Thursday, January 31, 2008

Eight Steps to Aging Gracefully

"Recommendations for enhancing spiritual health and well-being."

Pay attention to your breath. Many cultures identify breath with spirit, seeing the breath cycle as the movement of spirit in the physical body.. Simply minding the breath is a way of expanding consciousness beyond the ego, of experiencing transcendence.

Connect with nature. You can do this by walking or sitting in a natural setting; a city park will do just fine. Allow yourself to slow down, drop your usual routines, and just absorb the influence of the place.

Make a list of people in your life in whose company you feel more alive, happy, and optimistic. Make an effort to spend more time with them. Our spiritual selves resonate with others, and that connection is a healing.

Bring flowers into your home and enjoy their beauty.

Listen to music that you find inspirational and uplifting.

Admire a work of art that raises your spirits: a painting, sculpture, or work of architecture.

Reach out and try to resume connection with someone from whom you are estranged; practice forgiveness.

Do some sort of service work. Give some of your time and energy to help others. The possibilities are endless but do not include just writing a check to charity.
The suggestions above are intended to help you become more aware of your spiritual self. Any activity that makes you feel more alive, more connected to others and to nature, less isolated, more comfortable with change, is beneficial. It will enhance your physical and mental health. It will help you accept the fact of your aging. It will help you to age gracefully.

Smiling: A Simple Way to Feel Good

*Smiling changes your attitude, raises your confidence, and makes you more attractive.*

As we rush through our busy days accomplishing our tasks—work, kids, shopping, cleaning, and eating on the go, we often complain that we don’t feel good. There is a simple, quick, and effective way that you can feel better throughout the day and also be more attractive.

All you have to do is smile more. Smiling changes your attitude, whether you realize it or not. If you have any doubts, next time you feel down, start smiling and thinking positive thoughts and see what happens.

You can’t help but have a better attitude when you smile.

Smiling also raises your confidence. Smiling affects our emotions because of a brain-body connection. It triggers scientifically measurable activity in the left frontal cortex—the area of the brain where happiness is registered. In fact, there is science dedicated to the study of facial expressions and responses called FACS – Facial Action Coding System. Your face has 44 muscles between the skin, cartilage, blood, and bone that you contort, flex, and move. This lets you make over 5000 different types of expressions. That’s a lot of expressions! And each will have a different affect on your feelings and those looking at you.

Admit it, when someone is smiling aren’t you drawn in? Don’t you enjoy that person’s company more? We all do. Smiling is a very important part of connecting and getting to know someone.

As your life-coach, I offer you this push. I want you to smile. Go ahead. “SMILE!” Great! Let’s do it again but this time breathe in through your nose, let it out through your mouth and smile as you let the air out. Doesn’t that feel good? The breathing is very important. Your nostrils are attached to the limbic system. The limbic system controls your emotions, and when you breathe in deep through your nose it has a calming effect on you. So breathe in and smile.

Let’s add a final touch: “positive thinking.” It doesn’t hurt to get excited and say out loud to yourself, “I feel good and I am taking control and finding my opportunities!” Go ahead and do it. Feel that positive energy in your body and the release of tension.

Now that you know how good smiling is for you, make a conscious effort to use this smile exercise a minimum of six times throughout your day. When you smile remember to breathe in through your nose and think positive thoughts. This I guarantee will make a positive impact on your day and in your life.
In fact, the result from this simple exercise will have a huge effect. Here’s a basic fact about energy: it is attracted to energy of a similar frequency. So when you smile not only will you make yourself feel better, you will also attract positive energy into your life.

So smile!

Allow Good Things Into Your Life

Everyone gets off track from time to time – it’s normal and a consequence of living in a complex, stressful world. Attract abundance and maintain a good mental equivalent by raising your vibration. Raising your vibration means giving loving attention, or energy, to what you want. We get faster results by attuning to an idea of what we want and then allowing it to come into our lives, because we are already in a state of thankfulness that it is here. That is another reason we write affirmations in the present moment: there really isn’t any other time in our lives that is important. Live in the now, thank in the now, love in the now, and allow prosperity to happen in the now, knowing it is already present. When we concentrate on the effects of the world, rather than our supply, we lower our vibrational quality, making it much harder to demonstrate what we want. You’ve heard the concept of alignment and finding “center” from many spiritual teachers, achieved by chanting, prayer, meditation, chakra balancing, even martial arts or exercise. Those activities help raise your vibrational quality by helping you to identify or resonate with the true self, so that goodness can manifest. Essentially, you are attuning to your God-force. That is why in affirmations, we focus on the “I am” within us and align our vibrational quality with that of our God/Goddess energy.

We do a pretty job of cultivating our own negative programming and often bring to the table a lot of negative assumptions about money and abundance that lower our vibration. You might recognize these.

It was never meant for me to have money.

I’m poor but clean (or good, pure, happy, content).

If I want to lead a spiritual life and be closer to God, it means I must have to give everything up.

I’ll be like Christ (or Buddha, Rumi, Mohammed, Mother Teresa) because not having any material wealth means I am purer (or righteous, religious, going to get a better afterlife).

You can live a pure life only without material items.

I don’t want to learn about how money works – I’ll just let ______________do it.

I just want to spend money.

I only care about large sums of money. Why should I pick up a penny off the sidewalk?

It’s not worth my time, so I’ll just do a mediocre (or lousy) job. This shows overall disrespect for your true supply when it’s giving you an opportunity. Choose not to do the job instead!

Prosperity means I have to take something away from someone else.

I can’t enjoy wealth because I feel guilty.

I will never be able to afford that.You are building a “can’t afford” consciousness. You will bring more events and things into your life that you cannot afford.

I can’t imagine having a million dollars – I wouldn’t know what to do with it.

If I had a million dollars, I’d give it all away.

If I become wealthy, why should I be generous? I struggled so long, I’m going to let everyone else know how it feels not to have anything.

People who have money are wealthy snobs.

Being rich is selfish. You can have too much money.

Rich people consume all the world’s natural resources. I love the earth too much to be rich.

Money represents temptation and evil.

I don’t deserve what I really want.

I don’t want this deal not to work out. If you’re constantly worried about lack, you’ll attract it.

I just want to be rich.This one is particularly self-defeating, because you’ll spend your energy on getting the money without any focus on how to do it.

You won’t be able to demonstrate the law of being with this type of mental muck. Start affirming that you are a prosperity magnet because you possess the boundless wealth of the universe without exception. Spend time raising your vibration. Say that you attract all good things today, not tomorrow or next week. Love yourself, praise your abilities in the present moment, and build feelings of confidence.

I am a prosperous, intelligent, capable individual who can do anything.

I deserve health, wealth, love, and happiness in my life. I thank the universe for my opportunities.

I pay my bills with love and joy… Come on, you can do this one!
…I love that I have the ability to pay this bill, and I rejoice in the goods and services I have received as a result of this bill.

I see the abundance in the universe everywhere I go. I see it in myself.

I am a loving individual, who is part of unlimited creation; therefore, I am unlimited in what I can do.

I am my divine self and I choose to demonstrate my highest good. I prosper everywhere I go because I love life.

I am an open channel to receive my abundance from the universe.

I am open to new opportunities.

Remain open to the possibility that the universe is infinitely more creative than you in choosing the channel for abundance to flow through. If you outline exactly how you want to receive your good, you are definitely giving the idea some clarity. But be flexible. Devising a mental equivalent to own the winning lottery ticket might be a way to manifest abundance, but you are limiting the avenues by which good can come to you. Likewise, it’s great to visualize opening the front door to discover a huge basketful of money, but it is more likely that the universe will present prosperity through people and opportunities. Be attentive and keep your options open.

Maintain high vibrational quality by practicing verbal harmlessness. Always extend loving thoughts to those around us. What you see in others is what you will see in yourself, and you’ll reproduce that vibration in your immediate environment. You are attracting that which you are, or think you are. If you are attuning to the highest vision of your true self, how can you go wrong? There are also two words you need to eradicate from your vocabulary: hate and try. Hate, because you can’t have hate as part of your mindset even if you are talking about the corned beef sandwich you had for lunch. Try, because if you say you will try something, it implies that you aren’t going to do it now, only sometime in the future.

Learn to set a mental equivalent of gentleness and generosity and act with poise, grace, loving-kindness, ease, and serenity. You’ll be surprised how little practice you will need until you permanently internalize those peaceful qualities within and find others possessing those qualities who are part of your everyday experience.

