether this is at Christmas or a week throughout summer, it will give them much-needed rest and relaxation away from the workplace. This perk is one that’s bound to be adorned by all of your employees.

3 Reasons Why It’s Worth Having Non-Digital Hobbies

We live in an extremely digital age, and it’s all but normal now for the majority of people to spend virtually every single moment of their waking time in front of some type of screen – whether that’s a computer (and a social media feed), or a TV streaming the latest hits from Netflix.

As things stand right now, you’ve really got to work to get “non-digital” hobbies off the ground – but whether those hobbies are things like creating the perfect fishpond in your garden and identifying the best pond stocking company, or whether they are more along the lines of stamp collecting; it’s well worth having some “old school” hobbies after all.

Here are just a few reasons why it was having non-digital hobbies.

Because constant digital stimulation literally overloads your brain

You could be forgiven for assuming that scanning the web all day doesn’t really do anything much to your consciousness, nevermind your brain. But, according to a growing wealth of evidence, you’d be wrong in that assumption. The writer Adam Alter revealed, in his book “Irresistible”, just how much social media companies and other tech giants utilise essentially exploitative techniques from the gambling world, in order to ensure that you stay hooked on their services.

Another writer, Nicholas Carr, showed that constant digital stimulation literally “overloads” and “rewires” the brain, thereby significantly reducing the ability of the person in question to concentrate on anything at all for a prolonged period of time, or in an in-depth way. Your digital technologies should be viewed, first and foremost, as tools. Make them work for you, not the other way around.

Because there is something deeply fulfilling about active hobbies

There’s something truly ancient and fulfilling about creating, or repairing, things with your hands – whether that means painting a piece of art, or working on a vintage era old motorcycle of yours. As mentioned earlier in this article, passive entertainment forms are now more the order of the day, and it can be too easy to get caught up in a habit loop of never really doing anything very “creative,” yourself. On some level, we all get a sense of fulfilment from actually “doing stuff.” So, get a non-digital hobby that requires you to “do stuff.”

Because, these days, it will make you a more interesting person

Everyone wants to stand out in some way (some positive way, at least), and we all like the idea of being interesting people with interesting stories to tell. If you are engaged in non-digital hobbies and pastimes these days, that already makes you slightly out of the ordinary, and a bit more of an “interesting” person, at least in some ways.

Of course, the specific extent to which someone finds you more “interesting” because of your hobbies is bound to vary. At the very least, though, you’ll definitely be a more “well-rounded” person as a result of doing more stuff, in a broader range of different areas. According to the book, “Range,” the broader your skill sets, interests, and experiences, the higher the likelihood that you will actually succeed and feel fulfilled in life, in general.

Wonderful Ways to Stand Out as a Wedding Supplier

Being in the wedding industry is hard work; you work long hours, weekends off are a myth and you can’t always guarantee clients at all. You are always looking for ways to stand out from your competitors, but your ideas so far haven’t quite played out as you’d like them to. You may be planning on heading to a wedding exhibition or fair, but you know that you’re going to need to be prepared. There are so many stand out suppliers in your industry, so here are a few worthwhile tips to take on board.

Head to Wedding Showcases and Fairs

One of the best ways to stand out in the wedding industry, is by attending wedding showcases and fairs at local venues. Choosing local ones rather than huge national shows can really play in your favour. People want to see suppliers that are close to them geographically as it builds more trust. If you are in any doubt about standing out then you should definitely consider 10×10 trade show booths. If you have your brand name, your color scheme and your range of products on display, there is no doubt that potential passersby will spot you.

Network With Other Industry Professionals

Whether you’re at a wedding fair or at home, there are so many ways you can network and build those all important contacts. Join a Facebook group for local wedding suppliers and talk to people who are in the same boat as you. You could even collaborate together on a styled shoot to showcase each other’s work. Building others up instead of feeling like you’re head to head with them can often play in your favour.

Observe Your Competition 

You don’t necessarily want to copy what your competitors are doing, but you do need to keep a firm eye on their strategies. If you see that something is working really well, then you need to go ahead and try it for yourself. Market research will also help you to stay in tune with what your clients are looking for; the market will be changing constantly, so it’s good to stay across this as often as you can.

Hire a Copywriter to Assist With Your Blog

There are a number of specialist writers out there who have a tonne of experience in writing for wedding industry professionals. If you don’t have the brain power or time to start up a blog, there are excellent writers who can help you. Blogging not only established your authority in your industry, but it also helps you get discovered on Google too!

Becoming overwhelmed as a wedding supplier is completely natural; not only are you trying to book clients but you’re also super passionate about what you do. Creating something beautiful for a couples’ wedding day is what you love doing, so it can be disheartening when you don’t get that booking you have been eagerly anticipating. If you take some of these ideas on board, you will soon have your own, workable strategies to keep you motivated. It may take time to see the result you’re looking for, but you will get there in the end.

