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Complete Guide: How To Get Rid Of Ants In The House

Complete Guide: How To Get Rid Of Ants In The House

Springtime is wonderful. It brings new sunshine, spring flowers but it also brings the dreaded ant season. There are a large variety of ants that invade our homes and gardens and the shear amount can be irritating and frustrating. With numerous ways for them to enter – floors and foundations, crevices in the walls or ceilings – in fact any holes that are an opening to attractive smells and food, ants can appear in their hundreds. With so many it can feel like a tall task to get rid of ants in your home but there are some great, effective ways to prevent, deter, and eradicate an infestation. The last thing you want is to have them crawling all over your kitchen and living spaces so here are some different ways to use homemade, cheap alternatives to get rid of those pesky ants once and for all.

Preventing An Ant Invasion

The first thing you can do is to make sure you do as much as you can to prevent an infestation or stop an infestation getting worse. By doing a few simple preventative tasks, you can get yourself on the way to an ant-free house.

  • Keep your house clean by sweeping floors of food and dirt.
  • Keep trash and rubbish away from the house and make sure you put any rubbish out on a daily basis.
  • Don’t allow moisture on surfaces – ants like to find sources of water and tend to stay near them.
  • Always cover food when it’s not in the fridge.
  • Don’t leave dirty plates and utensils around – wash them up straight away.

Deterrents For Ants In Your Home

There are many substances that ants just don’t like and using these can deter ants from certain areas like the kitchen, or you can use these methods outside your house if you know of a particular way they are getting in. Here are three different methods for detering the ants easily and effectively.

1. Chalk

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    Ants absolutely hate chalk. The calcium carbonate in the chalk repels the ants and stops them from entering the house. You can simply draw chalk lines where you don’t want the ants to wander either around the house or in rooms (if you’re able too). Alternatively you can purchase chalk dust and sprinkle this around any entry points to your home. The ants will be reluctant to cross and it will keep them at bay.

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    2. Flour

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      Similar to chalk dust, flour is also a repellent to ants. Sprinkling flour especially around food cupboards, will stop ants from getting in and crawling over food stuffs. You can put flour in front of open doorways or entry holes to prevent the ants from entering your home.

      3. Double-Sided Adhesive Tape

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        A genius way to stop ants from crawling on to your food is to surround it with adhesive tape – sticky side up (double-sided would work best). The ants will get stuck and won’t be able to reach their prize.

        Eradication of Ant Dens

        If you want to deal with the problem at its source, and you are aware of where the ant mounds are then there are inexpensive, homemade ways to do this. Eradicating the ants at the source will help with fewer getting into the home. Here are three easy ways to deal with any ant hills or dens that you have close to your home.

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        1. Borax, Water and Sugar

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          This is a great way to attract the ants from their den and kills them before they can get into the home. If any ants survive they will take the borax solution back to their colony and spread it around doing half the job for you!

          • Get some old plastic containers and put holes around the sides about a couple of centimetres from the top (about the width of a pencil)
          • Mix Borax with sugar –  around a ratio of 3:1.
          • Put the powdered mixture into the container until it’s around a centimetre down from the holes and mix it with water. It should be a soupy consistency but it doesn’t have to be exact.
          • Add a teaspoon of peanut butter (as ants love a bit of peanut butter) and mix it in.
          • Leave it around the ant hill or den with the lid on. The ants will crawl through the holes but shouldn’t be able to crawl out again.

          2. Flowerpots

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            There’s a great and simple trick that uses a flowerpot. Turn a flowerpot upside down over the ant den and pour boiling water down the small drain hole of the flowerpot this will kill a lot of ants at the source leaving less to come in and infest your home.

            3. Boiling Water and Washing Up Liquid

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              Much the same way as the Borax, having a jam jar full of boiling water and washing up liquid will attract the ants. Place these next to an ant colony or alternatively use it with the flowerpot method instead of plain boiling water. This will kill the ants almost instantly and prevent them from spreading to the house.

