Does Intermittent Fasting Work?

The ultimate guide on whether it’s worth it.

For years, we’ve been told it’s important to eat breakfast within an hour of waking up, to rev up our metabolism and get our day started right. But a more recent trend, intermittent fasting, throws that wisdom out the window. The technique relies on restricting your eating to set times and alternating between feasting and fasting.

“Intermittent fasting is allowing the body to have a prolonged period of rest without calorie intake,” explained Dr. Adam Perlman, an internist at the Duke Center for Integrated Medicine in Durham, North Carolina.

Proponents of intermittent fasting say it’s less of a diet than a lifestyle. “What makes intermittent fasting different from dieting is that you are regulating when you eat, not what you eat,” said Dr. Luiza Petre, a board-certified cardiologist and weight management specialist who follows the principles herself. However, she said, limiting your dining window “does not give you an excuse to binge eat, especially on unhealthy foods, when you are not fasting because you will not see the benefits.”

So, what are the benefits of this practice? And should you be doing it? We got the breakdown from experts. Here’s what you need to know:

How it works

There are various ways a person can incorporate intermittent fasting into their daily routine. Below are some of the most popular techniques.

The 16:8 Method: This structure involves consuming your meals within an eight-hour window and giving your body a break from food for the next 16 hours. “You are asleep for the majority of the fasting period, which makes this a medium difficulty compared to other variations,” Petre told HuffPost in an email. “16:8 also is the most common way of intermittent fasting and has gained the most media attention.”

The 5:2 Diet: Also known as the “Fast Diet,” this type of intermittent fasting includes two nonconsecutive days of a strict 500-calorie diet and five days of normal, healthy food. “This method fits the profile of people who have busy family lives or social commitments that would make it difficult for them to stick to a daily regimen,” Petre said. One caveat, per Perlman, is that this eating schedule “can have an impact on a person’s sleep, mood and energy level.”

Alternate Day Fasting: This, according to Petre, is becoming a popular way to kick-start weight loss. The practice involves fasting every other day but eating whatever you want on the non-fasting days. People who follow this trend typically eat 500 calories during their fasting days and then don’t count calories on the other days.

A study published last year in JAMA Internal Medicine concluded that this fasting method hasn’t proven to be more effective than a restricted-calorie diet. “It is least sustainable of all fasting methods in [the] long term and is associated with more over eating in the non-fasting days,” Petre said.

Eat Stop Eat: This method involves consuming only non-caloric beverages for a full 24 hours, one to two times per week. So, for example, if your fasting day was going to be Tuesday, you’d stop eating after you finished a meal on Monday and wouldn’t eat anything else until that same meal the next day.

The potential outcomes can be beneficial for some…

According to Perlman, the potential benefits of intermittent fasting include weight loss and increased muscle mass. “During the fasting state, the body burns more stored fat for energy,” he said. Intermittent fasting can also enhance metabolism, he said, allowing you to more efficiently utilize food for energy.

“Research has also shown the intermittent fasting has effects on the gut flora, which might also explain some of the effects on metabolism,” Perlman said. He added there may be positive effects on insulin sensitivity and various hormones in the body, which can lead to effects such as decreased appetite and improved energy levels.

My whole body seems more efficient.Jazmine Giovanni, a Los Angeles-based writer who practices intermittent fasting

“My whole body seems more efficient,” said Jazmine Giovanni, a Los Angeles-based writer, of her experience with intermittent fasting. “With digestion limited to those few hours, my body’s energy reserves are focused elsewhere the rest of the time, making healing and recovery faster. I’m more focused and have more pep.”

Studies have shown that intermittent fasting can decrease inflammation in the body and improve blood pressure and heart rate. It’s also been claimed that intermittent fasting can lead to improved brain function and decreased risk of cancer and Alzheimer’s, but these claims have less evidence backing them up, Perlman said.

Erin Wathen, a food addiction counselor and author of Why Can’t I Stick To My Diet, says that in general, the practice is a great way to give your digestive system a break. “It reduces the number of opportunities we eat so our body is not constantly having to process food,” she said. “This is a huge benefit for our GI track, appetite control, sleeping and even our teeth, which will benefit from reducing how often we ask our bodies to metabolize food.”

…But intermittent fasting is definitely not for everyone

At the most basic level, intermittent fasting can be difficult for your schedule. Fitness and nutrition coach Ivana Chapman warns that people may have a hard time fitting intermittent fasting into their social life, for example. If your friends want to get dinner at 7 p.m. but your last meal has to be done by 6 p.m., that could be an issue.

And when people break the fast, they often overdo the portions. “Larger meals may be harder on the digestive system and can trigger acid reflux in susceptible individuals,” Chapman said.

Lisa Cooper, a dietitian with Orlando Health, noted that fasting can come with some initial side effects, such as “increased hunger, low blood sugar, headache, irritability, hypoglycemia/low blood sugar, dizziness, lightheadedness, tiredness, nausea and fatigue.”

And the practice can be particularly dangerous for people with certain health conditions.

“Some women, especially those who are already lean and who are active, may encounter hormonal issues if they reduce calorie intake and intermittent fast for days on end, or simply too often,” said Josh Axe, a clinical nutritionist and author of The Real Food Diet Cookbook. “These women may benefit from intermittent fasting only a few days a week, rather than every day, and by paying close attention to how their body responds.” He also emphasized that pregnant and nursing women should avoid intermittent fasting.

People with certain diagnoses who require calories or set meal timing, such as those with diabetes, hypoglycemia or underweight, should avoid fasting, along with people who require food to be taken with medications.Lisa Cooper, dietitian at Orlando Health

Cooper said fasting would not be appropriate in circumstances where people need extra calories or nutrients for growth and development, such as during childhood or adolescence, or when breastfeeding. “People with certain diagnoses who require calories or set meal timing, such as those with diabetes, hypoglycemia or underweight, should avoid fasting, along with people who require food to be taken with medications,” she said.