Practicing verbal harmlessness also applies to what you say about you. Nothing lowers your vibration quicker than self-criticism. Whatever you say about yourself applies to everyone because we’re the same soul substance – and what you see in a mirror is what you will see in every person in your life. If I say I am weak, poor, or broke, I am saying you are too, because we are the same substance. Further, if I say I am stupid, I have just called the Divine stupid – not empowered thinking! By putting yourself down, you are conditioning your mind to believe it, which means you are focusing on lack in yourself. How can the infinite self lack? Become conscious of the spirit within you as your infinite supply. Know that you are composed of perfect soul material. Keep your affirmations in the present tense, be positive, stop using hate and try, stop self-criticism, and know that you are already wonderfully rich.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

'You Are Beautiful. Now Say It'

"Simple Abundance"start appreciating your own beauty and worth.

Undoubtedly, we become what we envisage.

You are beautiful. Right now. Today. Just as you are, just the way you look as you read those three words: You. Are. Beautiful. Say it slowly aloud, as if the phrase were a foreign language, for it probably is.You are beautiful. Now say it in the first person singular.

"I am beautiful."

Do you know that? If so, remind yourself of this glorious fact every day. If not, it is time to become beautiful in your own eyes. This will require a makeover of sorts, but not the kind you think.

Learning to love the way you look has nothing to do with starting a diet or reshaping your eyebrows. Accepting and embracing your authentic beauty means seeing yourself from the inside out. I love me, I love me not--I love me.

Beauty may only be skin deep, but there is nothing superficial about the complicated relationship that a woman has with her appearance. How you see yourself and how you think other people see you—your body image—is deeply connected to how you feel about yourself.

The effects of a negative body image can be devastating. If you don't like the way you look, you probably don't like the woman you are. And those feelings of worthlessness, self-consciousness, and inadequacy will insinuate their way into nearly every area of your life—into your friendships, your career, your romances, and, most importantly, your relationship with yourself.

A positive body image is equally powerful. It is not an instant solution to all of life's problems, but a starting point, a spark that can set off a fabulous chain reaction. Loving how you look when you catch a glimpse of yourself in a mirror or store window paves the path of self-love, and with that acceptance comes self-esteem, confidence, and authentic beauty, a radiance that glows from within.

* A beauty that is more than skin deep. *

Looking in the mirror is a startling subjective experience. When facing her reflection, one woman may say to herself, "I wish my hips were smaller," or "My fat hips make me ugly." Or she could say, "My curves make me sexy." In each example, the hips are the same—it's how a woman feels about them that's different. But where do these feelings come from? Whether or not you realize it, you've spent your entire life developing them, honing them, cloning them. Transforming the messages communicated by society, your family, your friends, your rivals, and your enemies into cellular memory.

"As preschoolers, boys and girls have already learned the lessons about physical appearance that our society teaches," explains psychologist Thomas Cash, author of "What Do You See When You Look in the Mirror?" "They know that lovely Cinderella gets the prince; her ugly and mean stepsisters do not. From childhood on . . . we judge our self-worth by the physical standards we've absorbed." The world's standards—to be extraordinarily thin, conventionally attractive, and forever young—are uncompromising and unrealistic, yet so pervasive in the media that women who do not conform (and who does?) feel flawed, inferior, unsuccessful, unlovable.
Society's ideals are reinforced in children by parents who overemphasize the importance of appearance, consciously or unconsciously. Their messages, be they subtle or painfully obvious, are expressed in dozens of ways: Were you put on a diet as a child or compared unfavorably to a sibling? Or were you praised for your prettiness, made to feel that it was your looks that made you lovable? Did your father disparage your mother for the way she looked? Or did she obsess about her own appearance? Don't discount the influence of friends and classmates: Being teased as a child or ostracized as a teenager can undermine the efforts of the most accepting parents.

Do you have memories of experiences that might have contributed to the way you see yourself today? As an adult, you may be able to "understand" them, to understand that your parents' criticisms did not mean they didn't love you, or that the bullies at school were acting purely out of their own insecurities. But this doesn't make the memories any less hurtful or their hold on you any less powerful. However, facing them, before you face yourself in the mirror, is the crucial first step in reshaping your body image.

A lifetime pattern of self-denigration is not going to disappear overnight. You're going to have to learn how to replace your automatic criticisms with praise. Self-admiration takes many forms. It can and should include the new compliments you pay to yourself everyday. But the most powerful self-compliment of all is honoring the promises you make to your own soul.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


It is the dream of every woman to have a beautiful, fresh and youthful skin. The first step in looking younger begins with what you decide to put into your mouth. Your diet and lifestyle plays a major part in deciding the beauty of your skin. Most people think of a diet as being appropriate only for getting a beautiful figure, however eating the right kind of foods and following a proper diet will put you on the fast track to a healthy body and healthy and glowing skin.

The secret to a beautiful, healthy and glowing skin is FRUITS. Include plenty of fruits in your diet and you will see the difference within a week. Fruit is essential for both inner and outer beauty since it enhances the beauty of your skin and hair.What makes fruit so wonderful is that it is rich in skin and hair enhancing vitamins, acids, and enzymes.

Fruit can be used in just about every beauty product to cleanse, freshen, tone, and condition our bodies.

Find out the characteristics of the following fruits and what wonders they can do to your skin:

Apples: Apples can used as great conditioner and toner. They have been used for centuries for their skin-healing powers. Add a cup of apple juice to your bath to cleanse and soften your skin. The juice of apple can be used as breathe freshener. Apple juice when applied to your hair scalp can prevent dandruff. Use as a final rinse after shampooing your hair.

Lemons: A classic home beauty ingredient, lemons are used to cleanse and freshen the skin and hair. Use lemon slices to soften rough skin spots such as elbows and heels. Lemon slices also help deodorize and mix a few teaspoons of lemon juice in your bath and you will feel fresh the whole day. Lemon juice can be added to your favourite cleanser or shampoo to refresh and tone your scalp. It also helps prevent dandruff.

Strawberry: Strawberry can be used for conditioning and skin toning treatment. They are rich in salicylic acid an ingredient found in many commercial acne creams and thus are the best treatment for troubled or teenage skin. Mix 1/2-cup fresh strawberries with a tablespoon of sour cream for a weekly facial mask. Eating fresh berries will also help whiten your teeth and keep your breath fresh.

Banana: Banana can be used for moisturising and soothing your skin and hair. They are rich in protein and natural fats and can be used by all skin types. An easy facemask that will make your skin smooth is to apply mashed banana over your skin and keep it for 15 minutes, rinse off with warm water and moisturize well. Mashed banana also makes a wonderful hair conditioner mixed with a teaspoon or two of honey.

Pineapple: Like papaya pineapples are also good skin softeners, which cleanse and rejuvenate dull and dry skin, especially for classic rough skin spots like knees, elbows, and heels. Use a slice of pineapple as you would a sponge or loofah to scrub your body in the bath or shower.

Papaya: Papaya is rich in natural enzymes and is the best treatment for cleansing your skin. For having a fresh and glowing skin apply the oaste of mashed papaya and 3 teaspoons of aloe vera gel and massage all over your body monthly. Leave on your skin for no more than five minutes and rinse thoroughly. Do not use on your face and avoid sensitive skin areas.

Peaches: Peaches are best for soothing and cleansing dry skin. Mash a fresh peach and combine with a tablespoon of plain yogurt to make a smooth paste. Apply on the skin and keep it for 15 mins and then wash off with cold water.


"If you will help someone & you're the same person who will pull him down it is better not to help at all."

"Cheaters are the sisters of liars who celebrates their victory decieving the innocent,for them i pity bec. they are not aware that the real victims are those who commited the sin,for they will be haunted till their last breath."

"It's better to live alone than to live with bunch of hypocrites."

"Self-trust,knowing your true self-worth has a big difference between being arrogant.Arrogance, are those people who are to proud of themselves using their advantaged to pull other people down.Self-trust, inspires people to be better."

"You should believe in yourself even others don't ,even the world go against you,if you know you are right,stand up & have the courage to fight for what you believe."

"You might be a LOSER to the eyes of the majority but come to think of it,The true FOOLS are those people who just goes with the flow without using their heads."

"Gossiping is a manifestation of people who live their lives in misery,they are so desperate that they waste their time minding other lives."

"Practice helping others just for the sake of helping not expecting any in return."

"WE should start the changed within ourselves & our own homes."

If we will just really analyzed the situation that we experienced & the problems that we are encountering we will realized that the SOLUTION to our problems are has been there all the time rigth in front of us.The problem with us is our resistance to accept the fact that we could resolve all the problems that we are facing no matter how big or small it is,the important thing is the WILLINGNESS to change & eagerness to end the problem from the root not just putting a temporary remedy.If we looked at it we can say that it may seems impossible but if we think & believe in our strength & capabilities we can change our lives & make a difference.For us to help others we must start to help ourselves first,helping is not all about money or material things it is how we influence one another to become a better person/citizen to our nation.

