10 Visually Eerie Places to Visit

Surreal, creepy, and occasionally simply strange places abound in the world. While many of these strange occurrences have rational explanations, others remain unsolved.

From the comfort of your own home, enjoy a virtual tour of some of the world’s oddest locations as we examine the science, stories, ideas, and legends around them. Inzspire presents 10 Visually Eerie Places to Visit.

Blood Falls, Antarctica

The frighteningly grisly waterfall isn’t comprised of blood, as a new study reveals, and a new study reveals what gives it its distinct colour. The falls flow from Taylor Glacier in Antarctica’s McMurdo Dry Valleys, and the liquid bubbles up through fractures in the glacier’s top.

Because the average temperature is 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit (-17 degrees Celsius) and little glacier melting can be detected at the surface, the flow was previously a mystery.

Imaging from beneath the glacier revealed a complex network of subglacial rivers and a subglacial lake, all loaded with iron-rich brine that gives the falls its scarlet hue. According to the study, the brine’s composition explains why it flows rather than freezes.

Bran Castle, Romania

Permission to build the castle was recorded in the act issued by Louis I of Hungary on November 19, 1377, giving the Saxons of Kronstadt (modern Brașov) the privilege of building the stone castle at their own expense and with their own labour force; the settlement of Bran began to emerge nearby.

Outside of Transylvania, Bran Castle is known as Dracula’s Castle and is frequently referred to as the residence of the title character in Bram Stoker’s novel “Dracula.” There is no proof that Stoker was familiar with this castle, which has only loose ties to Vlad the Impaler, Voivode of Wallachia, the alleged basis for ‘Dracula.’

Dracula’s crumbling fictitious castle described by Stoker in his book has no similarity or likeness to Bran Castle. The castle is now a museum dedicated to presenting Queen Marie’s collection of art and furniture.

Tourists can take a self-guided tour or join a guided tour to see the interior. A tiny open-air museum at the bottom of the hill displays traditional Romanian peasant structures (cottages, barns, water-driven machinery, etc.) from the Bran region.

Devil’s Bridge, Germany

The Rakotzbrücke is a finely arched devil’s bridge nestled among the luscious vegetation of Kromlau, Germany’s Kromlauer Park, and was intentionally created to create a circle when reflected in the waterways beneath it.

The slender arch arching over the waters of the Rakotzsee was commissioned in 1860 by a local knight and is made of a variety of local stone. The Rakotzbrücke, is referred to as a “devil’s bridge” due to the popular belief that such bridges were erected by Satan because they were so dangerous or miraculous.

Today the bridge is best seen in the autumn or fall, when the foliage lends a sense of awe to an already bizarre scene. The bridge can still be seen in the park today, but crossing it is forbidden in order to preserve it.

Great Blue Hole, Belize

The Great Blue Hole, located off the coast of Belize, is a massive underwater sinkhole. It’s located at the middle of Lighthouse Reef, a small atoll about 100 kilometres (62 miles) from Belize City’s mainland.

The hole is round in shape, measuring about 300 metres (984 feet) in diameter and 125 metres (410 feet) in depth. The Great Blue Hole, the world’s largest natural creation of its sort, is part of the broader Barrier Reef Reserve System, a United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization World Heritage Site (UNESCO).

It has a reputation as a world-class diving site for recreational scuba divers who want to explore a variety of marine life, including tropical fish and magnificent coral formations, while diving in crystal-clear waters.

Nurse sharks, large groupers, and numerous varieties of reef sharks, such as the Caribbean reef shark and the Blacktip shark, can all be found in these places (Carcharhinus limbatus). Dive trips to the Great Blue Hole are usually full-day excursions that include one dive in the Blue Hole and two more dives on neighbouring reefs.

Hoia-Baciu Forest, Romania

If you have a thing about visiting strange and earie places, you might wish to visit (or at the very least learn about) Hoia Baciu Forest, popularly known as Romania’s Bermuda Triangle. As one of the world’s most haunted forests, it’s no exaggeration to say the forest’s history is cloaked in mystery, and separating reality from fiction is as simple as untangling the forest’s twisted and deformed vegetation.

The reason for the legend is that peasants are said to have been slaughtered in the forest hundreds of years ago, and the area is now haunted as a result. A UFO sighting in the late 1960s added to the site’s paranormal legacy, in addition to its mediaeval history.

It covers an area of 295 hectares (729 acres). If you desire to explore the mystery woodlands, don’t worry about getting lost because there are various established routes for your convenience. For leisure purposes, bike trails have also been added.

Kawah Ijen, Indonesia

The world’s largest acidic volcanic crater lake, Kawah Ijen, is located on the Ijen volcano in East Java and is known for its blue colour. The 950×600 metre active crater is notable for its rich sulphur resources, which are currently being mined.

The volcano is one of numerous active stratovolcanoes that dot the 20-kilometer-wide Ijen caldera, which is Java’s largest caldera. Because of the risk of the lake draining and forming catastrophic lahars, eruptions from Ijen are extremely dangerous.

A lahar is a rapid flow of hot or cold water and rock fragments down the slopes of a volcano. They travel at speeds of up to 40 mph through valleys and stream systems that stretch for more than 50 kilometres from the volcano. Lahars are more lethal than lava flows and can be exceedingly devastating.

Magnetic Hill, New Brunswick, Canada

For nearly 80 years, visitors to New Brunswick have been perplexed by a small, otherwise unremarkable hill. When automobiles became more widespread in Moncton in the 1930s, drivers found a mysterious occurrence on this short hill that was once a cart road.

If a driver lets go of the automobile brake at the bottom of the hill, they will be surprised to see that their vehicle is rolling backwards—uphill. What appears to be an uphill incline in these “mystery areas” is actually part of a bigger downhill incline, which our brains misread due to the way the slopes are positioned combined with little or no view of the horizon line. Water, balls, and tyres appear to be rolling uphill while, in fact, they should be rolling downhill.

Since 1931, when freshly constructed roads revealed the hill’s unusual qualities and local vehicles shared the experience of floating uphill, this remarkable optical illusion has enthralled residents and visitors. People began to flock in from the surrounding towns to witness the strange occurrence for themselves, and the Moncton Magnetic Hill eventually developed into its own cottage business, attracting thousands of tourists each year.

The region surrounding the hill has been developed with a number of other attractions, including the Magnetic Hill water park, Magic Mountain Fun Zone, Magnetic Hill music venue, and the Magnetic Hill Zoo.

Nazca Lines, Peru

The Nazca Lines are a collection of massive geoglyphs, drawings, or motifs etched into the earth found about 250 miles (400 kilometres) south of Lima, Peru.

The 2,000-year-old Nazca Lines, which show numerous plants, animals, and shapes and were created by the ancient Nazca society in South America, can only be completely understood when viewed from the air due to its immense scale.

The geoglyphs, which were named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994, have remained a mystery to scholars despite being researched for over 80 years.

Richat Structure, Mauritania

The 50-kilometer-diameter circular Richat formation is one of those geological structures that can be seen more clearly from space than from the ground, and astronauts have known this ‘eye of Africa’ since the first manned expeditions.

The Richat formation was once assumed to be the result of a meteor strike, but geologists now believe it was produced by a sequence of geological uplift followed by wind and water erosion.

Concentric bands of resistant quartzite rocks form ridges, with valleys of less-resistant rock between them, forming an onion-like shape.

The black area is a sedimentary rock plateau that rises 200 metres above the surrounding desert sands, with the structure’s outer rim peaking at 485 metres above sea level. The dunes around the Richat formation are part of the Ouarne (Erg Oudane), a vast sand sea running hundreds of kilometres from Morocco to Mali, where some old Ksours can still be found.

