Sexual Health of Men!

The sexual health of men is not as complicated as that of women. Show a man a certain type of image and if his brain and nervous system are working properly to produce nitric oxide, then a response will usually occur. That's not to discount any mental, emotional, and spiritual components but it is the physical component that has the greatest impact on man's sexual health. This article will focus on what men can do to improve the physical component of their sexual health. The side benefit is that these suggestions can also positively affect your overall wellness and how you age.

In all the information I gathered to prepare for this article, two overriding issues kept surfacing. These two health issues were consistently present. The first is hormone levels. The second is cardiovascular health. Most men would understand how hormone levels could apply but few ever consider cardiovascular health.

Cardiovascular Health!

Your cardiovascular health is as important to your sexual health as it is to your overall health. The reason why centers on the health of the endothelial cells that line the blood vessels of your body. The creation of nitric oxide occurs in these endothelial cells. Nitric oxide researchers believe that nitric oxide can correct up to 90% of all penile dysfunction. When the endothelial cells are damaged by high blood pressure, high sugar levels, cholesterol, and smoking this decrees nitric oxide production. Endothelial cells and their ability to produce nitric oxide are critical to the sexual health of men.

Hormone Levels!

At its simplest level, sex is just a hormone driven function designed to perpetuate the species. With that said, the sexual health of American men is in trouble. Testosterone levels have been decreasing over the last 20 years. Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone. It plays an important role in maintaining bone and muscle mass. Low levels of testosterone have been linked to lowered libido and diabetes. Diabetes can affect the endothelial cells of the blood vessels compounding the problem of lower testosterone levels.

Over the past two decades, the level of testosterone in American males has decreased by 16 percent. Researchers do not know why. But there are some clues. The recent Nurses' Health Study revealed some important truths as they apply to women. Some of those truths also apply to the sexual health of men because they affect both hormonal levels and cardiovascular health.

Additionally, as testosterone levels have decreased this has resulted in reduced muscle mass and tone, reduced metabolism and energy and an increase in body fat. Not a sexy combination! You can accept it and do nothing about it. Or, you can begin to live life by making healthy eating and exercise choices. Choices that will help your body actually be younger physically than your chronological age.

You Have Control Over the Process!

Every day you replace approximately 1% of your cells. That means that 1% of your body is new today, 1% is new tomorrow, and 1% is new each and every day of your life. You choose whether those new cells will be nourished properly or poorly. You choose wherever you will have healthy and vibrant cells that act young. Or, sickly and sedentary cells that act old.

The sexual health of your body will be affected by the choices you make. I call it "The 1% Solution!" And it will positively affect the cardiovascular and sexual health of your body.

Choices Affecting Sexual Health!

The Nurses' Health Study highlighted five critical lifestyle and diet behaviors. They are:

O Carbohydrates – Slow verses Fast!

O Fats – Natural versions Artificial!

O Protein – Animal or Plant!

O Body Weight – Your BMI!

O Exercise – Is It Important?

If you look at this list, three critical components emerge: Diet, Weight, and Exercise! Now you might think that this only applies to women. It does not! Each of these factors will affect your cardiovascular disease and hormonal balance. Each of these factors also affects the health of your endothelial cells and their ability to produce nitric oxide. Nitric oxide production is the most important component to the sexual health of men. Let's look at how all of these factors affect your sexual health.

The Diet Component!

You are what you eat and drink. The sexual health of your body and the cardiovascular health of your circulatory system will be greatly determined by your food and drink choices. These choices will also impact the potential for disease and how you age.

Your first choice is in the area of ​​carbohydrates. Are you choosing foods and drinks that are high in fast carbs (simple sugars)? If you are, then you need to understand that:

O Fast carbs disrupted hormone levels.

O Fast carbs create the potential for high blood sugar that can lead to diabetes.

O High blood sugar can damage the endothelial cells of your blood vessels reducing the production of nitric oxide which is critical for good sexual and cardiovascular health.

Learn to consume foods that are high in slow carbs (complex carbohydrates). Slow carbs will help to keep your blood sugar levels normal and your hormonal levels balanced. Drink water instead of sugary drinks and diet sodas. Drinking water hydrates your system, helps you balance your hormone levels, and aids in weight management.

Your second choice is in the area of ​​fats. Eliminate all trans fats from your diet and replace them with natural, heart-health fats. The Nurses' Health Study clearly showed how disruptive trans fats are to fertility in women. As little as four grams of trans fat (the equivalent of two tablespoons of stick margarine, one medium order of French fries or one donut) began to disrupt their hormonal balance.

How much of your diet consist of trans fats from fast food restaurants? How many orders of French fries and donuts have you consumed at work? Although I can not give you any hard research on men, it makes sense that we can be as affected by trans fats as women are. It's time that you incorporate foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids (such as wild, cold-water fish, walnuts, and flax seeds) since essential fats help to balance hormone levels and promote healthy cell function.

Your third choice is in the area of ​​protein. According to the Nurses' Health Study, women who got their protein from plant sources rather then from animals took a big step towards improved fertility. Animal protein can adversely affect your sexual health. It also has a direct influence on cancer!

If you're not willing to give up your beef, pork or chicken, then invest the time, energy and extra cost to make sure that these sources of protein are hormone free. This also applies to your dairy products. Much of the industry still relies on hormonal injections into their livestock to help increase food production. Eating meat from these animals and their byproducts will affect your hormonal levels. If you're not willing to switch to plant-based protein sources, then make sure your meat and dairy sources are hormone free.

The Weight Component!

Like it or not weight impacts the sexual health of your body. Why? Because fat interfereses with your hormonal balance! Fat also stresses your cardiovascular system. This additional stress on your cardiovascular system will compromise the sexual health of your body. Currently, 66% of Americans are overweight with at least a third being obese. Diets are not the answer. America has been dieting for the last 50 years. It has had no real impact on slowing down overweight and obesity rates.

You need a paradigm shift from "dieting" to "healthy eating". Make food choices based on how it will improve your health and wellness, not on how it will affect your weight. Most people who do this see their weight stabilize or decrease.

The Exercise Component!

Exercise is important for both sexual and cardiovascular health. Inactivity saps the body of its ability to respond to insulin and makes you less efficient in absorbing blood sugar. A study from the Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality highlighted that people who exercised on a regular basis:

O Feel better about themselves.

O Think they are more sexually desirable.

O Experience greater levels of satisfaction.

It's always important to check with your physician or health care provider before you start an exercise program. Once you have them OK, than strive to get at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. Aerobic exercises like walking, jogging, biking, and swimming are important and seem to increase circulation to the pelvis and the reproductive organs. But do not forget about strength training exercises. Strength training exercises will help you maintain bone health and density. Additionally, strength training exercises will increase your spatial awareness. This is a very positive feeling that improves your overall well being.

The Nitric Oxide Component!

You can not live without nitric oxide. Your cardiovascular system could not function properly without nitric oxide. The sexual health of your body revolves around the production of nitric oxide. Nitric oxide production is dependent upon the health of the endothelial cells of your blood vessels, and adequate supplies of the essential amino acid L-arginine.

High blood pressure, high sugar levels, high cholesterol levels and smoking all affect your endothelial cells in a negative way. Damage to these endothelial cells will reduce nitric oxide production. This can compromise the blood flow to the sexual organ resulting in decreased susceptibility and / or erectile dysfunction.

Since nitric oxide is synthesized from the essential amino acid L-arginine, your diet needs to include protein sources and / or supplements that contain this amino acid. It needs to be emphasized that L-arginine is not a hormone and it is not testosterone. However, when properly brought into the body it can cross the blood-brain barrier to signal the hypothalamus to naturally trigger the pituitary gland to produce growth hormone. This is the key to eliminating any negative side effects typically associated with hormone supplements like DHEA and HGH.

