WINTER 2012 $9.95 (incl GST)
TRANSPARENCY AND ABUNDANCY AT WORK
Entrepreneurship ANGE BE THE CH YOU WANT TO SEE
What is Behavioural
Economics LEARN TO INFLUENCE YOUR CUSTOMERS
MEET TAMMY MAY OF MYBUDGET
Arena Nothing Ventured Nothing
● Understanding QR codes for business ● Explore the Workplace Gender Equality Bill 2012 ● Rhonda Byrne’s latest book: The Magic ● Are you the Stickman or Pitman? www.empoweronline.com.au
10 COVER STORY
The Transformation of Tiny Tina With the first season of the new Young Talent Time deemed a success, Helen Rosing gets a behind-the-scenes look into the life of Australian singer, songwriter, musical theatre actress and now TV Host, Tina Arena.
24 BUSINESS IN PROFILE 10
Budget Buster Tammy May, founder and director of MyBudget, started the debt management company from her kitchen table when she was just 22 years old. She talks to Helen Rosing about her achievements.
16 Best behaviour brings big business Learn the little-known business tool of Behavioural Economics to influence consumer behaviour. 18 The carbon tax It’s coming and will impact you in more ways than you know. Get prepared before 1 July. 20 Crack the code Find out what the fuss is about with QR Codes and why they are important for your business. 22 Make the link If you’re not already utilising LinkedIn you should be. We show you how.
28 Courageous leadership Apply the Courageous Leaders Model to develop leadership mastery in your organisation. 30 Social Entrepreneurship Be the change you want to see in the world and make a difference. 32 Herstory We ponder the historical pattern of men conquering and women nurturing. 34 Are you an Intrapreneur? Let your inner entrepreneurial side shine within your organisation to drive change. 37 Workplace gender equality Understand what the new Workplace Gender Equality Bill 2012 means to working women.
38 Stickman v Pitman Meet two quirky little characters who challenge you to achieve your goals despite your hardships. 40 Be you. Be different It’s time to embrace your differences and live the life you were always meant to.
41 It’s magic Solve the next riddle in your quest for abundance in Rhonda Byrne’s latest book, The Magic.
42 Me and Her Karen Tyrrell shares her personal story stepping out of the darkness of a severe mental illness. 44 In the name of love Are you overly competitive with your brothers or sisters? It’s time to end sibling rivalry. 45 Beware perceptions Change those perceptions that are destroying your relationship.
46 What is biomesotherapy? Learn about this “new” ancient therapy used as an alternative form of pain management. 48 End emotional eating Satisfy your emotional hunger and stop using food to cope with life. 51 Bust your excuses We’ll show you how to let go of the justifications that have been holding you back. 52 Women in denial Find out why women are four times more likely to die of heart disease than breast cancer.
54 Playing it smart We present a new strategy to purchase property with no money down. 56 Choosing your super fund Find out if industry super funds live up to the hype. 57 The 10-step plan Implement this simple plan to find freedom from financial stress.
4 From the desk…
50 Great Reads
6 Your Say
60 A little motivation
7 Meet the Experts
61 Coaching Toolkit
8 Acts of Kindness
66 15 Minutes
36 Check it out
From the desk... “emPOWER is the vehicle for women to achieve more in their professional and personal lives.”
shows how to let your inner entrepreneur shine to drive change in your organisation on page 34.
presents an interesting strategy to purchase property with no money down on page 54.
With the cold weather upon us, I can’t think of a better time to grab a hot chocolate and delve into the pages of the latest issue. And a bumper issue it is… Tina Arena sits proudly on the cover of this issue and I have to say it was a real pleasure to have such a down-to-earth interview. She’s had an amazing 37 years of success in music, since she first appeared on Young Talent Time as a tiny seven year old and as I’m sure you’ll agree, she’s a powerful example of the importance of staying true to yourself. Be inspired as Tina openly shares her views on life, music, TV and what it means to be famous. For our ambitious business women, check out the article on behavioural economics on page 16. Bri Williams shares this little-known concept and how you can use it to influence your customers. We’ll also explore the impact of the Carbon Tax from 1 July (page 18) and look at how you can use the increasingly popular QR Codes to grow sales in your business. We also meet Tammy May founder of MyBudget to hear how she’s changing lives everyday (page 24). For career, we’ve got a great selection of articles this issue starting off with Mandy Holloway wanting to grow more courageous leaders in organisations (page 28). We’ll then explore the concept of social entrepreneurship on page 30 and look at the implications of the new Workplace Gender Equality Bill 2012. One article I particularly love this issue is Stickman v Pitman on page 38. Terry Hawkins challenges you to choose how to respond to hardships in your life to achieve your goals anyway. We’re also glad to be joined by Rhonda Byrne, author of bestselling book The Secret, who shares an excerpt from her latest book, The Magic on page 41. If you’re like me, you’ve often heard great success stories of property investors who invested with ‘no money down’. Well, this issue we’re showing just one strategy that you can apply to actually do it. We’ll be bringing more of these strategies to the magazine over the coming issues. There’s also some great life and wellbeing articles to enjoy so snuggle up with that hot chocolate and we look forward to hearing ‘your say’ on the issue.
Subscribe for you or a friend this issue and receive a gorgeous gift pack from Affirmations, valued at $90.
Turn to page 53 to check out this month’s subscription offer.
Helen Rosing, Publisher
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favourite letter I started reading emPOWER magazine when it first hit the shelves many years back, but unfortunately stopped a couple of years ago due to various reasons. I decided to once again sign up for a subscription about a month ago and gee, the issue I received this week couldn’t have come at a better time. I was recently diagnosed with breast cancer and while I have remained positive throughout most of my treatment, the past six weeks have been the worst. I’ve felt a real lack of confidence due to my young age, social expectations, and more recently relationship issues. I’ve felt like I’ve had to deal with everything on my own without the support of my boyfriend and this was also taking its toll in me emotionally. Reading your article, Your Physiology Creates Your Life (Autumn 2012), felt so close to home for me and reminded me that I need to stay focused on a positive emotional state of mind; even more so through this difficult stage of my life. Thank you for waking me up and bringing me out of the dark hole I was quickly sinking into. Much appreciated reader once again. - Peta - via email
I was flicking through emPOWER on a colleague’s desk and wanted to write in about the article What’s your influencing style? in the last issue of emPOWER (Autumn 2012). Thinking about the different styles, I would say that I am ‘The Preacher’ and to be honest I just assumed that everyone is same. It was an eye-opener for me to realise that the way I am interacting with some people may not be effective. I’m practicing being more of a ‘Visionary’ to inspire the people I want to follow me. Thanks for making me think. - Michael, via email
I had almost given up hope of ever finding a magazine that speaks to women as though they have brains when I stumbled across a copy of emPOWER in the Virgin lounge at Brisbane airport. In short, I love it! The variety of articles ensured I read it from start to finish and I was left feeling positive. Thank you for publishing something that is informative and intelligent. - Kaylene, via email
I was fascinated by your article on Mirroring & Matching in the last issue of emPOWER (Autumn 2012). I’ve never heard of this concept before and decided to put it into practice. The first few times I attempted to mirror or match the person I was talking to I was very obvious and lost track of what I was talking about but soon after I found I could easily position myself to be the mirror. All I have to say is WOW! I don’t know if it is because I am focusing on building rapport or that the technique really works but I’ve definitely noticed a change in the quality of my relationships and the teams I’m in. Thank you for teaching me such an insightful new technique. - June, via email
I wanted to comment on the Create a virtual team article in the Autumn 2012 issue of emPOWER. I run my business from home and while I love the flexibility this provides, as the business has grown I’ve felt stuck, not being able to recruit help because I have nowhere to put them. I found your article incredibly helpful. I had heard of sites such as elance.com previously but didn’t really know how to get started and how to ensure I find good people who are reliable. It was interesting for me to note that while I was questioning whether I could find someone good, the article put a lot of that responsibility back on me to ensure good systems, procedures and communication. I’m going to give it a go, so thank you for giving me the know-how and confidence. - Gayle, via email
I can’t believe I didn’t know you were back in print. I was an avid reader of emPOWER in the early days and have always thought it’s a fantastic magazine. I’m so excited to be able to have the hardcopy again and have just purchased all the back issues as well. Thanks emPOWER for bringing me so much motivation and holding me accountable to improve my life. - Michelle, via email
Submit ‘Your Say’ through the website at www.empoweronline.com.au or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
meet the experts
to all our expert contributors Yza Canja started property investing at 22. With low income, no savings or assets, Yza built a multimillion dollar property portfolio using none of her own money. Having worked in the finance industry for over 10 years, Yza has developed finance and property investment strategies to rapidly grow profitable property portfolios. Yza now teaches thousands of Australians her strategies through her course Pro Investor.
Janine Cox is the Senior Analyst at Wealth Within, a private investment company specialising in managing direct share portfolios through their Individual Managed Account Service. The company is also a government accredited specialist share market educator, where Janine is one of only two lead trainers educating people how to invest and trade the share market.
Jason Cunningham is an ordinary guy with an extraordinary talent for engaging with people. His high energy and entertaining style instantly endears him to people from all walks of life. He has an ability to convey complex financial concepts simply and in everyday language. His true talent is his ability to encourage and inspire others to make positive changes in their lives.
Dr. Vesna Grubacevic is a Performance Transformation Expert™, an internationally recognised and Certified NLP Trainer, Certified Trainer of Master Time Line Therapy™, Certified Trainer of Hypnotherapy, Clinical Master Hypnotherapist, author of the Transformational NLP Guide, creator of the Self Empowerment Technique©, and a passionate and innovative speaker. Dr. Vesna also holds a PhD, a BEc and is the owner of award-winning company, Qt.
Zoe Wyatt is a Social Media Marketing Specialist, Speaker, Trainer, Manager and Internet Entrepreneur, operating multiple businesses from her laptop while travelling the World. Zoe and her partner Mark are based on the Sunshine Coast and operate a full service Social Media Marketing Consultancy with clients around the Globe.
Terry Hawkins (CSP) is an award winning speaker, award winning entrepreneur, best selling author and founder/owner (1989) of People In Progress Global, an industry leader in enterprise training resources with offices in Australia and now the USA. Terry’s dynamic, transformational presentation style and her powerful, action based messages have made her the most in demand speaker throughout Australia and now the USA!
Dr. Dain Heer travels all over the world facilitating advanced classes on Access Consciousness. He invites and inspires people to more consciousness from total allowance, caring, humor and a phenomenal knowing. Dain has a completely different approach to healing. He teaches people to tap into and recognize their own abilities and knowing. The energetic transformation possible is fast – and truly dynamic. Dr. Heer’s latest book, Being You, Changing the World, was published in June 2011.
Participants from the many leadership programs Mandy Holloway delivers report she has the rare ability to make them feel significant while engaging not only their head but also their heart and soul. She brings the real and practical aspects of leading yourself and others to life through these programs, along with executive coaching, speaking and writing. Her first book, Inspiring Courageous Leaders, was recently released.
Tharani Jegatheeswaran is the Client Director in Deloitte Private’s not-for-profit specialist group. She has over 8 years’ experience providing audit and consulting services to small and medium businesses and not-forprofit organisations. Tharani is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, Australia and has a Bachelor of Business. At heart though, Tharani is a social entrepreneur who is passionate about social change.
Fabe Keily is the CEO & Founder of What Working Women Want and has spent the last 14 years in the personal development industry, developing techniques that have been instrumental in empowering thousands of women across Australia to overcome their personal, organisational and cultural barriers to success. Fabe is a popular keynote speaker and MC with her vivacious, cheeky personality warming her to crowds around the country.
Danielle King is the Founder and Director of Green Moves Australia, is a qualified and accredited Sustainability Consultant and teaches Sustainability subjects at Swinburne. Danielle is also an active member of the BDAV (Building Design Association of Victoria) sitting on both the Sustainability Committee and the Sustainability Advisory Board.
Lisa Messenger is the Owner and Creative Director of The Messenger Group and has worked globally in events, sponsorship, marketing, PR and publishing. On the back of her first book, she developed a custom funding and distribution model that is unique in Australia. She has since authored and co-authored 16 books and The Messenger Group has custom published over 350.
Lysa Black and Gina Martin spent years trapped in emotional eating. Comfort eating, binge eating, and secret eating created a limiting prison of self-loathing. After breaking free from emotional eating they slimmed 40kg combined and have stayed slim for 16 years. They are passionate about helping women end the struggle with emotional eating.
Carren Smith, CEO of Quantum Leadership Group and founder of the seminar series The Art of Public Speaking, Speaker Secrets Exposed, Mindset Mastery and Magnetise Your Message. Having delivered over 540 presentations in five years with a background in human potential, neuro science and the psychology of creating success deliberately, Carren has literally transformed the lives of thousands of individuals’ worldwide.
Katie Stoddart is the director at Digital Marketing Agency 3-idea. A marketing specialist and web developer, Katie delivers workshops, training, services and consultations in all realms of digital marketing. For more information on QR codes and how they can work in your digital marketing strategy, contact email@example.com or visit www.3-idea.com.
Yolanda Vega is the CEO of the Australian Women Chamber of Commerce & Industry (AWCCI), a member based not-for-profit organisation. She represented Australia at the first Women’s Economic Summit chaired by Hilary Clinton in September 2011. Her mission is to ensure women business owners and female entrepreneurs have a voice and the programs and policies required to be more independent and their business more profitable.
Recently returned to Australia after a decade making her mark in the USA, Margie Warrell is a Forbes Columnist, bestselling author, media contributor (Today Show, Fox News, CNN) and sought after expert in what it takes to work, live and lead with courage. A dynamic speaker, facilitator, and master coach, Margie walks her talk when it comes to challenging what’s possible and living courageously.
Bri Williams is a behavioural specialist, presenter and author who runs People Patterns, a consultancy focusing on the business application of behavioural economics. Bri is a CPA with a degree in Applied Psychology who has worked across FMCG, Information Publishing and Advertising industries.
We can change the world, one act at a time – a little kindness is all it takes.
t’s quite possible you have changed someone’s day without even knowing it. Perhaps you gave a welcoming smile when they were feeling left out, delivered a compliment, opened a door, offered up your seat on the bus or were generally helpful and pleasant when it was most needed. You can probably also think of moments when someone changed your day in a similar way. What happened in each of those moments is called an Act of Kindness – a small action that can make a big difference. Here’s how some of our readers are getting in on the act.
Most mornings when I arrive at the office the first thing I do is to check my emails. This morning when I checked there was one from my boss. Initially I assumed that it was a task she wanted me to complete but in opening the email I saw it was actually an e-card. I opened it up and it was from her saying how much she appreciated my work. It was such a lovely and unexpected surprise and made me feel fantastic. This is why I love my job and the company I work for. I think more bosses should take the time to do things like this; it doesn’t cost a cent. Necia – via email
A long time ago, I was driving home from the supermarket and noticed my neighbour walking with a lot of shopping bags. We’d never met but I stopped and offered her a lift home. We helped each other to get our shopping inside and then sat down for a coffee and a chat. We are still friends today and I often think how a little kindness can pay off in so many different ways. Esther – via email
I know it’s only something very small but I always say ‘thank you’ to the bus driver when I get off at my stop. I think it’s a simple courtesy that easily improves someone’s day. I wish more people would do it. Sal – via website
I was walking around on my lunch brea k last week and saw a random quote stuck up on a brick wall . It said, “Even monkeys fall out of trees”. Throughout the week, seve ral other inspirational signs appeared on the wall and I found myself wanting to check each day for a new quote. It made me smile to read them and see the reaction of other people who smiled as well. I hope the quotes continue; they are a small act of kindness brightening everyone’s day. Perhaps I should join in.
t has always been I live in Toowong (QLD) and our stree a heap of graffiti was e ther , ever how fairly clean. Recently I was running painted on one of the big fences. When ing it off. Before the other day, I noticed two ladies clean brush in my with I knew it I had stopped running and t exercise grea got still hand joined the cleaning crew. I ning and mor nice a was It and had a few laughs as well. ced. hopefully it won’t be repla Leanne – via email
Maureen – via website
My neighbour is an older man and we often have a chat. One day, he was telling me that he has never tried a scratchie before. He won’t buy one himself because he thinks it’s a waste of money. I can still rememb er the day I was old enough to buy one; I went to the closest newsagency and was so excited to be able to do it. I was picking up the paper one Saturday morning and saw the scratchies at the counter. It made me think of him so I bought two and went by his place on the way back home. He was really touched and although he didn’t win anything he had the same excitement as I did with my first scratchie . It was really lovely. Candice – via email
Submit your Act of Kindness & Win The a reader to send in our favourite and most inspiring act of kindness before 30 April will win 3 gorgeous Massage Oil Candles from Mind To Body, valued at $149.95. These luxurious candles melt into a magnificent body lotion suitable for skin care or for use as a soothing massage lotion. Try one out today. www.mindtobody.com.au Submit your Act of Kindness at empoweronline.com.au or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
yourself â€“ where did you grow up and what are your fondest memories of your childhood? A. I grew up in Melbourne in the North Western suburbs; I went to school around there and lived in a really lovely, warm community with really great neighbours and a great spirit around. I had a huge family, Sicilian on both sides so the gatherings were always enormous, so generally I had a pretty fantastic childhood.
tarting her career as seven year old on Australiaâ€™s longest running variety television show, Young Talent Time, Tina Arena has grown to become a household name, both in Australia and overseas. Having lived through the highs and lows of the music industry post-Young Talent Time, Tina shares how the industry and those within it have evolved over time, for better and worse.
Q. Who was most influential in your life growing up? A. Iâ€™d have to say probably mum because we spent so much time 10
Photo courtesy of Peter Brew-Bevan
Q. Tell us a bit about
With the first season of the revived Young Talent Time deemed a success, Helen Rosing gets a behind-the-scenes look into the life of Australian singer, songwriter, musical theatre actress and now TV host, Tina Arena.
with her. She worked two jobs from home because there were three of us. She was always busy because it was pretty hectic in those days, carting me around, picking me up from school and the logistics were pretty regimented; then obviously doing things with my other sisters, so managing three different logistics and schedules wouldn’t be an easy thing.
Q. Was she a bit of a strong woman, your mother?
A. Not a bit…a lot. What you would
probably refer to as referential; a very interesting woman, a very courageous woman. I had a very courageous father as well, putting up with four very strong women, that has to be something to be admired as well. I think that takes great courage and I mean that sincerely.
Q. What values do you feel you have as a result of your upbringing and how have these shaped who you are today? A. Values and manners and social graces full stop are something that is very important and they are something that they instilled in all of us. I certainly hope that we’re instilling that into our children as well. The philosophy is to treat people the way you want to be treated. It doesn’t mean you’re the perfect individual, but you certainly do your absolute best.
Q. It’s amazing to think you started
Photo courtesy of Peter Brew-Bevan
your music career at just seven years of age. Looking back now, what do you remember of this time? A. A whole lot of good fun. It was far more innocent and far less calculated, certainly from my part back then. We weren’t a generation that was aware, nor were we dealing with the elements that generation Y, or generation I as it’s now being referred to, have. We never had any elements like that so our motives were probably a little bit different.
Q. How were you discovered for the original Young Talent Time?
A. I sang at a cousin’s wedding when I a
flower girl, I must have been about five and the master of ceremonies actually pulled my folks aside and said: “you
really should take your daughter to this singing teacher,” and it was a woman by the name of Voila Ritchie. I started going for a couple of months and within a couple of months of doing lessons, she rang (former Young Talent Time host) John Young personally and she said: “I have this little girl, she’s only been with me a short time but I’d really love to put her on the show,” and John said absolutely. I appeared four times and won three out of the four times and after the fourth appearance I was contacted by John and asked to officially join. That was a big deal. I wasn’t even aware back then how much it would change the goal posts of everything. If I had have known I may not have done it. But I was a child and it symbolised fun and making me feel good so that association alone was enough for me to go “yeah, I really want to be a part of it”. Mum and dad saw that I was committed and because of that decided to enter in on the adventure.
Q. Following Young Talent Time it
was a few years until you were in the public eye again. What were you doing during this time? A. Going to school, doing jingles for TV and radio. I started working live at a venue in Melbourne called the Grain Store with an 8-piece band called Network Horns. I had originally just started as a special guest but it took up quite a monumental following so I ended up doing that for about three years and that was an incredible live experience. I think that’s where I got a lot of that pub gig sensibility and started working a live audience and from there it just grew.
Q. What would you say have been
the highs of your music career?
A. There’s been so many. France has
been an incredible journey. Integrating and becoming almost a part of their community has been pretty much a trip. It’s not something that many people get to experience, to culturally and artistically integrate into another culture. The birth of my son was monumental; it was a major turning point for me and my partner. It just made me realise that art is a beautiful thing but I realised I didn’t want it to take all of that space and being a mum is really an enriching experience.
