3 Things You Must Do To Land That Promotion*

*This is a collaborative post*

If you've got your sights set on a promotion and you want to make sure you don't get passed up for it, then there are a few things you need to make sure you do. Below you'll find three things that can help you to climb the career ladder and make more money, - take a look! 

1. Have A Meeting With Your Boss

Start by having a meeting with your boss to let them know that this is something you're interested in. If they don't know then they might not even consider you for the position. You will want to let them know why you're so interested in the promotion, as well as present them with evidence that shows them you're a great candidate for it. This won't always guarantee that they will choose you, but they will appreciate how straightforward you have been and will likely consider you for future promotions.

2. Change Your Mindset

If you're going to land that promotion, you should work on changing your mindset to that of somebody already in a higher position. This might sound woo-woo, but people like Tony Robbins swear by this kind of thing. How would you dress, think, speak, and act? Step into that mindset now!

3. Work On All Of The Skills You Need

Work on all of the soft and hard skills you need to succeed in the promotion. Work on them like you know you've already got it. The infographic below can help you!

credit to STL Training

It's Time To Start Treating Your Garden Better!*

*This is a collaborative post*

A lot of people tend to make the mistake of treating their garden as if it's little more than a piece of outdoor decoration. It's understandable why this happens, after all, most of the time people talk about gardens almost exclusively in terms of how they look. You might talk about keeping your home tidy in terms of being comfortable but generally, people talk about keeping their gardens tidy because they don't want to look at something overgrown and unkempt. Of course, making your garden into something that you actually enjoy looking at is incredibly important, but that shouldn't be your only priority. For one thing, if you only ever think about the way it looks then it's going to feel like much more of a chore to keep it tidy. However, if you think about your garden as yet another place for you to spend your time, then you're far more likely to want to keep it well cared for. In order to help you reach this stage, here are a few simple things that you can do to make your garden into the kind of space where you actually want to spend your time.

Keeping the lawn flat

No one likes an overgrown lawn. Often, keeping your lawn trimmed can take a yard from feeling messy and uncared for to looking neat and tidy. However, one of the biggest issues that people tend to run into is that, if you're letting your grass get too long then it can become clumpy. When this happens, you start to get lumps in the soil which means that, if you're trying to sit or lie down on your lawn to relax then you're pretty likely to end up with a lump of dirt poking into your back. By keeping your lawn neatly trimmed it will not only look better but will stay flat, allowing you to actually feel comfortable when it's time to get outside for a spot of sunbathing. It the kind of job that a lot of people put off because they associate it with a whole lot of hard work that they have to put in time and time again. However, the truth is that it would actually be a whole lot less of an annoying job if you were to make it a regular part of your home maintenance routine. Rather than having to fight with overgrown weeds all the time, just running the mower over the lawn once a week is incredibly easy and lets you actually enjoy a part of your garden that could otherwise be the source of a pretty hefty amount of stress.

Injecting some color

The biggest mistake that a lot of people make is that they don't think about color in their garden enough. After all, if every room in your home was the same color get bored of it pretty quickly, wouldn't you? Sure, having a garden that's full of greenery is wonderful, but why not make things a little more exciting? You don't need to become an expert gardener to do this; there are plenty of flowers that don't need huge amounts of care but can inject a huge amount of life and color into your garden. Similarly, why not throw a lick of paint on your garden furniture or your fence? That way you can bring even more excitement into your yard without much effort.

Making a space to relax

The very best thing about a garden is having a space where you can get out in the fresh air and just relax for a while. So much of modern life is so busy and fast-paced that it's important to take that time for yourself every once in a while. This is why it's so important to create a space in your garden that's dedicated to being able to kick back for a while. Something like a flat roof patio is perfect for creating this kind of space because you don't have to worry about keeping it maintained and you can often enjoy it regardless of the weather. High-quality patio roofing is often the best way to make sure that your garden is the kind of place where you actually want to spend your time all year round, not just when the weather is beautiful. Having a space where you, friends, and family can get together and enjoy each other's company while also enjoying the great outdoors is one of the very best things about a well kept back yard.   


Of course, nothing brings that relaxation to an end faster than realizing that your neighbors are poking their heads over the fence to eavesdrop on what you're doing. Even if they're not doing it intentionally, knowing that they can see everything you're doing in your garden, even if you're just sitting down with a drink and a good book, can make things really awkward for you. Because of that think about fencing and hedges in your garden. Sure, you don't want to feel too closed in but having that extra layer around your garden is great for making it feel like a much more private and comfortable space.


Of course, the problem with a garden compared to any other part of your home is that it's not just going to stay the same. Unless you're making a mess in your home, you can be sure that stuff isn't just going to end up out of place or all over the floor. However, if you leave it alone for too long, your garden is going to end up becoming overgrown and unruly. You need to make garden maintenance a regular part of your cleaning routine. By doing that you can turn it into a habit until you reach the point where trimming the weeds is no more of an effort than running the vacuum over the floors every week.


