7 Signs You Need to Hire A Plumber ASAP

A house is like a working factory. It may not resemble one but if you look closely you can relate to it. There are so many systems working together to keep it a functional house.
Let us have a look in the kitchen.

There are several appliances for heating, cooling, and brewing your food and drinks. Most of these appliances are either connected to water pipes, gas lines, or electricity. Then there is a sink, plumbing fixtures, and its garbage disposal.

A lot of pipes and wires can be seen while others are fixed in the walls. The same is the case with your bathroom and other parts of your home.

It is easy to tell that the plumbing is the central system of your home. You can’t imagine a happy and healthy day without a working plumbing system. If you want to keep your daily routine on its track, it is important to know the warnings signs.

Here is a list of 7 signs you need to hire a plumber as soon as possible.

Burst Or Leaky Pipes

leaking pipes

A burst pipe can flood your house within a few minutes. It can incur water damages worth thousands of dollars. The first step is to find the main water valve and shut it down. Once you have stopped the water flow successfully, it is best to call your nearest plumber to fix it. Smart homeowners understand the importance of immediate action in case of burst pipes or you will be dealing with a mold problem in your house very soon.

Failed Water Heater

Opening your tap to unwind under a hot shower is a moment of relaxation. What if you are hit with stone-cold water? This is a sign of water heater failure. Check the thermostat of the water heater. Is it adjusted at the right temperature setting? Is the water heater working? DIY repair of a water heater is a major risk. Hiring a professional plumber is the safest approach.

No Water In Your House

when to call a plumber no water

Well, having no water in your house is a little less annoying than water flooding your home but you can’t continue to live like that. You have to hire a plumber to check the main water supply. You can check on your water utility for reporting the issue if the plumber is unable to fix the issue.

Water Pressure Is Non-Existent

Low or non-existent water pressure in your house indicates an underlying problem in your plumbing system. It may be a clogged or leaky pipe. If water pressure has declined in a single faucet, simple cleaning of the pipe can fix the issue. Most of the homeowners need professional assistance to fix the issue.

If you have pressure problems in all of your plumbing fixtures, it probably indicates a major leak or clogs. It is important to find a master plumber to fix it because clogs can often lead to burst pipes.

Slow Draining Sinks

The slow draining sink is one of the ugliest sights. You have to look at the toothpaste remains and soap bubbles in your sink long after you are done with brushing your teeth. It is gross.

Simple DIY drain cleaning tricks can be very helpful in removing the drain clogs but, at times, you need professional plumbers to get it running. Make sure to check the competence and reliability of a plumber before letting them in your house.

A Serious Back Flow Issue

Backflow issues are some of the worst plumbing issues. The water going down the drains is not that smelly but when it returns from the main drain, it can be pretty disgusting, not to mention the contamination.

The backflow can soak your investments on the floor furnishings within a few hours. Whether you have carpets, expensive hardwood, or both of them, water can ruin them. Hiring a plumber is the most efficient way to get it over with.

Soggy Basement

What if you find your basement a bit soggy on your last trip? The water in your basement is not something you should ignore. Hire the best plumbing services to get it checked.

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How to Earn Money on Social Media in this Pandemic

With the onslaught of the pandemic, more and more are finding themselves without work as numerous industries lose revenue at an alarming rate. In America alone, it was reported that 20.5 million Americans were unemployed as of April 2020. That alone is enough to push people to find alternative sources of income – whether it be a part-time job to keep afloat or an online work to market their skillset.

A new audience has emerged, hungry for information and connectivity with others in the same situation, and even content creators have taken notice. Many social media influencers have diversified their content to cater to this new paradigm shift, moving towards lifestyle and fitness as more of their audience find themselves staying home.

While social media can be a gray area, it’s obvious that it can be an effective platform for marketing. Even small businesses are jumping on the bandwagon and using social media to their creative advantage. It’s not too late to use your social media platforms to start earning money in these trying times. Here’s how you can get started:

Market yourself

earning money on social media

Social media influencers are making money independently by marketing themselves as their own product. In 2017, 86% of brands depended on influencer marketing campaigns. With the pandemic putting a halt to full-blown productions and cutting budgets, brands are looking towards social media influencers as an alternative to produce and air their ads.

