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7 Critical Essentials You Must Have in Your Car

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.

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 March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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