Wednesday, June 28, 2006
An unemployed graduate woke up one morning and checked his pocket.All he had left was $10. He decided to use it to buy food and then wait for death as he was too proud to go begging. He was frustrated as he could find no job; nobody was ready to help him.He bought food and as he sat down to eat, an old man and two little children came along and asked him to help them with food as they had not eaten for almost a week. He looked at them. They were so lean that he could see their bones coming out. Their eyes had gone into the socket.
With the last bit of compassion he had, he gave them the food. The old man and children prayed for him that will bless and prosper him and then gave him a very old coin. The young graduate said to them "you need the prayer more than I do". With no money, no job, no! food, the young graduate went under the bridge to rest and wait for death. As he was about to sleep, he saw an old newspaper on the floor. He picked it up, and suddenly he saw an advertisement for people with old coins to come to a certain address.
He decided to go there with the old coin the old man gave him. On getting to the place, he gave the proprietor the coin. Alas, the proprietor screamed, brought out a big book and showed the young graduate a photograph. This same old coin was worth $3M. The young graduate was overjoyed as the proprietor gave him a bank draft for $3M within an hour. He collected the Bank Draft, went in search of the old man and little children.
By the time he got to where he left them eating, they had gone. He inquired from the owner of the canteen who told him that they even left a note for him. He quickly opened the note thinking it would lead him to find them. But alas, the words in the note reads thus:
You gave us your all and we have rewarded you back with the coin"
Have you given all to Almighty? If you haven't, do so today and he will surprise you.
Here is your financial blessing! It's a simple prayer, you got 30 seconds?
If you need a financial blessing, continue reading this email.
Dear Almighty, most Gracious and Loving God, I pray to you that you abundantly Bless my family and me. I know that You recognize, that a family is more than just a mother, father, sister, brother, husband and wife, but all who believe and trust in you. Dear Almighty , I send up a prayer request for financial blessing for not only the person who sent this to me, but for Me and all that I have forwarded this message on to. And that the power of joined prayer by those who believe and trust in you is more powerful than anything. I thank you in advance for your blessings.
Dear Almighty, deliver the person reading this right now and those who will read it in the near future from debt and debt burdens. Release your Godly wisdom that I may be a good steward over all that You have given me Almighty, for I know how wonderful and mighty You are and how if we just obey you and walk in your word and have the faith that You will pour out blessings. I thank you now God for the recent blessings I have received and for the blessings yet to come, because I know You are not done with me yet. In Almighty's name, I pray, Ameen .
Say a prayer for the one who sent you this email to be prosperous!
"Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear. "
A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing, and the lawn mower is broken.
- James Dent
Monday, June 26, 2006
By Robert MacMillan and Mark McSherry 1 hour, 42 minutes ago
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Warren Buffett, the world's second-richest person, is donating about $37 billion -- more than 80 percent of his fortune -- to foundations run by his friend Bill Gates and by the Buffett family.
The move is the biggest-ever single act of charitable giving in the United States.
Sunday's announcement by Buffett, 75, comes just days after Microsoft Chairman Gates said he would move away from his day-to-day role at the software giant to focus more on charity work, and highlights the close friendship of the world's two richest men.
Gates, 50, is a bridge partner of Buffett's and a director of Berkshire Hathaway, Buffett's investment firm. Buffett serves on the board of the Washington Post Co. with Gates' wife Melinda.
In a letter to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Buffett, said he will set aside 10 million shares of Berkshire class B common stock for the foundation.
Based on the stock's per-share price of $3071.01 as of Friday, the total amount for the Gates foundation comes to about $30 billion.
That is the largest commitment to a philanthropic cause ever made by one person in the United States, said Stacy Palmer, editor of the Chronicle of Philanthropy.
"Even if you look at what (John D.) Rockefeller and (Andrew) Carnegie gave historically -- even if you do it in today's numbers, it doesn't come close to that," she said.
The Gates foundation is one of the world's richest philanthropic organizations.
It has committed millions of dollars to fighting diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis in developing countries, and to education and library technology in the United States.
Buffett, chief executive of Berkshire Hathaway, is worth an estimated $44 billion, according to Forbes magazine. That makes him the world's second-richest man behind Gates, who is worth about $50 billion.
