5 Types of Friends You Need

Muhammad Ali will always be remembered for being the greatest champ to step into the boxing ring, but he was also a very enlightened and informed man. One of the many personal insights he shared during his lifetime addressed the worth of friendships. He said,“Friendship is the hardest thing in the world to explain. It’s not something you learn in school. But if you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven’t learned anything.”

His words reflect an importance that lies in our friendships that’s immense, unfathomable, and can only be understood by being a part of one. Our friendships pick us up, carry us further, and come from some of the most unlikely sources . In order to get the most out of our friendships, there are certain types of friends we should have in our lives to round out our social circles.

1. The Caretaker.
We all need a little help now and again and a friend who proudly plays the role of caretaker will never leave you wanting for more support.
Caretakers are the ones who remember the little things about you, who check in on you, and are the first ones to volunteer a helping hand. These sorts of friends are selfless givers who work towards the happiness of others.
Not only does having a caretaker friend benefit your social circle, it also makes you a more compassionate person. Research into understanding empathy has found that exposure to compassionate people causes our minds to match the same level of compassion we are picking up.
Generally kind and giving, caretakers set a good example for the rest of their circles and are just the type of friend you’d want.

2. The Couple.
This two-for-the-price-of-one friendship has a lot to offer to your group of pals.
Being around a loving and supportive couple can offer a healthy example to follow in your own relationships. Their presence teaches how a caring relationship handles both the good times and the bad in a way that is still respectful to both parties.
You can also use the couple in your life to increase your romantic potential. Research has found that newly dating couples who befriend established couples report feeling more “excited, enthusiastic, happy and closer to their partner.” The love lessons alone that you’ll learn from being friends with a couple will make up for all the lovey dovey behavior you may have to put up with from them.
Two friends taking a picture

3. The Adventurer.
Having someone in our lives who is good at giving us a push in the right direction is a valuable asset.
The adventurer friend is the one who is always up for a new endeavor and is set on taking you along for the ride. They can motivate you to push your personal boundaries, step up your game, or face your fears and, best of all, they will be right their with your throughout the adventure.
Those sorts of novelty adventures have been shown to be good for our health by encouraging wonder and curiosity, both of which benefit our mentalities and the world we live in.
That friend with a spirit that longs for adventure may pull you into a few unusual situations but it’s all a part of the journey.

4. The Planner.
Unfortunately, not all your friendships are built to last a lifetime, but planner friends are guaranteed to stick around.
The planner is the friend who keeps the group together. Life sometimes gets in the way, sidetracking us from certain priorities, causing friendships to suffer . What makes having a planner in your circle so valuable is that they will make it their priority to keep contact up within the group.
Research has found that not maintaining friendships was among the top 5 regrets that elderly patients reported feeling towards the end of their lives. Having a friend who makes staying connected easier will help alleviate the possibility of that burden.
Planners loyally ensure the whole gang stays together through all life’s moments, especially the ones when those friendships are needed the most.

5. The Honest Friend.
As much as we all enjoy hearing assessments of ourselves, we also require the truth, no matter how ugly it may be.
That’s where your honest friend comes in. We sometimes need someone who will be brutally honest with us in a way that is constructive. Without that honest friend keeping it real for us, well meaning “yes men” will give us the truth we want, not necessarily the truth we need, and disaster can strike from misinformation.
Besides gaining the right info from honest friends, they can also up your physical and mental health. Studies have found that living with less lies simplifies your life and helps personal relationships run more smoothly, thereby reducing unneeded stress.

The truth can hurt sometimes, but when coming from a friend, it’s just the sort of authenticity you need. 
As an old saying goes “Faithful are the wounds of a friend”.


How To Apologise

I usually get up early so I can read and think and drink a little coffee before the rest of my family is awake. A couple of days ago, I looked over and saw Tony asleep in bed when I got out of the shower, and my stomach was instantly in knots. I had gone to bed early the night before because I was in a foul mood. We were working together on our new #staymarried group, but our hard drive had crashed. We had minimal programs, no printer set-up, no ink for the printer. It was a big irritating mess and a giant waste of my time. Tony was working through the tech stuff, and of course that irritated me, too. Waste of time, all of it. Bleh. I’m going to bed!

Now, after a full night’s rest, I saw more clearly that I’d been fantastically rude and taken my frustration out on him. I saw him sleeping and I knew I needed to apologize. Bleh, again! I hate apologizing. I mean, why can’t I just be grumpy and even a little mean when I feel like it? Why can’t we all just move on? I mean, he shouldn’t take it personally, right? I was mad about the computer, not about him. Yet, there he was, laying there sleeping, forgiving me before I even muster up whatever it is I need – humility, is it? – to apologize. I hate it.

I slinked into the bed, waking him up slowly, and I said it. “I’m sorry. Will you forgive me? I was a jerk and was really rude to you last night. I’m really sorry.” … and, exhale. Wow, that wasn’t so bad. As I started the words, I began to actually feel them. As I heard myself, I believed what I was saying more and more. I WAS a jerk, he didn’t deserve that. I WAS sorry. I DID hope he’d forgive me.

He kissed my cheek, “I forgive you. I love you,” and that was it. I was relieved. I couldn’t believe how much I was dreading apologizing, how frustrated I felt when I saw him in bed knowing I needed to ask forgiveness. I had just wanted it to go away without me taking any action at all. I was so annoyed with the whole thing in the first place and, now that it was over, I was so light and thankful and even happy. I pranced off to the kitchen to make us some coffee, sat and had a few minutes to myself, and the rest of the day was perfectly normal.

So, I’m wondering, am I the only one that dreads apologizing? I should say, I used to be much worse. I’m the stone-walling silent-treatment type by nature, and it used to take me a minimum of twenty four hours to come around. I would gnaw on my own self-righteousness, getting as much of that bitter flavor in my mouth as I could. I would glare and ignore and even wait for him to approach me in just the right way before I could even fathom apologizing for anything I did, which he probably provoked me to in the first place. Dream girl, right?

Maybe it’s because I hate being wrong. Maybe it’s the pain of humility – though it isn’t actually humiliating. Maybe it’s the lack of self-control I have over my attitude in the first place that frustrates me. I would admit, yes, actually, it is all of these things. I hate apologizing for all of these reasons. When I need to apologize, I can easily think of even more reasons I hate it and even justify why I can’t or shouldn’t do so just yet. But, I’ve done it, and I’ll do it again. When I know I need to apologize, these are the things I try to keep in mind
Funny Apology

Tony’s never been that way. Not that he’s always right… although, I can hardly remember a time when he was actually wrong… but more that he always wants to reconcile as soon as possible. He has no need for grudges, no appetite for bitterness. He wants to move on and enjoy each other as fast as possible. Is that you? Are you quick to apologize? Quick to forgive? Quick to move on?
We’ve learned each other better over time, of course. I have always known it wasn’t the best thing to hold onto my frustration, but knowing and doing often have a gap – or even a chasm – in between. The gap has been narrowing for me over the years. Just think, I went to bed in a huff and woke up and apologized – not bad. Now, if I could have apologized for my attitude before going to bed, that might even be considered “ holy” – but I’m not there yet.

Maybe it’s because I hate being wrong. Maybe it’s the pain of humility – though it isn’t actually humiliating. Maybe it’s the lack of self-control I have over my attitude in the first place that frustrates me. I would admit, yes, actually, it is all of these things. I hate apologizing for all of these reasons. When I need to apologize, I can easily think of even more reasons I hate it and even justify why I can’t or shouldn’t do so just yet. But, I’ve done it, and I’ll do it again. When I know I need to apologize, these are the things I try to keep in mind
As simple as the word sorry is, it could sometimes be a magical word

The DOs and DON’Ts for Making an Apology.
DON’T apologize for someone else’s feelings.
“I’m sorry you’re mad,” is not an apology. It’s condescending.
DO apologize for your own actions and attitude.
“I’m sorry I was rude,” is an apology that takes ownership. Be specific about what you did wrong. “I’m sorry for whatever made you mad” is NOT going to work. If you need some time to think and reflect on what you did, take it. It’s better to come with a real apology than a generic one that will probably end up creating a whole new fight.

DON’T add an excuse to your apology.
“I’m sorry I was rude, but I was really irritated,” means you’re not really sorry. You feel justified for the way you acted and you expect to be excused. One of the most memorable pieces of advice I’ve ever heard: When you say “I’m sorry, but …” you’re really just a sorry butt.

