ARE YOU AN ONLY CHILD?

Last night, as we snuggled up to read your bedtime story, you asked me the question Daddy and I have been half expecting. With a slight ripple across your brow and your blue eyes wide, you said: ‘Mummy, why don’t I have a brother or sister?’

Are you an only child and did you know why you became one literally? Perhaps it is a health or a financial circumstance beyond parent’s control or unfortunate situation of loss of parent making it not possible to have siblings. The parents of an only son have written a letter to him explaining their choice and decision to him alone. The letter stated that mother found out ‘last night, as we snuggled up to read your bedtime story, you asked a question Daddy and was half expecting. With slight ripple across your brow and your blue eyes wide, you said: ‘Mummy, why don’t I have a brother or sister?’ I kissed the top of your head, squeezed you closer and momentarily panicked about how on earth to answer. At four years and four months, you are clearly starting to notice many of friends at nursery talk of siblings or babies. And thankfully this time, you gave me a reprieve turning your attention straight to dinosaur story read to you.’ Last night, as we snuggled up to read your bedtime story, you asked me the question Daddy and I half expected. With a slight ripple across your brow and blue eyes wide, you said: ‘Mummy, why don’t I have a brother or sister? But I know one day the ‘why’ will become more persistent. Daddy and I are far from alone in deciding to stop at one child. Apparently by 7years, half of all families in this country will only have one offspring. Not that it stops me from feeling occasional pang of guilt. I know there will be many positives to decision like our undivided attention for starters so you never know a prickly adjustment period when a new baby arrives. How about sibling rough and tumble you’ll miss out on? A constant companionship for better or worse? I cannot pretend it hasn’t been a real dilemma. Yes, there have been moments when my resolve wobbled particularly as you get closer to starting school so baby no more. Who doesn’t get broody when they see a tiny newborn enfolded in a mother’s arms. But deep down, I know we’ve made the most responsible choice. I just hope, as you grow older, you agree. The truth is Daddy and I would loved another child but quite simply are too old. We liked the idea of two or maybe more, Daddy even hoped for twins! We imagined you all together and nobody ever short of a playmate, bundling you all into the bath after a day at the beach or the park. Sometimes I do wonder if we left it too late to start our little family. After all, we’ve been together for 19 years. Will you wonder what we were doing all that time? know many positives to our decision of undivided attention, helps you thrive. But I turned 44 last year, a day you and Daddy helped me devour the birthday cake I’d made. ‘That’s REALLY old!’ you exclaimed. In terms of having another baby, you were right. More women are have babies well into 40s and beyond but risks proven to be grater for mum and baby not least Down’s Syndrome or other birth defects. I wonder if we left it too late to start family. After all, we’ve been together for 19 years so wondering what we were doing all this time? We met through mutual friends in our mid-20s, drawn together by similarities: we’re both driven, determined, sociable and aspire to wring the most from life. But like many of our generation, chose naively it turned out to let time slip by. Distracted by careers, Daddy as a chartered surveyor and board director, and me as a journalist, we saved like mad for our future, bought property, played hard and enjoyed exciting holidays all over the world. Sometimes I do wonder if we left it too late to start our little family. For 19 years prepared in advance for your arrival. Family and friends badgered us about settling down but we felt buying a home together was the greatest commitment. I know there will be many positives to our decision — all that undivided attention, for starters, and you’ll never know that prickly adjustment period when a new baby arrives There were the more important things paying off a mortgage, for example than a wedding to spend money on. As for having a family, conscious of getting older, of course, honestly didn’t think leaving it to late 30s was a problem. After all, many friends in a similar situation. And in February 2011 of 12 years together, finally married at a beautiful country house in North Yorkshire. By then we were financially secure, happy, had bought a spacious barn conversion and wanted nothing more than to have a little family. But three months after our wedding, early one cool, grey May morning, my own beautiful, adoring mummy your granny died. She’d had cancer for four agonising years, and in the end the doctors and nurses couldn’t do anything more to save her. If I had just one wish in life it was that Granny had lived to meet you. She would have been besotted by your mischievousness, love of being silly and making people smile traits you share with her. Losing her made me all the more desperate to become a mum. I wanted to love and nurture another little person the way she’d always loved my brother and me. I longed to watch her warmth, wisdom and trademark cheerfulness live on in her grandchild. Grief stricken, I barely ate or slept for months.Grief stricken, I barely ate or slept for months. I ran for miles at a time as a coping mechanism and lost a lot of weight despite being slim anyway 

I ran for miles at a time as a coping mechanism and lost a lot of weight despite being slim anyway. Perhaps we shouldn’t have been surprised when, after almost two years of trying to have a baby, doctors confirmed that the shock of losing Granny had caused my body to shut down. I was almost 40 by so we referred for IVF. That’s when something magical happened against all the odds. In late January 2013, I went to fertility clinic in outskirt of Nottingham for some initial scans before starting a treatment. After minutes, sonographer took off her glasses, wiped a tear from her eye and said: ‘You’re not going to believe this you are already pregnant!’ I was around five weeks, but there you were on the sonographer’s screen, a microscopic dot. I cried, and couldn’t wait to tell Daddy. We were elated you arrived in September that year by a planned Caesarean section. I adored you in an instant with your cute little face and love of a cuddle. When I delve into my handbag for a lipstick and instead pull out a toy car or a dirty twig from the park that you’ve put there, it makes me smile 

