When to Take a Mental Health Day

If you woke up tomorrow with a fever, the flu, or a bad stomach virus- would you stay home to keep from infecting others? Or just to give yourself time to rest and feel better?

Most of us take sick days when we are, well, sick. But what about when we are feeling exhausted in other ways? So stress, exhausted and drained that crawling out of the bed brings you to tears? If we can take sick days to improve physical health, why not a mental health day?

We don’t mean call in when you are in a bad mood, or just feeling a little tired. But if you are seriously stressed and starting to feel it physically, it is TIME for a mental health day.

Physical illness is contagious. When you are stressed, guess what- you are still contagious- spreading your bad mood to everyone- but even worse, allowing stress to keep you from giving 100, or even 75% at work.

You are only HUMAN. Sometimes you simply need a day to mentally recharge and reset. That may be sleeping, spending time with someone you love, curling up with a good book, or sitting outside and enjoying nature.

Some tips for taking a guilt-free mental-health day:

  • Schedule it in advance. Request a day off so that you can plan and not have to catch up after. This also gives your boss a head’s up.
  • Timing. Taking the day off in the middle of a big project or deadline may only increase your stress afterwards, and may create stress for you while you are trying to recharge.
  • PLAN. Who will cover for you? What will happen to the work that doesn’t get done? What are you going to do the day you are out?

Sometimes, working through the stress can be better than staying home and wallowing in it. Just don’t be afraid to take a day now and then when you need it and you KNOW that it will be beneficial.

If you do not deal with your stress before it is too late, that sick day WILL be a sick day after all!

Tips For A Successful Cleanse

If a cleanse is on your to-do list in the near future, you’re most likely excited about the results, but perhaps less than thrilled with the process. Even if you romanticize your upcoming detox or cleanse you may quickly find the reality a little more difficult than anticipated. These tips however will keep you on track and ensure you’ll make it through with your sanity.

Plan and shop ahead of time

“Never shop while hungry” is not just a cliche, it’s true and especially during a cleanse. Make sure you do your grocery shopping for the week before you start and prep your food so you have no excuse to stray when hunger strikes.

Schedule your cleanse strategically

Obviously, you’re way more likely to struggle with your cleanse in December with a calendar full of holiday parties. Think about your social calendar before committing to a timeline. Whether that means the start of football season or an upcoming wedding, avoid times of high temptation.

Be flexible, be kind

If you have attempted and failed a cleanse in the past you may need to evaluate whether or not you are following the best program for you. You have options, so choose a cleanse that allows you food you like— you will not be successful with a cleanse that includes asparagus everyday when you have to gag it down. If you do slip up, be kind to yourself and move forward.

Plan some activities

Plan some activities that aren’t going to derail your cleanse. A cleanse can feel lonely as most social gatherings include food and drinks. Have drinks out at a juice bar or teahouse that fits within your cleanse.  Invite friends out for a hike or a movie night with healthy cleanse friendly snacks only.

Get support

Share your plan with your friends and family. You will need the support and they will be more sensitive about what they offer you, eliminating some temptation. Invite some of them to join you as well, you’ll be able to keep each other motivated and on track. Having that sense of community will make your cleanse more enjoyable.

Cutest Mugs Starbucks Has to Offer!

Starbucks is known for a lot of things – like making “frappuccino” the first four-syllable word your nephew could pronounce perfectly – but one of our favorites is their adorable customized tumblers! If someone walks by with a mug full of delicious-smelling coffee, we’re instantly jealous. If that same someone walks by with delicious-smelling coffee in a limited-edition Hawaii tumbler with a pink background, we turn into full-blown envy monsters, scouring the internet for the same mug at any price.

There’s something to be said, though, about having a mug from a place you’ve been, whether it’s from your hometown or a city you went to on vacation. For instance, this super cute pink and white striped ceramic tumbler with “South Carolina” on it in gold cursive is perfect for a southern belle who loves her americanos in the morning. It’s delicate and girly without being breakable, and we can’t get enough of it!

Or what about this cheery lime green mug that reminds the sipper to look at the bright side (which isn’t always easy first thing in the morning). This cup is always half full, and is sure to bring a smile to its owner’s face.

If you’re more of a brainiac who likes to brood at their coffee mug during the morning train ride, this crossword one is one of our faves. It gives you something to do, but it can also be a conversation starter – just ask the cute guy next to you if he can find the word “Grande!”

And for those of you out there who are total individuals, Starbucks has you covered as well. This black tumbler allows you to change your mug with your mood by doodling on it with the chalk pen! If you don’t like what you wrote yesterday, wash it off with water and start again! Every day is a new day!


Photo Book Makes Sharks Photo Stars

Brian Skerry is an amazing photographer, specializing in ocean photography. He has spent 30 years collecting photos depicting the lives of marine creatures. Working for National Geographic has given him a great deal of notoriety, as well as the ability to capture these amazing images.

Brian has spent 10,000 hours  over the past 30 years swimming in oceans throughout the world. During this time, he has been fascinated with sharks who, while beautiful, are also endangered.He has his first encounter with a shark in 1982, 7 years after the release of the infamous JAWS movie, and fell in love.

Commercial fisheries kill an estimated 100 million sharks each year, in part due to increasing popularity for such delicacies as shark fin soup. Sharks have been overfished, and because they do not reproduce quickly, they are not replacing themselves fast enough to meet the demands. Over half of shark and ray species are now classified as threatened or near threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. (IUCN)

Skerry himself stated that he became a photographer because he likes looking at pictures and is very passionate about nature. Combining two things that he loves is an important aspect of his job. He also feels that photography is a powerful tool that can make a tremendous difference because of the visual aspect of humans and our emotional response to imagery. He states that a single photo can stay with a person for their entire life. .

His powerful images bring to life the predators that he holds dear as well as their fight for survival.

Skerry, who also Blogs for National Geographic, has created a book entitled, “Shark,” which contains 250 photos and chapters outlining the role that sharks play in the ocean as well as the need for shark conservation.

The book, which is told with humor, respect, and emotion, partners with the breathtaking images to provide a beautiful story of the life of these creatures.