Getting More Sleep Means Living Longer and Feeling Better

How to Get the Sleep That You Need

Lots of people have a hard time falling and staying asleep each night. One approach to this is to get used to getting by on only a few hours sleep. Yet, as modern research has shown, it’s simply not healthy for the body or mind to function without enough rest. The good news is that you do not have to simply learn how to function on very little sleep. Sleeping well does not come easily to everyone, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible for you. Consider the following methods, and put them to good use and you should start to sleep better.

One of the most important things you should do if you want to increase your chances of getting a good night’s sleep is to develop a bedtime routine. You need to pick a time to go to bed that will be the same every night, along with all the other little things you will need to do. Train your body every day by doing things, such as changing into PJs, washing your face, brushing your teeth, etc. at the same time. As soon as your body associates all of these activities with sleeping, things will get better.

Stop staring at the clock

When this starts to happen, you won’t even need to look at a clock, your body will just get tired and be ready for sleep. You can also use the routine to induce tiredness because your body and brain will associate the routine with sleep.

Many herbal teas can make it easier to sleep. One herb that makes an excellent tea is chamomile, and this is very easy to find. Another herbal tea that helps is Valerian tea. Celestial Seasonings and other brands make herbal formula teas for different purposes, including one to help you sleep. Sleepytime is the name of the blend made by Celestial Seasonings. Warm tea, as long as it doesn’t have caffeine, is relaxing all by itself, and many herbs have qualities that help induce relaxation.

Pills won’t help you sleep better

Don’t be tempted by over-the-counter products to help you sleep. If your insomnia is so serious that you need immediate help, you should see a physician. Over the counter sleep aids might help you for a few nights but they can be incredibly habit forming. Your body will start to rely on this medication to sleep, which means if you try to stop, your insomnia will be even worse than before. They change the chemical makeup in your brain. Before taking something potentially dangerous or habit forming, try gentler approaches like herbal teas, tinctures and other natural sleep remedies -though you want to make sure any of these are safe as well.

Exercise every day helps you sleep better

As long as you are willing to try certain things, the possibilities of getting to sleep each night will increase for you. Taking medication should be the last resort option for sleeping, after trying such things as making the room dark or colder, and also having a bedtime routine. As long as you are willing to try things, getting to sleep at night can happen. To find what is the best solution for you will require running various test.

Beat Stress or Plan on a Decreased Quality (and Length) of Life

Did you know that stress can kill people? It can! That is why you need to look at the negative effects it may be having on you. It is very possible that you could die from stress, and we are not over exaggerating this one bit. It is in your best interest to avoid the pressure and consequences that come with experiencing stress everyday. Becoming the perfect person is not necessary when attempting to manage your stress. Just doing small things every day can help you manage the stress in your life. Handling stress will become so easy for you if you do this enough.

Stress’s effect on hormones

Hormones in our body can be influenced dramatically by chronic stress in a detrimental fashion. If you have a stressful day, or if a stressful situation occurs that is an emergency, your body will interpret both events in the same manner. Adrenalin which is what signals your entire body that you’re in danger floods your system Other stress induced hormones like cortisol which is the main hormone associated with stress increase. One of the effects of high cortisol levels is your blood sugar increases which puts additional strain on pituitary gland and adrenal glands. You will certainly have adrenal burnout because of this perpetual stress, which is basically overworking this particular gland.

Family life can cause stress

Family life can be fun, but if there is a lot of stress in your household, it cannot be good for anyone that is involved. Massive amounts of unhappiness can occur if this is actually your situation at home. People reach their breaking points quite easily, especially when stress levels are extremely high. Most people try to deal with stress, as long as they can, until a solution must be found. You need to learn how to cope with these things should this represent how your life is right now. Lessening the effects of stress in your life is possible, but not totally eliminating it altogether. If you start to exercise, you will find that it will be much easier to deal with stress every day. You can actually remove stress chemicals from your body by doing exercises.

In terms of negative outcomes, the effects of stress are usually discussed. But there is a flip side to stress with certain people, and it’s important to remember that this is a minority of people. There can be some positive effects of stress and it has to do with a certain feeling or set of emotions. What happens is they become much more determined, almost infuriated, wanting to achieve the goal that the stress is causing them to focus on. Usually this effect is seen in people who are more naturally competitive than others.

Anger can mean stress

Almost everyone has experienced anger, and then did something that they could not have done. Sometimes stress has a way of adversely affecting your body when things are going well. That’s the thing about stress, it’s like high blood pressure in that the symptoms are not detected for a long time. It is in your best interest to try to deal with stress before something terrible effects you. Everyone that is able to lessen the amount of stress in their life tends to feel better, and will be motivated to continue feeling that way.

