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Easy Ways to Improve Your Relationship Bond

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Contrary to popular belief, keeping your partnership or marriage happy is actually quite easy – introducing small changes and positive behaviours into your relationship is what will make it even better. While many relationship experts in Singapore say that you should focus on fixing what’s wrong, some research show that incorporating positive behaviours to a relationship has a greater impact on a couple’s happiness. With that in mind, we listed down some easy ways on how you can deepen your bond with your partner and be a happier couple.

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1. Perform Random Acts of Kindness
Doing small gestures that say “I’m thinking of you” are essential to keep your relationship bond strong – e.g. filling up her tank with gas or brewing him coffee in the morning. Hand holding and sending midday love emails are also small ways of showing affection. Research also shows that performing small gestures frequently has a greater impact on couple happiness compared with grand, but less frequent gestures.

2. Grow and Change Together
Just like you, your relationship is something that needs nourishment to develop and grow – and that best way to nurture it well is to infuse it with change. Introducing change into a relationship is believed to be a key factor to couple happiness. These changes can be small, but it should break your routine. You can take a leave from work and do something fun together, such as visiting a nearby museum or tourist spot. You can also try something new like going on a meditation retreat or taking a water-skiing class together.

3. Get to Know Each Other’s Family and Friends
A research found that men, in particular, are happier when their partner has a good relationship with his family and friends. Also, couples who accept and make an effort to know each other’s friends are said to be happier than couples with separate friends and family lives.

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4. Keep Everything Light
To prevent your relationship from slipping into a rut, you need to get the right balance between the rational aspect and the fun parts. You need to do certain things to keep your life in order and your relationship secure, but you shouldn’t forget to play as well. Rediscover the delight of watching silly movies, playing a game or dragging her onto the dance floor.

5. Find a Good Way to Communicate
Learning how to communicate in a healthy way is what will keep your relationship thriving. This means not just asking your partner what he or she needs, but also telling him or her what you need. It means knowing what stressors are rearing in your partner’s life, as well as learning how to fight fair – no shaming or name calling.

Practising positive behaviours and incorporating small changes in your relationship is what will help in making it better. So be sure to use the aforementioned tips to help you further deepen your bond with your significant other and become a happier couple.

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Stress Savers: 6 Hobbies That Helps You Relax

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No one can escape occasional feelings of stress, but there’s definitely something that we can do to lessen that nagging feeling of anxiety. Apart from sleeping, eating well and doing other self-care habits, we can practice a number of hobbies to help us reduce stress – and these extend beyond stereotypical activities like meditation and yoga.

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1. Photography

Most people see photography as an expensive hobby as it includes purchasing gadgets and travelling to tourist destinations. While these are necessary for a professional shoot, you can actually do well without it when it comes to taking photos as a hobby. You can use your phone’s camera and anything, including your meal, your best friend or any random thing that you can use as your subject. Photography is all about being immersed in the moment and looking at things from different perspectives. If it goes well, you can turn it into a rewarding profession.

2. Journaling

Several studies show that keeping a journal reduces stress, as well as symptoms of depression and anxiety. Writing down your thoughts helps you clear your mind and emotions, and reflect on your feelings in a healthy manner. Journaling provides a creative way for you to privately express your emotions and ideas.

3. Reading

Even just five minutes of reading is already enough to reduce stress. Reading helps in easing muscle tension, as well as reducing the heart rate, making it a healthy hobby to turn to when you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed.

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4. Knitting

It’s time to forget the stereotype that knitting is only for our grandmas. According to researchers, the repetitive movement done in knitting actually helps people get into the moment the way meditation does. It also enhances the release of serotonin, a feel-good neurotransmitter that helps you feel positive and calm.

5. Colouring

Adult colouring books have been the rage recently, and for a good reason. Several studies showed art therapy as a great way to reduce stress and ease symptoms of anxiety and depression. Using a colouring book results to having a relaxing mind-set, since it allows the brain to switch off your thoughts and focus on what you’re doing in the moment.

6. Gardening

If you’re fond of flowers, or plants in general, then this activity is the perfect hobby for you. Gardening will require some knowledge about the right kinds of plants to grow in your region, as well as how to care for them. Fortunately, these information can be acquired from your local nursery or online. Gardening will help you in more ways than one. You’ll be around nature, be able to breathe fresh air and enjoy the fruits of your hobby.

