Here are this week’s Life Pro Tips.
1. Go ahead and take that raise into a higher tax bracket! You’ll still be bringing home more money than before.
Only the money above the old tax bracket will be taxed at a higher rate. If you were making $99,999 per year and you got a raise to $100,001, i.e. a $2 per year raise, only the $2 would get taxed at the higher rate.
So don’t worry, and may you get a raise in 2023!
2. Even if you are happily employed, spend 30-45 minutes job searching a few times per year.
Most people stop looking at other options once they get a job they are content with. Even if you are happy/content at your current job you may find that you are being underpaid or underutilized for your skill set.
You might find that you are more thankful for the job you do have after seeing what is out there, which will make you happier at work.
You may also find yourself needing another job sooner than expected, so it’s a good idea to know what is going on in the market and not be left feeling totally shocked and unprepared.
If you are unhappy at your job, or just stuck in a rut, seeing what else is out there might motivate you to make a much-needed change. Not all jobs are going to be “fun” but life is too short to work a job you truly dread going to.
Online job postings are everywhere. LinkedIn, Glassdoor, Craigslist, Indeed, and Monster.com are a few that come to my mind that can be browsed casually while watching Netflix, etc.
3. Don’t be the first to applaud at a classical music concert.
Musicians often take a short break between movements during which the audience watches in silence. To an inexperienced listener, it may seem as though the piece was over. Unless you know the piece being played and are confident the musicians have actually finished, don’t start clapping. It’s safer to wait for others to start and then join in.
4. How to kill bed bugs effectively and inexpensively.
Bed bugs have a reputation for being difficult to deal with, but a lot of that stems from common misinformation you will find online, and also because many products sold to kill them simply don’t work. For example, some people say to use ultrasonic pest repellents, bed bugs don’t have ears. They have also largely developed immunity to the chemicals used in sprays and foggers. In fact, the University of Rutgers Entomologist Dr. Wang, considered an expert on the topic of bed bugs, predicts 100% of bed bugs will be immune to them within 10 years.
So what actually works?
The good news is there are still a couple of methods that work very well, and the better news is that you don’t have to spend much to get them.
For the bed bugs, you can’t see, Diatomaceous Earth.
Diatomaceous Earth is inexpensive and is composed of silica. Silica will stick to bed bugs and draw moisture out of their bodies, dehydrating them to death. It also has the added benefit of transferring from one-bed bug to another on contact, meaning when they walk back to their hidey-hole, it will transfer to bed bugs that might not have needed to leave to feed for a few weeks, and kill them as well. And since it dehydrates them, they will never develop immunity to it.
And with Diatomaceous Earth, a little goes a long, long way. When applying it on their footpath, light dusting is all that is needed. Making piles of it only encourages them to find other ways of getting to where they want to be.
For the bed bugs you can see, heat.
122 degrees Fahrenheit, or 50 degrees Celsius. Once they are exposed to that temperature, they die immediately. So a simple steamer can kill all the bed bugs that have found hiding spots that are more easily accessible, such as on the mattress or in the bed frame. And like D.E., heat is also something that they will never become immune to.
These two methods of eradication aren’t going to be a single application process. The Diatomaceous Earth in this experiment had a 90% mortality rate at 10 days, so it may require a few weeks. It will also benefit greatly by being paired with a rigorous cleaning regimen, such as more frequent sheet washing in hot water, and drying on the hot setting, as well as frequent sweeping and vacuuming(and don’t forget to empty the bag immediately after). So while it will involve some work, the alternatives can be costly, which can include companies that come to your home to make the entire interior reach temperatures that kill the bed bugs and cost thousands of dollars to do so.
What is the evidence these methods work?
Youtuber Mark Rober recently made an in-depth video on some experiments, which were overseen by entomologist Dr. Wang at Rutgers University, so you can see the results yourself!
Here is the setup for the experiment. You only need to watch 2 minutes from the beginning of this link to see the entire setup, variables, controls, etc.
Here are the results of the experiment. You only need to watch 2 minutes and 12 seconds to see the entire result.
Here is how the Diatomaceous Earth and heat work to kill the bed bugs. You only need to watch one minute of this link to see how effective they are.
Here are some tips on how to prevent bringing them into your home. You only need to watch 1 minute from this point in the video to learn them all.
And finally, here is the link to the entire
~24-minute video, if you just feel like learning more about bed bugs.
5. Intrusive thoughts are a natural mechanism, often there to make sure you don’t do the thing (like cross the center line in traffic). Acknowledge the thought as intrusive, and what concern it brings up, and move on.
Parenthood has brought on a host of intrusive thoughts I would rather not have, but this is what my therapist told me.
You don’t have to engage with your intrusive thoughts, but trying to suppress or ignore them likely will not work as well as acknowledging them and moving on.
Your intrusive thoughts do not make you a bad, broken, or messed up person, and most people have them in some form or another.