About pbilodeau01

Born in Berlin, N.H.; bachelor of arts, major in journalism, Northeastern University; master's degree in urban studies, Southern Connecticut State University; was an editor and reporter at New Haven Register, an editor at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and a reporter at The Meriden Record-Journal. Now a freelance writer and editor.

ATTENTION GRADUATES: SIFT AND SORT THE ADVICE YOU GET

#graduation #GraduationMessages #GraduationSpeeches
Graduation speeches, at least to the graduates who are just looking to celebrate and party afterward, can often draw a groan.
It seems to many of them to be something they must sit through. Perhaps it’s good training for the next corporate meeting they will have to attend.
But they also may find a few nuggets of good advice among the long, drawn-out talks.
Jena McGregor, in a Washington Post article, highlighted some well-known speakers’ pearls of wisdom. The article was also published May 29, 2018, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Oprah Winfrey, for example, gave the typical “do what you love” advice when she spoke at the Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California, the article says. Then, she said:” You need to know this: Your job is not always going to fulfill you,” McGregor writes.
Yet, Oprah also advised the graduates to be so good at what they will do that “your talent cannot be dismissed,” the article quotes her.
Undoubtedly, some of those graduates will find out that even though they are very good at what they do, perhaps even winning awards etc., whoever they work for might not recognize it. And, they may also discover that even good people get laid off when each of the many reorganizations they will witness takes place.
Meanwhile, Hamdi Ulukaya, CEO of the Chobani Greek yogurt company, told this to grads of the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania: “It’s great that you are a Wharton MBA. But please, don’t act like it,” the article quotes him.
His point was the great training that Wharton has given the graduates shouldn’t make them think less of others who have not been so academically blessed.
“Don’t let (your degree) get in the way of seeing people as people and all they have to offer you, regardless of their title or position,” the article quotes him.
Certainly, graduates have their own ambitions. They have come this far and have put in the work and time – hopefully having some fun along the way. Some may come out of school not knowing exactly what they want to do. For some, it may be a craps shoot as to what opportunities their degrees will give them – or not.
Then, they face the issue of jobs not turning into what was expected or promised. Will they be able to roll with whatever happens? Make no mistake: the unexpected will happen.
If you are a new graduate in a period of indecision about your future, know that there are many ways out there to earn a potentially substantial income with a few part-time hours a week away from your W-2 job. To check out one of the best, message me.
Meanwhile, sift and sort every piece of advice you get. Some advice, though well meaning, can stifle what you might want, or be destined, to do. Other advice can encourage you to shoot for the moon. Know that the moon can be there for the taking if you shoot properly and consistently over time.
See the good in everything you do, and everyone you encounter, as you endure some drudgery in each endeavor. Don’t ever be afraid of pursuing your dream. It, too, could be there for the taking with the right effort and strategy.
Peter

