Tag Archives: jobs

Face Mask Festivities: Actual Face Mask Edition

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Face Mask Festivities: Actual Face Mask Edition

Hello!!! My county board of Developmental Disabilities has been doing a wonderful job of educating and protecting all of their employees and the people we help. Earlier in May, a care package was delivered to me that was filled with games and activities to help entertain my clients while in quarantine.

This month, a box of personal protective equipment was dropped off and I was able to divvy up the goods between all of the families I serve. I even got to keep two cloth face masks for myself and Johnny. I was so happy because I’ve been meaning to buy cloth masks for a while but never did because Johnny and I have been using the disposable hospital masks.

I love that the cloth masks can be reused and, while they may seem thicker than the disposable masks, I feel that they are so much more breathable. I also am a huge fan of the paisley pattern on mine! Check it out:

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Normally, I would go for the plain black mask that I chose for Johnny but the bright orange and yellow on mine just made me happy. In fact, I didn’t even mind putting it on when I ran into the store. Summit DD provided me with a lot of pattern options from polka dots and paisley to rainbow and regular, solid colors. Each of my clients enjoyed picking out their favorite and I enjoyed knowing that they had an extra way to keep them safe.

Are face masks the most fun thing to wear? No! Especially if you wear glasses, lol. But, my new cloth mask certainly makes, what I feel is an obligation, a whole lot easier. ❤

What pattern is on your face mask? Do you prefer cloth or disposable masks? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

The Hidden Dangers Of The Daily Commute

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The Hidden Dangers Of The Daily Commute

Before the coronavirus pandemic shut down the economy, many of us used to travel to work. (Do you remember those days?) But even back then, the subject of the commute was a thorny one. Employers expected you to spend large parts of your day sitting on buses and trains to get to the office. And they didn’t usually pay for it (even if it was a necessary cost of the job).

The commute, though, could be more dangerous to you than you think. It’s not just a matter of getting to and from work and the time you lose. It could also be taking its toll on your health.

It Is Hazardous:

Getting on the train to go to work seems like a perfectly normal and safe thing to do. After all, workers have been alighting at railway stations ever since the Victoria era. Trains, though, are hazardous. Accidents are waiting to happen around every corner.

Research suggests, for instance, that the average worker faces risks around 32 times every week when they use trains to get to work. Being packed into a tin can with dozens of other people and having to navigate the step down to the platform is dangerous. The chances of a slip or fall are high, especially when workers are in a rush and their minds on other things. Data from the UK suggest that 1.7 million people have to take time off work every year because of injuries they sustain while commuting.

The risks are even higher than that, though, in some cases. One of the worst New York city derailments of all time, with more than 200 people sustaining injuries, occurred in Union Square in 1991, proving that accidents can still happen on the railway.

It Could Damage Your Body Clock:

Evolution designed humans to wake up with the rising sun and go to bed soon after it sets. Modern working lives, however, disrupt this natural process. We’re no longer in a routine. Instead, we organize our lives around our shift patterns – and they’re not always healthy.

The commute may actually make things worse. When you get on a brightly-lit train or bus in the morning or evening, you send signals to your body that it is day time, and you should wake up. Suddenly, your body releases a flood of hormones designed to perk you up and give you a buzz. When this happens in the morning, it is healthy. But when it occurs at night, it is anything but. You wind up fizzing all evening, and when you hit the sack, you can’t sleep.

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Pixabay Image

It Could Affect Your Cardiovascular System:

Finally, commuting to work could harm your cardiovascular system. The combination of sitting still for a long time with the added stress of being around so many people can lead to increases in blood pressure. When your body goes through this daily, it can lead to conditions like hypertension, which are risk factors in more severe diseases. Standing up more on transport may help.

Stay aware during your commutes to work and keep yourself and those around you safe.

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Help Me Help You!

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Help Me Help You!

