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shopping spree. (Some folks might really like it).In this issue:
- Product Highlights
- Brainpower tip
- Time tip
- Finance tip
- Security tips
- Health tip/Fitness tip
- Thought for the day
1. Product Highlights
|If you've ever found math challenging,
mystifying, or intimidating, this course is for you.
The author of this course used the techniques of
this course to help an 8 year old girl overcome her math problems. At
the start of the tutoring, the girl could not add any numbers that were
more than single digits. Six months later, she was able to
solve college-level algebra and trigonometry problems in her head. This course
has been presented to adults in a classroom setting, and the results
have been remarkable.
The basic problem most people have with math is
not the math itself. It's poor instruction in math. This course fixes
that problem, leaving the student with high levels of mathematical
competence and personal confidence.
|The ability to easily do math confers benefits well
beyond being able to solve problems without a calculator (which is
awfully convenient, sometimes). Working with math stimulates the brain
to greatly expand its neural network. Working with math improves your
ability to reason, use logic, figure things out, concentrate, and
analyze information. If you've been held back from these benefits
before, you can now break free--into a new and brighter future.
2. Brainpower tip
Many people think memory lapses are a necessary
consequence of aging, and they are due to the brain's running out of
neural connections. This isn't true. You can stimulate the brain to add
neurons, at any age.
Each neuron has branches called dendrites. Every
time the brain encounters a new experience, new dendrites form. Why is
this? The cerebral cortex (where most of our information processing takes
place) is essentially a pattern matching machine. New experiences require
storing new patterns.
The reason most people experience a decline in
mental prowess as they age is they fail to engage in new experiences that
stimulate the brain properly.
In today's culture, there's a strong bias toward destimulation.
Passive activities like television, for example, slow down brain activity.
Researchers have determined this via PET scans and other methods that
monitor brain activity.
There's also a strong bias toward destruction.
People poison themselves with
alcohol and other substances that cross the blood-brain barrier and kill
brain cells. Combine that with passive activity, and you must stimulate
the brain a pretty fair amount just to stay even.
You should note that if you are eating foods with
aspartame, you are introducing alcohol into your blood and then into your
brain, where it destroys brain cells. But, it's not grain alcohol. The
body breaks aspartame down into wood alcohol, which is lethal in
relatively small amounts. Don't eat aspartame.
You can stimulate your brain, and you should
stimulate your brain. But how? And what kinds of experiences qualify as
new vs. just variation of the old? Good questions. The best answer
is to think categorically. Here are some examples.
1. If you hate math, this probably means you avoid
doing it. And this means you have a paucity of neurons developed for doing
math. The math course mentioned above will help you solve this problem and
ones related to it.
2. If you use your mouse with your right hand, stop.
From this point forward, use it with your left hand only. This provides
several benefits: increased speed (once you get used to it), decreased
chance of carpal tunnel syndrome, and growth of new neurons. Expand this
practice into other areas. Is there any reason you have to brush your hair
with your right hand? Try writing with your left, if you are not already
left-handed (or switch to the right, if you are). With practice you can
become ambidextrous. The next step is to grip a pen with your toes--sounds
silly, but it will make you smarter.
3. Change your routine. Remember, the stimulation
comes from new experiences. Change which aisle you start with at the
supermarket. Park your car by the south door rather than the north. Go to
a different bank branch, occasionally. Change sides of the bed with your
mate. Rearrange your furniture. Sit at a different chair at the dining
table. Change the order in which you get ready for work or ready for bed. Just
changing small things forces your mind to adapt.
4. Go somewhere you haven't been to--in the town
where you live. If you live in a city or metro area of even modest size,
there are many places you probably haven't been to. Make a point of
visiting every park and library branch within 10 miles of your home. Then,
expand the radius. Note the major shopping centers, tourist attractions,
historical monuments, museums, and other places you may not have been to.
When's the last time you went to the zoo?
