Exceptional People Magazine - July/August 2009 Issue
Living well, changing lives and fulfilling dreams by inspiring people to discover and live their life’s purpose. Recognizing people for their outstanding contributions to society, their personal triumphs and successes.
July-August 2009 CONTENTS Extraordinary Profiles 3 Cover Story: Ivan Rusilko -- Mr. U.S.A. - Multi-talented, Driven and Compassionate Lieutenant Colonel David Younce - No Sacrifice is Greater Judy Kendall - Giving Zambian Orphans a New Life Alastair Galpin - Breaking World Records Ray Buchanan - Ending World Hunger: A Personal Approach Career 44 45 Surviving Job Loss Surviving Job Loss, Pt. 2 9 14 18 23 Family and Relationships 47 6 Must-Tell Messages to Prepare Kids for Your Divorce Emotional Intimacy 48 Health & Fitness 31 33 Reclaiming Your Focus Take Control of Your Metabolism Inspiration 51 52 Don't Give Up When Obstacles Rise Up Before You 7 Ways to Boost Your SelfEsteem Money 36 Talking to Your Adult Children About Important Financial Issues When a Will is Ripe for Revision Food 53 Recipes from Chef Sean Thomas 37 The Lighter Side 57 The Art of Selective Procrastination Business 40 41 Minding My Business � Cr�meMagnolia Mission Am I Self-Employed Material? - What It Takes to Run Your Own Business Take time to enjoy the beauty that life has to offer. S O T V O E R R Y C Extraordinary Profiles that gorgeous, rugged look, is a smart young man with talent, skills, compassion, and lot's of energy and drive. Oh, and there's a lot of muscle too. He's Ivan Rusilko, Mr. U.S.A 2008. Let's face it, in the eyes of most young ladies today, he's a "hunk". Last, but certainly not least, he loves helping people. What more can you ask for in a gentleman? He's an intelligent young man who is grounded, levelheaded and knows what he wants. Ivan Rusilko is living his passion and setting a standard for living life to it fullest. He has set his sights on specific goals and he continues to accomplish them. Ivan knows what it means to be ambitious and passionately lives out his dreams everyday. Despite the negativity that often comes with fame, Ivan remains focused and grounded in an industry that can sometimes make life very complex. At age 25, he has only begun to scratch the surface of his potential to do great things. As a young kid growing up in Western Pennsylvania Ivan probably had no idea that he would attract the fame that he has. Living a simple life and working hard has given him a great perspective on life � take nothing for granted. Working on a farm, milking cows, bailing hay and shoveling manure taught him how to appreciate all that he has earned. "This is why I love doing various charitable events and giving back in any form possible because it keeps me grounded," says Ivan. With all the fame he has garnered, Ivan still remains the same, sincere and compassionate. His great attitude about life and his commitment to helping others makes him destined for long-term success and he will have a positive impact on many young people as well as adults as he continues his journey of fulfilling his dreams and touching people's lives in unique ways. Underneath July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 3 people Extraordinary Profiles From Mexico, to the U.K. and other countries around the world, Ivan not only promotes the title of Mr. U.S.A. but his desire to help people succeed has inspired him to reach out to those less fortunate through charitable organizations such as the Special Olympics. He is also a member of the Georgetown University Legacy Society and University of Florida President's Council, The Radiology Society of North America and several other organizations. One of Ivan's current aspirations includes earning a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree. He is also a personal trainer, a Certified Sports Nutritionist, a model and the list goes on. America, keep an eye on Ivan Rusilko. He's on the move and is bound for new heights. Ivan was recently interviewed by the Editor-in-Chief of Exceptional People Magazine and shared his thoughts on life, his role as Mr. U.S.A., as well as his dreams and what it's like to live a famous lifestyle from a simple perspective. Monica: Tell me a little about Ivan Rusilko. Who is the man behind all of the exciting things you love to do? What was life like growing up? Ivan: Well, Ivan Rusilko is more of a consortium of varying influences pieced together into this current entity. In a nutshell, I am a very down-to-earth guy who grew up in Western Pennsylvania playing hockey, hunting and fishing, studying, and having fun the simple way! Currently, I am doing these same things but on a much grander scale. Playing hockey morphed into playing the field. Hunting and fishing turned into networking and interviewing. Studying stayed the same but I changed subjects! And having fun became having even more fun the complex way! I'm one of the simplest of people you can meet in the most complex of worlds... the Entertainment Industry where nothing makes sense! Monica: You were named Mister USA in 2008. What kind of training did you do to achieve this goal? 4 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 people Extraordinary Profiles an active lifestyle, so many different careers, but yet stay grounded and focused and do all of them well? Ivan: Discovering how I, as an individual, approach a new task is critical in my being successfully involved with so many things from playing the guitar to painting and photography plus all the other things being Mister USA involves. In every field of which I am a part, I determine what's the best way to learn the particular material, remember it, and use it effectively so when I need to improve my skills in that subject, it is as "easy as apple pie!" I learn one thing a day WELL which means that in one year I have learned 365 new and different pieces of information I didn't have before! Monica: What additional goals do you have as far as the field of medicine? Ivan: Going into the competition last August was more of a story I felt needed to be checked off my "list" than an actual hope or dream. My training and preparation consisted of the normal activities I indulge in everyday. I love to exercise and stay in shape so no new or unique training regimens were implemented. I was already immersed in the modeling field before the competition was even a thought, so the interviewing and posing were second nature. Finally, the attitude and mentality towards the event was as relaxed as it could be. My mother and I made the journey from Pittsburgh to Boston with nothing more than the aspirations for a good time, which was accomplished and then some! Monica: You are a man of many talents and skills, including a personal trainer, a sports nutritionist and a model. You're also studying to become a Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.). How do you manage such Ivan: Providing to as many people as possible the knowledge to make informed decisions on their own regarding not only health and well being but life in general. I want to teach people to catch, clean, and cook fish and not just serve them smoked salmon. This is why becoming a Doctor of Osteopathy is so stimulating. Osteopaths not only provide medical care such as surgery and medications but they also believe in the prevention of disease through lifestyle changes, July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 5 people Extraordinary Profiles using knowledge as one of the most important preventative measures. Don't just chop the problem down, kill the root!!! Monica: What led you to some of the decisions you've made career-wise? Ivan: Sports and school have dictated where I currently am. The education I received from the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine provided me with the proper know-how to correctly tackle health and fitness goals as well as taught me how to manage my time wisely. Various sports like hockey and bodybuilding gave me the raw knowledge needed to get into and stay in shape, which lead to my modeling career and eventually becoming Mister USA 2008! Decisions have been made along the way, some good, some bad, but I wouldn't change any of them because I am "digging" where I am at this exact moment in time, satisfied! Monica: Your schedule keeps you constantly on the go. How do you balance work, family and your personal life? Ivan: Family first, second, and third and then work fourth followed by family again at fifth! It's that simple. Monica: From all the talents and skills you possess, which one has brought you the most joy and satisfaction and why? Ivan: Teaching! Whether it is fitness routines, proper diet, the basics of wine making, or Tom Petty's "Free Falling" on the guitar, being able to pass knowledge along is the most rewarding feeling and I would like to think that I am doing a "Bang a Rang" job at it. Monica: What do you enjoy most about being involved with fitness and helping others accomplish their fitness goals? Ivan: Fitness is something that anyone can improve on no matter what his or her current situation is. I love being able to help people change their current selfperception by using easy diet and exercise modifications to form a perception that they are proud of. It's your body and you drive it everyday so why truck around in a 6 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 people Monica: You have achieved so much at such a young age. From your perspective, what do you consider to be the main ingredients for achieving success? Ivan: A famous hockey player once said, "You won't score on 100% of the shots you don't take!" I take as many shots as I can and if one percent of them go in, then I've had a successful go at it. Monica: What does success mean to you? Ivan: Ending your day with a smile, sense of satisfaction, and a great glass of wine. Monica: I'm sure you consider everything you do to be fun but what are some things you do to relax outside of work? Pinto when you can cruise around in a Ferrari! Monica: I'm sure you've been an inspiration to many young people. Who has been the inspirational force in your life? Ivan: Well depending on what aspect of my life you are referring to these next couple of people are the primary reason for who I am today, thank you all so much!!! Physically and mentally: Big Dave (my Pap) who was critical in helping me understand the importance of exercise, diet, and "smartness," being a former bodybuilder and current chiropractor. Spiritually: Suessy (my Mum) who instilled values that allowed me to appreciate and be thankful for both who and where I am today. Career-wise: A great friend more commonly known as "SP2" who saw potential, took a chance, and helped me make the most of it!! Keeping me grounded: Paul and Cat (my Brother and Sister) who love trying to keep me in check. Ivan: I am an avid classic rock guitarist (Floyd/Petty/Young/Skynard) as well as a professional artist and amateur photographer! Everyone needs a release and being able to incorporate your release into an active lifestyle is crucial for personal growth and development! Whenever I get back to good old Western Pennsylvania, I love to partake in all the outdoor opportunities it has to offer. Monica: You have achieved success and fame. How have you been able to handle fame (and all the young ladies) and the temptations that sometimes come with it? Ivan: Nice question! Being recognized and treated a little "extra" special is a trip. Don't get me wrong but using it correctly is the key!! I grew up shoveling manure, bailing hay Extraordinary Profiles and milking cows so all the new and amazing things I have been exposed to are fantastic. But with the background I have, I'd like to think that I am able to appreciate it a little bit more. Fame is like giving a baby a gun...it is something new, different, and mesmerizing but if used in the wrong way it can be a disaster. Oh yeah, young ladies = guilty! Being able to weed through "climbers" versus those who are genuine is a skill! I don't mind using a skill like this one bit! Monica: Have you met that special woman yet? Ivan: Well...I have met many women "on the road" and all of them have been special! There may be one that is above and beyond special for so many reasons and in so many ways but I'm going to go ahead and let that play out to see where it takes me, hopefully somewhere WARM! (I'll add a wink wink nudge nudge here!) July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 7 people Extraordinary Profiles - Molly Dooker Wines - Always making sure my favorite wine was there! - Dr. Harnois - For the Pearly Whites! http://www.yourlifesmiles.com/ - Websites 2 Go - For the hard work and killer website. Thanks Denise. - Richard Squire - For the doing a fantastic job! - Rowina - For all the Effort (http:// www.thelyall.com/) A quote that inspires Ivan: "Yesterdays are over my shoulder so I can't look back for too long, there's just too much to see waiting in front of me and I know that I just can't go wrong!" � Jimmy Buffet As a person who has and continues to achieve greatness, Ivan believes in stepping out of his comfort zone and trying new things. When was the last time you stepped out of your comfort zone? You might be amazed at what you can accomplish. Monica: What have you found most rewarding about being Mister USA? Ivan: Being able to experience things I never thought conceivable coming from such a small town has been great. Checking "To Do's" off of my life's list 30 years prior to what I thought was conceivable is even better. Meeting some of the most fantastic people from every part of the world that have influenced me in every way from life to love and back again is the best! But so far the most fantastic thing has been being able to give something back and have it make a difference. I am currently associated with the Jigsaw Foundation at the Royal Children's' Hospital in Melbourne, Australia, which is a foundation for children with facial abnormalities. These children are able to receive care and change not only the way the world views them but more importantly how they view the world. Being involved in modeling, one can appreciate how critical self-perception and esteem are and being able to give the gift of change to these kids is amazing on so many levels. Monica: What does the future hold for Ivan Rusilko? Ivan: The future can be scary for some and unsure for others but for me it is the most invigorating thing going. I could be saving lives in Harlem or "yucking it up" on the beaches of Australia down the road but I do know one thing, Ivan Rusilko is going to enjoy every moment of his winding road and hopefully at the end of it, make the world a little bit better for those around him! God Bless and Stay Tuned... Adios! Monica: Is there any person or organization that has made this ride extra special? Ivan: Definitely! In addition to the ones mentioned above: - LECOM - Allowing me to partake in this life changing experience 8 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 Lieutenant Colonel David Younce Proudly Serving His Country No Sacrifice is Greater people Extraordinary Profiles He was born into a military family so one would think he might simply follow in their footsteps. Well he did, but not for the reasons you might think. As a young kid, David Younce loved the Army and had a strong desire to serve his country. That's why he decided to join the Army. He began his career as an MP in the Army National Guard. He went on active duty and his life as a full-time infantryman began in 1984. From there he would serve in various parts of the world, including Germany and Kuwait. But there was one place that would change Lieutenant Colonel David Younce`s life forever in more ways than he or anyone else could imagine. It was Iraq. David says, "I can tell you that everything I was, everything I knew from my very soul to the very surface of who I am, died over there. It affected me greatly. I came back a very hollow person. When I got back -- obviously it was great being back in America but I lost my wife and I lost my home. I lost everything that I was in the States. Iraq was real simple. You get up, do your job and get some sleep when you can." It would be one of the longest ambush battles that he and members of his unit would ever encounter. And within that time frame, total devastation of life would occur. This unforgettable event played an astounding role in changing David's life and his perspective on life. It's as if he's lost his identity. The journey to recovery has been long and the mental pain he's endured seems everlasting. Younce returned from Iraq in late 2006 and he suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). His home has become his only safe zone, where he feels safe, mentally and physically. "There are so many times the depression and PTSD hit me that I've got to run here before something happens," says Younce. 