Please note that L-arginine has a dark side and can cause some serious side effects. Read my article, "L-arginine, Nitric Oxide and Sexual Health!" For more information on this essential amino acid.

Conclusion!

If you continue a life of inactively, animal protein intake, sugary drinks, foods made from refined grains, increased body fat, and innocent nitric oxide production, then you will become part of the new reality for America. This new reality includes epidemic increases in diabetes, continued high levels of cardiovascular disease and stroke, continued high levels of cancer, and poor sexual health especially for those over the age of 40. As Aristotle said, "We Are What We Repeatedly Do!"

By taking the necessary steps to improve your diet, manage your weight, exercise properly and increase your body's ability to produce nitric oxide you will experience positive changes in the sexual health of your body. If you repeatedly take these positive steps you will also improve your wellness and slow down your aging.

One Final Thought!

Although the hormonal balance between men and women are different, the process of change is the same. Many of the steps that improve the sexual health of men will also help improve the sexual health of women. Encourage your spouse or partner to implement these changes with you. If you both take the steps to improve your health, then you will both be reward in the bedroom, and in living your life to its fullest.

Until next time, may we both age youthfully!

Sex and the Bible

Introduction

The Bible was completed thousands of years ago. It is silent on some subjects and general on others, thus giving room for different opinions. But when addressing human sexuality, the Bible material is very specific. While there are some complicated situations, the basics are still clear. The goal of this article is to present the Bible's view on human sexuality in an accurate and unbiased manner. There is no intent of coercing opinion on the forthcoming material. It is not normal to state a conclusion at the start of an Article. If offensive, there is risk of immediate loss of the audience. But, in this case, it is important to keep the conclusion in view as details being being discussed. The Bible's conclusion is this: the only approved sex is heterosexual sex between legitimately married people.

Creation Rights

Human sexuality either orose from natural forces (evolved), or was created. There are no other options. From the first verse of the Bible, God declares Himself as Creator – including creating sex. He thought it up – and then made it. As the Creator of sex, He asserts Creation Rights and defines the proper, or improper, use of this created function. Actually, this is the position behind all Bible commands (See End Note 1).

The Mosaic Law

Under the Mosaic Law, twenty-eight (28) offenses called for the death penalty. Of these, 8 were for sexual offsets. Capital offsets relating to human sexuality are listed in the order in which they appear (See End Note 2).

1) Bestiality. A person having sex with an animal was to be executed along with the animal (Ex 22:19 and Lev 20: 15,16).

2) Adultery. A married person having sex with some other person was to be executed with the illegal partner (Lev 20:10 and Deut 22:22).

3) A son having sex with his father's wife (his mother or stepmother) was to be executed along with the partner (Lev 20:11).

4) A man having sex with his daughter-in-law was to be executed with the partner (Lev 20:12).

5) Male Homosexuality. Both men were to be executed (Lev 20:13 and Lev 18:22. Also see Ro 1:27 and End Note 3).

6) A woman who has had sex while living in her father's house and then marries (presenting herself as a virgin) was to be executed after due process (Deut 22: 13-21).

7) A man who has sex with a virgin engaged to another, was to be executed (Deut 22: 23-27).

8) If an engaged virgin is inside the city and has sex with another man, that woman was to be executed along with her lover. If the virgin is outside the city, she may have been rapped, so only the male is executed (See # 7 above and Deut 22: 23,24).

Other commitments called for violators to be "cut off" from the people. It does not appear this means execution. See Lev 18: 6-30, Lev 20: 17-24, Deut 22: 5, Deut 23:17, and Deut 24: 1-4 for examples.

Marriage and Complications

The conclusion states the only approved sex is, "heterosexual sex between legitimately married people." But what constitutes a legitimate marriage? It is here I make an assumption. Varied cultures have different practices and procedures as to what constitutes a state of marriage. So, whatever is publicly recognized in each culture as a fidelity agreement between heterosexual individuals constitutes a marriage. With this parameter, when examining sexual expectations within that arrangement, it is best to go from the simple scenario to the complex.

1) The ideal is for a male and female virgin to marry and be absolutely devoted to one another sexually until death parts them. Obviously, their sex is approved (See Pro 5: 15-20, and Ro 7: 1-3).

2) If the mate dies, the widow (by assumption, a widower also) is free to remarry. The new sexual union is approved (Ro 7: 2,3).

3) If two non-virgins marry, having never been married in the past, their sexual union is approved (See Ex 22:16 and Deut 22: 28,29).

4) Legitimately divorced people are free to remarry. But only the violated party is free to remarry (See End Note 4). The Bible only recognizes two grounds for divorce.

A) Sexual Immorality. If one's partner has sex outside the marriage bond, the violated partner is free to divorce and remarry (Mt 19: 3-9). This includes all types of sexual infidelity.

B) Qualified Desertion. A Christian deserted by a non believing mate, is free to divorce and remarry (I Cor 7: 12-15).

Note: There is no provision for divorce and / or remarriage based on physical abuse.
Note: If a Christian woman does part from an unbelieving husband for any reason other than sexual unfaithfulness or qualified desertion, she must remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband (I Cor 7: 10,11). By assumption, Christian husbands are under the same directive.

5) Polygamy by a male is not condemned. However, there is no mention of women being able to have multiple husbands (See End Note 5).

Some Points Where the Bible is Silent

1) There is no comment on interracial marriages among non-Jews.

2) There is no comment about masturbation (See End Note 6).

3) Other than the prohibition of having interference with a menstrual woman (Lev 18:19), there is no comment about the types of sexual activity between legitimately married people.

Conclusion

1) When one marries, authority of one's body is surrendered to the mate (I Cor 7: 3-5).

2) The sex act creates a unique union between two people – they become one flesh (Gen 2:24 and I Cor 6:16).

3) Vital fidelity extends past the physical act. Internal lust for a different partner is adultery (Mt 5: 27,28). However, it does not appear internal adultery Establishes grounds for divorce.

4) Sex in marriage should be directed towards satisfying each other physical need (I Cor 7: 9).

5) Sexual activity should provide a unique pleasure experience. God created the unique actions and reactions of the whole process.

6) Typically, this union results in the privileges and responsibilities of procreation (Gen 1:28).

End Note 1

If one opts for an evolutionary development of human sexuality, there are still parameters for acceptable sexual behavior. For example, few evolutionists condone bestiality as acceptable human sexual behavior. Sexual activities arose for the propagation and incremental development of each species. Outside of the human species, it is exceptionally rare that any creatures engage in cross species breeding. Another sexual phenomenon that is at total cross purposes to scientific evolution is homosexuality. The evolutionist sees each human being as the product of millions of years of evolution – maybe a billion years. The homosexual partnerships his / her billion-year line to an abrupt, eternal end. For an in-depth discussion on this, you can download the article , "Evolution and Homosexuality" at the website below – for free! You've never read anything like it.

End Note 2

"The Mosaic Law" could be called "The Theocratic Law." The six hundred plus commands (the Ten Commandments being but a fraction) are declared as originating entirely from God. Moses was simply the conduit through which this Law came. These laws can be divided into two broad categories – religious and civil. Religious law deals with man's relationship toward God. In this area, there are nine offs requiring the death penalty. Civil law deals with man's relationship towards man. In this category, there are nineteen offs requiring the death penalty. Only one of these could be commanded to a lighter sentence – and that choice is usually in the hands of the victim's family (Ex 21: 28-32). Of these nineteen capital offsets, eight are for sexual offsets. There are no reprieves for sexual offsets. For an exhaustive exploration of this subject, you can freely download the Ebook, "Capital Punishment and the Bible" at the website below. It is a unique exposure and includes guidelines for today.

