Top 5 filming locations you can see for yourself

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Traveling can be a great way to see the world and explore, but how do you choose where to go? When we watch movies, we let our imaginations run free as we see our favorite characters living their lives in beautiful and exotic lands. We often find ourselves wishing that we could join those characters in their far off homes. As it turns out, it is possible to visit many of the beautiful destinations from the movies! Here are five of the best filming locations you can actually travel to.

New Zealand

Whenever we think about movies with beautiful natural scenery, the Lord of the Rings trilogy is at the top of the list. Since the movies were filmed over a few years in New Zealand, fans from all over the world have flocked to see Middle Earth in person, which has been a great boost for tourism in New Zealand.

You can travel to the Matamata Hills, where the scenes set in Hobbiton were filmed. The area still looks like the Shire, complete with hobbit holes. The film crew even planted flowers and crops a whole year before production began for the set of Frodo and Bilbo’s homes. You can head to Tongariro National Park where the scenes in Mount Doom and Mordor were filmed. Next, venture over to the South Island and the Southern Alps to see where Gollum found the ring.

Thailand

We will always remember the lead character, Alex Garland, in Danny Boyle’s film The Beach, who found paradise in Hat Maya. This famous movie was filmed on Phi Phi Leh Island’s main beach in Thailand. The country shot to fame following the iconic success of the movie, starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

The island itself is breathtaking indeed. But it’s not exactly the same as it was portrayed in the movie – during post-production, filmmakers added the backdrop of mountains digitally. Despite this, the beach is truly stunning in real life as well, and is definitely worth a visit.

Philippines

The set for the cult hit Apocalypse Now was the exotic island of Luzon in the Philippines. The movie was inspired by the book Heart of Darkness, written by Joseph Conrad, and it was directed by famous filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola. Travelers can visit the Philippines for sunny shores, aquamarine water, and beautiful natural features.

Kauai, Hawaii

The legendary movie Jurassic Park was a big hit, and is loved by movie enthusiasts young and old alike. The movie, which explores what would happen if there were suddenly dinosaurs here on earth with us, was partially filmed in Kauai, Hawaii. Helicopter rides are available so guests can see the area where the film was shot, and take photos.

South Carolina, USA

The Notebook has become one of the classic love stories of our time. The film is about a young couple, and what happens to them as they grow older. The Notebook was proudly filmed in some of the most beautiful places in South Carolina. It’s a wonderful idea to visit this state and see its charm for yourself.

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The post Top 5 filming locations you can see for yourself appeared first on Worldation.

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Alone for the Holidays? Here’s How to Keep Yourself Sane

Source: Vladimir Vladimirov / Getty

For some, the holidays are the best time of the year. It means spending quality time with friends and family, holiday parties and gifts galore. For others, the holidays can be less than cheerful and seem to have a special way of making you feel awful if you’re spending the season alone.

Maybe you’re getting over a recent break up or the loss of a loved one. Maybe you’ve moved away for work or school and can’t afford to make it home in time for the holidays. Whatever the scenario, let’s be honest: being alone over the holidays sucks…and the fact that the entire world is talking about it definitely doesn’t make being alone feel any better.

If you’re one of those feeling a bit lonely this season, you’ll be surprised to know that you’re actually not alone as the holidays can be one of the loneliest times of the year. In an effort to keep your spirits up in spite of being alone, we’ve complied a few coping mechanisms to help you get through the last few days of the year. Here’s a few ways to stay sane if you’re alone during the holidays:

Create Your Own Tradition

Starting your own tradition is a great way to distract yourself from being alone over the holidays. If you have other friends, coworkers or neighbors who are also spending the holidays alone, it might be a great opportunity to start your own “Friendsgiving” or “Christmas Brunch” where you can bond over great food, great drinks and great conversation.

If you’re not up for the group activity, you can start a solo tradition too. Maybe go to the movies on Christmas, or take yourself ice skating, or treat yourself to a nice fancy dinner. If you adapt a tradition you love, you might find yourself actually looking forward to spending the holidays to disconnect from the world and reconnect with yourself.

