Interpersonal Relations

Body Language Speaks Louder Than Words

Body Language Speaks Louder Than Words

Body Language Speaks Louder Than Words

By: Lydia Ramsey

Has it ever occurred to you how much you are saying to people even when you are not speaking? Unless you are a master of disguise, you are constantly sending messages about your true thoughts and feelings whether you are using words or not.

Studies show that your words account for only 7% of the messages you convey. The remaining 93% is non-verbal. 55% of communication is based on what people see and the other 38% is transmitted through tone of voice. So think about it. In the business setting, people can see what you are not saying. If your body language doesn't match your words, you are wasting your time.

Eye contact is the most obvious way you communicate. When you are looking at the other person, you show interest. When you fail to make eye contact, you give the impression that the other person is of no importance. Maintain eye contact about 60% of the time in order to look interested, but not aggressive.

Facial expression is another form of non-verbal communication. A smile sends a positive message and is appropriate in all but a life and death situation. Smiling adds warmth and an aura of confidence. Others will be more receptive if you remember to check your expression.

Your mouth gives clues, too, and not just when you are speaking. Mouth movements, such as pursing your lips or twisting them to one side, can indicate that you are thinking about what you are hearing or that you are holding something back.

The position of your head speaks to people. Keeping your head straight, which is not the same as keeping your head on straight, will make you appear self-assured and authoritative. People will take you seriously. Tilt your head to one side if you want to come across as friendly and open.

How receptive you are is suggested by where you place your arms. Arms crossed or folded over your chest say that you have shut other people out and have no interest in them or what they are saying. This position can also say, "I don't agree with you." You might just be cold, but unless you shiver at the same time, the person in front of you may get the wrong message.

How you use your arms can help or hurt your image as well. Waving them about may show enthusiasm to some, but others see this gesture as one of uncertainty and immaturity. The best place for your arms is by your side. You will look confident and relaxed. If this is hard for you, do what you always do when you want to get better at something - practice. After a while, it will feel natural.

The angle of your body gives an indication to others about what's going through your head. Leaning in says, "Tell me more." Leaning away signals you've heard enough. Adding a nod of your head is another way to affirm that you are listening.

Posture is just as important as your grandmother always said it was. Sit or stand erect if you want to be seen as alert and enthusiastic. When you slump in your chair or lean on the wall, you look tired. No one wants to do business with someone who has no energy.

Control your hands by paying attention to where they are. In the business world, particularly when you deal with people from other cultures, your hands need to be seen. That would mean you should keep them out of your pockets and you should resist the urge to put them under the table or behind your back. Having your hands anywhere above the neck, fidgeting with your hair or rubbing your face, is unprofessional.

Legs talk, too. A lot of movement indicates nervousness. How and where you cross them tells others how you feel. The preferred positions for the polished professional are feet flat on the floor or legs crossed at the ankles. The least professional and most offensive position is resting one leg or ankle on top of your other knee. Some people call this the "Figure Four." It can make you look arrogant.

The distance you keep from others is crucial if you want to establish good rapport. Standing too close or "in someone's face" will mark you as pushy. Positioning yourself too far away will make you seem standoffish. Neither is what you want so find the happy medium. Most importantly, do what makes the other person feel comfortable. If the person with whom you are speaking keeps backing away from you, stop. Either that person needs space or you need a breath mint.

You may not be aware of what you are saying with your body, but others will get the message. Make sure it's the one you want to send.

 

Author Bio
Lydia Ramsey is a business etiquette expert, professional speaker, corporate trainer and author of MANNERS THAT SELL - ADDING THE POLISH THAT BUILDS PROFITS. She has been quoted or featured in The New York Times, Investors' Business Daily, Entrepreneur, Inc., Real Simple and Woman's Day. For more information about her programs, products and services, e-mail her at lydia@mannersthatsell.com or visit her web site www.mannersthatsell.com

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Simple Tips for the Best Super Bowl Party Ever

Simple Tips for the Best Super Bowl Party Ever

Submitted by: KC Kudra

The final football game of the season is coming up. You want to invite all your cronies over to enjoy the biggest game of the year with you. However, how will you keep them content and fed? The good news is, there are lots of ways to not only keep your guests happy, but you can enjoy the game, too!

