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How to Prepare Your Car for the Frost This Winter

How to Prepare Your Car for the Frost This Winter

Have you taken steps to prepare your car for the winter? Winter conditions such as ice, snow, or sleet make roads slippery and difficult to navigate. Planning for bad weather is critical for safe driving. Prepare for the frost by performing all routine maintenance on your vehicle, checking your tires, testing your battery, packing in case of emergency, and adjusting your driving in dangerous conditions.

Perform All Routine Maintenance on Your Vehicle

Bring your vehicle to a mechanic to make sure everything is working properly. If you’re at a mileage point where a tune-up is necessary, get the tune-up before the cold weather starts. Cold weather can make existing problems worse.

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Top off all fluids and install new filters as needed. Flush the coolant system and have a mechanic check the system for leaks or cracks. Mix antifreeze at a 50/50 ratio with water so that coolant doesn’t freeze in the pipes of the system. You can also install a block or engine heater to heat your engine’s coolant and help you start your car more easily.

Check Your Tires

Your tires are the best defense you have in dangerous driving conditions. Tires that are improperly inflated or worn increase your chances of accidents. If your tire tread is worn, replace them. Follow your manufacturer’s recommendations for proper air pressure in your tires.

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If you live in an area that gets a lot of snow, consider purchasing tires specifically designed for snow or add chains to your tires. The added grip from special tread or chains can help you maintain control of your vehicle in snowy conditions.

Test Your Car Battery

Car batteries are just as susceptible to cold as the rest of your vehicle. A mechanic can do a test on your car battery to ensure optimum performance. If the battery is older than five years, replace it. Waiting until bad winter weather is not the best time to realize that you cannot start your car. Store jumper cables in your vehicle in case the cold affects your battery’s ability to charge.

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Pack in Case of an Emergency

In the event that frost or an accident traps you in your vehicle, you want to make sure that you have supplies. Pack food and water as well as extra blankets, gloves, and socks. Traffic cones, flares, a shovel, and a cell phone charger are beneficial to keep stocked in your car.

Another way to prepare for an emergency is to make sure that if something does happen, you are still able to provide for your family. No one wants to consider loss of life or mobility in an accident, but knowing that your insurance policy will support your family should give you that peace of mind. Now is the time to check your policies and make any necessary changes.

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Adjust Your Driving in Dangerous Conditions

A well-maintained vehicle is not your only defense against colder weather. Adjust your driving habits when you’re in snowy or icy weather. Because of decreased traction, drive slower than usual. If you need to brake, apply brakes slowly if driving over snow or ice. Aggressive braking can lock up your brakes and cause skidding.

The same method applies to accelerating and steering – increase your speed and turn gently to avoid spinning your wheels. Leave plenty of room between you and the cars around you and pay attention to your surroundings.

While cold weather brings many threats to your car and driving, proper preparation can protect you. Following these guidelines will help you avoid potential dangers while on the road this winter.

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Last Updated on July 23, 2019

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

In the journey of growth, there are times when we grow and excel. We are endlessly driven and hyped up, motivated to get our goals.

Then there are times when we stagnate. We feel uninspired and unmotivated. We keep procrastinating on our plans. More often than not, we get out of a rut, only to get back into another one.

How do you know if you are stagnating? Here are some tell-tale signs:

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  • If you have been experiencing chronic procrastination on your goals
  • If you don’t ever feel like doing anything
  • If you keep turning to sleep, eating, games, mindless activities and entertainment for comfort
  • If you know you should be doing something, but yet you keep avoiding it
  • If you have not achieved anything new or significant now relative to 1 month, 2 months or 3 months ago
  • If you have a deep sense of feeling that you are living under your potential

When we face stagnation in life, it’s a sign of deeper issues. Stagnation, just like procrastination, is a symptom of a problem. It’s easy to beat ourselves over it, but this approach is not going to help. Here, I will share 5 steps to help you move out of this stagnation. They won’t magically transform your life in 1 night (such changes are never permanent because the foundations are not built), but they will help you get the momentum going and help you get back on track.

