Many parents struggle with problems in raising their children, problems that can be approached and solved in such a manner that it will benefit both parties involved long-term. Thousands of books have been written on how to be a successful parent and theories have been developed by educational psychologists and pediatricians around the world, so that it is fair to say that no matter the problem you are facing, someone somewhere has already found a viable and efficient solution to it. The issues that we talk about in the following paragraphs are commonly a source of great distress and frustration for parents, but usually have a relatively simple answer.
1. Bedtime struggle
All children go through what it is known as the “no” phase, whether it involves following rules, eating vegetables or going to bed at a certain hour. The key to getting over this phase successfully is treating it with maximum attention and patience. For example, bedtime struggle usually occurs when the child is overexcited because of the activity that he/she was engaged in just before bedtime. Thus, as a rule parents should interdict over stimulating TV shows or animated cartoons, and also playing video games just before bedtime. One trick to get your child into the mood for bedtime is taking them out for a breath of fresh air and a walk. If they have a favorite stuffed animal make sure they have it and always leave the lights on if the toddler is afraid of the dark.
2. The fussy eater
Picky eating is a normal phase in every child’s developing years and it is usually found in toddlers of 2 up to 4 years old. However, an abrupt change in a toddler’s eating habits can be due to a number of reasons and probably the most notable is that children do not easily embrace change; they actually greatly enjoy routine because of the safety feeling it offers. The easiest way to approach the fussy eating problem is by taking it step by step. Parents can start by introducing mashed veggies into their child’s favorite dish and by making home-made fruit juices to quench the thirst. It is also important to involve the child in the food making process which is a great opportunity for them to explore the texture, smell and taste of certain ingredients.
3. How to help develop a child’s self-esteem
Psychological research shows that the input a child receives during the first five years of life are paramount to his/her later emotional and cognitive development. Thus, the fragile self-esteem structure that a child has is greatly influenced by the type of parenting style applied during the formative years. To this end, parents can help their child to build a positive self-esteem that will later on benefit him/her in adult life by considering just a few aspects. First of all, it is important that parents find the time to play with their children, to pay them attention and listen to what they want to communicate. They also should avoid harsh and indiscriminate punishing, and just accept that mistakes happen; they can also be positive role models. And last, but not least, they should be supportive and encourage new experiences.
4. The importance of early reading
Developmental studies show that the sooner a child is exposed to the written language the richer his/her vocabulary will be later on. This fact goes against all traditional schooling programs and the truth is that not many parents expose their children to the written language before age 6 or 7. Besides getting one-on-one time with their parents, the child benefits greatly from early reading aloud because the activity helps with developing cognitive skills, the memory and with building motivation, and it encourages curiosity.
5. Managing your child’s fears and anxieties
Many children develop irrational fears and feel anxious about things that in reality are not as scary as they believe them to be. A parent’s primary job is to help the child address and suppress these fears, because if they are not treated with the corresponding importance the chances are that they will be carried out through adulthood and cause psychological distress. For example, the commonly found fear of darkness or of the “boogie man” can be addressed by encouraging the child to talk about it freely. Parents can also help their children gradually confront the fear, but always on their own terms and when they feel ready to do that.
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The growing popularity of men’s diamond rings proves that these sparkling gemstones are not just a girl’s best friend. Men’s diamond rings make for excellent wedding bands for a variety of visual, financial and romantic reasons. Here are four reasons to consider buying your groom a diamond ring for his wedding band. 1. Diamonds are tough. The natural beauty of diamonds sometimes overshadows the fact that they are incredibly durable. A 10 out of 10 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness, diamonds are the hardest naturally occurring material. Because of their durability, there’s little question why diamonds have become such a popular choice for both men’s and women’s wedding bands. Diamonds are extremely scratch-resistant and are also not prone to oxidizing or reacting when exposed to chemical materials. This makes men’s diamond rings extremely suitable for everyday wear and ideal for use as wedding bands or anniversary rings.