A DISTURBING TREND: RETIRING BEFORE YOU WANT TO

#retirement #RetirementPlanning #layoffs #buyouts
It’s an alarming trend, a letter writer wrote.
People in their 50s are getting laid off, he continues. The workers may get an optional early-retirement package which, if not taken, leads to a layoff a short time later, he continues.
Or, he says, it may mean becoming a contract worker making half the money with fewer, and more expensive to you, benefits. “A friend who refused a package last year will retire with much less this month because of shortsightedness,” he writes.
The letter writer signed his missive “B.” He wrote the letter to Peter Dunn, the USA Today columnist known as “Pete the Planner.” His column was also published March 4, 2018, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
To sum up Pete’s response, he advises: “Draw a horizontal line on a piece of paper, and create a series of hash marks on the line, representing future age markers. Next, list major life events on the timeline. Be sure to note events such as your mortgage payoff year, when you reach age 59.5 (when retirement funds become available) and when you hit 62 (the first chance to activate Social Security). …
“When I drew my line, I noticed my need for money peaked at age 53,” Pete continues. “If I were to lose my job at or around 53 years old, I would be in big trouble. Therefore, I want to be sure not to take on any additional obligations around that time in my life. Knowing when you’re the most at risk is a reasonable way to avoid additional risks,” Pete writes.
He goes on to say that the age timeline will help people evaluate any early buyout options.
This topic is trending at a rapid pace. Pete advises that retiring at a normal age, with “normal” benefits etc., is challenging enough. Retiring early because one is forced to can be torture, he writes.
Planning is obviously a wise decision, but the best laid plans can go awry when you least expect them, or want them, to. So, we are in a milieu in which we have to PRESUME that we will not be able to work at our current jobs for as long as we want. Reorganizations will come frequently. Bad managers will come into your life and throw you out – or force you to leave on your own.
The age-old advice is to spend less and save more, as consumer adviser Clark Howard preaches. If you “have to have” the latest, up-to-date gadgets, think about whether your current gadgets are serving you well. A rule of thumb might be: if a new gadget will give me pleasure, and is not a necessity of life, postpone buying it and live with the older technology. When the old stuff craps out, then replace it.
If you have, say, a daily habit of buying a cup of coffee in the morning, you might think about buying a Thermos and brewing your own coffee to take with you.
In other words, examine the little things you do in life that cost you money. Do you really need to spend it? Remember, too, to think value rather than price. Sometimes, buying better stuff up front will keep you from buying multiple cheap things later on.
Finally, if you are planning your financial life as best you can, but you don’t think it will be enough when you get shown the door at work, think about investing a few part-time, off-work hours in something that may not only augment your income, but could surpass it. There are many such vehicles out there. To check out one of the best, message me.
Meanwhile, draw the diagram Pete suggests. This is especially good for folks who are less careful about their spending. Save well. Invest well – or as best you can – with a good, trusted adviser.
In today’s world, for many people, retirement decisions, unfortunately, are made FOR them by others. Be prepared for that decision to be made for you, as early as tomorrow, no matter how old you are.
Peter

MILLENNIALS NEED TO BE CONCERNED ABOUT MEDICARE

#millennials #Medicare #RetirementSavings #HealthCareSpending
Millennials may be a long way from Medicare eligibility.
But they need to care about it now, lest it runs out of money, or pays fewer benefits, when their time comes.
“Previous years’ surpluses, stowed away in a trust fund, will cover the (funding) gap until 2029. After that, Medicare Part A will be able to cover 88 percent of promised benefits, rather than 100 percent,” writes Liz Weston, a personal finance columnist for NerdWallet.com. Her column was published March 3, 2018, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Weston also writes that the younger folks need to figure out ways to cut health care spending in general.
Let’s break down the situation. First, as Weston writes, some in Washington are itching to cut Medicare, which provides relatively affordable health insurance to the 65-and-older demographic. Depending on what happens in Washington, health care costs could go up for millennials as they age. “Without a sturdy Medicare system, health care for older Americans could quickly become unaffordable,” Weston writes.
Also, young people in the private insurance market – those who do not have decent insurance benefits from their employers – should think about buying individual insurance policies now. Sure, you think you are young and won’t get sick or injured, but what if you do? Plus, they are relatively affordable for young, healthy folks. Also, having a health insurance policy young may make it easier for you to get health insurance when you are older.
Young folks tend to spend less time thinking about eventualities when they get older, so they tend to spend more and save less. The earlier in life you start saving, the more comfortable you’ll be when you get older. Also, retirement won’t necessarily come when you want it to. Companies reorganize frequently, and jobs you think are indispensable today could be gone tomorrow.
“Millennials already have enough burdens. They earn less, have a lot less wealth and owe a lot more in student loan debt than previous generations did at their age,” Weston writes.
So what’s a young person to do? First, have a bona fide, regular savings plan. Even if you can only put, say, $5 a week into it at the beginning, do that religiously. As your income increases, add more. Any raises you get should go into that fund, so, as your income increases, you can learn to economize on living expenses. Whatever you do, don’t touch that money until many years down the road.
Easier said than done? Perhaps. So you have to make a point of doing it, perhaps sacrificing some immediate pleasures to ensure you are keeping your promise to yourself.
As your savings increase – when your fund builds to a point that keeping it in a bank account seems unprofitable – find a trusted investment adviser who can guide you through the different investment vehicles for each stage of your life. Unless you are a financial professional, trying to manage your own investments can be risky. Obviously, some risk is warranted, but good, objective advice on the type of risk for your situation is essential.
Then, think about how you use your time. Are the things you spend your non-work time on enriching you? If not, there are many vehicles out there that, with a small investment of time consistently, can make you money. To check out one of the best, message me.
Young folks need to worry about Medicare, if they want it available to them when they reach that stage of life. So, pay attention to what happens in Washington. But, also, set up your own life so that no matter what happens, you’ll have the best life you can get when you reach your parents’ or grandparents’ ages.
Peter