Think about all those tailgating parties you attended during the football season. You can plan your Super Bowl party the same way! Use lawn chairs in your living room for extra seating. Make great tasting snacks and set them out like a buffet so everyone can eat, as they like. Stock up on heavy duty paper plates and plastic silverware... it will make your cleaning up a breeze. Use those memories of tailgating to create a theme of camaraderie at your party.

Supply plenty of cold beverages. Soda, water, and beer will be the easiest to serve as well as what is expected. Keep them cold in chests full of ice. We are invoking that tailgating fun remember? Screaming and cheering brings on a lot of thirst, so be sure to stock enough!

Now for the food. You must have food for a good Super Bowl party. Snack foods are the best. They are easy to make and easy to eat while you are yelling at the game. Think of things like chicken wings, meatballs, nachos, pizza... anything that tastes great and you can eat with your fingers. Other foods like chili are always welcome, too. Serve everything up on platters or in crock pots so everything is ready when your guests want to eat.

Sub sandwiches are a great Super Bowl treat. Pile them high with cold cuts, lettuce, and tomato. Serve it up with lots of chips and dips. Finger foods like pigs in blankets and sausage rolls are super simple to make and they taste great. Keep it simple and fun so you can enjoy the party, too.

Not everyone is a big football fan, and it is inevitable that there will be a few who just do not care too much about watching. Let them congregate in a nice corner with lots of goodies to eat so they can visit and have a good time. If some guests are bringing children, set up a play room with toys they can enjoy during the game. Give them some snacks and they will have a great time.

Making Superbowl party food should be stress free and simple. You should be able to enjoy the game if you wish, or stay with the guests who prefer to visit. Either way, choose foods that make it easy for you. If you can prepare some the day before, all the better. Offer the food throughout the afternoon so it is not all gone at one time.

You should be able to relax on Super Bowl Sunday, or at least join in the mayhem as your team makes the winning touchdown. Football fans do get intense at times. Either way, you should revel in feeding your guests delicious snacks and having a ball.

About the Author: Making easy Superbowl party recipes means that you can prepare all your snacks well in advance and relax with your guests when the game starts. There are lots of Superbowl recipes to choose from and meat snacks, like chicken wings, ribs and hot dogs, are always incredibly popular. http://www.EasyAppetizerRecipes.net You Make the Appetizers, We Help You Make Them Delicious.

Source: www.isnare.com
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Kiss the Ring: Hierarchy Matters (It's not what you think)

Kiss the Ring: Hierarchy Matters

Kiss the Ring: Hierarchy Matters (It's not what you think)

By: Dr. Karen Otazo

Excerpted from The Truth About Managing Your Career... And Nothing But The Truth.

Someone once asked a Washington insider how to deal with important people whom you can't stand. His reply? "You put on your respectful face and you don't blink." This strategy is known in business circles as "kissing the ring." Its origins lie in a much earlier era, when royalty and clerics wore rings of office denoting their status. Bowing your head as you kissed their rings was how you showed respect for their office, while not necessarily feeling that sentiment towards the characters themselves.

Why go to the trouble to show deference to someone you don't personally like or respect? In the cut and thrust world of business, as in the political sphere, it's all about survival. Or, to look at it more positively, enlightened self-interest. Like it or not, the business world is structured by a strong sense of hierarchy. Why else would we be so fixated on gaining promotions and better titles? Those high up can have a significant impact upon your reputation and career: positive if they like you and see you playing by the rules, negative if they feel slighted by you in some way. Showing them the appropriate respect helps keep your career path obstacle free.

"Kissing the ring" might mean responding in a neutral to positive way when someone important says something off base in a meeting. Or staying positive with your boss when he or she doesn't understand what you're trying to do or say. However irritated or amazed you feel, keep your facial expression kind and free of negativity, a kind of poker face. It's worth practicing this in front of the mirror so that it's ready to put on when you need it.