Q. What have been the lows? A. The period after YTT was a lull for me - that was a tough time. You go from being in an amazing routine for seven years to all of a sudden just focusing on one thing. Going to rehearsals every day with a bunch of kids, growing and evolving together, to all of a sudden stopping, that was pretty tough to live. There have been a couple of moments in my life where everything had to shift. It’s no different to what everybody experiences.
Q. How do you remain positive when things are tough?
A. Ultimately I realise that without that positive
Q. Since then you’ve had an
amazing music career. How would you describe your journey? A. It’s been eclectic. I’m a performer from a generation who was able to flirt with different elements of performance. I come from an education where we kind of did the full circle of everything, as opposed to today where they’re much more directionalised.
approach you’re not going to attract positivity. I really try to get myself in the mental headspace and realise you’ve got a great life! You have to be able to reflect and pull back and look at the big picture from the outside looking in.
Q. You’ve had quite a bit of success
in France with albums reaching platinum status. How did this come about given your Italian background? A. I never got the chance to work Italy the way I was able to work France. The Mask of Zorro, which was my first big recording, was done in France. Chains had made a little bit of noise in 199596 in France, so they’d already heard the voice on radio, but then as soon as the soundtrack came out that song was hugely enormous in that country. I have a branch of family that left and moved to France so French was always present in our roots so it didn’t seem strange for me.
Q. When this interview goes to print in June you’ll be about to tour. Tell us about that. A. It’s orchestral, there are 64 pieces on the stage plus my rhythm section and another 6 or 7 people, and we’re playing Songs of Love and Loss from Volume 1 and 2, throwing in a couple of classics and playing some tributes as well. The arrangement is really the focus and the songs are really given a whole new spirit.
Q. You’ve also been involved in
musical theatre. Tell us about that. Is this something that you would like to do more of? A. I’ve already done quite a bit of it. The last one I did was Chicago in London on the West End. I’ve always loved musical theatre for as long as I can remember and I’d love to do more.
Q. What have you
Q. When you first heard that Young
Talent Time was being revived, what was your initial reaction? A. There have been quite a few people who have attempted to revive YTT over the years. I knew this time it was serious because I realised who was behind it when I began having initial discussions with Grenada and Ten about it. The way they spoke about the brand was incredibly respectful and I think it was from that that I realised I wouldn’t really have a good reason to not do it; it’s where I started, I’m talking from experience. You try to look for reasons not to do something and when they’re not sufficient it’s obvious. The experience has been awesome. It’s been the most fantastic journey and everybody in that company is delightful. It’s been an absolute gift working on that show.
Q. How has Young Talent Time
changed from when you were initially involved to the current format? A. They’re dealing with different elements on the show now than what we dealt with back then. They’re dealing with Facebook and websites and web chats; the digital world has changed and they’re all completely savvy, as opposed to my generation. They’ve all had a million different acts for musical references, one wants to be Britney Spears, the other one wants to be Rihanna and we grew up with different musical references.
enjoyed most about being involved in the program again? A. Just seeing kids have a great time and expressing themselves. I’ve really enjoyed seeing them thinking outside the box and doing things that they usually wouldn’t do. That’s when they’re growing.
Q. What do you think is the secret to being so successful in the same career for so long? A. That’s a brutal question (laughs). I think it’s tenacity, dedication, how much you want something, being very well surrounded, being surrounded by honest people and understanding that it’s a job. I think ultimately people think that you just go out there and put those shoes on or dress up, they don’t realise what’s in between, they don’t see what goes into having a career. It’s a lot of work and it’s not always glamorous.
Q. Earlier this year you were
featured in the program Who Do You Think You Are? What was this experience like and what did you learn about your family? A. I learnt that I come from an extraordinary family first and foremost and I learnt about myself. I learnt what makes me tick, why perhaps the music element is so great in my life, why the sense of healing and helping is very important. It’s made me understand where the genetics and where the characters come from and who they were. It was an amazing experience and it changed my life.
Q. Not much is written about your
personal life. We know you have a son to partner, Vincent Mancini. Is it important to you to keep your personal life out of the media?
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Fast facts 1. 2. 3. 4.
A. Yes it is. Because I feel that people’s
personal lives are used like pieces of porn or something. I think it’s quite revolting when you see somebody having some difficulty and it is constantly criticised or talked about and I don’t think it’s respectful. I think it’s an old fashioned thing, people need to live their lives their way, they don’t need to have everybody talk about them, I just think it’s ridiculous.
Q. How would you describe your relationship with ‘self’?
A. It can be a little bit antagonistic at
times. I think I’ve learnt that that’s a part of a performer’s journey, those feelings of absolute doubt or fear, and I think I’ve realised it’s just a part of the whole genetic make up and you have to understand that it’s a process that you go through but you get out of it.
Q. Do you feel like you’ve reached
a point now where you have that self belief and self confidence? A. I’m generally more confident, but having said that doesn’t mean I don’t go through times when I’m down or I’m scared, but generally I think the confidence in myself is something that has gotten better with time.
Q. I think people look at someone
that is in the public eye like yourself and think you have everything handled, what do you think? A. That’s very naive. One thing that is very obvious to me since I’ve come back the last couple of years is the influence of gossip within everyday culture in Australia that is almost at a deafening proportion. I’m amazed by the amount of time dedicated to talking about other peoples’ lives. I find it bizarre and perhaps it’s because I’m much more European in my sensibilities than I have perhaps recognised before. But that fascination with watching train wrecks and stuff is just mind boggling to me. My mind is just perplexed about what is so seductive or seducing about it.
Q. Do you think there is an element
of it that makes the ‘everyday person’ feel better about themselves? A. That’s definitely an element. Do you, the reader, feel better when you read about Rihanna or Kate Moss or whoever, seeing that they hit a wall? Have we lost our sense of empathy? Because if delving into that kind of psyche makes you feel better then there’s something fundamentally wrong with you. It’s part of the reason I am very careful with what is written and what I answer because it’s not going to make your life any better knowing who I’m sleeping with, is it? What are you going to learn from that? When I learn it’s by reading about somebody’s journey. Whether it’s a good or bad one, I’m going to take something from that and think, “Wow, they actually lived through that”. Them talking about it in a really beautiful way is where I learn. I’m not worried about people like Kim Kardashian. Give me a break, talk about numbing the people. That is something that is deeply concerning as a human. We’ve got other things to do here and we don’t have much time. The beautiful thing about what I do is that I am able to travel and spend some time observing people a bit and I’m learning about different people. It’s amazing what you take from that.
Full name – Tina Arena Date of birth – November 1, 1967 Favourite food – Anything fresh Who you’d like to meet and why – Warren Buffett, because he’s one of the richest men on the planet but he’s also one of the most refreshingly humble ones as well. It’d be fascinating to see the juxtaposition with a human being like that 5. Who inspires you – Anyone who is doing the best they can in whatever they’re doing 6. Favourite time of day – Morning 7. A little known fact about you – I’m a ball breaker 8. Can’t live without – Love and laughter 9. Biggest turning point in life – Becoming a mum 10. Best piece of advice for other aspiring women – Just get on with it.
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business | Feature
Best behaviour brings big business
People Patterns’ Bri Williams explains the littleknown business tool of Behavioural Economics and how it can be your guide to influencing consumer behaviour.
n the real world we spend more time deciding which washing powder to buy than where to invest our superannuation. In the real world we spend hours looking for the best holiday airfare but let our car insurance roll over without discussion. And in the real world, we would rather buy another book so that our online shopping basket qualifies for free shipping than have to pay for postage. Welcome to the real world of irrational decision making, better known as Behavioural Economics. It’s a world you live in and if you’re in business, can revel in so here’s your introduction to why we behave the way we do when it comes to decision making.
What is Behavioural Economics?
Behavioural Economics is the study of emotional, cognitive and social influences on economic decision making. In other words, examining what makes us buy what we buy. The difference is the field is experimentally based, using control and sample groups to isolate the behavioural principle that has influenced a decision. You won’t catch a Behavioural Economist asking a consumer why they bought something or whether they will in the future. Instead real, observable behaviour is what they are interested in because it is a better indictor of what will happen in future
than reports of intended or rationalised behaviour. The power of Behavioural Economics is that the principles uncovered are robust and therefore predictable, meaning that an observation of past behaviour is turned into a predictor of future behaviour that can then be utilised by government or businesses to influence an outcome. It’s like a ‘play book’ on how to influence consumers.
Where does Behavioural Economics fit?
Imagine a spectrum. At the far end is traditional economics, which treats us as entirely rational beings and is built on the assumption we will always act in our financial best interests. At the other end sits psychology, which is concerned with our cognitive and behavioural processes. Wedged in the middle you’ll find the relatively new field of Behavioural Economics, which starts with the assumption that we are in fact not always rational when it comes to economic decision making. For example, we know that many of us volunteer our time to charitable causes. To an Economist, volunteering does not make rational sense because it is use of your resources without an economic benefit. To a Behavioural Economist on the other hand, it is simply
an example of us choosing to do something for reasons other than financial reward.
Where is Behavioural Economics being used?
Government policy Perhaps most famously, British Prime Minister David Cameron installed a team of Behavioural Economists in the so called “Nudge Unit”, with the objective of influencing behaviour according to social policy. This unit, advised by leading Behavioural Economist Richard Thaler, is tackling issues such as obesity, smoking and energy consumption by ‘nudging’ the public’s decision making towards a more positive outcome. Likewise in the United States, Behavioural Economics is being used by President Obama’s Administration to influence the behavioural outcomes of policy decisions. Advertising To some degree, Behavioural Economics has been used in the world of advertising for decades. However, until now it may not have been clear as to why particular advertising techniques were more effective than others. Rory Sutherland from Ogilvy, UK, is leading the formalisation of Behavioural Economics in the advertising discipline, using the rigour and predictability of behavioural outcomes to improve marketing effectiveness. Market Research Market Researchers are also grappling with what Behavioural Economics means for their craft. For many, Behavioural Economics could be the missing piece of their methodology. Focus groups
Feature | business
and qualitative research are great for understanding attitudes and reactions to research topics, and ethnographic and observational techniques are ideal for analysing what actually happens. But how do you predict future behaviour? Behavioural Economics can fill in the blank between intended and actual behaviour by predicting what is likely to happen based on the proven behavioural principles. Businesses Behavioural Economics is slowly permeating the business world as it gains broader appeal and loosens its academic identity. Banking – Westpac New Zealand struck upon a key behavioural insight that they are now using to grow their market share; we spend impulsively but do not save that way. To capitalise on our short term bias, Westpac launched their Impulse Saver App, whereby people can, whenever the mood strikes, hit a big red button on their smartphone that deposits a pre-set amount of money into their savings account. Now every time you check the weather, read your email or update your Facebook status you can also feed your savings account. Retail – Retailers use many behavioural techniques without necessarily knowing them as Behavioural Economics. Whenever you come across a Recommended Retail Price (RRP) marked down to a sale amount you are witnessing the behavioural principle of anchoring, where we contextualise the value of something by the first number we see. Amazon serves as a great case study on the application of anchoring as well as many other behavioural principles. As soon as a book is released to Amazon it is displayed with a marked down RRP ‘anchor’ to persuade us that we are getting a bargain. Utilities – Energy consumption and emissions control is on the minds of most governments. In the US city of Sacramento the municipal utility provider employed a clever behavioural strategy to get people to reduce their consumption; social pressure known as herding. Imagine getting your monthly power bill with a graph that showed how your consumption compared with that of your neighbours. What they found was people who were above-average energy consumers actually decreased their usage toward the average – a success! However, people who were below-average, the power-misers, realised they were doing better than their neighbours and got slack, increasing their
usage toward the average – not what was intended. But the municipal utility provider was unperturbed. Imagine now you get your monthly bill and you are below average, but this time you don’t increase your energy. Why? Because on your bill next to your low usage is a smiley face. Turns out all that was needed to reinforce the behaviour of low energy consumers was a social cue of appreciation in the form of a smiley face.
Key Behavioural Principles to use
There are dozens of proven behavioural principles that can be used by businesses of any size, industry or market as part of everyday practices, most often without any significant additional cost. Here are two of those that carry the greatest opportunity: Loss aversion We are more motivated to avoid loss than seek gain. For example, many of us stay in jobs that we do not enjoy because we are more scared of what we may lose than gain by finding alternative work. We stick to the same meal in restaurants in case an alternative isn’t as good and we drive further to a petrol station to use our discount voucher because it is too painful to pay a full price at the local pump. If you have ever watched the TV game show “Deal or No Deal” you can see loss aversion at play as contestants refuse the ‘bank’ offer if it is lower than an amount they have previously knocked back even though it would be a better economic decision to take the money. Applying loss aversion As a business you must first realise that when people are thinking of buying your product/service they are weighing up what they have to lose rather than gain. This is not always just money. Are they risking a new experience? Risking the reaction of their friends and family? Risking the pain of finding it cheaper somewhere else? To get your customers over the loss aversion hurdle, consider Money Back Guarantees, Price Guarantees and a No Questions Asked Returns Policy. Whilst these policies may expose you to the cost of refunds, they are much more likely to grow your revenue beyond any additional claims activity. Status quo bias Also known as default bias or inertia, we have a tendency to leave things as they are rather than seek change. Insurance policies we rollover rather than renegotiate, terms
and conditions we tick without reading and mortgages we continue to have with banks that we get angry with are all examples of inertia overcoming our willingness to change. Applying status quo bias Once you have a customer, status quo bias can work in your favour as long as you make it easy for people to renew. Automating renewals is great for this, but otherwise you can make the renewal process as simple as possible by prepopulating customer information, providing a priority phone line or webpage, and ensuring the steps to follow are clear and distraction free. Your goal should be for your customer to be on auto-pilot. If you are seeking to secure a customer, status quo bias is your enemy, and you have to punch through inertia in order to get their business. In this case, if the customer is on auto-pilot they will default to doing nothing or sticking with your competitor, so you need to interrupt them using a vivid and memorable brand proposition. The best technique for overcoming status quo is to make the customer feel that they are losing out by doing nothing; in other words, using loss aversion to scare them into changing. Car insurance companies use this technique by promoting how much people could be saving by moving their policy, daily deal sites like Groupon use count-down clocks to create an urgency to take action or miss out, and many retailers use “today only” discounts for the same reason.
How to find out more about Behavioural Economics
Behavioural Economics provides significant opportunity for businesses looking for a ‘play book’ on influencing consumer behaviour. Cass Sunstein and Richard Thaler’s “Nudge” and Dan Ariely’s “Predictably Irrational” are books well worth reading to get a sense of what this new field has to offer. Whatever you do, don’t do nothing because you risk missing out on one of the best opportunities to create advantage for your business. Bri Williams runs People Patterns, specialising in the business application of Behavioural Economics. Bri is a presenter and author of “22 Minutes to a Better Business: How Behavioural Economics can help you tackle everyday business issues”. Contact Bri at email@example.com, follow her on Twitter @Peoplepatterns or visit www.peoplepatterns.com.au
business | Feature
With the carbon tax coming into effect on 1 July this year, it’s time to seriously look at and prepare for the impact it will have on you and your business. Danielle King reveals what you can do.
he carbon tax will be charged at $23 per tonne of greenhouse gas (GHG) and will apply to any entity producing more than 25,000 kilotonnes of GHG (or equivalent) per annum. This carbon price will apply to approximately 500 of the biggest polluters in Australia. While it seems impossible to obtain a full list of such entities, the costs that are expected to increase are energy (from non-renewable sources), transport, construction materials, manufacturing inputs and air travel. The Treasury Modelling Overview document states an expected increase of 10 per cent for electricity and around 9 per cent for gas during the first year alone. Airfares will also increase, although price rises may not be applied evenly across the ticket range. Exemptions to the carbon tax currently include agriculture, fisheries and forestry, so there should be no direct price increase in these areas. Most road transport vehicles (4.5 tonnes or less) are exempt for the first two years but they will be impacted from 1 July 2014.
Although the Government expects the impact to be minimal, small businesses will certainly notice the cost increases. Administratively there will be no forms to fill in or carbon accounting required. It will be business as usual; however, businesses will be exposed to slightly higher costs, as outlined above. The Federal Government is offering several assistance packages to soften the blow. The two that are of particular relevance to small businesses are the asset tax write-off and energy efficiency information as follows: • For investment in more energyefficient equipment, during 2012-2013, small businesses (with an aggregated
turnover of under $2m per year) will be able to instantly write off any eligible equipment or asset up to $6,500. This has increased from $5,000 during the 2011/12 tax year. • Funding is also being provided via grants to eligible groups to provide energy efficiency information programs specifically for small businesses. Keep an eye out in your local area for information sessions.
Small businesses will certainly notice the cost increases Note that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has a legal budget to investigate complaints where consumers feel an organisation is charging too much carbon tax. Ensure you report any organisation you think is applying unfair carbon tax price increases.
What can you do?
There is always something you can do to mitigate the risk of higher costs - here are some suggestions. • Review your business and identify areas where you are likely to be impacted (for example, electricity costs and transport). • Look at ways to reduce your exposure (by reducing what you use, minimising use of impacted goods or changing the way you do things). • Read your energy bills, understand what you use and apply energy
efficiency strategies to reduce energy usage. • Increase your recycling - this will reduce waste to landfill and any resulting costs. • Take advantage of the $6,500 tax write-off and replace energy-hungry appliances and machines with highly energy-efficient models (an old refrigerator, for example, can cost up to $1,200 per year to run, while energyefficient models cost around $80 a year). • Minimise transport costs by buying local and using options such as meetings over the internet and conference calls, rather than travelling. • In the building industry, minimise use of products that have a high carbon footprint (aluminium, steel and cement, for example) and use other options instead, such as wood. If you’d like some help, get a qualified energy auditor to review your business and give you a prioritised list of actions against quantified savings. You can then work through it at your own pace. You can get more carbon tax information from www.cleanenergyfuture.gov.au. If you’re seeking advice for your small business, visit www.business.gov.au. We also recommend downloading the excellent (and free) book, Sustainable Growth, by Jon Dee and Sensis, from www.about. sensis.com.au/small-business/freesustainable-growth-book/. The bottom line is yes, carbon tax will have an impact on your business. To what extent really depends on what you do and how you do it.
Danielle King, founder and director of Green Moves Australia (www.greenmoves.com.au), is a qualified and accredited sustainability consultant and teaches sustainability subjects at Swinburne. Danielle is also an active member of the BDAV (Building Design Association of Victoria), sitting on both the Sustainability Committee and the Sustainability Advisory Board.
CASH FLOW HEADACHES
business | Marketing
Crack the code
QR codes are appearing on everything from newspaper ads to wine bottles. Katie Stoddart explains why you should put them on your products, too.
usiness today is all about the quick response. Responding to customers quickly when they need your help builds up trust and ensures quality service. Enabling customers to respond quickly and conveniently to your ads and promotions helps facilitate consumer engagement and allows you to measure the success of the campaign. Social media has fuelled the growth in demand for a quick response, but more recently a new contender has emerged – the QR, or Quick Response,code. This two-dimensional bar code improves response time by enabling you to link any type of digital media with non-digital products. QR codes are most commonly scanned by mobile phones but can be scanned by any digital image-capturing device with an internet connection. In Australia,QR codes are starting to emerge on print advertisements and product packaging, and most commonly link to an online video, social network or website. With more and more Australians becoming aware of QR codes, now is
the perfect time for your business to start incorporating them into your marketing strategy. QR codes can be used for convenience, such as storing the data on your business card, linking to online payment gateways on invoices, or linking to a phone number or SMS for a quick reply. They can also be use to add another dimension to print advertising, through the form of a video, download or even a smartphone app. The easiest way to understand how QR codes work is to create one for yourself. There are two elements to implementing your own QR code: first you need a QR code scanner;and second you need to create a QR code. See the boxouts for details. To be part of a successful marketing strategy, your QR code must provide something new, exciting or informational. You need to make it worthwhile and give your audience a reason to scan. Too many companies place a QR code on their advert and expect people to scan it without a push, so make sure you have some sort of call to action. Remember, when used correctly, QR codes can reduce costs, increase excitement and improve response time. Check this one out to receive a special bonus from emPOWER
How to make a QR code All you need is a QR code generator; there’s a free one you can download from 3-idea at www.3-idea.com/qr-codegenerator/. 1. Select the type of QR code you want to create from the following options: Contact: Stores all your contact details. Most commonly used on business cards. Text: Displays a basic text message. Great for promotions, competition terms and conditions, product instructions or coupon codes. SMS: Auto-populates a text message. Great for booking forms and instant ‘contact me’ options on invitations, flyers and appointment forms. URL: Links your QR code to any URL, including YouTube videos, your website, online booking forms, iPhone app, newsletter subscription, downloads and more. Email: Auto-populates an email. Used on invitations and business cards. Phone: Connects to phone number. Used for calls to action and setting appointments. 2. Enter the required details and select ‘Next’. 3. Customise your QR code to suit your branding or artwork. The 3-idea QR Code Generator enables you to customise the colour and the background. You can also add some text above and below the QR code. 4. Choose the size of your QR code and select ‘Create QR Code’. 5. Your QR Code is generated on screen. Scan it with your phone to check for any errors. 6. To download the QR code, select ‘Click Here To Download The Image’.
