How to Educate Kids to be Entrepreneurs

How to Educate Kids to be Entrepreneurs

Startups play a major role in most economies.

In the US, for instance, small businesses have contributed to about 64% of the new jobs in the past twenty years. It shows just how important startups are in the US economy.

The future is bright since more entrepreneurs are generating ideas that are adding jobs to the economy. It can be attributed to the conducive atmosphere that is ideal for the growth of startups.

This environment has made some startups to be huge businesses. Some big entrepreneurs you see today, like Steve Jobs of Apple and Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, started as simple entrepreneurs. Despite all this, not all entrepreneurs become successful. Most of them don’t reach their potential because they have not learned the art of successful entrepreneurs.

Luckily, you can teach your kids entrepreneurial skills from an early age. Starting early will set a foundation for success in the future.

But how can you teach your kids qualities that are essential in making them better entrepreneurs? Read on to find out.

Key Qualities for Young Entrepreneurs to Cultivate

Problem-Solving

As a business owner, you’ll be expected to solve customers’ problems. Besides solving your customers’ problems, you’ll have to deal with a horde other issues, including employee issues, cash flow management difficulties, and time management concerns, among others. Budding entrepreneurs have to find a way to provide solutions to every problem.

It’s essential to equip your kids with problem-solving skills from an early age if they are to be successful entrepreneurs. The best way to do that is by allowing them to be decisive in the things they do. Encourage them to take actions whenever they are faced by challenges and be proactive in making decisions and taking stands.

When your kids make decisions, allow them to face the consequences of their decisions. Provided they are not grave consequences. Once in a while, when faced with challenges, invite your kids to suggest some solutions. Make sure you appreciate them for their ideas.

Goal Setting

Setting goals is a crucial part of business planning. Every entrepreneur sets goals and then devise a plan to achieve those goals.

Likewise, teach your kids to set smart goals. It should be an exciting exercise for both you and your little ones. You can let them identify and write down some of their goals. These goals should then be narrowed down to one important goal.

Once they’ve identified their main goal, kids should write down how they intend to accomplish this goal. Always remind them of their goals and commend your kids whenever they take steps towards achieving them.

Recognizing Opportunities

The difference between successful entrepreneurs and those that are not is the ability to recognize opportunities. The majority of unsuccessful entrepreneurs fail to reach their full potential because they cannot spot opportunities in their businesses.

Children should learn to recognize opportunities from a young age. The best way is to teach them to spot opportunities that are disguised as problems. You can show them a problem and let them determine a resultant solution that people can pay for. A good example is where a cleaning company is a good solution in a busy neighborhood where most people are a working population and do not have the time to do their cleaning. With time your kids will become creative, and they’ll come up with ideas that can lead to profitable business ventures.

Networking

Successful entrepreneurs are good at networking. Networking helps business owners to meet new clients and fellow business people, from whom they can acquire fresh ideas, advice, and potential employees.

You can teach your kids to perfect the art of networking. Let them be comfortable around people and have conversations freely with other people. If your kids are shy, you can have them sit in on when you’re having conversations with other adults. With time, they will learn to be comfortable around people and to make new connections with ease.

Financial Literacy

Lessons about money come in handy for any kid aspiring to be a business owner. If you teach your kids money matters and personal finance at an early age, it will create a strong financial foundation.

You can inspire your kids to figure out earning opportunities. Encourage them to pursue their passions when looking for part-time job opportunities. For instance, a student who is good at writing essays may choose to be an essay helper for a fee. These services will enable them to make money while they pursue what they love.

When your children earn money, let them plan on their expenditure and saving. You should also teach them the importance of investing and starting small. These lessons will instill an entrepreneurial spirit within them and shape a successful journey into the business world.

Customer Service

Convincing prospects to work with you is one thing, and converting them to repeat customers is another more difficult task. As hard as it may sound, you can easily turn clients to repeat business by simply providing satisfactory services.

Most customers won’t forget how you treated them. So, ensure you give timely responses to their concerns and make their business a priority before and after transacting with them. And always provide top-notch customer service.

Kids start learning customer service skills from as early as preschool. Preschool reinforces some skills such as patience, empathy, accountability, and communication, which are very crucial in providing satisfactory customer service.

