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10 Things Only Couch Surfers Would Understand

10 Things Only Couch Surfers Would Understand

Couch surfing has recently taken off in the past few years and has proven as a great way to learn about different cultures. Here are some things that only couch surfers would appreciate.

1. They know how important it is to be a good match with their host

When you are sharing such close proximity with someone you have never met, it is important to find someone who shares similar living habits with yourself. If they are very social and like to have people over often, but you prefer a quiet night at home, it is important to realize these differences before you finalize your stay with a host.

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2. They know to read the fine print

It is important as a couch surfer to read all the requests that the host lists in their profile to avoid any future conflicts. If a hosts says that they go to bed early for work, but your flight gets in after midnight, then it would be ideal to find someone who can greet you and help you get settled when you arrive.

3. They know that communication is key

It is important to notify your host of any special request that you have before your arrival. If your host has a pet bird, but you are deathly afraid of anything with wings, make sure you do some research before finalizing your stay.

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4. They know that cleanliness is crucial

Couch surfers know that it is important to not be a slob when you are a guest at someone’s home. They know it is important to clean-up immediately after themselves at all times and not treat their host’s house like their own.

5. They know that respect is important

A couch surfer knows the importance of maintaining respect the moment that they step into their host’s home. They realize that they are a visitor in someone’s private space. It is important to maintain that level of trust, whether it is being quiet at night, or not bringing extra guests back home without running it by their host first.

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6. They know to always have a complete profile

Mutual respect goes both ways. It is important as a couch surfer to fill your profile with as much background information as possible. The last thing you want your host to do is to have to Google your name to find out basic info about their visitor. This rule also goes for any significant others or friends that will be guests with you as well.

7. They know not to overstay their welcome

Couch surfing is a privilege. It is important for visitors not to stay too long in one place. You are empathetic because you know how tiresome out-of-town visitors can be when they overstay their welcome at your home. The rule of thumb for the appropriate duration of a stay is one to three days maximum. If your hosts invites you to stay longer, than this is a different situation, but always have a back-up plan just in case.

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8. They know the importance of sharing a part of their culture

One of the main purposes of couch surfing is the opportunity to learn about one another’s respective cultures. As a couch surfer it is important to share a piece of where you came from, whether it is through cooking your host a meal or telling a story about your life back home.

9. They know that there is a chance of rejection

With couch surfing being a free service, there is always a chance of being rejected by your host. This can happen for many reasons, including not being seen as a good fit or simply because there were too many applicants during the time.

10. They know the importance of bringing a gift

The number one unspoken rule of couch surfing is that you never arrive at your host’s home empty handed. The gift does not have to be elaborate, and can simply be a bottle of wine or a small gift from your country.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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