How to scan a QR code Most phones come with a QR code scanner; if you don’t have one,there are plenty available for free in app stores. You can test out your scanner on the QR code in this article. 1. Go to the app store on your smartphone and download a freeQR code scanner or reader. 2. Open the QR code scanner. 3. Point your smartphonecamera over the QR code. 4. Your QR code scanner registers the code and acts accordingly.
Katie Stoddart is the director at Digital Marketing Agency 3-idea. A marketing specialist and web developer, Katie delivers workshops, training, services and consultations in all realms of digital marketing. For more information on QR codes and how they can work in your digital marketing strategy, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.3-idea.com.
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What makes you two such a great team? We are both very down to earth and have a knack for getting insights quickly but our working styles are markedly different, there is 20 years between us in age, and our backgrounds are worlds apart. This brings a richness to our coaching and products and is a winning combination. How can we find out more about you? Simply visit beyondsuccess.com or contact us on 02 6247 8336. We can assist you with the product or course that will best suit your needs. Call TODAY, it’s easy!
business | Social Media
LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network, with over 101 million members – and growing rapidly. Zoe Wyatt explains how joining can benefit you.
nlike other well-known social networking sites, you won’t find your LinkedIn connections sharing their family photos with you or asking you to subscribe to the latest game app. The official description states that LinkedIn “connects you to your trusted contacts and helps you exchange knowledge, ideas, and opportunities with a broader network of professionals”. What this means is that LinkedIn is intended as a professional résumé and networking site. For this reason, LinkedIn has evolved into an essential social network for professionals, and it is particularly powerful for recruitment and job hunting. However, LinkedIn is far more than just a professional résumé site. Recently, the company launched LinkedIn Today, a social news service for different groups of its users, based on what they’re sharing using Signal, its version of the news feed. This enables you to share links and content, and it encourages user participation and gives you even more reasons to return to the site. As the resources and users grow, LinkedIn is stamping itself as a leading social media network, and if you’re not already using the power of LinkedIn, now is the time to start.
How to join
LinkedIn is designed as a place for business people to connect with other business people and, most importantly, to promote opportunities for their businesses. With this in mind, LinkedIn creates its revenue from premium subscriptions, corporate solutions and advertising. The success of LinkedIn can be clearly seen by the fact that it has been profitable since 2007, while many other social networks are still struggling to work out how to make money from their sites. As an individual user, however, you can set up a profile and use LinkedIn for free. Setting up a LinkedIn profile is relatively straightforward – simply follow the instructions at www.linkedin.com, and have all the information that you would usually add to a résumé to hand. Take the time to fill out your profile completely – LinkedIn helpfully tells you how much you have left to do - and keep your information professional, truthful and engaging. A key tip here is to remember that your LinkedIn profile can rank very well in search engines, so make sure you add the keywords that people would use when searching for you, your company, or the products and services you provide. The next step is to start connecting with people. On LinkedIn this means asking people to “join your professional network”, but it pays to avoid using the generic message that the site provides. When asking someone to become part of your network, take the time to let them know how you are connected to them and why you want to add them to your network. You need to tick a box to say how you know someone before your request to connect is sent. For most people, using the ‘friend’ heading is best, but then you should
personalise your message to let the person know more about you. LinkedIn is about connecting to, and referring, people who you have legitimately done business with, connected with, or would like to connect with. You may have 42,000 followers on Twitter and 4,000 friends on Facebook, but only 500 connections on LinkedIn - it really is quality, not quantity, of contacts on LinkedIn that matters.
If you’re not already using the power of LinkedIn, now is the time to start The final step in completing your profile is to receive recommendations from other LinkedIn users. These are basically testimonials from people who have worked with you or purchased your products or services previously. The quickest way to receive recommendations is to give them first; most people are more open to a request for a recommendation from a contact who has already given them a great testimonial. Again, be professional and honest in your recommendations and make sure that you ask whether contacts are happy for you to use their testimonials in your other marketing as well.
Find your way around
LinkedIn offers advanced functions you’ll find very familiar if you already use Facebook. You can set up a Company Page for your business, add applications, start Groups on individual topics, post Events and promote these on the site. Your Company Page is a compilation of individual profiles of your employees. You
Social Media | business
need an @yourbusinessname.com email address to set up a Company Page, and your own personal profile must be at least 80 per cent complete. You can, however, set up a Company Page even if you are a sole trader or entrepreneur. This can be extremely beneficial when setting up and promoting events through LinkedIn, and again your search engine results can be improved dramatically, especially for searches on your individual name or your company name. Once you have your structure in place, it’s time to start posting updates to your network. A good rule of thumb is to post, on average, once every second day. This way you keep your name in front of your network but don’t overwhelm people with updates. When you have something specific to promote, you can post more frequently, but target your messages within LinkedIn to particular contacts. For example, if posting details of an event in Brisbane, send updates to your contacts in Brisbane, not all over Australia.
How LinkedIn benefits your business
The biggest advantage of LinkedIn is that you can acquire new customers through online recommendations and word of mouth. Satisfied clients are the best source of new clients. You can increase your wordof-mouth referrals by asking your happy clients to write you a recommendation, which can be published on your LinkedIn profile and be broadcast to the entire LinkedIn network. Importantly, LinkedIn enables you to keep in touch with people who are genuinely interested in your business. LinkedIn is effective for two reasons: the business intent of LinkedIn users and fewer status updates. Generally, if people are using LinkedIn effectively, they actually want to see your posts and read your messages. The site also enables you to find the right people when outsourcing services in which you lack expertise. Think of the number of times you’ve asked your
colleagues whether they knew of a great web designer or photographer - LinkedIn makes it easy for you to find and vet vendors through the network of your peers. Make sure you search LinkedIn’s Groups directory to find industry associations and networks to take part in. For example, if you’re in the event planning or wedding industry, there are over 530 relevant groups you could join. LinkedIn can help provide answers to tough business questions, too, with a little help from your real friends. LinkedIn Answers and Groups enable you to quickly find answers to the challenging questions you face each day in your business by tapping into the combined wisdom of your network. Conversely, you can win new business by answering questions in your area of expertise. You can use the many forums on LinkedIn to share the knowledge you’ve gained in your business. You can also use LinkedIn to find mentors or potential investors for your startup, because there are over three million startup professionals, and over 12 million small business professionals on LinkedIn. It’s a good idea to network with peers in your industry for repeat business referrals. LinkedIn Groups is a powerful medium to find peers in your respective industries to network with and to find complementary businesses to share referrals with. Many people have set up joint ventures and referral partners through LinkedIn connections. You could also show your expertise by sharing unique blog content. If you have your own website and are updating unique content, you could be sharing these posts through LinkedIn. It’s also a good idea to cross promote your LinkedIn profile with your other social media sites and web properties. Add a link to your email signature and all other marketing materials. And last but not least, with LinkedIn you can do your
due diligence on potential employers, clients and alliances. You can search individual people or Company Pages. These pages supply key statistics on companies: how do they describe their jobs? What keywords do they use? What LinkedIn groups do they belong to? What connections do you have to these people? The more you know, the less risk and the more you can maximise the relationship. LinkedIn is a powerful business networking site. The value you get from participation in this network is determined not only by the effort you put into setting up your own profile, but the connections that you make and the value you add to the community overall. It’s well worth taking the time to make the most of LinkedIn. LinkedIn facts and figures • Launched in December 2002 - before My Space (2003), Facebook (2004), YouTube (2005) or Twitter (2006). • Reached one million users in September 2004. • Operates in over 200 countries. • Over 52 per cent of LinkedIn members are outside of the US. • There are nearly two million members in Australia and New Zealand. • Used by 69 of the Fortune 100 companies. • A new member joins LinkedIn approximately every second.
Zoe Wyatt is a sought-after social media marketing specialist, speaker, trainer and mentor. Based on the Sunshine Coast in Australia, Zoe travels the world giving training to entrepreneurs and savvy business owners on how to maximise social media marketing. You can connect with Zoe on her website at www.socialmediashortcut.com or via LinkedIn.
business | Women in business
Tammy May, founder and director of MyBudget, started the debt management company from her kitchen table when she was just 22 years old. She talks to Helen Rosing about her achievements. Q. Tell us a bit about yourself. A. I’m a very proud mother of two
amazing children: Madison, age nine, and Seth, age seven. When I’m not in the office, I love being active and spending time with my friends and family.
Q. What were you doing before you commenced MyBudget?
A. I was working at a solicitor’s firm,
looking after their trust accounting and managing a small debt collection firm they owned. That’s where I first witnessed how devastating debt can be for people.
Q. Tell us a bit about MyBudget and how it works.
A. MyBudget is a personal budgeting
company that specialises in helping people to manage their finances. Everything we do at MyBudget revolves around helping people achieve their financial goals. During a free consultation, we find out everything we can about a person’s financial situation. We analyse their income, debts and all their expenses. Using that information, we then create a complete personal budget and longterm financial plan for the individual or household. People can also choose to have MyBudget manage their budget for them. We think of it as a partnership; MyBudget does all the heavy lifting, which makes it easier for clients to stay on target and achieve their goals. It’s also why our clients experience such incredible levels of success. The client’s income is paid directly into their MyBudget account, then each
week living expenses are transferred to their private bank account for them to access as needed. We also pay bills, loan instalments and make savings on behalf of the client. Last year, we managed over 1.5 million payments and $250 million in salaries on our clients’ behalf. MyBudget can also become the point of contact for our clients’ creditors. This is usually a huge relief for people experiencing financial stress. We act as the client’s advocate and handle all the paperwork and conversations that happen during the creditor negotiation process. Essentially, we’re personal trainers for people’s money. We specialise in achieving financial health.
Q. How did the decision to start the business come about?
A. I was managing a small debt collection
agency for a solicitor’s firm and I couldn’t help notice the impact that debt was having on people’s lives. Here’s the thing, it wasn’t due to a lack of income - it was because of the way people were managing their money. I thought, “Where can I refer these people for help with their budget?” but there wasn’t anyone they could turn to. That’s when I decided to help them myself. That’s how MyBudget was born.
Q. What type and how much
research did you undertake before starting the business? A. My research was very anecdotal. Based on my experience, I could see a clear need in the market for personal budgeting services and no one was
filling it. MyBudget started simply out of the desire to help people.
Q. Tell us about the growth of
MyBudget from inception to your position today. A. MyBudget started slowly, literally from my kitchen table. I was getting lots of referrals from local accountants, finance brokers, and government departments, so eventually I rented a little office in the south of Adelaide and employed my first staff member. Everything was done manually at first, writing clients’ bills in my diary and highlighting them when they were paid off. And, remember, this was before online banking. I paid most bills by standing in line at the post office and I deposited living expenses at the bank. As the business grew, we invested significant time and money in developing our own software. The software was a platform for us to grow from, allowing us to significantly increase our client base every year. With very careful planning, for the past 12 years we’ve been able to grow at an average rate of more than 50 per cent per annum. We now employ 160 staff and have 11 offices across the country.
Q. What were the early days like
in the business? While no doubt you were confident about the potential success of the business, there must also have been times of doubt. A. The early days were about getting things right - working hard for our clients and discovering what works and
Women in business | business
what doesn’t. There was a lot of trial and error and some brave choices. The only doubt I had was about how we were going to educate the market about what MyBudget did. That was a huge challenge because we were creating a new category. The question was how to reach the public and in such a way that they would quickly understand our service and how it would help them. There was never any doubt in my mind about how successful the service would be because our motivation has always been to help people who need it.
Q. What was your biggest challenge
when starting the business? A. In the beginning, the biggest challenge was carving out a space in a new business category – personal budgeting – and educating the market about what it is MyBudget does. It’s not like we sell shoes and can say, “We have awesome shoes and here is the price.” Our category is even more challenging because budgeting is not a particularly exciting topic for most people. We had to find a way to show people that it is possible to take control of their money and achieve their financial goals. That’s why our marketing uses personal testimonials by real MyBudget clients. The changes in our clients’ lives are the best demonstration of MyBudget’s services.
Q. How have you funded your
business? A. Initially, there was some funding required to build our software system, so I took a small mortgage over my home. But since then, MyBudget has been solely funded from the cash flow of the business.
right decisions and manage the details to execute on those decisions.
Q. Were there times when it all felt
too hard? How did you overcome these feelings to keep going? A. It’s not really in my nature to give up and I’ve always had fantastic support around me - people who really care and want to make a difference in our clients’ lives. Our approach is to tackle the difficult situations head on while always trying to plan for what could go wrong. I always stay focused on the fact that we make a difference in the community – that’s what keeps me going.
Q. Please share one of your favourite success stories of MyBudget.
A. There are so many client success stories!
Really, I don’t know where to start. We’ve helped take clients from the brink of bankruptcy to being completely debt-free and owning their own home. We constantly hear client feedback about how we’ve saved their marriages, or even saved their lives when it felt that their financial situation was too depressing to keep going. I was talking to a client at the weekend, who told me that without MyBudget she wouldn’t be here today. She said she would have taken out life insurance and no one would have seen her again. That’s a success story. Today she’s happy and on her way to becoming debt-free. To me, MyBudget is a success story.
Q. You’ve won some great awards. Please share your thoughts on why it’s important for business women to enter, and win, awards.
A. Awards give you an opportunity to
look back and reflect on where you have been and where you are going. They also give you and your business credibility. They can result in excellent PR and positive business profiling. For some businesses, awards can lead to new opportunities, either in the form of new connections or from the publicity it generates. For me, I was able to meet and become friends with some truly remarkable women.
Q. What are you most proud of in your achievements to date?
A. My children are my proudest
achievement. I am so proud of the little people they are becoming, watching their personalities develop, seeing them establish friendships and explore everything this modern world has for them. Professionally, I’m proud of the culture at MyBudget. We’ve developed a working environment where people want to come to work. Our staff are incredibly caring and they genuinely want to make a difference in our clients’ lives.
Q. What else would you like to achieve in business?
A. My plan is for MyBudget to continue being the number one leader in personal budgeting in Australia.
Q. What advice do you have for other women starting out in business?
A. Be passionate about what you’re doing because, when times get tough, it’s passion that keeps you going and gets you through.
Q. As the business has
grown, how have you needed to grow personally? A. It’s one thing to be good at personal budgeting, it’s another to run and grow a business. I’ve had to learn how to become a business leader by working on the business rather than always in it. I’ve had to educate myself to make the
Voxy Lady featured Speakers, Consultants, Trainers and Coaches
oxy Lady is Australia’s only women’s speaker bureau and our speakers, consultants, trainers and coaches are all experts in their chosen field. As you will see featured on these two pages, our professionals can educate on a range of topics including business, leadership, social media, marketing, sales, communication, motivation, mentoring, digital strategy, sustainability, networking, team building, health, entrepreneurship, training, Do-ityourself workshops and a vast range of other topics. Each one of these professionals offer a wealth of information to share with you and to find out more just visit their profiles on the Voxy Lady website. To make them easy to find we have created a link for ‘Featured Speakers’ on the homepage! As well, you will find articles written by many of our speakers on the website. Voxy Lady supports both corporates and associations and we are advocates for small business growth. We invite you to select your next speaker from our list of professionals. To book your speaker please call me directly on 0414 729 646, email email@example.com or visit www.voxylady.com.au I look forward to hearing from you.
Deb Carr Managing Director
Mandy Holloway Courageous Leadership, High Performance, Brand Culture Mandy’s empathic style and ability to intimately understand the on-going pressure faced by business leaders is grounded in her personal leadership experiences. Her passion and commitment to leading with courage is modelled personally and professionally. She inspires others to have the confidence and conviction to do the same. Topics include Inspiring Courageous Leaders, Creating high performance teams, Aligning vision, brand and culture.
Sandi Givens Confidence, Leadership, Building Team Esteem People say working with Sandi is a ‘life-changing’ experience, challenging their thinking & providing real-world strategies that create sustainable change. Problems she solves include poor morale & productivity, unresolved conflicts and low confidence in self & others. With a unique ability to engage & connect through her authenticity, Sandi guarantees to catapult your success & exceed your expectations!
Dr Jenny Brockis Brain Fitness, Efficiency, Change Dr Jenny Brockis provides understanding and insight into the complexity of our brains, promoting practical strategies on how to improve brain health and personal performance. Articulate, passionate and engaging, she inspires possibility and behavioural change. Topics include Smarter Thinking: How To Future Proof Your Brain for a Rapidly Changing World; and Rewire Your Brain: Leading from the Top.
Kim McGuinness Networking, Leadership, Master of ceremonies Kim McGuinness is owner and Director of Network Central, founder of the Businesswomen’s Breakfast Series and a leading commentator on networking, business, balance and social media. Kim has been MC at hundreds of events, has developed and delivered training programs for blue chip companies and has presented at many prestigious events and conferences on marketing, small business, authentic leadership, entrepreneurship and networking.
Fi Bendall Digital strategy, Leveraging the new age of digital business
A PROUD SPONSOR OF VOXY LADY
Fi Bendall is the Managing Director of Bendalls Group and Director of Digital Intelligence. Her business leads some of Australia’s most successful digital business strategies. She has worked in three continents over 24 years and is an International expert and pioneer in digital strategy, and one of Australia’s most respected thought leaders in the digital space.
Impact, Inspiration, Motivation Shannon Dolan is engaged by global firms who are looking for a key stand out difference in their people. She develops and delivers tailored training, coaching, and keynotes to provide clients with a unique and targeted approach. Results are seen through greater employee engagement, effective teams, display of brand and culture, confidence and charisma, career success, professional impact and the bottom line. She works with all levels and all industries. Her style is dynamic, professional, and positive.
Photo courtesy of Zahrina Photography
Dispel Games, Dances & Dynamics In Your Company Clare Mann is a Psychologist, Bestselling Author, Speaker and Existential Psychotherapist with extensive international experience facilitating individuals and organisations to create extraordinary results. Her latest book Communicate - How to Say What Needs to be Said, When it Needs to be Said, In the Way it Needs to be Said will be released in August.
Keynote, Leadership, Motivation, Master of Ceremonies As the first woman to lead a major political party in Australia, ‘Chika’ reveals a journey of great success combined with some spectacular failures. Her warm personality, humility and ability to engage with diverse audiences have her highly regarded as an MC, keynote speaker and as a facilitator of business meetings and panel discussions. Kerry is also a successful business woman having run own her government relations consultancy since 2004.
The Corporate Optimist - Boosting Team Results Helen specialises in maximising opportunities in individuals and teams and has created optimal performance in organisations of all sizes. With an initial background in psychology and decades of experience in working with hundreds of businesses around the Asia Pacific region, she delivers a fresh approach that boosts attitudes and gets individuals and teams into productive action that creates better results.
Executive Coach, Personal Development and Enjoying life!
TV & Website Presenter & Brand Promoter/Ambassador
Sam Buckingham is a recognisable face, having represented some of Australia’s leading brands on TV for over 10 years. For the past 5 years she has been the face for all of Bigpond’s direct response TV advertising and has also presented numerous websites for large companies such as Telstra. If it’s not her face you recognise, then it’s her warm and welcoming voice, delivering strong messages about brands and products.
Management Skills Trainer and Coach Sally is the skill-builder who empowers new managers to be strong, confident and above all, effective and productive. Sally’s known to be a straight-talker with a fantastic sense of humour. Her practical approach is well supported by her qualifications and her experiences training and coaching all levels of management, across a range of industries, as well as from living and working in Germany, the U.A.E., and outback Queensland.
Ms Desley Casey
Promoting Mental Health Wellbeing Desley is an innovative, passionate trainer and speaker on mental health issues. She has worked in the mental health sector for over 18 years, promoting: “It Is Far Easier to Maintain Mental Health Wellbeing than to Regain It!” Desley’s training specialities are: training employees and managers on: Maintaining mental health wellbeing in the workplace; and, the 2010 National Employment Standards. Creating Training Solutions Together
Inspiring Connection through Self-Leadership Connection is the key to embracing diversity and encouraging team cohesion. As a Clown Doctor working in Sydney Hospitals every week, Robi Mack is a great reminder of the value of a positive attitude when dealing with challenging situations. Success can be determined by the quality of the connections that exist within the workplace. Robi Mack is a high energy, entertaining and passionate keynote speaker and is a great opener or closer for any event.