5. Stimulate conversation. To most people,
socializing is about trading inanities. One person asks, "How are
you?" The other answers, "I'm great." Same pattern, all the
time. And what do they talk about? Weather, sports, work, and gossip. To get out
of that rut, ask a question about the other person's life. Rather than, "What
do you do?" answered by "I'm an accountant," ask something
like, "So tell me what a really good day would be like for you at
work." Or you can ask any question that show an interest in the other
person and requires that person to think to answer it. This breaks the
bonds of inanity and opens the door to interesting conversation.
6. Blindfold yourself for a few hours. I was once
blind for an entire summer, due to eye surgery. This made for quite the
learning experience. You should try it. This might also make you more
appreciative of your eyes. By this, I mean you will wear safety glasses when
operating a lawn mower (as instructed in the owner's manual!), a saw, or
any rotating equipment. If you think it's silly to wear safety glasses
while working with tools, then wear a blindfold for three months. You will
have a completely different opinion. You'll be smarter in more ways than
one--you'll have new neurons and a new attitude about safety.
7. Read a book. A hardbound book. This hardly seems
like a tip at all to some folks. It's like telling them to breathe. But,
for many others it is urgent advice. Book readership is way down and the
effects of this are showing in our society. Language skills have taken a
nosedive over the past two decades. Reading
stimulates many parts of the brain, depending on what you are reading.
Generally, you will stimulate your language center and you will increase
your attention span. In the book The New Brain (https://www.mindconnection.com/books/thenewbrain.htm)
you can read about the huge difference in attention spans between book readers
and those whose primary information source is electronic.
3. Time Tip
the time speaker come to
your next association meeting or put on a seminar at your company.
Your whole group will be much more able to turn time into opportunity
and opportunity into accomplishment.
4. Finance tip
|Most of us fail to think of our
finances in an integrated fashion. This is why a person might be
carrying a balance on a credit card at 15% but will pay off the 2.9% car
loan early. Or worse, have cash sitting in a savings account. You'd
be borrowing at 12.1% on the car, and you'd be borrowing at 15% to
maintain that savings account.
Strategy #1, for those not wallowing in debt.
Look at your highest-cost loan. You want to get rid of this one,
first, to reduce your cost of borrowing. If you need extra cash to do
so, then reduce payments into all of your other loans as much as
possible. If you can borrow from a cheaper source, do so. For example,
if you have a 15% credit card loan, use a home equity loan or a
"bridge loan" to pay it off. Talk to your banker to see what
your options are. Then schedule your payments as before, but make them
into the highest cost loan so you can get rid of it. Note that this
works only if the loan is such that an early pay-off saves you interest
and doesn't trigger a penalty.
Strategy #2, for those wallowing in debt (those making minimum
Look at your smallest loan. Pay it off first, to increase your cash
flow (it will increase by the amount you used to use to make payments on
that loan). Repeat with the next smallest loan. Don't get new loans.
Instead, keep paying off the smallest loans, using newly-freed cash to
pay off your loans faster. When you get sufficient cash flow, switch to
strategy number one.
5. Security tip
|90% of security involves prevention.
- Don't be there. If you don't have to be somewhere dangerous, don't
be there. Driving through the bad part of town simply puts you in
the path of danger. Standing outside while your next door neighbor
mows the lawn simply puts your eyes in the path of danger.
- Take note of where your local IRS offices are, and avoid those
areas. These people are heavily engaged in criminal activity and
have the power to eliminate people they even remotely think might
have stumbled on to a particular scam. If you encounter an IRS
employee at a party, church, or other gathering of people, leave
immediately. While it's possible this person may not be scouting for
victims, you do not want to give this predator your scent. Don't
tell anyone why you are leaving, just do.
- Park carefully. Avoid parking next to vans or SUVs. These block
vision in parking lots just as much as they do on the streets.