Of course, if you're going to keep your garden neat and tidy then you need the right tools. Just about everyone needs a lawnmower, a spade, a garden fork, and home hedge clippers at the very least. With those tools, you need somewhere to store them. After all, leaving them out in the garden not only makes it seem untidy but exposes them to the elements as well. It's a good idea to invest in a small garden shed so that you have somewhere dry to store your tools when you're not using them. If you want you can even at a coat of paint to the shed so that it can help to reinforce the pleasant personality of your garden.

Dealing with patio weeds first

Weeds are the bane of many gardeners' lives. They grow faster than you ever expected, they take over spaces that were once occupied by other, more desirable plants, and they can be a real pain to get rid of. However, if you really want to make a difference to the way your garden looks, you should focus on those weeds growing through the cracks in the patio. Weeds in your flower beds might be annoying, but they can often blend in with the rest of the garden. Clumps of weeds growing up through the patio can be a real eyesore. Don't assume that just yanking them up is going to do any good, especially if you can't get to the roots. There are plenty of weedkillers that you can spray on, leave for a few days, and then come back, able to pull them up with no problem at all. Not only that but many weedkillers prevent them from regrowing nearly as fast as they normally would. Weeds are always going to come back, but if you catch them quickly enough, you can stop them from becoming a major issue. 

The best thing to do in order to change the way that you think about your garden is to treat it like just another part of your home. That way, rather than seeing gardening as some extra task that you'd like to avoid, you can treat it as an extension of the tidying and cleaning that you do indoors on a regular basis. Not only will this take a lot of the stress out of keeping your garden looking nice, but it will give you even more of an incentive to get out and actually spend some time in it. After all, your garden isn't just the thing outside your home, it's a part of it. Not only that but you should remember that your front garden if you have one, deserves just as much attention. After all, it's often the first part of your home that you will see when you come home, so why wouldn't you want to make it as pleasant as possible?

*Contributed by Sam Jones. Header image source Pexels.


How Can You Keep Your Everyday Costs Down?*

*This is a collaborative post*

It's pretty likely that we all feel like we want to take better control of our finances. Money can be a significant source of stress and a lot of that can stem from feeling like staying on top of your finances is a bigger task than anyone can handle. With all the difference places that money seems to be disappearing into, it's hard to keep track of where it's going. The last thing you want is to discover that your finances have been slowly slipping away and leaving you without any security. Fortunately, there are always things that you can do. Here are four ways that you can take back control of your financial situation.

Cut back on luxuries

We all enjoy our comforts and luxuries. Nobody wants to live a life where they can't enjoy themselves. But the trouble arises when spending on luxuries starts to overtake your ability to manage your money. It's easy to find yourself spending impulsively and then feeling anxious about your bank balance. The best thing to do in this situation is to set yourself a monthly budget. Keep a very close eye on how much you're spending each month and try to limit yourself. Don't deny yourself all luxuries of course. Just cut back, so that money worries don't ruin them.

Look at the cost of living

Your living situation can be a big factor in your financial condition. If you're living somewhere that costs more than you can really manage, then you're going to find yourself in big trouble sooner or later. Ask yourself the tough questions. Is the area I'm living in too expensive? Is my house bigger and more costly than I need and can manage? These are serious issues and can be difficult to face up to. But doing so now rather than later can save you a lot of trouble in the long run. It's also a matter of being able to manage things like the cost of running your home, whether that's through installing a energy efficient wall heater, to trying to use less energy overall. There are plenty of little things that you can do to bring the cost of living down if you don't want to make any significant changes.

Take control of your debt

Debt can be completely crippling. Things like credit card debt can feel like they've completely taken control of your life. Sadly there's no quick and easy way to deal with debts. The only thing that you can do is to take responsibility for it. Don't hide your head in the sand. Face up to your debts, figure out what you owe and what you can afford to pay back. If you can, set up a repayment plan to avoid having to pay it all back at once. After that, it's just a matter of cutting back on your spending and making sure not to use credit cards and adding to that debt unless you have no choice. 

The reality is that your home is always going to be one of, if not the the biggest financial obligation that you have to deal with. This means that the best thing that you can do is often simply to balance your budget around your home. 

*Contributed by Sam Jones. Header image source Pexels.

4 Essential Homeownership Management Strategies To Avoid Stress*

*This is a collaborative post*

Becoming a homeowner is an exciting day. For a lot of people, many claim that it is their first step into adulting. Indeed, buying a home is a huge step and with it comes new responsibilities. While as a tenant you only need to worry about paying the rent on time each month, homeowners need to create a dedicated homeownership management strategy. This is to not only maintain their property but to also ensure that they can remain the rightful owner for as long as they wish. In other words, if you thought the hardest part of purchasing a property was to figure out what you can afford in the current real estate market, you might want to re-adjust your expectations! Giving yourself the best chance along your homeownership journey is crucial.