But I admit I struggled emotionally for a long time. Within a space of under two and a half years went through the two significant events in a woman’s life losing my mum and having a baby of my own. Not having Granny around at that time was heart-wrenching. During the three days that you and I were in hospital, I longed for my mum to walk in, beaming and saying: ‘Aren’t you a clever girl? He’s absolutely gorgeous!’ When Gramps came alone to meet you for the first time, he hadn’t seemed more solitary since Granny’s death. In the months that followed, I’d take you for seven-mile walks in pram along the canal paths and country trails close to our home and tears would roll down my cheeks as I daydreamed about Mum walking by my side. When I delve into my handbag for a lipstick and instead pull out a toy car or a dirty twig from the park that you’ve put there, it makes me smile  What I’d give to have just one photograph of her cuddled up cheek-to-cheek with you. Daddy was wonderfully sensitive and supportive. But at times I felt very alone, as many women do after having a baby. The impossible sadness was juxtaposed by the unrivalled joy you brought to Daddy and me.I know that watching you with a little brother or sister would be a delight. But another baby now? I was 40 by the time I had you. We quickly decided it was more important to enjoy you, rather than focus on trying for another simply because the clock was ticking 

You make us laugh uncontrollably often every day with your funny little ways and your constant chatter and wonder at the world around us. I was 40 by the time I had you. You’re as affectionate and loving as you are boisterous and wilful, destined to be strong-willed given our own personalities! And even when you’re throwing a tantrum we wouldn’t want it any other way. I know watching you with a little brother or sister would be a delight. But another baby now? I was 40 by the time I had you. We quickly decided it was more important to enjoy you, rather than focus on trying for another simply because the clock was ticking. After all, there are so many couples who’d give anything to have just one child. And who’s to say it would have happened a second time, given how long it took us to have you? Plus, at what point do you draw a line under the disappointment of trying and failing? Besides, we’d found being a family of three suits all of us. I am still able to do a job I love while you’re at nursery three days a week. More importantly, Daddy and I are able to focus our attention on you rather than feeling torn between more than one child. Your energy knows no bounds and I have to run you like a dog every day to expend it. I’m not sure I could cope with another little one fizzing with such effervescence. You have always loved your sleep, too: And imagine if you had a sibling who wailed all night for months. That said, I can’t deny the occasional well of sadness: the ‘what ifs’ and fear you’ll miss out on the fun of having a sibling. If I had just one wish in life it would be that Granny had lived to meet you. She would have been besotted by your mischievousness, love of being silly and making people smile — traits you share with her Since I’ve always been so close to my own little brother your uncle Robbie, 42, who loves to tickle and dangle you upside down. Daddy and I have often looked wistfully at our friends with four kids: they’re never without a ready-made playmate. On the other hand, we know siblings who fought terribly as children and barely speak as adults. We know lots of gloriously happy, and well grounded, sociable, selfless children including your brilliant cousin, Saffron, who’s five years older than you. It was adorable watching you playing together on the beach and in the pool on a recent family holiday in Spain. How I chuckled listening to the two of you animatedly discussing favourite or not vegetables in back of car. Nobody ever questioned our decision although there are friends who still tell us: ‘Go on, have another!’ Some people assume things of an only child that they are spoilt because they don’t learn to share. Or they miss out on so much. But Daddy and I will ensure you never feel isolated or become spoilt. Bracing ourselves to hosting lots of play dates sleepovers. We’ll do everything to encourage you to continue to be sociable caring confident little boy you already are. What I’ve realised more than anything is there is actuala much shorter answer to your question. Quite simply, Daddy and I feel enormously fortunate to have one healthy, happy, hilarious little boy who fills our lives with magic every day. We have never been left wanting more.

 

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TRUMP IS LIKE MARMITE

20130431-marmiteThe first Amendment of US constitution freedom of speech has taken a whole new meaning starting directly from Trump to the global citizens. Trump is like Marmite deeply loved and adored by those who love him. On the other hand those who cannot stand him hate him with vitriol wants him impeached but have no grounds to stand on to use against him. Trump is offensive to many people with regard to utterances made about calling other nations “shit holes and banning some Muslims from going to America.” The decision to set up an American Embassy in Jerusalem has caused outrage and demonstrations. He wants to build walls in Mexico whose land is America taken by the Europeans. Whether one for or against Trump as a president of America the world is also compelled to take notice of him. Some wonder if he the right person in office. Considering the outburst on Twitter and the outrageous statements concerning the whole world. From cutting grants to refugees and nations that do not agree with policies to “America First” plans. It is interesting the longer Trump in office the worse the language used by him so people wonder if he is of sound mind or beginning of dementia. Unpredictable, impulsive, compulsive decisions made on Twitter bemuses other politicians. Trump bypassed the traditional political forum for debate for expected decision-making to announce policies.mblumenthal0105russia A current book Fire and Fury, revealing another side of concern to world about Trump. That book described Trump as “a child” always wanting immediate gratification.” This statement in book grabbed my attention because childlike qualities are required by God to qualify in His Kingdom. Children are typically naive so trusting and believe anything told. And children also repeat private conversations overheard from adults to the people causing confusion. And wars have been fought by adults as a result of the children’s compulsive, impulsive tell all unfiltered statements of adults. With regard to being child like there are so many children like,” Wolff explained. What they mean is a child want things for immediate gratification so it is all about them.” Whether day or night, convenient or not if possible child wants it now so has tantrums. Matthew_18-3matthew_18-3 (1)Children are used by God in Bible to do great things for whole nation. Jonathan wss used to save David in turn defeated Israel’s enemies killing Goliath. Joseph’s interpretation of dreams saved Egypt and world from 7 years famine and also became Prime Minister. Again, Daniel, Meshach and Abednego served foreign king in Babylon. In living history God bypassed traditional leadership to use “a child” to fulfil HIS PLANS. Samuel “a child” was called by God to deliver HIS MESSAGE to Prophet Eli and nation of Israel. Hophni and Phinehas did not Honour God or allow worshippers to first serve God’s portion of sacrifice. So they arrogantly went with a 3 pronged fork to take God’s portion. Consequently God woke “a child” Samuel to deliver a message children should not hear.6627ee97bc413caaf9183b923dfd299a--bible-illustrations-u-god John_Singleton_Copley_COS013Is it possible Trump’s childlike qualities are being used for such a time as this to do the things God said HE WILL DO? Only God Yahweh knows that answer. If one looks at end time signs and the wonders unfolding towards great Tribulation it is those “wars and rumours of wars” Jesus warned the world about. Could it be the stage is being set militarily for that big one, Armageddon. If so Israel is central core in the wheel of motions moving to gather all nations against Israel as Bible predicts in Ezekiel 38. Since Trump said his war head button is ‘bigger’ than that of North Korea, the nation’s are alert on what will happen next. As child, Samuel was used to deliver message to Israel so Trump can be used to trigger the plans of God concerning the whole world. Jesus-christ-HD-wallapers-with-children-Jesus-called-the-children-to-him..Become like little children to enter the kingdom of heavenThe Bible says people must pray to ask God shortens the evil days or NOBODY will be left alive on earth. It is not just America or Israel involved it is the whole world affected. So good to pray for leaders and peace of Jerusalem because God is going to send Jesus back to earth and join the people left on earth after Armageddon. It is necessary to watch and pray and read Revelations in Bible to see God’s message to whole world unfolding. Billy Graham said read the Bible and see prophecies predicted happening unfold in the world. God can use Trump’s childlike and unpredictable nature as the perfect person suited to do trigger events. And living history shows leaders often instigating wars or being provoked into war by the actions of the others like Alexander the great, Hitler Napoleon among others. Such leaders often have a compulsive, impulsive and child like personalities. Only God knows if Trump’s Marmite role either loved or loathed for God’s wrath plans to unfold. Whether Trump is childlike instrument of choice to fulfill God’s Wrath purpose, Jesus said the type of evil unfolding has not been seen before and will never be seen again after Armageddon. The most important thing is be saved and to have your life hidden in Christ Jesus in God.   Be on God’s side and belong to HIS Eternal Kingdom. Leaders come and go, but God’s WORDS stand forever so be in the know. Make informed Bible choices irrespective of whether you are Trump Marmite lover or just neutral person. If it comes to God’s decisions you cannot sit on the fence. It is the bigger picture of consequences unfolding that really matters. Whether Trump is leader or not God’s Wrath is unfolding on whole world through choices of standing with Israel or not. The Ultimate decision is in God’s HANDS to rescue the church in the rapture and unrestrained evil will continue. Pray and ask to reveal to you deeper plans through Jesus Name. 