Buffett took over Omaha, Nebraska-based Berkshire in 1965, and has transformed it from a struggling textile maker into a $141.8 billion company with investments in undervalued securities and purchases of well-managed, easy-to-understand businesses.
Its stock investments include blue-chip names such as Coca-Cola Co. and Procter & Gamble Co. Berkshire also owns some 50 businesses, including Geico auto insurance, Benjamin Moore paint and Dairy Queen ice cream.
In a letter to Gates and his wife, Buffett wrote: "You have committed yourselves to a few extraordinarily important but underfunded issues, a policy that I believe offers the highest probability of your achieving goals of great consequence."
Gates and his wife said in a statement on their foundation's Web site: "We are awed by our friend Warren Buffett's decision to use his fortune to address the world's most challenging inequities, and we are humbled that he has chosen to direct a large portion of it to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation."
Buffett also pledged 1 million shares to a foundation established by himself and his late wife, Susan Thompson Buffett, and 350,000 shares each to the foundations of children Howard, Susan and Peter.
In letters to the recipients, Buffett said he will award the gifts every year for the rest of his life.
Buffett is in "excellent health," he wrote to the Gates foundation, but said he is writing a new will to ensure that the stock is distributed after his death.
Friday, June 23, 2006
He sat beside me, patiently listening and sometimes asking questïons. A man of few words, Dad’s answer to all of my dilemmas was simply, “I think you should sleep on it.” For many years it was a familiar routine. I talked. Dad listened. Then came his advice: “Sleep on it.”
One day, my teenäge frustration got the better of me, and I could stand it no longer. “How will sleeping on it help, Dad? What does that solve, anyway? Don’t you understand? I have this problem, and I need an answer, now.”
My father was silent. He looked at me, and in that moment I could see that he was making a decision. I grew quiet, realizing that something important was about to happen.
Then, Dad said, “I think you’re old enough now to understand this concept. Let me give you an example. Last night, I was working on my model ship.
Often, the kits come incomplete. Parts are missing, the instructions are in disarray or, even worse, inaccurate. Assembling the model itself is challenging enough, but when you run into problems of this nature... well, I find that I end up having to improvise quite a bit.
“There’s a certain point in building the model where you have to proceed very carefully. A wrong move can mean lots of wasted time and energy. I could try to explain what the problem was, but since you’re unfamiliar with model ships ...the point is, I was perplexed. I just couldn’t figure out the next step, no matter how hard I tried.
“When I went to bed last night, I thought again about the situation. And then I asked for the solution to the problem to come to me while I was sleeping.”
“Who did you ask, Dad? Who were you talking to?” I interrupted.
“Well, I believe that we all have the answers within us. When we listen, we can hear the answers. And you know what? I woke up about two in the morning with the solution! I don’t know why I hadn’t seen it before. It may seem really simple, but it works. I’ve found answers to all kinds of problems this way. I could tell you about times when your mother and I have had difficult decisions to make, or I’ve been worried over something at work.
“When you’re faced with a problem and need a solution, sleep on it. Ask for the solution to come to you. It can’t hurt, and it just might help. It sure works for me.”
“I think you need to sleep on it” has proven to be among the best advice Dad’s ever given me. Over the years I’ve used this simple technique in a variety of ways.
Early on, I found great benefit simply by distancing myself from the problem. By allowing it to marinate overnight, meat is tenderized. By allowing a problem to marinate for a few hours, often, its “toughness” is reduced as well, and sometimes, the problem even resolves itself completely! Other times, I wake up with an “ah-ha” experience, where the solution is laid out before me. Just like my father, I wonder why I hadn’t seen it before. It seems so simple when you know how.
Recently, I’ve discovered a brand new use for this technique: inspiration! I don’t always have to have a problem that needs solving; it’s okay to ask for inspiration as well! I stumbled onto this discovery through a real estate deal. I’d purchased a fixer-upper, and boy, did it need fixing up, from new siding and windows to all new flooring and furniture and everything in between. It took several months to renovate. When it was finished, I looked around and said to myself, “You know, this is good. Really good.”
