Screen Time Limiting Measures for Parents

The world you’re parenting in today is vastly different from what it was like when you were a kid. Back then, your parents might have some mild concerns about letting you watch too much TV. Today, screen time is a mammoth challenge that many parents are grappling with, so if you’re not sure what the right thing to do is, you’re not alone.

As a parent, you’re competing with the TV, smartphones, computers, the internet, and every new technological advance that comes onto the market. And the draw of the screen is a powerful one, as you will also be able to attest.

So, what can you do to keep a healthy screen time balance in your home?

Schedule screen time

Kids love structure and routine, and incorporating screen time into yours can make the difference you need. Set boundaries and give your children set times during which they can enjoy screen time. This technique works very well with younger children, and it’s a great way to teach them from the start about the balance between screen time and real life.

Use a timer, preferably not one that involves a screen, to signal the start and end of screen time. The key is consistency from all role-players in the child’s life. Kids test boundaries, and once you start moving them, there’s no going back without a fight.

Tracking app

As children get older, they’ll test the rules and rebel against them. This is a natural process, but you can still set time limits on their screen time. However, now you’ll need to be a little savvier about tracking it. By now, your child probably has at least one device that’s theirs to use, and you need to be sure they’re not breaking the rules.

A spy phone app allows you to monitor data from a smartphone, such as their usage, contacts, and activity. Your kids might not be too thrilled with you for using this approach, but it’s an excellent way of teaching them consequence management. By proving themselves unable to be trustworthy when it comes to your screen time rules, they must sacrifice privileges as a consequence.

Parental controls

Most modern devices come with a built-in set of parental controls. They allow the adult to limit the times at which the device is active. Additionally, you can select how much screen time is allowed before the child must come to you to request more. The parental controls also govern internet usage and age restrictive materials.

Unfortunately, some of these systems have not proven to be kid-proof. With the combined determination of a group of friends, parents will be shocked by what kids can get up to behind their backs. You should check your child’s devices frequently to see that your parental controls are still in place.

Role modeling

The days of children doing what their parents tell them to in blind obedience are gone. Today’s kids are more inquisitive, and they want to understand why something is necessary before they do it. 

This is where communication lines between you and your children are essential. Speak often about technology and the role it plays in our lives and the value of maintaining a healthy balance.

Another vital component of maintaining control over your children’s screen time is modeling the behavior you expect. Do as I say and not as I do is not going to work when it comes to getting your children to comply with the rules. They should not see you doing the exact opposite of what you told them to do. It will lead them to rebel against the rules more easily.

July 17, 2020 / by / in
IVF Considerations When Planning A Family

Infertility impacts up to 10% of the U.S. population, driving people to seek help in starting a family of their own. Success rates for IVF are positive, but some factors should be thoroughly weighed before taking this route. 

In-depth research of IVF success rates, who are good candidates, health, stress and persistence, are just some of the elements that need to be discussed before proceeding with IVF. Age and potential side-effects are additional factors to consider.

Persistence is key to falling pregnant with IVF

Not everyone has the persistence to find top IVF clinics and see the IVF route through to a joyful conclusion. Top clinics typically have the best physicians and equipment and record the highest success rates. If able to book yourself into a top facility for the duration of treatment, this will enhance the potential for success.

Women can take up to 2 months to get their health optimized prior to an implant. Hormone medication are first administered to suppress the menstrual cycle, followed by injections designed for ovary stimulation.

The usual IVF path requires up to 3 injections every day for between 8 and 12 days to stimulate the release of mature eggs. Retrieval of these mature eggs will follow as an outpatient, which encompasses sedation. 

Retrieved eggs are then fertilized and nurtured into feasible embryos. Implants will take place within 7 to 30 days. Your physician will require an examination in 7 days to determine if the implant is successful.

Constant monitoring and a series of tests will be conducted. Medications may need adjustment. This process is taxing and requires significant effort, patience and inputs of time and energy and may not always be successful the first time around.

