Keep your circadian rhythm in line
Your body’s natural clock, or circadian rhythm, is integral to regulating your functions. Keep it regulated by making sure you receive daily sunlight and bright light exposure during the day, then limit blue light exposure such as from TVs or phones right before bed. Make sure to limit the number of naps during the day and if you do, keep them short. Also aim to get up and go to bed at around the same time each day.
Pay attention to what you eat
Consuming caffeine only in the morning and not after around 3 p.m. is key to getting better sleep. Caffeine is a stimulant and can stay in your bloodstream for hours making it harder to fall asleep. Consider also taking melatonin before bed, a hormone to aid in deep rest. Other supplements such as magnesium, glycine, and L-theanine can also help.
Create a positive sleep environment
Set up your room in a way to maximize comfortable nighttime rest- ensure the space is dark, minimize external noise, and set it to a comfortable temperature. Make sure your bed and pillow are comfortable, adequate, and upgraded for your body. Creating a nighttime routine such as taking a shower and then reading can also help.
Getting better sleep takes time and dedication, but with the right mindset and some changed patterns, it can be improved!
Questions about getting better sleep to discuss:
- What are some things you incorporate into your nighttime routine?
- Do you believe certain supplements aid in sleeping better?
- Do you think improving your nighttime rest would aid in your productivity and how?
- How good is your sleeping quality, and what could be improved?
- Is the quantity of sleep also important for you to feel refreshed the next day?
Digital Marketer At Expert Circle
Here are the important ones, what they do, and all the info you need about them!
The most important vitamins
There are 13 essential vitamins known to make you the healthiest version of yourself: Vitamins C, D, E, K, B, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), pyridoxine (B6), biotin (B7), folate (B9) and cobalamin (B12). Here are the key ones, what they do and all the information you need about them.
- The key player in the growth and cell development, Vitamin A, helps give you strong nails, hair, bones and teeth. Vitamin A also helps prevent night blindness, and may even prevent lung cancer. Salmon, cold-water fishes, egg yolks and fortified dairy can give you your supply of Vitamin A.
- An important helper with calcium absorption, as well as building strong bones and teeth, is Vitamin D. You’ll find it in fortified dairy, fortified soy and rice products, butter, egg yolks, fatty fish and fish-liver oil. Your body will also produce Vitamin D when you are exposed to the sun.
- Vitamin E, the protector of fatty acids, is in charge of maintaining muscles and red blood cells. It also is an important antioxidant. Consuming eggs, vegetable oils, margarine, mayonnaise as well as nuts, seeds, fortified cereals will give you your needed supplies of Vitamin E.
- Responsibility for blood clotting comes from Vitamin K. Leafy greens, spinach, broccoli and liver are the main sources of K.
- Vitamin C from citrus, potatoes, melons, berries, peppers, broccoli, will help your body with healing, iron absorption and is known for beefing up your immune system as well as strengthening blood vessels.
The key B vitamins
- Thiamine, or B1, is core to a healthy metabolism, normal digestion and good nerve function. Eating pork, legumes, nuts, seeds, and grains will give you your dose of B1.
- Riboflavin or B2 deals with energy metabolism, as well as giving you healthy skin and good vision. Fortified cereals, grains, lean meat, poultry, dairy products, fortified soy and rice beverages, raw mushrooms is where you can get your supply.
- Niacin or B3 metabolizes energy and promotes growth. Protein sources like lean meats, poultry, seafood, legumes and eggs as well as fortified bread are your main choices for B3 consumption.
- Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) is responsible for energy metabolism and the normalization of blood sugar levels. The good news is almost every food has B5.
- Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6) aids in the metabolism of carbs and proteins, nerve functions and the synthesis of red blood cells. Meat, poultry, fish, grains, legumes, potatoes and leafy greens all have B6.
- Biotin or B7 plays a big role in metabolism. You’ll find it in eggs, soybeans, yeast and nuts.
- Folic Acid or B9 is crucial for pregnant women as it helps prevent birth defects.It also makes RNA and DNA. The main sources of it are liver, asparagus, orange juice, avocados and legumes.
- Vitamin B12, or Cobalamin, which makes red blood cells, RNA, DNA and myelin, is found in almost all animal products.
