Leopard On A Mission – Week Four


Woohoo! Week four’s mission is here! I hope you had a fun time writing letters last week, I know I did.

This week I’m asking you to leave a positive or encouraging message on at least one public bathroom mirror! Bonus points for multiple mirrors! Be sure to take a picture and share them with the hashtag: #LeopardOnAMission (but not location, both for safety and for fun!)

This is one of my favorite missions, so you may see this again in the future.

I hope you are all also continuing to spread kindness and love. Please let me know if there is anything you’d like to see in these weekly missions.

Have a great week everyone!

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Leopard On A Mission – Week Three


It’s mission day!! How did the first two weeks go for you? I hope you are finding a little more positivity in your life, while adding some light to other people’s lives.

This week’s mission is easy, write at least one letter. Not an email or text, but an actual letter. Bonus points if you write multiple letters! Thank a friend for the help they gave you, say hello to a Grandparent, tell a family member you love them.

Mail it, or hand deliver! Think of the recipient’s face when they receive such a heartfelt message.

I can’t wait to hear how this week goes, don’t forget to use the hashtag: #LeopardOnAMission on social media so others can see the kindness you are spreading!

Leopard On A Mission – Week Two


Hello and happy Sunday! How did week one go for you all? I’d love to hear, so please leave a comment!

Here is this week’s mission: Be only positive on Social Media! Post happy pictures, share good news, leave supportive and uplifting comments.

These things can really add some happiness to a person’s day. On your posts, remember to use the hashtag: #LeopardOnAMission!

Have an awesome week everyone!

Leopard On A Mission – Week One

At times, it can seem like the world is a dark place. However, we need to remember that there is a lot of good out there. I believe it starts with us, sometimes a simple act of kindness is all a person needs to add some positive thoughts to their day. 

Today starts a new challenge on my website, and it needs your help! Each week I will give you a “mission” to help add some positive vibes, helpful kindness, and extra love to our world. Some missions will even be just taking care of yourself, because often times we forget that self care can help us live happier, healthier lives.

I encourage you to follow along and spread some kindness! By using the hashtag: #LeopardOnAMission on Social Media, you can help share how you are making our world a better place. Use it to share stories and pictures of how you “completed each mission”. I can’t wait to see the good we all spread in the world! About once a month, I will also choose some of my favorites and share them in a “Mission Completed” post!

Ready for your first mission? We’ll start off easy for the first one: Each day this week give someone a compliment. A family member, friend, neighbor, even a stranger! Sharing a compliment can give the receiver such a boost in their day! 

Have fun, and enjoy your mission!

Essential Care For Elderly Relatives


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Eventually, we all grow old. And even if you may not be at that stage of your life yet, you will have relatives who are either elderly right now or will be in the near future. It is always important to prepare for the future, whether it be life insurance, funeral plans or your retirement. However, there are also things to consider when your parents grow old and need care. Your parents spent a huge chunk of their lives looking after you, bringing you up well, feeding you and consoling you when you cried. It’s time to pay them back. There are plenty of different things you need to plan and decide on when you begin to care for your elderly parents or relatives.

Home or Away?

The first big decision is whether your parent will stay in their own home, come to live with you or go into assisted living. This depends on their personality and health condition. Often more severe cases will be better off in a care home for 24-hour support. However, if the situation isn’t as serious, you will be able to make accommodations at your own home.

Special Facilities

If you decide on keeping your elderly relative in your home or their own, you will need to set up some unique features to make living easier. Adding certain things to your home will allow them independence which is not only good for their physical health but their mental health too. First of all, you will need to install an alert system in case of an emergency. You can purchase them from companies such as medicalert.systems and they consist of a cord or button which when activated will contact the emergency services. It is a way to give you peace of mind that if they have a nasty fall, medical help will be able to find them.

Another thing to think about is assistance for sitting down and standing up. As we grow old, our back loses its strength, and it can be difficult to bend down very far. Investing in a rising recliner will allow your elderly relative to sit down comfortably and offer them help standing up afterward. Similarly, you can purchase a bath lift, which lowers them down and then lifts them back out after bathing.

If your elderly relative has stairs in their home, you will need to have a stair lift installed. This will allow fully independent travel around the home without damaging their back and risking a serious fall.

