How to Begin…

This is a cross post…Original Title: GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE

No one likes to move beyond his or her comfort zone, but that’s really where the magic happens. It’s where we can grow, learn, and develop in a way that expands our horizons beyond what we thought was possible.

Also, it’s terrifying.

For me, operating beyond my comfort zone was participating in classroom discussions in college. Early in my career, it was public lecturing and participating in departmental meetings. I knew I had things to say, but was very unsure if they were worth saying.

And you know what? I didn’t say a word in nearly all of my undergraduate classes, and uttered very little in professional meetings at for a long time. From talking with others about their own unique fears and challenges, I’m sure I’m not alone.

Fast forward 20 years, and I am now in the interesting position of teaching and coaching others to operate outside their comfort zones. So in this new year, how can we get the courage to take this leap — and develop the skill and ability to actually pull it off?

Tip 1: Recognize When You’re Tricking Yourself

When I was afraid of participating in meetings or in class, I would rationalize away my discomfort. I’d tell myself quite convincingly that, “Participating just isn’t that important.” Now, in my position helping others to operate outside their comfort zones, especially outside of their cultural comfort zones, I hear similar rationalizations: “Networking isn’t that important; it’s the quality of your work,” or “People who network are slimy or full of themselves, and I’m not like that.”

These statements may be true, but they also may be masking the reality of the situation: that you are afraid of networking or public speaking and can’t get yourself to admit it.

So ask yourself this question: If you didn’t experience any anxiety at all in your chosen situation — if it were completely comfortable and stress free — would it be something you’d like to be able to do? Would it be exciting? Would it help your career? If the answer is yes (and be honest!), it’s probably fear that you’re grappling with — and that’s OK. In fact, it’s great to recognize that so you can move onto the next step in the process, which is to use your power of rationalization for instead of against you.

Instead of rationalizing why the behavior is something not worth performing, actively brainstorm all the reasons why it is worth performing. How can taking the leap and starting to work on performing this tough, but key behavior advance your career, give you chances to grow and learn in exciting ways, or whatever other goals you happen to care about?

Answering these questions honestly will actually give you great fodder for moving forward. Understanding why you want to take this leap and what’s in it for you is a wonderful motivator.

Tip 2: Construct a Plan That’s Unique to Your Situation

Taking a leap without a plan is bold, but unwise. And without a strategy for how you are going to actually make this change, you’ll likely end up just where you started. So what kind of strategy should you use?

In my work helping people move outside their comfort zones, I help people clearly and specifically identify what is most challenging for them in a particular situation, and then I provide a set of tools to help them develop a solution for overcoming these particular challenges.

The system I use in scary situations is predicated on the idea that there is no single perfect way to perform the particular behavior you’re working on, be it networking, participating at a meeting, or simply learning to make small talk. Rather, in most situations, you can find a way to customize or personalize your behavior so you are effective in the new situation while not feeling like you’re losing yourself in the process.

Let’s say, for example, that you’re an introvert who simply dreads the idea of schmoozing with a group of strangers at a networking event. In fact, you’d rather skip the event altogether. I know many people in this situation (myself included) and my advice to them — which is similar to the advice Susan Cain gives in her path breaking work empowering introverts to thrive in an extraverted world — is to resist the idea that there is one single way to perform at these events. Yes, for some people it’s natural to do classic, prototypical networking behavior. But for others it’s not. And if that’s you in whatever situation you’re working on, tweak the situation to your liking.

So, in the networking context: instead of feeling pressured to meet everyone in the room, focus on one or two people you seem to hit it off with, and actually try to get to know them. Or, if this type of conversation isn’t for you, especially in a noisy, crowded room, focus instead to making initial contacts at the event with the ultimate goal of arranging follow-up conversations in a more comfortable setting, like over coffee or even on the phone.

The point is that instead of being overwhelmed by the situation, you can take control of it and make it your own. That’s the power of customization.

Tip 3: Find a Mentor or Coach

Even with a solid plan and a revitalized sense of purpose, a good source of help, courage, inspiration, and feedback can seal the deal. It can be a professional coach, but doesn’t have to. A thoughtful and encouraging colleague or friend can also do the trick.

For example, a mentor can help you identify gaps between how you’d naturally and comfortably behave and how you need to behave in the new situation to be effective. A mentor can also then help you customize your behavior to find that sweet spot blending effectiveness and authenticity. Finally, a compassionate and encouraging mentor can help you persevere when the going is tough — and when you’re operating outside your comfort zone, in situations that really matter, that’s almost inevitably going to be the case.