AN UNLIKELY FRIENDSHIP

amurtimur1Unlikely friendship developed between a goat and a tiger, amazing the world. The fantastic friendship between the two happened when the goat was given alive to a tiger to eat. However, the tiger instead of eating the goat has formed an unlikely relationship between the two by sparing the goat’s life. People are also trying to figure out why the tiger which ate goats over the years yet at this point spared goat’s life. The goat flourished in the same cage living together with the tiger and relationship thrived between both unpredictable friendship between a tiger and a goat went viral so attracted more visitors to the zoo. 1336954294Against all odds Timur the goat is still alive even after he was meant to have been the food for his friend, Amur. The goat was thrown into the cage some time ago but Amur the tiger did not eat the goat. Pretty soon as the world followed their love story and became more intriguing. Even more fascinating is the fact that they lasted longer so created suspense as people wondered how long their friendship would last. Pictures were taken often regularly to show their friendship was ongoing and was real news at the time. Even more surprising is the fact that Amur gave his bed for the goat to sleep on.tiger-goat-friends Suddenly, the news brought the people increasing the number of visitors to the zoo. it was not long when the privileged goat begun to take liberties and kicked the tiger who had shown kindness to the goat. But this time the goat run out of luck because the tiger reacted to teach the goat a lesson by grabbing the goat’s leg. Unfortunately, the goat was injured so they are now separated from each other. The goat is recovering well and a search is ongoing on for a new female goat to keep tiger company. .xw_1189002.jpgTiger-befriends-goat-at-Russian-safari-park-Photo-600x330The Bible says that when a man’s ways please God, HE makes his enemies to be at peace with him. It is necessary to stay humble to enjoy the favour of God that spared the goat’s life. And not to “grow horns” by becoming proud and arrogant taking for granted the compassionate friend who helped save life. Thinking it was okay to head butt the tiger, the goat made a terrible mistake that cost their friendship. So it is good to remember to be kind to those who sacrifice personal happiness to help. In return treat them with kindness and respect as the golden rule says treat others as you like to be treated.

EXPRESS MARRIAGE TRENDS

Sophy on her wedding day in traditional attireWith Valentine day approaching people are looking for love and romance for a form relationships. So couples celebrate established meaningful, love fulfilling a family bond. Others also ready to settle down prepare and advertise for love in new ways using social media, Facebook post and was married six days later. The marriage took place quite quickly than the normal traditional longer process of a family searching and taking years for the marriage to be finalised. CHIDIMMA AMEDU, did exactly that advertising for love and marriage on Facebook. He found a beautiful wife who said, ‘he is the most handsome man I’ve ever met and I liked him instantly.” Those who use Facebook come across pretty strange posts in their time. But this time however the random friends requests, being added to groups you did not ask to join, and tags allows “friends” to marry. Others clog up timeline with posts or photos you don’t necessarily want. But a Nigerian man took it to a whole new level posted unusual advert. Chidimma Amedu put up a post on 30 December, asking women interested in being his wife to reply, he told the BBC.Chidimma Amedu on his wedding day

The proposal

“Am of age to and I am ready to say I do and am wasting no time. “Send in your applications – the most qualified will be married on January 6, 2018. Application closes 12 midnight 31/12/2017 he posted. He followed up with subsequent posts. ‘Am serious about this oh and don’t say you did not see it on time Good luck.’ He received a couple of responses, but one from Sophy Ijeoma is someone special who caught his attention. She wrote in her reply “Am interested, just DM me… lols,” her post read. At first, she thought it was a joke and she simply replied to keep thread flowing. A direct message from him to her inbox, followed by a Facebook call, would change her life’s trajectory. Chidimma placed the advert initially as a joke but became optimistic when Sophy said she was interested. So two days after their first conversation, he travelled some 500km (300 miles) from his home in the northern city of Abuja, to Enugu in the east where she lived. She had been waiting for him outside a retail store and in true fairy-tale style, “it was love at first sight”, she recalled. “He is the most handsome man I’ve ever met and I liked him instantly.”The couple on their wedding day in Igbo attire

