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Subaru Loves Pets as Much as its Owners

December 18, 2018

Subaru shows its owners love by providing reliable vehicles that are ranked as some of the most trustworthy cars out there, but did you know that we show love to communities and causes as well?

As part of our Love Promise Community Commitment, we join forces with a wide variety of non-profits and charities on a local and a national level. Our missions include protecting and preserving the environment, supporting education for all, and encouraging volunteers within communities.

When you find a Subaru dealer for your next vehicle, you can be sure that we’re taking action beyond simply providing you with a great car.

If you’ve seen some of our commercials featuring the furry Barkley family going to the car wash or taking driving lessons, you know that our vehicles are dog-tested and dog-approved! Many Subaru owners are also pet owners, and we’re consistently ranked as one of the most dog-friendly vehicle makers out there.

But our love for pets doesn’t stop with our customers’ companions. We’re committed to the well-being of pets everywhere, not only those who already have homes with our customers. We show that love through action – it’s about returning the love that our animals so generously give to us. It’s all part of our Love Promise because Subaru loves pets as much as its owners, and we’re committed to keeping dogs and other animals happy, healthy, and safe.

October is Subaru Loves Pets Month

Every October, we celebrate Subaru Loves Pets month when we team up with long-standing partner The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) to help the approximately 6.5 million companion animals that enter shelters each year. Since 2008, Subaru has donated nearly $22 million to the ASPCA, helped support over 1,500 animal welfare-related events, and significantly impacted the rescue, transport, and adoption of more than 50,000 animals nationwide.

Our dealers across the country also work alongside local animal organizations in our communities to collect supplies needed to keep animals healthy, happy, and ready to find homes.

If you want to help, find a Subaru dealer near you and bring in some pet supplies such as canned or dry food, collars, towels, blankets, grooming supplies, food bowls, small dog/cat toys, treats, or cleaning supplies. These items will be donated to a local organization.

Another partner of ours in the Subaru Loves Pets initiative is BARK, the makers of BarkBox and one of the dog-friendliest companies around. Together with BARK, we put together and provide Subaru Loves Pets shelter supply kits. These special kits include lots of different pet items that can support the well-being of shelter animals awaiting adoption such as chew toys, reusable water bowls, bath wipes, and tennis balls.

We believe that keeping animals happy and comfortable during their stay in a shelter is important, and once they find a new home, we also offer starter kits to families who are adopting a pet

Meet and Greet with Pets in Your Community

During Subaru Loves Pets month, Subaru retailers host pet events in partnership with local animal welfare organizations where you can meet different pets that might just become your new best friend.

Often times, the adoption fees are waived or significantly reduced at these events, which leads to higher rates of pets finding homes. In fact, surveys show that the majority of pets adopted at a waived- or reduced fee are kept by their owners and that their owners actually report a higher attachment to the pet. It’s all about giving these animals a second chance and making sure they find a safe place to call home.

Subaru provides grants to the ASPCA that waive these adoption fees; our funding also goes toward Rescue Rides, which transports animals for adoption. In fact, we’ve helped transport over 21,000 pets in just four years.

Throughout October, we also encourage you to find a Subaru dealer and take a picture with the Subaru Loves Pets photo frame. You can then share this on social media using the #SubaruLovesPets hashtag to raise awareness about animal welfare.

Our Commitment to Pets is Year-Round

How else do we show that we love pets? One way is demonstrating that we care about providing the safest possible vehicles for your animals. We’ve collaborated with the Center for Pet Safety, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit research and advocacy organization dedicated to companion animal and consumer safety.

Subaru has sponsored two studies conducted by the Center for Pet Safety around pet travel, which looked at dog harnesses/safety belts and animal crates that performed well in crash tests. If you’re interested in learning more, you can read about one of our sponsored 2015 studies here.

We also work with the Southeastern Guide Dogs, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping blind men and women achieve independence. We sponsor many events every year that fund the training and development of guide dogs so that they can eventually be placed in homes with individuals who need a service animal.

You can also see evidence of our dedication to pets in your very own community here in the Portland metro area. For example, during the Oregon Humane Society’s 150th anniversary, Royal Moore Subaru of Hillsboro donated over $5,000 to the organization.