End Note 3

Female homosexuality is not addressed in the Old Testament. But in the New Testament, Romans 1:26 describes female homosexuality as a "degeneration passion" that is "against nature." Female homosexuals have been "given over" by God to homosexuality – a judgment by Him for rejecting and / or suppressing truth (Ro 1: 18-32).

In light of this Biblical material, I have often been asked to explain how homosexuality can be accepted in many churches today. There is even a homosexual "Christian" denomination called The Metropolitan Church. Here is how this happens. Principles used in Bible interpretation are called hermeneutics. Conservative interpreters have developed five (5) principles to apply to any given passage when seeking to interpret the passage properly. Those who believe homosexuality is acceptable have added two (2) more principles. The one of interest here is their "cultural hermeneutic." This is how it works. When examining a passage, one must consider the culture to which it was written to understand why it was written. For example, in Moses' day, the children of Israel were being led to the Promised Land – which was to be gained by military contract. They needed warriors. Therefore, in that culture, at that time homosexuality was sin for them. After the request was basically over, attitudes began to soften. When Jonathan died, David cried, "Your love to me was more wonderful than the love of women" (II Sam 1:26). These interpreters are convinces David and Jonathan were homosexual lovers. Thus, David was bisexual as he had many wives. By the time of the New Testament, Paul heralded celibacy as superior to marriage, but still clung to Old Testament taboos about homosexuality – at least in doctrine. But an old Apostle Paul wrote young Timothy, "I constantly remember you in my prayers night and day, longing to see you, even as I recall your tears, so that I might be filled with joy" (II Tim 1: 3,4 ). These interpreters are sure this is evidence of a homosexual union. Some also boldly point out that Jesus surrounded Himself only with men for 3+ years of ministry travels. So how does this work out for our culture? The argument goes something like this. "What is one of the great concerns for our present age? How about overpopulation? In our current age, it is best, like the New Testament affirms, to be celibate. That way a person will not add to the crisis. Can not remain celibate, homosexuality is the Christian way to go. In fact, homosexuality may be God's answer to the overpopulation problem. " With this cultural hermeneutic, all Bible passages are affirmed. Nothing is explained away. The prohibitions were correct for those cultures in those times – but not ours. The teaching goes further. "The Bible says, 'everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be restored, being received with thanksgiving' (I Tim 4: 4)." If you were born a homosexual, it is sin to reject the way God made you Everything God makes 'is good' and to reject what He has done is sin. Receive your homosexuality with gratitude! Start thanking Him for the way He made you! "

The Bible warns about those twist the Scriptures "to their own destruction" (II Pet3: 16). This is a current day example.

End Note 4

It is here that situations get complicated.

1) A guilty mate who leaves his / her first marriage, by committing sexual immorality or by desertion, can not engage in approved sex before God. Even if legally remarried in his / her given society, the sexual acts are still illegitimate before God. It is continuous adultery (Mt 19: 9).

2) However, if one becomes a Christian while in this adulterous union (legally remarried in his / her society), it appears this earlier adulterous union is no longer considered adulterous by God. No adulterer can enter God's approach, eternal world (I Cor 6: 9,10 and Gal 5: 19-21). Yet there seems to be no call for dissolution of the present union. The new Christian is declared as forgiven for all sin – past, present and future. So it does not appear the new Christian is viewed as living in an adulterous state. Concerning the other party of this union, it does not follow that he / she is automatically pardoned because of the other's conversion. His / her part in the union may still be considered adulterous until such a time that he / she also becomes a Christian. However, it is possible the faith of the believing wife may serve to justify the union with the unbelieving husband, and, by assuming the same for a reversed situation (I Cor 7:14). This is complex.

3) A professing Christian can not illegitimate leave a marriage for a new one and presume that he / she is automatically forgiven. There are numerous warnings against presumptuous actions – assuming suburbate sin will be pardoned (See Ro 6: 1,2 and 15, Heb 6: 4-6, Heb 10: 26-31 and possibly Ro 3: 8). It may be that the cleansing of a formerly adulterous union (as discussed in # 2 above) is a one time pardon by God that occurs at the Christians conversion. The web is quite entangled here too.

The material in this End Note should not be considered the final word in this complex area. However, this material should not be easily dismissed either. Our sexual activities are more importance to God than any of us realize. If one is in a complex sexual / marriage web, that person should earnestly bring the situation before God and carefully work it out. The only goal is that things be in right order before Him. Weigh the councils of others cautiously – including mine. Much counsel is half thought out and wrong.

End Note 5

For many, it is a shock to discover the Bible does not uniquivocally prohibit or condemn polygamy by males. There are many instances of central Bible figures who had multiple wives. These men include Abraham, Jacob (Israel), David, and Solomon. However, there are several conditions to this arrangement. For example, each wife was unattached to any other man. If she had been previously married, her husband was dead before marriage to the polygamist (I Sam 25: 39-42 and II Sam 11: 26,27). The Bible is extremely clear that no adulterer, fornicator, whoremonger, or otherwise sexually immoral person will enter the kingdom of heaven (I Cor 6: 9-11 and Gal 5: 19-21). Many of these men died while having multiple wives. The Bible does not teach these men are condemned. In fact, quite the opposite. Polygamy evidently does not fall under the category of sexual immorality.

In the New Testament, a church elder must be "the husband of one wife" (I Tim 3: 2). But this is not a condemnation of polygamy – just a qualification for the position of elder.
Note: Some maintain this passage also means a legitimately remarried divorcee or widower can not become an elder as he has had more than "one wife." This is a minor position.

Many societies have laws against polygamy. If a person violates any governmental law, he / she risks the consequences of that choice. But it does not need to follow that God will judge that person as a violator of His moral code. Such appearances to be the case with male polygamy.

End Note 6

Some Christian counselors have taken the position that single people, with raging hormones, can masturbate with a clear conscience. It is hard to understand how a Biblical case can be made for such a position. Christians are "to walk in the same manner as He (Jesus) walked" (1Jn 2: 6). That is all I am going to say about that. You figure out the rest.

Is My House Haunted? Part III

Those of you who have read my previous articles are aware that there have been some strange happenings in my house. I attribute my encounters to the paranormal simply because there is no other way that I can explain them. I could be totally wrong, but at least I know that I’m not losing my mind. My husband and my five-year-old daughter have noticed them as well.

We obviously do not point out these occurrences to my daughter but try to offer what seems like a valid explanation for the events so she will not be scared or confused. We have smelled perfume, heard sounds from footsteps to objects moving, music boxes playing on their own and utensils being placed down on dishes. Our bedroom television shuts off by itself every night and I have had the sensation of someone getting off of our bed in the middle of the night as if someone just stood up from the bed and the mattress bounced a little bit as it settled.

I’m a horror movie freak and I’ll admit that sometimes after watching scary movies or ghost shows on TV that my mind will wander and I can occasionally freak myself out in the middle of the night just as anyone else would. I’ve been hooked on the show Ghost Hunters and every time the show is on it seems to provoke even more paranormal activity in our house. I might not watch it tonight just for that reason. I don’t know if I can actually bare to miss an episode of Ghost Hunters Academy but after what happened in my house last night, the last thing I need is to add to my paranoia.

My daughter was watching TV in her bedroom and resting with wet cloths on her head and belly to cool off from the heat wave we’ve been having. I was in the living room with my husband watching TV. I mentioned before that my living room and dining room are connected. My daughter’s room is off of the dining room and I can see the reflection of her room on the dining room window. All of the lights were off except for the one in her room and the light was shining into the dining room so we had a fairly decent view of her room in the reflection. I happened to be glancing in that direction when I saw a shadow cross her bedroom door as if she was closing and opening the door slowly two times.