And anyone who has a history of eating disorders should forgo the practice. Perlman said that for people with such a history, any type of dieting or food restriction program “runs the risk of increasing the focus on food and exacerbating an already challenging if not unhealthy relationship with one’s diet.”

Axe noted that eating disorders, including anorexia and bulimia, “can lead to malnutrition, which has a variety of negative effects on hormonal balance and someone’s metabolism.” Intermittent fasting can make those problems worse if someone is already undereating and struggling to produce sufficient hormones.

“Fasting may basically make all types of symptoms associated with eating disorders more severe, especially if someone is already underweight or very active,” Axe said.

What you need to know before you try it

Many experts endorse the practice of intermittent fasting, as long as it is properly and safely carried out. Part of this means continuing to adhere to a healthy eating plan, regardless of when you are consuming your calories.

“I’ve seen some people go overboard with the food during their feeding window,” said Sunny Brigham, a board-certified clinical and integrative nutritionist in Texas. She emphasized that the goal is to maintain a healthy amount of calories for your body, not to “rebound eat.”

If intermittent fasting is incorporated, it should be included as part of a healthy, balanced diet and lifestyle change and under the supervision of a health care provider.Lisa Cooper

The bottom line, Cooper said, is that “if intermittent fasting is incorporated, it should be included as part of a healthy, balanced diet and lifestyle change and under the supervision of a health care provider.”

For those starting out, Petre suggested implementing a 12-hour fasting/12-hour eating window and building up from there, eventually finding the schedule that works best for you. She also stressed the importance of breaking your fast with fresh, unprocessed, nutrient-dense whole foods, prioritizing healthy sources of protein and not going crazy with junk food, as that would negate the benefits.

Source: huffingtonpost.com ~ By:  Nicole Pajer ~ Image: Pixabay.com

14 Ways To Actually Make Money From a Website!

When it comes to finding ways to monetize your website and making money online, the best thing I have found, is to use a variety of different techniques and to always be testing.

This blog makes money by selling our own online courses, software and other peoples products as an affiliate.

However, there are a lot more than two ways to make money online.

Every site needs to be treated differently.

It can take a while to work out how to best make money from a website. If something doesn’t work, try something else. Don’t just give up. The main reason people fail with blogging, isn’t because their idea or website is bad but because they give up too soon.

Best Ways To Make Money Online

1. Email Marketing

This is one of my favorite things to talk about because it’s just so powerful.

Building an email list can make you a lot of money, help you build a solid brand and of course help readers come back to your site, time after time.

Email marketing can be seen to make you money in a few different ways, such as direct email promotions, to deliver free reports that are monetized and my favorite, to drive traffic back to your site where you make money from other methods.

Gone are the days of finding it hard to get people to subscribe to your website.

A few years ago, we added a lightbox popup to IncomeDiary. Over night, we went from getting 20+ subscribers a day to well over 100.

At the time, most websites hated the idea of using popups because of the negative association people have with them. But these popups are different. Instead of popping up in another browser window, they popup as part of the page you are on. It was a lot less intrusive. Even better, it wasn’t to promote something spammy, but rather something of value to the reader.

After seeing the massive results, we decided to create our own software, so that other website owners can experience the same huge gains we have. We called it PopUp Domination.

At the start, some big names in the industry spoke out, saying they didn’t like them and wouldn’t use them. That didn’t last long, once they saw how well they worked. Now it seems like every site uses popups and despite that fact, they still perform so well!

Love it or hate it but a big reason for the success of popup opt-ins is down to this site you are on right now.

PopUp Domination works on any website. Has over 30 different designs, each pop is customizable to match any colour scheme. We offer a full 60 day, no questions asked, money back guarantee, so there is no good excuse not to give it a try.

Another list building technique you should be trying, is a squeeze page. A squeeze page is a dedicated page on your site to getting a visitor to sign up for your mailing list. You can see an example of a page like this by checking out our squeeze page for our Traffic Domination video! If you want to create amazing high converting squeeze pages (+ a lot more), check out Optimizepress.

Here is an example of a squeeze page we created with Optimizepress for our photography blog:

picture

In order to start collecting emails, you need to sign up for Aweber, which hosts your emails, which you use to send messages, create follow up campaigns, split test etc.

Personally I would say you should also get PopUp Domination, not because I own it but because it’s the best thing for email marketing. 63.9% of our email subscribers come from our popup.

Benefits:

  • Very direct way to market.
  • One email can make you thousands.
  • Anyone can do it.
  • Considered by most to be the no1 way to make money online consistently.
  • Can work on autopilot, if you setup a autoresponder series.

Drawbacks:

  • If subscribers don’t like your emails, they will unsubscribe.

2. Promote Products as an Affiliate

Another hot topic here on IncomeDiary.

We earn around 30% of our income from promoting products as an affiliate. What this means is we receive a commission when you buy something.

Don’t be alarmed, we promote what works for us, not because we will earn a commission. Fortunately nearly all products that exist, have an affiliate program. If you can’t find an affiliate program for a particular product, type product name + affiliate into Google. For example: PopUp Domination Affiliate. This should bring up their affiliate page, if they have an affiliate program.

In my experience, affiliate marketing works best when paired up with email marketing. Top marketers consistently agree, year after year, that email marketing is their most important income source. Combine that with affiliate marketing and you have a winner.

There are so many ways to go about finding a product to promote, it often depends on your industry. For a fitness blog, you could go to Clickbank, find a product about six pack abs and grab an advertising banner from their resources area and put it up on my website.

You could also do a blog post such as, 7 Best Exercises To Get Six Pack Abs, then at the end, promote the product.

