would like to give a special thanks
to all of you that contributed to Alabama Business Source Magazine and making the very first issue a reality. I would like to thank those that were in support of the entire process and journey. I look forward to building T.A.B.S in the future to be a continuing success. I look forward to meeting and working with many small businesses and others along the way. I aim to see that all businesses and readers benefit from this publication and allow me to continue something great. I look to make 2014 a great year and hope you all do the same. I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas and you enjoy this New Year. P.S: In this 2014, refrain from making those same oleâ€™ New Year resolutions and set goals to go after what you want. Accomplish something you can be proud of and make 2014 your year. Sincerely,
Staff/Contributors Editor Journey Steven Advertising www.albusinesssource.com 334.440.2967 Contributing Writer Jonas Givens Venice Fallon Tony Milton Tâ€™sharin Moncrief Aretha Bettis
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What is Health Care Reform? Is it Mandatory? Interview By: Chaymeriyia Moncrief Many of us are already aware, insurance will be very important to have this coming 2014. Will it be mandatory? I sat down with Venice Fallon for a quick insight on what exactly to expect from our new Health Care policies.
7 STEPS TO GETTING NEW CLIENTS AND BUSINESS STARTING UP By Jonas Givens Scoring new clients and business when starting up can be hard when you don’t have a plan or tactics for capturing potential clients. Here are 7 steps that’s worked for me: 1. Don’t go for everything at one time. When scoring new customers, settle for a phone call and then find reasons to meet in person. Don’t automatically force them to meet. They’ll get reluctant.
Q: What is Health Care Reform, in your words? A: It’s basically a rubric discussing health policy changes and changes that affect health care delivery. Q: What exactly will these new policies do? A: Its generally suppose to improve the quality of health care, give more health care to citizens and importantly decrease the cost of health care. Q: Why is health care important in 2014, or in general? A: I feel that its extremely important for many reasons. To ensure your treated properly (Medical), a healthy workplace, a healthy community and possibly being fined for NOT insuring yourself. Q: By fined, what do you mean? A: As most of us already know , if we just opt out of getting insured you’ll be penalized, ONLY unless you qualify for exemption from mandate. “So, I strongly encourage insuring yourself and informing love ones and friends to do so also.”
2. Be prepared for long delays, punctuated by sudden activity. In case you have noticed, the slack of our economy has led to hesitate and tentative business planning, no one is rushing to judgment anymore. Companies and people are putting off spending to the very last minute. It all can be a constant hurry-up-and-wait cycle, but sooner or later projects will happen and spending will eventually occur. 3. Use social networking to find a friend– or friends of a friend– who knows your prospects. Businesses are all different, with different operating styles, planning horizons and cultures; the more insight you have about your prospect, the more likely it is you’ll be able to tailor your message appropriately. 4.Make offers your prospects cant refuse. In order to generate your prospects attention, you have to offer them something of value, in a way that he can’t turn it down without seeming...rude. It could be the interesting results of a survey or piece of research, or perhaps a competitive overview. 5. Never call to confirm a meeting, once its been set up. No matter how much planning you’ve done, if you call to confirm in advance there's a very good chance the client will cancel or more likely put off the meeting. Better just get there when and as you both agreed. What's the worst that could happen if the prospect forget the meeting? It’ll be small debt to collect. 6. Always have a next step in mind that can be agreed to instantly. 4
If you want a face to face meeting with a potential client, try to figure out how to be in the right geographic location for it, because a prospect will often be reluctant to put a formal meeting on the schedule, if you can be there in 10 minutes hey, they may just agree to a quick meeting. 7. Once you win some business be sure to follow up for more. One of the biggest mistakes almost every company or start-up makes when bringing in new clients, is not showing clients other divisions, service and products in the company. You want them to look for other, often unrelated opportunities and involving all other “silos”. Don’t forget to think smart and logically when following these steps when gaining new clients and business. As a start up it is extremely important, you push and give clients a reason hey should invest or take into your product and service. Why? People tend to be hesitant about buying into something that’s new and have no niche of establishment. BE SMART!!!
