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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Pure Love is Incomparable

Marriage provides an ideal setting for overcoming any tendency to be selfish or self-centered. … Pure love is an incomparable, potent power for good and the foundation of a successful marriage. - Richard G Scott

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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Things You Must Give Up to Move Forward

If you want to fly and move on to better things, you have to give up the things that weigh you down – which is not always as obvious and easy as it sounds.
Starting today, give up…
  1. Letting the opinions of others control your life. – People know your name, not your story.  They’ve heard what you’ve done, but not what you’ve been through.  So take their opinions of you with a grain of salt.  In the end, it’s not what others think, it’s what you think about yourself that counts.  Sometimes you have to do exactly what’s best for you and your life, not what’s best for everyone else.
  2. The shame of past failures. – You will fail sometimes, and that’s okay.  The faster you accept this, the faster you can get on with being brilliant.  Your past does not equal your future.  Just because you failed yesterday; or all day today; or a moment ago; or for the last six months; or for the last sixteen years, doesn’t have any impact on the current moment.  All that matters is what you do right now.  
  3. Being indecisive about what you want. – You will never leave where you are until you decide where you would rather be.  It’s all about findingand pursuing your passion.  Neglecting passion blocks creative flow.  When you’re passionate, you’re energized.  Likewise, when you lack passion, your energy is low and unproductive.  Energy is everything when it comes to being successful.  Make a decision to figure out what you want, and then pursue it passionately.
  4. Procrastinating on the goals that matter to you. – There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them.  Follow your intuition.  Don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do.  When there is love and inspiration, you can’t go wrong.  And whatever it is you want to do, do it now.  There are only so many tomorrows.  Trust me, in a year from now, you will wish you had started today.
  5. Choosing to do nothing. – You don’t get to choose how you are going to die, or when.  You can only decide how you are going to live, right now.  Every day is a new chance to choose.  Choose to change your perspective.  Choose to flip the switch in your mind from negative to positive.  Choose to turn on the light and stop fretting about with insecurity and doubt.  Choose to do work that you are proud of.  Choose to see the best in others, and to show your best to others.  Choose to truly LIVE, right now.
  6. Your need to be right. – If you keep on saying you’re right, even if you are right now, eventually you will be wrong.  Aim for success, but never give up your right to be wrong.  Because when you do, you will also lose your ability to learn new things and move forward with your life.  
  7. Running from problems that should be fixed. – We make life harder than it has to be.  The difficulties started when… conversations became texting, feelings became subliminal, sex became a game, the word ‘love’ fell out of context, trust faded as honesty waned, insecurities became a way of living, jealously became a habit, being hurt started to feel natural, and running away from it all became our solution.  Stop running!  Face these issues, fix the problems, communicate, appreciate, forgive and LOVE the people in your life who deserve it.
  8. Making excuses rather than decisions. – Life is a continuous exercise in creative problem solving.  A mistake doesn’t become a failure until you refuse to correct it. Thus, most long-term failures are the outcome of people who make excuses instead of decisions.
  9. Overlooking the positive points in your life. – What you see often depends entirely on what you’re looking for.  Do your best and surrender the rest.  When you stay stuck in regret of the life you think you should have had, you end up missing the beauty of what you do have.  You will have a hard time ever being happy if you aren’t thankful for the good things in your life right now.  
  10. Not appreciating the present moment. – We do not remember days, we remember moments.  Too often we try to accomplish something big without realizing that the greatest part of life is made up of the little things.  Live authentically and cherish each precious moment of your journey.  Because when you finally arrive at your desired destination, I guarantee you, another journey will begin.
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Help Your Parents Prepare for Long Term Care

Are your parents prepared for long term care? If not, are you prepared to help?

Your parents might only think about golfing, birding or traveling around the country when you talk about retirement. They should also mind about health issues, though it may not hinder them from enjoying retirement years, it can punch a heavy dent in retirement savings.

“As we age, usually our medical or long-term care expenses increase, sometimes depleting our assets to a level of crisis,” says financial advisor Jake Lowrey, president of Lowrey Financial Group. “It’s important for retirees, and anyone planning for retirement, to become educated about what the pitfalls are and what they need to do to avoid losing their life savings” he added.

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Friday, January 30, 2015

7 Ways to Stay Healthy After 40

Age 40 is a milestone when the risk of many health conditions increases. This makes the birthday a perfect time for taking stock of your health, experts say.

Whether people have demanding jobs, aging parents, growing children or all of the above, it's easy to put health aside. But 40 is the time to evaluate your wellbeing, and to plan for the long-run.

"Forty is a good time to take a deep breath, and, although you have a lot of other things out there, do a little introspection and say, 'OK, there's some things I need to do to make sure I stay healthy,'" said Dr. Sandra Fryhofer, an internist at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta.

And if you're not there yet, there's no reason to wait, said Dr. William Zoghbi, professor of medicine at the Methodist DeBakey Heart and Vascular Center in Houston and president of the American College of Cardiology.
"It's not like people are going to wake up and say, 'I'm 40, I'm going to change everything I'm doing to get healthier,'" Zoghbi said. Instead, "the earlier they can start, the better it is for them."