First is the ACCEPTANCE of our mistakes,this is very important bec. if we cannot admit our mistakes,and if we are in denial to see the real picture of the problem,we cannot solve anything. Escaping is not the solution,bec. if we do this we will just putting a reliever but not solving anything still we can see ourselves trapped in the shadow of our problems that will keep on haunting us.So,the solution is to have courage to face the problems...I know that this is not as easy as it was said but running will not do anything good.I think it is all about mind setting on what we really want to achieve in life,in any area or aspects of life whether it could be family,financial,political & spiritual issues.

Second is to ANALYZE the root of the problem & what will be the corresponding action that should be taken.This process will not be easy bec. we need clarity in deciding,even sometimes it would not be the best choice to make bec. we need to sacrifice for some intances.Because most of the time people want to get away with a situation but really not willing to let go.There is no sense if the willingness will not be put to action.There are people who are always complaining about their problems & seeking for symphaty so their weakness & cowardness will be justified.

Monday, January 28, 2008

The 5 Secrets To Hooking Mister Right

"What can I do to find the right guy! I'm tired of dating!!"

Men... undoubtedly the most discussed subject at every gathering of single females. Women young and old get together and strategize, trying to figure out how to dress, do their hair makeup and nails, and what to say to make love happen. Well, I have a few ideas I'd like to share with you, and they h ave nothing to do with your outfit.

(1) Project Confidence and Self-Esteem. A woman should be accepting and comfortable with herself. Men love women that are confident and sexy in their own eyes. And when you believe in yourself, men believe in you too. When you feel good, you ooze confidence and sex appeal - traits that are very intriguing to men. Developing the ability to flirt is an essential element in the art of meeting and establishing contact with some of the other 95 million singles in America. Flirting can affirm a woman's feminine charms or make a man feel especially good about his masculinity. Flirt confidently with a bright smile and a meaningful glance. And dress in a way that makes you feel good, no matter what your body type. Men appreciate a wide variety of physical traits, body types and dress sizes. Watching what you eat and engaging in a regular exercise routine are wonderful lifestyle habits to adopt, but exercise and eat to be strong and healthy, not a size 2.

(2) Get In the Kitchen. The phrase "the way to a man's heart is through his stomach" still holds true. Invite an available bachelor over for a home cooked meal and watch him break his neck to get there! When a man with a grumbling stomach comes to your home and it's smelling good, his favorite eats are on the stove, and you look pretty, he's a goner. Feed him well, make him laugh and get him to relax and feel comfortable. Where is he going to get anything better than that? You'll have to evict him to get him to leave!

(3) Respect Yourself. Many women are afraid a new man won't like them if they establish boundaries and standards. They don't realize that the lack of boundaries will pretty much guarantee his disdain. Never allow anyone to treat you callously. Stand up for yourself and clearly communicate the parameters under which a man will be allowed to continue to be in your life. Let him know that the way he is acting is not on the list! You care about him and you treat him very well, but you do not condone disrespect of you, your home, your property, or your relationship. Not for a second.

(4) Be Mentally Engaging and Fun to Be Around! If your only hobbies and interests are watching television, reading fashion magazines, and shopping you are boring. Do you know anything about sports? Can you put on shorts and sneakers and take it to the hoop? If the attractive bachelor you met is on a bowling league do you know how to play? Have you read a decent book lately? Can you carry on an intelligent conversation about a wide variety of topics so that he finds his time with you mentally stimulating? Are you deemed to be a "cool" person open to trying new things, or are you a stick in the mud? If you answered negatively to any of these questions, you need to find a way to become more fun. Men work hard and experience a lot of stress. The last thing they want is some woman stressing them out even more!

(5) Present Yourself as A Team Player. An average guy working a 9-5 is looking for someone to pull the wagon with him, not sit it in the wagon with her legs crossed telling him to go faster!! Men enter into committed relationships only when they feel unafraid of losing out in some way. He must believe that you are a good deal...that a relationship with you brings more to his life than it costs him. No man wants to commit to a woman he is afraid will become a burden. Though a guy may initially receive an ego boost from playing Knight on a White Steed, he will eventually tire of the role and put down his shield. In spite of what you may have heard in fairy tales as young girls, it is not a man's responsibility to save or take care of you - it is the responsibility of both parties to save and take care of EACH OTHER.

Present yourself as the woman that makes your chosen one's life joyful and exciting. He'll feel an emptiness when you aren't around because you bring him peace and pleasure. Once he feels that his life is better, richer and more rewarding by having you around, you'll be on your way to having the passionate, committed romance you seek!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Why Men do not Marry Women They Love Anymore

Men do not marry women in this day and age because legally, marriage is one of the stupidest contracts a man can enter into, though I for one am a happily married man.

What is marriage?

The general population might say that marriage is a legal/religious union of two people in love wanting to share their lives with each other, promising to be together forever, for better or worse until death do them part. (Insert pretty music, floating hearts, and little cherubs shooting arrows in your ass while you are at it.)

Ask a divorce attorney and he or she might say that marriage is essentially a lifelong binding contract between two people that is guaranteed to blow up 50% of the time, with no escape clause or built in penalties for either member if one should become unstable, unreliable, or otherwise stop providing essential services to the other party short of dividing up the assets and more typically than not forcing the male member to financially support the female until she is able to find another male to marry her. Children aside. (Insert… Insert nothing, that paints a scary enough visual all by itself.)

Just recently I overheard two women in conversation about the same topic, saying:

“I don’t understand why he won’t ask me to marry him. We are perfect for each other. We enjoy the same things, we have fun together. If he does not ask me out by my birthday in May, I am going to leave him. I don’t know what’s missing but I can’t wait forever.”

Men do not get married for a variety of reasons but here are the big five as I see them.

1.Because he could care less about the beautiful wedding, the pretty dress, all of the wedding drama on that special day, or the romanticized version of your life together forever. He sees the hard cold reality of the legal mine field surrounding marriage if it somehow falls apart.

2.Because he can get all of the benefits he sees in marriage without being legally tied down and forced to walk the marriage mine field in the first place, while the female has built in incentive to stay sweet, attentive and sexy.

3.If he does enter into marriage, there are no guarantees she will uphold her end of the bargain as he visualizes it, but by then he will be stuck with no recourse short of his facing steep penalties, including alimony, for what he may see as her failure. (Men have limited vision in this area typically, many naively believe they are taking a perfect dating relationship and cementing those behaviors in place for a lifetime with marriage.)

4.He likes you enough to want to be around you every day, but he does not love you enough to feel compelled to make it permanent or take the added risks associated with marriage. A small part of him somewhere just might consider you a place holder until “The One” shows up. (Added competition from another guy can help get him off the fence with no guarantees on which side he might land, though.)

5.In a dating relationship, he has more leverage. In a marriage a woman typically has more leverage, having the ability to make his life hell by being continually bitchy, unhappy and/or celibate.

There has to be a whole lot of upside to a woman to outweigh the potential negatives of a life long contract chock full of financial penalties with no guarantees that she will fulfill any of her obligations as a partner.

Today, we are all collectively concerned about Me, Me, Me. That attitude flies in a marriage just about as well as a boat anchor. In marriage it should be We, You, Me, in that order, for both partners. That should be the model, but real life shows that it plays out more like “There will be a WE, only when YOU submit to ME,” and ending in divorce 50% of the time.

Why would he want to give up this…?

Dating or living together, in a position where he can end a relationship without penalty. She is a skinny little sex kitten that makes him feel better just by being in her presence.
For fear of ending up with this…

Married, with financial, emotional and mental penalties in place, she can turn off the sex tap, get a little to a lot larger, bitchier, and make him feel miserable just for being a man by continually finding and emphasizing his faults, making him want to stay at the office longer and longer instead of having to face the woman he is chained to for life.

The answer for many men is because he thinks she is worth the risk, he is ready for a family or he has had enough of the single lifestyle.

I am speaking in generalities here; I acknowledge up front that there are wide varieties of men and women, some good some bad, which will not necessarily be covered by my blanket statements. I accept the fact that there are women out there facing the same situation.

If you happen to find this article searching for an answer to “Why he will not commit,” here are a few tips that might get you some answers.

