How smartphone apps can actually make you healthier Comments Off on How smartphone apps can actually make you healthier 1362

Imagine having a way to make even the most stressful situations seem less daunting. It may seem a bit unrealistic, but there’s a practice dating back to prehistoric times that makes this possible.

The benefits of meditation are well-documented – it can help with anxiety, depression, and even help you with insomnia. It’s also been shown to help calm you down about day-to-day worries.

But how do you take the time to unplug and meditate? Funnily enough, it may take your smartphone. This may seem counterintuitive, but some of the best tools for relaxation are found on your trusted device.

In order for you to experience the full benefits of meditation, it’s imperative you don’t get distracted while using meditation apps – don’t steal glimpses at your Facebook news feed in between sessions. With the right amount of discipline, you’ll be able to take a device that’s often the cause of stress and use it for health and happiness.

Whether you’re a beginner or you’ve been meditating for years, these smartphone apps – all available for both iPhone and Android – will kick start your wellness journey.

Headspace: Guided Meditation

This is easily one of the most popular guided meditation apps on the market. With a star-studded fan base (Emma Watson and Gwyneth Paltrow have shared their love for the product) and nearly 62,000 five-star reviews, it’s not hard to see why Headspace has become so trendy.

Fortunately, the app isn’t all hype. Founded by a former Buddhist monk and advertising exec, Headspace has hundreds of sessions on everything from stress to sleep. Additionally, the app has “SOS” exercises in case you run into an unexpected situation and need to de-stress quickly.

Available for iOS and Android. Free for a basic plan; monthly subscriptions start at $12.99.

Relax Melodies

Whether it’s humming your favorite tune in the car or seeing a beloved band in concert, you likely already use music for comfort in some form. But it turns out that music is good for more than that – it’s been proven to improve mood, get rid of burnout, and reduce anxiety.

If you prefer your relaxation with some background noise, it’s imperative you choose sounds that will calm you down instead of creating an unnecessary distraction. That’s where Relax Melodies comes in.

The app specifically focuses on sleep meditation but can be used at any time. The basic plan gives you 52 sounds for free and allows you to mix them as you please. Maybe you prefer listening to the sounds of the ocean over a relaxing piano tune – have no fear. There’s something here for everyone.

Available for iOS and Android. Free for a basic plan; lifetime subscriptions start at $19.99.

Meditation Studio

This is an all-encompassing app with an impressive variety of topics. Since we all use meditation for different reasons, the app doesn’t try a one-size-fits-all approach. If you’re looking to boost your confidence, trying to reduce stress, or dealing with military-related PTSD, there’s a meditation plan specifically designed for your needs. While many of the apps on our list have subscription plans, Meditation Studio has a one-time fee of $3.99.

The team at Meditation Studio boasts over 30 experts who have an array of meditation skills. You can sort by topic or by the teacher, depending on what you’re looking for.

Available for iOS, Android, and Alexa. $3.99.

Simple Habit

Are you too busy to take time to relax? Even if you think the answer is yes, Simple Habit would beg to differ. The app is designed for those with hectic lives and asks for only five minutes of your time daily. According to the folks at Simple Habit, that’s all you need to reap the benefits of meditation.

Founded by an entrepreneur and designed by meditation experts and a psychologist from Harvard University, Simple Habit has been lauded as the go-to app for busy people.

Available for iOS and Android. Free for a basic plan; monthly subscriptions start at $11.99.

Stop, Breathe & Think

This is another option for those who are constantly on-the-go. Feeling overwhelmed at work? These guided meditations are short enough to be done in between meetings, and it picks an exercise based on the user’s current mood.

Additionally, there’s a breathing timer that allows you to practice deep breathing, which is a key part of meditation and a proven way to reduce stress. Bonus: The team at Stop, Breathe & Think donate 10 percent of net revenue to a non-profit that teaches inner-city youth how to use meditation skills to their benefit.

Available for iOS, Android, Alexa, and Slack. Free for a basic plan; monthly subscriptions start at $9.99.

It’s time to take that pesky phone that always demands your attention and use it for good. What are you waiting for? Get started on your meditation journey today.

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The Netflix show you need in your life Comments Off on The Netflix show you need in your life 72479

Netflix is definitely the place to go if you are looking for the best of the best. Their shows cover all genres, niches, clichés and so much more – there’s something fun for everyone. Aside from their exclusive Netflix original series’, they also let you stream hundreds of shows from anywhere on up to six devices. The little company that started out as a mail-in DVD rental startup has grown into one of the biggest names in motion production and streaming.

Currently, Netflix has a seemingly never-ending library of top-notch award-winning TV shows. Their series mostly receive positive reviews from their audiences and the fact that all the episodes of a season are usually released all at once makes the fans even love them more. Who doesn’t love a good Netflix “binge?” It really removes the mind-numbing pressure of waiting one whole week for another episode of a series that has twenty-something episodes in a season. While we’re discussing Netflix, it’s also important to mention that they make series’ that are considered “next-generation” and “out of this world,” so it will make what we are attempting to do here extremely difficult, but we have to be tough. 😃

Listed below are some of the best series out there based on popular review and well, our opinion too. Picking one show is tough, so let’s explore some shows that made the final cut for the “one Netflix show that you definitely must see.”

