What Your Handshake Says About You


What Your Handshake Says About You

Improve your handshake experience with these tips.

This spring, Bill Gates gave South Korean President Park Geun-hye a shake with one hand while keeping the other in his pocket. The South Koreans reportedly were offended. It was disrespectful, they said.
“There’s an art to the simple handshake,” says Joe Navarro, an ex-FBI agent, author and expert in body language.

Here, Navarro recommends some ways to improve the handshake experience:

1. Make eye contact as you shake.

2. Wipe clammy hands first—he recommends Botox injections to stop perspiring in severe cases.

3. Dominant handshakes (when you try to get your hand on top) are bad form.

4. Don’t finger the wrist of the hand you’re shaking, which is described by recipients as “creepy.”

5. No two-handed shakes—this is known as a “politician’s handshake,” Navarro says, and he recommends reserving it for Grandpa.

So, what does your handshake say about you?



6 Valuable Life Lessons Shared By A 17 Year Old Boy

6 Valuable Life Lessons Shared By A 17 Year Old Boy

By  on December 8, 2013
Bilaal Rajan Life Lessons

It’s never too early to start. That’s what I learned from Bilaal Rajan a 17-year-old who has helped raised money for many different causes. At the age of 4 Bilaal started out selling fruit door-to-door in his neighborhood to raise funds for the victims of the earthquakes in a province of India. He is a globally recognized motivational speaker, published author, tireless fundraiser, and UNICEF Canada Ambassador. Last October, he spoke during the Fifth Global Summit of Values.

Here are 6 important lessons Bilaal Rajan shared and how we can apply them to our lives today.

Bilaal Rajan’s Life Lessons

1. Have goals

If you know where you want to go, you can get there. A very important thing in your personal and professional life is to set goals. Take time aside from your busy schedule to establish your goals. Once you have an idea of what they look like you can start finding ways to get there, and of course if you have a destination, it’s easier to get going.

Plus: If you write them down and place them somewhere you can see them every day, when you get up and go to sleep, you’ll keep them in mind and this will help you stay focused and motivated.


2. Think before you act

Very often we may do or say things and then regret doing so. Instead, think twice before you say or do something. To double-check use the THINK acronym. Ask yourself, is what I am about to say,True, Helpful, Important, Necessary, Kind? If you answered yes, to each and every one then proceed. If your answer is no, you might want to stop before your actions turn into regrets.


3. Listen hard, don’t hardly listen

It’s so easy to get distracted nowadays, but listening to someone is the real way to connect. People can tell if you are really paying attention. Your ability to listen is something you can work on and it is a great way to show someone how much you care about them.

Next time you are speaking to a person really focus on the conversation and set aside your distractions. Begin by putting your phone away and resist the temptation on reading every notification you get, it can always wait until later.




4. The importance of urgency

Leaving everything for tomorrow is not a good habit. It’s very common to start a project 1 hour before the deadline, the downside is that you get so stressed and hurried to finish when you could have spared the anxiety by completing it weeks ago.

If you want to be less stressed and more relaxed, you can schedule things in order to finish them on time without the pressure.

A very helpful tool is to write down all your “to do’s”, and then categorize them in A, B and C, according to their deadline and their importance to you. Recognising that A is extremely important, B is important and C is somewhat important, you can then plan accordingly.


5. Strength in numbers

A group of people can make a difference, but the strength of the numbers is not only in the actual number of individuals but in the organization and direction that drives them. If everybody is pulling to a different side then there will be hardly any movement, but if they share the same direction they can conquer any mountain together.

So don’t be afraid to have a vision and share it with your group, this is the key to building strength in any community or organization.


6. Visualize

The power of the mind is incredible, so a good tactic is to visualize what you want to achieve. For just a few minutes close your eyes, then picture yourself where you want to be and feel like you are already there. Repeat this action each and every morning.

It’s never too early to start, so why not start today.

The Monchu Method of Networking

Chris Brogan

The Monchu Method of Networking

Spend 20 minutes a day reaching out to your very own VIPs.

Monchu is an Okinawan word that means “one family,” but monchu is defined as going beyond those of our blood—it includes a family of our choosing. I’m enamored with the concept because I feel that a lot of times our intentions while we are networking become sullied by an expectation of receiving something in return. My monchu approach to networking weeds out selfish motives but still produces great results. Here are the steps to making it work.

1. Imagine Circles.

In the smallest and tightest of circles are those people you love the most. These are the people I don’t have to remind you to stay connected with often (at least I hope not).

