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The difference between wrongful death and manslaughter

If your family has experienced an accident or incident that resulted in the death of a loved one, you may want to know how you can legally settle the matter to see justice done on the deceased’s behalf. Many of these unfortunate cases are classified as manslaughter or wrongful death. You’ll need to know which is which so you can go through the proper legal procedures to get the compensation you and your other surviving family members are entitled to.

Wrongful Death

A wrongful death settlement offers a degree of safety to grieving families. This is particularly the case if the family member who passed away was a significant breadwinner in the family. The settlement allows families to restore themselves financially, such as paying for medical bills associated with the family member’s death or paying to replace a vehicle that was used in the family member’s fatal car accident.

Wrongful death law pertains to cases in which the actions of one person led to the death of someone else. This law is in place to ensure dependents and family members of the deceased who are financially affected by the relative’s death will be compensated.

Wrongful death claims can cover all types of fatal incidents, such as car accidents, medical malpractice, construction accidents, product liability cases, and elevator accidents. For the defendant to be held responsible for a wrongful death, the plaintiff has to provide evidence that the victim would not have died if the defendant were not negligent.

Wrongful death is considered a civil lawsuit. It’s important to note that a family can also file a wrongful death claim if the victim is injured at work or in a car accident, hospitalized for the injuries, and later dies because of them.

Manslaughter

Manslaughter charges can be filed if an individual did not intend to kill, but their negligence resulted in the death of another individual. Manslaughter in the first degree is when someone intentionally inflicts harm on someone else, and that harm or injury resulted in the victim’s death. Manslaughter in the second degree happens when a person causes someone else’s death because of recklessness. 

If a person is aware that they are acting recklessly and ignore the risk of hurting or killing others, they are guilty of manslaughter, which is a criminal charge. Even though the defendant doesn’t have an intent to kill, their decision to act irresponsibly could be fatal for someone else.

For instance, if someone is driving at night and doesn’t turn their headlights on, and this decision results in the death of another driver or pedestrian, the driver is guilty of manslaughter. Or, if a doctor recklessly performs a procedure on someone with health conditions that increase their risk of death from the procedure, the doctor can be charged with manslaughter.

How Are Cases Conducted?

If a person is guilty of manslaughter, the federal or state government will prosecute them. The jury starts a trial assuming the defendant is innocent. The prosecutor has to present evidence that shows the defendant was behaving recklessly and caused another person’s death. If the defendant is found guilty, they will have to pay hefty fines and may have to serve a prison sentence.

Wrongful death cases occur in civil court. The close family members of the deceased usually file the charges. Since this is not a criminal case, wrongful death attorneys do not have to prove innocence or guilt beyond a doubt. The lawyer does, however, need to show adequate evidence to sway the jury. If the defendant is deemed guilty, they will have to pay for damages, which include funeral and burial expenses, loss of the deceased individual’s income, medical bills, and damages.

If you need to file a wrongful death claim, it’s important to start working with an attorney as soon as you can. Submit all evidence of your case to your lawyer so they can start working on your behalf to ensure that you and your family get the best settlement possible.

Online Casino Bonus Guide for Players in the US and UK

The Ultimate Online Casino Bonus Guide for US and UK players

When you first enter the extraordinary world of online gambling, you will be faced with an inevitable question that will present itself the moment you walk through the virtual casino doors: what is an online casino bonus?

As you are greeted by the plethora of alluring promotional offers, it’s crucial that you understand what you are dealing with before you start on your bonus-infused online gambling adventure.

So, how exactly does a casino bonus work? What types of bonuses are available in the online gambling industry? Are there any terms and conditions I should be aware of and when should I claim a bonus on my account? All of these questions will be answered in our ultimate online casino bonus guide for US and UK players.

However, if you are simply looking for a top recommendation straight off the bat, All Star Slots Casino is mainly for US and UK players and impresses with a wealth of features and bonus offers that is sure to satisfy even the most avid gambler.

What is a Casino Bonus and How Does it Work?

The online gambling landscape would be unimaginable without promotions and bonuses spread across big, colorful banners to excite UK and US players from. It’s a wonderful incentive for the time and money you invest in the site and is a great way to reward you for your loyalty once you become a regular player. The online gambling market continues to expand as more and more gambling sites are flooding into the market.