2. Diamonds are financially sound. With a long standing history of being used in upscale jewelry, diamonds have a luxury appeal that is unlikely to wane any time soon. Do a little groundwork before buying men’s diamond rings to ensure that you are making the best investment possible. Unsurprisingly, “natural” diamonds are more valuable than synthetic diamonds or diamonds that have been treated in some way. Familiarize yourself with the four C’s of diamonds (cut, clarity, color and carat weight), as well as what is sometimes referred to as the fifth C: certification. Diamonds that have been certified are generally considered to be a better investment than non-certified diamonds.
3. More than just “white.” While white or colorless diamonds may be considered the classic choice for men’s diamond rings, there are actually far more options available.Brown and yellow diamonds actually occur more frequently in nature, and can be less expensive than similar styles using colorless stones. Guys naturally gravitate towards the warm masculine look of men’s diamond rings with brown stones, or as they’re more often referred to as, cognac stones.
Another frequently sought after choice for men’s diamond rings is black diamonds. The rich ebony hue of black diamonds is undeniably striking and slightly edgier than white diamonds. Important to note: most of the black diamonds used in men’s diamond rings have been color-treated to achieve their deep jet color (naturally black diamonds are very expensive and not a true black).
4. He’ll have a ring that matches yours yet is utterly unique. With so much attention and energy devoted to finding the bride’s engagement ring, the groom’s wedding band can often be neglected and almost treated as an afterthought. Buying him a diamond ring for his wedding band focuses some of the attention on your groom, and makes him more of an equal figure in the wedding process. Many men these days aren’t satisfied sticking with a plain traditional band, hence the growing popularity of men’s diamond rings. Since most men’s diamond rings use smaller stones that function more as design elements, you’ll be able to get him a stylish band that is more reflective of his personal taste, but without breaking the budget.
Make sure to also consider setting materials outside of the standard precious metals like gold and platinum. Precious metal palladium is being seen more and more as a setting for men’s diamond rings, but other less expensive options also exist. Contemporary metals like cobalt chrome and Argentium silver offer settings that are traditional in appearance, yet a fraction of the price of their precious metal counterparts.
Needless to say, there are many reasons why men’s diamond rings are worth your consideration when choosing his “forever” band. No matter what the diamond band you end up choosing looks like, he will have a ring that truly reflects your love for him.
This Guest post is contributed by Tanya Nauri who writes articles on men’s diamond rings and wedding bands for JustMensRings.com
We drink it every morning at home, on our way to work or at the office. For centuries it has served us well and because we recognize that our lives could not unfold without it, today, coffee is the second most traded commodity on earth, after oil, of course. Whether you need the buzz or high it gives in just a few minutes after drinking it, or you enjoy its amazingly delicious flavor, no one can deny having drunk at least one cup of coffee by the time he/she was 20 years old. This exquisite beverage’s long-term effects have been studied in enough detail for us to have a good picture with regard to the advantages and disadvantages of drinking coffee every day. So, let us have a closer look at what we know today about coffee to be true.
The myth of coffee or caffeine having an impact on our daily intake of water has finally found a resolution. Actually, the answer to this dilemma has two answers: yes and no, each with circumstantial validity. Beginning with the “yes” side of the story, people know that coffee is a natural diuretic. Because of the effects it can have on our body, coffee also helps push liquids out of our systems, and when drinking 4 cups of coffee a day is a routine done without replenishing the water resources, specific dehydration symptoms will manifest: fatigue, poor concentration, and headaches. The “no” part of the answer implies that we remember to always drink a glass of water with every cup of coffee.
Caffeine is the most common used central nervous system stimulant worldwide, and for this reason alone researchers have conducted a number of longitudinal studies, mainly on women, to establish if there is any connection between coffee consumption and depression. A BBC article from 2011 suggests that caffeine may help prevent depression according to the findings published in a renowned medical magazine. The study reported that some 2,600 women developed depression in less than 10 years after the study began, and they belonged to the category of subjects who tended to be non- or low-coffee drinkers. For those who drank 2-3 cups of coffee per week the risk of developing depression decreased by 15%; as for those who drank 3-4 cups/week, the risk decreased by 20%.