10 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 people "For some reason I'm mentally attached to this house, I can't explain it, I don't know why, I don't know how it happened. But this is the place where I feel safe. I don't worry about bombs, I don't worry about killings, I don't worry about wanting to kill someone and I don't worry about wanting to kill myself. For here right now, that's the safe zone. There's no other way to explain it." Since returning from Iraq, Younce's perspective on life has taken on a new meaning. He takes one day at a time, doesn't worry about tomorrow and forgets about yesterday. As a matter of fact, he often barely remembers yesterday. Life is an ongoing struggle but he continues to press on, although sometimes when he awakes, he wishes that he hadn't. Younce has been receiving care through the Veterans Administration but the trauma he experienced was so devastating that he realizes only time will heal his wounds. When asked if there was a particular incident in Iraq that caused him to be in his current state, he replied, "There's the killing of people. One thing that I remember quite often is this guy that was taking aim at the gunner behind me who got ambushed. I probably remember it everyday to be honest. It's like a visual that comes into my head like it is right now because I'm speaking of it. I ripped this guy in half with my machine gun, a young kid. I can see his face, probably in his 20s. How many children does that leave? It's those things you think about. How many other people have I killed that were in the distance? You just don't know because you get ambushed and you just rip and tear into anything around that's a threat. How many people did I kill?" Exceptional People Magazine had the honor of speaking with Lieutenant Colonel Younce about his experience in Iraq. EPM: You said that you really wanted to go into the Army. Why were you attracted to the Army more so than any other branch of the military? Younce: That's a really good question. When I was a young kid I was in something called Civil Air Patrol -- an auxiliary of the Air Force. Even though we were part of the Air Force, the Air Force didn't send many recruiters. We were supposed to be a really good source for them to get kids to recruit into the Air Force program. But the Army would send recruiters all the time. They would have all these neat things - posters, toys, just neat things. So when I grew up, it was like the Army is where I'm going because recruiters were always there trying to recruit us and they seemed neat. All I wanted to do was serve my country. I still cry when I hear the National Anthem, whether I'm in military uniform or not. I just love my country that much. EPM: You love it enough to obviously be in the position that you're in now. You're definitely dedicated to serving and protecting your country. Extraordinary Profiles July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 11 people Extraordinary Profiles David: I think about the kids that we lost in their teens and their early 20s. Why them and not me? I'm in my 40s. I've had a pretty good life. I would rather die than one of these kids die. If I could bring one of them back with my own life I would. EPM: Is there any advice, foresight or words of encouragement that you can give young soldiers that are going into the military today? David: I can tell you this, when I was a soldier on active duty, we used to go out and do military police duty and active duty. That involved a lot of what we called back then stupid things, doing things for stupid reasons, going out to the field and staying there for 30 to 45 days. Doing all this Army training just seemed like bull. Train as you would fight. You're going to be so scared you're going know how to fight. That's how we would think about it. I can tell you for absolute 100 percent fact that I would tell soldiers to pay attention to their training. It's not stupid because when you have to use it, it will all come back to you and it will probably save your life. When I hit that first ambush and I was on top of that Humvee with that machine gun, all my infantry training came back to me and it was "train as you would fight". And I can tell you to this day that training helped a lot of people die that we needed to kill and it also saved my life. So the stupid training that we hated all the time, it really does work. EPM: What did you learn from them - the Iraqi people; the citizens? Was there anything that you learned from them, the way they think or things they like to do that's similar to how we live our lives in America? David: I did a lot of things for kids. I used to volunteer my time at the Civil Military Operations Center (CMOC). It's a center where they directly interact with the civilian population, like finding people that are missing. If someone took their car, we would help them find them it. They had a medical clinic that dealt with less complicated issues as well. However, if they're missing an arm or something, they also helped them get the appropriate care. I found the kids to be normal kids. All they want is toys. All they want to do is play. All they want is love. They're a little bit different than us in that they don't get anything, so from our perspective it's like sticking them in a closet for a year and bringing them out and showering them with food, clothes or shoes. Shoes were a big thing. EPM: I'm sure they were very happy to receive those things. David: Extremely happy. CMOC built a playground there for the kids, the same sort of thing we have in America. While there, I never saw seesaws or things we see in grade school but the kids loved it, especially the seesaws. They laugh and have fun like normal kids. 12 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 people EPM: What one good thing did you love about being there and meeting the people while serving your country? In your opinion what improvements could have been made? David: There's one thing I learned, and it's been passed through the ages of different warriors: When you conduct war, you need to conduct war. They (the powers that be) need to make up their minds what we're doing in Afghanistan and Iraq. They keep injecting politics, and soldiers are there for war. A positive thing that I took away is they're just people. They're just normal everyday people that have been raised in different customs, different cultures, different belief systems and different value systems. And if we learn to respect them a little more, if we were in the peace keeping operations, I think it would go a lot smoother. Instead of trying to make Iraqi's accept American democracy, try to help Iraqis achieve what they want. How can we facilitate their Muslim culture and their traditions? I saw that in Berlin when the wall fell. We tried to bring in American democracy and it didn't work there. American democracy worked for Americans in 1776 and it's done very well for us since. Not everyone desires all those freedoms. Not everyone knows what those freedoms are. Lieutenant Colonel David Younce's story is a lesson from which we all can learn something about commitment and serving others. What have you done lately to serve others? Have you made a commitment to someone and failed to follow through? Have you asked yourself why? How much are you willing sacrifice so that someone else might have something they've never had before? As a nation, we should be thankful for the Lieutenant David Younce and all his fellow warriors and heroes. Support those who fight for our freedom. Extraordinary Profiles July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 13 Judy Kendall Giving Zambian Orphans a New Life people Extraordinary Profiles Judy Kendall's commitment to making life better for others is exemplary. Three years ago after witnessing news stories of abandoned orphans in African countries, she made a decision and personal commitment to change her life and make a difference in the lives of those who were helpless and suffering. Without hesitation, she immediately arranged a trip to Zambia to find out what she could do to help. Since then she has committed her life to changing the lives of hundreds of orphans in Zambia and other African countries. As the founder of Anchor of Hope, Judy's leadership of the organization has immensely impacted orphans, HIV-positive babies and children of all ages. She believes that all children should live in an environment that's filled with love and attention and that is what she continues to provide for many children in Zambia. In turn, her life has been enriched through the Zambian culture and its focus on family. When asked how these children impacted her life on a personal and professional level, she replied, "My passion for July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 15 people Extraordinary Profiles Judy: In 2004 I traveled to Southern Africa. I had no idea how my life would be impacted. I saw commercials on TV that depicted terrible conditions for children in Africa, but until you are there, you can't really comprehend the impact that the world's largest pandemic, HIV/AIDS is having on those in Africa. Out of a population of 11 million, 1 million are orphans, mostly due to AIDS and Malaria. Orphanages populate Zambia, like churches populate the U.S. Half of the population is under age 15. Children are raising children � this is what impacted me. Monica: Do you plan to run Anchor of Hope Charities full time? Judy: Someday maybe. But for now I have Anchor of Hope Charities set up to run without administrative costs. I feel strongly in making sure that all our donor funds (100%) are being used to build a dormitory in Kabwe, Zambia. So for now, I will fundraise and plan events in my free time. Monica: What type of programs have you developed to help improve the lives of these wonderful and deserving kids in Zambia? Judy: Last year we laid the foundation for a dormitory to house 24 children. This year we have been able to put up the walls and construct the roof. There is a little left to do, then we will move on to the people in Zambia, especially the children, transcends differently. And it is what I've learned of the Zambian culture that I hope to return to those around me in the states. Their focus is on family. Above all else, family is first. As American's with so many monetary distractions, we sometimes forget this." As founder of the organization, Judy has also had an amazing impact on the lives of the volunteers who support her mission. They've realized how important it is to be a part of something greater than them. During the day Judy is a Project Director at Indiana University School of Medicine. In her spare time she is changing the face of Zambia, one orphan at a time. Imagine what you could do in your spare time. Exceptional People Magazine was thrilled to have an opportunity to speak with Judy Kendall about her mission to create a better life for many of Zambian orphans. Monica: What is the mission and purpose of Anchor of Hope? Judy: In 2006 Anchor of Hope Charities was established to develop health care and educational programs that promote a brighter future for the world's most vulnerable children. Our Values � We believe that all children should be protected and nurtured. � We believe in providing children with a solid foundation for physical, intellectual, and emotional development. � We value enriching experiences that teach critical life skills and lead to independence. � We value young people as leaders and believe that they have real opportunities to contribute in the world. � We believe in children helping other children. � We honor adults who embrace and empower young people to reach beyond their current experiences and realize their dreams. Monica: What was the defining moment or your inspiration for starting the organization? 16 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 people construct the next building � more than likely a school house. Anchor of Hope Charities also received a donation of 50 pairs of children's shoes. When our team of six left for a trip to Lusaka in June 2009 we each be carried shoes in our suitcases! We were also able to send money to a school in Lusaka that is associated with the YWCA. They used our donation to build 10 brand new, large desks! The children are very excited, and expressed their thanks through a video sent to Anchor of Hope Charities. Monica: What impact have the kids had on your life? What have you learned from them? Judy: I have a HUGE crush on a little boy at Anchor Orphanage. He is 7 years old and his name is Ben. Ben's mom and dad both died when he was 1. Since then, he has been living at Anchor Orphanage. On my last visit Ben drew a picture for me of a house, a little boy and a dog. He drew it on the back of a clothing tag, with a pencil about 1 inch long. I now have that picture in my home. He says he is coming to America someday. I'm just happy that this child has a dream, one to inspire and motivate him to succeed in whatever he sets his mind to. Monica: How has the government responded to you and your efforts to make a difference in the lives of the people there? Overall, the Government of Zambia is taking positive steps towards addressing the poverty issues that affect the country, including enhancing educational systems and prioritizing HIV and AIDS prevention methods. The need is just so great. The government is very supportive of what Anchor of Hope Charities is trying to accomplish. I am friends with several members of parliament, one of whom personally donated to our efforts. Unlike what you would expect, members of parliament live in conservative homes and live conservative lives. Monica: What has been the greatest reward for you in serving others? Judy: The greatest reward for the work that I do is seeing the smiling faces of children who dare to dream of becoming doctors, teachers and pastors. My goal is to support the educational efforts in Zambia so these children can reach their dreams. In my mind, it is education that will facilitate breaking the vicious cycle of healthcare challenges and poverty. My goal is to help children be advocates of change. Monica: What advice can you offer other's who might be thinking about starting a non-profit organization? Judy: Don't kid yourself. There will be lots and lots of IRS paperwork! (smile) Monica: What future plans and goals do you have for Anchor of Hope? Judy: We would like to continue our efforts in assisting the children in Africa with their healthcare and educational needs. Monica: What are the requirements for becoming a volunteer with Anchor of Hope? Judy: I am grateful for each and every person who helps us reach our goals in helping the children in Africa. We have had volunteer web designers, marketing folks, physicians, humanitarians, builders, teachers, and many others who have volunteered their time. Monica: What can we do as individuals to help you further your mission and goals for the Anchor for Hope? Judy: You could help us with our "Buy A Block" "Build A School" campaign! We are going to U.S. schools and giving presentations on Africa. Typically we go to middle schools where the children are already learning about Africa. We share our stories and photos � and the children tend to be very engaged and love to listen. At the end of the presentations we ask if Extraordinary Profiles they want to help. Every time the answer has been yes. So, we have them sell "Blocks" for a dollar. They represent the cement blocks we use for building in Zambia. They take the blocks they sell, write the name of the donors on them and put the blocks on a wall in their school. If their school sells the most "Blocks," we put the name of their school on a gold name plate, take it to the school we are building in Africa and place it on the building. The kids love this competition!! So if you could help, it would be to SPREAD THE WORD about Anchor of Hope Charities, and our willingness to give presentations on Africa and about our "Buy-A-Block" "Build A School" Campaign! For more information about Anchor of Hope Charities or the "Buy-A-Block" "Build A School" Campaign visit: http://www.anchorofhopecharities.org. July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 17 Alastair Galpin Breaking World Records to Promote Worthy Causes people Extraordinary Profiles Alastair also has great concern for the environment and how its once pristine condition has been damaged by mankind. He has chosen to do something about it by developing a plan for sustainable housing for some of the poorest nations in the world. After six years of hard work and dedication to the project, he is now working with a team of engineers, business developers and global agencies who believe in his dream to help eliminate the horrific housing conditions that so many of the world's poorest and underprivileged are experiencing. "We are not interested in small solutions; in our sights we have the world's biggest development agencies and my mission is to bring