DON’T JUST FIND HAPPINESS; CREATE IT!

#happiness #CreateHappiness #optimism
Happiness doesn’t just happen.
It is created.
Sometimes, as author Ellen Petry Leanse tells us, we have to hack our brains to create happiness.
She discusses the topic in her book, “The Happiness Hack.”
She writes that we have to overcome distractions, create real connections, find more calm and master new habits.
Though technology has many benefits, it also creates many distractions, she writes.
It’s been said that some people aren’t happy unless they are miserable.
Workplaces are filled with people who constantly complain, and try to drag happy people into their pity pots.
There’s more gloom and doom out there than most people can stand. Some take vacations from social media to get a break from it.
Part of being happy is being optimistic. It’s also appreciating the good we all have in our lives.
Certainly, circumstances will knock us off course. We may experience illness, death of someone close to us, economic hardship etc. But we have to fight to overcome circumstances and regain our happiness.
We all can think of things we would like to have to enhance our happiness. Yet, not having those things immediately should not deter us from appreciating the good things we already have.
Perhaps our circumstances are such that we believe we are not where we think we should be. If your economic circumstances are that way, and if you are willing to look at a different path, message me.
Leanse uses in her book a quote from an unknown source that says, “ When I was in grade school, they told me to write down what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy.’ They told me I didn’t understand the assignment. I told them they didn’t understand life.”
Such wisdom is rare among grade-school pupils. Yet the idea is spot on.
We all have different definitions of happiness. Some can find happiness no matter the situation. Others can find despair even when their lives are quite good.
No matter what makes you happy, look for it. Find it. Perhaps you don’t know what will make you happy. That’s no reason not to look for it.
Don’t just look for it. Create it. Look at all the positives around you. Don’t let the negatives, or negative people, affect you.
If you have a job, find things about that job, no matter what they are, that you like about it. Focus on those things. Certainly, there are tasks we must do that don’t create happiness, but one can push through those to focus on what makes us happy.
The distractions will come, as Leanse points out. But don’t let those distractions taint your overall happiness. Happiness is not just there for the taking, it’s there for the creating.
Peter

ROBOTS, OTHER COUNTRIES KILLING U.S. JOBS?