A Ksour is a mediaeval hamlet consisting of towers, homes, and surrounding walls located along caravanning routes across the Sahara’s trading centres.In 1996, the Ksours in this area were included on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Rock-hewn churches, Ethiopia

Lalibela is found in the Amhara Region, some 370 miles (600 kilometres) north of Addis Ababa, at an elevation of 8,200 feet (2,500 meters). A magnificent complex of 11 churches chiselled out of the living rock some 800 years ago sits at its heart. Their creation is credited to the Zagwe dynasty’s King Lalibela (about 1181-1221), who aspired to build a new Jerusalem on African land that would be accessible to all Ethiopians.

Lalibela’s features mimic those of Jerusalem: the Jordan River, Golgotha Church, and Adam’s Tomb. The churches are still utilised for daily worship and special rituals, and during holidays such as Christmas and Easter, pilgrims and big crowds flock to them.

The churches, which were included to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1978, are carved out of solid volcanic rock and are typically linked by underground tunnels and trenches. The primary cluster of 11 churches is separated into two groups: a northern group with five churches and an eastern group with another five, with the exception of Biet Gyorgis, which is an isolated church.

✔️ An abridged video version of this post can be found on our YouTube Channel-please click here: https://youtu.be/K94gCzvM4zs

10 Common Misconceptions that are simply not true

This post looks at 10 facts that you grew up with that are untrue. No, bats are not blind and no, Mount Everest is not the tallest mountain in the world. Here are 10 myths some of us believe which are not true. Find out the truth behind the myth:

#1 You can see the Great Wall of China from Space

People have claimed since 1904 that the Great Wall of China is so large and conspicuous that it can be viewed from the moon’s surface. Apollo astronauts were able to verify the accuracy of this claim after 65 years of waiting. It is simply not true.

It’s turned into a space-based legend. The Great Wall of China, which is commonly described as the only man-made object viewable from space, isn’t visible from low Earth orbit, at least not to the unassisted eye. It’s impossible to see it from the Moon.

Despite its length of 4,500 miles (7,200 kilometres), the Great Wall is made of materials that make it impossible to see from space. The ugly truth is that the wall can only be seen from low orbit under certain weather and lighting circumstances. However, there are numerous other outcomes of human action that can be observed, such as household lights and street lighting.

#2 Humans evolved from Apes

Are humans descended from apes? No, orangutans, chimps, baboons, and gorillas co-evolved with humans. Humans are not descended from chimps or any of the other extant giant apes. They’re on a very different evolutionary path than we are.

Instead, we have a common ancestor who lived about 10 million years ago. There was once an animal that was an ancestor to both humans and apes. We have not found the ‘missing link’ just yet.

#3 We only use 10% of our brain

There is no proof that we employ only 10% of our brains or any other particular or limited percentage of our brains. Humans use almost every area of their brain, which may come as a surprise to you.

Furthermore, humans employ virtually all of their brains during the course of a typical day.

Researchers who used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) equipment to study the brain discovered that there are no dormant areas of the brain. In fact, the majority of your brain is functioning virtually constantly.

#4 Water conducts electricity

You’ve undoubtedly been instructed to keep water and electricity as far apart as possible since you were a youngster because you were told water is a good conductor of electricity. However, the fact is that pure water is one of the best insulators of electricity. Electricity does not conduct through pure water because it lacks salt, and is therefore a poor conductor of electricity.

Rather than water conducting electricity, it is the other dissolved particles in water, such as salt, that conduct electricity. As water is such a good solvent, dissolved particles are virtually always present. These particles are held in water in such a way that they can conduct electricity very well, and it’s preferable to keep water and electricity apart.

#5 Bats are blind

Bats are not blind, contrary to popular belief. In fact, research suggests that, depending on the situation, bats prefer to hunt with their eyes rather than their ears. Bats have small eyes with extremely sensitive eyesight, allowing them to see in what we would consider pitch darkness.

In fact, bats rely on their eyes to find food. As one might expect from a nocturnal mammal, their eyes are densely packed with photoreceptor cells known as rods, which help them see in the dark.

They lack the crisp, colourful vision that humans have, but they don’t require it.

#6 Microwave ovens cook food from the inside out

An electron tube called a magnetron produces microwaves within the oven. Microwaves are reflected back into the oven’s metal interior, where they are absorbed by the food. Microwaves cause water molecules in food to vibrate, generating heat that cooks it.

The interaction with the microwaves actually heats just the very exterior layers of the meal.

Heat conduction from the exterior to the interior is responsible for the rest of the cooking.

It’s rather simple to put the myth to the test for yourself. Particularly if you have a meat thermometer on hand.

#7 Mount Everest is the tallest mountain in the world

Mount Everest is known as the world’s highest mountain because it has the “highest elevation above sea level,” or “highest altitude,” with a peak elevation of 8,848.86 metres (29,031.69 ft) above sea level.

There is no other mountain on the planet with a higher elevation.

However, the tallest mountain on the planet lies half a globe away, in the midst of the Pacific Ocean.

Mauna Kea is located on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano, stands 13,796 feet above sea level, but its entire height is approximately 33,500 feet when measured from the ocean floor to its top.

#8 Alcohol kills brain cells

Even in moderate levels, alcohol does not damage brain cells, but it does have both short- and long-term impacts on your brain. Alcohol has a significant effect on the brain’s intricate structures. It disrupts chemical signals between brain cells (called neurons), causing impulsive behaviour, slurred speech, poor memory, and sluggish reflexes, among other symptoms of intoxication.

Going out for happy hour a couple times a month is unlikely to harm you in the long run. Heavy drinking and binge drinking, however, can harm the brain and nervous system permanently.

#9 Blood Flows Blue Inside of You

Perhaps you’ve heard that blood looks blue in our veins because it lacks oxygen on its way back to the lungs. Human blood, on the other hand, is never blue. Because of the way your skin and veins absorb and reflect different wavelengths of light, the veins visible through your skin seem blue.

Your blood is red, both outside and within your body, and the shade of red varies depending on how much oxygen your red blood cells contain. Veins’ bluish appearance is merely an optical illusion. Red light penetrates deeper into tissue than blue light.

#10 Fish have 3-second memories

Goldfish have a three-second memory span, according to popular belief, and each lap of their fishbowl is like seeing the world for the first time. This is absolutely not the case. Goldfish have demonstrated that they can learn and process information.

Goldfish have also been taught to swim through mazes and drive a ball into a net, both of which are relatively difficult undertakings. This suggests that goldfish are capable of not only recalling information, such as the name of the person who feeds them, but also of more complicated processing and cognition.

What is true is different fish species have varying skills and visual levels. Yes, fish can recognise and build attachments to their owners in the vast majority of cases. The fish will approach their known owner, who will frequently offer a food treat or reward.

✔️ An abridged video version of this post can be found on our YouTube Channel-please click here:

How to get over a breakup with your friend

It maybe the gradual drifting apart of a childhood friend, the quick, sharp detachment formed by a quarrel, or one of the countless relationships that have quietly drifted away during the pandemic; losing someone you thought would always be in your life is deeply upsetting. In this blog Inzspire examines 5 ways on how to get over a breakup with your friend.

Friendship breakups will occur throughout our lives, and we must begin to learn how to cope with them in a healthy manner. The most important thing we need to do, is to normalise the reality that friendships can end for a variety of reasons. We haven’t been taught, however, to apply this possibility to our friendships.

It is interesting that we consider looking at our friends through the prism of, “I hope this friendship works” but we do with a lover or partner. When it comes to friends, though, we presume they’re the one from the moment the friendship is formed. Because we don’t consider the death of a friendship to be a typical occurrence, it feels like a personal failure and something we should be embarrassed of when it happens.

Friendships, like any other type of relationship, aren’t always meant to be, and even when they are, keeping them takes a lot of effort. We undervalue the importance and value of our social interactions and friendships. Yet we realise the burden people bear when it happens, and we feel their pain and disappointment.

So how do you get over a friendship that has ended?

#1 Give yourself time and space to get over the loss

Tell other people what you’re going through, and try to use the same language and self-care that you would if you were going through a split with a partner.

