Tips for Achieving a Sense of Personal Growth

Tips for Achieving a Sense of Personal Growth

What is Personal Growth?

You’ve come a long way in your earthly journey, whether you realize it or not. And that’s a problem — many of us don’t recognize or develop a sense of the personal growth we have attained during our lives. We don’t give ourselves credit for our accomplishments simply because we don’t stop to evaluate our current position on that inner map. Here are some ways to help ensure that you not only blossom as a person but also feel, know and love that blossoming and personal growth as it occurs.

Test Yourself

It’s all too easy to fall into a rut or at least a sense of complacency. Work, home, spouse kids — lather, rinse, and repeat for the next couple of decades. But when we allow ourselves to be lulled into a routine, we may not feel that we’re growing or achieving as much as we might. What about all those youthful enthusiasms, hobbies or dreams you once nurtured? Some of them are still alive and well, if you search your heart for them, like once-beloved toys waiting to be played with again. So play! Enroll in community courses. Take up a sport. If you’re ready to think big, put your passion to work by changing careers or even starting your own business. Just as importantly, if you’ve already stood on that stage or made that first sale or finished that marathon, congratulate yourself for stepping out of your comfort zone and into a world of personal growth. Don’t wait for a pat on the head from someone else, either — if you’ve grown as a person, thank yourself for it!

Record the Journey

Journaling or keeping a diary holds enormous benefits for those seeking a sense of personal growth. First of all, it enables you to vent your frustrations, celebrate your triumphs and preserve your feelings about others in your life — without creating the external turmoil that some of these expressions might otherwise stir up. Secondly, as you go back and review that emotional logbook in the months or years to come, you will see with perfect clarity how you got from where you were to where you are. Professional counselor Kathleen Adams also points out that many women find journaling a way to tap into their “authentic selves,” discovering their own personal power as they put their everyday struggles or self-doubts into words.

Get a Personal Growth Coach

A professional life coach can help you figure out what aspects of your life you would like to nurture or change. As you implement those changes, you’ll have someone to cheer you on, hold you accountable to your goals and ideals, and act as a sounding board for what’s working and what isn’t. Of course any loved one can do these things as well, but a certified personal coach has the training and experience to quickly and accurately recognize your strengths and weakness, point them out to you from an objective, professional standpoint, and then give you the tools to overcome them.

Reflect

Have you ever found yourself looking into a mirror and saying, “Who am I, anyway?” Today’s woman divides her time between so many pursuits that she often forgets to carve out time for self-reflection. But as we grow and evolve as people, it’s critical that we “check in with ourselves” on a regular basis. You might choose to do this in many ways. Yoga, for instance, reacquaints you with your body while helping you achieve a sense of peace and focus. Meditation quiets your mind so you are no longer distracted from the big questions by a thousand little ones. Some people find this quiet place through prayer or simple contemplation as well. But whatever approach you choose, schedule it just as rigorously as you do all those other activities vying for your attention.

Subscription Beauty Boxes: Hot New Beauty and Style Trend

Convenience is Essential

For today’s busy women, convenience is essential when it comes to purchases. Let’s face it: We just don’t always have time to get to the mall, or even to the local Wal-Mart, to do the shopping. Sometimes shopping online is the easiest solution. However, that doesn’t change the fact that many women are beauty junkies or product lovers who would love to try out new beauty and body care products.

It’s hard to even know what the new trends really are, let alone shop for them, when you don’t have enough time in every day. The new trend of beauty subscription boxes has emerged as a solution for the time-strapped woman who wants to introduce a bit of pampering and fun into her life.

Beauty Box Options

Beauty boxes like Ipsy, Birchbox, and GlossyBox offer subscribers the opportunity to receive a monthly “goodie bag” full of deluxe sized makeup and body care products for $10 per month ($21 for the higher-end GlossyBox.) All the companies offer 5 products each month and send out items including bath products, makeup, hair care products, and nail polish. Perfume samples are also a frequent inclusion in the BirchBox boxes.

