Saturday, December 30, 2006

15 ways to find inspiration

Inspiration is described as an irrational and unconscious burst of creativity it’s that and a whole lot more. When you’re inspired you’re in-spirit, beyond consciousness, liberated, all of you’re thoughts break their bounds. Sounds pretty good don’t it? But how exactly do you get to that all-encompassing point? Is there any way? Answers is: yes, there is no one way to get “inspired” there’s a multitude of ways. Here’s just a few:

1. Meditate

Read more

10 ways to have an Active Mind

1) Read more & take part in mentally challenging activities. Usually morons have an innate
prejudice towards reading. It’s of course, a well earned inferiority complex. Grow up, idiot.

2) Watch TV.Well, it may sound naïve and against conventional wisdom.But, I have found television as a highly educative medium. Mostly people classify it as a passive activity. Doesn’t it keep people more informed and let those creative juices flowing? Come on, look at younger generation kids. Look at their parents. Ask yourself. Well, if they aren’t that different, let’s figure out ways to force their parents to let them be so.a Read more

3) Use memory aids. Mnemonics are extremely helpful in improving ones memory power. Believe me; it can even help you memorize large chunks of digits –thousands of them. It involves linking items to a series of visual images which help you recall what you you need keep in your mind.

4) Improve your vocabulary. One’s sophistication of thoughts can easily by assessed by his ability to handle words with fluency and imagination. I hope you share my opinion. If you don’t, consult a psychiatrist. Inferiority complex is a terrible thing. It can kill you. Please, do it for yourself.

5) Read good specialized magazines. Surf the web daily on a wide range of topics. Join & read forums and blogs that propagate a view point which is different from that of yours. Think over it. Post your comments. Debate with yourself. If you think arguments are a weak man’s weapon, read my blog on arguments. I tell you, it’s a well articulated blog. You can start from there!

6) Work on your vocabulary by playing word games. Try concocting metaphors.

7) Whatever your career aspirations are, write at least a few pages daily. It’ll help you a long way. Write your dairy on a daily basis. Start blogging. It can easily be a good source of income if you put in the time and effort necessary.

8) Broaden your horizons. Look through books and pieces of art which you aren’t that familiar with. Write on what you feel.

9) Listen to music. Visualize what you’re hearing.

10) If you’re in a train, classroom or work place, just look around. Weave a story around people you see based on their expressions and behavior. Be careful not to laugh out loud as I do. In most probability they will take you to a psychiatrist. She’ll give you a set of pills which will take the life out of you.

20 Ways to Kill Your Hangover

Hangovers suck, and it’s your own stupid fault when they suck like they do. Stop wallowing in self pity, print this out, and start checking items off. Some of these are more effective than others. Some are preventative and some are after the fact treatment. Either way, it’s something to think about next time you go out. Or maybe it’s something to read since you just called in to work and are hugging a trash can while you check your email this morning, lush.

  1. Drink Buttermilk. (ughhh) It will calm you stomach and add badly needed liquid into your system. That is, if you can keep buttermilk down hungover.
  2. Reduce the amount of sugar you consume while drinking. The boosted metabolism of sugar AND alcohol will accelerate the depletion of B vitamins and make your hangover worse.
  3. Coffee/Caffeine. This will enhance the effectiveness of analgesics (aspirin and similar) and the stimulating effects will banish many symptoms of a hangover.
  4. Have sex. First of all: easier said than done hungover. Second of all: oh, wait, ’sounds good other than that first thing. This gets your blood pumping and will release endorphins which are natural painkillers and mood-enhancers. See exercise below.
  5. Drinking Coke or Pepsi. (The “Black Aspirin” or “Red Ambulance”) the caffeine, bubbles and sugar can be easier to hold down than pure water (or buttermilk). Sugar partially compensates the inhibition of the gluconeogenesis.
  6. Oscillating in water between extreme cold and hot temperatures. This practice has no effect on the hangover and can be dangerous. See The Princess Bride.
  7. Eating some Asparagus before bed. Asparagus is a diuretic and these only compound the problem.
  8. Eating whole jalapeños. This will certainly wake you up.
  9. Pedialyte. This contains more electrolytes than almost any over-the-counter drug. This will help you re-hydrate your body as quickly as possible.
  10. Eating mineral-rich foods, like pickles or canned fish.See buttermilk, above. Gross.
  11. Drinking pickle juice, the solution in which cucumbers were pickled, in the morning (a staple hangover remedy in Russia and Poland). It is sometimes suggested to add honey to the solution.
  12. Instant chicken or vegetable soup provides salt, proteins and electrolytes which help soften hangover symptoms. It also adds liquid to your system.
  13. Taking ibuprofen before sleeping can supposedly reduce hangover effects dramatically; however, mixing ibuprofen and alcohol can cause stomach irritation and bleeding, and is highly recommended against. The adverse effects of alcohol are amplified when ibuprofen, which also can cause trouble with the liver, is taken with it. In fact, most medicines should not be taken with alcohol, so it is best to consult a medical professional before using this supposed “remedy”.
  14. Sleep. This one’s my favorite. Some people argue that sleep only prolongs the negative effects of alcohol due to slower metabolism while asleep. However, one doesn’t notice the negative effects of the hangover while asleep, which suits me just fine.
  15. Exercise. Exercise can be painful with a hangover, but is usually very effective. It increases blood flow to the entire body, especially the head, and induces sweating, which helps the body purge alcohol. The feeling of lethargy dissipates and there is a strong mental and emotional effect (endorphins) where mood will improve.
  16. Cysteine, which is available as the over-the-counter supplement N-acetylcysteine (NAC), is known to assist in processing acetaldehyde, best taken while already drinking and/or before going to bed. (Egg yolk is also rich in cysteine, and it is notable that many hangover folk remedies or morning-after breakfasts incorporate eggs. Red-eye anyone?)
  17. “The hair of the dog”. a.k.a. drink more. Well liked and effective, but this is more of a procrastination tactic, as a hangover is basically alcohol withdraw and you’re just prolonging your inebriation.
  18. Midnight feast. This is another fave of yours truly. get stuffed before you go to bed. Almost all foods contain some liquid and nutrients. (Even if it’s Taco Hell, a favorite of the drunximus outlateicus.)
  19. Tag team your drinks with water. I’m not kidding. if you’re getting a drink at the bar order an ice water with it. As soon as the bar keep brings you your drinks chug the water, set the empty glass on the bar and walk off with your drink.
  20. Stick 13 pins into the cork of the offending bottle. Hey, it works for Haitians.