Grow your following by defining your own brand and tone with an attractive feed. And this can be done easily using free downloadable apps on Google Play and App Store like Instasize, which allows you to customize and create eye-catching posts with its array of filters, fonts, and photo-editing tools.

Engage your followers

Use your following to your advantage to get the word out or redirect them to the social media page of your brand. But more importantly, you need to get your followers engaged first. The best place to get the engagement you need is on Instagram where it has 58 times more engagement per follower as compared to Facebook.

Stand out with visual appeal on your feed as the human brain processes visuals 60,000 times more than text. Use eye-catching photos and graphics, and add context to your content. Ask the audience their opinions on product-related posts to get them engaged.

Promote your product

Use your social media account to advertise what you are offering to your audience. Make sure that your bio includes professional information, including the link to your website and contact information (an email address should suffice). Get clear and attention-grabbing photos of your product, which you can repost from your customers, to add a human touch.

While Facebook includes Groups and Maketplace that lets you sell products to virtually anyone in your circle of interest or area, Instagram, as a platform, allows you to build your brand, promote it, and gain an engaged following. Besides, it makes more money, too. An engaged follower on Instagram is likely to spend $10 more than an engaged follower on Facebook.

Tag your products

earn money on social media

Instagram also includes a neat feature that allows customers to shop your products directly on your page through shoppable posts. Customers can click on product tags on your post and add it directly to their carts without having to leave your page.

To add product tags for shoppable posts, you’ll need to merge your shop’s Instagram profile to your Facebook shop or Business Manager catalog which you’ll need to be an admin of. Once connected and approved, you’ll be able to tag products on your Instagram posts.

Advertise your skills

If you’re a professional in a certain field, you can market your expertise online – particularly on social media. Offer your skills per project or up your profile to get hired as a remote employee. Professionals are taking to social media to offer their skills while the pandemic has rendered them unemployed.

Many are also realizing this new direction could be an opportunity for something bigger. Comedian Matt Levy took to Twitter to offer his writing skills on a per-project basis. Seeing its potential for success, he’s looking to start an independent public relations company in the near future.

With the pandemic in tow, now is the ideal time to think outside of the box. As more and more lose their main sources of income, it has become apparent that new paradigms need to be adapted in this new normal. And fortunately, with present technology, the opportunities continue to present themselves as more and more needs arise from a shifting consumer market.

Think of a skill or something you’re good at and hone it. Find your target audience and market it properly using the proper social media platform. It’s a risk but a worthwhile one if you use your creativity to your advantage.

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Two Reasons to Stop Striving Towards Perfection and Instead Be More Creative

“I need to be the perfect student”. “I must be the perfect employee”. “I have to be the perfect parent”. Many people with high anxiety strive towards perfection. I have been known to be a perfectionist in school, always trying to get straight A’s and being disappointed with any grade lower. You know a perfectionist when you see them and you might be one yourself.

Being detail-oriented and super organized can be helpful in getting good grades, meeting work expectations, and raising children. However, striving towards this idea of perfection is only hindering you. Worrying and walking a path towards being perfect has two main downsides.

The high bar ignores many accomplishments

overcome perfectionism

Perfection is a ridiculously high bar and you would have to go through many obstacles to get there. This can take years and the obstacles include making sacrifices such as your time and energy. Every time you have an accomplishment, you are comparing it to the high bar you have set for yourself. At that point, any success is not as significant and does not bring you as much joy and pride as it should.

The student who strives to be extra excellent often misses out on fully celebrating their good report card. Some perfectionists do not take the chance to jump up and down with joy after graduating with a degree. We ignore these accomplishments because our ‘perfect’ plan is not yet complete. It can be scary to realize there are still years to go for that certificate, degree, license, etc. I mean, does it ever end? If your journey in academics is long, you might as well enjoy it.

Perfection makes you stuck

The other downside is that you might reach perfection and then get stuck in, what I like to call, a snow globe. If you become the perfect employee, you often become stuck in that position because you are perfectly filling the role. You are doing what the boss wants you to do and why would they want to move you from a position that you fill perfectly? It is easier for the powers that be to watch you in your snow globe, performing a set of tasks consistently. They will put the globe up on the shelf and that is where you will sit, likely beginning to collect dust.

When you reach perfection, you prevent yourself from becoming the most creative version of yourself. We can only become more creative by brainstorming, taking risks, and failing. The word ‘fail’ is making all perfectionists cover their ears and close their eyes because it sounds like nails on a chalkboard. I beg you to please hear me out. Everyone fails and failing helps us learn how to do something better than the last time.