"Kissing the ring" doesn't mean being sycophantic though. It's just about treading carefully around egos. There's nothing wrong with telling a senior person that you think there might be a better way of doing things, but just make sure that you think strategically and don't react there and then, especially if there are others present. If you are genuinely concerned about something you might want to bring it up in private in a neutral way but not make a big deal out of it. You do this by talking about it in a low-key way, tactfully introducing your point by saying, "By the way, what do you think of... " or, "Is there is a case to be made for this other point of view?"

Are there "don't kiss the ring" moments too? You bet. As soon as anything looks the slightest bit immoral or illegal you need to stop and think. Don't jump to conclusions, but once you've confirmed that something improper is up, do everything you can to extricate yourself from the situation before you get into trouble. If, for example, your company requires that the highest level person at a dinner should pick up the expenses then you might hesitate before paying for something so that your boss doesn't have to put it on his or her expense report. While illegality is something that you should always report, without exception. There are ex-employees of Enron or Health South, currently in jail, who probably wish they had spoken up, or even left their jobs, rather than keeping mum.

"Kissing the ring" is one of a repertoire of respectful behaviors that will serve you in good stead with high ranking people. At some point in your career you will have to suck in your gut and show deference to a senior person whom you can't stand. Be prepared for it.

 

Author Bio
Dr Otazo is an author, consultant and global executive coach. She worked in multi-nationals in US, China, Indonesia, India, France. See more about Dr. Karen Otazo at www.globalleadershipnetwork.com

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Where DO you get the time?

Where DO you get the time?

Where DO you get the time?

By: Stephanie Foster

Why does it so often seem like you turn around and it's midnight when you're raising your kids? It seems like no matter what you do sometimes, there's still a lot more work to do by the time you are ready to go to bed. What can you do?

The first thing you need to do is figure out where your time is going each day. Try making notes one day about what you do and how long it takes. If you're feeling really ambitious, you can try this for a week, since every day is going to be different, but even one day will give you an idea as to where you're using up all your time. It may feel like you're wasting time writing these things down, and they will slow you down a bit for that day, but it can be a big help.

Take a look at what you spent your day doing. Now assign a priority to each. How much time would you prefer to spend on each?

Now if you add all these up, you'll probably find out your day is more than 24 hours long if you include time to sleep. That's how it is being a parent.

The first thing you need to do is figure out what items can be done less often. Can you stand a little mess in the house? Can everyone else? Can you get more help from your spouse and the kids in keeping the house clean? You'll have to decide which solution is right for you.

What about time spent surfing the internet or watching TV? Give yourself time limits on each of these. If you have a Tivo or a VCR, try recording your favorite shows and watching them a little later, skipping the commercials. Not only does this allow you to choose the time you watch your shows, it can cut down their length.

Sometimes it can be hard finding enough time in your day to be with your kids, yet most parents will call this a priority. Just remember that time with your kids isn't just about having fun. Even small children can help out with making dinner, which can be a great time for talking with kids of any age. My three year old daughter has been helping make salads since she was two. The lettuce ends up in either rather large or very small pieces, but she has fun helping and we get some great time together. Older kids may or may not appreciate this time, but it's good for them to help out.

I definitely do not recommend cutting back on whatever meals you insist on eating as a family. This is a great thing to do as a family, and if you aren't making time for family meals, find a way to do so! Even if it's just dinner one night a week together, no activities or sports to run off too, your family needs the time to relax together.

Finally, are there things you can cut out all together? If you feel as though you've been pushed into doing things for others because you're at home and "have time," don't feel guilty about telling people that you do not have the time to do things they want you to do. Your family comes first. If you really want to volunteer, think about either cutting back the number of hours when you need more time for yourself or your family, or volunteering for something you can do as a family.

There are only so many hours to a day, and so many things you'd love to get done. Take a good look at what you need to do, want to do and don't really need to do, and you can find ways to feel a little less overwhelmed most of the time. You'll go through times where there just aren't enough hours in the day even when you know your priorities, but you can cut down on the less important stuff and relieve a lot of your stress.

 

Author Bio
Stephanie Foster is the owner of Home with the Kids, a site for stay at home parents. If you want to learn more about time management as an at-home parent, please visit www.homewiththekids.com/time-management/

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Five Stumbling Blocks To Successful Networking And How To Overcome Them

Five Stumbling Blocks To Successful Networking And How To Overcome Them

Five Stumbling Blocks To Successful Networking And How To Overcome Them

By: Lydia Ramsey

The ability to connect with people is essential to success in any business. Professional networking events present opportunities to interact with others on a personal level and to develop profitable relationships. These occasions are critical for anyone who wants to grow a business or promote a career.

