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How to Celebrate National Unplugging Day

National Day of Unplugging happens every year in March. This year we will celebrate this national holiday on March 4th by unplugging from the virtual world to be more present in our real world.

In today’s world, it is more important than ever to unplug and connect with the people and things around us. The National Day of Unplugging started in 2010 as an event that encouraged people to unplug from their technology, turn off the TV, spend time with friends and family, read a good book or simply relax.

This is an occasion to disconnect yourself from high-tech gadgets for 24 hours. As part of my preparation for this day of unplugging, I want to remind you of various ways you can unplug all year round:

1. Take a break away from the internet

We live in an online world where it’s easy to get wrapped up in our online life. To celebrate National Unplugging Day, take a day off of the internet so you can unplug yourself for 24 hours.

2. Unplug your TV

Do not watch any televisions or other electronic screens for 24 hours. Instead, try to spend more time talking with your family and friends.

3. Leave your phone behind

Leave your devices at home on National Unplugging Day so you have no choice but to be present wherever you are. Instead of taking photos of the world around you, open up a book, go for a walk, or strike up a conversation with the strangers around you.

4. Read more books

Instead of taking photos of the world around you or playing on your devices, try to read more instead. If you feel like reading is too much work, try listening to an audiobook while undertaking another activity such as cleaning your house, walking your dog, or commuting to work.

5. Spend less time on social media

Try spending less time on social media for National Unplugging Day to disconnect from the virtual world and instead focus on your real life. Don’t worry if you have no choice but to use social media so try avoiding it whenever possible.

Why Celebrate National Day of Unplugging?

While most of you will be on board with the idea of unplugging for 24 hours, let’s face it, some of you may be a little more reluctant.

I understand and I do hear you.

But, do you hear me?

Since I know some of you out there may need a little more convincing to think that 24 hours without electronics is worthy of a celebration, I’m sharing some of my favorite reasons why I believe everyone should celebrate National Day of Unplugging:

Being present in this moment.

Unplugging from the virtual world and living life by being present is truly a gift we can give ourselves.

Celebrate real life.

Instead of taking photos and posting them online, try celebrating your real life by spending time with family and friends and really enjoying their company instead of looking at your phone screen.

Gain space to dream.

No distractions will give you the time and space to dream big. It also gives your mind a chance to wander which makes solving problems easier.

Reconnect with yourself.

This day can help you reconnect with yourself so you don’t regret missing out on life.

Take care of yourself.

When you unplug, you will have more time to take care of yourself which includes your health. Try exercising, reading a book, or meditating.

So there you have it, plenty of positive reasons to celebrate National Day of Unplugging. I’ll be honest with you, I do my best to incorporate at least one day per week of total unplugging. This has truly helped me stay more balanced, optimistic, and present in my family life.

If you’re still reluctant about celebrating National Day of Unplugging, I invite you to start planning now for this unique holiday. Make some notes and get yourself ready to unplug for the entire day on March 4th. You can give this one day in March and see how you feel the next day. Who knows, it may be the start of something wonderful where you unplug once a week like I do.

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9 Freelance Job Ideas for WAHM’s

The online world is full of opportunities for people looking to work from home, but many WAHMs are unsure where to start. The internet also provides a great platform for WAHM’s to earn extra income in order to supplement their families’ budgets.

If you’re struggling with the idea of starting your own business, here are 9 freelance job ideas for WAHM’s that will help you start earning extra income.

A few benefits of using these Job Ideas for WAHM’s:

Once you get started, you really just need to keep track of your time and submit an invoice at the end of the month. Many can be done from home with little or no additional equipment.

  • Low startup cost and low overhead.
  • Once you get started, you really just need to keep track of your time and submit an invoice at the end of the month. Many can be done from home with little or no additional equipment.
  • You can start and stop as your schedule allows and easily pick up where you left off if you had to take a break for any reason.
  • Feel more confident taking selfies with friends
  • Enjoy looking at your smile in the mirror again
  • Hear what your kids are saying

A few of the Job Ideas for WAHM’s:

Tutoring

If you have a degree or even just some course work in a certain field, you may be able to get paid to tutor people online. In some cases, you can even find local students via Craigslist or other sites.

