All posts by Beth Berger

About Beth Berger

Hi there! Finding Delight is a lifestyle and lifelong learning blog written and curated by me in Alabama. Along the way, I attempt to tackle the rough real world with books, budget-livin', brainpower and all the beautiful stuff you can find when you really look. Won't you join me? The true delight is in the finding out.

The Benefits of Looking After Your Health

Looking after your health is definitely important and it’s something we don’t do enough of. We prioritize other things in life that might not be worthwhile when it comes to our quality of living. With that being said, it’s worth being attentive to your health and finding ways to look after it more often. Here are just a few of the benefits that you should be focusing on when it comes to looking after your health.

Better Quality Of Life

It’s important to have a better quality of life. We all deserve that, no? The most obvious and major benefit to looking after your health is that you’re giving it every opportunity to continue for as long as possible. None of us will know when we will ultimately say goodbye to our life, but it’s important that you do everything you can to give yourself the best life possible and that’s often down to how much time you get to enjoy that life.

If you’re getting regular health checks and maintaining your health in other ways, you’re going to live a more satisfying and healthier life as a result. Who doesn’t want that?

Relieves Any Concern Or Stress

Stress can have a negative impact on your body as well as any type of negative emotion or state of mind. If you’re in a constant state of concern or stress when it comes to worrying about potential health concerns, it’s better to get them addressed than to just ignore them. Without addressing those concerns, that stress is only likely to get worse and that feeling can build up into something a lot worse.

In the majority of cases, you might not have anything wrong with you at all. However, it can very easily become something completely different if you end up causing more damage to yourself through stress.

Having those medical appointments can be a great relief to any concern or stress you’ve been feeling recently. You can learn more about how you can better your health by seeing medical professionals on a regular basis. 

Improved Focus & Concentration

One of the great opportunities that come with looking after your health is that you benefit other parts of your body, as well as your mental state. You may have found yourself getting sick regularly perhaps due to having a weakened immune system or some other underlying condition. However, addressing the problem and getting the help you need is going to do a lot more for your well-being overall. 

With a healthier body, you’re going to have an improved focus and concentration when it comes to getting things done. Whether that be your work life or just general day to day tasks. It’s the little things that can often take the most effort and having a more focus and concentration can certainly help get through every day with ease.

Helps Your Mood

It’s important to look after your health because what we do to it can also affect our mood. If you’re not looking after yourself in the right way, then you’re likely to do more damage to your social life and relationships. Our mood can greatly affect how we behave around others and that negative attitude can be damaging. It’s necessary to keep your health at the forefront of your priority, especially when it can do sigifnicant harm to how you’re perceived and how you treat others.

Our mood can be telling to who we are and how we present ourselves. You can help your mood by looking after your health and being attentive to yourself more so when you’re not feeling great. It’s better to get yourself checked out instead of avoiding doing anything at all about it.

Takes Care Of Your Mind & Body

When you look after your health, it’s not just your body, it’s also your mind. It’s important that you’re looking after your mental wellbeing because that in itself can affect your health too. With that being said, focus on getting any additional help for when you need it mentally. A lot of people find talking to a therapist helpful, whilst others wants to talk to someone they already know or can trust with their thoughts and feelings. Our minds can be our biggest enemies, so it’s important to ensure you are looking after it.

Looking after your health is certainly important in this day and age, so do what you can to help yourself, your body and your mind. Get yourself in for regular medical check-ups and look after your body and what you do with it.

Friday Update

I hope you had a fantastic week! What are your plans for the weekend? It is finally starting to cool off here so I’m excited to go for a walk once I wrap up my work day…and maybe we’ll throw up our pop-up tent for some backyard chilling this weekend. I’m also looking forward to Monday when my books from the Biannual Berger Book Swap should arrive in the mail! (Here’s a look at what I got in the last swap.) Have a killer weekend!

P.S. Need a workout for your weekend? Try this one.

Would you try this problem solving hack?

A few days ago, I was listening to Gretchen Rubin’s podcast. Gretchen and her sister/co-host Liz Craft talked about a listener’s suggestion to try the rubber duck debugging method. The listener had written in explaining that this was a trick used by software engineers when they needed to debug code. They simply explain the problem to the rubber duck, and in the process of talking through it, line-by-line, they are able to debug the code.