Branding Ideas That Will Impress Your Industry

As an entrepreneur, you most likely know that your company’s brand is important. That isn’t news to you. Every business owner knows this. Yet, some businesses have much better brands than others. And if your company is struggling, you might be wondering what improvements you could make to your business. The goal is to build a better reputation for your company. This is how to turn heads in your marketplace. As a result, you’ll be able to gain customers and grow your business. These are some branding ideas that will impress your industry.

Give something back to your community.

Giving something back to the community could really benefit your brand. It would show that you and your team members care about more than your company’s profit margins. It would show that you care about other people, and this would remind your industry that your business is comprised of people with caring ideals. The goal is to add a human element to your company’s brand identity. Maybe you could donate to charities which mean something to you and your employees. That would demonstrate the human side to your business and its brand.

Care for your employees.

You should care for your employees, too. That goes without saying, obviously, but you could always take things further to impress your industry. A company that takes care of its workers will create a team full of motivated employees who want to deliver a kind and charismatic service to their clients. Additionally, your business will get a name for itself as a company that looks after its staff members. So, caring for your employees will help your brand on many levels. You could take inspiration from businesses such as Cynthia Telles. They have great benefits for their Latina workers. It’s about more than adhering to workplace laws regarding equality; it’s about caring for each of your employees and making them feel valued.

Conduct extensive research.

One of the most important ways in which you could make your brand better is by conducting extensive research. If you want to develop an identity for your business that impresses your industry, then you need to know your industry. Market research will give you the information necessary to develop solutions which appeal to your current and potential clients. You should aim to find out what your target market is missing by talking to consumers in your marketplace.

You should talk to your customers about their opinions on your service. Request feedback, and come up with ideas which solve the issues in your market. You might want to post polls on social networks, such as Twitter, to get a general consensus on each aspect of your products and services. Once you know what your current and intended customers like and dislike about your business, you’ll be able to make the right improvements. This will help you to catch the attention of your target market. By listening to consumers, you’ll also get a reputation as a kind and caring company. That should help your brand name, too.

Shuffling Off This Mortal Coil: Practical And Personal Ways To Prepare For Death

It may cross your mind every single day or it may not. As we get older there could be a fear of death that starts to become a part of who we are. But when we truly start to think about this in the round and what we need to do before we shuffle off this mortal coil, is there anything we should prepare for? Not just practically, but personally as well.

Preparing Your Will

This seems to be the obstacle that many of us think that is a sign we should prepare to die soon. In fact, preparing a will is just common sense regardless of how old you are. It’s purely a way to stop anybody that inherits your goods or debt from fighting over it. Consulting a probate attorney will give you the information that you really need to know. Preparing your will can be, believe it or not, quite therapeutic. It can make you think about your life but also how your funeral is going to be. Some people consider this to be a very grim way of thinking but when you start to look at preparing your funeral it’s all about it being a celebration of your life. Some people love the idea of the relatives wailing in the aisles but others want it to be a colorful and vibrant affair. And preparing your will is essential from a legal standpoint but it’s something that can be quite fun!

Fixing Your Debt

From the perspective of anyone who thinks that they haven’t got long left on this planet, it can seem incredibly futile to sort out debt and bills. But the reason to do this is purely to make sure that nobody inherits your debt. Fixing your debt doesn’t have to be something that takes up all of your time. In fact, when you pass on, your estate could be used to pay off certain debts. But you’ve got to keep on top of your will in this respect. If you can fix your debt early on in life, as well as your assets, you can enjoy everything so much more. As they say, you can’t take it with you when you go.

Understanding How To Make Peace

When you consult any of those lists that show people’s regrets in life, the main regret is always not having the courage to be true to themselves. It’s something that we all know deep down after so many years on this planet. We all know that we have to be true to ourselves but we find ourselves avoiding this for whatever reason. When in school we look at making an impact on our peers. This then translates later in life into fitting a certain social construct. But if we can start to make peace with ourselves, this is when we are ready to move on. Some of us spent so long trying to please others that the moment we let it all go is when we are ready to shuffle off this mortal coil. But peace is something that we can all attain within ourselves. Part of it is about being forgiving rather than holding onto anger or bile that makes us unwell. It’s also about realizing that making peace is a key to life.

You Only Have One Life

We don’t listen to our elders. In fact, a lot of us think them a nuisance but when we realize that we only have one life to lead and we spent the vast majority of it focusing on pointless things we could do something about it and turn our lives around or we can think that it’s too late and continue down the path that we’ve already trod. The fact of the matter is that it’s a cliché that we only have one life to lead but when we start to think about this journey they call living it’s amazing how many people decide to live a life of sheer misery. Perhaps part of preparing to leave is about understanding those regrets that people have later in life and using them right now. One of the main regrets of people that are dying is that they didn’t let themselves be happy. If we can give ourselves permission to feel happier despite our circumstances we are preparing to go on our terms.

