Archive for March, 2013

26 mar

Fixing Your House from the Inside Out

JennaSmithHome is your haven – a place where you can relax and spend time with your family. But unfortunately, your haven can contain germs and contaminants that harm the health of you and your family.

If you and your family frequently battle colds, allergy symptoms or digestive issues, you might link these problems to outside factors. Nobody wants to think or believe that their home can make them sick, but sometimes, this is the reality. Don’t let your home have a negative affect on your health. Here are four ways to fix your home and your health.

1. Fix water damage. Common water problems in the home can include a leaky roof or leaky pipes. Periodically exam your home and check for signs of water damage. Go into your attic or basement and look for standing water or water marks on the walls. The best time to check is after a heavy rain storm.

Additionally, look underneath your sinks and check for signs of a leak. An ongoing water leak can trigger a mold problem, and mold can bring on a host of unpleasant symptoms, such as skin rashes, coughing, breathing difficulties, watery eyes and a sore throat. Getting a new roof, repairing burst pipes and using a dehumidifier helps reduce water and moisture in your home, and lowers the risk of mold. If you discover mold, call a mold removal specialist immediately.

2. Drink healthier water. Most cities have a water treatment plant that’s responsible for removing impurities from tap water. However, treatment plants don’t remove all traces of pollutants and contaminants, and these can find their way into your home. Drinking unclean water can trigger brain fog and stomach ailments, such as diarrhea and cramping. Install a water filtration system on your faucet or drink bottled water to ensure a healthy, pure water supply.

3. Remove dust. If you’re sensitive to dust, too much dust in your living space can bring on asthma and allergy symptoms. You can dust your house on a regular basis, but this may not be enough to remove dust in the air. Change the way you clean and use microfiber cloths to dust your home. These cloths trap more dust and help keep your home clean. Additionally, change your air filters regularly – every three to six months depending on your particular filter. You can also use an air purifier, which is proven to remove 99.99% of airborne particles.

4. Attack allergens. Dust mites, pet dander and pollen can wreck havoc on your allergies. Allergy symptoms are no joke, and if you deal with frequent attacks, you might spend your days coughing and sneezing. Allergies are also responsible for water eyes, migraines and fatigue. You might blame symptoms on outdoor elements.

But if symptoms worsen when you’re at home, the problem can be inside your house. An allergist can help determine your triggers. You can reduce flareups at home by keeping your home dust-free, keeping the doors and windows closed, frequently washing pillows and blankets, and in extreme cases, removing your carpet.

Everyone deserves to feel their best, and your house shouldn’t control your health. Be proactive. Discover the root of mystery symptoms and your home will truly be a place of relaxation.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Jenna Smith on March 26th, 2013 in Finances, House and Home | No comments

25 mar

Workplace Confidence: Does Age Matter?

MichelleKerrigan“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” – Mark Twain

Mark Twain was a very wise man. And yet, age often causes such a chasm in the workplace, affecting teamwork, performance and innovation. Why?

A lot of it comes from perceptions driven by the media: seniors are slow and technology challenged; gen y is self absorbed with a sense of entitlement; and baby boomers are stuck in the past and glory days. Sound about right?

While many of these thoughts don’t originate with us, once we adopt them, they turn inwards, and we run the risk of putting ourselves in age boxes (18-24, 25-33, 34-45, 46-55). Like most things in life, it’s the stories we tell ourselves that get in our way.

Case in point: When asked to speak at Hunter College about navigating change, I was nervous about addressing a room full of students in their early 20s. In my 50s, I found myself thinking not like Mark Twain, but like Will McAvoy, the anchorman character in the hit show The Newsroom, who has that awful fear known as ”Am I still relevant?”

As I help people address issues with confidence, it’s odd that I even think of this, but that’s exactly why I think of it. If you let it, negative perceptions can shake your confidence to its very core.