The Umbrella Academy

If you are into superheroes, then the obvious choice of a Netflix original will have to be The Umbrella Academy. Although the series debuted just a few days ago, it has racked up quite the reviews from fans and critics everywhere. The extreme and unexpected turn of events was unprecedented, and don’t get us started on the bad-assery that is number five. The plot revolves around seven individuals all born on the same day through arguably miraculous means. They were, however, unfortunate enough to be adopted by an eccentric billionaire bent on saving the human race. After adopting these kids, the billionaire built a school, The Umbrella Academy to help these kids harness their powers and save the world. Surprisingly, they all quickly disbanded as they hit their late teens and sought out life outside the four walls of The Umbrella Academy, all except number one. They all reunite thirteen years later to scatter their father ashes and they stay around to investigate their father’s death and stop the apocalypse that their long-lost brother five warns them about.

This series features an unexpected ending, a cast that is to die for, and a diverse set of characters.

Stranger Things

The 80s were famous for the wacky theories that floated around everyone’s minds, Stranger Things revisits those theories and the 80s of course, and brings them to life. Join Dustin, Lucas, Mike, Steve, Nancy, and Eleven as they try to rescue Will from the Upside Down all while fighting a monster who can appear out of thin air. The show explores theories of government top-secret researchers and the discovery of alien life. The show takes an old idea and gives it a fresh new outlook. It makes most producers and writers ask questions like: Why haven’t we thought of this? The show also won a ton of awards and has fans binging the old seasons in anticipation of the next season to drop in April.

Narcos

If you love Tom Cruise in American Made then you will love Narcos. It’s the famous Netflix retelling of the rise of the drug trade in Columbia in the 80s. It recounts the life tail of famous kingpins and their battle with law enforcement. It’s filled with everything you’d expect from the legendary Pablo. It’s packed with power plays, money, guns, and of course, drugs.

13 Reasons Why

If we look at the drama section of Netflix there are a ton of great options. From the thriller Ozark to the emotional 13 Reasons Why to the insightful Orange is the New Black. This section is packed with options. If we had to pick one though it’d be 13 Reasons Why. The series offers an insight into the reasons or conditions surrounding the suicide of Anna Baker. She left 13 audio tapes that were to be passed around between people that she deemed relevant in her life and help them understand why she did it. The series is like being on an emotional rollercoaster of suspense and heartbreak, we highly recommend it.

Black Mirror

Black Mirror is one of the earliest and the most satirical Netflix productions, second to Dear White People. This series is a collection of satirical stories exploring the perceived dangers of modern-day technologies. The series is arguably one of the shows that made Netflix the streaming service it is today and it has this multi-faceted nature that allows the mind to wander.

Our top pick, because the fan loves it so much is Stranger Things.

How to ask your boss for a raise Comments Off on How to ask your boss for a raise 71102

In most companies out there today, there are measures that have been put in place to ensure that employees get promotions and, subsequently, a pay increase. But in the rest of the world we aren’t so lucky. For you to get a pay increase you have to get it done the old-fashioned way; asking your boss for a raise. Upon initial thought, most might think it’s a bad idea. Asking for a pay increase does seem suicidal in the employment front, but it doesn’t have to be. Surely not all bosses are like that but regardless of their temperament they might think the idea ridiculous unless it is supported with a long list of requirements to cushion the request.

In this world we live in, there is no way that someone who doesn’t trust you or particularly like you will choose to favor you or give you what you want. It doesn’t just work that way. It’s simply the order of things and as such your boss needs to like you, trust you and your abilities, and think you deserve a raise before he/she will actually give it to you. Asking him or her after all these boxes have been checked is going to be a breeze, a mere formality. Here are a couple of tips that will help convince your boss to say yes when you ask him or her for a raise.

Put in the time

Your boss won’t just sign off on a salary increase if he or she feels like you are not devoted and consistent. Consistency is very important in the workplace. It shows devotion and dedication to a universal goal. When you come to work on time and clock out at the very last minute your boss will see things differently. He or she will begin to think you are a hard worker and you are a step closer to getting a yes when you ask for a raise.

Increase your productivity

Staying late is but one part of the entire equation. You need to not only put in the time, but the work as well. There needs to be a distinguishable difference in the quality of your work. This will convey that you are as dedicated as you are productive. You don’t have to outshine everyone on your team, you just need to make sure that the boss knows that you provide better results than other teammates. This will make you look industrious and dedicated.

Always help everyone you can

This is a very important step in the plan. When you help your fellow workers and employees out constantly it makes you seem like you care. And this acknowledgement will help your crusade. Make sure you don’t leave the very boss you are trying to impress out. You must make it a point to help your boss when he or she needs it. You could help him/her with the financial books or help with his/her kid. Anything to ensure that the boss understands your importance.

Be a problem solver

This is usually the trump card in this endeavor. This is an instance where you come to the aid of the company you work at. There is always bound to be some form of crises sooner or later when you work at an organization. It’s simply a norm at every institution. When these problems arise and they seem like they might be more complicated and challenging than most anticipated, it’s your chance to dig deep and try to solve the problem for everyone. It’s not a do-or-die situation, but getting a raise is all about scoring points with the boss (over time) and the best way to do that is defusing a bomb that threatens the entire workplace.

Getting a raise without getting a foot in with the boss is extremely difficult. Like any reasonable person, they need to make sure that you deserve the extra sum of money that you are requesting. They can’t simply give out raises without being confident in the recipient’s ability. This is where checking all the boxes comes full circle. If you are a great employee that helps when crises strike, you will definitely be on the boss’s list.

Checking all these boxes will ensure that your request is seen as important and placed above everyone else because you have proved that you are an important part of the team and you deserve a raise. After fulfilling some or all tasks on this list asking your boss for a raise could get you a sure yes. However, it’s important to note that fulfilling this long list is not an assurance that your request will go through. There could be extenuating circumstances that could prevent the boss on signing off on your requests. Circumstances like budget cuts or seniority, etc.

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