Every time we look at something from a different angle, try a new approach, and fail, we learn something about ourselves. What we learn then helps us grow. People who are entrepreneurs, trailblazers, and super creative take risks and have failed. Although these people can reach great success in their career and relationships, they still are not perfect.

Be more creative

how to overcome perfectionism be creative

So how do you slip out from underneath the heavy pressure of perfectionism? Allow yourself to create, even if you need to push yourself to do so! Write down your hopes, interests, and dreams to help you contribute something unique to the world. Design a new system, invent a new product, compose a song, or write an article about what you know to be true.

If it is hard to create out of thin air, focus on something that you already like and change it. Add your flair to the dress, mix beats in the song, or deconstruct the model to reassemble it into something new. You might like what you created or you might hate it. Either way, you took a risk and absolutely learned something. Some lessons are small, tiny even, but they all add up to making big changes in our life. These changes make you a more unique person and not a perfect one.

Perfection can seem great, but remember that there are downsides. Consider ending your path towards perfection in order to grow beyond it. Instead, grow into someone who is more creative.

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When Reality Threatens To Kill Your Dream, Turn Reality Into Your Dream

“All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.”
– T.E. Lawrence

The current worldwide pandemic and the isolation rules that came with it did not go well with my claustrophobic nature. It forced me into a limited, uncreative space. It deprived me of experiencing new places and meeting new people. It kept me from living my latest dream.

Moving with my husband from South Africa, my country of birth, to Rwanda, I had to quit my teaching career three years ago. To write was always a dream, but I did not have the self-confidence. My husband convinced me to enter for an online writing course.

dreams into reality

I finished a course in travel writing with flying colors. But then today’s global health crisis happened. As one border post after the other closed, my enthusiasm waned. The word processing faculty in my brain was slowly locking down.

The borders of my country of residence choked me. I could not go on my four monthly visits to South Africa. Our family’s planned trip to the Netherlands had to be canceled, as well as the visit to my sister in Houston, Texas.

My dream to be a travel writer slowly slipped through my fingers. In my mind, negativity piled up like an enormous mountain of trash.

At some point, I realized that I had to do something. I was the only one who could change my state of mind. I had to escape the emotionally claustrophobic space I was locked in.

Though to set unrealistic goals in a time where everybody suffered (and is still suffering) to keep their heads above water, would be ridiculous. I had to dig deep to find something that would lighten my mood and put me back on track.

My thoughts spiraled like a whirlwind in my head. It searched desperately for something positive to focus on. Backward and forward, it moved in time.

Eventually, it lingered on almost forgotten moments in the past. It pondered on travels to different places, people I met and the experiences I had.

I could not remember details like the names of restaurants, hotels, or tourist shops. But chunks of life-changing experiences came back to me. The possibility of beautiful stories unfolded in my mind.

An extra-ordinary thought grasped my attention. I could travel to places where I had been before without spending a dime. À la Amelia Mary Earhart, the “Queen of the Air,” I prepared for a solo flight.

I jumped on my visionary plane and had the trip of my life:

  • I revisited Africa’s plains where I was taught to live true-hearted to my fellowmen and the planet. Many wise people from this continent crossed my path. They taught me about integrity, diligence, and respect.
  • Numerous encounters with majestic African animals put my being into perspective. Looking for a brief moment in the gentle eyes of a gorilla made me realize how insignificant my existence was. Though, my race is single-handedly responsible for the nearly extinct status of this noble animal.
  • Sailing around Thailand, I encountered a culture and religion as far removed from mine as the East from the West.
  • An emotionally rewarding backpack trip with my two sons through Europe was an opportunity to reconnect with my ancestors’ roots.
  • Thanks to Hollywood and hearsay stories, I had some preconceived ideas on the American people and their lifestyles. A three-month visit to the States taught me valuable lessons about passing judgment when you have superficial or the wrong information.
  • South America astounded me with its riches and beauty, so different from Africa, my continent of birth, but with so many similarities.

Memories kept flowing back. Like a fine wine, it had improved over time and left me with a full, smooth taste of life.

turn your dreams into reality

The words, which eluded me for so long, started coming back. My bygone travels provided useful material, but more importantly, it inspired me to get a new grip on my dream.