#robots #AmericanJobs #efficiencies #CreativeDestruction
Do you believe robots, or manufacturing in other countries, are killing American jobs?
A recent article in The Guardian carries the headline, “Robots will destroy our jobs – and we’re not ready for it.”
Economist Joseph Schumpeter describes technological change as “creative destruction.” Actually, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says that the U.S. labor force in 1950 was 62 million. By 2000 it was 79 million and it’s projected to reach 192 million by 2050.
These bits of information come from an article by Walter E. Williams of Creators Syndicate. It was published Feb. 21, 2018, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“Though the ‘creative destruction’ process works hardships on some people who lose their jobs and are forced to take lower-paying jobs, any attempt to impede the process would make us all worse off,” Williams writes.
It’s tough to understand the value of technological progress if you’ve been shown the curb from your job. Many people have lost relatively good-paying jobs, and been forced to take lower-paying jobs, if they were lucky enough to find a new job at all. The recession of 2008 has taken a toll on many.
The Williams article tells of the 62 million in the work force in 1950. Back then, progress was definitely slower. People could count on the jobs they had to be around for as long as they wanted to work. Some of those jobs were hard, either on the body, mind or both.
Back then, many workers were represented by unions, which helped impede some process innovations and efficiencies to keep more people working.
Today, fewer workers have that kind of representation, and the number keeps decreasing. Workers are essentially on their own to plan their careers.
As a result, in many cases, careers come to a premature end, and workers are left figuring out what to do next.
But just as technology has been, by and large, a good thing for the U.S. and the world, having workers determine their own destinies can also be a good thing, if you want to look at it differently.
It’s been said in several different ways that hardship creates opportunity. Though the opportunity may be difficult to see if circumstances have dealt you a difficult blow, they are out there for those willing to look for them.
If you have lost what appears to be a good job, and are not yet ready to retire, there are many ways out there to make money other than through a traditional W-2 job. To check out one of the best, message me. You might even see a great way to help your friends overcome difficult circumstances.
The U.S. has moved over the centuries from a primarily agricultural economy, to a primarily manufacturing economy, and is continuing to move into a more technologically based economy. You, as perhaps a temporarily displaced worker, can’t do anything to fight that. In fact, no governmental entity can do anything to fight that. If we try to impede innovation here, someone else somewhere will innovate, leaving the U.S. in the dust.
So the next time you try to blame robots, cheaper overseas labor or other advances on your circumstances, remember that you can’t stop those things. You can only look for ways to help yourself to a better life.
That may require a change of mind-set, or departing your comfort zone, but ANYONE can do it. If you don’t find a solution immediately, keep looking. You just might meet the person who will show you how YOU can change your life for the better.
Peter

OVERSTATING PROBLEMS

#OverstatingProblems #optimists #pessimists #poverty
“Can’t overstating problem energize us in terms of solving them?”
So asked Philip Galanes, during lunch with Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Steven Pinker, professor of psychology at Harvard University and author of 10 books.
Galanes wrote about his conversation with the two for The New York Times. The article was also published in the Feb. 11, 2018, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“There’s a paradox in letting yourself be very, very upset about what remains to be done (for the common good),” Gates said. “There are still parts of the world that are still like 40 years ago. But to read (Pinker’s) book and think it says, ‘don’t worry, be happy’ (borrowing from a Bobby McFerrin title), is to misread it. Because seeing the world through the eyes of that poor kid ideally wants to make you give some money, even though there are many fewer such kids than 50 years ago,” Gates said.
“Extreme global poverty has been reduced from 90 percent 200 years ago to 10 percent today. That’s great! Or you can say: more than 700 million people in the world live in extreme poverty today. They’re the same fact, and you have to be able to describe them to yourself in both ways,” Pinker says.
This snippet of a long conversation illustrates that there is more than one way to look at the world.
Some of the information we hear would lead us to believe that the world is going to hell in a hand basket, and perhaps we need to straighten it out. Or, others would have us believe that past efforts to solve problems have had a great effect, and that, though the problems are not completely solved, the situation is much better than it was years ago.
It’s perhaps the classic difference between an optimist and a pessimist. The old adage talks about viewing a glass of water as either half empty or half full. But it is more than that.
It starts with how you feel about yourself each time you wake up in the morning, or later in the day if you work at night. Is every day you do so a good day? Or, is it just another day?
Do you long for weekends, and dread the weekdays? Do you feel as if you are on a treadmill during the week, and finally get a break from it on weekends (or whatever your regular days off might be)?
Experts say you can change how you think. You can take stock of what’s good in your life, and be thankful, rather than think of what’s not so good and be resentful, or sad, or feel doomed.
You can think about what you really want in life, or you can presume you’ll never get what you really want, and settle for something OK, or tolerable.
You can see retirement as a goal to allow you to do what you want, or you can do what you want sooner, rather than later. Or, worse yet, you can see yourself as working at a job you hate until you die.
So, are you thankful, or dreadful (meaning full of dread, as opposed to an awful person)? Give yourself a break. Always – and you can pull this off – look at yourself as blessed and grateful.
If you need a vehicle to help you turn your life around, there are several such vehicles out there for those willing to look for them. To check out one of the best, message me.
Meanwhile, if you are on that treadmill of dread, stay on it only as long as you need to. Start looking for things that will help get you off it.
Your thoughts have the power to improve your life. Be an optimist, for there are very few, if any, successful pessimists. Take stock of the good in your life and build on it. It could start you on a path that will allow you to achieve your dreams sooner rather than later.
Peter

PENSIONS, RETIREMENT AND DECUMULATION?