It’s hardly something that can be encapsulated in a handful of thoughts but when you hear so many of those clichés about regrets in life and preparing for death the same things continue to come up time and again. Surely this means that we’ve got to just pay attention to those things and implement these pointers into our lives?

Smart Ways To Make Money Playing Video Games

Gaming is an incredibly fun past-time, allowing you to escape the stresses of everyday life. From board games to video games, and even role-playing games, playing is among the best parts of life. Turning this hobby into a full-time income is countless people’s wildest dream. Thankfully, making money from video games is more than possible. In fact, you could even earn more than a traditional job. With that in mind, here are six smart ways to make money playing video games.

1.Test New Video Games

A video game must survive many development stages before you find it on the shelves. An O.G. idea for making money with gaming is to play it during these stages. Game developers must make improvements to the game, so pay game testers to try it out. While doing so, the tester has to look for bugs, glitches, and other issues. This might sound fun, but it can be quite boring.

2. Stream All Gameplay Live

Rather than playing for yourself, you should try streaming any gameplay for the entire world to see. Streaming sites, like Twitch, allow you to do so easily. However, that doesn’t mean that making money is necessarily simple. An issue that many games face is building up a large audience. Having only a handful of viewers watching your content won’t make you much money.

3. Win At Online Casinos

There are various platforms that pay you for playing online games. Nonetheless, the biggest potential winnings come from online casinos. With Monkey Casino’s live gaming promo, you can get set up and start playing blackjack or roulette in little to no time. Although you could potentially win hundreds, you must remember that gambling is a risk and doesn’t always offer any reward.

4. Become A Gaming Coach

While gaming skills come naturally to some, other people struggle to get the hang of it. If you consider yourself an experienced gamer, you could offer services as a gaming coach. Whether you recruit students privately or use gaming coach websites, people will pay for your advice. Before they do, however, they will want to see your skills, so streaming gameplay is helpful.

5. Write Video Game Guides

Having experience gaming doesn’t mean you want to teach students one-on-one. Thankfully, there are other options to consider. Starting a gaming blog would allow you to publish guides for specific skills, levels, or games. This would put some distance between yourself and your audience, but could still earn you an income. Having ads on your posts is one way to do that.

6. Make Game-Inspired Merch

Enjoying gaming doesn’t mean you’re good at it. If you would like to make money with video games but aren’t the best player yourself, you could make merch instead. Etsy is a brilliant platform to start your own small business. Whatever game or games you choose, there are many products that you could create, including t-shirts, coffee mugs, posters, and figurines.

Gaming offers unlimited fun, but with the advice above, you can make money with this hobby too.

What’s Next For Empty Nesters?

When you have spent so much of your life raising and supporting your children, it can leave you feeling anxious once they have flown the nest. Your big house might suddenly seem unnecessarily big, your life suddenly has gaps where taking the kids to various activities used to take up time. Many parents go through a strange period, almost like mourning, as their life changes.

But this is not a time to give up. As we are living longer, the chapter after children can be just as fun and exciting as the chapter leading up to them. Indeed, many people choose to move to residential areas like 55+ Communities in Johns Creek so that they can be around their peers, almost like going back to college.

So, what are your options?

Move to a New Community

If you need a change of scenery, selling your house and moving on could be a good option. However, don’t make this decision hastily. Consider where your friends are and what you are looking for in your new area. Moving from your current home because you are bored isn’t a good enough reason to go. Aim for something positive instead.

So, if you are looking at a new community, think about the sort of place you are looking for. Communities specifically for people who have retired often offer a broad range of entertainment options. However, you might not want that just yet. In this case, think about what sort of amenities you want to have within walking distance such as cafes and shops. Do think about the long term implications of moving as well – the older you get, the harder it will be, so there is a balance to be had.

Make the Most of Your Time

Having an empty nest can leave you with a lot of time on your hands and when you retire, that time expands even further. In years gone by, people retired because they simply couldn’t work anymore but you have the luxury of being able to do things without having to worry about money. This is one of the best opportunities modern life provides and you would be mad not to make the most of it!

Adult learning courses mean that you can go back to college if you want or you could take a short course and learn a new skill. Going to classes is a great way to meet people of your own age and make new friends too. In fact, lots of people in their fifties and over are now going back to their education.

Of course, learning isn’t the only option. You might decide that this is the perfect time to travel the world or maybe you are quite happy to settle into a new routine of dinner parties and golf. Whatever you choose to do, you have an opportunity to fill your time with activities and people who make you happy. Don’t sit around at home – you still have years ahead of you and they are likely to be some of the best of your life.

