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4 Things That Attract Bugs and How to Repel Them

4 Things That Attract Bugs and How to Repel Them

Summer is great, except for bugs. When you are out, sporting a sexy dress over your tanned skin, your skin lightly sparkling from the sweat, you feel like a goddess – until you hear a buzz and you realize mosquitoes have just started to feast on you. Besides, gnats are all over the place, joining their forces with bees.

Yes, summer is amazing, but it’s also rich in bugs of all types, from flies to mosquitoes and gnats. In order to avoid them, you have to know how bugs find you. Your body releases a lot of smells, which humans can’t detect, but insects can. On top of this, you use a lot of perfumed lotions, deodorants, detergents and so on, which add to the fragrance footprint of your body.

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Your diet also has a lot to do with how you smell to bugs: what you eat is detectable in your sweat. Apart from smells, mosquitoes and other bugs detect humans by their breath and the colors they are wearing. Light colors make you invisible for bugs, while dark colors turn you into a target. The same is valid for your skin tone: the darker, the more attractive for bugs. Your blood type also matters, but that is something you can’t change, yet I wanted to mention it. To make sure you stay bug bite free, here is a list of things to avoid, followed by a list of bug repellent scents.

1. Floral perfumes

If you like floral scents, you should choose between becoming a big mosquito target and smelling like flowers. Leave the rose fragrance perfume, lotion, etc. at home and avoid it for the entire summer time as bugs are attracted by floral scents.

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2. Go sock-less

Remember how bugs are attracted by sweat and body heat? Closed shoes and socks are full of sweat and tend to be really hot, so they make you more attractive to a lot of bugs, including mosquitoes. For the summer, pick open sandals and leave the socks at home.

3. Quit drinking beer

Beer is one of the drinks that attract bugs, according to an interesting study. In fact, all sugary drinks are very attractive to bugs and these make your sweat equally attractive. So it is better you drink more water. There is also a 4th item to avoid, but I can’t actually number it: men. Yes, men are bigger and sweat more, so they tend to attract more bugs. If you can’t avoid them this summer (I am kidding, you know, right?), just keep away from large gatherings, where there are many hot, sweaty people who look like a feast for most bugs.

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Another reason you want to avoid large crowds is the fact that beer and soda are always present at gatherings. As we’ve seen, these drinks attract both mosquitoes and other type of bugs, such as gnats, flies and bees. If you want to get rid of gnats, bees and mosquitoes, drink water. Now that you know what attracts bugs, you need to know what repels them, so here is the list of fragrances you should stock on for a bug-bite free summer.

Bug Repellants

1. Lavender

Instead of a flower-scented lotion, opt for a lavender scented one, which is going to make you repellant to bugs. You can also pick a no fragrance lotion or spray and mix it with couple of lavender essential oil drops to create your own repellent. Lavender plant also works great at repelling bugs, so plant them in your garden.

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2. Peppermint and Eucalyptus

All bugs hate peppermint smell, so you can make your own bug barrier by crushing peppermint leaves and rubbing them on your body. Another way to hide yourself from bugs is by using a homemade peppermint spray, using peppermint essential oil. Eucalyptus has the same effect, so you can either use both or pick one of them.

3. Citronella

Citronella is another great bug repellent that smells amazing, but you need to be careful with this one, as it can easily irritate your skin. Lemongrass also contains citronella, so you can use that instead, if your skin is not sensitive to it.

4. Cooking repellents

When you want to organize a grill, make sure to use rosemary, basil and garlic, which are natural bug repellents and can add a great delicious taste to your food. As for rosemary, you can also make a DIY repellent perfume. If none of these repellents works for you, just go for the posh version: there is a Victoria’s Secret perfume that is actually a bug repellent in disguise. It may not be natural, but you can proudly tell your friends that you are wearing a great bug repellent.

Featured photo credit: Cara/Flickr via flickr.com

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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Review Your Past Flow

Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

    Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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