Then, I went outside and under the house to the pool area. (I live in a coastal community, and the houses here are built on pilings.) I saw that it was bad. Beyond bad. Awful, really. All the magic was inside the house! I needed magic under the house, too, but the months of renovations had exhausted me. I was worn out and weary, clueless as to what the right touch was or even how to approach it.
It had been a difficult day, and a long one. I flung myself onto the bed that night, too tired to undress. Frustrated, I called out, “I want a fabulous tiki bar. I don’t know how to begin. I cannot see what to do. I need inspiration. Show it to me, show it to me, please.”
Then, I fell into a deep sleep.
I awoke at 3:30 A.M. I had had the most wonderful dream! I’d seen how to do it; I saw the tiki bar built and painted. The underpinning was alive, the colors of a tropical sky in Caribbean blues and blue-greens. The pilings around the pool had been transformed into palm trees, the tops of the trees painted on the underpinning as though they were swaying in the gentle midsummer’s breeze. Toucans, parrots, macaws, and cockatoos sat perched on the branches in the trees or peeking through the colorful foliage near the bottom.
The outdoor showër nearly glowed in lime green, pink, and purple hues. Inside the showër a mermaid beckoned, an octopus guarded a treasure chest, a seahorse swam lazily by, and a dolphin leapt. Deeper blues and greens striped the outside of the bar, and inside, splashes of bold green and orange, red and yellow.
There was more. Much more.
I hardly slept the rest of the night. At the paint store early the next morning I had a list of colors to mix. The trunk of my car loaded down with paint, I went to work. After the background colors were finished I hired a local artist to paint what I had seen. Each day, a new idea would come. The more I turned my thoughts to it and reflected on the tiki bar, the more I was deluged with even better ideas!
When it was completed, I looked around, amazëd at the result--it really was fabulous! I’m filled with wonder at the inspiration and creativity that was just waiting to be tapped into...when I chose to “sleep on it.”
About the Author:
This article was written by Holleay T. Parcker, contributing author to "101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life." Holleay is a realtor who believes that great success in the real estate world is directly proportional to using the power of intuition. To learn more, and to see a picture of the tiki bar described above, visit http://www.RealEstateIntuition.com
Her article above is one of 101 great chapters that can be found in "101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life." This powerful compilation book with Zig Ziglar, Brian Tracy, Jim Rohn, and Denis Waitley contains 101 chapters of proven advice on how to improve your life.
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
WENT TO A PARTY, MUM
(Please read all the way to the bottom and sign your
went to a party,
And remembered what you said. You told me not
to drink, Mom So I had a sprite instead.
felt proud of myself,
The way you said I would, That I didn't drink
and drive, Though some friends said I should.
made a healthy choice,
And your advice to me was right, The party finally
ended, And the kids drove out of sight.
got into my car,
Sure to get home in one piece, I never knew
what was coming, Mom Something I expected
I'm lying on the pavement,
And I hear the policeman say, The kid that
caused this wreck was drunk, Mom, his voice
seems far away.
own blood's all around me,
As I try hard not to cry. I can hear the
paramedic say, This girl is going to die.
sure the guy had no idea,
While he was flying high, Because he chose to
drink and drive, Now I would have to die.
why do people do it, Mom
Knowing that it ruins lives? And now the pain
is cutting me, Like a hundred stabbing knives.
sister not to be afraid, Mom
Tell daddy to be brave, And when I go to
heaven, Put " Mommy 's Girl" on my
Someone should have taught him,
That it's wrong to drink and drive. Maybe if
his parents had, I'd still be alive.
breath is getting shorter, Mom
'm getting really scared. These are my final
moments, And I'm so unprepared.
wish that you could hold me Mom,
As I lie here and die. I wish that I could say,
"I love you, Mom!" So I love you and
MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Drivers) IS HOPING TO GET
SIGNATURES ON THIS,THEN PASS IT ON TO SIGN.
When this petition has reached 5,000, please return it to:
P.O. Box 541688
is only 1.239 milligrams per cubic centimeter under standard conditions.
Measuring the density is done by finding the mass of an evacuated glass
sphere, letting the air back into the sphere, and finding the new mass.
