Anything Under the Sun
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Lets get creative
For those who would like to know about more games that ignite creativity in your child, check out my other blog :Games and Activities to Ignite the Creative Spark in your child!
I came across this article on Creativity which I found interesting and useful. So here it is for your reading pleasure.
A Quick Course in Creativity
This quick course in creativity is designed to give you a platform to stand on as we look at the various ways you can handle home, social and workplace situations, job-search details and career-path decisions. Let's examine what creativity might look like.
Here are some of the ways in which creativity expresses itself. Perhaps the creative idea is one that mixes and matches items or ideas that haven't been combined in just this way before. A wonderful example of this comes from Anita Roddick, who founded the Body Shop, a chain of personal care products and stores. She combined the need to help underdeveloped countries earn income with the need to avoid destroying their resources and environment. She built her business by using natural products produced by these countries.
Or, perhaps the same item could be used in a different way. Which came first, the ballpoint pen or roll-on deodorant? Both use the same idea -- a rolling ball that applies liquid to a surface.
Perhaps you can take a new approach that works. This was the case, for instance, with Arm & Hammer Baking Soda when it was discovered that putting an open box into the refrigerator would soak up odors.
Finally, you might use your creative powers to develop special mastery in areas that can contribute to workplace effectiveness. For example, you might try opening yourself to new ways of experiencing life, increasing flexibility and open-mindedness. There are lots of ways in which creativity can be fostered to produce really great outcomes. And all it takes is practice. We all have the abilities...what we need to develop are the skills, the methods, the focus.
OK, now it's time to examine the process of creativity itself. There are five steps involved.
· First, there's PREPARATION. By this I mean that all knowledge contributes to creativity. No matter what you read or see or hear, it might become a part of a brilliant, new idea. Truly creative people are always hungry for new knowledge and information, even on seemingly unrelated subjects.
· The second step is INCUBATION. When a situation or project needs a shot of creativity, the real job is to get to know every intimate detail of the subject at hand, then to put it all into the very back of your brain and let it "stew." It's sort of like making bread. You mix all the ingredients, then you put them into the pan and let the dough "rise." The important thing here is that there's no way to force the process. You've got to let go and let it happen.
· The third stage of creativity is ENLIGHTENMENT. This could also be called INSIGHT. It's the moment at which the unconscious and the subconscious minds, having finished working on the problem, present an "AHA!" A "EUREKA." An "I'VE GOT IT!" We've all had this happen. Sometimes it comes in a dream; sometimes it's as simple as suddenly remembering where we left our keys or glasses. But it's a critical part of the process, and those who forgo it are taking a sort of foolish risk -- the risk that creativity won't present itself.
· Next, there's an EVALUATION of what's come up. It's not always the right answer, even though it may be excitingly creative. At this stage, we match imagination to reality and make some decisions about practicality. There's room for imagination and creativity here, though. The question, "Why not?" is vital at this time and at this stage. Consider this to be the moment at which the real risking in life begins.
· And finally, the risk goes on as you begin the IMPLEMENTATION of the ideas your creativity produced. And the cycle can begin again right here with new information, new incubation, new insights, new evaluations and further implemented outcomes.
Now let's look at the ten keys to creativity.
The first step is to stimulate yourself to get the process started. One way to do this is to look back at all the creative things you've done. Every one of us has had really good creative ideas that have produced wonderful outcomes, and remembering those things often puts the wheels in motion. Then?
1. Write a list of creative achievements - and add to it as new memories surface. This can be a valuable tool that can be used time after time when creativity is what you're focusing on. I have such a list, and it grows, usually, by about one item a month.
2. "Can the Can't!" This is just a short and sweet way to say, "Get out of any negative place you're in." If you believe you can't do something, you probably can't. And it's not that you don't have the intelligence, the drive, the resources, or even the track record. It's that you BELIEVE you can't. Your mind is a neutral place. It listens to what you tell it and acts on that information without regard to whether or not it's good for you. So keep yourself aimed in a positive direction.