Be honest with other people in your life about what you’re going through, and try using the same language and self-care that you would during a breakup with a partner. You are allowing yourself a dis-service if you avoid feeling the same way you would over breaking up with a loved one. To your brain, a break-up is identical whether it is finishing with a romantic partner or with losing a friendship.

#2 If it is possible-try to find closure

There is usually a breakup talk with a romantic partner, and you know if you’re in the relationship or not. Breaking up with a friend has an uncertain process. It is difficult to navigate and you have to ask yourself the question “Where is the end?”

Before that, you need to establish, “how did this happen?” or “what has happened to get you here?” and then you need to understand what you are feeling about it. Then, at this point, you can try your hardest to gain clarification from your friend, if you are still talking. That is not in an attempt to persuade the other person to change their position, but rather to provide you a sense of closure as you establish the level of the loss.

If a friendship has ended badly, you may have to accept that you won’t be able to have a final chat with them. If you have done something wrong, then you should try (if you can) and apologise whether they are open to discussion or not. Alternatively, if you are not at fault then you need to go through the healing process in any event.

#3 Establish what you need to do next

Your first course of action is to concede that the relationship is over. Then you have to think about moving on.

This could be talking things through with a trusted friend, making more space for yourself to grieve, or removing things from your life that bring up memories you’re not ready to ‘re-live’ yet in your mind.

You can be grateful for the relationship and not bitter once you can put it in the past tense and recall that you were really pleased that the person was once in your life.

#4 Examine the state of your other friendships and their boundaries

One of the most common concerns following a friendship breakup is how it will affect your larger circle of friends. This where you will need to trust the other connections and don’t try to disguise or deny what happened when you lost your friendship.

If you start losing other friends because of what happened, it suggests such friendships were never healthy in the first place, and they aren’t well suited to help you now. Realizing that you have varied levels of connection with each other within a group is a big component of keeping good boundaries. Some people can make you feel very close, while others just come into your life because they are friends with your pals. You just need to establish which one is which.

It is tempting to think that our friends will always be there for us, yet meaningful friendships necessitate upkeep. This entails having honest talks with one another and checking in on a regular basis in a meaningful way that can identify concerns before they become problems.

#5 Keep in mind that you are still deserving of friendship

It’s not always simple to establish new friendships, especially as you get older, but don’t let the loss of one friend make you feel unworthy of friendship.

It’s difficult to lose that sense of belonging and acceptance, which is all the more reason to work on creating an inner feeling of self-worth that may help you get through difficult times.

Being a friend entails being open about your feelings, and you should not consider partial friendships acceptable. You’re so much more valuable than that.

✔️ An abridged video version of this post can be found on our YouTube Channel-please click here: https://youtu.be/vWAvSOkfIyY

10 Common Dreams And Their Meanings

Dreams can tell you deep down what you really know about something, it depends on whether you understand the dream or not. This post covers the 10 most common dreams we have and their meanings.

#1 Falling

When you dream of falling, you are manifesting your Insecurities, instabilities, and concerns. In some aspect of your waking life, you are feeling overwhelmed and out of control. Falling dreams are frequently associated with feelings of failure or inadequacy in some situation or event.

Dreaming about falling from a great height, a stairway, a large structure, or a cliff indicates that you are concerned about your career, personal ability, property, prestige, or renown and are terrified of losing it. On the other hand, it might occasionally indicate that you may experience setbacks or mishaps, as well as losses.

The impact of hitting the earth often wakes you up in nightmares. If you fall to the ground and continue to dream, it means your ability to address your concerns has been increased, and you’re in a better mental position than before.

#2 Flying

A flying dream is usually considered as a good and thrilling experience, but if you sense anxiety while flying, it indicates that you are terrified of new challenges and success. Flying difficulties could indicate a lack of confidence, motivation, or hesitancy on your part.

A flying dream is usually considered as a good and thrilling experience, but if you sense anxiety while flying, it indicates that you are terrified of new challenges and success. Difficulty in flying could indicate a lack of confidence, motivation, or hesitancy on your part.

In fact, whilst you may have control in flying dreams, you may not have control in floating dreams.

Floating dreams almost always have a good connotation. They are frequently used as a symbol of liberty, achievement, independence, and joy. Floating in your dream usually represents your waking life’s peacefulness and peace.

#3 Failing an Exam

Exam dreams are said to be a sign of low self-esteem and confidence. Tests (or examinations) in dreams may represent an impending decision that must be made about you rather than by you. It can also represent a new stage in your life (such as becoming a mother or father), with the issue of whether you will succeed or fail.

Dr. Dennis Rosen, M.D. highlighted the study in a blog post for Psychology Today, noting that dreaming about failure has a “certain logic.” He says, “The more worried (and nervous!) you are with failing at anything, the harder you will work at it to avoid the unpleasant outcome you fear.”

#4 Losing Your Teeth

Simply said, a tiny disruption in one of our body’s interconnected parts might disturb the spiritual and mental rhythms as well. The biographers of our lives, our teeth are the embodiments of our personalities. Dreaming that your teeth are falling out is linked to loss and major life transitions.

This dream could be a sign that you’re grieving a loss, such as the end of a relationship or losing a job.

Some people feel that having a dream about teeth crumbling or falling out is a sign of losing power or loss of control over a situation. It’s possible that you’ll have this dream during one of those occasions.

Others, on the other hand, believe that teeth crumbling or falling out indicates that you may have uttered something you later regret.

#5 Being Chased

Dreams of being hunted are widespread, especially among children and much like other dreams, could be caused by stress or worry. This is a common occurrence in most people’s dreams but there is no need to be alarmed, even if they are distressing.

Dreams of being pursued are an obstacle dream, indicating that you are attempting to flee from something in your life. This is a typical dream, and you may wake up with a lot of questions about why it happened.

You may be concerned that the person pursuing you will injure or kill you. You are most likely trying to flee and hide from the person or animal in these dreams. This dream frequently indicates that you are attempting to ignore something in your current waking life. If you have a dream about hunting animals, it means that you are feeling pursued by a circumstance.

#6 Being Naked in Public

Dreaming of being naked in public in your dreams is about controlling your emotions. Most psychologists think that it is more likely tied to being humiliated about something about yourself that other people don’t know about you, rather than a physical desire to be nude in public.

Anything revealed in a dream indicates the need to address whatever is hidden. If you’re feeling vulnerable, your dream may be probing your notions about intimacy. Perhaps you emotionally exposed yourself in a way that made you feel awkward and uncomfortable.

If you have a dream about not wearing anything on your lower body, it means you are terrified of losing someone important in your life. It could be a literal or symbolic loss. If you have a dream about not wearing pants, it means you need to spend more time with this person and assist them so you don’t have any regrets.

#7 Drowning

If you dream you are drowning, this reflect the fear of losing one’s identity or power. Drowning is a symbolic archetype, according to psychologist Carl Jung, and drowning nightmares signal that you’re feeling overwhelmed at work or in your relationship.

Drowning can also reflect the sensation of being out of breath; it could also be a metaphor for not having enough time to yourself. If you have a dream about drowning in the water after being swept away by a massive wave, it could represent an unexpected circumstance in your life that you’re having trouble processing or coping with. You may feel that you are losing your footing in these circumstances, and feel like you’re losing control.

#8 Unable to Run

Dreaming that you’re trying to run but can’t get your feet to move as quickly as you’d like denotes a lack of self-esteem and confidence. It could also be a reflection of your REM paralysis when dreaming.

Barbora being rescued by Akash and Eli from a patch of quicksand near the end of the Paria River.

Dreaming in slow motion symbolises your emotions in relation to a situation you recall that occurred very rapidly. You could be mentally repeating an incident that occurred to you. In terms of spirituality, running suggests that you should be aware of your personal goals and life purpose. This dream’s most obvious implication is that you’re attempting to escape reality.