Together with other regional Subaru dealers and members of the community, the Humane Society was able to raise over $55,000 that year. And, during Summer 2018, local Subaru retailers donated $25 to the Oregon Humane Society for every vehicle purchased.

You can tell we’ve got a soft spot for pets: we make sure our vehicles are the safest they can be for all of your family members, whether they’re human or animal, and we dedicate financial support to charity, research, and organizations to support pets everywhere.

Our animals show us unconditional love, so we want to protect and love them too!


How to Improve Your Productivity When Studying

December 17, 2018

Studying is a process – there’s no way around it. You have to put in the time to retain the information and perform well on tests and exams. But you can make the most of the time you put in by maximizing your productivity. Try these tips to improve your productivity and transform your study habits.

Know your high functioning hours

Studying is an individual process. You can choose to study in groups and to meet up with a tutor to help you out, but at the end of a day, it’s a solo practice. Only you can study for the test that you have, and put in the work that you know that you need to to feel confident. So, make it a priority to know what your high-functioning hours are. Are you an early bird, who is most alert and productive in the morning? Are you a night owl, who feels most creative and effective in the evenings? Do you feel supercharged after an afternoon workout?

Figure out what your studying sweet spot is, and fit in your study hours during that time. This will make sure that you’re maximizing your studying effectiveness on your own schedule.

Try the Pomodoro Technique

One popular technique for “time blocking” when it comes to productivity is the Pomodoro technique. With this technique, you work non-stop for 25 minutes at a time, usually with the help of a timer. During this 25 minutes, you are focused only on one singular task – you are not taking any breaks to check your phone or social media – you are only working on the task at hand. Once the block is done, stop working. Get up and take a 5 minute walk, get a coffee, take some deep breaths and re-center yourself.

Once you’ve completed three to four Pomodoro cycles, then take a longer 20-30 minute break. By using this technique, you can help to amp up your focus, eliminate distractions, and remain on task when studying.

Create an ideal study space

If you frequently study while sitting or laying in bed, you may want to reconsider your choice. To ramp up your productivity when studying, choose one consistent spot (or a couple consistent spots) where you can go and really get in the zone. Whether it’s a desk in your room, a certain spot at the school library, your favorite coffee shop, or somewhere else, find a space that works for you and use it to maximize your productivity.

Use Memory Tricks

Another way to maximize your study time is by using memory tricks. Probably the most popular memory trick is the use of mnemonic devices. The mnemonic technique translates information you’re trying to memorize into a pattern your brain remembers better, like a sequence of numbers letters, and words that will correlate to a core concept in the material. It’s a super helpful technique for when you’re evaluating your university of miami final exam schedule.

Use these tricks to make your study time as productive and possible, and improve your chances of getting the best grade possible on your test.


How to Save Space in a Small Home

November 28, 2018

You can live in a 300 square metre house and yet feel crowded. Equally, you can live in a 60 square metre flat and feel that its spacious and airy. The future of housing, with the population rising and more people sharing rooms and homes, requires a smarter use of space. Improperly furnishing your place, neglecting to consider space maximisation in a small house, will mean youre living a cramped life needlessly. Instead, make absolutely sure that youre extracting value from every square inch of space in your home by following the tips outlined below.

Paint Smart

The feel of a space differs significantly depending on how you paint the walls – and the feeling of the colours you work with. Some colours create a warm feel while others are cold, and the general idea is to use colours that feel spacious, such as white, instead of colours that actually make the room feel smaller. Dark rooms can feel gloomy and uninviting – lighter rooms feel breathable, airy and expansive in comparison.

Furnish Smart

Furniture pieces are more than just functional, in the sense that their purpose is not just to provide you with a level surface on which to eat, or a seat in which to sit. Nowadays furniture is designed to have more flexibility and adaptability built in, which means modern furniture might be the right option if youre trying to save space.