3. Be willing to bend. I always feel a little subversive when I talk about this key. Why? Because you need to read a couple of extra words into this phrase?the words are: "the rules." You see, I'm not talking about bending to someone else's will or adopting someone else's ideas. I'm talking about bending your rules! This means, pay attention to whether your mind is locked in to a pattern of behaving a certain way because you've been told that this is the way it's done. You see, I was always told that the rules are the rules because they work. What they didn't tell me was that sooner or later, things change. What used to work just fine may not work any more. As soon as that becomes clear, creativity has an opening. What's more, the old saying "If it works, don't fix it" can be a real cop-out. Maybe -- just maybe -- it could work a little better if it were creatively changed. Now, I don't believe the other extreme -- "If it works, break it" ? I don't accept that as an option. But I do think that almost any rule can be re-written to work better so as to fit a changing, dynamic environment, and that's a real creative challenge. So question the rules. See if a different approach, a different method, or a different attitude might yield a different - and better - outcome.
4. De-stress. Creativity and stress just don't fit together. You can't expect your mind to work well when your body is stressed, because they're both part of the same system -- the system called YOU. So take care of stress. Spend time relaxing, meditating, even daydreaming. This simple process can often be a direct route to creative insight. And, since stress is often a consequence of fear, there's a natural "fear" consequence when approaching creativity because the creative process usually takes you outside of your comfort zone. You need to be willing to?
5. Take chances. Move outside of that comfort zone - perhaps in small steps - and be willing to fail or to make a mistake; that is, to have no outcome at all, or an unsatisfactory outcome. That's all part of the creative process. And here I'd like to add that most successful people failed many times on the way to their success. The minute you become willing to fail, you become capable of real success.
6. See mistakes as lessons, not failures. This is particularly interesting, because it's a creative act in itself to break out of the notion that a mistake isn't a failure. I think that our system of schooling builds this into us from a young age. Getting it "RIGHT" is very important...our grades depend on it. So, getting it "WRONG" is the same as "BEING BAD." Get off it. Look at mistakes as object lessons about what doesn't work. Forget about right and wrong.
7. Ask the right questions. We all seem to have a pat set of questions about life. "Why?" seems to be a leader. But you know, it may not make any difference "why" something is, or happens. The right question might be, "What REALLY happened?" And the WAY we ask questions - the languaging - is important. In other words, it's also important to ask questions in the right way. In fact, when you're tempted to ask "why," here's a possibly valuable substitute question. "What is it about ______ that ________. For instance, instead of asking, "Why did you move to Los Angeles?," ask, "What is it about Los Angeles that made you choose to move there?" When you ask someone "Why?," that person sometimes may feel challenged, or negative. "Why did you move to Los Angeles?" might be perceived as questioning the wisdom of the decision. But if you ask, "What is it about Los Angeles that made you choose to move there?" there's no threat...no negativity. And when you ask this kind of question of yourself - "What is it about this idea that appeals to me?" - you'll find yourself opening up channels that wouldn't be available to you by wrestling with a "why" approach.
8. Ask your opposite. What I mean by this is, try a "contrarian approach" to whatever it is you're working on. If it's a business problem, seek out a vendor, a competitor or a customer to interview. You'll get specific perspectives and information you'd never come up with yourself. It's a way of playing devil's advocate that is much more reliable and comprehensive than trying to do it yourself.
9. Study something new each year. The most creative people I know are folks who seem to have an unquenchable need for new knowledge. And they also seem to study a lot of different things. What they tell me is that by learning about unfamiliar subjects they learn new ways of thinking and relating and associating. This gives them broader platforms for decision making. And here's the final key
10. Identify the real problem. Many people ask me, "Why wasn't this the first key?" Are you thinking this, too? Well, observe what the key says...what's the REAL problem. After you've mulled over whatever is challenging you, be prepared to re-evaluate the first premise of what you're working on. Only after you've done all the creative work can you begin to see clearly where you're headed, and that's the time to ask yourself whether you're actually working on the right problem. One of the world's major creative failures, I think, is that too many people fail to take that last, long look, to question the work already done, and to be willing to start over or keep on going, but this time in a new direction. Well, there it is, a short course in creativity - five steps, ten keys. It didn't take long to outline, but it may take you a long time to master it. So please?start now.