Apart from these hobbies, you can also take part in any sport you like or make new friends. After all, what’s important is you concentrate on doing the things that lowers your stress levels and makes you happy.

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What Can VoIP Do For You?

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A surprising number of businesses in Singapore still use landline phones. In today’s modern era of Internet, it is unarguably the best time to switch to a modern communication system—the cloud-based Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). VoIP in Singapore provides so much more benefits to organizations and corporations in Singapore that a standard landline cannot.

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Here are the reasons why it may be the time for your business to cut the cord and switch to Voice over IP.

1. It can make a call without a landline phone.

Voice over IP apps for PC and mobile gadgets are available for free and can turn any device into a telecommunication machine. This flexibility is extremely handy in various areas of a business, especially where constant communication is essential.

Laptops, smartphones, tablets and desktops can all be enabled to make phone calls through http://www.crystalvoice.com.sg/ Singapore Voice over IP. When your cellphone battery dies or you want to save a couple of minutes on your phone plan, you can still make calls with VoIP-enabled devices.

2. It can transcribe voicemails to texts.

A number of Voice over IP providers offer voicemail transcription feature to their packages for an all-inclusive price. Voicemail transcription is a VoIP feature that instantly transcribes your voicemail and converts them into text, which can be e-mailed to you.

When the message is sent to your inbox in a text format, you are free to access the message at your leisure and get all of the important information without missing a single thing.

3. It can seamlessly transfer calls between devices.

If you are expecting an important call, perhaps from a prospect client, but need to go out for some important business-related errands, Voice over IP makes it possible for you to receive the call from any of your contact numbers. So, if that client calls in your office phone when you’re not around, after—say—two rings the call will be redirected to your personal mobile number or home phone number. You can set the numbers you want your calls to be redirected in case of no answer to any of them.

Also, you can transfer calls from one device to another. For instance, if you’re on an important call but need to head out somewhere else, you can seamlessly transfer the call to your cell phone.

4. It can block telemarketers.

For small businesses, the owner is usually the decision maker when it comes to purchasing goods and equipments. As such, you are constantly bombarded with phone calls from sales representatives and telemarketers wanting to take “two minutes of your time” for a product or service that’s irrelevant to you.

Unknown call rejection is a feature of Voice over IP that allows you to block callers who intentionally hide their phone numbers from caller IDs. This feature sometimes informs the blocked caller that you are not accepting unidentified calls, giving you the power to mute and automatically reject time-wasting calls.

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5. It lets you be in two places at once.

VoIP international rates are probably the cheapest in the telecommunication field. One of the best advantages of Voice over IP to make international calls is that you can be assigned with a local phone number from any country that helps you establish a local presence without putting up an office outside Singapore.

If your office is based here in the city but also conduct business in China, VoIP in Singapore can assign you a telephone number in China, providing your business partners and clients a local number where they can reach you while you’re in Singapore.

6. It can save you more money.

When talking about business profit, every little saving counts. In the case of your company’s expenses, minimizing how much you spend will maximize your earnings—but not at the expense of your employees’ performance. One great thing about VoIP in Singapore is that you get the best of both worlds.

Voice over IP services are much more affordable than standard telecommunication services, especially for international rates. It also offers better features and a myriad of useful functions at no additional cost. So with VoIP, your company gets to save from operational expenses while also improving your business’ performance and productivity.

7. It is generally much easier to use.

Installation of a Voice over IP system requires little technical knowledge. In fact, the ease of installation and mobility of the system offers much greater advantage over landline phones. For instance, you do not need separate cabling compared to standard telephone systems. Therefore, it cuts down office clutter and fire hazards associated with electrical wires.

Other than ease of installation, the service combines and stores data in a single network. Because of this, managing of data and productivity level of your business is greatly enhanced. Business can also invest on wireless Voice over IP tech to make low-cost calls from any place that has WiFi, such as book stores, airports, hotels, cafeterias, and a variety of other locations.

Staying competitive in the business industry requires the use of today’s best technological tools. When it comes to business telecommunications and service, Voice over IP offers the best solutions hands down. Offering a plethora of benefits with minimal—or almost zero—negatives, it is not impossible for VoIP to become a standard telephone service for establishments and corporations in Singapore in the future. If your business has yet to adopt this technology, now is the perfect time to do so.

