Top Chai Teas to Check Out in Toronto

For the tea drinking generalist. Gettem’ while they’re hot, JollyGens!

Chai tea lattes have grown in popularity over the years, especially with giants like Starbucks introducing their pumpkin spice chai tea latte taking the fall season by storm. But what exactly is

But what exactly is chai? Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as “a beverage that is a blend of black tea, honey, spices, and milk.” With benefits that include its supply of antioxidants, digestive aid, and anti-inflammatory properties, it’s easy to understand why this tea choice has become so popular. In addition to the above benefits, it is also a great substitute for coffee as its robust flavour satisfies the drinker all while offering significant health benefits.

Hearth Chai has put together a great infographic showcasing 7 Amazing Unknown Facts About Chai:

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So where can you find the best cup of chai in Toronto? Try one of these spots, you won’t be disappointed!

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Or try making your own at home using Chaiwala Fresh Blend – the perfect comfort drink for a cold day:

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Happy drinking Chai lovers!

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5 Benefits of Practicing Yoga

For the bendy generalist. Namaste, JollyGens!

Yoga over the last decade has grown in popularity exponentially across North America. A 2016 survey conducted by Yoga Alliance and Yoga Journal (carried out by Ipsos Public Affairs) reports the yoga industry in the United States at $16B, up from $10B in 2012. Studios continue to pop up in neighbourhoods from coast to coast and it appears that there are no signs of slowing.

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So why is this practice so popular? Below are five benefits of practicing yoga:

1. Flexibility

As expected, yoga helps with flexibility and range of motion. By stretching and holding various poses the muscles loosen up and with regular practice, the body will begin to notice increased flexibility.

2. Strength

While many perceive yoga as a relaxing and restorative practice, depending on the type of practice and teacher, yoga can actually work up quite a sweat. Power yoga, in particular, is known to be a quicker, high-intensity practice that works on building muscle. Often the result is leaner, tones muscle rather than bulky muscle.

3. Mindfulness

As discussions around mental health develop, new and thoughtful methods for handling and improving mental wellness are gaining attention. Yoga is a safe outlet for feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression as the breathing practice helps to bring center and awareness to the body’s natural state. By focusing on one’s breathing, other thoughts gradually dissipate and one is left feeling calm and in control.

4. Connectedness

Whether or not you are a spiritual person, yoga offers a sense of connectedness with yourself and others. Both mentally and physically, your body connects to the mind as much as it connects to the floor and a sense of oneness is the result. You begin to gain greater respect and appreciation for those around you as you begin to understand that we are all in this together.

5. Confidence

Every yogi has to start from somewhere. Nerves and inferiority are often felt when first starting yoga as it opens the mind and body to a place of openness, trust, and vulnerability. By opening oneself up in that way though it not only allows for growth and development, it ultimately fosters a place for confidence to grow.

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6 Things to Consider When Moving in with a New Roommate

For the moving generalist. Plan ahead, JollyGens!

Whether or not you are a generalist or specialist, big picture or narrow focused, just about everyone at some point in their life finds themselves in a situation where they need to move in with a new roommate. This can be a big decision and sometimes a daunting task for all parties involved, which is why it is important to consider all factors, big and small.

1. Timeline

It is important, right off the bat, to make sure you and your potential roommate are working within the same timeframe. Clearly identify your start date and prospective end date so that the other person doesn’t face any surprises down the road. Give the other person indicators of when you intend to find the place and move your furniture in. Be sure to give as accurate a timeline as possible so the beginning and ending of your living arrangement is as smooth as possible.

2. Location

Location, location, location. Make sure you and your roommate are on the same page when it comes to where you want to live. Find the mutual bordering lines that you want to stay within and avoid swaying from there. Location means a lot and no house, no matter how perfect, will satisfy you if it isn’t in your realistic area.

3. Budget

Before considering anything else, make sure you and your roommate are working with the same numbers. Determine your max budget and your ideal budget and see how they compare with your potential roommates. Hopefully, they align or are within the same ranges. If they do not align, ask if there is any flexibility.

4. The Space

Finding the perfect space can be a challenge and realistically, there will never be the “perfect space.” The trick is to find a space that checks most of your boxes and to be willing to compromise where necessary. Try picturing yourself on a typical day in the space and see how it fits. If it looks good, the details for the rest can be worked out from there.

5. Furniture

Review your inventory of furniture and personal items to see where you are covered, where there is overlap, and where you need to fill in some gaps. Be clear on items that have to be included and ones that can be eliminated where necessary. Be willing to let go of some things to make room for the other person.

6. Lifestyle

Last, and very importantly, make sure you are working with someone with a lifestyle that is compatible with yours. They don’t need to have the same or even a similar lifestyle to yours but you have to be okay with what they are offering. Be upfront to your potential roommate about what they can expect from you and ask that they, in turn, do the same. It is better to be upfront about these things than to find out later on that the relationship was doomed from the start.

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Interview with a PhD Student

For the academic generalist. “Celebrate the little win(e)s”, JollyGens!

The great part of being a generalist is learning about what others find interesting. And what better type of person to speak to, who loves learning and is an expert in their field, than the Ph.D. student. We interviewed a Health Sciences student to tell us a bit about how they got into and became a specialist in their area of study.

1. What lead you to want to do your Ph.D.?

After graduating undergrad and doing research for a year I realized that I still had a lot of questions about my area of research. In order to explore those questions deeper, I decided to do my Masters and then pursue my Ph.D.

2. What did you do your undergrad and Masters in?

I completed my undergrad in Health Sciences and my Masters in Health and Rehabilitation Sciences.

3. Did you enjoy your Masters more than your undergrad?

I was more interested in what I was learning in my Masters because my undergrad was quite broad so I had to take courses that I wasn’t particularly interested in. My Masters, on the other hand, focused more specifically on my areas of interest.

4. Did you know you wanted to do your Ph.D. before started your Masters?

No, I decided to pursue my Ph.D. while completing my Masters.

5. What are you doing your Ph.D. in?

Speech Language Pathology.

5. How many years is your Ph.D. and how far along are you?

It is a five-year program and I’m about two years in.

5. Did the number of years of schooling ever intimidate you?

Yes. I still find it sometimes intimidating but for different reasons.

6. How so?

Now that I’ve begun exploring my subject, I no longer worry about how many years I still have to go. Instead, I have a hard time figuring out how to fit everything I want and need to do into the next three years.

7. How do you plan to use your Ph.D. after graduation?

I would like to do clinical research in my field. A lot of school boards are now starting to hire researchers since there is interest in initiating new programs that are more helpful for students. I’d like to be a part of creating and implementing programs that work.

8. Any words of advice for other students looking to pursue their Ph.D.?

It takes a lot of commitment but is really satisfying to study something that you love every day. Create a support network with other people in academia that understand what you are going through because it is very different from the working world.

9. Do you need to be passionate about what you study?

Yes. It would be hard to commit to something that requires so much time and energy if you weren’t passionate about it.

10. Any last words?

Celebrate the little wins… and find a good wine!

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