 You can find a list of things to install here: https://www.agingcare.com/articles/how-to-adapt-your-home-when-parent-moves-in-123288.htm

 Professional Help

If you and your family work long hours, or even just work full-time, you may not have the hours to commit to full care. This is where it could be a good idea to hire a professional care assistant to help your elderly relatives and offer care when you cannot. They will be able to help with a range of tasks such as shopping, feeding, and bathing, and will be able to facilitate with medicine too.

 

It’s About Time You Began To Love The Body You Were Born With


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It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when it starts, but body shaming and body negativity tend to start early in women. Whether you’re a teen or a young adult, or even a child, there all comes a time when we begin to get a little more conscious of how we look. And it almost always extends to the shape of our bodies, regardless of what size or shape you naturally are.

Whether you’re thin or curvy, everyone judges themselves based on how they think they should look. And it can be tough. We’re often hard on ourselves to the extremes that we damage our health, bother physically and mentally. But there comes a time when we need to say enough is enough; we need to love the skin we’re in. And now’s the time. So let’s take a look at the ways you can start to feel more comfortable in the body you were born in.

Adjust Your Mindset 

First of all, you’re going to want to work on that mindset of yours. Because the issues often start in your mind, and after a while, you’ll find that you tend to think in a routine way, rather than being kind to yourself. So, you’re going to want to try and find a healthier mental state that can help you to see your body differently. This won’t happen overnight, and it will take work, but it’s important that you adjust your mindset if this is going to work.

Enjoy Eating

At the same time, you need to be able to work on your attitude with food. If you often restrict yourself or overeat, you’re going to want to change the way you think about your food. A great way to do this is to start eating for pleasure. You need to be mindful when you eat, enjoy your meals, and not feel shameful about food if you want to change your mindset and feel comfortable in your body.

 

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Exercise For Mental Clarity 

When you struggle with your body, it’s likely that you have an unhealthy relationship with exercise as well as food. It’s either going to be something that you’re terrified of or addicted to. However, to start loving your body more, you need to see exercise as a tool, and not a means to an end. Because exercise can help your mental state here and allow you to clear your mind while working towards a new way of thinking.

Set Yourself Goals

Then, you should think about setting yourself goals. Whether you need to make changes in order to accept your body as it is, or to feel better in yourself, goals can often help you to get there. As long as you’re working towards feel better about yourself too, you’ll be on the right track.

Take Action

Then, you’re going to need to focus on some action. A part of accepting your body shape is working with it. If you’re really unhappy about your body, you need to take action to make yourself better. Whether you want to work with sustainable weight loss or even build some muscle, nows the time to do it. By taking action in line with your goals, you will start to feel better about your body.

 

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Practice Positive Thinking

But you should also work on some positive thinking. Adjusting your mindset is just the start because you need to not only avoid the negative thoughts and pressure but actually be kinder to yourself too. This will take you some work, but by finally being positive about your body, you will start to feel more comfortable. 

Get A Glow

Combined with your new positive thinking, you’re also going to want to work on other ways to be happy. When you’re focusing on happiness and positivity overall in life, you will be able to take away from any body shaming or negativity that you’ve previously obsessed over. To do this, you’re going to want to take steps towards making yourself happier, whether it’s with self-care and pampering, or taking up a new interest.

Dress For Success 

Finally, as your start to get a bit more positive and begin to accept your body for what it is, you then need to put the cherry on top of the cake. To do this, you should focus on what you wear. When you dress for your body shape and make clothing choices that allow you to feel good, you’ll begin to feel more confident in your skin. When fashion flatters, it can go a long way to help you feel happier in the body you were born with.

 

How To Plan A Future For A Relative Going Into Retirement

Life comes at you fast and one day it will eventually come to an end as does every living thing. So, it’s wise to truly have an unabated, stress-free joyful life for however many years you possibly can once you’ve hit retirement age. Planning this monumental moment in your or a relative’s life is complicated and anything but stress-free. There are so many different avenues to think about, look further into, test out, investigate pick for the right person, that it can all start looking like a whirlwind at times.

One of the few times in life, when a financial planner is needed to know if, when and how someone can retire, is at a point in time when that person is in the final chapter of their life. It’s not as easy as just planning what money goes where and when the human aspect is so diverse in issues that feelings can supersede sound legal advice. One of the biggest dilemmas for those approaching retirement is whether they want to live a similar lifestyle they have been doing so before retirement as they’re finally free of life’s pressures. There are ways to properly plan for many eventualities and investigate every option you have in finding the right care center.