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What Factors to Consider When Hiring a Plumbing Contractor

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Plumbing problems are quite common than you think, particularly in older homes. Whether the problem is as simple as a leaky faucet, or something as complex as changing a pipe or installing a sink, it is already enough to throw a normal life out of gear. Although homeowners can already rectify the simpler problems, hiring a skilled plumber would be necessary to fix the more complex issues. But before you go and hire a plumbing contractor, there are some considerations that you should keep in mind and those considerations are as follows:

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1. Services Offered

One of the most important things to consider when looking for a plumbing contractor is the type of service they are offering. For instance, would you consider hiring a plumber who only does commercial repairs to install your water heater? We’re sure you won’t. Apart from the service they offer, you should also find out whether or not they dispatch a 24 hours plumber, since some plumbing emergencies don’t just happen on normal business hours.

2. Experience

Other than the services they are offering, experience is another factor worth considering when choosing a plumber. It is crucial for you to ensure that he has experienced working or fixing an issue similar to yours even before he arrives. Although hiring an experienced plumber is more expensive, it is rest assured that he will get the plumbing works done faster and with greater accuracy.

3. License

Ensure that you will only hire plumbers or plumbing contractors who are bonded, insured, and licensed. His license will confirm that he has undergone appropriate training, and has the knowledge needed to tackle any type of plumbing problem. Also, hiring a licensed plumber like faber plumbing in Singapore guarantees that your interest will be protected, should something go wrong with his plumbing job. Just ensure that you hire a plumber from a reputable plumbing contractor, as the person would be more likely to provide plumbing services during emergencies.

4. Cost

Most professional plumbers usually come to their client’s home to take a look at the problem, and give a free estimate of how much it will cost to fix the issue. Once you get the cost estimate, ask your plumber if the amount quoted already includes the cost of labour and materials. Also, consider inquiring if your total estimate is an hourly rate (excludes cost of materials) or a flat rate (one that will likely increase because of the labour costs).

Furthermore, confirm with your plumber as to when he expects to be paid. Some plumbing contractors expect to be paid on a daily or weekly basis, while others prefer receiving the payment upon the completion of their work.

5. Warranty

Clarify the type of warranty that comes with the plumber’s work. Is he offering a written guarantee? What will happen if you are not satisfied with their work, or if the issue arises again after they leave? Without any guarantee, you might end up paying for another round of plumbing services should further complications or problems arise.

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6. Response Time

If you are calling for emergency plumbing services, consider inquiring about how soon they will be able to fix the problem. Although there is a good number of emergency plumbers in Singapore, their response time could be significantly delayed if they will be required to travel long distances just to get to your home.

7. Parts and Permits

Before hiring a plumber or a plumbing contractor, ask if they stock their plumbing equipment in their work vehicle. If they don’t have the necessary parts on hand, then they might need to purchase it from a hardware store, thus adding to the cost of their service. Other than that, you should also consider asking whether or not the plumber can quickly get all the necessary permits to get the job done – especially if your plumbing problem will cause some structural damage to your home.

8. Insurance

If you are planning to hire a plumbing contractor, ensure that they provide their plumber with liability insurance and compensation, as these cover their workers in case they get injured on the job. In the absence of an insurance, the homeowner will be held responsible to pay for the person’s medical bills and other related expenses.
Liability insurance, on the other hand, pays for any damages that the plumber brought to your home. Without such insurance, the homeowner will likely end up paying for these damages and repairs.

9. Customer Promise

A good sign that you found a trustworthy and reliable plumber or plumbing contractor is their customer charter. If your chosen plumber clearly lays out his promises to his customer, you will be able to get a feel as to what kind of plumber he really is.

10. Referrals

Perhaps this is the most important factor to consider when choosing a plumber. Most of us prefer getting the work done through people that we know and trust. If you don’t know any good plumbing contractor, however, consider asking for recommendations from people who have engaged similar services as yours. Ask your friends and relatives for referrals, or research some plumbers available in Singapore online.

Finding a skilled and reliable plumber can be challenging at times, but keeping these considerations in mind will surely make dealing with a plumbing emergency less stressful, and even help you find a good plumbing contractor.