- Unpark carefully. As you approach your car, look under it and the
vehicles next to it. It's easy to hide under a car and yank someone
down by the ankles. If someone does grab your ankles, grab your
mirror for balance and twist your body sharply to one side (from the
waist--you want to pivot on your feet and turn your ankles to break
the criminal's grasp).
sit in your stopped vehicle with any window(s) open or the doors
unlocked. If you are sitting in your car and a stranger raps on your
window, Don't roll it down. Don't even crack it open. Just yell at
it and say something like, "Thanks for ruining my
stakeout, pal. Wait until the captain hears about this!" Then,
start your car and drive off.
- When you are on foot in public, be alert. Criminals actually do
lurk, just like in the movies. Like sharks, IRS agents, and other
predators, they sniff out their prey before attacking. If they think
you are distracted or in a fog, they see you as a much more
attractive target. Often, they can attack before you have any clue
something is wrong. And then it's too late.
- Pay attention to your gut instincts. Your "gut
instinct" really is in your gut. You have a
"second brain" that senses danger. Don't ignore it. If you
get a "bad feeling," leave the area quickly. But don't
lower your head and hunch forward--a natural fear posture. Instead,
pull your shoulders back and stand erect. If you are in a parking
garage, you may consider yelling off a ways at a pretend person. "Dave!
Hey, wait up for me!" Then, wave and smile as though you are
acknowledging a gesture.
- Don't let people stop you. A common ploy is to stop someone and
ask for directions, the time, or pocket change. While you are
distracted by the decoy, this person's partner attacks you from
behind--especially if you have a hand in one of your pockets. Yes,
we all want to be helpful. But we must do so carefully.
6. Health tip/Fitness tips
|The season of
gluttony is upon us! You can engage in the activities without
adding so much fat that you can't work it off in the 10 months until the next
season. Here are some tips.
- Limit the number of functions you go to. This not only reduces the
amount of time you are around high-calorie food, but it allows you
to feel more comfortable at the ones you do attend rather
than rushing to make them all.
- If you are going to a party that is a "bring a dish"
affair, suggest to the host or hostess that you would like to
propose a prize to the person who brings the healthiest dish. Offer
to supply the prize--it need not be expensive. Let folks vote, if
they want. The idea here is to send a message and get people
thinking outside the normal prison of bad diet choices. Out of
dietary ignorance, most people don't know what a healthy dish is.
But, they do know chips and cakes "aint it." So, this does
tend to improve the selections.
- Don't eat gravy, dressing, or pie. These are calorie
bombs. Eat the healthier fare, instead. Nobody else is going to
really judge you if you do this. And, you will typically eliminate
thousands of empty calories.
- Crackers are loaded with hydrogenated oil.
Unless you have a penchant for colostomy bags, don't eat crackers.
- Focus on leafy green vegetables: broccoli,
cabbage, kale, mustard greens, bok choy, turnip greens, red leaf
lettuce, romaine lettuce, and so on. Nuts are also fine, just don't
overdo it. Bring and eat foods that tend to be calorie light and
nutrient dense. Go easy on the cheeses, and avoid them entirely if
you can--cheese is very calorie dense.
- Don't drink drinks, eggnog, or alcohol. These are
calorie bombs. If you really need alcohol so you can stand to
be with your relatives or coworkers at a party, then you have no
business going to that party. Drink at taverns, not at parties. You
will enjoy the parties better if you don't hide behind booze. Dinner
wine? Major calories. Consider avoiding.
- Drink a glass of water with holiday meals. This fills you up, and
also takes time during a meal. Don't overdo the water, or you'll be
running to the bathroom constantly.
- Fill your plate once. No seconds.
- Compliment the host/hostess on the food. Rave about something.
This takes the attention off of what you are not eating.
Then, change the subject and talk about something else of interest
in their home. This takes the attention off of eating. If you can't
find something of interest, ask the person across from you what book
s/he is reading or what movie, play, concert, or opera s/he last saw
and what s/he liked about it.
7. Thought for the Day
Think of a person in your life. Now,
come up with three questions you can ask to show you are interested in
what is going on in this person's life. Take your time--for most of us,
this is a challenge because it's new. Keep in mind you don't have to ask
all three questions in the same day. If this person is especially
important to you, try to keep a running list--so you always have three
questions in reserve.
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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