One of the most significant things you can control is association— your choices of what you permit into your world, who you give time to or invest time with and who you look to for ideas, information and education. The people around you rarely have a neutral effect. They either facilitate your accomplishments, they undermine it, or they sabotage it. The first useful tactic is the elimination of toxic people and saboteurs. It’s not an easy thing to face facts about a friend, family member or even a long-time employee, when they are in some way, interfering with or disapproving of your accomplishments. Its important to face these facts and act on them because the more time you spend with these people who are unhelpful, unsupportive, disrespectful, envious, resentful or damaging you, the less value all your time has. Few people can so perfectly compartmentalize that they can lock every thought, assertion and act of a toxic person in a little box and without leakage into other mind boxes. There is a saying “if you lay down with mongrel dogs, you’ll wake up with fleas”— and they ride with you everywhere you go. Ideas, beliefs, opinions and habits works just like that. Even if your associating only occasionally or briefly with someone who is intellectually or emotionally toxic or someone who is feckless and inept, it’s enough time for fleas to leap from them to you, burrow in and be carried away by subtly affect in your performance and productivity. If your creative and constructive thinking or work performance is thus diminished, so is the value of your time. People who are determined for you to associate with them are not necessarily of evil intent. They may all be “good people’, but that doesn't mean they’re good for you. Good chocolate cake is not good for a diabetic. In fact, its poison. Associating with someone who is always pushing it to you, saying “Just one little piece” is just as suicidal as baking the cake yourself.
The entrepreneur is particularly susceptible to gaining or losing power by association because he has so many diverse responsibilities and is often operating under pressure, duress and urgency. Playing this game in a compromised mental state , weakened or wounded by poor ideas and attitudes seeded into the mind by association, is extremely difficult. Playing it strengthened and empowered by rich ideas and attitudes seeded into the mind by association can make the difficult easy. Simply put, you want to deliberately reduce and restrict the amount of your time. left vulnerable to random thought or association , and deliberately , sharply reduce the amount of time given to association with people who won’t make any productive contribution and may do harm. Does that mean you can only spend time with people you are in complete philosophical agreement? No. In fact, such isolation can be dangerous. But it doesn’t mean you should avoid association with people who believe and promulgate beliefs diametrically opposed to ‘success orientation”. Lesson is, you want to deliberately increase the amount of your time directed at thinking and input, and constructive, productive association. You want to associate yourself with strivers and achievers, with winners and champions this is a uplifting force that translates into peak performance, which makes all your time more worth while.
Women of Refined Gold is a non-profit organization found by T’sharin Moncrief in June of 2013. She began the organization to help sexually and physically abused women. Her goal is to open a transitional home to provide shelter for these women and children coming out of abusive and broken homes. TABS: What encouraged you to start women of refined Gold? And what is it’s purpose? WORG: For 10 year I endured physical and verbal abuse. After all those years I finally mustered up the courage and left with my three children. It had been a long journey afterwards, however I overcame. During those years of going through such abuse, I wanted to give back and reach out to women going through the same experience, especially those with children. I want to have workshops that will educate women on being empowered, building self-esteem and assisting them in finding resources that are available for them and their families. TABS: What are some goals of your organization that you seek to be productive in Alabama? WORG: Our first goal is to seek men and women to help build our foundation, which are the board members, because they are the foundation to a successful non-profit. Secondly, I look forward to building networks, having fundraisers to reach out to communities on behalf of the organization and finally starting the transitional home for Women of Refined Gold. TABS: What is WORG’s mission? WORG: Assisting women and children in their healing process by transforming and delivering them from a life that stagnates their growth’ TABS: What impact does WORG have on your life? WORG: It allows me to impart into families what was imparted into mines during my healing process coming out of abuse. It has also given me a even greater passion to help and see other families restore. TABS: What has been the hardest part of building your non-profit? WORG: The hardest part is finding people who share the same passion and commitment for helping families. It’s even harder finding people who are willing to give to help support a worthy cause when you haven’t been established for very long. TABS: What events and fundraisers can Alabama look forward to from WORG this 2014? WORG: I plan to have a Women empowerment Dinner that will honor women who have made an impact in their community and lives of other women. We also plan to have several empowerment workshops and various community fundraiser to help raise money for the organization. Before ending interview I asked T’sharin to give some words of encouragement, she stated “It doesn't matter how hard things may get in your life; with hard work, persistence, positive people and constant prayer, your latter will be greater” Help support Women of Refined Gold by visiting their website at www.womenofrefinedgold.com and sending donations and contributing to upcoming fundraisers and workshops.