3 Tips on Staying Fit and Active through Retirement (Without Even Trying)

New and Creative Strategies for Exercising

How often you exercise, as well as what you do, will determine how well you progress with better shape and health. The usual route for most is doing their own thing alone or with a friend, but of course you can always be a little social and join a gym. One of the most important things to keep in mind is you need to get moving in the right way. Open up your mind and realize that you can reach fitness goals in a number of approaches. Just as long as you decide on something that you actually look forward to doing each day.

On your mark. Get set, clean!

If you tend to sit a lot at home, then take a break and get up and do some speed cleaning. All you need to do is make sure you only do it for a set amount of time. It is important that you go all out in the short amount of time that you have established. Try to take at least two rooms and get them completely clean and clutter free. The running around dusting, wiping down and putting things where they belong gets your heart pumping and can work your arms and legs at the same time.

Take a hike. By hike I mean take the stairs!

Take every opportunity to take the stairs, and then you can even walk up and down on your toes. You will notice your thigh muscles getting firmer when you use the stairs a lot. If you live in an apartment building or work on an upper floor in an office building, take the stairs instead of the elevator. You’ll get more of a work out without having to spend lots of tedious hours on a stair climbing machine at the gym.

Keep moving.

Move around while you talk on the phone – but you don’t want to do anything that will result in heavy breathing because the person you’re talking to might get worried. Another habit to acquire is to go out and walk anytime you are on the phone. There are lots of ways to be active without it winding you or interfering. This is perfect if you get a lot of calls at home or you make them.

Your quality of life will be much improved if you take the time to work out and get in shape. The thing about life today is that we are all so pressed for time in one way or another. You can do traditional exercises or do the creative types that we talked about. Once you develop the habit of what we talked about here, then you will likely start doing more.

Inflation Eating You? Price of Gas Now the 2nd Highest it’s Ever Been in US History

price of gas highest since stock market crash
Things are starting to look like a slower version of 2008.

More Signs the US Economy is Headed in the Same Direction as 2008-2009: the Price of Gas in 2014

The price of gas is showing huge signs of US dollar weakness, edging higher and higher and resembling that of 6 years ago before the stock market crash. This goes to show the strength of inflation that consumers are facing. Although the Fed Reserve doesn’t care about inflation, the average American has dealt with a growing 25% inflation since 2001.

Additionally this theory is confirmed and supported as the #1 reason for consistent rises in the price of gas.

 

What You Can Do to Save Money When You Drive

One good way to save money is to optimize the gas mileage your car receives. There are many little things that can have a negative impact on your car’s gas mileage. Gasoline prices are not improving so it’s important that you do what you can to get maximum gas mileage out of your car. Two very simple things you can do is keep your car in tune and change the oil when needed.

Analyze how often and how far you usually drive, the routes you take, the amount of traffic, and see if there’s anything at all you can do to minimize the distance  you drive and the time you spend on the road.

Consider an Electric Vehicle just like the thousands of others who are enjoying new technology and savings on energy.

sale of electric motor vehicles going up
In spite of TX, AZ, and NJ banning the sale of Tesla automobiles, electric car purchases are on the rise.

Get a Tune Up, Especially an Oil Change

For those of you who don’t have a lot of knowledge dealing with automobiles and their maintenance, a tune up will usually consist of changing the spark plugs. Tune ups aren’t necessary very often, so you probably don’t have to worry about it at this moment. A good indicator that you should seek a tune up is if your car has been in use for 50,000 miles. Normally, you should schedule an oil change every 3500 miles, but you can usually wait until 4500 miles without any adverse effect on your gas mileage.

Give yourself time to warm the car up in the morning

A true gas guzzler is any vehicle that is turned on in the morning. The engine is cold from sitting all night long, and this means it needs a little more time to warm up. The mistake so many people make is they start their car and then go. When you start driving immediately, your car doesn’t get a chance to warm up before hitting the road. You will burn extra gas when you do this, which is why you want to prevent starting your car and then just driving.

You will prevent yourself from burning this excess gas by letting the car warm up, instead of just immediately driving away. Sometimes people have their mornings down to the last second – this means you need to modify your schedule in order to make this work. You will save a lot of money by using this approach which is why you want to do it.

