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11 Signs Your Friendship Is Holding You Back Tags: #friends # support

Friendships often seem like relationships that will last forever. Your work bestie, your college roomie, your long-time BFF ó these people are your people, and it's assumed they'll always be there. But sometimes things don't feel right, and you may have the sneaking suspicion that the friendship is holding you back. When that happens, moving on may be the best option.

This can happen when you outgrow a friendship, which is often the case once you head off to college, or go through another major life change. But this is even more so the case when a friendship has turned toxic. "In the same way that great friendships can help you achieve your personal goals ... a toxic friendship can block you from moving forward," says Sally Horchow, broadway producer and co-author of The Art of Friendship: 70 Simple Rules for Making Meaningful Connections, in an email to Bustle. "Itís hard to admit that a friendship has become stale ó much less toxic. But once you have, itís imperative that you quickly get out of the situation."If you think that's the case with one of your pals, Horchow suggests slowly backing out of the friendship the way you would a bad date. "The best way is to simply stop making plans with that person, and cut off communication with them," she says. "If that feels harsh, then wean off more gradually ... Fewer and fewer texts over time, until itís silent." Read on for some signs that your friendship is most definitely holding you back.

1. They Don't Support You Making A Change

Let's say you want to make a positive change ó maybe it's exercising more, drinking less, or giving up smoking. A good friend will be on board with that, and may even help you out. A toxic friend, on the other hand, will likely come up short in the "supportive friend" department. They may even give you a hard time, Horchow told me, or encourage you to do the very thing you're trying to avoid. Not cool.

2. You Can't Share Your Accomplishments

Besides maybe your mom or your SO, your friends should be some of the first people you notify when things are going well. So take note if you keep your accomplishments on the down low. "If you're worried to tell a friend about a new accomplishment, triumph, or life event, you might want to look harder at that relationship," said health expert Rebecca Butler on MindBodyGreen.com. There may be some underlying competition or discomfort there that's only going to hold you back.

3. You're Never Your True Self

"Most of us have a tendency to rein in certain parts of ourselves around certain people, but when it comes to a true best friend, you should be able to let it all hang out ó or at the very least, be able to be honest about who you are and what you feel," noted health writer Claire Hannum on SELF. If that's not the case, it may be time to move on to a friend group where you can truly be yourself.

4. They Seem Jealous Of You

Remember what I said about your so-called friend not supporting your positive change? "A friend ... who discourages you from making that change, or even threatens to stand in the way of it (because, perhaps, that person thinks it will threaten their importance in your life) is not a friend to keep," Horchow says. You want a friend who sees you as a separate and amazing person ó not someone they compare themselves to.

5. You've Grown In Different Directions

I remember the moment I realized some of my high school friends and I had grown in different directions. It sucked, but moving on gave me the chance to be the new 20-something I found myself to be. "This can be such a bittersweet reality of young, intense friendships," Hannum said. "Maybe once you wanted the exact same things out of life, and now, your values are clashing. Sometimes that's just too impossible to ignore."

6. He Or She Is Constantly Letting You Down

A friendship shouldn't make your life stressful. So don't put up with a friend who constantly lets you down. As health writer Kassandra Brabaw said on Prevention, "... if she's always rescheduling, always late, and always forgets to call, then there might be a problem." This type of disrespect is simply not something you should have to deal with.

7. You Don't Get Anything Out Of It

If you've been friends with someone for a while, it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly what it is you get out of the relationship. Maybe your friend seems to be happy and content with how things are, but do you? "Friendships are supposed to be meaningful in some way for both parties,"said Butler. "If you hesitate when you have time scheduled, you might want to stop and look into that feeling."

8. There's Some Kind Of Unknown Tension

You wouldn't put up with tension in your personal life, so take note if you're putting up with it from a friend. "Usually, these end up exploding before they get any better or worse," Hannum said. "Sometimes, that confrontation leads to understanding each other better than ever, which is awesome. Other times, though, it leads to the grim realization that your friendship isn't working anymore."

9. Your Friend Doesn't Expand Your Horizons

If you truly want friends to push you forward ó instead of holding you back ó then look to surround yourself with friends who push the boundaries. Look for people who introduce you to interesting ideas, or who are always down to try something new. It's perfectly OK to (politely) drop anyone who doesn't fit the bill.