I would not write the regular shiny magazine articles that provide readers with information about recommended day trips, posh hotels, or Michelin star restaurants. No, it would be life stories about experiences that enriched my life.

I realized we should never allow inescapable situations to press us into claustrophobic spaces where we cannot reach our dreams.

“Never give up on an idea. Just approach it from another perspective,” became the refrain with which I started a new day.

Sometimes we stretch for something too far out of reach, instead of making use of what we have already available.

Currently, I am working on a new blog where my past travels and encounters with interesting people will be the source of my content. On my imaginary trip, I have collected unpolished gems to craft stories, which hopefully will enrich other people’s lives.

The most valuable outcome of this experience will not be about my successes, but rather the insight that I could drag myself out of a deep, dark hole.

The most important lesson I have learned is to take stock of what I have piled up in the hidden drawers of my being and to assess the potential of the available stock open-mindedly.

© Margarete Heese, August 2020

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How To Launch And Optimize A Corporate Blog Generating Leads

Blogging became one of the most powerful tools for leads generation. Today, content plays a big part not only in entertaining but also in making sales. Though, there is a long way between just a reader, aka follower, and a qualified lead. How to make that way shorter? Read on to find out more about optimizing corporate blogs for generating inbound leads.

Keep Readers Interested

lead generation blogging

Modern readers are demanding and unforgiving of lapses. Your texts have to be informative, provide value, and be catchy at the same time. No matter what you need to tell your potential customers about, make it interesting. Think on how to present information in an easy and captivating way.

It can be a good idea to lead the narration by using a specially created character or even just one of the members of your team. It all depends on the field of your business, a platform you use for blogging, and purposes you want to reach.

Veterinarian communities can speak through a cat or a dog character who knows about pets’ needs and speak to people in order to explain the animals’ needs. Use your imagination and try to create a friendly atmosphere inside your blog.

Make A Content Strategy

To keep followers active and convert them into customers, you need a content strategy. It should include different types of posts including entertaining, advertising, and informative ones. The blog becomes popular when followers associate themselves with themes you explore. Try to understand what worries your customer and answer those requests in your blog.

If you can’t do it on your own, organize a poll and ask people what kind of content they would like to see in your blog. This way you would kill two birds with one stone. The polls not only push you in the right direction but also increase activity, and show readers you care about their opinion.

Also, content has to be added in your blog on a regular basis. Make a schedule and stick to it because regularity keeps readers involved and interested. What about style? You can tell stories and communicate in any manner you like, but most readers usually like a soft and unostentatious style of narration.

Encourage people to communicate and share opinions more, ask what they think about your latest article, and that will bring results. Communication is key to generating leads.

Let People Communicate

blogging lead generation

How to make followers communicate more? It depends on the services or products you offer to the clients. The following techniques are universal and work well for any area. We talk about useful advices, discussions, and answers to frequently asked customers’ questions.

If people see feedback and feel like their needs are important to blog creators they may become your inbound leads. Make sure your blog has all options for active readers to communicate with you. There have to be options for leaving contact details, which you can use for marketing goals. To generate leads, ascertain that your site makes it possible to:

  • order a call;
  • register a trial account;
  • sign up for updates or webinars;
  • join live chats service;
  • download interesting and useful materials in exchange for contact details.

You can also organize contests with valuable prizes and use chatbots to get more leads. Read on to know more about this method of leads generation.

Contests

Contests are maybe one of the best methods to turn readers into customers and get new leads. If you sell goods, make your followers vote for one of three products, and then offer a discount on “a winner”. Do you want to invite more potential clients into messengers?

You can use chat bots for that purpose. In order to participate in such contests and win the prize, users have to answer a few questions and click the messenger button. The type of contest has to match your platform, goals, and interests of the audience. Photo caption, giveaways, and “comment to win” contests are multi-purpose solutions.

Analyze Leads Behavior

Even if you are satisfied with the number of qualified leads and the followers’ activity, it’s important to analyze users’ behavior. View stats, analyze it, and change a strategy according to that data. It’s the only way you will be able to improve the results of leads generation and achieve greater success.

Author’s Bio

Karl Murphy is a professional journalist from Des Moines, Iowa. After obtaining his Master’s degree, he’s launched his career and over its course, Karl was contributing to the popular publications for men. He’s passionate about eSports, so now he develops his blog, csgo-bettingsites.com.

