Why You Should Have A Fidget Cube If You Have OCD or Anxiety

When it comes to having anxiety or OCD there are many ways to cope with it. Having anxiety and/or OCD or even both can be overwhelming, exhausting and frustrating. The feeling of hopelessness can start to kick in. But you don’t have to feel alone or lost. Something that I have found to help me and that I believe can benefit others is having a fidget cube. This little handy device can be great to use when you are feeling anxious, find your mind racing, and find yourself obsessing over those compulsions.

How Does It Help?

You may wonder and start to contemplate on how a fidget cube will help you with your anxiety or OCD. A Fidget Cube is a great device to use first off since it is small and easy to carry around anywhere you go. So whenever you find yourself stuck and needing to cope with your mental health struggles you can just fidget with your fidget cube. For myself, I have discovered that it helps to take my attention off my anxiousness and obsessions and allows me to place my focus on what I have to do with the fidget cube. The cube contains various things on it that allow you to touch them, push, spin, and fidget with. As well with the texture it provides a soothing effect. In addition, the noises it makes also allows for a positive distraction. I find the cube in general manifests for a great distraction. If you are a student in class I think it is great to use when you find yourself struggling. Anywhere you go you can have it with you to help you. It has also been said that fidgeting is a positive tactic that helps you focus. Fidget cubes have also been known to help those who deal with ADHD. Now a fidget cube may not help everyone but it doesn’t hurt to try it. Different things work for everyone but this is something I thought I would share as I am a advocate for mental health.

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The Importance of Self-Expression In Media

Music as a way of representing individualism, and identity is a concept in the culture industry that has brought much controversy. This is the case, because according tothe article “ The Culture Industry,” by Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer, our societyis deficient in owning up to this phenomenon. According to Adorno and Horkeimer, we are living in a society where popular media is becoming a commodity of repetition, and a business of reproducing mass culture. In today’s society, the music industry has become a substance of competition and dominance, where many artists are trying to stand out, when in fact their individual art, and style is missing.

One group that negotiates with self-expression is ‘The Beatles.’ They’re a group that not only remains true to themselves, but they have reached out to society in a way that is inspiring. The Beatles have put themselves out there in the market, and they have reached their full potential, by making their style, and sounding unique. The concept of self-expression is important in the music industry in order to maintain individuality and to avoid reproducing something that has already been produced. A group that encompasses this logic is ‘The Beatles.’ Before going into further explanation of why ‘The Beatles’ represent a special identity, Adorno and Horkeimer’s controversy must be addressed and explained in further depth.

In the article “The Culture Industry” they state, “The peculiarity of the self is a monopoly commodity determined by society; it is falsely represented as natural.” (Adorno & Horkeimer, 41). Adorno and Horkheimer in simpler terms are critiquing society by reinforcing that it is in a condition of artificial awareness, and that our culture is broken under authority because of the 1 capitalism that is taking place in the modern world. Another argument that is important inunderlying mass culture is when the article states, “In the culture industry the individual is an illusion not merely because of the standardization of the means of production.” (41).To get an understanding of this we can turn to pop stars such as Britney Spears, Rhianna, and Lady Gaga. They all share similar characteristics and our society is attracted to them.The music industry takes note of this and then begins to create more ‘Britney’s’ and ‘Rhiannas.’ Unfortunately this is what it has come to, but with taking a closer look at

‘The Beatles,’ it can be seen how they remain true to their art. The Beatles are a group that epitomizes what Adorno and Horkeimer are trying to pinpoint. They remain individual because no other artist today in the twenty first century is able to compare with them. They have this unique sound, which makes them able to produce so many songs. Looking at this review that focuses on one of their many albums,it is evident in seeing how this group remains so popular. Their first psychedelic masterpiece, Revolver represents the Beatles at their most creative and cohesive, still a tight rocking unit firing on all cylinders but with a surging freedom of self-expression. It is arguably their greatest album, in which they introduce whole new vistas of sound yet still contain them within tightly structured and performed songs (McCormick, 1)