A Bit, Or A Lot, On The Side? Looking After Your Side Hustle

It seems that so many of us need an extra income. As we start to look at the various options out there, a side hustle becomes one of the most alluring. But ask anyone who has tried to keep a business afloat and they will tell you that there is a lot to take into account. Looking after any business, regardless of its size, is about a sufficient amount of protection. How can you protect your side hustle so it can give you the income you need but also make sure you don’t let it fall short of the mark?

Arming Yourself With The Right Tools

The name of the game with any business is productivity. If you are able to improve your productivity you can potentially earn more by doing less. When promoting yourself via social media, there are plenty of tools to take advantage of like Hootsuite. But you must also remember the importance of protecting yourself in a technical sense. If you are promoting an online business you might not think that you are are going to be the victim of a cyber attack but if you are hopping from cafe to cafe doing your work online it’s important to get a virtual private network like the ones TorGuard provide. The right tools will give you that foundation to progress.

Understanding The Market Need For Your Product

Because everybody seems to set up a side hustle now, you’ve got to find the right type of products for your passions but also see if there is a demand for it. Everybody is setting up an Amazon Affiliate account now to go with their blog, but does this mean that it’s already an overcrowded market that we are jumping into? Think about what you can realistically achieve with your spare time and then address if there is a demand for the product. It’s always a good idea to branch out to a specific niche because this is what will keep you competitive in the larger market.

Making Sure It Doesn’t Impact Your Life Negatively

You should look after your side hustle and it should look after you. If you find that you’re dedicating too much time and it’s not having a positive impact on your life, you have to ask yourself, is it worth it? A side hustle is something that we should do on the side and while we have to put adequate time into it, if it gets to the point where we are doing too much for very little return it might be time to bid it goodbye. Or at the very least, you should find something that you can fit in with your life. The side hustle needs to work for you rather than you putting your heart and soul into it.

A side hustle is a fantastic way to acquire an extra income if we do it right. But you must remember that in order to make it worth your while you have to look after it properly and make sure it fits in with your life in the right ways.

4 Ways to Ensure Your Business Doesn’t Stagnate

A business needs to find ways to diversify their brand, introduce new products and grow their audience. If they fail to do one of these things, they risk becoming stagnant and falling behind the competition. This is never a good position to be in as it can seriously hinder your growth potential.

So what should be done about it?

1. Get on social media

One of the best ways to stay relevant and keep up with trends is to get yourself on social media. Social media will help you keep track of what’s going on in the industry, but also gives you a way to keep in touch with your audience. It’s fantastic for networking as well and you’ll definitely want to focus on creating a presence on multiple social media platforms if possible. The use of social media as a marketing tool is incredibly powerful, but you need to use it in the correct way or else it could have a negative effect on your business.

2. Think outside the box for revenue opportunities

Growing your revenue requires that you think outside of the box now and then. This will ensure that you’re diversifying your sources of income and gaining extra capital to assist in your business’s growth. There are many ways to diversify, such as renting out your employees on a contract basis or even renting out your private land and property to other companies. Companies like Vertical Consultants specialize in the renting of your private land to attract telecom companies who are looking to raise cellphone towers in your local area. The goal is to use your resources in an efficient and effective way in order to create more income streams.

3. Don’t do everything yourself

Make sure you don’t try to do everything yourself in your business. This is a common problem that a lot of entrepreneurs face because they’re worried about the costs of hiring an employee. They might also be fixated on quality control, unable to trust others when it comes to communicating with clients or creating products to sell. This is a bad habit to get into and it’s vital that you open up a bit and consider hiring employees. To start, you could also look into freelancers that help you remote with things such as website and logo design.

4. Use modern technologies when possible

The use of computers is essential to be competitive today, but it’s not the only form of technology that you should be looking into. There are plenty of hardware and software solutions that can help you speed up your tasks so that you’re more productive. Even something like accounting can be simplified with the help of cloud accounting software. However, this can quickly become an expensive money sink and it’s essential that you consider how much money you’re spending and how much return you’re getting on your investment. Saving a couple of hours each month could be worth your money as long as the time you save helps you grow your business and generate more revenue.

15 Hobbies That Could Change Your Life

If you’re feeling inspired this year and motivated to do new things, then perhaps a new hobby is for you. However, a hobby isn’t just good because it provides you with and enjoyment, there are many benefits to trying new hobbies that can not only improve your life and your health, but it could even help you in your career. Having a decent hobby can help you relieve stress, build your self-confidence, become a more exciting person, find a new passion, give you new skills, create new social connections and even earn you additional income.

So, what could your new hobby for 2020 be?

