#CollegeGrads #jobs #debt
One graduate has resorted to selling her eggs to help infertile women.
She is one of many college graduates who have huge college debt and not enough income to easily pay it off.
Her story and others were relayed by Kala Kachmar of the Asbury Park (N.J.) Press in an article also published in the May 8, 2016, edition of The Tennessean in Nashville as part of its USA Today supplement.
About 2 million borrowers bear a $1.3 trillion loan burden, the headline reads.
“Who wants to live at home at 29? I don’t. But, luckily, I can. … I shouldn’t be living paycheck to paycheck,” the article quotes Christyn Gionfriddo of Neptune, N.J.
Let’s examine what has happened. We have gotten constant messages for decades that to get a good job, one needs a good education – a college degree. Colleges and the government have made it easier for students of all income levels to go to college.
Some of the vehicles used to facilitate students getting into college involve loans that students are not obligated to begin repaying until after graduation.
In theory, this plan works if students can convert his or her education into a good-paying job.
That doesn’t always happen.
Therefore, students are graduating with huge debt that may be difficult to repay, if their incomes can’t support it.
Some, in fact, will try to avoid repaying it.
What’s a young person to do?
First, determine in your high school years whether college is right for you.
It’s certainly a nice goal to have EVERYONE get a college degree, but today’s economics require a more in-depth thought process for each student.
Ask yourself, if you go to college, what is the goal when you graduate? What kind of income will you be likely to earn with your degree? Will you need loans to get through school? What is the likelihood of you getting a job in your chosen field immediately after graduation? Will it be enough for you to live a decent life, and pay off your debt?
If you’ve determined that college is worthwhile enough to borrow money for, then watch your spending while in school. You may have to forgo some good times, get a part-time job and otherwise be somewhat miserly. Watch every dime you spend and make sure it is worthwhile.
If you determine that college may not be right for you, don’t fret. There are other ways to make an income without having to worry about what kind of job you have. To learn about one of the best, message me. You’ll learn about people of all income and education levels spending less, and potentially earning enough to pay off any debt promptly.
In short, don’t view going to college as an automatic decision. Don’t view your education as an interlude to be young, boisterous and have a good time. Because, when you grow up, there could be a big debt welcoming you to adulthood.
Colleges don’t care what happens to you once you get out. But you should take that into account before deciding whether to go to college.



#immigration #prosperity #workforce
Believe it or not, to quote the first line of a newspaper editorial, “immigrants are not the enemy.”
The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville commented on reports compiled by the bipartisan Partnership for A New American Economy showing how immigrants are contributing to the workforce, tax rolls and the overall economy, the editorial reads. It was published in the Aug. 14, 2016, edition.
In Tennessee, the newspaper says, 300,000 residents are foreign-born, or nearly 5 percent of the state’s population. But, they make up 6 percent of the state’s workforce, the editorial says. In 1990, immigrants made up only 1.2 percent of Tennessee’s population.
The editorial cites some notable stats from the report:
• Immigrants annually earn $7.9 billion, pay $493 million in taxes and have the spending power of $5.9 billion.
• They make up 7.8 percent of entrepreneurs.
• They are 32 percent more likely to work than the native-born population (57.8 percent of employed immigrants vs. 43.7 percent of employed natives.)
• Immigrants make up 7 percent of jobs in science, technology, engineering and math (the STEM skills).
Meanwhile, in an article published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Aug. 15, 2016, Tim Henderson of the Tribune News Service writes that many officials in small towns nationwide that have lost population in recent years are asking that refugees from the Middle East and elsewhere be relocated to their towns to take jobs they can’t fill, live in apartments and houses that are now vacant and to shop in local stores. The refugees will take the places of native-born residents who’ve moved elsewhere in large numbers.
Immigrants have basically gotten a bad reputation. Some see them as moochers, stealers of benefits and taking opportunities away from native-born Americans. The report, on which the Tennessean editorial was based, tells a different tale.
“(Undocumented workers) are demonized for their legal status, but overall they are giving back more to society than they are getting back,” the editorial says.
Undocumented workers, “though they don’t directly benefit from federal and state aid, but they annually earn $2.1 billion, pay $250 million in state and federal taxes and have $1.8 billion in spending power, “ the editorial says.
Immigrants do jobs native-born Americans won’t do. They are doing many highly technical jobs – not just manual labor – that relatively few native-born Americans are qualified for. Many get their training here, and overstay their visas.
The economic partnership that compiled the Tennessean report is aiming for sensible immigration reform.
It’s easy to blame immigrants, or something else, for one’s hard times.
It’s much more difficult to look for one’s own solutions to the hard times.
If you are looking for something to come into YOUR life that will change things for the betterment of you, there are many such vehicles out there. To check out one of the best, message me. You’ll see people from various races, and nearly all backgrounds, who have taken a step to turn their own lives around.
The economy is changing in ways that we can’t revert. One either has to accept that change and ensure that they can have what they want as the economy changes, or they can blame various people and institutions for their hardship.
If one thinks about it, one can only hope we all choose to accept and ensure. The next time you are working with, or being serviced by, someone who may not look or talk the way you do, know that the person is contributing greatly to the economy, and to the well-being of all of us.


