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50 Extraordinary Places To Put On Your Bucket List

50 Extraordinary Places To Put On Your Bucket List

If you feel the urge to explore the most amazing places on this beautiful blue planet, but don’t know where to start, look no further! Satisfy your wanderlust by visiting these 50 unforgettable travel destinations.

1. Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System, Belize

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    Image Credit: Cute and Weird

    This amazing natural reef, second only to the Great Barrier Reef, straddles the coast of Belize. It is estimated that 90% of its inhabitants haven’t even been discovered yet.

    2. Anywhere in Alaska, USA

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      Image Credit: No-See-Um Lodge

      Anywhere you go in Alaska, you can prepare to be stunned by mother nature just showing off. Fly fishing, hunting, and hiking excursions from local lodges are some of the biggest draws for the avid outdoorsman in a state over twice the size of Texas, which also boasts over 100 volcanoes and 10,000 glaciers.

      3. M’Zab Valley, Algeria

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        Image Credit: Djamel Arabie

        Travel back in time to the 10th century home of the Ibadites, and see their five ksour (fortified cities), in the M’Zab valley.

        4. Tassili n’Ajjer National Park, Algeria

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          Image Credit: Get In Travel

          Its name means Plateau of Rivers, and this beautiful mountain range in the Algerian section of the Sahara desert is best known for ancient rock art and prehistoric sites from the Neolithic area.

          5. Tipasa, Algeria

          Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 6.40.24 AM
            Image Credit: Hello Magazine

            Not far from all the modern convenience of the Mediterranean, you can find these ancient Roman ruins of a thriving city, which include basilicas, villas, baths, fountains, avenues, and an amphitheater.

            6. Sangha Trinational, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo,

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              Image Credit: Environment News Science

              This gem in the Congo Basin is made up of three natural parks totaling almost 290 square miles. It is home to a large diversity of plant and animal life, most notably the Nile crocodile, goliath tigerfish, forest elephants, the critically endangered lowland gorilla, and the endangered chimpanzee.

              7. Iguazu Falls, Brazil

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                Image Credit: Found the World

                If you think that the Niagara Falls are big, you have to visit Brazil to see the 275 waterfalls that join forces to create the giant Iguazu Fall’s majestic display.

                8. Victoria Falls, Zambia

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                  Image Credit: TravelWebDir

                  Forming the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, you will find a spectacular wonder once called “Mosi-oa-Tunya”  or “The Smoke That Thunders” by the Kololo tribe living there in the 1800s. Today, it is known as the greatest curtain of falling water in the world.

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                  9. Grand-Bassam Lagunes, Ivory Coast

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                    Image Credit: Brendan’s Adventure

                    This historic city in Côte d’Ivoire was the French colonial capital city from 1893 to 1896. The capital city moved to Bingerville after a bout of yellow fever. With portions of the city abandoned for decades, it resembles a beautiful ghost town. In 2012 it was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

                    10. Salar De Uyuni, Bolivia

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                      Image Credit: Found the World

                      A salt lake that freezes at night and is scorched by day, these flats harbor some of the most extreme daily temperatures in the world. The site was created when a prehistoric lake dried up and left a salty crust behind, which becomes a giant mirror when it rains.

                      11. Sea of Stars, Vaadhoo Island, Maldives

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                        Image Credit: Places to See in Your Lifetime

                        This small island in Maldives is famous for bringing the sky to earth. The phenomenon can be credited to tiny phytoplankton known as dinoflagellates that create a bioluminescence, which makes the “stars” dance through the waves.

                        12. Ashikaga Flower Park, Ashikaga, Tochigi, Japan

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                          Image Credit: Amusing Planet

                          If you love flowers and happen to be in Japan, the Ashikaga Flower Park is a must see. One wisteria tree, called “fuji” in Japan, is 100 years old.

                          13. Pamukkale, Turkey

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                            Image Credit: Deviant Art

                            As the hot, calcium-rich waters come from deep within the earth to pour over a cliff, they cool down and form white calcium into pools. This has been a popular spa since the Romans built the spa city of Hierapolis.