Helping Others

Volunteering and helping others is a sure way to lift your spirits when you’re feeling down. Just knowing you’ve made a difference in someone’s life by giving back will help bring a smile to your face and remind you of how fortunate you truly are.

You can give back in many ways over the holidays by collecting toys and warm clothing for those less fortunate, delivering meals to the elderly, spending time at a nursing home or even donating to your favorite charity. Bringing joy to someone else is a beautiful way to experience joy yourself.

Set Realistic Expectations

You might feel lonely during this time of year simply due to the fact that society has placed such huge expectations on what it means to celebrate the holidays. Everywhere you turn, there are romantic holiday movies playing, family Christmas portraits being hung and social media posts giving off false perceptions that everyone is living their most picture-perfect lives.

Not having a significant other or close family might only seem weird during the time when we’re “supposed” to be going to parties, exchanging gifts and spending time with those we love. Combat those feelings by re-thinking your expectations and realize that nobody’s life truly measures up to the Hallmark Channel movies you’ve been binge watching all weekend. Instead, shift your focus to the great things you do have in life and realize that your holiday is perfectly fine just the way it is.

Remember What You’re Grateful For

Expressing gratitude might seem like something simple, but it actually has many benefits that’ll help bring you out of your holiday slump. It’s hard to focus on being thankful and feeling lonely at the same time. For example, if you’re feeling down due to the lack of love in your life, be thankful for the love that you do have whether it be from friends, family or even your pets.

Keeping a gratitude journal is also a great exercise you can try to get you in the habit of recording everything you value in life. It’s even more rewarding to read through your list of grateful moments the next time you’re feeling down.

Prepare Yourself for The Coming Year

There’s no better pick me up than reflecting on everything you’ve accomplished this year and figuring out your plan for how you’ll level up even more next year. Rather than sitting around feeling lonely, you can spend the holidays writing down your dreams and goals for the coming year and mapping out a plan on how to achieve them.

You can try creating a vision board, reading self-help books, writing motivational notes to yourself or simply writing down your list of goals using your notes app. No matter your tactic, focusing on how great the coming year can be will definitely lift your spirits and help take your mind off of feeling alone!

 

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Scouted: The Best Gifts To Give Yourself This Holiday Season

This holiday season, consider buying a gift for the most important person in your life: you. The relationship you have with yourself is the longest and most important one of you’ve got, and it is worth investing in. When it comes to deciding what to treat yourself to, I’m a proponent of gifts that will most promote self-care. Little switches can make a big difference when it comes to making your everyday life more luxurious, fun, and healthy. These products are all ones that have made a tangible difference in how I feel.

Home Equipment To Make Impulsive Exercise Easy

I’m a big fan of keeping some exercise equipment at home — I find that if I don’t have to get changed to go to the gym, and can watch Netflix while using some free weights, I impulsively exercise much more than I would otherwise. I suggest getting a cushy fitness mat that looks good enough to keep out all the time so that the invitation is always open. Egg Weights are also great and compact for the home or traveling — just loop one around each middle finger to add some muscle to your workout. I’ve realized making the switch to a pair of wireless earbuds is also key to moving around more when I’m listening to music or watching a show at home (and is much better for the gym as well). And last but not least, those with kegel muscles should consider exercising those at home with a smart trainer that helps protect your future bladder control and sex life.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Same Job for Many Years? These 5 Tips Will Help You Reinvent Yourself

After 10 years in human resources at a nonprofit, Laura Niebauer Palmer figured she wouldn’t have any problem finding a new HR job when she and her husband moved from Chicago to Austin, Texas.

Then she started reading the job postings — which asked for advanced training and experience with programs she didn’t use — and realized her old skills weren’t marketable for a new position.

“My heart sank,” the 38-year-old says. “I was like, “What am I going to do? How am I going to bridge this gap?’”

So how is it that 10 years of experience could become a detriment rather than a strength for a job candidate?

Many longtime workers are falling behind on the skills required in rapidly changing industries, according to Alvin Nesbot, the New York City market manager for Manpower.

“People who are just joining the job market — maybe within the past three to five years or so — are making moves a lot faster than people who have been working for 10-plus years,” Nesbot says. “There are those people who have worked a lot longer who have stayed in a lull and gotten stagnant.”

