Understanding the Different Skin Cancer Types and How to Prevent Them

Understanding the Different Skin Cancer Types and How to Prevent

Understanding the Different Skin Cancer Types and How to Prevent Them

Cancer is a word that many of us fear. Hearing that you or a loved one have developed skin cancer can make your mind jump to conclusions out of shock and worry.

But just what types of skin cancers are dangerous, and how can you prevent yourself from getting skin cancer?

There are a few skin cancer types that vary in severity and can be prevented with different treatments. 

What is Skin Cancer?

Skin cancer is what happens when the cells that make up your skin begin to mutate into cancer cells that divide out of control. It is the most common type of cancer that occurs in the United States to this day. 

While skin cancer usually occurs on skin that is exposed to sunlight, it can also form in the lower layers of skin and be harder to detect. 

Skin Cancer Types and Treatment Options

While there are many different types of skin cancer, there are four common types that will be discussed. Here are the signs, symptoms, and treatments for each type of common skin cancer.

Basal Cell Carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma is among the most common and least worrisome type of skin cancer. It often develops on areas of the skin that are the most exposed to sunlight, including the scalp, face, and neck area.

It shows itself as a mildly transparent bump on the skin, though it can take other forms as well. Some signs of this type of cancer can include:

  • Pearly white bumps on the skin, or a bump of skin with a translucent outside; these often have visible blood vessels underneath and has a tendency to rupture or bleed
  • Brown, black, or blue lesions with a raised, translucent border
  • Scaly reddish patches on the back or chest
  • Waxy white lesions without a visible border

While basal cell carcinoma is usually not dangerous, you should contact a doctor if you notice any sudden changes to an existing bump, or if a bump that was previously removed has resurfaced. 

If you should discover a bump on your skin, don’t worry—basal cell carcinoma can usually be removed with a simple skin biopsy, or removing the small piece of cancerous skin. Cases of basal cell carcinoma spreading or developing into other types of cancer are rare, but you should still talk with your doctor about it to be safe.

Dr. Johnny Gurgen specializes in the removal of skin cancers and can help you to make sure your skin is healthy again. 


Melanoma is a far more serious type of skin cancer that can develop anywhere on the body, though it primarily appears in areas of skin that are exposed to sunlight. The most at-risk individuals for developing melanoma are women under 40 years old, though anyone is capable of getting it. 

Melanomas often begin as changes to existing moles, such as growths or darkened skin. However, they can also appear suddenly on otherwise normal skin.

There are steps you can take to find out if your mole is normal and healthy. Check to see if it:

  1. Has an irregular border or shape
  2. Has changed in color noticeably
  3. Has grown larger than 6 millimeters in diameter
  4. Has changed in either look, size, or sensation, such as if it has grown itchy or painful over time

If any of the above circumstances are true, then you should go to get it checked by a doctor, as it may be a melanoma. It’s crucial to catch this type early so that it doesn’t go unchecked.

Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer

Nonmelanoma skin cancer is a broad term used to describe any cancer that isn’t melanoma. This encompasses any rarer type of skin cancer, and as such has a variety of treatment options depending on the type of cancer involved.

These types of cancers will often need to be removed through surgery; if you’ve noticed any odd changes to your skin that you can’t account for, talk with your doctor about nonmelanoma skin cancer today.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Skin

While not life-threatening, squamous cell carcinoma of the skin can be a particularly aggressive form of cancer that can cause serious damage if left untreated. This is because it tends to form in deeper layers of the skin. 

This type of cancer is also prone to spreading along the skin and through other parts of the body as well. If you notice any new, painful red sores on your skin or inside of your mouth that doesn’t go away on its own, you should talk with your doctor immediately.

How to Prevent Skin Cancer

Fortunately, there are many different ways that you can protect yourself from getting skin cancer. Certain lifestyle changes and protective measures can help to keep you safe from skin cancer, such as:

  • Keeping away from direct sunlight, tanning beds, and other forms of UV light
  • Wearing sunscreen year-round while outside
  • Wearing protective clothing to prevent sun damage
  • Examining your skin frequently for changes or variations in moles or bumps

By keeping these tips in mind and checking yourself regularly, you can help protect yourself from developing skin cancer. 

Keep Your Skin Healthy

Now that you know the different skin cancer types and how to prevent them, you’re ready to start living your new healthy life with proper precautions in place. Keep yourself healthy, happy, and cancer-free, and remember to check your skin frequently for any potential changes. 

What have you learned about skin cancer? Have you had experiences with any of the above skin cancers that you’d like to share?

We’d love to hear your thoughts! Be sure to leave a comment with your story down below, and any tips you have for protecting yourself against skin cancer.


The Art of E-Commerce: Your Guide to Selling Your Makeup Online

The Art of E-Commerce: Your Guide to Selling Your Makeup

The Art of E-Commerce: Your Guide to Selling Your Makeup Online

The cosmetic and beauty market’s set to hit $438.38 billion in the next 6 years. Coupled with the $9.09 trillion e-commerce market value, it’s never been a better time to sell makeup online.

These numbers reflect a booming digital world in which businesses are thriving. The entrepreneurial spirit’s at its peak and there are many resources to build your own online store.

As society changes, so does the beauty market. If your passion for makeup has brought you to the masses, it’s time to be part of the evolution.

Your dream to start a beauty brand awaits you. Here’s what to know.

Sell Makeup Online

While beauty and business may pose as opposites, they go hand-in-hand. That said, having a passion for makeup’s not enough. If you’re seeking success in the e-commerce world, there’s a lot to learn.

1. Establish Your Demographic

First thing’s first. You won’t get too far if you don’t know your audience. Ask yourself the following:

  • Why do I want to sell makeup online?
  • Have others encouraged me to open my store?
  • Who’s expressed interest in my offerings?
  • Who would enjoy this service?

Getting clear on your motives clarifies the rest of your creative pursuits. It helps with marketing, tone, branding, and staying authentic.

Since makeup serves different functions, it has various contexts. Different makeup angles include:

  • Costume
  • Anti-aging
  • Professional
  • Everyday
  • Natural
  • Organic

Makeup’s far more than just colors and brands. How it’s made, when to use it, and who it serves are top focuses.

2. Type of Product

Once you know your demographic, you can identify what you’re offering. Before you sell makeup online, there are a few things to consider.

What type of makeup is it? Do you want your own operation, or to scale the business?

Personal Products

If you’re selling personal products, you’ll have to abide by the Federal Drug and Cosmetic (FD&C) guidelines. The good news is once you do, you’ll gain rapport with your audience. 

Personal products involve branding, manufacturing, and selling all on your own. One person operations are manageable for smaller businesses.

White Label Products

If you’re struggling to scale, you might transition to white label products. White-labeling means using a third-party manufacturer while using your branding and logos.

It’s simpler to manage your own products, but it’s more efficient to white-label if you have a high demand.

Once you get into packaging, you’ll want to know about the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act (FPLA) to meet appropriate standards.

3. E-Commerce Methods

If you want to sell makeup, you’ll need an online store. The e-commerce world gives you options. You can:

  1. Hire a web developer to build your store
  2. Use online marketplaces like Amazon
  3. Sell through social media

Successful businesses require big-picture planning. Consider which platforms you’ll use for customer engagement. That way, whatever you choose as your selling method can complement your outreach strategies.

If you want to start an online store, consider it a game. There are options and it’s up to you to choose your route.

Learning the language is important, but finding what’s best for you is the way to make it work.