Hi friends! Now is the time to support the creative endeavors of our friends in the community more than ever. We’re talking our musicians, artists, cosmetologists, chefs, and everything in between. I love to feature guest posts on my page and, as always, you can email me at: sarah.mush6794@gmail.com if you would like to be on lifewithlilred.

Now, I am asking for all of you to shoot me an email or drop your ventures in the comments so I can post it on my page! Etsy shop? Send it my way! SoundCloud link? I want it! Stay at home orders are still in tact but let’s get your online businesses on here so everyone can shop with you from the comfort of your home.

For example, my friend, Stephanie, who is a Licensed Professional Counselor and would like a shout out on lifewithlilred can have all of her info found here and here. Stephanie is an absolute joy and if you are struggling with all of the extreme changes happening right now, I can’t recommend her enough! ❤

What are some of your business ventures? Would you like them featured on lifewithlilred? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

The Ultimate Guide To Help You Understand Telecommuting

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The Ultimate Guide To Help You Understand Telecommuting

We live in a digital world and the concepts of a daily commute or corporate cubicles can be a thing of the past for people who telecommute. What is telecommuting? It’s when an employee of a company can do their work from home.

This can be full-time at-home work or part-time, but the key is the ability to do almost all of one’s daily work activities from home. There is no need to visit the office or even have an office. While telecommuting is more popular than ever, it’s not as easy as it seems.

In today’s post, we’ll explain some of the best practices for telecommuting and how you can be more efficient:

What Is Telecommuting and Is it for Me?

There are some jobs that are more suited for telecommuting than others. Jobs that require the use of computers and online tools work best. If your job requires hands-on labor or to use assets only available at the office, then telecommuting would be difficult.

The digital world of today is suited for telecommuting because cloud storage, Internet use at home, and reasonably priced computers have made it possible for people to have everything they need without leaving their homes.

Telecommuters can connect with company assets and data via their Internet connection, password protected online servers, and company websites. Types of jobs that allow for telecommuting include sales and marketing, healthcare, education, customer service, and information technology.

If this sounds like your job or a type of living you want, then telecommuting might be right for you.

Reasons Businesses Offer Telecommuting:

With telecommuting jobs on the rise, companies understand the benefits of offering it to their employees, but not all companies. If you’re a business owner, then consider allowing your employees to work from home at least part-time.

How much money do you spend to rent or buy office space every year? Has your company grown, and you need to expand your office to accommodate new employees? Telecommuting decreases these costs substantially. You don’t need an office at all or you can have a small office to meet with clients, etc. and never worry about expanding. Since most of your employees work from home, you can hire new ones without expanding your office space.

Studies show employees will work for less money if telecommuting is an option for their job. You can also hire employees from anywhere in the world and not worry about them moving to the area. They can stay wherever they are, so your pool for potential employees grows.

Telecommuting and Efficiency:

If you’re planning on telecommuting, then you need to have a good work ethic and be efficient. One of the biggest motivators for in-office employment is the ability for the manager to make sure the work is done on time. You can’t procrastinate if there is a manager hanging over you that wants daily meetings. When you work from home, it’s more difficult to focus and work because you’re surrounded by the familiar.

Before telecommuting, the home was a place of leisure. It’s where you could forget about work and enjoy your family and the comforts of home. It can be difficult to shake that feeling when you need to work from home.

Don’t work in your pajamas or from your bed. Treat the telecommuting day as you would any other. Wake up, get dressed in work-appropriate clothes, and work from an at-home office area. This will help you focus on work time and not home time. If you can’t be efficient from home, then your company may not offer the option.

Working from home is great because it offers you flexibility, lower stress, and an atmosphere that you control. It also requires focus and discipline to get the necessary work done and not be distracted by the comforts of home.

Keeping Telecommuting Secure:

The biggest worry an employer has about their data is security. Your servers house everything about your company and customers and it needs to be secure, but how can you do that with telecommuting employees?

