Friday, November 30, 2007

How do Parents help to make their Children love Books?

Here are a few simple and effective tips:
  1. Choose books that are suitable for reading at their level.
  2. Provide an environment at home conducive for them to read.
  3. Set a timetable for reading and stick to it.
  4. After reading a book, allow your children to share their ideas with others.
  5. With parents' supervision, encourage your children to choose their own reading materials.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Father's Special Ways of Helping his Children to Develop

How does father help his children to develop?
  1. By having fun and playing with his children. Research points out that daddy-style play helps children to gain social and emotional experiences that prepare them for school.
  2. By asking his children to work in the farm or office. It helps to create curiosity and problem-solving skills needed for science and mathematics.
  3. Many experts agree that daddy-style reading makes an academic difference to their children.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Emergency

What do you do when your house is on fire?
You grab"The Bag" and run!
The New York Office of Emergency Management (OEM) calls it the "Go Bag". The Singapore government refers to it as the "Ready Bag".

What do you put into the bag?
  1. Clothing: Shoes, rain coat and a blanket.
  2. Documents: Copies of your IC, passport, birth certificate, driving licence, etc.
  3. Food and water: Bottled water and food such as energy bars.
  4. First aid kit.
  5. Credit and ATM cards and cash in small denominations.
  6. Medication enough for one week's supply.
  7. Extra set of car key and house keys.
  8. Radio and flashlight and extra batteries.
  9. Child care supplies.
  10. Notebook and pen.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Carefree Retirement

To have a carefree retirement you need to be mentally and physically healthy.
By the same token you need to be "healthy" financially. You need to consider the following in order to have a carefree and happy retirement:
  1. Your life-style during your retirement.
  2. Commitments such as children's education and their cost of living.
  3. An adequate amount to cover inflation.
  4. A contingency fund to cover ill health and accident.

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Skills of an Effective Executive

In his classic article "Skills of an Effective Administrator", Robert L. Katz points out that to be a successful executive you need to master the following three skills:
  1. Technical skill: You must be competent in your area of expertise such as accounting, marketing, advertising and many others.
  2. Human skill: You must be able to get along well with your superiors, peers, and your subordinates in order to get things done.
  3. Conceptual skill: You must be able to see the business unit as a whole and that all the departments are interrelated. Changes in one department will affect all other departments in that company.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Healthy Vision

Sight is our most valued sense. Glaucoma and cataract are some of the serious eye problems which affect our daily life. Below are a few steps you can take to ensure healthy vision:
  1. Do not read while lying down.
  2. Do not read under dim lights or glare.
  3. If you read, watch TV or use computer for long stretches of time, take a break and do eye exercise: look at green object far away; look left and right, up and down without moving your head.
  4. If you spend long hours outdoors, wear sunglasses to avoid UV radiation and glare.
  5. Eat red fruit, such as tomato and carrot, which are good to vision.
  6. Eat green vegetables like spinach and kale.
  7. Stop smoking. Smoking impairs the body's circulation, decreasing the flow of the retinal blood vessels.

Friday, November 23, 2007

How do you Motivate your Children?

How do you Motivate your Children?
Psychologists suggest the following principles:
  1. Accept your child truthfully and without conditions. It does not mean that you are accepting his negative behaviour. You accept your child because he is your child. When your child realizes that you have accepted him totally he will show you his true self.
  2. Focus on the positive aspects of your child. This is to help him to build up his confidence.
  3. Concern more about the child's progress along the way and not the results.This will encourage him to try harder as he moves along.
  4. Allow your child to take initiative and be responsible for his action. This is to allow him to learn from experience and grow independently.
  5. Have positive expectation of your child.Your expectation should not go far beyond his capabilities. He will work harder with your support.
  6. Motivation must be based on facts. Highlight to him the areas that he has done well. Teach your child to be self-motivated by appreciating himself for a job well done.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Social Awareness

In one of the schools there are four big Chinese words written on the building. The words are:

Courtesy (Li)
Righteousness (Yi)
Honesty (Lian)
Shame (Chi)

These four words offer guidance for your social conducts:

Courtesy: Respect others; be polite in social interaction.
Righteousness: It is especially true among friends. Stand by your friends when they have problems. Do not desert them.
Honesty: Honesty is the best policy. Be truthful. Do not corrupt others and do not allow yourself to be corrupted.
Shame: Do not do things that bring shame to yourself or your family. Cheating is an example. Commit a crime is another.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

A Happy Family

A happy family is essentially a happy team living and doing things together. Here are some of the contributing factors of a family family:

  • Communication

Always communicate openly and frankly among members to discuss minor and major issues and solve problems. Truthfulness and honesty are necessary for effective communication.