Divas 4 Divas is a non-profit Community Service Organization found in Atlanta, GA in 1999 by Aretha Bettis. Divas 4 Divas consist of women coming together volunteering, giving back & helping better the community. They raise awareness for Breast Cancer, Lupus & also mentor young children and elderly adults. TABS: When did you start Divas 4 Divas? D4D: Divas 4 Divas was founded in 1999 in Atlanta, Ga. TABS: What encouraged you to start your organization? D4D: I started Divas 4 Divas so that noncollegiate women could have an organization they could be proud of. Collegiate women could have a place they could continue their service to the community. I wanted an organization where women could empower each other regardless of their educational background. TABS: What was your first step in making Divas 4 Divas a Success?
member of Divas 4 Divas is paid for the services we provide to the community, it is all volunteer work so we may remain a non-profit organization. TABS: How has the Journey been since establishing your non-profit organization? D4D: My journey in Divas 4 Divas has been an rewarding one; because knowing there are women out there that believe in making our community better through community service. TABS: What impact has it been on your life?
D4D: The first step I took was to find women like myself that wanted to give back to the community.
D4D: The biggest impact Divas has had on life is seeing my dream become a reality; all while surviving breast cancer, lupus, diabetes, and asthma.
TABS: What Steps are you taking to continue your success?
TABS: What was the hardest part of building your organization?
D4D: Some of the steps I am taking to ensure that Divas is successful, is to find women who enjoy given back to community and doing background checks on every member. I also make sure that no
D4D: The hardest part in building Divas is finding members who are committed. Also learning what it takes to run a nonprofit.
TABS: What are some Disadvantages and Advantages of Divas 4 Divas? D4D: Some of the advantages of been a member of Divas 4 Divas is having a sense of pride, honor, and self -worth in knowing you are helping others. Another advantage is having members of this organization that accept you for you regardless of your educational background. The only disadvantage is not always having enough members to cover all the events we are ask to do. TABS: What impact is your organization making on the community? D4D: This organization is helping all women to come together to support and uplift their communities. We do this through lupus awareness, breast cancer awareness, mentoring to future leaders in our communities, helping young children and elderly people know that itâ€™s people in world that cares what happens to them, helping women of domestic violence, and fundraising for other non-profit. TABS: Overall with all your experiences, what do you look forward to in the future of Divas 4 Divas? D4D: The greatest goal I look forward to is seeing Divas 4 Divas in every state. Divas 4 Divas is a non-profit community service organization who provide volunteer work to the community, they volunteer for other non-profit organization for events and community services. Divas 4 Divas can be reached at email@example.com WWW.ALBUSINESSSOURCE.COM
elson Mandela was born on July 18, 1918,
in Mveso, Transkei, South Africa. Becoming actively involved in the anti-apartheid movement in his 20s, Mandela joined the African National Congress in 1942. For 20 years, he directed a campaign of peaceful, nonviolent defiance against the South African government and its racist policies. Starting in 1961 Nelson Mandela was a wanted man for his leadership role in African National Congress, in which turned violate in there fight for equality. Just one year later after being increasingly on the run for 17 months, Mandela was captured and imprisoned for 27 years on Robben Island. After his release his journey began. After 27 years of grueling labor behind bars, he still had no plans of retirement or discontinuing his fight for peace. In 1994 marks two historic first for South Africa. The world watched as the country held an multiracial elections; within a month later South Africa announced it’s first black president. With only 4 years out of jail, Mandela praised the progress his country was making upon his election. He states “Out of the experience of an extraordinary human disaster that lasted too long, must be born a society of which all humanity will be proud”. He goes on to say ���Our daily deeds as ordinary South Africans must produce an actual South African reality that will reinforce humanity's belief in justice.” Just a year before Mandela Election, he was awarded a Nobel Peace prize “for his work for the peaceful termination of the apartheid regime, and for laying the foundations for a new, democratic South Africa.