We’ve seen countless stories about data breaches in the news and you don’t want that to happen to you. You can provide your employees with computers that have security programs or provide them access to the security programs for at-home computers.

Access to data can be protected by passwords, but that may not be enough. You may need data encryption and other security measures to keep your data secure for telecommuting employees.

Beating the Telecommuting Blues:

At first, telecommuting seems amazing for employees. They don’t have to commute and still get paid without dealing with an office. After a while, the employees begin to miss having coworkers and may get cabin fever because they never seem to leave the house. Work friends and human interaction are important, and telecommuting removes that.

If you want to beat the telecommuting blues, then you need to continue having work relationships despite working from home. Video chat meetings via Zoom or other programs allows people to see their co-workers and chat about not only work but life as well.

Schedule time to leave the house during the week for fun activities with your friends. Have a drink after work or go see a movie. It’s important to maintain relationships when telecommuting or else it can be lonely.

Keep Employees in the Loop:

When dealing with telecommuting employees, the manager must remember to keep them in the loop. In offices where the employees are a mix of in-office and at-home, managers may forget to loop virtual workers in on meetings or changes to projects.

This not only hurts the business but also makes the telecommuting employees feel less important than those working in the office. You must maintain communication with telecommuters and provide the same feedback for projects, success, etc. that you would for those working in the office.

If you are considering working from home or letting your employees telecommute, use the tips above for the best success!

Special Delivery

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Special Delivery

Hello! For those of you who don’t know, I am an independent provider and work with people with special needs. The services provided through the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities are considered essential and I have still been going to work Monday through Friday. Going to work has now consisted of just staying at each client’s home instead of getting them out and about in the community. And, no matter where I am, I’m still just as bored as if I was in my apartment. Lol, we all are!

I am sure many providers have said the same thing. I mean, there’s only so many movies you can watch, games you can play, and crafts you can complete until there is literally nothing left. So, my county’s board of Developmental Disabilities held a donation drive to help provide us with some new activities for our clients.

Last week, a reusable bag full of goodies was left on my parent’s porch. When I opened in up, I was so surprised to see all of the following:

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Something new is always exciting and I’m looking forward to sharing all of these treats with my clients. There seems to be something for everyone I work with in my care package and I am so thankful for such a generous and thoughtful gift. I definitely feel a new found pep in my step when it comes to going to work. Because, let’s be honest, I think everyone who is still working right now doesn’t really want to! But, I just know I’ll have some great days on the job ahead and that is a wonderful change of pace! 🙂

How are you helping your community during this crazy time? What helps keep you occupied at home? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Creating A Business From Home

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Creating A Business From Home

Being able to create a business from home is something we’d all probably aspire to do if we had the opportunity. However, it’s more possible now than ever to create a business from scratch and run it from your own home. You just need to have the knowledge and drive to be able to do it. Here are some tips if you want to do just that:

Have An Investment Budget:

An investment budget is something any business will need to some degree, even if you’re going to be working from home. When you’re creating a business from scratch, there are certain things that are going to need to be paid for. From the furniture and equipment you’ll need to access the internet and to do your communications to the stock you’ll need to create in order to package and send out products that you might be selling online.

There’s a lot to think about, regardless of what you do as a business, so the best place to start is to create an investment budget. Start with what you need in terms of a ballpark figure and then begin saving to achieve that amount.

Create Your Business Plan:

When creating a business plan, you want to make sure that everything has been thought of because it all matters in making sure you have everything laid out in preparation for your business to begin. Think of any objectives and goals you’d like to achieve over the first quarter of your business and don’t be afraid to set some long-term goals because everyone who starts a business has hopes of it lasting for more than just a few months. It’ll hopefully also give you the motivation you need to push through the hard times that you might endure.

Start Seeking Out Suppliers:

Depending on your business, you might have items that you wish to sell, and so it’s good to look into suppliers that are suitable for what you’re after. Whether it’s tumblers in bulk that you’re after or a wholesale provider who can offer clothing that you might be planning on printing on. There are lots of places out there to take advantage of so think about all of the different options that are available before making a selection.