So when it comes to getting outside your comfort zone, don’t mistake magical outcomes for magical processes. Adaptation takes time, effort, strategy, and determination. But with a solid plan in place and the courage to take it forward, your results can be extraordinary.

by Andy Molinsky

***Andy Molinsky is an Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Brandeis International Business School. He is the author of the book Global Dexterity: How to Adapt Your Behavior across Cultures without Losing Yourself in the Process (HBR Press, 2013). Follow Andy on twitter at @andymolinsky.

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Dictionary, Dictionary, Dictionary…

Hmmm…..ok o. So, you think Dictionaries, I mean the hard copy -not soft copy, is not relevant in this age?….

Read this story to learn the latest about the Dictionary….It’s a little shocking to me though!…

Doggie smiley

Senator Danjuma Goje,  former governor of Gombe State, awarded a contract for supply of dictionaries for over one billion naira (N1billion) to Gombe state Universal Basic Education Board without following procurement process.  Furthermore, he was alleged to have paid 85 per cent of the contract sum upfront to the supplier, Real and Integrated Hospitality Company as against the prescribed fifteen per cent as contained in the Board’s guideline when he was the governor.

This revelation was made at the Federal High Court, which sat in Jos yesterday, at the continuation of trial of the senator by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. The prosecution witness, Salisu Abaji, who was the former secretary to UBEB made this testimony against his former boss. He further submitted that one Aliyu El-Naffty, former UBEB chairman, also an accused standing trial along with Goje, awarded the contract the same day and ordered the advance payment based on the directive of the senator.

Another prosecution witness and former storekeeper to Gombe state House, Mr. Mohammed Aliyu concluded his testimony by tendering receipts of all payments made to the food contractor to the government during the eight years administration of Goje from 2003 and 2011.

However, Abaji admitted he played a role in the award and payment of the said amount as upfront to the contractor. This he did under cross-examination by the defence counsel, Mr. Adeniyi Akintola.

Meanwhile the trial had been adjourned till October 4 and 5, 2016 by Justice Quadri.

Source:

Wilson Uwujaren
Head, Media & Publicity
15th June, 2016

http://saharareporters.com

 

Pregnant Mississippi woman wins right to her placenta

So, why would the Placenta be so important to this woman?…What I read in this story shocked me  a bit. I don’t know about you, but , heeeen!!!?….

READ THE STORY  BELOW….

BRANDON, Miss. — Almost immediately after she found out she was pregnant, Brandon resident Jordan Thiering began preparing for her baby. She bought outfits and stocked up on cloth diapers.

She and husband Doug assembled baby furniture and decorated the nursery with the name they had chosen for their son; they would call him Roman, middle name to be determined. They packed a bag, ready for that moment they had to rush off to the hospital. In a multitude of ways, Thiering was prepared for her baby’s arrival.

One thing she was not prepared for, however, was to go to court.

At 33 weeks pregnant, Thiering got a court order giving her the rights to her placenta.

“I grew my baby, I grew my placenta,” Thiering said. “There should be no one that can tell me what I can or can’t do with it.”

Thiering said she was going over her birth plan with her OB-GYN in March when she mentioned she wanted to encapsulate her placenta.

After a postpartum friend told Thiering she put her placenta in a smoothie, the mom-to-be began to look into the idea.IMG_20160503_103706[1]

Placentophagy, or the act of eating one’s own placenta, has increased in Western culture. Proponents claim it can increase your energy level and milk production and help ward off postpartum depression. However, the benefits have not been scientifically proven.

After conducting her own research, Thiering decided to encapsulate her placenta.

“Taking a multivitamin is something that I do regularly anyway so putting it in a gelatin capsule just seems so simple and if it’s going to benefit me and my husband, my baby, I might as well,” she said. “The benefits just seem to outweigh any sort of negative. I’m really excited about it. If it does nothing, it does nothing, but it’s the whole perspective of being able to kind of have what I want, rightfully so. “

Planning to deliver at River Oaks Hospital, Thiering’s doctor said she might want to check with the hospital on its rules and regulations beforehand.

When she called the hospital, Thiering was told she would need a court order.

“I’m thinking, ‘What? For my own body part? Why do I need a court order?’”

Thiering was told it was an issue with the Mississippi Department of Health and she was considered a “third party” to her placenta.

“If I give birth to my baby and then I give birth to my placenta, do you own my baby, too? Do I have a third party to my own child? Well, of course not. So then why am I the third party to my own body part? It just doesn’t seem to make sense,” she said.

According to a memo obtained by The Clarion-Ledger, state epidemiologist Dr. Thomas Dobbs defined the placenta as “medical waste.”