DO ask for forgiveness when you apologize.
“I’m sorry,” on it’s own, is just a statement. It requires no response. “Will you forgive me?” is a humble request that can rebuild a relationship. When you ask your spouse to forgive you, wait. Listen. Be prepared for them to say in response, “I need a minute, I’m not there right now.” When you are in the wrong, you are never owed forgiveness. Be grateful when you receive it.

DON’T expect a reciprocal apology.
Let’s say you were in a fight. You were both rude and hostile to each other and now you’ve decided to be the brave one and apologize first. Do not apologize expecting your spouse to apologize equally. They may not. If you expect them to, and they don’t, you may be tempted to say something like, “Never mind. I thought we were going to work this out together. I said I was sorry, you are obviously not sorry, so FORGET IT!” … Um… yeah… that’s not an apology. When you recognize you have done something wrong, just own your part of it. The end.

DO attempt to make a repair.
Once you get through the brutal, “I’m sorry. Will you forgive me?” it’s wise to make the next step and ask, “Is there anything I can do to make this right?” Then, be prepared to wear your underwear on your head as you head over to the Starbucks drive-through to order your love his apology Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Asking my husband for forgiveness as often as possible has proven to bring us closer together time and time again. My stubbornness and self-righteousness seem to have done nothing for our relationship at all. So, I’ll be wrong again and again. I’ll need his forgiveness again and again. Hopefully I’ll see it sooner rather than later each time. Hopefully I’ll remember not to add excuses on the end of my apologies. I will ask him to forgive me. I will await his response. I will push past the knots in my stomach to say what needs to be said, because I know I can count on a light kiss on the cheek and his arms around me reminding me that with each time we forgive each other we are committing to #staymarried.

by Michelle


How To Live Long If You Have A Heart Disease

When talking about heart conditions, doctors use the terms coronary heart disease (CHD) and the broader cardiovascular disease (CVD).

CHD is used for any condition that affects heart function. CVD refers to both coronary heart disease and diseases of the circulation, such as stroke , when a clot blocks blood supply to the brain. Stroke is the country’s third biggest killer, claiming 70,000 lives each year. Most doctors now prefer to use the term CVD because it’s the major cause of premature death in the UK, causing around 32 per cent of premature deaths in men and 28 per cent in women.

One person in Britain dies from heart disease every three minutes – making us one of the world’s worst countries for this problem.

Types of Heart Disease
*Heart Attack

*Congenital Heart Disease 

*Heart Attack


Heart problems, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease often emerge as your heart adjusts to aging. The good news? You can do a lot to control and sometimes reverse these conditions by making lifestyle changes in your life. Here are creative things you can do that will not only help your condition but give you more energy so you can feel better and live longer.

Exercise can help lower your biological age.

Your heart is a muscle and it needs its exercise or it will grow soft and flabby. Getting started in exercise — especially if you aren’t at your peak form right now — can be mentally and physically challenging.

First, talk with your doctor and get specific guidelines for how much exercise you should do, and how to recognize the signs of overexertion.

Next, find a gym that has personal trainers. The trainer can help make sure that your efforts are going to pay off, and that you are doing the exercises correctly.

Hire a Registered Dietitian or Nutritionist

You will probably only need one or two consultations with a dietitian to learn volumes about what you are eating, what you should be eating and why. To get the most out of your visit, bring two or three days of food logs with you. A food log is simply a record of everything you eat or drink in a day, the times you ate or drank it and the amounts. This will help the nutritionist tailor a program to your life.

Banish Your Food Enemies

We all have food enemies. Maybe yours are cookies, ice cream, chips or candy? If you can’t avoid temptation, banish these items from your house, your car, and your office, and avoid eating them on a regular basis.

Relax a Little

Stress constricts your blood vessels, and this makes it harder for your heart to pump blood through your body. Relax, let the events of the day wash over you and consider earning relaxation breathing. When something bothers you, try to keep the big picture in mind: Ask yourself, will the stress triggers matter five years from now? Will you even remember them?


Smiling does all sorts of good for your body. You can actually trick your body and mind into being happy by smiling. Put a smile on your face while standing in line, driving or writing e-mails: You’ll be amazed at the change. Practice by smiling every time you look at a clock. This will add hundreds of smiles to your day!

Learn to Cook

Have you ever been amazed by restaurants? You can walk in, order any one of 70 items off a menu and a few minutes later your meal arrives warm and delicious. It is like a miracle. And the name of that miracle is butter. Restaurants use fats and butter to cover up so-so ingredients, over warming and other sins of necessity. By learning to cook and eating at home, you can be in control of your food. Use fresh ingredients and take some cooking classes.

Monitor and Record

Keeping important information at your fingertip can help your doctors plan the best medical care for you. Monitor your blood pressure weekly, keep your test results in a folder for easy access. Have your cholesterol tested every few months. Keep track of your medical information. Know what medications you are on, who your doctors are and what your medical goals are.

Take Your Medicine

If you doctor has prescribed medicine for you, take it. Figure out what you need to do to to be 100 percent compliant with your doctor’s orders. That means taking your medicine at the right times and following the suggestions. There are some really excellent medications on the market now that have helped millions of people avoid heart attacks and other problems.

Nurture Your Relationships

People with health conditions fare better if they have strong social relationships. Your spouse, friends or family members can be there to help you overcome challenges, make lifestyle changes and assist you if you are ill.

It has also been shown that having close relationships can help reduce stress and improve healing. So, take a second honeymoon, go on a buddy fishing trip, or have a spa day with someone you care about.

Celebrate Life

Life is good. Celebrate the progress you make in creating a healthier you, instead of getting caught in routines and ruts that eat away your days. Carving out time for pleasurable activities can boost your heart health.

Source: informationng


9 Innocent Pictures That You Probably Looked At Wrongly 

In this age of snapchat, instagram inter alia, snapping pictures and putting them up on social media has become the order of the day for some people. People commonly believe that pictures don’t lie or do they? Relax…I guess the only thing that lies about a picture is your eyes. What do you see when you look at a picture….All the ‘dirty minds’ folks gonna come for me now…runsaway.

Alright so I’m back, ‘cos I just have to write this post.. It has been said that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, so is the case of pictures. Take a look at 9 pictures that would make you question how you really think? 

1. If you really focus your books, you should know this is one of them. I see where your mind went..

2. You should relax you know ‘cos heels dont lie..Learn to look down sometimes.

3. Some cameraman can be somewhow sometimes sha.See what they made you think.. Be delivered….

4. Dont just think twice, also look twice and probably you would see that its just really the man’s hand not the other way round..

5. Sometimes all we want to do is snap with our pets…Lookatew and your dirty mind….

6. Its just a hand oooooo!!!!!!I repeat its just a hand!!!!!Nothing more..

7. So you cannot just admire a palm tree again right ..I’m dabbing for you…

8. Its not everything you join together..Its not always about marriage and you’re not a Pastor or are you? You can as well borrow them a pen cos their pen is broken..What is it you were thinking again?

Yeah so I can run away now before some ‘dirty minds crawl up in my business..😀😀Hope you had fun….


Single But Not Lonely


Sometimes it seems like it just can’t happen – especially when you consider yourself to be a “relationship person.” It almost feels like a part of you is missing even though you know that’s absurd logic.
So, instead of beating yourself down for wanting a relationship, focus on taking advantage of the time you have by yourself so you can be 100% ready to roll when you do find your certain special human. Not only will you feel more confident about your current relationship status NOW, but you’ll also be better off LATER.

Here is what to focus on while being single so you can be the best version of yourself once you meet the right person for you:

I said it. Get in the habit of putting yourself first now, because trust me, once a romantic interest comes along, that is going to go flying out the window.
I don’t want you to become some troll who is only out for herself, but I do want you to really focus on asking yourself, “What do I want?” first. When you are in a serious, committed relationship with someone, you have to ask not only what YOU want, but you also have to consider their opinions, desires, and needs. That’s what good relationships are built on. So when you are not in a relationship, take sweet, sweet advantage.

I want you to have a pulse on how you want your state of events to unravel. Instead of “going with the flow” or deferring action to others, take it upon yourself to cultivate some strong opinions. Get a sense of what you like and how you like it. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.

If you are already an opinionated missy, then own the fact that you don’t have to put a significant other’s feelings first! This is pure FREEDOM for you. Don’t restrain yourself – get used to speaking your voice and coming into your own. Because once you find somebody you truly love, you will want to soften your voice to let theirs be heard. It’s the considerate and natural thing to do. But for right now, go for it boss babe.

Other than the dreaded question, “are you seeing anybody?” I would have to say the second most anxiety-provoking question is probably “what do you like to do for fun?”