4. Online Presence

Consider prioritizing your online platforms. If you already have a website, that means you likely have a following. 

Incorporating an e-commerce platform is easier with a following. While you’re building, you can tell your audience what’s coming.

If you don’t have a strong online presence, your store will be your big break. Consider how a website or social media platform can drive traffic to your shop.

5. Digital Marketing Strategies

Once you establish your online presence, you’ll want to implement digital marketing practices. One of the smartest ones to adopt is SEO—or search engine optimization.

The goal’s to become a trustworthy vendor and build reviews. Using keywords, strategic phrasing, and links can drive traffic to your site and boost your sales.

6. Follow Through 

The easiest mistake to make with online stores is focusing on the building more than the follow-through. The good news is the solution rests in shifting your focus. 

Amongst the many moving parts of building a business, it’s easy to focus on selling. While that’s exciting and important, things like order fulfillment need proper attention.

To some, making sales and order fulfillment sound like the same thing. The reality is there are many steps between a consumer’s sale and them receiving the product. The backend tasks are as important as the frontend—if not more.

Order fulfillment services have the following benefits:

  • Meet demand
  • Get the product to the consumer fast

Order fulfillment services ensure customers are literally fulfilled with their order. Customer service remains the greatest tell of a successful business. That means tending to the consumer the whole way through.

Remember, consumers don’t know you, they only know your product. As a result, your product is their experience of you. Thus, manufacturing, labeling, buying, and shipping must be seamless.

Start a Beauty Brand

Once you fuse your business and beauty inspiration, you’re ready to start a beauty brand. Brands are impressionable, bold, and representative of you and your products. Building your brand means knowing the following:

  • What makes you and your products different?
  • What makes you memorable?
  • Why should people come back?
  • What’s worthwhile about this brand?

While there’s ample opportunity for beauty brands in e-commerce, the market’s laden with competition. That means one thing. Do your research!

Then, knowing what makes you stand out won’t be a pipedream—it’ll be factual. Find gaps in the industry and fill them with your passion and expertise.

Get Big in the Beauty Biz

Let the booming beauty business numbers encourage you to become part of it. Entrepreneurs fuel the economy with their small businesses. That means there’s ample proof that you can do the same.

If you want to sell makeup online, it’s not a question of whether you should, but how you will! Learn for yourself how both your beauty and business inspirations make a fierce combo.

For more on maximizing your business development plans, check out our latest blog posts.


6 Surprising Things That Make You Unique

6 Surprising Things That Make You Unique

The drive to stand out from the crowd and be special and unique is a mighty one. But with all the fantastic people in the world doing incredible things with their lives, you might sometimes feel lost in it all.

But have some positive thinking! You’re unique, even when you don’t feel like you are. You’re more than just a sum of your parts, and yet even those parts alone can make you even more distinct. Here are six special things that make you unique.

1.    Your Personality

Personality refers to multiple different aspects of one’s identity. Typically, character is seen most clearly in the way you interact with others, so behavior plays a significant role in demonstrating character. A mix of acquired and inherent factors affect these characteristics. Here are some aspects of personality that make you unique:

·         Your Attitude

The way you perceive the world dictates your attitude, and that attitude can have huge effects on negative and positive thinking. You can drag others down with a bad mood or lift others up with the right attitude. The way your perspective is shaped can often influence your success and progress in life. If you tend to look on the bright side of things, you’re likely to enjoy more accomplishments and have more positive experiences with those around you.

·         Your Perspectives

Only you see things exactly as you do. Only you have lived in your shoes, seen things from your angle, and experienced life uniquely as you are. This combination of knowledge and thought leads to a distinct perspective. Even if you have a similar view to others, you are still entirely unique in your complete perspective on the world! This is also why it’s important to listen to other people’s thoughts and ideas, too, as they provide views you will never have otherwise.

·         Your Sense Of Humor

Who and what do you find funny? What kinds of jokes do you tell? How do you tell them? What makes you laugh? What don’t you find funny? All these details add up to your overarching sense of humor, and that makes you unique, too!

·         Your Quirks

You are a collection of different bits and pieces that all come together to make you a standalone individual. This includes many quirks, like little things you do, ways you react to something, or ways you speak. Things like this can add to your uniqueness and make you stand out!

2.    Where You Grew Up

Did you know that your home environment as a child can affect how you develop and grow? Studies on adopted children who enter better socioeconomic homes show a clear correlation between IQ and home environment. A child adopted from a poor environment into a wealthy household is likely to score a more positive result on an IQ test than someone adopted into a poor home.

But why does this happen? Is it indeed wealth that dictates intelligence? Well, that’s unlikely to be the case. It seems more likely that the environment of poor and wealthy homes is to blame instead, as factors like stress are known to damage the brain and affect development. This factor is particularly true for children whose brains are still developing, according to research. Living in a more impoverished home or a more dangerous neighborhood could potentially worsen the risk of chronic stress patterns.

Of course, it’s also worth stating that several other things can affect stress levels than financial status. Abusive homes, bullying at school, or feeling repressed when growing up can lead to stress levels that affect cognitive development.

3.    Your Identity

Can you answer this question–“Who are you?”. That question is a straightforward one, and its answers lie in your entire being – or, more specifically, in your identity. Here are some aspects of identity that make you a unique individual:

·         Style

What is your personal style? How do you present yourself to others? What types of clothes and accessories do you wear? Do you use makeup? How do you do your hair? What’s your preferred aesthetic? These things are a part of your external identity!

·         Ethnicity and Culture

Where did you grow up? What is your ethnic origin? Do you feel pride and kinship for your ethnicity or culture? Do you feel disconnected from it? What things from these backgrounds do you bring with you in your life today? For many people, these things are huge parts of identity.

·         Age

Believe it or not, age can be a considerable part of the identity that makes you unique. How old do you feel? How much experience do you have? Are there things about your body that have changed? These things can all influence aspects of your identity.

·         Gender

Are you a man? A woman? Neither? Something in between? Nothing at all? This can make up a big part of your identity. It’s worth noting that gender and sex are two different things; studies discuss gender as something social, not biological, though the theory is still being fleshed out with research. This means that you are free to analyze your gender more closely. What aspects of you are feminine? Which ones are masculine? What do you see in yourself?

·         Spirituality

Are you a religious person? Do you nurture your spiritual health with prayer, meditation, or other techniques? Or do you practice unorthodox forms of spirituality? Do you seek to uncover mysteries of the universe? These are great questions that can give you a lot of insight into your own identity.

·         Beliefs

What is your political alignment? How about your thoughts on current events? What is your view on the world and life? Beliefs form your opinions and, eventually, your personality, making them a significant part of a unique identity.

4.    What You Like

You’re not defined exclusively by your interests, but you can’t deny that they play quite a role when it comes to the people you attract or surround yourself with. It can also say a lot about who you are. Here are some examples of how!

·         Hobbies

How do you like to spend your time? Are your hobbies mainly solitary, or do they involve others? Do your hobbies require patience, or are they very action-oriented? Are those hobbies commonly associated with people of your profession, temperament, or appearance? All these questions contribute to how your hobbies make you unique.

·         Passions and Goals

What is it that drives you and moves you forward every day, even when the going gets tough? What helps you keep your positive thinking? How did these goals and passions become entrenched in the first place? Often, what someone is passionate about plays a significant role in determining their personality or community!

·         Habits

What are some things you do without even realizing it? How do you tend to spend your days? Do you follow a routine? What are some good and poor habits you have, and do you care about them? Habits often say a lot about what a person finds familiar and comfortable.

