coronavirus

What Type of Mask Works Best for COVID-19 Protection

Wearing masks and other masks continues to be a significant topic of dialogue, and official advice is being replaced with more information on covid 19. In early April, the country’s leading national public health, disease control and prevention centers changed their government recommendations to recommend that folks wear non-medical masks outside and around. Whether it’s mandatory or not depends on your state. Topmask in Australia remains a seldom sight among the public.Australia’s masks are all 100% cotton, washable and reusable. Our masks are designed in Australia and that we have sizes available for men and women.

What kind of face mask works best?

Not all masks are created equal. So, the simplest depends on these three things: who you’re, where you’re and what you’re doing. The N95 breathers without valves provide the foremost protection against coronavirus – for the wearer and therefore the people around. But they ought to only be employed by first-time and healthcare workers in certain situations, like those working in close contact with COVID-19 patients, as they’re not the sole droplets to filter aerosols.

There are many various sorts of masks. it’s noteworthy that where medical grades and surgical masks are best, they’re currently in brief supply round the world and will be left to healthcare workers. the general public should cover non-medical fabric.

Surgical masks:

Source:rakuten.com

When you consider masks, surgical masks are what you think that of. These are disposable masks fabricated from synthetic fibers. Clothes are breathable and masks don’t seal the face. Their ability to filter pathogens varies from study to review. Now their supply is extremely low.

N95 masks:

Source:healthline.com

N95 masks provide the following degree of protection than a surgical mask or cloth mask because they’ll filter both large and tiny particles when the wearer breathes. They’re called N95 masks because they’re designed to dam 95% of particles or liquids which will be available contact together with your face. However, these masks aren’t for general public use and can be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders. They’re also incompatible with children or people with facial hair. Healthcare providers are fit tested for these masks, and like surgical masks, they’re intended to be single-use only, though researchers are examining effective ways to scrub these masks.

Facemask:

Source:kitsbow.com

The most effective thanks to filtrate pathogens is by breathing. they’re mounted on the face and sealed to forestall pathogens from entering, and are strictly tested by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

There are many alternative types, different uses. For 100-300 nm size particles: N95 breathable can filter 95% of the particles. N99 filters 99% of the respiratory particles. The N100 filters 99.7% of inhaled particles. The corona virus is estimated at 125 nanometers.

Which material is best for reusable face masks?

A lot of scientists try to work this out, and also the answer isn’t exactly straightforward (is it straightforward when it involves CoVID?). Various researchers have installed devices that spray tiny droplets on the material then estimate what quantity of it comes from the opposite side, while measuring air flow to work out breathing. Also in step with Siegel, what they found was that it had been less about the sort of cloth – cotton, silk, silk – and thus the quality of the material. Top of the range fabric incorporates a stiff wire and thick threads that employment best to forestall droplets from passing.

At the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign who is researching facial mask materials, you furthermore might want the material to be breathable. If the breath couldn’t be obtained with a mask, there would be an exceedingly different reply, which could allow the breath droplets to spread.

What is the proper way to wear a mask to prevent the spread of coronavirus?

Source:kgw.com

Mask to assist prevent the spread of coronavirus, choose one that matches your face well. ensure it covers both your mouth and nose, so there’s no large area round the edges to avoid droplets.

If you’re wearing a medical mask, confirm the blue face is on the surface. White should face your face. the highest of the mask will be indicated by a purple stripe, which should be placed across your nose.

Also confirm you wash your hands before applying the mask, and do not let it go down your forehead or hang it around your neck.

How do I assess the standard of an existing mask?

Two simple tests can facilitate your evaluation of the effectiveness of a cloth mask.

Place a light-weight match or candle about six inches ahead of your face and take a look to blow it off while wearing a mask.

Hold the mask to a bright light and check out to work out it.

If you’ll blow flames or see easily, it is not that thick. So, it is not visiting to dam the droplets.

In what situations do I need a mask?

Source:ucsf.edu

If you’re exercising outside, you most likely won’t wear it. Bring just one as a precaution, if you discover yourself in an exceedingly situation where you cannot keep a minimum of six feet off from others.

Otherwise, it’s important to wear a mask whenever you permit the house, because you never know what you’re visiting. you’ll be able to walk closer to the food market than you expect, or none of your neighbors will wear a mask or observe proper social distance, even just standing around on an out of doors tour. you cannot control other people’s actions, but you’ll always do your part to safeguard yourself et al.

Safety Tips for Cyclists

Cycling is a versatile activity, in that it’s a means of transport, fun, and exercise. However, it also comes with its fair share of risks. 2018 was the deadliest year for bicyclists (as opposed to motorcyclists) since 1990, with 857 fatalities. In addition to accident risks, the coronavirus pandemic has also made cycling a bit more difficult. These don’t exhaust the risks of cycling. Read on to find out what dangers you may face while cycling and what you can do to stay safe.

