As for business success, researchers have determined what will be your worst day of the year and here’s how you can make it your happiest and most successful. This goes for business success as well as personal success.
How would you like to feel happy and hopeful on the one day of the year when people are most likely to be depressed? This article will show you how to be motivated and happy on that day, as well as every other day of the year, business success if closely tied to the happiness factor.
A recent study in England showed these results. Cliff Arnall, a Cardiff University psychologist, citing unpaid holiday bills, rotten weather and people’s realization that they likely won’t live up to their New Year’s resolutions, say Jan. 22 is likely to be the unhappiest day of the year.
His equation takes into account six factors: weather, debt, time since Christmas, time since failing our New Year’s resolutions, low motivational levels, and feeling a need to take action. Taken together, they calculate to equal “Blue Monday.” in England.
I suspect these findings hold true for most countries around the world and present us with a real opportunity. As a Motivational Expert, I am more concerned with the loss of upside than I am on the downside of how the average person feels during the year.
The fix to the downside issues are fairly straightforward. Things like staying within spending budgets and setting realistic time schedules for activities certainly are a big step forward.
The issue of failing on New Year’s resolutions gets closer to the underlying issue though. New Year’s resolutions are just another word for goals, and goals can be a two-edged sword.
Goals can move your life ahead and give you real satisfaction, but goals can also be a cause of depression. Poorly chosen or implemented goals can do more harm than good.
One thing I stress in my seminars is that properly set and pursued goals are the key to a happy and successful life. If you know where you want to go and get there, life is good. Life is even good if you know where you want to go but aren’t there yet, but can see progress as you have hope.
Here is a quote from my book Sixty Seconds To Success that speaks to the point. “Here’s something that definitely works: getting definite about your plans. If you lay out what you want to accomplish in specific terms, it has a greater chance of happening than if you just have some vague ideas floating around in your head. Take your vacation, for example.
Chances are pretty good that you ended up when and where you wanted to be on vacation. Chances are also pretty good that you spent some time going over brochures, looking at costs, checking calendars, etc., to get most of the details worked out.
The rest of your life’s no different. Any business or personal plans that you give the same amount of effort to will probably happen. Imagine, you can really have what you want; you just have to plan for it.
It’s true, if you focus on what you want and get specific about how you can make it happen, you’ll probably get it. So if you definitely want to accomplish something, get definite about it.”
So how do we set and attain goals that will make us happy? First, we start by deciding what we want as a goal and only you can do that. Goals given to us by others rarely make us happy.
Invest all the time needed to come up with goals for you personal and professional life, that when attained, will truly make you happy. One of the tragedies of life is that some people become successful and then discover that the success is not what really makes them happy.
Next begin to lay out a plan to attain the goal. What money, activities, and time are required to attain the goal? What skills or experience is needed? Who will do what and when?
Then lay out a system to monitor results. Know when you are on track or off track so you can adjust your plan or activates accordingly.
I publish a free daily email of The One Minute Motivator and also post a video version on youtube.com and recently said this “Make one small change that moves you toward your goal, now.
Small changes lead to big changes, they build your confidence, and they give you feedback you are on the right track. Don’t hold off making a change until you are ready to make that really big change.
An Easy Budget Planner for Successful Folks
That time will never come. Start now and put a series of small changes together and before long, you will be where you want to be, and hardly realize you did it.”
Business and Life Coach Theresa A. Smith says, “Think about goals as the GPS coordinates to your happiness and success. Like the GPS coordinates, your goal coordinates need to be specifically articulated. What specifically do you want to achieve? How will you know you’ve reached the goal? What are your anticipated results? When will you arrive at your destination? I ask clients to clarify their top life values and to align or honor those values within their goals.
A goal that does not honor your values will not get the results you want in the long run. You may find yourself taking a detour and checking out the back roads. Perhaps the new views will help you think about whether the goal you set is really what you want.”
So regardless of what day it is, live it as if it is your last. We can’t choose how or when we will die, but we can choose how and when we will live. Living is a choice; you can be alive, but not ALIVE.
There is no guarantee that things will go exactly like you want them to go if you choose to be ALIVE, but if you decide to take the safe road, you will live an existence of boredom and regret, as opposed to savoring the memory that you decided to live life and did it your way. Try to tie this to your business success.