An excellent example of space-saving furniture are wall beds – not only adaptable in saving space, but they provide a sense of modernity, and they can allow for different settings within the same small living space. Other tips for smart furnishing include:

  • Arranging things appropriately. Generally speaking, you need to avoid stacking furniture in the middle of the room, which makes the space feel crowded. Have the smallest and lowest furniture in the centre of the room in order to accentuate the space around it.
  • Get rid of boring or useless furniture pieces, and instead make sure that anything thats rarely used in your home is either providing visual relief from the clutter or is an integral ornament to your home. If its not, it should go.
  • Do not forget that you have a 3D space. Use the vertical depth of your home wisely to store more and spread your belongings throughout your space. An easy example of this is floor-to-ceiling shelving. Having more surface area to work with means youll have the ability to arrange places for your small items, making them easier to find.

Be Experimental

You have to be a designer to know exactly how things should look in your home – but youre nonetheless encouraged to just experiment with your space. Its a fun activity to spend some time moving things around, seeing what the outcome is when item A is swapped with item B, and so on. Rearranging the furniture in your house will help you see your space differently, opening up holes in the space you own that you didnt know existed before.

See cramped or small abodes as a challenge and not a defeat, and work to make the very most of your conditions with the tips provided above.


How to Cope With a Mental Health Condition

November 28, 2018

Mental health problems affect ever-increasing numbers of people across the country, causing distress, misery, and lost productivity on a massive scale. Sadly many people don’t seek help for their mental health problems until they become severe, which means that recovery takes longer and is more problematic. If you’ve been diagnosed with a mental health disorder, it’s difficult to cope with on many levels, but there are ways you can help yourself to recover from your illness and return to leading a happy, fulfilling life.

The complications of mental illness

Having a mental health condition has added complications compared to a physical illness. Firstly, there are no outward signs of mental illness, at least not until you become very severely afflicted. That means people you meet and friends and family might not realize how sick you are, and to add to the problem, a lot of people still find it hard to be honest about mental health issues, so they don’t tell people they’re unwell.

You might find that because people don’t know there’s anything wrong, they won’t understand if you seem out of sorts, don’t want to talk, or you become irritable or angry. They may just assume you’re having a bad day, or they may even take offense and think you don’t like them anymore. The only way to avoid this problem is to be open about your illness. You don’t have to give any more details than you feel comfortable with, but unless people know you’re unwell, they won’t be able to understand your behavior.

The nature of mental illness

Another problem with mental health disorders is that because your brain is the organ that’s ailing, in many respects your thought processes aren’t working in the way they usually would. For example, if you have depression, you’re likely to view yourself and your abilities in a very poor light, being unduly self-critical and often convinced that not only do people not like you but that you are essentially unworthy of their regard. Managing these thoughts when you’re ill is a real challenge, which is why it’s so important to make sure you have a good support network in place, with both professional help, plus support from those close to you, to aid your recovery.

Another common problem for people with mental health problems is substance abuse. When you’re unhappy or your thinking is disordered, you may think the answer lays in a bottle of vodka, or a narcotic high. Although these substances might provide a form of temporary relief from the misery of mental health problems, in the long run, they make the situation worse. Therefore, if you’ve started taking these substances when you have a mental health disorder, you should find out about rehabilitation centers that specialize in helping people with both mental health problems and substance abuse issues, such as benzo withdrawal treatment.

It’s never easy to live with poor mental health, and it can feel almost impossible to help yourself get better at times. Just remember that’s the illness making you think that way, and you genuinely can get better.


6 Top Tips for Healthy Weight Loss

November 22, 2018

If you are carrying a few extra pounds, then you may be looking for ways to lose weight quickly. Weight loss can be very beneficial, and can lead to an improved figure, better self-esteem, more energy and less aches and pains. However, losing weight too quickly can be bad for you, so it’s always best to steer clear from fad diets or meal replacements and instead lead a healthier lifestyle so that your body can lose fat at a healthy pace. Here are some top tips to help kick-start your weight loss.

#1. Cut Out Carbs:

Eating too many carbohydrates can cause you to pile on weight quickly, especially if you are not doing enough exercise to burn it all off. Since starchy carbs such as bread, pasta and potatoes are turned into sugars if not burned up, what may seem like a healthy meal could actually be causing you to gain weight.

#2. Eat Healthy Fats:

Contrary to popular belief, healthy fats found in foods such as avocado, olive oil and even some nuts and seeds are actually good for your health and will help you to lose weight. These kinds of fats work by helping to keep you feeling fuller for longer, so that you will eat less and avoid weight gain. Although they may seem tempting, anything ‘low fat’ is actually not good for your weight loss.

