Saturday, March 31, 2012

5 Ways to Avoid Money Stress


In times of great stress or adversity, it's always best to keep busy, to plow your anger and your energy into something positive. ~ Lee Iacocca

According to the American Psychological Association, money is the main cause of stress in a survey. There are 5 reasons that lead to money stress:

1.       No financial planning:  You always find yourself running short of money when you do not have a budget and not spending within your means. You have to use your credit cards, get a personal loan or dip into your savings account or your emergency fund.  It is stressful that you can’t find the money when you need it the most.

Solution: A personal monthly budget is necessary to live within your means. You just can’t go on spending money as you wish because overspending is leading to debt and bankruptcy if debt is out of control. Plan your spending wisely and challenge yourself to stick to it. The aim is not to overspend and avoid drowning in debt.  

2.       Cannot cope financially: The rising cost of living is eroding your purchasing power and you can’t stretch your every dollar any further. It is stressful when your meager income just can’t cope with the situation.  Being prudent in spending does not seem to work things out.  

Solution:  Getting extra income by doing online business at home or working part-time is what you can do to manage your finance. When your own business is successful you can even do full-time and solve your financial woes once and for all.

3.       In debt: It is stressful when people are knocking on your door and asking for money. You have outstanding grocery bills and other sundry  bills. You miss your HP installments and the interest on your credit cards is snowballing.

Solution: When you are in debt, the most important thing is to get out of it. It requires a lot of self-discipline and will-power. The longer you delay the more interest you will have to pay. Be determined to be debt -free.    

4.       Stuck in a rut: Your job is boring and your present position is getting you nowhere. Your salary is also stagnant. Working life is stressful in such situation.  

Solution: The key is to make changes. Take a bold step and look for something you enjoy doing and go for it. Do not expect thing to get better when you are doing the same thing day in and day out.  The other important thing is to acquire more marketable Skills. You add value to what you can do and increase your earning power.

5.       Financial worries: Worrying too much of your financial future is really stressful. You are thinking about foreclosure of your home and the repossession of your car. You also worry about the security of your job because the economy is gloomy.

Solution: What can you do about the future? It comes only one day at a time. The best thing in life is to do the best you can now with what you have. Get busy, do the right things and hope for the best.  


A big part of financial freedom is having your heart and mind free from worry about the what-ifs of life. ~ Suze Orman 


Friday, March 30, 2012

7 Ways to Get Motivated in the Morning

7 Ways to Get Motivated in the Morning



Morning is an important time of day, because how you spend your morning can often tell you what kind of day you are going to have.
~ Lemony Snicket

Morning is the beginning of a brand new day. The most important thing is to start the day with the right frame of mind and do the right things so that you will stay cheerful and motivated throughout the day.

1.       Plan the night before: You start a new day the night before. You plan ahead what you want to do and how you are going to do it. In this way you are in full control when it is dawn.  The best thing you can do is to read a chapter or listen to classical music before going to bed.

2.       Get up early:  Going to bed early is the only way to wake up early. I knock off at around ten at night and I am up and about by six in the morning when the sky is still dark. I do not need an alarm, I wake up naturally. As an early riser I get the good feeling because I start early and I have not wasted my time.  The best way to motivate yourself is to be an early riser and you will know you are in control of your life.    

3.       Morning rituals: I have a glass of water to hydrate my body after eight hours of sleep. This is followed by stretching and a round of Tai Chi in a cool and quiet atmosphere. This is the best way to create energy and calmness in your body to face yet another challenging day.
 
4.       Psyche yourself up:  The next thing I do is to brush my teeth and wash my face and I tell myself right in front of the mirror that I am the No.1. blogger in Malaysia. It is my way of motivation to create enthusiasm, excitement and energy in the morning.

5.       Breakfast: A healthy breakfast is an essential part of my morning routine. I will not start work without eating. Coffee is my beverage to kick start a new day. Breakfast literally means breaking fast and it is the source of your energy and you can’t start a new day without it. 

6.       Do the most important thing: As a blogger, I will write an article in the morning. It is a good habit and I stick to it.  In the morning, my mind is fresh and it is the best time to be creative and do what matter the most to me. You should do the same so that you know while others are about to get up you have already accomplished a great deal. Isn’t it one effective way to motivate yourself in the morning?

