15 Cool Things to Check out in Singapore

Sometimes, we see something so often that we fail to appreciate just how awesome it is. Well, don’t be a stranger in your own country. Check out these awesome places in SG:

1. The Ritz-Carlton’s Art Collection. This hotel has an amazing art collection. Among its prized artworks on display is a Frank Stella installation at the entrance and two Dale Chihuly chandeliers.

2. Hawker Centres. Foreigners rave about the food in our hawker centres, so make sure to visit (and appreciate) them every now and then.

3. Haji Lane. Located at the heart of Singapore’s Moslem district, Haji Lane may be small in size but it offers riches for fashionistas.

4. The Night Life. Well, sure, we’re no New York or Tokyo, but make no mistake: we know how to party. Must-visit venues are the Training Shed and Zouk.

5. Kampong Glam District. This place offers wonderful boutiques, fashionable shops, cosy cafés and cool bars with a Malayan flavor. Check out Masjid Sultan Mosque for something more traditional.

6. Singapore Zoo. One of the best zoos in the region, here you can find and even interact with a myriad of wildlife.

7. Chinatown Heritage Centre. Going here would feel like time traveling as the establishment superbly recreated sets and scenes from Singapore 100 years in the past.

8. The Local Music Scene. The best place to find up-and-coming music artists is probably the Hood Bar and Café, though the Esplanade offers plenty too.

9. Trick Eye Museum. Spend a wonderful afternoon here playing with magical optical illusions and other 2D and 3D marvels.

10. The Singapore Flyer. Towering at 165 meters, this iconic Ferris Wheel will give you a breath-taking panoramic view of Singapore—plus others cool amenities.

11. Singapore Botanic Gardens. Open from 5AM until midnight, SBG offers a bucolic retreat from the metropolis. Even just a short walk here will give you a sense of serenity.

12. Little India. Little India has famous sweet shops, temples, boutiques, salons, and tattoo and henna parlours.

13. Mid-Autumn Festival. Traditionally celebrated to give thanks to a good harvest, the Mid-Autumn Festival is now akin to an artistic show of beautiful lanterns and other creative displays.

14. National Museum of Singapore. For a dose of cultivation, head to NMS to check out art exhibits, film screenings, historic displays and other enriching cultural shows.

15. Gadgets on the Cheap. Practice your haggling skills at Sim Lim Square and Funan Digitalife Mall to get the best deals on gadgets, appliances and all kinds of electronics.

Obviously, this isn’t an exhaustive list—actually, this barely even scratches the surface—which only goes to show that there’s so, so much you can find here in Singapore—even for locals.

How to Deal with Migraine

To those afflicted with the condition, a migraine attack can be one of the worst experiences in life. It’s a headache so severe that it leaves one unable to do even basic functions like eating and walking (much less complex tasks like driving or doing work). Avoid the horrible pain of migraine by knowing how to remedy an incoming attack.

Avoiding Your Triggers
Migraine can be triggered by different things, so your first line of defense is to avoid your specific triggers.

The most common triggers are:
Food: Cheese, coffee, salty food, dried fish, citrus fruits, cured meats, alcohol, chocolates, nuts, and food additives can possibly trigger migraine. Going hungry or having a poor diet can also cause migraine.

Changes in the environment: Glaring light from the sun, humid weather, and sudden change in barometric pressure or temperature also causes migraine in some people.

Stress or fatigue: Migraine is highly related to stress, particularly stress from work. Extremely emotional episodes—including depression, anxiety, excitement and shock—may also trigger the condition.

Other possible migraine triggers are: very loud noises, strong odors/scents, dehydration, excessive sleep, excessive exercise, prolonged computer use, menstrual period, and eyestrain (bright and flickering lights).

Staying Off Migraine
Most people can sense an oncoming migraine, especially if they know their triggers and usual symptoms (such as a light headache at the back of the head, neck stiffness, sudden mood change and constipation. A definite sign of an oncoming migraine for some people is experiencing what is called an “aura”. This is an irregularity in the nervous system that causes visual disturbances, such as seeing flashing lights (even if you close your eyes) or getting a wavy, zig-zagging vision.