Parents should teach kids to accept their mistakes and apologize. They should also teach them to be emphatic about other people’s problems even when they can’t provide solutions. These are very important characteristics of entrepreneurs.

Failure Is Part of the Process

Failure is a better teacher than success because the knowledge we learn from failing will last longer than the one we acquire from success. Every successful employer will tell you that they failed several times before achieving their success. Mark Zuckerberg will tell you that Facebook isn’t the first and only thing he built. He also made chat systems and study tools before Facebook.

It is important to allow children the freedom to fail. They ought to understand that failing is part of the process, and they shouldn’t avoid failing. Instead, they should learn quickly from their mistakes and never give up on their dreams.

When your children fail, appreciate their efforts and ask them to think of alternative ways to accomplish their goals and encourage them not to give up. In the end, they learn to persevere and become more confident and resilient.

Leadership

As the boss at your workplace, you have to portray some leadership qualities. You can do this by inspiring your employees and motivating them to be their best version.

While people claim leaders are born, that isn’t entirely true. You can teach your kids to be good leaders. Set good examples for your kids to be the leaders you like. Also, allow them to participate in combined activities with others. In case there are problems during the activity, let them work out the issues on their own.

In closing…

A good entrepreneurial education is good for young children. It helps them to think more freely and critically compared to kids who are not exposed to entrepreneurial lessons. By exposing children at a young age, you help them to discover their potential early. It leads to a more fulfilling and successful career.

As you can see, learning entrepreneurship is more about life than school. Therefore, parents must take the responsibility of teaching their children and instilling the entrepreneurial spirit.

Beyond the Basics: 7 Steps to Teaching Kids About Money

Beyond the Basics: 7 Steps to Teaching Kids About Money

Parents have a long list of things to teach their kids. And financial literacy ranks high on that list. However, most parents neglect to teach their children about money and personal finance.

According to a report by OECD PISA, most 15-year-olds struggle with financial literacy. The report found out that about 25% of these children could not make simple decisions on daily expenditure.

That’s a trend that must die. Parents ought to teach their children basic money skills. Teaching kids money matters from an early age helps them to make informed financial decisions in the future. They become good at saving, investing, and managing their finances.

The 7 Steps to Teaching Kids About Money

As a parent, there are many ways you can teach your kids important financial lessons. It doesn’t have to be hard. Below are some of the ways to give your kids a head start in the financial literacy realm.

#1. Teach Them Opportunity Cost

Opportunity cost entails foregoing the next best alternative. Essentially, it means if your child spends money on their favorite pair of shoes, then they would have to forego buying a pair of shorts that they like. That is, they have to choose to buy one thing at the expense of another.

Opportunity cost is a vital money lesson that every kid must be taught. It teaches them to cross-check their options and possible outcomes before making a decision. This way, they settle on well-thought decisions. Learning how to make wise money spending decisions is crucial in future business investments.

#2. Get Them to Save

Inculcate a saving culture from a young age. Whenever your child receives money, either as a birthday gift from family or friends or payment for some work done, let them save a portion of the amount in a home bank. It could be done in a 50/25/25 proportion. You can let them use 50% for fun, keep 25% for their needs, and save 25% in a piggy bank for future use.

Saving should be done with goals. Some saving goals could be to purchase a toy or video game. Having saving goals motivates your kid to save even more. Let your child identify their saving goals and figure out how much they will have to keep to achieve them.

Goals should be categorized as short term and long term. Financial experts advise that long term goals for children shouldn’t be more than six months. If they are too long, they will demotivate your kids. On top of the long term goals, let your kid set short term goals that they can achieve frequently. Hitting these goals regularly makes them have a sense of achievement and find joy in saving.

#3. Inspire Kids to Pursue Earning Opportunities

It’s not worth to teach kids about saving and budgeting money if they don’t know how to earn it. Learning to earn is vital, even for small kids. When children learn to make money, they become self-sufficient.

Inspiring children to work for their money can start simply by giving them an allowance for walking the dog, mowing the grass, or washing the family car. While these are simple tasks, they always inspire your kids to work hard for their own money.

You can also allow your teen to look for real jobs during their free time, especially during summer break. One of the best part-time jobs they can pick is freelance writing. Besides earning an income, becoming a freelance writer helps your kid to be a better paper writer and to improve in their school work.