Ummm. Oh, shit. My life is SUPER boring.
What a buzz kill. It’s mildly humiliating when you don’t have a few go-to answers to this question at your monthly networking events, so now is the time to get going. Everyone needs some personal hobbies. Something to get that creative energy out. Mine happens to be writing (le duh). And writing is a rather solitary activity. It’s all mine. I don’t share the process with anybody, only the results. (This is mostly because editing my work is considered cruel and unusual punishment.)

So what do you like to do that’s all yours?
I want you to come up with a few personal hobbies that you can do all by yourself. It’s ok if the hobby might intrinsically be a social endeavor. For instance, I know a lot of film buffs who proudly say going to the movies is their favorite hobby. Now that is MY kind of hobby! Sitting in a dark theatre and eating popcorn while someone entertains me. None of this hiking bullshit. My favorite kind of people tend to coin this as their favorite hobby, as you can see why.

My only issue with it is when they refuse to go alone.
Have you ever been to a movie alone? It’s amazing. No one wants to sit next to you and no one whispers in your ear “ Oh my God look at Liam Hemsworth” while drooling on your recently purchased faux cashmere sweater. Instead you get pure silence and pure focus. It’s a magical thing.
But robbing of yourself out of that blissful retreat simply because society deems it as a “social engagement”????
No ma’am.
It is beyond me why humans believe that going to a movie should be a social engagement to begin with. Think about it! You just sit there and stare at a screen in silence. Talking to each other during the film is considered to be RUDE. You can literally get kicked out for trying to BE. SOCIAL. It makes zero sense to me. And how people consider that an ok first date is another ridiculous notion, but that’s for another blog.
For right now, let me just say, please do not let being single dictate your hobbies. You are giving way too much power to a society that clearly has some massive flaws.

Point is you deserve to have an individual passion that requires permission from NOBODY to execute. And you will be much better for it when the time comes for you to invite somebody into the space with you. That is, if you want to.

This is another negative side effect of relationships: they tend to put a little strain on friendships.
It’s not that your friends all suddenly hate you just because you got a significant other and it’s not because you will start hating your friends, either. It’s because your time will be cut in half.

It starts with the weekends. They’ll bring you to a wedding, you’ll bring them home to meet the parents, then there’s date nights and cuddle nights and Netflix nights…and then, dang. When are you supposed to hang with your friends? You’re still a regular at Bachelor Mondays and Wine Wednesdays, but things just don’t feel the same.
Before I continue, I just have to get this out there:
You are NOT going to lose your friends. I repeat, just because you have a relationship does NOT mean you lose your friends.
You and your friends are going to be pulled apart in different directions even if you were all to stay single your entire lives.

People get jobs and promotions and must move as a result. They decide to go back to their hometowns to settle down. And yes, all of you have a high chance of meeting a special someone. And yes, a lot of you will create an insanely cute yet very time consuming family. Whether those are furbabies or human babies, the time is still stretched. This doesn’t mean that the love you share with your friend group goes away, and it doesn’t mean the time you have together is any less special. But as you get older your schedule will probably get more crowded, so you have to make sure you are spending an inordinate amount of time sealing these friendships for life.
Trap those girls, you hear me? Trap ‘em good.

Again, the amount of free time in your life is going to drastically change when you enter into a serious relationship. I don’t care how independent, feminist, or anti-love you are – that is what happens. You are going to be confronted with a person so perfect that you actually aren’t going to get sick of hanging out with them every single day! I know! It’s seriously crazy.
So in the meantime, get your accomplishment ducks in a row.

Look at your life right now and think about what you would like to change. Do you like your job? Have you been planning on going back to school? Are you ready to take that trip you always said you’d take? Now is the time. It is better to change your life before you start dating someone seriously, because when that happens, you will always want to take them into consideration.

And what about their dreams? Their desires? Their ambitions? What if one of you wants to move to LA while the other one of you is dead set on getting licensure in the state of Texas? THEN WHAT????
(I ache for my 25 year old self.)

It’s hard, guys. It really is. You are a superstar and you are going to end up with a fellow superstar who also has an idea of how their life would like to turn out. Spoiler alert: those visions don’t always line up. This is why compromise exists. But my best advice to give you is to figure your goals out as early as possible while you have the freedom to do so.

Don’t wait for someone else to shape your life. Shape it yourself.
Take away: You are free right now. Free as a bird. As much as I know that might pain you, it is the best gift you could ask for right now at your age. You have the time you need to craft the life you want, and then when you meet the right person, it will feel that much better.

Not to like, find the one . Not yet. You still have to work to do. But don’t shy away from dating just to date.
Here is my take on dating: it is super intimidating, super nerve-racking, it can be incredibly awkward, and it is a necessity of life.
Think of it this way: you probably don’t like job interviews, but you also probably wanted a job.
And it would have even been smart of you to go on job interviews when you didn’t even really want the job. Why? To practice. To get better at your interviewing skills so when a job you actually WANTED became available, you were ready. Game freaking on.
Same goes for dating. In fact, not only does “practice dating” help for the real deal, it also teaches you to become more selective. If you don’t date, then your dating pool is everybody . And if your dating pool is everybody, you are not going to find the right person for you. Trust me on that. You need to be selective with a capital S before you clear the bench. So go out on a few dates! Enjoy your freedom! Take some notes! See what you like!
And…more importantly, see what you DON’T like.
Take this time to explore.

It’s totally normal. Just remember however that being
single is a choice and a lot of times, it’s the best choice for you in the moment. The more you own your relationship status, the less insecure you will feel about it. Work with a Blush life coach to make sure you are focusing on BECOMING the person you want, instead of FINDING the person you want.

Kali Rogers


3 Reasons Why Bottled Water May Not Be The Best For You

Though water is the healthiest thing anyone can drink , science suggests that drinking from plastic water bottles might not be the best thing for you or the environment.

Here are reasons you should avoid drinking from plastic water bottles as much as you can:

1. They can release potentially harmful chemicals into your water.

When you expose plastic bottles to heat (such as in a hot car , dishwasher , ultraviolet radiation from the sun or microwaves ), the outer layers can break down. In response, plastics marked with recycle codes 3 or 7 can release a chemical called bisphenol A ( BPA) , while BPA-free plastics can release bisphenol S (BPS) . These can contaminate your water , says Dr . Cheryl Watson , a biochemist at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, who’ s done extensive research on human exposure to BPA and BPS.

The problem : When you ingest even small amounts, they mimic oestrogen , which can change the way your endocrine system functions. In humans , exposure has been linked to chronic diseases , including diabetes , asthma, and cancer. Animal studies suggest in utero exposure can ultimately impair development of the brain and immune system of a growing baby , with effects that could be passed down to future generations.

2. Plastic chemicals might make it harder for you to have a baby.

Researchers found that men and women undergoing in-vitro fertilization who had high levels of BPA in their blood , urine, and work environment were less likely to have a successful pregnancy , according to a 2013 review of 91 studies published in
Reproductive Toxicology.

The problem : Although more research is needed, the results suggest that when BPA imitates oestrogen , it interferes with different stages of pregnancy , such as fertilization and implantation, says Dr . Sheela Sathyanarayana, adjunct associate professor of environmental and occupational health sciences at the University of Washington.

3. Plastic chemicals could raise your risk of heart disease and other circulatory issues .

Humans exposed to the highest levels of BPA have an increased risk of heart disease, according to a 2012 study published in Circulation. Researchers think this could be due to BPA ’ s link to high blood pressure, a risk factor for heart disease. After all , the blood pressure of adults who drank from cans containing BPA rose almost immediately in a small but thorough 2015 study published in Hypertension.

The problem : Since BPA and BPS can mimic oestrogen once they get into your system , and high levels of the hormone increase the production of the blood plasma protein, according to Dr . Sathyanarayana, exposure to these chemicals could also lead to blood clotting and related complications like heart events and stroke .

Source: YahooNews


The Fine Art of Pretence- IV


It is a better compliment to be trusted than to be loved. I read that from John C. Maxwell, and ever since Ive wondered what makes trust such a scarce commodity even in places where love is superabundant.
Now, it seems quite ironical that trust should be central to such a concept as pretence because the two seem to harbour mutual animosity. Im sure, however, that even you reading this would, at one time or the other, have dealt in pretence, prevarication, or  even outright lying to someone just cause you knew they trusted you enough to hang on to your every word. Thus, I dont need to remind you that the trust they had in you was the very reason you got away with that act. 
Right, weve established a connection, so lets begin to cut a little deeper. Ill start by telling you something about myself. Basically, Im a lawbreaker; a lawbreaker in the sense that I learn the rules of my environment just for the purpose of knowing how best to break them and recreate them to suit my preference.