By what McCormick states, it can be seen why this group has been able to leave an influence for today’s generation. The Beatles are able to leave a lasting impact on their fans, and they’ve laid out originality in the album revolver by seeking out what society wants to hear, but still remaining true to their sound. Even as they are not a group anymore, their music is still listened to, and therefore they will never be forgotten. The Beatles were the first British group to ever write their own songs and music, and they therefore can never be replaced which makes them the reality of music. Lastly, the group has been able to create music that holds meaning in their songs. “Sure, they had their share of “yeah, yeah, yeah” songs in the beginning, but songs such as “We Can Work It Out,” “In My Life,” and just about anything on Sgt. Pepper simply include timeless messages – all packaged in beautiful music.” (Russel,1)

Through the understanding of Adorno and Horkeimer’s article, the main idea to grasp is that the modern world has transformed art into a business. This has caused the entertainment industry to manufacture music that satisfies the needs of society, but it has been done in such a way, where repetition is gained, and individuality is lost. Many artists today share a similar art, and are lacking their own identity, but ‘The Beatles,’ are a group that have shed light upon self-expression. They carry many great qualities such as carrying songs that hold meaning, producing music that reaches out to their fans, and leaving an influence for today’s generation of artists. The main influence being that the band was able to be a part of the music industry for many years and maintain succession. Adorno and Horkeimer’s article informs society of what mass culture, media, and technology has converted to. Although the industry has replicated artists in order to maintain the business of advertising, and making money it doesn’t mean that other artists can’t remain true to their art.

Works Cited

Adorno, Theodor, and Max Horkeimer. “The Culture Industry: Enlightment as Mass

Deception.” The Culture Studies Reader (1944): 29-43. Print.

McCormick, Niel. “The Beatles- Revolver, Review.” The Telegraph. N.p., 7 Sept. 2009.

Web. 19 Sept. 2012. <http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/the-beatles/6150301/The-Beatles-Revolver-review.html&gt;

Russell, Lindsey. “Why The Beatles Still Have A Lasting Impact.” Yahoo! Voices. N.p., 19 Jan. 2007. Web. 19 Sept. 2012. <http://voices.yahoo.com/why-beatles-still-lasting-impact-165802.html?cat=19&gt;

Why Spotify is Better Than Apple Music

When it comes to listening and streaming music these days, you have the luxury of streaming and listening to it in your phone. Listening to music has come a long way and although people still use YouTube, the most popular way to listen to music on your phone is through Apple music or Spotify. But which one should you download and pay for? If you have an android Huawei phone you have the option to choose either, as you can download Apple Music on a Huawei phone, despite it not being an IPhone.

Spotify All The Way

Personally I first had Apple Music and I liked it. You pay $10.00 a month and get the first 30 days free. I download a lot of music so it was worth the monthly fee. I enjoyed everything about Apple Music but when I found out about Spotify and that it had some added features I made the switch over to Spotify. When something lacks creativity and doesn’t have something better to offer then it’s always good to change things up. Spotify is great, because when you Shazam a song that song goes right into your Spotify.

The Perks

I also discovered that if you are following certain artists it let’s you know when they are in concert. Spotify also does pre-sale promos for concerts. The option to listen to podcasts is also nice. You can also find music easier with Spotify and it downloads faster.

Another great pro with Spotify music is that Spotify is renowned for helping people find alternate or cover versions of their favorite songs. Type in “Folsom Prison Blues,” and you’ll see live versions and covers by other well-known (and not-so-well-known) musicians. In fact, one of the company’s big strengths is that its reach helps lesser-known artists expose the broader world to their brand of music.

Another great bonus is that huge music storage is available. Spotify’s free and paying users both have access to the same library of “more than 40 million songs. In addition, Spotify offers free and paid membership. Logically, with Spotify free, you aren’t allowed to enjoy many features that Premium account offers.

However, with Free account, you can listen to the music you love on the go, create your own playlists, discover new music, share the music and the playlists with your friends, and more. But, if you choose to subscribe to Spotify Premium, you get to enjoy the full Spotify experience.

Lastly, it is simple to use. When it comes to Spotify, everything is so simple. You will easily find all the things you need, organize your playlists, explore new music, listen to the radio, and more. Exploring all its features and things it offers is quite an enjoyment.

