Climate Philanthropy: Four Simple Ways To Help Save Mother Earth

We tend to see philanthropists as people who want to make this world a better place through their actions and decisions. No matter how small, their efforts can help solve some of the most pressing issues in society. Nowadays, climate change is one of the biggest problems that humanity is facing. As we continue to feel and observe the frightening effects of global warming in various parts of the world, the need for a new kind of altruism is emerging – climate philanthropy. Governments and institutions around the world are organizing programs and allocating funds to help address the problem of climate change. However, to successfully combat the threat of climate change, everyone must do their share.

The good news is that doing something good for the environment is not that difficult. It does not necessarily mean donating huge amounts or taking big steps. On the contrary, your fight against climate change may even be more effective by incorporating earth-friendly habits in your lifestyle and routines. The following are simple ways you can do to lead an eco-friendly lifestyle and help save our planet:

Conserve energy. 

Energy usage is one of the major reasons why the earth’s temperature is rising up. Thus, using energy wisely can greatly help keep our planet habitable. You can do this by choosing energy-efficient appliances in your homes. It is also advisable to switch to compact fluorescent (CFLs) and LED light bulbs because they consume less energy. Simply remembering to turn off lights and other electrical items when not in use can also go a long way to protecting the Earth.

Choose to be a minimalist. 

Another great option to be an earth warrior is by choosing minimalism. This kind of lifestyle embraces simple living by concentrating on basic needs instead of splurging. By deciding to consume less, you help address another environmental problem brought about by the massive amount of waste people produce every day. You can help in waste management too by reusing and recycling as much as possible.

Get healthier.

Meat consumption is another culprit for climate change as methane emissions from livestock animals when digesting food cause damage to the earth’s atmosphere. Thus, you can help preserve the ozone layer by eating less meat. You can choose to increase vegetable intake or try meat substitutes such as tofu and mushroom. Aside from changing your diet, you can also commit to doing more exercise. One way to do this is by choosing to walk to nearby places instead of using your car. You will save energy and achieve your fitness goals at the same time. This shows that being earth-friendly is beneficial to the environment and to yourself.

Get involved. 

Many groups aiming to help sustain our healthy environment are being formed as more people become aware of the realities of climate change. Events with the goal of raising funds for environment-friendly projects are also being organized. Instead of ignoring, show your support to these undertakings. Try to reach out or participate in groups that want to help keep the Earth a safe and beautiful place.

Climate change is a big problem that cannot be ignored. To solve this global predicament, everyone must do their part in caring for the environment. Fortunately, small changes in your lifestyle can already make a huge positive impact.

Brad and Julie DuncanClimate Philanthropy: Four Simple Ways To Help Save Mother Earth
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Four Thrilling Coastal Trips to Take This Year

Now that we’ve rung in the new year and started to embark on our goals, many of us have decided to devote more attention to our self-care. In addition to drinking more water, exercising daily, and eating right, self-care includes creating balance in your life. One way to ensure you maintain a healthy work-life balance is by vacationing! Your mental health suffers when you subscribe to the mantra of “all work and no play.” So this year, get out of the office and enjoy life. Here are four thrilling coastal trips you should check out.

Cannon Beach, Oregon

Cannon Beach, the self-titled “small-town village by the sea,” is an hour-and-a-half northwest of the more well-known tourist city, Portland, Oregon. However, Cannon Beach has managed to earn quite the reputation for its beauty. It’s been named Best Beach on several occasions, drawing the attention of curious travelers from all over the world. With a combination of gorgeous shorelines, mountains, and natural wonders like Haystack Rock, there’s no shortage of things to see. Experiences like the Lewis and Clark History Expedition, Classic Cottage Tours, and live glassblowing demonstrations, guarantee that visitor’s trips to Cannon Beach are memorable.