I have this pet aversion for rules because they are, by their very nature, made to be restrictive. But Im of the opinion that rules are made to restore confidence and trust. Have you ever heard that Justice must not only be done, but must also seem to be done? Well, it tells you that justice is essentially a psychological feeling. Forget all the idealistic talk of conscience: most people dont listen to the conscience when theyre determined to do something.
If you reason things out, you discover that rules are set to establish standards upon which justice should be premised. There really is no justice without laid-down rules. Thus, if youre able to pretend to keep the rules, then justice is on your side for as long as it takes to deliver the blow you have been preparing.
Now you see why they say that everything is fair in love and war. In conditions of perfect love or perfect war, the rules mean nothing because no one really gives a damn. Rules are made to be broken; that is a standard fact. Else, why is man so bent on defying every law of nature? Take gravity, for example. Man has been on the go trying to make nonsense of gravity. Aerial vehicles were made and are still being made for this purpose. People travel by air with brazen abandon, secure in the power of the aeroplane, helicopter or jet to shut gravity up for as long as they want. Tell them to try letting an eagle take them so far high.

Dont forget where were coming from. Were saying that trust is essential for pretence to work, and that trust works best where rules are absent or not enforced. We are saying that the necessity of restoring trust, for which rules are made in the first place, is the selfsame reason why those rules must be broken. I dont guard myself when talking with my friend cause I know they cant shoot me, but with a stranger or enemy Im on my guard because the rules for safety and security ensure that I should not give myself away. Remember this: Trust is absolute where rules are unnecessary.
Let me tell you a story from my childhood days. We used to have a house-help who was roundly maltreated by my parents, especially my mum. She thus resorted to self-help: she  would steal from them, lie, and also have illicit dealings with men. One day, she persuaded me to take her into my parents room (it was usually locked, but on this occasion it wasnt) to get something. It was my elder sister who gave us away, and I knew two things for sure. One, being labelled an accomplice to a thief would earn me many strokes of cane. Two, my parents would believe anything I said. (That was then, not now; growing up makes you more crooked.)
What did you go to do there? was my mothers inquisition. I was trying to check my weight on the scales, came the equally swift reply from me, with all the confidence I could muster. Now catch the gist. I dont exactly remember what we took out of that room, but I do know that it had to have been incriminating. My best move was to put up as big a show of confidence and truthfulness as they had always thought of me. Instead of answering the question of what I had gone in there to do, I replied with something else which I also did and kept back my mission.

You know why that incident trips me? I could not have been more than six or seven years old at the time, but I was already learning to bend my way around the rules and regulations of the house by taking advantage of my parents trust. (Kids, dont try this at home!)
As I am writing this chapter something else has just happened that I wish to share with you. Dad and I had discussed plans to give me the key to the penthouse so I could get some items downstairs. True enough, I got the key, retrieved the items, and delivered his key back to him. 
The knot here is…
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The Fine Art of Pretence- III


I have met a lot of stupid people, but none worse than those who either don’t know how to conceal their knowledge and emotions or haven’t learnt how to flaunt it at the right time. These two groups of people are, to me, some of the worst human beings on the circle of the earth. Here’s the reason. The former, like brute beasts, are destroyed by the very powers and prowess they possess. For the latter, they want to please everybody and be the beast of burden.

Earlier we had said a little on quiet people being very dangerous. Now, as sweet as that sounds, it’s not always true. I know about the empty barrel that makes the loudest noise, but hey, even an empty barrel can be coated with thick rubber or leather so that it makes little or no noise. I’ll tell you this: if someone is so often quiet, it simply means they don’t think they have something useful to contribute to the pool of wisdom and don’t want to swell the cesspool of folly either. Or it may mean some even more sinister purpose.

You think I’m not making sense with this? You just study them and try to make some trouble or put them on the hot seat. You’ll see that they aren’t able to respond intelligently when upset; the response will usually be more emotional than rational. Just try it.

It baffles me that some people can be so naïve, especially women. You got married to this man, he turned you into a punching bag, you kept quiet about it and stayed on in his house until he finally knocked you out. It is when concerned neighbours and friends notice that you’ve suddenly gone missing and organize a search party that they discover you either in a hospital bed or under house arrest, your beauty all but finished. Your morale is at an all-time low, and this time they forcefully take you away amid your muffled protests (you can’t speak loudly because your mouth is in excruciating pain from several blows). Meanwhile, you keep saying, ‘He is my husband. What God has joined together let no man put asunder.’

My sister, let me start by telling you the ugly truth: you’ve taken ‘stupid’ to an all-time high. If ever I happened to be one of those people seeing you in that state, I’d not sympathize with you or rebuke your hubby yet. The first thing I’d do would be to paint before you the very ugly picture of the slave you have become, then afterwards I could go on to give your man the rough tackles he deserves.

Of course, the first thing would be to take you out of there; there’s no point condemning you if I can’t give any practical solution to your problem because talk is cheap. You should, the very first time he laid a paw on you to hurt you (paw because beating a woman makes a beast of a man, except in serious self-defence), have gone to report to your family first, and then to his (I’m being very careful about his family because the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree). After that time, be creative with your quarrels such that, the next time there’s one, you have a standby weapon with which to deal him a fatal (but not mortal) blow. Make it fatal so that you have enough time to escape while he’s still weak, but you can’t afford to make it mortal because no one pays for his crimes when he’s dead. If you must make him suffer, let him be alive so that the lessons will endure and you will feel good after leaving the house if you have to. Besides, there’s still chance to reconcile as long as he’s alive; you don’t want to lose that chance, do you?

Whoa, I just said that you may have to leave his house! My dear, if you were truly one flesh with him and he saw you that way, then he’d never do to you what he wouldn’t do to himself. He should love you as he loves himself—save that he’ll not die for you. Oh, what were you expecting? That your man should be able to give his life for you? No way! If he did that, you would get married to someone else sooner or later and all his heroic martyrdom would be but a memory, probably a milestone in your history. For goodness’ sake, let him save his life instead.

Jeez! I just spent all this time telling you women how to deal with a violent man? You see, gone are the days when we would say, ‘She stoops to conquer’. That was in the era when women had no rights and were simply baby-making machines bought at a bride price and deployed towards bearing and rearing children to continue the family name. Not anymore. In our world today women are prominent in different fields of endeavour. You cannot talk pop without the mention of Whitney Houston or TV talk show without Oprah Winfrey. Here in Nigeria, economic decisions are more or less influenced under the current dispensation by Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. So let’s not pretend that the world is still the way it was. No, things have changed and we must acknowledge the fact. Pretence is only fine when backed up with a sense of integrity and it can stand the test of reality.

By special providence I happen to have a lot of female friends, far more than male (and that doesn’t make me a ladies’ man). All of these ladies are intelligent to the core, but sometimes a few of them just get so gullible and you’d think they were under some hypnotic spell when you see them obsequious enough to eat ‘shit’ (sorry to say). I hate it, but I also don’t like it when people become toothless bulldogs. I’ve heard so many people say, ‘You can’t stand it when I’m angry’, and my response is always, ‘Are you the only one who knows how to get angry?’ Such people are so petulant, pugnacious and prone to throwing up temper tantrums, making much ado over nothing because they really can do nothing. These two groups of people are among the weakest and stupidest beings on the surface of the earth.

You must learn to manage your emotions. Be slow to speak and act but quick to learn. Pretence is about having information and using it when necessary to your advantage. You use it to either reveal or conceal something, depending on the demands of the situation. Silence is golden when the silent one has an advantage he’s waiting to unleash at the right time—and he must actively make that time happen, else he would have successfully crossed the line from pretence to foolishness.

I usually tell people that whenever they see me angry or speaking strongly to someone, it does not always mean that I’m really angry and letting words just fall from my mouth. Sometimes, I say things for effect even if I don’t mean them exactly the way I said them, and even the person will have to acknowledge later that I made sense. There are insults I don’t reply because I have a nobler objective in mind. At other times I could leave a stern warning or do something totally uncalled-for (what the Yoruba tribe in Nigeria would describe as replying a toothpick with a javelin) and it will only be an act of deterrence, not anger.

Here’s my point: you don’t have to wait to be angry before you react. More than that, learn to …

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Health, Humour

See How You Can Laugh More Today

Studies show that laughter lowers blood pressure, reduces stress hormones, and boosts immune functions in the body. It cleanses the lungs and body tissues of accumulated stale air since it empties more air out than it takes in.  In addition to these benefits, laughter triggers the release of endorphins — those “feel good” chemicals in the brain that make you feel joyful and elated — and even helps to relieve pain. Endorphins are the same chemicals released when some people, after an extended period of running, get “runners high”.