5.    Your Experiences

No one can deny that experiences shape the person you are today. You are often a product of the things you’ve been through. This doesn’t mean you’re defined by your part, but it does mean that you learn and grow through them. Here are some ways your experiences make you unique:

·         Childhood

We’ve already touched on the ways your environment growing up influences who you become. That applies to all aspects of your childhood. How did you grow up? What parenting styles did your parents favor? Research indicates that what happens in your youth is most likely to dictate the adult you become.

·         Trauma

Most people have been through trauma at some point in their lives. How has your trauma harmed you? Are you still struggling to overcome it? What have you learned from it? How has it influenced the way you respond to things today? It’s not unusual at all to feel like you became a different person after experiencing trauma.

·         Opportunities

What opportunities were provided to you in life? What inherent privileges were you born with? Have you seized or missed great opportunities? Without the opportunities you were given, you would likely be in a very different place than you are now – and that’s why they’re part of what makes you unique!

·         General Experiences

The things you have been through, whether positive or negative, have all taught you lessons or changed you in some way. How you responded to each of those experiences has also dictated much of who you are now!

6.    Nature and Nurture

For years, experts have referred to the debate of what affects growth and development as “nature vs. nurture.” This, however, might be the wrong way of thinking about it. Based on our list here today, it is reasonably evident that both aspects affect your unique personality and individuality.

Nature accounts for – as an example – your risk factors for disorders, your appearance, and even some part of your temperament. It’s boiled down to simple genetics, and that’s what nature is all about: biological reality. But some aspects of nature never come into play at all, and DNA cannot dictate every possible part of who you become. If genetics were indeed all that mattered, twins who share the same DNA would not emerge from the womb with differences in appearance and personality.

On the other hand, nurture is responsible for – as an example – your values, the lessons you’ve learned from experiences, and things that make you feel nostalgic for your childhood. It’s not just about family, but about experiences, mistakes, your hometown, how well you were cared for… the list goes on! If nurture were indeed all that mattered, experts wouldn’t have uncovered so many links between genetics and different risks in life.

So what, then, is the likely answer in the nature vs. nurture debate? The answer is that there shouldn’t have been a debate between them in the first place! No aspects of nature and nurture exist in a vacuum. They intertwine and work with each other to create the person that you are. Elements of your nature interact with aspects of your nurture to provide you with unique experiences, thoughts, and reactions.

Final Thoughts On Some Things That Make You Unique

Many people can view uniqueness as a bit of a paradox. Since every person in the world is, indeed, unique, are you unique at all? Well, there’s no direct answer to that, but no matter what, you are a separate and distinct individual from those around you. A million different factors all had to align for you to be exactly who you are today – and that’s a beautiful thing!


Does Renters Insurance Cover Storage Units?: A Complete Guide

Does Renters Insurance Cover Storage Units?: A Complete Guide

Does Renters Insurance Cover Storage Units?: A Complete Guide

When you’re renting a home, you rarely have the storage space needed to keep all your belongings in your apartment or house. Storage units solve the problem, but of course, they come with issues of their own, such as the risk of fire or burglary.

Having renters insurance is a smart idea, but do you need two policies? Or does renters insurance cover storage units?

Here’s what you need to know.

Does Renters Insurance Cover Storage Units?

Yes, if you buy renters insurance, then it will cover your storage unit.

Every policy is different, but the same rules should apply to your storage unit as your rental unit. That means fire, tornadoes, burglary, and water damage will all fall under your policy.

There are limits. You won’t enjoy the same coverage for both your rental and your unit. Policies typically cap storage unit insurance at 10% of your total policy value. So, if you have $50,000 in renters insurance, then you have $5,000 in coverage for your storage unit.

What Isn’t Covered?

There are a few instances when your policy won’t kick in after an emergency.

First, if you need to claim a result of a flood, earthquake, or pest, then your insurance won’t cover you. You typically need specific flood insurance to protect your possessions.

Second, neither renters nor storage unit insurance cover certain high-value items. Storage unit coverage never includes things like gold, musical instruments, valuable art, or other rare items. If you have jewelry (including expensive wedding rings), then you likely need to add a jewelry insurance rider or seek out insurance policies that cover your valuable items specifically.

There may be other limitation clauses depending on your state and policy provider. Always read the policy in full before deciding on the best storage unit insurance for you.

When Should You Buy Renters Insurance and Storage Unit Insurance?

So, when should you buy both renters and storage unit insurance?

Most people won’t need both, but you might consider looking for two policies if 10% of your policy value doesn’t cover what’s going into storage.

You might find this to be the case if you’re downsizing from a family home into an apartment and keeping the vast majority of your things. In this case, you would have a significant amount of furniture or other items into storage either temporarily or permanently, and $1,000 to $5,000 wouldn’t cover the value your storage unit.

What about storing valuable possessions? As noted before, you typically need policies covering your valuable items specifically or riders that do so rather than buying two of the same policy (renters and storage unit).

Make Sure You Have the Right Cover

Does renters insurance cover storage units? The answer is yes! However, there are policy limits.

If you have unique needs, such as a significant amount of stuff in storage or high-value items, then you’re likely to need multiple policies or riders for full coverage. Make sure you talk to an agent before you sign the dotted line. Because when you have the right cover, you can rest easy.

Are you looking for more helpful content? Visit the finance archive for more money matters.



True Mental Strength Is When You Can Find Fuel In An Empty Tank »

True Mental Strength Is When You Can Find Fuel In

Do you have mental strength? The world is chaotic, and you are either at a position where you’re struggling or going through life as a superhero. Your daily concerns are all over the place, from dirty dishes to global warming.

It seems that it’s almost impossible for you not to let the problems of the day get to you. It will help if you improve your mental strength by keeping your stress levels in check. If you want to have a productive and healthy life, then you must do this monumental task for you and others.

Ten Ways to Enhance Your Mental Strength

Have you ever been to the doctor and was told that you need to reduce stress? It seems like such a simple thing, but most people find it completely overwhelming. You can reduce your stress and protect your mental health by engaging in these ten simple things.

1. Set Boundaries

Do you have a hard time saying “no” to people? Why is it that you always try to take on more than you can handle because you’re afraid that you might upset someone? It would help if you learned how to use the word “no” to protect your mental strength.

If you’re having a hard time with the concept, then practice in front of a mirror. Say things like, “No, I will not work overtime or take on any more tasks.” When you practice this independence in private, you’ll be more apt to use it in public. Learn to set boundaries so that you don’t become overwhelmed with extra tasks.

2. Recite Positive Affirmations

A wise old proverb says that as a man thinks in his heart, so is he, so you must be careful that you’re not full of negativity. Did you know that negativity can affect your mental health? Recite positive affirmations daily.

When you first get out of bed in the morning, try saying the following things:

  • I will accomplish all of my goals.
  • I am a fantastic person.
  • I’m loved by my family and friends.
  • I am a productive individual.
  • I feel great.
  • I’m going to have a great day.

When you start feeding your inner man with positivity, you will be amazed at the outcome. Start your day on a positive note even if you got up on the “wrong side of the bed.”

3. Stop Overthinking

Why do people tend to overthink? Rather than waiting for the verdict, you’re borrowing trouble from tomorrow. It’s like getting test results on a suspicious lump you have on your body.

Before the results come in, you’ve already got yourself on chemotherapy and writing your goodbye letters. The fact is that it might be something simple that isn’t malignant, but if you don’t stop overthinking every detail, you will drive yourself crazy.

