Get to Know the Best Things You Can Do for Your Home This Year

The first step to living and relaxing better is making improvements to your home in order to make it a much more suitable place to live both for your practicality and for your tastes, and because nothing you do for your home is a wasted effort, it’s time to go all-out to give your home the sprucing up that it desperately needs.

To start, here are the best things you can do for your home this year:

1. Get that piece of furniture you always wanted
It might be hard to get rid of something that has sentimental value, but if you’re only keeping something because you can’t replace it, then you have every reason to splurge on something that will last you longer.

The same can be said about furniture. If you’re holding onto pieces of furniture at home just because you can’t afford to replace them, now is the time to splurge and finally switch it out for the one piece that you’ve always wanted.

You also don’t need to ditch everything in your living room, either. Even having a single high-quality piece at home, like a sofa or a shelf, everything else will simply fall into place around it.

2. Add more art
People hang things on the wall not just as a sign that they have really moved into a space, but because it makes them happy whenever they look at it – it gives their home a soul and sets it apart from other places, especially their work office.

The way you can make your own home distinct is by adding not just any painting, but a particular painting that speaks to you and moves you every time you look at it.

There’s also no need to go out and buy the expensive stuff from famous artists. Even vintage wall paintings from thrift stores or your photos from your last holiday or vacation can work well for this effect.

3. Share your space with a furry friend
If you’re living alone, one of the things you will miss is sharing the space with your loved ones, and this means that it might get lonely at times.

One remedy for this is that you have the option of having people stay over, or avoid being alone most of the time by moving in with roommates that you know well. Another option is adopting a furry friend.

So while pets aren’t for everyone, you should definitely get one if you are really inclined to love them. However, keep in mind that having pets can be a bit more work, which can take more energy from you especially when you already work full-time.

Home Cleaning Tool Essentials

Whether you’re adjusting to your life on your own for the first time or simply upgrading your housekeeping kit at home, it’s great to have tools and supplies you can use to make your living space as clean and dirt-free as possible.

And the good news is that you don’t need the fancy labels when it comes to getting stuff done – in fact, these are the only cleaning tools and supplies you will ever need to clean your home:

Toothbrush
Don’t throw away your old toothbrushes! When you need something a little more detailed than a scrub brush, you can still use them to clean all kinds of surfaces at home, and you can even use them to apply polish for your leather shoes.

Broom, dustpan, mop
No Asian household is complete without them. Whether you live in a tiled HDB flat or an expensive condo unit in Singapore, you need to have these three most important household cleaning items for clearing any room or dust, dirt, and debris, as well as getting rid of wet stains on hard surfaces.

Vacuum
Whether it’s a sturdy workhorse or a smaller, handheld unit with a rather short extension cord, you need to have at least one working for you at home to keep the dust bunnies and the allergies at bay.

A vacuum cleaner also makes for a deeper and more thorough cleaning than simply using a broom, and when you use both, keeping your home dust-free will be so much easier.

Spray bottle
Need a quick mix of water and soap (or laundry detergent, etc.) to clean surfaces? If so, then having a spray bottle not only makes the work more convenient, but you can also give your home cleaning products a good shake to mix more evenly.

Towels
Microfiber cloths may be the go-to for a thorough cleaning that doesn’t leave any fibers on the surface, but you need something else when you want to get rid of carpet and clothing stains.

Having a stack of cheap white towels not only helps in absorbing stains, but they’re also easy to clean and can take a cleaning with bleach just fine.

Scrub brush
No need for special tire cleaners – a scrub brush is your best friend when it comes to removing mold and mildew off of hard surfaces, as well as removing any accumulated dirt, dust, and grime off of tire grout when paired with a bucket of soap and water.

You can also use a scrub brush for almost anything, even soot and dried mud at the bottom of your shoes, and dirt from your garbage cans.

How to Improve Your Charisma

Charisma is a person’s ability to draw and influence others around him/her. A charismatic person appears confident in communication while keeping humble and selfless. Here, then, are some ways for you to develop your charisma. Who knows, you might be the next prime minister of Singapore.