#3. Take Supplements

There are a range of supplements which you can take in order to help speed up your weight loss. Green tea, caffeine and raspberry ketones are all popular supplements taken alongside a healthy diet and regular exercise to speed up healthy weight loss.

#4. Join the Gym:

When paired with a healthy diet, you can start to see some excellent results quite quickly with regular physical activity. Going to the gym for just half an hour per day, for example, can quickly help you to gain strength and become fitter overall. Plus, as you lose weight, exercise will help improve your figure by toning you up.

#5. Try Coolsculpting:

If you want to kick start your weight loss journey by losing a few extra inches and feeling better and more confident within yourself, CoolSculpting can be a great procedure to try. What is CoolSculpting? It works by targeting and freezing fat cells under the skin, encouraging the body to eliminate them. Targeting ‘problem’ areas with CoolSculpting can take you one step further to the body you desire, motivating you to maintain your healthy and active lifestyle.

#6. Stay Hydrated:

Did you know that many of the times that you feel hungry, you are actually thirsty? If your body is getting dehydrated, then you could mistake your thirst for hunger and end up eating more than you really need. You should always aim to drink around 2 liters, or about 6-8 glasses per day of pure water. Not only will this help you to lose weight, but it’ll also improve the condition of your skin, hair and nails.

Weight loss takes time and effort, but with perseverance and dedication, you can achieve the results you need.  


6 Tips For Getting A Great Night’s Sleep  

November 18, 2018

Did you know that nearly half of Americans are too tired to work efficiently? In a 2017 survey, it was revealed that 43 percent of the nation did not get enough sleep at night to safely carry out the tasks expected of them in the workplace while 67 percent admitted to feeling generally fatigued during the 9-5 slog.

Those figures just go to show how important a good night’s sleep is. It is essential to a healthy existence and both our physical and mental wellbeing. A good, deep sleep repairs our bodies and improves the functionality of our brains.

If you are worried that you don’t get enough good quality rest, then here are six tips to getting a great night’s sleep.

Expose yourself to bright light during the day

Your body has a natural timekeeping clock known as the circadian rhythm. It affects your brain, body, and hormones and essentially manages your body in terms of when it is time to be awake and when it is time to be asleep. A sort of more complicated body clock, if you like.

By exposing yourself to natural or bright sunlight during the day, you’ll be keeping your circadian rhythm healthy which will improve your daytime energy levels and as a result of that, the quality of your nighttime sleep.

Getting outside in the sun will, therefore, ensure you get a longer, better night’s sleep. If you live somewhere where the sun only makes very infrequent appearances throughout winter, then making sure you work and live in a well-lit home during daytime hours can also help.

Reduce unnatural light before bed

Light in the day is good, but lights before bed are bad. Again, this is because of your circadian rhythm, which will be tricked into thinking that it is daylight if exposed to too much light before your put your head down.

The “blue light” given off by electrical devices is particularly bad news in this regard. Every time we look at our cell phone screen or our tablet before we go to bed, we’re preventing our bodies circadian rhythm from working properly by making it believe it is daytime. With so many American’s now suffering from what is considered a phone addiction, this can be a real problem.

There are several ways in which you can block blue light from affecting your circadian rhythm. You can buy glasses that block out blue light, download an app that either helps manage the amount of blue light your device emits or blocks it completely or most effective of all, stop watching television and turn off all devices two hours before you go to bed.

Don’t drink caffeine before bed

Most of us need our morning coffee to get us going at the start of the day, which means we all know the energy boost that comes from caffeine. That boost arrives from caffeine’s ability to stimulate our nervous systems, stop our bodies from relaxing, heighten awareness and making us more alert mentally.

Clearly, none of those effects are good for getting a great night’s sleep. If you want to ensure that the effects of caffeine are completely out of your system by the time you go to bed, then you need to have your last cup of coffee of the day no more than six hours before you go to sleep, as caffeine can stay elevated in your blood for anywhere up to eight hours.

By giving your body its final energy boost at around 3pm in the afternoon, you should ensure you can get through the final few hours of the day and flushed the caffeine from your system by the time you want to go to bed. Any later than 4pm, and you’re setting yourself up for a low-quality night.

