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6 Ways to Clean and Maintain Your Bathroom

6 Ways to Clean and Maintain Your Bathroom

Your bathroom is quite possibly the one room you will (or should) spend the most time keeping up. Despite the fact that you and your family spend a relatively small amount of time using the bathroom (as compared to the other rooms in your home), it’s certainly one of the prime targets for mold, grime, and other bacteria within a household. Because of this, it’s important to maintain the cleanliness of your bathroom. And this goes way beyond simply keeping it “tidy.”

Separate Wet Materials

You probably know that mold thrives in areas of stagnant moisture. You’re also surely aware that most everything done in a bathroom requires the use of water. So it’s up to you to make sure that your shower curtains and towels stay as dry as possible when not in use. When you’re done showering, spready the curtain wide and allow it to dry properly. Don’t bunch wet towels up in the corner, or lay them on top of each other. Don’t overlook your bathmat, either; drape it over a drying rack or rod after every use.

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Declutter

Your bathroom is likely full of cleansing products, deodorants, soaps, and gels – and other items which may or may not belong in the bathroom in the first place. Do you really need five different shampoos and three different bottles of body wash? Chances are you haven’t touched many of the products in your shower or cabinet in months. Chuck out anything you don’t use on a semi-daily basis. It’ll be much easier to do the deep cleaning when your bathroom is organized.

Open Windows

I’m sure you know at least one reason why you should do this. But in all seriousness, this goes back to the first point about moisture being a trap for mold. The more air that’s circulated throughout the bathroom, the dryer the entire area will be. Consider also using a fan to keep the air circulating, especially on those hazy days of summer. Just because it’s hot out doesn’t mean moisture in your bathroom will evaporate on its own.

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Avoid Oil Stains or Rings

Unless you happen to know a certain hat-wearing cat, getting rings out of your bathtub isn’t exactly fun to do. Avoid them by rinsing the tub with clean, warm water immediately after taking a bath in which you used oils or salts. If the stain has already had time to set, scrub the tub with an abrasive cleaner such as Ajax. But it’s best to be proactive and make sure your tub stays spotless from the get-go.

Clean Grout

The little crevices in between your shower tiles can capture tiny drops of water, and – you guessed it – lead to mold and mildew growth. A mix of water and bleach scrubbed over the grout between the tiles will clear out most bacteria lurking beneath the surface. Just make sure to remove the bleach with warm water and a pH-neutral cleaner when you’re done, or you risk burning your skin or eyes the next time you hit the shower.

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Use Homemade Cleaners

As I just mentioned, many cleaners will leave behind some toxic remnants if not dealt with correctly. Because of this, it’s best to use homemade cleaning mixtures whenever possible. Anyone who’s gone through 4th grade science class knows what baking soda and vinegar do when combined. But this mixture can be used to clean out pipes, shower heads, and faucets. Vinegar can also be used for a variety of cleaning purposes throughout your bathroom. Not only is using homemade cleaning remedies safer for your family and the environment, but it’s also much easier on your wallet!

Featured photo credit: Dynamic Plumbing / Bathrooms via farm5.staticflickr.com

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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