To avoid a full blown migraine attack, immediately avoid or refrain from any suspected triggers and find a way to relax your mind and body. Ideally, you should take a rest in a room with no strong stimuli – the lights are off/ dimmed, little or no sounds come from outside, and nobody would come in to interrupt you. It’s advisable to take some pain reliever if you’re already experiencing severe pain.

Preventing Future Migraine
Aside from avoiding your migraine triggers, it’s recommended to do the following to further reduce the chance of getting a migraine attack:

• Have a consistent daily schedule. Having a daily schedule means avoiding irregularities—whether these are food or situations—that can trigger migraine.

• Get an occasional massage. Massage has been known to help people relax, and helps the body recuperate. Acupressure also relieves migraine in some people.

• Have sufficient sleep. As much as possible, sleep for 6–8 hours a day at regular times. Lack of sleep causes stress that can lead to migraine.

• Improve your well-being. You can also fight stress off through activities that improve your well-being, such as exercising, yoga, meditation, prayer and spending time with your loved ones.

• Take some herbal medicine. Some herbs, including skullcap, feverfew and butter root, have been shown to reduce or eliminate episodes of migraine.

What You Need to Know About Essential Oils

Essential oils have been used for a long time in different cultures for all medicinal and health purposes, and they can be made from a lot of different types of plants. These oil-based aromatics are often derived from different kinds of plant parts.

These oils can either be used by themselves or as a base for a perfume, and are often either topically applied on the skin or inhaled as a fragrance (this makes them widely used for aromatherapy).

While they have been used for as early as five or six thousand years ago, earlier methods of making are quite different than the ones we have now. Today, many producers of essential oils focus on the purity of the oil extracts.

Plants Used for Essential Oils
A lot of different plants are used for their essential oils, which contain these medicinal and health properties, for medical and hygienic purposes. Here are a few of them:

• Lavender – Lavender extracts are great for relieving stress, anxiety, and mental fatigue, as well as for treating bruises and stretch marks
• Peppermint – Used for nausea, vertigo, headaches, and even for exhaustion
• Tea tree – Extracts from this plant can be used for disinfectant and for treating skin blemishes, as well as acne.

How Essential Oils Are Extracted
Essential oils are taken by distilling plants whose oils can have certain therapeutic properties. The process uses different parts from different kinds of plants, such as roots, leaves, stems, and even the flowers and tree bark.
The result of distilling is a highly concentrated amount of the plant’s oils, which has both the fragrance and the properties of the plant itself, and can be used to treat different conditions in different ways.

The Benefits of Essential Oils
Essential oils have a lot of therapeutic properties that make them great to have at home, whether they are inhaled or applied as a topical ointment, such as:

• Balance hormones – Certain essential oils can do a lot to balance out hormone levels in the body, such as estrogen, testosterone, thyroid, and especially the stress hormone cortisol.

• Boost your immune system – Whether it’s anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, or antifungal, essential oils can help boost your immune system due to the chemical substances in them that can help your body fight off foreign pathogens.

• Improve your digestion – Aside from helping with stomach spasms, indigestion, and diarrhea, essential oils can even help your digestion to make it easier to break down and absorb nutrients that your body needs.

Essential oils can also have stimulating effects and leave you feeling refreshed and energized, which is great if you find yourself tired out and need to get your energy back. They can also improve your cognitive performance, and even lift your mood.

The Different Types of Essential Oils and What They Can Do For You

Essential oils have been used for a long time in different cultures for all medicinal and health purposes, and they can be made from a lot of different types of plants. These oil-based aromatics are often derived from different kinds of plant parts.

These oils can either be used by themselves or as a base for a perfume, and are often either topically applied on the skin or inhaled as a fragrance (this makes them widely used for aromatherapy).

