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Lifestyle

How-To: Feel Better Faster

February 24, 2014 — by Griffin Thall

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I’m not trying to over or under simplify any one’s life. I am more so trying to help every one de-stress. I think a lot of the time we do things to our bodies that affect us more than we think. And the negative consequences are only going to affect us later on. We don’t see now what consuming five diet sodas a day does to us, but we will in thirty years.

So why wait? Why wait for the negative consequences to catch up to us when we can start taking steps to improve our lives now? We should try to better ourselves everyday, so this is a short and simple list to help you start.

  1. Run outside. Instead of going to the gym to exercise, go for a run. And if you don’t get home until late and it’s dark, try getting up before work. If you make it a habit, it will get easier. Yes, waking up super early is hard, but as they say, your body starts remembering. It will get easier, I promise you.
  1. Write things down that you want to do as you think of them. Even if it’s a simple sticky note on your laptop titled, “Don’t Forget To Do Me” as awkward as that title may be. That way, you have a running list of things to accomplish, with no expiration date on them.
  1. Plan a date with your friends. Find a paddle-boarding Groupon together or a plan a spa date or a park date – just do something. That being said, if you continue to try and hang out with someone and they continuously don’t make an effort back, evaluate that relationship. If you are putting in X amount of effort and someone isn’t reciprocating, maybe they aren’t worth your valuable time.
  1. Force yourself to drink at least eight glasses of water a day. And try to eat less processed foods. All those chemicals are not good for you. Buying fresh produce isn’t as expensive as you might think. Contrary to common belief, buying ten different produce items from Sprouts is only about $10.
  1. Schedule a massage or spa date for yourself. I went and got one the other day and the therapist told me one of my leg muscles was “crunchy.” Right away, I was semi-terrified at what that meant. But she just told me years of not stretching correctly combined with playing sports and regular exercise caused some of my leg muscles to have calcium deposits on them. Which problem isn’t great, but at least I know that now, along with the steps I have to take to rectify that situation.

Lifestyle

5 Cool Brands to Check Out This Month – February

February 21, 2014 — by Griffin Thall

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We love giving back and supporting our community. We also really appreciate other brands who do the same kind of thing. So every month, we are going to spotlight five brands we personally like, and we think you’ll like too. Let us know what you think in the comments, and check out below five companies who have also created a brand based on social good and giving back.

Krochet Kids

Krochet Kids is a brand very similar to Pura Vida. Dubbed the “Krochet Kids,” in high school because of their love for the craft, Kohl, Travis and Stewart brought hook and yarn to Northern Uganda, and transformed a society previously ravaged by a rebel army, into a thriving community. The brand consists of products that range from beanies hand-signed by the Ugandan women who make them, to headbands, scarves t-shirts and sweatshirts, all made with elements of crochet. With more than 150 people in Uganda and Peru working and receiving education to experience a brighter future, the Krochet Kids have found a unique way to give hope to a society that was previously living without it.

Half United

HALF UNITED is a jewelry company that helps fight global hunger. For every product purchased, Christian and Carmen Black, the brother-sister duo who started this brand, will give half of all profits to feed children in need. They have currently provided more than 100,000 meals and have reached more than 20 countries. One of their most popular products, my personal fave, is the “fighting hunger bullet necklace,” which uses recycled bullet casings to represent the ongoing war against global hunger in impoverished countries.

The Giving Keys

The Giving Keys is a brand that focuses on the simple element of hope and the notion of paying it forward. Each key has a message on it, and the whole concept of the brand is that the wearer of the key must give it away at some point to a person they feel needs the message more than them. That person then writes the story of why they gave it away on the sites web page. In addition, The Giving Keys employs those who are looking to transition out of homelessness, keeping the concept of paying it forward alive throughout all aspects of the brand.