He was given name “moral authority’ from his lack of bitterness, even after being imprisoned for decades. “Today’s announcement that I have been named to receive the most prestigious award for peace was a deeply humbling experience, "Mandela told the press. Leave it to Nelson Mandela to include his former jail guard in the festivities celebrating his 20 years of freedom. On February 10, 2010, the prisoner, whose arduous path led to a presidency and a Nobel Peace Prize, marked the 20th anniversary of his release from jail. The 91-year-old was in jubilant spirits, toasting the occasion with a cheering group of friends, family, and admirers. “Whites are fellow South Africans and we want them to feel safe,” he said at a press conference. As humble as ever, he downplayed his sacrifices saying, “Nobody who has some conscious politically would avoid doing the same things that I have.’
Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world. -Nelson Mandela Nelson Mandela Continued to lead his nation into peace and equality until his death December 5th, 2013. He leaves behind a great legacy and a world of achievements. Nelson Mandela lived to see the U.S elect our very first black president, he had the chance to meet with First Lady Michelle Obama in his very home in 2011 in South Africa. Throughout his life of imprisonment, failures and even violence Mandela never stop fighting for what he believe in â€œPeace and Equalityâ€?. Quick Fact Timeline: 1944 - Joins the African National Congress and helps found the ANC Youth League 1951 - Becomes president of the ANC Youth League. 1952 - Opens the first black law partnership in South Africa with friend Oliver Tambo. 1952 - Leads the newly launched [ANC] Campaign for the Defiance of Unjust Laws, a program of nonviolent mass resistance. July 1952 - Mandela is charged with violating the Suppression of Communism Act. December 5, 1956 - Mandela is among 156 resistance leaders arrested and charged with high treason. March 21, 1960 - In Sharpeville, police fire upon protestors challenging apartheid laws; 69 people are killed. June 11, 2010 - Mandela makes his first World Cup appearance before kickoff of the final match. June 21, 2011 - Meets with U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama at his home in South Africa. June 23, 2013 - Officials say Mandela's condition has worsened in the past 24 hours, and he is now in critical condition. December 5, 2013 - Nelson Mandela Dies at 95 years old.
PIVOT? It’s the most critical decision for an entrepreneur knowing when to stay the course vs. changing direction when a business venture is failing. So in better saying, Turning one failed business venture into another success. Here are some businesses you probably never knew once failed drastically and went… PIVOT. Twitter The most legendary pivot in social media history is the transformation of Odeo into Twitter. Odeo began as a network where people could find and subscribe to podcasts, but the founders feared the company’s demise when iTunes began taking over the podcast niche. After giving the employees two weeks to come up with new ideas, the company decided to make a drastic change and run with the idea of a status-updating microblogging platform conceived by Jack Dorsey and Biz Stone.
Starbuck The coffee shop which now inhabits every street corner (and sometimes two on each street corner) did not always sell fresh-brewed coffee to customers. They started off in 1971 selling espresso makers and coffee beans, which Howard Schultz (current chairman, president and CEO) fell in love with on first taste. After his visit to Italy in 1983, Schultz was determined to actually brew and sell Starbucks coffee in a European-style coffeehouse, and transformed Starbucks into the nationwide java sensation it has become today. Instagram Instagram is the most widely used photo app for iPhone, but many don’t know its origins. Instagram began as Burbn, a checkin app that included gaming elements from Mafia Wars, and a photo element as well. The creators worried Burbn had too much clutter and potential actions, and would never gain traction. So they took a risk and stripped all the features but one: photos. They rebuilt a version of the app that focused solely on photography—it was clean and simple, and clearly it paid off. WWW.ALBUSINESSSOURCE.COM
Fab.com Fab, a modern fashion site that pulls hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue annually, actually began as Fabulis, as a social network targeted towards gay men. Although their social site tanked, in their side jobs the co-founders had a knack for selecting products that customers liked, so they decided to take a totally new direction with Fab selling hand-picked home goods, clothing and accessories. Their sense of taste paid off, as Fab now has over 10 million loyal users and is on an upward trajectory.
