By Jerry Mooney
When Bill and Melinda Gates combined forces in their health foundation, nobody gave the former head of the Microsoft empire the benefit of the doubt. In fact, it’s only when the malaria vaccine received the green light two years ago that the press began to take his desire to eradicate the deadly disease seriously. In fact, there is no comparison globally to the investment that the Gates Foundation has made to the world of health. The foundation commits several hundreds thousands million of Dollar to the research and development of a life-saving vaccine. You don’t need to be looking at this kind of wealth to consider investing in health, yours and the health of others. Health is not a topic to take lightly: Without it, you are pretty much doomed. There can be no life without health, also while there are plenty of cures and treatments available for a variety of issues, ultimately health is what keeps your body and your mind functioning. Everything breaks if you choose not to invest time, energy and money in improving health issues. So this invites an important question of life and death: How do you invest in health?
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Health is a complex topic
Before considering a variety of health investment options, it’s essential to define what health actually means. Is health what you have when you can pass through the winter months without catching a cold? Is health that special gift that keeps dark thoughts at bay when you are on your own? Is health the absence of physical pain or does it relate to emotional pain? Or is health another word for wealth? So many questions, and so few answers! What we’re interested in, here, is the physical and mental health. Your physical health relates to your bodily functions. In most cases, troubles are easy to identify as they leave a physical mark, Mental health is a more complex topic that focuses on your emotional well-being. It’s not about measuring how happy you are in your life, but how you function at an emotional level and whether psychological factors are handicapping. Looking after your health is the combination of these both elements. Unfortunately, as you have probably guessed, mental health can easily go unnoticed. Emotions do not have a physical sign that marks them as an issue. Contrary to breaking an arm or catching a cold, a mental disease doesn’t always show.
Getting the basics right
Investing in your health is a matter of maintenance. If you don’t take care of your health, you can bet that it will not last very long. But thankfully for you, investing in your health doesn’t have to be synonymous with spending money. It is about establishing the rules of a healthy lifestyle. Being healthy starts with looking after yourself and doing everything you can to give your body the nutrients it needs to stay strong. In other words, however boring it sounds, following a healthy diet is actually good for your body. Not specifically because it means that you can drop a dress size, but because it means that you are feeding your body the vitamins, minerals, proteins, and carbs that it needs. In short, processed foods, sugary and fatty foods might sound delicious, but they do your bodily functions no good. They build fat cells around your organs; they slow down your metabolism; and more importantly, they increase the risk of developing heart and brain diseases. The least you put your body under unnecessary risks, the healthier it will keep you.
The necessary body maintenance
Giving your body the right kind of food is a kind of health investment. But there are many others that you can make. Think of your body as a machine that you need to keep in a good state if you want it to work. Forget the steampunk imagery about wheels and steam, and focus on more basic functions: Physical activity is key to support the production of hormones, and the blood flows to your organs and your brain. It’s no wonder that doctors recommend a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity per day. It keeps things ticking properly in your body. Unfortunately, most people struggle to find the necessary motivation to work out. In fact, workouts are too often associated with a form of fitness desire. You should train not because you want a slimmer body, but because your body needs physical activity to maintain its functions. Investing in physical activities means blocking the time in your diary and seriously sticking to it. It demands dedication and efforts. You can also choose to buy exciting fitness gear to motivate your efforts, but in the end, body maintenance is about investing time in your health.
Invest in fitness
What’s a healthy mood?
Your mental health is a little more difficult than just training. It’s about being able to take care of your mood. Naturally, you can’t force yourself to be happy when you are not. But you can make sure that you do everything you can to maintain your mental health. This starts by ensuring that you have a good night sleep, as lack of sleep can decrease the production of essential mood managing hormones. Additionally, developing positive habits can help your mind to stay focused on good vibes. Being grateful for the good moments in your life supports emotional growth and mental strength.
Keeping up with your health appointments
Even with the best care, there is no guarantee that your health will always be good. External factors can have a significant impact on your physical and mental health. Consequently, you still need to stay up-to-date with essential medical appointments to ensure that you are not taking any chances on your health. You need to rely on health specialists to help you to look after your teeth, skin, and your overall health.