Dr Annie Wyatt
Inspiration, Team building Celebrity Florist Mercedes Sarmini started from humble beginnings! Not willing to except a life of welfare Mercedes embarked on a career as a trainee florist. Today, Mercedes owns her own florist business and a training academy! Her interactive workshops are fun, entertaining and a great way to relieve stress! She is available for DIY shows, team building and keynote speaking. Mercedes is an advocate for disadvantaged women and Indigenous Australians. Mercedes is exclusive to Voxy Lady.
Speaker, Writer, Professional Presentation Coach Dr Annie is a highly regarded educator, trainer, published writer and coach in the fields of psychological safety at work and professional presentation. She is as comfortable in academic and boardroom settings as in a boiler suit in a factory. She is constantly digging deeper in order to find out ‘what works’ for individuals and groups of all sizes across industries. Note: can be massively funny!
Leadership, Business Transformation, Culture Sharon Bates is an inspirational authentic leader with infectious energy and a highly motivational leadership style. Her wide range of followers include the corporate elite through to the exoteric, steering aspirational leaders to strategise for success. Sharon readily shares her wealth of knowledge on corporate strategy, leading change and workplace culture, often punctuated by her passion for guiding women to succeed.
Sustainability, Design and Living Being passionate about Design and Sustainability is easy. Eminè extends this passion beyond the usual to intertwine everyday living, humanity and the Planet. With a focus on ‘spreading the word’ making sustainability accessible to everyone, Eminè helps decipher the green maze, bringing it back to ‘grass roots’ level in an easy formula that’s colourful and functional.
As a regularly featured personality on radio and TV, Lisa is an international expert on self development and coaching. She has owned her coaching business, Amazing Coaching for ten years and has worked in over 20 countries. Lisa has successfully introduced her methods into many large corporations and is an expert on injecting effective personal development skills into the workplace. Her passion and love of life is infectious.
career | Feature
l e lae add e si h e rrs h p ip A new kind of leadership is required if businesses are to really move forward, which is why Mandy Holloway developed the Courageous Leaders model.
s a leader, you know all too well how busy you are with everyone wanting things done yesterday. Along with these demands, you are inundated with a surge of information – email, social media, research papers, magazines, newspapers, even conversations. Increasing stakeholder expectations bear down on you from all parts of your life – family, community and business. You face constant, ever increasing and often opposing tension – do you focus on the long term or the short term; internal or external stakeholders; people engagement or bottom line performance? This is why we need far more people to be courageous in the way they lead themselves, lead others and lead the business.
What is a courageous leader?
Courage is the quality of the human spirit that allows us to face difficulty, danger, pain, criticism or judgement in spite of the fear we may feel. It encourages us to be vulnerable. As a courageous leader unleashing this kind of courage, you find yourself approaching issues and problems with interest, creativity and integrity. You facilitate the thinking of others so they embrace their future and approach problems with creativity rather than constraint and fear. Thinking is no longer limited by a need for predictability. Learning agility replaces the fear of retribution when mistakes are made. A courageous leader strives to be their best and inspires others to do the same. Holistic organisational sustainability is achieved because these leaders inspire each person in the organisation to: • Stretch their thinking; • Embrace the future with enthusiasm; • Deliver exceptional outcomes for critical stakeholders;
• Collaborate with others to create exciting entrepreneurial outcomes; • Approach problems with curiosity, creativity and interest; • Ignite and then resolve conflict constructively; • Drop their egos when working with others; • Interact with complete and real honesty; • Engage consistently with high trust and integrity. A world with more courageous leaders would be a world of no political game playing, no fear, no deception, no blame, no justifying and defending of actions, no abuse of positional power and no leaders with too much desire to control others while protecting their positions and remuneration.
Your conviction drives the uptake of people around you wanting to be courageous leaders It would feel as though you are standing on the peak of a mountain, seeing no boundaries, just limitless blue. Everyone standing alongside you feels inspired about the future and almost breathless because of the anticipation of what might be. You embrace two critical business philosophies: transparency and abundancy. Transparency is where you all share what you are really thinking and feeling. Abundancy is favoured over the current mindset of scarcity. Instead of competing in a restricted space, you are encouraged to broaden your thinking and find new opportunities for organisational growth. In this world you give, you share and you deliver, because you believe it is the right thing to do. Trust is an absolute
with no need to hide anything, cover up mistakes, window-dress decisions or sugarcoat feedback. From this, a conscience in business fosters a way of doing things that take account of the community and human element of a business, while also bringing a focus on the moral and ethical level of looking after people, brand, finances and the environment.
Emerging and existing leaders unite as one population of courageous leaders to develop this future. Both are essential to unleashing the exponential possibilities: The infinity symbol represents the unlimited business growth potential and personal development possibilities available to existing and emerging leaders when they choose to connect, commit and truly unite in their intentions for developing future sustainability for the organisation, for their careers and for the future of their collaborative relationships – with courage. There are nine elements to the Courageous Leaders model and it is designed to start on the left-hand side of the infinity symbol with your need to develop confidence, conviction and courage in leadership mastery. 1. Leadership mastery Start by recognising the importance of developing your leadership mastery (balanced between the facets of self, relationship, business and technical), so you have the confidence, conviction and courage to become the kind of leader you want to be - not the kind of leader you think you ought to be to create success. 2. Confidence in your leadership mastery Develop confidence in your leadership mastery so you can be at your best and can transition to support others to be at their best while delivering the best business outcomes.
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3. Conviction in your leadership mastery Believe in your decisions and choices to such an extent that you are ready to bear the full consequences of them. 4. Courage in your leadership mastery With this kind of conviction you are ready to unleash your courage and engage in the conversations you know you really want to have with real transparency – so you can stay true to the leader you want to be in all aspects of your life. 5. Connect and commit The relationship space for leaders to connect and commit to the future of the business and the future of their career is now generated. 6. Courage to be challenged and change Exponential opportunity is exposed and can be realised when existing leaders consistently come to conversations with the courage to be challenged and to change. As emerging leaders start coming to conversations differently, existing leaders must turn up with a different level of courage. 7. Challenge Existing leaders develop the courage to be challenged, and emerging leaders develop the courage to voice their challenging thoughts and ideas. Challenging is the critical business behaviour used by emerging and existing leaders so they connect, commit, collaborate, create change and ultimately make decisions to secure the future sustainability of the business. 8. Change Challenge yourself to turn up with a mindset that ‘change is the new black’ – it is the new constant. Gone are the days of
certainty and predictability. Habits need to be challenged and need to change if you want to maintain a high performance culture where everyone is engaged and inspired to deliver great results. 9. High performance culture Creating and maintaining a high performance culture is essential to the holistic sustainability of the organisation. Every experience created by the leaders informs the culture: how and when you decide to engage in conversations, how and when you make decisions.
Implement the model
If you want to get serious about implementing the Courageous Leaders model, get serious about challenging your existing leaders to get on board. Find out how serious they are about culture, engagement and long-term holistic business sustainability. Assess how serious they are about acknowledging that a focus on bottom line results is not enough – how these results are achieved is of equal importance. It is imperative we have far more existing leaders wanting to be courageous leaders – and until we have them, behavioural change within organisations is always going to be a mere tinkering at the edges. People must want to develop their leadership mastery. It’s like holding a mirror up for you to see yourself with complete truth, unlocking doors that may have been shut for a long time and opening
your eyes to potential you may never have explored. To become a courageous leader takes consistent and disciplined commitment and energy. It is not good enough to one day be a courageous leader and the very next day, when you are under pressure, resort to the same old power-oriented behaviour that achieved immediate results. Take a moment to envision whole populations of courageous leaders uniting and offering us the opportunity to see and feel what it is like to work in a business environment where we can trust, we can say what we really want to say, we can make the decisions we know need to be made for us to do the right thing, at the right time, with the right intent, we can innovate and we can truly collaborate. No more protecting, no more political game playing, no more controlling, no more holding back on what you think. Your conviction in this kind of experience drives the uptake of people around you wanting to be courageous leaders. There has to be another way of leading people to untap their potential and create an abundant future. There is a way where people no matter their age, skills or beliefs can bring passion to work. It is time to challenge yourself to invest in this new way. Yes, it takes great courage but let’s not allow people who are afraid of this kind of originality of thinking to strangle this idea, because who knows what a big idea it is going to turn out to be?
Mandy Holloway is a leadership development facilitator who draws on personal experience, real business application and passion to inspire others to be a courageous leader. Her first book, Inspiring Courageous Leaders, was recently released. www.courageousleaders.com.au
career | Feature
ld r o w the g n i g n a h c
While social entrepreneurs have been around forever in one form or another, the concept of social entrepreneurship is an emerging trend in the business world. Tharani Jegatheeswaran explains…
ocial entrepreneurship is where people notice a social problem and use their entrepreneurial spirit to create a solution that addresses the problem and achieves sustainable social change. As defined by the School of Social Entrepreneurs: “A social entrepreneur is someone who works in an entrepreneurial manner, but for public or social benefit, rather than simply to make money. Social entrepreneurs may work in ethical businesses, governmental or public bodies, or the voluntary and community sector.” Social entrepreneurs have often experienced firsthand the indignity or pain of a particular social problem and have decided to do something positive about it. They have a driving passion to change something that they feel very strongly about and persevere until they achieve an outcome.. One of the most wellknown contemporary social
entrepreneurs of our time is Muhammad Yunas, the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize winner and founder of the Grameen Bank - a microfinance organisation and community development bank that makes small loans to the poor of Bangladesh without requiring collateral. There has been much acknowledgement globally of the synergies and benefits that can be realised by applying business principles to social ventures. Today, many international foundations have made it their mission to identify, support and encourage social entrepreneurs around the world. Consequently, social entrepreneurship has become a thriving global movement with Gen Y in particular becoming increasingly socially conscious.
What’s the difference between social entrepreneurs and business entrepreneurs?
The main difference between business entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs is that social entrepreneurs act in a very strong socially conscious manner. While a business entrepreneur typically uses their skill and initiative to build an enterprise that creates personal wealth, a social entrepreneur will use their skill and initiative to create sustainable social change and further societal goals.
Success is also measured very differently for a business and social entrepreneur. Business entrepreneurs typically measure success by traditional metrics such as profit and return on investment. In comparison a social entrepreneur measures success by metrics such as social return on investment.
Can you be a social entrepreneur if you work in a Corporate organisation?
Of course you can! An increasing trend in today’s society is the emergence of the ‘corporate social entrepreneur’. Schwartz, S.H (author of Studying Values: Personal Adventure, Future Directions) defined a corporate social entrepreneur as "an employee of a firm who operates in a socially entrepreneurial manner identifying opportunities and/or championing socially responsible activities; in addition to helping the firm achieve its business targets.” Do you have any ‘corporate social entrepreneurs’ in your organisation? Perhaps it’s time to hire or nurture one!
Why should your organisation support the emergence of the ‘corporate social entrepreneur’?
Today more than ever, there is increasing pressure on business to reinvent the role that it plays in society. Society wants corporations to be more than just an engine for profit. It wants corporations and brands to stand for something. People want leaders and corporations to plan for the longer term, rather than just think about short term profits and to consider the impact of their decisions on all stakeholders, not just shareholders. The solution to this complex problem could lie in the concept of ‘shared value’, that is being advocated by Michael E. Kramer and Mark R. Kramer of the Harvard Business School. The concept of shared value “involves creating economic
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value in a way that also creates value for society by addressing its needs and challenges… it is not social responsibility, philanthropy or even sustainability, but a new way to achieve economic success.” Who best to help make this concept of shared value a reality, than corporate social entrepreneurs? By combining their innate understanding of their own corporation, their entrepreneurial spirit and strong social conscience, corporate social entrepreneurs can help their organisation identify ideas that realise business outcomes whilst also addressing societal needs.
Why is corporate social entrepreneurship important to encourage?
There is no disputing that today’s business environment is complex - we are in a new world where globalisation is very real, everything is interrelated and the world is not so simple. A time in which both uncertainty and volatility is the new reality. In this new world, corporations need leaders who are visionaries, dreamers, and innovators; leaders who have the courage to disrupt existing convention and the resilience and tenacity to create change. Corporate social entrepreneurs can often display the characteristics that we require of the leaders of this new world. They often display the visionary thinking that is required to conceive ideas that are ‘outside the box’. They also often have a much broader sense of the world and they appreciate that business is not performed in isolation and that societal ills can impact on a business. Most importantly, corporate social entrepreneurs understand the importance of business transcending borders and know that increased collaboration will ultimately enable more sustainable profits and create greater social change.
Corporate social entrepreneurship in practice
In 2011, a group of corporate social entrepreneurs in Deloitte Australia’s middle market division (Deloitte Private) decided that they were going to, in the words of Ghandi, ‘be the change they wanted to see’, not only in their business but in the world at large. They decided to establish an alliance with a youth-led, Australian-based, not-for-profit organisation called the 40K Foundation. Deloitte Private chose to support the 40K Foundation because of the
great work being undertaken to reduce poverty through education in developing communities in India. With the concept of ‘shared value’ in mind the group developed a ‘business proposition’ premised on mutual benefit for both Deloitte Private and the 40K Foundation. The idea was simple – work with the 40K Foundation to engage and unite an entire division to work together to change their culture, whilst also making a difference in the lives of the disadvantaged. For Deloitte, the collaboration was designed to encourage staff to innovate and try new things, embrace cultural and gender diversity and to do business that transcends borders. Additionally, it would add value to the business by providing opportunities for staff to hone important business skills including how to plan, budget, project manage, sell, innovate, collaborate and, most importantly, execute. In return, Deloitte Private would work with the 40K Foundation to: • Raise funds for their work; • Raise the profile of the 40K Foundation across the Deloitte Australia practice (of approximately 5,700 people); • Introduce the 40K Foundation to Deloitte Private’s professional networks; and • Help to improve the 40K Foundation’s capacity to act by assisting them with their strategy, budgeting and forecasting. The collaboration took the form of organising a charity fundraising event - a Bollywood night, hosted by Deloitte, which successfully raised $30,000 for the 40K Foundation and raised the Foundation’s profile in front of the 350 attendees. In organising the event, the group successfully leveraged Deloitte’s sense of fun, team spirit, and energy, which had a positive impact on staff engagement. The business also realised that staff, particularly Gen Y, were very motivated by the desire to give something back to the community and make a tangible difference. Tharani Jegatheeswaran is the Client Director in Deloitte Private’s not-for-profit specialist group. She has over 8 years’ experience providing audit and consulting services to small and medium businesses and not-for-profit organisations. At heart though, Tharani is a social entrepreneur who is passionate about social change. firstname.lastname@example.org
Examples of social entrepreneurship are everywhere: Intrepid Travel: Apart from being at the forefront of sustainable tourism, ensuring communities aren’t impacted on negatively by the tourism industry, the Intrepid Foundation supports community-run organisations in the countries of their tours (eg. Peru, Timor, Tanzania). Travellers donate to a cause and the company matches the donation dollar for dollar. www.theintrepidfoundation.org Charity Shop: An online shop with a difference. Charity Shop has partnered with over 300 of Australia’s top retailers to provide a feel good shopping experience. Every time a shopper buys online through Charity Shop 50% of the proceeds are donated to their nominated partner charity or not-forprofit organisation. Current beneficiaries include WWF Australia, Camp Quality, ChildFund Australia and Oscar’s Law. Lovelly Communication: Emma Lovelly believes that social entrepreneurship should be part of every business model. Her PR and communications company supports Red Hands, an organisation that empowers women in third world countries (www.redhands.org), by providing help with social media, promotions and email marketing. Aya Furniture is special not only because they specialise in custom made Australian recycled furniture. For the past 5 years they’ve partnered with OrphFund, a volunteer based organisation that since 2006 has been setting up Children’s Villages in countries such as Sierra Leone, Uganda, Kenya and Cambodia. Over this time over 300 orphaned children have been built a home and over 1500 currently attend one of their schools. Scraps from Aya Furniture’s workshop and other donated timber are used to make unique recycled timber photo blocks which are then sold, with the help of OrphFund’s volunteers at various markets. www.orphfund.org
career | Feature
Yolanda Vega wonders why, throughout history, there has been a pattern of men conquering and women nurturing at all levels of society, business included. Today in the 21st Century however, it
ccording to the Bible, Jesus, a man, conquered the hearts and minds of the people. His disciples, all male, spread the word, while his mother, Mary, and Mary Magdalene nurtured him. Today, religion is one of the most profitable businesses on earth, with men still holding the reins. Although the configuration of one great man having two greater women behind him continues, women are making strides as they have always done – as quiet achievers. But is this historical trend of men conquering all, including the history books, a fact of life we need to accept? There have always been successful women regardless of the century or status we wish to research; the key is we really need to search to find them. Women have been highly successful in all areas of life: politics, family and trade in both traditional and non-traditional areas since societies began. Two women whom come to mind that worked and prospered in non-traditional roles and ignored the written and the unwritten rules are Mary Reibey and Eliza Furlong. The well-known Ms Reibey was a businesswoman from a small cottage in Sussex, England, which in Australia became the owner of pubs, property and an import business in colonial Sydney. The amazing entrepreneur Eliza Furlong, born in 1784, was known for her outstanding pioneering and managerial skills – her ability to select sheep made her very special in her day. With her two teenage sons Eliza walked her sheep across
Germany; which took four weeks on foot. She then shipped them to England and then to Australia. Eliza walked this journey a total of three times to establish her business in the antipodes. Once in Australia Eliza managed her own farm and that of her son. Eliza was one of Australia’s prominent grazing entrepreneurs of the 19th century. But I wonder if you had heard of Eliza before today? Was she included in your history textbook at school? What about Maria Sofia De la Gardie, born in 1627 in Swedish Estonia, another intrepid and hardy, entrepreneur. Maria Sofia ’s husband and father died leaving her in control of substantial business interests. She alone managed the business enterprises in the 17th century and began many more new ventures. She exported timbers and grains, founded paper mills, purchased properties, fabricated linseed oils, and started several other companies.
Why are there so many women today who believe ‘feminism’ is an objectionable title? What is a bit ‘back to the future’, is that her most successful enterprise was a textile company, which used the energy from a waterfall she had in her backyard. This woman was using Renewable Energy to run her factory more than 350 years ago. Had you heard of her before reading this article?
you are to believe what you see and hear in the main stream media, Hollywood and Disney, the only women in power are the alpha females commonly labelled as having the ‘Queen Bee Syndrome’. Although I have searched, I am yet to learn of a male equivalent ‘syndrome’ to describe the male version of the Queen Bee. I have looked everywhere for the ‘King Lion Syndrome’ or similar, to no avail. I wondered about this controlling, pathological behaviour of not allowing the careers of other women to progress and asked if it is specific only to Queen Bees? “I don’t know if the sting is only from women,” said Victoria Kasunic a psychologist and happiness expert. “Yes, there are some corporate psychopaths with a skirt that act on fear and from pressure within the corporate environment, but there are also men that suppress women in the same way,” explains Ms Kasunic. It’s interesting to note that the environments where the so-called Queen Bees exist are in fact created by men and even more interesting to note that these male dominated organisations are the ones that nurture the alpha type personalities. It is here that men are mentoring, supervising and managing the women attempting to ascend through the meagre pipeline. When the Queen Bee Syndrome was first defined in Toronto in 1973, were the three brains inside the heads of Staines, Jayaratne, Tavris feminine or masculine? And how many case studies did they research before coming up with such a theory that turned to a syndrome? Why is it that when women start to influence and/or obtain positions of power
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their efforts are turned into a negative manifesto and subjugated? I remember that once upon a time the word ‘feminist’ was a strong and positive title for women, regardless of age, colour, creed or socio-economic background. Then one day, date not recorded, feminists were turned into sinful malicious types, which both men and women banned from their communities and business environments. Can someone please explain how a word that means ‘the doctrine advocating social, political, and all other rights of women equal to those of men’ was turned to be a negative and shameful term? And why are there so many women today, from several generations that believe ‘feminism’ is an objectionable title? Should not all women rejoice in their femininity regardless of business environment? Do we blame the impairment of feminism on the system, politics, or the men and women that stopped advocating for equality?