Virtual Assistant

You can find clients who need help with things like typing, organizing documents, making phone calls, etc. Hourly rates vary depending on the type of work you’re doing and your experience level. Consider creating a profile on Upwork and Fiverr for this type of WAHM job.

Marketing Consultant/Social Media Specialist

Help others set up their online presence or address digital marketing strategies. You may be able to set your own hourly rate, but this type of home business usually takes time to build.

Recruiting/HR

If you have experience in recruitment or HR, you may be able to recruit people for companies via Craigslist or other job boards. Hourly rates vary based on the industry and location.

Virtual Personal Assistant

Similar to a personal assistant, this type of WAHM job usually pays by the hour. You should be able to find clients via Craigslist or Fiverr. The hourly rate should reflect your experience and areas of expertise.

Ghostwriter

If you have a great idea for a book or blog post, but don’t have time to write it yourself, find a ghostwriter to do it for you.

Being a ghostwriter is not easy and it typically pays by the hour as well. Your profile should mention your experience level and an hourly rate will follow from there.

Freelance Illustrator/Cartoonist

If you’re great at capturing your ideas with a pencil or a mouse, you could get paid for your art. Many people need custom graphics so they can be used in presentations or on business websites. You may have to invest in some equipment depending on the type of work you’re doing and it usually pays by the hour.

Graphic Designer

If you have experience with graphic design, logos, business cards, advertisements, etc., you may be able to get paid for your services. Many people are in need of design work so you can connect with them via Craigslist or Fiverr. Hourly rates vary based on location and experience level. You may have to invest in some equipment depending on the type of work you’re doing.

Blogger

If you have a writing background and experience with blogging, you may be able to start your own blog and create valuable content that people will want to hire you to write for them. It usually takes some time to build an audience and get paid for your blogging services. Once you become established in a certain field, it’s easier to obtain jobs.

If you’re looking for ways to make extra money from home, these 9 freelance job ideas for WAHM’s are a great place to start. Many of these jobs can be done from home with little or no additional equipment.

You can start and stop as your schedule allows and easily pick up where you left off if you had to take a break for any reason.

So, what are you waiting for? Get started today!

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Tips for Parents to Manage Kids Screen Time

In a world where everything from food to friends can be delivered with the click of a button, it’s no surprise that children are growing up with unfettered access to screens.

In fact, according to survey responses from over 2,000 parents by Common Sense Media, an overwhelming 90 percent said their child under age 8 has used a mobile device, and 48 percent report that their children under age 2 use mobile devices regularly.

While parents recognize the importance of limiting their children’s screen time, they are not sure how to go about it. With over 80 percent reporting they worry “a lot” or “some of the time” about losing parental control of kids’ access to screens, they also do not feel confident in their own ability to manage kids’ screen use at home.

This is a major issue, given that children under age 8 spend an average of more than one and a half hours per day on screens (including TV and video games). That number jumps to almost 3 hours a day for kids 8 and older.

So how can parents find new ways to manage kids screen time? Well, below you’ll find some tips.

Curb screen use by designating media-free zones (and times)

Designate family movie nights or technology-free time together. Try alternate activities like backyard play, board games, and craft projects.

If your child is between the ages of 8 and 10 years old, set an earlier bedtime on school nights to ensure more family time away from screens.

Limit or monitor screen use when kids are not at home

Having a set time for your child to turn off their devices and put them away can help curb what they do on their own time.

However, it’s important to establish boundaries even when you’re not around by placing limits on how much they can play on a device, accessing certain websites or apps, and even the types of games that they can play.

These boundaries should be enforced both by you and your child; give him or her some responsibility in keeping their devices’ content age-appropriate and monitor how much time they spend on them.

Know the apps kids use most for homework and communication

If your child spends a lot of time on homework or school-related apps, it’s probably best to allow them access to those.

However, if they’re mostly used for entertainment purposes (such as YouTube and Netflix), consider limiting how much time they can be used for that purpose each day. This will help prevent any risks associated with distractions from homework or other important tasks.

Assess your child’s readiness to have a smartphone

Some parents may want to impose limits on their kids’ access to a mobile device, but they lack the tools to do so. You could get a kids smart watch to test if they’re ready for any smartphone or other electronic device that may not be as easily monitored. Don’t forget to also put limits on your children’s access to screens as you assess if they’re responsible enough to use screens for fun.