And it’s not just another co-worker who’ll offer the skills you’re lacking — at least, not a human one. It’s estimated that half of the work activities companies pay people to do could be automated by 2055, according to a study by the McKinsey Global Institute.

If you’re worried your field is going the way of the dinosaur, here are some alternative jobs for dying industries. But what if you like your industry and just want to change jobs? Read on for strategies for making a change after years in the same gig.

How to Make a Career Change

Laura Niebauer works on her laptop while holding her infant son at home.

If you’re a bit unsure about what’s happening outside your cubicle walls, here are five strategies for avoiding — or escaping — a dead-end job.

1. Network for a Job

Leaving your comfort zone to network may seem intimidating, but it’s a great way to find out what is going on in your industry. It’s part of the reason it’s so important to maintain networking relationships even after you have found a job.

Being around your peers is not only helpful for finding contacts for the next job but also for discovering what credentials and terminology are becoming more prominent within your field, according to Palmer.

“You have like-minded people to bounce ideas off,” he says. “Also, it’s very eye-opening when you’re around a bunch of people and they’re having conversations about topics you don’t really know about or are using acronyms that you’re like, ‘Wait, what does that mean?’”

And if the thought of a networking event makes you break out in hives, try one-on-one networking with former colleagues, Palmer suggests.

“What I would have done differently is definitely caught up with people who had left the company,” he says. She adds that by asking about the transition to new roles, you’ll get a better idea of what technology and skills are in demand outside your office.

2. Update Your Resume

If your resume touts WordPerfect expertise and includes your AOL address, it’s probably time for a resume makeover. (Also, stop wearing that sundress over a T-shirt.)

Reading your resume with a critical eye is essential for identifying skills or programs that are no longer relevant for your position, according to Nesbot.

“What you were doing seven to 10 years ago is not going to be relevant or as important as what is going on today,” Nesbot says. “Are there things making [your resume] look dated?”

If it’s been a couple of presidential administrations since you last updated your resume, you may want to start fresh. (Here’s a guide to writing a professional-looking resume.)

But starting over doesn’t mean you have to forget your past experiences. Instead, take some time to compile a comprehensive list of training and accomplishments, Nesbot suggests.

“Sometimes we don’t look at our resumes in a while, and we realize there are things we’ve been doing that we haven’t highlighted,” Nesbot says. “Include any certifications or training that you’ve done to help set you apart from any other candidate.”

Once you have your list, compare it to current job postings and craft your resume so it includes recent credentials and popular terms within your industry.

“Make sure you have buzz words that are going to stand out to whoever is reading your resume,” Nesbot says.

3. Find a Mentor

Palmer holds her son in his nursery.

Once she got to Austin, Palmer ended up at a staffing agency looking for work. The agency placed her in a temporary three-month position to fill in for a woman on maternity leave.

Palmer used those months to take advantage of the in-house training department to connect with someone who could provide long-term career advice.

“The biggest part that helped me develop was the mentorship that I had with my boss,” she says. “I learned so much from her; my confidence rose 100%.

You can’t replicate that with a course.”

At the end of her temporary gig, the company offered Palmer a full-time position in the HR department.

4. Volunteer for Experience

Rather than repeating past mistakes, Palmer says, she took the opportunity at her new job to question what she really wanted in the next five or 10 years — and it turns out, it wasn’t HR.

After spending some time figuring out what she really wanted to do, Palmer decided than rather than pouring money into additional education, she’d offer to work for free in exchange for the experience she was lacking.

“I volunteered at two organizations, and one of them specifically was something that I wouldn’t have been able to land a job at because I had no experience,” Palmer says. “But when you say, ‘Hey, I can volunteer for this,’ then they’re like, ‘Great, we have somebody who has a lot of time and is really excited about this. We’ll put some training into them.’”

Thanks to that experience, Palmer was able to snag a part-time job at a small company, which allows her to spend time with her infant son as well as write articles sharing her expertise — including some for The Penny Hoarder.

5. Apply for Jobs Before You Need One

Even if you’re happy in your job right now, it doesn’t hurt to start investigating what’s out there.

