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Science Says a Green Home can Improve Your Health

Science Says a Green Home can Improve Your Health

With the rise of the human civilization and society came urbanization. The process of urbanization continues today and more and more people will move to the cities as new ones emerge. The United Nations revealed that approximately 50 percent of the global population lives in cities, and this is according to the information from the now distant year of 2007.

According to some speculation, by the year 2030 the number of people living in cities will rise to 60 percent. Unfortunately this process of urbanization is harmful on more than one level, and it has a negative impact on the current ecosystem. So far, 8 percent of vertebrate species have been marked as “endangered”, and the distance between cities and protected areas has been reduced, which further increases pressure on natural resources.

These are some of the negative effects of this rapid urbanization, but there are a lot of ways in which we can preserve our planet by switching to cleaner sources of energy. Unfortunately due to the delicate nature of status quo, people who profit from oil, and the current economy in general, this global switch to a green lifestyle won’t happen any time soon.

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Of course, if you want to go green there’s no one really stopping you, and it will both benefit your health and your budget. So, let us examine how you can develop your green home, and why you should do it.

Reasons to go through with this change

A study has revealed that living in a greener area reflects positively on overall health. The study focused on examining how the amount of green space in people’s environment can affect their health. The groups of subjects consisted of people from both rural and urban areas.

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People in rural areas, which had a greater percentage of green spaces, had better general health. This means that the development of green spaces should be somewhat prioritized in urban spatial planning policies. Now let us focus on more concrete suggestions on how to change your lifestyle and how it will impact your health, as well as the environment, in a very positive way.

Save energy

All it takes to save energy is to adopt a few new habits.

  • You can start by switching all of the light bulbs in your home, with low energy ones. These are far better in every aspect, plus they use less electricity.
  • Remember to switch off the appliances you are not using. Your microwave does not need to be plugged in, your laptop does not need to be on when you are not using it, and it does not need to be plugged in if it is fully charged. Additionally, you should cut down on time spent in front of computer screen, since you’ll have difficulties falling asleep.
  • Lower your thermostat, the optimal room temperature is between 18 and 21 degrees Celsius. As long as you want to go above that point, your thermostat will use much more electricity, and it’s not good for you to be in a room that is really warm.
  • Line dry laundry – clothes dryers use a lot of electricity and it damages the fabric of your clothing so, if you can dry it naturally it would be far better.
  • Install Solar panels because it will pay up on the long run. Sure it is a hefty investment initially, but nowadays solar panels are far more accessible than when they were initially released.

All of these changes will significantly lower the amount of money you spend on monthly basis. With more money in your budget there is less stress, and that directly impacts your health in a positive way. Your green home will also help preserve the environment, and inspire others to do so.

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Work on your garden and grow your own food

You do not have to limit yourself to cultivating flowers in your garden – growing your own food is also a great hobby. This way you can be sure that the fruit and vegetables you eat are healthy, since you can monitor what kind of pesticides are present.

When you commit yourself to gardening you actually get a portion of physical exercise, so in a way you are watching both your muscles and your crops grow. Alternatively, if you are not fan of physical work, you can buy a drone and use it to water your garden, it is one hell of a fun way to irrigate.

Install a pergola in your garden

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So, what is a pergola, and how can it help improve your overall health? Allow me to explain. Basically, it is an outdoor frame structure made out of wood, designed to support vines. This is very nice home decoration, but it also has a great benefit if you intend to create a green home.

You can cultivate different types of wine and fill your home and backyard with more oxygen, while creating a lovely green wall that soothes the mind. You will also create a nice shade to rest under during the summer and get some of that important vitamin D from the sun’s rays without burning up.

Clearly, you’ll need to focus a portion of your time on maintaining the plants, but you’ll definitely find the activity rewarding and your entire backyard more serene.

Plant-based cleaning products

Cleaning products also have an eco-friendly version, made from plant-based, natural and sustainable materials. These do not leave a chemical mark behind, and are also biodegradable. There are actually plenty of great natural cleaning products to choose from, and they are very budget-friendly as well. You will be surprised at how many common household tasks you ca take care of using completely natural products that don’t harm the environment.

As you can see, there are many benefits to this kind of lifestyle, and you will generally love the switch, since it is not strenuous in any way. I hope the article has inspired you to adopt some of the green habits that were mentioned in it.

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Vladimir Zivanovic

CMO at MyCity-Web

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Last Updated on January 17, 2019

8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

Listen carefully:

We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

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The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

1. Pray Daily

You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

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If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

3. Smile Often

Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

4. Organize Your Working Desk

A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

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5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

How do you do that? This is my formula:

First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

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If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

8. Go Exercise

Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

The Bottom Line

It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

More Resources About Mindfulness

Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

Reference

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