Related Links: Residential Real Estate As An Investment
Here are a few email scams you should be aware of going into the new year, think before you click on that email link. There are many ways to avoid clicking on email scams or links in email scams. The email scammers are going to great lengths to appear normal. There has been a lot of information about email scams and hackers harvesting information from your computer, but computer users continue to be victims of the email scammers.
1. Automatic Email Harvesting Scams:
If you have a website with your email address on it, someone with email harvesting software can scan the web and pick up your email address. Instead of using email@example.com, use myemail(at)me.com on your webpage, this will avoid automatic email harvesting software.
If you click on an email with a subject line that appears to be malicious computer code, it could include code that is unloaded onto your computer when you click on the email. If there are a lot of characters in the email, it is sure to include hacker code. When the code is unloaded on your computer, it allows the hacker to consume your email list from your computer.
When you open a bad email, you will be instructed to open a link in the email, to buy something, give personal information, or with a message to view something interesting. The link is usually malicious computer code. They usually appear to be a legitimate company.
If you click on a malicious link in the email, most of those links include code that will unload your entire email address book, along with your personal email address, onto the scammers computer database. With that information , they will send out millions of spam emails with your email address in the “from” line and your friends email address in the “to” line. Those emails will instruct your friends to open a link in the email
that is actually malicious code. The links unload something called a “bot” onto your computer, and allows them to control your email address book.
It will appear that the email is coming from a friend to you, but the message line is usually not meaningful, or the email will ask you to click on a link in the open email that will unload a “bot” or coded program to access your computer and computer email address book. Your anti-virus does not usually delete these email bots in due time.
The only way to avoid giving your email address and your email address book to strangers is to avoid opening trick emails.
2. Responding To Trick Emails:
Understand trick emails to protect your computer and your personal information, including your passwords.
Fake emails that respond to a product you are selling online, an ad you placed, for anything ranging from a job to selling a computer, will ask you to click the link in the email for more information, and the “bot”, is usually code to install a keystroke tracker. The keystroke tracker, records your pass codes on their computer. This is how online banking accounts are stolen. Large companies have had millions stolen by hackers, when just one employee clicked on a link in an email with a keystroke tracker installed. Employees must be educated, as well as personal computer users.
3. To Avoid Email Tricks and Downloading Malicious Code
Run an anti-virus update and full scan before you use online banking account.
4. Clicking on Links to Unsolicited Emails Sent to You
This sounds super easy to avoid. But, the email scammers have gotten very sophisticated. They will email you several emails that appear to be from companies. These companies we use all the time, so folks don’t get suspicious. The problem is when the emails look like an amateur put them up, and they have links that encourage you to click them. Clicking on these links will download a “hidden bot” or script also known as code that takes personal information off of your computer. Many times it disables your computer from working all together. This is serious, but if you are vigilant you can avoid being a victim of this scam. If you didn’t order anything from said company, you know it is a spoof of that company, so you don’t need to open the email. If you think you ordered something and can’t remember go directly to your account page on that website or paypal to check to see if you ordered something. But, absolutely NEVER click on a link in a suspicious email.
5. Do not open emails with [no subject], in the subject line
Do not open emails with email addresses you know are in your email address book or belongs to a friend, but that friend no longer uses that email address. This email came from a bot, downloaded from your friends computer to the email scammer.
Emails with any type of perverted information in the subject line; these are designed usually for men or those who are extremely “curious”. The information will tell the user to click on the link to get more perverted information, but the link is a malicious bot, to steal information off the users computer.
Emails that come from companies that you don’t do business with, they hope you will open the email and click on a bad link to be curious about why they are contacting you.
Emails that claim to be your bank or some other place you do business with—do not open–call the business instead, with a phone number you already have. These are called fishing emails. They are crooks, fishing for information from unsuspecting computer users. They usually send out emails appearing to come from hundreds of different banks, hoping they will land your bank name on your computer. Don’t fall for the trick.
When you place your email address on your website, place it as (at) instead of @.
6. Understanding Limitations To Anti-Virus Software:
Anti-virus software has limited use, be aware that it does not work when you answer a fishing email and/or click on a bad link to automatically download a malicious bot to your computer. The bot normally downloads information to your computer before the anti-virus picks it up. Get an anti-virus and a malware removal program.