So, as I arrived in the classroom, I kept trying to talk myself through it: “It will be alright…just 20-30 minutes, and I’m done and out of here, before they start yawning…..loudly.” See? We can really get fluent in ‘crazy’ when facing fear and doubt.

90 minutes later—yes, 90 minutes–I was in a deep Q and A with the students. I kept looking over to the professor, wondering when to sit down, and she mouthed—“as long as their hands are up, keep going.”

I found that the students were just as nervous as I, if not more so. They were concerned about all the changes they were facing—definitely at a much faster pace than I’ve ever experienced.

They were also frightened of entering the workforce, and being considered too young, too inexperienced, too inferior. In essence, give or take 30 years, they felt just like me.

They were so relieved when I told them that everyone has fears—no one’s immune. It’s what you do with your fear that matters. You can let it stop you by worrying about the future or getting stuck in the past. Or you can get in the here-and-now, and ask “What’s the next positive step I can take to move myself forward and who can help me?”

It was then that I realized the most relevant lesson of all: No one succeeds alone—no one. The success we felt in that Hunter classroom was a team effort—timeless and transcending all barriers. We can all learn from each other, and we should.

In the workplace, embrace this practice of working together, and there’s nowhere you can’t go. Performance, productivity, and innovation are driven by collaboration and must be unencumbered by preconceptions because they limit us and everyone we touch.

We all have something of value to bring to the table—our different strengths and experiences.

Age, like fear, doesn’t matter. It’s the confidence to move forward together that does.

Copyright 2013 Michelle Kerrigan. All rights reserved.

For over 25 years, Michelle Kerrigan has been helping businesses and private clients achieve workplace success by developing the practical skills they need to improve their confidence. Based on her own leadership experiences, Michelle provides an invaluable road map for conquering fear and doubt, navigating change, and solving day-to-day challenges, resulting in more effective management and leadership, increased productivity and growth. Michelle also writes and speaks about achieving success, and is currently working on a series for public TV about self esteem and workplace confidence. More at www.workplaceconfidence.com and www.michellekerriganinc.com.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Michelle Kerrigan on March 25th, 2013 in Career, Global/Social Change, Personal Stories | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , , , , ,

24 mar

How to Handle Peer Pressure When It Comes to Drugs

RobertCordrayWhen you are growing up, there are a lot of challenges that you have to face. But often the hardest thing that you have to deal with comes from your closest friends. When you like someone a lot, “peer pressure” seems like a ridiculous idea. Why would your friends pressure you into anything? But sometimes what we call “peer pressure” is nothing more than just a suggestion, or even feeling pressured to do something that you don’t want to do, just because your friends do. One of those things might be drugs. You might never have been offered drugs, but the chances are that you will at some point during your teenage years. So here are some tips to help you to be prepared for such a situation.

Decide Where You Stand On the Issue. Now.

“I’ve never been offered drugs so far, so I’ll just cross that bridge when I come to it.” Sounds good, right? Wrong. If you do not know how you will act now, you will not know what to do then, and you are far more likely to let other people decide for you. That is why you have to make the decision not to take drugs now. Right now. You do not know when you will come across drugs, so you need to be prepared now to say no tomorrow.

Stick to Your Guns

Once you have made your decision, stick to it. People respect those who have their own minds. And if your friends are real friends, they will not care whether you do the same as them or not. Don’t be tempted to try something out just for the sake of it, stick to the decision that you have made. No means no.

Know the Facts

It is a good idea to look into the topic in question. In this case it is drugs, and there are a lot of facts to back up your stance. If you do your research and find out all that you can about drugs, you will be able to share what you learn with your friends, and you can all make an educated decision. The effects of drugs can be incredibly dangerous, so you are all better off if you do not get involved with them.

Hang Out With People Who Feel the Same Way

You call these people your friends for a reason. You have a lot in common and you would probably do anything for them. But if your friends are putting themselves and you in danger, there comes a point when it is best to just walk away. This can be one of the hardest decisions that you will ever have to face, but it could save your life and your future. You don’t have to cut them off completely, but you can politely tell them that you don’t agree with the choices that they are making, and that you cannot be a part of such a destructive habit. Spend your time with people who have the same opinions on this topic as you do.

