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Health & Wellness

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Period Talk: What Matters to U

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WhatMattersToU #CollectiveBias

Tips to make your period easier - Healthy recipe that'll feel like indulging while actually combating PMS symptoms, DIY fruity facial mask for clear, glowing skin that will leave you feeling beautiful.

Period talk. It makes some people uncomfortable. It makes me uncomfortable thinking about me making any of you uncomfortable. But you know, why should it? That time of the month is something I frequently talk openly and honestly about with all of my girl friends. So there is no shame here; you guys are my friends too! And U by Kotex®’s What Matters to U campaign has inspired me to open up and be honest with you guys about what matters to me when I’m on my period. The two keywords that matter to me are indulge and pamper.

8 Ways to Relax and Unwind

If you ask me, we're all way too go, go, go around here. Here are 8 ways to relax and unwind after a long and busy day.

If you ask me, we’re all way to go, go, go around here. Being busy and on the go all of the time can lead to a love of stress and tension, and without taking a few minutes everyday to relax and unwind, that can lead to some pretty negative side effects. Although relaxing may seem like a self explanatory thing, I wanted to compile a list of my favorite ways to unwind at the end of a long day. All of them can be done at the comfort of your own home and within an hour or less. And if you think about it, an hour of self-care a day is really nothing at all, so shut down your laptop, put away your work and just relax.

Turn down the lights and burn a candle

Lighting a candle is soothing for multiple reasons. It is dim lighting, not harsh on your eyes, and it gives off your favorite scent. For an even better atmosphere try Yankee Candle’s crackling candles that sound like the crackling of wood in your fireplace.

Get some fresh air

Getting some fresh air will do a lot to clear your head and make you feel refreshed. Whether it’s sitting outside on the porch with your cup of tea or going on a walk, being outside with nature is the perfect way to relax and unwind.

Let our your creativity and color

I had been hearing about adult coloring for a long time. Then my mom and I passed by the coloring section at Barnes and Noble. Weeks later when I went back home, my mom and I both said that we couldn’t stop thinking about the beautiful books we had seen, so we made it a date and went to Barnes and Noble to color and sip Starbucks. Needless to say, coloring is now one of my favorite ways to relax (among many, because who doesn’t love relaxing?). That day at BN, I picked up Animal Kingdom: Color Me, Draw Me (A Millie Marotta Adult Coloring Book), and I highly recommend it! Below you can find my first finished page and my next project!

ways to relax and unwind ways to relax and unwind

Put your thoughts into writing

Journaling is a great before bed activity. It allows you to unplug, put all of your stresses, concerns or thoughts down on paper and let them go. It allows you to think more deeply on your day and reflect. Journaling can take only a matter of minutes, but it will do a whole lot for your mind and stress.

Take a bath

Taking a hot bath before going to sleep will help clear your mind and make you feel ready to doze off. For an even more relaxing bath, try a lavender bath bomb like the LUSH Twilight bath bomb. This bath bomb is on my must-try list after reading the website description and seeing all of the phenomenal customer reviews. I’m telling you, LUSH, whoever is writing your copy should get a bonus. I’m sold! But no matter what bath bomb or gel or bubbles you decide to use, lavender is sure to make you feel calm and relaxed.

Grab a good book and read

When relaxing, it is great to unplug. Books, just like movies, are a great way to relax and escape reality for a while. In my personal opinion, they’re even better than movies at this! So pick up a feel-good or light-hearted novel and let your stresses fade away.

Drink tea

I’m personally not a fan of tea, but tea has great soothing effects for so many people, and I know that even just the smell makes me relax, but if you’re like me and don’t like tea, try hot chocolate or another warm beverage. It will still feel like a calming, luxurious treat.

Take a yoga class

Even if you’re look at your computer screen thinking, “no way, that’s not for me,” I want you to think again. Not all yoga is the same. Some works on building muscle, some works on balance, other classes focus on breathing or chanting and all sorts of combinations of the above. If you go to one class and don’t like it, I strongly recommend you go to another type. The focus that yoga gives you on your breathing and on your body will relax and soothe you.

So, what are your favorite ways to relax and unwind? Have you ever tried any of these activities? Let me know in the comments below!

Phonetic Eyewear: A stylish solution

Phonetic Eyewear- Computer Glasses

As a blogger, student, social media/ marketing intern, and copy editor, I spend a ridiculous amount of time in front of the computer… often times more than healthy and always more than wanted. But to get by day to day and do what I love, it’s necessary.

So here’s the honest truth:

“Our eyes and bodies were not designed to sit in front of a computer all day long.”