We should take advantage of every opportunity to have a good hearty laugh.  Humorous situations surround us each day. We just have to be on the lookout for them.
Obama Laughing

Here are some ways to get more laughter into your life:

  • Let people know that you enjoy a good laugh and ask them to share their favorite jokes with you via email, etc.
  • Visit joke sites on the Internet.
  • Plan to attend a live comedy show with a group.
  • Share your embarrassing or humorous moments (let good taste prevail here).
  • Laugh at yourself and your shortcomings, especially on the job. Be a good sport.  When others do imitations of you, laugh and pay attention. It can be a real eye opener to some of your eccentric ways. Don’t allow life’s pressures and negative circumstances to snuff out your sense of humor.
  • Laughter can take your mind off of what’s stressing you, providing temporary emotional relief. 
  • Laughter can improve your social life as well as your marriage or romantic relationship since it makes you more fun to be around; nobody enjoys a sourpuss.

A young man once said “Those who carry a long face don’t live long”. Laugh often and let others find strength in your joy.Hahahahahahahahahahaha…

Motivation, Relationship

3 Types Of People You Should Avoid At Work

In most personal situations, we can try to avoid the impact toxic people have on us by limiting our interaction with them. But how do we do that in an environment where we don’t pick and choose those who surround us?

At some point in our careers, many of us have had to work with a “toxic worker.” This person is a colleague or boss whose harsh personality or devious behaviors make the workday miserable. These behaviors often shift the morale in other employees, create conflict in the work place and can potentially hurt the company’s reputation.

Research shows that up to 80 percent of all difficulties within organizations stem from poor or strained employee relationships. This means that it is more helpful for the overall success of the company to avoid such employees. Difficult work environments can cause anxiety, depression, and in some cases, physical illness.
In most cases, it is very easy to identify the common types of toxic persons in your workplace.
Here are three classic types and ways to deal with their behaviors:

1. The Escalator
There are some co-workers who escalate every issue to a level 10, instead of fixing problems and finding reasonable or logical solutions with the person directly involved. This makes it hard to build relationships where colleagues trust one another, and in the long run, wastes time (as well as money). This toxic worker feels the need to alarm supervisors with trivial issues that could either be avoided or solved among peers. These types of employees waste time, and lack problem solving techniques.

The best way to handle these colleagues is by addressing the issue with them directly and offering solutions in tackling the issue. Ask them to approach you directly so you can discuss and work towards a common solution, and if one cannot be found, then you can both alert your managers to find the best way to fix the problem.

2. The Complainer
Constant complaining can make a work environment toxic. This particular co-worker is always quick to point out the worst-case scenario, and thus changing the mood of others with their negativity.
If you encounter this colleague, either change the direction of the conversation to highlight positive aspects of the situation or project. You can also redirect them to come up with solutions to the issues they are speaking about. If neither of those tips work, it’s probably best to avoid conversation altogether. You may not be able to shift their perspective, but you can limit your exposure to their negativity.

3. The Time Consumer
This person has a lack of respect for schedules and a person’s need to concentrate on his/her work. They often show up at your desk and engage you in long conversations, ask numerous questions, or email/phone persistently, with little regard to realistic time frames. If you encounter this colleague, it’s best to let them know you are working on a tight deadline, and either give them a specific time to return or ask them to schedule a meeting for further discussion.

The most important way to deal with toxic co-workers is to set boundaries with yourself so that you do not allow them to waste your time or cause you to under perform your own job. If at all possible, limit your exposure to them, avoid office gossip, and stay focused on why you are both there: to work.

Don’t surround yourself with people who won’t challenge to be better than you are.


How To Have A Great Relationship

One of the best pieces of relationship advice I’ve come across goes thus: “A great relationship doesn’t happen because of the love you had in the beginning but how well you continue building love until the end”. Thus, the first step in building a great relationship is finding the right person. As such, in bid to avoid a wrong and abusive relationship, some folks tend to look forward to finding the ‘perfect one’ but as you would have come to learn, this is just a myth.

Hence building great and healthy relationships 
requires the coming together of two ‘imperfect’ people who are ready to make a conscious effort to 
create their own kind of ‘perfect relationship’. Against this backdrop, below are traits that make a great 

True Love

Even though it takes more than love to sustain a relationship, true love is still a key factor in sustaining a relationship. Overtime, the word ‘love’ has been used confused with ‘lust’, hence some people have 
given up their hope of finding true love because they found themselves in relationships with people who 
didn’t really love them but just had a lust for them, which unsurprisingly couldn’t stand the test of time. 
Thus, you should know that true love will stand the test of time. True love transcends beauty and other 
physical qualities. Any relationship built on material things without true love would surely collapse. Let 
love lead the way.


Trust is very vital in sustaining a great relationship. Without trust, there will be gross suspicion capable 
of destroying the relationship. You can never have a great relationship with someone who you cannot 
trust. The fact is that you can trust someone without loving them but you can’t build a great relationship 
with someone you don’t trust. Trusting someone doesn’t necessarily mean you wouldn’t ask them 
certain questions but when asking sensitive questions you must ensure that you don’t send the ‘I don’t 
trust you’ vibe to your partner. Also, trust when broken takes time to heal, so you have to learn to give 
your partner time to learn to trust you in the event that you break their trust at any time.

Effective Communication

Communication in relationships is very important, as without effective communication, there will be lots 
of assumptions and misunderstanding. You both must be able to express yourself in a way that you will 
both understand. Talk plainly, not in parables. Don’t assume your partner knows what you’re thinking 
when you never said anything to him or her. Don’t assume he or she should know what you’re passing 
through. Talk about your plans and visions with your spouse so that you both are able to align your 
goals. Also, remember that your body language is part of communication in relationships. Thus, when 
you apologise for an incidence, also show it with your body language.


One recurring theme you’re likely to hear in a marriage counseling session is the word ‘understanding’.
This is the bedrock of building great and healthy relationships because if you understand your spouse
you’re more likely to be accepting of their shortcomings. No couple has exactly the same needs at any
time or feels the same intensity when they do occur. Whether it’s about sexual frequency, social
attachments or family obligations, it is important that you do not invalidate the desires of your partner.
In other words, understanding each other helps you to have respect and honour for unequal desires.
Understanding your partner also helps you to trust them better as well as avoid allowing seemingly little
issues lead to a mountain of problems. This factor can also bridge any form of communication gap, as
some partners who are introverts may tend to struggle with be open always. However, when you
understand your spouse, you would appreciate his or her uniqueness as well as be patient with them.


According to Mark Twain, a man known for writing good relationship quotes, forgiveness is the
fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it. Thus, it’s important to note that no
matter how much you both love and care for each other, times will come when you will offend each
other and have some form of disagreement over issues. You should know that holding a grudge against
someone can be a very heavy burden and you’re just going to be hurting yourself. This factor is one of
the major pieces of relationship advice handed down to couples during relationship counseling sessions.
Learn to discuss and settle differences. Discuss not argue. Don’t hold on to past errors and mistakes. No
one is above errors. Having an unforgiving attitude leads to bitterness, strife, hatred, and lack of trust,
which are all great relationship killers and create room for an abusive relationship. It is important to
note that bitter relationships never get better.

One of the most commonly asked relationship questions during marriage counseling and relationship
counseling sessions is the issue of what makes for a great relationship. It’s often said that sometimes we
don’t choose whom we love but we choose whom we stay in love with. Thus, fostering a great
relationship requires constant efforts from both parties in a relationship.


Three Tips For A Perfect Date Night 

By all accounts, you’re a successful business person. You’ve put a lot of thought and work into moving ahead and now you’re reaping the rewards.

For some people, though, professional success can come at the expense of personal relationships.  But that doesn’t have to happen to you.  In fact, the very same habits that propel you to business success can work wonders in your romantic life.
Employ these 3 tips and to make the most of your date night.

1. Keep Your Appointments

You didn’t become successful by constantly rescheduling your important business meetings. Honor the time you’ve set aside for your significant other in the same way by keeping your appointments.  Your commitment to spend time together will keep your love going no matter how busy your work schedule gets.

2. Have An Agenda

The most productive business meetings operate by an agenda, and the same is true for date night. Have a concrete plan for how you want your date night to proceed. Don’t be afraid to take the lead here, your partner will appreciate your thoughtfulness.  This doesn’t mean tossing spontaneity aside.  Rather, a clear plan for your night out will allow you to be spontaneous without running the risk of missing out on what you’ve already scheduled.