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How to Conduct Singing Lessons at Home

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The key to achieve great singing voice requires talent and technique. In order to become a successful singer, you need to be knowledgeable about the solid practises in singing, such as proper diction, posture, and projection, as well as the important vocal exercises. Some people attend music school, and take vocal lessons to learn such techniques, while some try to learn it by themselves. If you’re one of the latter, then here are some helpful tips on how you can successfully conduct a Do-It-Yourself vocal training at home.

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1. Loosen Up Your Throat and Voice Box

An easy to do this is to imitate the yawning reflex of your body. Create a particular sound every time you do the yawning action, and remember how creating that sound felt. As you yawn, notice how there’s no hint of tension or stress on your voice – that’s the proper way to sing. To help you sing higher notes, practice the yawning sound you made in a higher pitch.

2. Practise Proper Projection of Your Voice

Another important singing technique taught in most regular singing lessons is the proper projection of your voice. Properly projecting your voice allows you to produce fuller and louder singing voice without straining your voice box. If it is too complicated, you can consider to bring your child for singing lesson in Singapore to have a professional teach them. Do this by producing and sustaining a yawning sound in a large room. Just remember to avoid producing continuous full sounds as it may strain your vocals.

3. Learn the Right Breathing Technique and Posture

Learning the proper breathing technique and posture is important in speaking as it is in singing. As you perform your at-home vocal lessons, make sure that you’re sitting or standing up straight to promote good air circulation throughout your lungs. Both professional and novice singers in Singapore use this technique while vocal training so they can produce better sounds as they sing.

4. Develop Some Good Voice Intonation

As you project your singing voice, you’ll notice that some sounds are quite difficult to hear clearly. Which is why as a performer or singer, it’s also important that you develop a good voice intonation. The best way to achieve this is to concentrate on your singing, and be familiar with the piece you’re going to sing. That way, you get to adjust your pitch on each part of the song.

5. Learn the Proper Vocal Placement

Whether or not you’re taking vocal lessons from a voice coach, learning the proper voice placement is one of the most difficult technique to master. Some experienced and novice singers in Singapore do this by feeling the sound vibrations on their cheek and nose area, while some just relax their jaw, throat, and tongue as they sing.

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6. Do All the Essential Warm-Up Exercises

Just like your workout routine, performing warm-up exercises is also crucial in singing. Warm up your singing voice by performing a five-note scale of do-re-mi-fa-so in a higher and lower pitch. Also, keep your jaws loose by doing the yawning reflex while performing this routine. That way, you get to smooth out all the unnecessary breaks in your voice, and avoid putting so much strain on your vocal cords.

7. Record Yourself as You Sing then Analyse Your Vocals

While this can be a bit difficult for novice singers, recording yourself as you sing and analysing it afterwards is one of the best ways to discover areas that need improvement – whether your voice is flat or sharp. Once you’re done making observations, sing the same song and record yourself again. This time, you’ll be amazed at how better you sound after one or two tries.

8. Practise Healthy Vocal Habits

Apart from attending your vocal lessons regularly, practising healthy vocal habits is another way to make sure that you develop a good singing voice. If possible, avoid singing for longer hours, holding out notes that are too high or long, as well as singing loudly over loud accompaniments as this will only strain your vocal cords. Also, withdrawing from vices like drinking alcoholic drinks and smoking will be beneficial not only for your singing voice, but for your overall health as well.

9. Look for Resources That’ll Maximize Your Singing Potential

Watching YouTube videos, for instance, is a good way to train yourself to sing at the comforts of your home. Here, you’ll find various resources from people who just love sharing their knowledge and expertise to others for free.
Apart from watching videos, you can also ask a family member or a friend who sings and even your local music teacher for some tips and feedback with your performance. Tell them to be completely honest with their feedback so they won’t feel required to praise you. But if they do praise you, thank them and ask them as to which areas you need to improve.

10. Exude Confidence

Apart from honing your singing skills and mastering every singing technique there is, having confidence in yourself is also essential for developing a good singing voice, and showcasing a good performance. Don’t be discouraged if you sound off sometimes, because even singers who attended vocal training sessions also experience instances where their voice sound off key. Just keep developing and practicing the singing techniques that you acquired, and be confident with all your performances.