#4. Be a Good Example

Findings from a study conducted by the University of Cambridge show that children learn money habits from as early as 7 years old. At this age, kids pick most, if not all, their parent’s money habits. You should, therefore, be careful about what you do with your money around children.

If you love to swipe with your card at the filling station or when you go out for a meal, then you should expect your children to learn to use credit cards more often. It is not a good behavior lest you make your kids be credit card victims and risk putting them into debt.

Always strive to be a good example and smartly manage your finances. Teach them the importance of setting financial goals and keeping track of expenditure. The result is that your kids will pick these positive lessons and become better financial managers.

#5. Give Smart Financing Lessons

One vital lesson kids should learn at an early age is expenditure. Teach your kids that before they spend on anything, they must determine whether it is a need or want. Needs are things that we require to survive, while wishes are the things we desire, but we can do without.

Teach your children how to differentiate the two. They should be ready to forego their wants so that they acquire their needs. While it’s not easy to make the kids understand that buying their favorite toy isn’t as important as paying the water bill, it’s usually worth the struggle. Teaching your teens about prioritizing needs over wants helps them to make proper financial priorities in the future.

Distinguishing between the two is usually difficult for kids. You can simplify your work by creating a chat with the needs and wants. You can equally read books on the subject together with your little ones. Most of all, learn to say no to some of your children’s wants, even when you can afford them. This way, they’ll learn that they can still do without the things they want and be contented with what they have.

#6. Allow Them to Handle Cash

The best way for teens to learn about money is by handling cash. Give your children a little cash to spend once in a while. Let them spend it, do some shopping, know its value, and do some calculations.

When you go shopping with your kids and ask them to pick things as you pay chances are, they’ll pick just about anything. However, if you set a given budget and let them have the cash, they are more likely to plan and keep track of their expenditure and only pick the things they need. Letting youths control their money helps them to be more responsible and conscious of how they use cash.

#7. Teach Kids the Noble Art of Giving

After you’ve taught your kids about earning, saving, and spending money, you ought to teach them the vital art of giving. Show them the importance of giving back to the community at a young age. Let them make contributions to charity, or help someone in need.

Your children should learn that we get money by engaging with others in business deals. We don’t pick it from trees or dig it from the ground, literally! Likewise, it should be spent to help other people and not just us.

If you don’t teach your kids about finances from an early age, they’ll have to learn it when they have the money. In most cases, these lessons are learned the hard way. They have to make some poor money decisions and grapple with losses before they become financially informed. No parent wants that for their kids. So start educating your kids about cash today to help shape a better financial future for them with defined by smart financial choices.


 

Extreme Situations Call for Extreme Self-Care: 6 Action Steps for Getting It

Extreme Situations Call for Extreme Self-Care: 6 Action Steps for Getting It

When the going gets tough—when world-class change beckons, and you know you must rise up and meet the moment—what is essential?

How do you actually weather this crisis? And how do you hang in there for the long haul?

This might be a sudden loss of your job or your home, or a major change in your relationship. Or perhaps a pandemic or a massive civil rights movement comes to your door.

How do you do what you’ve got to do, and still keep body and soul together?

Such times are rich with opportunity, but only if you play them right. And yet, so few of us are prepared to actually do that. What many know how to do in a crisis is to react. Perhaps that means freezing or leaping into untethered action. Or sending text after text to anyone who will listen, all of them in caps.

Or maybe we just have a very public freak out on social media.

Ah, but friend, here is where the learning curve is.

This is exactly when you need to take a pause and crank up the self-care. If this seems counter-intuitive, bear with me for a moment.

You’ll know you need to do this if you feel your energy flagging, or you’re unable to sleep or even concentrate. Maybe you’re obsessively worrying, or constantly checking the news.

You may feel uncomfortable in your own skin. Especially if world events or events in your own life seem to be spiraling out of control.

And most especially if you feel unsafe.

This is when a lesson is truly at hand, friend. Which is precisely why your body is talking to you.

Instead of reacting, I suggest you get grounded. For within that grounding, you’re going to actually find your marching orders. And they will be spot on.

Here is where you will gather your power.

This is a roadmap you might follow.

Extreme Situations Call for Extreme Self-Care: 6 Action Steps for Getting It

#1. Stop and get clear.