Talk it out with your partner or spouse

If you’re living with a spouse or partner, then how about both of you getting on board and save money together. Do a “brain dump” and put down any ideas each of you has. Then, fine tune the details and you will have a comprehensive plan that encompasses both of your ideas. It may be a challenge sometimes, but give each other encouragement to stay with the plan. Eventually, you will see progress in your savings.

It’s worth it to start saving money even if it’s $10 a week. 500 bucks is what you will save on an annual basis. This only represents cash you are not spending every single day. Over time, this can build up quite a bit. You will be able to save a lot of money by doing several other things. Things might look a little bleak for you, but even then, people strapped for cash can still save money. You will be able to save money, but you need a plan of action and you need to stay positive.

Other Steps for Making a Plan to Save Money

Almost everyone that has a credit card is aware of the credit card wars that continually wage war with one another. It does not take a long time to figure out what many people like to do. Credit card hopping will start to occur as the consumer chooses one with a lower rate over another. It is always a good idea to get the lowest interest rate possible to save the most money. If you want to help your credit score, then have a few cards because it will positively affect your score. Using your card to pay monthly expenses, you can then put your paycheck away. Your credit score will be positively affected by paying off a credit card with your check at the end of the month.

 

Return to the home page and learn how gold beats inflation

Saving and Preparing for Your Kids’ College Education

Affording college has become harder and harder for many families. Many people have less money available today than a few years ago, due to economic problems such as unemployment and the housing crash. Despite all of these problems, the cost of education gets more expensive each year. You have to be creative and resourceful when it comes to paying for your child’s college education in today’s economy.

cost of a college education is rising and increasing exponentially
The cost of a college education is skyrocketing, yet another indicator of the true value of the US dollar after the last 15 years of deficit spending and federal debt accumulation.

Valuable Advice For Parents on Making College Affordable

 
If your kids are in high school, now is the time to start preparing them for college. All of this preparation will help them qualify for scholarships and grants, plus the college that they want to attend in order to get their degree. It is important that they do well on the ACT or SAT tests.You should convey to them how important this is.

The kids that are able to get high scores on these tests will be eligible for scholarships they would otherwise not be. Also encourage them to participate in extracurricular activities that will look good on a scholarship application. Kids involved in clubs at school, or perhaps who were elected to an office on campus, write this down on their application.

Getting a job is a time honored way for students to make their education more affordable. This can include working full time during the summer and part time while going to school. Work study jobs, which may be things like working in the campus bookstore or in one of the college’s offices, are one type of job students may be able to get.

Kids Have to Work through College in Addition to Loans and Grants

 
An off campus job, though, may pay considerably more, especially if it’s something like restaurant work where tips can be earned. It’s easier to get jobs in some areas than others, and it also depends on what kind of abilities the student has. One thing to avoid is having a student work so many hours that he or she doesn’t have time to study or write term papers.

Teaching your kids the skill of budgeting money is something that you should impart with them before they leave for college on their own. At an early age, some kids are great at budgeting money. Most kids like Mom and Dad to do this for them as budgeting money is not their forte. It would be a great time to start teaching your kids about their budget if you haven’t done this already. A reasonable budget should be adhered to while they are attending college for those many years. It really depends on their spending habits, and there are some parts of the budget that are simply going to be there until they graduate. Basically, your kids need to conform to a budget that is comfortable for them, and that you can afford.

Military Service can mean the GI Bill

 

Some parents save up for college years in advance, while others aren’t able to save anything due to other economic pressures. Almost inevitably, college turns out to cost more than parents originally planned for. I served in the Navy and got the GI bill which greatly helped pay for my education at the University of Houston and the Berklee Online College of Music. Additionally, outside of formal training real-world experience and entrepreneurship are going to be the deciding factors in who is able to become wealthy in America’s current economic situation.

entrepreneurs make this country
The entrepreneur creates the jobs, not the politician.
America needs innovation and people willing to work and think outside the box at this moment more than anything. I truly believe that.

Paying for college isn’t easy, which is why you have to gather as much information as possible on the subject. One way or another, you can find a way to help your kids get through college. You can start with the strategies we’ve discussed here to help you get creative and resourceful about saving money on college.

Some Exercises to Deal With Back Pain

Learning a few good back pain exercises can help you find relief from this painful condition and help you avoid it in the future. By choosing to do exercises that will not overstrain your back, you can help your back get better. To help you align your spine, strengthen your back muscles, and feel better than you have in quite some time, we will now show you some low impact exercises that may be beneficial for you.