Here are seven ways to stay healthier when you are nearing or turning 40:

Keep your eyes open for vision problems
At age 40, vision can start to worsen, so have your eyes checked out, Fryhofer said. "You need to be able to read the fine print on medicine labels, and lots of different labels. If you don't have reading glasses and you can't read the fine print, you might miss some important information," Fryhofer said.
She also suggested wearing sunglasses to prevent further damage. "Too much sun exposure can increase cataracts, so sunglasses are a good idea," Fryhofer said. "Make sure they have the UV-A [and] UV-B protection.
A diet high in fruits and vegetables – which are full of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals – may slow vision loss, added Heather Mangieri, a spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
The leading cause of blindness in the elderly is a condition known as macular degeneration. It affects 9.1 million Americans over age 40. "Macular degeneration tends to be genetic, but we can use nutrition, a diet rich in lycopene (found in red fruit and vegetables) and antioxidants to slow down that vision loss," Mangieri said.

Know your numbers
Age 40 is a good time to look into your numbers for blood pressure,cholesterol levels, blood sugar and body weight. "People need to know what their cholesterol level is and if they haven't checked before age 40, they should," Zoghbi said.
When you visit a pharmacy, take time to get your blood pressure measured, and visit your doctor to get a simple blood sugar test, he suggested. Knowing these numbers will help you and your doctor identify potentially hidden disease risk-factors.
For example, people with higher blood pressure are at higher risk of heart disease, stroke and kidney failure, Zoghbi said.

Explore your family history
During your fifth decade, it's time to look carefully at your family tree to find out if your genetics increase your risks for diseases such as cancer or heart disease. "Once you hit 40, when things go wrong, you have to think of the C-word and that's cancer, cause you're no longer a kid," Fryhofer said. "That's a good time to make sure you understand your family history."
For example, those with a family history of colon cancer may want to get a colonoscopy at age 40, instead of waiting until age 50, Fryhofer said.
The same goes with heart disease: a calcium test can help determine whether your arteries are starting to harden, and if you need major lifestyle changes or medications. "People get by with a lot until they hit 40, but then when you hit 40, it's got to be a little bit about you. It can't be just worrying about everybody else," she said.

Muscle up
Starting at age 40, we lose about 1 percent of muscle mass per year.
So people can benefit from incorporating weight-bearing exercises, along with cardiovascular exercise, into a weekly physical activity plan, Mangieri said. "Even if it's using cans of soup to do some bicep curls — it doesn't have to be in a gym, it just needs to be some sort of resistance training," Mangieri said.
As we age, we also become less flexible. Mangieri suggested adding yoga or Pilates, which can help improve flexibility, core strength, balance and range of motion. "If we can maintain our muscle mass and maintain our strength, then as we get older, we can continue to do the things we enjoy doing," Mangieri said.

Fiber is your friend
The days of gorging without gaining weight are over. And as your metabolism slows around age 40, eating fewer calories can boost health. But you should also make sure to get adequate fiber and fluids, Mangieri said.
"We want to make sure the calories that are decreasing come from things like sweets, but we keep those high-fiber foods in the diet, and we also make sure we meet our fluid needs. That's really important," Mangieri said. "Make sure that our daily eating plan is packed full of nutrient-dense food, like lean protein, fruits and vegetables and low-fat dairy and whole grains.
"Those items are important through all the stages of life, but as we get older, we want to make sure we maintain those high-nutrient foods even though our caloric needs are less," Mangieri said.

Consider the big picture of your lifestyle
Dr. Elizabeth Jackson, an assistant professor at the University of Michigan emphasized the difference that a generally healthy lifestyle can have on preventing heart attacks and strokes.
For cardiovascular events, "we know that the risk increases with age, and you can't get younger. There's no cure for getting older," Jackson said.
But losing the spare tire around your middle could help you not only fit into your clothing, but reduce the risk for heart disease, diabetes and vascular diseases. "When you think of lifestyle modifications, there's a lot of bang for your buck in all different factors," Jackson said.
Doing regular physical activity, reducing stress levels, maintaining a healthy weight and a eating a diet high in fruits, vegetables and polyunsaturated fats all "help keep our blood vessels healthy," Jackson said. "And that keeps our heart healthy, that keeps our brains healthy, and it really helps us prevent that waistline increasing. An investment in healthy lifestyle will pay off through every subsequent decade," she said.

Butt out
Age 40 should include a reality check for smokers.
"If you're a smoker, it's time to take this seriously and stop it by whichever way, shape or form. Get some help," Zoghbi said.
Quitting "is not easy, but believe me, it will decrease the incidence of everything bad that you can think of, from heart attacks [to] heart disease, stroke, kidney failure as well as lung cancer and lung disease," he said.