Also Read: 5 Addictive Things You Do Every Day
Many people dismiss a headache or feeling dizzy without giving them a second thought; however, both symptoms may indicate low blood pressure – a condition that should not be treated lightly because in time it can block oxygen and nutrients from reaching the brain. There are a number of reasons why someone might have low blood pressure and the most frequent causes are: dehydration, pregnancy, and heart problems. Besides increasing the salt intake and drinking more water, a very effective home remedy for low blood pressure (headaches) is drinking a cup of black coffee which will increase your heart rate immediately, thus raising your blood pressure.
An impressive number of studies have been conducted in order to establish coffee health benefits, especially in supporting the body’s fight against different types of cancer. The results are astounding, and they show the following: that drinking up to three cups of coffee per day can reduce the risk for women to develop ovarian cancer by 5%, and for those who have never been on the contraceptive pill or HRT the risk was reduced up to 43%; that people who have a daily intake of 4 cups are less likely to suffer from 4 types of cancer: prostate, colorectal, mouth and larynx; that if you drink 6 or more cups of coffee on a daily basis you can reduce the risk of developing some types of skin cancer up to 31%. Of course, there are also noticeable side effects to drinking 3, 4 or more than six cups of coffee a day that everyone should consider before anything, including increased blood pressure, the risk of cardiovascular illnesses, of developing rheumatoid arthritis, and even breast shrinking for women.
No one can deny that Christmas is one of the most popular holidays in the year, being celebrated annually by billions of people all over the world. As with every major holiday, people get into some sort of shopping frenzy or hysteria, but with Christmas the drama is twice the size. Within a society driven by consumerism and where advertising dictates spending habits, Christmas has turned from a time to commemorate Jesus’ birth and help others to a peak selling point in every store’s calendar. Christmas, as we celebrate it today, is only a ghost of what our ancestors experienced a few centuries ago. Let us find out the true origins of our Christmas traditions.
Have you ever wondered why we celebrate Jesus’ birth on the 25th of December? The truth behind this tradition is that if you read the Bible from cover to cover, you will find nothing to support this hypothesis. On the contrary, the sacred texts offer few clues, if any; they do not mention the date or the time of year when Jesus was born. However, there is a reference in Luke 2:8, according to which at that time the shepherds were watching over their flocks in the fields which indicates that the event probably happened sometime during the spring months. Clement of Alexandria, one of the first Christian teachers to write about Jesus’ birth suggests that the most probable dates when it occurred were either on the 20th of May or on the 21st of March. Later on, by the fourth century C.E. there were two dates, widely recognized and associated with Jesus’ birthday: December 25th (the Romans) and January the 6th (Egypt, Asia Minor).
The tales of Santa Clause can be traced back to the Dutch figure of Sinterklaas or to the historical Saint Nicholas who brought gifts to the poor. Every other detail about Santa’s whereabouts at the North Pole, his febrile preparations together with his magical elves just before the 24th of December, his magical powers of reading into children’s hearts and seeing whether they were good or naughty, his down-the-chimney method of delivering presents, and even the reindeer pulling his sleigh – all of these can be gradually attributed to the fervent imagination displayed in books such as: “A New Year’s Present, to the Little Ones From Five to Ten” (1921), and “A Visit from St. Nicholas” (1823) in which Clement Clarke Moore named part of Santa’s reindeer for the first time.
Not many of us may know this, but the mistletoe is actually a parasitic plant with poisonous white berries. So how is it that it has become associated with kissing and affection? The mistletoe Christmas tradition can be partly attributed to the Celtic Druids. Because the mistletoe grew on their sacred tree, the oak, they not only considered it a sign of good fortune, but also thought that it could heal illness, disperse bad spirits, and even increase fertility. Druid priests used to perform a ceremony for its cutting, and then gifted one spray to each Druid family to hang over a doorway. Although it underwent several drastic changes, the “kissing ball” was revived beginning with the Victorian era in England, spreading worldwide as a symbol of holiday affection and warmth.
