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One Fall Prep Secret to Staying Warm All Winter

One Fall Prep Secret to Staying Warm All Winter

With summer becoming a distant memory, homeowners across the nation are trembling at the thought of another wintry season with frigid, blustery weather. Without the right fall prep to your home, you could be caught with your winter pants down – with not enough protection in place to keep your home cozy and warm.

As fall brings cooler temperatures, there’s one thing you should do to your home to ready it for winter – beef up the insulation.

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Is insulation getting the job done?

The home’s exterior can either make or break your comfort level this winter. As colder temperatures set in, your home’s shell acts like a thermos – or at least it should. The insulation keeps whatever’s inside warm, just like a portable thermos keeps hot chocolate at just the right temperature until you pull it out to take a swig. But over time, those thermos walls can break down. Maybe you’ve put it in the dishwasher too often, or maybe it’s just old.

Your home’s insulation can fall prey to the same circumstances. Over time, insulation wears out. Perhaps it wasn’t installed up to today’s codes. Maybe it was installed improperly. Whatever the reason, if the insulation can’t do its job of keeping heat inside, you’ll be feeling the wintry effects inside your home.

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Insulation in action

You see, insulation is actually a barrier to heat. When it’s not working, you’ll feel the cool effects — which is anything BUT cool when winter’s knocking at your door! When it does work, it keeps the cold at bay. Here’s how:

  • Your furnace circulates heat in the home.
  • Insulation stops it from moving through the structure.
  • Heat is always drawn to cooler places — a law of nature that’s always in effect.
  • So when the insulation doesn’t work, you actually feel cold in your home because it’s losing heat — not because the outside cold is moving inside.

This fascinating, scientific explanation doesn’t do much to alleviate your suffering. However, it does shed light on why insulation is the secret to keeping the cold at arm’s length.

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Fixing comfort issues

There’s almost nothing worse than knowing that a cold, bitter winter is ahead – except if you also know that your insulation won’t be keeping the heat in. If you’re less than absolutely confident that your insulation is up to the job, it’s time to take action.

Hire an expert to conduct an insulation evaluation – they’ll often do it for free – to find out how well your insulation is performing. If you need to upgrade it, consider choosing injection foam insulation. This unique material offers a few significant advantages for retrofits over common options like fiberglass or cellulose.

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Installers pump the liquid-like insulation into walls, filling every last nook and cranny to the brim. The insulation quickly hardens, creating an air barrier as well as a heat barrier (remember how you need to keep heat inside the home to stay warm?). Finally, installers won’t have to tear into your exterior walls (or do a complete interior remodel) to add insulation. Only a few small holes are required to fill the walls with insulation, which are easily and seamlessly repaired. When the job’s done, no one will ever know that you’ve had insulation added through the exterior.

What you will notice, however, is a big difference in the comfort level of your home. You may not even notice when temperatures dip into the frigid zone or when the winds whip. You’ll be cozied up on your couch with a good book, oblivious to your surroundings — all thanks to your new and improved insulation.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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Last Updated on April 8, 2020

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Assuming positive intent is an important contributor to quality of life.

Most people appreciate the dividends such a mindset produces in the realm of relationships. How can relationships flourish when you don’t assume intentions that may or may not be there? And how their partner can become an easier person to be around as a result of such a shift? Less appreciated in the GTD world, however, is the productivity aspect of this “assume positive intent” perspective.

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Most of us are guilty of letting our minds get distracted, our energy sapped, or our harmony compromised by thinking about what others woulda, coulda, shoulda.  How we got wronged by someone else.  How a friend could have been more respectful.  How a family member could have been less selfish.

However, once we evolve to understanding the folly of this mindset, we feel freer and we become more productive professionally due to the minimization of unhelpful, distracting thoughts.

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The leap happens when we realize two things:

  1. The self serving benefit from giving others the benefit of the doubt.
  2. The logic inherent in the assumption that others either have many things going on in their lives paving the way for misunderstandings.

Needless to say, this mindset does not mean that we ought to not confront people that are creating havoc in our world.  There are times when we need to call someone out for inflicting harm in our personal lives or the lives of others.

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Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO of Pepsi, says it best in an interview with Fortune magazine:

My father was an absolutely wonderful human being. From ecent emailhim I learned to always assume positive intent. Whatever anybody says or does, assume positive intent. You will be amazed at how your whole approach to a person or problem becomes very different. When you assume negative intent, you’re angry. If you take away that anger and assume positive intent, you will be amazed. Your emotional quotient goes up because you are no longer almost random in your response. You don’t get defensive. You don’t scream. You are trying to understand and listen because at your basic core you are saying, ‘Maybe they are saying something to me that I’m not hearing.’ So ‘assume positive intent’ has been a huge piece of advice for me.

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In business, sometimes in the heat of the moment, people say things. You can either misconstrue what they’re saying and assume they are trying to put you down, or you can say, ‘Wait a minute. Let me really get behind what they are saying to understand whether they’re reacting because they’re hurt, upset, confused, or they don’t understand what it is I’ve asked them to do.’ If you react from a negative perspective – because you didn’t like the way they reacted – then it just becomes two negatives fighting each other. But when you assume positive intent, I think often what happens is the other person says, ‘Hey, wait a minute, maybe I’m wrong in reacting the way I do because this person is really making an effort.

“Assume positive intent” is definitely a top quality of life’s best practice among the people I have met so far. The reasons are obvious. It will make you feel better, your relationships will thrive and it’s an approach more greatly aligned with reality.  But less understood is how such a shift in mindset brings your professional game to a different level.

Not only does such a shift make you more likable to your colleagues, but it also unleashes your talents further through a more focused, less distracted mind.

More Tips About Building Positive Relationships

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