For example, you can place limits on what websites and apps are accessible through a WiFi-connected device, but these are more difficult to enforce on a mobile device.

There’s also the issue of apps that go beyond entertainment and into social media territory, which can have harmful effects on kids’ self-esteem or encourage them to engage with questionable content.

If your child is between the ages of 10 and 13, assess whether they are ready to have a mobile device with unfettered access.

If you do decide to give your child a smartphone, consider purchasing one that comes with parental controls (such as the iPhone) and help them learn how to use it responsibly.

Honestly, managing kids’ screen time is easier said than done, but it’s important for children today to have some time away from technology.

For younger kids, it can be hard to stop them from using screen devices altogether, but you can guide them towards more age-appropriate content and teach them how to use it responsibly.

As for older children, you can help manage their device use by restricting what they are allowed to do when they have access to a device. You can also use a kids GPS tracker to keep track of your older kids when they’re away from home!

Just make sure that you aren’t the one who winds up being too distracted by your phone as well to enforce those boundaries!

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The Best Activities to Give Your Kids Confidence

Lacking confidence or self-esteem is a normal thing for children to experience at any age. Even a child who at one point seemed outgoing and confident can sometimes become shy and reluctant to put themselves out there. Some children are also more naturally reserved and less inclined to be outgoing. Building your child’s confidence helps to give them the ability to engage in different activities, enter new environments, and make friends on their own. Building confidence takes time, but there are lots of ways you can help your child to gain confidence. One of the best things that you can do is find an extracurricular activity that they enjoy.

When you’re looking for the right extracurriculars, talk to your child about what they would like to do.

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Music or Drama Activities

Performance-based activities or anything related to music or drama can be a great way to get your child to come out of their shell. It might not seem like a great choice for a shy child or a child lacking in confidence, but it can really encourage them to be a bit more outgoing. You might sign your child up for music lessons or a music group where they can do musical activities with other children. Joining a choir or glee club could be fun for some children too. Theater and drama activities are also excellent choices for children who like to act and play pretend and could benefit from something to build their confidence.

Art Lessons

Creative children might enjoy various art-based activities. There might be art clubs at school or you could look for other classes or clubs to join. There are different options that could be available and different art forms to try out. For example, there are drawing or painting classes or your child might like to try something like pottery, jewelry making, sewing, knitting, or arts and crafts. There are lots of different things to try, and you can often try out one session or a small block of sessions to see if your child enjoys it.

Sports and Athletics

There are plenty of options for sports and athletic activities that might help your child to gain confidence. It doesn’t have to be anything competitive, although there are opportunities to get involved with competitive sports too. You might consider children’s gymnastics classes if you have a child who is keen to learn. Or there are team sports that you could look at, such as football or basketball. Sports don’t have to involve a lot of pressure, and they can give your child to express themselves in a different way and make new friends.

Dancing

Another way for your child to get active might be to attend dancing lessons or a dancing group or club. There are lots of different types of dancing and different types of activities to join, from more formal lessons to clubs that are just for fun. Some dancing might involve dancing as a group, others could involve pairs dancing or individual performances. Whether you choose ballet, salsa, or Irish dancing, it can be a fun way for your child to gain confidence. It’s also a great way to be active and keep fit, and there might be opportunities for performances or competitions.

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School Clubs

Your child’s school will often offer lots of great extracurricular activities, and many of them will be related to subjects they study at school. There might be a science club, art club, photography club, math club, or various other options. The advantage of going to one of these clubs is that your kid will be with their school peers. They might be in a club with friends, classmates, or teachers they already know. And it can give them the opportunity to get to know people at school in a familiar environment.

Outdoor Adventures

If you have an adventurous child, there are some outdoorsy activities that they might like to try. Joining groups like Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, or Eagle Scouts – or any other similar group – is a great option for children who like the outdoors. It can help to build their confidence in multiple ways, teaching them new skills, helping them to be more independent, and encouraging them to step outside of their comfort zone too. There are all kinds of activities involved, so it’s great for a child who likes to try new things or can’t settle on one activity. Help to boost your child’s confidence with these activities, and you can help to give them a better sense of self