In This Issue:

Resolutions and the New Year

It's almost that time of the year again.  The time where we go over the things we'd like to do this upcoming year.  Lose 20 pounds, workout more, get organized, the list goes on and on.  We promise ourselves that this year is going to be different.  The truth is most New Year's resolutions are never met.  Millions of people make resolutions every year, it's a tradition, yet  by the end of the first week of the New Year, most people have forgotten about those resolutions and fallen back into the same familiar pattern...their routine.  

Routines can be powerful, both constructively and destructively depending on the routine that you set for yourself. Disturb that routine and we feel uncomfortable and race back to our old familiar patterns. 

If you're serious about  accomplishing a resolution this year, make some changes to your routine. The key is to make small alterations to our routine, one at a time, until each change becomes a part of our routine that you become comfortable with.

It's good to have a New Year's resolution, however if you don't fit the time to achieve that resolution into your daily routine, you will probably fail or never take your resolution seriously. 

Just for grins here is my list of things I'd like to improve this year and how I plan to accomplish them:

  • Keep the house cleaner - I plan to wake up 30 minutes earlier each weekday to get things picked up/cleaned up BEFORE taking my daughter to school.  My current routine is that after I drop her off I generally come home, grab some coffee and don't leave my office area until it's time to pick her up from school, so I am not getting enough housework done in the day.
  • rcise - I am going to join Jazzercise which is n door to where my daughter takes karate twice a week.  They happen to have a class that starts and ends the same time as karate so I am already there in that area and it won't cause a major rehaul of my schedule.
  • Better organization -  I'm not sure how I will handle this quite honestly, because I am THE most unorganized person that I know...  Perhaps I'll find a professional organizer by trade and see if I can barter a new web site for their services.  I did that 3 years ago with a personal fitness trainer and the hange worked out well.

Good luck with your 2005 resolutions!

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Client Holiday Gift Ideas

It's time for the holidays, whether your client celebrates Christmas, Hanukah or Kwanzaa, we are all searching for client gifts that won't break the bank.

Here are links to some of my favorite web sites for holiday gifts:

Scent-uous Candles - I love these candles!  They burn forever and smell incredible.  My clients particularly love the Vanilla Creme Peppermint smell during the holidays!  Also, new this year is their body spray.  The Tropical Paradise Body spray is delicious!!!  Send a candle and body spray for less than $20.

Hershey's - Okay, who doesn't love Chocolate?  You can't really go wrong with this gift...unless your client is allergic to chocolate!  My favorite is the personalized "Big Bytes Card" which you can view here.  Customize it with your company name and have it shipped directly to the client for around $20.

Dimple Art Caricatures - Send a little bit of fun to your favorite client.  Caricatures add a bit of fun and are sought after by both young and old.  Prices start at $28.99 and these highly talented artists are sure to please and their work is 100% guaranteed.  For additional fun, caricatures can be put on shirts, mugs, mouse pads, etc. directly through Dimple Art.   Your clients will LOVE it!

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Downloads and Free Stuff

Word Web
- A free dictionary and thesaurus for Windows.  An incredibly useful tool that I find myself using again, and again.  The free version does not have the word list, search, anagram, or customization features.  Purchase the pro edition for $19.

JConnect (free)
- A free service/phone number you can use to receive voicemail and f s as email attachments.  Premier service also available for around $15 per month.

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Continuing Education

Anyone who knows me knows that I always preach about continuing your education.  The more you know, the more valuable you are and the more you can charge for your services.

Take classes to either improve your software skills or learn new ones.

One of my favorite distance learning sites is LVS online.  Your first class runs $25 and each class after is $20.   They have an ensive list of classes ranging from Microsoft Office applications and web site design, graphics and flash!  Take a look at the courses offered, I'm sure you'll be impressed and find one or two classes you'd be interested in taking.

A lot of VAs are interested in transcribing, in particular, medical transcription.  One of the best online classes is taught at SETT Inc.  Janet Stiles is one of the foremost authorities on medical transcription training and has the connections to get you placed as an intern and then with a company if your performance is good enough.  The cost is pricey however there is such a demand and need for medical transcriptionists today that some companies will refund all or part of your tuition costs if you maintain an "A" average.

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If you can make time over the holidays, read "See You at the Top" by Zig Ziglar.   It will open your mind and change your life...for the better!

Until n time,









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