10. It Feels Like A Waste Of Time

We all need those pals who pop over to say hi, or to chat about the weather. But it should never be at the expense of doing things that matter to you. Think of what you can accomplish when you clear up that schedule, and devote yourself only to relationships more worth your while.

11. When It's All About The Drama

Occasional disagreements are to be expected, and good friends will weather them together. And yet, in the same way you don't want to clog your calendar with pointless relationships, you also don't want to bog yourself down with drama, according to Hannum.

Life's too short to be held back by less-than-stellar relationships. So don't be afraid to move on from the ones that are stale, toxic, or not worth your time.

Images: Pexels (12)

Why You Need to Put Yourself First and How to Do It Tags: #yourself

Before I had my daughter in 2005, at age 32, I spent my time boxing, surfing, traveling the world as part of my job with a tour operator, and fixing up a dilapidated beach house with my husband. I had lots of fun, but spent very little time doing things for other people.

I made time for my husband, my family, and my friends, but I was mostly able to do what I wanted, when I wanted.

Then, we had baby.

For the first year of my daughterís life she came before everything else. In a way, it was a relief to look outside myself so completely. Thereís a dark side to constantly focusing on yourself. It can lead to a rigid way of thinking, an inability to be flexible or to compromise. If youíre constantly looking at yourself in the mirror, you canít see anyone around you.

Just as I was coming out of my baby fog, and starting to get back into focusing on my own health, my son was born 2008. Now I had two peopleís needs to put before my own.

It took two years until I was able to think about putting my needs first again.

I realized I had swung too far in the other direction, and I needed to put myself higher on my list of priorities. I couldnít go back to the way I was before kids, but I had to find a way to prioritize health and fitness while building my career, taking care of my kids, and spending time with my husband ó all while not getting buried under mountains of laundry.

Why You Need to Put Yourself First and How to Do It

First, Establish Priorities

I think sometimes people misunderstand what it means to ďput yourself first.Ē It doesnít mean doing what you want to do all the time. It doesnít mean ignoring the needs of others. Itís all a matter of priorities and understanding the interplay between taking care of yourself and others.

I have four main priorities in my life: family, community, health, and work. Two of these are self directed: my health and my work. Two equally important priorities, my family and my community, are more altruistic.

The reality is that all of my priorities are intertwined, and the success of one depends on the other.

If I ignore my health, itís difficult to be there for my family, both mentally and physically. My workouts help stabilize my mood, give me more energy, and prolong my life. This is why I donít feel any shame putting a high priority on my hour in the gym. Itís not only about looking good in my lululemon pants (although that is a nice side benefit), itís about having the energy to be engaged and present with my husband and children.

Exercising also benefits my work. Writing requires creativity, and that doesnít always happen sitting in front of a computer. Biking home from the gym is when I get my best ideas. Itís not a surprise to me that studies show exercise boosts creativity. I experience it firsthand almost every day.

Why You Need to Put Yourself First and How to Do It

On the surface, it might seem like family, especially kids, would be at odds with health and work. And, truth be told, sometimes they are, especially when the kids were babies. But as I worked through the process of focusing more on my own health and my career, I began to see how my habits benefit my family.

Itís important to me to eat lots of vegetables. Every night I make a salad plus some other vegetable. My kids have grown up seeing all sorts of vegetables appear on their plates, and itís made an impact. They happily consume salad, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and kale. (Iím still working on chard.) My kids also benefit from my healthy habits because they are growing up with an example of parents who prioritize health and fitness.

The community part of this equation is interesting. For me, community encompasses my friends, my neighborhood, and any organizations that are meaningful to me. I give back to my community by volunteering monthly at a local soup kitchen, helping the local elementary school, or doing favors for my friends.

These things are all about putting others first, but focusing on community does help me at times, too. If Iíve done a favor for a friend ó letís say watched her kids so she can go to the gym ó I donít feel bad asking her for the same favor. Itís important to ask for help as much as you offer it. It puts you in a vulnerable position, but nothing strengthens a friendship more than asking for a favor.

Volunteering within my community helps connect me to a cause greater than myself, and gives meaning to my life. Having a purpose, and being connected to a larger cause, has a positive effect on well-being and overall satisfaction. Happiness is tied to getting what you want, which does not always happen. Meaning is longer lasting, better able to endure the vicissitudes of life.