We have a photography blog. One of the ways we use affiliate marketing is to promote the cameras and accessories that we use. All of these are available on Amazon. So we signed up for Amazons Associate program and receive a commission every time a customer buys something through our link. We also get a commission on anything else in their shoppingcart which is kind of them.

One of the best tips I can give you for maximizing affiliate sales, is to make sure that the products you are promoting, are as targeted as possible to your content. Most websites have advertising space, it could be on the sidebar, above or below blog posts. The mistake most website owners make is, always showing the same advert, on all pages.

Using condition marketing, we display different adverts depending on the topic of the page. This is done by creating conditions for different tags, categories and authors. For example, any blog post with the tag make money online, will show an advert about making money online and any post with the tag drive traffic, will show an advert about the best ways to drive traffic to your site. This kind of targeting will significantly boost your conversions. If you want to start using condition marketing on your own website, I recommend you use our brand new tool, WhyCompete, which will make setting this all up a lot easier!

Benefits:

  • Can earn you big bucks!
  • Easy to setup and doesn’t require much support.
  • Passive income.

Drawbacks:

  • Earnings are not guaranteed, can earn $100 one month, $1000 the next.
  • Great products can have low converting sales pages.
  • High converting sales pages can have rubbish products.

3. Create & Sell Your Own Digital Product

Something I’m experimenting more and more with and I’m not sure if it’s just me.. but it seems like the world has gone crazy about making products, they are everywhere which has educated the market so they know they have to purchase content now. The simple version of creating a product is as followed, create a 30+ page word document about something, turn it into a PDF and sell it.

You can find out more about creating a product and selling it online by reading these posts.

Personally I think your first steps would be to ask your audience what they want to know more about, create a product around that and sell it!

When it comes to selling any product of your own, I recommend using SamCart for your checkout page, upsells and affiliate program. They have a free trial, so make sure to try it out.

Benefits:

  • Affiliates send you traffic, build your business.
  • Passive income because of affiliates promoting it.
  • Great for building your brand and authority.
  • Big Money Earner.

Drawbacks:

  • Time consuming to setup.

4. Sell Advertising Space

The most popular way to make money from a website is by placing ads on it. We all know what ads look like, but did you know that they function in many different ways such as Pay Per Click, Pay Per 1000 Views or Pay Per Time Frame.

The biggest downside of website adverting, is that most people know what they look like and avoid clicking them.

When selling advertising, you typically have two choices:

1. Find and work with advertisers yourself.

or

2. Work with a middle man who takes a cut for bringing you advertisers.

It all depends on you. Is this a business for you or is this just an opportunity to make a bit more money?

I always lean towards finding advertisers myself. In my experience you get paid more, build better partnerships and can do a better job for them.

Advertising sales makes up only a small portion of my earnings but it’s nice to know that money is almost guaranteed to come in every month.

Be warned, Google does not like the practice of buying and selling text links. People buy text links because Google rank sites better based on quantity and quality of links. When you link to someone, you are telling search engines that you trust this site and you are giving them some of your authority. Google likes this to happen organically. So when you buy/sell links and get caught, Google will punish you by slapping your site down in the rankings.

Benefits:

  • Often guaranteed income.
  • Little effort to monetize.
  • Saves you a lot of time.
  • Great way to connect with others in your industry.

Drawbacks:

  • Takes away from user experience.
  • If you set a set price per month, you can’t make any more even if you double your traffic.
  • Advertisers come and go, you have to spend time editing, adding, deleting and finding more advertisers.

5. Create a Job Board

This works like so:

People looking to hire someone will post a job on your board and readers will apply for the job. This is a great method of monetizing a website which I have seen done by a lot of authority websites.

On the other hand, I have seen smaller blogs try to do this and completely fail because it’s competitive and if you can’t send them anyone to apply, it’s pointless for them to post a job. Jobs can be anything from, writers to trainers.

As for what software to use, I recommend you check out ThemeForest, they have a good selection of different job board plugins and themes.

When it comes to marketing your job board, you will want to use some of your advertising space to promote the job board so that readers will see it and apply for jobs.

Charge a low price at the beginning so that you can attract a lot of customers and if they get applications they will be happy to return.

Benefits:

  • Completely hands of, you don’t have to do anything.
  • Adds to credibility

Drawbacks:

  • Doesn’t work for small blogs
  • Very competitive at times.

6. Selling Services

Selling services is a very popular technique people use to make money from a website and is often the reason for them building a blog in the first place. They want to get more clients, to do that they need to get traffic and blogs are great for that!

The easiest way to start selling your services on your blog is to create a new page within WordPress and call it services. Here you can put in the information about what you offer, testimonials and a buy now button.

To collect payments, your best two options is either PayPal or Stripe.

Benefits:

  • High converting, they see your blog and want more!
  • Highly profitable.
  • Easy to deliver.
  • Low refunds.

Drawbacks:

  • Exchanging time for money.
  • Customers are always right (which we know isn’t true).
  • Can be periods of time where you have no customers!

7. Review Products as an Affiliate

I know quite a few people who review products on their blogs, it makes great content and if the product you are reviewing has an affiliate program, can make you a lot of money. You can review anything from software, to bikes, cars, hotels, holidays, food, anything you could think of and it’s all tax deductible (I believe) if you buy something to review.

Check this post out about How To Start a Review Blog.

I personally want to review one product a month, it’s not so many that readers will be turned of but enough that it will make up a high proportion of my income. Doing small amount of reviews means you can pick all the best products and don’t have to speak about negative ones.

Benefits:

  • Great source of income.
  • Converts higher then banner ads and email promotions.
  • Free products sent to you to review.
  • Connect with industry leaders.
  • Get noticed as a top affiliate.

Drawbacks:

  • You can’t always say nice things.
  • If you say bad things, don’t expect to work with that person.
  • Products become irrelevant quickly in some industry’s.