Friday, December 29, 2006

11 Ways to Improve Clarity and Start Getting Results

Once you have found your purpose in life, you will have more than enough to do in never enough time. Here are some ways to make your experience even more joyous:

1. List the top three objectives of your current endeavour. To do this, weigh the most important goals and assign them relative importances. You obviously have to decide which ones are not in the top three. Can you see where this is going? No two things are equally important.

2. Be sure and confident about what you are doing and why and pursue exactly one project, single-mindedly to the end, until completion. This means you have to make decisions. Do not stand in your own way. Concentrate all your efforts and energy on one target at a time. Read more

3. Be able to present a written list, at any time, with your top priorities. Practice and pretend to be pitching your services and your goals every day.

4. Define your #1 goal, its #1 project and its respective #1 task and start working on it, once you understand that this is the only thing there is, right now.

5. Do not worry about the future. Stop worrying altogether. Apply your rage to the present moment. Transform rage into vigor. Do not fight the future and do not fight in the future. Be clear about the present, about this very moment.

6. Your rewards are nothing to worry about either, they will come to you when their time has arrived -- worrying will only delay them and prevent you from receiving what you deserve.

7. Realize that you do not have to suffer to achieve what you want. You decide whether suffering is part of your experience or not.

8. Drop any goal that isn't worth pursuing anymore; do not let your countless started, semi-finished, and never followed-up upon projects divert your focus. They are worth nothing and only add to your sense of failure. Get rid of the clutter.

9. Set up a hierachy of time and desire. You cannot have everything you dream of immediately. Even if you skip sleep and eating, you are not going to accelerate the pace with which your dreams are made real.

10. Set yourself up for success by accepting what you have, as the ground in which to plant the seeds. Do not resist the situation you're in for you set up your future failure as long as you fail to accept the present.

11.Do not break down and destroy your previous achievements in order to follow a new idea. Recognize the foundations that are laid out for you and your creation. Build on top of what you have -- whatever that may be.

There is another way that runs parallel: see and set your goals as plans to improve your current experience of the present, whatever their outcome may be, regardless of the time it takes to successfully complete them, if they are ever going to be completed, that is.

13 ways to better sleep

This looks like a useful resource for people who’re having trouble sleeping. It includes some educational hand-waving, tips on finding out why you aren’t sleeping, plus cautions on the usual outboard sleep solutions (from the environmental to the pharmaceutical).

  1. Here’s their long-term, sustainable tips for developing better sleep hygiene:
  2. Wind down prior to bedtime
  3. Do not smoke (nicotine is a stimulant) or consume caffeine
  4. Try warm milk or a light snack before bed (if this doesn’t interfere with another treatment you are using)
  5. Exercise daily, but not right before bedtime
  6. Take a warm bath, but not right before bedtime
  7. Keep a regular bedtime and rising time
  8. Get in the habit of going to bed when you are sleepy and sleeping where you sleep best
  9. Reserve your bed for sleeping only
  10. Don’t have any clocks visible to you
  11. Reduce the amount of time you allow yourself to sleep until you fall asleep easily (your health care provider can help with this form of “sleep restriction therapy”
  12. Schedule worry time during the day and put worries out of your head when it is time to sleep; you can write them down on 3×5 cards, and then let go of them
  13. Get up if you have not fallen asleep in 15 minutes and practice a relaxing activity (e.g. handwork, reading a boring book) until you feel sleepy

Personally, I cast aside their hand-wringy warnings last night and treated myself to a cocktail of Melatonin and Valerian; slept like a lamb, I tells ya. Now on to cutting out tobacco, alcohol, caffeine, clock-watching, and worry. Yep. Need to get right on that.