The shadow looked like a fuzzy outline of the door moving and it certainly didn’t look like a person. I didn’t hear the door, so I was just about to call her or go to her room to see what she was up to when she called me first. She said “Mommy! Mommy! I’m scared. I want to come see you”. I hopped off of the couch and went to her room where I noticed she was laying in the same place on the bed with her cool cloths and hadn’t moved. I asked her what was wrong and told her she needed to rest because it was late. She said, “I don’t want to sleep in here. I’m scared.” I told her that there is nothing to be scared of and said that I was right near her in the next room. She said, “I saw a statue”, and I noticed that the chandelier crystals were moving back and forth as if someone had just touched the light. I explained that she might have seen the shadow of the crystals moving and that it must have just been the wind.

There was absolutely no air last night because it was about 90 degrees and humid. I had the fan blowing into her room but it was on the floor just outside of her door and there is no way that it would make the crystals move. She wasn’t standing on her bed and touching the chandelier, first of all because she knows it’s not safe, and second of all, because her facecloths were still on her the way that I placed them for her and she was laying in the same place on her bed propped up with pillows and watching TV. I would have noticed her standing on her bed in the reflection and I didn’t. I was wondering what the “statue” could be, if anything other than her imagination. She claimed to have seen the “statue” at the same time that I saw the shadow.

It was already way past her bedtime and even though she didn’t have school the next day, she needed to get to sleep. The rest of the house was way too hot and we had an air conditioner on this side of the house, so I decided I would just sleep in her bed. I told my husband what she said and that she was scared so I was going to sleep with her. He was already falling asleep on the couch so he decided to head off to bed too. I was lying in bed with my daughter and looking out into the dining room. I watched my husband turn the dining room light on at a dim setting for a night light for Lili and go back to the living room to shut off the TV. The minute he shut off the TV, the dining room light went out. He came to turn the light back on and the TV turned back on. He just glanced over at me and we looked at each other as if to say, “This is getting worse”.

I mentioned before that my grandparents passed away peacefully in my house at different times and I always attributed what seems like paranormal activity to be them watching over us. I don’t know if I really want to know what is happening at home. If there are valid explanations for all of the bizarre circumstances that have happened, I would like to know what they are at this point. I don’t think I want to find out for sure that there is a spirit or ghost in my house unless I know for sure it’s my grandparents. The one thing I really do not understand is why they would keep making themselves noticeable after they know that my daughter is catching on and is getting scared.

I have a plan. I don’t know how great it is, but we have a friend who is studying to become a film director and he owns a top-notch video camera. He lives about 30 miles away so he will spend the night on our couch on occasion if he comes to hang out with my husband on a weekend night. I’m thinking we might invite him over for dinner this weekend and try to coax him into bringing the camera so I can set it to record over night. I’ll probably set it up in my daughter’s room looking out into the dining room and wake up in the middle of the night to set it up in our bedroom at the area where I thought I felt someone get up from the bed in the middle of the night which is right next to the TV that shuts off by itself. Like I said, I’m not sure I really want to know what this is because I’m sure there’s very little I can do about a ghost in our house. At the same time, my curiosity and paranoia are getting the best of me.

I’ve also been wondering if watching horror movies and shows like Ghost Hunters could be welcoming ghosts or spirits into our home. The advice I’ve found online suggests that this idea is silly. I suppose I could just notice these things more when I am more suggestible and in tune to the whole thing. I know the paranormal couldn’t have been further from our minds last night as we were watching something totally unrelated and interesting on TV. I suppose time will tell and maybe the camcorder will unfold more than what we expect. I’ll keep you posted.

How To Prepare and Install a Deadbolt

Adding extra security to your home by installing a deadbolt is an easy, inexpensive project that can be done in less than a day. Deadbolts come in several different finishes so you should be able to find one that matches or comes very close to your existing hardware finish.

Deadbolts can be purchased as keyed on both sides or keyed on the outside and a thumbturn latch on the other inside. The latter being the most common for residential use.You will need a 2 1/8 "hole saw that fits into a drill to make the hole needed for the new deadbolt, as well as a 7/8" wood boring bit that makes the Hole for the striker latch. These are also commonly known as "spade" bits or "butterfly" bits. They can be found at any home improvement store for about $ 20 combined.

The first thing you will want to do when you have your deadbolt is locate where you want to place it on the door. Usually they are just above the existing door knob, about six inches center to center but you can go slightly more or less to suit your set up or if there is a window in the door that will interfere. Make sure the deadbolt will not interfere with the storm door handle if you have one. Most of the time, it does not stick out far enough to cause a problem.

Measure in from the edge of the door whatever the "setback" is on the existing knob. The setback is the distance from the edge of the door to the centerline of the door knob or deadbolt. This is usually 2 3/4 "Older doors can be 2 3/8". Carry the line across to the edge of the door and mark a line across the edge. Start drilling your 2 1/8 "hole with the hole saw going slowly to begin. If you have a metal door, you may want to drill a pilot hole first and drill at a slower speed when making the 2 1/8" hole.

Once you are through the metal skin, keep going through the wood core and partly through the other side with the guide bit. Finish by drilling from the other side so as not to make a rough edge by drilling it all from one side. Measure the centerline on the edge of the door where you transported the line across earlier. This is where you will use the 7/8 "bit and drill through until you get to the larger hole. Place the latch into this hole and trace the outline of the face plate. Chisel out this area the depth of the face plate thickness with A 1/2 "or 3/4" chisel.

You are now ready to install the new deadbolt. Place the latch in first and then the deadbolt. It may be necessary to partially extend the bolt to line up the screw holes and guide pin when placing the two sides together. Once together, insert the screws and do not tighten just yet. Put the screws in the latch and tighten those, then go back and finish tightening the other screws. Complete the process by locating the position of the strike plate on the door jamb. Do this by extending the bolt against the jamb and marking with a pencil the top and bottom of the bolt.

Measure the distance from inside of the bolt to the edge of the door and mark that distance on the door jamb. This along with the two lines made previously, is the hole location for the deadbolt. Drill a 3/4 "hole just through the jamb and finish by tracing the outline of the strike plate and chiseling out the thickness of the plate. Fit the strike plate in and pre-drill two 1/8" holes for the screws and insert The long screws so they reach the framing of the door. You have now installed added security and peace of mind to your home without having spent a fortune.

How to Enjoy Your Relatives

Recognize the role of beliefs.

"We are incredibly heedless in the formation of our beliefs, but find ourselves filled with an illicit passion for them when anyone proposes to rob us of their companionship." James Harvey Robinson 1863-1936

Most family squabbles come from opposing beliefs about something that result in an exchange of insulating looks if not outright insults. It's easier to be tolerant of your relatives when you understand that they formed their beliefs as carelessly as you did and defend them as much as you defend yours.

Think of a belief you have about, say, capital punishment or seat belt laws. Where did your belief come from?

That's a hard question to answer. If you ask that question when you disagree with a relative about something, even if it is as trivial as that way dishes face in the dishwasher, you might end up laughing. Of course, you have to try to answer it yourself, first.

Otherwise you tend to avoid all subjects that may spark disagreement. That can beboring. Or you get into such a fight there is no hope for reconciliation.

Family members who do not speak to each other for years carry an unnecessary pain for years.

Here's a story, an old folk tale I heard on national Public Radio: Long before recorded history two brothers owned and great wheat on a large parcel of land in what came to be Jerusalem. The youngest brother married and had several children. The oldest retained a bachelor.

One year the two brothers had an argument they did not resolve. They divided the land and built a fence to separate them. Each continued growing wheat. The years went by. The brothers did not speak to each other.

One night during harvest the oldest brother awoke with this thought: I really do not need all this wheat. My brother has a big family to feed. I will put some of my wheat in his barrels. Very early in the morning he shoveled wheat from his harvest over the fence.