8. Offer a Membership Site or Premium Content

This technique has become more and more popular over the last few years.

The idea is simply, people come to your website because they want to read your content. They love it and want more. So you offer them even better content, for a price.

Your first step should be to work out what you’re going to offer. Then, you will want to go ahead and create a membership area for them to login and see the information you’re selling.

Once you have set it up, you will want to focus on marketing it. For best results, I recommend focusing on email marketing and adding an advert at the bottom of every page, mentioning that if they liked what they have read so far, they should take a look at your even better paid content.

Another option would be to release an affiliate program for your membership site. This not only will increase sales but will bring you even more traffic.

For billing, checkout pages, upsell pages and affiliate program software, I recommend you use SamCart.

For your membership site, again you could use ThemeForest to find a good theme.

Benefits:

  • Continuity income, keep making money, month after month.
  • Can be set and forget, if you time release.
  • Affiliates will send you traffic!
  • Can be a huge earner, it accounts for over $90k a month for Tutsplus.

Drawbacks:

  • Can be a lot of work to set up.
  • Regular work to release more content.

9. Sell Paid Directory Listings

This isn’t very common but I believe it should be.

I see it as a smart way to sell advertising, you see instead of putting adverts on your sidebar, you have a directory on your blog where you link to different company’s and websites in your industry and charge a premium for the listing. If you charged a monthly fee, so for example, say you had 1000 people listed in your directory and charged $7 a month, you would earn $7000 a month in continuity.

In some ways, this is actually beneficial to the reader, say you have a website about becoming a model, in the directory could be a section for photographers, where photographers pay to list their services. Models will come and look for the right person to take pictures of them for their portfolio, helpful and profitable.

Just like a job board, I would add adverts to my blog, promoting the directory to make sure customers are happy with the number of people seeing their ad and the traffic they get. To start with, I would even advertise on other sites to get people to list in your directory, as well as reaching out to people and company’s to buy a listing.

Benefits:

  • Highly profitable.
  • Useful to readers.
  • Makes you stand out as your doing something different.
  • Nearly guaranteed income.

Drawback:

  • Costs to setup.
  • Smaller sites may not work so well.

10. Host Webinars & Sell Something

Webinars are great at selling high price products, either a the product owner or as an affiliate.

Alternatively, you could set up a free webinar that you replay once a week, teach something and then at the end you sell them into 4 more webinars. Once you complete the webinar series, you now have a product that you can sell as a home study course

Here is a great introduction to how to sell with webinars.

Benefits:

  • High priced, low amount of customers, so low support.
  • Readers want to connect with you.
  • Highly beneficial to those who buy.
  • Great way to teach.

Drawbacks:

  • If your doing live webinars, your exchanging time for money.
  • Investment for software.
  • People have to turn up at a specific time, hard for different time zones.

11. Write Tutorials & Promote Something

Another thing I don’t see often, but I love to do!

Content is what everyone is after, that’s why they come to your website, so create content which includes them buying something so that when they do buy, they buy via an affiliate link, and make you money!

What I do to create a tutorial, is I start with the product, find one that you are using and you get a lot out of, it of course needs to have an affiliate program. Then do a tutorial about doing something using that tool.

So for example it could be a post about Photography and take a specific type of photo but you need this lens to do it.

Benefits:

  • Makes great content.
  • Good for search engines.
  • Profitable long term.
  • Quick to produce.

Drawbacks:

  • Finding enough products that have affiliate programs.
  • Some people may not be interested because they don’t yet have the product.

12. Publish a Book

A lot of people want to write a book, however they have no audience.

A blog can bring you branding, can help you connect with other people in your industry, help you understand what people like to read about, more importantly what people don’t like. All this can help you write a best selling book.

A lot of people don’t consider a book because you only get a couple dollars a book but that’s not just what you earn.

Publishing a book can allow you to then launch a product because people always want more, also a more exciting prospect is being paid to speak. If you are published, you’re automatically seen as an expect, it doesn’t matter if you never sell more than a dozen books, this means you can charge to speak and charge a lot more for consulting.

There’s so many different ways to go about publishing a book, most choose self publish but if your blog is successful, either they will find you or in my case, a friend connected me with his published and told me I should write a book. Someone in your industry who blogs, will also have published a book, help them and they will help you.

Benefits:

  • Authority.
  • Long term earnings.
  • Increase your charge for consulting.
  • Paid to speak at events.

Drawbacks:

  • Timely or expensive if you have a ghostwriter.
  • Doesn’t make you a lot of money on it’s own.

13. Offer Live Training and Workshops

Just like selling consulting and services, you could also use your blog to sell live training, workshops and seminars.

People read your blog but I wouldn’t be surprised if over 80% don’t act on what you say. Having a workshop means they learn from you and implement with you, this is a very attractive offer to some people and they are willing to pay high prices to do it.

You don’t just make money from the price of the ticket but you can also make money from selling follow up workshops and masterminds. If you bring in speakers, then you also collect 50% of everything they make if they sell from stage at the end. Another thing to consider is recording the event and then selling that as a product on your blog.

Putting on an event is a daunting thing, however it really isn’t to hard. Ring up a hotel, book a conference room, now you have a date, write a blog post and send everyone on your mailing list to that page.

Mention your event every where and keep hustling! Apart from that, all you NEED to do is create your slides and turn up. Some of my friends even hire people to run everything for them so they don’t have to worry about the event side of things themselves.

Benefits:

  • Can make you a lot of money.
  • Can be made into a product.
  • People will invite you to speak at their events so that you can sell yours.
  • Makes you an authority.

Drawbacks:

  • Time consuming.
  • Selling can sometimes be hard.
  • Stressful for first timers and often the pros.

14. Sell Your Website

Definitely my favorite of all the above and also the one that pays the most.