How to think about the key vitamins for your health
There are four fat-soluble vitamins that are stored in your body’s fatty tissues: A, D, E, and K. The other eight vitamins are water-soluble which means you need to constantly replenish your supply as they get washed out from your body with urine. However, there is one outlier, Vitamin B12 – the only water-soluble vitamin that is stored in your body, specifically the liver. Doctors recommend getting your dose of these vitamins through the food you consume. The best way to do this is to have a healthy diet, and if you’re struggling with that, check out our guide to eating healthy!
Questions about vitamins to discuss :
- How much did you know about these 13 essential vitamins?
- Do you take any vitamin supplements in addition to what you get from the food you consume?
- Have doctors ever shared the importance of vitamins?
- What impacts have you seen of being deficient in these key vitamins?
Check out this fascinating podcast which debates all of the facets of old world versus new world wine. Jancis Robinson, award-winning wine writer, advocates for old-world wine. Oz Clarke, a leading wine expert, argues for new world wine. The debate was moderated by Amelia Singer, TV presenter and former wine writer.
The new world includes California, Australia, South Africa, and Chile. The old world includes France, Italy, Spain, and Germany, among others
Debating wine as a science
The debate touched on wine taste, body, alcohol content, technology, methods, and more. One of the key debates is as to the role of science and technology in winemaking; even as new world winemaking developed more and more, some dismissed new world wine as “vin de pharmacien,” a pharmacist’s wine.
Interaction between old and new
Robinson pointed out that the two regions have more interaction than might seem. Many “old world” winemakers do internships in the new world, and in the current generation of winemakers, friendship and problem-solving ideas are shared across regions.
New world, new wine flavours
Clarke argued that creating wine is not just about recreating flavours we already know; it’s about imagining and creating new flavours we’ve never seen before. The search demands “a new world state of mind.” This thrill of making something new is not only in the realm of fancy, inaccessible wines; it also created the simplest, everyday wines we drink, which prioritize the casual wine drinker and their enjoyment over everything else (whereas old world winemakers value tradition over appealing to palates).
Wine and climate change
Climate change and sustainability present both challenges and opportunities for new world winemaking. The two speakers also commented on each other’s arguments. Robinson claimed Clarke’s arguments about climate change actually weaken his case since new world regions are more threatened and old world regions are experimenting to adapt to it. Clarke argued that this old world innovation is not actually occurring at the necessary speed.
The great wine debate – where do you stand?
In addition to historical differences and rivalries between the old world and new world winemaking, climate change has added extra complexities, challenges, and opportunities. Although old world winemakers tend to prioritize tradition over innovation and new world winemakers rely on science rather than history, both will have to adapt in order to continue to create delicious wines into the future.
Questions about wine to discuss:
- Do you prefer old world or new world wines? Why?
- Do you think technological innovation or traditional methods are more important in winemaking?
- What do you think is the most exciting recent development in winemaking?
- Which are your favourite wine regions?
- What do you like best about your favourite wine?
Here are three key tips to kickstart your new healthy eating lifestyle.
- You, you, you: Prioritizing yourself on your healthy eating journey is paramount to success. You need to remember that your hunger matters and you need to remind yourself why you started this journey. Realize that your only competition is yourself and stay calm throughout this journey.
- Be prepared: Cook as often as you can and always have “backpocket” recipes ready. Make sure to pay attention to food quality and not only calories! Meal prepping, reading nutrition labels, and keeping a full pantry are crucial.
- Keep your eye out: Healthy eating is a science, so treat it like one. Vegetables and fruits that “grow together, go together.” In other words, foods that are natural complements of each other are good to put together. On this note, artificial ingredients and highly processed foods should be avoided as well.
Bonus tip: When planning meals, what food is on the plate and how much of a food is served should be considered equally. Balancing what is on the plate and how much of that is on the plate, using the right food options is the key.
The mantra for a healthy eating lifestyle
The crux of these tips is to monitor not just how much is going onto your plate but rather what is going onto your plate. The quality and ease of preparation of foods are critical in jumpstarting a healthy and sustainable diet. These four simple tips, if followed correctly, will be the first step on your journey towards a healthy eating lifestyle.
Questions about healthy eating for discussion:
- What are the blockers to eating healthily in your life?
- How have you managed to stick to a better diet?
- Do you find that sharing a healthy eating plan with friends and family makes it easier to stick to it?
- What are your best tips for eating healthy?