What if you want to help others?
Looking after your health is one thing. Looking after the health of others is a way of investing your skills for the benefit of most. From dental nurses positions – you can find many here – to surgeons; there is an infinity of ways in which you can help to maintain the health of other people. As surprising as it might sound, personal trainers are just as important as they accompany people on the path of health by encouraging physical activities. Creating a healthy path for others to follow demands a lot of patience and specialist skills in addition to the necessary motivation and time.
The external health factors that others control for you
Unfortunately, investing in your health is not just a matter of dedication and wanting to make it work. You can’t control external factors, such as the weather, or more importantly the legislations and marketing of products that are controlled by the government. In fact, your health is nothing but another comma in a governmental budget. As a result it’s not uncommon for governments to choose money over individuals. The latest building fire in London – Grenfell Tower – revealed that governments preferred the cheapest over the safest option. And that, sadly enough, wasn’t an exception. In the great scheme of things, Bill and Melinda Gates are an exception in choosing people over money.
Cost of health
Investing in your health can be challenging at times. It’s a mixture of time, lifestyle choices, physical activity, and medical checkups. In other words, it often sounds like a chore. But if you don’t look after your health, you can’t expect anyone to do it for you. At a governmental level, economic arguments often win when it comes to decisions that could impact the health of others. Gradually the voices of environmentalists and those who want to look after the health of the planet will be heard. But in the meantime, looking after your health starts with looking after the flora and fauna around you.
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By Brian McKay
Want to make a difference in a developing country, but not sure how? There are lots of ways that we can help those less fortunate around the world, most of which are much easier than we may think. Here are just a few ways that you can lend a helping hand.
Travel to less developed countries
One simple way to make a difference is to travel to less developed countries. By paying for accommodation, buying local food and purchasing souvenirs, you’ll be putting money into the pockets of everyday folk and making a difference whilst experiencing the thrill of travelling. For many less developed countries, tourism is becoming an essential part of their growth. Say no to the popular first world travel destinations and try somewhere off the beaten path.
You can go one step further than travelling by volunteer abroad. This may include teaching English to those less fortunate or helping with a manual labour task such as building a well. Such volunteer tasks don’t require any skills or qualifications – you’ll most likely be teaching English to kids that already have a basic grasp and any manual labour job will be very basic. However, by offering that extra helping hand you’ll be making a big difference whilst still getting the experience of travelling. There are companies such as Global Cross Road that specialise in such volunteer programmes.
Give to a specialist charity
There are plenty of charities that you can give to in order to make a difference. Consider a cause that means a lot to you. There are charities that are catered to specific causes such as the National Endowment for Democracy that helps to increase the democratic rights of developing countries. You may even find a specific project such as the construction of an orphanage or helping someone ill to get medical treatment they wouldn’t otherwise be able to get. These specific causes may be far better for your sense of fulfilment than giving to a general charity or government in which you may not necessarily know where your money is going.
The simplest way that you can help is by spreading awareness of foreign issues. By sharing things on social media and discussing causes with your friends you may influence others to make a difference too. You may be able to notify a company or figure with more influence and wealth than yourself to help out. Obviously, it’s far better if you can donate or help out on top of spreading awareness. However, that isn’t to say that you shouldn’t spread awareness of issues that you yourself can do nothing to help – there may be someone else out there that can make an impact, especially in the case of legal cases and curing the sick.
By Nigel Hilton
Businesses start to let themselves down when they forget the importance of their workforce. Each individual member of staff was chosen for their skills and abilities, but when you start viewing the workforce as a mob of worker ants then you’ve taken a little too much of a step back from the company. It’s important to invest time and energy into your employees as a collective and as individuals because they’re human beings. You wouldn’t want to be dismissed as the business owner, and it’s the same story for these hard-working individuals. Here are some tips on making your workforce more effective.
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Reward your employees.