The suggestion was that this is a hack us non-software engineers could borrow. That by talking through a problem, you might just arrive at a solution. And because there isn’t always someone around to listen as you babble about why something you’ve tried five times now STILL isn’t working (…or maybe there IS someone around but you don’t want to bother them), it’s nice to have a little companion at the ready who is always willing to hear you out.

And whatever frustrating situation you’re navigating, naming a problem is often the first step to solving a problem.

While I’m the furthest thing from a software engineer, the rubber duck debugging method made a lot of sense to me! So I set about searching the house for my own little companion…

Tiny Mark Twain seemed like the perfect choice!

What do you think of the rubber duck debugging method? Would you try it? Do you have a little friend on hand to talk your problems through? I’m starting to think it is a WFH must!

P.S. Here’s another post with something I learned thanks to Gretchen Rubin!

Everything I read in August (my TBR challenge)

In August, I set myself a challenge to only read the books languishing on my TBR bookshelf. And to read as many as possible.

What’s a TBR bookshelf you ask? Well, I have a bit of a book buying habit. I pick up books all the time with no real plan of when I’ll get to them. Those books go to live on a small two-shelf white bookcase that lives in my office. Meanwhile, I get books from the library and buy other books that I read right away. Leaving some books unread, sometimes for years.

I needed to make a dent in the shelves on this little bookshelf before I ran out of space…and so I could continue buying more books, let’s be honest.

Here’s what I was able to clear off my TBR bookshelf this August:

The Switch by Beth O’Leary
Rom-Com
Ordered to take a two-month sabbatical after blowing a big presentation at work, Leena escapes to her grandmother Eileen’s house for some overdue rest. Newly single and about to turn eighty, Eileen would like a second chance at love. But her tiny Yorkshire village doesn’t offer many eligible gentlemen… So Leena proposes a solution: a two-month swap. Eileen can live in London and look for love, and Leena will look after everything in rural Yorkshire.

My Review:
4 stars
A genuine and absolute delight! This book follows Eileen Cotton and her granddaughter Leena as they switch places for two months – Eileen moves into Leena’s posh warehouse flat in London and Leena takes up residence at Eileen’s cottage in the Yorkshire Dales. The story is told in dual POVs and because of that we have two whole casts of characters to fall in love with – each of them unique and fully realized. If you like found family, Gilmore Girls vibes, or wacky British village shenanigans – pick this one up!

Girl in Snow by Danya Kukafka
Mystery
When a beloved high schooler named Lucinda Hayes is found murdered, no one in her sleepy Colorado suburb is untouched—not the boy who loved her too much; not the girl who wanted her perfect life; not the officer assigned to investigate her murder. In the aftermath of the tragedy, these three indelible characters—Cameron, Jade, and Russ—must each confront their darkest secrets in an effort to find solace, the truth, or both.

My Review:
2 stars
Danya Kukafka writes beautifully. Unfortunately, for me, this particular story was just super slow and not that memorable.

The Round House Louise Erdrich
Literary Fiction
One of the most revered novelists of our time – a brilliant chronicler of Native-American life – Louise Erdrich returns to the territory of her bestselling, Pulitzer Prize finalist The Plague of Doves with The Round House, transporting readers to the Ojibwe reservation in North Dakota. It is an exquisitely told story of a boy on the cusp of manhood who seeks justice and understanding in the wake of a terrible crime that upends and forever transforms his family.

My Review:
5 stars
It’s 1988 on an Ojibwe reservation in North Dakota and 13-year-old Joe’s world is turned upside down when his mother is sexually assaulted. Sadly, she doesn’t know exactly where she was when the attack occurred, making it difficult to determine whose jurisdiction the case falls under – state, federal, or tribal. This sets up the mystery at the heart of the novel. Joe and his friends, as well as his father, are trying to figure out the perpetrator – and once they do, they grapple with how justice will be served and by whom.

While the book is set in the 80s, Erdrich notes in the afterword that, at the time of writing, a third of Native women will be raped in her lifetime; 86% of sexual assaults upon Native women are perpetrated by non-Native men; few are prosecuted. The story is a commentary on the need to restore sovereign justice and ensure safety for Native women, and it is beautifully done.

The plot is exciting and well-developed. The characters are well-drawn. But my favorite part was the strong sense of place. I highly recommend this to any literary fiction lovers, especially if you like books about family dynamics or are interested in reading about Native issues from an own voices perspective.

Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri
Short Stories
Navigating between the Indian traditions they’ve inherited and the baffling new world, the characters in Jhumpa Lahiri’s elegant, touching stories seek love beyond the barriers of culture and generations. In “A Temporary Matter,” published in The New Yorker, a young Indian-American couple faces the heartbreak of a stillborn birth while their Boston neighborhood copes with a nightly blackout. In the title story, an interpreter guides an American family through the India of their ancestors and hears an astonishing confession. Lahiri writes with deft cultural insight reminiscent of Anita Desai and a nuanced depth that recalls Mavis Gallant.

My Review:
4 stars
This collection of short stories is beautifully written. Lahiri is a master of her craft. Her book ‘The Namesake’ is one of my favorites so I was excited to give her short form prose a go – and it did not disappoint! Most of her stories focus on the Indian immigrant experience, and even more specifically – the experience of immigrating shortly after an arranged marriage to work at a university in the Greater Boston area. Even with this niche subject matter, each of the stories holds universal appeal. Lahiri shows us a lighthearted and hopeful side of the human spirit, even as her characters face challenges, which makes for a very readable little book. Pick this one up!

Atonement by Ian McEwan
Historical Fiction
On a summer day in 1935, thirteen-year-old Briony Tallis witnesses a moment’s flirtation between her older sister, Cecilia, and Robbie Turner, the son of a servant. But Briony’s incomplete grasp of adult motives and her precocious imagination bring about a crime that will change all their lives, a crime whose repercussions Atonement follows through the chaos and carnage of World War II and into the close of the twentieth century.

My Review:
4 stars
I found the middle third to be a bit slow-going, but well worth pushing through to get to the latter part of the book. Really enjoyed this one!

Someday, Someday, Maybe by Lauren Graham
Rom-Com
Franny Banks is a struggling actress in New York City, with just six months left of the three-year deadline she gave herself to succeed. But so far, all she has to show for her efforts is a single line in an ad for ugly Christmas sweaters and a degrading waitressing job. She lives in Brooklyn with two roommates – Jane, her best friend from college, and Dan, a sci-fi writer, who is very definitely not boyfriend material – and is struggling with her feelings for a suspiciously charming guy in her acting class, all while trying to find a hair-product cocktail that actually works.

My Review:
4 stars
I liked this a lot more than I thought I would. It’s a sweet rom-com full of the smart, fast-paced dialogue style Lauren Graham is known for in her shows (Gilmore Girls, Parenthood) and lots of fun NYC settings. I also have a weird love of books that take place in 1995. It’s just a great year

Throughout the book, we get to see pages from our main character’s Filofax. I love seeing other people’s planners (even fictional people) so I thought this was a fun element. My nitpick is that the handwriting the pages are written in is really hard to read! Cool that the pages are realistic (I’m guessing it’s Lauren Graham’s actual writing?) but I was sad I couldn’t enjoy them more.

The Flamethrowers by Rachel Kushner
Historical Fiction
The year is 1975 and Reno—so-called because of the place of her birth—has come to New York intent on turning her fascination with motorcycles and speed into art. Her arrival coincides with an explosion of activity in the art world—artists have colonized a deserted and industrial SoHo, are staging actions in the East Village, and are blurring the line between life and art. Reno meets a group of dreamers and raconteurs who submit her to a sentimental education of sorts. Ardent, vulnerable, and bold, she begins an affair with an artist named Sandro Valera, the semi-estranged scion of an Italian tire and motorcycle empire. When they visit Sandro’s family home in Italy, Reno falls in with members of the radical movement that overtook Italy in the seventies. Betrayal sends her reeling into a clandestine undertow.

My Review:
2 stars
This may have been a me thing… This book just did NOT hold my attention! I am a self-proclaimed know-it-all so it pains me to say this, but I just didn’t “get it,” and the plot didn’t do enough to make up for the fact that I wasn’t vibing with the subject matter. On a sentence level, the writing is very nice. However, I’m happy to be done reading it.

Since She Went Away by David Bell
Thriller
Three months earlier, Jenna Barton was supposed to meet her lifelong best friend Celia. But when Jenna arrived late, she found that Celia had disappeared—and hasn’t been seen again. Jenna has blamed herself for her friend’s disappearance every single day since then.