IVF manipulates hormones and generates side effects

Hormone manipulation is bound to impact your emotional stability and mood swings. Additionally, the stress associated with the various tests and procedures can take its toll. Physical side-effects such as cramps, bloating and lethargy may also be experienced. Combined mental, physical, emotional and financial stresses may leave you feeling depleted.

Some women may develop ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome (OHSS). Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, stomach pain and weight gain. Speak to your physician should you experience any of these unpleasant side-effects, or if OHSS symptoms do not decrease naturally. 

Your age can impact IVF results

Egg quality and feasibility tend to decline with age and health, as does sperm quality, although somewhat less so. Consider donor eggs or sperm if your physician conducts tests and finds an issue with either you or your partner because of age or health complications. 

Health affects IVF success rates

Prepare yourself physically by eating organic foods. Refrain from alcohol consumption and cigarette smoking. Lose weight if you are over your ideal weight for your height. Start an exercise routine to improve fitness levels. Do as much as you can to enhance your health to improve the chances of IVF being successful.

Take steps to decrease your stress

Learn to say ‘no’ to anything that increases your stress levels. Whether stress is caused by work issues or family engagements, avoid the triggers that induce stress as much as possible. You decided to become a mother and are faced with additional challenges now, so take the time to look after your health.

IVF doesn’t work for everyone

Many couples experience the joy of having their own baby through IVF treatment. Not everyone is able to fall pregnant, and the treatment cannot be guaranteed. 

Up to 3 IVF treatment cycles are recommended, and if these don’t produce desired outcomes, donor eggs are recommended. The use of donor eggs is particularly recommended for women over 45 years, as their chances of success stand at 3% unless they use this option.

May 11, 2020 / by / in
8 Tips to Reduce the Stress of Business Travel

Even when traveling for pleasure, most people experience a significant amount of stress. After all, no matter how much you’re looking forward to your trip, you’ll still be leaving the comfort of your home. In case you’re traveling for business, you’re bound to experience even more stress, especially if you take trips often. In order to ensure that you have stress-free business trips from now on, here are some tips that you can try.

Stay Healthy

Traveling often can take a toll on your health, so it’s important that you do everything in your power to stay healthy. This means improving your nutrition, following a good sleeping schedule, and exercising regularly. People who travel a lot can experience a huge amount of stress simply because they don’t sleep enough or they eat only at fast food restaurants during their trips. On top of that, they usually don’t exercise.

Lighten Your Load

There’s a good chance that you pack more stuff that you actually need. If you travel often, then you might never take certain items out of your suitcase or laptop bag. Therefore, it’s a good idea to look through your bags and see if there are any items that you don’t need. By carrying less, you will reduce your stress levels while traveling.

Don’t Overspend

This is a tip that’s mostly directed at small business owners, but others may also benefit from following it. One of the most stressful things people can think about when going on business trips is how much money they will spend. If you overspend, then you may even start regretting going on the trip and stressing over it even when you get back home. In order to ensure that this doesn’t happen, you should carefully look at the options for your stay and transportation. Make sure to use price comparison platforms in order to get the best prices.

Plan Ahead

If you don’t plan ahead, then you’ll be dealing with a lot of stress right before your trip. In most cases, you’ll be given enough time to adequately prepare for the journey. Therefore, you should make a packing list and make sure that everything is in order with your passport. The last thing that you want is to find out that your passport has expired as you’re getting ready to leave.

Keep in mind that you can renew your passport by mail instead of going to an application acceptance facility. You can do this by finding a DS-82 application form for passport renewal online, filling it out and sending it.

Schedule Personal Time

Just because it’s a business trip doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy yourself. If you have the time, you should make every trip a small informal vacation as well. Do some research on the place you’re going to and make a list of the attractions you’re interested in visiting. This will give you something to look forward to.

Pack Some Snacks

During your business trip, you may find yourself in a situation where you are extremely hungry but don’t have a lot of good food options. In order to reduce stress levels associated with hunger, you should always have some snacks packed. Make sure to bring something that won’t crumble or melt.

