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10 Tips and Tricks to Help You Cope with Your Busy Life

We all want to be happy and successful, right?  Well, yeah… obviously. Trouble is, ‘stuff’ gets in the way. All too often, it’s the little things that take up our time and attention.  They pile up, distract us, and before you know it we’re up to our necks in ‘overwhelm’, with no clue how to dig ourselves out.
Question is, when this kind of *#%! happens, how do we get back on track? There’s no easy answer (it does us no good to pretend there is), BUT… it can be done!
If you ever find yourself in ‘overwhelm’ and need to get on top of things, then you might want to consider the 10 tips listed below:

1. Embrace the Hard Stuff:  Okay, you’re going to hate this, but ALWAYS tackle that thing (and there’s always that thing) you really don’t want to do first! Simply by getting your teeth into it, even if it’s something you can’t complete in one go, you’ll not only conquer your fears, but everything else on your plate will suddenly seem a whole lot more manageable!

2. Remove Distractions: Distractions are… aww, you’re such a cute doggie! Hold on! Wait! What???… Distractions are everywhere, and the quality of our work always suffers when we’re side-tracked. And that happens a lot, right? Because, distractions. Facebook, Instagram, texts, emails, YouTube, Twitter, the dog pulling itself like a slug across the carpet… honestly, you’re just the cutest… Hey! Focus! Put those pesky distractions aside. Get on with what you need to do.

3. Don’t Overlook the Small Stuff: Putting out the rubbish, clearing the dishwasher, cutting your toenails… those little tasks, huh? We think we can put them off forever until – ‘Wham!’ – they’re on top of us and we don’t know where to start. Don’t let this happen. Take a deep breath, look around, use the next 5 minutes to sweat the small stuff – Go!

4. Set Aside Time for Work: So obvious, but oh-so-hard, right? It’s amazing how the day can get away on us and our work gets put to one side. To overcome this, we should set aside a period of time – maybe 10 minutes, maybe 30 minutes, maybe even (gulp!) a whole hour – where we do nothing but work . Seriously. Nothing. But. Work.

5. You Don’t Need to Be a Perfetionist Perfectionist: This stops a lot of us. We’re so worried about doing something absolutely just-so that we end up doing nothing at all. Be prepared to forgive yourself (yep, we know it’s hard) if something doesn’t go exactly to plan. Better still, be proud of yourself for having given it a go.

6. Take Time Out: No matter what you’re working on, you can’t stick at it forever. It’s counter-productive. So, every once in a while, treat yourself to a break, even if it’s only for 10 minutes. Meditate. Listen to some tunes. Read a book. Grab a cup of coffee. Breathe… Do whatever it takes to relax, if only for a moment. And then go back to your task. You’ll feel much better and you’ll be more focused.

7. Keep Yourself Motivated: Set yourself goals and make a timeframe in which to achieve them (like finishing this article before getting some lunch because, dude, sooo hungry right now). And reward yourself when you get something done (that’d be lunch… thinking a salad, with a sprinkling of roasted nuts and some chimichurri dressing). Alternatively – and serial procrastinators, listen up – you might look to punish yourself in some small way for not getting something done (No lunch??!! It’s too horrible to even contemplate…).

8. Make Yourself Accountable to Others: Be loud. Be proud. Let people know what you’re going to accomplish and the tasks for which you’re responsible. This not only puts your skin in the game, it shares accountability and motivates everyone.

9. Focus On the End Goal: It’s vital you have a big picture goal for yourself or your family (two weeks at a 5-star tropical resort, anyone?). Keep it in mind at all times and keep going for it, even when that niggly little distraction we call ‘life’ gets in the way.

10. And Last But So Completely-Not-The-Least… Create a To Do List: Ahhh, the humble ‘To Do’ list… so easily overlooked, but oh-so-important if you want to manage your life.

The ‘Efficiency Guru’ and author of the book, ‘Master Your Workday Now’1, Michael Linenberger, is pretty much the king of the ‘To Do’ list. He thinks we can better manage our lives by creating a simple ‘Workday Mastery To Do List’ (yes, it’s a mouthful, and yes, it really does work!). Linenberger breaks his list into three ‘urgency zones’ – ‘Critical Now’, ‘Opportunity Now’, and ‘Over the Horizon’ tasks.
‘Critical Now’ tasks should be reserved for anything which needs doing, like, right freakin’ now! You should never have more than 5 ‘Critical Now’ tasks at any one time (after all, apart from stay-at-home or working mums, who the hell can handle more than 5 tasks at once?). But you do need to list them and you do need to keep them in front of you, as getting on top of them will help you dial back your stress levels. Not sure if a task should be on this list? Ask yourself this question – Will I be able to relax tonight knowing this task hasn’t been done?  If the answer is ‘No’, then add that task to your ‘Critical Now’ list.

‘Opportunity Now’ tasks aren’t due immediately, they’re more the kind of tasks you’d like to get to today if you could. But keep on top of them and keep reviewing them, because these kind of tasks have the habit of sneaking up on you and suddenly becoming urgent. If they do, they’re not ‘Opportunity Now’ tasks any longer, they need to be moved to your ‘Critical Now’ list. Oh, and another thing? This list will quickly grow waaayy too large if you let it. To avoid this, make it a rule to never let ‘Opportunity Now’ tasks get above 20 in number.
‘Over the Horizon’ tasks are the kind of tasks we all love, the ones you can postpone until next week or even much longer. Mind you, that doesn’t mean you can forget about them! You’ll still need to review this list from time-to-time, just to see if you can fit one of them into your schedule or whether they need moving into your ‘Opportunity Now’ list.