The Benefits of Common Oils
When used properly, essential oils are not just relaxing, but also boost your immune system and relieve headaches and stress that comes after a long day’s work, which makes them great to have for your home or office in Singapore.
What’s even better is that there are all kinds of essential oils made from different plants and can help you with all kinds of health benefits.

Tea Tree Oil
Also known as melaleuca oil, tea tree oil has strong antimicrobial properties and has a long history of being used as an antiseptic in Australia.

When inhaled, tea tree oil does a lot to relieve cough and prevents yeast and fungal infections from growing, and can be applied topically to heal cuts and wounds.

Lavender Oil
Lavender oil is one of the most popular essential oils, and has been known to improve sleep quality and concentration. It also encourages hair to grow for those who are suffering from a type of hair loss called alopecia areata.

Additionally, lavender can be used to fight anxiety and generalized anxiety disorder without having any harmful side effects that could lead it to being abused.

Peppermint Oil
Alleviating digestive problems can call for the use of peppermint oil, which not only alleviates nauseas, headaches, and stomach gases, but also calms the stomach’s smooth muscles and allows the bile to move more freely in the digestive system.

Peppermint oil can also be used to treat symptoms of the HSV-1 virus by acting as a virucide, though more research may be needed for this.

Jojoba Oil
Derived from the seeds of a woody plant native to certain areas in the United States, jojoba seeds can be distilled to make jojoba oil. This essential aromatic oil is often used to help heal wounds faster and reduce symptoms of acne outbreaks.

How You Can Use Essential Oils
Using essential oils after a long day is easy, and there are a lot of ways that you can enjoy it to get the best effects for you.

However, you should keep in mind that more doesn’t always mean better with essential oils because they are highly concentrated extracts of the plant oil. For instance, one drop of peppermint oil is just as strong as twenty-eight cups of peppermint tea.

4 Rules at Work You Can Absolutely Break

Many of us think that we know the secret to career success: always say ‘yes’ to your boss and avoid emotional and personal subjects. Well, think again. Here are four unspoken office rules that are sometimes worth challenging.

1. Avoid Emotional Topics at All Cost
Unless it is non-work related, it should be okay to bring up any problem in the open. Say, you and a n officemate have clashed over a project, resulting to a tension between the two of you. Avoiding the issue may only cultivate the tension and min result may affect your productivity. Talk about it in a professional way by opening up with something like “You seem to disagree with every idea I suggest, and I don’t quite understand why. Did I do anything wrong to upset you?”

2. Only Do Work-Related Tasks
It’s no secret that many people are pursuing a job that isn’t really their passion. So, it is essential to also pursue your interests—both for your creativity at work and happiness in the office. Remember that amazing ideas often sprout when you’re tinkering on something. Plus, hobbies give that sense of calmness, so have a 15-minute cross-stitch break or just listen to your favourite playlist during a coffee break. Once you have relaxed and cleared out your mind for a bit, the answer to a work problem you may have will simply reveal itself.

3. Do What You’re Hired to Do
You may not be hired to make photocopies of documents or encode product details, which you need to complete a task, but no one else would if you won’t go the extra mile. Your boss is constantly looking at the bigger picture, and he’ll admire if you have the initiative to do the same as well. If you focus on doing some small tasks that’s related to your job, you might see things in a better perspective and possibly come up with ideas to help the company.

4. Join Event to Build a Network
Cocktail parties and events can be inefficient for some—not to mention the awkwardness of having to mingle with random people you barely or don’t know at all. Other way around? Build your own network through social media. Get in touch with people who interest you, whether they are in the same industry or not. Retweet some of their posts, strike up a conversation and ask questions by messaging them. From there, it’d be easier to get them to meet you for a coffee or lunch—where you can connect with them in a real and personal way.

These four work rules and the ways to challenge them generally work, but may not be applicable to every situation. It still depends on personal choices, the factors present in the situation and the necessary things you need to do to get to a place you want the most career-wise.

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