#9 Car Out of Control

If you have a dream about an out-of-control or speeding car, it means you are going off the rails in your daily life or moving too quickly. This dream isn’t a forewarning of impending calamity or loss, but rather of what will happen if you don’t take control of your life.

A dream in which the brakes fail, regardless of the type of vehicle, indicates that you are careening out of control in some aspect of your life. If you’re a passenger when this happens, it means you’re letting someone else’s terrible decisions ruin your capacity to control your own destiny.

#10 Murder

If you have a dream about someone being murdered, it could mean that you’re having trouble expressing repressed feelings of anger, irritation, or fear, and your subconscious is trying to help you do so.

When a person is depressed, it is common to have dreams about killings and murders. We become submissive when we simply let go of certain occurrences or circumstances in our lives. It all comes down to a lot of rage and fury directed towards one certain concept or object in your head.

In our dreams, our inability to express these unpleasant or gloomy feelings might manifest as severe visual manifestations such as murder.

✔️ Bonus-If you are interested in controlling your dreams, try out the “Lucid Dreaming Bootcamp Course” and Turbo Charge your Personal Growth. Click here for details:

✔️ An abridged video version of this post can be found on our YouTube Channel-you can see the video by clicking here: https://youtu.be/3ZpytBrd-5U

Ten Strangest Places In The World To Visit

Ten Strangest Places In The World To Visit. Where words fail, pictures do the trick.

This post and accompanying video (see link below) shows the photographic evidence to understand the baffling beauty and sublime grace of some of the strangest places on earth. Enjoy travelling to ten of the strangest places on earth to visit.

#1 Avatar Mountains, Zhangjiajie National Park, China

Located in the Hunan province of south-central China, the park is more commonly known as “Avatar Mountains”, thanks to its uncanny resemblance with Pandora Mountains, featured in James Cameron’s “Avatar”. Zhangjiajie is located in the northwest of Hunan Province, over 1,000 kilometres from both Shanghai and Beijing.

Zhangjiajie National Forest Park was established in 1982 and is part of the greater Wulingyuan Scenic Area which holds the esteemed title of being China’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site.

#2 Waitomo Glowworm Caves, Waitomo, New Zealand

The Waitomo Glowworm Caves attraction is a cave at Waitomo on the North Island of New Zealand. Under the green hills of Waitomo lies a labyrinth of caves, sinkholes and underground rivers. But what is really special is its population of Arachnocampa luminosa, a glowworm species found exclusively in New Zealand.

A tour of the glowworm caves includes a walk and a boat ride through the cave system, followed by a gentle float underneath a million sparkling glowworm lights that line the caves’ top.

The cave guides have such a good understanding of the cave system and the eco-system that has formed inside it, so it’s amazing to get a glimpse of glowworm life from them.

#3 Derweze, Turkmenistan-The door to hell

Derweze is a village in Turkmenistan of about 350 inhabitants, located in the middle of the Karakum Desert, about 260 km north of Ashgabat. According to the Smithsonian magazine, a group of Soviet geologists accidentally created the crater, searching for oil, which has been burning since 1971 caused by the methane.

Darvaza Gas Crater

Darvaza gas crater tours are a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. It is recommended that you visit the “Door to Hell” in the dark to really appreciate the vista and capture your spectacular photographs.

#4 Deadvlei-The Dead Marsh

Deadvlei is a white clay pan located near the salt pan of Sossusvlei, inside the Namib-Naukluft Park in Namibia. This area boasts some of the largest sand dunes in the world and is a major tourist attraction in Namibia.

The river flooded during a particularly severe rainstorm, generating a shallow surface layer of water over the clay pan. Camel Thorn trees were able to grow and mature as a result of the water. During a drought, however, the water evaporated, and sand dunes along the clay pan’s edge prevented the river’s flood passage into the area. Around 700 years ago, a drought caused the trees to die.

Regardless of the trees’ death, their skeletons remain, and despite being darkened by the light, they appear architecturally the same as they did when they died. Their lack of decomposition is down to the absence of water, as trees cannot decay without it.

#5 Underwater waterfall, Le Morne, Mauritius

According to the Scienceblogs website, the underwater waterfall, is actually sand from the shores of Mauritius being driven via ocean currents off of that high, coastal shelf, and down into the darker ocean depths off the southern tip of the island.

It plunges 11,500 feet (3,505 meters) straight down from the Greenland Sea into the Irminger Sea, carrying around 175 million cubic feet (5 million cubic meters) of water per second — which is considerably larger than any giant waterfall on land.

#6 Firefall, Yosemite National Park, California

“Firefall” is the name for the natural phenomena that creates the illusion at the park in California. It comes to life when the setting sun causes light to hit the waterfall at just the right angle. This can only see “Firefall” for a short time in February, which draws hundreds of visitors each night.

In mid- to late-February, the Firefall only happens around dusk. During that moment, the sun sets at just the correct angle in Yosemite Valley, illuminating the upper reaches of Horsetail Fall. The “peak” is usually February 17-19, though the Firefall can light up beautifully 6-7 days before or 3-4 days after the peak.

#7 Spotted Lake, northwest of Osoyoos

Spotted Lake is located northwest of Osoyoos in the eastern Similkameen Valley of British Columbia, Canada. It is a small lake rich in a variety of minerals, including calcium, sodium sulphates and magnesium sulphate. During the hot summer months, much of the water in the lake evaporates, leaving concentrations of these minerals that form the spots visible in the lake.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The Spotted Lake is only a short drive from some of the world’s most famous Okanagan Valley wineries and is about 4.5 hours from Vancouver. Although the lake is on private land, the public can see it from the gate next to Highway 3 west of Osoyoos.

#8 Manpupuner rock formations, Northern Urals, Russia

The Manpupuner rock formations (“Seven Giants” or “7 Strong Men” or “Poles of the Komi Republic”) are seven randomly shaped stone pillars of weathering located inside the Pechora-Ilych Nature Reserve, the Northern Ural, Russia. Local legend has it that they are the remains of seven Samoyed giants. They were on a forced march through the Urals, heading across the mountain ranges to decimate the Vogulsky people.

Their Shaman, the largest of the seven, beat a drum to keep his comrades moving relentlessly on towards their quarry. However, when he caught sight of the holy Volgulsky Mountains, he let go of his drum and all seven giants froze to the spot.

#9 Dallol, Ethiopia

Dallol is a cinder cone volcano in the Danakil Depression, northeast of the Erta Ale Range in Ethiopia. The term Dallol was named by the Afar people and means dissolution or disintegration, describing a landscape of green acid ponds and iron oxide, sulfur and salt desert plains.

The Dallol craters are dangerous places to visit because their surface can be covered by a crust of salt with pools of hot acidic water just inches below. Toxic gases are sometimes released from craters.

#10 Rainbow River (Caño Cristales), Columbia

The Rainbow River is a tributary of the Guayabero River in Colombia. It is located in the Serrania de la Macarena province of Meta. The river is also known as the “River of Five Colors” or the “Liquid Rainbow” because of its vibrant hues.

The Liquid Rainbow is caused by a unique phenomena: a red plant – Macarenia clavigera – growing in the riverbed. Other colours come from black rocks, green algae, blue water and yellow sand, producing an iridescent effect.

✔️ A video version of this post can be found on our YouTube Channel-please click here:

New Zealand (10 notable places to visit)

New Zealand is an island nation in the Pacific Ocean’s southwest corner. It is made up of two main landmasses, the North and South Islands, as well as around 700 smaller islands.

Jagged mountains, undulating farm land, steep fiords, clean trout-filled lakes, raging rivers, gorgeous beaches, and active volcanic zones make up this country’s beautiful and diverse natural splendor.

These islands are one of Earth’s most unusual bio regions, home to flightless birds found nowhere else on the planet, such as the kakapo, a nocturnal burrowing parrot, and the kiwi.

Here are 10 notable places to visit in New Zealand.