3. Conduct A Post-Op

Post-op meetings are important after any project is completed. They give your team the chance to identify what did and didn’t work well.  Your date nights should be approached the same way. What was the highlight of the date? What should we try again and what do we want to reconsider? Conducting a post-op demonstrates you’re committed to improving the quality of your relationship, even if it means admitting some mistakes were made.

Increase your measure of happiness by translating your successful business habits into your personal life and watch your partner love you more for it.


How To Regain Trust in A Marriage 

Regaining trust in marriage is no easy feat. Losing trust in your spouse is one of the loneliest and desperate feelings that a man or woman might experience. Whether due to finances , infidelity, distance, communication , or more, not knowing if you can still safely have faith in the person you love can be a difficult feeling to overcome for the strongest of marriages. Here are 7 tips for regaining trust in marriage.

1. Write Down Your Feelings
The first step to overcoming your feelings of distrust is to identify them. We highly recommend starting a journal . In your journal include entries about what happened to cause your feelings of distrust – was it something your spouse said or did? Or was it something deeply rooted within yourself that happened during childhood or another tragic event prior to marrying your spouse? By identifying the root cause of your feelings of distrust you will be able to get to the heart of the matter.
Let us be clear: this isn’t an easy thing to do. Be prepared for a fight. Not a fight with your spouse – but a fight within yourself. It is totally normal to feel insecure and scared to delve into the root cause of your distrust – but if you want to have a healthy marriage, it is something you have to do. Journaling gets your feelings out of your head and in the open where you can look at them from a different perspective. Acknowledging your feelings and allowing yourself to feel as you do will help you to take steps forward to rebuild trust with your spouse.
As you continue to work through your feelings and take steps toward a stronger marriage, make regular entries in your journal so that you can review the road that you took along the way. It will amaze you how far you have come in your personal growth as well as the progress you’ve made in your relationship.

2. Be Honest with Each Other
Once you have come to terms with your feelings, be completely honest with your husband/wife. Share what events caused you to feel as you do and how your trust in your marriage has been bruised. Talk with your spouse about what you plan to do to rebuild your trust and ask him/her what steps he/she plans to take so that you may work together to rebuild your marriage.
Don’t rush this part of the process. This is the time when you will realize just how important focused listening, loving one another, and leaning on God for wisdom and patience will get you through this process. Also, don’t be afraid to seek outside help if you are finding your communication is breaking down and you are not making the progress both of you desire to see. It is very important to diffuse any arguments between the two of you and find some one to help you work through this obstacle.

3. Identify Your Needs
As you work through your plan for rebuilding your trust, share with your spouse what you need from him/her. Explain what emotions and commitments you need so that you are in a place to continue to grow. In turn, ask him/her what you can do so that you can grow and rebuild your relationship together.
Don’t be afraid to admit if you aren’t able to give them what they need. Sometimes this happens. But if you are willing to at least try and learn to be able to give them what they need (so long as the need is healthy and not abusive) let them know that, too. There is no shame in admitting you need help in any area of life and it is best to be able to admit that and deal with it than let it linger and silently grow into resentment.

4. Give Yourself Time to Heal
Regaining trust won’t be a process that happens overnight. It will require you to remind yourself of the steps each of you are taking and how, together, you’re working to rebuild what you had before the challenge to your marriage. Over time, the reminders, in combination with continued growth (from both of you) will lead to a renewed sense of trust.

5. Take Baby Steps
As you work together to regain your trust in your marriage, take tiny steps until you are ready for larger ones. Perhaps the passion disappeared with the trust…then don’t expect yourself to regain it immediately. Taking small steps such as making his/her lunch (for work) or sending a “thinking of you” email during the workday will help you to begin adding the romance back to your marriage…a little bit at a time.

6. Date Each Other Again
Once trust has been lost, it’s important to go back to your beginning: dating each other again . When you’re emotionally ready, you must start from scratch at proving to one another why you were meant to be. Going out on a series of dates, complete with working to win one another’s heart , will help you to refocus on how your relationship began and where you can go (again) together.

7. Review Your Growth
Once you feel that you have renewed your trust in your marriage, review the entries that you made in your journal as you grew. Look at how far you traveled. Reviewing your journal will help prevent the challenge from getting in the way of your marriage in the future, as well as help you to see the personal growth that you’ve endured. Sharing your journal with your spouse will allow him/her to see into your journey and the steps that you’ve taken so that your trust in your marriage could be restored.


What Does Love Mean To You

Love means a lot of things to a lot of people but have you ever asked yourself what love means to you? How do you show love  and to whom do you show love? We been taught about love languages but its application seems to be limited to romantic love and love shown to someone you know but we were not born to love only those we know, we also have the capacity  to love even those that we don’t know.

 Practically ,I think the best example of love was shown by God who sent his ‘ONLY’ son to die for a world of people who cared more or less about him. God didn’t specify who Jesus should die for, rather He sent Jesus to die for all and sundry. Even Jesus, with  all the things that men did to him, still decided to let his life down for men, both those he knew and those he didn’t know? What greater way to show love than this? A young man once said the true measure of a man’s character is how he treats people he doesn’t know and not how he treats people he knows.

It will surprise you to find out that many folks  do not know what love means. A friend of mine once defined love as ‘a feeling you feel when you feel you’ve not felt a feeling like that before’. Someone once said there’s no magic in the world as great as the magic of love. Love really can be defined in a thousand ways.

One question  I ask myself is how do we fall in love? What makes us fall in love? Contrary to popular view,  there’s no such thing called ‘Love at first sight. It’s a very big lie. What many people  experience is really called infatuation. Now what is infatuation? Oxford dictionary defines it as “an intense but short-lived passion or admiration for someone or something”. Also, urban dictionary defines it as “people thinking they are in love but when indeed it is just a deep lust or like for another person”. Unlike love which sees  a person’s flaws and still accepts the person that way, infatuation doesnt even recognise the flaw, at least in most cases. How in the world do you expect to fall in love with someone on your first sight? Now this doesnt mean infatuation is an evil thing or it cant grow into love. Certainly, you can grow to love the person with time. 

So then, falling in love is a gradual process that takes time and understanding. People who have been married for a long time still get to fall in  love with each other as time goes on because no matter how hard you try, you can never know everything about a person. Sometimes, we do not choose who we fall in love with but we have the power to choose who we stay in love with. In other words, we may not have the power to control how we feel but we sure have the power to control how we react to those feelings. I’ve found myself stuck in love with an ex-lover. It seemed  to me as though I couldn’t just  help loving her, despite all the things she did to me but I realised that I had the power to control my attitude to those feelings. So I decided that I may love her, I may think about her but I will not contact her and I will keep a good distance between us. Yes, I had the power to do that. In other words,we choose who we show love to.

 Today would not be complete if you don’t show love to someone you don’t know.Show love to that person in need. Remember love is patient, Love is kind and Love is felt most when its genuine. Show that special person genuine love!!!

Contraceptive Pills Side Effects

There are several ways to catch fun but for women taking a pill certainly wouldn’t count as one. This has led to the trending #MyPillStory on twitter. Some folks tend to go through a plethora of struggles when taking pills, mostly because they’ve not been adequately informed on the effects of taking contraceptive pills. However, the effect of contraceptive pills on the human body is nebulous. Hence, there are a couple of ‘good’ effects and the ‘not so good’ effects as well.

Contraceptive Pill, generally referred to as ‘the pill’, is a form of hormonal contraception taken by women to prevent pregnancy. It consists of two types, one of which contains both the estrogen and progesterone (progestin) hormones, while the other called ‘mini pill’ contains only the progesterone hormone.

The Good

Clearer Skin
Black woman with clear skin

Due to the fact that acne is accelerated by high level of male hormones (androgen), balancing it out with female hormones (estrogen & progesterone) can help reduce the break out of pimples on your face.


Less Painful Sex

In a few cases, the pill can increase your vaginal lubrication, thus making sexual intercourse less painful, especially if you had the issue of painful sex before you started taking the pills.

Reduced Risk of Certain Types of Cancer

A study carried out in 2011 showed that incidences of endometrial and ovarian cancers dropped by about 40% among those with a history of HIV, who were on pills. Also, research has shown that women who take the pill may be 20%less likely to contract bowel cancer.

Less Painful Menstrual Cramping

When your body experiences a regular intake of estrogen & progesterone, your periods get on a more predictable schedule. Periods tend to become lighter when you’re on the pill.

Fewer Complications from Anemia

Researchers believe that pills can boost iron levels and the protein molecule hemoglobin in the bloodstream, which can reduce the incidence of anemia.

Combined pill
Combined Pill

The Not So Good

Nausea: Some women tend to feel mild nausea when they first start taking the pill. Taking the pill with after a meal or at bedtime can help in reducing how queasy you feel during the time your body needs to adjust to new levels of estrogen and progesterone. You should seek medical guidance if you have this experience.