In fact, the industry is so competitive that casinos need to create new and exciting ways to attract players to their sites and the best way to achieve this is through online casino bonuses. So, what is a bonus, anyway? To put it simply, a casino bonus is essentially an incentive that is offered by the casino to attract players to the site. Casino bonuses can be used to entice new players to register or to keep existing players from leaving by boosting their bankrolls with additional funds. The bonus funds that are added to your account can be done in one of several innovative ways which bring us to the next question: what types of casino bonuses are available to players in the UK and US?

Types of Online Casino Bonuses for UK and US Players

You will discover that there is a casino bonus for each and every player in the online gaming industry. You can look forward to bonuses that don’t require a deposit, welcome packages on your initial deposit, payment specific promotions, and the freedom to claim these offers on either your desktop or mobile device. In fact, claiming promotional offers while away from home is only one of the advantages of gambling on your mobile device. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the types of casino bonuses you’ll come across in the UK and the US along with a brief description of each.

No Deposit Bonus: This is exactly as the name implies, a bonus that you will receive without making a deposit. No deposit bonuses are primarily offered to newcomers for simply registering a new account and come in a variety of flavours, including a free cash offer, free spins, or free play. It’s perfect for online players that want to test the waters before committing with a real money deposit.

Welcome/Sign-Up Bonus: This is undoubtedly the most popular offer in the industry and it usually doubles, triples, or even quadruples your initial deposit made at the casino. It’s the casino’s way to welcome you to the site and to thank you for choosing them over everyone else. You will even come across welcome packages that contain a welcome bonus and a number of free spins on a popular slot to further entice you to make a deposit.

Reload Bonus: Once you’ve claimed a no deposit bonus and welcome package, you will be deemed an existing player, opening up the doors to ongoing promotions. One of the most popular promotions for existing players is the reload bonus. It’s basically a deposit bonus with a smaller match percentage when compared to the welcome bonus. For instance, where a welcome bonus might offer 100% up to $100, a reload bonus will offer a 25% match up to $50.

Cashback Bonus: This offer is designed to give you a percentage back on your losses for either the week or month. For instance, if you lose $100 during the week, the casino would usually credit a 20% or 30% cashback bonus based on your losses, giving you a second opportunity to enjoy your favorite games without making an additional deposit on your account.

High Roller/VIP Bonus: These types of bonuses are specifically designed for high rollers and VIP players that are planning to deposit well-over the usual deposit amount. These offers are usually not displayed within the promotions section. Therefore, you will need to contact support and find out what high roller packages are available, depending on your deposit size.

Loyalty Bonus: Most gambling sites will come equipped with a loyalty program where you can earn loyalty points for every wager you make at the casino. Once you’ve accumulated enough loyalty points, you can redeem them to unlock additional bonuses or free spins on your account.

Refer-A-Friend Bonus: There is nothing better than enjoying your favorite casino games with friends. This is why gambling sites created this innovative promotion that will allow you to earn an additional bonus for simply referring your friends to the site. Most referral bonuses will require that your friend register a new account and make a minimum deposit before you’ll be rewarded with a Refer-A-Friend bonus.

Complimentary Bonus: This type of bonus will usually be based on your financial history with the casino. If you have a bad run, or you feel like making a deposit on the day, you are welcome to contact support and request a complimentary bonus. Should your financial history prove that you’ve been a loyal and consistent player, you will receive a complimentary bonus as a thank you for your patronage.

Birthday Bonus: This is credited to your account once a year to celebrate your birthday and the size of the birthday bonus will be based on your financial history, much like a complimentary bonus.

With so many promotional offers at your disposal, it’s easy to understand how the online gambling industry continues to grow in the United Kingdom and the United States with each passing year. The only pitfall when it comes to online casino bonuses is the terms and conditions which is the next topic that deserves your attention.

Promotional Terms and Conditions to Consider:

All promotional offers will be restricted in one way or another to ensure players don’t bankrupt the casino. The restrictions will always be presented in the terms and conditions and it’s here where most players get in trouble as they simply don’t take the time to read through the fine print. Most online casino bonuses will have similar terms and conditions, including:

Wagering Requirements: This will tell you how many times the bonus needs to be wagered before it’s allocated to your cash balance, ready for a cashout. For instance, a typical welcome bonus needs to be wagered 40 times before it’s cleared.

Game Contributions: Every casino game will contribute a different percentage towards your wagering requirements. For instance, slots will usually count 100% towards wagering, while video poker and blackjack might only contribute 5%.

Expiry Date: All bonuses will have an expiry date, indicating how long the bonus will be available on your account before it expires. No deposit offers last between 7 and 14 days, while welcome bonuses usually last up to 30 days.