4. Use Self-Care

Remember one thing in life you cannot pour out of an empty cup. If you want to take care of others and do an excellent job at work, you must learn to practice self-care. Make time for you each day, even if it’s only 30 minutes.

5. Practice Deep Breathing

Do you ever feel like you have a significant weight on your chest? Stress, panic, and anxiety can make you feel overloaded. Thankfully, when you practice deep breathing, you’re releasing that tension you feel.

You can use many methods when you do deep breathing, but the most common way is to inhale to the count of seven, hold the breaths for a count of seven, and then release them slowly for the count of seven. It’s a simple yet amazingly effective exercise.

6. Be Grateful

Do you ever sit back and count your blessings and be grateful for all the things you’ve been given? Did you wake up and take a warm shower, eat breakfast, and get into a nice car to drive to work?

Do you have family and friends who love and support you for whatever life throws your way? Do you have food in your cabinets and money in your checking account? Many people are homeless, and they could only dream about having a small portion of the things you have. Be grateful for what the universe has given you.

7. Exercise

One of the best ways to protect your mental strength is by engaging in exercise each day. You only need about 20 minutes to work out, but the effects it has on your brain is astounding.

Research shows that when you are working out, you’re releasing feel-good endorphins in your brain. You’re also increasing the production of vital neurotransmitters that regulate your moods like dopamine and serotonin. You should add a healthy diet to your day that has little carbohydrates and sugars.

The more protein and healthy fats you consume, along with your workout plan, can keep you in an adequate space and protect your mental strength.

8. Get Fresh Air

There’s something tranquil about a breath of fresh air? Air is life, and you need it to survive. Research shows that when many people have a panic attack and feel those fight or flight sensations kicking in, they often run to the outdoors.

There’s something magical about Mother Nature and her ability to calm you almost instantly. When life seems to overwhelm you, then you should go outside and look up into the heavens. Feel the golden rays of sun shining on your face and breathe in the flowers’ aroma and other fresh scents.

9. Engage in Yoga

You probably hear a lot of hype about yoga as a workout. However, most people have no clue the power it has on your mental health. Yoga first helps you to form a sense of self. It will then move you into a better place by altering you from the sympathetic to the parasympathetic nervous system.

Many studies have been conducted on this art form, and the results are overwhelmingly positive. Researchers show that it gives you mental clarity and helps with depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses. Additionally, they have found that it has a profound effect on post-traumatic stress sufferers too.

Learning breathing techniques and body movements can do a world of good for your mental state. The great thing about this art form is that it can be modified for all body types and endurance levels.

10. Practice Positive Thinking

Are you a “Negative Nelly” or do you see yourself as a “Positive Pearl?” It’s hard to be positive in life with destruction on every corner. Do you ever feel like you want to throw in the towel?

Many people want to give up, but that isn’t an option. You can change how you feel by only using positive thinking skills. Sure, the electric bill was $200 more than you budgeted for the month. However, you should be thankful that you even have electricity.

In some third world countries, the electricity comes and goes. You have heat to keep you warm and air conditioning to keep you cool. Those in such nations would love to have the pleasure of a comfortable home with an HVAC system.

When you change your mindset from negative to positive, you will see a world of difference in your overall wellbeing. Feelings of gratitude and mindfulness enhance your mental strength. Look at each situation you face daily, and though bad it may seem, you should try to find something positive.

Remember that some of the worst storms end with a rainbow. When the skies begin to clear, and the sun’s rays hit the water droplets, it displays one of the most beautiful sights in nature. Stay positive and focused no matter what life throws your way.

Final Thoughts on Gathering Up Your Mental Strength to Face Tough Times

It seems like the world is in chaos, and people struggle to find harmony in their lives. How do you combat the pressures of the world without losing your cool? The ten tips above can help you to protect your mental strength in times of adversity, and you should utilize as many as possible.

One of the most potent inspirational stories comes from the man who wrote the song “It Is Well with My Soul.” Horatio Spafford was someone who struggled and came through insurmountable troubles in life. He lost his business and his 4-year old son in the fires of Chicago in 1871.

Spafford struggled along until 1873 when even greater financial struggles hit his company. He decided to take a trip with his family on the SS Ville du Havre ship. A last-minute change of plans caused him to send his family ahead, and he would follow later.

Sadly, the ship collided with the Loch Earn in the Atlantic Ocean, and all four of his daughters perished. Anna, his wife, survived the incident, and she sent him a telegram to let him know she was alive. He immediately went to be with her. As the ship entered the area where his daughters had perished, he wrote the famous song.

Like Spafford, you can learn to sing even when things look their worst. This man lost everything he had and suffered more problems in his life than anyone could imagine. Yet, in the middle of the darkest of nights, he found a song in his heart. Is your mental strength like Spafford’s?


10 Types of Negativity to Let Go of Right Now >>>

10 Types of Negativity to Let Go of Right Now

Have you ever wondered exactly why you remember all the mean things people have said to you more than the beautiful things they’ve said to you? That’s because your brain is hard-wired to remember negative experiences in life. And this sets you up for a negative mindset to gain a stronghold in your thoughts and actions. It can affect your friendships, your work, and your decisions. If you struggle with being overly negative, it’s crucial to find ways to let it go, especially of the more destructive types of negativity.

Here are the ten types of negativity you need to get rid of right now

Release the burden of these negative thoughts–you’ll be all the happier for it in the long run!

  1. Blameshifting

Blameshifting is blaming others or situations for your own failure.  Studies say blameshifting is a tool people use to push away criticism. But the same study found that blameshifting usually backfires because people don’t like blame shifters. Think here of politicians who make sweeping campaign promises, then blame others when the commitments aren’t met, even though it’s their fault. Blaming your spouse, kids, or your upbringing is a form of negativity that weighs you down and distorts your view of life.

How to let go:

The next time you’re tempted to blame someone or something, stop and make a decision not to blameshift. Allow yourself to accept the situation and admit your own fault when needed. Find peace in letting go of this negative attitude.

  1. Being a perfectionist

If you are a perfectionist, then you want to do things in an utterly perfect way. You set high standards for yourself and others. No one is perfect, and to set your goals on perfectionism is unrealistic. It’s a negative view of yourself because you’re afraid you won’t be accepted by others if you don’t look and act correctly.

How to let go:

Perfectionism is a deep-set negative view of yourself. Here are some simple new habits you can try to begin breaking free from perfectionism.

  • Admit your weakness to others
  • Don’t compete with other people, decide not to compete
  • Accept yourself
  • Practice gratitude for who you are
  • Pray when you’re tempted to be critical of yourself or others
  • Use mindfulness to relax and find peace
  1. Self-defeating thoughts

Negative, self-defeating thoughts are those negative thoughts you believe about yourself. These thoughts chip away at your confidence. They bombard your mind with statements like

  • I can’t do it, why bother trying?
  • I always mess things up. I’ll mess this up too.
  • I’m not good enough.
  • I’m a hopeless mess.
  • I’ll probably fail as I’ve done before.

When you have self-defeating thoughts, you become your own worst enemy. If you had a friend that uttered these things to you, you would question the friendship. So, don’t talk to yourself with these negative thoughts.

How to let it go:

Please pay attention to your thoughts when they cross your mind. Review what caused you to think like this, then make a choice to let go of them. Here are some additional items you can try to help reverse your self-defeating thoughts.