Have we all failed to provide the new generations with the correct historical facts so they are able to understand how their great-grand mothers, grandmothers and their mothers and sisters had to struggle for everything they now take for granted including the right to vote, equal family planning rights (1960s) and ‘the Pill’; not to mention the Sex Discrimination Bill (1984), the right to get an education and equal pay (1972)! Today we know that women are the biggest consumers in a world where KPIs are king; yet we still work and strive for equal opportunity in business and still have few seats at the tables where the decision are being made that affect us. Women are starting SME faster than their male counterparts because they have different needs and a different sense of what is success, regardless of what history tells us. “Men are generally motivated by achievement,” explains Ms Kasunic. “While women are more
focused on relationships. Happiness is about having a purpose, meaning, positive moods and relationships. Success in our society is about economic success not about happiness; yet women look within for a feeling of success, while men look externally for evidence of their success.” So, if women continue to be the nurturing species, perhaps the 179 years we are told we have to wait for equality in business may not be just around the corner. Perhaps tomorrow’s history will differ only if it is herstory. Yolanda Vega is CEO of the Australian Women Chamber of Commerce & Industry (AWCCI). She was part of the delegation to represent Australia at the first Women’s Economic Summit in September 2011. Her mission is to ensure female business owners and entrepreneurs have a voice, and the policies required to be more independent.
career | Feature
Are you an
intrapreneur? Just because you’re part of an organisation, doesn’t mean you can’t allow your entrepreneurial side to shine. Lisa Messenger thinks intrapreneurs are just what the business world needs.
s it possible to work within corporations and be innovative? Unfortunately, most businesses are still operating under the same factory model they’ve been using since the industrial revolution. The basis for decision-making and measuring success is still predominantly the bottom line. There’s a serious lack of creativity. So what can we do to change things? True, we could turn our backs; wait until we become the CEO; start our own business; or just ignore and avoid the problem. But there’s another way. We’re talking about working inside the tent to drive change – leading by example in showing big business that there’s a better way to operate, a way that is good for everyone. What’s desperately needed is a massive injection of innovation, enabling organisations to flourish, to stand out, and to create entirely new markets. Innovation arouses people’s curiosity, and sings to the world that the company is interested in helping humankind to move forward, as opposed to just copying what everyone else is doing because it’s what is selling today,
Are you one?
never mind that it’s taking us down a path of no return. There’s lots of talk about innovation, but little clarity, and no consensus on where to get it. From an advertising agency? The marketing department? That funky design company next door? Do you have to hire weird people with red hair and piercings, and install a sushi bar where Accounts Receivable used to be? Guess what? The source of innovation already resides within most organisations. They’re called intrapreneurs.
What is an intrapreneur?
An intrapreneur has the same traits as an entrepreneur – passion, creativity and the conviction and desire to make a difference. They possess a healthy work ethic, a desire to excel at what they do, and an optimistic attitude towards obstacles. Intrapreneurs are entrepreneurs by nature, working within the corporation– passionate, intelligent, highly creative, but often constrained and frustrated rebels who lurk within all organisations. They are the courageous and authentic questioning minds, the tireless seekers of a better way. Innovation can happen right now. Intrapreneurs want to see the organisations they work for flourish, and achieve greatness. They want their organisation to help make the world a better place. Given the right environment, with support, guidance and freedom to experiment and make mistakes, intrapreneurs can make powerful contributions way beyond the benefits of any short-term cost-cutting exercises recommended by expensive management consultants.
In a nutshell, intrapreneurs are: • Long-term thinkers; • Wide, encompassing, inclusive, flexible thinkers; • Aware their actions affect a lot of people; • Empowered; • Movers and shakers; • Self-aware, responsible, lifelong learners; • “How can we help?” not “What’s in it for me?” people. Intrapreneurs derive meaning from their work. That’s why you want to find an outlet for your ideas, and see them take flight. Intrapreneuring is a way to claim ownership of, and express, your true self and core values, a way to obtain satisfaction within the organisation in which you work. It’s about finding all the opportunities for creativity,innovation and freshness that you crave – without having to leave your job. Intrapreneurs constantly seek opportunities to create value. In many ways, they think and operate as though they were an independent enterprise within their organisation – intrapreneurs run intraprises! As an intrapreneur, it’s up to you to seize the moment and start something extraordinary within your organisation. If not you,who else? You’re the first and last chance for creative thinking and innovation. One thing’s for sure – you can’t sit around waiting for something or someone else to fix it. It’s imperative that you care passionately, and that you’re prepared to stand up and be counted.
You are not alone!
You probably feel as though it’s you against the whole world sometimes, but
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take heart –there are other people within your organisation who feel the same. Find them. You’ll benefit from meeting each other, sharing your creative thinking and optimistic attitude, helping each other to galvanise your collective thoughts, and spurring you into action. Successful intrapreneuring is a team sport! There will be people within your own organisation who would love to work with you to make extraordinary things happen. This is about finding people of like-mind to start a revolution. Intrapreneurs are curious. They have an insatiable desire to learn about anything and everything, and an open mind that leads them to think and play beyond narrow traditional frameworks. They love having fun, and refuse to take things too seriously. They’re comfortable with “I don’t know”,and constantly ask “Why?”, “Why not?” and “How?”The more you develop your curiosity, the more you open yourself up to new possibilities and life-paths. This makes you an invaluable problem-solving and option-spotting guru.
Find a cause that moves you
Intrapreneurs have a burning need to make a difference. They focus on producing extraordinary results. For them, it’s not just about making money. They have a passion for producing something enduring and meaningful. A neat way to think about this is in terms of a cause. A cause is something that inspires you to get out there and do something. On bad days, a cause keeps you going. A cause guides your actions at all times, and feeds the part of you that needs meaningful direction. Talk to any intrapreneur and they’ll tell you that they have a burning desire to leave their footprints on the world. They pursue causes that resonate with their values and personalities, and constantly inspire and drive their creative energy.
Take a risk
Intrapreneurs have the inner strength necessary to take on a challenge, and the persistence to stick at it. You can’t change
the world while you’re hiding under your doona. If you’re addicted to comfort (and we know how tempting it can be), try this: conduct little experiments every day that force you to take yourself a small way out of your comfort zone. This could be tasting a new cuisine, or talking to a stranger on the train. Discover that the world doesn’t end when you stretch yourself!
You don’t need to be a techno-geek, you don’t need money, and you don’t need an invitation Gradually increase the scariness of the scenarios until you become more comfortable operating beyond your comfort zone. Intrapreneurs have a strong sense of adventure. They know what fear smells like, but take a deep breath and do it anyway. Taking a risk is never easy, but half the fun is the mingling sense of fear and exhilaration just before you take the plunge! It might be the hardest thing you’ve ever done, but you need to acknowledge your fears, challenge them, and at least control, if not conquer, them. Only then will you be free to live your life to the max, and guess what? The sense of achievement is indescribable.
“Get real!” Do people say this to you occasionally? Whatever their intentions, we recommend that you choose to interpret it as a gentle reminder to take a reality check. Embracing reality is an important intrapreneurial trait, because we all have to live and work in the real world. Ideas, dreams and visions are important starting points in your quest to change the world. But for innovation to happen, you need to take action. And to be truly effective, you
need to work within the constraints of the world as we know it. Operating in a parallel universe is not part of the game! Working with constraints means compromise. For intrapreneurs, the question is almost always how much to compromise, and when; it’s rarely how to avoid compromise altogether. Learning to accept and work with (or around) obstacles will make your intrapreneuring life much easier, and at the same time, much more interesting. Embracing reality provides another advantage. Identifying where the boundaries are at the start of your project can help reduce the variables, and serve to shortlist the options for the way forward. Of course, the caveat is that you need to know the difference between genuine constraints you need to work with or around, constraints that are real but can be challenged, and red-herring constraints, such as your self-limiting beliefs, that need to be stared down. Working within the bounds of reality also enables other people to more easily understand and buy into your cause and your project. It makes it easier for you to create a fan club. You don’t need permission, more experience, or a bunch of fancy qualifications. You don’t need to be a techno-geek, you don’t need money, and you don’t need an invitation. There’s no doubt about it, intrapreneurs are out there, hidden within every organisation. The bad news is that some of the seriously creative types, the movers and shakers of the world, are being totally turned off business in its current state. Many are feeling stifled or drained by their employers, and are finding new ways to express their talents – going freelance, and/or becoming consultants, or branching out and re-emerging in completely different fields (for example, the wellness industry), because they need an outlet for their intuition, creativity, and innate humanity.
Lisa Messenger is the owner and creative director of The Messenger Group (www.themessengergroup.com.au). On the back of her first book, she developed a custom funding and distribution model that is unique in Australia.
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rkplace Gender Equality Bill Wo w ne the at wh es lat mp Fabe Keily conte er companies are really serious eth wh d an n, me wo g rkin wo 2012 means to about gender equality.
access the Agency’s advice, education and , which means that the cent per 18 r unde you re, natu by f you’re an optimist incentive activities. The legislation will on this is extremely important. s focu ific ions nisat orga that ve enable the minister to set industry spec may truly belie The bill requires that from 1 April with ion ultat en cons wom in s, race dard emb stan ury cent mum mini in the 21st 2013, relevant employers will have to industry experts. It is recommended that in the workplace, and that it is just that rt repo ic publ a e lodg and are prep ed sed these minimum standards be determin the minority of companies that are oppo information relating to gender ains cont . 2014 l t Apri 1 wha re befo to it. However, that is definitely not has been experienced over the The impact last three months in launching So what exactly are all these t effor tive Project 200 (a collabora changes going to mean for you? to see 200 more women in senior While we should applaud the management roles, including Hon Julie Collins in getting boards, by the end of 2012). While this important reform through some organisations have been very parliament, we are still a supportive, the project has also considerable way off changing the experienced apathy, opposition attitudes of some people towards and sometimes hostility in the women in the workplace. You process. don’t have to go too far to hear On 1 March, 2012, the women saying, “What glass ceiling? Minister for the Status of Women, It’s more like a concrete ceiling!” the Hon Julie Collins MP, Collecting comprehensive data introduced the Equal Opportunity is the first step in being able to for Women in the Workplace set benchmarks and minimum Amendment Bill 2012, and said standards of practice in the that its main outcomes were workplace, so at least we’re on the to improve gender equality in right track. Australian workplaces, improve Before we can see change in the women’s workforce participation workplace, we need to start with and workplace flexibility, as well as us as women. We have to be the change equality indicators. It requires that these , simplify reporting for businesses. we want to see. We need to back ourselves public reports must be signed by the The new system of reporting will have tions situa n whe r othe each that ort ring and supp g chief executive officer, ensu role a clear focus on monitoring and improvin est level engages in arise that would try to undermine our high the at ent agem that so man e, plac work that n gender equality in the show has arch in the workplace. Rese the issue of gender equality. both minimum standards and performance prise com that s e nam team management in The bill proposes to change the up benchmarks can be developed over time nity for ortu Opp al men and women can increase profits by Equ the from act The the rts. of expe e plac work consultation with industry and that to 35 per cent, which means ing Women in the Workplace Act 1999 to the good data collected will be invaluable in know e mak just n’t , and gender equality does Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 exactly what is happening and where, for nity ortu Opp al sense, it’s good business, too. Equ the nds ame it also in regards to gender equality practices the to cy Agen Women in the Workplace What throughout Australia. Fabe Keily is the CEO and founder of Workplace Gender Equality Agency. The t Wan en Act Working Wom bill amends the principal objects of the om). The new bill er gend (www.whatworkingwomenwant.c on s focu t rtan impo the ct refle to es mlin strea and ring tape owe red emp cuts in The bill She has been instrumental equality in the workplace. It also expands reporting for employers, focusing on as , men women to overcome their personal, de inclu to Act the coverage of the success. the information that really matters. The organisational and cultural barriers to particularly in relation to en, wom as well for pay l equa to s refer from Act specifically In 2011, Fabe received an award caring responsibilities. women and men, and organisations will r Premier Anna Bligh for her extraordinary fewe with . Smaller organisations nd. subsequently have to report on pay data contribution to the women of Queensla just than 100 employees will be not required The gender pay gap in Australia sits at to report, however they will be able to
you | Feature
s v Pitman
Stickman reality of how we choose to be either our greatest fan or our own worst enemy.
Why wait to be great? Terry Hawkins believes that it’s either now or too late!
ome people, regardless of the great hardship and suffering they experience in their life, go on to achieve great things and contribute in a way that is nothing short of spectacular. Others, who seemingly lead a charmed life, fall in a heap at the slightest sign of a bump in the road. Most of us fall somewhere along this gradient, but by reading this article, you could become someone who achieves their goals despite their hardships. Two fictional characters – Stickman and Pitman* – are useful metaphors when considering why people differ so greatly in their response to life’s circumstances and how we could all choose a different, more empowering response to these challenges. Stickman and Pitman are a fun and nonthreatening way to introduce people to the
Stickman, our internal superhero, represents the process and mantra used when explaining how to build supportive, new neural pathways that create healthier, positive habits. Pitman, on the other hand, represents the villain within - that part of us that is saboteur, the voice that says you’ll never do it, you’ll never get over this, noone appreciates you, you’ll always feel less than, you are not that clever, you are just a big, fat, ugly loser! You know that voice, don’t you? We all have that voice, that chatter inside our head that judges us and everyone else on everything. Pitman wreaks havoc in our life and feeds off our insecurities, our painful pasts, our shortfalls, and our losses. He lives in the pit of misery with his pit pals having pit parties, firing his pit pistol at anyone who dares suggest there is a better way. Weall have a story from our past that can stop us from living a full and wonderful life. Stories of childhood abuse, poverty or hardship perhaps. If you play those tapes over and over in your head, you can end up feeling resentful and grieving for opportunities you failed to take throughout your life. But you can stop the pit party. Don’t continue giving your life away to the past; stop feeling as though you are
damaged goods and less than others because of what has happened to you. Pitman has had his rule over you for long enough! You don’t want to get to the end of your life and have someone say, “Thisis what you could have done had you not been so afraid!” and you don’t need to. Don’t waste another moment of your life, and if that means redesigning how you perceive those events from the past, so be it. Li Cunxin, author of Mao’s Last Dancer, is quoted as recalling a story from his childhood where a mentor of his said to him, “When the heart is breaking with sorrow for what it has lost, the soul is singing with joy for what it has gained.” That is such profound insight, and when you’re feeling great pity for yourself, it’s worth remindingyourself of this healing wisdom and taking heed.
A new person
Instead of letting Pitman control your life, allowyourStickman to take over – empower yourself to own your life, to be able to choose your response in every situation, regardless of how enticing it may have been to blame others or feel sorry for yourself. When we realise that we’re not broken, no one is damaged, and no one is dysfunctional, we start to accept that our past, whatever that may be and however painful it may have been, has been a great teacher, guiding us to our most wise and connected self.
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It takes great courage to sit in such a place and not be overwhelmed with the fear of letting it go. But if we choose to live a Stickman life, we take complete responsibility for our life and what we do with it. The Stickman Mantra offers you a process to follow when replacing negative, unwanted behaviours or habits with new, more empowering and supportive behaviours. The key is to be veryclear on the end result that you want to create.
If we are serious about making longlasting changes in our life, we’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen
have ever seen: Mother Theresa. She has often been quoted as saying, “I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a propeace rally, I’ll be there.” Can you see the difference? One attracts war, while the other attracts peace. That’s the power of effective dialogue.
The Stickman Mantra follows a simple formula of four steps: see it, say it, feel it and do it. In order to explain how the mantra works in a real-life situation, we’re going to use the example of how you would use the formula for stopping the habit of nail biting. The first thing we would need to do is create the four opposite positive areas to the see, say, feel and doof the negative state of nail biting. We would need to focus on the end result that you want, and then create the visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and takeaction stimuli that would give you that end result as though you already had it.
Now, imagine how you will feel in the futurewhen you look at your long, healthy nails(the kinesthetic stimulus). This is the one step that most people leave out because they feel silly acting out a feeling that isn’t real. But, when we pretend to have the feeling of achievement and do it with the best acting skills we can muster, we help the brain send a message to the body that connects at the cellular level. Your brain thinks you have already achieved it and so supports the neural pathway production.
Using positive visualisation, make a picture in your mind of your hands with long, healthy nails. The more visual it is, the better. When we can make the picture as clear and as specific as possible, it’s much easier for the mind to duplicate it. Having an actual picture of what you want to create can also help keep the visual really strong.
Then, using a positive auditory stimulus, tellyourself, “I have long, healthy nails.” It can be so easy to think we have this part right, but people use a negative auditory stimulus so often. Winning and not losing are two very different states even though they may sound the same. One forces the mind to focus on the behaviour of winning, and the other focuses on the behavior of losing. No one depicted this better than one of the greatest Stickman role models we
And finally, you must keep fingernails out of your mouth. Start with your new Stickman Mantra, “I have long, healthy nails, I have long, healthy nails.” Keep pictures of long, beautiful nails around you, and imagine feeling incredibly proud as yousee long, healthy nails on your fingers. Then, and most importantly,act like a person who doesn’t bite their nails. Have them manicured. Paint them with nail strengtheners. Each day you will feel yourself achieving long, healthy nails. By continually repeating the process, over and over, youkeep firing the neurons. Neurons that fire together, wire together. You will eventually create a new neural pathway of “I have long, healthy nails,” which will replace the old dominant pathway of “I am a nail biter.” Naturally, this is a very simple explanation of the far more complex reality called neuroplasticity, but it is a great support in developing new habits.For the really old habits, it can take from a thousand times to up to three years to create a really strong new neural pathway. That alone can have us retreating to our old ways faster than a lizard drinking at a waterhole. But if we are serious about making long-lasting changes in our life, we’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen. This formula can work for any negative habit or behaviour that you are
seriously committed to removing from your life. Countless people have used Stickman to turn their lives around, renew the love and passion in their relationships, send sales results through the roof, achieve new sports records and numerous other achievements. Hopefully,over the course of this article, you have been able to understand the power of these two fun characters. They have been instrumental in the lives of thousands and thousands of people, both adults and children alike. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could all live out of our pit and experience a life filled with Stickman strength, courage, love and light? *Stickman and Pitman are gender neutral and the use of he/him is only as a reference.
Terry Hawkins is an award-winning speaker and entrepreneur, best-selling author, and the founder and owner of People In Progress Global, an industry leader in enterprise training resources. Terry’s dynamic presentation style and action-based messages have made her in demand throughout Australia and the USA.Find out more about Stickman at www.TerryHawkins.com.
you | Feature
t n e r e diff
It’s a lot more fun and you may just change the world
Have you ever felt weird? Have you ever felt different than other people? Have you always known you were different but tried to hide it from everyone, including yourself, preferring instead to pretend to be the same as everyone else?
t first glance, it seems to be a smart idea to hide from everyone (including ourselves) how different we are. Otherwise, how are we ever going to fit in? How are we ever going to have relationships, families, businesses or success? My question is: “If you get all of those things, but you’re not truly being as beautifully, joyfully, weirdly, irreverently, playfully different as you truly are, how successful are you really?” And while we’re at it, what makes ‘fitting in’ so valuable? What if it’s our difference that is the most wonderful thing about us? What if it’s embracing our difference that will change everything in our lives? And the world? What if it’s our different point of view that is the gift we bring to our relationships, our businesses, our families, and the world? What if that different point of view that you always seem to have about everything is exactly what’s required? By the way, if what I’m saying here makes you feel lighter, then it’s true for you. What’s true always feels lighter. A lie always feels heavier. How much energy have you personally been using to deny the gift that your difference is? Would you be willing to change that now? The willingness is all it takes to open the door. If we keep doing things the same way, we can expect to keep getting the same results. But if we choose to open up to something different, then we can finally create different results. To paraphrase Einstein: “The definition of insanity is doing the same
thing over and over again and expecting a different result.” Ever been guilty of that one? No? Me neither. Do you know he was a clerk in the post office before becoming the eminent physicist of his time? Did he change reality by trying to fit into everyone else’s box, or by knowing what he knew that was different and following it, even when it wasn’t accepted by his peers or by the mindset of his time? By following what he knew, he quite literally changed the world. But I’m sure that wouldn’t work for you. Or would it? What different point of view do you have that would be your gift to the world if you stopped denying it? How much more fun could you have? If Einstein had decided not to pursue what he knew that was different, would the world be greater today, or lesser? As another example, what if mother Teresa had decided that her difference didn’t matter? What if she decided not to follow her knowledge, her heart, and her being? What if, instead, she tried to fit into the box of everyone else’s reality, like most of us keep trying to do? Would the world have been greater for her choice to keep herself small? Or not? What about Oprah? Gandhi? And more importantly, what about you? For every choice you make to allow more of your differences show in the world, does the world become greater or lesser? Here are a few simple questions you can ask to begin to access more of what’s true and different for you:
• If I were having fun being as different as I am today, what would I choose to do? • What do I know that I’ve been pretending not to know or denying that I know? • What are my knowing, my heart, and my being urging me to choose that I keep avoiding? • What’s right about me that I’m not getting? • How does it get any better than this? Now is the time, my beautiful friend, for you to truly be everything you are, even all that “weird” stuff. The world needs you. What are you waiting for?