This is done with the sphere on one pan of an equal-arm balance. The outside
diameter of the sphere is then measured, the thickness of the wall estimated,
as well as the volume of the neck, and the volume of the air computed.
Sometimes smaller, metallic spheres were used in this experiment.
An example can be seen mounted on the vacuum
pump in the Kenyon College collection.
This apparatus at the right is at St. Mary's College in Notre Dame,
Indiana. There is no maker's mark.
Monday, June 19, 2006
Read his article below :
Sunday, June 18, 2006
Friday, June 16, 2006
Swanson Analysis Services, Inc., and a resident of The Villages, Fla.,
is recognized internationally as an authority and innovator in the
application of finite-element methods to engineering.
In 1970-only four
years after he graduated from the Pitt School of Engineering with the
Ph.D. degree in applied mechanics-Swanson founded ANSYS, Inc., to
develop, support, and market the ANSYS program, a finite-element
software code he created that is used by a broad spectrum of industries
employing computer-aided engineering, among them the aerospace,
automotive, biomedical, manufacturing, and electronics industries.
Swanson served ANSYS as president, chief executive officer, and
director; at his retirement from ANSYS in March 1999, he was the
company's chief technologist. Headquartered in Canonsburg, Pa., with
more than 40 sales locations worldwide, ANSYS and its subsidiaries
today employ approximately 1,400 people and distribute products through
a network of channel partners in more than 40 countries.
to founding ANSYS, Swanson was employed at Westinghouse Astronuclear
Laboratory in the stress analysis group in reactor design, the core
analysis and methods group, and the structural analysis group. It was
at Westinghouse that Swanson realized the significant resources
companies could save by using integrated general-purpose finite-element
software code to do the complex calculations engineers were then doing
In May 2004, Swanson was given what is considered to
be the highest award in the engineering profession, the American
Association of Engineering Societies' John Fritz Medal. Prior awardees
of the Fritz Medal include, among others, Orville Wright, Alexander
Graham Bell, Alfred Nobel, Thomas Edison, and George Westinghouse.
has received many other prestigious honors throughout his career, among
them being named in 1986-87 Pittsburgh Engineer of the Year by the
American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), winning in 1990 the
Computers in Engineering (CIE) award for outstanding contributions to
the engineering and computing industries, selection by Industry Week as
one of the Top 5 of the Top 50 R&D Stars in the United States in
1994, election as an ASME Fellow in 1994, and receipt of the ASME
Applied Mechanics Award in 1998 and ASME Honorary Membership in 2003.
loyal and generous Pitt alumnus, Swanson has created at the University
the John A. Swanson Institute for Technical Excellence, which houses
the John A. Swanson Center for Micro and Nano Systems; the John A.
Swanson Center for Product Innovation; and the RFID (Radio Frequency
Identification) Center for Excellence. He also has established the John
A. Swanson Embedded Computing Laboratory in Computer Engineering and
the John A. Swanson Fund in Pitt's School of Engineering. In 1998,
Swanson was named a Pitt School of Engineering Distinguished Alumnus
and, in 2002, was inducted into the Cathedral of Learning Society,
which recognizes individuals who have donated $1 million or more to the
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
To know the value of one month - ask the mother of a premature baby.
To know the value of one week - ask the editor of a weekly magazine.
To know the value of one day - ask the wager earner with six children.
To know the value of one hour - ask the lovers who are waiting to meet.
To know the value of one minute - ask the person who missed the plane.
To know the value of one second - ask the person who survived the accident.
To know the value of one millisecond - ask the Olympic silver medalist.
The desktop is an integral component of the Windows operating system
and cannot be removed. However, you do have the option of disabling the
resource-hungry Active Desktop and using the classic user interface
instead. The biggest advantage of doing this is that your PC will feel
much snappier. Unfortunately, it is much harder to disable the Active
Desktop in Windows XP than it was in previous versions of the operating
system - it requires a change to the registry.
To open the registry editor, go to "Start, Run", type regedit
and hit "OK". Find the entry
and create the DWORD values ForceActiveDesktopOn and NoActiveDesktop
. To do so, right-click into the right-hand window and select "New,
DWORD". Then change the binary value of the registry key called
"ForceActiveDesktopOn" to 0 and that of "NoActiveDesktop" to 1. Now
quit the program and restart your computer.