#pensions #retirement #decumulation #MoneyandTime
The news stories appeared next to each other on the same day.
One headline read, “As pension plans fade, workers find retirement more elusive.” The story, written by Peter Whorisky for The Washington Post, talks about how pension plans are on the decline and workers are increasingly dependent on their own savings for retirement.
The second headline read, “Why you should resolve to spend more money.” The story, written by Suzanne Woolley for Bloomberg News, talks about how retirees who have diligently saved and invested for their retirement, should consciously decide to spend down some of those savings after years of frugality.
Both stories were published Jan. 28, 2018, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The obvious question here: what retirement position are you in, and is it the right place for you?
Many can relate to the former. Perhaps they were promised a pension by their employer when they were hired, but that pension is no longer offered. Or, perhaps the pension benefit disappeared.
Perhaps not nearly as many can relate to the latter. If you are fortunate enough to have a good retirement nest egg, by all means, enjoy it. Do what you like to do. But, as any financial adviser would tell you, it’s best to take out the dividends, interest and other earnings your money produces first. A good rule: if you never touch your principal, you will never outlive your money. So, spend, but spend with some care.
Retirement didn’t used to be this complicated. In decades past, one was hired for a job and, if they stayed out of trouble, showed up every day and did what was expected of them for many years, they could count on retirement benefits.
They would get whatever pension their employers gave, combined it with Social Security and, perhaps, some savings and/or a no-stress, part-time job that provided some pocket money.
To live in such a retirement, one had to spend carefully. Perhaps they had enough to enjoy some hobbies, travel, spoil grandchildren etc. But most had to watch how they spent their money. You may have heard the pleas of, “we’re on a fixed income, you know.”
Hopefully, by this time, their mortgages were paid off and there were very few other debts.
Contrast that with today. Job security is non-existent. Pensions, as the article says, are not offered to as many people. Many don’t have a great deal of savings for retirement, and perhaps have vowed to work until they die – or until their employer forces them to leave.
The “fixed incomes” of many fortunate retirees is greater than those of many of the younger, working cohort that’s helping to fund their parents’ Social Security payments.
The part-time “retirement” jobs many are forced to take involve longer-than-desired hours, much stress and take away whatever fun retirement might offer.
There is some good news in all this. There are many ways people can earn potentially good incomes by spending a few hours a week – and have some fun doing it. The good news: it doesn’t involve taking a second, or “retirement,” part-time job. To check out one of the best, message me.
If you are young, you can think about doing this using some time when you aren’t working at your traditional job. If you are diligent, you could be in the position of having a comfortable, spendable nest egg when you retire, and have the kind of decision the second article features.
If you are retired, either by choice or force, time is on your side, and you may find a less stressful way to earn an income.
So think about your retirement position today, and bear in mind that what you were promised, or what you thought you might get, may not be there. Build enough of a nest egg, however you choose to, so you won’t have to “work until you die.”
Peter

