Selasa, 29 Maret 2011

Top Ten Tips for Balance Between Home and Work

In my never ending quest for the perfect balance between work and home, and friends and clients, I have been blessed with many great mentors and the opportunity to learn countless lessons for myself and from others. Many of these tips are hard-fought for me. And so, in honor of David Letterman's famous "Top Ten," here are my top ten tips on getting to balance.

Number 10: Use one calendar. It sounds simple, but put your personal and your business commitments in the same place so you can quickly see what you have going on and make intentional decisions about where you want to spend your time. How many times has it happened that you inadvertently scheduled a work commitment (or a doctor's appointment) on top of your child's school assembly?
Number 9: If you work from home or have the luxury of a flexible work day, set a specific start and end time for your work day. Set clear boundaries so that you do not end up doing "that one more thing" that takes you through dinner time.
Number 8: Never go to bed angry. Resolve whatever the problem is before you head off for bedtime. Trust me, you will sleep better and feel better. Apologize even if you did not start the fight.

Number 7: Take all your vacation days! What are you saving them for?
Number 6: Don't keep up with the Joneses. Meaning, don't worry about what everyone else is doing, or how many committees they are on, or what activities they pack into their days. Define what balance means to you, and stick to it. I once had a business owner tell me that I couldn't run my business in just 40 hours a week - and for him, 60 hours was just fine. But guess what? I found a way. You need to find your own way to achieve your balance, not somebody else's definition of balance.

Number 5: Listen to your body. Really listen. Your body will tell you when it needs a break. This tip is particularly hard, because we become experts at ignoring warning signs. Begin to pay attention to what your body is saying - build that habit of actively listening to when your body tells you it is worn out, or not eating right, or getting sick.

Number 4: If you don't block time for exercise or physical activity, it won't happen. Make an appointment to go to the gym, or play tennis, or join your son in a pick-up basketball game.

Number 3: Laugh as often as you can. Find ways to bring laughter into your day. Watch a comedy; listen to the comedy station on your radio; call your favorite jokester friend.

Number 2: Set consistent sleep patterns. This is not just about the number of hours of sleep you get every night (although that's important too). In addition, get in the habit of going to sleep and rising at about the same time every day. Yes, that includes the weekends. Try it, you will thank me.

And, the Number 1 Tip for Balance: Make time for what is most important to you. Have you ever heard the story of the Mayonnaise Jar, the Rocks, and the Two Beers? In that story, a professor tells his class about the "big rocks". Those big rocks represent the most important things in your life. If you fill the mayonnaise jar with all the little things (the "pebbles") then you won't have room for the big rocks. Put the big rocks in first, the rest will find a space somewhere.

If you want a copy of the full Mayonnaise Jar story, contact us. We would be delighted to share it with you. And let us know which of these Top Ten Tips is more valuable for you? What other tips can you share with our readers?

Robyn Rickenbach, President of Springboard International Inc., is an innovative, strategic thinker with proven success in executing critical business objectives, making teams successful and facilitating collaborative decision making and planning. She has an intense focus on human capital improvement, learning and performance, and organizational development areas, with 20 years experience in a variety of market sectors and verticals. Learn more at or email her at

