google-site-verification: google935433b691795853.html KRISTY BERRIDGE

Sunday, 15 January 2017

10. Money
Despite this thought process undoubtedly earning me a slap in the head from my mother, money really does ease many a burden of the low-income earner. I’m not talking about excessive bulges of cash in the wallet to toss at strippers or waste on Pokies at the casino, I’m talking about just that little bit of injection to help alleviate bills—enough that you don’t have to work full time and thus can spend more time doing the things that make you happy.
9. Family
Having a family, being with family, sending family to exile. No matter your vice, having family either near or far will generally put a smile on your dial. There’s very few people in the world that will understand your eccentricities and even accept them and for those of you that hate your DNA buddies, at least you just made Christmas shopping simpler.
8. Holidays
I don’t think there’s a single soul on the planet that could say that they hate going on a holiday and, if you just so happen to be one of those people who doesn’t happen to enjoy luxuriating in the benefits of free time in a foreign place, then clearly you’re the devil incarnate.
7. Exercise
I can’t imagine this is high on the list of those that favour the couch to pounding the pavement, but exercise is almost certainly a must to happiness. Not only does it promote good health both inside and out, it also feeds the body endorphins—good for sufferers of depression or those susceptible to funks of laziness.
6. Cooking
I would have said ‘food’ as 99.9% of people in existence enjoy the process of eating, but there’s something special about cooking. Not only is there a sense of self-satisfaction when the dish has been accomplished, it’s a widely accepted extension of friendship and a communal way to enjoy the company of others. Cooking can alleviate stress and also be a fantastic way to maintain a wholesome, well-balanced diet.
5. Music
Listening to music has been proven in studies to reduce stress and evoke a plethora of emotions in those engaged. Music has been around in some form or another for centuries, enhanced by time and contemporary arrangement, but the effects still remain the same—a must do to promote ongoing happiness.
4. Looking through old photos
Nothing is more nostalgic than dipping into funky-smelling photo albums of your past or into those of the people you love and exploring a past not always forgotten, but re-written in the present’s ink. So often the memories of yesteryear are photographed because they captured a moment in time encapsulating happiness. Need I say more?
3. Sitting by the Seaside
Warm sand between the toes, cool waters lapping over your skin while the heat of the midday sun beats down upon your brow? What could be better than lazy days at the beach alone or with friends and family? It’s the prefect sanctuary for time out and to reconnect with those you don’t always see.
2. Date nights
Been a while since things were a little saucy between the sheets or you and your partner weren’t engrossed in social media? Then go on a date night. I indulge every week without fail to not only re-establish your reasons for being together, but to re-connect on an intimate and personal level that is often over-looked with kids and busy, consumer-driven lives.
1. Friends
I have left this last on the list because friends should never be taken for granted, but always be high on your list of priorities regardless. All of the things listed above can be enjoyed with friends and family and should be entered into often and without second thought … except date night … inviting anyone who isn’t your partner to bat lashes out or play footsies under the table with is just plain weird.


Sunday, 8 January 2017

Donald Trump!
So Donald Trump made it; President elect and the first orange man to run the United States of America.
Despite what you may think of him personally, the people of America have spoken and they have decided their ultimate leader.

I’m not personally politically savvy enough to have too much of an opinion about this man and it certainly wouldn’t be fair to do so as my assumptions would be based entirely on watching Celebrity Apprentice and current exploits via the news or internet marketing. I will say this though; never has an election sparked so much world-wide outrage and conflicting opinion. For the first time since September eleven, the entire world was watching the movements of the United States and praying for their safety and the safety of their own country’s future financial security.

How can one man bear the burden of so much responsibility and also be the possible catalyst for the ruin of not just one nation but many?

The question is on everyone’s lips and the result of this presidential election is proof that the old adage of parents telling you that you can be or do anything in life really rings true. I remember I once thought about being a Marine Biologist. I believed it was as easy as donning a mask and snorkel and swimming with a pod of Dolphins. Despite Donald Trump’s numerous business successes, he must have had someone whispering in his ear that he could run an entire country and all it would take was a suit and tie, a fistful of bigotry and a new wig to make it happen. You certainly can’t blame the man for trying when it appears it’s as simple as that.