Upcycling

Crafting is both a fun hobby, and it’s also therapeutic. Not only this but upcycling means that those things you still have but no longer use for can be made into something useful and something you love again. Find things in your house, that you no longer love. Do you have some old shelves that could do with a bit of attention? Even a glass jar that is just sitting around gathering dust, you could spray paint it and make it into a modern vase. There’s loads of inspiration for this kind of thing online.

Fishing

Whether you fancy wading through a river in search of trout or relaxing by a river, fishing can be as exciting or as laidback as you make it. There are different types of fishing and so many different places to fish, you can make a weekend of it, take lessons, go to different countries to do it, the options are endless. This is probably the best online fly shop and has a great fly fishing starter kit, so check it out. One of the most exciting things about fishing is that it can sometimes result in a delicious dinner too.

Blogging

Everyone’s a blogger these days, but there’s a good reason for it. If you’ve got something to say, blogging can be an excellent place for you to express yourself. Whether you want to blog about mental health, food, lifestyle, books or films, there is a place for you online. Even though so many people are blogging, there’s always room for more. Of course, you need to start writing for yourself and about something you are passionate about, and then once you’re in the flow, you could look into monetising it and turning it into a potential career or just a side hustle.

Drawing

Even if you think you are no good at drawing, have you ever been to a class? Drawing can be very therapeutic, and you can learn how to do it. There are simple techniques to get you started so that a few drawing lessons could get yours on the right track. It’s good to have a challenge, learn something new and you might make new friends too. Also, if you end up drawing some lovely things, then they make great gifts for friends and family, or you could even try and sell a few.

Photography

Another fantastic skill to learn and can be so useful when it comes to taking photos of your family and family occasions. You could take a course as there’s plenty about and you can learn the different types of photography.

Learn A Language

If this is something you’ve been meaning to do for a while, then why not make 2020 the year you finally do it. With so many apps and online courses to learn new languages, there is no end of resources to teach yourself, all you need is a little discipline. Or you could enrol yourself in a course which will be a great way of meeting like minded people too.

Writing

They say everyone has at least one book in them, is this true for you? If so, then maybe now is the time to start putting pen to paper. Start slow, take it one step at a time and if you want to get out and about then sign up to a writing class or meetup group as this will also give you the discipline you need if you find it a struggle to motivate yourself. Writing can be great therapy and like other hobbies, could help you in your career too.

Cooking

If you can’t cook, then this is something that you should learn how to do. It will expand your mind, your palette, your taste buds and your weekly menu. When you learn the basics of cooking, you realise the possibilities of what you can make. You find that making soup isn’t hard at all, that you can put a roast dinner together on a Sunday and a homemade lasagne is a doddle. If you sign up to a cooking class, then you’ll meet lots of people and come home with exciting dishes each week. What’s not to love?

Birdwatching

Birdwatching is a great hobby to take up, and that is because there is so much more to it than you might think. For one, birds are all around us. No matter where you live, you can always find birds, so it’s a very accessible hobby. Two, it is a hobby that gets you to connect with nature which is very good for us humans and something that we seem to do less of in this day and age. Also, birdwatching is a very economical hobby as no expensive equipment is necessary to enjoy watching birds. All you need is a good field guide and a decent binocular, and you can do this hobby all your round.

Archery

Despite what you might think, Archery is one of the most peaceful experiences you will find; it is genuinely a form of meditation. It is also good for improving hand-eye coordination, and as your body must be held in a constant position while you’re setting up your aim and taking a shot, this improves balance too. It is also a sport that results into muscle development as it builds strength in your arms, hands, chest, and shoulders.

Running

Most people associate running with pain; however, if you start small, and run in different and beautiful places where you won’t get bored, then you’ll fall in love with it. Running won’t just be a sport that keeps you fit, but a hobby that you will love and become passionate about. You’ll soon find yourself running marathons.

Join A Book Club

If you enjoy reading, then why not opt for a hobby where you can incorporate your love of books? A book club where you can meet other people who have read the same book, and you can discuss it with is brilliant for book lovers, and you’ll learn so much more listening to other people’s opinions.

Computer Programming

Learning to program computers can be not just a hobby but something that could really open doors for you. It’s nice to learn how these things that we have become so reliant on, actually work but also could really help you in your career or to get a new one.

Coding

A hobby that lets you build something is definitely a hobby worth having. Coding is something else that could unlock doors for you as well as being a really interesting hobby. If you’re not sure if it’s for you, then you could try taking a free class at Code Academy to start with.

Volunteering

Volunteering can be hard work, but it can also be seriously rewarding.  There are loads of places you can do it; you can go for an animal shelter, a homeless shelter, volunteer to help and work with children. If you have some hours to spare and want to make a difference, then volunteering could be the perfect hobby for you.