Many people are simply not comfortable walking into a room full of strangers and striking up conversations. Here are five common stumbling blocks that you may face and tips to help you overcome them.

A RELUCTANCE TO TALK TO STRANGERS. You were taught at an early age not to speak to people you don't know. It's not safe. In certain situations today this is still good advice. In business, however, talking to strangers is a way to generate interest and support for your products and services. If you only talk to the people you already know, you will miss out on opportunities to make new connections and establish valuable contacts.

To get past your discomfort in talking to strangers, set a goal for yourself before you attend any networking event. Decide how many new contacts you want to make or how many strangers you want to meet. In some cases, you may specifically target individuals whom you'd like to know.

Next come up with some icebreakers or conversation starters. Have questions prepared that you can ask anyone you meet at the event. You may want to inquire about other people's business, their connection to the sponsoring organization or their opinion of the venue.

LACK OF A FORMAL INTRODUCTION. It's much easier to make a new contact when there is someone else to handle the introduction and pave the way. If you wait for another person to make the move you may not meet anyone. At networking events, the goal is to meet as many people as possible.

This is the time to take the bull by the horns, walk up to people you don't know, introduce yourself and start a conversation. You can do this if you have prepared your self-introduction in advance.

You will not introduce yourself the same way on every occasion. Perhaps it is your first time to attend an association meeting. In that case, you might want to say that as part of your introduction. Let people know who you are, why you are there and give them a reason to ask more abut you.

FEAR OF BEING SEEN AS PUSHY. You may think that you will turn people off if you are assertive and that if they want to talk to you, they will make the first move. If this is your line of thinking you will find yourself spending your time alone at the reception or meeting function and leaving without a single new connection. Being open, friendly and interested does not turn people off.

You will not come across as overly aggressive if you seek out the "approachable" people. These are the ones who are standing alone or who are speaking in groups of three or more. Two people talking to each other are not approachable because they may be having a private conversation and you would be interrupting.

THINKING THAT OTHER PEOPLE MAY NOT LIKE YOU. There is always the risk that the other person is not interested in you and doesn't want to meet or talk to you. It happens. If that is the case, don't take it personally. Nothing ventured is nothing gained. When you get a cold shoulder, smile, move on and say to yourself, "Next?"

HAVING YOUR INTENTIONS MISUNDERSTOOD. Approaching someone of the opposite sex to begin a conversation may seem more like flirting than networking. This is more of an issue for women than men. Women have an equal place in the work arena and need to make professional connections the same as men do. Women in business can no longer afford to hold back when there is opportunity at hand.

Neither men nor women will have their motives misinterpreted if they present themselves professionally in their attire and if they keep the conversation focused on business issues or topics that are not personal or private.

Whatever your stumbling blocks, face them before the next networking event and devise a personal plan for getting past them. Once you do, you will find yourself connecting with confidence and courtesy on every occasion and the results will be reflected in your bottom line.

 

Author Bio
Lydia Ramsey is a business etiquette expert, professional speaker, corporate trainer and author of MANNERS THAT SELL - ADDING THE POLISH THAT BUILDS PROFITS. She has been quoted or featured in The New York Times, Investors' Business Daily, Entrepreneur, Inc., Real Simple and Woman's Day. For more information about her programs, products and services, e-mail her at lydia@mannersthatsell.com or visit her web site www.mannersthatsell.com

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The Balancing Act

The Balancing Act

The Balancing Act

By: Kathy Paauw

"The average office worker receives more than 200 messages a day via snail mail, email, express mail, cell phone, landline, wireless Web, bicycle messenger, singing telegram, you name it. Taking in information these days is like trying to drink from a fire hose."
--Dr. Martha Beck

Did you know that one Sunday edition of The New York Times contains more information than all the written documents in the world during the 15th century? Does it seem like life is spinning out of control? The pace of life just keeps picking up! And with it, job satisfaction is on the decline.

