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10 Incredibly Easy Ways To Live Better While Spending Less

10 Incredibly Easy Ways To Live Better While Spending Less

You don’t have to break the bank and live paycheck to paycheck, spending your hard-earned cash on things… just to enjoy the good life.

A few alternates you can choose from include:

1. Define Your Goals

What is the good life for you? Having more money so you can afford to stay at home all day, Netflixing and eating whatever you want, whenever you want?

One of the toughest things for me to figure out, has been this: what the Hell am I working for?

If I was working myself to the bone for food… Food came and gone. My life isn’t happier for that. So it’s not food.

Was I working for the weekend? Being able to hit bars, drink myself stupid, and spend the rest of the weekend sleeping and watching TV?

Every time I did that, I felt like I was missing out on SO much more life had to offer. Not to mention, hangovers hamper my creativity – and this creativity I cherish above almost anything. So I didn’t want money to party more.

Why you want more money is a hard thing to figure out. Some say to travel more. Where? Why? To see the sights? What is it about the sights that fulfills you?

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Find out what it is.

2. Grow a Garden

Aside from saving gas on trips to the grocery store, buying your own seeds and planting your own crops cuts down on pollution.

Not to mention that, because you’re growing your own, you don’t have to worry about pesticides and GMO chemicals most commercial farms put in their junk.

Another plus is you can grow exactly what you need. Everything we buy in stores has such a pricey-tag because (oh no!) it had to be cut before being packaged. The horror.

3. Carpool

Aside from that one person we can’t stand – the only downside to carpooling is some people have such small cars.

But for cutting down on gas and spending time with good people, certainly makes a strong case for carpooling.

It’ll also give you time to get to know more about people, things you didn’t know beforehand. Remember: everybody has a story, even if they themselves aren’t sure about that.

4. Declutter Your Home

I don’t know about you, but I always feel rejuvenated when my home is nice and clean and not a war zone.

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The key to living a better life is managing your life. There is no other place in your life you can completely control than your home. So why not take control of your life and maintain your dominance?

People also say that, when you’re depressed or sad, cleaning helps boost your spirits and health, as well. Another reason for keeping your home clean is, for me at least, it makes me feel more professional.

Who doesn’t want to feel like a professional while walking around in their underwear?

5. Swap Clothes

When it’s time to buy yourself or your children new clothes… there is no cheaper option than trading clothes with a neighbour or Tradezone.

Not only do you get new clothes (well, new to you), you save $10-40 that some store clothes go for. Plus, it’ll give you a chance to get some face time with strangers – and what’s life if we don’t make the most of each and every experience?

You’ll never know who you’ll meet in the course of a day.

6. Barter Better Rates

Bartering is a skill, a world-class skill that separates people who talk… From people who “talk.”

You’ll also learn more about how to persuade people, and how to wear a more confident face when you’re dealing with people. Name one person those benefits won’t work for.

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Let’s face it: sometimes, people are stubborn and you just want them to see your way. Not to agree with you, rather… Showing them your point of view. Bartering with cashiers, who hold onto their money like an iron monkey death grip, are a tough crowd.

Wack five or ten or twenty bucks off their original bid, when you’re selling, and you’ve learned the first rule of salesmanship. (I can’t tell you what that is – only people who have been there will understand. So get bartering.)

7. Host a Family Dinner

Unless you’re a black sheep of the family, or ostracised from members for whatever reason – family time goes by like no time at all. It truly is the most cherished, wonderful time for creating memories that will never be the same.

So, prolong the good times (and create new ones!) by letting your fam know that you’re going to have a dinner at your place.

The catch?

It’s a potluck. Everybody brings their own special, unique dish that they and only they are known for. (Mine would happen to be Indian Fry Bread.)

8. Save Raises

When you get a raise, save half of it. Be sure to do the same with each and every bonus you get. The time for satisfying your instant gratification by blowing it on “what you want,” is over. Paying bills and living life become a lot more bearable when you aren’t buying in bulk at Costco and the Price Club.

You’ll never get anywhere if you keep doing what you’re doing. Start with your wallet.

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Plus, with all that money saved, you can go on a budget family vacation much more often.  You can share the cab and even hotel rooms with your family – all you have to do is plan in advance and make necessary arrangements/bookings at least a month before so that you can get better prices.

9. Make Breakfast Early

Like, the day before early. For me, waking up in the morning is pure Hell. Having to make coffee, clean up the house from the night before (we have a terrible tendency to not put away dinner plates and go straight to bed)… and waking up in general… is like trying to calm down a dragon by handing it a dish rag.

It just doesn’t work. On top of all that, I’m supposed to make breakfast? Forget that.

Simple solution: make what I want to eat, in the morning, hours before I go to sleep. Pop it in the fridge or freezer – bam. Instant breakfast.

10. Cherish Experiences

This is the most important key for a better life: invest in experiences, rather than things and items. George Carlin said it best when he said, “A house is just a box of stuff with a roof on it.”

We don’t need fancy stuff. What we need is shared time together with our loved ones – the ones who make us happy. A fulfilled life can’t be quenched to its core, by expensive cars or other goodies.

“We buy things we don’t need with money, we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.” – Ed Norton

Final Words

Only you can choose to be content – nobody can choose it for you. You have to find your sweet spot in life, manage your time wisely (we all have only 24 hours), and pursue the best things in life. For yourself, for others, with others. Together.

Featured photo credit: pixabay.com via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on August 12, 2019

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark Chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko Biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and Black Tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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