Use Travel Apps

There are many great travel apps that can make your business trip a more enjoyable experience. From transportation apps to travel planners, you can really make traveling less stressful simply by downloading a few applications on your smartphone. Not only will they help you purchase train or bus tickets, but they’ll also show you where to find good bars and restaurants. On top of that, some can even translate your speech for you.

Wear Comfortable Clothing

When you’re traveling to a different city or country, you should do everything that you can to rest and relax. Therefore, it’s recommended that you wear comfortable clothing. It’s also a good idea to bring a book and your headphones.

June 7, 2018 / by / in
How to Balance a Full-time Job and College

Whether you’re aware of college’s demands because you’ve attended before or because you’ve watched relatives struggle through the process, you may feel overwhelmed by the thought of attending while you’re also working full-time. While the journey toward a degree is likely to have its challenges, taking on this adventure can provide you with a career that you love.

Take Evening Classes 

Quitting your full-time job is probably not an option, especially when you’re trying to afford a college tuition. Fortunately, many schools offer evening classes so that you can obtain an education after your shift is over for the day. In fact, in New York alone, 109 schools offer courses at night or on the weekends. A host of schools understand that students are trying to balance school and work schedules and plan courses accordingly.

Enroll in Community College 

Ultimately, you may want to pursue a four-year school or a graduate program to procure the exact position that you want. However, if you’re just starting out on your college journey, consider taking general education courses at a local community college. The low cost is just one of the advantages associated with such a decision. Do keep in mind that you should speak with an admissions counselor at the four-year school or in the graduate program that you ultimately plan to pursue. You want to make sure that your community-college credits will count.

Reduce Travel Time

While you might dream of attending a prestigious college in a big city, ask yourself if doing so is realistic when you work in the suburbs or a rural area far from the urban life. You may need to sacrifice one of your smaller desires in order to achieve the largest one. Perhaps after you have reached a high level of success in your field, you could take some courses at your dream school. Opting for a school that is near your home or job will help you to better balance your responsibilities and plan a schedule.

Consider an Online Program 

Another way to reach your goal is to attend college online. In fact, you could even enroll in one of the online colleges that offer laptops. Instead of having to spend money on a new computer for school, you can get one included with your tuition and start to work on your desired degree. While you will still need to complete assignments by a certain deadline, you will likely have a great deal of flexibility as to when you complete those requirements.

Review Residency Requirements 

Even if the program in which you are enrolling is primarily online, you may have residency requirements to complete. A residency requirement would mean that you need to take a certain number of classes on campus. Finding out about these obligations as soon as possible is imperative. For example, you may find that you need to spend an entire semester taking multiple credits at the school. You can start to save up money now for the reduced amount of time that you’ll likely be able to work.

Evaluate Possible Cutbacks 

Doing everything that you’re currently doing and adding a full-time college schedule onto the load might prove impossible. You may have the ability to work from home a couple of days per week, or if you can afford to do so, your boss may let you start working part-time. When you can’t change your job situation, you can consider reducing the amount of clubs or sports in which you or your children partake. You may also want to hire a babysitter to give you more time to concentrate on your work.

Expect to Work

Since you are returning to school and have a full-time job, you might think that your professors will afford you with certain allowances. For example, you may envision that they will readily give you extensions on your assignments because of your situation. Keep in mind that professors need to treat students fairly. The fact that you are more advanced in your career than other students in the program does not mean that you will get breaks.

Balancing a full-time job with college is difficult. Therefore, you want to make sure you are selecting a program that you love and researching ways to reduce stress.

May 26, 2018 / by / in
Taking Care of Your Body After a Long Day of Work

Manual work is hard. Ask any carpenter, plasterer, or a bricklayer how taxing their jobs are for their bodies, and they’ll tell you — a lot. Working at a job site usually entails lifting heavy objects, and it’s very difficult to retain proper lifting form when you need to lift objects quickly. Spending too much time on your feet can also cause many issues. Doing repetitive work is a sure way to get an injury.

However, with so many blue-collar Baby Boomers retiring, we are seeing an increased demand for manual and trade workers. If you are looking to take advantage of the blue-collar boom, you need to make sure that you take care of your body. And that doesn’t mean only to prepare and ensure safety at work, but also to learn how to recover after a day at work.