Senin, 28 Maret 2011

5 Tips for Building Confidence and Self-Esteem

Building confidence and self-esteem is something that everyone should work on. There is nothing that gives you confidence more than success. I do not mean some remarkable success, but even knowing that you have managed to keep your desk tidy for a week can be a "success-event" for you.
1. Review Past Successes Often
One important factor in building confidence and self-esteem is taking five minutes to jot down or just re-envision past successes. Even if you have to go back to third grade to hoist them out again! I can remember one day in primary school that my teacher pinned my drawing up on top of the blackboard. The compliment she gave me on my first effort to draw an apple-tree, remained with me throughout school, and made me confident about art for the rest of my life. Everyone can remember moments when a friend, teacher or parent complimented them, however commonplace the incident was.
2. Learn to Compliment Yourself
It has been my experience when working with people that not many have great self-esteem and I believe it is the one area that we should consider, before charging on with goals and other success strategies. I have seen beautiful young women say that their nose was too short, their legs too long, their eyebrows too high etc. when often, I myself, was thinking "What a beautiful girl that is." People often think much better of us, than we do ourselves, so in building confidence and self-esteem, you can begin by learning to compliment yourself although, this thought may, at first, shock you.
3. Watch Your Own Self-Talk
The next point in building confidence and self-esteem is to watch what you say about yourself. Catch yourself, saying things like, "I made a mistake, as usual." "Just my luck that the tickets were sold out." "Glad you enjoyed the cake, I'm not good at cooking,"etc. Also, you must watch what you are saying to yourself. Are you unconsciously chastising yourself by saying, "I knew I would mess it up. Can't I do anything right for once?" Often your self-talk is much harsher than the criticism from others and it is definitely more repetitive!
4. Take Action and Challenge Yourself Everyday.
Learning to take some action that challenges you, is another vital point in building confidence and self-esteem. I have been teaching English for years to foreign businessmen, and one of their huge blocks was answering on the phone in English (for them a foreign language.) During the course, I would always slip in a little unexpected "authentic" phone call. It always surprised me, that after they had done this a few times, their anxiety about it dissipated. If they didn't understand, they learnt to ask the person speaking to repeat himself. Take a little action everyday to do something that you are a little shy of doing, whether it is taking over-ripe tomatoes back to the store, or telling your neighbour to turn down the volume of his t.v. after 12.p.m. because you need to sleep.
5. Learn to Program Your Subconscious Mind
Lastly, in building confidence and self-esteem, do not forget to learn to program your subconscious mind by repeating and saying out loud, positive affirmations. For years, the Self Growth movement has been advocating this, and yet how many people do it? Determine to practise these five tips, and you will find that slowly and surely, you will build confidence in yourself. The astounding thing is, that when you respect yourself, you find that others will respect you too. This, after all, is a Universe of Reflection. The Universe will reflect back, that which you give out.
Fastrack your progress by reprogramming the subconscious. I have many other practical tips in my report on "Becoming Your Best Self." Check on my site, below.
M.Elena Rogers is a vigorous proponent of Self Help, after having had extensive experience in the University, Education Field, in different countries, including Australia, U.K. and Perugia,Italy. Publisher, Editor and Founder of

Sabtu, 26 Maret 2011

What Does Your Dream Life Look Like?

Every child has been asked what they wanted to be when they grew up. And more often than not, they had responded with "doctor," or "lawyer," or "movie star." It would always be some stereotype of success. It would always be something that was prevalent in both school books and popular media. Did you describe your dream life the same way when you were young? Don't be ashamed if you have; it's not your fault this information has been drilled into you from the start.

However, this doesn't mean that you should conform to such ideals. So what if that's what your parents or teachers wanted of you? Is that really what you want for yourself? You have your own unique perspective on life and the world you live in. The best life you could possibly live, then, is something you conjured up in your own mind. What do other people have to do with it?
So, ask yourself: what really is your dream life anyway? What does it look like? Chances are, it incorporates the elements of life you personally enjoy the most. It is a life that you maintain entirely on your own terms, one that you have complete control over. It is the kind of existence where your success depends on doing the things you love, and nothing else.

Still stumped? Think long and hard. If you had the chance to do only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be? Forget your current obligations. Don't take your job, finances, or family into consideration. Whatever that thing is, be it cooking haute cuisine or building houses by hand, that is your dream life. That is what you should be pursuing.

Do you really want to waste away your precious time on Earth with your crappy job? When you feel that you should be doing something other than what you're doing now, then why don't you do it? There is no reason for you to stunt your growth as a person. There is no reason for you to stick to lame excuses. You know they're lame to begin with!

A man who slaves away day and night for a job he hates but still takes home millions of dollars is not a success. A man who makes the same income with a career he loves is the true success. By pursuing your dream life, you can be the latter man.
What's stopping you, then? Now that you know what your true goals are, you should go out there and fulfill them. Now that you have a better understanding of what your priorities should be, then the next step should be to avoid procrastination. The best life is an active life. There is no fairy godmother out there who can help you kick things off. In fact, you are your very own fairy godmother, and you have all the power in the world to make your wish come true. No matter the situation, you can only earn true success if you were responsible for your actions from the very beginning.

Manuel Hernandez believes that a great life coach can help you achieve your dream life. If a healthy and happy lifestyle can be yours, why not give getting a mentor a shot?