Mood Changes

Before taking contraceptive pills, you should ensure that discuss with your doctor if you have a history of mood problems like anxiety and depression. Women with such symptoms tend to see an increase in these mood changes when taking pills. On the hand, even if you don’t have a history of mood swings, you may experience slight changes in your mood when taking pills.

Breast Tenderness
Woman with breast pain holding her breast

Taking pills may lead to enlargement of the breast or tenderness. This can last for up to 18 months while on the pill. If you experience persistent breast tenderness or pain, seek medical help. You should also reduce your salt and caffeine intake in order to stem the tide of breast tenderness. Wearing a supportive bra would also be ideal for you.

Teen woman with headache holding her hand to the head

A study carried out by the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology in 2005 found that about 10% of women feel headache within a month of starting the pill. The sex hormones have an effect on the development of headaches. Thus, studies have shown that pills which contain low doses of hormones are less likely to cause headaches. In the long run, headaches tend to reduce.

Lower Sex Urge

It has been discovered that some women experience decreased drive for sex while on pills. So don’t be surprised when your wife feels a little uncomfortable with the coital act during the period when she’s on pills. The hormones in the contraceptive pills can affect se drive (libido) in some people. Albeit, it can also cause increased sex drive, in which case you may experience symptoms such as endometriosis and premenstrual syndrome.

Quick Facts about Contraceptive Pills

  • People with a history of blood clots, heart attacks or stroke are best advised to avoid taking a combination of the pill. In other words, if you must take the pill, you should only take the mini pill.
  • In the event that the pill isn’t having any negative side effects on you, you can continue taking it until menopause
  • The US Food and Drug Administration advises that women aged 35 years and above who smoke, should avoid taking a combination of pills.
  • Some women may experience weight gain while taking the pill but this doesn’t cut across all women.
  • People with a history of liver disease, heart disease, uterine cancer, breast cancer, and uncontrolled blood should avoid taking contraceptive pills.
  • The hormones in the pill don’t remain in your body for long, which is why you have to take it every day.
  • Women who miss a pill are have a higher probability of getting pregnant than women who take their pills faithfully.
Woman consulting female Medical Doctor

Above all, consult a qualified health care provider if you are not really sure of the effect the pill could have on you, considering whatever peculiar situation you might have. Seeking medical guidance would help you know the best type of pill to take as well as how to take birth control pills.

Humour, Relationship

The Fine Art Of Pretence II

​Turning the Other Cheek: A Closer Look

The idea behind turning the other cheek, a religious injunction that has gained secular popularity, albeit in a derogatory sense, is to let someone go as far as they wish if they want to hurt or deprive you. That is, to let them exhaust their sinister intentions, or at least let them have a little more of it than they might have even thought possible at the moment.

Think about this just a moment: someone slaps you, even if you may have deserved it, and the next thing you do is let them have the other cheek. At first it may seem like a really laudable virtue, but just imagine if, during the great wars of the twentieth century, Britain and the USA had allowed Germany continue sinking merchant ships and even warships after Germany had conducted some air raids. Or perhaps, you allow a rogue rape your daughter after stealing your property. That would very well pass for turning the other cheekand for foolishness too!

Some of you, at this point, are already wondering whether Im not going a little extreme with this, but what is good for the gander should also be good for the goose. If its okay to let someone slap your other cheek because he had the cheek to slap the first one, then maybe it would make even better sense to let someone have your job after taking your spouse.

Okay, okay, fineI heard your objections. Perhaps we should really delineate that admonition and ask ourselves if we sincerely believe that its okay to turn the other cheek the way we know it to be, or, maybe, we can scan this statement under a different hue of light and get results that are more agreeable to practicality.

You see, some diehard pacifists have postulated that if someone were to strike you on one cheek and you offered them the other, they would lose the willpower to keep the assault on. But it does not follow. We know for a fact that each one owes his destiny to himself, and if you leave your well-being to the stretch or shortness of anothers conscience, you become vulnerable to their every whim. So if their conscience has been seared with hot iron, youre doomed.

Understand this: people seek unlimited power, and anytime anyone becomes conscious of the possibility of taking you for a ride, then your days of freedom are numbered. Youll live the rest of your life in servitude. But you stand up for yourself and the evil slave driver will be forced to back off. Those in political circles and the armed forces understand this perfectly: failure to build your own power is invitation to trouble.

You dont believe? Well, thats your business. Wait till your vast reserves of potential are outclassed by your many wasted years, then ask your contemporaries of the past why they ride on wheels of progress while you are still legging your way through life, or even worse, crawling on your belly. That is if youre even able to see their brake lights again.

So what are we supposed to make of this supposedly divine admonition to turn the other cheek?

My first suggestion is that you forget vengeance. You see, the quest for revenge is almost a choking one in all of us, even the apparently soft people. It takes the truly strong, even when all the means are available to exact their pound of flesh, to extend grace in lieu to those who have hurt them.

In saying that, I am not an advocate of the leave it for God or God will judge maxim of the weak, but I would say this with all due respect to your feelings: To err is human; to forgive is divine. You may have heard this axiom several times and even grown to hate hearing it because you think it will make others trample you underfoot, but nothing could be farther from the truth. You must forgive!

When, however, people ask you to forgive and forget, what they really mean is that you should make yourself more vulnerableand I wouldnt advise that. Lets face the fact: there is a God and you are not Him. Only God possesses the power to truly forgive and forget (atheists, please skip this part), and even that is a mind-boggling paradox for the Supreme Being who is omniscient, all-knowing.

Listen to this: God can safely forget because He knows where the sea of forgetfulness is and He can also, with pinpoint exactitude, pick out whichever part of your history is needed exactly wherever it is located on the map of that Great Sea when matters come to a head. As for man, we must try to forgive and forget within the ambit where amnesia will not occur. Yes, your graciousness shouldnt degenerate into memory loss in the name of piety (more on that in the next chapter), but if you allow a grudge to fester in your heart, the suffering is on you while the offender might well be enjoying life elsewhere. You should be rest assured that we are human and are therefore bound to err (whatever the intent), and then steel yourself against the surprises of such misdemeanor. Then, forgiveness will be easier.

If that is too hard for you, then imagine if all the people you ever offended decided to take it out on you. How would you feel? Now is the time to respect the Golden Rule. An eye for an eye, they say, leaves the whole world blind. (Heres our little secretkeep it between usI also hate hearing forgive and forget.)

Having taken the step of striking retaliation out as an option, heres a further idea: strike first! And just in case youre unable to do that, develop second-strike capability in your shock absorber as a back-up plan. You see, some people need some massive retaliation from you, but not at them. For example, in your office there could be persons who are avowed antagonists of your person, but if you settle it in your heart to do better all the time and always make friends with the right people in power, then any plan those foes of yours contrive will be difficult to implement because your records speak for you. Besides, they will fear a backlash if they are found out, since you have on your side the powers that be.

You see, it pays to be both smart (perceptive) and sharp (powerful). Dont forget that the first person who needs you is yourself; if you cant protect yourself, then how do you protect someone else? Let your strategy lie in your smartness, and your strength in your sharpness. In learning to strike first, you will need to draw attention away from your awareness of the antagonist (lest people suspect your every move as being against the other person). You must pretend not to know of their sinister intentions unless letting them know will keep them at bay. 

Let me give you an example from my days in the secondary school. Seniors could come wake you up anytime to go do anything for them, so juniors devised a means of getting their own back somehow. They would be awake but pretend to be asleep, and when they knew they were being roused by a senior, they would suddenly fling their hands in the air, leaving the senior stunned with a slap. Immediately, the junior would apologize, citing the name of some troublesome classmate whom they had supposed was disturbing them again. Most times they would thus escape with just the errand and the very lucky ones might even be left to go back to sleep, but the less fortunate juniors, God help them.

Turning the other cheek is good advice when youre under persecution or oppression by an enemy against whom you have absolutely no power. I mean, you are simply no match for them. At that time it will be useful to acquiesce to their demands and go the second mile because, in fact, you are preparing your mind for when it will be your turn. You know what? When such a person gives you a hard task, carry it out with grace and complete it if you can. Then do just a little more and thank them for the opportunity. Leave them in no doubt that you are greater than them. When someone much stronger keeps beating you, and after screaming and crying you end up smiling the next time you meet them, you have overcome the evil in them with the good in you. As it is said, The best revenge is to be successful.