About the Author: Hyrum Taffer is a freelance writer for DrugRehab.org and expert in drug addiction/recovery. Through much personal experience and a lot of research, Hyrum hopes others can benefit from his writing.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on March 24th, 2013 in Health | No comments

20 mar

Preventing Your Family’s Health Problems Before They Start

JennaSmithIt is important to understand your family’s medical history. Knowing whether you have a genetic predisposition for certain types of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, etc can help you take proactive steps to keeping these problems at bay for as long as possible. You might not be able to prevent them entirely but you might be able to slow them down or reduce their severity.

Heart Disease

If you know that you come from a family of heart disease you should already be on a “heart healthy” diet. Ask your doctor for recommendations or literature to help you plan your meals accordingly. You should also be making sure to get in a full workout at least three times a week. This strengthens your muscles, including your heart. It also improves your circulation which helps reduce your risk of developing blood clots or other problems. If the heart problems in your family are particularly severe, make sure you know how to use and have some basic rescue equipment (AED Brands has good offers on those if your budget is tight) on hand.

Diabetes

It is true that Type 1 Diabetes cannot be prevented. It’s genetically passed down and usually starts to affect people at an early age. You can, though, make sure that you keep it in check by eating right, following your doctor’s instructions and taking your insulin properly.

Type 2 Diabetes is a disease that you can usually prevent. While the exact cause is unknown, this type of diabetes develops more often in people who are overweight, inactive and who have terrible eating habits. This makes it easy enough to prevent, though it does require some discipline. Work with your doctor to figure out which weight is the healthiest for your height and frame. Eat a healthy and balanced diet of whole and organic foods (just say no to HFCS). Learn and practice portion control. Get regular exercise—start with what you can do now and as you get stronger introduce new activities. Remember that weight loss and proper nutrition require constant maintenance.

Cancer

The really terrible thing about cancer is that if it is going to develop it is going to develop. You can’t completely stop it—especially if it is a hereditary cancer. That does not mean, however, that you can’t slow it down. Smoking and excessive drinking have been known to exacerbate, speed up and even sometimes induce lung and liver cancer. Failing to protect your skin against the harmful rays of the sun increases your risk of developing skin cancer. If you have a genetic predisposition to certain types of cancer (there are a lot of them) work with your doctor to figure out which behaviors you need to develop or moderate to reduce your risk of the cancer getting too serious too quickly.

The one thing that all of these diseases and conditions have in common is that, the earlier they are detected the easier they are to treat or even cure. This means that whether you are genetically predisposed to cancer, diabetes or heart disease, make sure you see your doctor regularly for checkups and scans. This preventative measure alone could be what saves your life!

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Jenna Smith on March 20th, 2013 in Diet and Fitness, Family, Health | No comments

15 mar

10 Small Ways to Lose Weight at Work

JoshWeiss-RoesslerMany people today spend at least a third of their waking life at work. Worse, more and more “work” means a full day of sitting at a desk or in front of a computer. Add in the time spent commuting to and from and we’re on our rear ends way too long.

Living such sedentary lives, it is no wonder that so many are out of shape or overweight. Yet as a friend of mine says, it’s all about the small stuff. Small things add up to big things, and if you want to manage your weight, you need to find ways to take back control and get yourself moving again.

The office is a great place to start, so here are ten ways to lose weight while at work.

1. Walk the stairs
Maybe you think you work on too high of a floor or believe using the stairs takes too much time. Get over it. If walking up 10 flights it too much, do the first five and take the elevator the rest of the way until you get stronger. And if you’re worried about the extra time and lost productivity, get to work 15 minutes early and leave 15 minutes later. Compared to going to the gym, you’ll still save time.