7.       Positive frame of mind:  Think cheerful thoughts, wear a smile and greet people you meet happily. Wear smartly and act confidently. These are some of the delightful ways to get motivated in the morning.           

Over to you, how do you get motivated in the morning? 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

7 Effective Ways to Achieve Your Goals


7 Effective Ways to Achieve Your Goals


People with goals succeed because they know where they're going.
 ~Earl Nightingale 

Do you know where you are going in life? The most important thing is to find out what you want and then go after it wholeheartedly and energetically. Here are the steps that you can take to go on your journey in life purposefully:

1.      Dream: What are the things that motivate you?  What are your aspirations? What would you like to be? What can you do better than others? One of the answers will be your dreams and ambitions in life.

Nothing happens unless first a dream.
~Carl Sandburg

2.      Plan: Write down your goals and plan ahead the small steps to be taken to reach your goals. Do not aim for perfection, or else you may delay taking the first important step.      


3.      Work: Acting promptly and working on it every day with great effort is the way to make your dream come true. It is also about overcoming obstacles and solving problems along the way.   

A dream becomes a goal when action is taken toward its achievement.
~Bo Bennett


4.      Believe: Be confident of achieving your goals and visualizing the outcome of your dream. Believe in yourself that you can get it done because what you can conceive and believe you can achieve.  

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams
~Eleanor Roosevelt


5.      Live: Look at your written goals every day and think about it so that it is always in your mind. When you get up in the morning, look at the mirror and tell yourself about your goals such as “I am a confident man”.     

6.      Measure: Review and check your progress at regular intervals, be flexible and make changes if necessary to avoid stagnation.

7.      Reward: Be excited and get motivated when you are making progress. Work harder when you are doing right. Success is working constantly and persistently over a long time.    

The thrill and satisfaction in life is the daily action to pursue your goals and achieve them bit by bit. Living in the moment and enjoying what you do is the best thing you can do to stay happy. 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

10 Blogging Mistakes to Avoid

10 Blogging Mistakes to Avoid



Blogging, a level playing field, is interesting, challenging and profitable in many ways. Over the years I have leant from many mistakes that I have made and here are 10 important issues to take note:      

1.      Not using attention-grabbing headlines: Words likes secrets, success, effective, free, easy, productive and numbers such as 7 and 10 are eye-catching words to use in your headlines. If your title is not good enough to capture readers’ attention, your valuable content is wasted.

2.      Too many ads: Having too many ads on your page means you are only interested in yourself. Readers are interested in your content not your ads.

3.      Write what you don’t know: if you are not coming from a financial background you do not write about personal finance.  Write what you know so that readers can learn from you and get value from reading your articles.

4.      Teach what you are not good at: If you do not have Google PageRank or Alexa Traffic Rank, you do not tell people how to get better ranking.  When you are not making money, don’t tell others how to make money on the Net.

5.      Not using relevant images: A suitable picture will enhance reading pleasure and convey message for your article. An attractive image will definitely support your content and stimulate interest for readers to read the article.

6.      Avoid distractions: Have the interest of your readers at heart, avoid flashing graphics, Pop-ups, and dark background. These things will turn readers off and get away from your blog quickly.

7.      Not Writing for your readers: You are writing for humans, not for the search engines, so write naturally and not stuffing your content with keywords. Write to express in simple and clear words and not to impress with bombastic words.
 
8.      Not using numbering or bullets points: Using long paragraph with big chunk of text and not highlighting important key words are no-no for writing articles on the Net. The key is to make your article scannable, so that readers will get your message easily and quickly.

9.      No consistent posting: Like managing a business, consistency is the key. Post articles regularly like daily or three times a week. Readers will know what to expect and they will come back for more.

10.  Grammar and spelling errors: Making typo mistakes tells the readers that you do not care much about your work. If you do not, nobody will. 