Take a melatonin supplement

Melatonin is the key sleep hormone that tells your brain when it is time to relax and head to bed. As a result, taking melatonin supplement is an extremely popular and effective way of improving your quality of sleep.

It’s largely used when a person wants to avoid jet lag or adjust to a new time zone, but it has also proven to be extremely effective in the battle against insomnia. Just 2mg of melatonin before bed has been shown to improve sleep quality and energy levels the next day.

Start with a low dosage to assess your tolerance and then increase as necessary. Since melatonin can alter your brain chemistry, it’s always best to speak to a healthcare professional before taking it if you are worried.

Avoid alcohol around bedtime

You might think that one small nightcap can help you get to sleep at night, but alcohol is in fact bad news for having a good night’s rest. It is known to cause or increase the symptoms of sleep apnea and snoring, which can lead to a disrupted night’s sleep.

Most pertinent of all though is that alcohol can also alter the bodies nighttime cycle of melatonin production which, as we’ve already touched upon, isn’t good news for ensuring you get the required amount of shut-eye.

By avoiding alcohol before bed, you will be helping your body regulate melatonin levels and helping to ensure a higher quality of sleep. If you’re worried about a possible alcohol or drug addiction issue which may be the reason behind you not sleeping well, then click here to find out more about addiction treatment.

Reduce how much you nap during the day

Having a nap during the day, especially on a lazy weekend, is one of life’s great pleasures. Short, sharp, power naps can be beneficial, but if these turn into long or irregular napping during the day, then you are going to be adversely impacting on your ability to sleep at night.

Sleeping in the day can confuse your internal clock, especially when the nap goes on for longer than 30 minutes. If you need to have a little sleep, then be sure to limit how long for and if you find you can’t sleep at night as a result, then either shorten how long you are napping for or cut naps out altogether.



How to Relax When You’re Working Long Days

November 14, 2018

Americans work some of the longest hours of any nation in the world. With some estimates placing the average number of hours at well over 30, some people choose to reduce time spent in the workplace in order to make sure that they have enough time to see their families and have some more downtime. However, if you can’t get away from working for long periods of time, then there are steps that you can take in the meantime to improve your long days.

Complete some puzzles

Puzzles perhaps aren’t the first things that come to mind when it comes to getting in some downtime, but there are actually lots of benefits to completing puzzles if you’re spending long days at work. They help to improve your concentration, for example, and they’re also so engrossing that you’ll often find yourself distracted from whatever issues you might be facing. Both printable puzzles and online games are available, so you can choose the format that suits you best. Also, by sharing your new-found passion with your colleagues, you’ll be able to use fill-ins, Sudokus and more as ways to connect with the people with whom you work.

Get out of the workplace

Whether you work in an office, at your home, or in a location such as a factory, getting outside as often as possible is a good idea. Fresh air is known to make people relax, and it’s also an ideal way to clear your head and allow yourself to think things through in a different context. Most workplaces should provide enough of a break time for a walk outside to be possible. In fact, there are very few workplaces – perhaps other than airplanes, submarines and similar environments – where this isn’t possible. Even if you’re only able to break out of the building for five minutes or so, you’ll be grateful you did the next day.

Look forward to time off

If all else fails, it’s a wise idea to have plenty of nice activities planned for the times when you’re off work. Whether that’s the weekends, the evenings, or some other time altogether, every time you feel stressed at work, it will relax you to know that there’s something lovely coming up later in the week. Consider booking a treatment day at a local retreat destination, or even a break to a different city just for the night. If you can, why not schedule your time off to coincide with that of your significant other in order to make the most of it?

Working long hours is tough, especially if it impacts on your family or personal life, and for those who have to do it regularly, it can quickly become a drain on both their time and their energy. However, there are ways around it. By training your brain through mental exercises, making some time to get away, and even just heading out for a quick walk during the day, there are lots of ways that you can give yourself the opportunity to relax.


7 Ways To Get A Natural Energy Boost

November 8, 2018

Sleep is so important; it is when our bodies get a rest (which is often not possible during the day), and our brains can relax more. This is also when our bodies can regenerate and repair themselves, making us feel happy, healthy, and more productive the next day. A ‘good night’s sleep’ is a real phenomenon that can make all the difference to our lives.