After 2 hours of awkward conversation, he asked her to go to meet an uncle who incidentally is also resident in Enugu. So he asked what was going through her mind at the time, she said she thought it was all a bit of a joke but was excited about it and thought Chidimma was also quite an interesting character. “We got to the uncle’s house and he said: ‘Uncle, meet the woman I want to marry.'” Like Chidimma his family don’t seem to hang about when it comes to getting things done because uncle gave his approval. The couple are friends on Facebook for over a year but never spoken to each other before the advert. Getting family backing for your choice of spouse is an essential part of Igbo culture. Whereas picking your future wife from dozens of respondents to a Facebook marriage advert and marrying her in six days is decidedly not. At this point in their day-old relationship, it was beginning to dawn on Sophy that this fellow was not playing, but how do you commit to marrying someone you only just me. She would not comment on whether they had even shared as much as a kiss at that point, but maintained she was captivated by how focused, determined her new fiancé was. “When I saw him for the first time, I definitely found him attractive, but what I didn’t know was how serious he was about marrying me. “It was after we met the uncle and his wife, I realised that this could actually happen and I wanted it.”A family member felicitate with the couple

The engagement

It was now her turn to worry about how she was going to get the approval of her family to marry a guy she had just met on Facebook. But they had momentum going for them. Having met and fallen in love at first sight, or first message, if you like, and getting Chidimma’s uncle’s approval, couple decided to complete the cycle by visiting Sophy’s family the same day. Approval from the family is essential in Igbo tradition and Sophy recounted how she relayed information to her mother. Her dad passed away, and her mum said she did not have a final word in terms of giving approval for her to be married, so up to Sophy’s elder brother to give his blessings. It appears the odds firmly in their favour as Sophy’s brother gave his blessings too. So after a few questions from her brother it became official. Chidimma and Sophy were engaged to be married in six days.The happy couple cutting their cake

On the rebound?

Last year Chidimma was engaged to another woman and the wedding was scheduled for December, but then that relationship fell apart in March leaving him dejected. As December approached, the disappointment of not being able to fulfil his dream of getting married made him put up the post, he said. In wedding it was a blend of old and new “I had the desire to get married, had date in mind, but no bride, decided to place an advert as a joke, but I was open and up for it.”  Asked whether she knew about earlier engagement and her thoughts on how this seemingly rushed marriage might be seen as a rebound, Sophy dismissed any suggestions that her relationship was not well thought through. “I don’t care about that when you see what you want, you go for it.” They are friends on Facebook for more than a year, but had never met or spoken to each other until the advert. Am interested just DM me… lols” was all it took for the union to be formed. Sophy admitted her friends were sceptical about the whole thing, while some are still in disbelief, but as she said: “When you see the one, you will know he is the one.” And they got married on 6 January in a traditional Igbo ceremony, and posted photos of wedding day on Facebook of course to the amusement of the social media community. Chidimma put up a post saying people may have thought he had been joking but clearly wasn’t. And as expected there was mixed reactions, but mainly a lot of support for the couple. They hope to have a church wedding in April and honeymoon somewhere nice.

GUILTFREE WAYS TO SAY NO

Saying No for the Sake of Your Wallet

Request: A friend in need asks for loan.
What you should say: “I wish I can but as a rule, I don’t lend money to friends.”
Why it works: So its clear you did not single out this person as untrustworthy.

You shouldn’t feel guilty: Lending any amount of money can cause problems, says the communications trainer Don Gabor. It changes nature of relationship if the person doesn’t pay you back.”
Avoid the situation in the future: Never lend money to friends, you won’t get reputation as a Mobile Bank ATM. 9f8eab4c34bbdd4065c5809378443d16

Request: A coworker wants you to chip in $25 for gift for colleague you would not recognize at the watercooler.

You should say: “Oh, I’ve never really had a conversation with Ian. I think I’ll wish him a happy birthday in person.”
Why it works: Chances are, the person taking donations has no idea how close you are (or are not) with the intended recipient. By clarifying nature of your relationship emphasises intention to get to know the person better. So you come across as thoughtful rather than cheap.
Why you shouldn’t feel guilty: A gift is not a gift if an obligation, says etiquette writers Kim Izzo and Ceri Marsh.
Avoid the situation in the future: If workplace gift giving is getting out of hand, take the lead in restoring sanity by circulating a card before someone can break out the gift-donation plate. Make sure others know you don’t expect anything on your birthday.How-to-say-no-to-your-boss-politelyRequest: Your third cousin asks to bring her boyfriend-of-the-month to your $150-a-plate wedding reception.

