HAVE A GREAT SUMMER ROAD TRIP!

packed car

Taking to the highways this summer? Join the club: 71% of us plan to drive to our vacation destination instead of fly according to a new Jiffy Lube survey – which means you’ll have a lot of company on the road (and a lot of potential stress)! Here’s how to make sure your road trip is one smooth ride:

save gas by

LIGHTENING YOUR LOAD!

The biggest drag on getting good mileage? Overloading the car! “The more weight you carry, the more gas you’ll use”, Says AAA spokesperson Geoff Sundstrom. So take a tip from the airlines and ask your passengers to limit how many “carry-on” bags they bring!

LISTENING FOR THREE CLICKS!

When putting your gas cap back on, listen for three clicks to make sure it’s sealed properly. If it’s not, gas fumes can evaporate, says Lauren Fix, author of Lauren Fix’s Guide to Loving Your Car. If you don’t hear any click? “Your cap is probably broken, but a new one cost just $10 at an auto store, and you’ll make it up in gas savings.”

make trip easier by

AVOIDING A SPEEDING TICKET!

Sure, you know to keep to the speed limit, but seeing a police car on the road is still anxiety-provoking! Be prepared for speed traps ahead of time by logging on to SpeedTrap.org, which alerts you to speed traps along your route. Or download Trapster (Trapster.com) onto your cellphone or PDA, a free service that uses your phone’s GPS and internet to warn you of upcoming speed traps so you won’t be taken by surprise!

MAPPING OUT YOUR REST STOPS!

Before you start your trip, head to TripTik Travel Planner to map out your trip and find restaurants, hotels, rest stops and gas stations along the way. The site even gives you the cheapest gas stations on your route, with more than 100,000 listed – and their prices are updated every day!

save gas by

CRACKING THE WINDOW!

Even if it’s hot out and you have the AC on, roll down your windows when you start to feel stressed. British research found drivers who do experience less road rage, stress and fewer headaches by bringing fresh air into the car – and it also improved driver accuracy!

ADJUSTING YOUR SEAT!

Believe it or not, pushing your seat back for extra leg room can cause you extra stress! “It forces you to extend your arms to reach the steering wheel, locking them into place, which is tiring”, say Fix. “It can also cause back pain!” Instead, push the seat forward so your elbows are slightly ben, which is a more relaxed, natural way to hold the wheel. “You’ll feel more comfortable and have more energy.”

save gas by

USING YOUR HEAD!

About half of all adults and kids suffer from car sickness; if you start to feel queasy, keep your head back in the headrest and try to be as still as possible, says auto safety expert Jacob Nelson. “Car sickness is caused by a disturbance in your inner ear that can throw off your sense of equilibrium”, he explains. “Not moving your head is calming to your inner ear, and will make you feel better.”

NOT BREAKING OUT THE DVD PLAYER!

While a portable DVD player is a great way to entertain kids on long trips, “it’s the last thing you want for a child prone to car sickness”, says Nelson. That’s because when your eyes are fixed on something stationary, your brain and body still know you’re moving – and the system gets confused, intensifying motion sickness. Instead, play games that encourage you to look out the window. Go to MomsMinivan.com to find games, including car bingo games and a travel scavenger hunt you can print out.

The above information was taken from an article written by Alison Bell in Woman’s World Magazine July 2009

Overcoming Adversity

In talking with a friend of mine the other day I realized that we are all going through challenges in our lives. We are living in a time that is changing rapidly and some of us are having a hard time keeping up. Add to this the adversities that we have had in our lives and we get stuck, depressed, anxious and worried. We start to feel like we are the only ones on earth who are going through a tough time. Well, I am here to tell you, you are not alone. Everyone, from the wealthiest person, to the bum on the street, has gone, or is going through some kind of adversity. The real test of a person’s character is how do we get through it and come out on the other side with our passion for life still in tact?

Count your blessings! That’s it. By counting our blessings we will see that there are some things in our life worth living for. When we focus on the good things in our life, then, we can overcome adversity against all odds. Each one of us was born for a reason, we each have a purpose for being on this earth. Finding the thing that gives us a passion for life is what our purpose is. Whatever we are doing right now is what we are supposed to be doing. There is something to learn, not for us to keep to our self, but to share with others. That doesn’t have to be a big, grand or over the top idea, it is more about the little things in life. When each person does something small, collectively it adds up to something big. Whether your passion is for people, animals or the earth, that is up to each individual. Just do it, and the results will come.

When our backs are against the wall and there is no light at the end of the tunnel, that’s when we have to shift our mindset. We can use our time of adversity to think out of the box, be practical and simplify our life. Remove the junk that is blocking the way to success. This can be physical or mental. When there is clutter in our life or in our mind we can not move forward. We need to remove the clutter in our life by either cleaning up our environment or our minds, removing the things or the thoughts that are not of use to us anymore. Whether it be an old worn out mindset, or couch, it doesn’t matter, if it doesn’t bring us joy or it doesn’t create an atmosphere for creativity then it is not of use in our lives. Be flexible, open minded and aware when it comes to opportunities. They are all around us if we just take the time to look. Sometimes we put ourselves in a box and think that there is only one way of doing things, but when it comes to overcoming adversity, we need to recognize that we can use our adversity to our advantage. In finding a way out of our struggles, we have found a solution to our problem, this can then be used to help others who may be having the same problem, that creates opportunity.

Surrounding ourselves with people who have the same goals as we do is great, but surrounding ourselves with people who have the skills we lack is the key to our success. We need each other, and not one person has all the skills it takes to be successful. It is just like a good marriage, they say that opposites attract, well, that is because where one person lacks the other picks up the slack. That is how it is in life. We find the people who, not only share in our passion, but also have what it takes to work together, to get us to our next level in life. By working together, we can spread the wealth, and boost the economy. By pulling our resources we can come together and solve, not only our own problems, but also help someone else with theirs.

“Find your purpose”, “be courageous”, “face your fears”, don’t just know these cliches, live them. That is where the fire burns, is in actually living your purpose, actually being courageous, and actually facing your fears. Whatever they may be, whatever is going on, whatever is holding you back, don’t let it! Stand up, take charge and go for it. Quit looking for purpose in life, whatever you are doing is your purpose, and in there somewhere is your passion, that is what you need to find, what is it that drives you each day to get up and move, why do you keep getting up each day, who is important enough to keep you going, when are you going to realize that you are important, where are you going and why are you alive? Important questions that will change your life. Be yourself and remember that in adversity is where we find out more about who we are.

Balanced Energy, Balanced Life, by Sindy Williams: Kindle Version

Balanced Energy, Balanced Life, by Sindy Williams: Hard Copy