Dangers and Safety Tips

Source:trainright.com

A common danger is failing to pay attention to the right of way rules. The basic definition of right of way is basically the right to pass of one vehicle over another when on the road. For example, you may have to turn left, but the cyclist next to you has to turn right (and both your paths could intersect at the same time if one does not yield the right of way to the other).If you let the other cyclist turn first, you’re giving them the right of way.

As a cyclist, there are certain instances where you have the right of way. If you’re on a through road and a car is on an intersecting road, the car should give you the right of way. However, ‘should’ makes for a good legal defense, but a bad physical defense. If you don’t mind being patient, don’t give other drivers the benefit of the doubt when it comes to their driver education. Always be prepared to giveothers the right of way to avoid accidents.

Amid the coronavirus, you should find yourself wearing a mask while traveling outside the home. While this is essential to minimize transmission, when you’re exerting yourself, a mask can make breathing a bit more difficult. Additionally, you’ll have to contend with air pollution. To counter this, try to treat cycling as a means of transport rather than as exercise. If you feel yourself getting lightheaded while cycling, slow down and take a moment to catch your breath.

Overtaking is a common source of bicycle accidents. This could be because the cyclist was either overtaking or overtaken in traffic. Generally, there’s no restriction on filtering through lanes or overtaking in slow traffic. However, a large part of this safety relies on the competence of motorists around the cyclist.

If a car makes a turn without indicating, for example, it could cause an accident for a cyclist filtering through their lanes. Try to be a bit more passive with your cycling (though look out for potholes on the edges of the road). Additionally, maintain a 3-foot-or-more distance (safe passing law) from other motor vehicles.

T-junctions and roundabouts are common accident areas. Accidents on T-junctions are most often due to two reasons. First, there can be confusion regarding who has the right of way. Second, motorists emerging onto the through road from the junction can crash into cyclists already on the through road. Roundabout accidents also occur due to miscommunications regarding the right of way.

Moreover, if a motor vehicle overtakes a cyclist and then turns off the roundabout, they could violate the above-mentioned safe passing law. This could reduce the space available to a cyclist and result in an accident. There isn’t much you can do in these cases, since these accidents are largely the result of negligent driving. If possible, try to avoid busy motor areas.

Finally, do whatever you can to improve your visibility to motorists. Many motorists claim a lack of visibility as their defense when an accident occurs. These aren’t terribly strong legal defenses, but to keep yourself safe, you should improve your visibility while cycling especially at night. Wearing high visibility clothing and outfitting your bike with lights will improve visibility at night.

Accidents

You can take many precautions while cycling. However, a large part of your safety depends on the competence, or negligence, of others on the road. Consequently, if you do find yourself in an accident, you should do the following:

Regardless of whether you think you are or aren’t injured, you should seek medical attention and call the police to the scene of the accident. Be skeptical of the negligent driver’s apologies and placations. In court, they often won’t admit their negligence, even if they admit it to you after the accident.

The police’s accident report is a key piece of evidence if you decide to pursue a civil case against the negligent driver. Make sure you tell the police your version of what happened, as well as get the relevant information from the scene. This includes the negligent driver’s name and license number, as well as information from witnesses, like names and phone numbers. If you’re injured, ask someone to gather the information for you.

Once that’s done, get a comprehensive check-up and fully treat your injuries. After you’ve healed and are back up on your feet, make sure to keep copies of your medical reports. They’re used to determine the compensation amount for the damages sustained.

Personal Injury Cases

If you do intend to recover your damages from the negligent driver, you will file a personal injury claim. This is a claim you file with the defendant’s insurance company.  If the defendant is uninsured, you file the claim with your insurance company. A tort is any wrong that infringes on another person’s property, life, or freedom. In a biking accident, you’re likely the victim of a negligent tort, where the motorist did not take the care expected of drivers while driving.

There are four conditions that your accident must meet for you to prove negligence.

First, the driver must have had a duty to act carefully. This is easily provable using the  laws and rules that regulate transportation and vehicles.

Second,you need to prove that the driver disregarded their duties. Proving this requires your and witness testimonies.

Third, the breach of duty must have led to some kind of injury or damage. Your medical report is a key document in proving this.

Finally,you need to prove that the driver’s negligence caused these injuries. This requires a comparison between your pre- and post-accident medical records, as well as witness statements.