What you should say: “We’ve already had to make so many tough decisions to get the guest list down to size. We really can’t squeeze in/afford another guest. But I would love to have you two over for drinks sometime so I can meet him.”
Why it works: If you illuminate some of behind-the-scenes planning, cousin may get clue of inappropriateness of request.
Why you shouldn’t feel guilty: It’s your party and your pocketbook, says author Patti Breitman.
Avoid the situation in the future: Make calls before you put together the guest list to see the new additions you should consider as you plan.sayno

Saying No for the Sake of Your Time

Request: You are offered a promotion that you don’t want. Though it means more money, it demands more hours or more of what boss calls responsibility and you call tedium.
What you should say: “I’m flattered that you want me, but for personal reasons I’m not in a situation where I can take this on. Perhaps in a year from now things will be different. Can we talk again if my circumstances change?”
Why it works: If in enviable dilemma boss will understand you have personal priorities that take precedence.
Why you shouldn’t feel guilty: By saying no to more time at the office, you’re saying yes to other things you cherish, long walks alone at sunset or evening time with your children.
Avoid the situation in the future: “If a position opens up at your workplace, you could let it be known that you are not in the running,” Breitman suggests. Being forthright saves your manager the trouble of pursuing a candidate who isn’t interested.maxresdefault (4)

Request: You are asked to coordinate bake sale again at your child’s school.
What you should say: “I know I am going to disappoint you, but I’ve decided not to volunteer this year, because I will feel stressed. Is there any way to get some of the other parents to step up?”
Why it works: People feel manipulated into doing something like The ice cream social won’t happen without your help! If address the problematic pattern of one person’s doing all the work, you sidestep manipulation. If you say no, it force others never get asked to say yes.
You shouldn’t feel guilty: “You’ve done your fair share, and now others can do this job,” says Robinson.
Avoid the situation in the future: Encourage school leaders to present the problem to all parents,” says Robinson. “If people know an important program may fail, usually remedy situation.maxresdefault (3)Request: If invited to distant relative’s annual Lobster Lua, 14th year in row.

You should say: “I’ve really had fun in the past, but I can’t make it this year. That week is already packed for me.”
Why it works: “You’ve explained it in a way that doesn’t sound like a personal rejection,” says Robinson. “And you’ve asked for understanding, based on your need to take stress out of your schedule. Everyone can identify with that.”
Why you shouldn’t feel guilty: You have only so much free time―and so much tolerance for flying lobster goo. “Don’t R.S.V.P. yes, then back out at the last minute or, worse, not show up at all,” say Izzo and Marsh. “That is the least decorous way of handling invite.”
Avoid the situation in the future: In a note, thank the relative for thinking of you and explain that because you tend to be busy at this time of year, he should feel free to take you off his invite list.maxresdefault (2)

Request: Boss asks you to supervise this season’s intern last seen with feet up on a desk, iPod on, Gameboy in hand.
What you should say: “Wow, that’s an interesting project. I’m really busy with the ABC assignment right now, so let me know if you want me to re-prioritize.”
Why it works: “Asking boss to prioritize tasks for you means so do not have to actually say “no,” Breitman says. If told to just squeeze the new task in, then do it. But keep a list of all the extra work you’ve done for your next review.
You shouldn’t feel guilty: You really do have enough work to do as it is.
Avoid the situation in the future: If extra tasks keep getting dumped on your desk, ask your boss for a meeting. Explain that the added assignments are making it hard to do your primary job properly. Ask if she wants to review your job description and renegotiate your salary while she’s at it.  AAEAAQAAAAAAAANxAAAAJDczZjg2NDEyLTE1Y2QtNDllNi1hNjIwLWY2MzgyYzc0YTA2Mg

Say No for the Sake of Your Sanity

Request: A friend asks to borrow car because own in shop to repair dent got while driving, talking on phone, and unwrapping juice-box straw.
What you should say: “I do not lend anything worth more than $1,000.” Try to avoid “I don’t have insurance for a non-family member, insurance policies cover the car, not specific drivers. If friend got into accident, it could make your premium go up. If you have time, offer her a ride instead.
Why it works: “Avoid blame on you,” explains author Patti Breitman. “Don’t indicate you don’t trust the friend.”
Why you shouldn’t feel guilty: “Your car is probably the first or second most valuable thing you own,” says Breitman. “You’re protecting a big financial asset.” Plus, if friend gets accident relationship might be totalled, too.
Avoid the situation in the future: Let your friends know that while you’re typically a generous lender (“Of course you can borrow my snorkeling gear!”), your car is off-limits. Say-NO-pic

Request: A guest offers to bring seven-layer dip to party. But doesn’t really go with Greek theme you planned.
What you should say: “What a kind offer thank you. I have already planned the menu, but do you have any dietary restrictions I should know about? Be nice and ask to bringing something, like bottle of wine or a loaf of bread.
Why it works: Acknowledging the offer of generosity let person know did all they could. If the person has dietary restrictions so cooking difficult for you, relent and let bring a dish to eat.
Why you shouldn’t feel guilty: Person offered to be courteous. Saying no, you gives license to relax, enjoy hospitality.
Avoid the situation in the future: When you invite people, ask if there is anything they don’t eat, because you want to make sure your menu works for everyone. Emphasize the word menu, so people know that you have a plan or a theme for the meal (and so they won’t try to upset it).thumbs-down

Request: Future sister-in-law wants to throw baby shower you don’t want fuss.
What you should say: “I really don’t want a party, but thank you so much for offering. Why don’t we splurge on visit to a day spa instead?”
Why it works: “Not everyone likes a party in honour or wants to be center of attention with a paper plate of bows on her head,” says etiquette writers Kim Izzo and Ceri Marsh. Unless she has her own agenda, she should understand.
Why you shouldn’t feel guilty: “If you decline, you are taking away pleasure from the people who care about you, but it is occasion to shout about or be quiet about,” say Izzo and Marsh.
Avoid the situation in the future: Announce what you would prefer to do instead of a shower before anyone offers to throw one.

 

DO NOT READ THE NEWS?