My Review:
3.5 stars
I knew this book was written by a Western Kentucky University professor but had no idea going in that it was actually SET in Kentucky. That was a welcome and fun surprise. Not a mind-blowing thriller but an enjoyable read with a couple unexpected moments/twists. Definitely want to pick up some of Bell’s newer titles now that I’ve read this one!

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett
Literary Fiction
The acclaimed, bestselling author—winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize—tells the enthralling story of how an unexpected romantic encounter irrevocably changes two families’ lives. One Sunday afternoon in Southern California, Bert Cousins shows up at Franny Keating’s christening party uninvited. Before evening falls, he has kissed Franny’s mother, Beverly—thus setting in motion the dissolution of their marriages and the joining of two families.

My Review:
5 stars
I love this book so much. We follow the Cousins and Keating children from childhood to adulthood, starting with a kiss between the mother of one set of siblings and the father of another that sets into motion all the ways these two families will blend and disperse over the coming decades.

Patchett has written a pitch perfect family saga that explores divorce in full – beginning to end, an entire cast of blended family characters represented and fully realized. Each character in this tender narrative searches for connection while grappling with the damages of loss. They all share a bond that’s simultaneously painful and powerful. This is a truly brilliant, touching story.

The Round House and Commonwealth were real stand outs this month and I’m so happy that this challenge brought them to me!

I can’t wait to do this challenge again in the future. (I think I’ve decided that I’m going to make it a biannual occurrence.) But for now, it’s on to my FALL TBR!

What was the best book you read in August? xoxo

P.S. If you’re planning your “spooky season” reading, check out – 3 Spooking Books to Read this Halloween.


Proven Steps For Retaking Control Of Your Wellbeing

*This post may contain affiliate links

Do you sometimes feel like your wellbeing is out of your control – like there’s always something in the way? If that sounds like you, you’re not alone. Many leading wellness thinkers believe that our environment is hazardous. We’re like herbs trying to grow without sunlight – we can’t thrive

Fortunately, though, unlike plants, we have minds. And we can use them to our advantage, retaking control of our health and wellness.

Tackle Symptoms Holistically

Traditional medicine believes that the best way to deal with symptoms is to treat them one at a time, as if you can separate one part of the body from another. In some instances, there is merit to this approach. But if you’ve tried everything from the doctor and nothing is working, then it means that you need to adjust your approach. 

Try treating your whole body instead. Focus on improving your diet and exercise routine. And focus on eating plants in their natural form. Avoid anything refined, including oil. And minimize your consumption of animal foods. Then just wait and see how you feel. The majority of people will suddenly discover that they have more energy. What’s more, their symptoms often resolve by themselves. 

Stay In Touch With Others

When you feel exhausted, run down or burned out, it is all too easy to isolate yourself from other people and just lie in bed. But, as experience will teach you, that’s a poor strategy for improving your wellbeing.

Being around others can have a profound positive effect on your biochemistry. It causes your brain to release certain feel-good factors (so long as the experience is positive). And you often find that you wind up feeling so much better than you did before. 

Something as simple as laughter can really help. The act of smiling can transform how you feel considerably. 

Find Out More About Wellbeing

When you are in a state of ignorance about your health, you have no idea what you should do. In that position, you often listen to the first piece of advice that comes along – and that’s rarely correct. 

Learning more about wellbeing and educating yourself can move you closer to the truth. Approach health questions open-mindedly and honestly. Find out as much as you can and explore all avenues. You will often discover a solution that allows you to move past your current health issues. 

Avoid Becoming Frustrated

When you have symptoms that won’t go away, you will often find yourself becoming frustrated. You desperately want to take control of your wellbeing, but you can’t. 

In situations like this, it is a good idea to take a step back. You want to recognise that while your symptoms are up and down, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be like this forever. 

Take fibromyalgia, for instance. Some days can be fine while others are a nightmare. You can believe that you’re moving forward if you are pain-free for a week, and then feel desperately disappointed when symptoms return. 

The trick here is to learn to seek solutions instead of focusing on problems. Experiment with different things. Again, try to improve your diet. Work on improving your mind. You’ll often find that relatively minor changes have a tremendous impact. 

Get Help From Others

Trying to improve your health and wellbeing all by yourself isn’t always possible. Sometimes you just don’t have the experience or knowledge. 