Cashout Limit: This restriction is usually found in no deposit offers and indicates the maximum amount you’ll be allowed to withdraw from a no deposit bonus. Most gambling sites in the US and the UK will go as high as $200 as a withdrawal cap.

When to Avoid Casino Bonuses

Now that you have a better understanding of what a casino bonus is, how it works, and the types of bonuses you can claim, it’s time to look at when to avoid a bonus. When a bonus sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Casinos might impress you with the biggest bonus offer in the world that you can claim with the smallest deposit. However, when you look at the terms and conditions, you’ll quickly understand why it’s not worth your time or money.

Most gambling sites will trick you into claiming a bonus and will then make it impossible to accumulate any winnings due to unreasonable wagering requirements. Some might only use slots to contribute to your playthrough requirements, while others might increase the wagering requirements to make it impossible to actually clear the bonus.

You will also find gambling sites that shorten the expiry date, making it harder to clear the bonus in the given time frame, while others will limit your withdrawal limit, forcing you to play your winnings instead of cashing out what you earned. Apart from the terms and conditions, you should also avoid claiming bonuses when the casino isn’t licensed and regulated by a reputable regulatory body.

With the ultimate online casino bonus guide, you will have all the tools at your disposal to confidently claim a bonus without having to worry about falling prey to rogue casinos or claiming an offer that comes equipped with arbitrary terms and conditions. You should also have a good understanding of the types of bonuses in the online gaming industry and whether it’s suited for your own unique playing style. Claiming casino bonuses is a fantastic way to keep yourself entertained and is one of the self-care tips during COVID that you can use to escape reality while giving yourself the opportunity to win some cash in the process.

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Jonny Bowden’s Nutrition Advice

Have shelter-in-place comfort foods
put your healthy diet on the back shelf?

Nutrition Myth Buster Jonny Bowden says toss out the old nutrition advice along with the junk food. It’s time to start fresh before you start having health issues.

It’s no big surprise that some processed foods, such as boxed macaroni and cheese, have been enjoying a renaissance lately. People are stressed. Grocery prices are rising. And given all the confusing nutrition advice coming at us, surely someone … somewhere … has done a study that says sugary snacks are good for you. Yeah, not so fast. Step away from the toaster pastries.

“Many high salt, high carb comfort foods are only going to make you gain weight, feel worse and could ultimately damage your health,” cautions Nutrition Myth Buster Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., CNS. “You’ll actually start feeling better and have more energy once you begin eating more nutritious foods.”  

But here’s the dilemma: When it comes to dietary advice, who do you believe? 

Some dietary advice on mainstream websites is decades out of date

“The dietary advice issued by various organizations is often a mix of old and new data. It’s not in line with what those of us who study this continually are telling people today. It takes way too long for some of these big organizations to incorporate the current scientific thinking into the mantras that they’ve been repeating for sometimes decades,” says Bowden. 

“Another reason why it’s so hard to get a straight answer about foods is that they don’t fall into perfect categories. For example, some saturated fats are very healthy for you. And some unsaturated fats should be avoided at all costs!” 

He elaborates, “Saturated fats such as ghee, palm oil, butter and coconut oil have been absolved of being bad for your health. Meanwhile, canola, sunflower, corn and soy are now known to be highly inflammatory!”  

Film exposes the misinformation and why we’re so confused! 

In the new feature length documentary Fat Fiction, Bowden and other leading health experts examine the facts and myths of saturated fats in the human diet, and question why medical advice has remained the same for decades as health issues proliferate in America. 

“In the film, we share more than a decade of published research confirming that fat, particularly saturated fat, was wrongly demonized. It is not a causative factor in heart disease. Worse, the low-fat dietary guides we’ve been following since the 1980s were never based on hard science,” says Bowden. 

So what should we be eating? 

Bowden, the best-selling author of “The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth,” gives three tips for choosing what foods to include in your diet: 

  1. “Check your sources for all articles on health and nutrition. A single study should never be the basis of your nutritional decisions, because studies contradict each other all the time. And don’t buy into the infomercial stuff about “clinical studies” supporting the latest fat-burner. Those are usually done in someone’s office and not subject to any peer review.

“Wait for multiple studies, completed by reputable universities, confirming the same outcomes. And even then be aware of things like who funded the study and who benefits from the results. There may be no way to avoid commercial interests in scientific research, but at least it’s good to be aware of it.”

