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In this issue:
- Brainpower tip
- Featured product: awesome sale
- Time tip
- Finance tip
- Security tip
- Career tip
- Health tip/Fitness tip
- Thought for the day
1. Brainpower tip
Many people, when faced with a large and
seemingly complex problem, get that deer in the headlights look. This is why,
for example, we still have the IRS. (For those of you in Russia, this is the
equivalent of your Russian Mafia. Our Afghanistan readers--if we have any--just
need to imagine a more powerful but insidious Taliban whacked out with greed
rather than one whacked out with religion.).
Suppose you are trying to paint a 3,000
square foot house. The job seems a bit much, because all you have is that one
gallon of paint. But, rather than trying to cover the whole house with a single
gallon, cover one wall face at a time (a house that size typically has at least
12 exterior wall faces, not just four). Note that another name for a wall face
is an "aspect." Problems also have multiple aspects. Try covering
those one at a time, and you suddenly "become" much smarter than you
Look at one portion of the problem and say,
"I can do this." When you stop trying to spread your paint
(brainpower) too thin, you can do a right smart job of covering all of the
surfaces. And as you tackle one wall face (aspect) at a time, you will have
painted the whole house before you know it. Just be careful on that ladder....
2. Featured product
We have acquired a good quantity of brand-new
Chinese language translators at a deep discount, and would like to pass the
savings on to our readers (and/or you friends). If you're enterprising, you can
buy 2 or 3 and sell them to Chinese restaurants in your area, at a profit. These
normally retail for $149.95, but we have them on sale for just $109.97. If you
are interested in more than one, contact Mark at this e-mail and I'll work with
you on a volume discount. You can see these at:
3. Time tip
Here's a sure-fire way to save many hours a week: time segmentation.
Simply allot X minutes to each task you have planned for the day. Be sure to
specify a starting time and ending time, and stick to the plan. How does
this save you time? Let me count the ways:
- Parkinson's Law says the amount of work will expand to
fit the amount of time allotted to it. Therefore, open-ended tasks take more
time than if the very same tasks had starting and stopping times.
- You avoid pacing yourself to a lower than "normal" energy
- You can actually raise your energy for the duration of
the allotted time, rather than working at normal energy. A person in decent
physical shape can sprint full-out for three minutes (please note, the
average person cannot sprint full-out for even thirty seconds, but that is a
different topic). But, asking someone to sprint "for as long as you
can" will result in a lowering of overall effort.
- Your brain needs variety. By switching at predetermined
stopping points, you get variety without sacrificing concentration.
This idea of focusing for a defined period is not some
age crap." In fact, it is the basis for most of the martial arts,
rock-climbing, competitive shooting, and advanced
sports training techniques. It's been proven in venues far more demanding than
the local latte shop.
By the way, if you know of any group that wants a speaker
on the subject of time management, please point them to www.mindconnection.com/main/timemanager.htm.
That'll make you look good, and it'll help them find a highly-rated speaker who
has something valuable to present to them.
4. Finance tip
Did you get an income tax refund for 2002? If
so, adjust your withholding so you pay in less. Many people realize too much
withholding is simply giving a free loan (so the military can "lose" $9 billion in
equipment or 4300 IRS employees can get free computers) to the government.
But, they see that refund as a "gift." Not logical thinking, and not
Actually, the government doesn't like giving refunds--messes up their cash flow.
So, do us all a favor and get the correct withholding. Worried you might
accidentally put the money into the economy where it can do some good, when
you'd rather have a big bonus in the spring? Simple cure: set up a small savings
account and have the excess money that would go to buying personal computers for
the private use of IRS employees to instead go that
account. Tell the bank you don't want a passbook. Then, when summer vacation
time rolls around you will have a nice little kitty to spend however you
5. Security tip
We hear all the time about corporate
corruption. What we don't hear much about is corruption within government
agencies. That corruption just about makes Enron look like a Sunday School exercise by
Now, I'm not anti-government. Far from it. I
am simply saying that some unelected government officials take great liberty with our
liberties! From the 4300 computers "missing" from IRS offices in 2001
to the $9 billion in equipment "missing" from our military, the
evidence is overwhelming that we have a very serious problem in this department.
To protect yourself, at least somewhat, here
are some things to consider:
Do not provide personal information to government
representatives, unless they just about force it out of you. Even then, make
sure they really have a need for it. In a scam revealed in 2002, IRS
employees were selling sensitive taxpayer information. Assume whatever
information you provide will not be held confidential.
If you use a "one pass" for
tolls, occasionally use cash. Ditto for video rentals, grocery purchases,
etc. You don't want to leave a perfect trail--put some holes in it. Keep in
mind that any transactions that meet certain criteria now get reported to
the government. We don't know what these criteria are, but I can bet if you
watch a lot of dirty movies and/or war flicks, you are on record as doing
so. Ditto if you visit Websites that are on the watch list.
Do not vote for, approve of, or condone
any further incursion into your liberties under the guise of "public
safety" or "homeland security." One natural born American
citizen has been held without being charged, without being able to see an
attorney, and without being able to communicate with his family--for over 30
days. That is a direct violation of the Bill of Rights. We either have a
nation of law, or we don't. If it's not a nation of law, who is controlling
those who are making the rules? See the Bill of Rights at https://www.mindconnection.com/library/legal/billofrights.htm.