1.Ask him. Skip all of the coy hints and just ask the question. I qualify that by saying make sure you do not use a bitchy attitude when asking or he go defensive on you and shut you down. With a calm, non-accusatory tone, just flat out ask the question. “Do you feel this is a relationship leading to marriage?”

2.Cut him off. If he is getting everything he wants without have to marry you, then why marry you. When cutting him off, do not do it in a mean way. Do not be a b*tch about it, be nice about it and let him know it is time to make a decision. Just be sure you can handle the consequences of your actions. You could be single again in a matter of minutes.

3.Attract some additional suitors. Competition is good the economy and it is good for forcing a man to make a decision. Again, if you play this card, you have to be ready to be put in the discard pile.

4.Skip the mind games. I read one article that said “You want him to admit to himself and to you that this is as good as it gets.” I say bullsh*it. Call it exactly like you see it. If you are just curious, say so. If it is a matter of life and death and you cannot possibly go another day without an answer, say so. Guys are not good at guessing your thoughts, and they do not want to get good at it typically. Men do not deal with each other in hints and suggestions to get our point across; we whack each other over the head with the main point of contention then negotiate the rest, and go for a beer when we are done.

5.Leave. When all else fails, stop moaning and start moving. You will only be hot and sexy for so many years, use it while you’ve got it.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Can a Relationship Survive Infidelity?

I believe so. Of course, it's not easy. When someone you love and trusted has been unfaithful to you the pain is unbearable. As are all the emotions that run with it: anger, heartbreak, depression, anxiety, doubts, fear, insecurities, and a crushed ego. Add to this those torturing feelings of a loss of faith and trust in your partner and one can feel physically sick. Playing those 'love-scenes' in your head of your mate and their lover together don't help much, either. Oh, argh!

Getting over these emotions, healing, learning to trust again, finding forgiveness and understanding, and rebuilding your relationship - all take time. It takes the conscious decision to save your relationship. It takes the courage to let go and learn to trust again. It takes the stamina of determination, and the strength of the commitment you have to your relationship.

It also takes two. Yes, I believe a relationship can survive an affair. But both partners have to be willing to work at repairing the damage done to the relationship and to rebuilding a relationship based on commitment, forgiveness, and trust. And, yes, this is especially hard for the one who has been cheated on.

However, both parties may experience the same painful feelings: shame, guilt, blame, anger, disappointment, rage, embarrassment, resentment, denial, and mistrust.
I hope that within these pages you find hope, understanding, and the strength to do what you feel is best in your life - whether it be staying and working through it, or leaving and moving on. Ultimately the choice is yours.

The Fashionista's Guide

"Dress to Kill,Impress those MEN out there by dressing with simplicity & elegance."

Look for quality

You don’t have to break the bank to buy quality garments. Just look for items within your price range that have excellent cuts and classic colors. Tip: when looking to buy a quality coat, make sure the inner lining is well constructed- if this finishing element is well made, you can rest assured that the rest of the garment is too.

Avoid looking like a fashion victim

One crucial element to dressing chic is to avoid looking like a walking billboard. More than one initial display of a designer name in one outfit makes you a fashion victim. Prominently displayed logos- real or knock-off, look cheesy and cheap. If you want to emulate a celebrity, think Gwyneth Paltrow, not Paris Hilton.

Pay attention to details

Looking chic doesn’t have to be really expensive. Cheaper fabrics look more expensive if they are ironed. Change a cheap cardigan by replacing ugly plastic buttons with mother-of- pearl ones. Dressing chic is all about focusing on the details that make a garment stand out.

Pick clothes that flatter:Chic clothes never bunch, hang, sag, or constrict your breathing. They should graze over your silhouette, highlighting and enhancing your figure. If it doesn’t flatter your figure, leave it on the rack. If it doesn’t fit well, it will NEVER look good.

Focus on fabrics

There are lots of options for beautiful fabrics, even if you are on a budget. Rule of thumb: stick with fibers that can be found in nature. With proper maintenance they will keep their shape and wear beautifully. Keep an eye out for sales to get great deals on cashmere sweaters, and gorgeous silk tops for evening looks.Update your shoe wardrobe

A great pair of shoes really finishes an outfit, so make sure you appropriate footwear. A pair of black pumps is a staple that you can’t live without- they work great with a suit for work or with dark denim and a sparkly top for evening. Some other great shoes to invest in: a pair of classic boots, an open toed pump, and flirty flats. A great pair of strappy sandals for evening, and a stack- heeled boot for walking in should round out your shoe wardrobe.

If you are going to hand over your hard earned dollars for an expensive designer piece, make sure it’s a classic that will transcend trends and last more than one season. Think Manolo Blahnik, Chanel, Ferragamo for shoes, Louis Vuitton, and Hermes for bags; Dior shades.

It’s all about the attitude

Whether your outfit cost 100 dollars or 1,000 dollars, the trick to looking you spent a fortune is all in how you wear those duds. Focus on good taste, confidence, elegance, and maintain an air of mystery, and no matter what you wear, you will always have what the French call a certain, je ne sais quois.
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Friday, January 25, 2008

How to Make An Inter-racial Love Relationship Work and What To Expect

You cannot help whom you fall in love with. Many people do not understand that and think that everything has to be either black or white.

However, this is not the case. So many people are in an inter-racial relationship and loving it. They are truly happy and want to share their feelings with others.However, many couples are not so happy and are having a hard time dealing with all the pressures that are out there today.

You can have problems and hard times in any relationship, but it is sometimes harder when it is an inter-racial relationship.

1) Just don't understand

So many people out there just do not understand love. They are not ready to see that there are people that love someone that are not the same color.Many times, parents, friends, and work acquaintances do not understand why you can love someone that is so different.

They are only seeing the outside and not taking into consideration the inner being that is there. This is a hard thing to deal with and it may either make or break the inter-racial relationship.

Your race is a big part of who you are, however it is only a color.

It does not determine your personality, your spirit, and your ability to love and to be a good person.

You are not controlled by the color of your skin. There is so much more to life and to who you are wand what you become in life.

You need to make sure that you believe that and doing all that you can to make the most of your relationship no matter what color you or the other person is.

2) What to expectIn order for the inter-racial relationship to work, you will have to know that there is going to be problems that come your way.

You have to be ready to take on all the challenges that are there for you to deal with. You will have to first be able to accept each other for what you are.You need to make sure that you are ready to take on this big challenge that faces you and be happy.

If you are ready for this, you will then be able to expect a better and brighter relationship. For a couple to begin an inter-racial relationship, both people need to be strong.

They will have to be ready for all the things that society is going to throw their way. They have to be ready to take on the challenges that come their way and make it through.

You have to even be willing to lose friends and family because of the choice that you have made.It is not easy, but it is a reality for most.You need to be ready to stand up for each other to your family and friends.

You are in a relationship that will have to withstand the problems that come your way. There are going to be mean people that try a lot of things, and you will want to be there standing with your head up high ready for the heat.It is important that you do not back down and are ready to come to the rescue of your loved one at any given moment.

3) How to keep the relationship aliveThe most important thing that you will need to do for an inter-racial relationship is to keep the trust and the love there.You will want to be there for each other and make sure that you are fulfilling all their needs.You may have to go the extra mile at some point, but it is going to be well worth it once you see that you are in a committed relationship that may end up in marriage one day.

You will need to be ready for this and make sure that you are doing what is in your heart.If the subject of marriage comes up and you are not sure, you will want to reevaluate your life. Think about what you want.

Can you go on without this person?

Is this your soul mate?

You need to think about your happiness and what you want.

The world is overcome with harsh people that mean to do harm on others. It is vital that you do what is necessary to make things happen for you and the way that you want them to.

This is the only way that you can be happy in an inter- racial relationship and do what is right for you both.

Dating a single mom

In today's society, it is not uncommon for you to date a single mom at some time in your life. This can be a problem for some men. They may not want to date someone that has children.However, this cannot be controlled if they feel a special bond to them. The one thing to remember is that you are dating the person and the role of the person.

A woman will want to be noticed and appreciated for every one of her qualities and not judged by a role that she is in.Sometimes having children was not a situation that she wanted to be in but just one that happened and now it is her responsibility.

1) Exploring the RelationshipIf you really like a woman and you want to go on and explore the relationship further, you will have to concentrate on the one on one part first. There will be a time and place to meet her child or children later on in the relationship.It is first going to about getting to know her better and learn how to start trust each other. You need to move past the fact that she is a mom and worry about that a little bit later on. First, see where the
relationship is going and what you are both feeling.