                            14. Wind Cathedral, Namibia

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                              Image Credit: Planet Den

                              These dunes, found in the Namibian dessert, are believed to be 60-80 million years old. They were formed by the Atlantic Ocean drifts that pushed the sands for eons. The winds constantly change their faces, moving the contours and shape of the dunes to create new masterpieces.

                              15. The Wave, Southern Utah

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                                Image Credit: National Park Tourz

                                This sandstone rock formation near the Arizona-Utah border is found on the slopes of the Coyote Buttes. It’s quite a hike to get there, but the photography opportunity is well worth the effort.

                                16. The Pearl Waterfall, Jiuzhaigou Valley, China

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                                  Image Credit: Wallpaperest

                                  The Jiuzhaigou Valley literally means “Valley of Nine Villages,” and is a beautiful nature reserve on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau known for its many waterfalls, crystal lakes, and snowy peaks.

                                  17. Kaieteur Falls, Kaieteur National Park, Guyana

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                                    Image Credit: Fronteering

                                    This unforgettable natural wonder is four times higher than the Niagara Falls. While a few other falls may beat it in height, it is rare to have its combination of height and volume of water challenged, which is why this is one of the most powerful waterfalls in the world.

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                                    18. Jacob’s Well, Wimberly, Texas

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                                      Image Credit: Planet Den

                                      Considered one of the largest underwater caves in the world, Jacob’s Well is a very popular tourist attraction and swimming hole. With a depth of 120 feet and dangerous underwater caves, it has been the scene of several diving tragedies from attempts to explore the bottom part of the well.

                                      19. Antelope Canyon, Arizona

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                                        Image Credit: Wikipedia

                                        Antelope Canyon, located on Navajo land, includes two separate slot canyon sections, called the Upper Antelope Canyon, or The Crack, and the Lower Antelope Canyon, or the Corkscrew. It was formed by flash flood waters wearing away the sandstone.

                                        20. Ice Castles in Silverthorne, Colorado

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                                          Image Credit: Globe Traveling

                                          What started as a father making an Ice Castle in his front yard for his children has turned into an annual event. Brent Christensen’s original castle was so popular that word spread quickly. Now, over 25,000 visitors come to see his castles every year.

                                          21. Pongua Falls, Vietnam

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                                            Image Credit: The Wow

                                            One of the most powerful falls in Dalat, the Ponga waterfall is as high as 131 feet and barrels down into a lake below, guaranteeing that you will hear this majestic display long before you see it.

                                            22. Devetashkata Cave, Bulgaria

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                                              Image Credit: Hand Picked Collections

                                              This natural wonder has seven different-sized holes in the ceiling, bringing in natural light to illuminate its interior. Studies show that this cave has been inhabited during almost every historical era. The earliest findings of humans were during the middle of the Early Stone Age, about 70,000 BC. This cave also houses some of the richest cultural artifacts from the Neolithic period. After visiting his marvel, it’s easy to see why it has always been a prized piece of real estate throughout history.

                                              23. Rice Field Terraces in Yunnan, China

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                                                Image Credit: National Geographic

                                                Who could have guessed that a humble grain could have had such a spectacular origin?

                                                24. Mount Roraima, Venezuela

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                                                  Image Credit: Booms Beat

                                                  This 1,300-foot mountain, once believe by the indigenous people to be the stump of a mighty tree that held all the fruits and vegetables of the world, continues to provide inspiration today. The creators of the Disney/Pixar animated movie “Up” used this mountain as their creative muse, even climbing it to gain additional insight.

                                                  25. Marble Caves, Chile Chico, Chile

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                                                    Image Credit: Atlas Obscura

                                                    Found on a remote glacial lake that spans the Chile-Argentina border, these caves are accessible only by boat. They were formed by more than 6,000 years of waves eroding away the calcium carbonate into swirling smooth stone that reflects the blue waters at differing intensities, depending on water levels and season.

                                                    26. Ice Cave in Skaftafeli, Iceland

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                                                      Image Credit: Amusing Planet

                                                      Ice caves are formed when rain and melted water on the surface of the glacier enter it through channels. The water melts a hole, and then drains toward lower elevations. This forms long, temporary caves along the edge of the glaciers.