Fortunately or unfortunately (however you look at it), this is a problem that is becoming increasingly hard to fight for a large majority of the population. Little did you know, there is something you can do to make it more comfortable and healthy. Invest in computer glasses. Computer glasses are no longer unsightly or unfashionable, and they won’t break the budget. Phonetic Eyewear is the perfect and only brand I’ve found that sells these new, fashionable alternatives. They have modern, trendy glasses for both men and women… and a large number of them. Without a doubt, you can find a style that works for you – from bright and sassy to traditional and preppy. My favorite is the Allison in tortoise, which is pictured above and below.

Phonetic Eyewear - Computer Glasses

So how do these glasses make sitting on your phone or in front of your computer healthier and more comfortable? You can read all about it here, but essentially, these lenses have a special coating that reflects and absorbs the blue light that comes from your electronics and is harmful to your eyes. Blocking these harsh lights can relieve eye strain, itchiness, irritation, and headaches caused by looking at your electronic screens for long periods of time.

To make them even more convenient, Phonetic Eyewear frames are available as reading glasses, prescription glasses, or just plain computer glasses. I opted for regular computer glasses, because I’m an avid contact wearer, and since I’m near-sighted, I don’t need glasses to look at my computer screen late at night even after I’ve taken out my contacts.

Phonetic Eyewear - Computer Glasses

As a person who has suffered from headaches due to digital eyestrain, I can thoroughly appreciate these glasses and all that they do. I’m happy to announce that with these glasses, I no longer have to get up and take blogging/homework/work breaks, which can be frustrating when fighting a quickly approaching deadline. And I look cute while doing it!

Have you ever suffered from eyestrain headaches? Would you ever invest in computer glasses?

Use my discount code ALI10 to get 10% off your Phonetic Eyewear purchase!

How to Increase Your Productivity

increase productivity

With the end-of-the-school-year rush here on campus, productivity is vital, but learning how to increase your efficiency and stay productive is a necessary year-round skill. If you’re efficiency is lacking, you’re in luck. There are ways to change that:

Know your prime time

Are you a morning, afternoon, or night person? It’s natural to be more awake and alert during different parts of the day depending on your body and sleep schedule. I know that after 2 am, I’m useless. I’d be better off waking up early in the morning to finish my work. Therefore, I know that I’m a morning/afternoon person and should take full advantage of those optimal hours. And with that being said…

Take productive breaks

That sounds like an oxymoron, right? Well you may be taking the wrong kind of breaks without even knowing it. Take breaks in spurts – each one short. While on your break, do the opposite of what you were doing. If you have to read a 30 page write-up for work, don’t turn to a book for a distraction. Relax your eyes. If you were sitting at your desk, don’t sit at your desk and browse Facebook. Stand up and walk around. If you were doing tiring yard work, sit down and drink some water. Take full advantage of this time off.

Evaluate your work & Evaluate your surroundings

I’m not a huge proponent of turn off the TV, turn off your music, and avoid everyone in sight. It doesn’t work like that… only in some cases. Take a look at what you have to do, and decide how you work best doing those things. For most people, if you need to read, you should isolate yourself from noise and distractions. If you have to make notecards, update social media for your latest blog post, or read through your stack of mail that has built up, you’re probably okay with a little noise – maybe even better off. Interaction can help keep your spirits up and your will to keep going strong.

Get enough sleep

Don’t deprive your body of this necessity. If you are fully energized, you will be able to work more quickly and accurately than if your body is lagging behind. Even if you don’t get a full 7/8 hours of sleep, any rest is better than no rest.

Know your plan of attack

Make a plan and a to-do list but don’t make it too strict. Be willing to switch around what you do next in case your mood wavers. Sometimes doing a less important task that you look forward to instead of slowly, painfully going through the most important task on your list is the best way to go. At least you’re doing something, right? Just make sure you get to the important jobs eventually or you’ll have to force yourself to finish them in the end anyway.

Disconnect

Turn off your phone and focus on the task at hand. Checking texts, emails, and social media can be a part of your break, but while you work, make sure to focus on what you are doing in the moment. Set your phone in the other room or out of sight to help reduce the amount of temptation you will feel to check it. Often times if it is right in front of you, you will subconsciously pick it up out of boredom.

One step at a time

No matter how much you have to do, don’t stress. It doesn’t help to worry about the 10 other tasks you have to finish that day, because worrying only slows you down. The best thing you can do is work diligently on one task at a time and stay positive. It takes more time to worry about something than to actually do it.