Not getting enough sleep can be a big problem. If it is a chronic issue, a healthcare professional should be consulted since it can lead to many other health problems including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and depression. It can also be a symptom of other underlying health issues, which is another reason a doctor should be consulted.

Every now and then, however, everyone has a problem with their sleep. They might be worried about a big event the next day such as an exam or a wedding. They might not be tired enough when they go to bed, and, therefore, have trouble sleeping. Maybe they have a young child who doesn’t sleep through the night. Whatever the reason, when we have the odd night here and there where we don’t sleep, we tend to spend the next day feeling groggy and moody and lacking in energy. When this happens, it is important to remember that there are plenty of natural ways to boost your energy to make a tired day a better one.

  • Bite A Lemon

This may sound like an amusing idea, but in terms of an instant natural way to increase your energy and wake you up, a lemon can help immensely. Simply cut a lemon into quarters and then quickly bite into one of them. The sharpness of the lemon juice will help you to feel more awake – your eyes will probably open wide as well in addition to your brain suddenly feeling a lot more alert. Some office workers like to keep lemon quarters on their desk so exactly this reason, especially for the afternoons when they have had lunch and their energy is greatly reduced.

  • Go For A Walk

The great outdoors is a wonderful and natural way to feel more awake and to give yourself more energy. The walk does not have to be a long one, so anyone, no matter how busy, should be able to fit it into their day if they are feeling tired. In fact, even if you are feeling wide awake, a daily walk is good for you regarding both your physical and your mental health.

If you normally take your car or public transport on short journeys, try walking instead. It will make you feel much better once you arrive at your destination. If you do need to use some means of transport to make your journey, try parking a little farther away at the other end of the parking lot, or on a different block or take the stairs rather than the elevator. There are all kinds of ways you can find during your day to walk and wake yourself up.

  • Take Peppermint

Using aromatherapy to give you an energy boost may not be the first thing that comes to your mind. After all, aromatherapy is often used to relax people, using scents such as lavender or jasmine which are known to promote sleep. However, there are other scents which are excellent at waking you up, and peppermint is one of the best as it is so powerful. You can use peppermint in a variety of different ways when you need an energy boost including chewing gum, sucking hard candy, or putting a few drops of peppermint oil onto a handkerchief or tissue to sniff when you are starting to lag.

  • Meditate

Meditation has a number of benefits, and it can greatly enhance your life once you know how to use it properly and to your advantage. When done right, meditation can reduce your stress and anxiety levels, help you to think more clearly, and improve productivity. It takes practice to be able to rid your mind of any thoughts, and some people find that relaxing with medicinal cannabis can help to achieve that state. You can find out more on this website.

If you meditate on a regular basis you will automatically know how to keep or improve your focus throughout the day, even if (or particularly because) you are feeling tired due to lack of sleep the night before. It may not make you feel energized as such, but it will help you to get through the day more productively.

  • Drink Water

If you are not properly hydrated your energy levels can really drop dramatically, and this combined with a poor night’s sleep can make the day ahead difficult. Therefore, it is important that you drink a lot of water when you are feeling less energized. If you aren’t at home or in your office where you can easily pour yourself a glass of water, make sure you have a water bottle with you. You can buy individual bottles from any store, or you can buy a reusable bottle that you simply need to clean and fill up whenever you go out. To make the water more palatable and to more energizing, you can add a squeeze of lemon juice.

  • Listen To Music

Music really can affect your mood in all kinds of different ways. If you are feeling as though you are lacking in energy, put on some energetic music and it will make you feel much more awake. There are so many different devices around that will enable you to listen to music wherever you go, and to choose exactly what kind of music you listen to, that this might even be the easiest way to wake up properly. You may even be able to find a playlist that someone else has already created that is ideal for boosting your energy levels.

  • Take A Hot And Cold Shower

Which type of shower is it that will wake you up best? Is it hot or cold? The answer is that it is both. Have the water in your shower hot for 30 seconds and then turn it cold for the same amount of time. Do this three or four times and you will feel wide awake and ready to take on the day.