#1 Arrowtown

Arrowtown is approximately 20 minutes from Queenstown and is constructed on the banks of the Arrow River, which was once a rich source of gold that drew miners from all over the world in search of their fortune. Thousands of miners swarmed to the Arrow River in 1862, lured by the scream of “gold!” The population peaked at 7,000 people during the gold rush.

Arrowtown has developed into a world-class destination while effectively preserving its historic legacy.

Arrowtown offers a distinct atmosphere, with a sophisticated choice of fine clothes stores, art studios, galleries, cafés and restaurants, boutique hotels, and traditional pubs and taverns in the historic downtown area.

Things ‘to do’ whilst in Arrowtown, would include visiting the historic Chinese miners’ hamlet, now stone ruins but once a bustling settlement, gold panning in the Arrow River, visiting the Lakes District Museum, or exploring the boutique retail sector.

#2 Auckland

Auckland is a significant metropolis in New Zealand’s North Island that is built around two enormous harbours. The landmark Sky Tower, located in the heart of the city, offers views over Viaduct Harbour, which is lined with restaurants and cafes and is home to many superyachts. The formal Wintergardens are located in Auckland Domain, the city’s oldest park, which is built around an extinct volcano.

The varied landscapes of Auckland offer numerous opportunities to be immersed in nature. In the west, dense native rainforest descends the hills to reach the sea on spectacular black sand beaches, while in the east, sheltered golden sand beaches are bordered by red-flowering pohutukawa trees. Auckland’s wine country’s rolling hills meet breathtaking coastlines to the north and to be explored in the south are picturesque country gardens, unspoiled wilderness, and tranquil bays.

Worthy of note is Waiheke Island, a gorgeous island with vineyards, olive groves, farmland, and golden beaches, and it’s just a 40-minute ferry ride from Auckland. At one of the 30 boutique vineyards and wineries, you have the opportunity to sample award-winning wines, dine finely, and purchase outstanding local artwork.

#3 Glacier Country

Glacier Country is situated on the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island, in an untamed natural wilderness.

Tragically these ancient glaciers are receding at an alarming rate of roughly 70 cm per day as they are bearing the weight of global warming. Franz Josef Glacier and Fox Glacier are the two main glaciers in the area, being approximately a 30-minute drive away from each other.

On a clear day, Lake Matheson, near Fox Glacier, is known for its mirror-like reflections of New Zealand’s tallest peaks. Glow worms can be seen on display at night along a bush trail leading to a fern cave.

The Franz Josef Glacier area features some of New Zealand’s most breathtaking landscapes.

Franz Josef Glacier/K Roimata o Hine Hukatere descends from the summits of the Southern Alps/K Tiritiri o te Moana into rainforest close to sea level, only six kilometres from the community centre.

There is also the spectacular Lake Mapourika, ten minutes north of the Franz Josef Glacier settlement on State Highway 6, which is an excellent site for fishing, birdwatching, and kayaking.

#4 Matamata (Hobbiton)

Matamata is a town on New Zealand’s North Island that lies in the shadow of the Kaimai Range Mountains. A trail leads to Wairere Falls, which offers views of the Waikato Plains, to the northeast.

The Firth Tower Museum has heritage buildings that chronicle the region’s settler past, including a school and a prison.

For Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” and “Hobbit” films, the Hobbiton Movie Set was made at Matamata and still can be visited today.

#5 Milford Sound

Milford Sound is a fiord in New Zealand’s South Island’s southwest corner and famous for Mitre Peak, as well as rainforests and waterfalls like Stirling and Bowen, which cascade down its sheer sides.

It is also noted for its fur seal colonies, penguins, and dolphins that inhabit the fiord. One of the best ways to visit and explore the fiord is by boat excursion.

Views of rare black coral and other marine life can be found at the Milford Discovery Centre and Underwater Observatory.

#6 Queenstown

Queenstown is nestled against the spectacular Southern Alps on the shores of Lake Wakatipu in the South Island. It is mainly known for adventure sports, but it’s also a great place to visit if you want to see the region’s wineries and historic mining villages.

Things to do include bungee jumping from the Kawarau Gorge Suspension Bridge and jet boating on the Shotover and Dart rivers. Skiing is also available on the slopes of ‘The Remarkables’ and Coronet Peak in the winter.

#7 Rotorua

Rotorua, is a town situated on New Zealand’s North Island known for its geothermal activity and Maori culture. There are bubbling mud pools and the 30m-tall Pohutu Geyser in Te Puia’s Whakarewarewa Valley, which erupts several times daily.

The town has a lake of the same name and is home to a living Maori village. The New Zealand Maori Arts and Crafts Institute, which has traditional wood carving and weaving classes, are also located there.

#8 Tongariro National Park

This is New Zealand’s first national park and a World Heritage Site. The park’s significant Mori cultural and spiritual connections, as well as its outstanding volcanic features, have earned it this accolade. In the summer, hiking and climbing are popular, and in the winter, skiing and snowboarding are preferred.

Hunting, game fishing, mountain biking, horseback riding, rafting, and scenic flights are also available.

Mount Tongariro and surrounding area are one of the locations where Peter Jackson shot The Lord of the Rings film trilogy; tour operators and lodges often organise tours to see these locations. Regarded as one of New Zealand’s best day walks, Mount Ngauruhoe, also known as Mount Doom, is located in Tongariro National Park. While tackling the full-day Tongariro Crossing, you can get a good look at Mordor and Mount Doom.

#9 Wanaker

Wanaka is a resort town on New Zealand’s South Island that sits on the southern end of its namesake lake, with views of snowcapped mountains in the distance. It’s the key to Mount Aspiring National Park in the Southern Alps, a wilderness with glaciers, beech trees, and alpine lakes. The park is close to the ski resorts of Treble Cone and Cardrona.

Here you will find a popular willow tree that symbolizes hope and resilience. The crooked willow tree in a lake has been photographed hundreds of thousands of times by tourists and is a popular tourist attraction in the South Island.

#10 Wellington

Visiting New Zealand would not be complete without going to see Wellington. Wellington, New Zealand’s capital, is located on the Cook Strait, near the southernmost point of the North Island. Lonely Planet recently called Wellington, New Zealand, “the coolest little capital in the world.” A waterfront promenade, sandy beaches, a working harbour, and colourful timber houses on nearby hills make up this compact area.

Wellington is known for its hidden bars, exclusive cafes, award-winning restaurants, and excellent coffee. Wellington offers action-packed adventure activities such as mountain biking and sea-water kayaking, as well as scenic walks across the harbour and surrounding hills, for those who enjoy the great outdoors.

Mount Victoria, which is within walking distance of the central city, is the most open filming place for “Lord of the Rings” in Wellington. The mountain’s forested areas were used to portray Hobbiton Woods, where the hobbits sought refuge from the black riders.

✔️ An abridged video version of this post can be found on our YouTube Channel-please click here: https://youtu.be/XAIJRADu9Wc

The Benefits of a Mediterranean diet

  • The Mediterranean diet is one of the healthiest eating plans available, and it can aid weight loss and blood sugar control.
  • Lean foods, healthy fats, and fruits and vegetables are all part of the Mediterranean diet, which minimises sweets and red/white meat.
  • A Mediterranean diet meal plan allows you to enjoy red wine in moderation.
  • Set out below, are benefits of the Mediterranean Diet.

What is a Mediterranean diet?

Following a Mediterranean diet means eating in the same way that people in the Mediterranean region have done for centuries. The Mediterranean diet is common among nutritionists not only because of its numerous health benefits, but also because of its versatility and ease of implementation. To see if you think it is for you, you can refer to the ‘7-day Mediterranean Diet Plan ‘in the link below.

Whole, plant-based foods, heart-healthy fats, and seafood, which make up the majority of meals in Mediterranean regions like Greece and southern Italy, are given emphasis in the diet.

Furthermore, the Mediterranean diet is more of a way of life than a transient diet. It has been discovered that people who practise it for a long time have lower rates of chronic disease and have a longer life expectancy.