Get Out! Reasons To Embrace The Outdoors Now And Again

Do you find that there are times where you feel that you need more adventure in life? If you are feeling like you need something different in life, getting out in touch with nature is a fantastic approach. When we spend so long indoors consuming Netflix and pop culture it can be quite difficult to get outside and truly be at one with nature. And even if you don’t go for something so hippie-like, there are some great reasons to get outdoors.

It Could Spur You Onto A Whole New Career

Working out in nature isn’t just about being a tree surgeon but if this piques your interest, you can look on centaurtreeservices.co.uk to see if it’s your type of thing. Being outdoors isn’t necessarily about feeling at one with nature because there are things you can do to help in terms of industrial processes. We can work in the construction industry or farming, and these types of outdoor jobs can give us a whole new meaning to life. You could even start a business! And it’s these little things that can make you consider a whole new direction in life. Working outdoors doesn’t have to be boring or miserable. You can make it what you want. It’s always important to note that with the construction industry or farming that there are unique components and machinery that you need to consider, such as red diesel which is used in off-road machinery; and you can check out fuelbox.co.uk to find out more information about red diesel. Starting a whole new career can certainly reinvigorate us just as long as we have the right atmosphere.

That Different Sensation

Being outdoors is good for us. When we are working in a career that doesn’t give us the opportunity to go outside we can feel hemmed in. Going outdoors is good for us and this means that if we start to find ways to get out more, we will feel better. It’s such a cliché, but going out for walks and getting more oxygen in your system is really good for you. We have to remember that we can spend a lot of time being barricaded indoors, and while we love video games and watching Netflix, we need to get outside and truly get some sort of different sensation. Being outdoors is a different type of feeling, and when you start to crave this feeling of healthiness and happiness you will continue to chase it. You will then possibly start to think about joining a gym or exercising more. Once you start to go outside it can open up a whole new world for you, literally! Start to think about what going outside can do for you as a person. Yes, it’s great exposure to oxygen but going for a long walk is your opportunity to contemplate things. But it’s also a great way for you to meditate without doing it in the most hippie of ways.

It’s certainly worth thinking about going outside now and again, especially if you don’t do it much. Give it a go!

Is 2020 Going To Be The Year For Mental Health?

In recent years the global mental health crisis has finally started to take center stage and more people than ever are now aware of the importance of looking after their mental health and the services available to them if they are struggling. In 2019 there were more mental health awareness events hosted than ever before and the wave of mental health activism doesn’t seem to be stopping with 2020 lined up to be the year that mental health finally gets the recognition it deserves. But what’s currently being done doesn’t seem to be making the drop that it needs to in the mental health ocean, so what can we do to make sure that 2020 is the yeat for mental health?

What is the problem?

It is estimated that 1 in 5 people globally suffers from a mental disorder at any given time with depression and anxiety ranking as the two most prevalent mental health disorders. Although mental illness has no gender bias statistics show that women are more likely to suffer from a mental illness than men and both education and employment have been found to be intrinsically linked with the prevalence of mental disorders, though of course, mental illness can strike anyone regardless of their employment or education status. Living with a mental disorder can be debilitating taking a serious toll on the quality of an individual’s life which in some cases can be too much to bear leading to attempts of suicide. Every year approximately 800,000 people choose to take their own life, with many more attempting suicide but ultimately being unsuccessful. Suicide and suicide attempts can have devastating effects on not only the individual whose life is in question but also their friends, families, colleagues and peers and no one should feel that suicide is their only way out from mental illness. So what is being done?

What is currently being done?

In recent years the world has come a long way in recognizing the prevalence of mental illnesses and has begun to break down the stigma surrounding speaking out about it. Some of the things that have been put in place to improve mental health awareness include:

  • Awareness days
    Awareness days such as Mental Health Awareness Week, Time To Talk, Self Injury Awareness Day, World Bipolar Day and World Suicide Prevention Day to name but a few, have helped to raise the profile of mental health issues around the world whilst encouraging individuals who suffer from mental illnesses to speak out and get the help they need. With the help of social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter these awareness days are now able to reach more people than ever, spanning oceans and getting into the heart of homes to reach those most at need. Awareness days have also provided charities with a valuable means to gain funding and donations, contributing to life-saving mental health research and the funding of important charitable mental health services.
  • Education
    Alongside awareness days, some schools are now electing to teach their pupils about their mental health in an attempt to break down barriers and remove stigma in the early stages of childhood development. Children face some of their most difficult challenges in the school environment from bullying to exams and understanding their mental health, how these challenges may make them feel and who they can turn to for help can help many of them to navigate their problems and steer clear of more serious mental health issues.
  • Coverage by the media
    The media has also had a big part to play in breaking down mental health barriers with shows such as Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why making controversial issues such as suicide, rape and depression mainstream. TV presenters and celebrities have also begun doing their part, sharing their own mental health journeys and promoting mental health charities and awareness days to their far-reaching audiences.
  • Online counseling
    Not so long ago the only way to speak to a professional about your mental health was in person or at best over the telephone which led to many people avoiding accessing their local mental health services. Now, thanks to the internet, a new age of online counseling is available enabling more people to access mental health services whenever and wherever they need them, even if they do not feel comfortable sitting down with someone in person. One such online service is Better Help, offering free online therapy to those that need it over the internet.