What works for you? How do you beat insomnia?


10 Ways To Save Money On Your Electricity Bill

Saving your hard earned cash on your next electricity bill just got easier than you ever imagined. In this article, I have compiled the a list of the top 10 tips to help navigate you on your campaign to save money and knock your electricity bill down. Along with each tip you will see the possible energy savings you can potentially expect to receive.

In addition to conserving your money, you will be making your house more enjoyable, and you will be helping to preserve the enviroment and your surroundings. Read more

6 Ways To Boost Your Mental Acuity At Work

Whether you’re having trouble concentrating at work or you just need an extra mental kick to make it through your finals, there are some easy tricks that can improve your memory, concentration and focus.

It doesn’t matter how brainy you are or how much education you’ve had, if you combine some of these “brain fixes” you’ll have boosted your brainpower in no time.

So, here are six ways to flex your grey matter and get the best out of your brain cells:

1. You are what you eat, and that includes your brain

Studies from Switzerland, Hawaii and Boston, Massachusetts, support the memory and cognitive benefits of a diet rich in antioxidants (vitamins C, E and beta carotene) and B vitamins. Read more

5 Ways To Become a Job-Search

According to current Department of Labor statistics, today’s college graduates will, on average, have 8 to 10 jobs and as many as 3 careers in their lifetime. In addition, in today’s job market with downsizing, rightsizing, layoffs, mergers and acquisitions, etc. your job skills and job-hunting skills need to be constantly updated and refined.
The job market is getting tougher and your competition is getting smarter. That’s why you need to gain every advantage you can. You need to become a Job-Search “Commando”. Commandos commonly use guerilla tactics to win. What I am about to share with you are tactics that have helped me find good jobs over the last 28 years.

Commando Tactic #1 - Problem solvers get jobs!

All companies have problems. Demonstrate that you can solve a company’s problems and the world will beat a path to your door.

What type of issues do companies have?

* Sales are down

* Expenses are up
Read more

5 Ways To Improve Your Adsense Earnings

If webmasters want to monetize their websites, the great way to do it is through Adsense. There are lots of webmasters struggling hard to earn some good money a day through their sites. But then some of the “geniuses” of them are enjoying hundreds of dollars a day from Adsense ads on their websites. What makes these webmasters different from the other kind is that they are different and they think out of the box. Read more

Best 50 hacks for your Life

Do you want to be as productive as many of us, but missed a lot of actions at during the year? Other than subscribing our feed now, I give you a way to catch up with us before 2007 begins. I’ve selected the best 50 life hacks of the year, based on their popularity and contents in different categories. Invest your time - read them. Bookmark this page and mark reading them as one of your new year resolutions. More...

5 Ways to Get More Abundant in 2007

Here are 5 new habits you must "get" in the coming year if you intend to replace your current marketing blueprint with an abundant marketing blueprint.

Get Uncomfortable! - Your wealth, your marketing success, will correspond directly with the size of your marketing mindset. Get in front of an audience and speak, write for an industry publication, start blogging, network with prospects, write personal thank you notes. You can't grow unless you are uncomfortable. Write a book. Start a radio show. Create a podcast. You are so much bigger than you are allowing yourself to be. Reach.

Read more

Get and Give New Skills - Read everything about marketing you put your hands on. (Perhaps starting with Duct Tape Marketing!) Read your direct mail, watch infomercials, read magazines that cover marketing and "this is a big one" look for ways to teach others how to market and promote their businesses. Become known in your industry for your marketing expertise and show others how to do it - how to get the marketing mindset.

Get Bigger Ideas - Tear your products and services apart. Look for ways to approach an industry problem like know one else can or will. Your ideas don't have to really be that big as long as they are world altering. Come up with one idea this year that makes someone say you are nuts - and then go do it.

Get Value - No matter what you offer, it can be better. Heap more and more on your products and services, give stuff that no one expected you to give. Add services over and above what was agreed upon. Makes people talk about how incredible you are.

Get What You're Worth - If you do the above, you can do this. Raise your prices. Choose to work with fewer clients at much higher rates. Sell based on value, not on time. And, refuse to work with clients that don't fully appreciate the value you have to offer. You can make more space in your head to serve your clients when you don't have clients that bring you down.