Meanwhile the younger brother thought, my brother does not have any children to help him with the harvest. I'll give him some of my wheat when he's sleep. So he shoveled a barrelful over the fence onto his brother's land.

The next day, at different times, both brothers wonder why the amount of wheat was the same on both sides of the fence. This went on for a few more days until one night, when both sneaked out to shovel wheat at the same time, they saw each other and realized why the wheat levels had remained the same. They tore down the fence next to a large rock and hugged.

When God saw, that he declared that rock as his church on earth. That's how the tale ends. Today, four or five religions claim that rock in Jerusalem as their. Blood has been shed over that rock for centuries. The beliefs that we still fight over form our identities.

My Australian grandson asked his American mother, "What religion am I, Australian?"

My daughter answered, "That's your nationality. You were baptized Anglican."

He replied, "But I thought I was half-American."

Identities can be confusing, but once found, by God, we're not going to change them!

Enjoy the irony and love your relatives.

Copyright 2006 Cole's Poetic License

English Has Come A Long, Long Way …

I often wonder what would happen if Shakespeare were to be transported in a time machine to our world today. What would he think? How would he react?

Yes, Willie would probably tell me "thou hast too much time on thy hands if you spendeth it wondering about such flights of fancy." But only after he found his feet.

You see, Willie would be blown away by some of the comforts we take for granted. For instance, that box we walk into. The doors close all by themselves … just like magic. When they open, we are magically in a different place.

"What calest thou this contraption?" Willie would ask in utter amazement.

An elevator. You would think nothing would phase a man who just landed his time machine 400 years into the future.

"Ah, I see. It was not magic after all. It elevated us, because it is an elevator."

This Willie guy is pretty handy with his English, is not he? But that will not get him far these days. A hundred years ago, even fifty, he could have figured out just about every new word by tracing its roots (often to Greek or Latin). But not today.

"What are those … those … those, things?"

Why that's a TV, with a VCR and a DVD player. Over there, it's a CD player, an AM and FM radio and an amp. This is a PC, with CDRW and floppy drives, a powerful CPU, A and C drive, and more RAM than a MAC.

"What? Thy alphabet looks a bit confusing."

Once upon a time, the meaning of a word could always be guessed by simply tracing the entomology of the word back to its lowest roots.

"Thou meanest 'etymology', dost thou not? Entomology is the study of insects and bugs."

I knew that.

I took out a 'Kleenex' because my nose was running.

"But how dost thy nose run?"

I suppose the same way I drivest on a parkway and parkest in the driveway. Or how it does not matter whether we fill in a form or fill out a form … either way, the taxman gets the last laugh.

I offered to take Willie for a ride.

"That is more like it. There is nothing quite like a horse under one's bottom. '

No, no, no. We do not ride horses anymore. That is a barbaric way to treat such majestic beasts. Now we drive cars … and kill the horses off with the exhaust.

"I have no idea what you are talking about."

Just have a seat in the BMW, Willie, while I turn on the AC and rev up the RPMs on this old V6. Before you know it, we'll be doing 100 mph down the 102.

"More letters and numbers. Have words become redundant in the future?"

Pretty much. As life got more and more complicated, words got more and more complicated. Pretty soon it was taking several minutes just to pronounce a single government department. So real word groups had to be replaced by acronyms – the first letter of each word. Pass me a CANDY.

"What does CANDY stand for?"

Candy, actually. But maybe I should just leave old Willie guessing. After all, there is just so much to discover in this brave new world. Like why there are so few sundials around. And why some people sleep on the street, while other climb 34 stories to an office tower above to sleep at their desks. And just how do they shrink those liquor bottles for the airlines.

"What is an RSVP? And ASAP? And TLC?"

I had to find just the right way to explain to him that all these crazy letters actually made some kind of sense.

Internal Department of Income Overhaul Transfer Systems.

"Ah, IDIOTS. Now, that I understand!"

Auto Accident Involvement – What to Do and to Avoid

The law for an appropriate reimbursements guarantees an injury-causing auto accident involvement in Los Angeles, California due other individual's negligence. However, many accident victims have been losing their cases because they fail to exercise a list of things that they should have accomplished immediately after the incident. It is important therefore to know what to do and to avoid in case an auto accident happened in order to have a good chance in recovering damages from the liable party.

Take note of the details that transpired in the accident

Your testimony about what had happened is important in judging your case. It is your duty then to be credible with your statements by giving all the exact information about the incident. You can only do this by writing down all the facts that you can acquire from the accident scene. These include:

  • The other driver's name, address, contact information and insurance company
  • The other vehicle's licensed plate number and model
  • The time and place where the accident occurs
  • The names, addresses and contact number of possible witnesses
  • The description of the area (road and weather conditions, traffic situation, etc.)

Report the accident to the authorities as soon as possible

Any emergencies should be informed to the police and the paramedics for proper actions. They are the people who have the knowledge to handle such situations. The police will accomplish a report of the scene and determine who is at fault while the paramedics will take care of those who have sustained any injuries.

Discuss the accident only with the police

Never tell any accounts of the accident to any one and have a limited discussion of it with the police authority. You should know that anything that you will say in the discussion will be included in the report and may be used against you.

Do not accept any fault or liability on the incident

Many accident victims have been very impulsive in admitting their mistakes but after consulting an auto accident lawyer, they would realize that they are actually eligible in collecting damages. Always remember that your acceptance of any fault would certainly prevent you from filing charges in the future.

Seek an advice from a competent auto accident lawyer

Before you forget some of the vital information about the accident, it would be a wise act to meet a lawyer to discuss your case. He will then explain your rights and what legal actions you should undertake to obtain justice.

Our Los Angeles Auto Accident Lawyer is expert in handling personal injury claims connected with auto accidents .

Baby Safety Checklist – Protecting Your Baby

When bringing home your new baby, there are so many things to do in order to get ready. Making your home a safe haven for your new little one is one of the most important things you will do to get ready. Each room contains its own set of dangers. Below is a baby safety checklist to ensure that every room in your house is baby friendly.

General Safety Tips:

___ Place child-resistant covers on all electrical outlets.

___ Install safety gates at the top and bottom of the stairs.

___ Do not use baby walkers because they have been known to have caused serious injuries to babies. Use stationary exercisers instead.

___ Keep all dangerous chemicals out of the reach of children.

___ Shorten curtain and blind cords.

___ Install smoke detectors on each floor of your home, especially near sleeping areas. * Be sure to change the batteries each year.

___ Keep all small objects away from young children. (This includes tiny toys and balloons.)

___ Use corner bumpers on furniture and fireplace-hearth edges.

___ Know the names of all plants in case a child eats one of them.

___ Be sure that furnaces, fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, space heaters, and all gas appliances are vented properly.

___ Place screened barriers around fireplaces, radiators, and portable space heaters.

___ Keep firearms and ammunition safely locked away.

___ Secure unsteady furnishings.

___ Check your house for lead and asbestos. If you detect either of these substances, contact a professional. Any house built before 1978 is at risk for lead paint.