Anti-virus usually works to keep viruses, worms, and bots off your computer hard drive, but you must be vigilant.
Update your antivirus and malware software a few times a day, and run a full scan, at least once a day. Don’t leave your computer off for extended periods, that is, weeks at a time. If your computer is not in use, turn it on at least once a week, update your anti-virus software, and run a full scan. If your computer is left off for too long, the hard drive can become overwhelmed with viruses, worms, and bots—and therefore the computer may not function in any capacity.
Become friends with your delete button. After you have taken a close look at each of your emails, and you are not positively sure it is from a trusted source, delete it right away.
7. This is a 2018 update to email harvesting and malicious bots. Your phone has also become a target.
Your phone has also become a target for home and business abuse. Many unscrupulous types use spoof cards to mimic a legitimate company on your caller ID. The ID can have both the name of the company and their number which has been spoofed by a spoof card used before the call is made to disguise the real caller’s information. You can get a hint that the caller ID is fake if; 1. The caller ask for a financial donation to a legitimate source, 2. The caller ask for banking information, or 3. A computer answers the phone when you pick it up. It helps to be suspicious of every single email and call. Do not give out credit card information, or any other confidential information when someone calls you. 4. Telephone calls are outrageous, always different scams asking for money for a created fraud — tell seniors – DO NOT ANSWER, they use fake phone numbers to match real businesses. Understand more about protecting yourself, in my new eBook, 67 Powerful Ways to Save Money, Now and Forever. The book is even more powerful with the companion “Budget Planner” you can instantly download.
Tax Savings Ideas
A collective sigh of relief can be heard around the nation after the April 15 deadline normally, but this year April 18, 2016, because many people only think about tax savings during tax season. Smart savers and investors realize that managing their tax burden is a year long commitment that can save them a lot of headaches and money. It is important to have a tax strategy early to take advantage of steps that can help relieve the April 15 (18) tax burden.
A good place to start is to analyze your paycheck to see if there are any opportunities you are missing that could result in tax savings or tax payment to Uncle Sam. People should decide if they want to get more money in their paycheck and perhaps have to pay something back each year or perhaps they would like to get a big refund check.
Some financial analyst suggest that people take limited exemptions and use the extra cash in their paychecks to invest. This is a good suggestions for those who are disciplined enough to put that extra money into an investment account instead of purchasing the latest fashion or using the money for entertainment.
If you are not one of those people who can be disciplined enough to dedicate the extra cash generated by limited exemptions and claims taking more deductions might be the better strategy for you. The larger check you receive when you file your taxes should be spent wisely with at least a portion of the money going to an investment account.
The government has creative ways to get more of your money and you have to use creative (and legal ways) to decrease your tax bill. Many people don’t think about taxes until it is too late to do anything about them. There are some steps you can take now that will help you feel less of the pinch of your tax bill. (Please be sure to check with your tax provider or visit the IRS Website for additional information.
Itemized vs. Standard
Keep a file of all the times you have donated to various causes, the Salvation Army and even donation to your church. Compare the itemized deductions with the standard one to see which one will save you more money. It important to remember that when claiming charitable donations on taxes that a receipt is required for donations $250 or more. Make sure that receipts are kept in a safe place.
The cost of higher education can be felt at public and private colleges especially when considering the starting salary for many careers start below the $30,000 a year mark. Make sure you include student loan repayments on your tax bill. Parents can also include contributions to a 529 college savings account on their taxes.
Contribute to Company sponsored 401K
There are two great reason to contribute to a 401K. The first is that it lowers your tax bill because money used for the plans are not taxed until you withdraw. The second reason is that when a company matches the plan giving you free money. There is usually a schedule of when you can take all the company match if and when you leave the company. (Ex. 2nd year+40%, 3rd year=60%, 4th year=80 % 5th year=100%) Please note that you can always take the money that you contribute from your paycheck with you.
Consider Flexible Spending Accounts
Flexible Spending Accounts are ways to put away money for medical expenses. You can use pre-tax money to pay for out of pocket costs. These accounts can help you save money by lowering your taxable income. The important thing too remember about these accounts is that you lose whatever you don’t use during the year so plan carefully.