  • Ask yourself why you’re thinking this way.
  • Change your negative thoughts with positive ones. Instead of “I can’t do it, why bother” say, “I can always try.”
  • Talk to yourself, don’t listen to yourself. Tell yourself what’s real instead of listening to lies.
  1. Judging others

Judging others is a form of negativity because it’s an effort to feel better about yourself at the expense of others. Being critical of others, seeing their faults, and assuming you’d never be like that shows your own insecurities. It would help if you felt better than others because of your uncertainties. Judging shifts the focus off of your faults so you can find fault in others. This negativity destroys your relationships. It kills your self-esteem and your ability to see yourself correctly.

How to let go:

  • Refuse to judge others. Assume you don’t know people’s story so you shouldn’t come to a conclusion.
  • Choose to understand the other person’s situation.
  • Be accepting of others. No one is perfect, so don’t judge people by those criteria.
  • Choose to love others and love yourself.

  1. Fear of failing

No one wants to fail, but if you have a fear of failure, it paralyzes you. Fear of failure keeps you in from reaching out at work, in relationships, and in every part of your life. Fear of failure blinds you to your true potential. This negative mindset holds you back from really living.

How to let go:

  • It’s easy to get overwhelmed, so set small, reachable goals for yourself. Accomplishing small goals leads to achieving bigger goals.
  • Make a list of your failure fears. Figure out what will happen if you fail. You may be surprised to see that failure isn’t the worst thing.
  • Others have failed big time only to bounce back and succeed. Tell yourself you can bounce back. You can overcome any failures.
  • Don’t believe everything you think. Just because you think it, doesn’t make it real. Your fear of failure is a lie you are telling yourself. Please do not believe it.
  1. Low expectations in life

Another common type of negativity that can hold you back has low expectations. You assume the worst about yourself and your life. You feel like your life is worse than everybody else’s life. Low expectations are related to fear of failure because you feel like you will never succeed. This thinking may be related to your poor choices, but not always. It’s a mindset that develops over time as you allow negative thoughts to fill your mind. You begin to believe the lies.

How to let it go:

View your life as a journey. Choose to be healthy, happy, and empowered along the route. Try some practical things to help improve your perspective.

  • Mindfulness breaks to bring calm and peace into your life.
  • Exercise releases endorphins, so you feel better physically and mentally.
  • Gratitude journaling can help you be grateful for what you have.
  • Find a community of like-minded people to can share life.
  1. Worrying

Worry is when you feel uneasy or concerned about something. Your brain goes into overdrive, thinking about all the bad things that could happen. Worry eats away at you. It distorts what’s real and creates anxiety and fear. It’s a negative mindset that causes stress, which makes you prone to physical problems such as ulcers, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

How to let it go:

Here are a few ways to stop worrying.

  • Try to live more in the present instead of the future “what ifs.”
  • When you start to feel that worry, stop yourself and let it go.
  • Avoid things that trigger your stress like news or social media.
  • Keep a journal of your worries. When they’re on paper, they don’t look so bad.
  1. Helplessness

Helplessness is a feeling that everything is overwhelming. You underestimate your ability to rise up and face challenges, to do hard things. You avoid difficulties, and anything hard you ask for help. This low confidence makes you clingy and insecure. You look to alcohol or overeating to calm yourself. Helplessness is negative thinking about you.

How to let go:

Letting go of helplessness means taking a small step outside your fears. Choose to stop being helpless. When you have a challenge, see it as an opportunity to succeed. Other ways to overcome helplessness include

  • Set small goals
  • Keep a gratitude journal.
  • Find a community
  • Push your helpless thoughts away and replace them with positive thoughts about yourself.
  1. Trying to control

Controlling people try to control their spouses, kids, friends, and sometimes even strangers. This type of negativity is based on anxiety and fear of losing control. You may feel if you don’t try to control things, something terrible could happen. It’s a skewed view of your own abilities.

Common controlling techniques include

  • Being critical of others
  • Wanting to prevent bad things from happening to others or yourself
  • Finding fault in others
  • Keeping a record of wrongs people have done to you
  • Manipulating others out of fear of losing control

How to let go:

If you find yourself drifting into a controlling attitude, stop yourself. Tell yourself it’s okay not to control everything. Refuse to control others. Accept others as they are.

  1. Jealousy

Jealousy is a feeling of insecurity that leads you to crave what others have. You may wish you had their looks or wealth or career or children or spouse. Jealousy leads to anger, resentment, and disgust. It’s a deep hole that you fall into when you nurture negative feelings about yourself and others.

How to let it go:

Refuse to fall into the jealousy trap. Find contentment in your own life. Cultivate gratefulness. Don’t compare yourself to others, instead appreciate the differences.

Learn tips on how to overcome pessimism and become a happier person.

Final thoughts on releasing all forms of negativity from your life

Negativity comes in all forms of behavior and attitudes. It disguises itself in worry and fear of failure. It obscures your view of who you are and makes you focus on what’s not right in your life instead of what’s good.  If you find negativity holding you back from living your life, stop it in its tracks. Refuse to give in thoughts of jealousy, control, or worry. Do the hard work it takes to step away from being a negative person into a life of positivity.


Read These Notes to Yourself Every Morning…

Read These Notes to Yourself Every Morning...

Sometimes we need to jot down some positive notes to self to keep ourselves going in this stressful world. Reading some encouraging words from time to time can elevate your mood and help you rise above any negativity life throws your way. Inspiration can come from anywhere, but positive affirmations have been proven to ease mental stress and improve one’s outlook on life.

No matter if you write down your affirmations on sticky notes and put them around the house or jot them down in a journal, everyone needs the motivation to keep on trucking sometimes. Respect yourself the same as you would treat your best friend and reinforce positive messages in your self-talk. Have the rule that if you wouldn’t say something to a friend or loved one, don’t say it to yourself. If you start to change your relationship with yourself and become your own best friend, everything in your life will begin to look sunnier.

Here are seven notes to self you need to read every day:

Below, we’ve listed some of the best positive messages to tell yourself every day when you wake up. Make sure to read them daily to get the best results!

  1. “I can get through anything life throws my way.”

If you’ve been feeling defeated lately, use this affirmation to get your mind back on track. After a while of existing on this planet, you realize that life comes with a lot of problems. However, that doesn’t mean you don’t have what it takes to tackle them. In fact, you would not have been put here if you didn’t. Believe in yourself and know that the universe will never give you more than you can handle.

Even if you don’t know how to do something, simply believing that you have what it takes will give you the strength you need in challenging times. Life always gives us solutions; we have to open our eyes and think outside the box, sometimes to see them. Some notes to self about courage and strength can give you the encouragement you need to keep going.

  1. “I am beautiful, smart, and perfectly capable of achieving my dreams.”

Everyone struggles with self-esteem at some point because the world demands so much from us, and sometimes we don’t feel we measure up. Don’t beat yourself up for feeling inferior, but don’t allow yourself to remain stuck in this mindset, either. Just remember that you become whatever you think about yourself, so why not make it easier and believe positive things? You can become whatever you want, and you don’t have to limit yourself based on your perceived shortcomings.

The more you tell yourself positive affirmations during your self-talk, the more you will start to believe it. That’s why it is so important to practice this each day, preferably in the morning before you go to work or school. Drill it into your head that you’re an amazing person, and don’t settle for believing anything less about yourself.

  1. “Today’s going to be an excellent day.”