Protect your kids rooms:

___ Ensure that your crib meets national safety standards.

___ Place guards on windows and stops on all doors.

___ Make sure your baby's crib is sturdy and has no loose or missing hardware.

___ Make sure that the mattress fits snugly.

___ Be sure the crib sheet fits snugly.

___ Never put stuffed animals or heavy blankets in the crib with your infant.

___ Never leave your baby unattended on the changing table.

___ Remove mobiles and other hanging toys from the crib as soon as your child can reach up and touch them.

___ Place infants under one year of age on their backs to sleep. Mattress should be firm and flat with no soft bedding underneath. * Following this advice will reduce the risk of suffocation and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

___ Place night-lights at least three feet away from the crib, bedding, and draperies to prevent fires.

___ Check age labels for appropriate toys.


Keep the bathroom safe:

___ Put a lock on the medicine cabinet.

___ Lower the household water temperature. (It should be set at 120 degrees F or below to avoid burning your baby)

___ Always test the water first before bathing a child.

___ Never leave your child alone in the bathtub or near any water.

___ Secure toilet lids. Many young children are fascinated by putting objects inside.

___ Make sure that bathtubs and showers are not slippery.

___ Install ground-fault circuit interrupters on outlets near sings and bathtubs.


For the Kitchen:

___ Keep all knives, cleaning supplies, and plastic bags out of children's reach.

___ If stove knobs are easily accessible to children, use protective covers to prevent kids from turning them.

___ Never leave your baby alone in a highchair. Always use all safety straps.
___ Replace any frayed cords and wires.

___ Keep chairs and step stools away from counters and the stove.

___ Remove all household cleaners from the bottom cabinets or put them in a cabinet that is out of your baby's reach.


In the Yard:

___ Store tools, garden, lawn-equipment, and supplies in a locked closet or shed.

___ Do not use a power mower when young children are around.

___ Do not allow children to play on a treated lawn for at least 48 hours following an application of a fertilizer or pesticide.

___ Know the types of trees and plant life on the property in case children ingest berries, leaves, or other plant life.

___ If you have a swimming pool, install a fence that separates the house from the pool. (Make sure that the gate is childproof)

This list is a general guide. For more in-depth information go to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission at http://www.cpsc.gov .

5 Tips on Preparing Crock Pot Meals

Slow cookers are often tucked away in a cabinet and seldom thought of as a regular kitchen tool. Most of us cook from habit; grab a familiar pan and stand over the stove stirring and adding ingredients. Think of the time and energy that could be saved as we learn to rely on the slow cooker or crock pot.

I have used my crock pot through the years to prepare roasts or chickens. However, I removed the meat when done and prepared the rest of the ingredients on the stove top or oven. Since this meant extra steps to get a meal ready, the crock pot would end up in the back of the cabinet and I would go back to my old cooking habits. It seemed to me that vegetables were tastier if cooked my old-fashioned methods.

In recent years, I have worked to find simpler and less time-consuming ways to prepare meals. Hopefully these tips will help you get more comfortable using a slow cooker for everyday menu choices.

If you do not have a cookbook specifically for crock pot recipes, I would suggest you purchase one. Watch for used ones at garage sales or flea markets as well as the library.

1. Peruse the recipes for slow cookers looking for what foods are prepared in them. Particularly consider whether ingredients are added all at one time and how they are placed in the cooker. Vegetables, for instance, take longer to cook and should be added first on the bottom or sides of the pot.

2. Familiarize yourself with food preparation. You will notice foods are to be cut into small pieces; meat which is added to a recipe is usually cut into 1″ chunks. Vegetables are cut in very small pieces.

3. Find some recipes in the cookbook that are similar to your family favorites. With a few changes in preparation of foods, you will be amazed at how many of your own recipes will become crock pot favorites.

4. Slow cookers do their best work when they are one half to three quarters full. This may mean you need to double some of your recipes. Now, you will really be saving time and energy as you will have some extra foods that can be frozen and ready for another day. That is a real bonus!

5. In adjusting recipes, or using one of your own, keep in mind a slow cooker will capture moisture. Cut back on the liquids you add until you see if it’s needed.

Another important thing to remember is to have all your ingredients prepared ahead of time and resist the temptation to open the lid to see how things are cooking. Your slow cooker can take up to twenty minutes to regain the heat lost by one little peek inside. Fix the recipe, shut the lid, and let that marvelous aroma fill your home.

Slow cooked foods will retain more nutrients and be much healthier for you.

Enjoy your extra time.

Modeling – Plastic Modeling Kits Considered

As a teenager, and even starting as early as age 6, I liked to build plastic models. At one point I think I had built every single 1:172 scale plastic model which existed. I built race cars, army tanks, HO scale rail-road buildings, and nearly every possible aircraft. In fact, I had so many airplanes hanging from my ceiling with fishing line, that times you could not see the ceiling. A miniature Smithsonian Aviation Museum in the making – so, that’s what I did in my youth, and I enjoyed it very much.

Now that I’m older I still occasionally enjoy building models, air brushing them, and although I don’t have space for them all, I enjoy building dioramas also. Now then, if you would like to learn more about building plastic models, or if you would like the models you build to come out better, more realistic, and more historically authentic, then there is a very good book I’d like to recommend to you, and it is actually one that I own myself. The name of the book is;

“Plastic Modeling Kits” by Jack C. Harris, Crestwood House Publishers, New York, NY, (1993), 48 pages, ISBN: 0-89686-623-8.

The author of this book is a master modeler, and this book is well illustrated. Mr. Jack C. Harris has written an excellent book and he has included chapters about; plastic model kits, how to choose your first plastic kit to build, and how you can work your way up in skill. He also explains the tools you will need to build these models, along with the glues, and paints. There is a great section on airbrushing, and I wish I had this book back when I was a teenager because I could have really used it.

Would you like to learn how to customize your plastic models once you are completed, there is a chapter on that as well. And there is information on how to win and enter contests, and where to display your plastic models where they will be viewed the most. You’d be surprised that museums will be happy to have your plastic models if they are done correctly, and you can even enter them in the local county fair for prizes and accolades.

In the book there is information on joining master modeler clubs, or even how to make your own club with other local hobbyists. And if you are worried about using the right terminology when talking to your modeling friends, then there is a complete glossary in the back, so you use the proper buzzwords. Indeed, I hope you will please consider this if you plan on building plastic models for profit, or as a hobby. Please think on it.

4 Simple Tips to Being Irresistible to a Man Called of God

TIP 1 Be set apart for God.

Every person wants something that is exclusive. The price of things becomes much higher the rarer it is. Being set apart for God is not singing love songs to Him and Jesus each week. Being set apart for Him is a person that is Holy, devoted, in love with and very focused on Him.

Holy

Sin is the first thing that comes to mind when I write the word Holy. I look at my own life and I have to say I am very happy with my level of sin. I have worked hard on this. To be Holy, one has to respect the Word of God and accept and practice it in your day to day life.

That's not being a busy body. That's not speaking ill of people. That's taking the plank out of your own eye before looking at the speck of another's. We all like to judge, it's in our carnal nature. We like to compare ourselves and justify ourselves while we discuss how bad someone else is.

A Holy person directs the conversation away from gossip. A holy person does not go to another person and say, "Do you know what that other person said about you?"

Holy is doing all the do's in the Bible and not doing the don'ts!

Devoted

I see many ladies that love Jesus in worship and trying to reach out to God. But then I watch how they like to have what the world has. I see so many times how they warn for the things of the flesh.

I wonder how many people of today would sell all they have and give it to Jesus and travel with him? I wonder how many ladies would willingly be homeless to travel with the Messiah?

A guy set apart for God, and I have to say they are quite rare, would have no problem with a wife that is devoted to Jesus.

Twenty Australian dollars buys four Bibles in Bangladesh I found out last week. Do you know how excited that makes me? I look forward to giving twenty dollars frequently to the head pastor of a church I attend so he can pass it on.

How dedicated are you to the Lord?

Would you remain single for him?

Would you marry a man that is called to the ministry as an apostle to plant churches who is always using all his spare cash to support the new churches and who has you move every few years?

Would you marry and support a man while he writes and speaks full time with little income and would you rent and pay the bills while he serves the Lord?

Would you be a pastor's wife and work as hard as him but not get a salary?

In love with Jesus

Could you love Jesus more then your own husband? Could you love Jesus and His will so much that your could cope with your husband being way from home six months out of the year as he ministers to the body of Christ?

Does your relationship with Jesus have merit?