How many of these 10 rights did you know you have? What do you think life
will be like when they are all gone? If you don't know, just look to Germany
in 1938 for the answer.
If you are tempted to cheat on your
taxes, don't. The IRS focuses on small businesses, waitresses, and middle
income taxpayers. Their rationale has nothing to do with the amount of
revenue being dishonestly taken by folks in those categories--it has
everything to do with the ability of those people to defend themselves. So,
don't tempt fate.
If you are tempted to apply for
government aid, be careful. Whether this is mortgage assistance,
unemployment compensation, aid to dependent children, Social Security
benefits, or some other program--there are always strings attached. Just
read everything carefully, know the costs, and insist on your rights.
Keep your files locked up in a secure
location. Bank vaults are not secure from rogue government agents, who
frequently violate the Privacy Act and 4th Amendment rights to invade those
Remember that crooks are everywhere.
While there are good people in government, there are some seriously
(expletive)-up people who work in government and hide behind the power of
their office. If you are made a victim by one of these folks, you may not be
able to recover by the time you find out. So, always be alert. Report any
irregularities to that person's supervisor and to the supervisors one and
two levels up. When dealing with people who have access to the power of
government, leave nothing to chance and trust no one.
Gosh, this is a dark subject. But, life
isn't all roses. What did that guy say on Hill Street Blues? Be careful out
6. Career tip
We all get training in the
technical skills that we believe will entice employers to hire us. But, that training
doesn't prepare us for the real world of career management--that is, getting
raises and avoiding layoffs. This is especially
true of folks who enter such quantitative fields as accounting, engineering,
business, marketing (real marketing), statistical analysis (a major element in
real marketing), computer science, and the trades.
What we tend to be weak on are the soft
skills, though most of us rate ourselves as "above average" in these.
The truth is different from what most of us believe. Mindconnection has a Career
Success Secrets course, now on sale. Check it out at:
This course is based on the Mensa Jobkeepers
Special Interest Group Newsletter, which ran for about a decade. Find out what
the geniuses discovered about having a healthy career.
Oh, and here's your tip: edit your e-mails
carefully. Write an e-mail, then set aside for a moment. Come back to it, and
edit for clarity and brevity. Then, make sure you have nothing inflammatory in
that e-mail. Remember, e-mail is a permanent record. If you are going to make a
fool of yourself, do so verbally--not in e-mail. Trust me, I've done both and
can tell you the verbal is the better way to go.
7. Health tip/Fitness tip
The Kansas City Business Journal recently had
an article about a woman who went for some surgery that was fairly routine. The
hospital overlooked the fact that she was diabetic, and she went into diabetic
shock. They amputated her hands and feet, as a result. She lives in the state of
Missouri, which has a malpractice cap of $250,000. She could not get an attorney
to represent her.
We are now seeing 12-year olds with adult
onset diabetes. I think you can connect the dots between that fact and the
Adult onset diabetes is 100% preventable. It
is 0% curable. If you don't understand what causes adult
onset diabetes and how to prevent it, see the diabetes article at www.supplecity.com.
A friend of mine who was born with diabetes
is waiting for a kidney. Earlier this month, I did a time management seminar for
35 or so Clinical Managers who all work for a string of dialysis centers. If you
are unconcerned about diabetes, I know from their horror stories you should
visit a dialysis center to see the results of eating the way 95% of the
BTW, I have a secret weapon for coming back
from business trips at 7.5% bodyfat. It's called VitaPro. It tastes great, and
it takes the place of those sugar-laden fat fests that pose as breakfasts at
restaurants. In addition to keeping me healthy, a VitaPro shake saves me a good
half hour of my precious morning. I can use the time for catching e-mail or
whatever I want.
If it works for me--someone who gains fat just by looking at food--it will work
for you. It always travels with me. I also pack small plastic bags of nuts and
carry some quality food bars.
You can see these at:
Feed your brain, not your waistline.
8. Thought for the Day
The other day, my neighbor was putting fuel in his weed
whacker and changing out the string. It was getting close to dark, so I said,
"Ray, isn't it a little late to start mowing your lawn?"
He said, "I'm not going to mow it today, just getting
ready for tomorrow. I was going to mow it today, but my son wanted me to play
baseball with him. "
I smiled at Ray, and said, "You didn't miss anything,
bro, not a thing."
Are you missing precious moments by letting non-crucial
tasks control you, or are you in charge of your life? We all make decisions.
Wishing you the best,
The views expressed in this e-newsletter are generally not shared by criminals, zombies, or brainwashed individuals.
Except where noted, this e-newsletter is entirely the work of Mark Lamendola. Anything presented as fact can be independently verified. Often, sources are given; but where not given, they are readily available to anyone who makes the effort.
Mark provides information from either research or his own areas of established expertise. Sometimes, what appears to be a personal opinion is the only possibility when applying sound logic--reason it out before judging! (That said, some personal opinions do appear on occasion).
The purpose of this publication is to inform and empower its readers (and save you money!).
Personal note from Mark: I value each and every one of you, and I hope that shows in the diligent effort I put into writing this e-newsletter. Thank you for being a faithful reader.
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