In an Associated Press article, Marc Greenbaum, a 50-year-old professor at Suffolk Law School, stated that "I'm personally happier but I observe more people that are more miserable. There's more pressure on them to produce, more problems with maintaining a boundary between work and family, even maintaining a boundary between work and the outside because of things like e-mail, voicemail and the Blackberry. They can't get away."

According to the Families and Work Institute, over 47% of U.S. workers surveyed feel overworked. In addition, 59% of Americans describe their lives as very busy according to an NBC news survey. According to Dr. Richard Swensen, author of Margin: Restoring Emotional, Physical, Financial, and Time Reserves to Overloaded Lives, the average American will spend one year in his/her life searching through desk clutter looking for misplaced objects. We are working harder and faster than ever. Being more organized can help reduce stress, save time, and improve efficiency.

We celebrate National Get Organized Week the first week in October. Most people think of "getting organized" as a physical act - clearing piles of paper, putting things away, etc. What many people overlook is the mental part of getting organized. And I always say that organizing your physical environment without first clarifying your priorities is like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic!

Here are 8 tips to help you with the mental part of getting and staying organized. I encourage you to read through the whole list, and then go back and choose two or three ideas to implement.

1. Understand the difference between URGENT and IMPORTANT. If it's important, it may be a vital priority for you. If it's urgent, it's time-sensitive, but it may or may not be important. Be sure you are clear about the difference when deciding what deserves your time. Check out the time management matrix at www.orgcoach.net/timematrix.html, which beautifully illustrates the difference.

2. Find time for yourself. Schedule time away from your work and your family. Use this opportunity to tune in to what you want and need. Don't feel that you're being selfish; you have a responsibility to yourself to take care of your needs. Studies show that productivity dramatically increases when you are well rested.

3. Check for balance between these four vital areas of your life:

  • Well-being - caring for your physical, mental, spiritual, and social needs
  • Family relationships
  • Work activities
  • Service activities - volunteer work, being a good neighbor, practicing random acts of kindness

4. Live your life in the present! Quit saying, "I'll do this when I get around to it." I have yet to find a person who said on their death bed, "I wish I had spent more time at the office."

5. Increase productivity by planning your week and fine-tuning your workday. Block out time to handle priorities. Important tips to remember as you plan your week:

  • Have unscheduled time in your calendar for handling unexpected but important tasks.
  • Plan to work on creative activities during the time of day when you are at your best.
  • Schedule "protected time" to work on projects that need your undivided attention. If interruptions are eating you alive, close your door and ask that people come back to see you at a designated time.
  • Temporarily turn off the audio feature on your cell phone, pager and email account. Pick and choose when you respond and when it's appropriate to let calls go into voice mail.
  • Be realistic about your expectations. Don't set yourself up for failure by planning too much in one day.
  • Leave work at a reasonable hour so you have time for those other three areas of your life - self-care, family, and service to others.

6. Reduce your stress by being underwhelmed. Here are a few tips to help you avoid getting overwhelmed:

  • NO is a complete sentence. Don't bite off more than you can chew. When someone makes a request, buy some time before answering. Say, "Let me think about it," or "I'm in the middle of something right now. I'll call you back and let you know." This will give you time to evaluate the situation and decide if it's something you truly want to do.
  • Delegate as much as you can. Focus your time on activities that you enjoy and are best at.

7. Stay out of e-mail jail. Here are a few tips to help:

  • Determine frequency of checking for e-mail messages. Some people choose to check it throughout the day and even use such devices as the Blackberry when on the road, while others only check for messages a couple times a day. You are the only one who can determine what will work for you.
  • Use the F.A.T. (File, Act, Toss) method to keep your email inbox from piling up. If a message needs to be filed for future reference, place it in the appropriate email subject or contact folder. Place a red flag next to those items you need to act on but don't have time to do right at the moment. Immediately toss (delete or forward) anything you don't need to keep.
  • Remove your name from subscription lists that do not provide value to you.