 

Source – Chris Potter

Preparing to fund a life in old age

Cash IRAs, aren’t the same as regular savings account because they don’t charge you tax on the interest that you earn; more often than not in an annual plan. This means that if your relative, parent or yourself, started earning more and moved into a bracket where you could be paying higher tax, an IRA could give you the leverage you need. Higher-rate taxpayers could avoid the general 40% tax on interest their savings face, while if you were in a middle-class bracket, you could potentially save up to 20%. However, these are average, at the end of the day, this is all dependent on the company you decide to choose, the state, province or region you live in, your country’s national or federal laws.

Shares IRAs and indeed stocks, are free from both income tax and a capital gains tax which you would pay for the profits you make in your business ventures. It’s practiced throughout most Western financial industries, the fact that you can transfer the money you have invested, in the current year’s or previous year’s tax and capital gains tax legislation. You can do this tax-free as long as, you do not physically withdraw any money whether for the process of for personal reasons.


Photo by – Michael Coghlan

The right finances to maintain living standards

If your and someone you love’s state pension runs out or will eventually teeter out, and you can foreshadow this happening, you can find solace in setting up a basic saving account well ahead of time. You may use a basic savings account if other funds are sinking, therefore, becoming scarce. Sinking funds cover the essential things in your life, like home repairs, expenses for business trips, vacation and money needed for coverage such as insurance.

A savings account will offer a decent interest rate and will demand that you do not touch the money inside the account for a set period of time. Generally speaking, the longer time you leave the money alone and keep adding to it, the higher the interest rate will rise after the account holder has shown themselves to be trustworthy. Some banks will offer you consistent rise in your interest rate but will balance this out by taxing the interest money you will have earned. This service is generally seen as risky and consequently only offered to rich clients.

 

Image by – Mark Doliner

How to preserve your mental health

If you’ve spent your whole life working, it can be disheartening to be told you need to retire. Having a job brings a sense of self-worth, confidence, and goals to reach. You may need to console a busy-body relative who’s nearing retirement age that it’s okay to let go and enjoy their old age in comfort. One of the many blessings, and for some the greatest one, is spending more time with grandchildren. Sometimes the struggles of old age lead grandparents to live vicariously through their grandchildren and reminisce about their youth. Unlike their parents, grandparents are their fun authority figures, who laugh and play with them and get up to mischievous activities with them. Children form a bond with adults who don’t pose as a barrier and don’t judge them.

This bonding and love, without the need to go through all the diaper changes and sleepless nights, brings newfound joy and love into the hearts of many in retirement. Children need a good network of adults who will work with them to teach life lessons and be their for them as emotional support. And, quite frankly because grandparents aren’t directly giving them orders to clean their room, do chores, they can be that fun playmate children can’t wait to go to. Retirees have a lot more time for loved ones and countless memories can be created together so that the children and people around them, might remember them as a force for good in their world once they’ve passed away.

 

Source credit – Max Pixel

More time for yourself and be happy

Retirement gives you the excuse you need to exert yourself in areas you hadn’t before. Finally, you can start doing the things you want without responsibilities hanging over your head. Old folks are free of the nagging thoughts of living carefully and not taking overt risks. But, as you get older, you start to care less and listen more to that voice that wants to seeks thrills and enjoy being rebellious. Suddenly you’re full of so much energy, and the daredevil in your can come out.

 

When you’ve retired, you can do all those crazy things you kept putting off, like bungee jumping, skydiving and adventuring across the world at your leisure. Transatlantic cruises are much revered by prosperous couples who have retired, as the ship docks at many different ports in Europe and America where individuals can go sightseeing and explore new cultures and cuisines at their own pace. Retiring from work doesn’t mean you have to retire from life. There are so many new doors that can open when you do, however, all you need is the right planning and attitude.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s Time To Open Your Arms To Technology!


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There’s no denying that technology is one of the most important aspects of modern life. It’s practically taken over some incredibly significant parts of everyday life and, for good or ill, there’s no going back on that. Because of the sheer prevalence of technology, it’s incredibly easy to feel cynical, even distrustful of it. After all, surely there’s a price to pay for all of this innovation and convenience, right? Well, sure, but no more so than with anything else. After all, anything that’s embraced without consideration, or done without moderation can be harmful. Technology by itself isn’t harmful unless you use it that way. If you use it properly, it can make your life far better and easier than it would ever be otherwise. With that in mind, here are some modern pieces of tech that you should embrace right now!