Please share other blogging mistakes to avoid. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

How I Turned a Blog Post into a Press Release

How I Turned a Blog Post into a Press Release



On Sunday (March 25, 2012) I took out the following article which was newsworthy from among my unpublished articles and submitted it to free-press-release.com:




I did not alter the content as it was suitable to be published as a press release. This was my first attempt at press release:
 
1.   I opened an account with www.free-press-release.com. This site has a Google PageRank of 5 and an Alexa Traffic Rank of around 3000. It is free to open an account. I provided a brief bio and unloaded my image. As soon as I had posted the article I was able to ping it immediately to Facebook. Twitter, StumbleUpon and many other sites.

2.      Clickable link: As I checked my draft, I found out that it did not have a clickable link to my site.  I had to upgrade my free account to that of a Premier account by paying a minimum amount of $20/=. However, for each press release I only need to pay $1/=, therefore I have a balance $19/= to do 19 more press releases with as much as three active  links per press release to my site. Within 12 hours my draft was accepted and it was officially published.

3.       Benefits: For a free account, you are able to check the number of views for your press release, add Technorati tags and distribute via RSS. As a premier account holder you are   able to add active links to your blog, three images and other benefits. My first press release has accumulated  96 117 views.   

I find that press releases can boost the visibility of my site and get wider exposure and awareness. Most important of all I gain high quality PR backlinks and improve my SEO.   

Monday, March 26, 2012

7 Great Ways to Love


7 Great Ways to Love


Love is life. And if you miss love, you miss life.
~Leo Buscaglia

In life it is good to express your affection by saying I love you. However, there are 7 more wonderful ways to show your love:

1.      To respect: There is a Chinese saying (相敬如宾) xiang jing ru bin. It means respect each other like a guest. It is a great way and the right way to treat one another because people, just like you, like to be acknowledged courteously and respectfully.  

2.      To accept: You do not judge others, you accept people as they are. As you know you can’t judge a book by its cover. Get to know the other person better and look for the best in him or her.

3.      To understand: To be interested in another person is to get to understand the other person better. Probe deeper into their background, belief and their ambitions and you will get to know the other with a better frame of mind.

4.      To recognize: To congratulate and to highlight people’s achievement is to recognize their success. Rejoice with them. Don’t get into the negative attitude of getting jealous or bitter.

5.      To care: To care is to be concerned about their well-being. Offer help which you think fit instead for waiting for them to come to you.  Act and people will be delighted to know that you do pay attention to them.

6.      To give: Giving without conditions is pure love. Giving and expecting returns is an investment. Giving for the sake of giving is selfless and the best you can do for others.  

You can give without loving, but you can never love without giving.  ~Author Unknown

7.      To forgive: To love is to forgive and forget. Holding grudges in your heart hurts no one but you. When you truly know the person well, you will understand, forgive and let go. 

Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.  ~Peter Ustinov

It is important to express your love now. You never know how soon is too late. Just do it. 

Saturday, March 24, 2012

5 Benefits of Housekeeping without a Maid


5 Benefits of Housekeeping without a Maid


It is reported in the news that maids from Indonesia will carry out four main household tasks at a minimum salary of RM700 per month in Malaysia. The daily tasks are cooking, housekeeping, washing clothes and ironing. Why not take the opportunity and leave your comfort zone and do some changes at the home front? There are 5 benefits   to carry out the household chores without engaging a maid:

1.       Savings: The monthly amount of RM700/= can be set aside as an emergency fund to meet unexpected expenses.  It is also an effective way to halt the outflow of fund and save on foreign exchange.

2.       Sharing: Sharing is caring. Mother can do the cooking, father can do the dish washing, and children can do the laundry and ironing.  Everyone in the house can take turn to keep the house spick and span.

3.       Self-reliant: It is a great way to survive and learn to be independent. When it is a habit, doing all the tasks will come naturally.

4.       Self-fulfillment: It is an effective way to manage your home and be productive while having to work and earn a living. You get personal satisfaction and happiness in managing time and tasks efficiently and effectively.

5.       Sedentary lifestyle: idling is not a good way of life. Human beings are meant to be active. Doing things at home will keep boredom and anxiety away from your mind. When things are done, you will enjoy more when you take a deserving break.   

A maid is another human being. She is far away from home and she needs support emotionally, spiritually and mentally. Will you be treating her in a dignified way? A maid may be a solution to your household problems. If you do not handle the situation with care, she could also be a source of your family problems in many ways. 