              Homemade Sprays To Get Rid of Ants

              Bug sprays can be full of chemicals so it’s best to use homemade versions that are environmentally friendly and still as effective. Keep a few different sprays around the house to use when an infestation occurs.

              1. Vinegar

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                Ants absolutely hate the smell of vinegar so mixing equal parts water and vinegar into a spray bottle and aiming it at the ants will give them a huge signal to leave. They will soon be off to somewhere else that smells a lot better. Spraying this onto surfaces and letting it dry will also stop the ants from wanting to come near them. Use vinegar several times a day to get the full effect.

                2. Citrus Fruit

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                  Mixing any citrus fruit with water and using it as a spray will deter the ants away. The juice of oranges, lemons, limes (or all three if you want) mixed with water. Alternatively, lemon peels are particularly effective when blended up and added to water – let the mixture infuse before spraying in the direction of the ants.

                  3. Tea Tree Oil

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                    Tea tree oil is another pet hate for ants so, again, mixing a few drops into water will make a great spray that will help get rid of ants in your home. There are also other smells including cinnamon, cayenne pepper, black pepper, salt, and some strong perfumes which are highly detested by ants. Using these with water will create safe, cheap homemade sprays that will rid you of the ants in your home.

                    Featured photo credit: brianbeedit via pixabay.com

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                    Jenny Marchal

                    A passionate writer who loves sharing about positive psychology.

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                    Last Updated on April 6, 2020

                    How To Be Successful In Life: 13 Life-Changing Tips

                    How To Be Successful In Life: 13 Life-Changing Tips

                    What is success to you? How to be successful in life?

                    To some, when they think of success, they imagine wealth; others want power; some just want to make a positive impact on the world.

                    All of these are perfectly valid, indeed success is a concept that means different things to different people. Though no matter what success is to you, it almost certainly isn’t something will come easily.

                    There are countless guides and books to being successful, however, as success is personal and unique to each individual. The advice contained in these books can often not be relevant. Therefore following the advice of a single individual can often be unhelpful.

                    With this in mind, considering the advice of a great many people, people whose ideas of success were different both to each other, and quite possibly, to you can be a good alternative.

                    What follows is a list of 13 of the best pieces of advice from some of the most successful people who have ever lived. If you want to learn how to be successful, these tips are essential:

                    1. Think Big

                      From Michelangelo Buonarroti, Great Renaissance Artist:

                      “The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.”

                      There are few artists as influential as Michaelangelo. Today centuries after his death, his work still inspires and connects to people. His work is world famous, just think of his statue of David, or the Mural in the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican.

                      Imagine then, if he decided not to work as an artist.

                      Being a successful artist has always been extremely difficult, imagine if he decided to give up this ambition in favour of something easier?

                      Oftentimes, people often decided to put their dreams aside for something more “realistic”. To give up their dream for something easier. This quote teaches us the danger of such a point of view.
                      Instead be ambitious.

                      2. Find What You Love to Do and Do It

                        From Oprah Winfrey, Media Mogul:

                        “You know you are on the road to success if you would do your job and not be paid for it.”

                        This is a good quote to remember and think about when you’re at work.

                        Imagine being as successful as possible in your current job. Ultimately you’ll probably find yourself working extremely hard and this it will take up much of your time.

                        If it’s a job you hate, then being successful at it might only mean filling your life with something you hate to do. What’s the sense in this?

                        Instead, why not focus on doing something you love? When you’ve found what you’re passionate about, you get the motivation to keep you moving. Success at this means the fulfilment of your dreams.

                        Not sure what your passion is yet? You should learn about this Motivation Engine first.

                        Even if you’re not successful, you still filled your time with something you love to do. Many successful musicians spent years of their lives doing unpaid performances, the only reason they kept playing was because they loved to perform.

                        3. Learn How to Balance Life

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                          From Phil Knight, CEO of Nike Inc.:

                          “There is an immutable conflict at work in life and in business, a constant battle between peace and chaos. Neither can be mastered, but both can be influenced. How you go about that is the key to success.”