The memo states, in part, “no hospital or other facility may release non-infectious medical waste (including placental tissue) without there first having been obtained by a court order, or other judicial mandate, which will assure proper disposal by the release.”

Which contacted for comment, MSDH spokesperson Liz Sharlot said, “We are not a pivotal party in the lawsuit.”

Confused and frustrated, Thiering turned to a Facebook group for moms asking for advice. She posted what she had been told and was contacted by attorney Jacqueline Hammack.

Neither Thiering nor Hammack, who specializes in women’s health issues, said they had ever heard of a woman having to obtain a court order to get her placenta.

“I told her I would love to help her out, that this was a crazy thing she was experiencing,” Hammack said. “Placenta release was a new endeavor for me but I read the law, talked to her, got all the pertinent facts and I made a petition that I hoped would be sufficient and it was.”

Thiering petitioned the Rankin County Chancery County on May 2, asking for the rights to her placenta. Judge John McLaurin granted the order on May 17.

“It was pretty simple but totally unnecessary in my opinion to need any of that,” she said. “I don’t think it’s right for someone who has no experience to dictate what a woman can do with her body…he’s not a woman. He shouldn’t have a right to dictate what I can do with my body.

“It’s your body part and no matter what women want to do with it, it’s their right to have it.”

Thiering said she recognizes that other women may not want to encapsulate or consume their placenta but for her, the health benefits made it an easy choice.

She added that education is key in the entire birth process, not just regarding the placenta.

“It’s my choice and I think that all women really need be educated, knowing that their birth is their choice,” she said. “Obviously, emergencies happen but you don’t have to do everything by the book, the way that people kind of assume is the normal way. There is no normal way … I think this placenta thing is one of those things. It’s something that you can do to help your body and help your baby and I think it’s just really important in general to let women know you have options.”

Hammack said she hopes the court order “paves the way” for other women.

“It’s not just about getting (Thiering’s) court order but making it easier for other women,” she said. “I think if the Department of Health is amenable to changing its policy, I think we could change the way hospitals treat the issue.”

Source: http://www.usatoday.com

…SOMETHING DIFFERENT

This is a word that has become so repeated on the lips of Nigerians… but, this one written by a friend today has caught my attention also…

READ ….and score her.

IMG_20160513_182604[1]CHANGE! CHANGE!! CHANGE!!!

Many people have asked if this is the change we voted for…while time will tell more, here is the change we got in one year.

*CHANGE is when a Friday goes by and no
 one
 is dying in the Mosque due to
 Bomb Blast..
 .
 * CHANGE is when Sunday goes by and no
 one
 hears of another Bomb Blast in a
 Church killing worshipers…..
 .
 * CHANGE is when mansion built with stolen
 money are sealed up and
 confiscated…..
 .
 *CHANGE is when Boko Haram suicide
 bombers are intercepted before they kill
 innocent people….
 .
 * CHANGE is when prominent looters fall sick
 after years of eating our yams and
 bleat like demented goat for forgiveness…
 .
 *CHANGE is when untouchable comes to
 court
 with Handcuffs…
 .
 * CHANGE is when Corrupt people swallow or
 chew their confessional statements
 in panic to escape the long arm of the law…..
 .
 *CHANGE is when judges stop giving stupid
 interlocutory injunction to stop
 corruption from being investigated and
 prosecuted…..

She promises to write more on this…if I am able to keep pace with her, I will bring what she writes again.

 

SOURCE: Facebook- Alu Azege

US Students surprise classmate at Graduation…

US STUDENT'S MOTHER FOR GRADGreat gesture! Very worthy friends…but the person who wrote this story confused me small o.

Where in Benue did this woman travel from f for 12 hours to get to an Airport’?!!! Excuse me?!!! I need someone to tell me which part of Benue that someone would have to travel from for 12 hours to get to ‘an Airport to travel to the US’ …Flights leave Abuja Airport to the US everyday! And Abuja is just about 4 hours from the Benue state Capital, Makurdi. Which town or village did she travel from, and which airport did she fly from in Nigeria to the US?

….Let me not spoil the good story sha. Read it here. But take note of the small confusion I have after reading this story…

Students surprise Nigerian classmate by sponsoring his mom’s trip to his graduation in U.S

Mike Tertsea, an only child, hadn’t seen his mum, Felicia Ikpum, 56, since he left Nigeria to study at The John Carroll School in Bel Air, four years ago.

Felicia Ikpum didn’t even recognize her son when she met him at the airport Friday. After Mike Tertsea left Nigeria to study at The John Carroll School in Bel Air, she did not see him for four years.

“He has changed completely,” a smiling Ikpum said after the school’s baccalaureate ceremony Wednesday.