genuine sustainable housing to the forefront. A colossal challenge but one I will not shy away from easily," states Alastair. Alastair shared his life's passion and desire to help others with the Editor-in-Chief of Exceptional People Magazine. Monica: Why is it important that you travel to every nation and country in the world? Alastair: This is simply a personal ambition. It is common for others to feel this way about having babies, getting rich or becoming a top sports player. In my case, I have never felt this type of ambition. Instead, my mind yearns for contact with distant places on earth. Once this fascination gets into one's soul, it essentially directs one's life! That is one reason I am excited about world record-breaking possibilities which arise abroad. Life, to me, is also an intense and valuable field study � I believe the more my mind is exposed to facets of what interest me, the richer being I will become. Travel, especially at the vagabond level, is not to be scorned. I found it an exhilarating and enriching journey of self-fulfillment. One's reason for continually pushing the limits with that sort of journeying may well prove that the lure of drifting is indeed a powerful captivator. Monica: You say you want to live an interesting life. How do you define interesting? Alastair: That's such a subjective question! To me the answer includes aspects of my answer to your first question and the satisfaction of knowing I can bring substantial waves of good through publicizing good causes with world records. In addition, through my sustainable housing company, our team is working towards bringing strong sustainability into communities among the world's poorest urban communities. As our research advances and we are presented with opportunities to state our case to powerful change agencies, it brings me contentment knowing I am able to speak on behalf of many people whose hearts are ready but who are not in a position to defend themselves against the environmental ravages of anthropogenic changes to the earth. There is something special about knowing one's vision of massassistance is gradually turning into a reality, and this emotion is bolstered by support from influential organizations that share the He's a dreamer, an innovator and a humanitarian. Most of us have never broken a world record. For Alastair Galpin, it is his life's passion and mission to break as many records as possible. He has broken more records than you can imagine, but not just for the sake of breaking them. Some may think he's quirky, others may think he's just a little extreme, but there's a distinct reason for everything he does. Alastair uses his love of breaking records to bring exposure to various charities around the world. Some of his recent world records include the most rhinestones on the body (31,680), the most hugs in an hour (624) and the largest bowl of soup (25,000 liters) which fed over 4000 lowincome children and elderly persons in a low socioeconomic area of New Zealand. Alastair says his life's goal is three-fold; 1) to set foot in every nation on earth, 2) to live an interesting life, and 3) to be a good ideal partner when I find her. He's well on his way to accomplishing all of those things. 20 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 people vision of genuine sustainable urban societies. Even if we do not reach our community goals as individuals, a "small snowball correctly set in motion quickly gathers momentum on its own". I believe this and it motivates me. Overall, I'd define `living an interesting life' as putting one's pride aside and wilfully standing up for what one knows has an infinitely deeper meaning: contributing to our planet's environmental and social wellbeing, and aligning with others who do. Monica: You have chosen record breaking as your life's passion. How do you determine what records you want to break? Alastair: When choosing world records, I consider how I can use them to promote good causes. I tend to go for what I like, but sometimes matching the record to the cause takes precedence over my personal choices! In some cases I have to match world records to entire events, such as the African expedition we are planning. This is an environmental awareness expedition, so it is important to embed the event in a suitable world record plan. We are seeking two accomplices and they will add their own personality to the journey, influencing the sorts of world records we attempt. Monica: At what point did record-breaking become your life's purpose or mission? Alastair: Meeting Simon Evans, a big game hunter was a trigger point in my life which planted the record-breaking seed. I made my first world record attempt in Ireland in a planned event which the Prime Minister attended. While working out in the gymnasium on 11 September 2001, a newsflash interrupted television. Thinking it was a fiction movie, I ignored the crumbling twin towers on the screen. But over the following few days, my world record attempt folded as sponsors turned their attention to that situation. Several years later, I immigrated to New Zealand where I was forced to seek employment as a government condition of my immigration. I battled. Upset, I decided I would not let the narrowly focused decisions of others rule my life. I set out to do what I wanted to do, the way I wanted it done. I suspended 1.7 kilograms from my tongue in a feat of defiance against others who did not share my dream, got that Guinness World RecordTM, and the next, and the next. Monica: What is the most unusual, fun endeavor you have ever experienced? Alastair: This would have to be my hitchhiking adventures. On Valentine's Day 1997 I set off from my South African home with a small bag of essentials, a minuscule amount of local cash my mother gave me at the last moment and emergency funds. I didn't have a plan, except that I wanted to see Africa. A pretty na�ve ambition, I now think looking back. But perhaps it was that very innocent world view which brought out the immense sense of adventure that hitchhiking ignited in my heart. Over a two-and-a-half year period, I crossed dozens of nations, many alone as a vagabond. On a random occasion, I Extraordinary Profiles had the good fortune of meeting a woman older than myself whose ambition was to run a 4x4 expedition across the continent. She was focused on her goal but had nobody to accompany her. I had the will to wander ever further, but not the means. We made the perfect team. And so a chance encounter led to my first major expedition during which I was inspired to begin breaking world records by a Kenyan big game hunter who held a title for rally driving. Monica: To whom do you owe your daring spirit? Alastair: Growing up in rural South African surroundings gave me a connection to nature. I became fascinated with how it works. Encouragement from my parents led to my desire to explore, study and work with it. As I did so, I became engulfed in a growing curiosity, and so began my yearning to dare and know more. Then, meeting a Kenyan woman I can only describe as intriguing � Julia, manager of Robert Glen Sculpture in Bronze � spun my life around. Julia introduced me to African life on the edge, to big risks and to big gains. I fared reasonably well and wasn't going to give up. As I continued to explore the world which I had just discovered was so much bigger when seen through risk-taking eyes, I met people I remain in awe of to this day. They've traveled the globe by light motorcycle, replicated the Egyptian pyramids, flown over Africa in a by-plane airdropping supplies and stocked the world's zoos from the continent's savannas. My life had been reoriented, and that's the way it's stayed ever since. There is no way I could ever settle for a regular job after having been in the presence of such striking human beings: utterly inspirational. Monica: What would you say is the driving force behind your desire to be the best at everything you do and at breaking world records? Alastair: Life can be, and is, as interesting as you make it. No excuses � if you think you can't intensify your life's positive experiences, therein lies the problem: your frame of mind. Change it. I do want to be the best I can be according to the goal posts I set for myself, and I continually want to improve. This is living. Sometimes I wonder where I get the constant nudging from within to go further, go higher, go bigger. It's there when I succeed; it's there when I fall short. Perhaps the flame comes from a realization and an unshakable belief that when born, I was given a world to experience, and was expected to do so. I was given a limited time with no guarantees of living through it. I was presented with countless choices, each leading to consequences which assist or restrict my ability to progress. I soon convinced myself there are only two options � shy away from the single biggest opportunity I am conscious of, or engage in a lifetime of mind-expanding experiences. My way of engaging is through the wider experiences of breaking world records. Monica: You say you will continue to focus on record-breaking if you can control your future? Do you believe you can control your future? July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 21 people Extraordinary Profiles Alastair: Absolutely, I will continue to focus on recordbreaking! If you found your calling, would you be prepared to sacrifice for it? World records are all vastly different in their planning, undertakings, the media I work with and the diverse array of people whom I have the pleasure of associating with as a result. I find record-breaking tends to attract the extensively open-minded, and working with such people is a truly enriching time for all. I know I can't control my future to the degree I'd like to. Natural cycles and processes have ultimate control, I believe. However, within the limits of what control I do have, I command what is available to me. Monica: You use record-breaking as a way to help bring exposure to worthy causes. What are one or two records you've broken and how have you used them to promote charities or causes? Alastair: My world records range from the small and quirky to the large and demanding. Two of the most memorable world records I've attempted have been to highlight social causes in New Zealand. Last year, we decided to strip Venezuela of its Guinness World RecordTM title for the largest bowl of soup. We made 25,000 liters in what was a magnificent event of teamwork and goodwill. We served this hearty vegetable soup � straight from bulk road tankers � to over 4,000 children and the elderly in a low socioeconomic area of the country's biggest city. We fed ladies at the local women's prison, and our dispensed soup was distributed to outlying areas all with a message of hope and peace for local residents. The Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand and I have a history of breaking world records. During April 2009, I was taken from the ground for 21 days, tied to a cage containing a public toilet. This solitary confinement cubicle was suspended from a massive crane at New Zealand's premier theme park, 18 meters above the ground. This attempt at a Record Holders' Republic title called Most Radio Interviews in a Suspended Cage left me mentally drained � having been broadcast on 98 qualifying radio stations, I exited exhausted. The media coverage was extensive, reaching across most of the Englishspeaking world and elsewhere in translated interviews, including large international radio stations. This, and other world records for the same nonprofit have drawn so much media attention it has been "immeasurable". Monica: You are certainly living your dream. What can you tell other dreamers who are skeptical of their abilities and think their dreams may be too large? Alastair: Do it or die trying. Like many, I've taken inspiration from achievers I've read of who were, for all intents and purposes, belittled, attacked and dismissed for conceptualizing change. In many cases, their intentions were selfless and for the good of others. Then, at some point, their lives changed and results began to bloom. This, I tell you, is more than worth the blood, sweat and tears. Remember that believing in your capa22 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 bilities is the correct way. It has taken me over half a decade of record-breaking to get into a position where I am able to bring the most meaningful impact to others through these events. It took nearly seven years of continual pleading and explaining for big international players in sustainability to listen to my humble contribution before I was taken seriously by many. Along the way, in both cases, I received a considerable number of vicious responses from some whose intent was to hurt, and encouragement from others. The positive well-wishes are so uplifting and inspire me terrifically. Throughout your life, during all times from elation to extreme lows, it is important that you listen quietly to your inner voice and your soul and you will hear the strongest message you ever have: "I believe I can, and I'm going to try." Listen to your soul because it knows you well. Monica: What legacy would you like to leave? Alastair: In an age where mankind seems infused with an obsession "It's all about me, now," the most meaningful things are often not about us and they are often not about now. If I were to leave a legacy, it would be to instill that the good people of this world and the good earth itself care for us all throughout our lives; the least we can do is reciprocate with the future in mind. Are you a dreamer? Do you have goals or a passion to achieve something that you feel is overwhelming or too large to achieve? Do you have a passion for doing something different? What's stopping you? Go for it! Try to accomplish at least one thing each day towards achieving your goal. Read about some of Alastair's records at the following links: http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/gwrday08/default.aspx http://caama.com.au/caama/caama-joins-world-record-attempt/ Ending World Hunger... A Personal Approach people Extraordinary Profiles Ray Buchanan "We have a vision of ending hunger in our lifetime." We all have goals that we'd like to achieve but can you imagine setting a goal such as ending world hunger. Former Marine and Reverend Ray Buchanan is dedicated to doing just that. "We have a vision of ending hunger in our lifetime," he states. He's an ex-Marine with a heart of gold, determined to eradicate hunger and change the world from a personal approach. Eliminate hunger, you say? Rev. Buchanan says it's possible. Through his organization, End Hunger Now, Buchanan and thousands of volunteers have provided millions of meals to hungry people around the world. It was in 1979 that Buchanan realized he had to make a difference. He and a friend, Reverend Ken Horne, co-founded the Society of Saint Andrew. They moved their families into what they referred to as an "intentional community of covenant lifestyles" on a farm in the mountains of Virginia. They lived a simple life below the poverty level, grew their own food and used solar power. Their mission was to educate college students about hunger and how it can be affected by lifestyles. Buchanan and Rev. Horne incorporated their experiences and delivered their message to the local community through United Methodist congregations. They quickly realized that the issue of hunger must be dealt with by focusing on lifestyles. They saw firsthand how much food was being wasted. Since 1998 his organization, Stop Hunger Now, has provided millions of meals and $44 million worth of emergency aid to people in more than 60 countries, helping many of them the rebuild their lives and become self sufficient. The organization has supported medical programs, agricultural programs and micro-credit projects to help women start their own businesses. Their current focus is on supporting food programs in crisis situations. Exceptional People Magazine spoke with Reverend Buchanan about his desire to end world hunger. Monica: You are a former Marine. Why did you join the military? Buchanan: I joined in 1966. I spent a year in Junior College. My mom was overly protective and didn't want me to go to school. A lot of it was wanting to get away from home to spread my wings. I took a year's worth of subjects and passed about half 24 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 people of them because I didn't have any sense of responsibility and didn't know how to study. I was the first person in my family to go to college and it was great fun. I was the president of the biology club, the president of the chess club, played football and had a great time but studying was something I didn't even know about, because I kind of sailed through high school. I read a book a day in high school and that was pretty much how I got through high school. During my first year