8. Set up your work environment to keep your focus on what's most important. Here are some tips:

  • Arrange your workspace so you have the most commonly-used things close in. Store things used less frequently in less accessible space.
  • Create a filing system that enables you to find things instantly. The #1 reason that people pile instead of file is a fear of not being able to find it when they need it. Visit www.orgcoach.net/PaperTiger.html for some ideas.
  • Create a tickler file system to remind you of important follow up at the appropriate time. The #2 reason that people pile is a fear of forgetting to do something that is out-of-sight and out-of-mind. A good tickler system reminds you to follow up on the appropriate date, and provides an alternative to that "I'll just set it here for now" pile. Visit www.orgcoach.net/products/tickle.html#ticklerfile to see what a good tickler file system looks like.
  • Use the F.A.T. (File, Act, Toss) method to process your mail daily. Review our Trim the F.A.T. tip sheet at www.orgcoach.net/trimthefat.html.
  • Keep only what you plan to focus on today on your desktop. Remove visual distractions from your workspace so your attention is not pulled away from what you've chosen to work on today! Everything else should be put away until it's time for you to focus on it.

 

Author Bio
Wouldn't you love to stumble upon a secret library of ideas to help you de-clutter your life so you can focus on what's most important? Kathy Paauw offers simple, yet powerful ideas, on how to manage your time, space, and thoughts for a more productive and fulfilling life. Visit www.orgcoach.net

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How To Leave Your Dead End Job

How To Leave Your Dead End Job

How To Leave Your Dead End Job

By: Liz Sumner, M.A., CPC

This is for everyone who is sticking with a job that no longer fits. Maybe it was right for awhile, for a certain time and place in your life. But not anymore. When was the last time you jumped out of bed with excitement about what the day would bring?

"But I love the people I work with."
"It's so convenient."
"The money's pretty decent, considering... "

I've heard all the excuses. Hell, I've made them. You know that job is sucking your soul and it's time to leave. The only thing left to decide is how.

Above all, you want it to be your decision. Don't let boredom and apathy lead to an attitude that gets you fired or passed over. Who wants to work with a burnout no matter how skilled they are?

The number one reason people stay in bad jobs is fear of the unknown. Are you hanging on to something that doesn't fit just because it's familiar? What if the unknown wasn't scary? What if it was filled with joy and delightful possibilities? Sure, there's that transition period where you leave what you can do in your sleep and head into new territory. I assure you that the downhill slide of staying too long is far greater than the steepness of a little learning curve. How might you make unknown territory more comfortable?

1. Make It Known
Learn about it. Do research. Talk to people. Do informational interviews. Volunteer, be a trainee. Find ways to educate yourself. Go to school. Hire a trainer. Shine some light on the stuff the scary ignorance and it's no big deal. If you're drawn to it you probably have a knack.

2. Make It Up
There are a lot of successful people in the world who just decide that they know what they're doing. I'll never forget my friend Susan, a beautiful and confident woman who discovered her gift for public speaking in Toastmaster's and went on to become a highly paid consultant just because she decided she was worth listening to. I had just finished grad school and was trying to get my nerve up to go pitch companies. She read a book or two, made a presentation, and was suddenly crossing the country getting big fees. There's a lot to be said for chutzpah.

3. Try It On A Small Scale
Part-time or pilot projects work well particularly if you're thinking of venturing out on your own. The hours are long when you don't give up your day job but if you're pursuing your passion you generally can find the energy. Cater a friend's party for the cost of the supplies. Print some business cards on your computer. Do some pro bono work for a civic group for the testimonials. Before long you'll feel ready to go for it.


4. Dive In
This is my favorite. I get enormous energy from leaping off metaphorical cliffs. Instead of screaming "NO", try saying "Wheee!" or "Geronimo." I've crossed the country on three occasions with no job and no place to live. I keep having soft, successful landings so I keep leaping. Sometimes it takes a geographic change to get yourself out of a rut. Try something out there and see if you can fly.


5. Be Prepared
So maybe you're not a leaper. You can plan for contingencies, save that nest egg. Find an answer for all the what-ifs. But be careful not to over prepare. Just how likely are those eventualities that you're covering? There comes a point when it's time to take steps.

"Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.

Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now".