2) Accept the children's needsYou will eventually have to realize and accept that the children's needs are a going to be a priority at times. She does not really want to cancel an important date with you but if her child is sick or she cannot get a babysitter this is something that you have to deal with.As a man, you will have to come to the realization that her children come first and they are the most important part of her life. You need to be prepared for any last minute changes or cancellations that can happen because she has other obligations at home.Do not take it out on her when she does have to cancel for these reasons. It is not her fault or the fault of the child. It happens and it is best to be flexible and understanding when these things come up.You need to make sure that you do not give her the guilt trip when she has to cancel plans or if something would come up. You need to make sure that give her a chance to explain and make other arrangements for a next time.

3) Meet the children on her termsWhen it does come time to meet her children, you have to do it on her terms and her schedule. Make sure that you are putting yourself in the shoes of the children for a minute. They have probably had a hard time with the separation of their parents.This is usually a hard time to see his or her mom go out with someone else. You need to be patient and understanding. Try to be their friend but do not push them or expect too much at all. You have to be able to accept them for who they are and how they feel.Give it time and you will see that things should work themselves out and everyone will get along eventually.

4) Never expect too muchYou should not expect to be welcomed in by her children or other family members right away. You need to be patient and have understanding about what is going on. This is going to be a difficult transaction and one that needs to be dealt with care and devotion.Having a good method of understanding with everyone is going to be the best way to get through this time. You cannot push anyone to like you and never act cocky or arrogant in any way.Having common sense. Think about how you would feel if you were put in the same situation. You want to make sure that you are giving everyone space and time. Never push a woman into making her kids do something or giving her a guilt trip when she cannot go out with you. You do not want to make this a hard situation.

In fact, you can make sure that you are giving her support when it comes to this situation. She will appreciate you more because you are being so supportive and understanding with her and her children.

The Art Of Respecting Women

If someone had to ask me what my secret was to keeping women in my life it would be this one principle to respecting women. Not being like those so called "all guys are the same" type that women always complain about. When you respect a woman she will do absolutely anything for you as long as you are genuine about it. If you are being fake or just trying to be someone you are not so you can get into a woman's pants it won't work they are smarter than you think my friend.

When you respect a woman and she knows it she will brag to all of her friends how much of a good guy you are and you're already half way there. I know of men who don't even go out and meet women in night clubs and they consistently have women around them and this is because they respect women and the word travels to other women like a plague. You would have heard of word of mouth? Well women talk and when you are different and unique to men you start to become well known.

So what is respect exactly in the first place? To take notice of, to regard with special attention, to regard as worthy of special consideration, hence, to care for, to heed.

How do you respect a woman? To respect a woman it means to simple be genuine to not play games and to be the real you. To know the difference between right and wrong and to always be honest to yourself and others, to not only respect women but men as well. To not do anything to someone else that you would not like done to yourself.

I hear of men who brag about picking up a woman that has a bf or how they "hooked" up with a woman who is seeing someone. Now these men who brag first of all have no respect because I am sure if that guy had a girlfriend and she cheating on him with another man he would not be too happy about it. What this guy doesn't realise is that word travels fast and that eventually the word will get out and when it does women TALK and that guy will be known as a guy who has no respect for women therefore ruining his chances with all of the woman's friends and then their friends which will be attractive high quality women.

Women don't want to hang around men that they cannot trust they want to hang around a man who has his life together and has respect for himself and others. I can honestly tell you that having respect for women is one of the biggest causes for women being drawn to me.

I had received a phone call the other day from a female friend and she was telling me how her boyfriend was intimidated by me and she was explaining how she said to him he had nothing to worry about because out of "ALL" the guys she knows I am one that respects women and would never go there. Having respect for women not only goes a long way but the friendship made and trust built is remarkable. You don't have any bitch shields when approaching their friends because they are practically pushing their friends towards you because you are such a "good guy."

So I don't know about you men but if you never had to approach another woman in your life again and you had attractive quality women approaching you seeking your approval and wanting to be with you then that wouldn't be that bad of a problem to have would it?

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Things that a Man look for in a Woman

A definitive responsible to this is impossible and answers could go on forever. Every man has his own strengths and his own issues and insecurities. Moreover, men go through different stages of life and relationships have different stages. What men want in a woman varies widely.

*Men want what they can't have.
*Men look for health (physical, psychological, emotional, fiscal).
*Men look for the outward appearance of physical health, e.g. clear, bright eyes, a body not too overweight and not too underweight, clean lustrous hair, clean nails, clean body, few if any blemishes.
*Men want someone beautiful but "beauty is in the eye of the beholder."
*Men want someone beautiful and we objectively know what this is. A Discovery health program stated that men overwhelmingly, crossculturally, cross generationally are visually attracted to women who have a 70% ratio from waist to hips. Meaning waist is 70% size of hips. Beauty contestants across the decades have been this way even though they are much slimmer now than 10-20 years ago. Marilyn and Twiggy were both 70% ratio. It is also interesting to know that this is also an immediate indicator of health.
*Men want a woman who is honest, who he can trust completely, who is not likely to sneak around and sleep around with other guys.
Someone with similar interests so they have something in common.
*A woman who will make an effort to please him.
*A woman who makes an effort to look her best.
*An appreciation of the man's job.
*A woman whose ego isn't bigger than her hairstyle.
*A partner for his life.
*A partner for his soul.
*Someone who is caring. All men want to be looked after.
*Someone who has faith in him.
*A woman who is strong yet sometimes submissive.
*A woman who is strong but does not have an attitude.
*Someone who is not too loud.
*Someone who won't nag him beyond reason.
*A woman who challenges him and is full of the unexpected.
*An interesting woman.
*An intelligent woman.
*A woman who is not dumb (mediocre intelligence is fine).
*A woman who is smart enough to grasp new concepts.
*Someone artistic or creative.
*A woman can take care of herself without feeling that she has to compromise herself in a relationship.
*Someone who suits their individual personality.
*Some guys like an aggressive woman.
*Some guys like silent and reserved type.
*Someone in-shape/athletic.
*Interdependence, so that you trust and need each other.
*A sense of humor.
*A woman with a nice laugh.
*A positive personality.
*Men want a woman who is comfortable with her own sexuality.
*Someone up for action, or willing to get a litte kinky in the bedroom.
*A positive personality
*A talent and passion in something worthwhile.
*Men respect and want a woman who knows her own mind; women who are true to themselves.
*Someone relaxed and confident.
*A woman with a good soul.
A woman who has a great smile and loves to laugh and be herself but can also be intelligent and serious.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

10 Things To Avoid If You Want A Lasting Relationship By: Marjorie Janczak

"Love is the master key that opens the gates of happiness." - Oliver Wendell Holmes However in today's world, love seems to have assumed a different meaning. The problem of separation among couples is becoming overwhelming great and that in effect is affecting societal morals. It is interesting to reflect back and realize that in the days of our parents, such problems hardly existed. They managed to handle their differences and kept their love aflame. But how did they really do that? Below are some love killers that anyone who is concerned about keeping his/her love true must avoid.

1.Never go into a relationship just thinking about the financial wealth of your partnerHaving a partner who can provide you with financial freedom and luxury is good but be careful not to just love his/her riches and think you really love him/her because that would not be true and should there be some misunderstanding, this money love would result definitely in a separation. In as much as money is good in any situation, it can be a devil and so if care is not taken, one time sweethearts may end up as the worse enemies that ever lived.

2.Accepting your partner because of his/her educational achievements or statusIf you can openly and confidently present your less educated partner to the public then that is not an issue. But if you can only love and feel free with the less educated partner only in the privacy of your home then you rather think twice before deciding to spend the rest of your life with him/her because this can spark troubles.

3.If you cannot tolerate your partner's faith (if different from yours)It might seem in the beginning that love would solve this problem. But the reality is that if deep inside you refuse to accept the other partner's FAITH it is most likely that it might disturb you even when you have been together for a long time. Wars have risen because of religion from old times and they are still be fought because of religion, so both parties MUST make sure that they respect each other's FAITH if you decide not to change FAITHS.

4.Loving the color of your partner's skinThink not of the origin of a partner, think of your compatibility. Love knows no limits and what is more the problem of racism could be solved if the number of mixed raced children increase. You hardly realize how baseless racism is until you have mixed blood children.

5.Being or having a partner who is not supportive of your dreamsA partner who does not take time to discuss with you your future together or who ignores what you want out of life is worth thinking twice about. Every human being needs encouragement and support no matter how independent you may be and there is no better person to give such support and encouragement than your beloved partner.