San Juan Islands, Washington

Washington’s beautiful San Juan Islands are accessible by ferry, traditional airline, seaplane, or boat (specifically the San Juan Clipper) and boast accommodations that range from farm stays, to glamping, to luxury vacation suites. One of the island’s most famous landmarks is its scenic byway. It’s composed of three segments: the blue marine highway, a driving tour around the island itself, and last but not least, a driving tour through neighboring Orca Island. In addition to the scenic byway, San Juan Islands offers many family-friendly activities to enjoy. Whale and Wild Life Tours, Krystal Acres Alpaca Farm, the extremely popular Pelindaba Lavender Farm, and multiple museums, are just a few possible items to add to your family’s to-do list. For adventurous travelers, the island offers hiking, biking, fishing, kayaking and much more. 

Key West, Florida

Just off of the southern coast of Florida, the island of Key West is a tropical retreat. To start, you can relax on one of the southside beaches or enjoy a stroll through one of the many parks. But one thing’s for sure while visiting Key West, you’ll never have reason to be bored. For the art lovers, the island offers live-performance theatres, art galleries displaying diverse arrays of talent, and antique shops. Naturally, along with dolphin encounters, watersports also thrive in the area, making kayaking, jet skiing, and snorkeling extremely popular activities. But many visitors simply love walking down Duval Street – an active 1.25-mile road where tourists come together to eat, shop, and have a good time. 

Portland, Maine

Upon first glance, Portland may appear to be nothing more than a hardworking fishing community that specializes in shipping from its harbor. But look a little deeper and you’ll find a city deeply rooted in culture and history, and worthy of the tourist attention that it draws. With its art district, historical parks and gems like the Portland Observatory, this coastal city has many attractions for visitors to explore.  Many travelers’ most memorable stop is Portland’s Old Port district, where patrons can indulge in any number of the plethora of high-quality eating and drinking establishments downtown. Maine is famous for its fresh seafood, but in addition to its lobster rolls, Portland is also known for being extremely vegan and vegetarian-friendly.

If your vision board included travel, adventure or life balance, then these four coastal cities are for you. Gather your family or a couple of friends and plan some time this year to recharge. Every city on the list is full of unique culture, natural wonder, and friendly locals waiting to share their towns’ history. So check your calendars, book your flights and get ready to enjoy your coastal vacations! 

Brad and Julie DuncanFour Thrilling Coastal Trips to Take This Year
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Four Leadership Resolutions To Start The Year Right

Leadership is an esteemed post that comes with tough responsibilities. And in the course of trying to be the best leader for a team, mishaps can happen. Once in a while, you may find yourself guilty of making wrong decisions or judgments. It is also possible for a well-thought-out tactic to fail due to hasty moves or wrong tactics.

However, strong and smart leaders do not allow those blunders to define them. Instead, they always find a way to bounce back and rise again. Incidentally, the first month of the year is one of the best times for a fresh start. For a much better year as a leader, the following are some leadership resolutions you may want to consider:

Stay calm and patient.

Managing a team is a huge task so leaders can sometimes get cranky, irritated, or annoyed. These bursts of emotions are understandable but if you wish to be a better leader, learn how to control your reactions to circumstances. Loosen up a bit and relax because your mood greatly affects your team performance. To keep everyone inspired and motivated even in stressful situations, learn to stay calm and patient. 

Encourage feedback.

Are you wondering if your leadership style is working on your team? The best way to know is to ask your team members themselves. We usually expect leaders to be the ones giving feedback but you can also greatly benefit from giving your people a chance to voice out their opinions. You can use the comments to improve your leadership and at the same time foster better communication and camaraderie within a team.

Take a break.

It will be difficult to be an effective guide to others if you do not know how to take care of yourself in the first place. Thus, do not forget to have a break even as you try to be as productive as possible. It is sometimes tempting to sacrifice our time-offs so we can accomplish more tasks. However, slaving yourself up to exhaustion can just lead to burnout. It can also prevent you from giving your 100 percent to a job. On the other hand, a few days of break can put you in tip-top condition that will help you do a better job.

Commit to learning more. 

Leaders are often considered as experts in their chosen fields but it should not stop them from further widening their knowledge and enhancing their skills. This is especially important nowadays when technology is developing at a rapid rate. To stay as competitive as ever, never stop learning. Aim for more personal and professional growth by finding more opportunities to keep up with the times and learn something new. As you nurture your love for learning, you can also discover more ways to empower your team. 