Self Improvement: How to Get Motivated On Demand

What is motivation?
Motivation is the internal force, or the pull of an external force on someone, that drives them to take action.
Unfortunately most people have hardly any motivation at all.
In the workplace this results in:
Decreased productivityWorse overall resultsProcrastinationDecreased satisfaction in the work once it's been accomplishedVarious other detrimental effects
In life this lack of motivation also has negative results.
These are things such as:
Getting tired more quickly and easilyLack of focus and being easily distractedPoor social connections with other peopleIn general just feeling less "alive"
Nobody wants to suffer from these effects. However, it can be very hard to get yourself motivated--especially at first, so people often times unwillingly suffer from poor motivation for years.
Fortunately you don't have to.
Psychologists have long wandered what motivates people. Why people do certain things, and why others don't, and whether there is a common cause for everything that people do.
After a long time and a lot of studying on their part, they have discovered that their are, in fact, a few common motivational factors that work for everyone.
The four factors are:
First, let's focus on fear.

Intrinsically, fear is the emotion you get when you perceive that something bad is going to happen that will decrease the quality of your life. People are naturally motivated by fear. Not too long ago there was a study done by a U.S. based research team. These particular researchers wanted to find out the motivation behind why rich people became rich. They were surprised to find that most rich people didn't become rich because they wanted more money-they became rich because they were afraid of NOT having money.

The lesson here is this:
If you can figure out what you're afraid of, then you will be able to motivate yourself in the right direction.
The second motivational factor is reward.
We've all seen this factor at work. For example, when a little kid is supposed to clean his room, but he doesn't want to, his mom might tell him he'll get some cake if he cleans it right now. Then he runs upstairs, cleans his room, and runs back down for the cake.
This motivational factor does work, however reward isn't nearly as powerful of a motivator as fear. Using them in combination is the best way to get results.
The third factor is need.
Everyone has needs, and at the most basic level this is a fantastic motivator. People will even go so far as to kill just to get some food or water.

The problem is that as we get to more complex needs (like financial security), people are less motivated by the pure "need" aspect.
This can be used to motivate, but unfortunately it's not the most powerful tool either.
The last, and perhaps most powerful tool (yes, even better than fear) is self-actualization.
This is essentially when someone reaches a point in their life when all their basic needs and more complex needs are fulfilled. At this point they, almost automatically, begin trying to become the best person they can become.

The only issue with this, of course, is that you must first meet all your basic and slightly more advanced needs first. (To see more of what I mean with basic vs. advanced needs, Google "Abraham Maslow" and look at his hierarchy of needs).
So overall--fear is the best motivator. Figure out what you're afraid of and then use it to motivate you in the right direction!
Jeff Russell is the owner and author of the site This site offers an email newsletter on the subject of personal development and maximizing productivity as well as other useful information. To find out more about motivation, and to discover 8 powerful methods for maximizing your productivity check out

Kamis, 24 Maret 2011

3 Top Tips for Dealing With Noise Pollution in Your Home Office

"If I do my invoicing, I'll be able to reach my monthly cash flow goals, but I can't concentrate with all the traffic noise!"
"I'd love to work on that proposal, but my neighbor's dog just won't stop barking!"
"Is that baby STILL screaming? I need to get this project off my desk!"
If any of these sound familiar, then you've run into one of the unique challenges of working from home - dealing with residential noise pollution.
Home office workers face a variety of challenges related to distraction, but noise is one that is typically overlooked. Most large offices and workspaces have a symphony of office chatter, the hum of copiers and other office machines, and even the low rumble of the A/C, all of which generally become a type of "white noise" - which we can usually tune out and stop hearing. At home, however, there typically isn't any background noise - it's usually just you and your trusty computer - and any outside noise can be especially jarring and make it challenging for us to focus.
In order to get our work done, we home office types need to find strategies to help us manage the noise pollution that can encroach on our productivity. Here's a few tactics that I've found successful with my organizing clients:
The hills are alive; Well, maybe not the hills, but your home office can be alive with the sound of music. For many people, having the right music as background noise can help to get us "into a groove" and make our tasks go faster and seem more enjoyable. I emphasize having the right music, because background music while working is not a one-genre-fits-all affair. Some people find music with lyrics can be distracting while doing verbally-related tasks such as writing, reading, and editing. For these task types, you might want to choose instrumental or electronic music, or even nature sounds. Other tasks, such as organizing your office, might be perfect for that Top 40 song you just can't seem to get out of your head. Match the music to the task at hand, and you'll focus less on outside-world noise distractions.
The tech. As with most things, technology is there to help us deal with noise pollution. Noise-cancelling headphones can silence all but the most piercing of outside noises, and can create a quiet zone for us to work in. Sometimes, just having "white noise" can help us ignore the more unpleasant background noises. White noise generators, which create a static-like tone, have been used in therapy offices for many years, and help to drown out or mask things we don't want to hear. You can find both noise-cancelling headphones and white noise generators online.
Shift your space. Recognize when it might be helpful to just get out of your chair, leave your office, and go someplace else to work. A change of scenery can shift our energy and allow us to focus in a different way than when we're at our usual workspace. This can be an especially helpful tactic when you need or want to work on a specific task. Let's say that you need to write an article for your newsletter, but it's simply too noisy at your home office. Try taking a trip to your local coffee shop, library or park and do your writing from there - you might just find that you write a lot better in that environment. Sometimes, tying a specific type of task to a physical location can help reduce our distraction level and help us focus on the task at hand.
As I'm writing this, two sirens went off outside my window, a dog started barking, and a plane is flying overhead. I know what I'm going to do to get my focus back - what will you do the next time you're distracted by your noisy environment?
Joshua Zerkel, Productivity Strategist, is a Certified Professional Organizer and the founder of Custom Living Solutions, the San Francisco Bay Area's premier productivity and organizing consulting firm. Joshua specializes in helping busy entrepreneurs save time, be more productive and make more money by getting organized at home and at work.