If you want to give this balanced, common diet a try, there is a meal plan to get you started, as well as more information on some of the long-term benefits of adopting the Mediterranean diet at the end of this post.

What to eat and drink on the Mediterranean diet

The Mediterranean diet does not require calorie restriction or specifically prohibits certain food classes. However, there are several requirements to follow in order to get the most out of the possible health benefits.

TIP: Choose foods in their least processed form, such as steel-cut or even fast oats, rather than instant oatmeal packets, which also contain added sugar.

Eat/Drink often

Beans

Healthy fats (olive oil, nuts, seeds, and avocado)

Fish

Fruits

Vegetables

Water

Whole grains (barley, bulgur, quinoa, millet, steel-cut oats, brown rice, amaranth, and

rye)

Eat/drink in moderation:

Dairy

Eggs

Poultry

Wine – red wine has a higher concentration of the heart-healthy antioxidant resveratrol than white (no more than one 5-ounce glass a day for women, two glasses a day for men).

Avoid:

Foods with added sugars, such as pastries, sodas, and sweets/candies

Pizza dough containing white flour

Refined oils, which include canola oil and soybean oil

White bread

White pasta

Food for Thought

Meat eaters aren’t the only ones that profit from the Mediterranean diet. By substituting protein-rich plant-based foods like lentils, quinoa, tofu, chickpeas, and hemp seeds for beef/pork/lamb, you can easily turn a meat dish into a satisfying vegetarian meal.

6 health benefits of the Mediterranean diet

1. Cancer Prevention

Lower risk for certain cancers: The Mediterranean diet has been linked to a lower risk of a variety of chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative disease, diabetes, and cancer, especially breast and colon cancer. Reductions in inflammation, oxidative damage, metabolic syndrome, and weight are among the pathways responsible for these effects. Observational and clinical studies indicate that the Mediterranean diet is beneficial for cancer prevention, both primary and secondary.

Meat, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, potatoes, fruits, extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), moderate quantities of wine, and reduced consumption of red meat make up the Mediterranean diet. It restricts the consumption of processed foods and refined sugar. It is an easy and attainable aim to follow this dietary pattern.

2. Diabetes Management

According to some doctors, the Mediterranean diet is one of the safest ways to regulate blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes.

Researchers found that when the Mediterranean diet was compared to low-carb, low-glycaemic index, and high-protein diets, the Mediterranean diet increased blood sugar the most for people with type 2 diabetes, and when combined with a low-carb diet, contributed to greater weight loss.

3. Heart

According to research, eating a Mediterranean-style diet will lower the risk of having another heart attack. A Mediterranean diet consists primarily of fruits and vegetables, fatty fish like sardines, and wholegrain cereals, with small quantities of meat and low-fat dairy products.

4. Mind

Reduced risk of cognitive decline: According to a 2017 report, elderly patients who ate a Mediterranean diet were less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of cognitive impairment as they aged.

Memory, vocabulary, and visuospatial awareness were all improved when people followed the Mediterranean diet. Eating fish, in particular, was linked to a lower risk of dementia.

5. Stomach

According to researchers, following the Mediterranean diet for a year increased “healthy” gut bacteria by 7% thus lowering bacteria linked to harmful inflammation in elderly patients. Researchers also concluded that these positive results were due to an improvement in dietary fibre and related vitamins and minerals.

6. Weight loss

Several studies from the last decade or so have shown that eating a Mediterranean diet is linked to a smaller waist circumference, a lower risk of weight gain, and can help with weight loss when combined with caloric restriction. This is most likely due to the focus on whole foods rich in satiating fibre and fat.

Potential downsides of the Mediterranean diet

When it comes to possible drawbacks, the Mediterranean diet isn’t linked to many, but if you consume a lot of fish, you might want to keep an eye on mercury intake.

Salmon, shrimp, pollock, and canned light tuna are all low-mercury seafood choices. Furthermore, if you have dietary restrictions such as gluten intolerance or Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) that necessitate a low-FOODMAP diet, seek advice from a nutritionist or doctor before embarking on a new eating plan.

✔️ Bonus 1 If you are interested in some of the meals that you can enjoy, have a look at a ‘7 day Mediterranean diet meal plan’ by clicking on this link:

✔️ Bonus 2 Alternatively you may want to look at the ‘The Custom Keto’ diet that people are excited about. Click on the link for details:

How to Deal with People Who Don’t Like You

How do you cope with people who dislike you without them having an apparent reason? This is especially distressing since maybe you have done nothing wrong to cause their contempt? It happens in life a lot more than you think and may not be in any way your fault at all, well most of the time! In this post, Inzspire examines the reasons behind this and how to deal with it.

This particular article really resonates with me. When I first started working many years ago, there was a member of staff I worked with who really hated me. I was devasted as I genuinely did not understand what I had done to make her act in such a way towards me. She constantly made disparaging remarks about me to other team members and openly confronted me on many occasions. She rejected any overtures I made to her to resolve the situation, and when I raised the issue with my manager, it was rejected as paranoia on my part.

What made matters worse was when a chance for promotion came about, she voiced her opinion to our manager that I was unsuitable for the role. It didn’t make my situation any better just because it arose from her own professional frustrations. I felt compelled to justify myself all of the time, and had to deal with all of the negative publicity. Eventually, she got the position and she continued to make my life a living hell before I quit.

I decided from that moment on that whilst I was unable to control how people felt about me, I could control how I felt about them.

#1 “You”

This is a very good place to start. Take a moment to decide whether you’re doing something that may be disrespectful or inappropriate before deciding it has nothing to do with you. Here are some of the reasons why people may dislike you. Go through the list and be honest. Are there any here you can relate to? Let us know in the comment section below.

It’s all about you?

Every day when you come to work, you cannot wait to tell people what has happened in your life. You’re always trying to brag about everything in your life and making it sound as if it’s all brilliant and wonderful. However, you never inquire about others’ well-being or show little interest in them.

If that is what is happening, engage with the world and the people in it as nobody wants to be around someone who is always talking about themselves.

You are intimidating

For those that are not fully confident, seeing someone who is successful and assured can be sometimes imposing. Unfortunately, they may confuse your confidence for arrogance, and they’ll think you’re too big for your boots. In this instance, you have to keep going as this is not your problem.

You are too self-opiniated

Well, you must be really upsetting the bullies and the vain ones of the group! They feel that you have no right to speak back to them. Some people simply want you to say yes, and when you don’t, they get very upset. It’s not a bad thing to be outspoken, opinionated, with sincerity. But, like too much of something, being candid with someone has a way of rubbing people the wrong way. Being too blunt or straightforward in some situations may be totally off-putting.

However, you should continue to speak out and advocate for what you believe in, whatever the case might be, as long as you treat people with respect and allow them to have their own opinion especially if it does not match yours.

Being negative all the time

The impact of constantly negative prevents positive energy from flowing and causes the Law of Attraction to attract negative rather than positive outcomes. It increases our anxiety and uncertainty, as well as our trust and faith in ourselves and our goals.

Negativity, like many other things in life, can become a habit. Criticism, cynicism, and denial can all lead to the formation of neuronal pathways in the brain that promote sadness. These negative tendencies can cause our brain to misinterpret the reality, and the ability to break the negative cycle much more difficult.

Always interrupting people’s conversations

Some people interrupt because they are so enthralled by what you are saying that they can’t wait to share their thoughts and feelings with you. Similarly, many persistent interrupters are completely unaware that they are doing so. Interrupting other people, they believe, is what keeps the conversation lively and interesting.

This is known as a “conversational narcissist”. A conversational narcissist is someone who keeps the conversation focused on themselves and then walks away when it is no longer about them. They are uninterested in what other people have to say in general.