The best leaders are not the ones who do not commit mistakes. Rather, they are the ones who continuously seek ways to improve their managing styles and broaden their knowledge. They will also be a good example that can inspire their team to achieve excellent things.

Brad and Julie DuncanFour Leadership Resolutions To Start The Year Right
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Four Ways to Make Philanthropy a Way of Life

Philanthropy is undeniably a commendable act. To see people take time to share blessings reminds us that we are all intrinsically good. However, not everyone understands the true meaning of altruism. One of the biggest misconceptions is that it is a one-time thing. Some think that engaging in philanthropy only happens when you allot a certain amount to fund a cause, gather a number of items to donate, or participate in a community program. But genuinely practicing philanthropy means making it a part of your life. To be truly philanthropic in everything you do, here are some things you should start doing:

Live frugally.

People have this impression that philanthropists are supposed to be wealthy. However, a person who is genuinely generous can find ways to give even without much money. They are able to help others by choosing to live within their means. To live frugally does not mean depriving yourself of the good things in life. Rather, it means not being wasteful and giving importance to the more essential things in life. By not being too materialistic, people who live frugally rarely run out of things they need and always have something to give. 

Choose kindness.

We all know the importance of being kind. Still, there are days when it is simply too difficult to be considerate and patient. But a commitment to choose kindness regardless of the situation is a must if  you wish to practice philanthropy in your life. It can be as simple as being extra patient to a new co-worker who still has to learn the ropes or choosing to smile to a tired cashier in the grocery despite the long lines. It also means being more tolerant of others and not being judgmental. Your simple gesture of kindness can go a long way.

Be involved.

Philanthropic people are not living in their own bubbles. Rather, they tend to be active participants in the community or any group they belong to. They keep themselves updated and involved in whatever is happening around because they are always seeking out ways to be of service to others. They are always the first to volunteer, sign-up, or show support for any cause that needs a helping hand.

Be genuine. 

Philanthropy should be done because you genuinely want to. It is not something that should be forced or done just to look righteous in the eyes of others. To do this, it is necessary to be true to yourself in everything you do. Instead of being pretentious, you are honest in your words and actions. Being genuine allows you to do everything from the heart. People can usually tell if someone is just faking things so being genuine will also make others appreciate you more.

People who are truly philanthropic always add value to everyone they meet or every situation they are a part of. Thus, if you really want to be philanthropic, always be on the lookout for opportunities to help or do more. At the end of the day, your good deeds will benefit you more than anyone else.

Brad and Julie DuncanFour Ways to Make Philanthropy a Way of Life
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Four Ways To Fuel Your Adventurous Spirit

“Life is a daring adventure or nothing at all.”
– Helen Keller

Do you consider yourself adventurous? Answering yes means having the courage to pursue your passions and live your dreams. It is taking the initiative to fulfill your goals and aspirations. Likewise, being adventurous means having the guts to speak up when you have something important to say. You fully understand the risk of your every word and action yet remain unfazed by the possibility of failure and embarrassment. This is because you cherish the experiences and embrace the lessons that will come out of it. The above descriptions suggest that being adventurous is essential to truly live life to the fullest. Adventures can lead to nerve-wracking and uncomfortable situations but it can indeed pave the way for a happier and wiser you. Thus, if you wish to see a better version of yourself, eliminate the fear of trying something new. The following are things you can do to nurture an adventurous spirit:

Say yes more. 

It is often too convenient to just say no to a lot of things because saying yes may mean you have to exert more effort or squeeze more time out of your calendar. However, this attitude can also make you miss a lot of opportunities. So how about attending that event you are invited to or joining that excursion trip. You may also want to say yes to more work tasks that will help you learn a new skill. Just remember to say yes not to please other people but for being willing to experience new things. This way, choosing to say yes can open doors to learning and favorable circumstances. 