in school, my best friend and I were neighbors and have been best friends since we were five years old. Together we were in the Cub Scouts, the Boy Scouts, band and football. During that first year after high school, he and I visited every recruiter two or three or four times, just listening to the pitch and trying to figure out what we wanted to do. My father had been in the Navy in World War II so everybody knew that I would go into the Navy. In fact, my nickname in high school was Swaby or Anchor Cranker. In the spring of 1966, my friend came on campus and said, "I just got my draft notice". And he said, "I'm not going in the Army. I'm enlisting in the Marines this afternoon". I said, "Okay, I'll go with you." It was basically off the cuff. When he said he was going to enlist, I did it just because he did it. And so it was probably the best decision that I ever made. Of course, when my parents learned about it, they were dismayed, to say the least. I learned more in my four years in the Marine Corps which lead to the success I've had in my ministry and career than I did in all the years of formal education. Monica: When did the ministry become a part of your life? Buchanan: When I got out of the Marine Corps. While I was in the Marines I became a Christian and I got my call to the ministry. In fact, some of the time I served as a chaplain's assistant. What you learn in the Marine Corps, number one, is faithfulness. You learn about the spirit of Corps and that's where everything starts. But you also learn about gung-ho which in Chinese translation means "all together, everybody working together" but the way it's used in the Marine Corps and culture is, if you're gung-ho, you give all you have, no hesitation and no holding back. The other thing you learn very quickly is accountability. I think this is true for all branches of service. When you're in your training, you're responsible not only for yourself and your mistakes but everybody around Extraordinary Profiles you. So if somebody near you makes a mistake, you're held accountable. Monica: How have you applied what you learned in the Marine Corps to what you do now as a humanitarian? Buchanan: There are no excuses in the Marine Corps. You either do it or you fail. When I came back from the Marine Corps, not only had I spent four years in the Marines, but I'd been overseas in Vietnam, gotten married, had a family, went back to school and I went through my undergraduate courses in two-anda-half years. I went around the clock in the summer, winter and fall. I never took a break and I fully completed 18 to 21 semester hours in about half the time while working 40+ hours a week. I was on the dean's list and I had a double major. When I left the Marine Corps, the way all those things helped me is I had the discipline and the drive to study. When I took on a job, whatever it was, I didn't do it halfway. I gave it 110 percent and I learned about taking care of myself and those around me. All of those traits that they teach in the Marine Corps really have served me well. That's what I attribute my success to. Monica: You co-founded an organization called Stop Hunger Now and your vision is to help end hunger in your lifetime. Do you think you'll ever be able to conquer it? Buchanan: I got involved with feeding the hungry through the church. One of my commitments early on in my ministry was that I didn't want to teach or preach anything that I hadn't experienced myself. I wanted to be authentic. We began focusing more on hunger. One thing lead to another until I realized it was my calling. I could make a difference in July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 25 something that was so big and so large and so unnecessary. In 1979 I cofounded and co-directed for 18 years an organization called Society of St. Andrew, (www.endhunger.org). That organization is one of the premiere organizations in the United States doing domestic work. We started it in 1983 and called it the Potato Project. Since then the Potato Project has moved almost 800 million pounds of produce across the United States, saving it from the dump and getting it to food banks and Native American reservations. Monica: Why did you choose to focus on overseas versus the United States when there are hungry kids and families right in your own backyard? Buchanan: Once I began working overseas in Jamaica and Kenya, I realized that hunger overseas was qualitatively and quantitatively different from the U.S. In the U.S., we have 35 million Americans that go hungry on a regular basis and that's obscene. I mean there's no reason in the richest country on the planet that anybody needs to go hungry. But we have 35 million people that live under the poverty line, more now probably as the financial crisis deepens. There are people that go hungry one or two days every month when the welfare checks run out, when it's at end of the month and they don't quite have enough to stretch. There are millions of Americans that eat fewer meals for two or three days of the month or no meals for two or three days of the month and they go hungry. There's no question about that and that's horrible. The difference with that is there's nobody in this country that starves. We have a wonderful system of safety nets in place from the federal government and all the school feeding pro26 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 grams and the WIC and all the other programs that the United States government runs. States run programs and the religious communities -- Christian, Jewish, Muslim -- all have programs that work with the poor and hungry. And every local community has soup kitchens. Every local community has food pantries. And so there's just a myriad of ways that the hungry in the United States can be taken care of. Working with the hungry in the United States is very real and I did it for 18 years and I know what hunger is in the United States. But at the same time, if you go outside the borders of the United States, 25,000 people dying every single day is unconscionable. It's morally repugnant. The scriptures say when God created the world, He did it perfectly. Right now, today, there's enough calories out there, if you just took the grain in the world and shared it justly, everybody would people Extraordinary Profiles What we're learning is that giving people in the United States an opportunity to do something is probably the best way to get people more involved. The reason it's vital for me personally is that I'm interested in achieving a world where there is no hunger. The only way you're going to really end hunger is by getting people to the place where they will not tolerate hunger anymore. I'm looking to create a movement, a world movement where hunger will not be allowed anymore. Monica: You've interacted with so many people that you have helped across world borders. What have you learned? Buchanan: I have learned that people are people. And not to be light about it but people around the world, whether they're in Iraq in the middle of a war zone where I've been, whether in Afghanistan, in Thailand or Indonesia or tsunamiaffected areas, we all are part of the human family. And everybody wants the same thing. They want a better life for their children than they've had. That's basic human nature. Most people are not as interested in politics as people think. They're interested in living their lives and making better lives for their children. I have a vision of a world without hunger and what I want is for that vision to become a reality in my lifetime, number one, because it's right and number two, because it's possible. The reality is we can't end hunger in my lifetime. The only way it's going to happen is that those of us who are not hungry get as mad as those who are. It's not about feeding the hungry. It's about asking why they're hungry. Monica: What is your answer to that question? have 3,500 calories a day just from grain. That's corn, rice, barley, wheat, orca and millet. Monica: You have prepared millions of meals and you've hand-delivered them. How do you go about preparing so many meals at once? Buchanan: The reason we package the meals in the United States is because we are packaging them for school feeding programs. All the experts agree that the best way to end hunger in our lifetime is through school feeding programs. When you see famine and people starving that's only five or ten percent of the world's hunger. Most of the world's hunger is malnutrition. And the best way to address that is by reaching kids in school. July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 27 people Extraordinary Profiles I also think of Mother Teresa living a very quiet life where she did what she was called to do, touching people in hopeless situations. Martin Luther King, of course, has been an inspiration because he got everybody focused on what needed to be done. Monica: What is your goal for 2009 in terms of the number of meals you want to prepare and deliver? Buchanan: We want to package at least 10 million meals this year. And we will do that. But more importantly, within the next five years, our goal is to produce 100 million meals a year within five years. In the first three years of our packaging, we produced 11 million meals. This year, our fourth year, we'll do 10 million meals alone. And we are going to continue until we're producing 100 million meals a year. Monica: How can people help you and your organization? Buchanan: They can call us to set up a packaging event, if they're close to us. If not, the meals are only 25 cents apiece. Six meals cost less than a soft drink at Starbucks. Monica: For that small amount of money, how can you prepare a meal? Buchanan: The amazing thing is that 25 cents a meal covers the raw ingredients, the plastic bags, the staff costs, the warehouse costs, the trucking costs, all of the costs, simply because the volunteers are putting them together. Two-and-a-half dollars provide ten meals. That's pretty phenomenal. Monica: What is the greatest lesson that you've learned that you can share with everyone about what you are doing? Buchanan: The greatest lesson that I've learned is that we can do anything we set our minds to. And that the biggest shortcoming most of us have is we don't dream big enough. I think we sell ourselves short and especially young people by not challenging ourselves enough. People say how can you think of a vision as big as ending world hunger. Very simple. You just do what you can where you are with what you've got and keep building on it. One of the faith lessons that I have lived out my entire life that I know is true, is you're not given all the answers to start with but if you'll take one step in the direction you think you need to go, there'll be enough light given so you can take another step. To learn more information about Stop Hunger Now or to find out how you can help Ray Buchanan and his organization end world hunger, visit: www.stophungernow.org. Buchanan: Greed. Greed, bad economic systems and lack of community, a lack of a real sense of family. I believe we are one human family. The world needs to get to the point where we say, "25,000 of my sisters died today because they were hungry. I'm not going to tolerate it anymore and I don't care what I have to do, I'm not going to allow it." We're not living the life we say we believe in otherwise people wouldn't be hungry. Monica: What is your greatest personal reward in doing what you do? Buchanan: I sleep well at night. I have several different levels of reward. What I enjoy more than anything else is to be in the field with the people. When I can get into the field and into camps and see school feeding programs working and talk to the unsung heroes, the people who run the mom and pop orphanages that make things happen with no resources, that's a reward in itself. The other thing that gives me a real sense of satisfaction is when we are able to involve volunteers. This year we will involve probably 10,000 volunteers or more. I want people to realize they can make a difference on behalf of the hungry. Nothing that a person does for the hungry is too small to make a difference. Monica: Is there a universal face of hunger? What does hunger look like? Buchanan: Real hunger is in the face of two-thirds of the girls in the world that never get a chance to learn. The real face of hunger is hidden, in a sense. It's the kind of hunger that's everywhere and in most of the world. Brazil, for example, is one country in South America that's doing wonderful things with hunger and poverty. And there are a number of other countries in Latin America. But the reality is, in the United States, we could cut hunger in half in the next ten years just by starting school feeding programs in every place they're needed. Those of us, who have so much, have an awesome responsibility to make good things happen for those that don't. That's part of what being a family is all about. Monica: Who inspires you most? Buchanan: I think one of the greatest inspirations for me was one of my philosophy professors at University of North Carolina at Wilmington, Dr. Gerald Shin. First, the inspiration from him was that he was a United Methodist Minister but no one ever knew it unless they were in trouble. I've modeled my own ministry after him. Second, he's always reaching out and starting something new and trying to get people to think. He opened my eyes and helped me realize anything's possible. 28 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 Exception l People Magazine Surround yourself with remarkable, powerful, passionate and successful people without leaving home! Subscribe Today! Health and Fitness advice Health & Fitness Reclaiming Your Focus By Dr. Eichelberger Have you ever had 'full plate syndrome'? That's when you've got so many things happening in your brain that there's no more room for anything else. In fact, if you do put something new there, something else falls off the other side because there's just no more room. This is an alltoo-common occurrence when you have a busy life and lots 'on your plate.' What are the symptoms of this? � You keep misplacing things - "I know I put it here somewhere..." � Completing tasks takes longer than it used to � You aren't remembering everything that needs to get done � You forget things people say � You find yourself more frustrated than before because you're just not thinking as clearly If any of these sound familiar, you're not alone. As we get older such events are increasingly common. Fortunately, there are things that you can do to improve the situation. Here is a list of some of the most powerful ways to achieve better mental focus and clarity: � Regularly doing the right kind of exercise for your body type � Eating whole, natural (ideally organic) foods that keep your internal balance processes functioning optimally � Practicing effective stress-management techniques July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 31 advice Health & Fitness the outside, these can be surprisingly effective forms of exercise since they both strengthen and stretch the body Eating Right � If you've read much about diet, you know that there are almost as many different diet plans as there are humans. Why is this? The best explanation is that just as in clothing, one type of diet simply doesn't work for everybody. You can, if you become really good at listening to your body's signals, discover for yourself which foods energize you and which ones don't. This process can take several years of paying close attention. Another option is metabolic typing, which is part of our Personalized Nutritional Assessment service. This will trim at least 1-2 years off of the learning curve and get you closer to your goal quickly. Stress Management � Stress has a huge impact on mental clarity and effective thinking. While you can't always control the outside sources of stress, you can control how you respond to them. Some techniques that are especially helpful for this include: � Exercise � Meditation � Prayer � Deep breathing Also, don't wait until you are thirsty; if you do, you've already waited too long. Balance Your Brain � This is one of the things that is difficult, if not impossible to do on your own but can be very powerful. As you live your life, the levels of neurotransmitters in your brain (the chemicals that allow our brain to function correctly) become depleted and imbalanced. Stress, incorrect diet, drug use and other factors affect your brain in powerful ways. One of the best ways to correct this is to first understand your current status. This can be done with a simple urine test which will identify which neurotransmitters are low and which are out of balance. Once you identify these, the deficiencies and imbalances can be corrected using high-quality natural supplements, focused on restoring the correct levels. We offer this in our clinic. Yes, this does seem like a lot, but if you think about it, you are already eating, breathing, and drinking water. Why not do these in a way that actually supports your mental clarity? � Drinking plenty of purified water � Discovering and correcting any brain imbalances (neurotransmitters) � Taking herbal and nutritional supplements that can support brain function Each one of these contributes to keep your brain healthy and your thinking clear. I'd like to address the last one first namely taking herbal and nutritional supplements. This is almost always the one that people want, because they want a quick fix. And, sometimes this is enough to make a difference. The problem arises when the rest of your body (digestion, breathing, elimination, etc.) isn't working up to par. In such cases you aren't completely digesting, absorbing and utilizing these supplements and they tend to go to waste. Whenever part of your body is working at its peak, taking these supplements can make a huge difference, or even be totally unnecessary because you're already where you want to be. Let's talk about each of the others: Exercise � Research shows that exercise has a powerful effect on mental performance. If you aren't already clear on the type of exercise that will work best for you, it will pay to figure this out. What are some of the options? � Aerobic exercise � jogging, dancercise, tae-bo � anything that gets your heart rate up for an extended period of time � Strength training � lifting weights, isometrics, body dynamics are all examples of this � Stretching � even stretching is a kind of exercise � Focus training � this refers to yoga, tai chi, and certain qigong exercises. Even though they look slow and relaxed on � Shifting focus to something else � Using your social support system by talking with friends and family Water � Your brain cannot function clearly without enough water in your system. The right amount of water is slightly different for each person because of weight and other factors. A good general rule is to sip water all day long. This is because your body only absorbs a few ounces at a time. Dr. Bruce Eichelberger, OMD is a Doctor of Oriental Medicine whose practice is based on the concept of balance in all areas of living. He practices acupuncture, herbal medicine and Metabolic Typing in Reno, Nevada. http://www.renoalternativemedicine.com/. 