If you have suffered a personal injury, get in touch with an injury attorney to represent your case. Contact the Law Offices of Lisa Douglas for a personal injury lawyer in Little Rock, AR. Offering representation for other kinds of cases as well, such as social security disability and criminal cases.

The Mental Health Implications of COVID-19

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has led to enormous repercussions for people around the world.

There are so many worries and fears that people have. There are health concerns, and then there are the financial consequences that have come with economic shutdowns.

There are also the people on the front lines of the pandemic, including first responders and medical professionals who are grappling with an unknown virus.

According to Darras Law, while we are learning more about coronavirus and the treatments seem to be getting better, and deaths appear to be declining, the mental health effects might last far beyond 2020 for many people.

From job loss to isolation, it’s important to be aware of your own mental health and to check in with the people you love.

Everyone Reacts to Stress Differently

Source:bangkokhospital.com

You may feel like you’re much more stressed than others around you about coronavirus or its effects. That’s normal, and people react to stress differently.

People also have different levels of fear in different situations. What may seem incredibly overwhelming for one person may not be as anxiety-producing for someone else.

Some of the people who may have the strongest reactions to the stress of COVID-19 include:

  • People who are considered high-risk to develop severe illness if they contract COVID-19, such as older people or people with certain underlying health conditions.
  • Children and teens.
  • Health care providers and other frontline workers.
  • Essential workers.
  • People with existing mental health concerns.
  • Individuals with a substance use disorder.
  • Someone who’s lost their job or experienced major employment changes.
  • People who live alone and are socially isolated.

If you have a pre-existing mental health condition or a substance use disorder, you may be especially vulnerable to the effects of stress such as what’s stemming from the crisis situation created by coronavirus. It’s important that you’re aware of your risk factors so you can take steps to care for yourself.

What’s Normal and What’s Not?

Again, stress is a normal reaction to certain things in life, and of course, a pandemic would qualify as a stressful situation. It’s imperative that you do give yourself some understanding if you’re experiencing stress but you also have to be able to recognize when things you’re experiencing or feeling might go beyond what’s considered “normal.”

If you have ongoing feelings of sadness or helplessness that aren’t situational and don’t go away, it could be a red flag. If you’re experiencing symptoms like problems concentrating, body aches, or changes in appetite, and these symptoms last for several days in a row, it may go beyond stress. Also if your symptoms are causing problems in your functionality in your daily life, it may not be considered just normal stress.

Managing Your Mental Health During COVID-19

Source:healthblog.uofmhealth.org

If you’re struggling during COVID-19, there are things you can do to take care of yourself and perhaps help your mental health.

Self-care is important for everyone right now.

Make sure that you have a good sleep routine and schedule and that you get plenty of sleep each night.

Regularly exercise because movement can help boost your mood and reduce anxiety. If you can find an activity you can safely and comfortably do outside, even better. Getting sunlight is good for your mental health and it’s also an important part of your physical health because it provides vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency may be linked to worse COVID outcomes.

Don’t give into the temptation to cope with stress by eating unhealthy foods, such as refined sugar and packaged items.

Be careful about your consumption of alcohol because it can make mental health symptoms worse.

Also, aim to limit your screen time. Whether it’s a TV, your phone, or a computer, too much time in front of a screen is going to breed more anxiety and also keep you from engaging in more healthy activities.

If you can turn off the news, you’re likely going to see some big improvements in your mental health just from taking that one step. Constant news about COVID-19 and other things going on in the world right now is incredibly stressful. Social media can expose you to conflict and false information as well.

Know what your triggers are and actively work to avoid them.

For example, if you’re constantly refreshing the COVID death counter on your computer, then you’re triggering yourself over and over again.

Keep a journal for a week where you write down the situations that make you feel most anxious or depressed. After that week is up, look over them and start to identify those patterns that could be your triggers.

Work on training your brain to avoid them and break the loop.

We don’t even realize that sometimes we become addicted to bad news or things that trigger us.

We then put ourselves into a negative emotional spiral. If you can be more mindful and create a replacement for yourself when you find that you want to engage in these triggering behaviors, it can help your mental health.

Source:mymcmedia.org

Get Help If You Need It

By recognizing red flags and warning signs, you may be positioned to get help for yourself if you need it. It’s important to be proactive about seeking help when it comes to your mental health because otherwise the condition can worsen.

There are many options available to you.

One option is to seek support from the people in your life.

You might also reach out to someone who’s part of your faith community.

If your employer has an assistance program, they can provide you with a referral to a mental health profession.

There are organizations like the National Alliance on Mental Health and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration that can put you in contact with service providers and programs.

You can also talk to your primary care doctor and talk about what your options could be.

What’s most important through all of this is that you realize you aren’t alone. Be compassionate with yourself, and do what you need to do to stay mentally healthy.