Express yourself more. 

it is sometimes easier to just stay silent for fear of offending someone or causing conflict. However, there are also many times when you simply have to voice out your opinions or concerns. If you wish to be more adventurous, you should not be afraid to speak out when you need to. It also means not being scared of letting others know the real you. In a way, being adventurous also means being genuine because you are expressing yourself truthfully. 

Seek new challenges. 

Adventure is learning so it means being hungry for new knowledge. You may think that you are already too wise or too skilled but if you wish to keep improving, you must seek out new challenges once in a while. There is always something new to learn such as picking up a new sport, learning a foreign language, or trying a new job. These challenges can test your resolve and strengthen your character but can ultimately lead to self-improvement

Quit perfectionism.

You may have a number of plans but you cannot seem to take the first step to bring it to fruition because you keep waiting for the right moment. You are such a perfectionist that you obsess over every little detail to make everything flawless. Thorough preparation is always necessary but sometimes you have to let go of other things to finally start something. By letting go of perfectionism, you will be more carefree and have more adventures.

To have an adventurous spirit does not always mean doing scary stuff such as jumping off a high cliff or walking on a thin wire. Most of the time, it is just bravely facing the many challenges that this life may bring. These adventures can take you out of our comfort zones but can also keep your zest in life burning.

Brad and Julie DuncanFour Ways To Fuel Your Adventurous Spirit
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Three Things to Avoid When Using Social Media While Traveling

Are you all set to have a wonderful vacation? You are probably excited about the places you will visit and cannot wait to share details of your escapades to all your family and friends. Undoubtedly, the best way to do that today is through social media. Posting on sites such as Facebook or Instagram is indeed a fast and easy way to update your network about your whereabouts. However, since these online platforms are accessible to anyone, it pays to keep in mind that social media usage should be done responsibly. For your safety and to avoid unintentionally offending anyone, here are some things you should not do when sharing details and pictures about your trip on social media.

Do not over-inform the public about your travel details.

No matter how eager you are to share your travel fun, there are things that are better kept private. Your travel itinerary and length of stay in your destination are just a few. It is also not advisable to announce your exact location when posting online. This is because the said information can jeopardize your safety as it makes it easier for people with bad intentions to track you down. Letting the public know the days when you are out of town also reveals the times when your house will be empty. These details can encourage thieves and burglars to break into your house. 

Do not post updates and pictures to brag.

One thing to do before posting your vacation pictures is to reflect on your true intention. Are you sharing your travel adventures to impress and brag? If the answer is yes, then your social media updates may make other people feel dissatisfied or unprivileged. As the owner of your account, it is true that you have the right to post anything you want, regardless of what others may feel about it. However, you also have the option to use the platform in a way that will inspire and encourage others. You can do this by posting updates that inform or educate other than show off material things. Instead of flaunting the amount of money you spent on the trip, it is better to show bonding moments or lessons learned during your travels.

Refrain from posting pictures of others without asking prior permission.

Traveling will give you hundreds of interesting scenery and images. Sometimes, it is a person or a group of people that will catch your attention.  In times like this, remember that others are also concerned about their privacy. Thus, make it a habit to ask permission before taking a picture of a stranger and also inform them of your plan to post them online.

The influence of social media is so great that it has become a part of people’s daily lives. It would not be surprising that we take advantage of the online platform as a way to keep special days such as travel times more meaningful and memorable. As long as we do not forget to be responsible, social media will always work to our benefit.

Brad and Julie DuncanThree Things to Avoid When Using Social Media While Traveling
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Thoughtful Gifts To Give A Leader This Christmas

It is a great privilege to be under exceptional leaders. Their leadership skills and styles are likely to leave you with a wealth of lessons that will help you grow both personally and professionally. Amazing bosses are hard to come by so it is a must to show your appreciation if you come across one. As Christmas is just a few days away, you have a nice excuse to express your admiration for your leader. One thing you can do is giving your boss a useful and thoughtful present. The following are some suggestions for gifts:

Stress-relieving items.