-J. W. von Goethe


Remember, if you only do what you already know how to do your world would get pretty stale. Growth is an essential part of life. There comes a time to move on. You can feel when change is due. When that time comes the universe makes it easy for you. The money for graduate school appears, child care arrangements work out, an article about a new company catches your eye. Pay attention to the signals. Then trust your judgment. If something tells you this new opportunity is right, it probably is.

 

Author Bio
Liz Sumner, M.A., CPC, of Find Your Way Coaching specializes in mid-life reassessment. Are you happy with your direction? Do you feel good about yourself? Are you fearless? Joyful? Energized? You could be. Visit www.findyourwaycoaching.com or call 603-876-3956 for more information.

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Changing Your Child's Behavior With Positive Reinforcement

Changing Your Child's Behavior With Positive Reinforcement

Changing Your Child's Behavior With Positive Reinforcement

By: Destry Maycock, MSW

Think about your interactions with your children today. How many things did you notice they did wrong? What did you do or say to them because of their wrong doings? Have they engaged in the same kind of behavior before? What did you do or say the times before? Is it working? How many things did you notice your children did right today? If you did take the time to notice, what did you do or say to them? Did you praise or reward them in some way? If so, then read no further and keep up the good work. If you could use a little work on doing this, then read on.

Let's face it. We parents often neglect to notice the positive things our children do. Rather, we tend to focus on our children's negative behaviors, because they either annoy us or otherwise make our lives difficult. Have you ever heard the phrase, "that which gets noticed gets repeated?" If all we ever notice is the negative things our children do, then why would they do anything different? It is as if we program our children to believe "if I'm only noticed when I do something wrong, then so be it."

It is just as important, if not more, to notice our children's positive behaviors. Remember most behaviors are controlled by their consequences. Some may believe rewarding kids for positive behavior is bribery. We all receive rewards daily for doing things well, at work, at home, and at play. These rewards often motivate us to continue the behaviors for which they were received. Where parents use rewards ineffectively is when they give a positive consequence to stop an inappropriate behavior. For example, "I'll give you a cookie if you stop whining." This only encourages the inappropriate behavior. Where as rewarding kids for their positive behaviors is quite the opposite and much more productive.

Using positive reinforcement to strengthen a desired behavior is easy. Just watch and wait for the behavior to occur then reinforce it with praise, a pat on the back or a special privilege. It may go something like this, "David, I really appreciate how you came in the house when I asked and you even did it without a big hassle. You should feel good about being able to do that." How about, "Wow Jamie, your bedroom looks awesome. You must have worked really hard on it. I bet you worked up a healthy appetite. Why don't you decide what we have for lunch today."

Focusing on your children's positive behaviors could be the most productive parenting change you make if you don't already do it. Chances are you have been trained like the rest of us to only call attention to the bad things your kids do. This phenomenon isn't found solely in the parent/child relationship. It is also prevalent in spousal, sibling and employee/employer relationships. When was the last time your boss called you into his office and asked you to shut the door? Was it because he just wanted to tell you what a wonderful job you are doing and how valuable of an employee you are? If so, lucky you. More than likely, it was because he wanted to talk to you about something he thought you could do better or you were doing something wrong. People tend to take positive behavior for granted and punish negative behaviors.

Some parents find it helpful to make a note and put it where they can see it often. The note might read, "notice the positive" or "catch'em doing good." You may also want to consider using a jar of consequences, a parenting tool that parents can use to help them focus on and reinforce the positive behaviors their children exhibit.

Catch your kids being good. It could have a profound affect on the atmosphere in your home. Whatever it takes I assure you it will be worth it.

 

Author Bio
Destry Maycock, MSW has had over eleven years experience working with children and families as a professional social worker. Destry has helped hundreds of parents solve a variety of parenting challenges and strengthen their relationships with their children. Destry enjoys developing tools that help parents with the difficult but rewarding duty of raising children. His most recent creations can be found at www.parentingstore.com

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Homework - I Mean, Working At Home

Homework - I Mean, Working At Home

Homework - I Mean, Working At Home

Whether downsized, outsourced, or sick and tired of cubicle hell, more people are earning their living by working at home. The work at home industry is booming with a diverse lot of income earning opportunities. People of all skill and education levels can find a niche in this market. And the driving force that allows such an option is the Internet.