Warning: Manipulating the registry can easily damage your installation of Windows. It is crucial that you create a backup
copy of your registry before making any changes to the Windows
registry. Once again, open the registry editor as described above and
go to "File, Export". Choose a memorable name for your backup file,
select a suitable destination on your hard drive and click "Save".
Sunday, June 11, 2006
"I am indebted to the press of the United States for almost every dollar which I possess..." -- P.T. Barnum, 1891
Charlie Stratton was a little boy who would not grow. He was destined to be less than three feet tall.
His parents accepted the fact that he would n'ever become a full sized adult. The neighbors felt sorry for the nice family and their midget. But no one saw an o'pportunity for greatness. No one saw the potential for fame and fortune. No one, that is, until one man came along in 1842 with an eye for hidden possibilities. That man was P.T. Barnum.
Barnum taught the child to sing and dance. He taught him to express himself, to accept how he looked, to feel good about who he was. He also taught the boy how to charm and entertain crowds. And he named the y'oung prodigy a name that still lives today: General Tom Thumb.
Years later, after Tom was rich and world famous, his Connecticut neighbors would shake their heads and smile. "We always thought little Charlie was a nice boy but not very special," many said, "but we n'ever knew he would become a celebrity until Barnum took him and Barnumized him."
P.T. Barnum took many people who were talented but unknown and made them rich and famous. While Jenny Lind was known as the greatest Swedish soprano in all of Europe, few had any idea who she was in America. Yet Barnum hired her, managed her, promoted her, and Jenny Lind became so famous that 30,000 people met her ship when it docked in New York in the mid 1800s. Again, Barnum had practiced the art of "Barnumizing" someone.
And to prove that his techniques worked, when Lind decided to save m'oney and manage her own concerts without Barnum's help, her crowds grew smaller. Lind didn't get media attention. And she returned to Europe without fanfare. Yet it was the same Jenny Lind that the crowds had gone wild to see under Barnum's art!
That art is not lost today, of course. Throughout 1997 I smiled whenever I saw an article on the singer Jewel. H'ere you have a woman barely out of her teens, with only one CD released at the time, making front page headlines and cover stories on national magazines. Last I heard she had been hired to write her autobiography (!) and was paid more than a million dollars for it. Yet Jewel is barely an adult! How is this happening? Clearly, Jewel is being Barnumized.
And that's how anyone can become famous today. You need someone skilled in the art of Barnumizing. There should be a latent talent or trait that can be publicized, of course, but even that can be gotten around. Richard Branson, the tycoon founder of many businesses, including Virgin Records and Virgin Airlines, Barnumizes himself by creating balloon flights around the world. Whether he actually succeeds at the trip doesn't matter. His events bring himself international publicity. And he is not promoting any talent except maybe the bold desire to be famous.
I've been personally fascinated by publicity and publicists since I began researching P.T. Barnum a few years ago. Here's a taste of some of the people I've discovered:
* Harry Reichenbach was an audacious silent movies publicist who made people famous in the early 1900s. In fact, his i'ncredible creative ideas helped stop World War I.
* Edward L. Bernays helped make such stars as the singer Caruso famous. And he got American women to smoke with a publicity event he helped orchestrate in 1929.
* And publicists today continue to Barnumize people like chicken soup authors Mark Victor Hanson and Jack Canfield. One reason Deepak Chopra remains a bestselling author is the publicist behind him: Arielle Ford.
But let's forget actors and actresses, authors and speakers, singers and celebrities for a moment. What about the average person? What about you? Can you be Barnumized? Can you be made famous?
Without hesitation, I say yes. The s'ecret is in hiring a publicist who knows how to find or create a news worthy subject out of you or something you do.
There isn't any one way to fame that fits for all people. Sometimes all you need is one wild event to draw attention to everything else you do:
* Barnum once showed a preposterous "Fejee Mermaid." The curious half-monkey-half fish increased his ticket s'ales 33%.