Workouts Designed to Help Relieve Back Pain

Pilates Exercise for retireesAn exercise system that has been available since the 1920s is Pilates. Unfortunately, not a lot of people know much about Pilates. Pilates focuses on strengthening and stretching your core (torso) muscles with gentle stretches. This low-impact exercise system is very beneficial to spinal health. A variety of Pilates exercises are done using equipment that you can generally find available at a Pilates Center.

However, there are many Pilates exercises you can do in the privacy of your own home. One advantage of Pilates is that it is very gentle at the beginning. As you build up your strength and endurance, you can add to the intensity. You can look for a Pilates center in your area, or find a workout video that can help you get started. Pilates is not only great for back problems, but it can enhance your health and well-being as well.

Strength Training has Helped My Back Injury

 
I used to sell beer at Reliant Stadium where the Houston Texans play. Lugging giant carts of beer up flights of stairs was tough work but I pulled my back out pretty bad. Lifting weights and exercising is the only thing that’s really consistently helped over time to make things better.

Strength training is a very important aspect of maintaining a healthy back. If you have an injury, you should go easier on your back. It is important, however, to do exercises that do not strain your back but help it improve.

Exercises that are recommended include seated exercises, however, you should stay away from any type of leg extension, leg press, or exercises in which your hips are rotated. It’s important to strengthen the abdominal muscles, as this also makes your spine stronger. To avoid stressing your back further, you should do abdominal exercises that are different from crutches or situps.

Exercise Ball for Back Pain

 
Have you ever used an exercise ball? These are great tools for strengthening and helping your back. Many fitness centers have these, but it’s also good to get one for your home. Before you order your exercise ball, make sure that you get one that is designed specifically for your height to make sure it can help you.

You can do many therapeutic stretches on an exercise ball that will help relax and align your back. You may also want to sit on your exercise ball instead of a chair, as this can help you maintain a better posture. Used regularly, exercise balls are great for strengthening your back, stretch it out, and at the very least, improving your posture. In order to stop having backaches and back pain, you have to find out what you are doing to cause this condition and stop doing it.

Then, find techniques to improve the flexibility and strength of your back. You will be able to ascertain what exercises and movements are bad for your back by the way they make your back feel. These are things that you want to quit doing. Your back needs to be kept strong and flexible, and the exercises we’ve mentioned in this article can help you with this.

Return to Investing in Precious Metals and Gold IRAs

Hard and Fast Investing in Cyclical Markets: Shorting the Dollar, Picking up Houses

I had the thought the other day to get into real estate with a declining dollar. Real estate is a hard asset and depending on the location, is unlikely to ever go down especially if it attracts wealthy foreign investors. They say that there’s never an economic collapse, but a transfer of wealth. Keeping that in mind, piling into cheap real estate is a way of shorting the US dollar.

Warren Buffett recommends that a business is the best investment you can make. Probably because it produces money and has intrinsic value! It’s what I believe in, and it creates jobs too, which America needs.

When it comes to stocks, Warren Buffett believes in holding stocks that have a long-term prospect for profits and success with the companies in which he invests. Makes sense and it’s a reason why he’s got billions.

Warren Buffett, Investor Genius

The Secret Story of Gold (Video)

median income of US since 1967 to 2012
Ask yourself, how again does a government go bankrupt? Could it be social programs that cripple economic growth?
If you’re waiting for the news to tell you that the country won’t be able to pay its federal debt and that another credit downgrade is inevitable, let me save you the anticipation.

It’s not surprising to see that median US incomes have consistently fallen since the mid 2000’s and with inflation rising, it’s like a grinder that’s sucking people’s real wealth dry.

This is just one more reason to consider starting a gold IRA. Real gold in a physical location: accounted for.

I love this video, it’s quite fascinating!

Also, if you think about it, there’s only one way to beat inflation and market instability, and that’s to create an asset that produces money for you at an unusually high rate, and not a job that you could lose either, but a product or service you could offer.

Create an asset that produces money for you!

Don’t Start a Business Before Answering These Questions

 

Everyone that has the intention of starting their very own business must ask the right questions, and answer them, before they can start anything. Questions are really helpful in helping us understand what we need to do in life. In regard to business, they help us stay on the right track, and decide what needs to be done, and what should be avoided.

start a business when retired

To Start a Business, Start Asking the Right Questions

 

Deciding on the business will help you figure out how quickly you will be able to turn a profit once you begin and what you’ll be doing with your time. This is why it’s so important that it be something you love or are extremely interested and curious about.

The Myth of Needing to Have the Next Big Thing/Idea

 

Why is your idea unique? Sadly, your idea might be mostly unique, but it is always going to be influenced in some way by other ideas. This is particularly true for web based businesses. Most of the time, if you do a simple search, you’ll find websites that have your idea already out in the open.