Is Jesus a very real part of your life. Is He there for you when you wake and because the day do you chat to him? Do you speak to Him like a husband? Could he fill the loneliness you experience as your husband is away?

Could you rest in Jesus?

Is He that real to you?

Focused on Jesus

If I could be very simplistic for a second can I reduce out of everything in the world the two things that matter most to Jesus?

Jesus is interested in two things.

1 That sinners find his saving grace.

2 That the people that know Him grow into a defect and more intimate purpose driven life with him.

When you are focused on Jesus these two things should be your focus to.

You know if a book has led you closer to Jesus taking the time to write a personal review of that book on EzineArticles or on Amazon can encourage others to buy that book and get closer to Him.

There are many things you can do to help Jesus have those two things I said He was interested in. The first thing you could do is make sure that your life is set apart for him.

When I meet women that are set apart for the things of God I take the time to make very good friends with their husbands so that whenever I am talking to his wife they are not concerned. I have three women in my Salvation Army church that are like this. All of them are married to guys that you would like to marry. All the guys have a future that will include serving the Lord full time.

TIP 2 Dress moderately

Fashion looks to want to show off women's body parts. A man of God can have a struggle with his eyes until he gets them into submission. A man of God will not appreciate you showing off your body to him. Covered up is fine and he will see you for who you are inside where it counts, not for what you look like with your midriff exposed.

The three women that I like all dress well. Never have my eyes been distracted by anything that they have worn.

Maybe some of you will object to this. Perhaps these are words of a prude. Let me quote Peter and see if he supports me in this.

1 Peter 3: 3-4 (New King James Version) 3 Do not let your adorment be merely outward-arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel- 4 Rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the Incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.

See Peter says what is really attractive, the beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit.

TIP 3 Be a prayerful woman.

Prayer is not a thing of sexes. Both males and females can pray. Some of the best speakers in the world that were male were great men of prayer, but when I think of prayer most often I feel that women are better at it.

I have to laugh at myself. How can women be better?

Well simply put women are better communicators and so this asset most often moves into the realm of prayer.

If women are good at prayer they need not worry as much. Women seem to really know how to worry and an active prayer life that has even just a mustard seed of faith can make a great impact on that woman and the people she loves and reduce worry.

Jesus said that we are not to worry. So many things can be solved simply by prayer.

I had a friend that once said to me, "Do not worry, pray!"

It has really helped me find much peace in my life.

A lady friend of mine wrote this as a comment on one of my articles.

Subject: Peace You seem to have more peace than ever right now. I am glad to know that. I pray that God continues to heal you and to give you more and more of His peace. God bless you!

It's good that she can see peace in my life. When a man sees that you are a woman with a steadfast faith grounded in regular prayer he will know that you will be a faithful wife.

TIP 4 Be a woman of the Word

There is a difference between a person that can quote the Word of God and a person that is living the Word of God. You look at the worries and fears in the average woman's life and you'd think she has never heard the promises of God.

God wants us to rest on His Word. Not just know the Word, but have the Word living in us fighting with the cares of this world.

In the parable of the four seeds Jesus mentioned the seeds that fell among the thorns. The thing that clogged the growth was said to be the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches.

A strong foundation in the Word will have you not chasing to be rich in this world and it will remove your worries and cares for the things of this world.

A man that is going to shake his town or his world, wants and needs a woman beside him that can not only support him and encourage him, but with prayer and knowledge of the scriptures in the Bible can teach him things.

Many pastors would love a wife that could preach also.

I pray that this article has helped you and I encourage you if you were blessed to rate it out of five stars or post a comment on it that will give me insight into how well I have done.

God bless all you ladies.

Plan Your Life Effectively

Big Changes, Little Changes

Magazines these days are filled with articles on how to plan your life well in advance, but which do not need to take the fact into account that LIFE can, and will, get in the way. What do you do when everything around is changing at a pace that even you can not keep up with and your life plan surely can not? With all that has happened in the world economy and the decisions made by certain countries regarding terrorism and war, it is not a good idea to stick your head in the sand and ignore it all.

What about when change happens at a more microcosmic level, ie what happens if you are one of the casualties of the recent 'downsizing' of firms in the City so your life changes in a far more immediate fashion? Or what if your life changes in a positive way? You get married, get promoted, have a baby – you could even win the lottery!

Reactive to Opportunity

Life plans are a good idea but for them really to work, they must be flexible so that they can still be useful when situations change. It is important for them to be not quite so specific as to ignore any opportunity that just presents itself because it is not quite what you wanted, or if you feel that the opportunity has come too too early or too late. There is a saying that "opportunities are viewed as more important with the vision of hindsight" but this can be flipped to say that opportunities when they first present themselves can be seen as risks too large to cope with.

Bring Your Dreams to Life

So how do you plan your life in the first place?

There are so many techniques that you can use for planning your ideal life, but the one that works best is when you really and truly know inside and out what you want, how it would look and what it would feel like to be there.

Imagine Who You Want to be

You can start simply by imagining what you want to be doing on a specific day in the future, for example 1st January 2020. Flesh out the daily tasks – where are you living, who with and how busy is your day? What do you look like, how do you have with others and what are your relationships like? All the areas of your life should be included within your plan:

Career,
Friends and Family,
Physical Environment,
Health,
Personal Growth,
Money,
Significant Other,
Fun and Recreation.

This is not an exhaustive list – if there is a significant part of your life that is not included above, add another category or rename one.

Pay Attention To Detail

Once you know what you want, it is essential that you break each goal down into smaller ones that you can work towards on a daily basis. For example, if you wish to be healthy enough to run a marathon next year, you could sign up to your local gym today and start going regularly, or find a local running group to join, and then start doing smaller sponsored runs until running is A daily part of your life. Of course, just doing the physical exercise is not the only thing you can do to make this dream come true – for a goal of being healthy, you must also eat healthily, sleep well and enough for you (sleep amounts varies from person to person ), Be able to manage stress, among many other things.

Life Comes Around To Play

But what happens when you get sucked into the day-to-day drag of life and end up realizing that a year has gone by and you have not done anything towards your goals and you can barely remember what they were in the first place?

So what CAN you do with your plan when life gets in the way?

Be Realistic

One way that life can get in the way is through sheer overwhelm: you may feel overwhelmed by the sheer size of each category when you do break each big goal from your life plan down into smaller ones. It is really important that you keep motivated and do not ask too much of yourself. If you are asking yourself to do 4 hours worth of work when you only have 30 minutes a day, do not be disheartened, be realistic. You may find that if you set yourself one thing a day to do, and get that done faster than you think then you can get another one done and get ahead of the plan.

Be Flexible

Another way that life can be annoying? Is through unexpected twists: this is where keeping your plan flexible comes into play. Depending on what life has thrown at you, there are different ways of doing this. Firstly, you need to keep in control of your plan rather than letting it control you. Monthly, Quarterly and Annual Reviews are very useful ways of making sure your plan fits in with what is really happening in your life and this kind of prevention system can help you anticipate and handle unexpected situations in the best way for you.

Be Willing to Reconsider

What if you change your mind about sections of the plan? No problem – you can redesign your plan as many times as is necessary because it is YOUR plan. Just go back to the drawing board and rethink – you may realize that one change in your plan may impact more areas than the one area you want to alter. It is important to remember here that it is your life and anything is possible, so if the prospect of replanning is daunting, just imagine where you want to be and start taking some action!

Be Honest with Yourself

It is important to know that whatever you plan it must be right for you – if your goal involves actions that you are either capable of or actions are not willing to do, you must review what you want and be honest about the likelihood of You actually completing the actions you set yourself.

