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7 Smart and Simple Ways to Improve Your Home Security

7 Smart and Simple Ways to Improve Your Home Security

Home security is one of those things that many of us don’t think about until we need to. (Believe me: After somebody breaks into your home, ignoring the issue of home security no longer feels like a possibility.) But as with eating right and exercising, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when it comes to home security.

Many people avoid burglar-proofing their home because it feels like a daunting task. People might feel like they don’t know where to start, or they’ll worry about the cost of securing their home. That’s where these tips come in. Not only do they give you a great foundation for home security, but they’re also simple and (for the most part) inexpensive. Dedicate one Saturday to implementing these strategies, and you’ll benefit from improved peace of mind for years to come.

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1. Beef up your locks

Door locks won’t do you much good if you have a weak door jamb. Reinforce your door jamb with a heavy steel strike plate and long screws, both of which will help strengthen your door against potential break-ins. You can purchase strike-plate reinforcing hardware at virtually any hardware store, or enlist a handyman to help out if you’re not competent with a drill. While you’re at it, replace weak locks with stronger grade deadbolts, make sure all of your exterior doors use interior door hinges, and change all locks if you ever lose your house key.

2. Reinforce your windows

Nobody needs to nail their windows shut—all of our homes can benefit from regular doses of fresh air. Get the best of ventilation and home security by installing window stops, which allow windows to be opened a few inches but not wide enough for a person to fit through.

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3. Install motion sensor lighting outside your home

Leaving the porch light on while you’re away seems like a good idea because it can help convey that somebody’s home. But when the light stays on 24/7, it has the exact opposite effect: It becomes obvious that nobody is home to turn off the light. The solution? Install motion sensor lighting that turns on whenever somebody comes within range of the sensor. This will help deter potential intruders and save you money on your electricity bill.

4. Hide valuables in unexpected places

No, I’m not talking about the sock drawer—that’s been done to death, to the point that thieves know to check there. Instead, try hiding your valuables in more unusual places, such as a tennis ball, a box of tampons or menstrual pads, or inside other random household goods.

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5. Consider mail and newspaper delivery when you go away

Nothing says “nobody’s home!” more clearly than stacks of mail piling up in the mailbox and a mountain of newspapers on the front porch. Whenever you go away, make sure to ask the post office and newspaper to hold your deliveries. Or enlist a friend or neighbor to collect newspapers, mail, and fliers from your property every day while you’re gone.

6. Reinforce air conditioning units

Unsecured window air conditioning units can easily be pushed inside the house, leaving a wide-open window for burglars to crawl through. Eliminate this risk by using a bracket, sliding window lock, and/or corner braces to secure the air conditioner in place.

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7. Store ladders inside (not on the lawn)

Leaving a ladder in the yard is like extending an invitation to thieves to enter via the second floor. The easy solution? Store ladders in a locked garage or garden shed to limit easy access to your home.

These strategies work best when they’re consistently enforced, so make sure everyone living in your home knows the drill and is committed to implementing these practices. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to purchase renter’s or home owner’s insurance—that way you’re still protected financially in the (now unlikely!) event that a burglar finds their way inside.

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Kenny Kline

Entrepreneur

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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Featured photo credit: Radu Florin via unsplash.com

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