A POSITIVE ATTITUDE CAN MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE

#PositiveAttitude #attitude #talent #discipline
To your eyes, is the glass half-empty or half-full?
When working with a team on a project, are you the first to see the worst-case scenario, and be immediately convinced that the worst will happen?
When getting reassigned at work, do you automatically presume it will be the worst thing that could happen?
Vicki Hitzges discusses attitude in her little book, “Attitude Is Everything: 10 Rules for Staying Positive.”
Her 10 rules include: wait to worry; keep an attitude of gratitude; your health is your wealth; the serious benefits of belly laughs; joy boomerangs; losing the fight? write; keep the faith, baby; learn to say “no” graciously; understand the power of discipline; and surround yourself with positive people.
In the interest of space, let’s focus on the last two rules. Hitzges tells the story of Lilly Mae, a bright girl from a good family who had a solid education. “She knew a smattering about everything, from how the moon affects the tides to surviving a freezing weekend without a tent in the forest,” the author writes.
Unfortunately, Lilly’s parents never disciplined her. She never had to do chores, was never taught to say “please” and “thank you,” and never really obeyed her gentle mother, the author writes. As a result, she grew up overweight, with poor study habits and poor social skills, according to Hitzges. Yet, she could sing, play the piano and play the ukulele. She could transform leftovers into a feast. She, indeed, was talented.
“Talent is cheaper than table salt,” Hitzges quotes novelist Stephen King. “What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work,” Hitzges quotes King.
In other words, “talent without discipline won’t take a person far,” the author writes. “Talent with discipline races like a thoroughbred.”
Something else is true. One who has discipline can be more successful than a person with more talent and less discipline.
As you think of this concept, think of athletes, musicians etc. who make a living with their talent. They are essentially forced to be disciplined to hone their craft and practice with others, and on their own, tirelessly. Otherwise, in most cases, they won’t make a living with their talent.
Those less talented than others who make a living in, say, sports or music, do so strictly through hard work. If you can’t outrun someone, out-work him.
As for positive people, the author writes: “Spent much time around people who just drift through life? They don’t set goals, expect others to pick up the slack, just don’t care. Avoid them!” the author writes.
Another adage: “If you can’t change the people around you, change the people around you.”
Negative people will work really hard to try to talk you out of being successful. Hang around people who will support your endeavors, and encourage your success.
If you are a person who considers himself or herself disciplined, and have a need to find a vehicle that could help you become successful, and introduce you to positive people, there are many such vehicles out there. To learn about one of the best, message me.
Your success doesn’t depend on circumstances. Things will happen to you, but those things don’t determine your success. How you deal with them determines your success. Your positive attitude will help you combat any pitfalls in your life, and allow you to take advantage of the good things that come into your life.
Peter

ECONOMY AFFECTS MILLENNIALS’ HOMEOWNERSHIP

#HomeBuying #homeownership #millennials #RealEstate
Contrary to what one might think, millennials actually want to buy houses.
But, the economy is stopping them from doing so, in significant numbers.
As with previous generations, they believe owning is better than renting.
“We’re wasting money where we are right now,” said Chris Eidam, 27, who lives with his girlfriend near Bridgeport, Conn. “We just take our rent and we throw it away. That money doesn’t go to anything,” said Eidam, who was quoted in an article on the subject buy Agnel Philip for Bloomberg News. It was also published in the Jan. 1, 2018, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The article points out that stagnating wages, rising housing costs and lack of supply are hindering first-time home buyers.
Still, the article says, for two straight quarters, homeownership rate among those 35 and younger has increased.
But, these are not their parents’ times. Decades ago, a lender would look at a young person that had a steady job, figure out what payments they could afford and determine whether they could buy a certain house. The lenders actually bet on a person’s good name and reputation and loaned them the money.
Today, lending restrictions are stricter. Buyers, sellers and real estate agents, too, have to hope that the agreed upon price meets the lender’s appraisal. Often, the appraisal comes in less than the agreed-upon price, prompting sellers to back out of the deal. Lenders have encouraged appraisers to be strict, to come in less than the fair market value.
Secondly, today’s young folks don’t have the job security that their parents often did. If their parents worked at, say, the local phone company, and had a decent wage, the lender could look at that as an income unlikely to go away. Today, no job is “secure,” and paychecks could dry up just like that. Lenders don’t really want to own real estate and, during the recession, that real estate often came back to lenders worth less than the money owed. Some of that can be blamed on homeowners playing fast and loose with home equity, but that’s another story.
In the overall scheme of life, stricter lending standards may be a good thing. But to those wanting to buy their first home, they are a detriment.
Lending standards have relaxed some in recent times, the article says, but younger folks are carrying record levels of student debt and can struggle to qualify, according to the article.
Home building today is also geared more toward high-end homes, and away from so-called starter homes, the article says.
Still, the experts, according to the article, believe the home-buying market among millennials will equal, or come close to, that of their parents decades ago, the article quotes Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist at Trulia.
So what is a young person, or young couple, that wants to buy a home, to do? First, figure out what you can afford. Don’t expect your first house to be perfect, especially, as the article points out, if you expect to change jobs, or move away from your location. You can always trade up, or remodel, later.
If your income, debt load etc. is making home buying difficult, look for a vehicle that can augment your income by devoting a few, part-time, off-work hours a week. There are many, non W-2 vehicles out there to do that. To check out one of the best, message me.
Finally, if you see a house you can afford, and you are reasonably happy with the location, overlook any cosmetic deficiencies. You can fix those eventually with time, patience and elbow grease. Remember, too, that perfect houses, like perfect people, don’t exist. Every house will have something about it you don’t like. Don’t dismiss good deals out of hand over something you can ultimately fix.
Remember, too, that homeownership is not for everyone. It may have been part of the American Dream, but it’s no sin not to own. Owning your own home comes with great responsibility. If you don’t want or need that, rent, and invest in other things. In short, do the math, figure out the kind of life you want and proceed accordingly.
Peter

