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5 Signs You’re a Crappy Tourist

5 Signs You’re a Crappy Tourist

    Your ticket is booked. You’re packed and ready to go. Are you ready to have a good time on your next adventure? Good.

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    Before you go, remember that you’ll be a guest in another country. As great as it is to kick back and relax, you need to keep in mind that you might end up disrespecting locals or even the very place you are visiting.

    You don’t want to do any of the following five things and end up looking like a crappy tourist:

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    1. Sticking Your Camera Where It Is Not Wanted

    You may find that there are places of worship that do not allow photos to be taken in certain places. Many have signs alerting tourists where they cannot take photos. Some might even provide the reason. It is not only rude, but sacrilegious in some places if you choose to ignore their warnings. If you are lucky, locals, and employees will probably chalk it up to the fact that you don’t know any better. Some places aren’t so forgiving and will confiscate your camera or just your SD card. Not only will you lose the photos you just took, but possibly all the other ones from the rest of your trip.

    2. Being Rude When Negotiating

    Some countries will have markets and stores where it is very common to negotiate on an agreed price before purchase. Think about it: these shopkeepers are merely trying to earn a living. Yes, they maybe be over-inflating prices, but are you willing to get into a verbal argument over it? Be friendly but firm when stating what you are willing to pay. Be prepared to say, “Thanks but no thanks” and just walk away if you don’t like the price.

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    Another reason to be nice: you never know if other shopkeepers might be looking. If you are rude to one, who’s to say the others will be willing to do business with you?

    3. Ignoring Dress Codes

    Many religious sites and historic buildings will post strict dress codes (if there are any). Some will provide appropriate clothing in order for tourists to comply with guidelines, but some won’t. Don’t insist on going in if someone tells you that you’re not dressed appropriately. What makes you think you’re the only who doesn’t need to follow the rules?

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    Some tourists tend to forget that there are unofficial guidelines to dress codes as well. For example, in some Middle Eastern countries, women tend to cover their hair and cover their bodies. If you go in as a female tourist and ignore the dress code, the chance of you looking like a crappy tourist are high.

    4. Not Immersing in the Local Culture

    What is the point of visiting a new country if you are not even willing to try out a few local dishes? Of course, there are exceptions like dietary restrictions, but there is nothing stopping you from doing a little bit of research beforehand and finding out what you can eat.  Even if you don’t go out to a restaurant, the least you can do is go to a market and purchase some local produce to cook in your hotel room, provided that you have the appropriate facilities.

    5. Openly Criticizing Your Surroundings

    It’s rude in your own country, so why is it ok to do the same somewhere else? You’d look like a total jerk if you make comments like “The restaurants are so dirty here” or “This hotel is definitely not like the standards we keep back in the US.” It doesn’t matter if you don’t think people understand you. Chances are, someone might. Don’t forget that body language and the tone of your voice also speaks volumes.

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    How to Keep Yourself Awake at Work Without Caffeine

    How to Keep Yourself Awake at Work Without Caffeine

    Keeping yourself awake at work can be a real challenge when you’re bored, exhausted or sleep-deprived.

    But before you reach for that can of Red Bull, bottle of Mountain Dew, or pot of coffee, try these healthy remedies to stimulate your 5 different senses and help you stay awake at work:

    Sight – Visual Stimulation

    The first thing you do when you wake up is opening your eyes, so your visual stimulation is very important to keeping your energy level high.

    1. Maximize your exposure to light.

    Your body’s internal rhythm is regulated by the amount of light you receive. The greater your exposure, the more alert you will feel.

    Open the shades and let in the sunlight. Step outside or look out the window. Turn on all the artificial lights in your office or around your work space.

    2. Exercise your eyes (or give them a break).

    Roll your eyes up and down, side to side and diagonally. Rotate them clockwise and then counterclockwise. Squeeze them shut and then open them wide. Do this several times.

    Reading and sitting in front of a computer screen for long periods can lead to eye fatigue.

    Take regular breaks with deliberate blinking and looking out into the distance.

    3. Take note of your environment.

    Learn to enjoy people-watching. Observe their activities, speech, body language and interactions with others. Notice the details of building, trees and other objects around you, including their color, shape and size.

    By doing this, you’re not only relaxing your eye muscles but also calming your mind.