After all, the best way to discover if you’re growing or stagnating in your career is to find out if someone will hire you — and there’s always a chance you’ll find your dream job in the process, Palmer points out.

Look at the jobs right now and actually apply to them and go through interviewing,” Palmer says. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that to see where your skills are — if they’re lining up with what is currently needed in the market.

“But you also might land a job that you didn’t even know you wanted.”

Why You’re Not Job Hunting

Laura Neibauer plays with her infant son in his nursery in Austin, TX.

Reevaluating your skills every few years takes some work, but the rewards are a more fulfilling career with greater chances for growth. Admittedly, that can be hard to do when you’re happy — or at least satisfied — with your current position.

Your salary and benefits might tempt you to stay put, but you’ll suffer in the long run if you’re too scared to change, according to Palmer. She notes part of the reason she stayed at her first job for so long was the generous paid time off and health care coverage.

“It’s hard because you’re trying to balance furthering yourself but also realizing if you further yourself, you’re taking a risk,” Palmer says. “ But if you’re looking to grow in your career… you need to challenge yourself.”

Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a staff writer with The Penny Hoarder. She likes all kinds of change, but pennies are her favorite.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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Flu Season and Protecting Yourself at Work: Separating Myth From Fact

Considering 2017 was the deadliest flu season in many years, you may want to think twice about skipping your flu shot. Radio personality JoJo O’Neal from HOT 99.5 in Orlando, Florida, never considered getting a flu shot because she’d never had the flu. And despite her chronic asthma, she considered herself healthy—working out regularly and even competing in several fitness competitions. But in 2018, O’Neal got the flu — not once, but twice. It also complicated her asthma, and she transmitted it to her sister who suffers from lung disease which seriously compromised her health as well.

AARP, an organization dedicated to empowering people to choose how they live as they age, reports an estimated 70% of adults, ages 50-64, have one or more chronic illnesses. And according to the CDC, adults in the same age range had the second highest hospitalization rates for the flu last year. Like many other people O’Neal’s age, the flu is potentially dangerous for those who have other chronic health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. Yet African Americans and other minorities are among the least likely to get the shot, according to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Many people avoid the flu vaccine because there are a lot of myths or negative perceptions around it. This includes the belief that the flu vaccine causes the flu, has harmful ingredients, or because they rarely get sick, the vaccine is not needed. Black Enterprise asked Dr. Cedric Rutland, M.D., a spokesperson for the American Lung Association, to clear up a few myths and misconceptions about the flu vaccine and provide tips for dealing with flu in the workplace.

Cedric "Jamie" Rutland

Dr. Cedric “Jamie” Rutland (Instagram)

Myth: Flu vaccination is only important for kids, pregnant women, and people who are really old. I’m healthy and rarely get sick, so I don’t need the vaccine.

Fact: I recommend the flu shot to all of my patients 6 months of age and older as the best way to protect them from the flu. This is incredibly important not only to protect you, but also those around you. One group who often doesn’t realize they are at higher risk is adults 50 years of age and older who feel good and healthy. But what they don’t realize is by the time they reach age 50, they’re much more likely to have one or more chronic health conditions (asthma, heart disease, diabetes) that can make the flu incredibly dangerous – leading to increased hospitalizations and even death. Everyone should get their annual flu shot.

Myth: The flu vaccine causes the flu.

Fact: The flu vaccines administered with a needle do not contain a live virus so they cannot give you the flu. The nasal spray flu vaccine does contain live viruses, but they are weakened, so they do not cause the flu.

What steps should employers take to address or prevent flu in the workplace?

The best way to protect yourself and your coworkers against the flu is to get your flu shot as early in the flu season as possible. You can also help stop the spread of germs by washing your hands, covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, and stay home from work when you are sick to prevent infecting others.

The post Flu Season and Protecting Yourself at Work: Separating Myth From Fact appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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The best way to pick yourself up and move forward after a lousy performance review

It can be difficult to pick yourself up after a lousy performance review, but having the right outlook is key to success. Here are tips on what employees should do the day (and weeks) following their review to start down the path toward improvement. 
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