20 WAYS to become a Leader

A recent woman law school graduate might be surprised to find so few women among the leaders of the firm she just joined. After all, half of her law school classmates were women. And although this law school statistic is often reported as if it represents some dramatic change, the fact is that roughly 40% of law school students have been women since the mid 1980s.

Although there have been small positive changes, for the most part, legal workplaces continue to be sadly lacking in women leadership.

There are several reasons for this, perhaps chief among them, the fact that a "committed lawyer" is defined so that it excludes the majority of women lawyers. If "commitment" is mutually exclusive with pregnancy and motherhood, then the odds of a woman lawyer advancing to a leadership position are slim.

This definition also excludes male lawyers who want to be more than just financial providers for their families. In fact, any lawyer seriously wanting "a life" is at risk of being deleted from the potential- leaders list.

The best chance of changing this systemic obstacle is to tip the gender scales in leadership balance. As more women become leaders in legal organizations, organizational values and definitions are likely to change. The concept of the "ideal lawyer" [1] will broaden to become equally inclusive of women as well as men whose wives handle family matters. The inclusion of men and woman who understand that work and life are not a zero sum game would benefit the profession as well as the individuals practicing it.

As organizations move from mono-cultural clubs to diversity-welcoming institutions, one might expect that the "ideal lawyer" image would also evolve into one that equally includes lawyers of color and those of non-majority sexual orientation.

There is another reason to expect that fostering leadership ability among women lawyers will benefit the careers of these and future women attorneys, as well as the organizations in which they work:

Research on leadership indicates that 50-75% of organizations are currently managed by people sorely lacking in leadership competence [2]. They are hired or promoted based on technical competence, business knowledge and politics - not on leadership skill. Such managers often manage by crisis, are poor communicators, are insensitive to moral issues, are mistrustful, over-controlling and micro-managing, fail to follow through on commitments they've made and are easily excitable and explosive. The result is low morale, alienated employees, and costly attrition. Since the best business outcomes are achieved by satisfied employees, the legal profession can only gain by an increasing focus on the development of attorneys' leadership competencies.

Women lawyers can take the lead in this endeavor. Here are 20 ways to become a leader:


Become the sculptor of your own career and life – not the sculpture. Leaders are authentic – the authors of their own lives. Take responsibility for your professional development. No one has a greater investment in your success and satisfaction than you. Especially as a woman, you cannot depend upon the traditional management structure of your organization to put you on the path to achievement. It's up to you to direct and protect your career and to develop your own potential. You cannot afford to be passive or to accept roles assigned to you. Know what you want and why and be prepared to take action to make it happen.


Work is most meaningful and satisfying when it gives us an opportunity to use our strengths. Leadership is fundamentally about character. Knowing your character strengths enables you to find ways to select work environments and work assignments that allow you to express and develop them. For example, if one of your greatest strengths is loyalty and teamwork, you'll be most effective and satisfied working as a member of a team. If fairness is among your greatest strengths, you'll be frustrated and dissatisfied without an opportunity to work on issues of justice. If you're someone who loves to learn, you'll feel bored and frustrated unless you find ways to master new skills and bodies of knowledge.

It's also important to keep track of your own accomplishments. Unfortunately, legal workplaces are notorious for focusing on mistakes and defeats rather than what people have done well. However, good leaders develop talent by matching peoples' strengths with work tasks. They recognize contributions and celebrate accomplishments.

Start practicing good leadership by keeping a log of your successes. Record even small wins – this is essential for building your own confidence as well as developing a crucial leadership competence.

You can assess your strengths by taking the VIA Strengths Survey at Dr. Martin Seligman, a psychologist known for his research in the areas of helplessness, depression, optimism and positive psychology has developed this website. Since he continues to do research on the instruments on his website, you can take them for free.

The Gallup StrengthsFinder is another way to assess your strengths. You can learn about it at


Leaders are vision directed. A leader creates a compelling vision, is committed to this vision, and inspires others to action by aligning their goals with this vision.

Start developing this leadership competence by creating your own personal vision. Your vision statement is a picture of the future to which you can commit. It expresses your values, the contribution you want to make, and the way you want to live your life.

Without a clear vision, it's easy to be led by the expectations of others. As a professional coach, I can attest to the unhappiness of lawyers who've allowed the demands and approval of others to become their compass. It is heartbreaking to look back on your life with regret.

Your vision statement is your own personal "why." Knowing what you're working toward allows you to plan your professional development as well as to be resilient in the face of obstacles.

If you'd like a format for a personal vision statement, you can email me at with "Vision Statement" in the subject line.


One of the biggest mistakes many attorneys make is to accept a position in an organization with values contrary to their own. This situation leads to misery at worst, and job change at best.

Furthermore, you are much less likely to achieve a position of leadership in an organization with values at odds with your own ethics than you would in an environment that echoed your principles.