2. BYOB
Despite the rising levels of awareness going on everywhere regarding health and wellness, office lunchrooms still stubbornly belong to the decade before last – religiously offering the usual fair of coffee, caffeinated tea with sugar, and small packets of half and half. Try bringing your own healthier beverages to work such as herbal teas or flavored seltzer waters.

3. Get up and walk
For every hour you sit behind your computer, take a five to 10 minute break and get up to stretch and walk. Sitting for extended periods of time at a desk can cause poor circulation and make digesting food and pumping healthy amounts of oxygen through your body more difficult.

4. Develop a stretching routine
You might look funny to your coworkers, but that five to 10 minute break can also be a great time to build some regular stretching exercises into your day. Try some modified yoga poses that lend themselves to sitting in a chair or can be done standing behind your desk.

5. Volunteer to be the lunch runner
If packing a lunch is not your thing and your office usually hits the lunch truck or local deli and works through the meal, make yourself the designated runner so that at least you’re getting some much-needed exercise. And if you treat yourself to an outside cup of coffee in the afternoon, be the runner for that as well. Get out and move as often as possible. If you can’t, at least get healthy delivery.

6. Pack a lunch
If the lunch truck isn’t doing it for you and the outside world provides too many food temptations, make a point to bring a lunch – one that’s healthy, but that you’ll enjoy and doesn’t leave you feeling deprived. You’ll save calories and money!

7. Pack a snack
Instead of reaching for that sugary caffeinated half and half cup of Joe from the lunchroom, bring a couple of pieces of fruit or some carrots. Make a deal with yourself that you will get up and walk around as part of your ‘snack break.’

8. Conduct walking meetings
If you have a boss or coworker you meet with on a daily basis, have walking meetings instead of sitting at desks or around a table. Even if it’s for five or 10 minutes, pick a path that you can walk through your building or on the outside grounds and get moving while you chat.

9. Don’t take the close parking spot
If you have an office parking lot, make a point to park far from the building. It will force you to get a walk in before you enter the building. And guess what? You’re going to have to do it again to get home!

10. Eat breakfast
The one thing that you should always try to do before you leave the house or after you arrive at the office is eat breakfast. A good breakfast helps you lose weight by keeping you eating with more balance for the remainder of the day.

Work does not have to be a place where you get fat. Weave in exercise throughout your day, and you’ll quickly realize that it really is the little things that make the difference. When you make an effort to really commit to them, you may see big changes faster than you think.

Josh Weiss-Roessler is a freelance writer based in Los Angeles. He’s a contributor to many diet and exercise websites, such as Weight Loss Triumph where you can find information on many different programs to help you achieve your goals. In order to achieve his own goals for weight loss, he cooks most meals and stays consistent with long walks with his wife, son, and two nutty dogs, Darby and Lady. You can learn more about his writing on WeissRoessler.com.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Josh Weiss-Roessler on March 15th, 2013 in Diet and Fitness, Health | No comments

14 mar

Workplace Confidence: Corporate Breakup Rule #1: Deal…. Don’t Dwell

MichelleKerriganGetting laid off is a big change. Often, a painful and unwanted change. When we are faced with a major change, the natural tendency is to dwell on the past, worry about the future, doubt ourselves and get stuck.

All these emotions are natural reactions, so don’t beat yourself up over them. But when you dwell too much on the negative, it becomes problem generating.

When we dwell, we go over the same ground again and again: “Why did this happen to me?,” ” What did I do wrong?,” “Will I ever be able to find another job?”

Have you ever done this? Gone over the same ground again and again, and come out at the same place?

When you deal instead of dwell, you focus in the present moment and take control over how you think and act. You become a problem solver. You think empowering thoughts, ask better questions and take action. It can sound like this: —“OK—I might not be comfortable with job hunting, but I’m not going to let that stop me. First I’m going to educate myself about the companies I like. Then I’m going to decide: How can I move forward?” and “Who can help me?”