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5 Invaluable Tips To Help You Improve Your Self-Confidence

A good number of people go through life having doubts about who they are and what they can achieve. Many fail to believe in themselves, and in the long run, this affects their productivity and achievement.

One constant attribute of highly successful people is great self-confidence, and this article is going to give you simple tips on how to improve your self-confidence so you’ll become more successful and productive in what you do.

Understand your strengths

The first and most important thing to do if you want to grow your self confidence is to understand what you are good at. It may be a piece of cake for some, but for others it may be a great deal to figure that out.

I once asked someone what he was good and he told me he couldn’t think of anything. That made me realize it could be really hard for some people to find out what exactly they are good at. But, as hard as it may be for many, it’s still a very simple thing to do if you relax and take your time to do it.

You are a unique individual. The question is not whether you can fly a chopper, or read complex coordinates. The thing is; what is it you do effortlessly? Single it out! Those around you can also help you figure it out. It can even be things like the ability to make people laugh, or the ability to offer good counsel.

The reason we are not talking about the areas you are not good at is because focusing on them will be anti-productive. But, knowing the thing(s) you are good at gets you started in the self-confidence journey.

You know you’re important. You realize there is something you have, something you can contribute to your world, and something you can change.

When you get hold of what you are great at, it gives you a sense of identity and improves the way you feel about yourself and what you do.

Take your time; take yourself out. Ask yourself the things you have a flair for. Put down areas you’re passionate about, and areas friends have pointed out you do greatly. Those will help you decide about your strengths.

Accept yourself: Stop unnecessary comparison

self acceptance

Every person with great self-confidence has mastered the art of accepting themselves. After knowing who you are, and understanding your strengths, the next and most reasonable response is to accept who and what you are.

“I am a jazz singer,”, “I am a fiction writer,”, “I thrive at counseling people,”, “I am a stand-up comedian,”, “I am a serious-minded thinker,”, “I am an academic nerd.” These are just a few of those things people realize about themselves.

Many realize these things, but some never accept who they are. They are attracted to who they are not and want to be jacks of many trades. People who always think there is something better about what someone else is, often look down on themselves and, as a result, lose confidence in themselves.

Self-acceptance is indispensable in the school of self-confidence. It doesn’t mean to stop making progress at what you do. But it means to accept who you primarily are and allow it to create your mental, then physical identity.

Stay on your strengths

Your strengths are those areas you are expert at. They are those things you’re talented at, or have a flair for.

Focus on them. Invest in them! Become a pro in those areas. Let them define who you are. This way you become a pro at what you do and gain others’ respect.

When you become a pro at what you do, you naturally have a sense of responsibility and importance that adds a long chip to your self-confidence.

Take on new, tougher assignments

improve your self confidence

Sometimes, you need to prove yourself and achieve new things as a way of building your confidence. Go for new things. Try to reach new milestones that people think are difficult or impossible.

Stand up from where you’ve been, reach for something higher. Aim to break a record – to push beyond your limits. It will require a lot of sacrifice and commitment, but it will yield a fantastic result, building your confidence.

You can prepare to break a sports record, an academic record, or a health record. It may be finishing your first book as a writer or making your professional career debut.

New achievements create a level of fulfillment. When you are fulfilled on the inside, it makes you feel great about yourself and trust yourself. By doing so, you improve your self-confidence admirably.

Don’t bite yourself; know that you’re in a process

A lesson everyone should learn is that of not staying on and taking their mistakes too personally. It’s easier for many people to forgive others than to forgive themselves.

You are in a process, whatever you do. It’s okay to make mistakes, and everyone should make room for mistakes in their lives. That you realized you made a mistake means you are a smart person. Instead of staying where you fell, the wisest thing to do is stand up, dust the mistake off your mind and body, and head towards greatness.

For most people in the prime of their career, their greatest confidence sapper is their mistakes. The right mental attitude that should follow a mistake is, “I accept I’ve made this mistake; it’s just a blip in my career, I’m going to figure out how to make amends and perform better, and I move on, and refuse to stay my mind on my mistake.”

One must never allow a mistake to define them. Every great person you can think about once made a mistake somewhere along their career. What defined them was not their mistake, but the attitude they put on after such a mistake. A winner forges ahead, but a loser stays where he fell, and I’d rather you be a winner.

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