Although the legal profession puts a premium on self-reliance, everyone needs guidance, role models and support. Old-style mentoring rarely exists in the 21st century legal workplace. Even if you have an assigned mentor, such "arranged marriages" rarely meet your most important professional development needs. It's especially difficult for women and attorneys of color to find mentors who identify with them or to whom they can look for time-tested strategies that apply to their unique challenges.

Establishing your own personal advisory board enables you to obtain assistance from several people. Each has a unique contribution to make to your career success. This approach also gives you an opportunity to seek needed assistance without over-burdening any one person.

In order to construct an effective personal board of directors you need to assess your learning needs. Identify the skills you need to acquire or improve in order to achieve the career goals you've set for the next year or two. Having identified your knowledge needs, you'll be ready to identify potential advisors. You can get recommendations from others. At the same time, observe people you'd like to emulate or those who have some special expertise in the areas in which you're interested. Look both within as well as outside your current work setting.

The people on your board will change as your learning needs change. Here are a few important tips for developing your advisory board:

Select people whom you trust.
Keep in mind that the alliances you form with your advisors are substantive, strategically important, and meaningful relationships.
Clarify each person's expectations for the relationship. Negotiate how long you expect the relationship to proceed in this form.
Understand what you mentor needs in order for the relationship to be mutually rewarding. For some advisors, helping another attorney succeed is sufficient. Others might feel rewarded by your offers to assist them in their own work.

You'll need to have advisors who serve different functions. The most important of these are:

A Culture Guide

If you're a new attorney, or are new to your current work setting, you'll need an advisor who can help you learn about the organizational culture. This mentor can provide tips on who is powerful, who the key players and decision-makers are, whom to seek out and whom not to cross. This mentor may also suggest committees to join and other avenues to pursue so that you will become more visible.

A Legal Skills Mentor

It's useful to find a mentor with deep knowledge in your area of the law – a senior and successful attorney who can provide candid and constructive feedback about your work. You need to have someone you trust to whom you can turn with substantive questions about your work. Ideally, this would not be someone who will be in a position of evaluating you: you can't hold back if you want to really learn.

A Role Model

It's especially helpful for women attorneys to form alliances with other women lawyers who share their work/life balance values. Ask someone you admire to share her strategies for balancing work and family.

It's particularly helpful to identify leadership role models. Think of the most inspiring leaders in your life and list the attributes that elicited your admiration and respect. Find role models who can advise you about how you can become a leader.

A Good "Connector"

Unless you have a well-established network, it's helpful to know someone who can introduce you to people you'd like to know. As a knowledge worker in today's economy, you simply cannot know everything. Establishing a knowledge network enables you to identify the fastest route to the information you need and the people who can connect you to that information. Whether you're seeking information requested by a client, connections to business development opportunities, or looking for another job, a well-developed network is an essential resource.


It's essential to have someone who will be your champion in the organization. Most likely, this will be someone with whom you practice. The more value you add to the practice of a senior lawyer in your practice group, the more he or she will be invested in retaining you. People who like you, as well as your work, are more likely to be in your corner. It's also necessary that this person be in a secure position in the organization; someone in a tenuous spot is unlikely to feel able to go out on a limb for you.


Excellent work performance is a necessary, although not sufficient condition for leadership. Stay on top of your professional development. Don't wait for your firm or organization to offer a seminar in the skills you want to learn – seek out your own training opportunities.

Keep in mind the difference between excellence and perfection. Maintaining high standards for your work reflects positive striving. On the other hand, being harshly self-critical for the smallest error will undermine your success. Perfectionism easily leads to micro-management and harsh criticism of others, neither of which are effective leadership behaviors.

It's difficult to strive for excellence unless you're doing what you love. People who are committed to what they do – who are strongly interested in their work – are resilient in the face of challenges. Enthusiasm and passion motivate hard work. Genuine interest sustains focused attention.

It's important to know what skills you should be developing as you progress in your career. The ABCNY Report of the Task Force on Lawyers Quality of Life delineates specific training goals for corporate and litigation associates. You can find these at:

Look for Attachment C. For a list of skills against which to assess your progress, you can send an email to me at with "Skills" in the subject line.

The more knowledgeable you are and the better your skills, the more you'll be a resource to others. Expertise builds your reputation as a credible and trusted resource, which is essential for attaining leadership roles.


Whatever you're trying to accomplish, you need to take control of your own destiny and act on your own convictions. To become a leader, you must first learn to lead yourself. Initiative is a fundamental leadership competence. Choose your work – don't let it choose you. Seek out work you like or from which you can learn. If the work you really want isn't coming your way, make a plan to find it. Forge alliances with people both within and outside your organization who can help you work with the kinds of matters and clients you prefer.

Avoid the "tyranny of the in-basket." [3] You need to actively work on your career, not just on your work. Develop a career plan. Identify specific, measurable goals and routes for accomplishing them. Go beyond adapting to whatever comes your way. Proactively select and influence the situation in which you work rather than merely reacting to situations created by others. Work to change yourself and your circumstances for the better.