Selling your website can make you very wealthy, or it could be just a nice retirement fund. Whatever it is, it can be a great way to get a large lump sum of cash.

Typically, websites sell for 12 – 24 months revenue, however if your site is old, has something unique about it or is the authority in your industry then you can expect any figure you want. I have seen some blogs go for over 200 years revenue and it didn’t even make $100,000 a year.

Work hard and it will pay off.

It is important to remember if you sold your site for 2 years revenue and it made $5000 a month, you would get $120,000. To earn that amount of money it could take you 6 or 7 years because of expenses and taxes. You also have to factor in how long it took you to build your business. If it took you two years and you sell for $120,000 – then it would be like earning an extra $60,000 a year.

If you are already at the stage where selling your website is an option, read this post on selling your website.

Benefits:

  • Large amount of cash.
  • Can be sold within a month.
  • Enough money not to have to work for years.

Drawbacks:

  • You lose an asset.
  • You lose an income stream.

That’s it. Our top 14 ways to make money from a website.

Here is a quick recap of what I recommend you do:

  • Get Aweber.
  • Get PopUp Domination.
  • Get Optimizepress.
  • Create a free report or eCourse to give away as an incentive for signing up for your list.
  • Create your own online training to sell to your subscribers.
  • Find highly rated products to promote as an affiliate to your list.
  • Reinvest earnings to make even more.
  • Get Samcart to increase checkout and upsell page conversions.
  • Use Samcart to release your own affiliate program to get other bloggers and competitors to promote your stuff.
  • Expand, expand, expand!

Good luck.

Source: incomediary.com ~ By:  ~ Image: pixabay.com

Conflict Management: How to Turn Any Conflicts into Opportunities

There’s a lot out there written on conflict from how to ask what you really want and how to understand what the other side really wants.

But what I have seen from those materials is that most of them have been written in bubbles using armchair philosophy with almost zero empirical evidence and applicability in real life.

It’s like the case with the orange. One side just wants the orange bark while the other side wants the inside of the orange. You solve the case by giving them both what they need and there you have it, you’ve solved the conflict.

In real life, both sides want the entire orange and they are not willing to budge a centimeter until they get it and that’s why I’m making this guide. No more armchair philosophy, no more talking in the bubble. We are entering the real world and this is how you will solve the conflicts and get what you want.

Chunking down conflict into primordial pieces

Conflict has multiple different layers which all play different roles and parts. And the biggest gain for you is going to be figuring out where exactly is your conflict playing out.

You will use a different method for different situations so this guide will serve as an arsenal of weapons for conflicts and you will just pick the right tool for the right situation. It’s like having a toolbox with a hammer, a drill, a screwdriver, pliers and many more inside and you use the one which you need at that moment. And we’ll call that our Conflict Toolbox.

With that in mind, let’s start with:

1. Level of conflict (emotional – rational)

Level of conflict helps us perceive where exactly is the conflict playing out. The two possible options are emotional and rational.

Emotional is the most common one. In fact, a rational conflict is so rare that I’ve seen it happen only once in my entire life. Nevertheless it happens and it’s going into our Conflict Toolbox.

Emotional conflicts

Emotional conflict is a conflict based on emotions and for it to be solved, it needs to have an emotional solution, not a logical one.

The example is when your wife gets upset that you came 10 minutes late for dinner and you bought her diamond earrings to fix that. But they don’t have that effect because the level of conflict is played in the emotional part, where your wife wants you to care and make an effort. So you will only fix it by displaying care and effort, not by trying to buy your way back.

A logical solution to an emotional problem is destined to fail.

One more example is your boss who doesn’t want to give you that promotion. He is worried that you might take his job further up if you keep this pace. He is frightened and scared and uses defensive emotional mechanisms to cover it up.

No amount of justifying to him is going to fix that because you are appealing to his logic. You need to solve his emotional pain – being scared and frightened of you- and tackle that problem with an emotional response that will calm those fears down.

Instead of telling him that you won’t take his job, prove it to him by displaying family as your number one priority in life and proving to him that a higher end job would just take away precious time from them.

Show him that you have interesting hobbies and that you are not simply “John from work” but “John the mountain-climber” or “John the National Dart Champion.” Make an emotional bond which will alleviate the concerns from the other side. Then, and only then, will you be able to solve that conflict.

Remember that when dealing with people, you are dealing with emotional beings who only use logic to justify their behaviors. But in rare cases, the conflict can be rational.

Rational conflicts

Rational conflicts happen when the logic of one proposal meets head with the logic of another proposal. It’s one of the least studied areas of life because there is not a lot of people having conflict only on a pure logical base. Most of us are victims of our narrow understanding of the world cognitive biases and beliefs to be able to put them aside and have a conflict based only on logic.

I’ve even used a cognitive bias myself when describing rational conflict by stating that “it’s so rare that I’ve seen it only once in my life” which is an anecdotal evidence and falls under the information bias.

But if you ever find yourself in a strictly rational conflict, the best way to solve it is by finding a unique angle (perspective) which will make your agenda stick but will also help the other side.

Conflicts are everywhere and if we don’t decide which fights to take, we will lose our minds. With that, we are coming to the second layer of conflict.

2. Scale of conflict (short-term or long-term)

The scale of conflict is really important. Some short-term conflicts can be left unattended but the long-term ones should be addressed as soon as possible and here is an example:

You’re working with a fellow colleague on a project and he forgets to add a really important piece of code in the program. Because of this, you just gained another week of work on your back.

If this is a one-time thing and he made a mistake because of some other problems currently happening in his life, then it’s okay. It happens to everyone.

But if this shows to you that your colleague is sloppy and that he isn’t detail-oriented, then you know that similar problems will keep popping up in the future and this should be addressed as soon as possible.