Friday, March 23, 2012

7 Great Ways to Live Your life


7 Great Ways to Live Your life


There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. 
The other is as though everything is a miracle.
~Albert Einstein


The most important thing in life is to take action and do what you want to do, do not wait and regret when you are old because you will not be able to do anything about it. The key is to live life fully every day. Here are the things that you can do so that life can be satisfying, exciting and fulfilling: 

1.      Go after your dreams: Living is making choices. Choose what you like to do and go after it fervently. Life is only meaningful if you live the way you want it. Take the challenge, be confident, be focus, be resilient, be flexible and be persistent. Do not live your life with regrets.    
Just do it.

There are many wonderful things that will never be done if you do not do them.
~Charles D. Gill

2.      Live fully now: Get up early and look forward to each new day with enthusiasm and excitement. Every day is a new day do to something different. The most important thing is to be happy. Take delight in the simple pleasures of daily life. Like what you do and enjoy every moment of it. You can’t go backward or forwards in time. It’s now or never.  

3.      Keep learning: Learning is fun and stimulating. Reading is the most effective way to jolt your mind and enlighten you. You maintain a rich life by learning new things. The best habit is to read a chapter before going to bed. 

4.      Looking after yourself: To live life fully is to be fit and energetic. Exercise every day, eat nutritiously and sleep well. Think happy thoughts and adopt a positive mental attitude. 

5.      Live with gratitude:  Do you know that you are living in abundance? Think of your physically perfect body, your job, your family and what you have got. Be thankful and appreciative of your existence.  Live a simple life and be contented. Your mind will be calm and not disturbed by your worldly wants.

6.      Focus on relationships: Your family is very important in your life. Without it you live in emptiness, though you may be successful in other areas of your life. Be in touch with people who care for you and you care for them. 

7.      Be free: How to be free in life? It means you are financially independent. You are not in debt and you get peace of mind. Manage your personal finance wisely and live within your means.


You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.
~Joe Lewis



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Thursday, March 22, 2012

10 Wise Quotes to Live Your Life

10 Wise Quotes to Live Your Life



How to live your life? Learn from the wisdom of the wise:

1.      Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is bliss, taste it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.

~Mother Teresa

2.      He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.
~
Muhammad Ali

3.      You see, in life, lots of people know what to do, but few people actually do what they know. Knowing is not enough! You must take action.
~
Tony Robbins

4.      One reason so few of us achieve what we truly want is that we never direct our focus; we never concentrate our power. Most people dabble their way through life, never deciding to master anything in particular.
~
Tony Robbins


5.      Once you say you're going to settle for second, that's what happens to you in life.
~
John F. Kennedy

6.      I have learned that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
~
Henry David Thoreau

7.       Learn to enjoy every minute of your life. Be happy now. Don't wait for something outside of yourself to make you happy in the future. Think how really precious is the time you have to spend, whether it's at work or with your family. Every minute should be enjoyed and savored. 
~Earl Nightingale

8.       Live life fully while you're here. Experience everything. Take care of yourself and your friends. Have fun, be crazy, be weird. Go out and screw up! You're going to anyway, so you might as well enjoy the process. Take the opportunity to learn from your mistakes: find the cause of your problem and eliminate it. Don't try to be perfect; just be an excellent example of being human. 
Anthony Robbins

9.       This life is yours. Take the power to choose what you want to do and do it well. Take the power to love what you want in life and love it honestly. Take the power to walk in the forest and be a part of nature. Take the power to control your own life. No one else can do it for you. Take the power to make your life happy. 
Susan Polis Schutz

10.    Slow down and enjoy life. It's not only the scenery you miss by going too fast - you also miss the sense of where you are going and why. 
Eddie Cantor


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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

10 Wise Words to Work Smart

 Work Smart



Working smart is doing the right thing at the right time with the least effort to give you the greatest impact at work.  Here are ten words to help you work smart and be successful at the workplace:

1.      Productive: Productivity is about performance. You are measured by, nothing else, but what you can do and how you execute your work.    Think of efficiency and effectiveness before you start working on a new project. This is the smartest way to get things done.