Disconnecting from Work

Blue collar jobs are not without stress. You will have a schedule you need to meet, you will be pushed to work more efficiently, and you will have to be focused to avoid any mishaps. All that stress will increase your levels of cortisol, the hormone of stress, which will make it harder for you to wind down after the work is done. And you will need to wind down if you want your body to recover after a day at work.

Among the many relaxation techniques you can practice, learning how to leave your work at the job site is one of the most important. If you carry your work home, you will stay tense and the quality of your sleep will suffer. There are many useful practices that will help you disconnect from work. Even the good old beer after a hard day’s work can be helpful, although you shouldn’t make it a habit.

Take a Bath

Hot and cold water treatments are often used for recovery. They do different things — a hot bath will reduce muscle tension and help you relax. Cold, usually in the form of ice, is used to reduce inflammation and swelling. Alternating between hot and cold can also be helpful.

You should use the treatment that works best for you. However, a warm bath can be very beneficial after a hard they at work. It will help your muscles relax and it will help you ease your mind. The water shouldn’t be too hot, though, just as you shouldn’t put ice directly on your skin when trying to cool your aching joints.

Take Care of Specific Problems

Heavy manual labor can cause several health issues, and you should keep them all in check. If you have a regimen your doctor or physiotherapist has prescribed you for after-work care, make sure you do it. You can do stretches that can help relieve back pain, for example.

You can take care of some issues on your own. If your legs are aching, lifting them while sitting might help. If your veins are swollen, you look into specific treatment options like compression stockings. Anti-inflammatory creams, as well as over-the-counter pain relievers, can also be helpful for a variety of issues, although you should always be careful when taking drugs.

Feed Your Body

Your body needs fuel to work, but it also needs it to recover from work. Blue collar workers often don’t have the time to eat well at work, or they don’t have the facilities for it. You should always make sure to eat well at work, but if you can’t, the least you can do is eat well when you get home.

Healthy food is the best. Instead of grabbing a burger, opt for a mix of protein and high-quality carbs. They will help you get the energy you need, as well as all the things your body needs to recover. Chicken breast and veggies are a great choice.

Finally, you should ensure you have plenty of high-quality sleep. If you manage to properly relax and detach from your work, you shouldn’t have a hard time falling asleep. And because you probably need to get up early in the morning, make sure you go to bed early enough.

April 24, 2018 / by / in
7 Realistic Ways to Make Money Online

Having ways to earn some extra cash on the side never hurts. In the United States, more than 44 million of people have a side-gig. Younger people, the Millennials, are at the forefront of the side-hustle epidemic in the US, although the older generations are able to earn more from their side-jobs. Either way, both can count on the Internet to help them easily find another source of income. There is no lack of ways to earn money online, although there are some ways that are better than others. Here is a list of seven tried and tested ways you could try.

  1. Earn Money by Doing Random Tasks

If you don’t want to tie yourself down with a lengthy money-making scheme, your best bet would be to do some micro-jobs. Websites like Fiverr and Mechanical Turk will offer you plenty of opportunities to earn some money doing no- to low-skill tasks. You will not get rich by doing these tasks. On the other hand, you will not have to put in too much time and effort into doing them.

  1. Sell Your Services

Becoming a part of the gig economy sounds appealing to many Americans. Some estimates put the number of people who are a part of the gig economy in the United States at 34% of total workforce. Gigs are more stable than tasks, and they require a higher level of skill, but they also get you more money. Through websites like Upwork, you can find people who would pay you to perform various services, from computer programming to writing articles and web design.

  1. Dropshipping

What is the biggest drawback of having an online store? It’s the inventory. You need a place where you will store products. You also need to send those products to the buyers. Luckily, there is a way to get rid of all of the logistics and focus on developing your store and reaching customers. Dropshipping is a popular retail fulfillment method that allows your store to sell products without ever having to handle them. Your job is to create a store and market it.