The most important things here is to assess if this behavior will repeat itself in the future or if this is a one-time mistake. If it’s a one-time mistake, you don’t need to make a huge deal about it (even though you need to inform your colleague about the problem) but if it’s going to happen again and again, you need to deal with the problem asap.

As Tony Robbins said “Kill the monster while it’s small” which means that you need to address the problem before it gets out of control.

3. Proximity of conflict (four decisions)

This is my favorite part of conflict management. The proximity of conflict can be defined as the importance of the relationship you have with the person with whom you’re having conflict.

Depending on the relationship, these are the four decisions you can take:[1]

  • Exit
  • Neglect
  • Persevere
  • Voice

Exit

Exit is all about removing yourself from the situation. This is something I do in 99% of the situations because I only deeply care about 1% of the things in this world. Everything else is really not worth arguing for.

With Exit, you simply move physically from that environment; or if it’s digital, just turn off the website and that’s it. It takes a little bit of time for you to get used to this but when you do, it will be one of the most liberating experiences of your life. Playing “I’m walking away” by Craig David in your head helps a lot!

Neglect

Neglect happens when you think you can’t change the situation so you just leave it like that, lowering any effort from your side to a minimum. This is mostly the case with a thick family member who is bullying everyone else but nobody can do anything about that. So you just accept that this is one war you won’t win and leave it be.

You might think that neglect is quite rare… until you remember your teenage years where you had almost no power in your household. You had to do chores that you absolutely hated so you tried to do them with the least possible effort. I know it was vacuuming the house for me – it was one of the worst things ever and I hated it from the bottom of my heart.

Neglect is everywhere around you, from the people at DMV who are half-asleep doing their job to the 17-year-old kid serving you fries at McDonald’s.

Persevere

Persevere means that you don’t have enough influence to change the current situation but you are building it for the future. This is the case of idiosyncrasy at work- what can you wear?

If you are a professor for 6 months and want to wear khaki shorts to work, it will never happen. But if you work there for a couple of years, build your reputation and influence and then wear khaki sorts to work, nobody will say anything to you.

Voice

Voice is a direct confrontation of the problem head-on. This is where you stop your tracks and have the argument/conflict at that moment.

Voice doesn’t happen that often because people are in different situations and using Voice means that you are tackling the problem (and the other person) head on. And for this, you need to ready for the consequences. If it’s your boss you are confronting on a meeting, think about the position you are currently in and if Voice is actually the best option to go for.

We have covered the layers of conflict and now it’s time to see what our Conflict Toolbox says about it.

4. How to gain the upper hand

Conflicts pave the way to opportunities and if we use the right tool from our Conflict Toolbox, we will gain the upper hand in it.

A master of this was Dale Carnegie and he explained all of it in his best-selling classical book How to Win Friend & Influence PeopleDale’s philosophy can be summarized in to playing the upper hand by actually letting the other person be right, appear great (especially in public) and letting them know that they sit on top of you.

Stroking the other person’s ego will help you get what you want because you are making the other side appear so great that they show you “some mercy” by actually giving you what you want. But the catch here is that you’ve already done the hard work by yielding so that they have no other option than to give you what you want – because doing that will help them look even better in the eyes of other people.

Not only will they appear smart, brilliant and on top of all right – but they will also show grace, mercy, thoughtfulness and consideration.

Just think about it – how many times have you snubbed at the person who was condescending you in any manner. I know I did because nobody likes to be condescended but a lot of us if we have the opportunity, love to “teach someone else a lesson” or “show them a thing or two.”

We are social creatures who have dominance hierarchies and it’s inevitable that ego will come into play. It’s in our best interest to have it as a great servant instead of a horrible master.

So the next time you’re in a conflict, set your ego aside and see how you can actually make the other person look better – it will help your cause.

Pack your Conflict Toolbox and off you go

We’ve dissected conflict into its primordial layers and found out that conflict can:

  • Have an emotional or rational level
  • Be on a short-term or long-term scale
  • Have four different relationships regarding proximity: Exit, Neglect, Persevere, Voice

We have talked about how to actually deal with conflict and how you can turn it into an opportunity for yourself. Here, we talked about the age-old wisdom of Dale Carnegie and his message of stroking the ego from the classic “How To Win Friend & Influence People.”

And now you have your Conflict Toolbox packed with different tools which you can use in different situations.

Off you go into the world of conflict or better said – the world of opportunities

Source: lifehack.org ~ By: Bruno Boksic ~ Image: Pexels.com

7 Surprising Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Metabolism

You might complain about the endless rush of daily life and meditate for a few minutes during the day, but there’s one thing you typically don’t want to slow down — your metabolism.

Think of it like an engine: Your metabolism is those series of chemical reactions that convert what you eat and drink into energy that your body can use. Your metabolism is influenced by your age, sex, body size and composition. That means men typically have faster metabolic rates since they tend to carry more muscle and less body fat than women. Your metabolism also decreases with age (more on that below).

While you know that sitting around all day can cause your metabolism to plummet (and exercising regularly can boost it), there are other simple things you may be doing to clog your engine. Here are seven ways that you’re slowing down your metabolism.

7 Common Mistakes That Slow Down Your Metabolism

1. Fasting for too long.

While you probably have heard that skipping meals isn’t great for your metabolism, leaving big gaps between your meals doesn’t help either, says Lauren Antonucci, RDN, owner of Nutrition Energy and certified sports dietitian. “You get a thermic boost every time you eat. Your metabolism revs up to process the food you’re eating,” she says.

But when you eat breakfast at 5 a.m., lunch at 4 p.m., and dinner at 9 p.m., you’re not doing your metabolism any favors. Instead, Antonucci suggests eating every two to three hours to keep your metabolism humming. All about intermittent fasting? While it can help decrease your calorie consumption, the drawback is that if it isn’t done with correct guidance, it can lead to unhealthy eating choices and weight gain. Our recommendation: Call in the pros.