There are many deductions self-employed people can take. It is important to keep accurate and up-to-date records. Gas, home office supplies, conferences and memberships to professional societies are a few deductions that you can take.
Recently the government has allowed people to write off home repairs related to decreasing energy waste.
Most people employed by companies don’t use this credit because out-of-pocket expenses have to be above 7.5% of your income. The self-employed and those using unemployment benefits may meet the financial requirement.
Whatever your strategy is it is important to have a definite plan on how to manage your taxes. There is one thing that is always certain-paying taxes and the smart investor manages taxes. Check out this articles site and IRS.gov for more information, the IRS site has all of the current tax information for everything in publications, articles and more..
Going to College With Student Loans
In the past 30 years as the priorities of states have shifted away from a public college education to for-profit government contract companies, the cost of college has skyrocketed and an increasingly huge number of students are being forced into student loans. College costs have soared far in excess of inflation. Thirty years ago a middle class family could easily send their child to a state funded college if they lived at home, and for some even living on campus was an affordable option. But, with today’s cost, the choice of which college to attend should be a well-researched and lengthy decision process, with cost your number one consideration. Because college cost are so high, students and parents who do not research college cost and financial aide well, find students going to college for 6 years( for a 4 year degree), or dropping out due to unmanageable cost. In-depth research and planning early in the students’ high school years can avoid these tragic problems. Get crucial information about college and student loans here.
The College Boards Research
According to the College Board, tuition and fees have increased from an average of $600 per year in 1976, to $6000 per year in 2007, for public colleges. The tuition increases are $2500 per year in 1976 to $22,000 per year in 2007 for private colleges. These numbers do not include room and board, books, lab fees, registration fees, car expenses, plane tickets, computers, clothes, bus tickets, or other hidden cost that colleges do not list.
The Real Cost of College
The total cost of college including room and board, tuition and fees, books, lab fees, registration fees, and bare necessities could easily range from $120,000 for a public college to $300,000 for a private college. This range could leave a middle class student with student loans (after Pell grants, Work Study, Summer Jobs, and Parents contribution), as much as $40,000 for a public school, to $150,000 in school loans for private schools. Many private schools have large yearly increases in tuition every single year, this must be factored in as you add up your total expected cost. If you do not qualify for government assisted subsidized loans, you may have to take out unsubsidized student loans that charge interest on loans while you are in school.
The College Acceptance Letters
College acceptance letters and financial aid information will soon be available. The average college tuition alone is $17,000 today. Most financial aide packages do not cover all of your cost, even for the poorest student. You are usually expected to come up with as much as 20-30% of the cost, after your financial aide award. Some students don’t find this out until they have traveled across the country to go to college and find themselves without enough money. Most financial aide packages don’t cover books; registration fees, lab fees, car expenses, computers, plane tickets, and other necessary items.
Do Your Research
Do your research when it comes to college cost and available financial aide. Most schools have a maximum amount of financial aide they will give to each student. For instance, if you are an out of state student, who attends a state school, your financial aide will be based on the cost for an in-state student. Therefore, you will have large gap that you will have to fill in, in order to pay all cost, no matter what you financial status. Know all of your colleges costs, this is difficult information to find, especially with private schools. Many schools hide some cost to keep students coming. Navigate the colleges’ website for cost; and also call the colleges’ registrations office, financial aide office, and housing office, and if possible talk to past alumni. It will literally take every single one of these inquiries to find out the true college cost. Most private schools will be off limits to middle income and low income students, unless they receive a full scholarship with many guarantees. Learn to Save Money here.
Keep Student Loan Amounts Low
Choose a college where you can keep loan amounts very low. There is no guarantee a graduate will be employed before school loan payments become due, or that they won’t become sick or disabled at some time during their loan repayment period. Know the difference between private loans and federal loans. Federal loans come with more safety nets. Private lenders such as Sallie Mae charges students when their loans are in deferral. With federal loans, if you are unemployed or suffering an economic hardship, you will not be charged to defer your loans. A rule of thumb is that your total loans should not exceed your expected beginning salary. For example, if you plan to go into teaching, a beginning teacher can expect to make about $21,000 a year, so your loans for 4 years should be capped below $21,000. Since many students change their major many times during college, and no one actually knows when they will be hired, or what their salary will be, it is wise to keep total college loans as low as
How the Current Administration is Helping
President Obama has made it easier to navigate the oftentimes complicated maze of college and financial aide. He has required colleges to be more open about their cost, and the financial aide available. In the past many colleges hid some of their cost to prevent parents and students from making an informed decision, as I mentioned before.