Mike, a basketball player at John Carroll who plans to attend the University of Rhode Island, was surprised to learn Wednesday that the whole senior class, joined by faculty members, had pitched in to make it possible for his mother to make the trek from Benue State, Nigeria, to see him graduate from high school.

“I was really, really surprised,” Mike said with a wide smile after the ceremony. “It is really a blessing and I thank everyone for coming here.”

  • Ikpum traveled 12 hours through dangerous territory to get to an airport and fly to the U.S., school spokesperson Joe Schuberth said.

Surprise graduation visit

“It was a tough drive for her,” Mike said. “She said at one point, she felt like giving up.”

It was also her first time on an airplane, and “for a while, she couldn’t recognize me and couldn’t believe it was her son,” Mike said.

Toward the end of the school’s annual ceremony and Mass, Principal Madelyn Ball told the friends and relatives gathered in the gym that one student had asked, “Is Mike’s mom coming to graduation?”

“Everyone was concerned because, you see, Mike has not been home for four years,” Ball said. She then explained how the senior class was able to raise $1,763 for his mom’s trip.

When “there were some issues once the flight was booked,” because the class was about $500 short, class co-advisor Carrie Siemsen raised the remaining money within a few hours by emailing faculty and staff.

Mike and his mother got a standing ovation as they were asked to come up on the stage, where they each thanked the senior class for bringing them together.

Some students seemed to be wiping away tears as Mike and his mother made their way to the stage.

Mike said he is an only child and his mother is his only immediate relative.

Growing up in the Benue area did mean real challenges, Mike said. “People sometimes don’t have food to eat; it’s hard to get food.”

Ikpum, 56, said when she saw her son, “I screamed, I shouted.”

“I was so excited,” she said about seeing him after four years, noting they had only spoken by phone over the years.

Besides playing basketball at college, the 6-foot, 10-inch tall senior said earlier he is considering pursuing economics or business management. Asked about her son’s accomplishments, Ikpum said: “It’s crazy.”

“I just believe God will take care of him, and the people here are nice,” she said. When they talked on the phone over the four years, “He was happy, and I am happy.”

Kishan Patel, student government president, said organizing the senior class “was not really difficult because there were so many people willing to help. It was a joy to do this.”

When Kishan heard Mike sometimes went to bed hungry, and now “you see this kid going to Division I with a basketball scholarship – wow, this is what it’s all about.”

Joe Kyburz, senior class president, added: “We wanted to exemplify the closeness of our community and we wanted to do something valuable for one of our classmates.”

“It was very special for all of us,” he said about the venture.

Source: http://www.baltimoresun.com/…/ph-ag-john-carroll-nigerian-s…

 

 

 

 

THE JANUARY CRUNCH 1

imagesCA63O53C

ARE rich people just good with money ( that the keep getting richer?)or is there something a little deeper underpinning their success?

Most people would agree that certain lifestyle choices and daily habits are as valuable in the quest for wealth as a sound understanding of finances.
On the flipside, there’s a bunch of stuff you should never, ever do if financial security is one of your main goals.

Two American wealth gurus have combined these two ideas into an excellent list this week.
What happened was, wealth guru Tom Corley wrote a list of 10 rich habits that will make you rich, followed by 18 poverty habits that are keeping you poor.

Then along came another wealth guru, Dave Ramsey, who helpfully condensed Corley’s ideas into a 20-point list of his own.

But for your sake, we’ve boiled this thing down even further. Here are 10 things which rich people do and poor people don’t. And as we’ve already said, these things have nothing to do with money.

1. EAT RIGHT
Corley undertook his own research on the habits of rich people and poor people – by interviewing real people – and he found that 70 per cent of wealthy people eat less than 300 junk food calories each day. By contrast, 97 per cent of poor people eat more than 300 junk food calories per day.

2. KEEP YOUR CARDS CLOSE TO YOUR CHEST
Only fools disclose what’s really on their mind.Source: ThinkStock
Are you the sort of person who blurts out every thought on their mind? Stop it. It’s not making you seem bold or cool or visionary or anything, but is in fact labelling you as dangerous, potentially treasonous and definitely not the sort of person who will ear promotions. Corley found that 11.6 per cent of wealthy people say what’s on their mind, compared to a whopping 69 per cent of poor people.

3. SET GOALS
Eighty per cent of wealthy people are focused on accomplishing some single goal, compared to just 12 per cent of poor people. And wealthy people are four times as likely to write down their goals as poor people. Corley has some great stuff about the difference between a wish and a goal.

4. KEEP FIT
Well, you know what they say about healthy body, healthy mind. According to our American friends, 76 per cent of wealthy people exercise aerobically at least four days a week. Only 23 per cent of poor people do this.

