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Turbo Charge Your Life

Part 1 
You know one of the biggest fears people have is public speaking…you’ve all heard that people would rather die than speak in public…or as Jerry Seinfeld says, “People would rather be in a coffin than giving the eulogy”. I always tell people who are shy or scared of making fools of themselves that no one cares about them anyway…people are far to busy thinking about themselves.  

Imagine if Margaret Mitchell had let 38 publisher rejections of “Gone With The Wind” stop her from trying to get it published. Imagine if Thomas Edison had listened to his teachers who told him that he was too stupid to learn anything. Imagine if Elvis Presley had listened to Jimmy Denny, manager of the Grand Ole Opry, who fired Elvis after just one performance telling him, “You ain’t goin’ nowhere son. You ought to go back to drivin’ a truck.” 

Benjamin Disraeli said: “Life is too short to be little”  

French Author, Andre Maurois Wrote: “Often we allow ourselves to be upset by small things we should despise and forget. We lose many irreplaceable hours brooding over grievances that, in a year’s time, will be forgotten by us and by everybody. No, let us devote our life to worthwhile actions and feelings. to great thoughts, real affections and enduring undertakings.”

In other words. we have limited time here, don’t waste it on the “small stuff”. Dr. Robert Eliot, Professor of Cardiology, University of Nebraska suffered a massive heart attack at the age of 44. He was forced to spend a few months looking at life from the perspective of a patient, rather than a doctor. There was no history of heart disease in his family and he had a feeling that his heart attack was the result of the constant stress in his life. Dr. Eliot, who now heads the Institute of Stress Medicine in Scottsdale, Arizona, estimated that as many as 500,000 Americans die each year from stress-related heart conditions alone. Some people tend to react to stress by overreacting in ways that may damage their heart and blood vessels by producing excess adrenaline.

As a heart patient, Dr. Eliot offered two rules to live by:

Rule #1: Don’t sweat the small stuff
Rule # 2: It’s all small stuff

Lot’s of people have ambitions and dreams in life – whether it’s to travel, to start a new career, to get out of bad relationships…whatever…and they wait till the time is right to pursue their dreams. They wait until they have enough money, till the kids are grown, till they lose weight, till they put together a business plan, etc. The problem with that is that a lot of talented people end up standing on the sidelines and not on the playing field.

The trick is to start before you are ready. I’m not saying to be reckless and not plan and think ahead, but don’t wait for the PERFECT time to pursue your dreams because you don’t know what that perfect time will be. Oftentimes when you start before you’re ready, the momentum of starting will propel you forward and you’ll be on your way.

Don’t let age deter you or be an excuse to keep on the sideline either. Many of our great success stories made their mark on society later in life. Who would believe that an overweight, ex-boxer-turned preacher could recapture the title of heavyweight champion of the world at age 45. George Foreman did. Who would believe that a 48-year-old widow who never owned a business before could start her own cosmetics company and turn it into a billion dollar enterprise. Mary Kay Ash did. Ray Kroc was a 52-year-old traveling salesman of milk-shake mixers before he launched McDonalds. Winston Churchill was defeated in every election for public office until he finally became the Prime Minister of England at age 62. Harland Sanders was 65 before he began selling his Kentucky Fried Chicken franchises from his car.

So it’s never to late to pursue your dreams or to start on a new goal. Don’t procrastinate.

Procrastination is such a huge problem for many people. We’ve all heard techniques against procrastination, like breaking down the task into small chunks, overcoming perfectionism, managing time properly, etc. There is a simple trick that psychologists say works best. It was discovered in the 1920′s. A psychology graduate named Bluma Zeigarnik was having tea in a cafe with her supervisor when they happened to come upon something interesting. When a customer asked for the check, the waiters could easily remember the food that had been ordered. However if the customer already paid the check and then asked about the order a few minutes later, the waiters had to struggle to remember anything about the order. The psychologists concluded that the act of paying for the meal brought a sense of closure so the waiters erased the order from their memories.

Based on this theory, Zeigarnik did some lab experiments where she asked people to start a task but didn’t allow them to finish it. She later asked people to describe the task and, like the waiters, she found that people who didn’t finish what they started remembered the task very clearly. It stuck in their minds.

The psychologists concluded that if you start an activity and don’t finish it, your mind experiences a kind of psychic anxiety until the task is completed. Now procrastinators put off starting activities because they are overwhelmed by the size of the job, but if they can push themselves to work on the activity for just a few minutes, they often feel an urge to see it to its completion. “Just a few minutes” rule is one of the best ways of getting a procrastinator to finish their work. Those few minutes of initial activity create an anxious brain that refuses to rest until the job is done.

Written by Orli Kohn



Thanksgiving Food Drive

Daily Bread Food Bank is a non-profit, charitable organization that is fighting to end hunger in our communities. Every year thousands of people across Toronto rely on food banks. Daily Bread serves these people through neighbourhood food banks and meal programs in over 170 member agencies.  In support of our local Fire Department station #422, the staff at the Old Mill Toronto held a food drive for the daily Bread Food Bank.