Instead of racing off in the first direction you can think of, I suggest carving out some intentional alone time. Use it to find out just what is going on. What are your body, your heart, and your soul trying to tell you?

Give yourself enough time, whether it be an hour or a day or even a week, to find out what you need. This will be especially true if you have a big decision to make. For some marchers in recent Black Lives Matter protests, they simply quit their jobs and went out there and marched. They knew, deep in their gut, they had to do this. So there was real conviction.

If you’re not clear yet on what to do first, take the time to find out. Pull out a journal and let your thoughts fly. Or if you’re inclined to meditate, go have a good long sit. Take a walk in nature and see if inspiration comes to you while you’re moving. If you’re stressed out, take off your shoes and stand barefoot on the ground. Let yourself feel just how stable and solid the earth is beneath you.

If you still feel muddled, you might even talk to a supportive friend.
One way or another, make time to check in with yourself and spill what’s in your heart. Then listen attentively.

#2. Stay focused on you.

The temptation, of course, is to obsess on the other guy and spin your wheels, especially if you feel wronged. Yet, ultimately this is a waste of time. What is your plan of action? What are your needs? What has to happen before you can move forward?

Keep checking in with yourself as time goes by. This is not a ‘one and done’ experience. The process of self-awareness is always growing and shifting, just as our needs are.

By staying focused on yourself, you intuit each next step and marshal your resources. And you feed your mojo.

#3. Get organized.

Though it may be tempting to dive into what’s happening right now, think out your long-term strategy for the coming weeks and months. Ask yourself what you will need as you move forward.

What can you let go of that will help you live lean, and operate unencumbered? What do you need to add that will boost your energy and your resolve? What will best support you and the plan you are making?

This is not a place for wheel-spinning, but quiet determination. If you want to move out of a hopeless relationship, plot your exit. If you know you need to find a new job, review the status of your resume. Does it need a makeover? Or would a networking group be more beneficial?

#4. Ask for support.

What do you need right now … and can you attain that by yourself? If not, there is no shame in asking for help. In fact, there is power in including others—especially if their skill set in a particular area is better than our own.

This is just being strategic. And yes, asking for support if it's a MAJOR piece of great self-care. If you’re not clear on who to ask, or where to find help, head back to number 1. You’ll get that inspiration if you tune in and listen for a while.

You just have to slow down enough to get clear.

#5. Take conscious action.

Whether it’s filing for a divorce, asking for a raise, or starting a movement, your job is simply to listen to your gut. Then take each step required, knowing you have your feet on the ground and you know what to do. If it feels right, do it.

This is a conscious action, and it’s marked by a wonderful, grounded sense of ease, calm. You know down deep you’re doing the right thing. And that you’re just where you need to be.

This is how we can make a difference in the world, thanks to the healing power of self-care.

Your time is now.

Suzanne Falter is a writer, podcaster, and speaker whose work has appeared in SELF, O, More, Fitness, New Woman, and The New York Times.

She is the author of multiple self-help titles including The Extremely Busy Woman’s Guide to Self-Care (Sourcebooks). Suzanne also hosts the ever-popular Self-Care for Extremely Busy Women podcast and regularly speaks to a global audience on the healing power of crisis and the importance of self-care. She does so both virtually and on stage when it's safe to do so.


 

How to Keep Your Body and Mind Healthy While Stuck at Home

How to Keep Your Body and Mind Healthy While Stuck at Home

To say that life has changed for many of us over the last few months is quite an understatement. Never, in the world's history, have so many people had to stay in one place for such an extended period.

The coronavirus is easy to catch and can be deadly. To stop the virus from spreading, people must avoid moving around. In best-case scenarios, people have switched to working from home.

Yet others have unfortunately lost their jobs or their businesses have stopped making money. Wishing each other good health has taken on a new and significant meaning.

By staying home we may avoid the virus, but how do we keep ourselves fit and healthy?

The temptation to sit around watching movies all day and snacking on junk is too much. How do we keep ourselves mentally fit?

A healthy mind in a healthy body has always been the goal of anyone pursuing good health. How can you do that when you can’t even go out to the gym?

How to Keep Your Body and Mind Healthy While Stuck at Home

As mentioned, fitness is much more than the absence of illness.