  1. Be open to learning about ingredients you may want to add to your diet. “For example, some people are hyper-focused on palm oil. They’d have you believe that it’s bad for you and the environment. They also are stuck in the old 1950s notion that “saturated fat is bad for you.” Both beliefs are wrong. Some countries — notably Malaysia — are passionately committed to the environment. The palm oil from Malaysia is sustainably produced. Real Malaysian palm oil is one of the healthiest cooking oils I know of.

“Malaysian palm oil is also a rich source of vitamin E tocotrienols which support heart and brain health. And heart health is a huge concern in this country! It’s also a nutritious replacement for trans fats.” 

  1. Eat real food: food your great-grandmother would have recognized as food. “Eat from what I call the “Jonny Bowden Four Food Groups”: food you could hunt, fish, gather or pluck. Stay away from overly processed and get back to basics.”  

To learn more about studies related to saturated fats and health, visit www.palmoilhealth.org

Biography: Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., CNS

Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS, also known as “The Nutrition Myth Buster” ™ is a nationally known board-certified nutritionist and expert on diet and weight loss. He has appeared on the Dr. Oz Show, Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, NBC, and CBS as an expert on nutrition has contributed to articles in The New York Times, Forbes, The Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, Vanity Fair Online, Men’s Health, Prevention, and dozens of other print and online publications.

Dr. Jonny is the best-selling author of 15 books including The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth, Living Low Carb (now in its fourth edition), Smart Fat (with Steven Masley, MD), and The Most Effective Ways to Live Longer.

The eagerly awaited and completely updated edition of his best-selling book, The Great Cholesterol Myth (co-written with cardiologist Stephen Sinatra, MD) will be out in October, 2020.

Follow him @jonnybowden

www.jonnybowden.com

Facebook: Dr. Jonny Bowden

Kaelen Felix Illustrates a Healthcare Article for 360 MAGAZINE

Authenticx x Healthcare Companies

Healthcare companies are at the center of so many debates right now, and their involvement in the pandemic is one of the biggest.

Having to answer customer questions while COVID-19 impacts the nation in a manner unprecedented in our lifetime can be a challenge, but Authenticx is offering advice to companies attempting to provide answers.

Authenticx CEO Amy Brown said the upcoming flu season will bring about more questions, and we can use the past several months to prepare.

“Americans are tuned into what healthcare experts are saying like never before. We’re urging healthcare providers to seize this opportunity to listen to the concerns of the public and use their resources to provide clear guidelines and straightforward advice so healthcare consumers can make the best decisions to protect themselves and others,” Brown said.

Based on 45,000 data points pulled from customer conversations, Authenticx was able to determine three main concerns regarding coverage. The three concerns are as follows:

1. Contraction Risk: Patients have divided themselves into different demographics trying to determine the possibility of contracting COVID-19, and the flu will only make it more difficult to determine. Customers called their healthcare providers to ask questions like:

  1. Should I get my flu shot this year or does that lower my immune system?
  2. Is there anything I should know about flu shots relative to my specific treatment plan?
  3. Should I quarantine if I think I have the flu?
  4. How do I know if I have the flu or COVID-19? What should I do about that?

2. Flexible Payment Options: Unstable employment and loss of insurance have been devastating results of COVID-19, but customers are still trying to remain safe. Customers reportedly asked how to proceed forward with healthcare given limited financial flexibility. Those concerns are not likely to curtail in the very near future.

3. Supply Chain & Access to Medications: With COVID-19 taking priority in national health, many patients expressed concern about getting medication they required prior to the pandemic. Issues with the mail system could also cause consumers to panic if their medication sees shipping delays or problems. Between flu shots and COVID vaccines, drug manufacturers are being kept busy. Some worry they’re too busy to handle normal mandatory medication.

Brown said healthcare companies can implement a listening system for customers with these questions by doing the following:

1. Listen at Scale: It will be nearly impossible to give full attention to each and every customer. The goal should be to prioritize the most important questions and select customer interactions to monitor. Determine a specific sample size suited to the customer base and use that sample to select questions and customers to address specifically.

2. Be Strategic: Listening can provide insight when choosing a strategy for engaging with customers. The customers will tell companies what they are hoping for in terms of service, and that information can be used to change for the better. Once a strategy is solidified, deploy resources to give the customers what they hope to receive from the company.

3. Move Fast: Begin moving on customer questions right away. As news regarding healthcare develops, so do the needs of the customers. Concerns not handled right away could get lost in the shuffle in an ever-developing news cycle, and customers want their problems solved in real time.