  1. Start a Blog

Starting a blog is still one of the most profitable ways to make money online. If you do it right, that is, because blogging has not become easier with years. The competition is as tough as it ever was. There are still plenty of ways to monetize blogs, and finding a good niche is still the best strategy for creating a successful blog. But you will have to put in a lot of time and energy into developing your blog before it starts earning you money.

  1. Write an eBook

There are close to 3.4 million Kindle eBooks on Amazon. Adding to the pile might not seem like the best business idea, but that is not the only way you can make money writing eBooks. If you are a clever marketer, you can do better by selling eBooks directly from your website. You can also try your hand at selling public domain books.

  1. Work Remotely

Making money online doesn’t have to be a side-gig for you. You can find a real job, benefits and all, you can do online, from your home. Remote working is appealing to many companies that want to reduce their overhead. If you look at online job ads, you are bound to find at least a couple that will offer remote working positions.

  1. Become an Email Marketer

An email marketer is only as good as his or her email list is. With a good list, email marketing is a way you can sell your own products, sell other people’s products, promote their business, or do many more things you can monetize. With email marketing, you are capitalizing on the access you have to people’s email addresses, which can be much more valuable than access to their social media presence, for example. If you can build a good list, you can secure decent earnings through email marketing.

April 24, 2018 / by / in
9 Ways to Increase Productivity at Work

It’s completely normal to experience moments of exhaustion and the inability to focus at work from time to time. However, if you’re starting to see your productivity steadily declining, then you need to do something about it. Here are 9 great ways to be more productive at work.

Think Differently

Instead of wondering how you will be able to complete all of the tasks you have, you should think about the best way to accomplish them. Simply by learning how to think differently, you will have more motivation to get things done.

Improve Your Sleeping Habits

One of the best ways to increase your productivity is to improve your sleeping habits. This will not only help you perform better at work, but it will also have a positive impact on your overall health. It’s recommended that you sleep at least 7 hours each night if you want to feel energized throughout the whole day. In order to improve your sleeping habits, you’ll need to find the perfect mattress type for you. The level of comfort your mattress provides you with has a huge impact on the quality of your sleep. One of the best options available today is memory foam mattresses.

Set Self-Imposed Deadlines

Although stress is usually a bad thing that will prevent you from doing quality work, a healthy dose of it may help you improve your productivity. This is why you should consider setting self-imposed deadlines on your tasks. Make sure to stick to your deadlines and act like they were imposed by your boss.

Cut Back on Caffeine

Although it’s completely normal to enjoy a cup of java in the morning, you shouldn’t drink too much caffeine. If you drink a lot of coffee before going to work, then you will most likely experience a caffeine crash after just a few hours. By drinking coffee in moderation, you will not only increase your productivity at work, but you will improve your sleeping habits as well.

Organize Your Workspace

It can be extremely hard to focus on your job if you have a messy workspace. In order to increase your productivity, you should remove all of the distractions from your desk. The only things that should be on your desk are the items that you need to do your job.

Ask for Help

You should never be embarrassed to ask some of your coworkers for help. If you don’t clearly understand a part of your assignment or if you simply seem stuck and can’t move past a certain obstacle, then you should ask a coworker for advice. If you’re stuck on a certain task, then you may end up spending hours on trying to get it done. By asking someone for help, you will move past that task easily, which will motivate you to continue working on your assignment. However, you should always make sure to help others when they’re in need of guidance.

Create a Work-Life Balance

If you’re constantly thinking about work, then you will most likely end up dealing with a lot of stress. Even though it’s completely normal to do a task or two when you’re not on the job, it’s crucial that you don’t let work take over your whole life. In order to be more productive, you will need to create a healthy work-life balance. No matter how much work you’ve got, you should always make time for your hobbies, as well as family members and friends.

Stop Multitasking

If you want to get things done fast, multitasking isn’t the way to go. By multitasking, you won’t be able to properly focus on any of your tasks. If you want to get more work done, then you should concentrate only on one task at a time.

Phone It In

Sometimes, you may end up waiting up to a few hours just to get a response to your email from a client or a colleague. This can negatively affect your productivity at work, which is why you should pick up the phone and call if you want to get a response quicker.

April 21, 2018 / by / in