To be fit, the mind has to be healthy.

A healthy mind and a healthy body complement each other. But how do we maintain that under the current conditions in which we’re living?

There are some simple tips that we can use to get started.

1. Be careful with your diet

Eat healthy, home-cooked meals.

A lot of people complained about the lack of variety in their diet when food delivery was impossible. Without access to food like pizzas and burgers, they said, life was boring. Yet this was great news for their health. Processed foods with high fat and salt content are not good for health.

2. Have a basic routine for all your activities

Yes, I know everybody says this. But that’s because it’s 100% true. Confinement in the house makes routine essential. This is so you won’t forget to do anything important. Arrange a time for cleaning the house, a time for doing your office work, and time to spend with your children. Set a routine and stick to it for the good of your mental and physical health.

3. Be active during the day

If you’re active during the day you’ll be able to sleep better during the night. Some people have allowed laziness to creep in. They are staying awake all night and sleeping during the day. It’s not an agreeable habit.

4. Remember to get enough sleep

When someone is getting proper sleep, it solves many health problems. Sound sleep lowers the blood pressure and lessens anxiety. It also helps the body tissues to repair themselves. Getting a proper amount of sleep at a proper time is essential in the long term for good health.

5. Work on improving your immune system

Even when we take all the right precautions and stay healthy, there is always the possibility of catching the virus. In this scenario, a strong immune system is of vital importance. Studies have found that vitamin D boosts immunity.

There are various ways people can get their vitamin D. Sunlight is an excellent source of Vitamin D. It's also found in fortified breakfast cereals and fortified milk, both dairy and non-dairy.

To improve immunity, it's also advisable to avoid smoking and drinking alcohol. Always drink enough water to keep up your hydration levels. Exercise also boosts the immune system by flushing out bacteria and increasing the production of white blood cells. Both of these are important to increase immunity.

6. Attend to your spiritual needs

Religious services can’t take place under lockdown. Social distancing is almost impossible when sizeable crowds gather.

Yet people still have spiritual needs, which are especially important, especially during the lockdown. Religious communities are reaching their faithful followers through the power of the Internet. You may follow an organized religion or you may follow an alternative spiritual path.

Either way, there are resources available on the Internet. Most spiritual centers have websites and newsletters to which you can subscribe to stay updated. Many of them teach online courses too.

7. Remember to disconnect

Internet connectivity has been a lifesaver for many of us. It enables us to keep in touch with our family and friends at the touch of a button. But we shouldn’t stay online more than is necessary.

Take a break from the screens every so often and connect with the space around you. Let there be a few hours every day that you don’t go online. Too much connectivity can have a damaging effect on our mental health as it raises anxiety levels.

8. Adapt your exercise plan

Many people today have a regular exercise routine. It could be an exercise class in a local gym a few times a week or a long walk several times weekly. For some, no less than a trip to the gym will do. We need some imagination and creativity to figure out how to carry out our exercise while maintaining social distancing. The psychological problems attached to being stressed during difficult times tend to melt away with physical activity, so it’s important to keep active.

Carrying Out Exercise Safely

If you practice yoga and you know a few balanced sets of exercises, all you need to do is find an uncluttered space in your home. Unroll your yoga mat and you’re ready to go.

exercise regularly

You can use exercise DVDs or YouTube videos for instructions. Some yoga and fitness instructors have started giving virtual classes, making it possible to carry out your exercise from a safe distance. Take advantage of what your living space has to offer. Do you live in a building with a staircase? That’s a readymade gym machine.

Depending on the staircase, you can plan to walk up and down them several times daily or weekly to get your exercise, if you have the stamina for it.

Making Your Gym at Home

Those who have some home gym equipment like a treadmill or an exercise bike can get full use from it now. But even a skipping rope, or a rope which you can use as a skipping rope, is a valid piece of gym equipment. You could also use a chair and use it for sits-to-stands.

No Excuses Necessary

The point is, being confined by the limitations Covid-19 has placed us under is no reason to neglect your health and fitness.

In fact, it is the perfect time to improve it. Don’t use lockdown as an excuse to avoid taking care of your health, mental, and physical. It is also important that you help the people around you to stay healthy.