Something that has never been done before – this is not something you should focus on creating. What you want to do is put a twist or spin on something that is already out there, which will have a higher probability of bringing you success. This is what makes your idea unique. Training dogs, for example, is something everyone can do.

Deciding on a unique way of training the dogs is how you come up with something unique. Which market am I going to be targeting? You should probably decide this early on in the process. Once you understand who your target market is, you will then know how to structure your business the right way. And if you didn’t know, your target market is identical to the target demographic.

These are interchangeable terms regardless of what you sell or do. Maybe you have a dog product, and you are selling it to chicken lovers. This simply isn’t going to work. So if you place a few ads about a retirement vacation home, you don’t want to target single moms with a couple kids. You understand right?

business with no start-up capital
If you can grow one orange tree, you can grow an entire grove.

You Don’t Need Lots of Startup Capital

 

Unless you are already profitable and have a successful model that you’ll then just need to figure out how to scale up, you may be tempted to get startup capital or a business loan.

This could be handy at least seemingly at first, but really, you should focus on turning a profit, even if the profit is only pennies on the dollar. Don’t be tempted to rollover your 401(k) into business start-up capital unless you’re already profitable or your idea is so unstoppable that Steve Jobs would be climbing out of his grave to help you make it happen.

My YouTube channel consistently makes enough to afford my total grocery bill every month. That all started when I discovered I was making a few cents a day from a random video I uploaded while working at an advertising agency to my YouTube channel. I then scaled the concept out and it became an income stream. It was all based on a little theory, a very cheap initial investment (the video cost me $10 to have made), and some time, but then I had discovered a profitable business model, even though it’s small (it’s one stream I fish in 🙂 ).

Once you start making money, then you’ll need a bookkeeper.

How am I going to handle my finances? Obviously if you have the money you might want to hire an accountant. This is something that you may not have the money for, however. So before you ever begin making a single dime, you need to know how to track your expenditures and your income. Having all of your money deposited into a personal bank account is simply not going to help you.

Actually, you might find yourself in deep water with the IRS. You might want to try books on finance and accounting, reading those before you start your business. Then set up your tracking system and stick to it.

Starting a new business requires you to make a variety of important decisions. This is just as true for web based businesses as it is for offline businesses. The above questions are well worth spending some time with if you want your business to succeed. As you move forward, you’ll discover plenty of other questions as well!

All Fences are Not Created Equal: Renovating Your Home’s Fence

At the most fundamental level, there are not very many differences with fencing when you consider the core materials which are either wood or metal. Even fences made from the same material often will not appear to made from the same thing. The industry has completely changed the way it does business over the past decade or so. Even industrial businesses are not locked into any one kind of fence or material.

What You Can Expect with The Variety of Fences

 
As you can imagine, wood needs special attention just because it is wood, and this applies to fences made from it, too. Wood does have some weaknesses, and you have to apply a stain to it, or you at least you should as this will add an extra layer of defense. One of the more common pests are the ordinary termite, but you can find repellents that are both chemical and natural. The prime area for mold to form is where the posts enter the ground, but you can help reduce this by applying generous amounts of stain and keeping an eye on it.

The Traditional White Picket Fence

 
white picket fenceA more delicate fence design is that of the picket fence, and these are very much seen in old European cultures and in the US. These are the fences that are seen in all the old American movies and it’s true they were everywhere. Regardless of where you live, you should at least put it on the list of things to consider.

What with people opting for more modern materials and designs, it’s understandable why they may have lost some appeal. Just to make the fence last longer, you can get them with a vinyl coating, and remember there are other materials you can use in this fence if you like, as well.

Solid, Dependable Wood Fencing

 

traditional wood fencing
Traditional. Rugged. Wood Fence.

You can consider a wood fence, but you should know that you will have to spend more time with maintenance. With wooden fences, you will typically choose the height being either four feet or as high as six feet.

A solid stain will not only afford some degree of protection from the rain, snow, and ice (if applicable), but they can protect against termites. One of the appeals of wood is that it looks natural, and that only makes sense, but you will have to sacrifice a little there if you want to protect it.

If you’re feeling excited about getting a new fence, then you’ll really feel pumped when you see all the different kinds you can get.

Fence accessories are a whole new area and market, and they are worth exploring because you may find something you really like. It all depends on what you want, and you can create very lovely effects that smack of European influence.

chain link fence
Beware of these guys

Still some people will feel fine with the ease of a chain link fence, especially if it’s a rental property or vacation home.