Boxes were placed in various staff areas throughout the Old Mill Toronto building with signs to support our mission.

           

Every staff member was encouraged to donate at least one can or jar as listed on the poster. All non-perishable food items were being collected on Friday October 11, 2013 and being delivered to our local Fire Department.

         

Every year, with the assistance of volunteers, Daily Bread Food Bank conducts a survey across the GTA of people who access food banks. For a fifth year in a row, food banks in the GTA saw over a million client visits. Did you know that 32% of Food Bank Clients are children and that 45% of adults go hungry once a week as they struggle with fixed incomes and rising food costs.

Daily Bread Food Bank is committed to providing food and resources for people experiencing hunger and poverty. Thank you to everyone who supported our food drive, we collected 11 boxes with over 350 non-perishable food items. 

          

It’s amazing what the power of a group can do to help a greater cause!



Tea, Men & Romance

Let’s talk about Men!

A friend of mine had a tea party a while back and the husband of one of the guests came early to pick her up. And he was invited in and promptly the ladies started serving him tea and gave him some cookies and cakes, and put a napkin on his lap. He was chatting and had a great time and then left with his wife.

If I told that same story a hundred or a hundred & fifty years ago people would be outraged. Women would have said how low have we come?… Women never serve men at any public or social function, men serve women.

In the Victorian and Edwardian eras – that is, from 1837 right through to 1910, (the end of the Edwardian era), the idea of men sort of sitting around at any party or social gathering and not constantly serving women would be unthinkable. A man’s character and social class was measured by his gallant treatment of women. Men were frequently invited to ladies afternoon teas and here’s why: Here’s a quote from an 1897 etiquette book for men.

Manners for Men – by Mrs. Humphry 1897
Gentlemen are in great request at 5 o’clock tea. Their duties are rather onerous if there are but one or two men and the usual crowd of ladies. They have to carry teacups about; hand sugar, cream and cakes or muffins, and keep up all the time a stream of small talk, as amusing as they can make it. They must rise every time a lady enters or leaves the room, opening the door for her exit if no one else is nearer to do it, and, if the hostess requests them, they must see the lady downstairs to her carriage or cab. With regards to the viands, a man helps himself, but not until he has seen that all the ladies in his vicinity have everything they could possibly want.

At any kind of social function, men always served women. For example at a dinner party, after the dinner was over, the ladies would rise to leave the dining room. The men sitting closest to the door would rise with the women, open the door for them, and remain standing at the door until all the women had left to go to the drawing room. Now, the servants would usually serve tea in the drawing room after dinner, and again, just as in afternoon teas, it would be the men’s job to take the empty tea cups from the women.

At a ball a woman would give her trusted man, like her brother or father, her gloves, fan, evening purse, and flowers to hold when she wanted to dance. Today, men would feel this was unmasculine, but Victorian and Edwardian men were honoured to be a woman’s most humble servant. 

Interestingly, the Victorian and Edwardian eras were extremely patriarchial. Women couldn’t vote until 1918 and 1920 in the U.S. A married woman could not own property. Married women were not allowed to make a will. A woman could not enter into a business contract without her husbands approval. A married woman who worked outside the home was not allowed to keep her earnings; her wages became the husband’s property. In short, a husband had the right to everything that was his wife’s, but she had no right to anything that was his.

Single women or “spinsters and old maids”, as they were called at the time, actually did have the right to own their earnings, widowed woman could also inherit property. In general, however unmarried women were looked down on, and had difficulty making ends meet unless they came from a wealthy family.

Here we have an extremely patriarchial society in which men are taught that real masculinity lies in worshipping and serving women. The truth was that Victorian and Edwardian men really did adore women, and they felt that having a patriarchial society would protect them. 

Men were so delicate and refined during the Victorian era that they would walk backwards when retreating from a room so as not to turn their backs on the ladies who remained. Men were required to bow slightly and lift their hats if they met a woman they knew on the street. Men were never allowed to push their attentions upon women unless the lady gave an invitation of some sort – through a card or mutual acquaintance.

Men always stood up when a lady entered or left the room. If a man was smoking when a woman walked by he would have to remove the cigar from his mouth. When dancing with a woman, men always wore gloves so that his sweat would not touch her hand or dress. 

Men who didn’t respect women were actually more frightened of other men…Rudeness, especially to a lady, was the kiss of death in Victorian society. A rude man would get “the big chill” from other men. He would be ostracized from social activities; from the sacred men’s clubs and other men might even refuse to do business with him.

Interestingly, in an 1891 issue of the Ladies Home Journal magazine, women were asked to predict what life would be like for women in the year 2000. They said they were happy that our sisters in the future will probably have freedom, rights and independence, however they said we also fear for our sisters of the future. Victorian women predicted that feminism and women’s independence by the year 2000 might lead to a sexual revolution. They predicted that if women were promiscuous without marriage or any promise of solid commitment, men would no longer respect them and chivalrous behaviour would be unfamiliar to us. A very interesting prediction!

Dedicated to Orli Kohn…