Managing Director at Expert Circle
Have you ever wondered why humans crave being outdoors so much? Have you ever wondered how much of an impact being outside and in nature can have on us and our mental health? Studies consistently show that being in nature can improve mental health in many different ways. And it all has to do with evolutionary psychology!
Physical health For Mental Health
A study has shown that children who spent more time outside had better vision than children who did not spend as much time outside. This is just one of the many benefits of being in nature that can improve our health. Nature has shown to improve the nervous system, aid the gastrointestinal system, and reduce the chance of eyesight problems. Other studies, though with weaker evidence, have established links between being outdoors in nature and lower BMI and increased chance of recovery from a disease.
A 2008 study has found that being in the great outdoors aids in cognitive processes such as memory, retention, and emotion regulation therefore improving mental health. Studies have also shown that being in the fresh air helps in reducing symptoms of depression, anxiety, and ADHD. Not only that, but being outside has been linked to improved focus, awareness, and concentration. Nature is a superpower to mental health and you should use it.
With increased mood regulation, memory function, and improved overall health, the holistic wellbeing of one can affect their social life positively. Not to mention, being outside in nature is a great social activity which can bring about great memories and bonding time between friends.
Though the research is ongoing, the benefits of nature cannot be denied, so next time you’re feeling bored or tired, lace up your shoes and head outside.
Questions about the benefits of nature to discuss:
- What are some outdoor places near you you frequent often?
- Where do you go when you are feeling stressed?
- How has it affected you living in various places closer or farther away from nature?
Managing Director at Expert Circle
Secret Santa is a time to give and receive gifts from different people, not knowing who they are. It’s important to understand that the concept of secret Santa is to keep the giver of the gift hidden from the person getting the gift. That’s why the name, Santa is a common term for a person giving a gift and he should be hidden making it- Secret Santa.
Secret Santa is a common practice in many different international environments such as schools, universities and workplaces, etc. It’s important for a person to understand that an ideal Secret Santa should be given him/her to another person. A person shouldn’t be giving any inappropriate gift which can create issues, especially in the workplace.
Giving an appropriate gift in secret Santa is very important. A clear and kind gesture towards the person receiving the gift will be shown by providing them with a simple and ideal gift. There are many gifts a person can give which should be considered ideal in a workplace environment such as:
- A pack of Socks– An ideal set of packet of socks can never be wrong to give it to a male colleague in the office. It’s a very simple and basic gift which could mean a lot to the person getting the award, as it’ll show them a lot of care and happiness.
- A simple gift set– a basic gift set can be given to people which can contain many different items that can be a lot of useful to the person getting a reward. In the workplace, giving such gifts is ideal and makes it easier for people to show their affection for the other person very easily as well.
- Fun games- Giving some games such as UNO or Monopoly, etc. can be a good gift to give to a person. They can enjoy the game with their family and friends, etc. This shows a good warmth from your side to them, making them feel good about you.
- Stationery- An ideal gift to give in a workplace setting is stationery such as a pen, notebooks, etc. It’s an ideal gift to someone new or who isn’t that close to you. And, this doesn’t look bad at all and is a gift which the person would probably use daily. When they will use it, they’ll remember you.
However, there can be times when people give inappropriate gifts to others, especially at workplace. This worsens the relationships between people and causes a lot of trouble to a lot of people. Some inappropriate gifts are-
- Any adult items- Items such as condoms or adult magazines, etc. are just the worst gift to give to anyone in a workplace environment. Furthermore, giving gifts like that can cause a lot of issues to not only receiver but also the giver of the gift.
- Pulling a prank- A secret Santa is not, I repeat, is not a time to pull pranks at others. So, giving them a scary box or roses that throw water, etc. are the utmost disrespectful thing to be given as a gift. So, please don’t give a person any adultery items on Secret Santa.
- Going over the top- Giving a gift such as expensive jewellery or an actual sports car, etc. in secret Santa is so over the top and it’ll kill your image in front of your peers. They will probably want more and more gifts from you and be around you mainly because of your heavy spending. You want ideal friends and not materialistic people around you. So, ensure you don’t do this.
- Giving Nothing- As a Secret Santa, the last thing a person can do is give no gift to the person. It’s important to understand that giving nothing is the worst and last thing a person can do as a Secret Santa. Hence, it’s important to be a good secret Santa and get a good gift for the other person.