You need to appreciate your employees and all that they do for you. Your office wouldn’t function without the people in it, but it also won’t function if you neglect the people within it. It’s important that you recognize real talent and effort in the workplace. If somebody finishes a project earlier than expected then give them the day off. If somebody goes above and beyond to point out specific problems within the company then give them a bonus that month.
Of course, you could go one step further than this if you want more of the workforce to be productive and effective in the office. You could incentivize people to work harder by offering rewards to all those who do so. The worker of the month could receive perks such as time off, a raise, or perhaps even a promotion. This will encourage everybody to work harder towards a goal. In terms of rewarding your workforce as a whole, of course, you should be allowing them time to relax and recover regularly. Put a pool table and some sofas in the breakroom to create a “chill-out” area for staff members to enjoy during their lunch break.
In the modern age, businesses are starting to realize that working people into the ground isn’t just damaging to humans on a personal level but to the company as a whole. Diminishing returns on productivity are something you need to consider; there’s a point at which you’re not going to get any more out of your employees by working them for extra hours or asking more from them during the day. They’re going to falter and become less effective or productive members of the workforce.
If you want to fix this then you might want to consider flexible working options. Many workers are finding that the freedom to work from home really helps them concentrate. Whilst some people may work better in a team, others may get their work done better in solitude. You could allow members of staff a few days of the week during which they work remotely, but simply stepping away from the rigid limits of the 9-5 might be a good idea. Give employees the freedom to leave early for their kid’s school play or to go to an appointment.
Address office problems.
Remember that your employees are human beings and not simply more cogs in the system. Yes, you rely on your workers to keep your business ticking over as they’re the life-supply of the company, but these people can only work well if they’re treated like people. You need to make sure that you’re putting effort into addressing the problems or questions of your workforce whenever such things might arise.
Listen to your employees’ problems. You could even look into HR consultancy services if you want to enlist a professional helping hand because it can be quite time-consuming to set up human resource services. Nonetheless, this doesn’t neglect its importance. Outsourcing such a service could be a great way to avoid impact on your business’ operations whilst still offering your workers a way to sort out their vacations, discuss potential conflicts in the office, or sort out other problems. The point is that your workforce just wants to be heard.
The concept of teamwork is so important in a workplace, but everybody knows that. You’re probably bored of hearing it by now. However, that doesn’t mean you’ve necessarily got a strong and collaborative team yet. You need to work hard to integrate and deeply embed employees into the company. The goal is to see fewer employees absent-mindedly clocking in at 9 and clocking out at 5. You want people to thrive off one another’s ideas, and that starts by making them feel as if they’re part of the big picture.
Your business needs to have a strong brand which seeps into the inner workings of the company. If you promise to be helpful and caring then be helpful and caring to your employees as well as customers. People are people, at the end of the day; you shouldn’t just be trying to impress your target market and expecting your workers to continue operating like robots. You need to be a little proactive and get people working together as a community or a family rather than co-workers and colleagues. Encourage “downtime” so that people can build friendships and bonds so that they collaborate naturally rather than forcefully.
At the end of the day, if you want your employees to work more effectively for your company then you need to stop seeing a separation between yourself and the workforce. Open up communication channels so that you can be a better boss to your workers and they can better understand your ideas and objectives for the business. You can offer feedback to your staff members to ensure that you’re staying on track and on task but they can also offer feedback to you to ensure that you know what is or isn’t working around the workplace.
Essentially, if you want your business to be organized then you need to ensure people are clear on what the business is striving towards. A more effective workforce starts with more effective communication, respect, and flexibility. People will work harder when they feel less like a slave and more like a valued member of the team. Keep your workforce energized and motivated to work hard.
By Lina Martinez
College may be the time of your life, or it may not. You shouldn’t feel under any pressure to make these few years the most incredible of your life because we can’t control that. The most incredible years of your life may come in your thirties or your forties. Still, whatever the case, the one thing you can control is how useful these college years are to you, and you should see them as extremely useful. This is an opportunity to pave the path to your future, but it’s also an opportunity to socialize, have fun, and meet people who could potentially be your closest friends for years to come. Here are some tips on getting the most out of your college experience.
Don’t narrow down your options.