I suppose it means that policies and political opinions aren’t really important either in debates or victories. The BBC News recently reported that twenty-four of Donald Trump’s pre-elective promises and bizarre beliefs have now been recanted in light of his recent elected state. For example: Mexico should build a great wall to prevent criminals and rapists from entering the US. In the wake of terrorist attacks in San Bernardino, Muslims should also be banned from the country. Should I even mention climate change? I’m sorry … Donald Trump believes this is just ‘weather’ and climate change is a hoax. I’m not even going to mention his apparent indiscretions or numerous sexual misconduct charges recently raised against him.

The point really is that the majority of this powerful nation has voted Donald Trump in to incite some sort of major change and to shake the very foundations that this great nation was built upon. As an outsider looking in, I’m both highly surprised by this outcome and yet supremely curious to see where his victory will lead. Donald Trump now has the opportunity to lead his country into a new revolution of ideas, greater acceptance and progressive change, but he also has the power to divide its multicultural and multiracial residents to incite another civil war.
Let’s just hope this man surrounds himself with plenty of varied and smarter intellectuals to lead the United States of America into a bright and positive future.

Kristy J

Thursday, 29 December 2016

CEO's Receive Massive Bonuses!

These are the headlines that line our newspapers and cover our favourite newsworthy blogsites and forums. It’s amazing how many top executives are receiving a hefty annual income bolstered by exorbitant bonus obligations by company stockholders. It’s almost a daily occurrence that hard working citizens the world over are shocked and outraged by the amount of money these seemingly ‘lucky’ fat-cat executives receive simply for doing their jobs.
I’m not going to lie, there’s a part of my scalp that itches and my left eye twitches when I hear about someone already in a position of power being paid yet another annual bonus of multi-millions because they can.

Over the past four years, twenty of the U. S’s top banks paid out more than two billion dollars in deductible performance bonuses to their top executives. In Australia, pay packets did shrink by an average of three percent, but the annual payout of bonuses increased dramatically leading to investigations by several major authorities.
These annual increases in bonuses and often hefty supplement salaries have also become topics of debate among politicians and used as a platform to coerce votes. It’s safe to say that there’s nothing that pleases the lower income-earner more than knowing the rich will somehow be penalised for their success and the playing field levelled for those not capable of keeping up with the Jones’s.

I have to wonder if these newspaper articles and blog reports regarding company expenditure and bonus payout don’t just irk us simply because we are not the intended recipients? I have no doubt that some major corporations are underhanded in their executive appointment of salaries and bonuses while the worker bees of the company are set to suffer on minimum wage. I also have no doubt that some of these CEO’s have sacrificed time with their loved ones; hours upon hours spent in corporate towers worldwide going over documents and overseeing projects. There is fairness and blatant acts of disregard for employees across any occupation whether entry level or executive.
It’s easy for a lower income-earner like myself to criticise big companies for their gross expenditure on a few, highly prioritised individuals rather than the worker populace as a whole, but that would also be a massive assumption on my part that every profitable company is extorting their workers for the sake of executive income.

For example, LinkedIn’s CEO—Jeff Weiner—boosted employee morale this year by distributing his annual fourteen-million-dollar stock bonus to avoid internal talent from jumping the proverbial ship. Bill Gates—net worth ninety-billion-dollars—consistently gives his money away to various charity groups including giving thirty-billion-dollars to the Melinda Gates Foundation to fight hunger, disease and poverty. Spanx founder—Sara Blakely—has helped many women world-wide finance their college educations and also donated one million to Oprah’s Leadership Academy for girls in South Africa.

As you can see, despite our own personal jealousy and inability to subsidise our own low incomes with multi-million dollar bonuses, there are top company executive out there trying to make a difference in a world so desperately driven by the almighty dollar. Although there are those that abuse a multitude of systems and some that support abolishing poverty too, it’s simply best to focus on what you can control; your own personal contribution to either your wealth or the betterment of those not nearly as financially settled. Every single day someone dies from poverty-stricken conditions. The choice is really up to the individual to make a difference and if that person isn’t you, then how the hell can you ride a high horse about CEO’s that may at least try?