RESULTS VS. PROCESS: THINKING OUTSIDE THE BOX

#ThinkingOutsideTheBox #task #process #PaperAirplane
Some kids in a class are asked to each make a paper airplane.
After each made his or her airplane, they would compete to see which one flew the farthest.
One kid waited forever, then, at contest time, never made his plane.
Instead, he took his piece of paper, crumpled it in a ball and threw it. It went farther than any of his classmates’ planes.
This story is the premise for the book, “Paper Airplane: A Lesson in Flying Outside the Box,” by Michael McMillan.
If you were the teacher in the class, would you applaud the crumpled-ball boy for thinking outside the box? After all, school is based on rules, process etc. In school, one learns to follow a process, perhaps to the letter, even if his or her results might be better going a different route.
“Maps (or processes) simply explain the territory you’ve yet to explore,” McMillan writes. “They are based on information and understanding gained by earlier travelers. (But), they can also be detrimental to creative thinking. If you follow them too closely, you can miss information not yet seen or understood by the map’s creator,” he writes.
The boy’s crumpled ball, in McMillan’s mind, was seen as a “breakthrough idea,” or “paradigm shifter.”
Certainly, when we send children to school, we expect them to follow the rules, obey the teachers and not misbehave.
We have also seen school settings in which children were allowed to “express themselves” in ways they see fit. We sometimes look upon those settings as unruly.
But what if children were taught to think of ways, on their own, to solve problems, while, at the same time, not hurting others or interfering with others? How can we discover “breakthrough” thinkers, or paradigm shifters at a young age? How will they show themselves in a forum governed strictly by rules and process?
Perhaps it depends on the teacher – how he or she was trained, what the school administration encourages, or discourages, etc.
We’ve all, at one time or another, have been told that following the rules was the best course of action. There was security in following the rules. You were less likely to get in trouble. You will get what you need in life by following the rules.
Yet, so many brilliant people have made their mark by NOT following the rules. In fact, all, or nearly all, of us may have to, at some turning point in life, be put in a position to think outside the box. Our following of the rules did not pay off. What we thought was safe has been suddenly taken away. We get kicked in the teeth for being good boys and girls, and following the rules.
If you are in that position, there are many different ways to get out of it. But, you HAVE to be willing to think outside the box. To check out one of the best ways out, message me.
With less and less security looming for most of us, it will likely become necessary to think of different ways, from what we know, to live, and to make a living. Instead of getting angry about what has happened, crumple up a piece of paper and throw it as far as you can. Then, go about thinking about which Plan B is going to help you the most.
Peter