Benefits of Beauty Boxes

These boxes allow you to try a range of products that are currently hot beauty trends without having to pay the often sky-high prices for the full sized products. Another bonus of the sample beauty boxes is that you’ll often be provided with a discount code to use at the online merchants who made the beauty products should you decide you like the item enough to buy. In this way you can often score discounts of anywhere from 10 to 50 percent on some high end beauty and pampering products. In general, each box is worth considerably more in retail value than what you paid. For example, recent ipsy bags were valued at $45 retail, and recent BirchBoxes topped the $40 retail mark as well.

High-End Beauty Boxes

For those who want to try ultra high-end beauty products like Le Metier de Beaute beauty cream ($225 for a single ounce!) GlossyBox gives you that opportunity for just $21 per month. The boxes contain five deluxe (sometimes even full size) samples from very high-end beauty and body care companies. The retail value of these boxes frequently lands in the $50 to $80 range. Pretty impressive value from a monthly $21 investment!

If you just don’t have the time or the desire to stalk the department stores and the fashion mags for the latest beauty and body care trends and the greatest new products, these beauty boxes are a fun little gift you can give yourself each month.

Fighting Spring Allergies with the Right Foods

Another Spring Returns

Each year, spring rolls around with relief from the frigid temperatures and snow woes of winter. For seasonal allergy sufferers, though, spring comes with a whole new set of pains. Like all medications, decongestants and antihistamines taken for allergies have their share of side effects, and aren’t recommended for long-term use. So, instead of stocking up on medication this season, stock up on these foods that help alleviate allergy symptoms.

Fresh Fruit

Spring and summer are high time for fresh fruits, so you have multiple antioxidant-heavy, vitamin-rich options. Citrus fruits bursting with vitamin C, like oranges and grapefruit, fight histamines that cause allergy symptoms, while fruits high in quercetin reduce inflammation, which alleviates swelling in the nasal passages. Quercetin-heavy fruits include apples, pears, peaches, cherries and grapes.

Omega-3s

Omega-3 fatty acids are health power houses that should be part of any healthy diet, but increasing omega-3 consumption during allergy season reduces inflammation and helps you breathe easier. Foods rich in omega-3s include fish, such as salmon, albacore and mackerel, nuts and pumpkin seeds, kidney and pinto beans, and avocados.

Spices

The spicy foods you eat that always open up your nasal passages, they do so for a reason. These foods contains chemicals that product their hot taste and cause their powerful effects on the body, which is why they are worth incorporating into your diet in greater quantity during allergy season.

Onions and Apples

Onions, like apples, contain quercetin, which reduces inflammation, but they also contain an enzyme known as lachrymatory-factor synthase, an irritant you know well if you have ever cut into a potent onion and welled up with tears. While it’s a pain to cry while cooking, it also clears out your sinuses.

Garlic and Ginger

Garlic and ginger both contain naturally occurring chemicals that reduce inflammation, according to UCLA’s Integrative Medicine, but garlic also thins mucus. The capsaicin in cayenne and other peppers are also mucus-thinning and stimulate the sinuses, which, according to UCLA, increases air circulation.

According to Time Magazine, a study of children in Crete found that those who ate diets high in fruits, vegetables, nuts, olive oil and fish suffered fewer symptoms of allergies and asthma. What you eat matters, and having a pantry full of foods that enhance immunities, reduce inflammation, and are high in antioxidants can get you through the allergy season without reaching for a bottle of pills.

Do We Have To? Causes and Cure for a Decreased Sex Drive

Sex drive Dissipating?

He runs his finger tenderly down your arm and kisses your ear – a sure sign that he is interested in doing more in bed tonight than simply slipping off to sleep. While all women will, from time to time, find themselves less than eager to reciprocate their partners’ affections, if you are finding yourself increasingly disinterested in sex, there could be a problem to which you need to tend. Instead of ignoring the noticeable dip in your sex drive, hunt out the issue at the root of the problem and cure it, ensuring that next time your sweetie signals that he wants some TLC, you are more than eager to provide it.