Secret Santa is a great way to make more friends in your workplace. At the end of the day, everyone needs their friends. Giving and getting gifts brings people closer and creates a good bond between people. Furthermore, Secret Santa is an ideal way to celebrate happiness and cherish Christmas for a longer time as well. Thus, choosing a gift for someone in Secret Santa is a very important task. Take your time and understand what would be an awesome gift for that person. This’ll ensure you get a great gift and who knows, create a good relationship for a long time. Happy Christmas.
Hi Kristov here,
My latest venture is working alongside a Memoirist, a person that records a person’s memories and with the resultant wording being printed in a book.
I tried this a couple of times, sitting and recording a friend for a few hours and using a recording device linked to a laptop and with a specialised software (Dragon Naturally speaking) converting the spoken word into a Word document. The document could then be formatted ready for printing and a lasting record kept. It did work but with someone with a very strong accent the recordings were not picked up very well by the equipment. It resulted in me having to type out all the text from the recording. This took forever. So when my friend said that she was a Memoirist, I jumped at the chance to help her new business get off the ground.
She had already completed three books for customers and was just starting another, which she asked me to progress to print. Printing costs for one or two copies of a book were very expensive, so I suggested going the POD (Print On Demand) route. I had already opened an account for my 2 books so I suggested that we could use my printer who had a good turnaround, and good quality print.
We have now just finished our 4th book together. With four more coming up!! I designed a basic website for her (another of my skills) and yourmemorybook.co.uk launched in September 2020.
Hi Kristov here,
I’ve been converting video VHS tapes to DVD for family and friends now for a few years as a hobby, and decided to go into it full-time now that I have retired.
It all started out when a friend of a friend came to me recently asking if I’d have a look at a video she had, to see if there was anything on it. She’d found it in the loft, but as she didn’t have a video player any more she wasn’t sure if it was any good.
It turned out that it was the video of the wedding of a friend that happened over 30 years ago, she’d ‘borrowed it’ shortly after the wedding to look at, but life got in the way. The videotape had been ‘stored’ in the loft for the last 30 odd years. As it happens, the friend’s wedding anniversary was coming up soon, so I suggested that a DVD of the wedding was made which would make a great gift to give to her friend thus returning her video.
I have now expanded my services as there has been a call for it.
Using a VHS recorder, Videotape camera/camcorder linked up to a laptop and specialised video conversion software I am able to convert VHS-c Tape, Hi8 tape, DV tape to a digital format.
Cine film conversion
Using a specialised 8mm reel to reel convertor, Standard 8 and Super 8 cine film is easily converted to Digital MP4 format.
Photos, Slides or film negatives
My image copying equipment converts to a digital format JPEG or any other image format.
Colour & B/W Media including 35 mm slide frames, 6×6cm slide frames, negatives up to 5″ x 4″, 35 mm filmstrips, and photos up to A4.
The resultant files can be added to a slideshow on DVD. Music can be added to your film as can a voice over.
Documents up to A4 copied
Lost your original word document, but have a hard copy? We can help here too! We can scan your paper document and convert it to a new word document.
Digitally capturing your Family Photo Albums
This allows you to have the pages in your album scanned including the front and back covers, so you can cherish the memories, and it affords you the opportunity to create extra copies to pass on to loved ones to enjoy. We can arrange for the individual scanned photographs to be put into a custom-made book if required.
See more at Cascademediaconversion.co.uk
To be continued…
When I started researching my family tree back in 1979, when my son was born, I needed to work out exactly what I already knew – what I remembered of my parents, grandparents, and wider family.
I simply took a pencil and blank sheet of paper and wrote down what I knew about my relatives in a family tree diagram. I soon started to see where the gaps in my knowledge started to appear.
Starting by putting my name and date of birth at the bottom of the page, with my siblings either side of me and a branch up to my parents’ names, adding their dates of birth and marriage. Next I added my aunts’ and uncles’ names next to my parents, and a branch up to my grandparents’ vital details.
I didn’t know too much about my great-grandparents apart from their names, so I added what I had to a fourth generation to the top of my tree, above my grandparent’s names.
Next I found some old family documents, letters and photographs I had lying around the house as these often provided precise dates and places for births, marriages and deaths, and helped me to start filling in some blanks. Few people know anything further back than their great-grandparents, and some will struggle to write down anything at all above their parents’ names.
While drawing up my tree I started to think about what I would like to find out. This was a really important question to ask myself, because it will form a focal point for the initial investigation and a framework around which I can plan my research.