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You’re young, and you still don’t know what you want out of life. That’s probably a relieving thing to read because it’s what you want to keep shouting at the adults around you who are trying to push you in certain directions. Use college as a chance to figure out which things you do and don’t like, in terms of subject areas and possibly even career options. You shouldn’t jump into any rash decisions because you’ll be a different person in a few years time. Avoid majoring in anything too specific because you don’t want to force yourself into a certain job role at the end of your degree if you change your mind.
Build up your CV.
You may not want to think about jobs when you’ve got a 3 to 5 year course ahead of you because there’s a lot of studying to do before you can think about getting a career. Nonetheless, you don’t want to be caught out after graduation day when you realize that it’s tougher to get a job than you thought. You need to start early when it comes to working on your CV. Having a degree says a lot about your intelligence and commitment to working hard, of course, but an increasing number of people are going to college and getting degrees these days. It takes more than that to make an impression on potential employers.
That’s why you need to continuously edit your resume before you’re even ready to make applications to businesses. You’ll be able to add on all your qualifications, first of all, but then you’ll want to think about what you can add on top of that in terms of experience and interests. Volunteering for things on the college campus could make for good references to add to your CV; if you volunteer for an important cause then that can also be used to highlight your interests to employers. Of course, part-time work is also great experience. You could look into these rewarding Walmart careers if you wanted somewhere to begin. It’s not about relevance to your future career; it’s about proving that you have the willpower to stay committed, focused, and organized within any job role.
Most of all, have fun. This is a pretty straightforward point. Don’t get too bogged down by work and worrying about the future because this is a special time in your life. You’re surrounded by thousands of your peers and they’re all in the same boat as you. This will be one of the best opportunities in your life to make connections with like-minded people. Again, you don’t have to feel pressured to meet as many people as possible; just have fun with the people you do meet.
By Brian McKay
Sketching a foolproof financial plan is one of the most important exercises that you should engage in as soon as you start earning. An appropriate plan will help you to save a lot more in the long run in comparison to what you have envisioned. You don’t want to let your hard earned money go to waste!
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Take the initiative; sketch up a plan, by way of which you will be able to channelize your earnings in an efficient way that will be beneficial for you as well as your family. You need not act like a miser but all you need to do is act smartly which in turn will secure yours as well as your whole family’s future.
The first thing that you need to do in order to understand the importance of financial planning is engage yourself in an innovative exercise. It is a simple exercise whereby you need to multiply your annual income with the number of years that you intend to work. You will be awestruck at figure. Moreover, this figure does not take into consideration all the increments, salary hike and promotions that are going to come in your career path. So the figure is going to far more than that.
Now, consider the fact that how much research and planning you need indulge in before investing on a computer or any kind of gadgets or for selecting your house or for any other heavy expense. Then isn’t it rationale for you to invest some quality time for planning your whole life’s earning as well? This will help you secure your future in a systematic way.
Sorting out problems
The main reason that so many people have income problems is because they’re dealing with massive drains on their finances. Bad spending habits can be a problem here, and we’ll look into that in a second. But much of the time the problem isn’t with conscious spending habits as it is with the long-standing problems of bills and debts.
So how do we mitigate our debts to ensure that we can maximize our income and channel more of our money towards more useful avenues? First of all, killing your debts is essential. Those who have earning enough to make hefty repayments every month should do so, instead of using that money on more frivolous purchases. If you’re in need of more specialized assistance, then you should research your options carefully to ensure you choose the right plan to help your debt. Don’t be tempted to put off dealing with debt indefinitely; many people do this as a means to maximize their income, but it will only make matters worse in the long run.
Check your spending habits
A concrete financial plan will also help to keep a check on the spending habits. Prepare a monthly budget whereby you can allocate the funds that you require to spend every month and also save a stipulated amount. In this way you will be able to control your expenditure much more efficiently. It can help prevent you indulging in impulsive shopping and save a lot in the long run.
Perhaps one of the best ways of doing this is to ensure that you’re really keeping detailed track of all your spending. Keep an Excel spreadsheet that tracks your spending – or a Google Sheet document if you don’t have Excel – and look into mobile apps that can help you keep track of these things on the go.