That’s why top personal injury law firms recommend that people get help. When you work with experts, you can often find resolutions faster. 

For instance, sometimes you simply don’t have the money to correct your health. But if the reason you have poor health is because of somebody else’s negligence, you can apply for compensation. 

You may also simply lack the relevant skills to learn what type of help you need. But that’s okay too. There are a myriad of experts out there who have the capacity to provide you with life-changing insights. 

Pace Yourself

Taking control of your wellbeing is more of a marathon and less of a sprint. For that reason, you need to pace yourself. Changing your lifestyle can feel overwhelming if you try to do it all at once. So work on one thing at a time, perhaps making just one change each month. Over time, you’ll find that these little changes all add up to something tremendous. 

Always remain realistic about what you can achieve. Celebrate the small victories so that you can muster the energy to work on your bigger wellbeing goals.

Five-Part Content Creation Brain Dump

Having trouble coming up with content ideas for your personal brand, small business, or side hustle?

As a marketing writer and content coach, I’ve come up with five questions I recommend you ask yourself at the start of each month. These five questions will help you get all your best ideas out from inside your head and onto the page (as any good brain dump should), allowing you to slot great content into your editorial calendar and begin posting!

Before you get going on your first Content Creation Brain Dump, there are two steps I’d like you to complete first.

Step 1: Determine your CONTENT PILLARS for the year.

I recommend that a content creator (whether that be a person or a business) have three content pillars. These are essentially the “themes” in which your content falls under.

A person creating content for their online jewelry shop, may select:
1. Jewelry Making & Crafting
2. Fashion
3. Travel & Outdoors

Step 2: Determine your MARKETING PILLARS for the quarter.

As you look at your business goals for the quarter, your marketing pillars prop those up. If you want to increase revenue coming in from sponsored Instagram posts, one of your pillars might simply be sponsored content. Trying to build your mailing list? Maybe your pillar is a lead generator.

Our online jewelry shop owner chooses:
1. Sale on Summer merchandise
2. Cross promotion of brick & mortar store that sells some of her pieces
3. Working with a few travel content creators on an influencer marketing campaign

[I advise that you repeat Step 1 every year and Step 2 every quarter!]

Once you’ve determined your CONTENT PILLARS and MARKETING PILLARS, it’s on to the Brain Dump! Grab some paper and ask yourself the following questions…

Question 1: What are some pieces of content I already have that I can repurpose?

Our jewelry shop owner took beautiful product photos of all her Summer merchandise before that line launched. Now that the remaining pieces are on sale, she can use those photos in her Instagram stories to promote her End Of Summer Sale.

Question 2: What is going on this month that I could create content about?

The brick & mortar store that sells her jewelry is a couple towns over and is hosting a small event. She plans to travel there for the event as well as do a restock of her merchandise.

She also donated a couple pieces to a local nonprofit for an online auction at the end of the month.

Question 3: What products or services should I highlight this month?

She’d like to promote her new jewelry collection that’s going on sale next month. She sent out a few pieces from the collection in advance of the launch date to travel content creators.

Question 4: What content did my followers/clients/customers respond best to last month that I can iterate on this month?

Her customers always respond well to giveaways! Maybe she can include some other local products she finds at the small event she’s attending this month?

Question 5: What content am I missing that would help me achieve my quarterly business goals?

Sales in the brick & mortar store are an important part of her business goals this month. She needs to sell the store (as well as the little town it is located in) just as much as the merchandise she has inside it this month. She might think about some content from her trip to the store that falls under her Travel & Outdoors pillar.

Once your Brain Dump is complete, you can build out the content ideas and get them scheduled on your calendar. Repeat each month for ongoing awesome content! Remember: Validate each idea against your two sets of pillars. They should serve one or the other and ideally BOTH!

If you ever want to talk strategy, my inbox is open! Send me a message at ebeth.berger@gmail.com ❤ Let’s work together to make some internet magic!

P.S. My 10 brutally honest tips about content creation.

How To Be Informed About Your Health

*This post may contain affiliate links.

The human body can be a mystifying thing. Add to that an increasingly busy lifestyle and different commitments, and it becomes easy to let your health slide. But really, your health is one of your most valuable commodities. Your work, family, and social engagements can all suffer if something goes wrong with your health. 