Don’t be afraid to talk to your family to let them know the benefits of a healthy mind and body. None of us have experienced such a difficult and stressful time in our lives.

However, with a positive attitude and a focus on remaining active, we will get through this difficult time.


Author Bio:

This article was written by Niall Hally of Village Physiotherapy. Niall has helped his clients exercise during lockdown by providing online tutorials and videos which has been essential in keeping his business running. It has also helped him provide an essential service for people during the lockdown.


 

A Short Message After a Heavy Week #BlackLivesMatter

A Short Message After a Heavy Week #BlackLivesMatter

It's been just over a week since George Floyd's death at the hands of a group of Minneapolis police officers.

The mood has been heavy in my household as our family has been deep in discussion about the systemic racism that's been witnessed on a global scale.

I've not been overly active online. Refraining from putting out content in favor of spending my time learning, listening, and understanding.

My 17-year old daughter, Chardonae, is an activist at heart and always thinking about how we can be part of the change. With passioned tears streaming down her cheek, she reminded us that we need to live the change. That she doesn't want to live in a world where people are treated so unjustly and persecuted for the color of their skin. That talking is not enough. It takes purposeful, peaceful action to live the changes we wish to see in the world.

I've never been so proud of her.

Right away, as a family, we made a commitment to learning what we can. Turning our attention to podcasts, films, books, and other media sources to learn further about the issues at hand and how we can do our part to aid in ending systemic racism. (resources linked below)

Deepening of Learning, Understanding, and Listening starts at Home

We're also listening to the Black community. We want to deepen our understanding and knowledge of both their experiences and the pain, frustration, and anger being felt.

On May 31st, to further our understanding and to be a part of the change, we participated in a peaceful protest at the Vancouver Art Gallery. I felt overwhelmed by emotions as I realized that my beloved city of Vancouver saw 3,500 people showing up on a day's notice! 3,500 people — of all colors — showed up to give their support while offering their voices and energy to a global movement.

Take but a minute to scour the social platforms, search engines, forums, and online publications, and you'll see very clearly that the world is awakening.

More than that, the world is listening… and together, arm in arm, banded together we're doing something to bring about the change.

I share some of our experiences over this past week only in hopes that it provides some ideas of the types of things many of us can be doing more of.

Though we understand we may make mistakes, we are committed to being a part of the change.

For my family, inaction is not an option.

Together we make a difference.

We're #StrongerTogether.

#BlackLivesMatter


List of #BlackLivesMatter Resources to Continue Learning, Listening, Understanding and Taking Action

  • The Secret Life of Canada is a podcast that focuses on ‘the beautiful and terrible' history of Canada.
  • A film called 13th, available on Netflix, is a highly-rated documentary that takes an in-depth look at the racist roots of the prison system in the United States.
  • An interesting article which asks “Where does racism exist in the healthcare industry?
  • A document entitled, ‘Anti-Racism Resources‘ that contains numerous links to books, articles, podcasts, organizations, and more to help educate us all on the history of race in North America, and how we as individuals can help to eliminate hate from society.
  • How to donate to the Black Lives Matter movement
  • How to take action towards ending police violence. Learn about the #8CantWait initiative – data proves that 8 policies can decrease police killings by 72%.

How To Stay Fit At Home With No Equipment

How To Stay Fit At Home With No Equipment

Without the usual commute, daily routine, and access to gyms, many of us have been left in a fitness limbo by Covid-19.

Working from home means the commute has been reduced to a casual stroll from the bedroom to the kitchen-office table where we stay sat for the best part of the day with little to no reason to move.

Midriffs worldwide are noticeably looser as millions of us struggle to adjust to the static lifestyle caused by the Covid-19 quarantine.

The benefits of continuing or even starting a fitness routine in quarantine are plentiful. Exercising at home, even a little a day, can relieve anxiety (really important as we try to cope with our ‘new normals’), lift moods, help manage blood pressure, prevent heart disease, strengthen bones and muscles.

All age groups can benefit from gentle home exercise. For the elderly gentle exercise can help prevent falls and keep the mind sharp. For young children and teens exercise can encourage growth and also improve self-esteem.

For fitness at home, there is no end to the options available to you. There are exercises for every fitness level that can be done at home with no special equipment. Here are some of the best.