Execute the plan
One important fact that all planners need to remember is that the plans you are making need to be executed properly as well or else the plan will be of no use! Make a strict note of all the plans you are making as well as your expenses. In this way you would get a clear understanding of all your spending and it will help you to learn from your mistakes as well.
Things have gotten a lot better in the past couple of years, but the global economic scenario is still a little volatile; therefore we need to prepare ourselves for combating any kind of adversities that may arise in the future course of time. If you start preparing yourself from the initial stage by checking your spending habits, even in the face of an extremely worse situation you would not be affected adversely. The better you execute the plan, the better a financial place you’ll be in – which can be very useful if you need a loan in the future. Take the initiative to help yourself as well as your family by curbing your extravagant spending habits!
By Nigel Hilton
An accident and the injuries it can cause will impact your life in many ways. Therefore, it’s vital that you’re able to make the road to recovery as smooth as possible so that you can rebuild your life and start working again. The following are some areas to consider if you’ve suffered an injury or illness after an accident and feel ready to take the first steps back into the office and working life. However big or small the accident was; the impact shouldn’t be underestimated, so take the time to read through and get any help you may need.
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Image source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/road-winter-arrow-74780/
Your Mental Health
Aside from the physical recovery, you’ll be going through; your mind will have taken the brunt of the injuries too. Therefore, it’s essential that you seek the right help and counseling so that you can begin processing what happened. Successfully dealing with the mental impact an accident will have, is the only way your body will be able to recover fully and you’ll have the mental capabilities to begin working again. Stress and trauma can cause you to lose sleep, which will prevent your recovery process from moving forward. It’s crucial that you continue to talk to a professional counselor after you’ve returned to your job too; they’ll be able to advise you on how to deal with the challenges that you’ll face, and help to encourage positive mind management.
Don’t block out your friends, family, and colleagues; they’ll be eager to help your recovery process as much as possible, and you’ll benefit from sharing your story. It’s important that your employer knows what you are battling and how far you’ve come on your journey since the accident; they’ll be happy to make the adequate allowances you’ll need to slide back into company life. Be as open and honest with those around you; they’ll get a better understanding of what you’re dealing with, and it will help to ease your stress and anxiety as you get back to being yourself again.
Your Financial Recovery
Time off work, medical bills, care, and treatment can all add up to a financial struggle that you’d never expected. Therefore, you’ll need to plan ahead as soon as you’re able and seek financial help wherever possible. You may be entitled to compensation, which will help to see you through until your return to a career and will help to ease the blow of what happened. It’s worth looking into an attorney to help with your personal injury case so that the hard work is taken out of your hands and you can concentrate on what’s important; your health. Get your loved ones to help you through the process as you may need to explain details and talk about the circumstances that led to your injury. Again, the emotional side of your recovery will help with your financial peace of mind and physical relief.
Cut back on unnecessary spending and purchase, and steer clear of buying items on credit until you know when you’ll be back to work again. Budget your income and savings, and prioritize paying your rent or mortgage as you don’t want the added stress of moving home. Your wellbeing is most important, so making plans to take care of bills and getting better again will mean that when you do go back to work, you won’t have spiralled into debt and be suffering from the residual stress.
Your Physical Capabilities
Bear in mind that when you go back to working life; you may not be at the level of capabilities you were at before the accident. Give yourself the time and space you need to recover properly, even after you’ve set foot in the office again. Making your colleagues, staff, or clients aware that you’re not quite there yet is the only way they’ll understand a slower performance or limitations on what you’re able to achieve. Rushing to get back to normal will only put a strain on your body and mind and will have detrimental effects on your future health and career; so be smart and look after yourself.
By doing all you can to make sure that you’re mentally, financially, and physically stable after your accident, will smooth out the bumpy road you’ve been traveling on to get back to work. Embrace help, assistance, and advice whenever it’s offered, and don’t be ashamed to ask for it when things become overwhelming. Being smart with your choices and utilizing the help of those around you will ensure that your back in the office and moaning about work again in no time.