                          All too often, people think that to be successful, they need to make the object of their success their life.

                          If a person thinks their job will lead them to success, then they may spend countless hours per day, and well into the evening working hard.

                          However this comes at the cost of rest, your health and having an enjoyable life. Ultimately they may burn out and cease to be successful at their job anyway.

                          If success comes from having a strong social life and a good group of friends, their job may suffer; meaning that they may lose their job, and then be unable to afford going out with friends.

                          In these ways, success, as Phil Knight says above, is helped by balance. Think of it as a balance between rest and work, or work and play.

                          To achieve that balance, this Ultimate Guide to Prioritizing Your Work And Life can help you.

                          4. Do Not Be Afraid of Failure

                            From Henry Ford, Founder of Ford Motors:

                            “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”

                            There is a story, it’s unconfirmed whether it actually happened, yet the message within is none the less true:

                            Thomas Edison inventing the lightbulb was the result of several hundred failed attempts. In an interview, he was asked “How do you feel after all of your failed attempts?”

                            His response was great, “I didn’t fail, I learned hundreds of ways not to invent the lightbulb”

                            He saw each “failure” as a lesson. From that lesson he learned what won’t work, and also might work instead.

                            Each failed attempt, each rejection, were key steps on his path to success. It is easy to feel like you should give up after a failure. But perhaps in that failure is a lesson.

                            Pay attention to your failures, study them. Perhaps then you’ll learn how to succeed.

                            If you find it difficult to fight your fear of failure, here’s a guide for you: Why You Have the Fear of Failure (And How to Conquer It Step-By-Step)

                            5. Have an Unwavering Resolution to Succeed

                              From Colonel Sanders, Founder of KFC:

                              “I made a resolve then that I was going to amount to something if I could. And no hours, nor amount of labor, nor amount of money would deter me from giving the best that there was in me. And I have done that ever since, and I win by it. I know.”

                              This, in many ways relates to the above quote about learning from your failures.

                              It’s the easiest thing in the world to give up from a failure. The only way to push on is if you have the true burning desire to succeed, to not be moved or dissuaded from your goals.

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                              If you are not truly dedicated towards success, then each failure will hurt more, each set back will slow you down.

                              Success is hard; without the unwavering desire to succeed, this difficulty may seem insurmountable. With the desire, it is merely an obstacle to go through.

                              6. Be a Person of Action

                                From Leonardo da Vinci, Renaissance Genius:

                                “It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”

                                Though it was said hundreds of years ago, it works just as much today as it ever had. It applies to literally any successful person.

                                Think about it, picture someone like William Shakespeare:

                                When we think of the time he lived in, we think of the time in a way shaped by him. When we think of Renaissance era Italy, we think of Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci. Or think about the present day, Bill Gates or Steve Jobs. Our current way of life would simply be incomparably different if they didn’t accomplish what they did.

                                You’re probably reading this article on a device by a company that they either founded or companies influenced by them.

                                All these figures were proactive, they saw ways to do things differently and did them. If they let the world shape them, then they’d simply fit into the background. Instead they shaped the world.

                                Applying this to you?

                                Don’t be afraid of going outside the norm. If you can think of a better way to do something, do it that way. If you fail, try again.

                                7. Cultivate Positive Relationships

                                  From Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of America: “

                                  The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people.”

                                  The best leaders and some of the most influential people (and Theodore Roosevelt is one of the best leaders and one of the most influential people to have lived) were not those who caused commotions, who fought with people or disregarded people; but were people who were friendly to those around them.

                                  People liked them. They wanted them to do well.

                                  This is key to good leadership.

                                  It’s logical. If someone likes you, they want to help you; if you give them a suggestion, they’ll gladly follow through with it.

                                  But if someone doesn’t like you, they may either refuse to help or actively get in your way.

                                  What’s more, it’s always a good idea to cultivate good relationships. You can never tell who will prove to become someone who’ll be able to help you in a big way, or even be a good and supportive friend.