Kristy J

Sunday, 18 December 2016

The Iraq war has been a hot topic of conversation since the early eighties when Dictator Saddam Hussein launched indiscriminate ballistic-missile attacks on Iran and messed with chemical weapons. Since this time, millions of people have lost their lives, Islamic state extremists have emerged and a growing refugee crisis has forced the world to pay attention to the evolution of racism, religious discontent and the middle-eastern upheaval.
But what does the Iraq war or any war on terrorism have to do with us?

It’s an interesting question and one that billions of people informed or uninformed ask themselves regularly. Terrorism in any measure is defined by the unofficial or unauthorised use of violence to intimidate in the pursuit of political gain.

Terrorism has become an accepted term that citizens throughout the world recognise as the leading form of oppression and the greatest driving force between the breakdown of communication between religious sects and countries divided in belief. But again, how does this affect us? How is global terrorism affecting our commercialised consumer-driven lifestyles?

For one, the families of the soldiers on both sides of this equation are suffering with the loss of life and love. Though divided by purpose, these people share commonality and yet, compassion remains absent despite the loss being substantially equal.
Trust has ebbed between foreign leaders, allied armies and even the general populace. We are now so consumed by the fear of the unknown that racism often rears its ugly head. What was once celebrated as our differences is now scorned for its possibility of future wrong-doing.

No longer can we travel freely between countries of interest for fear of political backlash or religious agenda. We are screened at public airports for explosive devices and are regularly updated via social media about what is acceptable behaviour and what is not. Our differences as human beings once set the tone for the uniqueness that inspired the best in all of us, but now we huddle in mass and conform, mostly to maintain personal safety or avoid public scrutiny.

The effects of terrorism, localised discrimination or middle-eastern wars are so wide-spread and accepted as normal in this day and age it’s no wonder our evolutionary process has slowed in its tracks. Our intellect is poisoned by our emotional drive to avoid those people and activities that are different from us. Naturally it’s easy to assume that a change in perception will ultimately inspire correction in our global attitudes, but realism must be adopted.

Good vibes and peace and love sentiments from a small percentage don’t incite change, but in saying that, when the human race decides to stop believing that the individual has the power to make a real difference; to change perceptions and recalibrate government powers for the greater good, we will really see the effects of war and terrorism. Why? Because it means that we no longer care and that is simply unacceptable.


Sunday, 11 December 2016

How nice is too nice? 
Is there such a thing?

A lot of people would say that in a world filled with suffering, oppression, arrogance and disregard, being too nice couldn't possibly be something worthy of complaint. Usually I would agree, the world is seriously lacking in the sincerity and general kindness that this post hopes to inspire.

But what if your existence is nothing but a few thousand cubic meters of space and filled with people not generally influenced by the world on mass?

My town, for instance, is tucked away in the northern end of Australia; population approximately 160,000. There's enough people to create eccentricity, variation of cultural and religious belief as well as a government based on the ideals of the country's overall agenda, but still far enough removed to remain independent of major political upheaval. In this tiny town we may know the person living right next door or we may live with the window shades drawn in the hopes to remain anonymous; basic niceties are still expected regardless.

Being nice, to me, is respecting each individual's choices to live, breathe and work within this environment without judgement or expectation of certain behaviours. Being too nice would entail dropping baked goods on doorsteps each day or friends and colleagues calling hourly to check on one's wellbeing.

To be nice (or merely human) is to be considerate of your fellow man; let them merge into your traffic lane during rush hour. Let the neighbour's kids play cricket in your front yard when there's no safe place elsewhere. Let the elderly have your seat on public transport and of course, respect everyone's opinions yet still value your own.

It's all about balance. Being too nice isn't really a first world problem and to be fair, not the worst thing that anyone could encounter. There's no issue with overextending oneself or elaborating kindness; it can be annoying, but still much better than the alternative which is to not care at all. I personally know which one I'd prefer even if I do like to keep the shades drawn most days.

Kristy :)