2. Avoiding the weight room.

You’ve heard over and over that muscles burn more calories — and it’s true. Studies have found that strength training revs your resting metabolism rate. That also explains why your metabolic rate declines, as you get older. “Your muscle mass decreases over time because you’re typically not doing as much resistance training,” says Antonucci. Schedule regular strength training sessions as part of your workout schedule.

3. Eating inconsistent daily meals.

If you eat breakfast first thing in the morning some days and don’t eat until lunch on other days, then you might be wrecking your metabolism. Whether you eat three meals a day or nine seems like it should be NBD, but a study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutritionfound that an irregular meal schedule might negatively affect your metabolic health. Instead, aim to eat a consistent number and schedule of meals each day.

4. Not eating enough.

If you want to lose weight, you should just eat less, right? It’s not quite that simple. Antonucci says that chronically dieting or consistently eating just a little less than what your body needs, whether inadvertently or on purpose, can wreak havoc on your metabolism. She sees this often in her athletes, especially those training for endurance events like Ironman triathlons. “Their caloric needs can be ridiculously high and they don’t eat enough,” she says, which can also lead to fatigue and injuries.

“Guessing your metabolic rate is a shot in the dark,” says Antonucci. That’s why she recommends metabolic rate testing for anyone who’s having trouble losing weight or athletes who are constantly injured or fatigued. “It’s like a VO2 max test except you just sit and breathe into a mouthpiece for 15 minutes,” she says.

5. Skimping on your zzzz’s.

Sure, dark circles and a long-standing caffeine habit are downsides of skipping sleep, but they’re not the only ones. Researchers have found that sleep deprivation can significantly impact your metabolism — and not in a good way — by decreasing energy expenditure. Plus, when you’re sleepy, you don’t move around as much, says Antonucci. “Studies have shown that people who sleep less move less during the day. You may not exercise or you may choose to take a cab rather than walk because you’re tired,” she says. So be sure to get a full night sleep regularly!

6. Neglecting protein.

calorie is a calorie, right? Not quite. Your body requires different amounts of energy to process the various macronutrients: carbohydrates, proteins and fats. “The cost of processing protein is higher than the cost of processing fat,” says Antonucci. “You need protein to increase muscle mass and to fuel your metabolism.” A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that a higher protein diet increased resting energy expenditure.

But Antonucci also advises that it’s not a license to eat only protein. A balance of macronutrients is key. “You need enough carbs to have enough energy to move through the day. And you need enough good fats to keep you satiated,” she says.

7. Stressing out.

You know that stress is bad for your health, but it turns out that it’s also bad for your metabolic rate. Researchers from Ohio State University found that stress affected how women metabolized food. Those who experience one or more stressful events the day before eating a high-fat meal burned 104 fewer calories in the hours following the meal compared to the non-stressed women. While that may not seem like a lot, researchers said that over the course of a year, that could mean an 11-pound weight gain. Just one more reason to chill out!

Source: dailyburn.com ~ By:  ~ Image: pixabay.com

What You’ve Always Wanted to Know About Supplements

Not a day goes by when I don’t see an article claiming some new supplement will change my life. Take this for better sleep! Try that for less anxiety! This is definitely missing from your morning routine. This little pill fixed that crazy-famous celebrity’s super-relatable problem. Trade in everything and try this single supplement superhero!

Is your head spinning yet? Mine is. And my pantry is overflowing with so many tinctures, powders, and cure-all pills that I could honestly open my own holistic pharmacy. From digestive aids to stress reducers to sleep inducers to who the heck knows what that is or what it’s for, there’s no shortage of supplements that can supposedly help with, well, everything.

While it’s important to get to know supplements and what they’re really good for (PSA: don’t believe everything you read), there’s another burning question that’s always on my mind: What’s the best way to take supplements in the first place?

Sure, popping pills is fast and convenient. And yes, mixing powders with smoothies certainly helps mask less than desirable flavors (cough cough, ashwagandha). But does the way I’m ingesting them really make a difference?

What Are Supplements?

For those who have yet to go buck wild adding every vitaminmineraladaptogenprotein powder, and magic elixir to your Amazon cart, supplements are products aimed at enhancing (also known as supplementing) your diet. From herbs to amino acids to enzymes to everything in-between, they come in various forms, like capsules, tablets, powders, and even energy bars.

Still not ringing a bell?

It’s likely someone recommended vitamin C or echinacea last time you had a cold, or suggested probiotics when you complained about your out-of-whack gut. Ever taken vitamin D when you were SAD? Or fish oil for that healthy heart? What about adding protein powder to your post-workout smoothie? Yep, all supplements.

Should I Be Taking Them?

In 2004, one in 10 adults reported taking herbal supplements. As of 2016, 71 percent of adults in the U.S.—more than 170 million!—reported taking dietary supplements. As people become increasingly interested in optimal health, curiosity about all-natural remedies, healing diets, and other holistic measures has piqued.

And while the best way to fuel your body is with a healthy diet, supplements can be a great way to give yourself a boost. (Read: Supplements should be complementary to a healthy lifestyle, not used as band-aids for not-so-healthy ones.) But the best way to figure out what you need isn’t surfing the internet.

“I recommend two things,” says Josh Axe, D.N.M., C.N.S., D.C., and founder of Ancient Nutrition and DrAxe.com. “One, be an advocate for your own health. Do your research on any concerns or conditions you may have so that you understand what may help most.”

OK, maybe surfing the internet isn’t such a bad idea. Just make sure any “facts” you find are actually that—and that they’re backed by science.

“Second, I recommend working with a like-minded medical practitioner,” he says. “Your chosen professional should be able to understand the effectiveness and interactions of any supplements you may be (or want to start) taking, and will be able to examine your medical history, symptoms, and any relevant tests to custom-design a supplement program for you, should they suggest you could benefit from it.”