New Laws
The last few years have also seen the introduction of new Extreme Risk Protection Orders in the USA designed to prevent a mental health crisis from turning into a tragedy. An Extreme Risk Protection Order, or ERPO for short, enables family members or law enforcement agents to ask the court for permission to temporarily remove an individual’s access to firearms if they are thought to be likely to either cause harm to themselves or others. The ERPO laws have the potential to save many lives in countries where firearms are legally carried especially in states such as Oregon where over 83% of deaths by gunshot are suicide. Removing an at-risk individual’s access to firearms can help stop them from acting impulsively in their time of need.

What more could be done to help?

Although the chatter around mental health has grown significantly in recent years mental health statistics have failed to dramatically improve and in some countries, statistics have even continued to rise. This lack of improvement shows that yet more still needs to be done to support people who suffer from mental illnesses and to prevent mental illnesses from occurring in individuals in the first place. If 2020 is to be the year for mental health then here are some areas that need to be focused on.

  1. Access to mental health services in developing countries
    A lot has been done in recent years to give those with the internet better access to mental health services but this does nothing to help the millions of people across developing or third world countries who do not have access to technology or the internet. For these people, mental health issues can still be isolating resulting in higher suicide rates To help those without the internet gain better access to mental health services there needs to be a greater prevalence of mental health drop-in centers and people on the ground to offer mental health support.
  2. Wider education in schools
    Despite the proven importance of providing early mental health education to children many countries, states and schools still choose not to teach pupils about mental health issues, mental health services, and coping techniques leaving them vulnerable in a very challenging part of their lives. For 2020 to be the year for mental health we need to see that mental health is spoken about in every school and at every age group, giving the next generation the tools they need to not only tackle their current challenges but those they may face in later life.
  3. Education in adults

Although providing education to the next generation is vital for improving future mental health statistics we also need to educate the adult population on the importance of open mental health communication in an attempt to help them break down some of the stigmas that they have encountered over the years and to come forth about their own mental health challenges. Although the media is doing a lot to make mental health a more approachable subject there are still more ways that it can be incorporated into daily life, making mental health as easy to talk about as having a common cold.

  1. A greater focus on mental health in the workplace
    The workplace and the challenges people face at work are some of the biggest causes of workplace stress and mental health problems. To combat this, employers need to take mental health more seriously providing their employees with the tools they need to look after their own mental health whilst also being more understanding that in high pressured jobs employees may need a time out to focus on themselves. Mental health needs to be seen on the same level as physical health and treated with the same respect by employers and employees need to understand the pressures that their careers can put on their mental health and how best to combat this.

Continued removal of stigma
Despite all the work that has been done to remove the stigma surrounding mental health a significant amount of work still remains. As mental health issues are often not immediately visible they can easily be swept under the carpet, labeled as falsities or disregarded and sadly these age-old ways of thinking still remain in parts of society across the globe. More work needs to be done for mental health to be treated with the same respect as physical health which will enable people to speak up about how they are feeling and gain access to the services they need. For this to happen we must all continue to speak about mental health, to support mental health awareness charities and events and to educate the next generation on the importance of their own mental health.

New Year. New Dreams

Dreaming big in the New Year is what everyone should be doing. We should all have goals and ambitions that make this year the best one yet. We know that in a few weeks time the motivation of the New Year will have drifted away, so now is the best time to think about what you’d like to achieve before another year flies by. Because that’s exactly what the years are doing at the minute. Before we know it, it will be summer again. And then Christmas will be in our faces quicker than we ever expected. So now is the time to dream big, and we’re going to help you to do that. We want to show you some of the biggest things that you can achieve this year, all of them being achievable if you work hard enough. Keep on reading to see what new dreams you can come up with.

Dreaming about the stars

Your Dream Body

This is one that so many people can relate to at this time of year. After going through the festive season and eating your body weight in food, you’re more than motivated to start back in the gym and on a healthy diet. But that often fades towards the spring, if you even make it to there. So to keep that dream in mind, you need to do six weeks training and eating. Experts say that after six weeks of drinking and eating well, and training however you do it, your body and mind will be in a routine. Rather than being a chore and something you have to work at, it’ll be something that becomes second nature to you. Having someone to get into the swing of things with you will usually help to keep you on track for longer. Body insecurity is one of the most common insecurities, but it can quickly be changed with the right motivation.