2.      Skillful: You can’t be productive if you are not knowledgeable. Skills are your powerful weapon to work smart. People respect you for what you can do and how you solve problems at work. Keep learning and be resourceful.

3.      Organized: Advance planning is one of the smartest ways to work. To organize is to prioritize your work and do what is important. To be organized is to work orderly and smartly.

4.      Positive: A positive mental attitude is the right attitude to work. Go to work happily, smile and greet people you meet. Listen with an open mind and be flexible to make changes to work better and smarter.

5.      Passionate: Are you excited about going to work?  Like your work, enjoy what you do and be proud of it. Work with your heart because you are only as good as the effort you put into your work. Cutting corners, slacking off and doing things half-heartedly are not the smart way to work.

Nobody can be successful unless he loves his work.
~ David Sarnoff

6.      Impress: Be presentable. People get to know you by the work you have done. Look after your work to look after your reputation. By the same token, dress smartly. If you do not care much of your appearance, you are sending a message to others that you do not care much about your work. Be smart, dress and work to impress.

7.      Likable: Do not be aloof. Get to know those people around you and be interested in them. People pay attention to you only when you pay attention to them.  It is smart to get more people on your side. Be good to them so that they will talk good things about you in your absence.

8.      Trusted: Trust is a valuable commodity at work. Be smart to gain the trust of other in you. Always promise less and deliver more.  Keeping your promises and meeting deadlines is the way to get others to count on you.

9.      Valued: Getting noticed and appreciated of what you can do is the way to be valued at work. Do not just work quietly.  Attract attention is the smart way to work.

10.  Proactive: it is all about preparedness. Anticipation and getting ready is the way to work smart. It is to avoid panic situation and rushing about to get something done at the last minute. It means it is not urgent to do it but it is important to get it done.

What are the other words that have inspired you to work smart? 

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

7 Social Networking Sites that Drive Traffic to My Blog

Social Networking Sites that Drive Traffic to My Blog



My Alexa Traffic Rank at the moment is around 250000, and I have missed the deadline to reach 200000 by February 29, 2012 within six months by taking part in the Yakezie Challenge. I am working hard now to catch up and hope to be there as soon as possible. Here are the top 7 social networking sites that are helping me to perform better in my Alexa Traffic Rank:   

1.       Pinterest: By far it is the most effective site to generate instant traffic to my site. I only offer popular articles from my collection of posts. If an old popular post is without image, I will insert one so that I can pin it to Pinterest. While I pin one post twice a day, I also pin stories from other sources. I find the response to my pins is encouraging. I also click “like” or “repin” when I find something interesting there.   You can read this article,  7 Ways to Get Noticed at Pinterest  to know how I get things done at Pinterest. The Alexa Traffic Rank of this site is 60.

2.       Facebook: The Alexa Traffic Rank is 2. I have a personal page and a page for my blog. Every day I post quotes, one old popular posts and my new post for the day. I use Pingfm to do the posting for me.     

3.       Google+: Alexa Traffic Rank is 1. I maintain a personal page and a page for my blog. Slowly more and more people have added me or my blog to their circles. Most of them like my quotes which I post twice a day. 

4.       StumbleUpon:  Alexa Traffic Rank is 147. I have to be careful with this site because I was banned once.  I have reentered the site by using a different email address. I don’t post daily. I have to post articles from other sites before posting one of my old popular articles. Response is immediate but not too many.

5.       Myspace: I have only a handful of friends there, but according to my Blogger Stat the traffic from Myspace is terrific. The Alexa Traffic Rank is 159. As usual a mixture of popular quotes, current posts and old popular posts  are sent to Myspace via Pingfm,

6.       Twitter: I do not know the actual traffic but I have more than 1400 followers. On a daily basis I post 2 quotes twice daily.  I also post one old popular article and the latest post as soon as it is live. Its Alexa Traffic Rank is 9. There are retweets and mentions about my tweets , so I think Twitter is working fine for me.    

7.       Plurk: Its Alexa Traffic Rank is 1982. One of the two founders is Alvin Woon from Malaysia. I have more than 100 friends and fans there with Karma of 93.88.


Are you taking advantage of social networking sites to drive traffic to your site? 

Charles Chua C K
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