To see a full step-by-step guide on how to properly serve healthcare customers right now, you can click right here.

Apartment hacks illustration inside 360 MAGAZINE

Picking the Best Printer for Your Business

Starting a graphics and design business is easy as long as you do your market research properly beforehand. Besides knowing the legal requirements and other expected requirements, gathering the right tools for your business to run successfully is crucial. One of the most important items you need is a good printer. How do you settle for one when many of these items are being advertised in the market? Check out a few pointers to ensure that you choose the right printer to support your growing business.

Consider What Materials You Will Be Printing

You are likely going to be printing specific things on your printer. For instance, a black-only laser printer is excellent for when you need high quality black and white monochrome output for text proofing. On the other hand, when working with colors, you need something with color output offers. You can opt for an inkjet device or laser printer, and in other cases, a solid ink printer may work. If you print a lot of media and images, ink jet will still be the best option.

Gauge Output Resolutions

Whenever you print the final output, you will most likely need the results to be clean and crisp. A high-resolution device is what most professional graphics design businesses will need, especially if the goal is to end up with a proofing device that shows the design’s overall look. Always exercise caution when checking the resolution stats and specifications. Laser and inkjet printers may appear similar but have differ in their diverse technological functions.

Consider Your Output Usage

Have a list of all the things you intend to use the printer for when purchasing it. For instance, any heat-based lamination processes will require printers that are not inkjet. If you insist on using inkjets, then you should prepare for poor quality printouts. Any printer with a low melting point means that they are vulnerable to high temperatures. The last thing you want is a printout that is not moisture resistant.

Consider Page Sizes

Your printer choice should factor in the size of your output. For a letter or tabloid-sized pages, you should consider choosing broad-range devices. Always have the page size in mind when you are selecting a printer. Consider the specifications of the printer to know how much space it will print on paper.

Speeds Matter

Printer output speeds are crucial, especially if you choose a printer that will serve you in the workspace. Select a printer whose speeds match the work schedule you intend to handle once you are operating at optimum level. You should be prepared to pay more for extra fast speeds too. Choose a faster processor that can power heavy use proofer with the ability to print multiple page layouts with complex graphics. You can compare a catalog of office printers from Konica Minolta to choose the one that works best for you.

Many factors need to be considered when you are choosing a commercial printer. Make a point to go through this list, note the details, and check its boxes before making your decision. This way, you will be sure to find one that matches all of your needs.

360 Magazine

Top 3 Reasons To Become an Educator

These days, a quality education is key to every student’s future job prospects, socioeconomic mobility and professional success. If you love helping others, are patient and have a knack for breaking things down in an easy-to-understand way, you may want to consider becoming an educator. You’re probably already familiar with a few of the perks of going into teaching, like getting summers off or having creative control over your classroom and teaching style. However, there are some other great perks that you might not have thought about. If you’re thinking of continuing your education first to become as well-prepared for your future career as possible, click here. To learn more about the top three reasons you should consider a career in education, read on.

1. It’s Great for Family Life

If you’re the parent of young children looking for a career that will fit into your family life but also bring professional fulfillment, look no further than a teaching career. While many teachers will tell you that even after the final school bell rings, you may have to bring grading or lesson planning home, being on the same daily schedule as your children is a big advantage. After all, you’ll be on spring break and summer vacation when they are, and you won’t have to hire babysitters to look after them until you get off work at your 9 to 5. For family work-life balance, going into education is a great option!

2. You Can Work Anywhere

While different states may have different educational and licensing requirements, teachers are in demand in just about every city across the country. This means that if you decide to become an educator, you get to pick where you want to live and will be sure to find job opportunities in the locality of your choosing. If you like the idea of having opportunities everywhere and not being restricted to living in only one metro area for the rest of your career, the versatility of going into education could be a great fit for you!

3. You Help Shape Students’ Academic Success

As any former student is well aware, success in school doesn’t just mean access to quality materials – it means having a great teacher as well. As the head of your own classroom, you have the potential to help your students exceed learning outcomes, get interested in new material and get motivated for future success. A good teacher helps students pass standardized tests; a great teacher helps students develop critical thinking skills that will serve them for years to come. If you’re driven by a desire to help foster creative thinking and practical skills in your students, you’ve got what it takes to make a big impact on your students’ academic performance not just in this school year, but potentially for the future as well. After all, a great experience in your classroom could change their entire outlook on academics and shape their future trajectory!
Education is essential for shaping the next generation, and working as an educator comes with a surprising roster of perks. If you’re invested in molding tomorrow’s citizens, teaching could be the perfect career for you.