520c2a94c1ba0.image (1)Billy Graham said, read the Bible and watch the Bible unfold in the news. The news is full of global events setting the stage towards fulfilment of Rapture and Armageddon. Updates everyday reveals the contents of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation precisely as Jesus foretold. It is also written in the Bible that the truth you know sets you free. So those free in God in Christ see the signs and wonders of the supernatural events testifying of God’s Glory in majestic created universe and firmament. Weather forecasts and storms, flood warnings, fire risks, other warnings to the world are relayed constantly throughout the day to alert people. Various channels also provide documentaries to educate the public and provide entertainment. Publicity generated by news creates awareness for injustices all over the work to make people bring change.hqdefaultAlthough the news is at times repetitive news of exact words repeated every 15-30 minutes overwhelming but ensures people are alerted, updated, reminded of more breaking news. Some however find the news irrelevant so are advising people not to watch news at all to prevent fear mongering. They argue “In the past few decades, the fortunate have recognised the hazards of living with an overabundance of food (obesity, diabetes) so started to change diets. But most do not understand news is to the mind what sugar is to the body. News is easy to digest so media feeds small bites of trivial matter, tidbits that don’t really concern lives or don’t require thinking. So experience no saturation unlike the reading of books and the long magazine articles (which require thinking). The limitless quantities of news flashes are bright-coloured candies for mind. Today reached same point in relation to global information faced 20 years ago similar in regard to food. People are beginning to recognise how toxic news can be:DEVELOPING_NEWS27News misleads. For example following an event of a car driving over a bridge, and if bridge collapses, the news media focuses on the car, person in car, where from, journey etc not the structural root causes of instability of the bridge. That’s underlying risk lurking or lurk in other bridges. The car is flashy, dramatic and a person in the news cheap to produce.’ News leads ‘misleads’ with completely wrong risk map in heads. Some news are over-rated. Chronic stress is under-rated. The collapse of Lehman Brothers is overrated. Fiscal irresponsibility is under-rated. Astronauts are over-rated. Nurses are under-rated it continued.

Article also said, some are ‘not rational enough if exposed to press. Watching an airplane crash on television changes an attitude toward that risk, regardless of its real probability. Bankers, economists with powerful incentives to compensate news-borne hazards could not prevent the credit crunch. So said, ‘cut yourself off from news consumption entirely. To advise people to boycott news totally is not possible because lives are saved by the dedicated services of newsmakers. Everyone has their own perspectives in life so entitled to their opinions, views or dimension of relevant suitable news If anyone feels strongly influenced to an extent of depression then it is better not spend whole day watching the news. In life moderation is required and so quick check of the weather forecast help the people to dress suitably, if they need an umbrella from rain, wind or the storm causing hazards warning drivers to be careful on roads. The media educates the public to warn of spread of diseases and where to avoid. So the news is not just exclusively consistently bad news. One has options to change the channel or switch it off if too busy at times. With unpredictable weather, storms tsunami, or fires, news becomes available source of information during crises to alert and save lifes. The Christian Channel News is available teaching and explaining the endtime signs and wonders to preapare people to store food, water and blankets or essentials before disaster happens.DBHOEg5VYAEQIGR

News is irrelevant. In approximately 10,000 news stories read in the last 12 months, name one that allowed you to make a better decision about a serious matter affecting your life, your career or your business. To them consumption of news is irrelevant but people find it very difficult to recognise so. It’s much easier to recognise what’s new, relevant versus new is the fundamental battle of the current age. So Media organisations want people to believe ‘news offers the sort of competitive advantage many fall for.’ Get anxious if cut off from flow of news consumption as a competitive disadvantage. The less news consumed, the bigger advantage one has they said.59397

News has no explanatory power. News items bubbles popping on surface of a deeper world is accumulating facts but not helpful to understand world in their opinion. “Relationship is inverted so important stories are non-stories and slow, and powerful movements develop below journalist radar has transforming effect. The more ‘news factoids’ digested the less of bigger picture is understood.” If more information leads to the higher economic success, journalists will be at top of the pyramid. That’s not the case.” Journalists not relay news from various places in all weathers risking life to tell world stories affecting lives. Journalists do not vlog their personal lives in news as the YouTube videos do.58a712ece126b28e55c15b57457edc17

News is toxic to body. It constantly triggers limbic system. Panicky stories spur release of cascades, glucocorticoid (cortisol). This deregulates the immune system and inhibits release of growth hormones. So body in a state of chronic stress. High glucocorticoid levels causes indigestion, lack of growth of cells, hair, bone, nervousness and susceptibility to infections. A potential side-effect causes fear aggression, tunnel-vision and also desensitisation and lethargy.Presidency

News increases cognitive errors. News feeds cognitive error towards the confirmation bias. Warren Buffett: said “What the human being is best at doing is interpreting all new information so their prior conclusions remain intact.” News exacerbates this flaw to become prone to overconfidence, to take stupid risks and misjudge opportunities. It also exacerbates a cognitive error story bias. Brains crave stories “make sense,” even if they don’t correspond to reality. Any journalists who writes, “market moved because of X” or a is company bankrupt because of Y” is cheap “explanation” to the world they also stated in the article.57009_1280x720News inhibits thinking. Since thinking requires concentration, concentration requires uninterrupted time. The News is specifically engineered to interrupt so like “viruses distract attention for own purposes. The News makes some people shallow thinkers but worse than that, it severely affects memory. There are two types of memory. Long-range memory’s capacity is nearly infinite, but working memory is limited to a certain amount of slippery data. The short-term to long-term memory for brain to understand passes through it. If brain passageway is disrupted nothing gets through. Because news disrupts concentration, it weakens comprehension. Online news has worse impact. In a 2001 study two scholars in Canada showed that the comprehension declines as the number of hyperlinks in a document increases. Whenever a link appears the brain makes the choice not to click so distracting. News interrupts the system of focus and concentration.153637_1280x720

News works like a drug. Ongoing story develops so people want to know how they continued. Hundreds of arbitrary storylines in a head craves increasingly compelling information hard to ignore. Scientists thought dense connections in brain formed in the 100 billion neurons inside skulls were largely fixed by time one reached adulthood. But nerve cells routinely break old connection forming new ones. As more news is consumed the neural circuits devoted to skimming and multitasking ignores reading skills for deep thinking and profound focus. Most news consumers even if avid book readers lost ability to absorb lengthy articles or books. After four, five pages get tired, concentration vanishes, and restless. Not because older or schedules or more onerous but physical structure of their brains changed from the news.”55076_1280x720

News wastes time. Read newspaper for 15 minutes each morning, check news for 15 minutes during lunch and then 15 minutes before going to bed, add five minutes here and there when at work, then count distraction and refocusing time loses half day a week. Information is no longer scarce commodity attention is. If responsible with money and health or reputation health why not the mind?