6.Having a partner who just cannot exhibit care, warmth, generosity and positive energy : A partner who simply cannot show care, warmth, generosity and positive energy just does not deserve to be loved and be with. If you happen to be the partner who keeps giving all the time then it is about time you took a decisive and definite decision to call it quits no matter how much love you have for this other person because it just would not happen. If your partner could not acquire such qualities all the years he has lived till you meeting him/her, NEVER think you can work any miracles to change the situation. Whatever will be will be!

7.Just because the other person submits to your every wish and command : In Napoleon Hill's classic 'Think and Grow Rich' he talks about two kinds of leadership – Leadership by Consent of, and with the sympathy of the followers and Leadership by Force, without the consent and sympathy of the followers. He further states that those who belong to the old school of leadership- by-force, must acquire an understanding of the new brand of leadership (cooperation) or be relegated to the rank and file of the followers since there will be no way out for them. One very important thing he added is that “Leadership-by-consent of the followers is the only brand which can endure. The fact is, this applies perfectly with couples as well. Being the 'Head of the house' or 'breadwinner' or any other excuse you can think of or imagine gives you no license to 'lord' or 'lady' it over your partner. Harmony is a vital ingredient of any relationship and the can only happen if there is respect, agreement and consent of both parties involved. So whatever side you are in such a relationship note that, the weaker partner will follow the forced leadership, but it will not be done willingly and for long.

8.Thinking a partner must be treated according to the number of years they have existed on earthAge is just but a number. True love and respect for each other is all that matters in a relationship that longs to be meaningful and lasting. After all there are adults who behave like children and children who are more matured than their age.

9.Choosing a partner just to ensure you will have a heir to your 'throne.' Children are gifts to a couple. But when a partner's main aim is to 'replenish the earth' then it becomes a danger and a threat to the relationship because should the unwanted happen, the 'blameless' one tend to start nursing some resentment for the 'troubled partner' and this is certainly not healthy for a lasting relationship. You need to love your partner just as he or she is!

10.Enter or be in any relationship other than to truly love and be truly loved! : Signs of lack of love for one's self is enough evidence of a partner's inability to give true love. If you can truly love yourself, then you are on the right path to giving and being loved by another. You need not say it. Love is the message and the message is LOVE!

There is more to loving than meets the eye but a thousand steps they say, begins with a step. Consciously and uncompromisingly working to maintain your relationship is the only way to have it last. Like any business, the business of love also needs to be worked on in every respect. The need to communicate the right way in order to send the right signals are very vital in this instance. In this way the couple can identify what is lacking in the relationship and they can subsequently make a collective effort to make the relationship work. Let not your love be just words, act it, it's more powerful!

SOULMATES,have you found yours?

************How to Identify your Soul Mate**************

Some people believe in soul mates and some do not, but typically those people who disbelieve are just the one’s who haven’t found their’s yet. Those who have met “The One”, however, don’t doubt the existence of soul mates. They know how reassuring it is to have found a partner that is everything they’d hoped for and a whole lot more….

So what is a soul mate, and most importantly, how do you know when you’ve met your’s? Here’s a list of clues:

*Strong attraction* – Most often it’s a person’s physical features that catch our attention first. This doesn’t mean we’re just all superficial beings…. It’s only natural for us to be drawn to those we find physically attractive.

*Good chemistry* — Some people simply mesh well together. They have that so-called “spark.” You know you have good chemistry with someone when you feel at ease around them and conversation comes easily. Soul mates are the people that can be together for 50+ years and STILL have not run out of things to talk about.

*Emotional connection* – You know you’ve met your soul mate when you miss them before they’re even gone. It’s someone you find yourself constantly daydreaming about. Ultimately, it’s that person with whom you can actually picture yourself having a future with - marriage, kids, growing old together….

*Bonding* – Sometime’s it during a dramatic moment that you discover that the person you’re dating is your soul mate. For example, you’re in an accident, and you’re partner is there for you 100% like no one else has ever been, and you know then and there that it’s true love.

*Acceptance* – No one in this world is perfect, but you know you’ve met your soul mate when you are able to acknowledge their good traits AND their bad traits. You accept those things and aren’t always trying to change them into someone they’re not.

*The one and only* — Perhaps the easiest sign to identify when you’ve met your soul mate is this — when you can’t picture yourself being with anyone else ever again. It’s when you know deep in your heart that this person fulfills everything that you could ever want or need in a life partner.

We Don't Feel Respected When...

"When we show our respect for other living things, they respond with respect for us."
To respect a person is not possible without knowing him; care and responsibility would be blind if they were not guided by knowledge.

*We are forced
*We are ignored
*We are threatened
*We feel imposed upon
*We feel intruded upon
*We feel judged or rejected
*We are not listened to
*We are lied to
*We are lied about
*We are not given reasonable explanations
*We are not asked for our opinions
*We are
*We are interrupted
*We are laughed at(especially when we are upset orin pain or some kind of trouble)
*We are not cared about
*We are mocked
*We are stereotyped
*We are underestimated
*We are not taken seriously
*Our feelings are not taken seriously
*Our preferences are not taken seriously
*Our dreams are not taken seriously
*Our ideas are not taken seriously
*Our needs are not acknowledgedand not taken seriously
*Our questions are not taken seriously
*Our questions are not answered or are evaded
*We are told that we wouldn't be able toto understand something (
*We are not asked for our ideas
*Others make decisions about uswithout our input
*Others do not try to understand us
*Others make assumptions about us
*We are not asked what we think we need
*Others tell us what they think we need.
*We are not asked how we feel
*Others believe they know what is best for us
*Others believe they know us better than we know ourselves
*Our way of doing things is not accepted
*Our privacy is invaded or denied
*We feel betrayed
*We feel controlled.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Helping Your Child Become a Responsible Citizen

What Does "Strong Character" Mean?
Honesty and Fairness
Good Judgment
Respect for Others
Citizenship and Patriotism

Character is a set of qualities, or values, that shape our thoughts, actions, reactions and feelings.

People with strong character

*show compassion,
*are honest and fair,
*display self-discipline in setting and meeting goals,
*make good judgments,
*show respect to others,
*show courage in standing up for beliefs,
*have a strong sense of responsibility,
*are good citizens who are concerned for their community, and
*maintain self-respect.


*Compassion, or empathy, means identifying with and being concerned about other people's feelings and needs. It provides the emotional root for caring about other people. It allows us to be understanding and tolerant of different points of views and beliefs, it makes us aware of the suffering of others, and it allows us to empathize with them or to feel their suffering as our own.

*Compassion also allows us to feel joy and excitement—rather than anger and despair—at other people's successes and achievements.

Babies may begin to cry when they hear other sounds of crying, and coo and laugh when they hear others making happy sounds. By the age of three, many children will make an effort to hug or comfort another child or a parent who seems upset. As children grow, compassion can guide their actions and behaviors in positive ways. They understand that by doing something wrong, they cause others pain or unhappiness.

We can promote compassion by helping our children to think about how others feel. For example, if your child says or does something hurtful to another child, help him* to focus his attention on the feelings of his victim by saying, for example, "How do you think Zack feels? Would you like to feel like that?" Children develop compassion by practicing acts of caring and kindness towards others. As adults, we need to emphasize the importance of helping others, giving others the benefit of the doubt and being open to differences.

What You Can Do

Talk about the point of view of others as you watch TV, read books or discuss other people with your child. For example, ask, "What do you think that character is feeling and thinking?"
Show care toward others, such as doing errands for sick neighbors or opening doors for others.
Give others the benefit of the doubt. If your child complains that a classmate deliberately pushed her down on the way to lunch, explain that sometimes when people are in a hurry, they don't watch where they're going—they don't mean to push or hurt anyone.
Be open to differences. If your child says "Our new neighbors dress funny," explain that people often wear clothes that reflect their cultures or native countries.

—Daddy, why is Grandma crying?
—She's very sad. One of her friends just died. Come sit with me. Do you remember how you felt when your gerbil, Whiskers, died?
—I felt sad and lonely.
—Well imagine how much worse Grandma must feel losing a friend. Maybe you can think of a way to help her.
—I could give her a hug...
—That's a great idea!

*Honesty and Fairness*

Simply put, honesty means being truthful with ourselves and with others. It means caring enough about others not to mislead them for personal benefit. It means facing up to our mistakes, even when we have to admit them to others or when they may get us into trouble.
Fairness means acting in a just way and making decisions, especially important ones, on the basis of evidence rather than prejudice. It means "playing by the rules" and standing up for the right of everyone to be treated equally and honestly.