7 Challenges Faced by Students During COVID-19

The novel coronavirus has created a plethora of challenges for people worldwide, but a major victim of the lockdowns are the students and learners at all levels. As of March 28, 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic is reported to be causing more than 1.6 billion children and youth to be out of school in 161 countries. This is close to 80% of the world’s enrolled students. Here, in this article, we discuss 7 challenges being faced by students during the COVID-19 pandemic.

1. Time and Workload Management

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Everyone has to agree to this. Due to the coronavirus lockdown, schedule management and timing of activities has become the task of students themselves. With the introduction of self-paced programs, the onus is now on the student to plan out his/her study and leisure time. Such a plan may be possible for self-motivated individuals, but for those who need regular nudging from parents, it has created a huge problem of procrastination and ignorance.

2. Access to Information and Communication Equipment

Modern day learning is highly reliant on information and communication technology hardware. Such needs of a personal device have created a huge problem for households having shared devices. Moreover, due to the lockdown, even purchasing new equipment has become an uphill task. This results in the online model of education being non-democratic, thus exacerbating inequality. It makes education the sole right of the ‘haves’ over the ‘have nots’. Online education becomes inaccessible to the masses in developing countries, making education an unlevelled playing field. While the rich countries are able to cope up well, the conditions in undeveloped and underdeveloped nations are of mixed type.

Align with this, high-speed internet is still not available even in the most developed parts of the world, leave alone developing nations. With the advent of classes on Zoom, Skype, Teams, Webex etc. high-speed internet is a must for video conferencing. For the rural or developing world which is dependent mostly on mobile data, lack of connectivity has resulted in access to poor quality of videos.

3. Resource Overload Curse

That exists for real. What might seem as a ‘resource’ could simply lead some for more confusion. Although the internet has lots of content which might seem a boon for an avid learner, but with every resource in excess, comes a resource curse – the wastage. Knowledge never goes waste, time does. A quick glance through a book or a classroom lecture on a topic, say, the American War of Independence for a Class 8th student would give him sufficient details for his exam preparation. However, a Google search for the same will flood him with truckloads of information which he may not be able to digest. Instead, he ends up spending too much time on a topic, researching and reading about it beyond the scope of syllabus, thus, compromising on other topics that are part of his curriculum.

With online learning comes the complex world of social media, advertisements, marketing, e-commerce and all the distractions associated with them. A student can easily get distracted. So, a student reading a Wiki page may suddenly wander onto Facebook or Instagram. Such distractions can be detrimental for learning and can result in wastage of time and energy.

4. Lack of Interest Due to Non-Engaging Content

This is one factor that deeply impacts students. Being virtually present in an online classroom and being physically present in the traditional classroom has its own differences. A teacher can engage a student much more effectively in a traditional classroom. Whereas, in an online classroom, the student might lack interaction and attention from the teacher. Online classrooms become more of a monologue, with the content not meeting the needs of the students requiring more engaging and insightful study. Individual’s problems and their understanding can be catered to in a more holistic way through an offline model.
Testbook, an India based ed-tech startup, recently came up with a new concept of ‘live coaching’ in both web and mobile application formats. This concept ensures that a student gets a personal coach to interact with, gain conceptual clarity, solve doubts and to stay motivated and engaged.

5. Lack of Assessments Leading to Poor Learning Outcomes

No education is complete without tests and assessments. Online learning may lack a transparent, competitive and fair means of testing and assessment. The model more often depends on the integrity of students for their tests and assignments.

6. Online vs Traditional Model Debate

Source:myeducorner.com

Technology has wrapped itself all around our lives. But for online education vs. traditional ways of learning, technology boon is still a topic of debate. For a student taking online classes at home, he’d surely have a hold on abundant study material from all over the Internet. But, at the same time, the student misses on interaction with other students and does not receive direct attention from the teacher. Motivation is a major factor at play in online learning.

7. Dommed Dreams of Abroad Education

Source:globalnexus.com.au

Due to lockdown, many international universities have imposed restrictions on having students at their campus. All the enrolled students are completing their courses online. Many universities are not providing new admissions to international students. This has raised serious concerns amongst abroad-education aspirants in terms of ROI, placements and their future on the whole. Also, there is a big doubt on how effective an online course would be as compared to a fulltime on campus course. Such dilemmas are stressing out students.

The challenges faced by students in the COVID-19 crisis must be taken as an opportunity to upgrade the current education system. Bridging the gap between monotonous non-interactive, e-learning experiences and regular classroom experience, is the need of the hour in order to ensure effective and quality education digitally. Proper training must be provided to the teachers so that they are skilled enough to use the digital teaching tools efficiently and deliver high quality content. Alongside this, the digital infrastructure must be upgraded to accommodate online learning.