Pay full attention
Having incredible charisma doesn’t always mean you always have to do the talking. It all starts when you listen attentively and pay full attention to others who are speaking to you. This is a good start because paying attention to what others are saying sends a message that you are present in that conversation and not just showing off.

Practice eye contact
Constantly shifting your gaze and not looking others in the eye simply shows that you’re nervous or uninterested. Maintaining eye contact is crucial in communicating your confidence and charisma. One way to practice holding eye contact is to simply talk and look at yourself in the mirror. This may seem awkward but it serves as good practice. When your speaking to someone, you can also try to focus on the color of their eyes as practice.

Use body language
Body language can help a good speaker but also betray a bad one. If you have a voice that’s loud and clear but your stiff and move your body in a reserved way, you might confuse others and end up becoming boring. A charismatic person will use body language to effectively emphasize the message and influence how the listeners feel.

Tell stories
Stories, if timed right and used effectively, can be utilized to attract attention and stir emotion. When you tell a story, you’re giving the people something that they will typically be able to relate to. If you have a story that fits the occasion perfectly, go ahead and share it. Just remember to not go overboard and hog all the attention. Also, make sure it’s not a made-up story, this will do you more harm than good.

Stay positive
Obviously, other people want to stay around those who are entertaining and easy to be around. Additionally, staying positive keeps you in a good mood even at trying times. Others will notice this easily and will turn to you for positivity. Simply remembering to smile is a great way to start. Smiling makes you look kind and more approachable.

Learn from others
You already have your own opinions, perspectives, your own knowledge. And those will not teach you much anymore because you already know them. But there will always be people who know something that you don’t. Accordingly, be open to others’ opinions and perspectives. You’ll be able to learn a lot by simply being open-minded and not staying on a pedestal above everybody else.

How to Cope with Burnout

Burnout is a case of physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion brought about by too much stress. Burnout causes you to lose motivation and interest, and also drains your energy and productivity at work. Burnout can affect your life negatively in a lot of ways, so here are some tips for you to fight burnout.

Reach out to your loved ones
One way to relieve a little bit of your pressure is to talk to those closest to you and tell them about your problems. Chances are, they will be more than willing to listen and possibly even be a shoulder to cry on. You will find that having someone to help you carry your burdens will definitely make you feel better. Also, spending time with your loved ones can help you take your mind off work and put you in a more positive mood.

Take breaks
You can take 10-minute breaks, take a short nap or a walk outside of the office for a while, maybe even take a 1-week vacation if possible. Having time to relax is very important when trying to fight burnout. Even if it’s just small breaks throughout the day, it can surely help you release some of that built-up stress. Plus, a change of scenery will refresh your mind and possibly help you strike a balance at work.

Choose your company wisely
Don’t spend your time with negative people who always complain. This will only add to your stress and drag your mood down. Try to go with people who stay optimistic and stimulate positive responses. When you enjoy your time with people, you’re more likely to feel relaxed and happy. You can also just enjoy some time on your own if you want to. This can be a valuable time for you to reflect and take your mind off the stress.

Find a way to relieve stress
Take a hike at the Southern Ridges, cycle around Singapore, have a food trip at different hawker centres, find some activities that you will enjoy. You can also play sports like boxing to get rid of the stress through the punching bag. Having hobbies and activities that you love doing can help you get around stress and easily enable you to get through burnout.

Try to get enough sleep
Many people, when they get home from work late, still reach for the TV remote, surf the internet, or scroll through their phones. Some do this because they want a little bit of time to unwind from work, but they end up losing hours of sleep. Sleeping for only a few hours is a big contributor to burnout. It can negatively affect your productivity and motivation and even increase fatigue. Getting enough sleep allows your mind and body enough time to restore energy and rest.

Home Repair, Your Toolbox, and You: A Quick Guide to Tools

Problems can come up at home when you least expect them. But when you can’t afford to pay a contractor to fix them for you, your next best option is to do your home repair by yourself.