Leaders create a vision, set goals that embody the vision, inspire action to accomplish the vision, and develop strategic plans which lead to their goals. Start on your path to leadership by leading yourself.


Developing leadership skill requires getting out of your comfort zone. Set "stretch" goals that enable you to develop new skills. Join committees and take a leadership role. This is an opportunity to develop leadership competencies as well as increase your visibility. Many women lawyers have told me that they do their best to fly under the radar. They believe that this demonstrates that they are team players. I disagree. You stand to lose far more by being invisible than you do by taking risks. In order to break through the stereotypes that keep women from achieving positions of leadership, you'll need to appear confident. That means being willing to learn on the job instead of waiting until you know everything before you take on challenges. Ask your advisory board and network to help you fill in knowledge gaps. Present your ideas. Be decisive and to the point. Speak in a convincing manner and make your statements strong and powerful. Claim authorship of your ideas. Don't qualify your statements or apologize for speaking. Be assertive, not aggressive. Manage your emotions when you set limits and make requests. Avoid harsh criticism and always respect the dignity of others. Depersonalize your mistakes. Just because you failed at one thing doesn't make you a failure. View mistakes as learning opportunities. If you become so worried about how you're perceived after you make an error that you never try again, others will conclude that you always make mistakes. But if you attribute your error to insufficient information, you'll learn more and try again. Your track record of successes will outweigh the memory of your small errors. Taking risks builds resilience and self-confidence. The more you stretch yourself and succeed, the more confident you'll feel. This will empower you to strive toward a leadership position.


As "purveyors of hope," [4] leaders must be optimistic. Realistic optimists take control where they can and stop investing energy in things beyond their control. When faced with a setback, optimists don't succumb to feelings of helplessness. They maintain their focus on the larger purpose, finding ways to bounce back and pursue alternative routes to their goal. Optimists see mistakes as learning opportunities, not as catastrophes from which they'll never recover. This enables them to take the kinds of risks necessary for becoming a leader. Optimism is especially difficult for lawyers, since so much of legal work is about anticipating and preventing disaster. But even though pessimism may help you be more effective in practicing law, it will be an obstacle if you think this way about career planning or the rest of your life. You're probably used to thinking that optimism is just a personality characteristic and you either have it or you don't. But, the fact is that research has demonstrated that people can learn to think more optimistically and that these changes are enduring. If you want to learn to be more optimistic, I'd encourage you to read "Learned Optimism" by Martin Seligman, Ph.D. [5].


Find a niche which your organization values and about which you can be passionate. Develop your expertise in this area. If you are the only expert, or one of a few experts in this area, you'll be of considerable value to your firm. This increases your power to lobby for flexibility in your scheduling and opportunities to take on leadership roles.


Focusing on your long-term career goals enables you to minimize the power of any given employer. If your goals are incompatible with those of your organization, or if you can't get the support you need to make your vision a reality, look elsewhere.


Leadership is interpersonal. Effective leadership is fundamentally about how you relate to people. Social intelligence consists of several components:
Self-management People who cannot manage the expression of their own emotions are unlikely to effectively manage others. It's important to develop an awareness of your own feelings and make deliberate choices about how best to use them in any given situation. Managing your emotions keeps them from clouding your perceptions and judgments. Being able to influence how others perceive you and coming across to others in the way you intend require self-awareness and self-regulation. It's essential to have a deep understanding of your own values, motives, strengths and limitations. Though it's not always easy to be honest with yourself, you need to develop this kind of honesty if you want to be interpersonally effective. Realistically appraise yourself without being overly self-critical. Ask others for feedback. The knowledge of how others perceive you is a powerful tool. Monitor yourself; pay attention to your feelings, actions and intentions. Observe the impact of your actions on others. Self-awareness is also critical for empathy since we tend to perceive others through the filter of our own needs, fears, expectations and hopes. When we are aware of what we expect to hear or are afraid of hearing, we can get past the filter and hear what's really being communicated.
Social radar Effective leaders can read emotional signals and assess other's emotional states. Your ability to influence others depends upon your skill at sensing their reactions and adjusting your approach accordingly. Practice "active" listening – listening not only to the other person's words but also their nonverbal expressions. Leaders are more persuasive when they can attune their message to their listeners.
Seek Win-Win Solutions to Problems Leaders elicit far more cooperation when they work toward equitable solutions, which all participants can embrace. Be flexibly open to others' points of view and demonstrate your understand of their perspectives. Always try to preserve the dignity of everyone involved in a problem or project. Leadership is about building and empowering teams. Practice creating an atmosphere of collaboration and openness.