Dr. Dain Heer facilitates advanced classes on Access Consciousness. He invites and inspires people to more consciousness from total allowance, caring, humor and a phenomenal knowing. The energetic transformation possible is truly dynamic. Dr. Heer’s latest book, Being You, Changing the World, was published in June 2011. beingyoubook.com and drdainheer.com
Spirituality | you
Magic In this powerful excerpt to Rhonda Byrne’s latest book, The Magic, she reveals how one word is the key to experiencing magic in your life.
he following passage comes from the Gospel of Matthew in the Holy Scriptures, and it has mystified, confused, and been misunderstood by many people over the centuries. “Whoever has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.” You have to admit that when you read the passage it appears unjust, as it seems to be saying that the rich will get richer and the poor will get poorer. But there’s a riddle to be solved in this passage, a mystery to uncover, and when you know it a new world will have opened up for you. The answer to the mystery that has eluded so many for centuries is in one hidden word: gratitude. “Whoever has gratitude will be given more, and he or she will have an abundance. Whoever does not have gratitude, even what he or she has will be taken from him or her.” By the revelation of one hidden word, a cryptic text is made crystal clear. Two thousand years have passed since those words were recorded, but they are as true today as they ever were: if you don’t take the time to be grateful you will never have more, and what you do have you will lose. And the promise of the magic that will
happen with gratitude is in these words: if you’re grateful you will be given more, and you will have an abundance! From the Koran the promise of gratitude is equally emphatic: “And (remember) when God proclaimed: ‘If you are grateful I will give you more; but if you are ungrateful verily my punishment is indeed severe.” It doesn’t matter what religion you follow, or whether you’re religious or not, these words from the Holy Scriptures and the Koran apply to you and your life. They are describing a fundamental law of science and of the Universe.
It’s Universal Law
Gratitude operates through a Universal law that governs your whole life. According to the law of attraction, which governs all the energy in our Universe, from the formation of an atom to the movement of the planets, “like attracts like.” It’s because of the law of attraction that the cells of every living creature are held together, as well as the substance of every material object. In your life, the law operates on your thoughts and feelings, because they are energy too, and so whatever you think, whatever you feel, you attract to you. If you think, “I don’t like my job,” “I haven’t got enough money,” “I can’t
find my perfect partner,” “I can’t pay my bills,” “I think I’m coming down with something,” “He or she doesn’t appreciate me,” “I don’t get along with my parents,” “My child is a problem,” “My life is a mess,” or “My marriage is in trouble,” then you must attract more of those experiences. But if you think about what you’re grateful for, like, “I love my job,” “My family is very supportive,” “I had the best vacation,” “I feel amazing today,” “I got the biggest tax refund ever,” or ”I had a great weekend camping with my son,” and you sincerely feel the gratitude, the law of attraction says you must attract more of those things into your life. It works in the same way as metal being drawn to a magnet; your gratitude is magnetic, and the more gratitude you have, the more abundance you magnetize. It is Universal law! You will have heard sayings like, “Whatever goes around comes around,” “You reap what you sow,” and “You get what you give.” Well, all of those sayings are describing the same law, and they’re also describing a principle of the Universe that the great scientist Sir Isaac Newton discovered. Newton’s scientific discoveries included the fundamental laws of motion in the Universe, one of which says: Every action always has an opposite and equal reaction. When you apply the idea of gratitude to Newton’s law it says: every action of giving thanks always causes an opposite reaction of receiving. And what you receive will always be equal to the amount of gratitude you’ve given. This means that the very action of gratitude sets off a reaction of receiving! And the more sincerely and the more deeply grateful you feel (in other words, the more gratitude you give) the more you will receive. Rhonda Byrne is a writer and television producer best known for The Secret, which remained on the New York Times bestseller list for a staggering 190 weeks. She is also the author of The Power, a New York Times bestseller, and most recently The Magic.
Me and Her
Having stepped out of the darkness of a severe mental illness, Karen Tyrrell is now working to support those going through similar situations. Here, Karen speaks out about her journey and latest book – ME & HER: a Memoir of Madness.
y name’s Karen Tyrrell and I’ve recovered from severe mental illness, manifesting in psychosis and mania. Today I live a happy, balanced life as a full-time author of children’s books, crime and memoir. I create writing articles for South City Bulletin magazine, am the leader of Logan City Writers collective, a public speaker and a mental health advocate. But why did I become so crazy and how did I reclaim my life? When I was a teacher, parents of one of my students harassed me to breaking point and beyond. For over a year, these parents dished out daily verbal, written, emotional and psychological abuse. I couldn’t escape them. The school encouraged me to discuss my angst with a counsellor but I laughed it off, saying I was alright. But I wasn’t. With all the pressure, my personality and moods began to change. I became
extremely stressed and anxious, developing acute insomnia and unpredictable panic attacks. Each night terrifying dreams and night terrors tormented me until I feared sleeping. I kept awake, my insomnia worsening. I dreaded returning to teaching and to the class I once loved. My personal and family relationships broke down. I could no longer cope. My symptoms gradually grew worse and I experienced a psychotic break. In a fit of desperation, I escaped and ran to a covert motel hideaway, my only solution. A week later, police arrived at my motel, insisting I surrender myself. A medical team forcibly escorted me to a psyche ward in a Brisbane hospital, where they incarcerated me away from my family. I became an inmate in the frightening world of the psychiatric system. Everything terrified me; the patients, the nurses, being locked away. I just wanted to go home.
Later an ambulance transferred me to a psyche hospital. I had no choice. I withdrew into a shell, refusing to leave my allotted room. Gradually I ventured out, exploring my environment. I discovered teachers, nurses and ordinary people dealing with their stresses, addictions and breakdowns. Throughout this stressful ordeal, I developed mania, one minute feeling anxious the next absolutely euphoric, compelling myself to write. Passionately, I began creating my personal story ME & HER: a Memoir of Madness. My stable side was ME - teacher, writer, mother and my other side, HER - manic, psychic, healer to the living, telepathic to the dead … and I was very psychotic. In my darkest psychotic moments I performed an ‘experiment’, purposefully stressing over a disturbed student, keeping myself awake at night in order to kick-start the creative ideas I craved. I experienced pitch-black manic dreams with ‘The Voice’ commanding me into action. A psychiatrist diagnosed me with bipolar disorder. What the hell was that? For weeks I refused treatment and medication. Finally, when I accepted my diagnosis, my journey to recovery began. Each day I participated in the hospital activity program including yoga, relaxation classes, morning walks, group therapy sessions, and art and craft classes. I agreed to take daily medication, praying I could return home to the family I loved.
Each day I wrote down what was happening to me in a journal, reflecting on my experiences and how I was feeling. I interviewed my own family, the doctors, nurses and the patients, seeking answers. Writing became cathartic as I strove to recover and find out why I became so ill. I used daily writing as a powerful tool to reflect on my condition and to trial mental health strategies to aid my recovery. I attended therapy sessions with a psychologist with one goal in mind, to become well again. I wanted to learn what triggered my episodes and how to avoid them. Most importantly, I needed real life strategies that worked for me. After my release, I joined a writing group and enlisted in writing courses to learn the craft of writing. I was determined to transform my scribbles into something coherent I could share with the world. I began writing fiction as a welcome escape from confronting my painful struggle with bipolar. The more I revealed about my past, the more I turned to fiction for escape. I wrote Sayonara, my crime novel and Josh and the It, a kid’s sci-fi on a parallel time scale. When I became a super space kid zooming off into space capturing space monsters and saving the galaxy, my angst disappeared. I escaped into a life of crime though my fictional criminal psychology student, Josie Roberts, as she investigated the disappearance of a Japanese girl named Yumi. Sayonara is based on a true story. Our Japanese student disappeared off the streets of Brisbane. I have now completed six books; my memoir, two books in a kid’s science fiction series, and two picture books for young children. Two years ago, I ‘came out’ online and became a mental health advocate. Friends and writers rallied around me, encouraging me to be brave and speak honestly about my personal experiences. I aimed to help those struggling with mental health issues by humanizing the face of mental illness and offering advice. My stories of hope were published twice on Beyond Blue’s website and in The Happiness Institute’s eNewsletter, reaching 12,000 subscribers. In 2009, I became the co-ordinator to Logan Crime & Genre Writers club, sharing critiquing skills to our members. In March 2010, I started up Logan City Writers collective in my local community to support and encourage emerging writers. We now have over 100 members.
In October 2010, I organised and presented the very successful Logan Writers Week Festival. Logan City Council awarded me two RADF grants to develop my writing craft and Logan Libraries presented me six opportunities to speak on panels, at workshops and author presentations. I’ve won several awards including admission to the QWC Editing Master Class of 2007 and recently won a mentorship with the Society of Editors Queensland. I’m proud to say publishers are now considering my books, which Sally Odgers, professional editor, positively assessed and reviewed. I’m very proud of my triumph over bipolar disorder and mental illness. I share my positive strategies for wellness via my free ME & HER eNewsletter to subscribers. In October 2011, my short story ‘Writing My Way to Recovery’ was finalist in Mental Health Association Queensland writing competition for Mental Health Week. In 2011, Queensland Health contracted me to develop a Life Writing Program for mental health participants. I co-facilitated the program at Logan Hospital as part of the Remix project. Participants developed their writing skills, giving them a voice. In February 2012, 4BC Radio Brisbane interviewed me live about my teacher harassment from parents. Announcers, Moyd and Loretta, wanted my honest account of how the parent harassment led to my gradual decline. I shared my brave story about how parents had stalked me, my breakdown and recovery. In the same month, Queensland Health published my personal testimonial, Karen’s Story on their ‘Change our Minds’ mental health website. My honest account reveals how it’s possible to recover from mental illness and reclaim your life. My life now is happy, stable and in balance. I’ve developed my own individual wellness plan, which includes a healthy regime of daily exercise, a balanced diet and pro-active tactics to minimize stress. I maintained a calm nightly routine to receive my full quota of restful sleep. I’ve triumphed over the symptoms of bipolar but I’m not cured. Each day I maintain my good health by empowering myself with pro-active strategies to combat insomnia and stress - my two bipolar triggers. Why did I become so ill? Instead of seeking help in the early stages of stress,
anxiety and insomnia, I ignored it. I soldiered on, denying I had any problem. If I become sick again, I will seek treatment straight away. We live in an ever increasingly stressful society. So many people succumb to the pressure, suffering from mental health issues, addictions and disorders. As humans, we need to nurture our emotional and psychological health every day. Admitting we need help demonstrates a sign of strength, not weakness. I’ve travelled so far along my personal journey, recovering from severe bipolar disorder. Each day I shout to the world, ‘You can triumph from the grips of mental illness and live a balanced, healthy life.’ My doctor tells his mental health patients about my victory over bipolar disorder, to provide hope. My ultimate dream came true when ME & HER: a Memoir of Madness was published. Now I share my positive messages and strategies for recovery and wellness with the community. Mental illness is like any other illness. It has symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and recovery. I challenge everyone to fight against the stigma of mental illness and spread my news of hope. After I triumphed over bipolar disorder, I thought I could do anything and threw myself into every project with gusto. If I can recover from the depths of mania and madness, you can do anything. Never, ever give up!
ME & HER: a Memoir of Madness is an optimistic story of recovery and hope, sharing my wellness strategies with the community. ME & HER helps to humanize the face of mental illness and fights against the stigma of mental illness. For more information visit www.karentyrrell.com or email karen@ karentyrrell.com
life | Feature
In the name of love
Are you overly competitive with your brothers or sisters? Do you go into a jealous rage when your siblings excel, succeed or perform better than you? To what extent is your behaviour and your performance affected by wanting to please your loved ones or to be acknowledged by them?
ibling rivalry is competition between siblings for love and attention from parents and other relatives. When siblings are growing up they compete for their parents’ love, affection and attention, and they are sensitive to differences in parental treatment from a very early age. When children feel they are getting unequal amounts of their parents’ attention, fighting between siblings can occur. This rivalry can continue into adulthood with competition for who is the most successful, most acknowledged or most accomplished in the family. While healthy competition between siblings can help each child to excel and succeed, unhealthy competition can be very disempowering and damaging.
Insecurities feed the rivalry
Unhealthy sibling rivalry can only exist if siblings have their own insecurities because it is those insecurities that feed the rivalry through emotions of jealousy, envy, resentment, betrayal, anger, etc. Rivalry can develop very early on in life based on how each sibling interprets their upbringing and their relationship with their parents. It can take only one event in early childhood to trigger sibling rivalry. For example, a new brother or sister being born can cause the existing sibling to feel jealous, abandoned or unloved as a result of more attention being given to the newborn. With Winter 2012
those emotions left unaddressed, subsequent family dynamics can be misinterpreted by that sibling in a negative way, adding to those emotions and fuelling the sibling rivalry.
The order of birth (first born, middle child, youngest) can also create rivalry if a child is being compared to their siblings, which can continue into adulthood. Think of the TV show “Everyone Loves Raymond”, where Raymond is the youngest spoilt son, while Robert, the eldest son, feels unloved. The two brothers constantly compete for their mother’s attention and recognition, and the mother encourages and thrives on it. Innocent off the cuff comments made by parents (e.g. why can’t you be like your sister?), can be interpreted by a child as them being judged, not being good enough, being unloved, etc. Too much attention directed at one child or more support for one child and/or their hobbies can create the perception of favourites. Differences in how school and sporting achievements are acknowledged and compared between siblings can also create perceptions of favouritism. Extra hugs or comments by relatives directed at one sibling over another can create rivalry, unhealthy competition, perfectionist behaviours, etc. Even significant emotional events in adulthood can trigger childhood memories long forgotten, or unconscious rivalries between siblings. For example, two brothers had a very harmonious relationship with each other until one brother went through a very bitter divorce, which brought up his insecurities from childhood about being unloved. This revealed a subtle unconscious rivalry between the two brothers that existed since childhood and started an outright competition between the two over whose children were more accomplished.
Ending the rivalry
As you reflect on your relationship with your siblings, notice your response to them and how your parents and relatives treat you compared to your brothers and sisters. Do you constantly 44
think about how to out-do your sibling (for example, going on and on about your successes compared to your brother’s or sister’s achievements at family events)? Once you have identified your unhealthy patterns, commit to ending the cycle. Make a list of all the benefits to you for stopping the unhealthy sibling rivalry, as well as the benefits to you for continuing the rivalry. As you look at the lists, which is longer and more compelling for you? In what positive ways can you get the same benefits you now receive from continuing the rivalry, when you stop it? If you hold on to past hurts, anger, rejection, betrayal, abandonment, etc. you will keep having these “buttons” pushed by your siblings/family until you resolve them. Similarly, if you believe you are being judged, are unloved, etc., and these beliefs are left unresolved, they can also trigger an overreaction to what your siblings/family say or do, and lead to rivalry. With the above commitment and insight, address the unhealthy patterns and watch your relationships with your siblings and relatives blossom as the rivalry ends once and for all.
Dr. Vesna Grubacevic is the founder of award-winning company Qt, an NLP Trainer, who holds a PhD in Clinical Hypnotherapy and a BEc. She is an author, speaker and the creator of breakthrough behavioural change techniques. For more techniques on improving your relationships and for your free gifts, visit www.qttransformation.com
Feature | life
Beware Carren Smith explains how your underlying river of expectations, boundaries and beliefs can destroy your relationship.
magine this: you meet Mr or Mr Right and the excitement of getting to know each other almost takes your breath away. You can’t wait for the phone to ring, to hear the car pull up for your date, and to spend time in each other’s arms. Every encounter with each other is blissful and even though there may be occasions or comments that throw you a curve ball, overall you can’t believe your luck. You’ve finally found the partner you’ve been looking for. Your experience of this person is filtered through your initial perceptions of what a perfect match should look like. You may not be aware of it, but it happens just the same.
We picture our perfect partner on the surface of consciousness, while underneath there is a river of expectations, boundaries, beliefs, behaviours and triggers. This river is the accumulation of our life’s observations, values,
experiences and instinctive inclinations. We know this river exists purely by the reality we experience. If we didn’t have these filters, no one would get together, and if they did get together, no one would separate because there would be no reason to. It is only when our filters, our perceptions of what is acceptable, are not satisfied, that we seek a new experience. Time and familiarity in a relationship force us to experience more of the real person, and their perceived flaws become more obvious. Still trying to have this person fit in your frame, you overlook the flaw, or you fight to change the flaw, so they remain acceptable. Inevitably, though, the flaws keep reoccurring, which causes continued stress and internal questioning whether this person is really the ‘one’ or not. Could our initial perception of this person have been wrong?
Behind the mask
Let’s look at the initial encounter, and what we find is that both parties were wearing a mask, trying to be what the other person wanted, and trying to fulfil the perceptions of each other. Over time, a mask can’t be sustained, because the real person breaks through the formalities, revealing the truth. We witness this transition and new behaviour, except that now we are filtering through the unconscious perceptions of what is acceptable and unacceptable. You know what you want the relationship to look like, but it’s not that way any more. Things have changed and you’re either going to fight to get it to fit back into your frame, or you are going to leave and start again. Have you noticed, though, that with each relationship, there is always something that isn’t right? There are always aspects of your perceptions that you have to compromise? No relationship is perfect, right? Wrong! It’s not the relationship that is wrong, it is just that your perceptions are dictating
your level of satisfaction or dissatisfaction in your relationship with this person.
Perceptions are a result of our environment when growing up, our past experiences and our beliefs, which are born out of what worked and what didn’t. We all have different perceptions. Two people can form entirely different views and meanings from the same situation; the difference in views is caused by the filtering of the situation through perceptions.
Free from perceptions, we would be free from judgment, opinion and expectation There is one fundamental flaw in our perceptions, though: none of our perceptions are based on the present experience. They are all based on history, past experiences and beliefs, and do not account for the reality of now. If this flaw were eliminated, it would mean that we would assess each situation as unique, and place no expectations on what should or should not happen. This is particularly poignant when it comes to the way we interact in relationships. Free from perceptions, we would be free from judgment, opinion and expectation, and we would simply be left with the present moment and our choice about it. We would leave the past in the past and allow the future to unfold as a mysterious journey filled with new experiences. Ask yourself, where are my perceptions about what is right or wrong destroying my relationship? You may be surprised by what you find… Carren Smith is the CEO and founder of the Quantum Leadership Group (www.qlg.com.au). An expert in personal and professional development, she leads seminars and offers corporate training around Australia and internationally.
wellbeing | Spotlight On
What is While biomesotherapy is an ancient form of pain management, therapists are still using it today in a range of forms. Administered in saline injections or inhalants, biomisotherapy is an alternative therapy that can treat a range of symptoms and in some cases eliminate the pain entirely.
iomesotherapy is one of those “new” ancient therapies that is used as an alternative form of pain management. This treatment is a combination of traditional homeopathic and Asian acupuncture therapies and involves inhalants and saline injections into specific trigger points on the body. When both therapies are administered together they have a synergistic effect that helps the body heal faster. In some cases homeopathic medicine may be in the saline injection itself. It is very common for European practitioners to use Trammel or Zeel, which are composite homeopathic remedies that have been added to the saline ampoules.
The History of Biomesotherapy
Saline injections are very safe and have been used since 1831 to rehydrate and detoxify the body as well as administer medicines. In this case the saline might also contain miniscule amounts of homeopathic remedies such as arnica (a known pain reliever and anti-inflammatory.) It is one of the fastest ways to efficiently deliver moisture and medications throughout the body. Homeopathy was first used in 1796 by German Physician Samuel Hanemann, who coined the law of similar, which goes “like versus like.” This means that miniscule amounts of a highly diluted substance similar to the symptoms caused by the disease can help cure the disease. Today the practice is very common in Germany, England and Austria and it is
catching on in the West, Australia and other countries. Acupuncture has been practiced in China since 1600 BC and the science has not changed much from then. Nowadays sterile needles are used instead of sharp stones to work on specific points in the body.
How Does Biomesotherapy Alleviate Pain?
Biomesothreapy works by stimulating the body’s own ability to heal itself. Both homeopathic medicines and acupuncture work by stimulating the body to have an immune response that combats specific problems. Yet another treatment goal of biomesotherapy is to help reduce inflammation and remove toxins from the body. This can help alleviate pain and discomfort around the affected area as well. Natural homeopathic medicines work by introducing miniscule amounts of the actual disease into the body, in the millionth of parts, so that the body is tricked into a response but not overwhelmed by symptoms. The result is that the body cures itself naturally. Usually homeopathic remedies are administered as pellets that are left to dissolve under the tongue or in liquid form that is dispensed from a dropper under the tongue. During the process of biomesotherapy, the homeopathic medicine is actually inhaled. For instance, a person who has headaches might be administered a homeopathic remedy such as Belladonna.