Your attitude determines what sort of day you’ll have, so in a way, whatever you believe becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Remember, you get to create your reality, so if you want to have positive experiences, you need to shift your mindset. Believe in the good things coming, and even if the day doesn’t go as planned, at least having a better outlook will improve your resilience. Always look for the hidden silver lining, because even the negative experiences have a hidden lesson.

Looking on the brighter side of things doesn’t mean you have to slap on a fake smile when something really awful happens. You should still feel and process your emotions, but try not to get too caught up in the details. Keep your mind on the larger picture, and don’t sweat the small stuff, in other words. If you spill a drip of coffee on your shirt while driving to work, laugh, and feel grateful that you still have some left to enjoy.

Remember – it’s not what happens to you; it’s your attitude about it that truly matters.

  1. “All is well in my universe, and all is working out for the highest good.”

If you’ve been struggling with not knowing what path to take, write down some notes to self about trusting the process and believing in the journey. As long as you follow your heart and learn to trust your intuition, every action you take will lead you further down the right path. No one really knows what they’re doing here anyway; we’re all just winging it for the most part. So, please resist the urge to put too much pressure on yourself to figure it all out.

We learn as we go, but if you can focus on how each experience helps you grow into a better person, what path you take won’t matter as much. As they say, it is not about reaching the top of the mountain – it’s about the journey along the way. If you wholeheartedly believe that good things will come your way and choose to keep a positive attitude, life will keep on pleasantly surprising you.

  1. “I choose to honor, love, and respect myself.”

Nothing good can come out of disrespecting yourself or giving in to negative self-talk. Use this affirmation if you’ve been feeling unconfident or unworthy of love to remind you that you do not have to look anywhere outside yourself for validation. It all starts with you, so give yourself the self-love and care that you deserve. Instead of focusing on everything you don’t like about yourself, use positive affirmations to shift your mindset.

What do you love about yourself? Make a list and keep it on a sticky note on your nightstand so you can read it every day. Here are a few ideas to put on it in case you needed some to get you started:

  • Your smile
  • Your friendly attitude
  • The compassion you have for other people
  • How well you do at your job
  • Your work ethic
  • Your quirky sense of humor and dazzling smile

These may not personally apply to you, but we just wanted to provide a few examples if you need ideas. The world may give you every reason to doubt yourself, but as long as you remember your worth, nothing outside yourself can hurt you. Keep your head held high and don’t let anyone, especially yourself, put you down.

  1. “No one can put me in a bad mood unless I allow it.”

Other people’s emotions don’t have to determine your own, even if that seems hard to believe. Why let the negative energy at work or school drain you when you can decide how you want to feel? As they say, “Ships don’t sink because of the water around them. Ships sink because of the water that gets in them. Don’t let what’s happening around you get inside you and weigh you down.” – Author Unknown

This takes some time to practice, of course, but you have to remember that you control your own emotions. Other people may influence your feelings, but they don’t get to determine your reaction. Remain even-minded even if everyone else allows the turbulence of life to rock their own ship. If you can sail on both the stormy seas and the calm ones, the water won’t even have a chance to drown you.

  1. “I am open to any potential opportunity that presents itself to me.”

Keeping an open mind means at least considering the paths that present themselves to you. You don’t have to take every opportunity, but it pays to keep your options open. If a better-paying job in your field opens up, for example, you should apply for it even if it makes you nervous to start something new. No one ever grew inside their comfort zone, so don’t allow complacency to set it.

Challenge yourself and believe in your qualifications if you want to achieve great things in life. This doesn’t just apply to jobs, either; if you’re going to move across the country, start a business, or begin a new relationship, you have to weigh the positives against the negatives. If you determine that the decision will benefit you, take that leap of faith and know that the universe opened this door to you for a reason.

Final thoughts on the notes to self to we should all read every day.

In this life, we all need a little mental boost in some way to get us by. Many people find this through positive affirmations, such as the ones we listed above. You become what you think most about yourself, so choose to focus on positive things in your self-talk. Instead of beating yourself up, compliment yourself just as you would your best friend or significant other.

If you treat yourself with kindness and love and compassion, it’ll make it easier to share it with others as well. Let’s start a movement of positivity and vow to show ourselves more love and care because we are so worth it!


10 Ways to Empower Yourself to Walk Away from a Narcissist

10 Ways to Empower Yourself to Walk Away from a

Walking away from a narcissist can be difficult but, if you can empower yourself, you can do it. The first step towards leaving is to acknowledge the situation for what it is.

Sometimes recognizing a narcissist isn’t as easy as you’d think, which could make you question yourself. Questioning yourself is what makes walking away tricky, so you must empower yourself and learn which characteristics to look for. It’s easier to walk away once you have learned to identify narcissistic behavior, luckily.

There are sure signs you can watch for that will let you know someone is a narcissist. These signs are generalized, so keep in mind that a narcissist may not exhibit all of them. To identify a narcissist, look for the following signs:

  • they think they are the single most important person
  • a sense of entitlement
  • require constant communication
  • they think they should be superior even when others have achieved more
  • exaggerate personal events, achievements, and talents
  • won’t associate with anyone they feel is beneath them
  • frequently take over conversations
  • belittling
  • they expect others to do whatever they say
  • take advantage of others to benefit themselves
  • an inability to recognize or acknowledge the feelings or needs of others, lack of empathy
  • arrogant and easily angered
  • they need the very best of everything, or they can’t be happy
  • can’t handle criticism and always has a problem with other people
  • easily offended and take innocent remarks as a slight
  • will begin to shout and insult to gain superiority
  • can’t regulate emotions or control explosive behavior
  • become moody or depressed when they don’t do something perfectly

Recognizing the signs may not be enough to get you to walk away for good, however. You must continue to empower yourself in other ways, too.

How to Empower Yourself to Walk Away from a Narcissist

You recognize the need to leave, but you must muster up the courage. Here are a few guidelines to help you make the transition.

1. Join a Support Group

When you first recognize that you are in this situation, it can be hard to overcome. You might feel as if you are a failure for not walking away sooner.

You aren’t a failure, however, as there are many narcissistic people in the United States. Encountering a narcissistic person is common, and you may be in too deep before you realize their real personality. This means that many other people have been in a situation similar to yours.

To overcome the situation, accept the way it is, and walk away for good, you may need support. This support is best when it comes to those who fully understand what it is like.

Joining a support group can be the perfect place for this. Make sure the support group is led by a therapist so that you can learn to move forward positively.

It’s crucial that you don’t turn to those who may judge the situation. Whether they will talk badly about the narcissist or they make you feel bad for staying, it can be counter-productive. This reason is why it is often best to turn to a third party for support.

2. Have a Life Separate from Them

Narcissists like to isolate you from other people who love you. This is one of the ways they gain control of you. They may also expect you to give up your hobbies or career so that your life only revolves around them.

This situation makes it harder to walk away, so you have to build a life separately from them. If you have gone out-of-touch with friends or family members, reach out and work to rebuild the relationships. Start spending time pursuing your old interests and hobbies, and find a job that makes you happy.

The relationships you rebuild should be separate from the narcissist’s friends and family. Likewise, the hobbies and job opportunities shouldn’t include them, either.

This attitude will give you a chance to start fresh and have people to support you and things to keep you busy. Plus, it will prevent you from returning due to loneliness or overthinking.

3. Learn Your Worth and Practice Self-Love

To successfully walk away, you have to learn to love yourself. Know your worth and work on building your self-esteem and confidence. Value your needs and wants and take the time to take care of yourself.

When you do this, you’ll begin to trust yourself more. You will be stronger and well-equipped to walk away. Then, you will notice that you no longer feel guilty, and you’ll stop doubting yourself.