There are a number of theories as to the real origin of the Christmas tree. Apparently pagan Europeans used to decorate their houses and barns with evergreen trees at New Year’s in order to scare the devil away. Also, during the middle ages the evergreen tree was decorated on every 24th of December with apples to commemorate the Paradise Tree, and Adam and Eve. In present-day Latvia and Estonia, around 1440, the evergreen tree was decorated on Christmas Day with sweets for the first time. The records show that the next years the beautifully decorated tree was taken in the Town Hall Square where everyone danced around it to celebrate Christmas Day. Later on, during the 18th and 19th centuries, the custom was gradually adopted by the European nobility, afterwards spreading to Canada, and then to the rest of the United States.
What we do on an everyday basis, starting with our morning rituals and ending with our sleeping patterns, makes us who we are more than some might be inclined to believe. For it is our actions that define us who we are, and not the elusive image we have created in our minds about who we are. Unknowingly sometimes, we engage in behaviors that seem harmless, but are nonetheless, highly addictive.
When the clock starts ringing there is only one thing on our minds: “I need my coffee before I can do anything!”. We use it on an everyday basis indiscriminately, although some people have turned to black or green tea for a milder similar buzz. Its effects are stunning: it will stimulate your central nervous system and metabolism in a matter of minutes after consumption, lasting up to 5 hours. Tasty and efficient, thousands of people drink it every day and with every cup they become more tolerant to it needing higher doses for the same buzz. In many ways, caffeine is a highly commercialized and accepted drug, just like alcohol. Caffeinism is the official name for caffeine dependency; symptoms include nervousness, restlessness, insomnia, headaches and heart palpitations. For those who have been brave enough to give coffee up, the process is painful and discomforting, the withdrawal effects lasting up to 9 days and they are very similar to those experienced with caffeinism.
Just like with alcoholism or caffeinism, watching TV shows can be subtly, yet very addictive in the long-run. If when you wake up the morning, your first thought is: “I need to check which TV shows are aired today!” and then you jump to your computer to check, chances are that you are already addicted to at least one show. There is also TV addiction that manifests as the viewer’s compulsive need to turn on the TV without intending to actually watch anything. But TV shows addiction is quite different in that it offers some sort of “high”, excitement and thrill due to the intensity the viewer experiences while receiving his/her drama/fantasy/romance/adventure/comedy daily dose. When confronted with this addiction some people will say that they are watching TV shows to: get their mind off things, to relax, to escape from this world’s limits. Essentially, TV shows are addictive because they offer people the chance to project themselves in another reality where things are more interesting, in a dream world they wish they could inhabit.
No one would have thought that such a daily routine as applying lip balm can be addictive. Actually, as with many other commercialized products, lip balms contain ingredients which if administered in any other form can kill you. Many lip balm users claim that they get a buzz from using it and this is easily explained by the menthol, camphor and phenol that most contain. Phenol, however, is the real culprit in this mix: it is normally used as an embalming agent, known to be highly corrosive to the eyes, skin and respiratory tract. Also, if injected with just one gram it can cause instant death. The catch is that these ingredients will actually irritate your lips thus requiring you to apply more and more. So, while you are trying to moisturize and heal, lip balm does not only harm your lips by keeping them dry, but it also creates an addiction that you are seldom aware of.
Stress, frustration, not enough time to sleep or rest, pressure and responsibilities – if you throw all these in the same bowl you get an explosive cocktail Molotov bound to drive you to your wits ends. The challenges and problems we are confronted with every day are the sources of our fears and anxieties, leading to sleepless nights or even insomnia, nervousness, irritability, lack of focus and they keep building up spirally. One of the things that we sometimes unconsciously resort to relieve some of that anxiety is biting our nails. This action, also known as a behavioral tic or onychophagia, is meant to induce a soothing feeling because it temporarily confirms that we are still able to do something even when we are mentally stuck. Not many people know this, but nail biting is classified as an impulse control disorder in DSM-IV-R, and it falls in the same category as other body-focused repetitive behaviors such as: dermatillomania (skin picking), dermatophagia (skin biting), and trichotillomania (the urge to pull out hair).