The same is true of acupuncture, which is traditionally treated with needles. Acupuncture treats points on the body that control the flow of energy through the body. According to traditional Chinese medicine there are 12 main energy channels that run through the body and help to regulate the flow of energy through the body. There are 12 main energy channels that have “trigger points” in the muscles and each trigger point corresponds to both an organ and a meridian. For instance, saline may be injected at a trigger point between the thumb and forefinger to alleviate headaches. Usually these trigger points are stimulated with needles that are warmed through a process called moxibustion (where bits of charcoal are lit and left smoking on the end of the needle.) In the process of biomesotherapy, needles are inserted and saline is injected into these points. The saline is of the same consistency and make up as your body’s natural fluid. By using both methods at once the body has double the chance to be stimulated and heal itself. However, it is important to note that not all practitioners use the combination therapy. Some, particularly the Asian alternative practitioners, will inject the saline under the skin and instead prescribe healing teas or pills with homeopathic properties to take afterwards.
Conditions That Respond to Biomesotherapy
There are a number of conditions that respond well to this type of treatment. These include • Any kind of repetitive strain injury • Arthritis • Cartilage decay • Chronic back problems • Chronic muscle cramps • Circulation improvement • Fibromyalgia • Frozen shoulder • Headaches • Irritable bowel syndrome
Spotlight On | wellbeing
• • • • • • • • •
Jaw pain Migraines Muscle bruising or tears Ligament bruising or tears Sciatica Sinus pain Softening scar tissue Swelling and inflammation Wound healing In some cases, this type of natural mesotherapy can be an actual cure for the condition. In others, symptomatic relief is acquired and can prevent taking pain relievers.
What Can I Expect at A Biomesotherapy Appointment? Before you are treated with biomesotherapy a naturopath, homeopath or acupuncturist may give you a general physical to determine what types of homeopathic remedies will best treat your condition. They will also examine your hands, tongue and other parts of the body to determine your trigger points. Once you have been diagnosed you may first be administered homeopathic pellets or drops, or you may be given a homeopathic remedy to breathe in through an inhalant while the saline injections are going in. Some practitioners use homeopathic remedies that can be sprayed into the mouth. European practitioners tend to use saline ampoules that have been augmented with homeopathic remedies such as Zeel or Traumeel. Both of these remedies are meant to treat inflammation and sports injuries. The needles used in the saline injections are very fine and quite painless. Most people feel only a tiny pricking feeling as they are inserted under the skin. Some contemporary practitioners use a self loading device called an “inject-ease” that helps reduce any discomfort. Usually a biomesotherapy session consists of a series of treatments focused on one or two trigger point areas. The needles are not generally spread out all over the body as can be the case with traditional acupuncture.
The Benefits of Biomesotherapy Treatment
The main benefit of a biomesotherapy treatment is that, true to the principles of both homeopathy and ancient Chinese medicine, the source of the pain is treated
and not just the symptoms. Many people also experience relief after just one session. Other benefits of the treatment include: • Non-invasive (meaning there is no surgery) • Non-toxic • Homeopathic medicine is nonaddictive • Treatment is done in an office • Treatment usually takes about an hour • No recovery time needed It is also not uncommon for people to experience immediate relief after a treatment. In fact treatments can be used in place of pain relief medications, especially when it comes to muscle strains and soft tissue injuries. This is very good news for those who are at risk of becoming addicted to pills.
Side Effects of Biomesotherapy There are very few side effects of biomesotherapy. Some people experience: • Nausea (due to detoxification) • Headache (due to detoxification) • If your muscles are very tight then you might feel pain during the injection treatment • Soreness or inflammation at the injection point after a treatment • Mild bleeding at the injection point • An urge to urinate due to the saline injection adding fluid to the body Many people feel relaxed and pleasantly tired after the treatment. It is recommended you take a nap after a treatment so your body can rest and repair itself.
• Not everybody responds to this type of treatment • It does not heal or cure severe conditions such as cancer • When there is more serious underlying health problem at play it may only treat the symptoms • Sometimes it takes four or more treatments to alleviate the pain entirely • Sometimes people experience discomfort afterwards as the process might trigger symptoms of detoxification (feeling hungover, headache, nausea and soreness) • It is not the best treatment for those who fear needles or injections The Pros • It can help reduce or even eliminate your reliance on pain relievers • It can help back pain sufferers avoid expensive surgery • It can detoxify your body and improve your general health • It improves your circulation • It helps you feel more relaxed and less anxious about treatment • It can usually be used safely in conjunction with allopathic treatments (but check with your doctor after having surgery or if you have a skin, water-retention or blood condition that may be complicated by biomesotherapy treatment)
The Pros and Cons of Biomesotherapy Treatment
The Cons • If you do not live in a city it can be hard to find a therapist • This type of treatment is not usually covered by an insurance plan or if it is, it is only partially covered
wellbeing | Feature
End emotional When we fill up with food even though we’re not physically hungry, it’s an attempt to quench an emotional hunger. Lysa Black and Gina Martin can help you stop.
motional eating is defined as eating when you are not physically hungry, or past the point of satisfaction. It’s using food to cope with the challenges of life. Awareness, acceptance and release are the three stages that can help you break free from emotional eating. Whether you have been emotionally eating for weeks or years, anyone can break free when they realise that emotional eating is creating more pain than it helps avoid.
Step one: awareness
Being aware of how you’re feeling is the first step to breaking free from emotional eating. Instead of allowing the impulse to eat control you, simply ask yourself, “Am I physically hungry?” If you are, go ahead and eat, but if you’re not physically hungry, ask yourself, “How do I feel right now?” Our emotions only have power over our behaviour when we remain unaware of them. Developing awareness around your emotional state is a liberating step towards freedom. Next time you think to turn to food when you are not hungry, simply spot the emotion; naming your emotional state gives you a powerful advantage.
Step two: acceptance
Choosing to eat when you are not hungry is an attempt to reject, ignore or shut out your feelings. The repercussion of labelling any emotions as ‘bad’ leads to an unconscious urge to use food to block those feelings. All emotions carry powerful messages that can provide valuable feedback about the choices we are making in our lives. Now you are more aware, and have recognised how you are feeling, you can begin to accept any emotion. Ask yourself, “When did I start feeling this way?” and “What was happening when I started to feel…?” It’s easier to sit with your feelings when you search for the hidden message each emotion holds. We have tried to fool ourselves into labelling emotional eating as ‘comfort eating’, when the truth is that eating when we are not physically hungry only creates guilt, regret and shame. Acknowledging and validating your feelings is a compassionate turn towards freedom. Trust yourself to be able to sit with whatever feelings flow. It won’t feel comfortable at first, but the longer you can sit with emotions you used to think were unbearable, the more you realise that, with patience, you can learn to accept any emotional state. Winter 2012
Accepting your feelings is a powerful form of self-love; it becomes the doorway out of the emotional eating trap. Whether it’s sadness, anger, guilt or jealousy, our feelings can provide powerful insight. For example, anger helps us to know that we feel disrespected; jealousy helps us know that we desire a quality we’ve seen in another. When we fear certain emotions, and try to escape from them through food, we miss out on learning valuable information about ourselves. Becoming curious about your feelings opens the door to insight and understanding.
Step three: release
Carl Jung stated, “What you resist persists,” so rather than pushing down feelings, allowing them to come up and out of us is cathartic. Catharsis is the process of releasing strong or repressed emotions. Holding on and clamping down on particular emotions that we’ve labelled as bad gives them power to become even more dominant. The fastest way out of an emotion is to go through it.
The fastest way out of an emotion is to go through it You’ve probably already experienced the liberation of releasing an emotion. When you’ve been sad and allowed yourself to have a good cry, it can feel fantastic. Developing ease around releasing our emotions frees us from an unproductive dependency on food. Once you know what you are feeling, you can flow with it, find the learning,then release it. Being comfortable to explore the messages behind our emotions frees us from the illusion that we can’t handle our feelings. These steps cultivate a sense of inner power and mastery that only strengthens. Remember that having compassion for yourself is the fastest way to learn and continue to improve. Lysa Black and Gina Martin spent years trapped in emotional eating. Comfort eating, binge eating, and secret eating created a prison of selfloathing. After breaking free from emotional eating, they lost 40kg combined and have stayed slim for 16 years. They are passionate about helping women end the struggle with emotional eating.
Great Reads Enjoy some time out for yourself with these new inspiring and motivational books. You
The Music of the Soul: a pathway to a rich and fulfilling life Stephen Chong, Sid Harta Publishers, $24.95
The Music of the Soul takes readers on a journey of change. It’s not about aspiring to be rich, famous or enlightened like another person, but rather about realising your own self-worth and sense of life purpose. The book comprises 21 chapters (called Sonata’s) that are philosophies and which Chong applies to his own everyday living. The book provides readers with practical suggestions on how to improve wellbeing, health and happiness, and tools to inspire change, overcome obstacles and provide clarity of life purpose.
By Cynthia Montgomery, Harper Collins, $27.99
Based on an acclaimed professor’s legendary strategy course at Harvard Business School, The Strategist offers a radically new perspective on a leader’s most vital role. The Strategist exposes all business leaders – whether they run a global enterprise or a small business – to the invaluable insights Montgomery shares with these privileged executives. By distilling the experiences and insights gleaned in the classroom, Montgomery helps leaders develop the skills and sensibilities they need to become strategists themselves. It is a difficult role, but little else one does as a leader is likely to matter more.
The Ultimate Volumetrics Diet Dr Barbara Rolls, Harper Collins, $27.50
Lose weight and keep it off while managing your hunger: That’s the simple and effective promise of Volumetrics, the #1 New York Times bestselling diet and lifestyle plan that for more than a decade has shown readers how to feel full on fewer calories. In The Ultimate Volumetrics Diet, Dr. Barbara Rolls expands on her time-tested message with new findings, recipes, and user-friendly tools. Dr. Rolls’s twelve-week program supports readers step-by-step as they develop new habits to help them lose weight and keep it off—and her 105 delicious recipes, divided into thirty-five food categories, provide a foundation for personalising and preparing everything from breakfast favourites to desserts.
By Rhonda Byrne, Simon & Schuster Australia, $16.99
In The Secret, Rhonda Byrne revealed the law of attraction. In The Power, she uncovered the single greatest force in our universe. Now, with The Magic, Rhonda Byrnes reveals life-changing knowledge concealed with a two thousand year old scared text. Then, she takes readers on an unforgettable journey for 28 days, teaching them how to apply this knowledge in every area of life. No matter who you are, where you are, what your current circumstances, with The Magic you will change your entire life. Rhonda says, “I’m here to tell you that the magic you once believed in is true.”
Content Strategy for the Web
Kristina Halvorson & Melissa Rach, Penguin Books, $24.95
Content Strategy for the Web delivers the knowledge to plan for and implement a successful online content strategy, shows which tools are available and how to use them to plan for, create and govern online content, and gives practical advice on staffing and resource allocation for web editorial roles and responsibilities and presents current best practices through case studies and interviews. Kristina explains how to create and deliver useful, usable content for your online audiences, when and where they need it most and introduces content strategy into the user experience design process.
Feature | wellbeing
s e s excu Excuses,
It can be so easy to make excuses why you are not pushing yourself towards your goals. Here, Margie Warrell explains how to bust those excuses and lead the life you truly desire.
hen you think about your health – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual – what is it that you find wishing were different? Now ask yourself what you could do by the end of this year that would make a real difference to how you feel about this area of your life. Aaaahh… but what’s that I hear you mumbling under your breath? “I’m
just too busy right now… perhaps next month... besides, this is the way it has always been… and on top of all that I just don’t know where to start… so really, what’s the point?” Whatever your excuses, consider this: the quality of your excuses determines the quality of your life! While you are prepared to continue to put up with parts of your life not being the way you’d love them to be, without any firm and consistent action toward improving them you are missing the boat on all that you and your life could be. Often what lies at the core of our excuses and resistance to taking proactive actions is fear. Fear of failing, being rejected, not being lovable, looking foolish, or simply fear of messing up. Your fears are driven by an intention to protect you from pain. The problem is, your fears want to protect you from pain at any cost! Even the cost of living a life where you settle for way less than you’d like simply because to take action toward more and better involves risk rejection, failure and pain! Too often instead of acknowledging your fears and how they may be trying to serve you, you look for excuses as to why things aren’t as you’d like them to be and to justify your inaction to make them otherwise. To move beyond your excuses you have to be prepared to leave the predictable for the unknown. To overcome your fear of the unknown it is important to first acknowledge the ‘payoff’ you’ve been getting from choosing to stay where you are. For instance, you may have become very attached to feeling like a victim of your parents’ incompetent or neglectful parenting and blaming them for your lack of success in life Sure, taking action to address those areas of your life you're dissatisfied with can be scary. But you have everything you need within you - courage, resourcefulness, strength - right now to transform your life into whatever it is
you'd like it to be. After all, courage is not absence of fear or self doubt, but action in their presence. Only when you leave the comfort of your excuses behind can you grow into all that you can be and create for yourself a life rich in all you seek. In the words of Samuel Johnston, “nothing great would ever have been accomplished if all possible objections (i.e. excuses!!) had first been overcome”. You see, there will always be plenty of reasons not to take a risk, make a change and address the issues that undermine your happiness and limit your success, both personally and professionally. But where will that land you? Likely, right where it’s gotten you! Begin today creating a life that you really love. Why today? Well, why not? Your life shrinks or expands in proportion to your willingness to let go of your excuses, dream bigger and live bolder. Excuse busting exercise 1. Get very clear on your goal by writing down what it is you’d like to change/ accomplish. 2. Write down all the excuses you’ve used for not taking action on this before and which may come up again. 3. Challenge the logic and reasoning behind each of your excuses; seek evidence that does not support their validity. 4. Break down your goal into steps and set deadlines against the first few. 5. Commit to taking at least one action every day, beginning today, toward your goal. 6. Get support! Share your goal with someone and ask them to hold you accountable until you’ve reached it.
Recently returned to Australia after a decade making her mark in the USA, Margie Warrell is a Forbes Columnist, bestselling author, media contributor (Today Show, Fox News, CNN) and sought after expert in what it takes to work, live and lead with courage. She is a dynamic speaker, facilitator, and master coach. www.margiewarrell.com
wellbeing | Feature
If you think heart disease only affects older men, you’re wrong. Heart disease is the number one killer of Australian women. In fact, women are four times more likely to die of heart disease than breast cancer.
he heart is one of the most important organs in your body, and yet, do you really know how it works and what your lifestyle is doing to it? The heart is an organ that is often taken for granted, but by taking a few simple steps, you can stay healthy, invigorated, and most importantly, alive. The first thing you should do is discover how your heart works and understand its mechanics. This will help you spot problems if and when they occur.
Your heart is smaller than you’d think. It’s about the size of a fist and has four chambers. The right side of your heart receives used blood from the rest of your body. Used blood lacks oxygen, since the body has used it up. This deoxygenated blood is sent to the lungs where it absorbs fresh oxygen then comes back to the left side of the heart. The left atrium then pumps this refreshed blood to the rest of the body. Your heartbeat, or pulse, is actually the sound and rhythm of your heart pumping blood. Heart conditions occur when parts of the heart are weakened or damaged. The blood vessels may be too clogged to deliver blood, the heart chamber walls may be too weak to pump, or your heart valves may be ruptured.
unclear. It’s possible that oestrogen protects the heart, so as oestrogen levels reduce during menopause, women become more vulnerable to heart failure. Women who smoke while using oral contraceptives are also at a higher risk than the average person. The reactions between the drugs included in the pills and the chemicals contained in the cigarettes are thought to increase the potential for heart conditions, blood vessel problems, and even strokes. Another form of medical assistance that may affect a woman’s heart is Hormone Replacement Therapy. Some researchers feel that HRT increases the level of carcinogens in the body, and it’s also thought to increase the risk of heart disease. There are many other factors that increase your risk of heart disease. Some you can’t avoid, such as ageing. If other members of your immediate family suffer from heart disease, you may be genetically susceptible to heart conditions, and you can’t help that either. But some factors that cause heart disease are behavioural. Being overweight, smoking, and avoiding exercise can all increase your chances of developing a heart condition. Pre-existing health factors that can lead to heart failure include diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
Preventing heart disease
How your heart works
Research has suggested some reasons why so many women are killed by heart disease. Women experiencing menopause seem to have a higher susceptibility to fatal heart conditions, though the exact cause is
There are many simple things you can do to reduce the risk of heart disease. One obvious step is to get more exercise. It could be anything from joining a gym to jogging around your neighbourhood. You can also
try activities that are more enjoyable like walking, hiking, ice skating, rollerblading, or dancing. Eat a healthy diet that includes at least two fruit portions and five vegetable servings a day. For snacks, avoid junk food and instead use unsalted nuts and seeds. Eat more legumes and less processed meats. Drink a lot of water and avoid sugary, carbonated drinks. Whenever possible, prepare your meals at home so that you can monitor the amount of oil, salt, and fat used. If you must have take-away meals, look for meals that have a Heart Foundation Tick on them. It means they have been tested and have no harmful trans fat in them. Fish is good for the heart, whether it’s fresh or canned. Have two or three servings of oily fish every week, and whenever possible, eat foods that have fish oil and Omega 3 additives. You should also try to eat more whole grains cereals and complex carbohydrates. If you’re a smoker, consider quitting. It protects your heart, but it also protects the people around you, since passive smoking can cause heart failure as well. In addition, women are advised to seek natural remedies like gingko biloba and cohosh to deal with the side effects of menopause. The Heart Foundation saves lives and improves health through funding worldclass cardiovascular research, providing guidelines for health professionals, informing the public, and assisting people with cardiovascular disease. Find out more: www.heartfoundation.org.au
with every subscription Subscribe to emPOWER before August 31st, 2012 and thanks to our friends at Affirmations, you’ll also receive a fantastic Affirmations gift pack, valued at $90. Your Affirmations gift pack contains the new book Dreamboat as well as a selection of gorgeous Affirmations bookmarks and gift cards. Dreamboat is a beautifully designed 144 page hardcover coffee table book filled with inspiration. Dreamboat’s cargo is wisdom and serenity, it’s ultimate destination will be according to your desires. Set the sails of purest white canvas cracking in the breeze, and confidently chart the course of your dreams upon the deep, cool sapphire waters. Weigh anchor; your journey awaits.
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finance | Property
Playing it With property prices going through the roof and getting further and further out of reach for the average person, more and more people are looking to team up with family and friends to invest in properties. Partnering with other individuals to purchase properties is a great way to continue investing and benefiting from property investment, though it has its pros and cons.
ave you ever read, or heard about how people are able to build great performing property portfolios in a short period of time while having average, or even modest incomes? Have you ever wondered how they did it? Many people think that these investors must have had to use their life savings or perhaps came across a generous inheritance. This need not be the case. You can most certainly invest in property and profit from property using very little, or none of your own money. There is even the possibility that you can invest in property when you have low or no income! You just have to be smart about how you do it.
Why would people partner with others to invest in property?
The answer is leverage. If you are unable to invest on your own,
some people consider it a better option to team up with another person, invest together and share the profits. Shared profits are better than no profits at all. Say you have decided to invest in property and you went to the bank to apply for a loan of $500,000. The bank could deny your application due to lack of affordability or income. What you could do is team up and purchase the property with another person who also has good income. Together your incomes will allow you to take out the loan from the bank.
How can you take it further?
Most people are aware that investing, whether it be in shares, property, or other asset classes, is the best way to create extra wealth for yourself, including a retirement nest egg. The more you can invest, the more you could profit. This being the case, it is very important we understand the power of leverage (borrowing). If we can take what money we have to invest and borrow against it, it will allow us to borrow more. The more you are able to borrow, the higher the asset value you are able to invest in. The higher the asset value, the more chance you have for higher returns. So letâ€™s say you have savings of $40,000. Instead of just buying something for $40,000, when looking at borrowing to purchase property, you could possibly borrow an
Property | finance
additional $9, for every $1 you have. Thus your new borrowing capacity would be $400,000, made up of $40,000 from your savings and an additional $360,000 borrowed from the banks.
Breaking through the limits!