4. Set Boundaries and be Assertive

When you have been affected by a narcissist, it can be hard to set boundaries and be assertive. It is possible, though, and you will be glad you did afterward. Typically, the first time you do this, you’ll feel powerful and in control. Each time you are assertive after that is only helping you gain strength.

Set boundaries by making it clear that you don’t like the behavior. You can also set boundaries by having an exit strategy when things go awry. Make sure you have a car, Uber, or a trustworthy person who can pick you up quickly.

This way, you can leave a situation when you are dealing with a narcissist. You won’t be stuck with them, and you won’t have to count on them for a ride. Use this same way of thinking for all situations you are in, and you’ll be able to walk away.

When you give yourself the power to decide when enough is enough, you’ll quickly build self-esteem. Plus, it’ll help get the point across that you aren’t going to be their victim anymore.

5. Leave When you Say You’re Going to Leave

If you keep threatening to leave only to stay every time, you’ll be going in circles. When you say that you are planning to leave, it’s time to leave. If you don’t walk away, you will stay trapped as a victim in this toxic cycle of narcissistic behavior.

Don’t let them convince you to come back, either. When you walk away, let it empower you. Embrace the freedom and the safety you feel when you are away.

Experts explain why narcissists have difficulty maintaining healthy relationships.

6. Identify the Role of a Victim

No person deserves to be a victim, and you might not even realize you have become one. If you begin feeling hopeless or powerless, it’s a sign that you have become a victim. These are signs of an unhealthy, toxic relationship.

When identified, you can use it to empower you to walk away. Choose to stop being a victim and put yourself, your happiness, and your mental health first.

7. Learn About Narcissism and Toxic Relationships

The more you know, then the more you will feel empowered. Learning is key to successfully walking away from a narcissist. As mentioned before, you have to learn the characteristics so that you can identify them at the moment.

You must also gather your inner-strength and remain assertive about your intent. Likewise, you have to learn how you can begin to detach yourself from this person.

It might help you to read about the effects a narcissist has on another person. This could help you understand why it is so important to walk away.

You can also learn how to safely walk away if you feel physical abuse might occur. There is a way out, and by learning all you can, you will feel stronger and more capable of leaving.

8. Take Steps to Do Things for Yourself

Don’t wait on this person to get things done for you. Usually, they are so busy thinking of themselves that they forget what you’ve asked of them. Learn to do something for yourself, and you will feel empowered.

It will make you healthier and help you realize that you don’t need them as much as you thought you did. If you cannot complete a task yourself, then hire someone, or find a handy neighbor to help you out. The sooner you realize how independent you can be, the sooner you will be ready to walk away.

This doesn’t just pertain to getting things done around the house, either. If you feel stuck because you have no education or work history, begin taking classes or signing up for training. Even if you can only pursue it at a slow pace, it will get you started and empower you.

Before you know it, you will embark on the journey to being more independent. With empowerment comes confidence, and that could lead to you landing the perfect job to help you walk away.

9. Take Control of Your Happiness

You are solely the person to ensure your happiness. When you are unhappy, remind yourself that you are responsible for that, too.

If you continually feel like something is causing you to be unhappy, think of how to change it.  Remember that you are 100% the only one who can make changes in your life. So, if you are unhappy with something, it is your responsibility to change it.

10. Cut Off Contact or Make it as Minimal as Possible

Once you have walked away, it is crucial to stay away. Narcissists have a way of making you believe they will change, but you can’t fall for that. It’s easier said than done, so cutting off contact is the best way to avoid the trap.

If you can’t cut off complete contact, make it as minimal as possible. Only discuss necessary topics, and set boundaries to ensure they don’t try to discuss anything else.

Final Thoughts on Ways to Empower Yourself to Walk Away from a Narcissist

Narcissists are manipulative and controlling, and their behavior can take a considerable toll on your mental health. Even so, it can be hard to walk away. If you can empower yourself, however, you will be able to do it.

Remember that you are tougher than you realize, and you deserve happiness and positivity. Remember these tips for empowerment the next time you are in a toxic situation, and think about your wellbeing.


Experts Reveal 4 Things Couples Should Do Before Getting Married

Experts Reveal 4 Things Couples Should Do Before Getting Married

Marriage is a serious commitment. Before leaping into this territory, you need to make sure that you and your partner are ready before getting married.

But how can you be assured that you’re on the right track? What can you do before saying your vows that will help you determine whether marriage is a good idea?

Relationship experts reveal four things couples should do before getting married.

1.    Have Serious Conversations

The significance of knowing what you are getting into before tying the knot cannot be overstated. You and your partner need to practice positive communication to make sure you’re moving forward on the same page. Here are some things you should talk about:

·         Money

No matter how much positive thinking you have as a couple, the fact remains that, scientifically speaking, financial problems are a chief cause of divorce and have been for decades. You and your partner need to talk at length about economic plans and goals, including ones for the future that seems unimportant to you right now, says Love Inc. founder Brittny Drye. Talk about 401Ks, financial responsibilities, bill-splitting, savings, the division of living expenses, retirement… absolutely everything related to money you can think of.

·         Names

Who’s taking whose name in the marriage, if anyone is? Are you hyphenating? Going for a traditional approach? Not changing any name at all? This topic is an important thing to decide on, according to Emily Sullivan Events’ titular founder Emily Sullivan. Think about your children and the last name they will inherit. What implications may arise for them and your current extended families?

·         Kids

Whether or not you desire to have children – and how many – is a huge point of discussion that needs to be cleared from the beginning. This is a huge step that will significantly affect the direction of your life, says SQN Events owner and event director Beth Bernstein. It involves personal responsibility and financial and emotional commitments. Most couples consider a clash in the desire to have children a deal-breaker.

2.    Open Up Completely

It’s fair to not tell a partner everything early in a relationship. When you’re planning to move forward into marriage though, being open about yourself is crucial. After all, there is little that you can hide from a spouse without it being a severe cause for concern or a breach of trust. Here are some ways to open up to a partner before getting married:

·         Talk About Your Family And Childhood

For some, childhood and family is a fun thing to talk about. For others, it’s a little bit more of a sensitive topic. Regardless of your past, it’s a good idea to talk about it with your partner and listen to their story, too. Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Becky Whetstone, Ph.D., consider this crucial in understanding your partner for a more substantial relationship.

·         Reveal Bad Habits

No one is perfect. When you first begin dating, it’s easy to try and pretend that you are, or at least try and soften the reality of your bad habits. Hopefully, that isn’t something you did. But even if you did try and conceal your worst sides before, the chances are that your partner already knows about them to some extent. Be open about the person you are, talk about your struggles and areas you need to improve on and ask your partner to share their own. You need to love each other exactly as you are, without any desire to change the other!

·         Know What The Other’s Values Are

The goal when you marry someone is to spend the rest of your life with them. Though it is possible for people to stay happy and in love when their values differ, it’s still a good idea that you do know if your values are at odds before making these long-term commitments. Get all beliefs, opinions, and potentially controversial thoughts out in the open before tying the knot. This way, you’ll know whether any are deal-breakers, says Drye. If they aren’t deal-breakers, you can then talk about how to handle conflict in those areas and how to respect each other’s values.

·         Discuss Goals

You and your partner probably have your own goals in life. By now, if you’re considering marriage, you should both already know about each other’s plans to some degree. Ideally, your continued partnership will allow both of you to continue to follow your dreams. You shouldn’t give up on those dreams for anyone, and neither should your partner! This is an excellent chat to see if your lives are heading in the same direction.