Prepare To Work Hard:

It’s important to know that it’s going to be a lot of hard work that goes into running your own business. Some days will go great, some days will be bad, and others will be worse. It’s important to take the highs with the lows and to enjoy the experiences and challenges that come with owning a business from home.

When creating a business, it’s not something that’s easy, otherwise, everyone would be doing it. Stay focused, believe in yourself, trust your instincts, and work hard.

Featured Image By: Pexels

Taking Some “Me” Time

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Taking Some “Me” Time

Hello! As an owner of two businesses, it almost seems impossible to hunker down during a work day for some “me” time. Especially considering that when I don’t work, I don’t get paid. I can count on five fingers the amount of times I have cancelled with my clients that wasn’t due to my oral surgery mishap or the car accident that happened this past year. So, yeah, I’ve been feeling pretty burnt out!

This past week was a rough one for me. My stomach was nauseous, I was on my period, and I just felt so fatigued. Then, on Wednesday night, I had a lot of my tattoos touched up which wore me out even more. Come Thursday morning, I got up around six and felt so lightheaded and weak that I grabbed my phone, cancelled all of my clients and plans for the day, and went back to bed. I ended up waking up at 10:30! It was beautiful. :*)

By the time I woke up and was feeling much better, I was kicking myself in the ass for not going to work and debated on heading over to my afternoon client’s house. But, after realizing that I probably would have left shortly after arriving there, I decided to just stay home and relax.

During my day off, I was able to clean my apartment, work on hanging pictures for my accent wall, and watch at least five episodes of America’s Next Top Model before my boyfriend came home from work. It was great! In fact, it made me wonder why I don’t have days like that more often and then I remembered it’s because I wouldn’t get paid! Lol, whomp whomp.

I didn’t really realize just how exhausted I was until I had my me day and it taught me a lesson in listening to what my body needs and being more accommodating to that. Calling off of work definitely will not be a regular thing for me, but scheduling a random day off for myself every now and then is going to be on the agenda and I am already thanking myself for it in advance!

How do you take time for you? How do you relax after a long day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Is Your Desk Job Damaging Your Health?

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Is Your Desk Job Damaging Your Health?

Desk work hardly seems like the most dangerous occupation in the world, but it can pose many long-term health dangers. The combination of sitting down for long periods, being indoors, and doing repetitive actions can lead to a number of illnesses and injuries. Here are a few problems to look out for and how to relieve/prevent them:

Circulatory problems:

Sitting down for extended periods of time increases your risk of developing circulatory problems. Your blood may not flow as freely around certain parts of the body such as the hands and feet, causing it to pool up. This can lead to blood clots, varicose veins, a stroke, or even a heart attack.

If you regularly experience numbness, tingling, or cramps in the hands and feet, it could be a sign that you’re experiencing circulatory problems. Red dark blotches are also a key sign. Compression socks and clot-dissolving drugs may be able to ease discomfort and return circulation to normal, but the best solution and prevention method is to be more physically active. You could opt for a standing desk or you could simply make it a routine to get up every hour for five minutes. Deskercises may also help.

Weight gain:

Lack of physical activity can also lead to weight gain – if you’re not being active, you’re not burning calories. Being overweight can increase your risk of everything from diabetes to heart disease.

The obvious solution to this, as with circulatory problems, is to be more active during the day. You could also plan exercise for before or after work, as well as trying to be more active at the weekend. Changing your diet could also be necessary (you may be able to keep up a sedentary lifestyle and not gain weight simply by eating healthily).

Back pain:

A lot of people working desk jobs experience lower back pain. This is usually from craning over a desk for long periods, which causes stress on the spine.