* In our own century a circus once displayed a "Unicorn." While everyone knows unicorns aren't real, ticket s'ales increased 55%. Again, the one publicity stunt drew crowds to see everything else being offered.
But you don't have to be wild and crazy to get attention. In an article I wrote titled "Hidden Selling," I talk about the various people who are getting rich and famous by sponsoring events that serve a good cause. Bill Phillips, for example, is selling people on the idea of getting fit. He gives away his book, and a video, and holds yearly contests. He donates his m'oney to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. All of this is making Bill internationally famous. How does he make any m'oney? He sells nutritional supplements. Back this fact is "hidden." What Bill is doing is getting fame, and then using that fame to make m'oney. Very, very smart.
One of the easiest ways to begin to seek fame is to write a book. You still have to promote the book, of course, but as an author you have an excuse to get publicity. That's what Evel Knievel wanted when he called me. He wanted me to help him write his life story. He knew that a book could bring him more fame. (I turned him down.) Many other people know this fact, too, from Donald Trump to J. Paul Getty to Madonna, and that's why they write (or hire someone to write) books for them.
By n'ow you've heard the quote from Andy Warhol that in the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes. My belief is that if you create fame for yourself that sticks, that fame will be a credential you can bank on for the rest of your life.
Take Evel Knievel. His publicity stunts Barnumized him in the 1970s. Yet we still know his name today, thirty years later. He wedged his name into public awareness through his fame tactics. And he's still cashing in on his name. In fact, his name is so strong that it has helped launch the career of another daredevil: Evel's own son, Robbie Knievel.
Most people know the name Tom Thumb today, as well. Why? The fame Barnum created for his little friend still lives. Fame can do that for you, too. It can become a lasting advertisement for who you and what you do. From then on, everything you touch will get automatic attention. Tom Thumb used to sell toys and other products. So did Evel Knievel. As a result of their fame, these otherwise mediocre products sold. The products weren't important, it was the name associated with the products. The more famous the name, the more easily the products sold. That's why Pepsi hires the latest hot stars to appear in their commercials. Their fame brings favorable attention to Pepsi.
But what if you can't afford a publicist? Easy. What you have to do is become your own publicist and Barnumize yourself.
Let me explain:
A year or so ago I wrote a news release that helped make Jeff DeLong---barely 28 years old---wealthy. The headline read:
50 Ways to Leave Your L'over (or anyone else); Unusual cards don't greet, say Hit The Streets
Paul Krupin of the ImediaFax news bureau sent it out by fax and email. As a result, Jeff did twenty radio interviews the day his release hit. The Associated Press picked up the story at least twice and spread the word to the media nationally. The number of times the story was reprinted is impossible to tally. But as a direct result, Jeff's website s'ales blasted to $20,000 a week. (A week!)
What made his news release so successful?
1. There was news h'ere.
I didn't have to dig too hard to see that Jeff's greeting cards were newsworthy in and of themselves. (You send his c-ya cards out when you *end* relationships.) Too many people send out news releases without any news. They are thinly disguised ads. Editors hate ads. They want NEWS.
2. We tied it to current news.
Valentine's Day was right around the corner. While Jeff didn't want to tie his release to that event, I knew that doing so would cause the media to grab his release. It helped make his news relevant. Whenever you can tie your product or service to existing news, you up the odds in being used by the media.
3. We distributed the release to select media.
Paul Krupin hand picked a list of media contacts. What you send out has to match the interests of those receiving it. Don't send artillery news to an anti-gun newspaper.
You can get publicity for virtually any product or service. The media is desperate for news. Provide it and they'll advertise your business. But how do you find the right news angle? There are at least three ways: (1) Have news, (2) invent news, or (3) tie your business to current news.
Jeff's release was an example of one and three. (His cards were news, and we tied it to Valentine's Day, which was current news.) Here's an example of number two: Inventing news.
When Barry Michaels in Australia hired me to write a release for his clothing store, I had to hunt to find the news angle. I talked to him and learned that because he was getting bogus orders online, he started calling virtually *everyone* who contacted him. This turned out to be a breakthrough. Customers were in awe that a retailer in Australia would call them. Not only did Barry stop the bogus orders, but he increased his s'ales with this extra personal service. So I wrote a news release with this headline:
Retailer Finds Way to Turn Bogus Orders Into Profit; Australia teaches the globe how to make m'oney online
As a result, the Investors Business Daily called him. Since that is a national publication, Barry's news release will turn into *thousands* of dollars in f'ree publicity. Very nice.