  • Commitment and Appreciation

Family comes first. Family gathering should be given priority. Learn to appreciate the achievements of family members, big or small. Understand and tolerate the uniqueness of each and every family member.

  • Quality Time

Spend time having meals together. Enjoy outdoor activities together and pray together.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Where do you park your savings?

You want to accumulate a sum of money and every month you are putting in more savings into your investment and you don't need the money in the foreseeable future. You can consider the following options:
  1. Savings Accounts: The interest rate is so low that it can't even meet the onslaught of inflation.
  2. Fixed Deposits: Interest rate is higher than savings account. May be it is just enough to cover the inflation rate.
  3. Bond Funds: When interest rate goes down the value of bonds go up and vice versa.
  4. Investment-linked insurance policy: It offers a better return and you are 'forced" to save on a regular basis which is your main aim.
  5. Unit Trusts: Like investment-linked insurance policy it offers a better return. However it is affected by the ups and downs of the stock exchange. It is a very suitable vehicle for regular savers.
  6. Share Market: The return is good. The risk is also high.
  7. Real Estate: It is very good for long-term investment but the initial investment sum is substantial.

Monday, November 19, 2007

How do you measure up to your job?

Use the following 12 criteria to check how valuable you are to your company:
  1. Effectiveness in getting a job done.
  2. Commitment to do the job well.
  3. Desire and ability to improve in skill.
  4. Ability to work in a team.
  5. Effectiveness in time management.
  6. Punctuality.
  7. Eagerness to assist colleagues.
  8. Positivity in attitude towards the company.
  9. Supportiveness towards immediate superior.
  10. Loyalty towards company.
  11. Willingness to sacrifice for company.
  12. Ability to make additional contributions of paramount importance for company.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

The benefits of Exercise

Exercise has tremendous benefits. In the book " The Complete Manual of Fitness and Well-being" published by Reader's Digest, 13 benefits are listed:
  1. Reduces stress and tension, and aids relaxation.
  2. Increase strength and stamina.
  3. Improves sleep.
  4. Aids weight loss and control.
  5. Improves respiratory and cardiovascular systems and reduces the risk of heart and arterial disease.
  6. Helps to relieve depression.
  7. Tones your muscles, which improve your appearance.
  8. Improves your concentration.
  9. Improves your sex life.
  10. Helps to relieve pain, such as backache and menstrual pain.
  11. Increases body flexibility and helps to delay signs of aging,
  12. Improves general health.
  13. Helps you to give up smoking or helps prevent you starting again.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Effective Communication with Children

To promote effective communication with children educationists point out the following principles:

  1. Listen more; talk less.
  2. Think from the children's point of view.
  3. Don't criticize, don't blame.
  4. Provide motivation and support.
  5. Use humour appropriately.
  6. Use words that they can understand at their level.
  7. As they are unable to express themselves fully, observe their body language to get a better understanding of the children.
  8. Create a win-win situation. The purpose of the communication is to get the message across to each other.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Fine Art of Conversation

In his book "The Art of Conversation" by Raymond de Saint-Laurent, he points out that there are two principles of elementary psychology which govern effective conversation:

  1. Every man is convinced of his own importance and desires and hopes that they will be recognized.
  2. Every man is interested chiefly in himself.

When you are guided by the principles and the following rules people will be delighted to talk to you:

  1. Talk little.
  2. Be a good listener.
  3. Encourage your partner to talk about his pet subject.
  4. Pay discreet compliments.
  5. Be hospitable in spirit.
  6. Use few jokes.
  7. Respect the absent.
  8. Be silent about your self.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Parents' Participation in Children's Education

Here are some simple steps to take so that you can make all the difference in your child's education:

  1. Read together with your child.
  2. Check his homework every night.
  3. Discuss your child's progress with teachers.
  4. Limit TV viewing time.
  5. Always ask your child about his progress in school.
  6. Set a good example by reading newspapers and books while your child is doing his homework.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Financial Planning

In the book "The Moneysense Guide to Planning your Family's Financial Future" produced by Insurance and Financial Practitioners Association of Singapore and Life Insurance Association, six areas of financial planning are highlighted:
  1. Cash Flow Management: Allocate your income to meet expenses, savings and other commitments.
  2. Risk Management: To have sufficient insurance to cover accidental death, disablement and illness.
  3. Investment Planning: Manage your portfolio wisely to allow your wealth to grow.
  4. Retirement Planning: Building sufficient wealth during working years so that you can retire independently.
  5. Tax Planning: Take advantage of tax benefits and incentive to reduce your tax liabilities.
  6. Estate Planning: To allow minimum tax and hassle-free transfer of your estate to your beneficiaries.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Personal Development