1. Realize You’re Not Alone

Everyone stagnates at some point or another. You are not alone in this and more importantly, it’s normal. In fact, it’s amazing how many of my clients actually face the same predicament, even though all of them come from different walks of life, are of different ages, and have never crossed paths. Realizing you are not alone in this will make it much easier to deal with this period. By trying to “fight it”, you’re only fighting yourself. Accept this situation, acknowledge it, and tell yourself it’s okay. That way, you can then focus on the constructive steps that will really help you.

2. Find What Inspires You

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Stagnation comes because there isn’t anything that excites you enough to take action. If you don’t have a habit of setting goals, and instead just leave yourself to daily mundanes, it’s not surprising you are experiencing stagnation. What do you want to do if there are no limitations? If you can have whatever you want, what will it be? The answers to these questions will provide the fuel that will drive you forward.

On the other hand, even if you are an experienced goal setter, there are times when the goals you set in the past lose their appeal now. It’s normal and it happens to me too. Sometimes we lose touch with our goals, since we are in a different emotional state compared to when we first set them. Sometimes our priorities change and we no longer want to work on those goals anymore. However, we don’t consciously realize this, and what happens is we procrastinate on our goals until it compounds into a serious problem. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to relook into your goals. There’s no point in pursuing goals that no longer inspire you. Trash away your old goals (or just put them aside) and ask yourself what you really want now. Then go for them.

3. Give Yourself a Break

When’s the last time you took a real break for yourself? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year? Never? Perhaps it’s time to take a time-out. Prolonged working can cause someone to become disillusioned as they lose sight of who they are and what they want.

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Go take some extended leave from work. A few days at bare minimum; a few weeks or months will be great. Some of my ex-colleagues have quit their jobs and took months out to do some self-reflection. Of course, some of us might not have that luxury, so we can stick to a few weeks of leave. Go on a trip elsewhere and get away from your work and your life. Use this chance to get a renewed perspective of life. Think about your life purpose, what you want and what you want to create for your life in the future. These are big questions that require deep thinking over them. It’s not about finding the answers at one go, but about taking the first step to finding the answers.

4. Shake up Your Routines

Being in the same environment, doing the same things over and over again and meeting the same people can make us stagnant. This is especially if the people you spend the most time with are stagnant themselves.

Change things around. Start with simple things, like taking a different route to work and eating something different for breakfast. Have your lunch with different colleagues, colleagues you never talked much with. Work in a different cubicle if your work has free and easy seating. Do something different than your usual for weekday evenings and weekends. Cultivate different habits, like exercising every day, listening to a new series of podcasts every morning to work, reading a book, etc (here’s 6 Proven Ways To Make New Habits Stick). The different contexts will give you different stimulus, which will trigger off different thoughts and actions in you.

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When I’m in a state of stagnancy, I’ll get a sense of what’s making me stagnate. Sometimes it’s the environment I’m in, sometimes it’s the people I’ve been hanging out with, sometimes it’s my lifestyle. Most of the times it’s a combination of all these. Changing them up helps to stir myself out of the stagnant mode.

5. Start with a Small Step

Stagnation also comes from being frozen in fear. Maybe you do want this certain goal, but you aren’t taking action. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work needed? Are you afraid you will make mistakes? Is the perfectionist in you taking over and paralyzing you?

Let go of the belief that it has to be perfect. Such a belief is a bane, not a boon. It’s precisely from being open to mistakes and errors that you move forward. Break down what’s before you into very very small steps, then take those small steps, a little step at a time. I had a client who had been stagnating for a long period because he was afraid of failing. He didn’t want to make another move where he would make a mistake. However, not wanting to make a mistake has led him to do absolutely nothing for 2-3 years. On the other hand, by doing just something, you would already be making progress, whether it’s a mistake or not. Even if you make a supposed “mistake”,  you get feedback to do things differently in the next step. That’s something you would never have known if you never made a move.

More to Help You Stay Motivated

Here are some resources that will help you break out of your current phase:

Featured photo credit: Anubhav Saxena via unsplash.com

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