Finally, let me tell you what I did a few months ago. In mid-June I bought a mermaid. Yes, a mermaid. P.T. Barnum had one and I figured it would be cool if I did, too. It turned out to be a disappointment and I felt like an idiot for getting it. But then I saw a publicity o'pportunity. So I wrote a news release (using method number two) that began with this headline:
Barnum Expert Suckered Into Buying "Real" Mermaid; Discovers curiosity as powerful marketing tool
The response stunned me. The editor of the American L'egal Association's newsletter asked if they could run the story. Radio hosts wanted to interview me. An A&E Biography TV show on Barnum plugged my book, causing my book to sell out overnight. Ah, I love this!
The point is, news angles are everywhere. Start to think like a reporter, get creative, and plug you or your business *within* your story. It's the key s'ecret to getting rich and famous today----within only 90 days---and with or without a mermaid!
Marketing specialist Joe "Mr. Fire!" Vitale is the author of nine books, including "Hypnotic Writing", which answers the question, "What will *you* do when you learn to hypnotize people with the power of words alone and get them to obey your commands?" C'lick h'ere to find out: http://www.hypnoticwriting.com
How to solve problems and make decisions more effectively in discussions with other people. Your ability to communicate is the most important skill you can develop to get on to the fast track in your career. Perhaps the most important thing you do in business is to solve problems and make decisions, both by yourself and with other people.
Use a Systematic Process
A major type of communication in the business organization is meetings for problem solving and decision making. The key to effective problem solving and decision making discussions, is for you to all go through the process systematically.
Define the Problem Clearly
Right at the beginning, you ask the question, "What exactly is the problem?" Clarity of definition will resolve 50% of the issues before they go any further.
Focus on the Future
When discussing a problem, be sure to focus on the future over the past. Ask the question, "Where do we go from here?" "What do we do from here?" "What are our options for the future?" Too many problem-solving discussions end up focusing all of the attention of all the people present on what happened in the past and who is to blame. The effective executive uses this type of communication to focus on where the company and the individuals are going, and what can happen in the future - the only part of the situation over which anyone has any control.
Talk About the Solutions
A second element in effective problem solving communications is for you to talk about the solutions instead of talking about the problems. It is for you to keep the attention of the individuals in the meeting focused on the possible solutions and what can be done rather than what has already happened.
The discussion of solutions is inherently positive, uplifting and has a tendency to release creativity amongst the group. A discussion of problems is inherently negative, de-motivating and tends to inhibit creativity.
The Key to Positive Thinking
You can become a positive thinker simply by becoming a solution-oriented person rather than a problem-oriented person. If you get everyone in your organization thinking and talking in terms of solutions, you will be astonished at the quality and quantity of ideas that will emerge.
Here are two things you can immediately to become a better problem solver and decision maker.
First, take some time to be absolutely clear about the problem that is under discussion. Give some thought to what an ideal decision or solution would accomplish. Instead of focusing on the situation as it is, talk about the situation, as you would like it to be.
Second, keep the conversation focused on solutions, on what can be done in the future. The more you think and talk about solutions, the more positive and creative everyone will be and the better ideas you will come up with.
Friday, June 02, 2006
I awoke from a coma, thinking I was in the southwestern part of Russia. I had no idea what I was doing there, and to add to my confusion I had no idea why so many friends and family members were also in Russia with me.
In reality, I was in the Intensive Care unit (ICU) at Breckenridge Hospital in Austin, Texas, the result of having been shot, point blank in the head, during a convenience store robbery. I was the victim of a violent crime, being at the wrong place at the wrong time. Before that infamous night, I thought I was invincible and immortal. Life was good for me. I was a 19-year-old pre-med student at the University of Texas in Austin, well on my way to fulfilling a life-long dream of becoming an Orthopedic Surgeon. I had a beautiful girlfriend (Sharon, my high school sweetheart) and I thought life could not get any better. How wrong I was!!