Handling an Unexpected Divorce

What to do when facing an unexpected divorce?

While things between you and your spouse may not have been perfect, you weren’t expecting to be served with divorce papers, now what?

New York divorce attorney, Leslie Montanile has advice for those in this situation;

  1. Identify the paperwork

    First, do not panic. Look at the papers and see if your spouse filed with a Summons and Complaint or just a Summons with Notice, regardless look at the end of the document served or on the face of the summons to see if your spouse is represented by an attorney or if he/she is representing themselves – this is called Pro Se.

    If there is a law firm identified, you will want to immediately find your own lawyer as you typically only have 20 days to respond to the Complaint – this is called filing an Answer.  If you are not able to find a lawyer in that time frame, don’t worry.  You can respond by going to the Court website listed on the document and find the Answer form (usually there are directions on the Court website to do this on your own) once you find a lawyer, they can amend the answer you filed, if necessary.

    If there is only a Summons with Notice, you will want to file a demand for Complaint from your spouse, which should also be done within the 20-day time frame. It is essential to respond in either case so that your spouse is not awarded a default judgment (for your failure to respond) for divorce.

  2. Manage your finances.

    Next, if you have a joint bank account with your spouse you will want to go to the bank and take out your share, usually 50%, should you withdraw more you may have to give that back to your spouse at a later date. Open a new bank account at a different bank and consider getting a safety deposit box for relevant documents and other valuables you may have.

    If you receive your bills electronically, change your passwords.  If you receive your mail at home, then perhaps you want to consider getting a P.O. Box that comes with a street address.

    Collect all of your financial information as soon as possible; mortgage payments, tax returns, utility bills, credit card debt, cars, insurance, etc. If done electronically, make sure to print out statements from each item in case your spouse changes the passwords.

  3. Protect your privacy.

    Set up a new e-mail account to use exclusively with your lawyer. Do not use your cell phone as a weapon of self-destruction – refrain from texting anything about your relationship to anyone. Text messages can be revealed during a divorce action, so think twice before your hit send. Stay off of ALL social media, especially if you have children. Anything you put on social media can be used in a divorce action, and while you may think it is harmless, it is often not construed that way. Social media will still be around when your divorce is finalized.

Finally, take a deep breath and look towards your future- if your spouse did not respect you enough to inform you of their desire to end your marriage, then, in the long run, you will be better off without them and know that you will find love again with the right partner.

Find more information about Leslie here.

FOLLOW LESLIE MONTANILE: Instagram | Facebook

Peaceful Relationships in Turbulent Times

3 Steps You Can Start Using Right Away

Are these scary times taking a toll on your most intimate relationship?

If so, you’re not alone.

Fear and stress can lead to impatience and anger. And before you know it, you’re in a gut-wrenching argument with the person you love—right when you need each others’ support and companionship the most. 

Then if these painful disconnects go unresolved, you can find yourselves drifting apart. In China, the divorce rate shot up when quarantines were relaxed, and we’re already hearing the same in this country.

But it’s not from spending too much time together in the current lockdown. It’s because we’re not good at maintaining true closeness when we’re frightened.

From decades of helping people have happier, more fulfilling relationships, we offer these three steps for alleviating fear and amplifying love—even in highly stressful times. 

Step #1: De-escalate yourself—before you try to de-escalate the argument

It’s natural to want to de-escalate the friction between you right away. But we recommend focusing on de-escalating yourself first.

This is not just taking a few breaths or counting to ten, although that’s useful. It’s a deliberate shift in your self-talk that dissolves your distress enough that your caring heart and clear mind come back to the forefront. 

It starts with noticing what’s going on inside you and then naming it for what it is. 

For instance, as soon as you recognize that you’re upset, you might say to yourself: “Yikes. My stomach is in knots. I’m raising my voice. I’m reacting as if the person in front of me is an enemy, not my beloved. I obviously got triggered and might be over-reacting… Hmmm…” 

When you do that, your neurobiological self starts calming your inner fear-fest and restoring your ability to think clearly and connect warmly—which puts you in the right place to approach your partner again

One way to know you’re ready to reconnect is that your desire to get back to love will be louder than your impulse to be defensive and right.

Step #2 — Restore the loving connection between you—before you get into a conversation

It’s so tempting to launch into discussing whatever went awry so you can fix it quickly. But don’t! 