32 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 advice Health & Fitness Take Control of Your Metabolism By Jesse Cannone So many people are talking about how slow their metabolism is and why they need to start taking the latest diet supplement yet they don't understand how the human metabolism works. So before I talk about how to speed up your metabolism, I want to first go over some of the basics. What is metabolism? There are many scientific ways for me to explain it and I could make it seem really confusing like most of the so-called experts do, but I won't. I'm going to give you my extremely simple and easy to understand definition. Metabolism is the rate at which your body burns calories to sustain life. I should also note that your body burns calories 24 hours a day, everyday � regardless of whether or not you workout. Remember that your body needs energy all the time, even while you're a sleep and that is why skipping meals is the absolute worst thing you can do if your goal is to lose weight (body fat). Before we go any further let's talk about what affects metabolism. What affects metabolism? What do you think has the biggest impact on your metabolism? Activity levels? Your Thyroid? Age? WRONG! WRONG! and WRONG! Activity levels, Thyroid function, and age do affect metabolism but not nearly as much. Do you have any idea? It's muscle tissue! The more muscle you have the more calories you burn regardless of how active you are or how old you are. It's live tissue and it's there working for you and burning calories 24 hours a day � each and every day! Here's a list of some of the factors affecting metabolism in order of biggest impact to least impact: � Muscle tissue (you already know why this is on the top of the list) � Meal frequency (the longer you go between meals the more your metabolism slows down to conserve energy) � Activity level (important but doesn't make any difference if you don't match your eating to your expenditure) July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 33 � Food choices (ex. low-fat diets tend to result in poor hormone production which leads to a slower metabolism) � Hydration (over 70% of bodily functions take place in water � not enough water causes all your systems to slow down and create unnecessary stress) � Genetics (some people have higher metabolisms than others � you can't change genetics but you can still win the battle!) � Hormone production and function (Think you have a slow thyroid? It's not likely. Before you blame it on the thyroid, first stabilize your blood sugar and throw in some progressive exercise 2-3 times each week.) � Stress (stress can also slow metabolism by placing a strain on numerous systems, plus, many people tend to overeat when "stressed out") Why does it slow down? How many times have you heard someone say, "as soon as you hit 30 your metabolism slows down"? Maybe you've said it. I know I hear it all the time and I got tired of hearing it so I did a little research and found that your metabolism does NOT slow down significantly due to aging but DOES due to a lack of muscle. And, you don't lose muscle quickly due to aging either but due to a decrease or lack of physical stress. So, the major cause of a slowing metabolism is three-fold. 1. You lose muscle due to the lack of physical stress. 2. Your body cannibalizes muscle when it needs energy but you won't supply any because you are "dieting" and skipping meals. 3. Your activity levels tend to decrease as you get older. So now we know the problem... what's the solution? Address those three issues! I've found with years of experience in helping hundreds of people, that increasing your metabolism and getting rid of that excess body fat can often times be quite easy! Yet you'll hear of all experts telling you how hard it is and why you need to buy their new diet program, supplement, or fitness contraption. advice Health & Fitness Strength training � Change exercises frequently (every 2-4 weeks) � Increase resistance It's not that hard, it doesn't have to be confusing, and you don't need any of that nonsense. All you need is an understanding of how your body works and the willingness to make some small changes. Here's my basic formula for jump starting your metabolism: � Perform more reps Step 1 - Stop the storage of new fat It doesn't make any sense to start an exercise program if you just end up adding new fat later that day. This is a problem that is very common among people who start an exercise program in an attempt to lose weight. The problem is this... We don't get fat due to a lack of exercise � we get fat because we supply the body with more calories than it needs at a given time. So the solution has nothing to do with exercise � it's all about your eating! And I'm not saying you have to eat low-fat, super clean and healthy diet consisting of salad and tofu only. You can still eat the foods you like IF you can give the body just the amount it needs. The key is to give the body the energy it needs, but just that amount, not a bunch extra because extra is extra and it doesn't matter what it is from. Salad can be stored as fat, celery can be stored as fat � if it results in extra it can be stored as fat. I should also note that not all extra energy is stored in the fat cells and I will touch on that later. So forget about trying to burn off any fat unless you can first stop storing new fat! Again, you do that by matching your eating to your activity level. This means small, balanced meals or snacks every 2-3 hours and the amount of calories in each feeding should depend on how active you are at that time of day. Step 2 � Attack the existing fat This requires a combination approach consisting of stable blood sugar and energy levels, and progressive cardiovascular and aerobic exercise and strength training. We already talked about how important stable blood sugar and energy levels are and how to match your eating to your activity level so now I'd like to cover the exercise part of the equation. In order for the exercise to even be worth your time you must be sure it's progressive. Just because you run on the treadmill for 30 minutes three times a week, doesn't mean your body has to burn off that unwanted body fat! You have to force the body to make changes and improvements and the ONLY way to do that is to consistently provide a stimulus or stress that is greater than what the body is used to. Here are some general guidelines on how you can make your exercise progressive and productive: 34 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 � Slower reps � Advanced techniques Cardiovascular training � Increase speed/resistance � Perform intervals � Increase distance traveled � Cross train by performing numerous activities I should also say that it is extremely important that you have a well thought out and detailed plan to follow. You can't just say "ok, now I know what to do" and then try a little of this here and little of that there. You need a roadmap. If you are serious about achieving your weight loss and fitness goals I highly recommend you get the help of a professional. Whether that means one-on-one personal fitness training or just a do-it-your-self fitness plan � your chances of success are much greater. Jesse Cannone is a certified fitness trainer, rehabilitation specialist and co-founder of the Healthy Back Institute. He is recognized expert in the treatment of back pain and has been featured on television news programs like NBC, radio programs across the US, magazines like Woman's World, Entrepreneur and on leading websites like Spine-Health.com, Ediets.com and About.com. Over 32,000 people in 94 different countries around the world have used his "Lose The Back Pain" system to eliminate their pain. www.LoseTheBackPain.com. It's Your Money Let's Talk Cents advice Money and encourage them to make choices that support their long-term interests, such as retirement planning or education planning for their own children. Many parents use trusts to transfer assets to their children or grandchildren. A trust may be used temporarily to hold and manage assets until a young adult matures. Other parents choose to set up a trust for life to protect their children's assets from creditors, divorce settlements and estate taxes. Regardless of the objective, it's important to talk about the trust with one's beneficiaries and explain its purpose. "You don't give a kid a car without also giving him lessons on how to use the car," says Gallo. One option for parents seeking influence is an incentive trust, which enables parents to establish terms governing the distribution of funds. An incentive trust can provide financial motivation for adult children to excel and to meet certain goals. Still, Gallo cautions that there can be "a fine line between adding too many constraints and providing positive incentives for the beneficiary to be a productive member of society." Regardless of how you plan to transfer your wealth, raising children who can identify their own passions and interests in life is the best way to ensure responsible money habits. "Trusts and inheritance decisions should provide enough money to encourage productivity, but not so much money that your adult children do nothing," says Hartnett. Securities offered through Sigma Financial Corporation, Member NASD/SIPC. Campbell Retirement Planning Centers does not render legal, accounting or tax advice. Please consult your CPA or attorney on such matters. The accuracy and completeness of this material are not guaranteed. The material is distributed solely for information purposes and is not a solicitation of an offer to buy any security or instrument or to participate in any trading strategy. Provided by courtesy of Dean G. Campbell, President of Campbell Retirement Planning Centers in Waterford, MI. Mr. Campbell advises clients throughout the country and is licensed in securities and insurances in many states. http://www.campbellretirement.com. Talking to Your Adult Children About Important Financial Issues By Dean G Campbell As parents grow older, they must eventually face the challenge of talking to their adult children about wealth, inheritance and the financial implications of their mortality. Unfortunately, "many parents postpone this conversation because they think they have time," says Dr. Eileen Gallo, a Los Angeles psychotherapist who counsels families about the emotional aspects of wealth. That can be a mistake. Communicating openly with your kids won't solve every problem, but it can minimize family conflict and provide you with more options for empowering your children to act on your behalf, should it become necessary. Open communication can also help prepare your loved ones to become responsible inheritors. For many parents, the key question is how and when to begin that conversation. A relaxing shared activity, such as walking, golfing or baking, may diffuse some of the tension when the conversation turns to wealth and responsibility. Try to avoid talking about your finances during busy or emotionally demanding events, such as holiday celebrations. Many people assume that family meetings are important only for the very wealthy. But regardless of your net worth, experts say that an annual family meeting can help you create a comfortable forum for discussing your values, priorities and goals related to managing money -- and important details regarding your wishes for the disposition of your estate. Family meetings also enable parents to clarify their intentions related to any possible misunderstandings that might arise from disproportionate splits of an estate. This is especially important when remarriages and second families are involved, or when parents want to name charities or unknown entities as beneficiaries. "If there are no surprises, you may avert a legal battle later," says Steve Hartnett, Associate Director of Education at the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys in San Diego. Begin your family meeting with a discussion of the basics. You should identify your executor and outline where you keep your will and other important documents and account statements. Although it's not important that everyone know all the details of your financial situation, it is imperative to make at least one family member aware of the location of important records. � Some of the specific issues you may wish to discuss in this regard: Have you granted someone a durable power of attorney and a power of attorney for health care? Where are the documents located? � Do you have a safe deposit box? Where is it located, and where is the key and the list of contents? � Does your retirement program have a death benefit for survivors? � Have you established any trusts and for what purposes? � How have you arranged to handle any applicable estate taxes? � Have you shared the names and contact information of your financial, tax and legal advisors with your children? Talking to your adult children about wealth is also about values. "It is important to provide a very practical financial education on managing your assets," advises estate planning attorney Jon Gallo, who with Dr. Eileen Gallo, his wife, coauthored The Financially Intelligent Parent. One approach is to introduce your children to a trusted advisor who can help them understand their financial options 36 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 advice Money Changes That May Call for Revisions What kinds of changes can affect your will? The tax law is gradually reducing the tax danger for estates with substantial assets. However, the overall worth of your future estate projected when your will was written may have been left far behind -- if your investments have grown or you have acquired additional assets. You may no longer own some of the assets that your present will transfers. There may have been family changes: marriages, divorces, or deaths of heirs, births of possible additional heirs, and children or grandchildren reaching financial independence. And your present executor or personal representative may no longer be available to act for your estate. It may only take one such change to cause a strong impact on your estate plan. So your will needs a periodic professional review to make sure it stays in line with your family's needs and your financial circumstances. It's easy to put this review off, but the consequence of delay can be a transfer of your assets that departs greatly from your current desires. Don't risk it. When a Will is Ripe for Revision By Dean G Campbell Some types of pears and other fruit don't change color as they ripen. You have to feel the softening. If you wait