Being informed about your health can help you to stay as healthy as possible. Most people have at least some minor health concerns, especially as they get older. Knowing your limits and your specific healthcare needs can keep you on your feet for longer and may prevent some problems from either worsening or developing.

  1. Get Regular Check-Ups

If it helps, think about your body as a car. Typically, it’s recommended that you get your car regularly checked out, especially if you start to notice any problems. This prevents a more major breakdown, which would be both expensive and dangerous.

Likewise, you should regularly book health check-ups to make sure that there are no problems under your metaphorical hood. Even if you’re healthy, you never know when something might crop up, and catching it early is always better than putting it off.

If you do have a known health condition, then regular check-ups are even more important. For example, if you have problems with hearing loss, then you should regularly see your audiologist and have any hearing aids checked out. Take the opportunity to ask any hearing aid questions so that you can get the treatment that best suits you. The same principle applies to all health conditions you may have.

  1. Learn How to Lead a Healthy Lifestyle

Whether you’re generally healthy or you have health concerns, there is always room for improvement when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to cut out every vice and dedicate your life to running marathons and living on chicken, brown rice, and broccoli. 

Even small changes can have a huge impact on your everyday life and your general health. The fact is, if you’re healthier, then you’re more likely to feel better. You’re less likely to have those days where you feel run down, and you may have more energy. 

  1. Don’t Neglect Self-Care

While good physical health can make you feel much better and may improve your mood and energy levels, it isn’t always the cure for everything. If you’re burnt out from work or other stresses, then pushing yourself isn’t the answer.

Rather, focus on your mental and emotional health. If you can, take some time out from external pressures and give yourself a break. Use the time to figure out what is causing you excessive stress and anxiety and see if you can make any changes.

If you need to, get some outside help. Talk to friends and family about what’s troubling you. You may also benefit from speaking to a doctor or other professional about your mental or emotional state. Your mind and your body are both aspects of good health, so both need care.

I’m rooting for you! xoxo

Monster Productivity Hacks For People Stuck In Home Offices

Having a home office can be a lot of fun. You no longer have to deal with office politics or chat idly around the coffee machine with co-workers you only barely tolerate. 

But there’s a problem – home offices aren’t always ideal for productivity. Compared to working in a regular office, in can be harder to get stuff done. 

In this post, let’s look at some monster productivity hacks for people stuck at home.

Find Something That Makes You Happy

*This post may contain affiliate links.

Did you know that our brains work best when we are happy? Well, it’s true. So when working from home, find a setup that fills you with joy. 

Naturally, what this entails depends on you. Perhaps it’s always having your favorite mug of tea next to you while you work, or maybe it’s putting up photos of your pets. Whatever it is, make sure that you do it. Over the course of weeks and months, it can dramatically improve your work. 

Focus On Ergonomics

Don’t just sit on the couch or at the kitchen table. Over time, that’s going to ruin your posture, cause pain, and make you less productive. 

Instead, really drill down into ergonomics. Find out what works best for your body and then perfect it. Make sure that your mouse and keyboard are at the right height, relative to your chair. Move your chair up and down. And even experiment with standing desks if you feel that they might help. 

Changing your ergonomics could be the best thing you ever do. 

Achieve The Perfect Temperature

Productivity goes down when office temperatures go above 73.4 or fall below 64.4 degrees F. So you’ll want to find a way to keep yours within that range if at all possible.

Don’t delay getting AC repair if you need it. You’ll often make back your investment in the form of higher productivity and more comfort while at work. 

Put Plants Next To Your Screen

Sometimes you don’t have a choice of whether or not to stare at a screen all day. But you can improve the experience by adding potted plants to either side. Plants increase oxygen levels in your office while also having positive effects on your mood. It’s also fun typing at a computer that looks as though it is emerging from the jungle. 

Block Your Time

Generally, you can place your work times into two distinct categories: tasks and communication (phone calls, emails, virtual meetings, etc.). Completing tasks is what earns you money and makes you valuable to the company you work for. Your correspondences and meetings can add value, but they are also an enormous time sink. For this reason, the most productive home office workers always block their time. For instance, they might block their calendar from 8 am to 9 am to respond to emails, schedule a project team huddle at 1:30 pm and then perform tasks for the rest of the day. If they have several meetings to get through, they might block them one after the other at the end of the day so that they can use the morning to do tasks when they are at their most productive. Play around with what time blocking works best for you!

