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Winter is Coming! Take Proper Care of Your Car

Winter is Coming! Take Proper Care of Your Car

Winter is swiftly approaching, and that means that it is time not only to start thinking about Christmas presents, but also to make sure that your car is ready for the new season. Here, we’ve compiled a list of what you should take care of to make sure that there won’t be any unpleasant surprises in the months to come.

1. Check Your Battery and Charging System

Winter months, especially in colder climates, are particularly harsh on batteries. If you often go on interstate trips, you should take additional care of this matter, unless you like the idea of being stranded with a dead battery in the middle of nowhere during a blizzard. That is why it is essential to check your battery and charging system for optimal performance and, if necessary, change your current battery for something more dependable.

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2. Check Your Brakes

The braking system is the car’s most important safety system at the best of times, but in winter, when driving in general gets much more dangerous, having faulty brakes is tantamount to suicide. Brakes, just like all other crucial systems of your vehicles, should undergo regular maintenance. It is a good idea to time this to the beginning of the cold season because something that is simply an annoying problem in summer can spell your death sentence on an ice-slick.

3. Take Care of Insurance

Winter is always a more dangerous time for driving, which necessarily entails the issue of insurance. Of course, one should always hope for the best, but preparing for the worst will certainly be a good idea. So, make sure to get acquainted with different variants available to you, find out what comprehensive car insurance is going to give you, whether it is necessary in your state and whether it applies to your case at all, and make all the necessary arrangements beforehand.

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4. Change Oil and Filter

If you own a car, it shouldn’t come as news to you that you are supposed to change the oil and filter at recommended intervals, but if you are sloppy enough to forgo it from time to time, you absolutely should do it before winter. The thing is, in winter dirty oil can be even more troublesome than in summer. If you live in a colder climate, you may find it useful to switch to winter weight oil for the duration of the cold months.

5. Check Tire Tread Depth and Tire Pressure

Or even consider switching to special winter tires if ice-slicks are staple guests in your area. And, no matter what tires you use, you should regularly check pressure in them – preferably on a weekly basis. Some tire producers also recommend increasing tire pressure compared to summer, and although there isn’t unanimity concerning the helpfulness of this practice, there are some logical considerations that support the idea.

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6. Prepare a Winter Emergency Kit

A warm blanket or a sleeping bag, a shovel, an ice-scraper, reflective jacket, high-calorie snacks, bottled water, battery jump leads – any of these things may be the difference between life and death if you are ever unfortunate enough to get stranded far from human habitation in a snowstorm. Do yourself and your passengers a favor – don’t brush it off as an unlikely possibility and get prepared.

Winter is certainly not the friendliest season for car drivers, and unless you plan to take your car off the road for this time, you should take proper care of all the necessary preparations. After all, in addition to helping you save on repair costs, it can save your life as well.

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I hope these tips will be helpful for you and your car this winter. Good luck!

Featured photo credit: Mr.MiTo outside/Jan L. | JLPhotography. via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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