And… that’s it! If you find yourself in overwhelm, it’s unlikely that any one thing will help you dig yourself out of the mire. Instead, it’s a whole heap of little things, things to do with preparation and mind-set and the way we live our lives, which will help you slowly reclaim your center.

Deep. Now, how about that lunch…

1Linenberger,Michael; ‘Master Your Workday Now’; New Academy Publishers 2010.

5 Reasons We Love Amaranth

If we asked you to name the top 10 natural ingredients that are good for your skin, it’s a safe bet most of you wouldn’t have the ancient grain, amaranth, on your list. But that’s not because it doesn’t deserve to be there, it’s more the fact you won’t have heard of it, given most skincare companies don’t include it in their products, thanks to its exotic origins and its expense.
Here’s 5 reasons why that should change and why we’re so proud to highlight amaranth in our Hydration Agent  moisturizer.

It’s Really Good for Your Gut:

The Aztecs straight out got how amazing amaranth really is. It formed an important part of their diet, rich in the kind of protein and fiber that helps maintain the healthy gut we all aspire to. It’s also an anti-inflammatory (pretty much the opposite to some politicians we know) and is a great food source if you suffer from conditions like arthritis or gout. Oh, and by the way. Good for bones? Yep. Helps lower cholesterol? Yes, that too. Fights diabetes, aids weight loss, and is gluten free? Tick, tick, and tick.

Of course, when we add amaranth to our skincare, we’re not suggesting you eat it! Instead, we use the oil extracted from amaranth seeds, which has some incredible beauty benefits.

OMG, Omega-3!

Amaranth oil has high concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids. If you’re into ingredients which help fight aging, protect against the sun, are anti-inflammatory, and help hydrate your skin, then this is really good news.

It’s Hip to be Squalene.

Yes, we know. Squalene sounds like something with tentacles that lives at the bottom of the ocean, but it’s actually a really important moisturizing agent for the skin. Trouble is, we struggle to produce much of it after the age of 25. And that’s where amaranth comes in. It’s one of the few ingredients out there that comes with an abundance of the stuff.

It’s Got Loads of Antioxidants.

Our skin loves antioxidants. That’s because they help to eliminate free radicals (the kind that ravage your skin, not the ones running amok on university campuses), helping to treat infections and reduce inflammation.

Vitamin E, For Me.

Lastly, amaranth also happens to be rich in vitamin E, which just happens to be one of our favorite vitamins, given its ability to help tighten skin and smooth out wrinkles.

And there you have it! Our low down on amaranth. Next time you’re compiling your list of top 10 ingredients for your skin (go on, we know you do it all the time!), then make sure to add it to your list.

Organic Aloe Vera

Ingredient #1: Organic Aloe Vera

When it comes to caring for our skin, organic Aloe Vera is the bomb! That’s why it’s a hero ingredient in so many of our products. To find out what it can do for your skin, click on the link here.

5 Reasons Why We Love Aloe Vera

Let’s cut to the chase. When it comes to caring for your skin, aloe vera is a health and beauty powerhouse. Here’s 5 reasons why:

It’s Got a Pretty Awesome Track Record
Aloe Vera is no ‘Johnny Come Lately’, with an untested track record. Instead, it’s been used as a skincare agent with great benefit for thousands of years. The Ancient Egyptians, for one, were all over it. They called aloe vera ‘the plant of immortality’.

It’s Got Age-Busting Superpowers
Really? You’re saying that something that looks like a cactus can actually help me look younger? Yep, according to a recent South Korean study, that’s exactly what it can do. You see, aloe vera can help increase collagen, which is a pretty essential part of the whole ‘staying youthful’ routine (in a nutshell, collagen keeps our skin elastic and stops it from going all wrinkly). Not only that, but aloe’s also full of antioxidants (think beta carotene as well as vitamins A, C and E), all of them beavering away at the task of keeping our skin hydrated and firm.

It’s Great for Acne and Other Chronic Skin Conditions.
Aloe Vera has two specific hormones (don’t worry, they’re not the ones that turn teenagers feral) which not only fight skin inflammation but also stimulate the growth of new cells. When you match them with the plant’s wonderful moisturizing qualities, then you’ve got a combo that can help skin affected by acne to heal quickly and without scarring.

It’s worth comparing this to many synthetic acne solutions, which focus on drying out the skin (like that’s ever a good idea). Unfortunately, such an approach can trigger the type of skin inflammation that leads to psoriasis and other chronic skin problems like eczema. By way of contrast, aloe vera can be used to effectively heal these problems.

It Helps Treat Sunburn.
Okay. Science time. There’s this layer of cells that covers our bodies which goes by the ever-so-cute, easy-to-pronounce name of the epithelial layer. Not so cute is that this is the part of our skin that’s often damaged by sunburn. And that’s where aloe vera comes in handy (again). It can help protect and repair this layer thanks to its moisturizing, antioxidant and nutritional properties.

It Can Help with Stretch Marks
Aloe Vera can also help to repair stretch marks, which are caused when the elasticity of the skin is compromised as a result of it being stretched too far and too fast (who knew that having a baby might do this?). In particular, the plant can assist in healing minor tears in the skin caused by stretching and thus help reverse the appearance of marks.

And there you have it! Aloe Vera really is the bomb, full of multi-tasking properties which can help regenerate our skin, leaving us looking younger and our skin nourished and healthy.