Nintendo We all know Nintendo for innovating and inspiring an era of mass-produced video games, such as Super Mario and Donkey Kong. However, the company existed several centuries before that, and dabbled in producing everything from playing cards to vacuum cleaners, instant rice, a taxi company and even a short-stay hotel chain (also called a â€œlove hotel,â€? Iâ€™ll leave it up to you to figure out what that is). It was in 1966 that Nintendo started producing electronic games and consoles, which gained wide popularity over the following 30 years.
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It's easy to think of happiness as a result, but happiness is also a driver. One example: While I'm definitely into finding ways to improve personal productivity (whether a one-day burst, or a lifetime, or things you should not do every day), probably the best way to be more productive is to just be happier. Happy people accomplish more. Easier said than done though, right? Actually, many changes are easy. Here are 8 science-based ways to be happier from Belle Beth Cooper, Content Crafter at Buffer, the social media management tool that lets you schedule, automate, and analyze social media updates.
Here's Beth: 1. Exercise: 7 Minutes Could Be Enough Think exercise is something you don't have time for? Think again. Check out the 7 minute workout mentioned in The New York Times. That's a workout any of us can fit into our schedules. Exercise has such a profound effect on our happiness and wellbeing that it is an effective strategy for overcoming depression. In a study cited in Shawn Achor's book The Happiness Advantage, three groups of patients treated their depression with medication, exercise, or a combination of the two. The results of this study are surprising: Although all three groups experienced similar improvements in their happiness levels early on, the follow-up assessments proved to be radically different: The groups were then tested six months later to assess their relapse rate. Of those who had taken the medication alone, 38 percent had slipped back into depression. Those in the combination group were doing only slightly better, with a 31 percent relapse rate. The biggest shock, though, came from the exercise group: Their relapse rate was only 9 percent. You don't have to be depressed to benefit from exercise, though. Exercise can help you relax, increase your brain power, and even improve your body image, even if you don't lose any weight. We've explored exercise in depth before, and looked at what it does to our brains, such as releasing proteins and endorphins that make us feel happier. A study in the Journal of Health Psychology found that people who exercised felt better about their bodies even when they saw no physical changes: Body weight, shape and body image were assessed in 16 males and 18 females before and after both 6 Ă— 40 minutes exercising and 6 Ă— 40 minutes reading. Over both conditions, body weight and shape did not change. Various aspects of body image, however, improved after exercise compared to before. Yep: Even if your actual appearance doesn't change, how you feel about your body does change.
2. Sleep More: You'll Be Less Sensitive to Negative Emotions We know that sleep helps our body recover from the day and repair itself and that it helps us focus and be more productive. It turns out sleep is also important for happiness. In Nuture Shock, Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman explain how sleep affects positivity: Negative stimuli get processed by the amygdale; positive or neutral memories gets processed by the hippocampus. Sleep deprivation hits the hippocampus harder than the amygdala. The result is that sleep-deprived people fail to recall pleasant memories yet recall gloomy memories just fine.