Relationship Problems

The first thing you should consider when you find yourself losing your sexual longing is whether your relationship is all it could be. Quite commonly, if your relationship is in the midst of a rough patch, you will subconsciously respond to this by exhibiting less sexual desire. If you think your relationship could use some improvement, try couples counseling and, once all is mended, you will likely find your sexual desire levels making a rebound. If you feel that the root of your relationship problems is sexual in nature, try a more specific course of therapy treatments, seeking a sex therapist instead.

Mental Stressors

Your sex drive level is inversely proportional to your level of stress. If your stress levels are through the roof, you will, more commonly than not, not have a strong desire to engage in sexual activity. The only way to cure what ails you if this is the case is to tend to the stress in your life. If you are stressed about money, focus on getting your finances in order. If you have recently lost your job, concentrate on finding new employment. By dedicating yourself to these stress-curing tasks, you can likely decrease the amount of time that you find yourself with reduced sexual urges.

Health Problems

A plethora of health problems can leave you losing your longing to slip between the sheets with your partner. If, after consideration, you determine that relationship struggles or emotional challenges aren’t at the root of your loss of arousal, it’s time to make an appointment with your MD. Explain your problem to your doctor candidly and he will help you hunt down the culprit. Some common medical causes of lack of arousal include:

High cholesterol – A study reported in the Journal of Sexual Medicine found that spiked cholesterol levels, something that can be easily tried with a healthy diet make over, can leave you uneager for sex.
Birth Control Pills – The hormones in some birth control pills wreak havoc on sexual desire levels. Particularly if you just recently changed your birth control and you have now found yourself less sexually eager, this is a likely cause.
Reduced Vaginal Estrogen – Particularly post menopause, you may simply have reduced estrogen levels that are leading to vaginal dryness, making sex not so much fun. This can be easily treated with vaginal creams.

A low sex drive isn’t something with which you have to simply deal. Instead, you can be proactive and work to rebound your sexual desire. By doing so, you can strengthen your bond with your partner, enjoy a physically loving connection and reap the physical pleasure associated with engaging in healthy and regular sex.

6 Signs of a Bad First Date

First dates are generally despised by many. While each first date does provide the opportunity to meet someone new who could ultimately end up being the man of your dreams, more often than not, these romantic outings don’t turn out as well as the lovelorn dater had hoped. To ensure that you don’t waste your time on a man with whom you have no future, be particularly keen to signs of distress from the start. If you find yourself on a bad first date, end the charade and save your sanity, holding out hope that your next first date is better.

1. He forgot his wallet

In this day and age the man paying for each and every date is considered by many to be an antiquated practice. Regardless of whether or not you intended to pay for some or all of the date, however, a guy who “conveniently” forgets his wallet is likely not one you want to pursue past date one.

2. He mentions his mother more than once

Having admiration for his mother isn’t a bad thing – being obsessed with this woman in his life is. If the majority of your first-date conversation includes mention of this matriarch, take it as a sign of impending danger.

3. He compares you to an ex

Regardless of whether the comparisons are complimentary, as in, “you are so much more beautiful than my ex,” or negative, like, “You do that same thing my ex did that always drove me crazy,” the fact that he even mentions his past relationship is a sign that he hasn’t moved past this former flame and should be a major red flag

4. He laughs at his jokes even though you don’t

A guy who is funny is something many girls seek. A guy who just thinks he’s funny, however, can be a horrible bore. Unless you want to spend years listening to jokes that are far from laugh-inducing, steer clear of the comic who only cracks himself up and no one else.

5. You can hear crickets

A date is all about getting to know each other. If you and your would-be-beau have so little to talk about that silence prevails on your first date, you likely aren’t a match made in heaven.

6. He shakes your hand

Not everyone thinks that kissing on the first date is appropriate, but a date completely devoid of intimacy is a bad sign. If your guy ends the date with a firm handshake, it likely wasn’t the raging success you had hoped it would be.