OCD and Skin: The Mental Disruption

What is OCD?

Many people are aware of the mental health condition of OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) a disorder that occurs when a person gets stuck in a cycle of obsessions and compulsions. These obsessions are usually unwanted thoughts that bring upon distressed feelings.

OCD and the Skin

Now normally we associate OCD with someone obsessively washing their hands, opening doors, and checking if things like the stove have been shut off. But when it comes to OCD it doesn’t just end there. When you have OCD the compulsive thoughts can be about anything including the skin.

Skin Disorders

After research and my own experience obsession over the skin has been referred to as Acne Dsymporhia and in even more extreme cases is called Dermatillomania. This disorder involves extreme skin picking that results in lesions. I myself never experienced this but did experience Acne Dysmorphia, where my thoughts were centered on my skin and worrying about it where it caused me emotional distress. It caused me to not want to go out and not want to look in the mirror but at the same time obsess in the mirror. Obsessively checking my skin and feeling if I had any blemishes or bumps.

Treatment

Living with OCD can be quite exhausting and make it a struggle in terms of focusing and concentration, but is possible to overcome. There is medication for OCD which can be the same treatment used to treat anxiety. Some have found success with medication, but for some and from my experience it was not the answer.

It actually gave me more anxiety, made me feel numb at times, tired, and heightened suicidal thoughts. But this was my experience and everyone is affected differently. Counselling, exercise, meditation, keeping busy, and using CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) are effective tools to use to treat both anxiety and OCD as both maintain a relationship. My skin obsession was caused by stress and anxiety and a mindset that was hard to get out of. It took me about 8 months to overcome. Self-compassion, and realizing my blessings and being grateful were huge ways to look at things in a different perspective. It was my obsession that was making my skin worse and acne, hives and bumps were taking over my life. I was missing out on life.

Some other tips to help stop OCD behaviours are to stop seeking reassurance, to not let thoughts maintain a power over you, and to accept your unwanted thoughts and then try to move onto something else. When you come to realize that maybe that thought is inaccurate then you won’t react to it as much. Not reacting with fear and panic to thoughts is very important. Thoughts we have are just thoughts and not always accurate or reality. Our minds can play tricks on us into believing things that are in fact not true. Something I learned from Youtube videos by OCD recovery coach Ali Greymond. Her videos were very informative and helpful. She also struggled with OCD and continues to provide support online as well as with books.

How puppies and preschoolers/toddlers are alike

Whether you believe it or not, animals are very similar to humans. Many consider their pets and especially dogs as part of the family and evidently, they should. To put it in perspective puppies particularly share many of the same qualities as preschoolers and toddlers. If you are thinking of having kids and want to make sure you are ready, getting a dog is a great idea as it will prepare you for it. Taking care of a dog takes a lot of patience, responsibility, and hard work; similar to having a child. But in the end, it is worth it as just like children, dogs bring a lot of joy. Puppies and toddlers share a lot of similar traits that I have picked up on and it is quite remarkable.

Both require a lot of love, attention, and care.

Just like kids, puppies require a lot of love, attention, and care. Puppies like to be held just like kids do, they like to be around people, and they love affection. Just like when a child is crying a puppy wants to be picked up, hugged and be cherished with love. Puppies are taken away from their mothers after 8 weeks so they can feel scared and miss their mother so making them feel comfortable, loved is important in order for them to feel at ease.

Both are therapeutic

Both kids and dogs bring a happy vibe that is contagious. When you see a child being silly, laughing, or happy it puts you in a better mood. Puppies have the same effect, in fact, dogs are used for therapy and can make one feel calmer and reduce stress. It goes to show that the simplest of things in life can bring joy and immediate pleasure.

Taking care of puppies and kids requires creativity

When taking care of a child and a puppy something that some people don’t know is that it requires creativity. What I mean by this is that when you need to get your puppy or child to do something that they don’t want to do it entails you to think outside of the box. In fact, you may have to be sneaky as kids and dogs can be stubborn. For example, if a child refuses to eat something you could try putting it in a sandwich. That way this proves that they actually liked the food that they claimed they didn’t like. With puppies, for example, if he or she isn’t eating a lot you can get a toy that they like and this will draw them towards the food. It works as an incentive just like when you want your puppy to sit you show them a treat and that encourages them to do what you want them to do. This is the same for kids as when they do something good you reward them. When preschoolers and puppies are getting potty trained, a common thing to do once they have gone to the bathroom is giving them a treat. Tactics like this will benefit you and your pup or child.

