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7 Critical Essentials You Must Have in Your Car

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7 Critical Essentials You Must Have in Your Car

You may not even realize how much time you spend in your car—whether that be commuting, travelling, dropping off, picking up, coming or going. Most car owners retain their car for over 5-7 years, almost as long as people live in the same place. What this means is that apart from your home and workplace, the car is effectively your third home, so it should reflect some “homeliness” along with being an expression of your personality! Do fluffy dice or swinging palm tree odors float your boat?

How much of an effort do you make to make life fun and comfortable in your third home? It doesn’t matter what car you drive or how much of a technophobe you may be, there are staple items that everyone must consider having in their car.

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Here are some critical essentials to consider.

1. Cleanliness

Cleanliness lies in the “eyes of the beholder.” Although, if a polite passenger says, “I don’t mind the mess,” i.e. stepping on loose papers, coffee cups, crusts and crunchy bits of an unknown item, they are being exactly that—”polite.” Tidy up and make it respectable for yourself and others.  It feels nice when your car looks and smells clean, sort of like jumping into clean bed sheets at night.

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2. Music of Choice

The radio no longer monopolizes our ears. Radical shifts have taken place! In fact, it’s no fun being screamed at by loud irrelevant, unanticipated advertising messages, annoying jingles and radio ad voices. It makes me angry and irritable. When buying a car, ask for a discount for no radio installed and see what they say! Pay for Spotify ad free and get a Bluetooth connection. Bluetooth also allows you to speak on the phone safely. Control the airwaves like you’ve never controlled them before. You’re now a DJ. Music by choice makes me feel great. Your CDs and old CD case can now accompany your old cassettes in your next garage sale. Embrace the digital age—even if you’re 80.

3. Coins

I hate when people don’t have coins ready for parking and need to break a note to get spare change from 7-11. Have a top up point, so you never go dry on coins when you can’t use cards to pay for parking. Especially when you’re in a rush, you’ve got to have coins ready.

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4. Mints

Smelling good increases confidence. No one wants to worry about bad breath. Most passengers always go for the mints—or even better, a stash of lollipops, when managed carefully, are a nice to have sugar hit. It’s nice when your Uber driver offers you water and mints, so pretend you’re the Uber driver when you have passengers.

5. Survival Kit

I love spontaneity. Let’s go to the park, the beach or a picnic on a whim! Rain, hail or shine, the survival kit comes in handy for all occasions. Think of including a towel, umbrella, sunscreen, water bottle, baby wipes, rag, spare socks, a pen or two that works, sweater and of course a bottle opener. A yoga mat is also a great picnic mat! Add as you like to your survival kit

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6. Hobby items

Bring hobby items for you and your kids. I’m a keen golfer, so I always carry a glove and some clubs for myself and my son for a spontaneous stop at the driving range, along with a soccer ball and cricket bat and ball. A runner might always have a pair of runners and gear. Whatever your favorite hobby, always carry something of interest

7. Phone charger

Charge your phone as you drive. Plug in when you hop in and never run dry.

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Now you’re all ready to roll in comfort and peace. If only all car salesmen would read this post and ask you next time you’re ready to purchase, “Now Sir/Ma’am, are there any critical essentials you would like in your car before you drive away?” Don’t be surprised if it happens at the time of your next purchase.

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Last Updated on November 22, 2021

Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

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Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

Thanksgiving, a day of pure gluttony, football, and possible uncomfortable situations with family members that you may or may not like. Oh, yeah, and the whole “know and reflect on what it is to be thankful and grateful.”

During the holiday season many people forget what this time of year is bout and are too worried about getting the “early-bird” deals on Black Friday and making sure that they have the perfect gifts for their loved ones. I am sort of a “Grinch” when it comes to the holiday season, mostly because of that mentality by many of the poeple around me.

But instead of being grinch-like this holiday season, I decided to simplify things and get back to what this time of year is actually is about; being thankful for what I have and what I can give.

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Simplify

I’m not a “minimalist” in any real sense, but in the last few months the talks of Patrick Rhone and others have got me to rethink my stance. Can you really have too much stuff?

Absolutely.

And with all that stuff comes the burden and the weight of it on your back.

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If you feel that the things around you are out of control, maybe it’s time to simplify and be thankful and grateful for what you have and use. Here are a few things that you can do to simplify:

  • You know those gadgets in the drawer that you said you were going to sell? Well, time to get the listing on eBay and sell them. Or, send them to a place like Gazelle. Even if they are old and won’t get money, you can at least recycle them.
  • Get rid of things you don’t need. Like old books, clothes, tools, etc. Have something that’s been laying around forever with no use? Donate it to a charity or church. If you aren’t using it, someone else could be.
  • Find your productivity tools and stick with them. Use tools and gadgets that serve multiple purposes so you can simplify your tool set.

Be Mindful

You don’t have to be a master Buddhist or meditator to be mindful (although, it can definitely help). Being mindful comes down to being cognizant of the present and not keeping yourself in the past or future. It’s about living in the moment and being aware of yourself and everything around you. It’s just being.

Without getting too “California” on you, it is super important to be mindful during the holiday rush. Rather than worrying about the things that you forgot at your house on the way to relatives or thinking about the next stop in your endless holiday travels, just breath and think about what you are currently doing.

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Spend the time with your family and friends and don’t crush the moment. Try not to concentrate so hard on getting the perfect photo of the “awesome moment” of the day and actually miss the awesome moment.

Being mindful over the holidays will help you be with your families, friends, and yourself allowing you to enjoy your time.

Reflect

As the year is coming to a close (yes, it really is that close!) it’s a great time to start reflecting on what you have accomplished and what you haven’t. Within the next few weeks we will have a more throrough reflection article here at Lifehack.org, but reflecting every now and then over your holiday break is a great way to see where you have been doing well in your life and where you need to improve.

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Reflection shouldn’t be used to “get down” on yourself. Reflection should be used to take an honset inventory of what you have accomplished, how you handeled situations, and what you can do better. If you journal everyday (a daily form of reflection) it may be a good time to start going over some of the things that you have written and start to put together a year’s end journal entry. I mean, how else will you write your autobiography?

But, seriously, reflecting on yourself makes you aware of your successes and faults and helps you plan and make goals for the coming year. It makes you a better person.

So, while you are stuffing your face with bird, stuffing, and mashed taters’, remember that the holidays are much more than the superficial things. Use this holiday to become a better person.

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Featured photo credit: Libby Penner via unsplash.com

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