To understand the importance of being honest and fair, children need to learn that living together in a family, community or even a nation depends on mutual trust. Without honesty and fairness, trusting each other becomes very difficult, and families—and societies—fall apart.
Words of caution: There is a big difference between being dishonest—lying or cheating—and "making things up," as children often do in fantasy play. If children are taught that not telling the truth is "a bad thing," some young children might assume that it is also a bad thing to pretend to be a princess or an astronaut. Although you should discourage your child from deliberately lying and cheating, you should also let him know that it is fine to role play and pretend.

What You Can Do

*Be a model of honest relations with others.
Discuss with your child what honesty is and is not. Point out, for example, that being honest doesn't mean telling someone you think he looks ugly. Kindness goes along with honesty.
—Dad, Why can't I choose what video to watch? It is not fair that Ramon gets to pick?
—Yes, it is fair, because you got to pick the video we watched last night. Now it is Ramon's turn.

Discuss fairness (chances are that your child will bring it up) in different situations. For example, how do we show fairness in our family? What does fairness mean to the community? What were standards of fairness in the past?
Talk about how you try to be fair in your life and work. What issues of justice have you wrestled with? Your adolescent will be particularly interested in talking with you about these things.

—Mom, why did you tell the cashier that she'd given you too much change? It was her mistake, so why didn't you just keep it.
—Because the money wasn't mine, and it would have been dishonest for me to keep it.


*Self-discipline is the ability to set a realistic goal or make a plan—then stick with it. It is the ability to resist doing things that can hurt others or ourselves. It involves keeping promises and following through on commitments. It is the foundation of many other qualities of character.
Often self-discipline requires persistence and sticking to long-term commitments—putting off immediate pleasure for later fulfillment. It also includes dealing effectively with emotions, such as anger and envy, and developing patience.

*Learning self-discipline helps children regulate their behavior and gives them the willpower to make good decisions and choices. On the other hand, the failure to develop self-discipline leaves children wide open to destructive behavior. Without the ability to control or evaluate their impulses, they often dive headlong into harmful situations.

What You Can Do

Talk with your child about setting reachable goals. For example, help him break big tasks into little tasks that can be accomplished one at a time. Have the child pick a task and set a deadline for completing it. When the deadline has passed, check together to see if the task was completed.
Help your child build a sense of her competence. To do this, she needs experiences of success, no matter how small. This builds confidence and effort for the next time. Keep making the tasks just a little more challenging but doable.

—Who just called?
—It was Tyler, Dad. He wanted me to go with him to the video store to check out the new DVDs.
—What did you tell him?
—I said I couldn't, because you and I need to work on my science project for school.

*Good Judgment*

Children develop strong character by learning to think about and make sound judgments about what is right or wrong, good or bad. These are not always easy distinctions for adults to make, much less children.

For example, it can be difficult for a child to recognize the difference between acting bravely and acting recklessly. As parents, we can help by showing, through what we do as well as what we say, that it is important in such situations to think carefully and honestly about what should be done, carefully weighing how others will be affected by what we do.

Sometimes we get into trouble because we "just didn't think." We let our emotions lead us to actions that we regret later. Making good judgments requires skills in monitoring impulses, using reasoning to sort through feelings and facts, and thinking about the consequences of our actions.

Your child's ability to think and make sound judgments will improve as she matures. With age, however, it also may become easier for her to try to justify and make excuses for selfish or reckless behavior. However, if you have helped her develop strong habits of honesty, courage, responsibility and self-respect, your child will have the ability to see the flaws in her reasoning and be able to come to the right conclusion about what to do.

What You Can Do

-Teach your child to stop and think before acting on impulse.
-Teach your child to tell fact from feeling. Let him know that just because he feels strongly about something—such as hitting someone who made him angry—doesn't mean it's the right thing to do.
-Encourage your child to think about the consequences of her decisions.

-Tell her little stories about situations she might face and talk about actions she might take, who might be affected by her actions, what might happen because of her actions and what the best action might be.
-When your child has a problem with a rule, brainstorm together a list of possible reasons for the rule. This leads to greater understanding.

Remind your child to pay attention to the rules or codes that apply in each situation. For example, the rules for behaving in church are different from those for a football game.

—I got really mad because John wouldn't talk to me.
—What were you doing at the time?
—We were in line for lunch.
—Well, what's the rule about waiting in line?
—You aren't supposed to talk.
—Then John was doing the right thing, wasn't he?

*Respect for Others*

Respect for others is based on self-respect and is summed up in the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. It is the value that makes the world a more decent and civilized place.

People show respect in many ways. They speak and act civilly—avoiding insults, cruel remarks and rude or crude language. They are courteous and considerate of others, including family members and friends, and care about their rights, beliefs and well-being. They treat others fairly and as individuals, regardless of race, sex, age or ethnic group. They display tolerance for people who do not share their personal beliefs and likes—so long as those people do not harm others.

Research indicates that children learn to respect others when they are treated with respect themselves. Constant criticism of a child, negative comments about him and failure to praise his achievements can lead the child to be disrespectful to others. Treating children with respect pays large dividends both to families and to societies as a whole.

What You Can Do

Practice respectful ways of communicating. Show your child how to talk to others with respect.
Help your child to resolve conflicts nonviolently. When facing a conflict, encourage your child to do the following:

(1) Find out what the conflict is. For example, if your child is angry because his little brother barges into his room without knocking, help him to explain the conflict by using an "I" statement, such as "I feel angry when you come into my room without knocking."
(2) Next, suggest different ways he might resolve the conflict. He could say to his brother, "I know I can't always hear when I'm listening to music, so you knock really loud five times—if I don't answer, then open the door." Or, "If I don't answer your knock, slide a note under the door." Or, "Let's use our walkie talkies."
(3) Then have your child agree on one of the choices.
(4) Finally, have him make a plan to check whether the solution is working.

Teach your child to respect the valued traditions of your heritage. Talk about family customs for showing respect, for honoring elders and for helping the community. Encourage her to do these things.

—Kaylee, is that my new sweater you're wearing.
—Yeah, Mom. What's wrong? Doesn't it look OK with this skirt?
—How it looks on you isn't the point. You didn't ask me if you could borrow that sweater, did you?
—No, Mom. I guess I thought you wouldn't mind.
—Well, I do mind that you didn't ask first. That's not very respectful, is it?


*Self-respect means taking satisfaction in appropriate behavior and hard—won accomplishments. People with self-respect also respect others. They do not need to disparage others or build themselves up by bragging or exaggerating their abilities or talents. They do not need lots of money or power to feel good about themselves.

People who respect themselves view selfishness, loss of self-discipline, recklessness, cowardice and dishonesty as wrong and unworthy of them. They have inner strength and are unwilling to let others use or manipulate them. They know that showing patience or tolerance does not mean allowing others to mistreat them.

People with self-respect do not crumble when they fail. They accept mistakes as a part of life. As we help our children set high standards for themselves, we also need to let them know that failure is no embarrassment when they have done their best.

Teaching children self-respect, however, does not mean complimenting everything they do. They also need honest criticism from time to time. When we do criticize, we should focus on things they have done, not on them personally.

What You Can Do

Encourage your child to build a positive identity that focuses on her integrity and talents.
Emphasize that character is built upon the decisions and actions a person takes each day.
Work with your child to help him reach his full potential by encouraging him to develop his talents, set reachable goals and honor himself as a unique person.

Teach your child how to choose good values. Help her reason about what are worthy goals and what are proper means to reach those goals.

—Why so down, Charlie?
—We lost the game.
—Did you play a good game?
—Yeah, we played our hardest.
—There's no shame in losing a game when you've played your best and the other team just played better. Hold your head high, son!


*Courage is the ability to overcome fear in order to do what is right, even if it is difficult or risky.

*Courage can mean facing physical dangers, but it also can mean standing up for beliefs and making hard decisions on the basis of evidence rather than on what is the easy or popular thing to do. It means being neither reckless nor cowardly but facing up to our duties and responsibilities.
*Courage, however, does not mean never being afraid; and children should be told that there are times when it is all right to be frightened and to run away from danger. But they also need to learn how to face and overcome some fears, such as a fear of the dark.

What You Can Do

Coach your child on how to be brave. Praise him when he acts courageously (but never ridicule him for any reason—ridicule can have long-lasting effects on a child's self-confidence).

Discuss with your child how to say no. Sometimes children don't know how to say no to peers who ask them to do dangerous or risky things. After identifying ways that she might be tempted, teach your child a three-step process for self-protection:

Apply the "trouble" rule: Will this action break a law or rule?
Make a good decision—think carefully about the risks or possible consequences.
Act fast to avoid trouble, using options such as the following:

Say no!
Make a joke.
Suggest something better to do.
Make an excuse such as, "My dad will get really mad."
Act shocked.
—Mom, some of the kids were smoking after school today. One of them offered me a cigarette.
—What did you do?
—I said no.
—Then what happened.
—Everybody laughed at me and called me a baby.
—So then what did you do?
—I just walked away.
—Good for you! That took a lot of courage, and I'm proud of you.