How do you keep yourself up-to-date in your current job? Here are a few suggestions:
  1. Take evening, home-study or other courses.
  2. Join your trade or professional association.
  3. Read publication on your field and business books on management.
  4. Look for ways to improve your performance.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

The Signs and Symptoms of Cancer

Recently two of my friends died. They were all died of cancer. Their signs and symptoms match with those mentioned in the book "The Reader's Digest Family Guide to Alternative Medicine". However, these symptoms may also indicate non-cancerous conditions. Identify the cause and have it treated quickly:
  1. Persistent coughing; coughing up blood.
  2. Skin sore (ulcers) that do not heal.
  3. Blood in the urine or faeces.
  4. Persisting changes in bowel habits.
  5. Lump or puckered area in a breast.
  6. Blood-stained vaginal discharge.
  7. Vaginal bleeding between periods, after intercourse or after the menopause.
  8. Lump in the neck.
  9. Unexplained weight loss.
  10. Indigestion with no known cause.
  11. Persistent tiredness for no reason.

What were their symptoms? One of them had persistent coughing and the other one had a lump in the neck.

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Psychological Needs of Children

The Psychological Needs of Children

To understand and to stimulate the growth of children you need to understand the psychological needs of children:

  1. The need to be noticed: If you don't pay attention to your child he will behave negatively to attract your attention.
  2. The need to be accepted: Accept your child totally and without conditions.
  3. The need to be respected: Self-respect and respect by others boost the confidence of the child.
  4. The need to belong: The need to be among one of the group, Non-acceptance will affect his healthy development.
  5. The need to be dependent: As a child, he needs the care and love of his parents for a normal growth.
  6. The need to achieve: The need to overcome obstacles and complete difficult tasks.
  7. The need to have friends: The need to be around with others

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Among Friends

You hope to have friends, real friends. Friends that care, sympathize and understand you. Buddha points out that someone who has the following traits will be able to have strong ties with his friends:
  1. Generous
  2. Polite
  3. Helpful
  4. Friendly
  5. Truthful

Among other things a true friend is someone who

  1. Protects you when you are in danger
  2. Does not desert you when you have troubles
  3. Respects your family members

A friend in need is a friend indeed

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Protect your Children on the Internet

The rules to keep your child safe apply in all situations including the Internet:

1. Beware and check your child's online activities.
2. Inform your child not to provide personal information such as home address, telephone number or school name online.
3. Highlight to your child that the person he is talking to may not be who he claims to be.
4. Never allow your child to arrange for a face-to-face meeting with anyone without your permission.
5. Set rules at home for the use of computer.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Wealth Preservation

According to Patricia M Stewart, head of the Investment Advisory group at JPMorgan Private Bank's Wealth Advice Lab, a spending rate of 3% to 4% is likely to preserve wealth. Is is assumed that an equity compound return of 7% to 8% in the next 7 to 15 years is reasonable. Let's say you have a portfolio worth $500,000, you withdraw 3% ($15,000) and you receive a return of 7% ($35,000) you still end up with $20,000 extra. The extra amount allows your wealth to grow with inflation factoring in.

Written Communication

The following points will help you to put across your message more effectively:

1. Before you write you must be very clear about the subject matter or else your message will be misunderstood.
2. Start with the main point as soon as possible
3. Use short sentences and short paragraphs as if you were taking.
4. Once you get the idea across do not add more detail. Your readers are busy people like you.
5. When you have a long report summarize the gist of the report at the beginning to allow the readers to have a quick idea of what you are driving at.

The whole idea is to write briefly, clearly and accurately.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

The Longevity Formula

1. Health: Diet and exercise
2. Forgiveness: Learn to forgive
3. Three things to forget: Age, grievances, worries
4. Four things to have: A house of your own, career, partner and friends
5. Five things to be happy with: What you have,a happy family, able to indulge in personal interests, helping others and travelling

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Intelligence

According to Dr. Howard Gardner of the Harvard University, there are seven types of intelligence:

1. Linguistic Intelligence
2. Mathematical/Logical Intelligence
3. Musical Intelligence
4. Visual/Special Intelligence
5. Physical Intelligence
6. Interpersonal Intelligence
7. Intrapersonal intelligence

You must possess strong linguistic and mathematical/logical intelligence in order to get good result in your examination.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Deliver Your Promises

In my last article I mentioned that you must keep your promises in order to maintain a superior relationship with others. Here are some tips to help you to keep your promises:

1. Do not promise if you do not intend to deliver but just to please someone.
2. Record all the promises in your "things to do list" so that you can review them daily and carry out the promises.
3. Inform the other person if you cannot deliver due to unforeseen circumstances. This will allow the other person to make alternative arrangement and the goodwill is not damaged.
4. Learn to say no and do not over commit yourself.
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