There is much public and scientific debate on whether video games addiction should be classified as a real addiction in the DSM and treated as one. On the one hand, studies show that approximately 3.0% of the game players experience the symptoms of pathological gaming, some of them being reported to have died after playing days on end without eating or drinking. On the other hand, recent research points out that gaming is meant to give the players the means to save the world, while they learn the habits of heroes. It is suggested that playing video games trains our problem-solving skills, thus being more beneficial than harmful.
After going through all these daily addictive behaviors, which one of them does it seem to you less likely to take over your personality and develop into a real disorder?
Photography is, in many ways, the art of capturing and recording individual and collective history. With our unreliable memories, pictures are not just practical, but vital for recollecting and remembering those special moments or people in our lives.
Photographs have a remarkable quality in that they reveal reality as it is. Symmetry and shadows, shapes and actions, emotions and beliefs – all of them have been in the center of attention, and no other technology has had such a long relationship with mankind’s true nature as photography has had. The collection of photographs that will be presented below is proof of how much a picture can influence the way we perceive the world as it is today.
This photograph was taken on the day when the second atomic bomb was launched by the American troops. Although, the name of the photographer is unknown, we can easily infer that it was probably taken by a bystander citizen who was some 100 miles away from Nagasaki. We can see the famous mushroom cloud steadily rising above the ground while a wide circle of dust and debris swirls around it. Today, we know that that cloud rose about 18 kilometers above the bomb’s hypo-center and that it killed everything alive within a mile’s distance, even the insects.
The Flower Power Movement marks America’s 1960’s and early 1970’s as the hippie era, when women’s emancipation and Martin Luther King’s “I have a Dream” changed society forever. Specifically, this photograph was taken on October 22nd, 1967, during an anti-Vietnam War march. As you can observe, the protester had fearlessly approached the soldiers’ rifles and is seen placing a flower in one of the barrels. The contrasting sides, on the left the soldiers – embodying power and war – and on the right the demonstrators – embodying courage, peace and beauty of life -, have a remarkable effect on the viewer. It is of no surprise that this iconic photo earned photojournalist, Bernie Boston, the Pulitzer Prize.
The story behind this photograph starts with the war in Vietnam, the unbearable living conditions, the communist government, and the unending massacres and suffering. In the spring of 1963 the Buddhist priests together with other monks and nuns, decided that peaceful and silent protesting for religious equality is no longer an option. The decision that they took at that time lead to the following events: on the fatal day of 11th of June, 1963, Buddhist monk Thich Quang Duc is engulfed by flames in the middle of the street as a sign of protest. Malcolm W. Browne was the only reporter on the scene. He won the Pulitzer Prize in 1963 for documenting this event.
This photograph is also taken during the Vietnam War period and it depicts the shooting of a Viet Cog prisoner right when it happened on the 1st of February, 1968. There are also two other pictures made public: one with the scene before the shooting, with the general walking next to the prisoner while interrogating him, and another after the incident. It was later found out that the Viet Cog was sentenced to death after he had killed several Americans. By taking this picture, Edward Adams did irreparable damage to General Nguyen Ngoc Loan’s career and honor, although the “bad guy” in this scene is not the shooter, but the prisoner.
Today the world knows that the Buchenwald concentration camp was one of the first and the largest camp established on German soil at Hitler’s command. As the picture obviously shows, the primary cause of death amongst the prisoners was starvation due to very harsh living conditions. But many others were literally worked to death. In the background, American senator, Alben W. Barkley of Kentucky, is seen looking at the mountain of corpses as he was inspecting the concentration camp after the fall of the Nazi regime. While being both shocking and horrifying, this picture stands proof to the atrocities that humankind is capable of. It was taken by a photographer that preferred to keep his identity anonymous.
If there is anything that we can learn from these pictures, that is never to repeat history.