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                                                      27. Capilano Suspension Bridge, Vancouver, British Columbia

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                                                        Image Credit: Vista Nature

                                                        If you’re afraid of heights, skip this one. To cross the Capilano Suspension Bridge, which is 460 feet long and 230 feet above the Capilano River, you will have to trust a relatively simple structure. However, the wire cable bridge is much safer than the original bridge made of hemp rope and a deck of cedar planks. This bridge has also been featured in well-known television series such as MacGyver, Sliders, The Crow: Stairway to Heaven, and Psych. It is part of a private facility, but draws over 800,000 visitors per year.

                                                        28. Multnomah Falls, Oregon

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                                                          Image Credit: Wikipedia

                                                          The Multnomah Falls, the tallest waterfall in Oregon, has two major steps. The upper falls are 542 feet, and the lower falls are another 69 feet. It is fed year-round by the underground springs from  Larch Mountain.

                                                          29. Ice Canyon, Greenland

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                                                            Image Credit: Shed Expedition

                                                            The Ice Canyon was recently discovered by NASA using ice penetrating radar, which showed the existence of a giant canyon beneath the ice. This canyon is the longest on the planet, and runs for 466 miles while reaching depths of 2,625 feet.

                                                            30. Baatara Gorge Waterfall, Tannourine, Lebanon 

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                                                              Image Credit: Daring Planet

                                                              This 837-feet waterfall drops into the Baatara Pothole, which is a cave of Jurassic limestone.

                                                              31. Preachers Rock, Preikestolen, Norway

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                                                                Image Credit: Exploring Tourism

                                                                Also known as Preacher’s Pulpit or Pulpit Rock, this steep cliff rises 1982 feet above Lysefjorden. The 200,000 visitors per year make it one of the most popular natural tourist attractions in Norway. It was also seen in the second season of the Vikings (TV series).

                                                                32. Trolltunga, Norway

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                                                                  Image Credit: Visit Norway

                                                                  Trolltunga means “Troll’s Tongue,” but that’s the last thing you will be thinking about as you survey the scenery from 2,300 above the north side of lake Ringedalsvatnet.

                                                                  33. Spotted Lake (Khiluk), British Columbia

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                                                                    Image Credit: World for Travel

                                                                    High concentrations of magnesium sulfate, sodium sulphates, and calcium give this lake its unique appearance when the water evaporates over the summer. Long believed to have therapeutic or sacred waters, the minerals of Spotted Lake were also used in manufacturing ammunition during World War I.

                                                                    34. Whitehaven Beach, Australia

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                                                                      Image Credit: Traveler Area

                                                                      These white sands consist of 98% pure silica, which gives the beach its brilliant color and makes it comfortable to walk on even on the hottest days, as the sand does not retain heat. Whitehaven Beach was named the top Eco Friendly Beach in the world by CNN.

                                                                      35. Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland

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                                                                        Image Credit: Irish Day Tours

                                                                        This natural phenomenon of about 40,000 interlocking basalt columns was the result of an ancient volcanic eruption.

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                                                                        40. Nahiku Waterfall, North Shore, Maui, Hawaii

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                                                                          Image Credit: Grace Delivers

                                                                          This is one of many spectacular sights you will see on the famous road to Hana in East Maui. Nahiku averages around 365 inches of rain per year, making it one of the greenest and wettest rainforests on Maui.

                                                                          41. Monument Valley, USA

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                                                                            Image Credit: Get in Travel

                                                                            This valley is the image many people think of when they visualize the Wild West. It has been featured in film since the 1930, most famously remembered in Stagecoach (1939) and The Searchers (1956). More recently, it was seen in the film Easy Rider (1969), Robert Zemeckis‘ film Forrest Gump (1994), Clint Eastwood‘s film Eiger Sanction (1975), and most currently in the popular United Kingdom television show Doctor Who.

                                                                            42. Devils Tower, Wyoming, USA

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                                                                              Image Credit: Kristen Lynn

                                                                              Jutting 5,114 feet out of the surrounding terrain, it is easy to see why aliens would choose this particular spot on planet Earth for their landing site, as seen in the movie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

                                                                              43. Avatar Hallelujah Mountain, Hunan, China

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                                                                                Image Credit: Daily Mail

                                                                                Previously called the Southern Sky Column, this 3,544-feet rock formation was renamed the Avatar Hallelujah Mountain in 2010, after being the inspiration for the fictional world of the blockbuster film Avatar.