President Obama made changes in Pell Grants so the amount awarded per student is greater, and the number of students who qualify per income is greater.
Effective January 2012, if you’re someone who has different kinds of loans’ guaranteed and direct-you’ll be able to roll them both into one direct loan and bring down your interest rate. You’ll only have to write one check a month, and you’ll see a discount. This switch saves money for taxpayers across the board and it helps pay for the second step President Obama announced in October 2011.
As a part of 2010’s student loan reform, borrowers’ loan payments could be no higher than 10 percent of their disposable income. This is a big deal-but it wasn’t going to go into effect until 2014. The President announced that he’s speeding up this program so it will affect students in 2012-two years early. This will have huge consequences for people struggling to make their student loan payments.
Federal Financial Aide Website
To get financial aide for college you can obtain a pin, and start your application process at the Federal Financial Aide Website. When all of your information is in, (check the site regularly), they will send a financial aide award letter to the colleges you submitted. Make sure you place every single college you are interested in on your FAFSA application. You will choose only one college at the end, and FAFSA will forward your information there. Read the FAFSA website carefully so you are well-informed before you start.
Promote Your Book Online
Congratulations on your book publishing contract. Using my 5 low-cost ways to promote your book online will help you get started. There are thousands of unpublished writers looking to get signed so you have made a great accomplishment. Take a few moments to enjoy the victory before the real work begins, MARKETING YOUR BOOK. Because many books are now ebooks, it is imperative that you understand how to promote your book online.
Publishing houses are expecting more of their writers to promote, in these times of budget cuts, which means fewer resources and personnel to promote your book. Sales of books are tracked and low book sales of your first book can make it more difficult to get that second book contract. Marketing your book online offers a low-cost and effective way to get your book noticed and sold.
#1 CREATE A WEBSITE:
The cost of hosting a Website or blog has come down quite a bit in the last few years. Authors can find decent hosting services for less than $100 a year. There are also free sites that post Websites and blogs. Paying for hosting services has two key advantages over the free sites. You won’t have to worry about ads on paid sites.
These ads posted by free sites can detract from the content on your site. You can choose the URL of the site as long as someone else hasn’t chosen the name first. With free websites, you may have to deal with a long string of characters making your site hard for readers to find.
#2 SOCIALIZE ONLINE: Create a Facebook page and Twitter account about the book separate from your personal page or account. The Facebook and Twitter accounts can be linked so that when you tweet it appears on Facebook.
Make the book Facebook page all about the book. Look for communities and groups that might be interested in your book and socialize with them. The goal is to build an audience that is interested in your story.
CAUTION: Be careful when promoting your book online. You want to be subtle in this arena or you will offend people.
#3 CONNECT WITH ONLINE AFFILIATES:
As it gets closer to your book ‘s publication date make sure you have a way for people to pre-order and order the book. The two most popular online affiliates are Amazon [affiliate-program.amazon.com] and Barnes and Nobles [www.barnesandnobles.com/affiliate].
These affiliate link should be on the homepage of your website and the links to these pages included in all online communications about the book.
#4 POST A VIDEO OR PODCAST:
Authors can inexpensively video themselves reading from key excerpts from the book and post that online. Readers are curious about the author and posting a video can help establish your brand. An author may be asked to participate in a podcast (basically an online interview). Once the podcast is posted include a link to it on the publishers and author book Website and Facebook pages.
#5 REACH OUT TO WEBSITES AND BLOGS:
There are blogs and Websites on every possible subject and topic. These sites are often looking for content. Write an article in exchange for a mention of your book. Ask if the site reviews books or does sweepstakes (free book giveaway).
If they do send the designed reviewer an ARC [advanced reading copy). Set up a sweepstakes and include the link on your Website. Always ask the site owner if they can recommend any other online contacts that might be interested in your book.