The pain of an argument comes from the disconnect between the two of you—not from the issue that triggered it.  

Here’s our favorite way to restore our connection before we talk: 

Whoever’s ready first (that was usually Paige early on) approaches the other gently and says: “I’m sorry for my part.” And then Don would say: “I’m sorry for my part, too.” And as you might imagine, the distance would melt, and within seconds we were in the full embrace of love again.

Of course, this only works when it’s 100% genuine, and it might take some practice to discover what works for the two of you. But when you do, the subsequent conversations will go much better.

Step #3 —  Listen and speak to create deeper understanding—before discussing what to do next time

We got this step very wrong in our early years. 

As soon as we were back in sync, we’d start talking about what to do differently—thinking that’s how we’d avoid reigniting the problem. Logical, yes. But it usually backfired. We’d start arguing again, or, if we agreed on a solution, it wouldn’t stick.

In time, we found that a real resolution only emerged from a full conversation. That meant having a compassionate, level-headed exchange where the goal of our listening and our speaking was to understand each other better. 

This requires listening with a genuine curiosity about your partner’s experience of whatever went awry and why it was so upsetting. When practiced with patience, this kind of listening makes it safe for your beloved to speak openly and honestly.

Your speaking also wants to be compassionate. Meaning, while being honest about what upset you, you’re choosing language and tonality that are easy for your beloved to hear without getting triggered again. That means describing your feelings and perspective without blame.  

Pitfall alert!

During this mindful make-up conversation—especially in these ultra-stressful times—it’s easy to slip back into criticizing your partner, defending yourself, or shutting down again. If that’s what happens (which we know it can) just go back to Step #1. De-escalating yourself again, and then… You get the idea.

These three steps—de-escalating yourself first, then restoring your loving connection, followed by listening and speaking for deeper understanding—provide a framework for creating patterns of communication that yield an ever-deepening bond of love. 

We know the quest can be messy, especially now. Still the potential for experiencing new dimensions of extraordinary love is well worth it.

About

Paige Marrs, PhD, and Don Marrshave been joyfully married for over 33 years and have worked together since the day they joined their lives. They co-authored two how-to memoirs, both of which teach through story. Their most recent book, Grabbing Lightning: The Messy Quest for an Extraordinary Lovereveals their messy, intimate journey to a love greater than either of them knew to reach for. Paige and Don have offered their program, The Love Conversation® Approach, for more than a decade to provide couples and singles the tools needed to resolve their challenges so they can experience the depth of love they yearn for. You can learn more or sign up for their newsletter, LoveNotes, at www.TheLoveConversation.com.

Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE

The Secret Code to Resetting Your Body’s Inner Clock

By Cynthia Li, MD

“Our modern lifestyle is disrupting a deeply ingrained, primordial, and universal code to being healthy.” This is how Dr. Satchin Panda, a professor at the Salk Institute in San Diego and a researcher on circadian rhythms, begins his book, The Circadian Code. His statement is backed by a compelling body of research.

In 2012, Dr. Panda’s team divided genetically identical mice into 2 groups, one with unlimited access to a high fat-diet, and another with access to the same diet but whose eating was restricted to an 8-hour window (during that 8-hour window, however, the second group could eat as often as they wanted). The total caloric intake per day ended up being the same in both groups.  

The surprise: despite the same total caloric intake, the mice that ate within the time restriction showed no signs of disease often seen with a poor diet. No weight gain, diabetes, elevated cholesterol levels, fatty liver, or elevated markers of inflammation.  

In 2014, Dr. Panda’s team took it further. They divided genetically identical mice into 4 groups based on 4 different diets: high fat, high fructose, high fat and high sucrose (table sugar), and regular mouse kibble. Each of these groups had unrestricted eaters as well as those with time restrictions. Again, the caloric intake per day for all the mice ended up being the same. 

The result: the unrestricted eaters across the 4 groups tended to be obese with blood sugar, cholesterol, and inflammatory disorders, while those that ate within a 9- or 12-hour window stayed healthy, even if the latter “cheated” on the weekends. 

The purpose of these studies isn’t to condone a poor diet, but to stress the impacts of circadian rhythms on health and disease. Paying attention to when we eat seems to be a missing piece in the discussion of food, whether the goal is weight loss, more energy, or general health.  

What Exactly is the Circadian Clock?