3 Reasons Why Bitcoin Price Could Crash in 2020

Three weeks ago, Bitcoin climbed to over $12,000 only to crash in a matter of minutes for $1,500. Investors got chills from such a huge plunge in a short time, and many are now questioning whether or not Bitcoin is able to maintain its value, or if the crash is inevitable. While the coin was taking a dive, 72,000 people decided to quickly sell their Bitcoins which brought down market capitalization from $214 billion to $208 billion. This may not seem like a big deal to ordinary folks who have no investments in digital currency, but in the currency exchange market circles, this is all investors talk about. Bitcoin seems to be justifying the suspicions that followed it from the first day, and now many are in doubt whether to keep the coins or cut their losses and run.

Source:forbes.com

Safer alternatives

This is a second hit for Bitcoin since the beginning of the pandemic back in March when it crashed to a value of a little over $4,000 for 1BTC. The currency is still standing and despite everything, is looking good with the little change for the past couple of weeks, but the traders are not so convinced. Many are questioning their decision to buy coins instead of gold which gained over 15% in value in the past few months.

Speculators are already rumoring that Bitcoin should be converted into more stable assets, with gold topping their choices. However, there have been some good predictions about Bitcoin circulating, like PayPal offering payments to its users in BTC, and Bloomberg suggesting that the coin could hit a $14,000 mark by the end of the year. Still, others seem to be scared of to further invest in an unstable currency and are looking for other sources and potential stakes.

In the last couple of years, investors have been at odds whether to keep Bitcoin or sell and invest in something else, namely gold. The price of gold spiked recently, mostly due to the banks stocking up on the assets, and being cautious since Federal Reserve started printing a lot of money to minimize the pandemic crisis. Will the gold manage to keep the trend of rising or is it just a temporary thing, only time will tell. In the meantime, speculators are buzzing about the weakened American dollar pointing out that it’s the best time to make gold reserves.

Source:express.co.uk

Domino effect

Major banks are suggesting that the market is about to crash which can pull down cryptocurrencies among other markets. One of the main reasons why Bitcoin is maintaining stability and value to some degree is the demand from Chinese investors through Tether. Tether is a US dollar-backed coin that was highly controversial since the creators claimed that every coin is backed by $1. In 2019 this all blew up and the Tether developers admitted that the coin actually was backed up by US dollar and loans. This “loan” part made it unstable and undesirable among investors. So, back to the Bitcoin. Currently, its value is closely dependent on the demand, if any, from the Chinese traders. If they decide at any point to move their investments into hedge funds, Bitcoin might lose the legs it’s standing on, and go down with the rest of the companies on the market.

Billionaires and some millionaires on the Wall St are wary of further investments until the markets are stable again. Many companies are struggling to remain liquid while the pandemic is still in effect. Big players on the New York stock exchange were not favoring Bitcoin even before the coronavirus crisis started saying that the currency that is backed by thin air is doomed. Today, investors are backing out of deals that they otherwise would not, and investing in cryptocurrencies right now is not even an issue. Truth be told, major investors are not thinking about investing in anything right now, but rather are just looking for ways to strengthen their hedge.

International Monetary Fund issued a statement saying that no one can predict with a decent amount of certainty how exactly pandemic is going to influence the markets. Uncertainty is not a friend to the investors and traders, and they tend to stay away from spending on fluctuating investments like Bitcoin. Pandemic completely disrupted trading, and no one can predict how it’s going to behave in the months to come. Because of this high net worth investors are laying low, trying to save their investments, and not making new ones. This could bring a market to a standstill and eventually crashing. When Federal Reserve started injecting more money into the economy to cover for all stimulus checks to boost consumerism and revive job markets, it sent the signal to banks and investment funds that the markets are in dire straits. This made investors put the hold on all investments and hold on to see new developments.

Influence of the stock markets

Source:investopedia.com

In the past year, every time Bitcoin came close to breaking an all-time high of $10,500 it suddenly dropped for a few thousand. This is a vicious cycle that keeps repeating itself. Even though Bitcoin is not backed by any asset, and is not controlled by any government, the stock markets do impact its value. Bitcoin is all about being not influenced by the movements of the traditional markets, but somehow it gets dragged under every time stock exchanges go under. So, we can determine that Bitcoin is not tied up to anything, but it is affected by the value swings of the stocks.