Copyright 2002, 2005 Optimum Performance Associates/Paul McNeese. Paul McNeese is CEO of Optimum Performance Associates, a consulting firm specializing in transitional and transformational change for individuals and institutions through publication. His publishing company, OPA Publishing, is an advocacy for self-publishing authors of informational, instructional, inspirational and insightful nonfiction. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Websites: http://www.opapublishing.com and http://www.opapresents.com
Thursday, August 23, 2007
The Joke is on us - the Online Marketers
IF, An Online Internet Marketing Poem
If before you have turned on the coffee, or got your kids fed,
If you are the last one dressed and ready to leave the house, While others in the family get ready, your still moving a mouse.
If you have more friends online, than you do in real life, And hubby refers to you as his cyber wife.
If you cook dinner between web pages and downloads, And your brain is dreaming about java script codes.
If your daughter tells her teacher moms a computeraholic, And you always push, "view source" to see how web pages tic,
If you are still sitting with blood shot eyes in that chair, While the rest of the family is off having fun somewhere,
If the dishes are piled high on the counter and sink, You know you should be doing them, you just got to hit one more link.
If all of the above in life seem too true, Maybe you should rule your computer, instead of letting it rule you!
This poem was first published on my practice site at Yahoo. I recently updated that website page and discovered it had been viewed over 2 million times in the past 3 years. Amazing, and they say poetry doesn't sell. Subscribe to my ezine below to watch an experiment I am doing with a blog on this subject, as well as learning other methods to earn money working from home.
I was no expert when I started, self taught myself all I know. If I can learn how to do this anyone can. Follow along on my journey with me.
By Laurie Meade Copyright 2002-2005 All Rights Reserved.
Dedicated to my 4 children, who I learned are growing to quickly for me to allow the computer to rule me.
Visit my blog for more articles and resources and humor on Internet Marketing. Writer's Resources for Internet Marketing Subscribe to her poetry mailing list at mailto:email@example.com?subject=TRAezapoemif Visit here site at http://lauriemeade.com or her blog at http://lauriemeade.blogspot.com
Success for life
What do we all strive for in life? Success! Success is the ultimate destination. Every one of us has the good intentions and capacity to achieve something but we lack the follow-through. A system is needed to keep us focused on the most important thoughts, ideas, people, actions, and results. Perhaps, a life organizer is what we require.
The winning combo required for achieving breakthroughs in every area of life:
1. Passion for what we do.
2. An unshakeable confidence and faith
3. A "Take-it-easy" attitude
1. Passion for what we do:
First, ask yourself these questions:
What gives me immense satisfaction when I do it? What can I lose myself in for hours? ? What did I want to be when I grew up? ? What do I still dream of being or doing?
Everyone has a passion in them. It may be buried deeply, but it's there. All we have to do is to discover it.
A passion to do something is when we spring out of the bed excited about the day ahead, we lose track of time because we are totally involved in that work, and when we long to make a meaningful contribution to the world.
2. An unshakeable confidence and faith:
We should put our whole trust and confidence in what we do. If we lose faith, it will cause us to deviate in our thoughts and actions and a chaotic condition will prevail.
Negative thoughts like "I'm bound to fail" or "I'm not good enough" or even "I don't deserve to succeed" will only lead to failure. Faith and confidence can be built by preparing ourselves thoroughly in whatever we do, setting reachable goals, and ultimately reward ourselves when we succeed.