In one experiment by Walker, sleep-deprived college students tried to memorize a list of words. They could remember 81% of the words with a negative connotation, like "cancer." But they could remember only 31% of the words with a positive or neutral connotation, like "sunshine" or "basket." The BPS Research Digest explores another study that proves sleep affects our sensitivity to negative emotions. Using a facial recognition task throughout the course of a day, researchers studied how sensitive participants were to positive and negative emotions. Those who worked through the afternoon without taking a nap became more sensitive to negative emotions like fear and anger. Using a face recognition task, here we demonstrate an amplified reactivity to anger and fear emotions across the day, without sleep. However, an intervening nap blocked and even reversed this negative emotional reactivity to anger and fear while conversely enhancing ratings of positive (happy) expressions. Of course, how well (and how long) you sleep will probably affect how you feel when you wake up, which can make a difference to your whole day. Another study tested how employees' moods when they started work in the morning affected their entire work day. Researchers found that employees' moods when they clocked in tended to affect how they felt the rest of the day. Early mood was linked to their perceptions of customers and to how they reacted to customers' moods. And most importantly to managers, employee mood had a clear impact on performance, including both how much work employees did and how well they did it. 18
3. Spend More Time With Friends/Family: Money Can't Buy You Happiness Staying in touch with friends and family is one of the top five regrets of the dying. If you want more evidence that time with friends is beneficial for you, research proves it can make you happier right now, too. Social time is highly valuable when it comes to improving our happiness, even for introverts. Several studies have found that time spent with friends and family makes a big difference to how happy we feel. I love the way Harvard happiness expert Daniel Gilbert explains it: We are happy when we have family, we are happy when we have friends and almost all the other things we think make us happy are actually just ways of getting more family and friends. George Vaillant is the director of a 72-year study of the lives of 268 men. In an interview in the March 2008 newsletter to the Grant Study subjects, Vaillant was asked, "What have you learned from the Grant Study men?" Vaillant's response: "That the only thing that really matters in life are your relationships to other people." He shared insights of the study with Joshua Wolf Shenk at The Atlantic on how men's social connections made a difference to their overall happiness: Men's relationships at age 47, he found, predicted late-life adjustment better than any other variable. Good sibling relationships seem especially powerful: 93 percent of the men who were thriving at age 65 had been close to a brother or sister when younger. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Socio-Economics states that your relationships are worth more than $100,000: Using the British Household Panel Survey, I find that an increase in the level of social involvements is worth up to an extra ÂŁ85,000 a year in terms of life satisfaction. Actual changes in income, on the other hand, buy very little happiness. I think that last line is especially fascinating: Actual changes in income, on the other hand, buy very little happiness. So we could increase our annual income by hundreds of thousands of dollars and still not be as happy as we would if we increased the strength of our social relationships.
The Terman study, covered in The Longevity Project, found that relationships and how we help others were important factors in living long, happy lives: We figured that if a Terman participant sincerely felt that he or she had friends and relatives to count on when having a hard time then that person would be healthier. Those who felt very loved and cared for, we predicted, would live the longest. WWW.ALBUSINESSSOURCE.COM
Surprise: our prediction was wrong... Beyond social network size, the clearest benefit of social relationships came from helping others. Those who helped their friends and neighbors, advising and caring for others, tended to live to old age.
4. Get Outside More: Happiness is Maximized at 57째 In The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor recommends spending time in the fresh air to improve your happiness: Making time to go outside on a nice day also delivers a huge advantage; one study found that spending 20 minutes outside in good weather not only boosted positive mood, but broadened thinking and improved working memory... This is pretty good news for those of us who are worried about fitting new habits into our already-busy schedules. Twenty minutes is a short enough time to spend outside that you could fit it into your commute or even your lunch break. A UK study from the University of Sussex also found that being outdoors made people happier: Being outdoors, near the sea, on a warm, sunny weekend afternoon is the perfect spot for most. In fact, participants were found to be substantially happier outdoors in all natural environments than they were in urban environments. The American Meteorological Society published research in 2011 that found current temperature has a bigger effect on our happiness than variables like wind speed and humidity, or even the average temperature over the course of a day. It also found that happiness is maximized at 57 degrees (13.9째C), so keep an eye on the weather forecast before heading outside for your 20 minutes of fresh air. The connection between productivity and temperature is another topic we've talked about more here. It's fascinating what a small change in temperature can do.