Will Bitcoin crash along with stock exchange? No one knows for sure. If you decide to invest in the current environment you should be more careful than usual. Stock exchanges around the world are struggling to keep moving, but the reality is that the major economies are on their knees. Maybe Bitcoin will survive one more crisis as it did before in the past, although many predict that it will be pulled down along with other stocks. In any case, do your research and get more information at https://infinitytrader.app/ before you make any moves that can cost you dearly.

How to Manage Your Money When Going through a Crisis

The coronavirus pandemic is far from over in the U.S., but already, it has left millions struggling as they lost their jobs due to repeated lockdowns. When times are rough, it is difficult to think straight and to add to our worries by trying to change our spending habits, on top of everything. But it’s important to adapt so you can survive through the crisis, so here are financial movements you should do or shouldn’t.

Entertainment in the COVID-19 Days

Source:scotsman.com

Who would have thought entertainment could be so important in our lives? Of course, we all like to go out, watch a movie, catch a play or head to a restaurant and go dancing afterwards. But if you were told that you weren’t going out on a given night, you wouldn’t have felt like you were missing out. However, the lockdown has created something new inside each of us, which has become as crucial to our survival as much as the money coming in: Being entertained.

When you can go outside your house, you rapidly lose track of what life is. Without working hours to be kept, the days rapidly mix one within the other. Entertainment becomes a way to either forget the confinement and refresh your head or for couples and family, a moment to share which brings normality to an uneasy situation. That is why Netflix was probably the most important company during the crisis, with millions of viewers around the world, evading to other worlds.

But you also need your time alone with entertainment and nothing is as helpful as music to soothe your soul. That is why Tidal, a music streaming app, was one of the most used during the lockdown as well. With over 60 million tracks and 250,000 videos, it provided a way out to be enjoyed alone or even with the other members of the family for an evening of dancing. Thanks to couponbox.com, you can obtain a reduction on the cost of the membership at Tidal but also on many different items like restaurants, a night at the hotel and clothes. That way, when you feel the urgent need to order out or do a little shopping, you can still save some money while doing so. Which brings us back to: How can you save money during these difficult times?

Defining what is necessary and what isn’t

Source:ft.com

This is probably the most difficult question you will face during this crisis. Why? Because needs can differ greatly from one person to another. That is, of course, until you need to reduce your spending to the bear minimum. Let’s hope this whole situation will resolve itself before any of us gets to that point.

However, there is no doubt that some habits will have to be changed for everyone facing difficult times on the horizon, after having been laid off temporarily or permanently for others. The problem is that we don’t know when companies will start hiring again, so it is better to save as much as we can in the meantime.

When defining what is necessary for you, make a list of all the extras you pay during a week (don’t write down monthly bills like electricity, loan or rent and other utility bill. Gas for the car, which would normally be one of the necessary spendings, may not be right now, if you don’t have to go to work. Once you have made the list, which should include things like cinema, restaurants, Netflix, golf, a day at the spa, etc., then you will have to start looking into what you are ok to live without.

Reduce Costs, Including Bills Whenever Possible

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There are things you should permit yourself to do in crisis which you should never do otherwise. One of them is lower your payment on your credit card. It is essential for a healthy lifestyle to be able to pay your credit card balance in full every month. If you don’t, that clearly means you are spending too much and there will come a time where you won’t be able to get out of this debt. But in a period of crisis, that is one of the bills you can cut by simply paying the minimum amount. However, be aware that you are doing so and that this situation is only temporary, or else you will find yourself in trouble. Then, go through your budget and try to find other bills on which you can temporarily pay less or simply stop for the duration of the crisis.

Reduce Your Savings Input

The best-balanced families usually have an amount of money they consider as savings for each pay check that comes in. That helps you build an emergency fund for times… just like the ones you are currently living. Don’t try to be mightier than you can be about savings. Of course you won’t be able to add to your savings (since you won’t be receiving pay checks anymore) but don’t stop yourself from using that money, because you believe it is not meant to be spent. It is exactly what it is meant to do: protect you in times of difficulties. Of course, manage it wisely so that you don’t find yourself spending it all. The fact that you have it doesn’t mean that you can continue your normal life as if you were employed.

Lower Your Pride and Get help from your Community When it Is Offered

Source:business2community.com

Community help is not always for other people then you. Hardship can happen to anyone, and you should not let your pride get in the way of accepting the help which is so graciously offered. Not all communities have this chance, so if you are part of one that provides it, accept it. To learn about the help which exists around you, call 2-1-1 or go to 211.org. The services they offer can be quite varied, from food banks, to meals for students and seniors and even psychological health for those who are suffering mentally from the pressure they are being put through.

There is also some relief that is being brought by the Federal government such as the postponement of federal student loan payments as well as coronavirus-specific unemployment programs. If you don’t take the time to learn about them, you may be spending money you shouldn’t have to or are not receiving some to which you are entitled.