Borrowing against property usually allows you to borrow large amounts, which is great but also risky. At some point in time we all hit our maximum borrowing capacity, which is where lenders decide we cannot afford to borrow any more funds. The funny thing is the lenders view point can sometimes be a bit distorted due to their rigid credit policies. Sometimes according to the lender’s computerised systems, you technically cannot borrow any more, however in reality it’s a different picture. Lenders may not lend you any more because they are unwilling to accept some of your income, such as bonuses, overtime, or even the high rental return you receive on your other investment properties. So while the lenders are saying ‘no’ to giving you extra funds, in reality you could easily afford another investment. If this is the case, what can you do to continue to grow your wealth if the banks will not allow you to borrow any more? This is when you need to get creative and smart. Before we look at breaking through the shackles of your borrowing capacity, let us look at a few other scenarios too, so you can get the whole picture. What if you were in the position where the banks just wouldn’t lend to you in the first place because of low income or even no income? Also, what if you are in the position where you have a great borrowing capacity, if only you had a deposit? If this is the case, this solution could also suit you. One of the ways to break through the borrowing limitations is by partnering up with other potential investors who have the one thing that you need to get a deal across the line. This is usually done using a Joint Venture agreement (JV). Though based on a similar concept, a Joint Venture agreement is a bit different from the example of just buying a property with a friend or family member. When buying a property with a friend or family member, you usually share all benefits and responsibilities equally or as dictated
by ownership on title of the property. In the case of a JV it is more a matter of each party bringing different strengths to the deal and allowing each other’s strengths and weaknesses to compliment the deal. For example, here is a way you can buy property without needing to use any of your own money: You could have a good income but not enough savings to act as a deposit for the property you wish to purchase. Let’s pretend that you have found a property and the price is $500,000. With this price, you would need a deposit of at least $50,000 (10%) and about $25,000 to cover additional costs such as stamp duty and legal fees. You may have done your research and lenders have told you that you have the capacity to pay back a loan of $450,000 but they would only lend you the funds if you had a deposit of 10%, plus extra funds to cover all your costs. The only thing you are sure of is that you do not have the deposit funds, even if the bank has said you could afford the repayments. In this case, all you need to make the investment a reality is access to a deposit. All you need is to find someone that has a deposit. You could get them to put in the deposit and costs while you put in the rest of the funds to complete the purchase. You may be thinking: “why would they do that”? And, “who would do that”? Well this is where the JV comes in. If a person is going to invest in your deal, there has to be a benefit to them. Here are the benefits that you could offer: • A share in the property. It could be 50% or whatever amount you are able to negotiate. Be ready to offer more, don’t be greedy if it means the deal can still be profitable for you. Remember shared profits are better than none. • The opportunity to invest in property without needing to borrow from the banks themselves. • Also these kinds of arrangements do not suit everyone. If you are looking for someone with money to use as a deposit, here are the usual
characteristics of the people this arrangement would suit: • Self-employed people: A lot of the time self employed people may have good cash savings or good equity but their borrowing capacity could be low or limited due to the fact that many self employed people limit their personal income on their records for the purpose of reducing the tax they are liable for. This means that their limited income on paper may mean the banks will not lend to them, or not very much due to their credit policy restrictions. However these candidates may still have access to some good funds. If these funds are not invested, it limits their ability to create more wealth. • Mature aged people: Mature aged people coming close to retirement or perhaps even in retirement, may have good funds to invest but due to their age, or perhaps even their reduced income, lenders will no longer allow them to borrow further funds, thus limiting their possibilities for investment. • People who do not want the risk of borrowing, or who cannot borrow: There are many different reasons for people not wanting to borrow funds in their name. It could be because of past bad credit issues, ongoing business transactions, or that they are saving their personal borrowing capacity for other purchases. Whatever the reason, you can offer them a way to keep investing without needing to borrow from lenders themselves. So whether you are someone with a good income but no deposit, or you have the deposit but you cannot borrow, the use of a JV is a great strategy to help you build your property portfolio without needing to get caught up in the limitations that lenders dictate and gives you the opportunity to stretch your borrowing capacity that little bit further. A JV allows you to invest in more and the more you invest, the more potential you have for higher profits.
Yza Canja teaches thousands of Australians to invest and profit in property using little or none of their own money. With over 10 years experience in finance and property investment, Yza developed investment strategies that helped create many property millionaires. For more information contact Yza and her team on firstname.lastname@example.org.
finances | Superannuation
Choosing your You’ve seen the hype about Industry super funds providing a better outcome than Public super funds but which is better? Janine Cox provides an overview of their differences to set you on the right track.
o you truly believe you will retire wealthy on your super? When asked, most of us would say they either don’t know or they doubt their super will see them living the life they dreamed. For women, more often the super statistics indicate most will fall well short of the minimum needed. If you are well informed, however, it can make the difference between having a comfortable lifestyle and a mere existence. For most, making decisions as to where you should invest your superannuation is not easy, because the choices are extensive. You would think that the financial industry would make it easy but it doesn’t, and the consequences of putting decisions off may be costly. If this is stopping you, seek professional assistance. If you want to take control of your super, there is a number of options, including industry super funds, public sector funds, and self-managed super funds. There is a lot of information on the internet to help you make informed decisions. If you find it more complicated than you first thought, you haven’t lost anything. In fact, you’ll have gained, because you will now be more prepared to ask the right questions.
Industry super funds
Industry funds hold billions of dollars under management, and were initiated to support members of specific unions. However, a number now have an open door policy,
which allows anyone to invest. Industry funds work in a similar way to any unitised managed fund, but they are only for your superannuation. The perceived attraction of industry funds is that because they are run for the benefit of the members, rather than shareholders, they offer lower fees.
The consequences of putting decisions off may be costly Industry funds have conducted strong advertising campaigns around low fees, because they don’t pay financial planners any commission - as a result, you get higher growth. While lower fees sound great, without professional advice investors tend to make mistakes, resulting in lower returns. Further, with FoFa reforms, we see changes in the industry where lower fees will no longer be a selling point, because financial advisers will be banned from taking commission.
Public sector and corporate super funds
Public sector funds have been available for decades through banks, insurance companies and various managed fund organisations. Public super funds are simply another form of managed fund, with profits benefiting the shareholders not the members. These funds are run by companies such as AXA, AMP and BT, and while fees can be higher, investment options and returns may be better. Corporate supers come from companies structuring their own in-house
superannuation fund for employees, and are similar to industry funds because they are run for the benefit of members (employees). Fees for both public and corporate supers are quite uniform, because legislation dictates the disclosure of fees. Investment returns from industry and public funds are, in most cases, publicly available, but some industry fund returns can be difficult to obtain. Returns are generally found on their websites, though it is important to compare like with like, or your decisions may be compromised.
Which is better?
Bear in mind that the name of a fund may not provide a guide to what assets are included. For instance, a check of an Australian equities fund revealed that 50 per cent of assets were allocated to Australian equities, with the balance in various other assets. Another anomaly is the reporting of returns in the press, and often on a comparison basis with the industry sector versus the public sector. These are averaged returns, and individual funds may have performed better or worse, so it’s best to investigate the specifics of the fund you’re interested in. There have been many comparisons across public and industry funds, with both arguing that the outcomes are flawed because the performances are being measured on a basis that is more suitable to a specific fund. The bottom line is that you need to do your homework, because either type of fund can have advantages depending on your circumstances and investment characteristics. If unsure, obtain professional advice. Janine Cox is the senior analyst at Wealth Within, a private investment company specialising in managing direct share portfolios. The company is also a government-accredited specialist share market educator, where Janine is one of only two lead trainers educating people how to invest and trade in the share market. www.wealthwithin.com.au
If you want to find freedom from financial stress, Jason Cunningham has devised a guide to help you achieve it.
ne of the biggest issues facing Australians today is a lack of sound financial literacy. We aren’t taught the basics of finance and how to manage money in the real world. A lot of people get into financial difficulty and struggle to see light at the end of the tunnel because of this absence of financial basics. These next 10 steps are designed to give you the basic tools to help you on the path to financial freedom. Anyone can achieve financial prosperity - provided you follow this 10-step action plan. Knowledge is power, but often what separates the haves from the have-nots is putting that knowledge into action. A marathon begins with a single step – so let’s get started.
1. Get your head right
Understand the difference between needs and wants, and the relationship with that Aussie trait of keeping up with the Joneses. Write down your goals, visualise what you want to achieve. Use a vision board – a collage of pictures and words that represent your goals. Do whatever it takes to document your goals. Put time frames on achieving these goals.
2. Understand your risk profile and protect yourself
Understanding the risks of investing can have a profoundly positive effect and help you become a better investor. The biggest financial risk facing most Australians is the risk of being underinsured and/or having wrong types of cover. It’s irresponsible and financial suicide to be underinsured.
3. Consolidate bad debt
Bad debt (credit cards, personal loans) can be like a noose around your neck. With interest rates for credit cards almost three times that of home loans, it often compounds into financial disaster. Do everything in your power to get rid of bad debt.
4. Create a budget
Every successful business and person has a budget. It’s boring and methodical, but it’s critical to your financial success. The golden rule is bottom-up budgeting - let profit drive the outcome. Reduce your expenditure where possible to ensure you achieve the level of net disposable income (NDI) that will help you achieve your goals within your time frames.
5. Maximise your incomeearning potential
Increase your NDI. After exhausting all avenues of expense reduction, address the other half of the equation – your income. Speak to your boss and let them know that you want to excel at work – and you’d like to know what you need to do to get a promotion (and subsequent pay rise). Perhaps get a second job or start a small business from home.
Feature | finance
6. Buy property - the smart way
You can buy (and keep) at least two properties in your lifetime. How you structure your property purchase is crucial to ensuring you minimise the interest you pay, while maximising any tax benefits you may be eligible for.
7. Have a crack at the share market
Over the long term, the share market offers a lot of good news. If your investment horizon is five years or longer, do yourself a favour and participate in the market. It’s best to do this with a professional who can guide and advise you on this journey.
8. Business - the ultimate in leverage
Step 8 is the only one that isn’t compulsory. Business isn’t for everyone. For those of you in business (or contemplating the leap), there are four things you need to focus on and get right: your mission statement; your core values; a vision of where you see your business in the future; and an action (business) plan.
9. Protect your assets
We have a hard enough time accumulating wealth without having to worry about the threat of someone trying to take it from us. Put as many firewalls around your assets as possible so they are protected from attack and litigation.
10. Get help
Tax, estate planning and having a team of advisers is vital. Surround yourself with professionals who you feel comfortable with and you can trust, and don’t be frightened to pay for professional advice. Jason Cunningham co-founded The Practice, located in Parkville, Melbourne, which provides accounting, taxation, business consulting, wealth management and finance solutions to a wide range of clients. Jason and the team are solutionsbased advisers who help people to achieve their goals and dreams. www.jasoncunningham.com.au and www.thepractice.com.au.
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a little bit of motivation
You Can Be Whatever You Want To Be!
by: Donna Levine
There is inside you All of the potential To be whatever you want to be; All of the energy To do whatever you want to do. Imagine yourself as you would like to be, Doing what you want to do, And each day, take one step Towards your dream. And though at times it may seem too difficult to continue, Hold on to your dream. One morning you will awake to find That you are the person you dreamed of, Doing what you wanted to do, Simply because you had the courage To believe in your potential And to hold on to your dream.
Coach yourself to success
WINTER 2012 www.empoweronline.com.au
live your Best life week 1
Set Your Goals
Areas of Your Life
Welcome to your first coaching session and congratulations for taking the first step to improving your life. In this first session you will be setting two inspiring goals for different areas of your life. Using the coaching models provided, complete the following exercises.
Where are you now?
On the chart, rate yourself on a scale of 0 - 10 in relation to where you feel you are at in each area of your life right now. Then, draw a line around the chart, joining the dots where you have marked your rating in each area. partner 10
3 4 wellbeing
A ‘10’ means you consider that area is perfect and a ‘0’ means major improvement is needed.
PARTNER Think about this area in the context of whether you’re single or in a relationship. If you’re in a relationship, it refers to how you feel about your life with your partner. Is your relationship what you want it to be? If you’re single, think about your level of satisfaction with being single. Some people would love a committed relationship and others are content as they are. How do 6 you feel?
family This area refers to how you 5 feel about your relationships with family members. The rating you give this area should be an average for all family 2 relationships. While some will be strong, others may not be so good.
Where do you want to be?
Next, give yourself a rating in relation to where you want to be in each area of your life in the next 1 - 2 months. Again, use a scale of 0 - 10 and draw a line around the chart, joining the dots where you have marked your rating in each area. Don’t be afraid to dream a little but consider what you can realistically achieve in that time. There’s no need to aim for a perfect 10 in any or every area. partner 10
Imagine your life with these results
social Similarly, this area refers to how you feel about your relationships 4 with friends and your satisfaction with your level of social/fun activity. Again, provide an average rating of your relationships and social activity. WELLBEING This is your overall sense of wellbeing and how you feel about your health & fitness. SPIRITUALITY If you’re a spiritual or religious person, this area refers to your level of connectedness with your beliefs. If you’re not spiritual or religious, think about your level of contentment with life in general.
BUSINESS/CAREER This area considers 7 the level of success and/or fulfilment5 you feel in relation to your business, career or current employment.
FINANCES This final area refers to how you feel about your level of financial freedom and/or your progression2 3 towards your desired level of financial freedom.
spirituality Winter 2012
SELF This is your relationship with yourself. Consider how much love, appreciation, acceptance and respect you have for yourself.
Use this goal-setting tool over the next three months to achieve your goals and improve your life. Set the dates for your coaching sessions and let’s get started.
Creating your goal Now it’s time to create your goals. To begin with, choose one area of your life that you would like to improve. Say it’s ‘Partner’ and you want to go from a rating of 4 to 8. Using the goal template over the page, create a written goal outlining what that new rating means to you - perhaps it’s about finding a soulmate or re-connecting with your husband.
Every goal that you write should be an empower goal. Think about the empower principles as you go through the process
It is the 30 g 2012 and I t h S e p t e m b e r proud of wh feel so happy and I have reachat I have achieved. of 60kgs an ed my goal weight I am fit, he d I look fantastic. much more althy and have so fit into that energy. Now I can and I feel fasexy black dress bulous.
Write your goal in the present tense, as if you’ve already achieved it. Make it meaningful, including some strong emotions, and make sure your goal is inspiring to you. Use only positive words and be specific – focus on what you do want instead of what you don’t want. Be a little realistic (but not too much) about what you can achieve in the timeframe chosen. Remember, too, your goal needs to be your own, not a goal to change someone else. You can only take responsibility for improving yourself and your life.
Write your goal
Fill in the spaces below to create your first goal. Remember, you’re writing in the present tense and be positive - with the right attitude you’ll get where you want to be much faster. What you want [Date] [Emotion1] [Emotion 2] It is .............................. and I feel so ................................................... and .......................................................
I/We................................................................................................................................................................................... I/We................................................................................................................................................................................... I/We................................................................................................................................................................................... Now I/We........................................................................................................................................................................... [Emotion3] and I feel.............................................................................................................................................................................
Why you want to achieve it
Write your goal
Fill in the spaces below to create your first goal. Remember, you’re writing in the present tense and be positive – with the right attitude you’ll get where you want to be much faster. It is .............................. and I feel so ............................................................. and .............................................................. I/We................................................................................................................................................................................... I/We................................................................................................................................................................................... I/We................................................................................................................................................................................... Now I/We...........................................................................................................................................................................
and I feel.............................................................................................................................................................................
Required action: Your only action for the next week is to read your goals every day. Read them out loud and, as you read each one, experience how you will feel when you have achieved what you want. This is called visualisation and is an important step in the goalsetting process – visualise your goals as if you have already achieved them.
Making it Happen
Now that you’ve been reading your goals for a week, consider whether you need to change or add anything to your goals to make them even more meaningful and inspiring. In this session, it’s time to start setting (and doing) the actions necessary to achieve each goal.
Required action: 1. If necessary, add to or change your goals. 2. On the action sheet provided, make a list of the actions you need to take in the next two weeks to get closer to your goals. Remember, these are your goals and you’re responsible for the actions, so be as detailed as you can. 3. Choose a motivational book to read or course to attend to expand your learning. 4. Continue to read and visualise your goals everyday.
Goal 1 Action
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Goal 2 Action
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Reflect on your goals and actions. Are you achieving what you’d planned to by this time? If you feel that you’ve lost some motivation for achieving your goals, or that you aren’t getting any closer to achieving them, it’s quite normal for people to experience this at some stage during the coaching process. To give you a reminder, and a shot of motivation, do the first action suggested below. Consider your results from the last two weeks. Have you completed all of your actions? If not, what got in your way? What can you do differently to prevent the same outcome in the next two weeks? If you’ve completed all of your actions, perhaps you can now push yourself a little harder.
Required action: 1. Meet with a friend or partner and share your goals with them. Explain to them all the reasons why you want to achieve each goal and how it inspires you. Ask them to hold you accountable. 2. On a new piece of paper, set some new specific actions for each goal over the next two weeks. Remember to challenge yourself. Anything worth achieving may be a little uncomfortable. 3. Continue to read and visualise your goals every day.
Hopefully you are well on your way to achieving your goals. If not, you may need to consider adjusting your goal date a little. This is normal and can happen for numerous reasons. You may have underestimated the time it would take, you may have gotten off track, or perhaps you may need to be more strict with yourself in taking actions. Remember, if nothing changes, nothing changes. It is up to you to achieve your goals.
Required action: 1. Adjust your date if necessary. 2. For each goal, make a list of 20 reasons why you want to achieve the goal. Remind yourself of how good you will feel and how life will be different. 3. On a new piece of paper, make a list of the actions you need to take in the next two weeks to get you closer to your goal. Remember to challenge yourself. 4. Decide on one nice thing you are going to buy or do to celebrate achieving your goal. 5. Continue to read and visualise your goal every day.
Well done for making it to Week 8 and congratulations if you have achieved any of your goals. If not, don’t lose hope, things sometimes just take longer than initially expected. Either way, it’s important to celebrate how far you have come.
Required action: 1. Celebrate your success to date. Do something nice or buy yourself your chosen gift. 2. If you have adjusted your goal date, continue to set actions every two weeks and read your goal every day. 3. If you’ve achieved your goal, get ready to set some more goals and start again at Week 1.
change your life in 15 minutes
I know, you’re probably thinking ‘how is breathing going to improve my life, I do it everyday’. But, if you’re like most adults you’re probably doing it wrong. Learning to breathe well can work wonders for your life so give it a go. Buteyko Breathing
If you suffer from asthma this one is for you. People who have asthma often breathe through their mouths. They also panic and breathe too fast. Buteyko breathing teaches them how to relax, breathe through their nostrils, and hold their breath when they need to.
Try it out
Begin by taking a normal breath in and out through your nose. Breathe in again then after breathing out, hold your breath for as long as you can before breathing in again. Try to hold for 60 seconds. Next spend five minutes taking quick, shallow breaths through your nose, keeping your mouth completely shut. When you’re done, try to pause for 60 seconds before breathing in again. Now take two normal breaths, like you did in the beginning, then pause after you breathe out. Hold the pause as long as you can, aiming for 60 seconds. Repeat the cycle four or five times, which should take half an hour or so. Do this three or four times a day for a week.
Feldenkrais is mainly used to reduce pain and improve movement during physiotherapy through an increased awareness of self. The Feldenkrais method helps you breathe better by making your body and mind more flexible and the body parts involved in breathing work more effectively.
Try it out
Start by breathing in. Then, as you breathe out, loudly count from one to ten. Don’t pause between the numbers. Instead, say them as a continuous word, and don’t breathe in before you finish. Try to count from one to ten as many times as you can before you breathe in again. Lie on your back with your knees bent and your palms on your lower tummy. Breathe in and, this time when you breathe out, push your tummy out. Pause as long as you can, and only breathe in when you can’t hold it anymore. Repeat this two or three times.
Now breathe in, and then breathe out with your tummy pushed out. Hold your breath until you can’t bear it anymore, and then slowly count to three while still holding your breath. Now breathe in. You’ll notice that the air rushes into your lungs. Repeat this a few times. Next, exhale while pushing out your tummy. Hold the breath as long as you can, then slowly count to three without breathing in. Count to three once more before you finally allow yourself to breathe in. The air will fill your lungs effortlessly, almost automatically. Do this exercise a few times. You can check your progress by breathing in one last time. As you breathe out, count from one to ten as many times as you can in a single breath. With practice, you’ll notice you can count a lot longer before you need to breathe in again.
Pranayam Breath of Fire
Breath of fire is a part of Kundalini yoga. It focuses more on breathing out than breathing in, and is sometimes described as breathing through bellows.
Try it out
Start by taking a deep breath and letting the air fill your lower lungs so that your belly is pushed out. Without breathing out, hunch over slightly, so that your chest moves forward. Take in more breath so that your upper lungs and chest area are filled as well. Ease your shoulders back while still holding your breath. Your lungs should feel quite stretched. Hold the breath for a moment. Place your arms gently on your tummy, then forcefully exhale, letting the air audibly rush out of your lungs. Breathe in immediately, filling first your lower lungs, then your upper lungs, and then forcefully pushing the air out. Repeat the cycle of breathing in and breathing out rapidly. As you practice, you’ll notice that once you force out your breath, you breathe in almost automatically and develop a rhythm. There are many more forms of breath work. Explore further to find the one that improves your life.
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Published on Oct 25, 2012
Published on Oct 25, 2012
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