Be Flexible With Yoga and Pilates

  • Who is it suitable for? Any Age Group
  • Difficulty: Beginner-Advanced
  • What You Need: A clutter-free space, a mat or towel, and a bottle of water to stay hydrated

Yoga and pilates are beneficial for all ages and fitness levels.

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I used to chase instant gratification while expecting immediate results for any of my personal or professional efforts — otherwise, why bother, right??! 🤔⁠ ⁠ That attitude was not serving me in life, business, or anything in-between.⁠ ⁠ When I shifted my focus away from 'perfection' in favor of 'continuous measurable progression', things really started to change.⁠ ⁠ The pressure was lifted as I relaxed my expectations. It was no longer a matter of doing things 'just right' — now it was as easy as asking myself…⁠ ⁠ 'What do I need to do TODAY to be a little bit better than I was yesterday?'⁠ ⁠ It seems simple, doesn't it? 🙏⁠ ⁠ Well, to be honest, as soon as I released the pressure of trying to be perfect, I started to have a lot more fun, feel a lot more connected, and on top of that, started to see regular progress.⁠ ⁠ I'm 5 weeks into daily yoga practice and I'm so excited to see how far I've come in such a short period of time. Small daily deposits of putting myself into a position (literally and figuratively) of feeling uncomfortable — and guess what? I grow, I evolve, I learn, I feel happier about myself.⁠ ⁠ And this creates a lifestyle that I can really get behind. Nothing is off-limits any longer. The world is a big place and there's so much I want to try… ⁠ ⁠ Just imagine if you took 15 minutes a day to do something that challenges you. And every day you practiced… where do you think you'd be in 30 days? 3 months? 3 years?⁠ ⁠ The journey may not be easy, but it is worth it!! 💯

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The difference is often misunderstood, but simply put yoga is focussed on flexibility and Pilates focuses on strength and body control. Some people enjoy one more than the other, try both a few times before ruling anything out. Pilates can seem harder and less beneficial at first but the pay off when you stick with it is worthwhile.

To get started with either of the exercises at home, consider using an app or joining an online class for guidance. With both pilates and yoga, it can be easier to do when you can see the exercises being demonstrated before trying them for yourself.

Use Your Body Weight To Stay Fit

  • Who is it suitable for? Any Age Group
  • Difficulty: Beginner-Advanced
  • What You Need: A clutter-free space and bottle of water to stay hydrated. Plus a sturdy chair or bathtub.

Calisthenics is a form of exercise that relies only on your body weight and movement to exercise nearly every muscle in the body. Calisthenics is so popular and effective that they have been used for hundreds of centuries – the first recorded use is dated from 480 BC!

So, what is it and how do you get started?

After you stretch, start your cycle of calisthenics as suggested below. This cycle is suitable for a beginner but you can increase the intensity if you find it too easy.

10 x Squats

Stand feet hip-width apart, push out your backside slightly as if you were about to sit down. Lower yourself as if into an invisible chair. Alternatively, you can use a chair to lower into if you are nervous starting out. Lower as far as you can go and then carefully push back up again using your leg muscles. Repeat.

10 x Push-ups

Position yourself on all fours on your mat and the stretch out your legs behind you so that you are on your toes and hands with a straight line from your neck to your ankles. Holding this straight line, lower yourself using your arms, and then push back up again. To make it slightly easier for beginners, lower your knees to the ground from the starting position.

10 x Burpees

Guaranteed to get the blood flowing, burpees are great for your core, glutes, legs, and chest, and more! Start with your feet hip-width apart and position yourself ready for a squat. Lower into a squat but stop here and place your hands on the floor in front of you. Move your weight onto your hands and jump your feet back. You should now look like you are doing a press-up. Next, jump them back so you are in a lowered squat position and jump back up to standing as powerfully as you can.

10 x Elevated push-ups

Use a sturdy hard chair or the side of the bathtub for these. Position yourself as you would for a regular push up but with your hands firmly on the raised surface. Keep your back straight and in line with your legs. Lower yourself to the chair/tub and push back up. Repeat.

10 x Dips

As with the elevated push-ups, use a sturdy hard chair or the side of the bathtub. With your arms and back straight hold yourself up with your hands on the chair/tub behind you and your legs straight in front of you. From this position, lower yourself as low as you can and slowly bring yourself up to the starting position. Repeat.