You need to be able to acknowledge your fears and doubts, then turn them into planning and action. Remember—you choose your thoughts and actions. You choose what’s next.

When faced with change, always ask yourself: “What’s the next positive step I can take to move myself forward?” Then, do it.

How about you––do you deal or dwell?

Copyright 2013 Michelle Kerrigan. All Rights Reserved

For over 25 years, Michelle Kerrigan has been helping clients achieve workplace success by developing the practical skills they need to improve their confidence. Michelle also writes and speaks about the roles confidence and self esteem play in high performance and productivity, and is currently working on a series for public TV about workplace confidence. More at www.workplaceconfidence.com and www.MichelleKerriganInc.com.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Michelle Kerrigan on March 14th, 2013 in Career | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , ,

12 mar

Workplace Confidence: The Perfection Addiction

MichelleKerriganFrom 1976-1986, I was the sole copy editor for every piece of printed product for Columbia Records. We’re talking album covers, inner sleeves, cassettes, 8-tracks (yes, I said 8-tracks), record labels—you name it. I worked for artists such as Bruce Springsteen, Pink Floyd, Billy Joel, Bob Dylan and Tony Bennett.

This was a time before digital production, when we worked with manuscripts, typesetting, mechanical boards and film—all mostly manual, labor intensive and very, very expensive.

At that time, one mistake by me could cost the company millions in reprint costs. It could also cost me my job. I made it a point to never make mistakes. What a pressure it was to always be dead-on accurate. This was one place where perfectionism really counted, because the costs were so high.

Perfectionism has its place, but it can get out of hand and affect everything you do.

When the digital revolution happened in the music business, having technology at our fingertips made it much easier for perfection addiction to spread. First, art directors finessed their designs to the nth degree. Sometimes, we had to literally pry the projects out of their hands as we rushed past deadline dates. Then, the label heads got into the act, and more excruciating tweaking began.

Here’s the double-edged sword: The wonderful thing about technology is that you can make changes easily. The terrible thing about technology is that you can make changes easily.

When we are addicted to perfection, we tend to over-think, over-analyze and over-finesse just about everything. We exhaust ourselves. We’re always looking for that solid armor of security that blocks any criticism. When we spend too much time perfecting one thing, other tasks that need our attention suffer. Then we begin to feel overwhelmed and depressed.

We get a limited amount of energy every day—just so many hours. My advice is to be very selective about which projects you want to refine to perfection. Avoid being counterproductive by being a stickler about everything.

Some ways to kick the perfectionism habit:

Focus: begin with the end in mind. Envision the big picture—what’s the true value of the project you’re working on? Does it merit all the extra hours of striving for perfection?

Set a timer: a deadline can be a wonderful thing.

Step away: taking a breather can often give you a fresh perspective.

Collaborate: getting input from a colleague whom you respect may give you a whole other viewpoint (and may silence your inner critic).

Put up a stop sign: Know when enough is enough. Perfectionists always tend to over-deliver. “It’s not good enough” is definitely something many of us have learned somewhere along the way. (Maybe a parent who always expected A’s.)

You don’t have to hit a bull’s eye every time. No one does.

Even when you think you haven’t hit the bull’s eye, often others will think you have. I can’t tell you how often I’ve thought I’ve done a so-so job, and have received more praise than I ever expected. We already have too much work now, and there’s more ahead of us.

Giving yourself permission to be imperfect is giving yourself permission to be human. And that’s a great thing. We’re all vulnerable in one way or another, and it’s at these moments that people relate to us. And that’s better than perfect—that’s life.

Copyright 2013 Michelle Kerrigan. All Rights Reserved.