Your Dream Home

Everyone dreams of a home that’s most likely going to be out of their reach. If we had it our way, we’d be living in a mansion with a private pool, cinema, and supercars lining the drive. But being realistic, you can get the home of your normal dreams so easily. Whether you’re moving out for the first time, or selling your old home to buy a new, good planning will get you where you need to be. All you have to do is look at homes for sale, find one that ticks all of your boxes, and figure out pricing. It may be a little harder if you’re selling a home to buy a new one, but if you do so at the right time, you’ll often end up making more money from your old home. We’re a firm believer that you can have anything you set your mind to, even a new home!

Your Dream Job

Your dream job is a stones throw away, the only thing that’s holding you back will be your own mindset. People prefer to stay in a job where they feel comfortable within the role, even if it bores them to death. But we think the New Year should be about finding a job that drives you to get out of bed in the morning, not leaves you there until you’re late and rushing out the house.

Everything Drivers Need to Prepare for in 2020

The world of modern driving these days is one that you need to familiarize yourself with. There is no question that having a car is a huge advantage for a lot of people, and it can have a profound impact on your life. But, you need to be clear about the different rules and regulations that will affect you as a driver, both right now, and in 2020. As we’re in the holiday season, it seems like the perfect time to broach this topic.

If you want to stay safe and sound on the roads and make the most of life as a driver, you are going to need to know what to expect. And this means planning and preparing as much as you possibly can. Think about the different elements of the process of driving, and understand what you have to expect from 2020. Here are some of the considerations you are going to have to make to help you prepare for life on the road in 2020.

Is Your Car Roadworthy?

One of the things you need to look into the most when you are a driver is to check how roadworthy your car is. There is a lot you need to consider here, and this is going to be essential when it comes time to improve your vehicle and make a difference to the safety and longevity of it. You want the car to be as efficient as possible then it is important to make sure you check how well it runs on the road, as well as what you can do to improve performance.

How Can You Stay Safer?

Being as safe as possible on the road is also really important, and there is a lot you can do to assess this. Make sure you think about what it takes to stay safer and more secure on the roads, and one of the best ways of doing this is to make sure you drive more sensibly. There are a lot of things that make a big difference to the way you drive when you’re on the road, and making sure you drive more carefully and follow the rules is hugely important.

Understand the Rules

So this brings us neatly to our next point, which is that you need to make sure you understand the rules of the road. There are a lot of things you can do that are going to help with this, and it’s vital that you look at the right way of achieving this. Familiarising yourself with the laws of the road is essential for ensuring you stay safe, but it’s also hugely important for making sure you stay on the right side of the law too!

Protect Against Bad Weather

Protecting your car against bad weather is one of the most important things you can do to look after your car and protect it against adverse weather conditions. This protects the aesthetic appeal of the car, as well as helping to keep it in great shape and ensure it’s running as well as it can. There are plenty of things you can do that are going to help you protect the car, and thinking about how you store it is one of the key factors here.

Reconsider Your Insurance Premium

Your insurance is a must when you are a qualified driver, and the new year is the perfect time to assess and reconsider your existing premium. There are a lot of things that you need to keep in mind if you are serious about doing this, and you are going to need to think hard about the different premiums available. You might well be able to get a better deal by shopping around a bit, and this is important to keep in mind.

Drink Driving is Still an Issue

It is important to know the reality of the situation as a driver, and the fact is that drink driving is still a very real issue. In fact, this is something that is important to understand and learn more about so that you can be prepared. You can find out about the topic here, and make sure you improve your knowledge in the right way moving forward.

How is Technology Making a Difference?

There is no question that technology is having a massive impact on the future of the automobile industry, and will continue to do so. There are a lot of things that you need to think about when it comes to achieving this, and there are a lot of aspects you need to factor in. In many ways technology is making the roads safer, and this is important, but it is also improving and increasing the efficiency of automotive travel, and this is important.

Maintenance Ideas

It is also important that you do as much as you can to look at improving the car as much as possible, and this means you need to look at maintenance tips and ideas. Come up with a strategy to look after your car more effectively; one that doesn’t always have to involve taking it into the garage to be serviced. If you can do a bit of work yourself to improve and maintain the car, this is most definitely something you need to keep in mind, and it is important to make sure you think about this as much as possible. If you can work on your vehicle and look after it as much as possible, you will be able to save money in the future.

It is important to make sure you look at what you can do to make the most of your time as a driver. There are a lot of elements that you are going to have to consider when you’re looking at improving the way you drive, how you are on the roads, and the ways you look after your car. If you can get this right, you are going to need to think hard about the different factors that play a role in taking things to the next level and doing things that will allow you to improve your vehicle.