Telecommuters

Internet technology has enabled former office rats to do their work at home. Armed with a computer, fax, and telephone, employees from back office data entry to management staff are able to perform part or all of their jobs at home. The telecommuting option is appreciated by workers as it allows them more freedom and control over the work day and more time to spend with families. Companies find that this set up often improves employee morale and productivity.

Net Work

Earning money via the Internet has become an increasingly popular option in the work at home industry. Chances are you know someone who sells merchandise on eBay. Many online merchants are working out of their homes. The Internet offers a wealth of opportunities for writers to earn a living at the keyboard. People with an Internet-based career often start on a part-time basis while working their regular office gig. Once their "web job" takes off, they escape the office grind for full-time work at home.

Home Base

Another option in the work at home industry is a home-based business where you go out in the field to provide services for customers. This is a wide open opportunity - think of any product or service that people need and, viola, you have a business. Again, with the Internet, advertising for your home business is no longer a burden. For example, the senior population is exploding. Start an elder service that helps seniors with light housekeeping, grooming, and transportation. Two career families and busy folks in general equal a business for you running errands such as shopping, chauffeuring kids, and picking up dry cleaning.

You can strike out on your own with these home-based businesses or buy a franchise. Franchises offer a brand name people know and trust along with marketing support from the headquarters office. Start up costs can be out of reach for a lot of people, however, there are hundreds of franchise options in the work at home industry that will fit with small budgets.

Scam Alert

The Internet and print and broadcast media are full of ads for great-sounding work at home opportunities. Sadly, the work at home industry is full of scam companies that advertise high income home-based jobs. Some ads are specific while others are vague and keep you in the dark about the exact nature of the pie in the sky venture.

Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Do your research before you plunge into any work at home opportunity. Talk with others who are working at home. Check out franchises or Internet opportunities with the Better Business Bureau. Despite the scam artists, there are thousands of options in the work at home industry and one of them will suit you.

Author Bio

HASNUDDIN HAMDAN is a serious Internet Home Business Affiliate. He is always looking out to guide people who would like to start their own successful Internet Home Business. Details are available at: www.emarketsociety.com/pips.html

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The All Important Job Objective on a Teacher Resume

The All Important Job Objective on a Teacher Resume

The All Important Job Objective on a Teacher Resume

I see a lot of teacher resumes. The first improvement I make to all of them is in the Job Objective. This is a statement of intention at the top of your resume. Why is this little piece of information so important to a teacher resume?

Good question!

Job objectives not only tell the employer what kind of job you are seeking (which is very important if they have more than one teaching position open in their school) but it lets them know that you are interested in the exact job they are offering. It makes them feel like you are a perfect fit for them. You can accomplish this even if you are willing to accept a variety of teaching jobs.

Here are a few secrets to a strong job objective for your teacher resume:

If you have the means to tweak your resume, change the job objective to match every job you apply for. This might mean just a one or two word change, or a complete rewrite. Either way, by doing this it makes the employer think that you are a perfect match for them. As an example, instead of, "A teaching position" they'll read "A third grade teacher in a bilingual classroom."
If you can't easily change your resume, opt for listing broader job categories. With this approach I suggest also including a spectrum of responsibility, which reaches from the lower range of jobs you'd be willing work to the higher levels you'd be qualified for. For instance, "A position as a Teacher's Aid or Pre-School Teacher."
If you want to include some keywords or job highlights at the top of your resume, I suggest that you allow your objective to stand alone. Include the highlights underneath your objective so that it is still easily seen upon first glance.

You can include a little selling point for yourself if you happen to have multiple years of experience. You can include something like, "A teaching position utilizing 16 years of classroom experience."

Do not write your objective in the first person (using "I" or "my").

Resist the urge to overlook your job objective. It should be short and easy to read, describing what type of job you are looking for. It's small but important, possibly the first thing a prospective employer reads on your resume. Make sure they know what your job intentions are.

Author Bio

Laura Malischke, owner of Great Teacher Resumes is a professional resume writer and an acclaimed teacher resume expert. She has written hundreds of resumes for clients all over the United States and Canada. To learn more about Ms. Malischke please visit www.Great-Teacher-Resume.com.

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