                                  As such, help people and they may help you; and be good to people, and they my be good to you.

                                  8. Don’t Be Afraid of Introducing New Ideas

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                                    From Mark Twain, Famed Author:

                                    “A person with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds.”

                                    It is an unfortunate truth that those with the boldest ideas are often disregarded.

                                    Most of us are taught from an early age to think and do things similarly to everyone else. This can be great to fill an existing role. But to truly do things differently (and all successful people did things differently), you need to think differently.

                                    If you have a new idea, don’t throw it away because it’s new and different; instead, celebrate it. Your strange new idea might one day be the one that leads you to success.

                                    9. Believe in Your Capacity to Succeed

                                      From Walter Disney, Founder of Walt Disney Company:

                                      “If you can dream it, you can do it.”

                                      Success has to be something you can imagine yourself achieving.

                                      It is possible that you will come across those who doubt you and your ability to succeed. You must not become one of these people because the moment you cease believing and dreaming is the moment these dreams fall away.

                                      Keep dreaming!

                                      10. Always Maintain a Positive Mental Attitude

                                        From Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of America:

                                        “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”

                                        Like the above quote says, you need to trust in your ability to succeed. This is the only way to cultivate the right mindset.

                                        Replace negative thoughts with the positive ones. You need to approach problems, not as obstacles stopping you, but merely tasks that need to be completed for you to keep going.

                                        If you stay positive and think like this, setbacks won’t affect you so much, people’s doubts won’t impact you and even the biggest obstacles will seem like minor problems.

                                        However with the wrong mindset of doubt, you’ll be much easier to stop.

                                        11. Don’t Let Discouragement Stop You from Pressing On

                                          From Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of America:

                                          “Let no feeling of discouragement prey upon you, and in the end you are sure to succeed.”

                                          It is an unfortunate fact of human nature — all of us in some way, doubt ourselves. This can be made far worse if others doubt us too.

                                          When surrounded by doubts, giving up can actually seem like a good idea.

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                                          Don’t pay attention to the doubts. If you are discouraged, ignore it.

                                          If this discouragement moves into your mind and you begin to doubt yourself. It is important to ignore this too.

                                          This is How Self Doubt Keeps You Stuck and How to Overcome It

                                          12. Be Willing to Work Hard

                                            From JC Penny, Founder of JC Penney Inc.:

                                            “Unless you are willing to drench yourself in your work beyond the capacity of the average man, you are just not cut out for positions at the top.”

                                            You might have heard the quote that “success is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration” or you may have heard about the 10,000 hours idea.

                                            Whichever way you frame it, they say one thing:

                                            True success comes from work.

                                            You’ll never become successful if you don’t work towards your goal in life and keep working towards it.

                                            Check out this article and you’ll understand Why Hard Work Beats Talent.

                                            13. Be Brave Enough to Follow Your Intuition

                                              From Steve Jobs, Co-founder of Apple Inc.:

                                              “Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

                                              In ancient Greece, there was a group of Oracles who lived in Delphi. Everyone who needed advice or to know their future visited them, from the poorest of society to kings. Above the doorway of the temple were the words “know thyself”.

                                              If you strongly believe and desire something, chances are that you already have an idea how to get there. If not, you may naturally know what things will help you and what things will slow you down.

                                              It’s like how your body can detect danger even when things seem safe.

                                              Ultimately then, you need to trust your own instincts.

                                              Final Thoughts

                                              What you might have noticed is that many of the above lessons are similar — most are about developing the right state of mind. This clearly suggests that the key to achieving success, in whatever you wish, comes down to the way you approach it mentally.

                                              Moreover, no matter what stage of life you’re at now, you can still make a difference and pursue success. You can make resetting your life possible when you do this: How to Start Over and Reboot Your Life When It Seems Too Late

                                              More Tips for Achieve Success

                                              Featured photo credit: Ryan Wong via unsplash.com

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