People are jealous of you

People who are envious of you are aware that you are succeeding, and they wish for the same success for themselves. Rather than spending their time in bettering their own lives, they tend to tear down others. Their envy stems from their own life shortcomings and inadequacies. Allowing these people to drag you down is not a good idea. Rather than being offended by this, try to persuade them to go their own way.

Your appearance or an event ‘triggers’ them

This is a difficult one to interpret or understand. It could be a recollection of an ex-girlfriend or boyfriend, or you could even resemble a family member with whom they are no longer friendly. They have negative thoughts every time they see you.

You can see how this is completely unrelated to you and entirely about them. There’s nothing you can do about it until they’ve recovered from their trauma or they accept your presence. It’s totally out of your control, and all you can do now is realise that they have the problem and they have to deal with it.

#2. “Them”

Some people in life are not going to like you and it is not your responsibility to persuade them to do so

You have more important things to think about and do. Yes, you should be courteous, philosophical even, but you must also be true to yourself. Some people dislike you because they don’t think those aspects of your personality meld with theirs; others dislike you because they see no gain or they feel that you do not make it worthwhile for them to spend their time with you.

It’s important to note that people have favourites both inside and outside the workplace; I’m sure you’ve noticed this: there are certainly some people with whom you get along and others with whom you don’t. Although it can appear personal, it is simply human nature and you just need to accept it.

#3. “Don’t Bite”

Acceptance, however, does not imply that you reciprocate. There’s an old adage that arguing with fools just serves to show that there are two of them. Don’t do it, no matter how important you feel the need to take some form of retaliatory action.

Redirecting the dialogue is one tactic that can remedy the potential conflict and avoid the temptation to engage. If at any stage you feel the conversation appears to deviate and slowly go downhill, quickly return the conversation to its original subject by saying. “We appear to be digressing, so let’s get back to the job in hand” for example.

You can try to calmly discuss the problem with them. However, if you don’t have something in common that is equally important to both sides, you’ll probably be turned down, if you ever try to resolve the reasons why that person dislikes you.

#4. Accept & Adjust

Dealing with someone who is so disapproving of you can be exhausting, so redirect your attention to those who believe in you.

For example, you are employed because you’re capable of doing the role, and the people who hired you know it. It makes no difference what others think about your qualifications or your competence in the job.

Determine whether or not you should be concerned. Not everybody who crosses your path should be considered a potential friend. It might not be fun if a fellow employee or someone you are aware dislikes you, but you can determine if it’s worth it and try to build the required bridges and win them over. Not everyone is worth your time and effort however, especially if they are extremely difficult and you stand to gain nothing by discussing it with them.

If you know why the person dislikes you, ask yourself if it’s really important that they like you. Does it really matter what they think? Do they dislike a lot of people? You may not be “special” in that case. You just accept and adjust.

#5. Tolerate

Regardless of the negative situation, you must keep going and, of course, whilst this is the best approach, it is easier said than done.

When all else fails, it’s best to accept the presence of the occasional adversary. You don’t have to go around provoking people, but if you don’t like someone and they don’t like you, you don’t have to go out of your way to please them either.

✔️ Bonus: See the “From Zero to Hero” E-Book. 7 ways to make people respect and like you, 5 ways to ban negative thoughts and develop a positive mindset, 8 ways to reach personal goals through awareness, 11 ways to increase your self-esteem and become self-confident and much more!

Learning How to Build Self Confidence

by Guest Writer Les Beat

Most of us at some point in our lives have yearned for change, to do something different. We may even have had clarity in what we wanted to do and felt the sensation of what it would feel like to succeed. For some inexplicable reason it was only a fleeting glimpse and the idea slipped to the back of our minds only to be lost in the hotchpotch of everyday life.

Why do we find such comfort in our inaction? What prevents us from moving forward? Fear and self-doubt can lead to a lack of self-confidence.

Wouldn’t it be fantastic to wake up every morning feeling like a million dollars alive with excitement and positivity flowing through your veins? You don’t stop to wonder why you just launch yourself into your day and combine effortlessly with family, friends and colleagues. At work, you complete your tasks with a lasting calmness and enthusiasm, which is seemingly unbounded. Fanciful! Not at all.

If you are constantly bombarding yourself with negative thoughts, telling yourself that you are not good enough to have the things you want, thinking you are somewhat lacking in certain qualities and therefore not worthy of success; isn’t it no wonder this has an adverse effect on your confidence? It can make you feel like you can’t do anything right.

If you think about the tasks, you do every day, most of them are wired into you and they are completed automatically. Other less frequent events such as a trip to the dentist, a driving test, a job interview or a project at work; you have taken on with a little trepidation but nonetheless have completed them all as it was essential to your wellbeing. It is important to look at past achievements and remember how you felt in yourself when they were accomplished. Knowing you can do it goes a long way to dispel your fear of moving on.

State of MInd:

When you feel intimidated by a situation it is not the situation you are reacting to it is about your feelings to the situation and your feelings are your own. You don’t have to be governed by your feelings. You have the choice to feel how you want and, in that moment, make the right decision for you. Being confident is no exception and you can create it through your state of mind.

Changing your mind:

The average person thinks thousands of thoughts ln a day and thoughts have a massive bearing on your state of mind and how you feel. It would be difficult to monitor all your thoughts constantly. Try capturing them in a common situation in an average day and you would most likely find the majority are negative. Of course, not all negative thoughts are bad though, indeed some are essential to our survival, but most do not serve a useful purpose.

Our thoughts and emotions are closely related and one is influencing the other. So, it goes without saying that if you change your mind and create more positive thoughts then you will find yourself in a more powerful and confident state and once again have a believe in your own abilities to achieve your dreams.

Learning how to build confidence:

1 Purpose

Why do you want to boost your confidence? You may have a new project in mind, something you have always wanted to do that would make a big difference in your life. Maybe you are wanting to change but are not quite sure what to do. Just knowing what it is will be the first step to building your confidence. Have a fixity of purpose on your goal. This doesn’t mean that you have to be rigid in how you get there but focusing on your intended outcome with determination is a powerful tool to have.

2 Visualisation – practice everyday

Imagine what it would be like to be confident and living your life with no doubts and fears. Picture yourself in your mind’s eye as that person, seeing you move with confidence, talk with confidence and wearing your strong suit and not your weak suit. Now most importantly begin to feel that powerful emotion of confidence spreading through you

3. Keeping motivated

However confident you start to feel you may find that there will be days when your confidence and motivation start to wane a little. It’s good to set aside some regular me-time so you can quietly review your goals and run through your techniques.

Friends are special but you may need to find new like-minded people with the same focus as you. Look for local groups or online. Sharing their experiences and knowledge can be a great source of inspiration, motivation and gaining confidence.

4. Positive affirmations

What you are looking to achieve is to be a happier and more confident person. It is natural to experience ups and downs in your life, but when the latter outweighs the former then you need to get back on track. You can start by checking your thoughts.

A great saying goes like this, ” if you say you can’t you won’t, if you say you can you will”. You may recognise thoughts like these. “I could never do that”, “I always make mistakes”, “I am not clever enough”.

Start to challenge the thoughts that continually put you down and make you feel limited and bad about yourself. A good way to do this for lasting change is to write down positive affirmations that reflect yourself in the present. ” I am a fantastic person”, “I am very happy”, ” I am confident”, “I am strong”. Write whatever works for you. Read them before you sleep and when you wake. For your intended goals you could write, ‘ there will be challenges for me along the way and as a resourceful person, I have the abilities to overcome them.

5. Taking Action

There’s no time like the present and never a truer word has been spoken. Did you know the best way to promote confidence is to start acting confidently and enthusiastically even if you are feeling low?

This will hasten your improvement no end. If you can get into a daily routine of promoting your positive thoughts and actions then this can soon lead to success. In the words of the late and great, Susan Jeffers, Psychologist, ‘feel the fear and do it anyway.