Compiling contacts of related sites and blogs will help the author develop a list that can be used in an e-newsletter campaign. E-newsletters can be created easily in newer versions of Microsoft Word. In addition to information on your book and how to buy it, these e-newsletters should have content related to the book that will appeal to readers. Create a budget for book promotion.
TIP: When communicating with blogs, and Websites make sure you update your email signature to include the name and Web page link of the book.
These 5 low-cost ways to promote your book online, should begin soon after the book is slated for publication. It takes time to build a Website and community. Use online promotion for your titles and you will sell books. An author looking for a long career invests time and resources in promoting their titles independent of what the publisher is doing for the title.
Related Links: Business Success
Choosing a College
The top colleges and universities recommended by major publications; most American students can’t afford. There for you must consider several factors when choosing a college, to make the best choice possible.
Several national magazines publish the top colleges and universities in the U.S. yearly. All of the top colleges listed have one thing in common, extreme high cost. Because the cost are so high, most Americans cannot afford to attend these so-called “top colleges” unless they acquire an uncontrollable school loan debt or a full 4 year scholarship. My number one consideration for choosing a top college or university, and what should be your number one
consideration, is simply put, cost. Not considering cost, can cost you misery later in life, for years to come.
If a poor or middle-income student choose one of the “top colleges”, their school loan balance after graduation would be outrages. Because, even after amortizing it over 20 years, the monthly payment would not be possible with the vast majority of entry level jobs in the U.S. You read that right, I said 20 years. Many students find that they have to amortize their school loans over 20 years to get a somewhat manageable payment option. Many graduates have payments more like mortgages than school loan payments, but this does not have to be the case.
Furthermore, if one of these students choose to defer school loans for graduate school, their existing outrageous balance could easily double. Interest payments are charged to the balance of the account even if the loan is in deferral.
If the school does not have a reasonable and affordable cost for your income, don’t even think about attending, unless you can get a full scholarship. Keeping a full scholarship usually requires you maintain a B+ grade point average.
Why burden yourself or your child with debt you or they can’t repay? The burden would be so high their life would be miserable trying to make the monthly payment. Figuring out the cost of a college includes a detailed analysis of tuition(for in-state and out of state residents), room and board, books, registration fees, plane fair or auto expense to get to and from school 3 times a year. Add an extra 2% to that total to cover hidden cost. Some students who choose schools they cannot afford, graduate with a college degree only to find their credit score fizzles so low they are no longer a candidate for employment, as a result of non-payment of school loans.
Most financial aide packages include a combination of large school loans, small grants, work study, and parents or students contribution. The financial aide package usually includes only about 70-80% of total cost for the poorest students, unless you are lucky enough to get one of the rare full scholarships.
Choosing a college without the consideration of debt can cause you and your child a lifelong drama of financial misery and unbearable stress. Don’t burden yourself with unsustainable debt and a low credit score, to get a college education.
Is the culture conducive to your upbringing? If not, can you assimilate into the culture? The culture includes kids from similar communities, things to do that you enjoy, your religious facilities to attend, and acclimating to severe weather you are not used too. Some straight A
students attend colleges that are so culturally different to their upbringing that they have a difficult time adjusting, hence, their grades suffer as a result.
3. Academic Standing
Is the school certified by the local, state and federal academic boards?
4. Major Fields
Does the school have a large variety of major fields, so you can choose a second or third choice if you discover you don’t like your first choice?
5. Type of School
Understand the different types of schools available. Is your school choice an in-state public college, a private college, or a for-profit college?
The best value for your education is an in-state public college. Public schools are subsidized by taxpayers dollars so children within the state can get a quality education at an affordable cost.
Private colleges and universities are usually owned by organizations and churches. For-profit colleges and universities are usually owned by corporations. Both of these choices can be outrageously expensive with a lot of hidden cost. Do your research well before you consider a college or university. Understand that most colleges have tuition increases each year, this must be figured into the ongoing yearly cost. Because school cost is being subsidized with school loans for many students, getting the lowest loan amount it imperative. Your income right out of college is not guaranteed, neither is a job. Because of this it is wise to focus on low or no school loan debt for college or trade school. The debt must be repaid, the lower your debt the better your chance of repaying your debt easily and on time.
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