Thyroid check
People who feel worn out, and are gaining weight and whose hair and skin have lost their luster, may consider getting their thyroids checked. This neck gland helps control energy levels and regulates hormones, and 40 is a time "when thyroid disease can show its face," Fryhofer said.
A test can determine if your thyroid is functioning as it should, she said. An underactive thyroid is primarily results from genetic condition causes, but you can stave off its complications with prescription medications, Fryhofer said.  
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Lincoln Financial Group is Up for a good start this 2015

The group scored 90 out of 100 percent which reflected the company’s commitment to LGBT employees and their families with respect to tangible benefits, practices, and policies.
The company has announced that they has been named Human Rights Campaign’s (HRC) 2015 Corporate Equality Index (CEI)  national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices relating to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) workplace equality, administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

On the other hand, Lincoln Financial ended the year 2014 by announcing the winners of its Give Thanks photo contest.
The winning photo was submitted by Sommer Pacana of Buffalo, N.Y, with her mom, Renee.

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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Life Hacks Anyone Over 50 Should Know

Who doesn't need life to be made a little bit easier? Below are 25 tips to do precisely that. Readers are invited to post their own life hacks below in comments.

1. Take a photo with your phone of where you park your car at the mall. That way, when you misplace the ticket you can at least show the nice security guard where your car is.

2. Take a cell photo of a list of all the medications used by relatives in your care. It's handy to have it in case of an emergency or when you take your mother to see a new doctor.

3. To get rid of your turkey neck in photos, photographers recommend that you stick your neck out and tuck your chin down.

4. To make your smile look bigger in photos, squint your eyes just a little.

5. Use nail polish to paint a colored dot on the end of your mom's keys to help her remember which one unlocks what. Green for front door; red for back door; etc.

6. Use a hanging shoe rack to store cleaning supplies inside the pantry door. It eliminates having to crawl under the sink to find the ones you use most frequently.

7. Can't hear the alarm clock? Set the alarm on your smartphone and put it in an empty glass near your bed. The sound will be amplified.

8. When a friend borrows a tool or book, snap a photo of them holding it so you'll remember later where it went.

9. Mark the side of your water bottle by hours so that you can keep track of what you've had to drink and will stay hydrated.

10. Take a photo of the inside of your refrigerator to help you remember what you need at the grocery store.

11. Use the clasps of an old skirt hanger to keep your cords from tangling and being tripped over.

12. When you downsize your house, consider buying a well-made foldout cot instead of a pullout sofa.
Your guests will thank you.

13. Use two-sided tape on area rugs to keep them in place.

14. Replace your aging parents' area rugs with wall-to-wall carpeting to minimize falls.

15. Use cold cucumbers to reduce eye puffiness. Cucumbers contain antioxidants that are thought to reduce irritation, while the cooling effect reduces swelling.

16. Carry a big scarf with you 24/7. It's as good as a shawl in overly air-conditioned restaurants, movies and airplanes and can double for sun protection at beaches and outdoor cafes.

17. Give charitable donations as gifts. Most charities notify the honoree only that a donation was made in their name from you and leave the amount out. You can appear to be a bigger spender and do some good in the meantime.

18. Have a big event and want to look glamorous? Make an appointment at a department store makeup counter for a makeover with their products. Sure they'll try to sell you stuff, but buy the least expensive item and tell them you'll think about the rest.

19. Feet making your shoes a bit odoriferous? Try sticking a dry teabag in each shoe overnight to reduce the smell.

20. Have trust issues with your GPS? Highway sign tip: If the exit sign is on the left of the sign, the exit itself will be on the left. If it's on the right, the exit will be on the right.

21. In a rental car, look at the little icon for the gas pump. The direction the gas handle is pointing is the side where you put your gas in.

22. Carry a nightlight with you when you stay in hotels. Sleeping in unfamiliar territory and trying to find your way to the bathroom in the dark can be a challenge for anyone.

23. Attach a small vial of hand sanitizer to the outside of your purse and use it liberally when you are out in public places. Escalators, elevator buttons, door handles are all germ territory.

24. Make your own emergency first aid kit by stuffing into an old prescription bottle: two bandages, a tiny sample of antibiotic ointment and -- if you are caregiving for a heart patient -- some nitroglycerin tablets.

25. A frozen wet sponge in a Ziploc bag makes for a great icepack that won't leak.

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What To Do When Long Term Care Rates Increase

Despite of 8.6% increase compared to last year, long term care advocates and advisors are still not yet discouraged to let their clients use it.

According to Stiles, Slome and planner Paul Jarvis, of United Capital in Fargo, N.D, Here are steps to consider when advising clients as the costs of policies increases:

1. Put the cost of coverage into perspective.
2. Don't try to offset all costs of long-term care.
3. Consider employer policies.
4. Buy in the sweet spot.
5. Shop around.
6. Give your clients options.
7. Negotiate with insurers.
8. Consider hybrid life insurance and long-term care policies.
9. Go with 30- or 60-day elimination periods.
10. Address the disconnect.
11. Prepare to teach.
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