Being responsible means being dependable, keeping promises and honoring our commitments. It is accepting the consequences for what we say and do. It also means developing our potential.
People who are responsible don't make excuses for their actions or blame others when things go wrong. They think things through and use good judgment before they take action. They behave in ways that encourage others to trust them.

People who are responsible take charge of their lives. They make plans and set goals for nurturing their talents and skills. They are resilient in finding ways to overcome adversity. They make decisions, taking into account obligations to family and community.

Children need to learn that being part of a family and a community involves accepting responsibilities. When each of us acts responsibly, our families and communities will be stronger.

—I'm going to Mattie's house, Dad.
—Have you walked the dog?
—No. I'll do that when I get back.
—Casey, walking the dog is your responsibility. In this house, meeting our responsibilities comes first. Walk the dog, and then you can go to Mattie's.

What You Can Do

Make agreements with your child and expect him to follow through.

When things go wrong, help your child take responsibility for her part and make a plan to do things differently next time.

Encourage your child to find out more about the world and how his actions may affect others far away.

*Citizenship and Patriotism*

Citizenship requires doing our share for our community and our country. Being a good citizen means caring about the good of society and participating actively to make things better.
Research reveals that participating in community service programs and learning about the importance and value of serving others can be a powerful influence on positive character development.

Patriotism is an important part of good citizenship. Patriotism is love of and loyalty to our country. It involves honoring the democratic ideals on which the country is based and expecting elected officials to do the same, respecting and obeying its laws and honoring its flag and other symbols. It also involves accepting the responsibilities of good citizenship, such as keeping informed about national issues, voting, volunteering and serving the country in times of war.

What You Can Do

Take your child with you when you vote. Talk to him about the candidates, the offices they aspire to hold and their positions on key issues.
Participate in community-building activities, such as cleaning up parks and assisting with school activities.

Discuss citizenship with your child and find examples of what good citizens have done for their communities.

—Mom, where are you going?
—I'm going to a meeting. People who live on this block are getting together to plan how we can clean up that empty lot down the street and turn it into a playground.
—That would be great, Mom! But I thought Aunt Jen was coming over tonight.
—She's coming over tomorrow night instead. She understands it's important that I be at tonight's meeting. A playground down the street is just what our community and our family need, and I want to help make it happen.

Children learn about strong character when parents and other adults in their daily lives
set a good example through their own behavior and actions,
set and communicate high standards and clear expectations,
coach them on how to be responsible and kind, and
use literature to reinforce the values of strong character.

*Set a Good Example*

We are always teaching our children something by our words and our actions. They learn from seeing. They learn from hearing and from overhearing. They learn from us, from each other, from other adults in the community and by themselves.

Children share the values of their parents about the most important things in life. Our priorities and principles and our examples of good behavior can teach our children to take the high road when other roads look tempting.

Remember that children do not learn the values that make up strong character simply by being told about them. They learn by seeing the people around them act on and uphold those values in their daily lives. In our daily lives, we can show our children that we respect others. We can show them our compassion and concern when others are suffering, and our own self-discipline, courage and honesty as we make difficult decisions. How we conduct our everyday activities can show our children that we always try to do our best to serve our families, communities and country.

The way that we view money and material goods also can mold our children's character. If we see our self-worth and the worth of others in terms of cars, homes, furniture, nice clothes and other possessions, our children are likely to develop these attitudes as well. Of course, it is important to meet our children's needs, but it is also important to help them understand the difference between their needs and their wants. The expensive jacket that your child has to have may be OK—if you can afford it.

Finally, we need to be consistent in upholding the values we want our children to respect and not present them with conflicting values. We may tell our children that cheating is wrong, for example, yet brag to a neighbor about avoiding paying taxes. We may say that rudeness to others is unacceptable, yet laugh when we see that behavior on a favorite TV show.

—Daddy, why are you leaving that note on the garbage can?
—There's broken glass inside, Matthew, and I don't want the garbage collectors to get hurt. I'm warning them about the glass.
—Are they your friends?
—No. I don't know them, but I still don't want them to get hurt.

*Set High Standards and Clear Expectations*

Some parents set low standards for their children, or do not hold their children to the standards they set. Parents may do this because they think that expecting too much of a child will harm his self-confidence. However, research shows that the opposite is true. A child builds self-confidence by trying (with guidance) to meet high standards, even when he has to struggle to do so.
Parents do not always make their standards for behavior clear to their children. It is not enough to mention your expectations once or twice. Remember that children grow and change so fast that they can easily misunderstand or forget what you have told them. Their understanding of the world is developing almost constantly and their "new" minds need to be reminded of your expectations. Because of this, you need to repeat your guidelines often and to do so in a way that makes sense as your child changes and develops.

—Dad, nobody's going to see inside the model's wing. Why do you work so hard with all those little pieces?
—Because that's the right way to build the plane, Martha. It makes the wing strong when the plane flies, and that's more important than what people see. I want to make the best plane I can.

Do you want to help?

Words of caution: Your expectations must be appropriate for your child's age and stages of mental, emotional, social and physical development. For example, it's not appropriate to tell an infant not to cry and expect him to obey. Likewise, it's not appropriate to expect a 3-year-old to sit still for hours or for a 13-year-old not to worry about how she looks. Pay attention to what your child can do, start there and help her learn skills to move forward. Be gentle but firm in your expectations.

*Coach *

Remember how you learned to drive or cook? You practiced while someone coached you, reminding you what to do until you were able to coach yourself and then, eventually, do it automatically.

Children learn values much the same way. They practice different kinds of behavior, while, you, as coach, help focus their attention on what is important and on fine-tuning important skills. You support them with your praise, encouragement and gentle reminders.

If you don't coach your child, she will find her coaches elsewhere and be guided by the values of the media, her peers and anyone else who captures her interest.

So, step up to the plate, don't be afraid and help your child learn how to be a good person, step by step.

—Paul, have you written a thank-you note to your aunt and uncle for the birthday present they sent?
—No, but I told them that I liked it when they gave it to me.
—Well, that's a start, but they were nice enough to take the time to buy you a gift, so you need to show them that you appreciate it. Here, you sit with me and write your note to them while I write one to Ms. Miller—remember how she stayed to help me clean up after your birthday party?

*Use Literature*

Literature can be a very powerful teaching tool. In fact, people in stories, poems and plays can influence children almost as much as the real people who read with them. Therefore, reading to and with children, encouraging older children to read on their own and talking with children about the books they read are important ways to help children learn about and develop the values of strong character and good citizenship.

*Asking Questions to Guide Discussions*

Use questions such as the following to help your child think about the values of stories:

MotivationHow did the people in the story act?
Did they have good or bad motives?Who were the heroes?
Why were they heroes?
Were there villains?
Why were they villains?
JudgmentDid the people make good decisions?

Why or why not?


How did the people carry out their decisions?
What kinds of steps did they take? Were there obstacles?
How did they respond to the obstacles?


Did the people think about the welfare of others?Did the story have a good or bad ending? For whom was it good? For whom was it bad?How could the story have turned out better for everyone?
Choosing Books
Choosing which books to use for character development can take some time and effort. Many good selections are available, including fiction and nonfiction books and books of poems, folk tales, fables and plays.

There are excellent modern stories, as well as timeless classics. There is also a growing number of books that allow children to explore values across various cultures and countries. For lists of books to read to and with your child, see Books That Can Support Character Development on pages of this booklet. For more titles or additional help in choosing books, talk with your local or school librarian.

Words of caution: Although the moral theme of a story, nonfiction book, play or poem may be very clear to us, it is not always so to children. Always talk with your child about what she is reading to see how well she understands its theme or message. Be patient and listen carefully to your child's ideas. If her ideas are too far off the mark, talk with her about how she arrived at them—perhaps she misunderstood a word or is missing some important piece of information. Reread parts of the story with her and talk about the message.

For more information about reading aloud with your children, see Helping Your Child Become a Reader.
—What did you think about the ant letting the grasshopper come stay with him over the winter?
—Well, it was nice of him. He was kind, and it was good that he wanted to help the grasshopper.
—But what about the grasshopper? Shouldn't he have prepared for the winter, as the ant did?
—Sure, but sometimes we don't do things that we should. I'll bet he learned a lesson, though. I'll bet he gets ready for next winter.