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10 Reasons to Introduce Fountains and Other Water Features into Your Garden

10 Reasons to Introduce Fountains and Other Water Features into Your Garden

Let’s start by saying that water can blend into the foliage you have growing in your backyard. Transform it into a pond, artificial river or fountain and it can stand out and become a focal feature all on its own. Water features are ideal for large gardens and for patios in smaller spaces. With the right accompaniments, and the correct position, they can also change the ambiance in a significant manner. Let’s have a look at these 10 reasons to why water features are ideal for your garden.

#10. Water features are easy to maintain

Cleaning a fountain or a pond is a piece of cake, but they will need to be cleaned out regularly to minimize the risk of algae building up. Not only that, but cleaning is necessary to prevent blockages, as well. If you are using gravel, stones or rocks, these will also need to be taken out regularly and given a clean or a polish. If you have any fish or pond plants make sure to get them out and place them in a water tank before drying the ponds or the fountains. And don’t forget the best part: this type of activity is very enjoyable, refreshing and does not imply high costs.

#9. You can match the ponds with your garden style

There are so many different designs these days, that it is quite easy to find a style to complement your garden. According to many decorating sources, people prefer three styles: modern, classic and old English. Modern garden spaces that are more minimalist look good with Asian inspired water features, made from natural substances. Plus, you can accessorize the space with grasses and bamboo. For old English gardens look for round or antique water features. Statues that double up as water fountains are also effective in classical garden spaces.
In case you only have a patio or balcony, look for a design that can be used in a corner or on a table. There are small fountains and ponds available, made up of concentric vases, which are very efficient on space.

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#8. You can make use of natural sunlight

Water features are even more beautiful when they have sunlight shining through their water streams. It gives off the impression that you are bonding with nature, while being caressed by light. For some cultures, this is thought to be the link with the spiritual world, while for others water is one of the sacred four elements and having it close means blessing of the gods.
Remember that the Greeks used to worship the god Poseidon who ruled the seas and the oceans, while Romans worshiped Neptune, the Roman god of water. The Ancient people had respect for water and light and more than 3000 years later, people still respect the sacred elements.

#7. You can add more garden designs and textures

Home owners love to décor their homes and this applies to gardens and yards, as well. People love to personalize and customize their gardens as a sign of luxury and prosperity. If you wish to décor your garden, you can use natural looking river rocks in different colors and sizes to add an element of interest. Some are rough while others are smoother and more polished, based on individual preferences. Just make sure the size of the rocks is relative to the size of the fountain and the green plants, water and décor objects ratio is equally spread. The last thing you want is to make your garden look unnatural and over stuffed with “decorations”.

#6. It allows you to create a natural habitat for fish

If you want to bring some more life into the ponds and fountains in the back yard, you can go for fish. While koi fish will need a fairly large amount of space for them to swim around in, gold fish work just as well and are a lot more affordable for smaller ponds. Of course, take into consideration that these small marine animals need clean waters all the time, algae and pond plants and of course, food. They usually feed on specific fish food you can find in any pet store. Another thing to consider is large animals: if you have cats or dogs, they might kill the fish out of play or curiosity. So if you are a pet lover, think twice before buying fish, as they won’t have long lives to live among cats and dogs, unfortunately.

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#5. Pond plants are really affordable

Larger water features and fountains can be enhanced with pond plants that serve as natural decorations. Water lettuce is a popular floating plant, as are water lilies, plus the costs are very low. And the best part is that you can do to the seashore and pick up small water plants such as smaller types of sea corals and even sea weed. Among the most popular sea weeds are the brown and green sea weed, also known as algae. But for a drop of color, you can also go for red or yellow sea weed, easily turning your fountain or pond into a natural underwater rainbow.
Remember to add salt, sugar and vitamins in the water, from time to time. Plants are living organisms, as well. And they need a lot of sunlight, so make sure they get plenty of it.

#4. Water attracts birds and wildlife to the yard

Birds, frogs and insects are more likely to frequent your garden when there is always a source of water available. To encourage more wildlife make sure you have plenty of indigenous trees and plant life in the area. Of course, you can’t just buy a fountain or water feature, set it down, switch it on and hope for the best. It needs to be well positioned and accessorized to monopolize on its potential.
Remember: whatever the choice, small water animals might harm the majority of the sea weed and the maintenance process is a bit tiring. But if you love taking care of your ponds, then this is a great idea to implement.

#3. Water cools the garden down

On a hot summer day, having running water can cool the garden down and make it a pleasant place to enjoy. It also enables you to have aquatic and semi-aquatic plants growing in the garden. And probably the most beautiful feature of having running or still water in the garden is what happens after rain. You get to enjoy one of the most beautiful rainbows in your personal garden, in your home.

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But remember: in order to have this cooling and blissful effect, the water used in fountains and ponds needs to be crystal clear and clean, so the maintenance process applies here, as well.

#2. Water makes the yard look bigger

The reflective properties of water mean it can make some spaces look bigger. For maximum reflection you should use dark material for the feature or fountain. If you really want to make the most of your new creation, you can use underwater lighting for night time in different colors and shapes. You can also use eco lights that charge from the sun during the day and light the garden during the night. It gives off a splendid calming effect that can be used in nature therapies and can relieve stress and anxiety.

#1. Water introduces serenity into your garden

A fountain creates a tranquil sound, which is ideal if you live in a noisy neighborhood or in the city. Think of it as your place to recreate yourself and to become one with nature. There are many water therapies, mostly taking place in the mountain side or seaside, near bigger amounts of water such as seas, oceans and rivers. But if you want to have a piece of heaven near your body and your mind, surely a pond or fountain in your own garden can make your dream come true. For an extra therapy effect, you can even plant perfumed flowers that bloom at night.

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After reading these ten reasons, are you ready to introduce water features and fountains into your garden?

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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