1. Find the best mortgage

The first step of your journey through homeownership is your mortgage. Most future buyers discuss their mortgage options long before finding their forever home. However, most homeowners assume that choosing the right mortgage is a once in a lifetime opportunity. In reality you should always keep your eyes out for more advantageous mortgage options,  https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/mortgages/best-mortgages-cashback/ that offer the rate you want. Within a few years of the purchase it's a good idea to review your mortgage payments and consider your credit score. Indeed you might find that you can re-mortgage your house - aka to replace your existing mortgage - and get a better deal.

2. Ask yourself: What happens when I'm gone?

Nobody likes to think about death. However, when you become a homeowner, you have to consider what happens to your home after your passing. That's precisely what estate administration is about through the choice of your executor. You can find a lot more about how your property will be administered in case of death on this site https://www.philipstrust.co.uk/. Ultimately, dealing with the loss of a loved one can be overwhelming. But, you can make things easier for your relatives by sorting out your real estate executor early.

3. Create a home maintenance budget

Homeownership implies maintenance costs. You can't afford to ignore household issues that could put your property at risk. Unfortunately, repair works come at a cost that can forever drag your budget into the red. As a homeowner you need to create a maintenance budget from day one. Indeed emergency repairs can be pricey therefore it's best to develop useful saving strategies that can let you tackle emergency expenses. Additionally you'll find that simple tips such as learning some DIY approaches can save you a lot of trouble in the long term.

Image source via Pexels

4. Become a landlord the easy way

As you prepare yourself to climb to the next step of the property ladder, you might come to consider rentals. Indeed becoming a landlord or landlady is the promise of a regular source of income. As you establish your rental investment portfolio, you'll be pleased to know that rentals can typically pay for themselves. You can directly hire a property management agency to handle tenancy agreements and necessary repair and maintenance activities on your behalf. Maintaining your propery can be a tricky path at first. For a lot of homeowners the choice of a mortgage is the end of their financial journey. However, you can maximise your home by considering ways of managing its economic value, through re-mortgage assessments, estate administration planning and even rental management.

*Contributed by Sam Jones. Header image source Pexels.

Autumn Wonders*

 *This is a collaborative post*

I can't believe how fast this year has gone. Yet again, here we are in Autumn - my favourite of all the seasons and that's not just because of the cooler weather - I've never been good in heat. It means new TV shows such as Strictly Come Dancing and the X-Factor, it means curling up under a blanket with a hot chocolate, it's means gorgeous Autumn/Winter fashion on the high street, it means Christmas shopping! It's pumpkins, sticky toffee, Halloween, Bonfire Night, it's the countdown to all things festive! On top of all that, it's a fantastic season for dating. 
There's something hugely romantic about this time of year. Wandering hand in hand through pretty parks as the nights draw in, twinkling lights all a glow, the smell of burning peat in the crisp cool air. And depending on where you live there are various places you can take advantage of. Below I've shared just a few of my favourites from a handful of places.

Dating In Lancashire

If you live near in Lancashire then Avenham Park is a beautiful place to visit. Weather permitting, the riverside based park features a Japanese water garden and a cafe. On the other hand if you want something indoors then again in the Lancashire area is the free to enter Harris Museum. Located in the Preston City Centre, this museum, art gallery and library has been going for 125 years. There are plenty of nearby pubs and restaurants to grab a bite once you've had a wander round.

Dating In Glasgow

For Glasgow singles I recommend the gorgeous Alexandra Park which is located in the East End of Glasgow. It has fantastic views and if it's your cup of tea then there's also a nine hole golf course. Glasgow dating is great this time of year. If you're in the area then definitely take advantage of the free Glasgow Doors Open Days Festival which is an annual event celebrating the city's architecture, culture and heritage.

Dating In London

Londoners will no doubt be all too familiar with Hyde Park but did you know that in November they open their Winter Wonderland? This year you'll find various attractions such as ice skating, ice sculpting workshops, karaoke, Paddington on Ice, A Christmas Carol and The Giant Wheel. There are various firework events this time of year in London too and of course some fabulous places to eat.

Dating In Blackpool

One of my all time childhood favourites is the Blackpool Illuminations. Some may scoff but you can't knock it until you've tried it. Founded in the 1870's the lights span a whopping 10 kilometers! Whether you choose a cosy slow drive through the stretch of lights or wrap up for the walk, be quick as the illuminations don't stay on all year around. The big switch off is the 3rd November. 
There's always plenty going on along the prom when the illuminations are live and the Blackpool Tower is also a must see if you've never been. Fellow Strictly fans will know that this is home to the famous Tower Ballroom.

What is your favourite thing about Autumn? Do you have any unusual dating ideas?

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