Find a high savings rate

Now, is the perfect time for you to be proactive in looking for a better saving rate. It is easy to open a high-yield saving account today, in an online bank, which can get you more than the 0.06% average currently being given out (on average). Some even go above 1%. This is the simplest way you will find to earn more money from the one you already have and do so in a matter of minutes.

Conclusion

No matter what you do, keep a tab on how much money you are taking out of your saving accounts. The last thing you want is to find yourself having to rebuild it all once the crisis is gone. Yes, it is there to protect you and to enable you to survive such a crisis, but the more remains on your bank account and the easiest it will be to rebuild it when you go back to work.

Top Tips for Starting an Online Business

It’s been a tough few months for the world, with the Coronavirus pandemic leading to many staff furloughed and leaving many companies no choice but to close their doors forever.

But for many, Coronavirus and the period of lockdown has been a catalyst for business creativity and innovation. With more free time than usual, individuals everywhere have been able to work on their “side-hustles” and turn passions into profit. This period of uncertainty has given rise to a whole new generation of entrepreneurs, with the sale of baked goods, arts and crafts, and home-made hand sanitizers, just a few examples of lockdown businesses that have bloomed in their multitude.

The pandemic has also been a real eye-opener for owners of traditional brick-and-mortar businesses. The realization of having to adapt their digital and online strategies has been key for survival. For such business owners, the lockdown has been a time of working on new websites, boosting their social media presence and digging deep into researching their online audiences in order to find out how best to reach them.

And so, one thing we know for certain coming out of lockdown, is that a strong online presence is essential for any business.

If you, too, are armed with a business idea and feeling like you’re ready to dive into the sea of entrepreneurism, take a look at these simple yet winning tips to get you off to a flying start.

Get to know your audience

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Really knowing your audience is an essential stage in targeting your efforts. If you want to make sales, you have to figure out who your primary target audience is, what they want, what they care about, and what they don’t care about. This will be vital information to drive your marketing.

A good first step is to ask yourself, “who should I be marketing to, and how will I reach them?”. This will involve identifying the age, gender, location, socioeconomic status, and other demographic and psychographic traits of the consumer who would be most interested in purchasing your product or service.

Deep research around these points will enable you to optimize your marketing efforts to engage and convert your target audience. For example, knowing what kind of content your audience likes should influence the design and creation of your own website content.

Create compelling content

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An important ingredient in both attracting and keeping your target audience engaged is the creation of regular, high-quality content.

If you’re selling products online, you need to ensure you’re using professional photography and clear descriptions so potential customers can easily find what they’re looking for.

You should plan and create content with your target audience always in mind. You can write engaging blogs that provide valuable information to your audience and answers any questions they may have and create eye-catching social media graphics on free tools such as canva.com. With 85 percent of people watching video content daily, you may wish to capitalize on this trend by producing a promotional video of your products or services.

Create a strong social media presence

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Social media is an essential tool in growing a strong online presence – so much so that some entrepreneurs have even built an entire business on social media platforms.

It’s a great place to promote your products and services and build up a community of followers both organically and through targeted, paid advertising.

There are so many social media channels available today, from the more established platforms such as Facebook to newer but booming platforms such as TikTok. You’ll need to identify which platforms your audience prefers and create a strong strategy to ensure you’re truly engaging them. Take a look at these six tips for boosting your social media presence in 2020.

Create a user-friendly website

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In today’s market, you can’t really have a strong online presence without a business website.

Fortunately, it’s never been easier to create powerful and well-designed websites thanks to the wide variety of business website builders available at your fingertips. Be sure to read reviews and do your research in order to decide which one will best fit your needs.

You need to ensure your website is designed with your target audience in mind, from the colors, style, and placing of imagery, to the keywords used throughout your website copy. These are all necessary steps in order to optimize your site for Google and to convert website visitors to paying customers.

On top of this, it’s important to ensure your website has a strong and reliable eCommerce Payment Gateway in place (for more information, visit www.utpgroup.co.uk). This is necessary in order to take payments from customers around the world, enabling you to increase the reach of your business and geographic spread of your customer base.

Devise a digital marketing strategy

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A digital marketing strategy is a plan of action that underpins all of the above points. It’s a holistic approach, using digital channels such as social media, email marketing, and more, to drive more traffic and convert more sales.

No matter your industry or company size, it’s one of the best ways to grow your business. Simply put, a strong digital marketing strategy consists of defining your goals and then strategizing how digital media tactics can help you achieve them.

Despite the challenges of the Covid-19 crisis, many businesses are thriving. If you have an online business idea and time on your side to work on it, now really is the time.