Read this quote:
"Don't quit when the tide is lowest, For it's just about to turn; Don't quit over doubts and questions, For there's something you may learn. Don't quit when the night is darkest, For it's just a while till dawn; Don't quit when you've run the farthest, For the race is almost won. Don't quit when the hill is the steepest, For your goal is almost nigh; Don't quit, for you're not a failure Until you fail to try"
3. A take-it-easy attitude:
Abraham Lincoln once asked an audience "How many legs would a lamb have if you called the tail a leg?" When someone volunteered the answer "Five", Lincoln said, "No, the answer is four. Just calling a tail a leg doesn't make it one."
Perception of problems is also important. When we perceive it as a big problem, it becomes one. Tough solutions are the need of the hour when it comes to tackling tough problems but the way to arrive at these solutions is to probe with a calm and composed mind.
The first two ? Passion, unshakeable faith and confidence - are needed to achieve the result and the third ? the "Take-it-easy" attitude is necessary to know how to deal with the result.
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Pearls are classic and elegant, while sterling silver jewelry are trendy and chic. For the sophisticated look, there's nothing like Diamonds.
I came across this article on Sterling Silver Jewelry and how to Care and Clean your Sterling Silver Jewelry. I hope you will find it useful.
Sterling Silver Jewelry Today
Sterling silver jewelry: silver and gemstone rings, sterling silver earrings, bracelets and pendants are some of the hottest fashion accessories today! Sterling silver jewelry is enjoying an unprecedented popularity with today's fashion conscious public. You know how beautifully sterling silver jewelry complements fashionable clothing and how it sparkles and shines; now here is the rest of the story.
Silver has been used since ancient times, but has not survived as well as ancient gold because it tarnished and decomposes. There have been times, however, when silver was "in"; we are going through such a vogue today.
Silver is the most common of the precious metals. Fine silver is pure silver, which is seldom used for jewelry because it is too soft. Sterling silver is 925 parts silver to 75 of copper, the alloy most often used. Silver weighs about half as much as gold, has greater flexibility, but is not as malleable, it has always been less expensive as well. A comparable piece of gold jewelry might cost four or five times that of a piece of sterling silver jewelry.
The current fashion trend toward black clothing has made silver jewelry more popular than ever. Silver likes to be worn; it stays cleaner & shinier through movement and friction. So sterling silver is a perfect accessory for today's fast paced lifestyles. Much like gold, sterling silver needs to be cleaned.
Care and Cleaning of your Sterling Silver Jewelry
1.) For daily cleaning it is recommended to use a simple jewelry polishing cloth that is impregnated with special jewelry cleaner. These are widely available and are very easy to use. Store your cloth in a plastic zip-lock bag, and keeping your jewelry drawer or armoire. It is a good idea to have one cleaning cloth for gold and one for silver.
2.) For a slightly more "in-depth" cleaning you may want to use a liquid jewelry cleaner.
3.) For cleaning badly tarnished silver, here's a neat little trick
a) Cover the inside bottom of a heatproof glass dish on bowl with a piece of aluminum foil, shiny side up.
b) Place the tarnished silver in the bottom of the dish, contacting the aluminum foil.
c) Add 1 heaping tablespoon of baking soda, and then slowly pour boiling water to cover the piece. The tarnish will gradually collect on the aluminum foil.
d) Remove your silver, rinse thoroughly, and polish.
Here are Some Tips for Greater Enjoyment of your Sterling Silver Jewelry
1.) Are your silver chains all tied-up in knots? If so, here's a nifty little trick for straightening them out. Dust your chain with a little talcum powder and then try to unknot it. If the knot is stubborn, place a small drop of baby oil on a sheet of wax paper. Lay the knot in the oil and work it out with two pins; then clean the chain as instructed below.
2.) Always apply make-up, perfumes, oils or colognes before you put on your jewelry.
We hope you have enjoyed this special report. Please feel free to share it with your friends!
For more information on jewelry and gemstones, we cordially invite you to visit http://www.morninglightjewelry.com to pick up your FREE copy of "How To Buy Jewelry And Gemstones Without Being Ripped Off." This concise, informative special report reveals almost everything you ever wanted to know about jewelry and gemstones, but were afraid to ask. Get your FREE report at http://www.morninglightjewelry.com