Rabu, 23 Maret 2011

Have You Forgotten Who You Actually Are?

Hey girl,
Aren't you sometimes puzzled by the question "Who am I?" or better "Who have I turned into? and "I don't recognize myself anymore"? Do you also think that sometimes you have forgotten who you actually are? The world is getting too fast. Too many deadlines. People don't have time any more. Are you one of them?
Admit. You have also forgotten who you are. Let me ask you a simple question. Who are you girl? If you have started with name and surname - FORGET it. That's just administration! If you have continued with your date and place of birth. WRONG again. That's simple NOT you. Too many people have the same date and place of birth.
You may begin with "I'm a home-stay mom who is taking care of 3 beautiful kids". Or, I'm working in counseling agency (for example). I'm good in Word and Excel. I'm married for god know how many years to a man I've fallen in love with once upon a time.
If you have started your answer like that, it means that YOU HAVE FORGOTTEN WHO YOU ACTUALLY ARE.
It's SO easy to forget who are actually are in this world. BUT, there is a light. You need yourself back. REAL you.
Go through these simple questions. DON'T try to FIX yourself. Just READ. Look into YOURSELF. FORGET that you are a daughter, mother, grand-mom, aunt, colleague, best friend. TRY to remember YOURSELF only!
Give YOURSELF time
It's not easy to find the forgotten yourself when you are overcrowded with bunch of stuff. Find a moment. Each day. At least a moment. That moment will be YOURS. ONLY. Not for cooking. Not for your husband. Not for your beautiful kids. You will keep your husband happy by keeping yourself as individual.
It can be the period when you take a shower. The shower IS NOT just for cleaning. It's not just something you NEED to do. Enjoy water. Clear thoughts. Detoxify your mind.
Have Breakfast
First, no one can think on empty stomach. Even though you don't have a habit of breakfast - EAT something. Take a small bite. Chew. Slowly. Take an orange juice before the day takes you away. The world WILL survive if you take an easy coffee in the morning.
Things You Simply Adore
This is the main question. You can't remember any more what you like. Have you forgotten who you actually are? Find things you like to do for YOURSELF. And yourself ONLY. That doesn't mean you don't love others. That means you love YOURSELF. Just the way you are.
Let Go Of The Need To Be Loved
We all want to be loved and that's normal. When you truly care and love someone, it will come back to you. A loving solo will have no problem reaching other loving solo. Don't forget who you actually are and who are the people you love. DON'T waste your time on others people opinion. There always be someone who doesn't like you. Have you forgotten who you actually are because of some random people who don't know you?
Take It Simple
It might sound silly, but with so many thing on our minds,, it's no wonder we are confused. No wonder we forget someone's birthday or favorite song. Take one step at the time. Take the steps YOU CHOOSE. Steps YOU would like to make. Life if full of dead ends. Face it one at the time.
No Substitution
No drugs. Antidepressants won't bring the joy back. Be aware of alcohol. Stay away from junk food. It won't substitute anything! Have you forgotten who you actually are and that when you were little none of these things were needed?
Searching yourself is a process. The most important is the first step. YOU HAVE ALREADY MADE IT.
Susan (43) and her neighbor are sharing truth stories how to keep husband happy and interested! Give yourself a second honeymoon by applying these advices. They know how because they have succeed it!
Become a real lady and keep your husband interested!