Do you work from home? What productivity hacks would you add?

How to Feel Great Every Day

*This post may contain affiliate links.

Life is far easier to handle when you feel great. Even stressful times can seem like less of a hassle when you feel good about yourself and ready to tackle any challenge that comes your way. But, feeling great is not always easy to achieve. Life gets in in the way, and you may find yourself struggling to feel great both physically and mentally. These small steps may help:

Take Care of the Basics

When you break it down, the ways that you can make yourself feel great are pretty uncomplicated. But, this does not mean they are always easy to achieve. If you are struggling to feel good and maintain balance in your life, it is helpful to go back to basics. Ensuring that you are drinking enough water, eating nutritious foods, and getting enough sleep are essential to helping you feel your best. It is surprising how much impact these basic actions make to daily life, but they can really make a difference.

Treat Annoying Ailments

Have you ever noticed when you feel a little run down or stressed, you have one ailment that rears its ugly head every time? It is impossible to feel great when you have a persistent ailment that appears at the worst possible times. For some people, it’s a flare-up of eczema or psoriasis, but for others, it is an annoying headache that suddenly appears and doesn’t seem to shift. To feel great every single day, you need to take control and do all you can to keep these ailments at bay. If your skin tends to react at the worst possible times, speak with a dermatologist about an effective remedy for, so you have it on hand when you need it. If headaches are the problem, there is no need to suffer in silence. Instead, you could seek out help by finding headache treatment services to help you tackle this issue.

Make Time to De-Stress

When you have loads going on in your life and are feeling super stressed out, the last thing you want is to stop. Although it may seem counterintuitive, sometimes the best thing you can do is hit pause and take time for yourself. For most people, being busy and being productive do not work well together. Being busy all the time can make you less productive, especially when stress is thrown into the mix. When your mind feels stressed, it can often become scattered, which makes it challenging to focus. But, when you allow yourself time to take a break and re-energize, you are more likely to return to your task feeling refreshed and get so much more more done as a result. Taking breaks when you need them is an excellent stress-buster and the ideal way to stop busy times getting in the way of feeling great.

What are your top tips for feeling great? Share them below!

How To Deal With Shin Splints After Running

There are loads of ways to get fit and healthy, but one of the easiest and most accessible is to get some running shoes on and go for a nice long jog. Loads of folks started doing this last year when the first lockdowns began rolling out, seeing as how many gyms and exercise classes had to take a backseat. For many, running quickly turned into a passion.

There is one slight problem though… your shins get really sore and painful after each run. While they may be fine a few days after, the pain has gotten progressively worse the more often you run. As it happens, you most likely have shin splints, which is a problem caused by inflammation of the connective tissues and muscles attached to the shinbone. This is from the extra stress put on your shins by running. 

It’s a real annoyance, but how do you deal with it? Here are a few simple suggestions to help you manage your shin splints:

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Ice your shins after running

If you experience pain straight after running, the best thing to do is to ice your shins. You can use ice packs for this, but a bag of frozen peas will also do the trick. The ice packs soothe the shins and reduce any inflammation or swelling. Do this as often as required in the following days until the pain subsides.

Try topical pain relievers

Alongside the icing tactic, you can apply topical painkillers to your shins. These usually come in the form of creams or gels, and they can include various natural ingredients, like CBD oil. The whole point of topical pain relievers is that they target the site of your pain, so they should kick in faster and provide a more focused pain relief in the affected area. Topical treatments are much safer to use with frequency than a pain reliever you might take orally. A good strategy would be to apply your topical cream or gel after icing your shins to give extra pain relief until it’s time to ice them again. 

Get better footwear

Typically, shin splints are caused by a combination of poor footwear or flat feet. In essence, your feet don’t have the support required to absorb the shocks you make when running. So, all the impact goes through the foot and into the lower leg, hence your shins are put under more stress. By buying a pair of more supportive shoes – or insoles for those of you with flat feet – you restore the supportiveness to your feet, making the impact less demanding on your poor shins. 

Following these simple steps will help you to ease your shin splints. However, you also need to rest your body so the shins can recover. Don’t rush yourself back into running – take a few days or weeks off until the pain has completely gone. Then, you can start running again with more supportive footwear to prevent future shin splint problems. Good luck!