Contemplate a Coach

What if life keeps getting in the way and you get disheartened about ever having the life you want? Or if you do not have a clue what you want as every situation you just try on your head just does not feel right? Here you may have to address your more basic needs and the real situation you're living in. It may be the case that you would benefit from having a coach to help you out in sorting through the top layers of life to the real you underneath – the one which you have hidden away and ignored. A coach can help you realize what your true values ​​are and help you figure out how you can translate this to your current life.

If you do decide to hire a coach, do try a few out to see what different styles are available – most coaches offer a free consultation where you can get to know the personality of the coach and their coaching style before deciding whether it is for you . Prices vary greatly, so this is where trying out many possible coaches can be extremely useful as you can decide whether the service you have just tried is worth the asking price.

Proactive & Adaptable

Life is all about change. How you adapt to that change and how proactive you are in chasing your ideal are what really makes the difference in having a fulfilled life. Having a plan can help you in being prepared for whatever life decides to throw at you while keeping you on track to achieving your dreams.

Why You Should Have a Love Affair With Problems

We live in a world where people have been conditioned to get rid of problems or breakdowns. In fact, we are trained to use more comfortable words like challenges. It is a problem to use the word problem; People become uncomfortable when you tell them you will give them problems.

However, the world of breakthroughs or quantum leaps is almost always preceded by problems. Why? Because breakthroughs require one to conceal mysteries of things that they did not know they did not know. That inherently comes with chaos, breakdowns and uncertainty which can be a problem. Therefore, most people avoid or give up the pursuit of breakthroughs. The mantra in place of a breakthrough is: it was not meant to be.

Instead of accepting that mantra and moving on to a substitution goal, explore a new perspective. There is something called the Disruptive Leadership Model. It is designed to empower people in the face of breakdowns. It provides individuals, teams and companies with tools to more effectively manage themselves in the face of breakouts, such that, breakthroughs become part of the individual's life or corporate culture.

With that said, because we are conditioned to see problems as negative, it is not the problem that is the problem. It is how we manage ourselves and our perspective of the problem. In other words, when we pursue breakthroughs, something occurs. What happens may not be the desired result, initially. Neverheless, it occurred. Through the Disruptive Leadership Model, you acquire tools that empower you in the face of not immediately getting the desired outcome.

What you learn is that it is not how you respond to problems or breakdowns. It is how you manage yourself and your thought process that matters most. For example, if you believe the breakdown occurred because there is something wrong with you, you will have an unsolvable problem, until you fix what you believe is wrong with you. That is one way to have underlining conversations about yourself and others, the situation and possibly the world. That alone will drive away breakthroughs. When you are able to more vigorously manage yourself and thoughts, it becomes significantly easier to clearly see the gaps that caused the breakdown to show up. With a clear state of mind, it becomes easier to resume breakthrough initiatives and bridge the gaps, instead of give up.

What is a breakthrough?

A breakthrough is a result that you would like to produce. Except, you may not know how and there is no blueprint to follow. However, once achieved, it alters the future for you, your team or company forever. Before 1956, no one was able to run the mile in under 4 minutes. It was believed to be humanly impossible. In 1956, Roger Bannister produced a breakthrough by running it under 4 minutes. Today, the world record is 3 minutes 43 seconds.

Why do breakthroughs matter?

In most organizations, the CEO has a breakthrough initiative that he would like to fulfill. It may be his legacy. However, he or she hesitates to execute it because his people are not ready, the economy is not right, he does not have the right resources or his people are already overwhelmed. In many cases, the initiative remains on the back burner because it looks like a problem.

When the Disruptive Leadership Model is incorporated into an enterprise several things happen:

  1. CEO acquires tools to manage self and problems more powerfully
  2. CEO develops skills and competencies to run larger corporation
  3. The CEO's direct reports execute breakthrough initiatives of their own
  4. Transformation of corporate culture
  5. People focus on outcomes instead of what's wrong with the initiative or themselves
  6. Employees create innovative solutions to accomplish CEO's initiative
  7. New and more complex initiatives become easier to execute in the future
  8. New or untapped markets are penetrated
  9. New revenue streams are realized

Once a person is empowered by problems, they can more effectively take on breakthrough initiatives. In addition, they will be more effective during economic, competitive or strategic changes as well. Opportunities can be found when everyone else has lost their stomach for perseverance.

What do you think? I would love to hear your feedback. And I'm open to ideas. Or if you want to write me about a specific topic, connect through my blog www.turnaroundip.blogspot.com .

Why You Should Have a Love Affair With Problems

We live in a world where people have been conditioned to get rid of problems or breakdowns. In fact, we are trained to use more comfortable words like challenges. It is a problem to use the word problem; People become uncomfortable when you tell them you will give them problems.

However, the world of breakthroughs or quantum leaps is almost always preceded by problems. Why? Because breakthroughs require one to conceal mysteries of things that they did not know they did not know. That inherently comes with chaos, breakdowns and uncertainty which can be a problem. Therefore, most people avoid or give up the pursuit of breakthroughs. The mantra in place of a breakthrough is: it was not meant to be.

Instead of accepting that mantra and moving on to a substitution goal, explore a new perspective. There is something called the Disruptive Leadership Model. It is designed to empower people in the face of breakdowns. It provides individuals, teams and companies with tools to more effectively manage themselves in the face of breakouts, such that, breakthroughs become part of the individual's life or corporate culture.

With that said, because we are conditioned to see problems as negative, it is not the problem that is the problem. It is how we manage ourselves and our perspective of the problem. In other words, when we pursue breakthroughs, something occurs. What happens may not be the desired result, initially. Neverheless, it occurred. Through the Disruptive Leadership Model, you acquire tools that empower you in the face of not immediately getting the desired outcome.

What you learn is that it is not how you respond to problems or breakdowns. It is how you manage yourself and your thought process that matters most. For example, if you believe the breakdown occurred because there is something wrong with you, you will have an unsolvable problem, until you fix what you believe is wrong with you. That is one way to have underlining conversations about yourself and others, the situation and possibly the world. That alone will drive away breakthroughs. When you are able to more vigorously manage yourself and thoughts, it becomes significantly easier to clearly see the gaps that caused the breakdown to show up. With a clear state of mind, it becomes easier to resume breakthrough initiatives and bridge the gaps, instead of give up.

What is a breakthrough?

A breakthrough is a result that you would like to produce. Except, you may not know how and there is no blueprint to follow. However, once achieved, it alters the future for you, your team or company forever. Before 1956, no one was able to run the mile in under 4 minutes. It was believed to be humanly impossible. In 1956, Roger Bannister produced a breakthrough by running it under 4 minutes. Today, the world record is 3 minutes 43 seconds.

Why do breakthroughs matter?

In most organizations, the CEO has a breakthrough initiative that he would like to fulfill. It may be his legacy. However, he or she hesitates to execute it because his people are not ready, the economy is not right, he does not have the right resources or his people are already overwhelmed. In many cases, the initiative remains on the back burner because it looks like a problem.

When the Disruptive Leadership Model is incorporated into an enterprise several things happen:

  1. CEO acquires tools to manage self and problems more powerfully
  2. CEO develops skills and competencies to run larger corporation
  3. The CEO's direct reports execute breakthrough initiatives of their own
  4. Transformation of corporate culture
  5. People focus on outcomes instead of what's wrong with the initiative or themselves
  6. Employees create innovative solutions to accomplish CEO's initiative
  7. New and more complex initiatives become easier to execute in the future
  8. New or untapped markets are penetrated
  9. New revenue streams are realized

Once a person is empowered by problems, they can more effectively take on breakthrough initiatives. In addition, they will be more effective during economic, competitive or strategic changes as well. Opportunities can be found when everyone else has lost their stomach for perseverance.

What do you think? I would love to hear your feedback. And I'm open to ideas. Or if you want to write me about a specific topic, connect through my blog www.turnaroundip.blogspot.com .