clairestewart

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  1. Do you love nature and the great outdoors? If you’re looking for a relaxing and stress-relieving activity, there are few places better to find this than the great outdoors. Exercise can be a a great stress-reliever. It’s not only essential for overall health and wellness, but it’s also a natural mood booster. Some activities have the added benefit of relieving the symptoms of chronic pain conditions. Here are five calming outdoor activities your doctor, chiropractor, or health care provider may recommend for de-stressing in green spaces. 1. Gardening You don’t have to be a master gardener to enjoy the benefits of planting and caring for ornamental or edible plants. Spending time in the garden reminds many of childhood’s zen-like state of deep play. A Dutch study from 2012 suggested that gardening is among the most stress-relieving of leisure activities. Six or more hours per week spent gardening can even help improve the symptoms of mood disorders including major depression and bipolar II disorder. 2. Swimming A dip in a lake, a pool, or the ocean not only releases endorphins but also builds strength without overly stressing the joints, making it an ideal exercise for those recovering from an injury. An hour of swimming at a moderate pace burns up to 500 calories, but you don’t have to exercise vigorously to appreciate the calming effects of spending time in warm, blue water and sunshine. 3. Tai Chi This favorite exercise of those with health conditions that limit their ability to tolerate strenuous activity combines deep, mindful breathing with a series of slow, graceful movements. It requires no equipment. You can participate in tai chi formally in a class in the park or you can learn a few moves and practice them alone in a quiet outdoor spot. Its many benefits include increased aerobic fitness, energy, flexibility, and stamina as well as improving your overall sense of well-being. If you have an injury, are pregnant, or have a chronic pain condition, talk to your chiropractor or personal physician before starting a new exercise program. 4. Walking Walking is an activity most people can do without any special training or planning at no cost. A 2013 study in the UK suggested that walking outdoors puts the brain into a state of calm awareness similar to that of meditation. 5. Yoga Like tai chi, yoga can be practiced alone or in a group and is enhanced by being practiced outdoors during pleasant weather conditions. Outdoor yoga increases focus and wakeful relaxation, heightens the breath awareness needed for yoga, and replenishes the energy that extended periods of stress deplete. Conclusion Each of these five activities is good for relieving stress. They’re not the only activities that work for this purpose, those. Any outdoor activity you enjoy can help you relieve stress if you make time for it.
  2. You might be surprised by all of the crazy possibilities out there for people to go green. From what you buy for your day-to-day office operations to how you decorate your office, you can save a lot of money. It might be just what you need to improve your bank account and be more eco-friendly at the same time. Opt for Sustainable Materials Whether you’re redecorating your law office in hopes to bring in new clients or simply in hopes to cut costs down the road, choose sustainable materials like hardwood floors. This is a bit of an initial investment to install, but you won’t have to replace or repair them often, and with well-placed rugs, you can ensure that they don’t get damaged. Hardwood and bamboo can even last the life of the building. Additionally, hardwood floors look really nice and usually appeal greatly to potential clients. It’s a win-win. Opt for LED Lights LED lights are higher priced than traditional ones, but they use significantly less energy and last a lot longer. This means you make the investment knowing you won't have to replace bulbs as often. Plus, it’s entirely possible that you’ll start seeing savings as soon as you get your electric bill the first month after you put in your LED lights. Replace Appliances with Energy Star Versions Your office probably doesn’t have many appliances, but what appliances you have could likely use an update. They could be chugging away every day, contributing to high electric bills without you even realizing it. Energy Star appliances are rated for efficient energy use, and the best part is that they don’t sacrifice what you’d expect from regular GE appliances.You could update the fridge in your breakroom, along with your water heater, air conditioners and dehumidifiers, depending on where your office is located. Energy Star could be just where you need to go to replace any older model appliances in place. Choose Alternate Energy Alternative energy options are increasing everywhere, so look into what’s available in your area. You could have access to wind, solar, or geothermal power, just to name a few. Talk to your utility provider to find your options. If there’s nothing, consider installing solar panels on the roof of your office. Tapping into alternative energy often warrants tax credits from the government too, so not only does it save you money on your utility bill, but it saves money at the end of the year with taxes. Install a Smart Thermostat Offices are often known for being too hot or too cold, especially if you have both males and females working for you. Someone will be unhappy with the temperature. You might even have employees adjusting the thermostat themselves, if they’re uncomfortable. You can save on your electric bill by installing a smart thermostat. It will adjust the temperatures to what you set depending on the time of day and year and your employees won’t be able to fiddle with it. Another option is installing a lock box around the thermostat so that only authorized personnel (you and your law partners) can make adjustments to the base temperatures. Knowing about the crazy ways to go green could be just what you need to save money. Your law firm’s account will thank you. Not only will you be doing something to help the environment while saving money, you might even be able to grow your clientele.
  3. Drought brings special challenges to dry and desert climate dwellers. Droughts impact the available water, making it scarce to completely unavailable for potentially long periods. Water is necessary for drinking, growing the vegetables, raising livestock, bathing, cooking, cleaning, laundry and sewage transport and treatment. To ensure continued water availability during dry times and get the most of your available water, here are four ways to do your part in a drought. Water-Saving Behaviors The simplest, and cheapest, way to save water is changing your habits surrounding regular water-using activities. Washing cars with a self-closing nozzle, cleaning driveways with a broom, turning the water off while brushing teeth or soaping up in the shower, watering plants in cooler times of the day, and composting over using the garbage disposal all greatly reduce water usage. Water-Saving Technology Although it is simple to change behaviors, it is not always easy. This is where technology comes to the rescue. Using a smart controller in yard and garden irrigation can save water and money. Smart controllers run your irrigation timers while syncing with weather monitoring systems to turn off your system or delay watering on rainy days. Installing low-flow faucets (including aerators), toilets, shower heads and drip irrigation systems all can work together with a smart controller to ensure you are using the least amount of water for your regular activities. Implement Drought-Tolerant Landscaping In addition to delivering the water more efficiently with technology, using nature can help us save water too. Removing grass, plants requiring large amounts of water and non-natives from your lawn and garden, while replacing them with native and drought-tolerant species can dramatically decrease your water demand. Re-Using Water, aka Greywater Installing high-tech greywater systems, or even saving the cold water from a slow-heating shower in a bucket for the garden effectively recycles the water you use to be used again. Re-using bath, laundry and dish-water for the lawn and garden can greatly reduce your water demand while increasing the utility of the water you already regularly use. The demand we place on the water system in dry climates and deserts during droughts determines how much is left for the environment, other people and the community of individuals around us who all depend on that water into the future. To ensure you, your neighbors and the environment have the water needed reduce your demand while using water more wisely and efficiently through the many methods available to us all.