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Archive for May, 2016

Danger Associated With Staring at Phone and Tablet Screens

Danger Associated With Staring at Phone and Tablet Screens

There are a number of risks associated with spending too much time staring at a tablet or smartphone.  One of the most dangerous is the increased risk of causing permanent damage to the eye.  Let’s take a look at what can happen as well as what you can do to preserve your vision as much as possible.

Blue Light Radiation

Phones and tablets emit what is called blue light radiation.  This is a high-frequency part of the light spectrum that we can see.  It is also close to the same energy that we detect from the sun that makes it visible.  We all know that we shouldn’t look directly at the sun because it can fry our eyes, right?  Well, researchers are now saying that similar damage can occur as we gaze at our phones and tablets for too much time on a daily basis as well.

Considering the fact that the average American stares at their device for about 7 hours a day, this is a big concern.  From a survival and preparedness standpoint, our vision is an essential sense that we want to preserve and protect.  Some of the ill-effects associated with blue light radiation include strain on the eye muscles and cornea, retinal detachment and the early formation of cataracts.  These are just a few of many problems that are being uncovered as more and more people go to optometrists for the rapid onset of vision problems.

Prolonged exposure can require individuals to need to wear glasses and contacts, and even corrective lenses may not resolve problems.  Some incidences of double vision, blurriness and headaches that are linked to over-exposure to blue light radiation may not be treatable at all.

Bright Screens, Dark Rooms

Another cause for concern stems from recent research that links staring at phone and tablet screens in the dark with a host of devastating eye problems.  The screens are designed to be bright and make them readable outside in the sun.  However, most screens do not adjust to varying light conditions.  Furthermore, even dim screens emit a certain type of energy that causes our eyes to respond in weird ways.  The result is that we can suffer permanent vision problems simply by spending too much time looking at our devices in the dark. 

This information comes on the heels of other studies that show how just having the screen on while we are sleeping can also cause problems.  We don’t sleep as deeply, and our eyes can detect and respond to the light even with our eyelids closed.  The recommendation to stop that problem is to turn off your phone or turn it upside down before you go to bed.

The biggest threat from staring at screens in the dark is that our night vision may become compromised.  It already takes time for our eyes to adjust to low-light conditions under the best of circumstances.  Anything that impairs our ability to see at night even more can put us at a disadvantage during a survival situation.

The lesson to take away from this is clear:  Spend less time staring at your device, take frequent breaks to look at distant objects and avoid looking at the light from your screen at night.  The more you can do to minimize exposure now will reduce the chances of developing permanent vision problems later.

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Why Complaining Needs to be Nipped in the Bud During a Survival Situation

Why Complaining Needs to be Nipped in the Bud During a Survival Situation

Very few things in life are more useless than complaining.  Unless someone is dissatisfied with a product they bought or service they received, there’s usually no point in complaining whatsoever.  This is especially true during survival situations, and doing so can put yourself and others in serious jeopardy. 

Complaining Divides and Conquers

Complaining, by its very nature, is intended to sway opinions and form alliances.  This occurs as someone tries to move people to their line of thinking and away from someone else.  Keep in mind that there is a difference between complaining or grumbling and having a valid disagreement with someone.  A disagreement is something that can be negotiated, evaluated and hopefully reconciled as the parties involved reach a consensus.  Complaining does not move parties to a mutual understanding.  It does not promote working together. 

The last thing that any group needs to contend with in a crisis or its aftermath is division.  Complaining is the fastest way to form opinions about someone else and move others to think the same way.  Strangely enough, people who are able to sway opinions and form their own “little camps” usually do not end up producing any better alternatives themselves.  Consequently, complaining leads to nothing, other than the satisfaction that someone got others to feel bad about someone else and better about themselves.  It is a very selfish attribute.

Complaining Erodes Morale

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Complainers have a remarkable tendency to reduce morale and diminish spirits.  Their negativity, dissatisfaction and inability to see positives in things is often contagious.  Even if people are not following the complainer, their own sense of contentment can be eroded and this can be tiring.  It’s like a dark cloud settles over a group and it really does wear people out.  The result can be that people who would otherwise be satisfied with how a situation is being handled can be brought down. 

Not only that, but complainers can cause others to start complaining themselves.  Instead of one person not being happy, a group may end up with multiple members who are finding ways to be miserable.  This is the last thing that we need to deal with during a survival situation, when times are stressful and difficult enough to begin with.

Complaining Magnifies Problems

One of the fundamental goals of dealing with survival situations is to find positive outcomes despite adversity.  A positive attitude and a sense that working through problems will produce beneficial results is a driving force behind pressing forward and reaching goals.  Complaining has the opposite effect.  It places a focus on problems rather than solutions, and they can get magnified to the point of being disproportionate.  Not only is this counterproductive, but complaining makes it more difficult to get through a stressful situation.

Dealing with Complainers

There are a lot of ways that we can deal with complainers, but each situation, and consequently, each approach will be different.  It’s important to try and nip it in the bud as quickly as possible.  This can be accomplished through having a talk with the complainer, establishing boundaries and highlighting expected behaviors.  It can be accomplished by the group as a whole telling the complainer that they will not tolerate this type of behavior.  There’s also the possibility that the only way to deal with a complainer is to remove them from the group entirely as well.  While this should be the option of last resort, it may be necessary in order to preserve morale and the best interests of the rest of the group.

The important thing is to address the problem of complainers as quickly as possible.  Ignoring it will not solve the issue in the long run, and doing so can make things exponentially worse.  It’s also important to try and deal with the issue of complaining before a survival situation presents itself.  This is especially true when you are already planning on being with your family, fellow preppers, coworkers or other people you know.  The more that you can deal with the problem now will prevent bigger issues from cropping up later.

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