For over 25 years, Michelle Kerrigan has been helping businesses and private clients surpass goals and achieve success by developing the practical skills they need to improve their workplace confidence, performance and productivity. Michelle also writes, speaks, and is currently working on a series for public TV about workplace confidence. More at www.workplaceconfidence.com and www.MichelleKerriganInc.com.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Michelle Kerrigan on March 12th, 2013 in Career, Global/Social Change | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , ,

12 mar

How to Avoid 3 Common Online Scams

RobertCordrayBeing a con artist used to be more difficult. At the very least, it used to require a bit more courage and ability than it does now. Unfortunately, the invention of the internet has expanded the base of potential suckers almost infinitely in every direction. So now, rather than carefully selecting a mark, acting out some elaborate setup, and finally closing the deal, the con artist can just cast his net out into cyberspace and wait for the payoff. The bad news is that internet scams are all over the place. The good news is that we’ve got a list of three of the more common ones that you should be aware of.

1. The Nigerian 419

No list of internet scams could be complete without the Nigerian 419. This one is the father of all the other scams on the list, and has been around since the early days of the internet. In essence, the scam involves receiving a message from someone who is attempting to move a large sum of money out of a politically unstable region. The scammer promises you that if you help them, they’ll let you have a substantial percentage of that money. All you need to do is send a few thousand dollars to help move the money through the various channels, and once it all clears, you’ll get a nice, fat, multimillion dollar check. Of course, in reality, that check will never come. If you’re foolish enough to send them the money, either the scammer will simply disappear into cyberspace, or he will follow up with the news that unexpected problems have arisen, and that more money is needed.

There are thousands of variations on this scheme, and some may appear to be very genuine. So here’s a good rule of thumb: if it seems too good to be true, assume that it is. Never send money—or even a response—to any message that you get requesting help in this manner. These people will see any reply as an encouraging sign, and some scammers have been known to resort to violence and abduction to get what they want. Just delete the email and move on.

2. Phishing

Maybe you’re too savvy to fall for the Nigerian scheme. So you delete that message from your inbox, and move on to the next. It’s an email from your bank, and it says that you need to update your account. So you click on a link, are taken to the website, and you enter your personal information. Well, congratulations, you just got phished. Phishing scams use fraudulent websites—that often look almost identical to the real thing—so that you will give them the data that they’ll need to steal your identity and empty out your bank accounts. Whenever a company asks you for personal information via email, warning sirens should go off in your head. If you seriously think that your bank has important business with you, play it safe and go speak with a banker. Never give personal info to someone who emails you asking for it.

3. Auction scam

This may come as a surprise, but sometimes con artists can be found working through otherwise legitimate and reputable websites. Take those who practice the online auction scam, for example. 60% of all internet scams reported to the FBI involve sellers in online auctions. The scheme itself is very simple and straight forward. A product is placed up for auction, an unsuspecting buyer purchases said product, and then the product never arrives. The buyer then attempts to get in touch with the seller, only to find that their contact information is bogus.

The real problem with auction scams is that they can be difficult to identify; after all, the auction site itself is legitimate, and they do have security measure in place to weed out potential con artists. However, no security system is perfect. If you do want to purchase something from an online auction, do some research into the seller. Does he have positive reviews? Has he been selling things online for more than just a few months? If anything seems out of the ordinary, like a new seller with no reviews, then maybe you should move on. At the very least, make sure that you never provide personal information to someone from whom you are making an online purchase. Use online sites like PayPal to make your purchase. At least in that case, even if they rip you off, all they’re getting is a onetime payment.

About the Author: Robert Cordray is a freelance writer for Income.com and expert in business who specializes in small business leadership. With over 20 years of business experience, Robert is now retired and hopes others can benefit from his writing.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on March 12th, 2013 in Technology | No comments

01 mar

How to Avoid Common Scams

RobertCordrayThousands of scams occur every year and to all different kinds of people. They may range from insurance scams to internet fraud to multi-level marketing schemes and everything in between. Could any of these scams been prevented? Yes, if people were a little bit more careful of what they did with their money. While scams come in all shapes and sizes, there are some common principles to keep in mind that will help you avoid them.