5. Help Others: 100 Hours a Year is the Magic Number One of the most counterintuitive pieces of advice I found is that to make yourself feel happier, you should help others. In fact, 100 hours per year (or two hours per week) is the optimal time we should dedicate to helping others in order to enrich our lives. If we go back to Shawn Achor's book again, he says this about helping others: ...when researchers interviewed more than 150 people about their recent purchases, they found that money spent on activities--such as concerts and group dinners out--brought far more pleasure than material purchases like shoes, televisions, or expensive watches. Spending money on other people, called "prosocial spending," also boosts happiness. The Journal of Happiness Studies published a study that explored this very topic: Participants recalled a previous purchase made for either themselves or someone else and then reported their happiness. Afterward, participants chose whether to spend a monetary windfall on themselves or someone else. Participants assigned to recall a purchase made for someone else reported feeling significantly happier immediately after this recollection; most importantly, the happier participants felt, the more likely they were to choose to spend a windfall on someone else in the near future. WWW.ALBUSINESSSOURCE.COM
Tell T.A.B.S MAGAZINE Your Story Issue 2 will be released April 18, 2014; T.A.B.S Magazine is already working on the theme, yes ALREADY!!!
Are you an Entrepreneur with a great Success Stories? WHAT ARE WE LOOKING FOR? In this issue we would like to feature some Alabama very own...ENTREPRENEURS . We are calling all entrepreneurs and business owners to submit their stories of starting up their businesses, the failures and what it was like building and finally succeeding in their journey. It does not matter what your business is; nor if it's home based or brick and mortar, share your success and testimonies with T.A.B.S MAGAZINE and our readers. (5 Entrepreneurs and business owners will be chosen to be featured in April's publication & on our cover) WHAT DO YOU DO NOW? If this is for you, than don't hesitate to send in your story for a chance to be featured in April's Issue, if you know someone that's an entrepreneur or business owner, share this great opportunity with them, where this could be a great opportunity for everyone to tell their entrepreneurial stories. SUBMIT YOUR STORIES TO OUR WEBSITE!!! 20
So spending money on other people makes us happier than buying stuff for ourselves. But what about spending our time on other people?
In an experiment where participants took note of things they were grateful for each day, their moods were improved just from this simple practice:
A study of volunteering in Germany explored how volunteers were affected when their opportunities to help others were taken away:
The gratitude-outlook groups exhibited heightened well-being across several, though not all, of the outcome measures across the three studies, relative to the comparison groups. The effect on positive affect appeared to be the most robust finding. Results suggest that a conscious focus on blessings may have emotional and interpersonal benefits.
Shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall but before the German reunion, the first wave of data of the GSOEP was collected in East Germany. Volunteering was still widespread. Due to the shock of the reunion, a large portion of the infrastructure of volunteering (e.g. sports clubs associated with firms) collapsed and people randomly lost their opportunities for volunteering. Based on a comparison of the change in subjective well-being of these people and of people from the control group who had no change in their volunteer status, the hypothesis is supported that volunteering is rewarding in terms of higher life satisfaction. In his book Flourish: A Visionary New Understanding of Happiness and Well-being, University of Pennsylvania professor Martin Seligman explains that helping others can improve our own lives: ...we scientists have found that doing a kindness produces the single most reliable momentary increase in well-being of any exercise we have tested.
6. Practice Smiling: Reduce Pain, Improve Mood, Think Better Smiling can make us feel better, but it's more effective when we back it up with positive thoughts, according to this study: A new study led by a Michigan State University business scholar suggests customer-service workers who fake smile throughout the day worsen their mood and withdraw from work, affecting productivity. But workers who smile as a result of cultivating positive thoughts--such as a tropical vacation or a child's recital--improve their mood and withdraw less.
The Journal of Happiness studies published a study that used letters of gratitude to test how being grateful can affect our levels of happiness: Participants included 219 men and women who wrote three letters of gratitude over a 3 week period. Results indicated that writing letters of gratitude increased participants' happiness and life satisfaction while decreasing depressive symptoms.