Therapists explain why couples should set ground rules before getting marries.

3.    Do Stressful Cooperative Tasks

What is marriage but a long-term cooperative task? (Yes, we know it’s more complicated than that, but the concept stands!) If you and your partner can’t handle cooperation under challenging times, you may not yet be ready for marriage. Here are some ideas for testing the waters:

·         Learn Together

Sure, it’s not exactly very stressful, but the process of learning together can give you a shared experience that will make you stronger in the long run. You’ll have a bit of fun, learn to support each other as you gather new information, and figure out how you handle success and failure both independently and as a couple. So try attending a class, lecture, workshop, or talk about something you’re both interested in and see where you go from there!

·         Do Some Grocery Shopping

Have you ever seen couples hashing out a big tiff in the middle of a grocery store? You do not want to become a party to that behavior one day! A great way to test if you work in a positive way is to try doing some shopping together, especially of the kind that involves shared purchases. Food shopping and buying necessities for your home is an excellent way to gauge your compatibility on this scale. It’s not the most stressful thing in the world, but it can still be a challenge!

·         Go On A Trip

Traveling is fun, but no one can deny that things can get stressful and heated. Going on a trip with your partner will give you some fascinating insight into how you both deal with the stress of planning, being on time, and organizing, says So Eventful founder and CEO Marisa, Manna Ferrell. If you are unable to have a good time traveling with someone, you probably wouldn’t want to marry them, either.

·         Live Together

The person you truly are is never more apparent than when you’re at home. That’s why cohabitation is a great way to gauge whether or not you are truly compatible with a person, according to Drye. You’ll have to live with this person, their good and bad habits, and their housekeeping preferences, after all. This might be why 59% of adults between the ages of 18 and 44 have lived with a partner before marriage, and an impressive 85% of them have positive beliefs about premarital cohabitation.

Of course, whether you want to do this or not may differ by your belief system and personal values. A similar option would be having regular sleepovers with your partner – whether intimacy is involved or not – to get a similar glimpse into what life with them would be like.

4.    Get Through A Tough Time

Tough times are a standard part of any relationship. They will come and go throughout a marriage. What’s important is that you know you and your partner can overcome them. Here are some tough times that, if you iron out before marrying, point to a better chance of long-term relationship success:

·         Resolve A Big Fight

Fights are inevitable in a relationship. In fact, frequent arguments, when handled correctly and not done in excess, can actually be a sign of a healthy and positive relationship. This is because you learn to communicate, get through the tough times, and work through problems together, coming out stronger.

The key, then, is in learning to fight well, says marriage and family therapist John Amodeo, also an author. Do you speak to each other with honesty, openness, and respect during fights? Do you know when to step back and take time to breathe? Are you able to find workable solutions and fair compromises? You’ll have many fights in your “career” as a couple, so make sure you know how to work through them!

·         Learn To Deal With Fight Aftermaths

When fights are resolved, what’s the next step? Respect, as always. If you were in the wrong, learn to apologize. This proves to your partner that you respect them enough to put aside your pride. Similarly, you should also be able to rely on them to apologize when they are at fault. But what about situations where there’s no blame, but the end result is that you can’t agree? Be comfortable with sticking to your guns and letting your partner stick to theirs. It’s okay to agree to disagree!

·         Experience A Rut Of Intimacy

In an allosexual relationship, it’s typical for intimacy and libido to have its ups and downs, says marriage and family therapist Sheri Meyers. But when a “down” period is prolonged, both parties can feel neglected, undesirable, and even rejected. That disappointment and hurt can build up over time into resentment.

Take the opportunity to talk about your expectations for intimacy, discuss how you can overcome your current plateau, and think of ways to spice things up just outside your usual comfort zone. Sure, it’s not necessary for you to go through this rut before getting married, but that doesn’t mean it’s not good practice for the fact that these ruts will crop up now and then in the future!

·         Be Apart

Being apart can be challenging for partners who have spent so much time together. The inability to see someone can make resolving arguments harder, and it also makes emotions run higher. You need much more positive thinking to stay strong together when you’re long-distance. We’re definitely not saying to intentionally force a long-distance relationship, but spending a bit of time away from one another is suitable for testing the strength of your relationship and uncovering co-dependency issues.

·         Hit A Rough Patch

Love is not always rainbows and butterflies. Hard times are a standard part of relationships. If you and your partner have never hit a rough patch, there’s a fair chance that you’ll struggle to overcome one that you do hit later on in a marriage. Learning to work through wrinkles with positive thinking, love, trust, and communication is very important, says Sheri. Overcoming these hurdles will show you how committed you are and how secure the relationship is as a whole.

Final Thoughts On Some Things Couples Should Do Before Getting Married

Each relationship is unique, but they all share the need for security, trust, respect, and love. By doing the aforementioned four things before getting married, you’ll know that your relationship is strong enough to thrive in the long-run.


3 Best Finance Certifications to Compliment Your Career

3 Best Finance Certifications to Compliment Your Career

3 Best Finance Certifications to Compliment Your Career

Accountants are the backbones of the entire economy — without the work they do, companies would come crashing down. They keep track of money flows so people know how much they have to spend, and help executives plan ahead. The best accountants also have the best finance certifications, to train them on how to handle anything.

It doesn’t matter if they’re managing wealth and helping it grow, or are tracking global expenses. There are certifications to prepare accountants for any kind of work and to help them achieve whatever they want with their finance careers. All they need to do is apply for a program that prepares them for it and then pass the test.

Testing for the best financial certifications is never easy, though. To become an accountant that works alongside some of the biggest companies, you need tenacity, fastidiousness, and focus. Otherwise, your spot may go to someone else.

Keep reading below to learn about which certifications you should pursue, and how to get them.

1. Become a Chartered Certified Accountant for Global Work

This kind of certificate is recognized by accounting organizations across the world. It proves that an account can work on topics such as financial management, reporting, taxation, auditing, leadership, and even ethics. It covers almost anything and shows that an accountant is ready for almost any kind of work.

To get one, accountants need to go through three modules and take up to 13 exams. It can cost around $2,500 to get, and many accountants said that it took around 3 years to complete the program. You can read on here to learn more about the financial risk management part of the program.

2. Certified Public Accountants Are the Cream of the Crop

A CPA certification is one of the most important certifications for any kind of accountant, no matter where they are. Being certified as a public accountant is a huge step for finance careers and employers even list it as a requirement for many positions. 

It covers topics like auditing, attestation, financial accounting, and reporting. They also usually go over-generalized topics like business environment and concepts, as well as regulation.

3. Chartered Financial Analysts Have the Best Finance Certifications

A designation as a CFA speaks volumes about the capability of an accountant and helps them secure high-ranking positions across the world. With a CFA, you will distinguish yourself as a good candidate for becoming a financial analyst, keeping an eye on the portfolios of wealthy people and companies.

It will prepare you to do more than just track transactions. With a CFA, you’ll be able to help people grow their wealth and make their money work for them in ways it wouldn’t without you. However, it can cost around $5,000 to be certified, and take around four years.

The Best Certifications Are the Ones You Want

There is one way to tell which are the best finance certifications — they’re the ones that you want. If you’re going after a certification that you want and will help you with your career, then you don’t need to worry about how it compares to the rest. All you need to do is work on getting it.

And for that, we’re here. Keep reading our website to learn more about how you can become the best possible accountant you can be!