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    Hearing – Auditory Stimulation

    What you hear or listen to have direct effect on your brain. This is why we feel so annoyed and sometimes angry when we hear construction noise when we’re working.

    4. Engage in conversation.

    Talk to a friend or colleague. Trade funny stories. Discuss your business venture, a creative idea, the latest political scandal, or any other topic that interests you.

    Practice mindful listening to what you and the other person are saying. Tune into the tone, volume and content of the conversation.

    Learn how to practice better listening from this guide:

    Why Listen to Reply Instead of Understand Is the Key to Failure

    5. Listen to upbeat music.

    Try hip hop, rock or jazz to keep you alert. Instrumental, non-distracting music works best.

    Sing, whistle, and hum along if you can. Plug in the earphones if you must.

    Smell – Olfactory Stimulation

    If you’re feeling sleepy and suddenly smell the coffee, you’ll probably feel more energetic. This is why smell is an influential stimulation.

    6. Work your nose.

    Aroma therapists recommend essential oils of peppermint (to boost energy), rosemary (to build awareness), eucalyptus (to increase oxygen), cedarwood  (to activate your mind), and cinnamon (to improve your reaction time).

    If you don’t have essential oils on hand, you can use lotions or burning candles that provide the same scents.

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    Citrus like lemons, limes, grapefruits and oranges are also natural olfactory stimulants. Get a whiff of these citrus scents to stay awake.

    Taste – Gustatory Stimulation

    If you want an energetic day at work, you can’t let your tongue feeling plain and flavorless.

    7. Have a good breakfast.

    Start off with the most important meal of the day.

    Think fresh, light and healthy: bran cereals, wholegrain breads, fruits, and yogurt.

    Nix the heavy stuff like sausages, greasy eggs or pancakes.

    Need some breakfasts inspirations? Check out these ideas:

    20 Healthy Breakfast Choices That Will Save You Time

    8. Drink lots of water.

    Keep a glass or bottle of H2O near you and sip from it throughout the day. Dehydration can leave you feeling tired, sluggish and sleepy.

    So make sure you drink enough water throughout the day. Not sure how much to drink? This can help you:

    How Much Water Should You Drink Each Day (and How Much Is Too Much for You)

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    Think that you’ve been drinking too little water? Try these friendly reminders:

    3 Best Apps To Help You Drink Much More Water

    9. Eat energy-boosting snacks.

    Nuts and fruits (like bananas, apples and strawberries) are sure bets. Pairings with staying power include baby carrots with a low-fat cream cheese dip; celery sticks with peanut butter; red peppers with hummus; and plain yogurt with granola.

    Avoid carb-filled, sugary snacks that make you crash and leave you feeling tired.

    Here you can find some healthy snack ideas:

    25 Healthy Snack Recipes To Make Your Workday More Productive

    Touch – Tactile Stimulation

    Last but not least, your sense of touch will make you physically feel more energetic and less stressful.

    10. Splash cold water on your face.

    Do this in the morning, during bathroom breaks and in the afternoon. Being exposed to cold water pushes your body to adjust and regulate its internal temperature, which in turn keeps you alert.

    This works the same as you take a cold shower to increase mood and alertness. Take a look at this article to learn more about it:

    5 Surprising Benefits of Cold Showers

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    11. Use acupressure.

    Apply pressure to, massage, or tap on the stimulation points of your body. These include the top of your head, the back of your neck, the back of your hand (between the thumb and index finger), just below the knee and your earlobes.

    Watch this video to learn about the acupressure points you can try:

    12. Get moving.

    Move away from your chair and stand, walk, run or climb the stairs. Feel the earth under your feet. Stretch and twist. Do jumping jacks, lunges, push-ups and back bends.

    And if you need to move more discreetly, wiggle your feet, bounce your knee up and down, scrunch your toes, or cross your legs.

    You can also try some simple stretches and exercises at your desk:

    Unlike addictive caffeine fixes, these remedies activate your senses, engage your attention, amp up your energy and prevent morning grogginess and afternoon slumps without the side effects or health risks.

    Pick a few ways from this list of suggestions and practice them consistently. And when you do this consistently, you’ll soon see the positive results — a more energetic and productive you at work.

    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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