In a nutshell, Im saying that if there are any odds in your calculation that you could outwit or destroy your opponent, do it by all means. If you must fake a smile or a plea in order to buy time till you find something that gives you the advantage (for example, a weapon around or a means of escape if youre in a physical fight), please do it! Pretence isnt a bad thing when its for the greater good. Pretence, like money, yields itself to the whims of the one who wields it. It is always better to be the big man being magnanimous than the small man seeking mercy. Turn the other cheek but show a juicy carrot and a heavy stick. See if youll not be on top of the situation.


How to Work Smart

We all know that it’s important to slow down sometimes for the good of our health, but the benefits of taking it easy can actually increase productivity as well.

Limiting action and allocating more time for restfulness doesn’t have to mean trading in productivity. There are a few cases were slowing down will still get the most out of our time.

1. Schedule everything; especially time for yourself.

The first rule of time management is effective scheduling and a small way to do that is by making lists.
Writing things down is a powerful tool because putting goals into words makes them more likely to be achieved.
Writing things down helps to unjumble the many priorities and responsibilities that require your attention. Making a to do list, for example, cuts out time that would have been spent trying to organize and reorganize priorities.

Research by Human Behavioral Specialist Dr. John Demetri has shown that making lists to break down large projects into smaller tasks also cuts down on procrastination which will help use time more efficiently.
Scheduling time specifically to do nothing is also a smart tool in ensuring you can do more by doing less. When your schedule is planned well, you’ll free up time that was once wasted.

2. Take purposeful actions.

Just as it’s essential to communicate with purpose ,

actions must also be purposeful in order to be useful.

“Busy idleness,” action that takes time and resources but accomplishes little to no results, is a common trap that you may fall into if you don’t take on and complete activities that are meaningful to your goals.

A published 10 year study of managers in the workplace found that only about 10% work purposefully to complete important tasks while the other 90% self-sabotage by focusing on unrelated matters, procrastinating, and allowing themselves to become disinterested in their work.
Don’t get caught up in busy work when your time is best spent solving the big issues. Cutting out busy idleness will leave you with completed goals AND time to spare.

3. Cut the multitasking

Multitasking can be a helpful practice when done well and applied to the proper situations but when it’s misused, it’s an even bigger time waster than not utilizing it at all.

Research by Ohio State University studied the effectiveness of multitasking and found that the practice gives users positive emotional feeling of increased productivity, but actual results underperform their expectations. It’s also less effective when applied to the wrong situation.

Activities that involve higher levels of concentration should not be multitasked. When focusing on such tasks, hold off on multitasking by giving them your full attention and you will see much better results.
Just as letting go is needed to move on, slowing down can help us to catch up. When we allow practices to be simplified, the results produced far exceed the energy and time that was put in and it doesn’t get more efficient than that.

Working hard is more beneficial than working smart.

Do less Get more.


Health, Relationship

18+ : 5 Ways To Control Addiction to Pornography, Masturbation, and Sex

Pornography, Masturbation and Sex have overtime, become one of the greatest tools which the devil employs to destroy people. Individuals have thus found themselves helpless and hapless in curbing and controlling their coital urge. Tough as it may be to control one’s sexual desire, here are five things you can do to stem the tide;

1. Talk To God About It: This surely should be the first step in coming out of dire situations. You need to talk to God about it because at the end of the day, He is the only one that can truly help you.

2. Avoid Touching Sensitive Parts of Your Body: Everyone of us has a sensitive part of our body, otherwise known as ‘sexual hot spots’. It is important we know which part of our body turns us on mostly, when touched. Generally, the nipples, penis, breast etc are sexual hot spots. Thus, you should avoid touching the parts of your body that turn you on easily.

3. Avoid Reading and Watching Sexually Stimulating Articles, Images and Videos : Sexual articles or stories create images of sexual scenes in  the mind which in turn stimulate emotions in individuals. The same principle applies to sexually explicit pictures. Similarly, sexually explicit videos (porn) stimulate masturbation and some of them have negative spiritual implications. Thus, they should be avoided.

4. Avoid Friends That Always Talk About Sex: You are what you listen to, a popular adage says. One way to control addiction to sex and sexual content is to avoid gatherings and people that always talk about sex. This is because the more you keep listening to sexual talk, the more stimulated you become.

5. Read Articles/Books and Watch Videos That Can Help You: This is also important as it enables you discover several other ways to control your sexual urge.

Addiction is a pretty normal occurrence in the life of a human being. Never loathe yourself because of your addiction because every problem always has a solution. The big question is are you ready to take pragmatic steps towards applying the solution? The results of the steps you may take would most times,  not yield a complete result immediately because addictions take time to stop.


10 Red Flags You Should Not Ignore On Your First Date

So its your first date night with that special person. So you’re probably unsure of what you really need to look out for in order to determine where this whole thing is gonna go? They may call it a blind date but it doesn’t mean you go there with a ‘blind mind’. There are certain red flags you should look out for on your first date.

Too much pessimistic talk

There’s no need for a debbie-downer on the first date. And whether its a pessimistic attitude or opinions, it should not be tolerated. It’s an obvious reason to question your date’s motives and attitude towards the future.

Outrageous overreactions

If your date makes a mountain out of a mole hill over petty situations, such as the waiter making an accidental error, you may want to rethink how your date will treat you when you slip up. If anyone is capable of exuding negatively reactive behavior in front of someone they hardly know – who they should be trying to impress – says a lot about their character.

Premature neediness

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with your date showing signs they like you. But when your date is already talking about validating the current status of the relationship, or wanting more from it, shows they are only desperate.

If your date begins delving into your past relationships more than what’s comfortable for you, or constantly needing reassurance of your interest, that shows a sign of insecurity. The constant need of your approval on the first date is a major red flag and an early sign of what is expected in the relationship.

Abusive behavior

Any form of abusive behavior is unacceptable behavior. Whether its verbal, physical or emotional. If your date talks down to you, makes you feel like you have no way out of the situation, controls every conversation, or has a constant physical grip on you, those are clear signs your date has possible abusive and control issues. And if your date shows any abusive behavior on the first date, its only a downward spiral from there.
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Too private

If its like pulling teeth to get your date to talk, elaborate, open up, or reciprocate the conversation, it might be an early sign of poor communication skills and possibly secrecy. Sometimes it may feel that your date refuses to fully answer questions, or feels reluctant on the answers to certain questions.

A first date is all about getting to know one another, asking questions and testing each other’s compatibility. And if you walk away from the date wondering what you even got out of it, it’s a sign of what your relationship will be like thereafter.

You’re put in a cornered situation

Things said that can put you in an awkward situation, such as ‘Am I even good enough for you?’, ‘Do you even like me – I get the feeling you don’t?’, ‘I don’t know where this is going – I feel like I am more interested in you than you are me.’ Any of these things said on a first date are trap questions, only to make you feel like you have to second guess yourself. They are the questions that make you think to yourself, ‘What do I even say to that?’ If you have to wonder that at any point, it might be time to end the date there.

It’s all about me, me, me

This red flag is far too common, especially for first dates. But sometimes they can be taken to the extreme; if your date is nervous, they might talk too much, spill too much, or babble on about themselves just to avoid awkward silence. But if the conversation seems to flow easily back and forth, except that the conversation always leads to being able your date. If your date never seems to reciprocate in asking questions back, or in getting to know you, that could be a the sign of selfishness, and someone needing control and validation at all times.

Talks down to you

If there’s any, ‘You can’t possibly be able to afford a two bedroom apartment with that job’, ‘Do you even do any work at that job’, ‘I can tell you don’t work out enough’, ‘Pretty sure I know more about life than you, I’m older’, ‘That sounds like a boring life – work and school’, ‘You should go blonde, I mean, they’re sexier and have more fun – you’d look better blonde’, ‘The food’s good, but you should take on cooking classes or something’, and so on. I could go on and on. And I hope you catch my drift of ‘talking down’ on a first date.

Humor, or insults?

These can be tricky. If your date is making jokes about your looks (whether it be your outfit, your hair, the way you talk), it might come off sounding like he’s not very good at being funny, or is just simply an a** without a care in the world on how you may feel from it. If humor is constantly directed at you, or about you, you might consider addressing the issue (since, in fact, your date might just be nervous and overly trying to impress you). But destroying your ego and self esteem on the first date isn’t a good choice in starting a relationship.

He/She’s trying to change you

If your date says anything in an attempt to alter your appearance, way of life, interests or beliefs: kick the boot, immediately, and never look back. Period.

Since there are so many first date red flags, it’s important to see the signs that can lead the relationship down a negative path. If at one point you feel unclear, unsure, or closed off after a first date, it’s crucial to address the issues and make a decision solely based on your happiness and what you deserve in a relationship.