News makes some passive. The News stories overwhelmingly about things one cannot influence by daily repetition not acted upon makes some passive. It grinds down until adopts the worldview pessimistic, desensitized, sarcastic and fatalistic. The scientific term is “learned helplessness.”So not surprised if a news consumption, partially contributes to the widespread disease of depression.Weather_Alert_Bumper_Blue_1280

News kills creativity. Finally, the news limits creativity. Great mathematicians, novelists, composers and entrepreneurs often produce their most creative works at a young age. Their brains enjoy wide, uninhabited space that emboldens them to come up to pursue novel ideas. There is no single truly creative mind who is a news junkie not a writer, not composer, mathematician, physician or a scientist, musician, designer, architect or painter. But viciously uncreative mind consume news like drugs si come up with just old solutions by reading the news. However those looking for new solutions they said do not listen to the news.breaking-news-new-photo-4.gif

Its necessary society has journalism in a different way especially investigative journalism is relevant. Reporting news on policies, institutions, uncovers truth. But the important findings do not have to arrive in form of news. Long journal articles or in-depth books are good too.

The writer of the article said, has gone without news for 4 years so sees, feels and reports effects of freedom from the first-hand: less disruption, less anxiety, deeper thinking, more time and insight. Concludes its not easy, but it’s worth it.

This is an edited extract from an essay first published at dobelli.com. The Art of Thinking Clearly: Better Thinking, Better Decisions by Rolf Dobelli is published by Sceptre, £9.99. Buy it for £7.99 at guardianbookshop.co.uk

In the past few decades, the fortunate among us have recognised the hazards of living with an overabundance of food (obesity, diabetes) and have started to change our diets. But most of us do not yet understand that news is to the mind what sugar is to the body. News is easy to digest. The media feeds us small bites of trivial matter, tidbits that don’t really concern our lives and don’t require thinking. That’s why we experience almost no saturation. Unlike reading books and long magazine articles (which require thinking), we can swallow limitless quantities of news flashes, which are bright-coloured candies for the mind. Today, we have reached the same point in relation to information that we faced 20 years ago in regard to food. We are beginning to recognise how toxic news can be.

News misleads. Take the following event (borrowed from Nassim Taleb). A car drives over a bridge, and the bridge collapses. What does the news media focus on? The car. The person in the car. Where he came from. Where he planned to go. How he experienced the crash (if he survived). But that is all irrelevant. What’s relevant? The structural stability of the bridge. That’s the underlying risk that has been lurking, and could lurk in other bridges. But the car is flashy, it’s dramatic, it’s a person (non-abstract), and it’s news that’s cheap to produce. News leads us to walk around with the completely wrong risk map in our heads. So terrorism is over-rated. Chronic stress is under-rated. The collapse of Lehman Brothers is overrated. Fiscal irresponsibility is under-rated. Astronauts are over-rated. Nurses are under-rated.

We are not rational enough to be exposed to the press. Watching an airplane crash on television is going to change your attitude toward that risk, regardless of its real probability. If you think you can compensate with the strength of your own inner contemplation, you are wrong. Bankers and economists – who have powerful incentives to compensate for news-borne hazards – have shown that they cannot. The only solution: cut yourself off from news consumption entirely.

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News is irrelevant. Out of the approximately 10,000 news stories you have read in the last 12 months, name one that – because you consumed it – allowed you to make a better decision about a serious matter affecting your life, your career or your business. The point is: the consumption of news is irrelevant to you. But people find it very difficult to recognise what’s relevant. It’s much easier to recognise what’s new. The relevant versus the new is the fundamental battle of the current age. Media organisations want you to believe that news offers you some sort of a competitive advantage. Many fall for that. We get anxious when we’re cut off from the flow of news. In reality, news consumption is a competitive disadvantage. The less news you consume, the bigger the advantage you have.

News has no explanatory power. News items are bubbles popping on the surface of a deeper world. Will accumulating facts help you understand the world? Sadly, no. The relationship is inverted. The important stories are non-stories: slow, powerful movements that develop below journalists’ radar but have a transforming effect. The more “news factoids” you digest, the less of the big picture you will understand. If more information leads to higher economic success, we’d expect journalists to be at the top of the pyramid. That’s not the case.

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News is toxic to your body. It constantly triggers the limbic system. Panicky stories spur the release of cascades of glucocorticoid (cortisol). This deregulates your immune system and inhibits the release of growth hormones. In other words, your body finds itself in a state of chronic stress. High glucocorticoid levels cause impaired digestion, lack of growth (cell, hair, bone), nervousness and susceptibility to infections. The other potential side-effects include fear, aggression, tunnel-vision and desensitisation.

News increases cognitive errors. News feeds the mother of all cognitive errors: confirmation bias. In the words of Warren Buffett: “What the human being is best at doing is interpreting all new information so that their prior conclusions remain intact.” News exacerbates this flaw. We become prone to overconfidence, take stupid risks and misjudge opportunities. It also exacerbates another cognitive error: the story bias. Our brains crave stories that “make sense” – even if they don’t correspond to reality. Any journalist who writes, “The market moved because of X” or “the company went bankrupt because of Y” is an idiot. I am fed up with this cheap way of “explaining” the world.