On that eventful night, February 18, 1981, I had to fight simply to remain alive. The three criminals who shot me thought I was dead, and after arriving by ambulance at the hospital very few people there believed I would be alive much longer. The police quickly transferred my case to the Homicide Division as they, too, thought I would not survive.
My neurosurgeon arrived at the hospital in the middle of the night only to turn around and go home, thinking I would be dead before the morning arrived. When he returned the next morning, surprised that I was still alive, he told my parents that he needed to immediately take me into the operating room for delicate brain surgery. However, instead of giving my parents any reason for hope, he coldly stated that there was a 60 percent chance that I would die during surgery, and if I did survive, there was almost a 100 percent chance that I would not be able to comprehend, communicate, or be a positive member of society again.
I beat the eminent neurosurgeon's odds and survived the surgery. I was still paralyzed on my right side, could not speak, and was confused. But I was alive.
After three weeks in Austin, I was strong enough to be transferred by jet ambulance to a Rehab Hospital in Houston. Once there, I continued to make slow but steady progress. However, after several weeks I was tested by a neuropsychologist and once again my life changed forever. She said, "I know you have goals of returning to college, but judging from the results of your test, we must be realistic." She implied most strongly that I would never return to college. I was furious and thought, "Lady, who are you to tell me what I can and cannot do? You do not even know me!" Right then and there I made returning to University of Texas my number one goal.
My goal was not an easy one. I had to learn to walk again. I had to learn to speak again. I had to learn how to do small things that most of us take for granted like tying my shoes, getting dressed every day, taking a shave, etc. But this time I had to learn to do it by using only one hand.
However, after one and a half years of extremely difficult work my goal was reached. I returned to the University of Texas. When I was first injured, very few professionals believed that I would survive, and even fewer thought I would ever return to the University of Texas. None thought I would return to Plan II, the Honors Program at the University of Texas in which I was enrolled on that eventful night when I was shot. I surprised everyone when I resumed my university studies in none other then Plan II.
After four years, I graduated at the top of my class, receiving such honors as Phi Beta Kappa, Dean's Distinguished Graduate, and Summa Cum Laude. After graduation from the University of Texas, I married Sharon, my high school sweetheart, who stood by me, giving me encouragement and love throughout my ordeal. Then I continued my education in Graduate School, obtaining my Master's of Social Work from the University of Houston.
Even though I was very proud of all my accomplishments there were times I felt very bitter. Once, a friend asked me to watch him play basketball thinking I would enjoy myself. Watching him play only upset me because I felt that had I not been a victim of violence, it would have been me playing instead of watching in the stands. I was constantly thinking "What if." I guess not enough time had elapsed for the process of grieving. Before I was shot, I could do at least 500 things extremely well, but now I could possibly do 200 if I was really lucky. I therefore thought to myself, "Am I going to concentrate on the 300 things I can no longer do or on the 200 things that I can still do?"
At that very moment, the answer was clear. I was going to make my life positive and focus on what I still had and not on what I had recently lost.
Grief is a funny thing. It affects us all. Whether you are shot in the head, mourning for a loved one whom has just passed away, or facing a divorce, grief is extremely painful. No one expects to experience these losses, but I have come to realize that they are part of life. It is true that overcoming grief takes much time. However, with the correct attitude I believe that most everyone can overcome it. It is like the old saying that says: "If life gives you lemons, make lemonade." As I thought about this, I decided to make myself a tall, delicious, glass of lemonade.
Michael Jordan Segal
©2001 All rights reserved - used with permission.
Michael Jordan Segal is a social worker at Memorial Hermann Hospital. An author and a well sought after inspirational/motivational speaker. His "miraculous comeback" story has been featured on national television and magazines. Mike has had stories published in "Chicken Soup for the Christian Family Soul," newspapers, booklets and ezines. Mike married his highschool sweetheart, Sharon, and together they live in Houston, Texas with their daughter, Shawn. For more information and to contact Mike please visit: www.InspirationByMike.com
Thursday, June 01, 2006
I would really like to hear from other managers on how to keep people motivated? I work in a engineering software firm - lots of pre-sales, post-sales and consulting work.