Right after that are the people you maybe “have to” stay connected with regularly, maybe your co-workers and/or your primary customers or vendors. They also don’t need a lot of thinking about to sort out. You simply connect with them in the course of doing business with them.

Figuring out who fits in the third circle of your monchu—which is where the networking magic will happen—is harder, and it’s where you’re going to concentrate your efforts. So let me explain the third circle further as it applies to your business.

2. Map Your Monchu.

Your monchu’s third circle consists of:

• People you personally want to help succeed.

• People you feel can help you succeed.

• People you care about who could use the help of people you know.

That’s it. Your aim isn’t to find prospects, although that might happen. It isn’t about connecting with people who will grow your business, except perhaps indirectly. Instead it’s about people you can help by enriching their lives—and people who might be able to help you if you ask the right questions.

So how many people should be in the third circle of your monchu? I’m not sure. I’m working on that. My current feeling is that if you grow beyond 20 people, you’ll lose them in the crowd. This, by the way, is why almost every social network is inherently flawed for your use. They are built to grow. They need you to reach out over and over to more and more people to demonstrate their value, but that doesn’t immediately benefit you. In fact, it lets you forget people easier. So stick to 20 people.

This leads us to the next part of the recipe: What exactly do you do with this group?

3. Serve Your Monchu.

Let’s imagine that you had 20 minutes each day to try and make your world more amazing. Twenty minutes. That’s less than the duration of a TV sitcom. It’s probably equal to the amount of time wasted doing tasks that yield much less value. Here’s how to structure those 20 minutes:

1. Spend 10 minutes reaching out to people in your third circle whom you think you can help, providing whatever assistance, advice or resources you can offer.

2. Spend five minutes asking people whose feedback you value some questions that will help you better understand your next steps in business.

3. Spend five minutes introducing people you know among your circles.

Which communication medium works best for making these connections? Whatever works best for you and the members of your monchu. I love email. Other people use the phone. Some people prefer Facebook messages. Others like Skype. Here’s what I suggest:

• Build a spreadsheet. In it, put the person’s name in the first column, his pertinent contact info in the next column or two, preference for contact in the next column, the date of your last contact in the column after that, and, finally, notes from your last conversation in the final column. You might also add a “notes history,” but that’s up to you.

• Think this through. Imagine you now have a list of 20 people who matter to you in one form or another. You have committed to helping people every day for a total of 20 minutes, including asking for some help for yourself. You work the list daily, with the three above-mentioned goals: Help others, ask for help, and connect people.

4. Begin The Communication Flow.

Imagine the difference between a cold call to someone you want to reach for business versus connecting with someone you’ve helped directly or indirectly through the efforts listed above. Because there’s an ongoing flow with those people you’ve chosen to connect with frequently via your monchu, everything will feel a lot smoother, or at least there will be more options. I’ll give you a real-life example.

My friend Charlie is writing a book. He reached out to five people in his monchu for advice. Four people gave reasonable advice that affirmed Charlie’s thoughts. I ended up saying something contrary to everyone else. My comment was a trigger that gave Charlie an even better idea. What came next was a chance for him to work through the idea with others in his monchu and receive an even better answer than mine… all rather quickly, all without a lot of friction.

The key to the workings of the monchu is that we all want to be on the inside. When a friend or business ally has an opportunity for us, the existing relationship works much more smoothly than when someone external or without connections tries to make the same experience happen. For instance, have you ever applied for a position at a company where you know people who work there versus trying a place “cold”? Day and night.

5. Give Without Seeking Reciprocation.

Susan Murphy, co-founder of Jester Creative Inc., a Canada-based media production and training company, is practicing her own kind of monchu method and says it has helped her professionally. But she adds a caveat to the process: “There’s one important thing that’s often overlooked. It must come from a place of a genuine desire to help others and from a real interest in connecting. Too often, people’s intentions are self-serving, and it shows. Connect because you want to connect. Be helpful because you want to help. That’s where the real payoff is.”

Here’s another real-life example of that payoff. Around the time I wrote this article, I flew to see some clients who also have partnered with me on some business ventures. They’re midway through selling their company, and I’m helping them with the process.

The reason for the trip, it turned out, was a lot more about building relationships monchu-style than it was about the pending sale. That’s because, during the visit, my clients/partners did me a great favor by introducing me to some people who will potentially grant me the opportunity to sell something to them. My clients/partners won’t directly profit from extending this opportunity to me. But they’re building the monchu and improving the power of their business relationships by being personal.