 

Fitness tech

 

Staying in shape can be something of a challenge a lot of the time. Whether it’s because of the hard work involved, or simply the act of finding motivation to work out at all. Fortunately, for anyone who’s ever struggled to get themselves down to the gym a couple of times a week, technology is here to help. Your smartphone has plenty of apps that can do everything from helping you count calories to giving you reminders of when you should be working out. Not only that but the benefits of wearables like Fitbit for health are remarkable. Tech like this tracks your heart rate, how active you are, even how much sleep you’re getting. For anyone who’s ever found it difficult to see the results of their hard work, tech like the Fitbit is perfect.

 

Social media

 

If you open a newspaper, magazine, or even spend any time on the internet, you’re likely to see something about how social media is ruining everything! It’s making us antisocial, competitive and shallow! But is that really the case? After all, social media doesn’t actually do those things, people do. And the sad fact is that people have been finding ways to be antisocial, competitive and shallow since the dawn of time. What social media can do, however, is connect you with people in ways that you may never have been able to before. You can now keep in touch with friends all over the world, reconnect with people you’d lost contact with, and keep friendships and relationships strong, even over long distances. Sure, social media has its issues, but it also has so many positive qualities that it’s important not to ignore them just because you’re sick of seeing your high school friends vacation pictures!

 

Gaming

 

Gaming is one of those hobbies that has always had something of an image problem. In the eighties when it first appeared it was the image of the lonely nerd hunched over an arcade cabinet or a computer, nowadays it’s the image of the angry, bitter gamer yelling at people over the internet. Yet, in spite of this, gaming has never been more inclusive and creative. With smaller games showing a huge breadth of experiences and artistic statements that simply wouldn’t be possible anywhere else. If you’re stuck for a way to spend your evenings, consider picking up a controller your computer’s mouse, and entering into a whole new world of possibilities.

Getting There Is Half The Fun!

Sometimes our with our exercise schedules, we can get so focused on the goals we are working towards. Whether it’s losing weight, toning up, or increasing our PB, we forget to actually have fun while we are exercising because we are so focused on the outcome. But moving our bodies should be fun, as that is just what they were designed to do! So read on for some tips on how to enjoy your workouts more.

 

Don’t set unrealistic goals

 

The first thing that you have to do to enjoy your workouts more is to not set unrealistic goals. If you are always pushing yourself beyond your limits, it is a great strain on your body and your mind and can leave you exhausted and drained.

 

Instead, work to smaller realistic, achievable goals. That give you a sense of satisfaction when you achieve them, but don’t become the be all and end all of your workouts. In this way, you will help build your own confidence and keep yourself coming back for more.

 

Change it up

 

Something else that you can do to make your workouts more fun is to change up what you are doing. I don’t just mean using a different machine at the gym or wearing a different headband though.

 

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Instead, challenge yourself in a new way and do something totally different. If you’re a runner, try one of the many dance classes available in your town. Or if you are a weight lifter, why not try aqua aerobics instead?

 

As they say, change can be a god as a rest, and it can really help you appreciate your regular exercise routine, as well as experience fun by doing something else.

 

Use music

 

Music is something that can really help people enjoy their workouts a lot more. It’s because music is so emotive, and can have an effect on our moods. For example, it can make us happy when we feel down. Or help to motivate us when we are tired.

 

So have your favorite music on while you workout, and it is bound to increase your enjoyment of whatever activity you are doing.

 

Take it outside

 

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Sometimes a change of scene is what you need to enjoy what you are doing, a little more. So why not take your workout outside? Yoga done on the beach, or in a beautiful garden is fantastic.

 

As is running outside in the breeze seeing all the landscape go by. Instead of being stuck in a stuffy gym with strangers.

 

Let go of perfectionism

 

Lastly, a sure fire way to enjoy your workouts more is to let go of that voice inside you that demands perfection. Contrary to what that voice says you don’t have to be perfect.

 

You don’t have a look the best in your workout clothes or be the fastest runner in your club.  You do have to achieve a certain time, or life a certain weight.

 

It’s enough that you turned up and you are doing something. After all, you’re lapping everyone that is sitting on the couch right now!