8. Meditate: Rewire Your Brain for Happiness Meditation is often touted as an important habit for improving focus, clarity, and attention span, as well as helping to keep you calm. It turns out it's also useful for improving your happiness: In one study, a research team from Massachusetts General Hospital looked at the brain scans of 16 people before and after they participated in an eight-week course in mindfulness meditation. The study, published in the January issue of Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging, concluded that after completing the course, parts of the participants' brains associated with compassion and self-awareness grew, and parts associated with stress shrank. Meditation literally clears your mind and calms you down, it's been often proven to be the single most effective way to live a happier life. According to Achor, meditation can actually make you happier long-term:
Of course it's important to practice "real smiles" where you use your eye sockets. (You've seen fake smiles that don't reach the person's eyes. Try it. Smile with just your mouth. Then smile naturally; your eyes narrow. There's a huge difference in a fake smile and a genuine smile.)
Studies show that in the minutes right after meditating, we experience feelings of calm and contentment, as well as heightened awareness and empathy. And, research even shows that regular meditation can permanently rewire the brain to raise levels of happiness.
According to PsyBlog, smiling can improve our attention and help us perform better on cognitive tasks:
The fact that we can actually alter our brain structure through mediation is most surprising to me and somewhat reassuring that however we feel and think today isn't permanent.
Smiling makes us feel good which also increases our attentional flexibility and our ability to think holistically. When this idea was tested by Johnson et al. (2010), the results showed that participants who smiled performed better on attentional tasks which required seeing the whole forest rather than just the trees. A smile is also a good way to reduce some of the pain we feel in troubling circumstances: Smiling is one way to reduce the distress caused by an upsetting situation. Psychologists call this the facial feedback hypothesis. Even forcing a smile when we don't feel like it is enough to lift our mood slightly (this is one example of embodied cognition). 7. Practice Gratitude: Increase Happiness and Satisfaction This is a seemingly simple strategy but I've personally found it to make a huge difference to my outlook. There are lots of ways to practice gratitude, from keeping a journal of things you're grateful for, sharing three good things that happen each day with a friend or your partner, and going out of your way to show gratitude when others help you. WWW.ALBUSINESSSOURCE.COM
Quick Final Fact: Getting Older Will Actually Make You Happier As we get older, particularly past middle age, we tend to naturally grow happier. There's still some debate over why this happens, but scientists have a few ideas: Researchers, including the authors, have found that older people shown pictures of faces or situations tend to focus on and remember the happier ones more and the negative ones less. Other studies have discovered that as people age, they seek out situations that will lift their moods--for instance, pruning social circles of friends or acquaintances who might bring them down. Still other work finds that older adults learn to let go of loss and disappointment over unachieved goals, and focus their goals on greater well being.
There has been a lot of Tragic events happening here in Montgomery, AL among our youth and it has brought a lot of sadness in our community. Stopping Violence among the younger generation is extremely important and that's what has inspired this scholarship. This Scholarship will be given by The Alabama Business Source Magazine .It is currently in Phrase 1, which is the Raise Phrase. This is where we raise $1000, why $1000? We would like to give 2 $500 Scholarships to High Schools students in their 12th grade year. We will require all contestants to write an essay on how Teen Violence has a impact on their lives and what would they do to prevent violence from happening, they also must tell why they should win the Scholarship and how it'll make a difference. Contestants may also add a video along with their essay which is only required to be 1-2 minutes long, if their entire submission is a video it must be at lease 5-6 minutes long covering all guidelines. The 2nd Phrase (Submission Phrase) of this Scholarship will not Start until our goal is completely reached, if we exceed our goal the remainder of the money will go to a 3rd runner-up of the contest. Once Phrase 2 is over, Phrase 3 (Rewarding Phrase) will began. Starting this scholarship is extremely important, it gives our youth a chance to really think on how violence is impacting their community and themselves. It gives them time to think on how change can start with them and making things turn for the better. We would like to see this scholarship reach other youth outside Montgomery, and become something big. Lets Restore our Youth in our Community.
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