                                                                                44. Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA

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                                                                                  Image Credit: PRWeb

                                                                                  Yellowstone National Park is known for many spectacular natural wonders, but the colors seen in the largest hot spring in the US, and the third largest in the world, is worth a line on your bucket list. The striking coloration patterns are created by pigmented bacteria in the microbial mats that grow around the edges of the mineral-rich water. In the summer, the mats tend to be orange or red, and in the winter they turn a dark-green hue. The center of the pool is sterile due to the extreme water temperatures.

                                                                                  45. Palouse Falls, Washington, USA

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                                                                                    Image Credit: Exotic Hikes

                                                                                    Washington’s official state waterfall is 198 feet high, and draws many visitors to the 105-acre camping area nearby. It was formerly known as Aput Aput by the Palouse Indians, meaning “Falling Water.”

                                                                                    46. Horseshoe Bend near Page, Arizona

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                                                                                      Image Credit: Flickr

                                                                                      Named for its obviously horseshoe-shaped appearance, this natural formation was created by the Colorado River’s eroding current. The overlook rises 1,000 feet above the river, making for spectacular panoramic views.

                                                                                      47. Tulip Fields, Amsterdam, Netherlands

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                                                                                        Image Credit: Flow Div

                                                                                        Beautiful tulip farms may remind you of a scene from the Wizard of Oz, but you don’t need to catch a ride on a tornado to another world to view these beauties blooming from mid-March to the end of May.

                                                                                        49. Mendenhall Ice Caves, Juneau, Alaska

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                                                                                          Image Credit: Fun Mozar

                                                                                          These ice caves are found in the Mendenhall Glacier, located 12 miles from downtown Juneau.

                                                                                          50. Naica Mine, Mexico

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                                                                                            Image Credit: Concierge Travel

                                                                                            Visiting these caves may be too hot to endure without protective suits, but the extreme temperatures are perfect for crystals, and have created some of the largest natural giant selenite formations ever found. The largest crystal found in the cave to date is 39 feet in length, 13 feet in diameter, and weighs 55 tons.

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                                                                                            Sarah Hansen

                                                                                            A corporate-sales professional turned entrepreneur

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                                                                                            Last Updated on January 17, 2019

                                                                                            8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

                                                                                            8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

                                                                                            In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

                                                                                            Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

                                                                                            Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

                                                                                            Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

                                                                                            Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

                                                                                            The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

                                                                                            There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

                                                                                            How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

                                                                                            According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

                                                                                            Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

                                                                                            Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

                                                                                            The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

                                                                                            Listen carefully:

                                                                                            We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

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                                                                                            The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

                                                                                            Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

                                                                                            8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

                                                                                            There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

                                                                                            Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

                                                                                            1. Pray Daily

                                                                                            You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

                                                                                            When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

                                                                                            Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

                                                                                            Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

                                                                                            2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

                                                                                            A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

                                                                                            By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

                                                                                            Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

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                                                                                            If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

                                                                                            This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

                                                                                            How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

                                                                                            3. Smile Often

                                                                                            Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

                                                                                            Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

                                                                                            Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

                                                                                            The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

                                                                                            4. Organize Your Working Desk

                                                                                            A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

                                                                                            When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

                                                                                            Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

                                                                                            Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

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                                                                                            5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

                                                                                            I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

                                                                                            Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

                                                                                            What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

                                                                                            6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

                                                                                            God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

                                                                                            I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

                                                                                            I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

                                                                                            7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

                                                                                            You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

                                                                                            How do you do that? This is my formula:

                                                                                            First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

                                                                                            If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

                                                                                            If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

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                                                                                            If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

                                                                                            Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

                                                                                            8. Go Exercise

                                                                                            Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

                                                                                            The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

                                                                                            You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

                                                                                            12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

                                                                                            The Bottom Line

                                                                                            It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

                                                                                            It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

                                                                                            Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

                                                                                            More Resources About Mindfulness

                                                                                            Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

                                                                                            Reference

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