Yes, some people might abuse this—taking a lot more than they give. And once your monchu network is up and running, you’ll learn quickly who does. Maybe that person doesn’t belong in your monchu. But start from the mindset that everyone you seek to help will use your gift to help others. In short order, you’ll sort out the rare exceptions and adjust your monchu members accordingly.

And you should take the advice to guard against being self-serving: When someone gives primarily with the goal of getting something in return, it’s fairly obvious to the other party and puts people off. If you choose to build and nurture relationships through the monchu approach, do it with unselfish intentions—or else your results might be the opposite of what you desire.

6. Build A Daily Habit.

By delivering something valuable to your monchu connections every day, you’ll learn not only about how to help others succeed, but also what you’re capable of offering the world at large. The help you offer might guide you toward even more business opportunities.

By simply staying connected with my friend Raul Colón, a business consultant who helps companies build their digital presence, I can pass along clients to him that aren’t right for me. By listening to the community I have the privilege to serve, I can find people doing like-minded projects and connect them. Invariably I’m providing value to others—advice, information, insights, client leads, etc.—long before I seek value for myself.

The payoff for your effort every day—just a 20-minute daily commitment—is that you can build a great network. Is there value in this? Yes, and you’ll see it in as little as a few weeks.


Things you can do to help move on with your life

Things you can do to help move on with your life

When you’re feeling overwhelmed with your sadness and loss, it’s hard to believe that your life will ever change, or you’ll ever be able to smile or laugh again. But the truth is you will – it won’t always be this bad – and there are things you can do help move on with your life:

Face your life, its pain, its pleasure, leave no path untaken.

1-Decide to face your pain.
An unresolved past never really goes away. You may think you have buried your anger and pain but the hurt is still there and it will surface later on. If you don’t face what happened, and the feelings it unleashed, you will end up being ruled by your subconscious mind. So try and find the courage to revisit all the pain.

2- Accept there’s nothing you can do to change the past.
What’s happened has happened, and what’s done is done. There’s nothing you can do to turn back the hands of time, or to rewrite the story so the ending’s happier. But you can change how you think, and you can start over again, and build a different future that’s not poisoned by the past.

3- Be grateful for the good times.
There’s usually something good that you can be thankful for. You don’t have to pretend that everything was bad – or write off any good times and happy memories.

4- Consciously let go and set your focus on the future –
Don’t let the baggage, or the failures of the past, affect your identity or self esteem. You are NOT what you did, or how you acted previously. You’re not just a product of what happened to you. You are valuable, unique and you have so much to give. You’re the author of your future; you control your destiny.

5. Remove your past from your future.
We all have a tendency to think that the past will morph into our future – and become our lot in life. But that doesn’t have to happen. The future’s a blank page. You can change your expectations – and work towards those goals. Instead, look hard for the exceptions – the times when things went right – and notice what you did that resulted in success. You still have those same strengths, skills and great qualities.

6- Be realistic and take small steps at first.
You can’t snap your fingers – and find that life has changed. Accept it will take time, and you will still have some bad days – but if you keep on going then the past will lose its grip.
Source unknown

Dr. Happiness Is In


Dr. Happiness Is In

A legendary scientist defines the path to true contentment.

 Ed Diener, Ph.D., a psychology professor emeritus at the University of Illinois, is an award-winning author dubbed “Dr. Happiness” by admirers all over the world. Diener has spent a lifetime researching ways to measure and understand personal happiness, and was one of the first academics to seriously embrace a field that, in the early ’80s, was considered far too wishy-washy and touchy-feely for any man of science.
During the past 30 years, Diener has studied how our emotions and experiences—over the course of a day and a lifetime—contribute to our overall “subjective well-being,” or SWB. While happiness can be defined temporarily (chocolate, runner’s high, etc.), it can also connote long-term satisfaction (raising kids, achieving goals, living life according to one’s core values). SWB encompasses both types of fulfillment. And while his research has shown that being positive and grateful can enhance your SWB, it has also shown that for people everywhere, loneliness, misery and suffering can actually be part of overall life satisfaction. (In fact, someone who is never sad, Diener told us, is likely to be “a sociopath.”) Even people living in extremely poor circumstances (Diener surveyed people living in the slums of Calcutta, for example) or going through tough events such as losing a job or getting divorced can remain happy over their lifetimes and be quite content on the whole.