 

We Just Can’t Wait Until The Weekend

For most of us, our jobs are a stress filled affair. In fact, there are few careers that are free from worries. But, don’t think that admitting your job stresses you out means you’re doing the wrong thing. The opposite is true. If you’re chilled about your job, the chances are that you don’t care about it in the way you should. When you’re doing something that means a lot, you get stressed about it. Because it matters! And, some jobs are naturally stressful. If you have a lot of responsibility, there’s no way you can be relaxed about what you’re doing.

Yet, exposure to high levels of stress is bad for our health. It can lead us closer to heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke. And, that’s not all. As well as physical problems, stress can lead to major mental health setbacks. To save ourselves suffering from stress, it’s important to take a break now and again. That’s why the weekend is important! It’s our time to kick back, put work to one side, and let our minds and bodies relax a little. If you feel like stress is getting on top of you, you may not be making the most of your weekends. Here’s a little guide about how to work a weekend worth having.

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THAT FRIDAY FEELING

We all know that wonderful Friday feeling don’t we? Nothing beats waking up on Friday morning, knowing there’s only one day to go until you can unwind. In many ways, Fridays are the best thing about the weekend. Once Saturday comes, the clock is ticking. And, we all know that time moves too fast when we’re having fun. On Friday, though, you have the whole blissful weekend still to come. And, everyone else is in as good a mood as you. So, the day is pretty much guaranteed to be a good one. Barring any major disasters, anyway. It’s important you start embracing Fridays for the joy they are. If it helps, count them as part of your weekend. Technically, they are. Friday evenings count, right? This change in your frame of mind means that you have one extra day to play with.

It can also help to use Fridays to destress your brain. It can take a little while to unwind. Often, we don’t feel relaxed until Saturday evening. And the weekend is half over by then! Turn Friday into your unwind day by shuffling your work if possible. Get all your stressful tasks for the day out the way early. If possible, spend the afternoon on admin, or other low pressure jobs. That way, you can enter the weekend already in the right frame of mind.

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It’s also worth developing some Friday night routines. Popping to the shop to buy some treats after you finished is a good signifier to your brain that it’s time to relax. If you do this every week, it will soon become the only way you want to start your weekend. It can also help to have a glass of wine or two on a Friday night. You may not want to get drunk – that would ruin your Saturday. But, a glass or two will, again, signal relaxation to your brain. You could even stock up on some fun wine stuff for the occasion. Treat yourself to some Friday night wine glasses, and keep them for Fridays only! These will become the perfect Friday night treat.

SOMEPLACE NEW SATURDAYS

The best way to make the most of your weekends is to go someplace new. Sticking around the same old places will not be the best way to refresh yourself. And, if you stay home for two days straight, you may feel like it’s time wasted. Saturday is the best day to get away, because you can let go, knowing you have another day still to come. It is when you will be in the best mood, and so most receptive to new experiences. You don’t have to travel for hours to get someplace new, either. Visiting local towns you haven’t been to before, or walking somewhere new, is all it takes. This time away is crucial for helping you forget about work for the day.

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And, if you want to go further afield, you can do that, too. It may be worth planning all the places you would like to go. Then, you can make plans for the Saturdays coming up. This has the bonus of giving you something to look forward to. And, that in itself can help to relax you. When planning what you want to do, bear in mind that you only have one day. Though going away is fantastic for weekends, it’s also important that you don’t spend too long traveling. You get enough of that during the week, right?

STAY AT HOME SUNDAYS

Sundays are the perfect day for staying home. You’ll be glowing from your time away the day before, and will be able to completely relax. Chances are, you’ll have some housework to do during your time off. Get it out of the way as early as you can on Sunday. Then, you can enjoy the rest of your day. Spend the time doing whatever relaxes you most. It may be that you love to sit in front of the television. Or, you might like to read. These are things we rarely allow ourselves time to do. Even on the weekends, we often feel guilty about wasting time. But, remind yourself that you’re doing it for the sake of your sanity. You deserve the time to unwind. Plus, you can rest assured that you’ve done all your jobs. And, you did something worthwhile with your Saturday.

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If you’re not used to unwinding in this way, it may take some getting used to. Be patient, and strict with yourself. The more you relax, the more accustomed you’ll become to the feeling. And, you’ll soon start to reap the benefits in every aspect of your life!