Leaders are usually slumped with so many tasks that stress can become a normal thing for them. Thus, they will surely be grateful for items that can help them maintain grace under pressure. So next time you are out shopping for gifts, keep an eye out for stress-relieving objects that you can give your boss. Scalp massagers, squishy rubber toys, and mini board games are examples of gifts for a leader. Other options include a snow globe that is relaxing to watch or a travel pillow that can make their office cozier. The said items can be carried anywhere or put on a work desk so they can use it whenever needed. You can also choose to give adult coloring books or aromatherapy diffuser.

Items to help them stay organized.

Good leaders are likely to be well-organized so you may want to give them things to help them keep everything in order. A dainty desk storage to hold their pens or even gadgets can keep their workspace tidy. You can also opt for a wall calendar or clock so they never have to worry about time. A nice little journal to list down their schedules or a cute little bag to hold their business cards may seem simple gifts but can be very useful for your leader.

Relaxation vouchers

Some leaders are so busy that even finding time to look for a way to relax can feel like a huge chore. Make things less difficult for them by purchasing a prepaid voucher that they can use to unwind. It can be a voucher that will allow them to have a lovely dinner with their family in their favorite restaurant. Or a gift card that will entitle them to a day of pampering at a spa center. A subscription to a fitness gym so they will be forced to allot time for their health is also a great idea. Your gift will be more meaningful if you base it on the specific circumstances and interests of your boss.

Christmas is a wonderful time to show how much we appreciate the significant people in our lives. If you have a great boss, do not let the season pass by without letting them know your gratefulness. Your simple gesture will motivate them to be even better leaders. 

Brad and Julie DuncanThoughtful Gifts To Give A Leader This Christmas
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Three Points Proving That Philanthropy Is The Essence Of Christmas

It is Christmas every time you let God love others through you…
yes, it is Christmas every time you smile at your brother

and offer him your hand. – Mother Teresa.

Christmas is undoubtedly one of the most popular and celebrated holidays in the world. So many people look forward to this occasion because of the pleasant things it represents. This is the time of the year for posh parties, happy reunions, and gift-giving. Amidst the celebrations, it is easy to forget that Christmas is also the best time to spread love and goodness. In fact, your Christmas celebrations may even be happier and more meaningful if you focus on sharing your blessings with others. When you come to think of it, philanthropy is indeed the true essence of Christmas. The following are reasons that prove this point:

It is a perfect example of humility.

Christmas commemorates the birth of Jesus Christ who was born in a manger during the coldest and longest night of that year. His whole life is a story of humility. The simple life he led teaches that we do not need an abundance of material things to make a difference. Thus, instead of focusing on things you want to have, you can try shifting your focus on things you can share. It will make you realize your blessings and at the same time make a positive impact on the lives of others.

It highlights the importance of kindness.

According to the tale, there were no more inns for Joseph and Mary. Fortunately, someone allowed the couple to stay in a stable. It was not the most comfortable place, however, it provided a safe place for Mary to give birth. Recalling the story of Christmas should remind us of all the power of a single act of kindness. It doesn’t always have to be a grand action, sometimes even the smallest gesture to show kindness is more than enough.

It is an example of unconditional love.

Christians believe that Jesus is sent by Father God to redeem the world from sins. The birth of Christ is one of the strongest messages of God’s unconditional love for humanity. Of all the things to give, God chose the most precious one which is his son. Since no other gift can be greater than this, Christmas should remind us to be less concerned about the things we want to receive but of the amazing gift which God has already given us. Christmas should also teach us to consistently show mercy and compassion to others because God never fails to show the same to us.

Christmas is one of the most awaited times of the year. Every year, we think of ways to celebrate it in the most joyous way. Make it more special this year by taking the time to be a blessing to others.

Brad and Julie DuncanThree Points Proving That Philanthropy Is The Essence Of Christmas
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Travel Tips: Five Quick Tips to Save Money on Travels

To go on a vacation is a luxury and people usually go on a holiday to splurge. Still, who would frown upon a chance to save some bucks while out on a trip? In the first place, a great vacation doesn’t necessarily have to be too costly. The following are travel tips you can do to ensure that your trips will not burn a hole in your pockets.

Try less popular destinations.