✔️Bonus 1 Get your Free E-Book entitled ‘The Confidence Confident’. “Your Trusted Guide To Building Confidence And Succeeding in Anything. Inside this e-book, you will discover the topics about introduction, basics to building confidence, how to conquer fear in any situation, the art of public speaking, how to fearlessly approach people and instant confidence boosters. Click here for your Free Copy:

✔️ Bonus 2 See the ‘Shyness & Social Anxiety System’. This system “has changed the lives of thousands of people, and received stunning reviews from experts and regular people who struggled with shyness, or social anxiety”. Click here for details of this step-by-step system:

About Les Beat

Les Beat has been a qualified employment professional for over 20 years helping people find that spark of excellence he believes is inside us all, so they can share it with society. Les has a keen interest in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Personal Development.

People who want to disappear

What causes people to decide that they have had enough of their way of life and the only solution for them is to ‘disappear’ abandoning their lives, careers, homes, and families with no intention of returning? Well, that is what is happening in Japan where companies are helping those people who simply want to vanish.

There is a word in Japanese known as jouhatsuwhich translated means “evaporation”, but it also applies to individuals who intentionally vanish into thin air and keep their whereabouts hidden for years, with some never returning to their former life.

Whilst it is not uncommon for people to disappear all over the world, Japan is likely to be more widespread than most other places due to cultural considerations. Like the taboo topic of suicide, jouhatsu is distasteful and almost unthinkable in Japanese society as a subject to discuss in regular conversation. The disappearing acts stem from Japan’s pressure to save “face”. Incredibly, you will not find an office of missing persons in Japan. Hundreds of thousands of people go missing each year, according to the Missing Persons Search Assistance Association of Japan, a non-profit dedicated to assisting jouhatsu families.

Why do people want to disappear?

The word jouhatsu first appeared in the 1960s and it was first used to describe people who chose to leave abusive relationships rather than go through the embarrassment of the traditional divorce process at the time. But it soon included people with depression, addiction, sexual impropriety, all requiring a need for solitude. It’s also been used to get away from domestic abuse, gambling debts, religious cults, stalkers, bosses, and complicated family circumstances in the past.

The humiliation of losing a job, being divorced, or even failing an exam can drive people to vanish. Ian Fleming in the James Bond book, “You Only Live Twice” mentions students disappearing rather than face the embarrassment of failing their exams. Their solution was to commit suicide in the ‘Garden of Death’, a place James Bond has to investigate.

In real life and in certain instances, being jouhatsu is simply a way to start over. They can leave their former homes, occupations, families, identities, and even appearances when they vanish.

When the Japanese economy collapsed in the 1990s, there was a significant increase in jouhatsu and suicide as many salaried workers lost their jobs and/or accrued debts.

In Japan, people who, for whatever reason, decide they don’t want to be identified are referred to as the “maliciously missing” by the police. The police consider that if you are facing a felony trial or prison time, it’s not unusual for people to disappear. In reality, many have staged elaborate deaths to throw the law enforcement agencies off their game (a person who skips out on bail or a criminal running from the law is considered “wanted,” not “missing”).

A thriving Industry?

Businesses that support the jouhatsu are known as “yonige-ya”, which translates to “fly-by-night shops”. These businesses are reasonably easy to locate and have their own websites.

Currently, depending on a variety of factors, a yonige-ya will charge anywhere between $50,000 ($450) (£325) to $300,000 ($2,600) (£1,900) for its services. The number of belongings, the size, whether the move is nocturnal, whether children are being transported, and whether the move is being made to avoid debt collectors are all considerations to consider.

Without the aid of yonige-ya, people have been known to vanish on their own. There are sourcebooks available that can assist people in becoming jouhatsu.

Regardless of their motivations, they seek assistance from companies who can guide them through the process. These clandestine operations are known as “night moving” programmes, a reference to the secrecy surrounding jouhatsu training. They will assist individuals who wish to isolate themselves from their lives in a safe manner, as well as provide accommodation in hidden locations.

Sho Hatori, who formed a night-moving business in the 1990s when Japan’s economic bubble went on a significant downturn says, “What we did was help people to start a second life.” He initially assumed that financial ruin would be the only reason for people to leave their troubled lives, but he soon discovered that there were also “social causes” too.

Hiroki Nakamori, a sociologist, has been studying jouhatsu for over a decade. “It’s just easier to evaporate in Japan,” says Nakamori. Missing people are able to withdraw money from ATMs without being flagged, and their family members are unable to view surveillance footage that could have caught their loved one fleeing. The police will only intervene when a crime or major incident has been proven to have been committed, such as a robbery or an accident. The family’s only option is to hire a private investigator at a high cost or just sit it out. That is everything there is to it.

Where do they go?

The jouhatsu are frequently unable to be located, especially in the context of Japan’s strict privacy laws. The majority of jouhatsu cases are civil in nature, and personal information is not readily accessible.

San’ya, a Tokyo slum that once housed tens of thousands of day labourers, is said to be a safe haven for the jouhatsu. In Osaka, Kamagasaki or Airin-chiku is another neighbourhood where you can live without an ID and is therefore preferred. Since they have cash-paying jobs, these districts are strongholds for the Yakuza (criminal organisations) and so, ideal for people who want to disappear, as most people will not want to go and look for them.

People who have become jouhatsu are often tracked down by detective agencies. They have been found spending time at pachinko parlours (slot machines and pinball) and cheap hotel rooms on occasion, and on other occasions, they have been found dead.

The people who have disappeared

For many of the jouhatsu, feelings of sorrow and remorse linger even after they have left their lives behind.

Sugimoto, a businessman who left his wife and children, says, “I constantly have the impression that I’ve done something wrong.” Sugimoto is currently residing in a house in Tokyo’s residential area.

Saita, the woman who runs the night-moving business where he is being housed, also was a jouhatsu who vanished 17 years ago. “In a way, I’m a missing person – even now,” she says, referring to her disappearance after being in a sexually abusive relationship. She admits that she has various types of clients, all with individual stories to tell, and she never considers any of their circumstances not serious enough.

What of the People who are left behind?

The emotional toll is considerable. They swing back and forth between hope and despair. The abandonment and subsequent quest for their jouhatsu can be intolerable for loved ones who are left behind. The phrase “life in limbo” is often used to explain how families are unable to move on while a loved one remains missing.

When an individual goes missing for an extended period of time, this is referred to as ambiguous loss. There is no closure or resolution to allow people who have been left behind to move on. This is exacerbated by the person’s desire for a happy reunion with their loved one, or even just learning what happened and why the person went missing in the first place.

Varying opinions about whether the missing person is alive or dead will inevitably be a topic of discussion for relatives and friends. This can add to the distress and friction in a relationship or friendships, particularly if a family member is suspected of “contributing to” someone going missing.

Following a disappearance, families can face legal and financial issues. They are frequently responsible for managing and protecting the missing person’s affairs when they are gone, which can be very distressing because they will feel obligated to secure the life they hope their missing loved one will return to.

The missing person returns?

If a missing person is found alive or dead, their families are confronted with a new set of emotions. It is unusual that joy in a reunion is as easy as it seems. Many families are relieved that the individual has been identified, but they are still frustrated. They frequently have unanswered questions, and they might be concerned that the individual will vanish again.

If the individual chooses not to contact them again, other families may feel betrayed, worried, and frustrated. This is particularly true when their family member has been missing for a long time and the police investigation has been closed. Then suddenly they appear. One interviewee described it as “having a stranger in your home,” and said she wasn’t sure whether it was safe to speak about what had happened.

Even if the reconnection is successful, it can present major challenges. Families and lost persons who have returned to their homes receive no help. When young people go missing, they will be referred to local social care, which may result in continuing help for them and their families, but when adults go missing, there is no promise of support until the police have done their job.

More should be done to help families of people who go missing, given the complexity of their needs. Following a disappearance, families may be offered support services that clarify the legal and financial challenges they may face. While such support will not make the pain of losing a loved one go away, it will help to alleviate some of the unforeseen pressures that come with it.