Many women attorneys who are excellent advocates for their clients are fearful of advocating for themselves. In our culture, women are socialized to believe that self-promotion is not only unbecoming and aggressive but will also damage their careers. But failing to advocate for yourself can have far-reaching consequences. In the short run, too much modesty feeds into the gender stereotype that women aren't "tough enough." Keep in mind that other people see only a small percentage of our actions. The missing information has to come from the actor herself. Share your knowledge by offering to help others. Broadcast your wins through in-house newsletters. Express your convictions. Self-advocacy is necessary for reaching positions of leadership. At the same time, make sure that you acknowledge and appreciate everyone who contributed to the group effort. Leaders are able to make their employees feel proud of their contributions. They don't need to steel the credit for themselves.


Gender role stereotypes are an obstacle to women achieving leadership in the legal profession. But believing you'll never break the "glass ceiling" is sure to hold you back. Sometimes the only way to get past these stereotypes is to address them directly. Shining a light on unspoken assumptions can enable your listeners to hear and see beyond their expectations. By identifying these assumptions, you're conveying power and insight, which inspire trust.


A leader must communicate her vision in a way that energizes people and galvanizes them toward action. The ability to gain the cooperation and support of others – through negotiation, persuasion and influence - depends upon communication skill, which in turn is essential for leadership. Be aware of gender differences in communication style. (For details, see Issue # 27 of "Beyond the Billable Hour at Essentially, you must take your listener's expectations into account in tailoring your communications. For women, it's especially important to give the other person a reason to listen by addressing a goal your listener wants to achieve. When people feel heard, they're more likely to hear you. When you understand their goals, you can articulate how their aspirations can be aligned with your vision. Although implicit gender role stereotypes foster the belief that mothers cannot be good leaders, the fact is that parenting is excellent training ground for leadership skills. As a parent you learn to plan strategically, negotiate, enlist cooperation and persuade – all of which you can transfer to the workplace.


Research [7] indicates that among the most important characteristics of effective leaders are compassion, nurturance, generosity, altruism and empathy. "Agreeableness" is a social trait and leadership takes place in a social context, so it's not surprising that these characteristics are so important for effective leadership. Women lawyers need to keep this in mind. All too often women are urged to "act like men" in working toward leadership positions. Be encouraged to learn that the most effective leaders demonstrate traits most often attributed to women.


Taking the time to maintain supportive and close connections with others is necessary to attain and sustain the energy and well-being you need to achieve career success. At home, you'll need a partner who will agree to negotiate and share family work with you. Be clear with your significant others that you need their help in order to reach your goals. Being overloaded with family responsibility is as much of an obstacle to women reaching positions of leadership as is the "glass ceiling" at work. You'll also need the support of people you supervise - your support staff, paralegals, junior associates, etc. It's easier to recruit such support if you understand their needs and goals and treat them with compassion and respect. Compassion and encouragement motivate people much more than impatience and harshness. Learn to delegate well. Remember, leaders don't do all the work themselves: They effectively match people to tasks based on knowledge of their subordinates' strengths and aspirations. They are clear about their expectations when giving assignments. But don't allow perfectionism to derail good delegating. If you're not satisfied with the finished product, resist the urge to do it over yourself. Instead, return the work to the person who produced it and make sure that he or she understands your expectations. That way, you won't feel overburdened and you'll help the other person increase their own competence.


Integrity may be the single most important characteristic of competent leadership; it's the sine qua non of a trusted advisor and effective leader. People are willing to be led by someone who follows through – someone they trust. Do what you say you will do. Don't promise to do what you can't. People without integrity may gain power, but they don't truly lead.


Persistence in the face of adversity is one of the cornerstones of resilience. Take responsibility for your own fate. Stay resolute in your values and goals and remain determined and self-disciplined in your efforts to achieve them. Persistence doesn't mean you never feel discouraged. Rather, it means maintaining your focus on the goal in spite of your feelings of discouragement. Like a marathon runner, you keep going because you believe in what you're doing. You simply will not give up. If your goal is to become a leader to help the legal profession become a truly diverse, welcoming and equitable profession, then don't give up. Your leadership is most needed.

Beyond Counterfeit Leadership: How You Can Become a More Authentic Leader


1. Williams, Joan (2000). "Unbending Gender – Why Family and Work Conflict and What to Do About It." New York: Oxford University Press.

2. Hogan, Robert (2003) "Leadership in Organizations." Paper presented at The Second International Positive Psychology Summit, Washington, D.C. October 2-5.

3. Covey, Stephen R. (1989) "The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People." New York: Fireside

4. Bennis, Warren & Goldsmith, Joan (1997). "Learning to Lead." Cambridge, MA: Perseus Books.

5. Seligman, Martin E. P. (1998) "Learned Optimism." New York: Pocket Books.

6. Wickouski, Stephanie, Esq. Personal communication.

7. Judge, Timonthy A. & Bono, Joyce E.( 2000) Five- factor model of personality and transformational leadership. "Journal of Applied Psychology," 85 (5), 751-765.