Tourists tend to flock to famous spots and the high demand for these places increases its value. Thus, going here may mean you have to shell out more money. If you wish to avoid the crowds and enjoy some savings too, you may choose to go to equally amazing yet unpopular destinations. Not so many people know about this place yet so rates can be a lot cheaper.  

Travel during off-peak seasons.

Perfect timing can make all the difference. To pay less for travel, it is recommended to travel during off-peak periods. Hotel and airlines are known to lower their rates during slow months to still encourage people to travel. Take advantage of the huge discounts by traveling during this time.

Opt for an apartment rather than a hotel.

Accommodation can occupy a big chunk out of your travel budget especially if you stay in high-end hotels. One option you can try is to rent an apartment instead. You can still have a comfortable stay and you may even have access to the whole house itself. Likewise, if you are traveling as a group, an entire apartment can be big enough for all of you. Apart from being cheaper, you can even prepare your own meals here so you can cut down on your food costs too.

Pack snacks and bring water while on the road. 

Traveling is all about exploring the place but to stay energized while on the road, do not forget to come prepared. Put your travel backpacks to good use by bringing snacks and water with you. You are bound to get thirsty and hungry while out and about but it would not be a problem if you have drinks and food with you. This simple tip can save you lots of time and money as well. 

Hunt for discounts or freebies. 

In a way, scoring great deals and packages is a great gauge to measure the success of your travels. So be on the lookout for anything that can help you save money. You can do research about places or activities that you can visit or do for free in your destination such as museums, libraries, or parks. Your airline may be offering some discounts and your accommodation may be offering some freebies which you can avail. Following the social media accounts of airlines and hotels can help you stay informed about these deals. You can also sign-up to be a member of their community to earn points you can redeem later on.

Money matters is one of the reasons why many put the idea of traveling aside. However, if you will just make an effort to be a more resourceful and creative traveler, you can discover easy ways to stretch your precious dollars. 

Brad and Julie DuncanTravel Tips: Five Quick Tips to Save Money on Travels
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Three Adventure Ideas To Enrich Your Soul

Jobs fill your pocket but adventures fill your soul.
– Jamie Lyn Beatty

Everybody needs a little adventure. We all want and need to try something new every once in a while because it makes life more fun and exciting. Likewise, the risks and uncertainties that come with adventures can also lead to valuable lessons that enrich our lives. These escapades are supposed to make us stronger and wiser. However, the outcome of your escapades would depend on your attitude and the type of adventure you choose. For adventures that can help you see life in a better light, the following are some suggestions:

Go somewhere all by yourself. 

Traveling by yourself is beneficial because it improves your well-being and widens your knowledge. However, while it is surely rewarding to visit new places with your loved ones, you would likely gain more benefits by giving solo travel a try from time to time. Solo travel will require you to be more independent, resourceful, and courageous. By having no one to rely on but yourself, there is a big chance for you to go home feeling more confident.

Join a cultural adventure trip. 

A travel itinerary to famous destinations would typically include visits to popular tourist sites and attractions. To veer away from the usual, you may want to join a cultural adventure. This is a trip where the aim is to truly experience local traditions and customs of the place they are visiting. Attending local festivals, trying exotic dishes, and visiting local homes are just a few activities that you can try in a culture trip. The opportunity to mingle with the locals and experience how they truly live can teach you lessons and can results in insights that you can never get from anywhere else.

Take the risk to do something you always wanted.

Have you always wanted to start a business, pursue your passion, or change your career? We are often advised to take precautions for plunging into things like the ones mentioned because they are considered risky. A business can fail and your dream job may not turn out well. Still, it will also be sad to spend your whole life just thinking about how things could have been if you try. So for once in your life, you may want to give yourself a chance to do what you have always wanted. You can fail or succeed, but either way, you will surely gain wisdom.

Although we can also discover amazing things in our daily routines, no one can deny that the unique experiences we get from little adventures gives color to our lives. Just do not forget to choose adventures that can improve your overall health and well-being. 

Brad and Julie DuncanThree Adventure Ideas To Enrich Your Soul
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