Learning each singing technique on your own won’t be easy, but by continuously practicing each technique, you’ll surely be able to develop a good singing voice even without attending any singing lessons.

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Convincing Singaporeans to Choose Entrepreneurship

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Here in Singapore, life is hard without a living. Some are enjoying their living while others are struggling to meet both ends. Here, the classic formula is to study hard, do well in school, graduate then eventually find a good job and work your way from there. If you continue just like that, there will come a day that you will boss the people around.

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However, many modern people think that making a living is more than a profession like being doctor, lawyer, banker or civil servant. Making a living also means being an entrepreneur. In fact, the government is convincing people to consider entrepreneurship. It is not easy being an entrepreneur here but one can make it do. For those who are not that convinced yet, here are some points that you can consider to choose entrepreneurship more than any profession in the world:

  • Altering of mentality: The society is conservative but with the coming of technology and innovation, it is time to change mentality. It is undeniable that the brightest students in the society are anxious of getting into a profession seen by the society as “suitable” for them. If they wander off the beaten track, people will think that it is a waste. If this mindset will not change, students will take conservative jobs.

 

  • Diversity at school: Diversity is important in every society. Even in school, when students are empowered of the range of possibilities for their future, they will think of broader things like being an entrepreneur.

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  • Reduce intense culture at work: Maybe you haven’t heard of the news but in average, we work longer than any other people in the world. This intense culture at work merely deters your potential to be good at something else. Some businesses started as a side gig. It is not an “all or nothing” risk unlike what other people are led to believe. You can start slowly and surely then devote all your energy to it.

 

  • Unemployment benefits: The government should think of something to entice more entrepreneurs. Why not start with unemployment benefits for entrepreneurs? While some are building their own network and empire, the government is backing them with financial support. This is enough to motivate and give chance for individuals to excel in business.

If that is not that convincing, at least think about it for some time and realize the difference. It is not yet too late to consider entrepreneurship. The journey is not a guarantee success but the important thing is you learn at the end of the day and cope up.

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What to Avoid When Decorating Small Spaces

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Decorating small spaces is a complex task. You need to make use of every space available while keeping the overall aesthetic value in mind. Fitting everything you need in the room is difficult enough but you also need to take the lighting and ventilation into consideration. Most often than not, we think that decorating a small space means stuffing every furniture you can and mounting every wall with a floating shelf space.

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Beware of these blunders when it comes to dressing up your small space:

Neglecting natural light

Natural light should be the star in small spaces. Maximize the flow of light in the room by adding mirrors on opposite walls of your windows so that light will be reflected and spread across the room. Rather than using a curtain that tends to block all the light, opt for natural woven binds to simply limit the flow of light instead of blocking it entirely. This helps in keeping the wall and furniture colors bright and vibrant.

Hindering visual flow

A house with small adjacent rooms will look and feel larger when you use a uniform color palette for the walls, furniture and other materials. When there is a consistent color palette, the flow of space seems smooth and the hone instantly looks more spacious. Use this trick instead of using an independent color palette for each area.

Ditching unused space

Floor space is not the only thing you can utilize in small rooms. Be more innovative by using unused door, window and wall space. Adding floating shelves and built-in seating makes a small more functional. Add a sofa or any seating furniture in front of a bookshelf for some hidden storage.

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Not acknowledging the small space

Forcing more furniture and stuff inside a small room does not make it bigger. Instead, work with what you have. Inspect the whole area of the room before determining what materials and fixtures you want to add inside. If your room does not have space for a bedside table, forcing a bedside table inside will not do anyone any favors. If you really need that bedside table, look for other alternatives. You can add a floating shelf near your bed to serve as your bedside table or you can position your desk near the bed to make it a multipurpose furniture.

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Decorating a space may make you feel that you can add anything inside the room but no matter how much multifunctional storage items you have, if you like to hoard stuff, the room will still look stuffed. Evaluate what you own and discard those that you don’t really need. Keep the important ones and discard (or donate) those that you find little or no use.

Wasting space

In a small room, little space is better than no space at all. Arrange your furniture by making sure that there is no valuable space being put to waste. Use the limited area for more important objects, rather than using it simply for decorative knick-knacks. Have an open mind and be more creative. Space that may look useless can still be used for better function.

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