How Will US Manufacturing Industry Adjust After COVID?

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There is a stark divide among the opinions surrounding what will change after the Covid-19 pandemic that has swept the globe. Some have hope that normalcy is waiting just around the corner while others fear that our previously perceived normal may never return.

For now, most of the world has a shared agenda: slow or stop the spread of the coronavirus among the population in order to save lives. The effort is so important that governments have issued emergency protocols and even enforced surveillance technology to ensure that social distancing rules are followed.

Many remain in full or even partial lockdown within their homes or cities. States have even closed borders refusing to allow entry in hopes that this will slow the spread of coronavirus. Suddenly, our worlds have changed around us and forced millions to re-think their daily lives from how they work to how they shop for things essentials.

We know from history that the short-term actions taken in response to any global or even local crisis tend to have a lasting effect on our society. Our “new normal” is actually quite literally our new normal because our view of normal has been forever altered. Manufacturers who embrace and take action based on this new normal will be the ones who come out on top in the end.

Covid-19 The Short-Term Actions on Manufacturers

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As mentioned above, the short-term actions embraced during the pandemic (in homes, public, and even in places of employment) are going to have long-term effects. Before we can truly understand those effects though, we need to first take a look at the short-term actions taken to control the spread of the virus.

In fact, Covid-19 has affected manufacturers in quite a few unexpected ways. The demand for certain products has soared as people purchased them in panic. Simultaneously, the ability to make more of these products (supply) plummets because fewer workers are available and allowed into the facility at the same time.

While some manufacturers are experiencing a boost in demand for products, others are experiencing devastating drops in demand for their goods and services. Regardless of the product, every manufacturer is now facing unprecedented challenges across the board in regards to continuing daily operations in manufacturing.

Now, manufacturers have to wrestle with new and not-so-exciting changes that have come about because of the short-term efforts to slow the spread of Coronavirus around the world. Social distancing, for example, is a pressure that manufacturers have to struggle with.

Consider for a moment that in manufacturing, six feet of distance might create a new problem regarding employee safety. Further, between 40 and 50% of manufacturing employees will not be allowed to perform their on-site functions. Of course, some of these employees may be able to work from home, especially if they have an office job, but the majority of the work undertaken in a factory is simply not suited to remote locations.

Source:mckinsey.com

The Long-Term Issues

While many of the trends that will emerge after the Covid-19 pandemic begins to subside had actually started long ago, these trends will certainly be sped up a bit by the emergence of the pandemic. Many will say that US manufacturing will never be the same again. Some companies, such as become.co, are offering solutions for some of the problems that emerge as a result of Covid-19.

Some of the trends that will begin to emerge are:

  • Re-emergence of Domestic Manufacturing

The U.S. relies heavily on supplies imported from other countries. However, during this time of isolation, we are seeing a significant difficulty in sourcing some of those goods which cause a problem for our supply lines. While it is certainly less expensive to purchase these goods elsewhere, being unable to find them is a serious issue.

Because of this, we will likely see a significant uptick in U.S. manufactured goods that we have not seen in quite some time. Considering that many of these goods are necessary for the survival and sustainability of the U.S. citizens, the government is certain to provide a significant amount of support to fill this need within the border of the country.

  • Supply Chains will be Decoupled

The chain of supply has been critically affected in the U.S. manufacturing sector. In fact, companies that relied on suppliers who are located in South Asia are experiencing a critical shock in their ability to receive continuous and reliable supplies.

This issue has brought awareness to the need for a reliable and diverse group of suppliers who exist across the globe rather than in one small area. On the other hand, suppliers will benefit from a more diverse base of clients as well in the event of another catastrophic event.

  • Investment in Digital Technologies

We can clearly see that companies were going to continue investing in enhanced technology for a variety of reasons. However, the pandemic has made companies highly aware of their technological deficits during a time of isolation and uncertainty.

If nothing else, one of the long-term effects is that companies will continue to invest in products that increase productivity and profit. These products, more often than not, involve complex software that companies can use to make complicated mathematical predictions.

  • Working From Home

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Manufacturing requires quite a few employees to be present during a working shift. In fact, most plants require multiple employees to run machines and even need maintenance workers constantly on the clock in order to make sure machines are functioning properly. There is simply no way for manufacturing companies to move entirely to remote work.

However, much like in any other business, there are a number of jobs that can be completed in a remote location. Office jobs, management, human resources, etc. Many of these jobs will be moved to remote positions, another technology shift that was likely to eventually happen either way.

Final Thoughts

When there is a global crisis, society experiences shifts in the way they think about home, work, politics, and even family. These shifts are usually meant to be temporary, but often they wind up having lasting effects on our world.

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