Aaron Hernandez CTE reports!

Aaron Hernandez according to the latest of news had stage 3 CTE, per attorney Jose Baez. His brain was studied at Boston University. It is also in news that the family will sue the NFL and the Patriots. Evidently, there are four stages of CTE, and stage 4 is the most severe.

What’s the backstory?

Aaron Hernandez, the former New England Patriots player committed suicide in April while doing a life sentence for murder. But the story today is that he was found to have a serious type of C.T.E., the degenerative brain disease that is associated with repetitive head injury. What makes matters more interesting is that it has been found in more than 100 past NFL players. Analysts at Boston University who investigated the brain came to the conclusion that it was the nearly the most serious case they had ever witnessed with someone of the age of 27.

C.T.E., or chronic traumatic encephalopathy, can be identified only post-obituary. Hernandez is the most current past NFL player to have taken his own life and then been diagnosed with C.T.E. Some other former football players joining Aaron are Dave Duerson, Junior Seau, Andre Waters, Ray Easterling and Jovan Belcher, among others. Seau and Duerson shot themselves in the chest probably so that analysts would have the capability to investigate their brains. With Hernandez, he hung himself in his own prison cell.

Other players with CTE

Seau, Duerson and Waters were all older than Aaron, past the age of 40, while Hernandez is one of the youngest former NFL players to have had C.T.E. In July, analysts at Boston University discharged information that showed that they had found C.T.E. in the brains of 110 of the 111 past N.F.L. players they had looked at.

The fact that Aaron Hernandez had advanced C.T.E. is tragic. All in all, the NFL must address this devastating occupational health hazard for all its players and do it immediately. It is also tragic that Aaron received the worst case of C.T.E. at his age. It is no wonder now why he took his own life as he probably couldn’t deal with the situation. It is also important that fans address their relationship to the NFL.

Controversy

But controversy still lies in the fact that he still killed someone. Does him having CTE make it okay to murder someone? But let’s also take into consideration that the brain chooses to murder. His brain was damaged, so yes, CTE played a part. But does that make him not guilty by reason of insanity or is he still responsible in the murder? Overall, they can only check for CTE on the dead. Plus, Aaron has always been violent so it is plausible that CTE exacerbated it.

Women, gender and tennis

Three major competitions; Wimbledon, The Rogers Cup, and The US Open are always major talk in the sports industry. I believe tennis to be a very active and exciting sport to watch on television. Although it may not involve as much contact as hockey, basketball, or baseball the quality that makes it stand out from the other sports mentioned are that women are participating and getting recognition in sports.
I believe it is great that we get to watch women participate in sporting events, because it shows that women can do anything that men can do. There has been the biased opinion that women’s tennis is one dimensional, and outside of the norm. I believe this to be false on so many levels. I have watched many stellar women athletes like Serena Williams who plays with aggression, and perfection. I have come to the conclusion that professional athletes like Serena Williams or Maria Sharpova being in the sport as long as they have been, they have the ability to read their opponents weak points. This also applies to players like Madison Keys and Sloane Stephens.
 In addition, they are able to win matches by using their strong points. As I have continued to watch tennis I have come across an issue that has surprised me, but at the same time hasn’t. We would think coming into the year 2017, where women have come so far into the world of sports that both men and women’s tennis would be at the same level of difficulty. I have noticed that men have to play one extra set in tournaments in order to advance to the next round. I find this to be demeaning to women.
 Although some might argue that it seems that men play more, because of the stereotype that they are stronger and that they can handle more, I find this to go against everything that equality has brought to society and to women. Wimbledon tennis used to be only men and now that has changed so I’m sure there is more room for change with women and tennis. Allowing best of fives for women would not only boost athleticism, but it would push athletes to work harder and allow them to want to accomplish more in their career.