Blenders Eyewear

Blenders Eyewear is a brand built on the concept of feeling good about your life and following your passions. Born from a crowd funding campaign backed by hundreds of supporters passionate about a brand that wanted to provide a quality product for an affordable price. Blake Jensen and Chase Fisher make fresh, vibrant, comfortable sunglasses that embody the California, free-spirit vibe every one wants to feel in their day-to-day lives.

31 Bits

31 Bits is a company that takes recycled bead products and turns them into fashion-forward accessories to push a plan that empowers women in Uganda to rise above poverty. The name “31 Bits” comes from Proverbs 31, where it describes a diligent woman providing and caring for her family, while the bits refers to the bits of recycled paper that the beads are made from. Everything they do for the Ugandan women is funded through product sales, so the more you buy, the more they can help empower women who need it most.

Lifestyle

10 Fun Things to do This Month February Edition

February 14, 2014 — by Griffin Thall

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No more sitting around your house, doing nothing for an entire day. No more laying in bed until 1p.m. on the weekends and no more logging 2+ hours on Facebook every three hours– as hard as that may seem. February is the shortest month of the year, so we can’t let any more time go to waste.

As our dear friend Drake once said, YOLO. I apologize for that, but it’s true. We must take his advice and live to our fullest potential. The wonderful month of February is halfway done, but what better way to continue it than by turning over a new, more productive leaf.

Here is a list of fun things to do for the remainder of the month, wherever you are. You have 360 hours left to try and fit all 10 of these things into your busy schedules, so hopefully, you find the rest of your February to be everything you hoped it would be.

  1. Find a new restaurant to eat at. This site (where the f*ck should I eat) is actually quite prime and, as in-your-face as the site name is, it’s actually extremely user-friendly. If you don’t mind vile extremities, than this site should be used. And if you do, than try out Thrillist, a hip go-to guide on restaurants, nightlife and events featured in a major city near you.
  1. Visit a local farmers market or street fair and start a new DIY project. Not only are you organically powering your local economy, but you are discovering hidden gems just waiting to be recreated into something better.
  1. Go to a concert. Check out the more low-key venues in your city and go see that Indie band you’ve been listening to non-stop for the past year. Ticketmaster is a great resource and if in fact you do find a concert you would love to go to, but tickets are way too expensive, than go to said venue and sit outside the gates and listen… I kid, I kid.
  1. Run a 5K/10K this month or at least sign up for one. Utilize this site to scope out local runs in your city. What better way to work out than by forcing yourself to train for an upcoming marathon… nobody wants to come in last in a race, or at least, I don’t.
  1. Plan a weekend getaway. Whether this entails spending a weekend away with your significant other or planning a trip to Vegas with your friends, plan something. It is fun to A) plan a trip out and B) have something to look forward to at the end of the day.
  1. Go see one of these movies. Pick one you are highly anticipating and round up a group of people to go view them with. And, sometimes, before a movie is out, you can use this site and sign up to see the movie for free. Such a win-win.
  1. Go on a hike. If you are outdoorsy, than dedicate a special Saturday and actually do it. Maybe even skip going out the night before to ensure your lasting success on a hike that’s duration should total more than three hours… And if you are not as inclined to hike up a mountain, go for a bike ride throughout your city. Dedicate the same amount of time you would to the hike, and maybe just stop for lunch in between.
  1. Go to the beach if the weather and location permit. Whether you go early in the morning to watch the sunrise, or you bundle up and enjoy a bonfire at night, just bring a blanket and sit in the sand and watch the waves.
  1. Go to a random bar you’ve never been to and order a drink you’ve never ordered before. Do this for no other reason than to spice things up a bit. And yes, the bar may be weird, the drink may be terrible, but why not just try it? You’ll never know how much you could potentially like something unless you do.
  2. Host a game night with your friends. Or, if your apartment doesn’t allow for rowdy board/card games like Cards Against Humanity, gather a group of people and go to Dave and Busters. Yes, it is basically an adult Chuck E Cheese but if you have never been, there is literally no harm in getting semi-intoxicated and trying it out.