5. BE ORGANISED
It’s almost too simple to be true, but 81 per cent of wealthy people keep a to-do list. Just 19 per cent of poor people do this. Want a good tip? Try an old-fashioned bit of paper. Crossing stuff off with a pen just feels good.

6. READ

Interestingly, the authors also found that wealthy people tend to read to their kids way more than poor people do.Source: ThinkStock
A massive 88 per cent of wealthy people read material which relates to their education or career for at least 30 minutes each day, while just 2 per cent of poor people do likewise. Want to swim in an Olympic Pool of $100 bills? Then stop playing Angry Birds and pick up a book.

7. RING GRANDMA
Corley found that 80 of rich people make Happy Birthday calls compared to just 11 per cent of poor people. And while we’re not suggesting that ringing Grandma will MAKE you rich, this stat does speak to the old adage: “if you want something done, give it to a busy person”.

8. DON’T WATCH BIG BROTHER (or Nigerian Home Videos)
We all know that watching reality TV will turn your brain to eggplant (Garden egg). Either way, you are indulging in the number one activity which keeps nobodies from becoming somebodies. Corley found that 67 per cent of wealthy people watch an hour or less of TV each day – and that just 6 per cent watch reality TV. Yes, just 6 per cent, compared to 78 per cent of poor people.

9. DON’T PUNT
Only 23 per cent of wealthy people gamble, compared to 52 per cent of poor people. Bear in mind these stats pertain to Americans, so the number of gamblers is likely significantly higher in Australia.(but also exit in Nigeria)

10. RUN YOUR OWN RACE
It might not hurt to run to the side of the road a little, both literally and figuratively. Source: Think Stock
The advice to run your own race isn’t contained anywhere in the material published by the American wealth guys this week. But the irony of lists like these is that you’ll never get anywhere in life if you follow everything word for word. Take the bits that apply to you, but remember to be a little flexible and do things your way.

… AND ONE LAST THOUGHT
The author of this piece is firmly of the belief that a lot of poor people are simply too busy or disadvantaged one way or another to change their situation.( I CALL IT A CELEBRATION OF POVERTY AND SUFFERING)

That said, there’s a great comment by Dave Ramsey which offers hope to all.

Writes “Poor no more”:
“I was born poor, raised in poverty and watched my parents die that way. I worked hard, eliminated my bad habits, and started doing what the wealthy did. Mostly I stopped blaming others for my lack of wealth. Now I am wealthy, and help others who want to be helped.”

(And if you would like to recieve help on how to avoid the January Financial crunch, you can email us on maivoices@yahoo.com)

Culled and adopted from: http://www.news.com.au

The Dance of Mandela’s Death

Mandela

It is normal for people to wail, or cry loudly when a loved one dies.

I watched the BBC this morning, and couldn’t help but give a deep thought to this. Nelson Mandela died yesterday. (I chose to call him ‘THE GREAT’ in this post, even though this is not near one of the  normal titles that the man was adressed by when he lived)  And unlike what is normal when people die, South Africans dance!

I had seen Nelson Mandela himself dance many many times when he was alive. South Africans love music and dance, yes.

Click link to see Mandela Dance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3HSahOZqYpQ

But, wait, my attention is not on this dance here. What got me thinking was the jubilation of the life that Mandela lived. Who doesn’t know him?! Many many children in Africa were named after this great freedom fighter, who spent, i would say the better part of his life in prison and came out to be president of his country.

The people love him! I remember the later days of Mandela, sick, in and out of hospital. South Africans kept vigil, praying for their Madiba. One can almost say nobody hated  Mandela…well…what do you think?

Now, this is a man whose life and struggles inspired many! For many of us, when we go through adversity, we rather drum up pity. But no, not this man’s story. Improsoned for 27 years, he never stopped! The struggle continued until he won. Of course, his winning made many people win!

The long Walk to Freedom was indeed long, but sure!

And when he became old and frail, South Africans cared, loved and rejoiced  over him. Every time i watched him and his children and grand children dancing, none of the faces of the people showed gloom. They were all smiles….

Now, he is dead, and the people dance. A dance of celebration of a great Son, Nephew, Father ,Grand Father,  God Father, Brother, Uncle, Husband…. (fill the gaps with others that you can remember) President, Mentor, Inspiration, etc

And yet, there are other people who die and people dance, but a dance of a different kind…a celbration of the passing of wickedness…**Shameful, sad**

Mandela’s contribution to humanity was worth this dance of his death. I am sure even in death, Mandela joins his people in happiness.

Rest, Rest on   Madiba!!