That said, consultations and tests don’t come cheap. So if you’re looking to keep things simple, Dr. Axe says that he’s seen positive results when people take the following supplement staples. But as always, check with your doctor first before filling your shopping cart:

Where Do I Buy Them?

If you’ve ever wandered down the aisles of health foods stores in search of a supplement, you know how overwhelming it can be. Tinctures, tablets, powders, capsules… all with varying doses, sold by countless brands, with prices all over the board, and mixed into so many combos that you end up cross-eyed. I often leave with several bottles and jars and more confused (and broke) than ever.

And it’s not just me. Even health professionals find picking the right supplement tricky.

“This is one of the hardest things to tackle,” says Tara Coleman, a clinical nutritionist who started her career as a chemist in the biopharmaceutical industry. “Supplement companies are regulated as food rather than drugs so they don’t follow the same rigorous testing and verification that our pharmaceuticals do.”

Case in point: A review done by Vox in 2016 showed that more than 850 dietary supplements contained illegal and/or hidden ingredients. Gulp. These included banned drugs, pharmaceuticals like anti-depressants, and other chemicals that have never been tested on humans. Double gulp.

While I’m not convinced we should abandon supplements entirely, I am convinced that buying them from a reputable company is the best way to ensure supplement safety—and effectiveness.

“Products that are available at reputable retail locations (Whole Foods, for example) will often go through a rigorous compliance review,” Dr. Axe says. “Products with outside certifications (like USDA certified organic) would also go through more testing. I like to give Whole Foods as a baseline because its standards for manufactured supplements are even stricter than the FDA’s.”

As for online shopping… not so much.

“I would be concerned about products available only online (either through the company’s own website or a marketplace reseller, such as Amazon) or late-night infomercial products,” Dr. Axe adds. “These tend to have the most issues with quality, compliance, and adulteration.”

Another pro tip: Look for third-party verificationwhich is a stamp of approval from a company with expertise in quality assessment that is not associated with the manufacturer. Good ones to look for include United States Pharmacopeia (USP), NSF International, and Consumer Lab.

“Companies that choose to put themselves through additional testing to prove the quality or potency do so at their own expense,” Coleman says. “Typically this is a sign of integrity and transparency and speaks highly of the company.”

As for the way we take them, that’s a little simpler—and less scary. (Phew.)

The Best Way to Take Supplements

I love adding powders to smoothies and lattes, will occasionally (and begrudgingly) down a tincture, and have been known to swallow up to 10 pills at once (don’t worry, just herbal). My choices have mostly been based on flavor and convenience and less so because I thought the way I consumed them actually mattered.

Does it?

“As a rule of thumb, the order of bioavailability (meaning your body can actually use it) typically goes liquid or tincture, powder, and then capsules,” Coleman says.

But there doesn’t seem to be a huge—or scientifically proven—difference.

“Many sources claim that a liquid-based supplement is the most ideal for absorption, but that type of assumption has yet to be proven,” Dr. Axe says. “Typically, how you take a supplement depends on how much your body may need or be able to use. For example, a protein powder scoop would typically have to be divided into 30+ capsules for you to get the same amount in one serving.”

Protein powder capsules? Maybe not such a great way to give your body what it needs. But for something like ashwagandha, which is often consumed in small servings (typically no more than a teaspoon) and doesn’t have the best taste, capsules are just fine. And considering many supplements require prolonged use to see the benefits, bioavailability may not actually be so important—depending on your needs.

As with most health-related things, it’s also about you assessing your own lifestyle and needs. Not everyone can stomach the bitter taste of tinctures, and similarly, not everyone wants to (or can) swallow numerous pills. In fact, some may not even be able to stomach pills.

“The downside to capsules is that there is a small percentage of people that may not react well to the material that the capsule is made from,” Coleman says.

And while the material of supplement capsules—and our ability to digest them—is widely contested, it’s something to watch out for (says someone who actually showed signs of inflammation in their stomach, which their gastroenterologist guessed was from all those supplements).

So yes, there are a few things to consider, but really it comes down to—surprise, surprise—you. And once you’ve picked your poison (slash method of choice), here are few supplemental tips to keep in mind:

  • To help break up clumps—which is a common frustration when using powders—use a blender, milk frother, or shaker bottle (like a Blender Bottle). They’re easy, fast, and (almost) lump-free.
  • Mix tinctures with eight ounces of water or a splash of juice to help subdue the flavor. That said, if you’re a ‘rip off the band-aid’ kind of person, there’s no harm in going straight down the hatch, Coleman says.
  • If you’re worried about the material capsules are made from, sprinkle the contents into liquid and drink them instead. (Though Dr. Axe says that modern supplement capsules are more easily digestible and break down within seconds.)
  • With some supplements, what you take them with actually matters. Fat-soluble vitamins, for example, need fat present to be fully absorbed. Vitamin C also helps iron absorb, so they should be taken together. Calcium, on the other hand, can compete with iron, so calcium supplements should be taken a few hours after an iron-rich meal.
  • Additionally, some supplements can negatively interact with medication, making them less effective, and in some cases, even dangerous.
  • Have I mentioned that consulting a health professional is really helpful?

The Takeaway

Unfortunately, supplements simply aren’t that simple. To get the most out of them, you need to understand what they can actually do and how to best integrate them into your life. And because each supplement is different, as is each individual taking it, it’s best to get guidance from a health professional as opposed to trusting the internet.

But I know that’s easier said than done. So when it comes to supplements, make sure to buy the good stuff—from the brands that make it well—and make sure to thoroughly investigate before popping any pills or sipping any super drinks.

Source: greatist.com ~ By:  TARA GOODRUM ~ Image: pixabay.com

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