Diener describes the concept of SWB in celluloid terms: “A film that is rated highly from moment to moment might consist of frequent action, narrative tension. A movie that is rated as great cinema, however, is one in which the individual elements are patterned and juxtaposed in interesting and meaningful ways, and in which the overall narrative and character development are compelling. Great movies also have their sad and slow moments, with the whole being greater than the sum of the parts. The best films contain both ongoing momentary interest and a long-term sense of meaning.”

So how can the movie of your life be great cinema? Diener’s work offers many science-based strategies. A few of his greatest hits:

Bad day? Take it in stride. Is the “good life” one filled with purpose and meaning or one filled with pleasure? It’s an age-old philosophical question tackled by the likes of Aristotle, Socrates and Aquinas. Diener was the first to pose the question scientifically. In one study, he and his colleagues asked 222 college students to complete end-of-day assessments for 52 days. The participants reported the frequency of specific emotions (ranging from joy to jealousy), physical pleasures (eating, beauty, etc.), discomforts (illness, fatigue, hunger, etc.) and their overall enjoyment of the day. Finally, they were evaluated on their self-esteem, sense of purpose in life and general life satisfaction. Diener found that the participants’ life- and self-satisfaction were determined more by their sense of purpose than by their day-to-day highs and lows. Satisfying days do not automatically lead to a satisfying life. Having purpose in life—meaningful work, volunteerism, art, goals and family—trumped sunny, relaxing days when it came to assessing SWB.

Keep setting new goals. Diener often asked his students if they would accept a wish granted by a genie. Almost all of them immediately said yes. But upon discussion, the students began to doubt the benefits of such immediate gratification. Getting everything you want without working for any of it might become boring and unsatisfying. Reaching a mountain peak is exhilarating in large part because of the climb to get there. If you were airlifted to the summit, Diener asks, would the moment feel as rewarding? “If we enjoy the activities needed in working for our goals, many hours and years of pleasure are provided, whereas reaching summits provides only the occasional short-term high.” Happiness is a process, not a place, he explains. So continue to set goals that you enjoy working toward.

Yes, stay positive. While Diener acknowledges that sadness and hardship are part of a rich and happy life, his research has shown that how you view these sad, hard aspects of life can increase your SWB even more. Of course, it’s simple enough to say, “Stay positive,” but if you’re a glass-half-empty type of person, how do you actually do that? It isn’t just about plastering a fake smile on your face and acting jolly. You can actually train your brain to think more positively. How? Diener uses an acronym as a guide: AIM—attention, interpretation, memory.

Take AIM on happiness. “Positive thinking is a mindset in which you recognize your blessings more than you pay attention to daily hassles,” Diener writes. The attention aspect is simply that: Look for the flowers and that’s what you’ll find; look for the weeds and your garden will be overrun with them.

Interpretation is about viewing things in a different light. You might see friends’ vacation photos or news about career highs on Facebook, for example, and feel bad that you aren’t accomplishing as much or having as much fun. But a positive person will see the success of her peers as inspiration. Being positive doesn’t mean that you’re never down or frustrated; it means recognizing tough experiences and feelings as opportunities for growth.

And being positive also means using the human idiosyncrasy of “rosy retrospection”—remembering past events more favorably than you viewed them at the time—to your advantage. The story about your disastrous first date with your spouse, when you spilled spaghetti on your lap and lost your wallet, for example, might become a charming and romantic anecdote later on when you share it with your children. Allow yourself to selectively remember certain events; people who do so are happier overall. Sure, your family vacation may have had its share of tantrums, feuds and rainy days. But when you choose to recall the shared jokes, fun times and sunny afternoons, everyone wins. You might even train yourself to put less emphasis on those not-so-great moments during your next vacation.

Don’t smile all the time. Well, you can if you want to, but Diener says being happy doesn’t mean being maniacally cheerful. Being too exuberant—without a dose of sarcasm, self-deprecation or even disgust—can be unhealthy. Sometimes, complaining/commiserating helps us bond with others, and making fun of ourselves can prevent us from taking life too seriously. Someone who never worries likely won’t take appropriate measures to protect himself from harm. Everyone has his or her own “set point” of happiness (50 percent of which is determined by genetics), Diener says. Some people are naturally more optimistic and merry than others. The goal isn’t to be happy all the time, but to raise your set point a bit to maximize your SWB. Diener advises, “Decide for yourself what your optimum level of happiness is, keeping in mind that being in a frequent mild good mood is functional, and negative emotions, so long as they are felt only occasionally, can be helpful, too. Then enjoy pursuing the goals and values that are important to you.”