© Copyright, 1998-2001


Thursday, December 28, 2006

Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Credit Cards

Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Credit Cards

The following tips are basic principles about obtaining and using credit cards that can save you some serious cash and keep you out of debt.

10. Have at Least One Credit Card for Emergencies – While we highly recommend having a rainy day fund for emergencies rather than relying strictly on credit cards, having a credit card with a low interest rate “just incase” is a good idea.

9. Rewards are not so Rewarding

– Rewards can be a good thing, but only if used correctly. Rewards cards typically have a higher interest rate than regular credit cards, with the value of the rewards justifying the extra expense. The rewards are not usually as valuable as you may think. Typically the value of the reward is around 1 cent per dollar charged and often the rewards expire at the end of the year if you don’t use them. If you pay off your balance in full each month and charge a lot they can be worth while, otherwise you’re better off with a non-rewards card.
Read more

Home-Based Business Start-Up: 7 Tips For Lowering Your Fear Factor

Is there something so exclusive about Miami Homes for Sale? Just understand what we would like to say on Miami Homes for Sale.

Let these facts enter in your mind so that you can notice the difference. We desire you to have a look at the material and get an understanding of real estate.

Stop thinking about your start-up fears, and focus on something
more exciting like; free business opportunities, and free advertising.
It ll greatly increase your confidence in being the boss.

All of us who tell the truth will admit to having fears. Many people live their entire lives with one fear or other, but Anne Block, discovered how to side step her fear factor into a home business reality. Read more

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

10 ways to get to sleep quickly

The first step on the road to a good night’s sleep is the ability to get to sleep quickly. Once you have this, the other aspects of a good night’s sleep fall into place fairly readily.

How do you get to sleep quickly then? Here are a number of things to consider when preparing for that ideal slumber.

1. What’s stopping you?
Take a moment to consider the thing (or things) that’s holding you back from getting to sleep quickly. Perhaps you just don’t feel tired when you first climb into bed, or you lie there thinking about things. Maybe you’re hungry. Whatever it is, identifying the cause will help enormously.
2. Awake at a fixed time
Regardless of what time you go to bed, wake up at the same time each day. Naturally there are limits to this - if you’re out partying until 5am, a 5:30 wake-up just isn’t going to happen. But the more regular your rising times are, the better you’ll sleep.

3. Make weekends the same
As far as your sleep routine’s concerned, treat Saturday and Sunday the same as the rest of the week. This means waking up at the same times - no more Sunday lie-ins.

4. Try to avoid a major caffeine hit
I tend to drink several cups (perhaps 5 or 6) of high-caffeine green tea per day. This, however, doesn’t seem to have any negative impact on sleep - although an intense coffee session does. If you like your coffee (and I really can’t blame you for that; I certainly love the stuff), spread it out a bit. No bingeing at the nearest cafe.

5. Exercise at the right times
Regular exercise (no matter what type) can certainly help you sleep, but the timing of your workouts is something to think about. A short session of something moderate will help you sleep, and can be done shortly before bedtime; a longer session (or a more intense one), however, can actually keep you awake for a while. If your schedule permits it, keep these longer/more intense sessions away from your intended sleep times.

6. Avoid slow-digesting foods shortly before bedtime
If your digestive system’s working overtime while you’re trying to get some sleep, it’ll win every time. The simplest thing to do is to hold off on that piece of cheese, spicy foods or anything covered in sugar until after you wake up.

7. Remove distractions from your sleep environment
Get rid of as many items with noise or changing light from your bedroom as possible. TVs, computers and rechargeable devices with flashing lights should all go. If you can’t get rid of them, switch them off when you’re trying to sleep. Minimise distractions.

8. Don’t take your worries to bed
A couple of years ago I discovered that I’d spend an hour or two each night simply lying there thinking, unless I wrote the problems down. A quick to-do list containing the main things on my mind (and the action I planned to take - even if that was ‘not sure what to do’) worked wonders. If you’re in a similar situation (lying there thinking about things each night), try it.

9. Comfort
Comfortable bedding and room temperature make a big difference. Making the bed isn’t just to keep your mum happy. It’ll help you sleep better.

10. Physiological factors
Health conditions such as arthritis, heartburn, menstruation and headaches (and many other things) are known to affect sleep. If you suspect the problem stems from your health, discuss this with your doctor. As some medications have sleeplessness as a side-effect, there are sometimes changes which can be made.

© 1997 - 2006 Scott Bird.

5 Top Ways To Build A Good Credit

1: Open Checking As Well As Saving Account

A good credit holder should give the impression of a financially responsible person. Although the accounts are not directly regarded as credits, the lenders certainly notice them and view them as symbols of stability. Eventually, your account transactions will reveal your responsible nature towards money matters. It shows that you have the “substance” and can save to pay. However, take care not to bounce checks or else it will have the reverse effect. Read more