too long, you'll eat overly sweet fruit or have to throw it away. Similarly, if your will has been sitting in your desk or another safe place for awhile, it may have unnoticeably passed its peak financial efficiency. A will that has been signed and witnessed stays valid until the time -- if ever -- when you revoke it. Your financial condition may have changed in ways your present will doesn't reflect. But unless you do something about it, your property will be transferred someday according to the provisions of your present will. Securities offered through Sigma Financial Corporation, Member NASD/SIPC. Campbell Retirement Planning Centers does not render legal, accounting or tax advice. Please consult your CPA or attorney on such matters. The accuracy and completeness of this material are not guaranteed. The material is distributed solely for information purposes and is not a solicitation of an offer to buy any security or instrument or to participate in any trading strategy. Provided by courtesy of Dean G. Campbell, President of Campbell Retirement Planning Centers in Waterford, MI. Mr. Campbell advises clients throughout the country and is licensed in securities and insurances in many states. http://www.campbellretirement.com. July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 37 Campbell Retirement Planning Centers, Inc. Complete Retirement Planning for People of All Ages In Challenging Markets You Need Someone Who Can Help You Plan Your Investment Strategy and Achieve Your Long Term Goals We Can Help You: Re-evaluate and Diversity Your Portfolio Achieve The Best Advantage in Challenging Markets Establish Your Risk Tolerance Show You How to Receive Income From Your Portfolio � � � � Take control of your finances and your life. Let us help you plan for the future. � � 401K Mutual Funds Annuities Pension Plans and IRAS Stocks and Bonds Educational Planning To Schedule Your Free Initial Consultation, Contact: Dean G. Campbell, President 5334 Dixie Highway Waterford, MI 48329 248-623-3400 1-888-910-7526 Fax: 248-623-3402 email@example.com www.campbellretirement.com "Over 23 Years Of Experience, Providing Total Financial Planning" Unlock Your Future! It's Time For Business advice Business Minding My Business Cr�meMagnolia Magnolia Mission: Legacy of the Founder Karen R. Vowell-Mager know, as I seem to have reinvented myself every ten-years or so. However, this project from the beginning had a mission that removed the "me" from the equation to be replaced with "we." My task to use God given talent and experience to help women start and grow their business, while lofty seemed inadequate. It seemed my undertaking was ill-formed, possibly incomplete, or potentially flawed in some way. And one afternoon it occurred to me I could do more than provide a forum � I can provide seed financing for women to start or grow their business! I knew at that very moment that I CAN build a foundation to do MORE. To date I have personally funded the CremeMagnolia project and will continue to do so as long as God provides the resources for me to continue. Ultimately CremeMagnolia will comprise six websites, (dot.net, com, info, biz, org, and US), each with its own personality, platform and original content. However, every CremeMagnolia site will have one mission in common; to help women in business � FREE of charge. http:// www.crememagnolia.net is already functional and helping almost 100 small companies around the country. There comes a time when even the noblest endeavor must address the pragmatic aspects of the objective. Our community will never be riddled with useless Google ads or outrageous claims from unknown companies. My intention from the onset has never been about money � but realistically, it is money that provides the sustenance we all need to survive. For that reason we will endeavor to attract Corporate Sponsorship. Income from website sponsor revenues will be used to fund Magnolia Mission � a Foundation to provide seed-capital or expansion capital for women-owned businesses. The CremeMagnolia network of communities has applied for 501c-3 status and it is our hope to begin making grants mid/late 2010. The mantra of CremeMagnolia is "pay it forward" today! CremeMagnolia is a portal community to provide information, marketing, promotion and direction for small woman owned companies. To become part of our community, contact firstname.lastname@example.org Our weekly newsletter is available at: http://www.crememagnolia.net/ Read or contribute to our blog. Join our free CremeMagnolia Network on LinkedIn Follow CremeMagnolia on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/crememagnolia mean to make a positive impact during our stay on the planet? Is it how many possessions we acquire, how much money we make, the THINGS we leave behind; or more specifically is it ALL the lives we touch over a lifetime that creates our legacy? When I began the journey of creating CremeMagnolia it was as though an unseen force was guiding my mind, creative self and energy. Clarity seemed to be dolled-out in small measures - when the timing was right and as I was able to conceptualize, completely, the inspiration. And I must admit in retrospect, inspiration has come from unlikely sources and at unexpected times. These events have changed my life to the extent I hardly recognize my former self. It is as though my former self is dissolving from my memory like melting snow flakes and the new me is forming like mist. The CremeMagnolia project began as any other "career" change � and I would What does it 40 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 advice Business Am I Self-Employed Material? What It Takes to Run Your Own Business By Kathi Calahan Employee vs. business owner, it's a scary dream for most, but attainable. If you are seriously looking to become self-employed there are a few factors you should consider before taking the leap. Ask yourself these questions: 1. Do I have the long term drive to make my business a success? 2. Will my values be met by the business I want to build? 3. Do I know the legal and tax laws required for being selfemployed ? 4. If I don't know how to do something, can I find a career coach or other help? 5. Do I have a plan? 6. Do I need a partner? 7. Can I continue to pay my bills while I get my business up and running? 8. What do I know about marketing my business? 9. Are the products or services I plan to offer wanted by the public and are people willing to pay me for them? July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 41 advice Business really got tired of the traveling. One day I was putting everything I owned into the trunk of a car, getting ready for our next gig, and realized I had forgotten where I was. I didn't even know which coast I was on." Today Kevin is employed as a Public Works Director for a town in Arizona and continues to sing karaoke in Laughlin, Nevada occasionally. He says it's hard to let go of the rush that audience applause provides, but if your most important value is a regular home life, then an on-the-road business is not for you. If you want to develop your own business, use Kevin's awareness as a role model and make sure your values match your business. SELF-EMPLOYED IN A BETTER INDUSTRY Kris was a college-level teacher and now in her 50's has made a decision to incorporate her interest in writing into a livelier, funin-the-sun environment. Searching and not finding employment locally, she is now revamping her resume to highlight transferable skills and looking for freelance work in the islands. Her Vermont apartment is tiny and easy to maintain while she's away in her new career. Her new self-employed goal is to teach journaling workshops at various resorts and spas. Because of her love for islands, she is narrowing her search to destination resorts on islands only. She can expand her possibilities and think outside the box by asking what else could she do with her writing skills. She could expand her own business by offering to teach guests how to write a short play and then performing it during their vacation stay. Or, she could freelance her writing excellence into marketing vacation spots for host companies. She could even write and sell how-to books for other budding writers. Her list of possibilities is endless in a changing market and yours can be too. Just highlight your best skills and take them into an industry you find exciting. SELF-EMPLOYED, FIND A PROBLEM, PROVIDE A SOLUTION Kate Cronan Sawert has made a career out of her interest in the health field. She is now self-employed in the same industry. She says she was disheartened by the American health care system and quickly began planning her own business. She truly believes that the only way she can make a quality difference is by becoming self-employed. Today she has formed her own company, Self Health, Inc. (www.sawert.com/selfhealth) that provides health education and wellness information to the general public. Her book, Self Health, is in the final stages of production and offers insight into what is causing your energy drains and strategies for healing them. What satisfies her most is the excitement on the face of her clients when they learn that anything is possible regarding their health. Kate knows that with her own business she can be more problem/solution oriented in her care. She advises anyone considering the option of running his or her own business to be skilled in willingness, tenacity and to have the ability to ask for help. For Kate, her life's work was built around a problem in her industry. Because health education has become more integrative in the last twenty years, this entrepreneur has found a cutting edge position for her talents, skills and values in her own business. If you want to start your own business, use Katie as a role model; find a problem and provide a solution. If after careful evaluation of what it takes to operate your own successful business you find that this is the path for you, learn as much as you can from others who have gone before you and here's to your career success! SELF-EMPLOYED WITH A BUSINESS PARTNER Another woman, Charlotte, from Pennsylvania, is finding the doors to her human resource expertise closing around her. How might she re-traffic her skills and abilities into a new market? She has a stellar background in planning, preparation and all behind-the-scenes work. Not particularly interested in being the front-woman for a company, she can now take her work history and switch gears slightly by becoming a wedding planner, or a consultant for the convention industry. When asked if she likes meeting and greeting people, her answer was a quick, "No!" So maybe a wedding planner wouldn't be the best choice for her. Knowing that she is more comfortable behind the scenes, she can now transfer her skills into an environment that needs what she has to offer, and although it may be a different industry, she will still be able to use her gifts well. If you are considering becoming self-employed, do like Charlotte did and know whether you are best suited on the front line or behind the scenes. This is a perfect example of the need for a business partner who is better suited with public contact. SELF EMPLOYED, BUT A MISMATCH OF VALUES Kevin Manley started out his professional career as an entrepreneur. He formed his own band and toured the United States. He had natural skills in musical talent, stage presence and organization, perfect skills for someone who wants to build a band. To succeed, he says, "You must first have natural musical abilities, a love of center stage and awareness that receiving applause and admiration can be like a drug you will always chase." When I asked him why he is no longer self-employed in the music industry he explained, "I knew that I needed a home base and 42 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 Certified Behavioral Therapist and Spiritual Career Counselor, Kathi Calahan is "The Idea Queen" and "Go-To Person" for solutions to your everyday problems. Using the principles of spirituality, she will help you find the work best suited to your personality and Soul's desire. Her background includes teaching at two different California community colleges and a business representative at the Camp Verde Chamber of Commerce. http://www.godseer.com. From the Front Office: Careers advice Career through after experiencing loss, which can also be applied to someone who has experienced job loss. Denial (and Isolation): "They're going to call me back when they realize just how much I contributed to their organization." "They can't do without me, just you wait and see." Anger: "It's all the manager's/company's fault." "I gave them 10 years of my life that can add value to an employer. I'll find an opportunity that may be even better than my last position." It is important to understand that this cycle is not linear and therefore you do not have to experience the first stage before going onto the next. Everyone's experience is different � you may not experience the denial stage however be angry at the company's decision to let you go, and then move into the struggle stage as you begin to weigh up your options, then onto acceptance and new hope. So while these are the general stages of the grief and loss process everyone's experience can be quite different in comparison to others' experience of the five stages. Job loss can also bring about other losses, such as changes to income, to your lifestyle, changes to your personal and collegial relationships and the feeling of security. Mergers, acquisitions and a competitive and constantly evolving marketplace can often prompt organizations to implement reshuffling, restructuring or downsizing initiatives, which unfortunately results in staff layoffs. The one job for life principle rarely exists in today's workplace, with workers told to expect at least 3, 4 or even more job Surviving Job Loss: Strategies to Get Your Career Back on Track By Annemarie Cross and career changes throughout their working lives, whether voluntary (through their own choice) or involuntary (through corporate downsizing and staff redundancies). Whether you have been downsized, are among those who have received redundancy packages, or have been dismissed from your employer, losing your job can be a traumatic experience. In fact due to the significant levels of stress that job loss can cause and the profound impact on your emotional wellbeing, it is rated among other life altering situations such as death of a family member, serious illness and divorce. and for what � I am furious at them." "They owe me. I'll show them, just you wait and see." Depression/Low self-esteem (self-blame): where people say, "If only...." "It's my entire fault; I should have seen it coming." "I'm never going to be able to find another job." "I don't know what else to do besides that job. I don't have any other skills." "I'm worthless; I really don't feel like getting out of bed." "At my age, how am I going to get another position with all those younger job seekers in the job market?" Struggle: "I suppose that I have to face the reality that I may have to lower my expectations." "I've not been able to find a role that will pay the same as I was getting before." "All the jobs in that field are extremely rare so I may have to look at another industry." "I'm trying to maintain a positive outlook � but it is difficult." "I am sometimes at a loss about what I am going to do." Acceptance (New Hope): "What can I learn from this experience?" "I am ready to accept the facts as they really are and am ready to move forward." "My old position is not there. However I have excellent skills, competencies and talents To your success! Annemarie The emotional impact � the grief process The loss of your job can have a significant effect on your emotional state and trying to move forward without dealing with arising feelings and emotions can make your job search quite difficult. With any change comes loss, and as with any loss you may also experience varying degrees of grief and sadness. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (a psychiatrist) undertook extensive research on the topic of loss and identified five stages that people go Annemarie Cross is a Career Coach, Trainer, Speaker, Personal Branding Strategist and Author of '10 key steps to Ace that Interview!' She is also the founder/principal of Advanced Employment Concepts (AEC) � Career Management and Corporate Career Development Specialists. For more information: http://www.a-e-c.com.au/ 44 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 advice Strategy 1: Career Surviving Job Loss: Strategies to Get Your Career Back on Track, Pt. 2 By Annemarie Cross In last the article we identified that the one job for life principle rarely exists in today's workplace and that workers should expect at least 3, 4 or even more job and career changes throughout their working lives. You only need to hear on the news about companies downsizing due to the financial crisis being experienced globally with many unfortunate employees finding themselves out of work. However, rather than bringing more doom and gloom to the situation, we'd like to share some practical steps with you, so that you can begin to take stock and refocus on moving forward more positively. Losing your job can also bring about other losses, such as changes to income, to your lifestyle, changes to your personal and collegial relationships and the feeling of security. One of the things that you have to realize is that you are not the only person who is experiencing change and therefore losses, but that this is also impacting those close to you, such as your family. Practical Issues: It's important to understand that your immediate family may also be going through their own grief and loss process as they too have to adjust to the situation that losing your job creates. Particularly changes to the weekly household budget with the loss of a steady income potentially putting added pressure on the family unit compounding the entire situation. So just remember that you are not alone in your grief and that those close to you may also be going through their own grief process through the practical issues that job loss can cause. Strategy 1: Initially it may be a wise strategy to set up some safety nets, particularly with regards to your finances so visiting a financial planner who can advise you what government entitlements you may be eligible for; whether you can contact your mortgage providers to see whether there are any provisions in your contract to lessen the mortgage payments for the short-term; and how to wisely invest any redundancy payouts to lesson any potential financial impact. Easing any financial responsibilities may then prevent you from having to take the first job that presents itself, thus allowing you some time to review your situation and plan how you are going to move forward in terms of your career focus and eventual job search. So please take advantage of a financial planner's expertise to assist you in working through the financial and practical issues. Emotional Issues: In terms of emotional issues, quite often losing your job can cause you to have doubts about your skills and talents impacting negatively on your confidence and self-worth and therefore perhaps causing you to feel despondent and somewhat apprehensive about moving forward. People who have been thrust into unemployment can quite often find moving forward extremely difficult particularly if there is added pressure by friends and family for them to "just get out there and find another job." It's important to maintain a positive attitude in order to energize and motivate yourself through the short term as you undergo further self-exploration, skills development or as you plan your future career move and job search. The saying `Where your attention goes, your energy flows' is so true so try to remain positive in your outlook. Ensure you get plenty of exercise and look after yourself physically and avoid hiding yourself from the rest of the world. Maintaining a positive attitude may not always be easy, but it is important. Recognize that you have good moments and not so good moments, but avoid getting stuck in the not so positive moments � rather allow yourself to get back on track with your job search positively. Strategy 2: Develop a support system whether it is family, friends, former associates or a career coach or counselor. Being able to speak to someone who is not directly involved in the situation (such as immediate family who will also be working through their own grief and loss process) - someone who is unbiased, non-judgmental and can provide you with the support you need during this time. Strategy 3: Some people find journaling a very good method to assist them through the grief process, where they write their daily thoughts and feelings into their personal journal. Being able to express this, even in written form can be helpful. Annemarie Cross is a Career Coach, Trainer, Speaker, Personal Branding Strategist and Author of '10 key steps to Ace that Interview!' She is also the founder/principal of Advanced Employment Concepts (AEC) � Career Management and Corporate Career Development Specialists. For more information: http://www.a-e-c.com.au/ July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 45 Family and Relationships advice Family & Relationships 6 Must-Tell Messages to Prepare Kids for Your Divorce By Rosalind Sedacca, CCT One of the most difficult conversations any parent will ever have is telling their children about their pending divorce. I know first-hand because many years ago I went through the experience. I fought and faced the overwhelming emotions. The deep gut-wrenching fear. The continuous anxiety. The incredible guilt. And the oppressive weight of shame. My son, after all, was innocent. A sweet, gentle soul who loved his father and mother dearly. He certainly did not deserve this. I struggled with the anxiety for weeks in advance. When should I tell him? How should I tell him? Should we tell him together? And most frightening of all, WHAT SHOULD WE SAY? How do you explain to a child that the life he has known, the comfort he has felt in his family setting, is about to be disrupted � changed � forever? How do you explain to a child that none of this is his fault? How do you reassure him that life will go on, that he will be safe, cared for and loved, even after his parents divorce? And, even more intimidating, how do you prepare him for all the unknowns looming ahead when you're not sure yourself how it will all turn out? I needed a plan. A strategy. A way of conveying all that I wanted to say to him at a level of understanding that he could grasp. Thankfully I found that plan. I came up with a storybook that told my son, in words and pictures, the story of how his father and I met, married and started a family. It explained problems we encountered that we could not readily fix, and the decision we ultimately made to get a divorce. In my new e-book, How Do I Tell the Kids about the Divorce? A Create-a-Storybook Guide to Preparing Your Children--with Love! I provide fill-in-the-blank templates that other parents can use to prepare their children for the many changes ahead. The interactive format allows parents to customize the story to fit their family dynamics. It also focuses on six key messages that are essential for every child to hear, understand and absorb. By sharing and repeating these six points to your children in the weeks and months following the initial conversation, you will enable them to better handle, accept and even embrace the challenges and changes they will soon be facing. Here are the six must-tell messages for your children: 1) This is not your fault. Mom and Dad have been having problems. We don't agree about certain key issues and that creates conflict. Even when some of the issues are about you, that does not mean you are to blame. You are an innocent child who we both love and cherish. It is not your fault that Mom and Dad disagree about your bedtime, where to go on vacation, how to help you with your homework or whether you should play soccer. We are not fighting about YOU. We are disagreeing with each other about issues that concern you and our family. But you are not in any way at fault. 2) Mom and Dad will always be your parents. No matter what changes occur over the weeks, months and years ahead, one thing is for certain. Mom and Dad will still always be your parents. No one else will ever be your real Mom. No one else will ever be your real Dad. We will both always love you and be there for you, no matter where we live or how things should change. 3) You are, and will continue to be, safe. Even though there will be some changes ahead in our family, Mom and Dad will still be taking care of you. You are safe and there is nothing to be afraid of. You don't have to worry about things. We're making plans for our family and you are a very important part of every decision. So relax, and let Mom and Dad take care of things. 4) This is about change, not about blame. Divorce is a scary word. But all it really means is that our family will be experiencing some changes. Change is okay. Everything in life keeps changing. You grow bigger, taller, stronger and smarter every year. The seasons change every year. Clothing styles and hair styles keep changing. You change grades and schools as you grow older. Change means things will be different in some ways. It doesn't mean things will be bad. Change July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 47 advice Family & Relationships can be fun, exciting and new. Sometimes it takes a while to get used to changes, like beginning a new grade with a new teacher. Other times change gives us a chance to do things in a new and better way, like trying a new sport or a hobby you grow to love. The change in our family is not about who's right or wrong or who's good or bad. Mom and Dad both tried their best to resolve our problems. The old way didn't work for us and now we will be trying a new way for our family to live so there's more peace, calmness and happiness for us all. Instead of worrying about who's to blame, let's think about how we can see the changes ahead as a new adventure -- a brand new chapter in our lives. Who knows what lies ahead? 5) Things will work out okay. We're often frightened when we begin new things and face new challenges. Like the first time you learned to ride a bicycle, the first day of school or day camp, your first trip to the dentist. Things always have a way of working out, even when we're scared that they won't. Divorce will be the same way. Things will be new and different for a while. We'll have new ways of doing some things ... some new responsibilities ... some differences in our schedules. But life will go on. We will get used to the differences. Some of them we may even prefer. And after a while, we'll look back and say, life is different than it used to be, but it's all okay. I'm okay, our family is okay and, most important of all, we still love each other. That is a lot better than okay. It's great! 6) Mom and Dad will always love you. No matter what happens, no matter what changes occur, one thing is for certain. Mom and Dad will always love you. That will never change. Regardless of where we live, what we do and how old you get. You can count on that. And don't ever forget it. These core messages are the foundation your children will depend on when they are feeling frightened, sad or insecure. Repeat them often in your own words and your own style. You'll be rewarded in countless ways as you and your children encounter and overcome the challenges of life after divorce. Emotional Intimacy By Dr. Margaret Paul Experiencing emotional intimacy with others is one of the most satisfying experiences of life. Emotional intimacy, or a sense of deep connection with another person or a group of people, occurs when each person is completely open hearted and devoted to taking 100% responsibility for their own feelings and needs. It occurs when each person is deeply connected with his or her own true Self, and connected with a personal source of spiritual guidance. When people are connected with themselves and with a source of love, truth, and wisdom, they become filled with love to share with others. There is a huge difference between people wanting to get love, intimacy and connection, and wanting to share love, which can happen only when they are each filled with the love from Spirit that comes from taking full responsibility for themselves and doing their inner work. Out of their inner connection and their ability to share love with others comes the fun, the learning, the growth, and the creativity. Emotional intimacy can also occur when people are open and vulnerable enough to share their fears, pain, and challenges. However, sometimes people get addicted to experiencing emotional intimacy through the sharing of their woundedness, rather than the sharing of their passions, fun, creativity, learning, and joy. While sharing pain can be an important part of a relationship, when it is the only way people experience intimacy, the relationship becomes codependent and dysfunctional. True intimacy in a relationship comes from a deep commitment with oneself and one's partner to kindness, compassion, presence, integrity, the intent to learn, responsibility for self, and faith in one's own and the other's essential goodness. It is the sweet, comfortable, light, safe feeling that comes from knowing that neither of us is making the other responsible for us in any way - that both of us are fully present with ourselves, with each other, and with Spirit. Emotional intimacy is the natural outgrowth of developing intimacy with ourselves and our Higher Power. The more inner work we do to heal our fears and beliefs that limit us and learn to be open and honest with ourselves, the more open and authentic we will be with others. Practicing the Inner Bonding process is a powerful way of developing this intimacy with ourselves and with our partner. Through the daily practice of learning to take full responsibility for our own feelings and needs, we gradually heal our fears and the limiting beliefs that cause our fears of being open, honest and transparent with others. Emotional intimacy is the outgrowth of your devotion to your own inner work. Emotional intimacy is what takes away loneliness. We may feel lonely when we are alone, and equally lonely when with another Rosalind Sedacca, CCT, has been facilitating relationship seminars and workshops for more than fifteen years. As a Certified Corporate Trainer and professional speaker, she now focuses her attention on coaching troubled families on how to create a "child-centered divorce." She is the author of: How Do I Tell the Kids about the Divorce? A Create-a-Storybook Guide TM to preparing your children. For more information and a free e-zine visit: http://www.childcentereddivorce.com 48 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 Exception l People Magazine or others who are focused in their heads instead of in their hearts. Our western civilization has stressed intellect much more than heart-centered feelings, which is why we are such a lonely society. Our loneliness goes away only when we are able to share our laughter, fun, joy, creativity, honesty, insights, and love with each other. When we are with people who are in their heads rather than their hearts, we may get stuck sharing our woundedness and our complaints, instead of being in the loving creative flow with each other that signifies true emotional intimacy. Emotional intimacy feeds the heart and soul. Without it in our lives, we will always feel that something is missing. We can learn to connect deeply with ourselves and with our spiritual guidance, but we are social beings, and the sharing of love is the highest, most satisfying experience in life. Quotes of Love and Friendship "Trouble is a part of life. If you don't share it, you don't give the person who loves you a chance to love you enough." Dinah Shore ISSN 1944-9062 Founder and Editor-in-Chief Monica Davis Editors Jon Crump Marla Gem Beatrice Roots Writers Donna Carletta Kathy Kentty Pat Markel Contributors "Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow-ripening fruit." Aristotle "Real love is a pilgrimage. It happens when their is no strategy, but it is very rare because most people are strategists." Anonymous "Friendship make prosperity more brilliant, and lightens adversity by dividing and sharing it." Cicero Dean G. Campbell Jesse Cannone Annmarie Cross Dr. Bruce Eichelberger Catherine Galasso-Vigorito Caroline Jalango William Patterson Dr. Margaret Paul Dorothy Rosby Rosalind Sedacca Sean Thomas Jean Tracy Exceptional Magazine is published bi-monthly by Atela Productions, Inc. The opinions of the contributors are not necessarily those of Atela Productions, Inc. Atela Productions, Inc. 2961-A Hunter Mill Rd. PMB 624 Oakton VA 22124-1704 Copyright � 2009 All rights reserved. Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is the best-selling author and co-author of eight books, including "Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By You?" and "Healing Your Aloneness." She is the co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding� healing process. For more information and for a FREE Inner Bonding course visit. http://www.innerbonding.com. Email: email@example.com Exceptional People Magazine is a copyright of Atela Productions, Inc. The contents of this publication may not be printed, copied or distributed without the express written consent of the Publisher. July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 49 Inspiration potpourri The first time you tried, you hit a bump in the road... and you kept on going. The second time you attempted to go forth, a huge boulder was blocking your path... and you went around it. The third time you made an effort... someone purposely held out their foot and tripped you...but you stood up again. The forth time you endeavored, nothing seemed to be happening... however; you worked and waited patiently for your situation to turn around. The fifth time you tried, although tired, you prayed to God for strength... and persevered. And God took the impossible and transformed it into a miracle... and you made it into your destination! Do you know that many of us give up just when we are about to achieve success? Give it one more try, don't stop, you have a purpose to fulfill. Your miracle may be right around the next corner, for God is not finished with you yet. Last fall, my family and I were hiking up a long mountain trail and after about an hour, my middle daughter asked, "What kind of path is this, Mommy? It is so bumpy, rough and full of large rocks." Quickly, I replied, "Just keep on climbing over the bumps, carry on honey, and soon we will arrive at the top." Frequently, we must try again and again, repeatedly, before we succeed in any endeavor. Perhaps, we have to submit a proposal 20 times before it is accepted. Or struggle for years with that bad habit, prior to it being conquered. Possibly, we have had countless delays and setbacks before we achieved a goal. And maybe we had to remind ourselves hundreds of times that we are `worthy,' `strong' and `loved,' before it sunk into our heart and we believed it. You were created to be a conqueror, and you have what it takes to persevere and determinately stand up to any obstacles, and prevail over them. Inspiration Don't Give Up When Obstacles Rise Up Before You By Catherine Galasso-Vigorito "build anyway," "don't give up," and "go forward with a vision of victory." All things are possible. So stand up to your obstacles, and soon, those obstacles will be crumbled and removed. Scripture says in Proverbs 1:31, "Therefore, they will eat the fruit of their own way." Thus, set your faith in motion, by changing your approach from doubt to faith, from inaction to action, from relinquishing to persevering, and positive things will begin to materialize. For you will have what your faith expects. Accordingly, release the blessings with the words you speak. Declare, "God is at work in my life," and "I am on the threshold of unparalleled success." What you say can change the course of your destiny. Even when you can't see anything happening, keep striving; God is orchestrating situations in your behalf. I have heard it said, "Most people look up and admire the stars, but a champion climbs a mountain and grabs one..." You are champions, dear readers; you have an extraordinary gift to offer to this world. There are new friends, new dreams, joys and blessings before you...So climb on! When I was growing up, we had a dog named Frenchie. He was a small French Poodle, but he had a huge bark. If anyone knocked on our door or even walked by the house, Frenchie would start barking ferociously. His size didn't matter. If he faced a situation that appeared improbable, even though he was so small, this little poodle did not back down and run away. He utilized what he had, stood his ground and carried on. In the same way, if we have a challenge, let us not yield or pull back discouraged. Like Frenchie, it is not our size, limitations, or obstacles that count; it is our faith, our attitude, strength of mind and fortitude that leads us to victory. Despite the odds, anything in life is achievable. Do you recall the saying, "Where there is a will, there is way?" I believe you have the will, the determination, and the staying power to win, because you are much stronger than the challenges before you. When everything seems to be going wrong, if you don't know where to turn next, and while some people say it's time to concede defeat, that's the moment to trust God, work hard and persist. Think about it like this: There were two builders who wanted to construct a house. They each purchased one-acre lots next to each other, drew up their home plans, excavated the land and poured the foundation. However, the storm came, the wind and the rain. The first builder waited and waited and did nothing. Nevertheless, the second builder carried on building his house. He did not wait for perfect conditions, talk about never-ending problems or allow obstacles out of his control to stop him. He built his house anyway. What am I saying? The storm may be furious; the wind might be raging but, Catherine Galasso-Vigorito Nationally Syndicated columnist and author: firstname.lastname@example.org Catherine's new book: "God Will Do the Rest" is now available online. Visit her website at: http://www.anewyouworldwide.com July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 51 potpourri Inspiration 7 Ways to Boost Your Self-Esteem! By Caroline Jalango 1. Get a life purpose statement. A well thought out life purpose statement is a powerful way to boost your selfesteem. It will define who you truly are, drawing out your essence and affirm you. Each time you read your life purpose statement, you will be reminded about who you are, what you represent and what you intend to accomplish in life. 2. Take personal development courses. Investing in the acquisition of knowledge and education boost your self-esteem many levels higher! This will give you a sense of control, amazing self-confidence and prepare you to face and deal with anything that comes your way. 3. Take action. Do something for yourself. Start something for yourself. Take positive risks with your life. Don't live your life in chains. If you want to start a business, do it. Don't live other people's dreams. Live out loud, live your dream, do something that you feel is important to you. Make sure you accomplish it. 4. Socialize Involve yourself actively in matters that interest you. Join clubs, networking organizations, associations or groups of similar interest and participate actively. Being part of a group gives you a sense of belonging, acceptance and appreciation. Knowing that you are part of something beautiful does a lot to boost your selfesteem. 5. Stand up for yourself. Don't allow people to put you down and don't allow their expectations to thwart what you are capable of becoming. Don't put up with people or situations that negate all the positive things that you can do. Stand up for your dreams! 6. Volunteer to help the less privileged. This usually gives you a sense of fulfillment, accomplishment and appreciation. Giving of yourself in service to others is one of the noblest things to do. The look of gratitude on the faces of those that you have helped is enough to boost your self esteem. 7. Set personal goals and accomplish them. Living aimlessly leaves you with a feeling of emptiness and confusion. Goals give you a sense of purpose. They steer your life in a particular direction. They make your life purposeful. Accomplishing personal goals gives your selfesteem a big boost. Caroline Jalango is a life coach for unstoppable women who have a real desire to find their passion and to excel. She coaches women to discover who they are, explore what they can be and take action to achieve their goals. www.motivationzone.com 52 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 Tasty, Healthy Meals Recipes from Chef Sean Thomas Read more about Executive Chef Sean Thomas at: www.exceptionalmag.com/ChefSean potpourri Ingredients Food Preparation 1. Rinse and drain basil leaves. Pat leaves dry with a towel. In a blender or food processor, combine basil leaves and olive or vegetable oil. Whirl just until leaves are finely chopped (do not pur�e). 2. Pour mixture into a 1- to 1 1/2-quart pan over medium heat. Stir occasionally until oil bubbles around pan sides and reaches 165� on a thermometer, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand until cool, about 1 hour. 3. Line a fine wire strainer with two layers of cheesecloth and set over a small bowl. Pour oil mixture into strainer. After oil passes through, gently press basil to release remaining oil. Discard basil. Serve oil or cover airtight and store in the refrigerator up to 3 months. The olive oil may solidify slightly when chilled, but it will quickly liquefy when it comes back to room temperature. 4 potatoes, washed, peeled, quartered and cooked until they can be pierced with a fork � cup basil leaves, julienned 2 TBL. extra virgin olive oil 1 tsp minced garlic 2 TBL butter 2 oz. cream cheese 2 Tbsp. grated parmesan cheese Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste Mash the potatoes roughly. I did it by hand with a potato masher. Mash in the olive oil, basil, butter, garlic, cream cheese, and parmesan cheese until the potatoes are as mashed as you like them (I like a few lumps but suit yourself). Thin the potatoes to the consistency you like with milk and season to taste with salt and black pepper. Grilled Salmon 8oz Salmon fillet Salt and pepper to taste Olive oil Season Salmon with salt and pepper as needed. Season with olive oil. Grill Salmon until it is prepared to your desired level of doneness. Place basil mashed in the center of the plate. Top with grilled Salmon. Garnish with basil oil. Basil Oil Ingredients 1 1/2 cups lightly packed fresh basil leaves 1 cup olive or vegetable oil Grilled Basil Salmon 54 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 potpourri Ingredients 2 teaspoons olive oil 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 teaspoon cumin 1 teaspoon garlic powder (or 1 clove minced) 1/2 teaspoon ground or grated ginger 1/2 tsp salt 1/2 cup chopped white or yellow onions 1 large carrot or 2 small carrots, peeled and sliced 1 small yam, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks 1 zucchini, unpeeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks 1 celery stalk, sliced 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms 1/3 cup raisins 1/3 cup chopped green onions 1 cup chicken broth 1 cup couscous Roasted Pepper Red pepper oil Food Preparation Heat the olive oil and spices over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Add the white onions and saut� until soft, 2-3 minutes. Add the chicken broth, carrots and yam - cover and let steam for 5-6 minutes. Add celery, zucchini, mushrooms and raisins and steam for 3-5 more minutes. When the vegetables are al dente, strain them and keep them warm. Bring the 1 cup of liquid to a boil. Add the couscous and cover with tin foil for 5 minutes. Roasted Pepper Char pepper over an open flame. When completely charred on all sides. Remove from heat and wrap with plastic. Remove charred outer pieces. Be careful not to break the pepper apart. Cut the top off of the pepper and reserve. Add Couscous inside the pepper and place the top back onto the pepper. Place couscous filled pepper in the center of a round plate. Garnish with basil oil and red pepper oil. Enjoy! Chef Sean Thomas Couscous with Roasted Red Pepper July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 55 The Lighter Side potpourri The Art of Selective Procrastination By Dorothy Rosby how my life would be different if there were no Free Cell. For you non-procrastinators unfamiliar with it, Free Cell is a type of solitaire, and one of many ways one can put off doing actual work on one's home computer. (Normally, you don't find Free Cell on business computers because of the effect it would have on Gross National Product.) While it may be one of the most effective methods of delaying work, Free Cell is certainly not the only one. And on January 1, 2009, I resolved to cut back on procrastination. Now I am finally getting around to writing about it. First, let's review some of the time-honored maxims about avoiding procrastination. 1. Eat the elephant in small bites. The elephant is, of course, a low-carb, high-protein metaphor for a project so large that one does not know where to begin. When one does not know where to begin, one does not begin. One plays Free Cell. Or reads her spam. Or eats Spam. In small bites. Meanwhile the elephant grows larger. No one can swallow an entire elephant in one gulp, nor would anyone want to. That's why one should divide the project into small tasks or, to put it another way, chop the elephant into bite-size morsels. While this should make your project more manageable, it won't necessarily make the elephant taste any better. 2. Eat your frog the first thing in the morning. The frog, of course, symbolizes those tasks so unpleasant that you simply cannot bring yourself to do them. Unfortunately, frogs left uneaten have a way of metamorphosing into large distasteful elephants while you're watching MASH reruns. That is why you must summon your courage first thing in the morning and force yourself to swallow the darn thing and get it over with. This will leave you energized and motivated to do other less abhorrent projects--or to play a rousing game of solitaire. 3. To misuse another time management axiom, make hay while the sun is shining. Pay attention to your peak times. Some people are morning people; some people are night people. I'm a person for a short time every day around suppertime. I try to avoid spending my precious peak time daydreaming or twiddling my thumbs; I have my other 15 hours of non-peak, nonsleep time to do that. While I recommend you add elephants, frogs, and hay to your diet, I do not believe you should give up procrastination entirely. Instead, I suggest you practice what I call the Art of Selective Procrastination. Consider the following: Lighter Side If you delay your Christmas shopping until December 23, you won't forget where you put the gifts. Or that you bought them. If you wait to buy your Halloween candy until the afternoon of October 31, you won't have to buy more to replace all that you ate. If you regularly delay grocery shopping, you'll get to eat out more. If you wait long enough, your family will eventually take all of the clean, unfolded laundry out of the laundry basket, making folding and putting away completely unnecessary. If you wait long enough to shovel snow, it will eventually melt. It always does. If you put off raking your leaves, the autumn winds will blow them into your neighbors' yards. But be aware that if your neighbors procrastinate like you do, you'll get them back when the winds change. And if you put off making hay and eating your frogs and elephants, you'll have a lot more time to play Free Cell. I often wonder Great truths little children have learned 1) No matter how hard you try, you can't baptize cats. 2. If your sister hits you, don't hit her back. They always catch the second person. 3. You can't trust dogs to watch your food. 4. Don't sneeze when someone is cutting your hair. 5. You can't hide a piece of broccoli in a glass of milk. 6. The best place to be when you're sad is Grandpa's lap. Great truths adults have learned 1. Raising teenagers is like nailing Jell-O to a tree. 2. Wrinkles don't hurt. 3. Families are like fudge...mostly sweet, with a few nuts. 4. Today's mighty oak is just yesterday's nut that held its ground. 5. Laughing is good exercise. It's like jogging on the inside. 6. Middle age is when you choose your cereal for the fiber, not the toy. Great truths about growing old 1. Growing up is mandatory; growing old is optional. 2. Forget the health food. You need all the preservatives you can get. 3. When you fall down, you wonder what else you can do while you're down there. 4. It's frustrating when you know all the answers but nobody asks you the questions. July-August 2009 | Exceptional People Magazine | 57 potpourri Lighter Side The Lighter Side (Cont'd) The highway patrolman noticed a car going just 22 miles an hour. He pulled the car over and noticed that there were five old ladies inside, eyes wide and white as ghosts. The officer explained that driving too slow can be dangerous. "But officer, said the driver proudly. I was doing the speed limit exactly, twenty-two miles an hour!" The officer explained that "22" was the route number, not the speed limit and asked if they were all OK. "Oh, they'll be alright in a minute officer," the driver said. "We just got off Route 119." 58 | Exceptional People Magazine | July-August 2009 potpourri Lighter Side The Lighter Side (Cont'd) During a recent revival, the evangelist asked the people who were in line what they needed. One man's request was for his hearing. The evangelist put his finger in the man's ear, prayed for him and then asked him, "How's your hearing?" The man replied, "I don't know. It's not until next Tuesday. A woman was trying to get the ketchup to come out of the jar. During her struggle, the phone rang so she asked her 4-year-old daughter to answer the phone. "It's the minister, Mommy," the child said to her mother. Then she added, "Mommy can't come to the phone to talk to you right now. She's hitting the bottle." Thank you. www.exceptionalmag.com Time, a precious commodity. How was your time spent today?