When it comes to relieving discomfort, there are many new lower back relief products and herbal remedies that you can try. Procedures like massages and acupuncture may also help. Improving your sitting posture could meanwhile stop your back pain from getting worse. Try to ensure that your back is straight – lowering your chair or raising your monitor could prevent you from leaning forward.

Sick building syndrome:

Being indoors all day isn’t good for us. As well as the lack of sunlight, being surrounded by dusty air and other people’s bacteria can result in nausea and respiratory issues. This is sometimes known as sick building syndrome.

Good ventilation and regular cleaning could make for a healthier indoor environment. Meanwhile, going outside on your lunch break could get you some fresh air during the day, which could help to clear out your lungs.

Repetitive strain injury:

Typing on a keyboard for long periods of time can sometimes lead to an RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury). The wrists and knuckles may start to cramp up and in severe cases this could lead to permanent pain.

Having your keyboard in the right position may prevent an RSI from occurring. Ideally, the keyboard should be directly in front of you and your elbows should be at the same height so that your forearms are horizontal when typing.

Use the tips above if your desk job is giving you grief and, as always, visit your doctor about your concerns, too!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Why Career Mistakes Can Be A Good Thing

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Why Career Mistakes Can Be A Good Thing

No one gets to where they want to go in life by taking the express shuttle to the top. If you look at the world’s most successful people, what you’ll typically find is a sort of zig-zag journey, one that took them to highs and lows and false-starts, before eventually ending up where they wanted to be. This is just as it is with the rest of life, which is always filled with ups and downs.

Your reasons for taking a different path in your career could be many-fold; you might be bored with your current work or you might make a serious error that ultimately ends up with your termination. When we find ourselves in this position, it’s easy to fall into a disheartened state of mind. We can begin to identify ourselves with our failures, or the dissatisfaction that we feel in our work.

But there is a way towards more career fulfillment. Instead of falling into a pit of negativity, we can embrace the idea of our career shortcomings, learn from them, and then push forward. These career detours can ultimately lead us towards a better and more fulfilling life. It’s all about owning the mistakes that you make, rather than allowing them to own you. There are lessons to be learned everywhere, and you can always take on a positive state of mind, rather than taking the negative route. To learn more about the idea of career detours, take a look at the infographic below, which was produced by the University of Maryland:


Infographic design by University of Maryland University of Maryland

 

7 Causes Of Stress And What You Can Do About Them

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7 Causes Of Stress And What You Can Do About Them

Stress is frighteningly familiar in modern life. Most of us report to feeling at least a little stressed out some of the time. And it’s easy to see why. We’re trying to take on the world. We’re encouraged to believe that we can do everything, and so we want to do everything. We want to have careers and push ourselves professionally, but we also want to raise our families and be there for the people that we love. Many of us also have side hustles or home businesses to help us make more money or give us an outlet for our creativity.

We’re trying to take care of ourselves, often reading contradictory advice and never quite knowing what to do. Many of us face a long and stressful commute, and while working for yourself can seem like the ideal solution to stress, many people that do report never taking full days off, and not having had vacations for over a year.

While a little stress is quite normal, and something that most of us can manage, it can be much worse. Too much stress can lead to insomnia and other sleep disorders, mental health issues, depression, and even physical symptoms. Stress can affect your relationships, your confidence, and your performance at work. It can leave you feeling lost, without any clear idea of how to move forward and it can mean that your mind begins to age prematurely.

That’s why it’s so crucial that you don’t just put up with stress, but that you take the time to understand what is causing you to feel that way so that you can reduce stressful situations, find ways to manage it or avoid it altogether, and learn how to let it go. Here are some of the most common causes of stress and some ideas of what you can do to beat it:

Work Worries:

Work is one of the most common causes of stress. We worry about our projects, getting promotions, pleasing our boss or our colleagues, doing the right thing for our clients, and doing well. We worry about situations that haven’t gone well or things that we don’t understand. We spend late nights awake worrying about the next day, not wanting to go to work, or replaying something that has happened the previous day.