Why You Need to Put Yourself First and How to Do It

How the Whole Life Challenge Helps You Commit to Yourself

Intellectually you may understand how prioritizing your health benefits those around you, but putting this knowledge into practice can be difficult.

Thatís where the Whole Life Challenge comes in.

Making a financial commitment and joining a supportive team is a great incentive to start putting your health first.

But before getting started, you have to accept a few things are likely to suffer. Life is full of tradeoffs and youíll be more successful if youíre also realistic.

During the week, I have to let household chores slide. Itís how I make room for exercise and cooking a healthy meal every night, on top of work and getting kids to various practices and lessons. So, the laundry piles up and I do four or five loads on the weekend instead. In addition, I commit part of each Sunday to meal planning and shopping for food so I can ensure another successful week.

But what is most important is that I donít try to do everything myself. Everyone in the family pitches in. If youíre worried how your family will react to your newly rearranged priorities, talk it over with them. Reassure them the big things will not change, and explain the benefits of you focusing on yourself.

Why You Need to Put Yourself First and How to Do It

When You Get in the Way of You

What if the barrier to putting yourself first is ó yourself? In this case, it might be useful to think about why you have trouble prioritizing your own needs.

  • Is always putting others first part of your identity?
  • Do you dislike exercising and eating healthy, and use putting others first as a way to avoid doing those things?
  • Another misconception about putting yourself first is that it entails only enjoyable, relaxing activities. This isnít the case.

When it comes to health, putting yourself first means exercising when you donít want to or drinking sparkling water when youíd rather have a soda. These things may not be entirely pleasurable, or what you feel like doing, but they will improve your life in the long run.

Review: How to Put Yourself First

  1. Make a list of your priorities. Keep it short.
  2. Ask for help from your family and your community.
  3. Keep a balance between treating yourself and giving to others.
  4. Remember putting yourself first sometimes involves doing things that are difficult, but benefit you in the long run.
5 Natural Ways To Remove Rust Tags: #rust#natural

5 Ways To Naturally Remove Rust

There are so many things in our homes and gardens that get rusty and instead of having to replace everything we can simply clean them up naturally with just some things that we have around the house.

Itís so easy to grab a few essential items that you have in your cupboard and make your household and garden products as good as new so that you donít have to keep replacing them.

Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola has long been used to get rid of rust and lots of other different types of build ups due to its high acidic content and oxidating nature. Yes, you can use other types of cola (cheaper varieties) but Coca-Cola is the one thatís been the most tested and so itís probably best to just get the one thatís tried and tested. The citric acid in Coca-Cola has abrasive citric acid and is powerful, so all you have to do is pour the Coca-Cola on the rust. You can also soak a cloth in Cola and rub it vigorously on the rust in order to remove it. For small items, you can leave them to soak in the Coca-Cola to get rid of all of those rust marks.

Baking Soda

baking soda

While the acid in Coca-Cola is perfect for getting rid of rust, it maybe strange to think that an alkaline substance is just as good at doing the exact same thing. Mix the baking soda with a small amount of water so that it is relatively thick and then paste it on to the†rusty†area and leave it for a few hours. You can take a†scrubbing†brush and then remove the past, with the loosened rust coming away as well.

Lime Juice with Salt

Lime juice

Take your rusty object and sprinkle it with salt. If itís a large item, take the salt and rub it into the rust (with a scrubbing cloth so that you protect your hands). Then follow this with†plentiful†quantity†of lime juice. You need to have enough salt so that it all doesnít dissolve in the lime juice. After a few hours, return with your scrubbing cloth or brush and brush away the solution (along with the rust).

VinegarVinegar

If you donít have any of the above in your home, you may want to try white vinegar. Vinegar is good for so many things and itís good for rust too! Take your rusty object and put it in a bowl with vinegar thatís been partially diluted with water. This is perfect for small items that you can bundle in at the same time. Within minutes, youíll start to see the rust flake away but the amount of time that you need to leave it there will depend on how rusty it is and how long itís been rusted for.

Lemon Juice and Cream of Tartar (For Removing Rust From Stainless Steel)

lemon juice

As if the above examples were not enough, a great way to remove rust from stainless steel is by mixing lemon juice and cream of†tartar†onto a washcloth. Just like with the Coca-Cola, the lemon contains citric acid and so when itís added to the cream of tartar it†becomes†an abrasive device. This method is great because when you use scouring pads to clean stainless steel it can often cause scratches and so this is a much better way of doing things.

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