30 Second x Planking

Plant hands directly under shoulders (slightly wider than shoulder-width) like you’re about to do a push-up. Next, ground toes into the floor and squeeze glutes to stabilize your body. Your legs should be working, too — be careful not to lock or hyperextend your knees. Then, neutralize your neck and spine by looking at a spot on the floor about a foot beyond your hands. Your head should be in line with your back. And then hold the position for 30 seconds.

Go For A Walk Indoors

  • Who is it suitable for? Any age group but use your judgment.
  • Difficulty: Beginner-Advanced
  • What You Need: A clutter-free space and a bottle of water to stay hydrated

The surroundings won’t be as interesting or varied as they would be outdoors but the fitness payoff is something similar. Download a pedometer on your phone and try to build up your steps each day at home.

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It's been just over one week of recommitting time each day to my health — and I'm feeling great! 👊 After 25 years of helping people with lifestyle transformations, you'd think I'd know all the signs by now… but when it comes to self-accountability, at times I'm quick to let myself off from doing the things I know I WANT to be doing. You see, exercise is that ONE thing that if I do it, it makes everything else in my day either easier or more enjoyable. One great decision begets more great decisions, etc. Can you relate to this? Yet, admittedly with the social distancing, self-quarantining, and closure of the gyms and such, I found myself becoming lax with my fitness and daily rituals (habits). My mindset 🧠 was slipping. I was allowing myself space to create reasons (aka excuses) to justify not exercising💪. The 'why bother!' mindset was creeping in… Funny thing is, I know that when I'm exercising regularly, I'm a much better version of myself. My energy is better, I'm more engaged, attentive, and downright way more positive! (And I get way more done — my productivity goes through the roof!) So, what to do? What to do? 🤔 Well… I drew a line in the sand and made a commitment to get back to basics. I wasn't going to do anything over the top, nothing super intense, but something I could easily manage daily. I blocked the 30 minutes into my calendar each day and made this a NON-NEGOTIABLE. No excuses, I'm going to make it happen each and every day! The first few days I committed to doing a minimum of 30 minutes or 2 flights up-and-down — whichever came first. That's it. After 2 days, my calves were not liking me too much, but nothing a few minutes on the roller couldn't help with. I continued to do 30 minutes a day while listening to audiobooks which helped the time fly by… I then decided to add an extra flight. Not because I had to, but simply because I WANTED to. I'm loving this reconnection with my fitness and body. Things during the day seem a whole lot less stressful, I'm more positive in general, and I'm making better nutritional decisions too. So, are you ready to join me? Draw a line and let's do this!

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If you have a garden, incorporate it into your walk route too. Aim for 500 steps to start with. Walking on the spot counts too so get marching if you live in a small space. Walking indoors can help lift your spirits, improve cardio, and all-over muscle tone. Incorporate stairs for extra glute toning and more of a challenge.

For variation, and only if safe to do so, switch from walking to dancing, hopping, skipping, and walking backward around your house.

Tips For Working Out At Home

Make Time

To get the most from your home workout routine, keep it regular and consistent. Set yourself a time table that incorporates your workout at least three times per week and commits to it.

Clear Space

Every type of workout requires a clear and clutter-free space. This helps to prevent injury and keep you focussed.

Outfit

You don’t need specific workout clothes to get fit. You need clothes that are loose enough to not constrict your movement but not so loose that they will trip you or get tangled. It is recommended to wear a sports shoe that allows flexibility and ankle support for walking. For yoga and pilates, barefoot is fine.

Hydrate

Drink plenty of water before and after your workout. Keep a bottle of water to hand for whilst you are exercising. Water will help regulate your body temperature but importantly it helps your whole body to perform at its absolute best.

Mix It Up

Boredom is one of the biggest killers of fitness. No matter how badly you want to be fit, if the fun of your routine has gone then you are unlikely to keep it up. That’s why it is important to mix up your routine types. Try doing a different workout type or routine each day. Make sure you have a rest day every 2 to 3 days but get right back into it afterward.

And, don't forget this important message…


Author Bio:

Ashley Halsey is an editor at Cardiff Writing Service who is a calisthenics enthusiast. Ashley enjoys traveling to attend fitness competitions.


 

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