The circadian clock is a biological rhythm found in plants, animals, and humans, closely aligned with the 24-hour day. This clock is influenced by our external environments—largely the exposure to light and dark—but is also controlled internally by our genes. Each organ has a set of genes that turn on, then turn off, at various times of the day and night. And though our environments have changed dramatically over the past century with artificial lighting and digital gadgets, our physiology remains largely the same today as it did two million years ago. In other words, there’s a mismatch between our internal clocks and stimuli from our modern lifestyle.    

Many of us know about the circadian rhythm, or have at least experienced it, in terms of jet lag.  Jet lag happens in part because melatonin, a brain chemical that dictates our sleep-wake cycles, gets disrupted by changes in the light-dark cycles when we cross time zones. But since each organ has its own internal clock, the liver is thrown off, too. And the digestive tract. And the lungs, the kidneys, and so on, through every organ. It takes on average 1 day for every hour of time change for the body to adjust.  

Why This Matters

When we deviate from our internal clocks, it creates added stress on the body. And stress, when perpetual and cumulative, can make us more vulnerable to chronic disease. Disrupted rhythms have been correlated with insomnia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), depression, anxiety, migraines, diabetes, obesity, dementia, and cardiovascular disease. On the flip side, aligning with our clocks can optimize function, and optimizing function means improving health. 

The Good News

Getting back in sync is relatively easy. We can optimize our clocks in just a few weeks. Based on the rhythms of insulin, digestion, and sleep, you can try the following:

  1. Eat a big breakfast. Don’t skip it! This sets the clocks for the other organs.
  2. Eat a medium-sized lunch. Drink 1-2 glasses of water between meals for a greater sense of fullness, or healthy snacks in between are fine, too.
  3. Eat a small dinner. The earlier the better. If you want to skip one meal a day, it’s best to skip dinner.  
  4. Nothing to eat or drink after dinner (water and herbal teas are okay).

Research suggests to repair, reset, and rejuvenate, it’s best to have a fasting window of 12 hours or more (EX: 8:00 am-8:00 pm, or -6:00 pm for the more ambitious). Our bodies need this window as much as our brains do.

Time-restricted eating isn’t about counting calories; it’s being mindful and disciplined about timing. 

*If you have chronic fatigue or moderate-severe diabetes, short-term or intermittent fasting may not be optimal, and might worsen your symptoms. It’s best for these conditions to work with an integrative doctor or functional nutritionist. 

A Few Last Tidbits

—Our bodies can’t make and break up body fat at the same time. Every time we eat, the fat-making program turns on and the body aims to store it. The fat-burning genes only turn on a few hours after the food stops coming in.  

—Gut motility increases during the day and slows down at night. So when we eat late, indigestion, insomnia, and weight gain are more likely.  

—The gut’s microbiome (the bacteria, viruses, and yeast that aid in digestion, absorption, and overall health) is affected by our internal rhythms.  

The take-home

—The better you can stick to regular eating intervals, the easier on your body.  

—A twelve-hour overnight window can have major benefits for your overall health.

—Eat real foods with lots of vegetables of different kinds, and keep the processed foods to a minimum.

—Try this for 30 days and see how you feel. 

—To be in sync with the internal and external rhythms of your body can do your body right.

Dr. Cynthia Li, MD, is an integrative and functional medicine practitioner in Berkeley, CA. She serves as faculty on the Healer’s Art Program at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine. She is the author of Brave New Medicine: A Doctor’s Unconventional Path to Healing Her Autoimmune Illness. 

Fitness Advice for New Year’s Resolutions

At the beginning of every year, gyms across the country are buzzing with new members who have made resolutions to lose weight, get back in shape or live a more active lifestyle. However, as the weeks go by, it can be challenging for some to stick to those resolutions. Steve Ball, professor at the University of Missouri and one of the nation’s leading experts on fitness and exercise, says that for resolutions to stick, people need to focus not only on outcome goals, but also goals related to the process of being physically active. You can read more about Dr. Ball’s advice here.

Dr. Ball also has comments on new federal guidelines for physical activity, which suggest that adults should aim for 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity each week, and any amount of time spent doing physical activity now counts toward the goal of active minutes. Prior guidelines had called for at least 10 minutes of activity for it to count.

There are video and audio resources available for broadcast-quality download here. The video features Donna Fox, who has recently made changes to lead a more active lifestyle and considers herself a “gym rat” now after never setting foot in a gym while growing up in the Caribbean.

As January winds down and the thrill of New Year’s resolutions wears off, Dr. Ball’s expertise in fitness and physical activity can be used as encouragement to stay on track with New Year’s fitness resolutions.