News inhibits thinking. Thinking requires concentration. Concentration requires uninterrupted time. News pieces are specifically engineered to interrupt you. They are like viruses that steal attention for their own purposes. News makes us shallow thinkers. But it’s worse than that. News severely affects memory. There are two types of memory. Long-range memory’s capacity is nearly infinite, but working memory is limited to a certain amount of slippery data. The path from short-term to long-term memory is a choke-point in the brain, but anything you want to understand must pass through it. If this passageway is disrupted, nothing gets through. Because news disrupts concentration, it weakens comprehension. Online news has an even worse impact. In a 2001 study two scholars in Canada showed that comprehension declines as the number of hyperlinks in a document increases. Why? Because whenever a link appears, your brain has to at least make the choice not to click, which in itself is distracting. News is an intentional interruption system.

News works like a drug. As stories develop, we want to know how they continue. With hundreds of arbitrary storylines in our heads, this craving is increasingly compelling and hard to ignore. Scientists used to think that the dense connections formed among the 100 billion neurons inside our skulls were largely fixed by the time we reached adulthood. Today we know that this is not the case. Nerve cells routinely break old connections and form new ones. The more news we consume, the more we exercise the neural circuits devoted to skimming and multitasking while ignoring those used for reading deeply and thinking with profound focus. Most news consumers – even if they used to be avid book readers – have lost the ability to absorb lengthy articles or books. After four, five pages they get tired, their concentration vanishes, they become restless. It’s not because they got older or their schedules became more onerous. It’s because the physical structure of their brains has changed.

News wastes time. If you read the newspaper for 15 minutes each morning, then check the news for 15 minutes during lunch and 15 minutes before you go to bed, then add five minutes here and there when you’re at work, then count distraction and refocusing time, you will lose at least half a day every week. Information is no longer a scarce commodity. But attention is. You are not that irresponsible with your money, reputation or health. Why give away your mind?

News makes us passive. News stories are overwhelmingly about things you cannot influence. The daily repetition of news about things we can’t act upon makes us passive. It grinds us down until we adopt a worldview that is pessimistic, desensitised, sarcastic and fatalistic. The scientific term is “learned helplessness”. It’s a bit of a stretch, but I would not be surprised if news consumption, at least partially contributes to the widespread disease of depression.

News kills creativity. Finally, things we already know limit our creativity. This is one reason that mathematicians, novelists, composers and entrepreneurs often produce their most creative works at a young age. Their brains enjoy a wide, uninhabited space that emboldens them to come up with and pursue novel ideas. I don’t know a single truly creative mind who is a news junkie – not a writer, not a composer, mathematician, physician, scientist, musician, designer, architect or painter. On the other hand, I know a bunch of viciously uncreative minds who consume news like drugs. If you want to come up with old solutions, read news. If you are looking for new solutions, don’t.

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Society needs journalism – but in a different way. Investigative journalism is always relevant. We need reporting that polices our institutions and uncovers truth. But important findings don’t have to arrive in the form of news. Long journal articles and in-depth books are good, too.

I have now gone without news for four years, so I can see, feel and report the effects of this freedom first-hand: less disruption, less anxiety, deeper thinking, more time, more insights. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.

This is an edited extract from an essay first published at dobelli.com. The Art of Thinking Clearly: Better Thinking, Better Decisions by Rolf Dobelli is published by Sceptre, £9.99. Buy it for £7.99 at guardianbookshop.co.uk

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DEPRESSED MUMS SINGING

Mum singing to babySinging speeds up’ recovery from post-natal depression. Singing helps mothers recover from post-natal or post partum depression more quickly study suggests. Researchers found women who took part in group singing sessions with their babies experienced much faster improvement in their symptoms than those who did not. The study, published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, looked at 134 mothers with post-natal depression. Early recovery is seen to be crucial to limit effects on mother and baby. Post-natal depression is estimated to affect one in eight new mothers. And previous studies have indicated singing can help improve the mental health of older people and those with dementia, but this is the first controlled study of its effect on post-natal depression. The women were placed into three groups:Mother and baby music group
  • one took part in group singing
  • another took part in in creative play sessions
  • a third group received their usual care, which could include family support, antidepressants or mindfulness

The singing workshops saw the mothers learning lullabies and songs from around the world with their babies and creating new songs together about motherhood. And those with moderate to severe symptoms of post-natal depression reported a much faster improvement than mothers in the usual care and play groups. All the groups improved over the 10 weeks, but in the first six weeks, singing group already reported an average 35% decrease in depressive symptoms. The Principal investigator Dr Rosie Perkins said the study, although small, was significant because it was important to tackle the symptoms as quickly as possible. “Post-natal depression is debilitating for the mothers and their families. As research indicates some women think accessible singing with their baby helps speed up recovery at one of the most vulnerable times of their lives,” she said. The lead author Dr Daisy Fancourt at University College London, said singing is another useful therapy to offer women. babies with musical instrumentsMany mothers have concerns about taking depression medication whilst breast-feeding and uptake of psychological therapies with new mothers is relatively low,” she said. “These results are really exciting as suggests something as simple as referring mothers to this community activities could support their recovery.” Dr Trudi Seneviratne, who chairs the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Perinatal Faculty, said: “It’s exciting to hear about the growing evidence base for novel psychosocial interventions like singing to facilitate a more rapid recovery for women with post-natal depression. “I look forward to more work in this area in the future, as it will be enjoyed by both mothers and their babies.”Since the study, Breathe Arts Health Research has started running singing workshops in partnership with the Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust for women with post-natal depression across the south London boroughs of Lambeth and Southwark. Community and socialising helps overcome isolation and loneliness of new mothers. The feel good factor of singing with the babies is definitely a win- win situation lifting the mood and going out of the home helps to lift their spirit too. Isolated mothers can organise own singing sessions with friends in communities and their babies benefit too from a calm, happy, relaxed mother. If child raising is recognised or considered as a valid hardwork and to celebrate mothers and carers the world will become a better and safer place. So families must be prioritised and to help mother’s like Finland pays both parents to raise their children. Depression is caused by loneliness, pressure, stress of modern living without extended family support and children become depressed too. So it is good news to help mother’s and also to improve motherhood as an honourable collaboration with God’s idea to multiply to replenish the earth.