Filling in the gaps
Once I’d got a clearer idea of what I did and didn’t know, and what I wanted to achieve, the next step is to talk to as many relations as possible to try to fill in some more of the gaps.
Older relations are particularly helpful, since they may remember people who were alive as long as 100 years ago. Extended family can alert me to additional mysteries that need resolving, and some relatives will undoubtedly have documents and photographs I’d never seen before.
Raiding the family archive is a great cost-cutting step because it saved me from ordering duplicate copies of records from the archives. For example, paper copies of birth, marriage and death certificates cost £11 (11/02/2021) and are sent 4 days after I applied for them from the General Register Office (GRO) for England and Wales, you can get a PDF copy for £7.50 and it is delivered electronically within the hour. Copies of wills are £1.50 in PDF format from the Probate Registry. Even more crucially, I found unique original documents and photos within the family that would never be found in a record office.
Once I’d started my research I picked up on something significant in my initial notes that I didn’t think was very important at the time of writing them, and this lead me to find other useful records.
When I let my relations know I planned to research the family tree you can always find someone wants to give you a hand. It’s a very addictive hobby and can be even more rewarding when you’ve got someone to share discoveries with. Two pairs of eyes are often better than one, especially when it comes to searching for ancestors with common surnames.
It’s also helpful if you can divide the cost of purchasing document copies and joining subscription websites.
Various companies and archives have digitised so many genealogical records in the last 30 years that the number of websites can seem a bit overwhelming at first. Ancestry, Findmypast and TheGenealogist are three of the biggest commercial websites for tracing English and Welsh ancestors, and for accessing additional British and overseas records. They all contain the two essential datasets that form the backbone of genealogical research – centralised birth, marriage and death indexes back to 1837 and decennial censuses from 1841 to 1911.
Each of these three big genealogy players also offers a huge range of other sources, some of which won’t be found on any other website. It will take a while to familiarise myself with the offerings on each site and work out which websites will be most useful to me, so before paying to sign up it’s worth trying them out for free first. The National Archives in Kew and the local Library computer systems let visitors use most genealogy websites for free on-site.
Some local archives and libraries also provide free access to some family history subscription websites, as well as a range of digitised newspaper collections, The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and Who Was Who databases.
You can also take advantage of ‘try before me buy’ offers at home.
Findmypast, Ancestry, for example, offers a 14-day free trial membership for newcomers, which gave me plenty of time to decide which was the right site for me. If you have Scottish ancestry you’ll probably want to save your pennies for ScotlandsPeople, which operates a pay-as-me-go credit system for home users.
Maybe a relative has already started to research the family tree, and would be willing to share their findings with you.
Some websites like Genes Reunited and Ancestry allow members to save their family trees online and for other users to search publicly accessible pedigrees for common ancestors. You can usually get in touch with tree owners via the site, which is a fantastic way to reach distant relatives.
I often use this method of tracing people, particularly if there’s an intriguing family story on one branch, because it’s interesting to find out whether the same story has been passed down through the generations of a parallel branch. Distant relatives may also have inherited old photographs of shared ancestors, which is what everyone hopes to find!
If you do discover that someone has already researched part of your family tree you should still double-check their findings using original documentation wherever possible.
Online and even printed family trees can contain errors, so be sure to verify the facts with as many sources as possible. You don’t want to realise later down the line that you’ve wasted time and money following an unrelated branch! Like I did. However, I kept all that research and eventually along came a line which looked familiar, I’d come across a member of a distant branch which joined up with my section, so using that information managed to clear up a few gaps.
I have over the 40 years managed to travel back in time to 1424 to find my Paternal 15th Great grandfather, Thomas, who with his own income, became a church warden in Hawkhurst, Kent and owned a large Manorial house. My maternal 2nd Great Grandfather, Robert, owned brickworks in Ballingdon, Essex and Sudbury, Suffolk, the bricks from these were used to build St. Pancras Station and The Royal Albert Hall, oh and his pub in Sudbury, Suffolk
It is amazing what you can find out!! The Family Tree is now a Family History!!
I retired in 2015, and I continue to research my family now that I have a bit more time. This lead onto a side hustle. I love old films and pictures so built up a little copying hobby which expanded to the local area <cascademediaconversion.co.uk> Here I copy video, cine, old pictures for people in the village and nearby. To be continued….