Don’t send money to someone you don’t know

A lot of people now do shopping online. While this is certainly convenient, it also raises the risk of being scammed. As a general rule of thumb, don’t send money to anyone you don’t know or trust. Of course there are certain websites that are perfectly safe. Companies like eBay for example, have safety measures in place to prevent scamming. However, if you run across a website you have never heard before, do some research before you send money to anyone. There are many fake websites set up that simply want to steal your money.

Don’t give financial information to anyone you don’t know

Don’t open links, messages, or emails that ask for personal financial information. The people behind it are practicing what’s called phishing. They send out official looking messages that ask you to provide information such as your address, phone number and credit card number. If you give this information up the thief could steal money from you immediately.

Don’t trust a single source

Let’s say your family is planning a vacation to a tropical island. You start looking online and find a beautiful hotel right on the beach that is surprisingly inexpensive. What you may not realize is that those pictures are fake. You might get there and notice that the hotel is a dump, or that it doesn’t exist at all. Always look at multiple sources. Read reviews about the hotel, product, or whatever it is you are purchasing.

Talk to a doctor before you buy health products

There are a lot of products on the market that make fairly strong claims. Clever advertising often makes those products seem much better than they actually are. Ask your doctor how effective he thinks the product might be. Present him with the claims and ask him to address the scientific research behind it. Companies could scam you by sending you fake, expired or even dangerous products.

Watch out for free offers

Advertisements often offer free products, services, or information. One of the most common forms of this is the “free trial offer”. The free offer, printed in bold and bright letters in the middle of the page is meant to distract you from the fine print at the bottom. If you were to read that fine print you might realize that by clicking “agree” you are agreeing to pay $30 a month. To avoid these scams always read the fine print and never trust testimonials. Generally, just stay away from companies you have never heard of or that no one you know has ever used.

About the Author: Robert Cordray is a freelance writer for PeopleClaim.com and expert in business/finance. With over 20 years of business experience, Robert is now retired and hopes others can benefit from his writing.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on March 1st, 2013 in Finances | No comments Read related posts in

01 mar

WORDS create WORLDS

SaskiaShakinWORDS create WORLDS

Words create. They can be used as weapons of mass destruction or for sacred creation. They can create joy or sorrow, pleasure or pain.

The way we choose our words speaks volumes about us: they are a window into our soul … a reflection of who we are, how we think, what we hold dear, and what we strive to become.

They mirror how we see the world, and, thus, how the world sees us. It is a 2-way mirror; for what we project with our words comes back as our reality. And the reality we experience is only as permanent as our words: change your thinking, and you change your world. In other words, we create our world with our words, and with our words we reflect the world we’ve created.

There is an old children’s rhyme that goes: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” How wrong that is! Bones mend quickly in a child. But the hurt of words spoken with cruelty can leave scars for life.

As a keynote coach to countless leaders over the past
30 years, I have listened to my fair share of words. Some have nearly put me to sleep; others were mildly
boring; others were mundane and predictable; and the rare few were inspiring and memorable.

But it is seldom the words themselves that remain with me . . . it is rather the feeling that they conjured up within me. It is the images those words evoked; the emotions they brought forth that remained . . . less in my head than in my heart. For we think far more often with our heart than with our head – despite what we have been taught to believe.

I see this fact all the time in the work I do whether I am preparing an expert witness in the courtroom to sway a jury; a CEO to inspire her legions; or a non-profit fundraiser to get people to part with their hard-earned cash.

Words that come from the heart will win over hearts and minds. Words that come from the head tend to go in one ear and out the other.

So choose your words with wisdom. They can move mountains or make mud pies. They are the currency of communication. Spend them wisely; invest them with care and they will repay you many times over.

And remember: People may not remember what you’ve said, but they always remember how you made them feel.

Saskia Shakin
Author, More Than Words Can Say: The Making of Inspired Speakers

www.TheKeynoteCoach.com

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Posted by Saskia Shakin on March 1st, 2013 in Uncategorized | No comments Read related posts in