While you might take it for granted at first, having a complete all-purpose toolbox is essential for fixing all kinds of emergencies in your home in Singapore, from your electrical circuit to your plumbing.

What’s In Your Toolbox?
You can actually take on most minor jobs on your own, and all you need are the right tools to handle them properly. A complete toolbox should have the following basic items for any home construction and repair:

Tape measure
Screwdrivers/ hex keys
Utility knife
Adjustable wrench
Hammer
Markers
Putty Knife
Other essentials (WD-40, electrical tape, gaffer tape)

While these tools don’t seem like much at first, they can spell the difference between doing a job properly and not being able to do it at all.

This includes having a proper tape measure to get accurate measurements, a Phillip screwdriver or a flat one depending on the screws needed, or even an adjustable wrench to open things that you can’t with your and alone.
You can easily find them at your nearest hardware store, and even cheap ones are likely to last for a long time when given proper care. You can also choose to buy more specific tools that make repairs easier, but keep in mind that these will be more expensive.

You should also make sure to add safety gear and equipment to your toolbox to avoid any potential injuries:
Work lamp/flashlight
Work gloves
Pliers
Safety goggles
Ear muffs

Taking Care of Your Tools
Your toolbox offers great protection and storage for your tools, but there’s more to maintaining your tools than simply storing them in the right place after use. Here’s how you can take better care of them to make them last longer:

• Keep them dry. When it comes to taking care of your metal tools, water and moisture can be your biggest enemy.

• Store power tools in original cases. If you have any power tools, such as hand drills or circular saws, don’t throw away the cases they come in! They are specially designed to protect these tools.

• Use silica gel. Those gel packets you find in shoes aren’t there for no reason – take them and stuff them in your toolbox to keep them moisture-free!

• Clean tools after use. Wipe your tools down with a clean cloth to get rid of any dust, debris, or even grime or water that could stick to them

How to Take Care of Your DSLR Camera in 5 Easy Steps

The most important thing you can do with your camera is to make it last as long as you can. It may be easy to learn how to start taking amazing pictures, but not everyone can keep their camera working through proper care and maintenance.

To get the most out of your DSLR camera – and to keep it working for a long time – be sure to follow these steps:

1. Turn it off before doing anything to it.
Whether you want to swap lenses, change memory cards, or even attach or disconnect cables, switch off your camera first!

Not only is it useful for conserving batteries, but it also minimizes the risk of you accidentally ruining its circuits and lenses when you open it up.

So while it seems simple enough, it’s easy to forget when you’re really busy or accidentally stumble onto a perfect scene that you need to capture. Getting into the habit of turning your camera off will help you remember early on.

2. Invest in a cleaning kit!
DSLR cameras are expensive, but what’s more expensive is having to buy another camera because you didn’t take care of the first one properly. You can avoid this by investing in a quality cleaning kit that includes microfiber clothes, liquid solutions, and brushes.

You should also be especially careful around the LCD screen and camera lens when cleaning, since you want to avoid scratching them at all costs.

3. Don’t keep the batteries in for too long.
Old camera batteries used to leak acid. Today, this is no longer the case, but can still be corrosive to your DSLR’s circuits especially when they’re empty.

To avoid this when you plan on shelving your camera for a long time, it’s best to take out the batteries when you’re not using them. This minimizes acid leaks and keeps your batteries’ shelf life for longer.

4. Camera bags are essential.
Most people tend to stuff cameras in backpacks, suitcases, and fanny packs, but these actually make them more prone to damage since they bounce around a lot.

Cameras also scratch easily and are magnets for dust and lint, which is why there are special bags for them that address these problems. When you’re not using your DSLR, it’s best to keep it in the camera bag.

5. Take care of your memory card.
Your memory card is just as important as your camera – without them, you won’t be able to enjoy taking great photos and capturing beautiful memories.

Not only should you keep it dust-free at all times by placing it in a protective case, but you should also only remove them indoors and store them in cool places away from any magnets and electronics such as speakers and monitors.