Unfortunately, most of us don’t have the option to change our jobs whenever we’re feeling stressed out. But, that doesn’t mean that you have to put up with it, either. Ask yourself what it is about the job that is causing you to feel stressed out? Could you make changes? Could your manager help? Or, is it worth looking for other careers or positions that could help you to avoid situations that you find stressful.

Anxiety:

We all face anxiety. For some of us, it’s just the normal anxiety that comes with situations that make us feel nervous. It might not stop you from doing things or cause you great upset. You might just feel butterflies before doing something that you are nervous about. But, for other people, anxiety is much more than this.

Their anxiety stops them from doing things. It might mean that they can’t enjoy their lives or that they can’t even leave their house. Anxiety can cause panic attacks, high blood pressure, and other conditions. It can be a severe illness. It should be no surprise that if you suffer from this kind of anxiety, your stress levels could also be high. The two work together. Anxiety causes stress, which makes anxiety worse, and it’s easy to get trapped in a terrible cycle.

Unfortunately, there’s no easy escape from anxiety. You may find coping mechanisms and relaxation techniques helpful, but if your anxiety is severe, you should speak to a professional for help.

Family Politics:

Your family should be a positive force in your life. But, we don’t automatically like, or agree with the people that we are related to. Family politics often causes us to feel stress. You might find yourself desperately avoiding taking sides or trying to avoid family altogether, which can cause upset and tension.

Sometimes, the best way to reduce the stress caused by family issues is to avoid them entirely. If the argument isn’t your own, remove yourself from the situation and let them sort it out. Spend time with your friends and family members that make you feel positive, instead. Remember, you don’t have to spend time with them or even like them. Don’t be afraid to cut contact with family members if they are having a negative influence on your life.

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Money Problems:

Most of us have money worries. We live paycheck to paycheck. We’re always looking for ways to make extra money, unexpected expenses can be crippling, and we’re terrified of having to take time off causing a loss of income. These money worries are made worse by Christmas and other expensive events.

Often, the best way to reduce this kind of stress is talking about your concerns. Speak to friends and family members, share your worries, and ask for advice. Or, speak to a financial advisor. Usually, the situation isn’t as bad as we fear, we’ve got more options than we thought, and our financial worries are eased by merely having a plan to improve our finances.

Health Concerns:

Worrying about your health is exceptionally stressful. Yet many of us would rather worry about our symptoms and concerns than getting them checked out. If you are worried because your lifestyle isn’t particularly healthy, make some positive changes to take care of yourself. If you have a symptom that is worrying you, make an appointment to get it checked out as soon as you can. It’s worth it, even if it just puts your mind at ease.

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Hormonal Changes:

If you are feeling stressed out and there are no apparent reasons, it might be due to a hormonal change or imbalance. Contraception methods, our diets, how much sleep we’re getting, our environment, and stress itself can all affect our hormones, and it’s typical for things to change over time. A serious imbalance can mean that you don’t feel yourself; you are tired and suffering from mood swings. Your appetite might change, along with physical symptoms, and your stress levels can rise, both due to hormone changes and the symptoms that they cause.

Try to eat a balanced diet, look at any artificial hormones you might be putting into your body, and identify any changes which might be causing an imbalance.

Significant Changes or Major Life Events:

We don’t like change. It worries us. We think about everything that could go wrong and all the ways that even a small change will affect our day to day life. You can’t, and shouldn’t, avoid all changes. But, you can prepare for them, take things slowly, and allow yourself a period of adjustment.

Major life events are also stressful. Weddings, birthdays, moving house, big family holidays, Christmas, and any other occasion where you need to plan a lot and spend a lot of money is stressful. The best way to deal with this is to ask for help and learn how to delegate tasks to other people as well as making a plan to spend money responsibly.

Stress can have a major impact on our life but it doesn’t have to. Figure out what is causing you stress in your life and make healthy changes to improve the problem.

Featured Image By: Pixabay