#DelayedRetirement #retirement #OlderWorkers
In decades past, one worked in a job, or for a company for 30 to 40 years and retired with a pension, Social Security and, perhaps, a no-stress, part-time job.
Some fortunate ones retired earlier than the traditional age 65. A scant few worked past age 65.
Retirements opened positions for younger workers to move up, and the jobs they vacated were available for newer workers. That was helpful to the economy.
In the last few years, since the 2008 recession, that dynamic has changed. More people are delaying retirement, largely because the relatively generous retirement benefits of decades past have been cut, or have disappeared. Another reason is that more people are being forced out of good jobs ahead of when they wanted, or had planned to, retire. They end up taking jobs that pay a lot less, so they have to work longer and retire later.
Michael Molinski, a Paris-based economist and writer, discussed this topic in a column for USA Today. It was published July 24, 2016, in The Tennessean newspaper of Nashville.
“People in the U.S. are working longer and waiting longer to retire – often not by choice – and that could be bad news for our economy,” Molinski writes. He quotes a study done at the University of Paris-Sorbonne that says, in part, “the most productive group is the group of core workers (ages 25 to 54) right in the middle” of the barbell-shaped labor force, Molinski writes.
In other words, more older and younger workers, starting at age 15, are being pushed into the labor force, he says.
He adds that older workers can be, and often are, valuable mentors to younger workers. But the average age for retirement in the U.S. has jumped to 62 in 2014, up from 59 in 2010, he writes.
“As a result, our economy is less productive than it could be, and that trend is expected to continue for the next 35 years unless something is done to turn it around,” Molinski writes.
Actually, when the traditional work cycle was alive and well decades ago, life expectancy was a bit younger than it is now. So, more people have more energy and, at least in theory, get “old” much later in life.
That isn’t to say that everyone WANTS to keep working later in life. Most of us, unless we really love our jobs, want to retire as soon as we are able. Also, many of us do not want to be FORCED to retire before we are able.
The key to making the work cycle work for you is to be retirement-able as soon as possible. You might decide to keep working even if you can retire, or you may be forced to retire before you want to. The key here is to make whatever you do YOUR choice. Circumstances may hit you in the face, but if you have options, you can hit back.
One option is to save and invest wisely throughout your working years, starting at the youngest age possible. Another is to have a Plan B, at which you work part time during your working years that will help you save money and earn an income that could enhance your options. There are many ways to do that, for those willing to look for them. If you’d like to check out one of the best, message me.
Working longer because you want to is commendable. Working longer because you have to could be torturous. At the youngest age possible, everyone should be thinking about how to enhance his or her options as life, and the labor force, takes its turns.
If you are an older worker and are able to retire, perhaps you should think about the younger person who really needs your job. If you are a younger worker and see many people working past when you think they should retire, don’t resent them. Instead, learn from them.


#BadBosses #leaders #managers
Most of us who’ve had jobs have seen different styles in managers.
There are some that left us, as employees, pretty much alone to do our jobs. They interfered only when necessary and appropriate.
Others wanted to know everything, have a say in everything, be copied on everything etc. They are known as micromanagers.
Debra Auerbach, a writer for the Advice and Resources section of, issued a few tips on dealing with micromanagers. Her article appeared in the Feb. 21, 2016, edition of The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville.
Her first tip in dealing with a micromanager is to be on top of your game. You don’t want to give that boss more reason to nitpick, she writes.
Secondly, she suggests determining whether you are a target. See whether the manager picks on others he or she supervises, as much as he or she picks on you.
Thirdly, she suggests building trust. The manager has to trust you if you have any chance of getting “more space” from that manager.
She also suggests providing frequent updates to the manager, trying your best to adapt to that management style and deciding whether working in this environment is a deal-breaker for you.
We’ve all either worked for, or have seen in action, micromanagers. As discussed previously, leaders don’t micromanage. Leaders hire the right people and provide the environment in which the employees are empowered to do their jobs the best way they know how.
Ideally, the boss is doing what he or she does best, so he or she doesn’t have the time or inclination to worry about what the employees do best. Sure, there are certain expectations. But, if the leader has done his job correctly, he or she has no worries about those expectations being met or exceeded.
What kind of environment do you work in? Do you work for a micromanager? Many of them are not necessarily hostile toward you, but they annoy you and make your job more difficult than it should be.
Most jobs have stressful components. Micromanagers add to that stress. Leaders do their best to relieve as much of the stress as possible.
Micromanagers will still be all over your case when you are shorthanded because someone is out sick or on vacation. Leaders will understand that you are working shorthanded, and pitch in to help pick up some of the workload.
A micromanager can ruin the career of a perfectly good person by nitpicking. That manager may even set out to hold his or her people back from advancement. A leader will encourage his or her people to move on, when the opportunity is better for that employee, and even help that person get what he or she wants.
If your boss is nitpicking you to death, you may have to take time outside of work to find other opportunities to earn income, so you can make such nitpicking a deal-breaker. For one of the best ways to do that, visit Eventually, you could be the leader that helps others advance.
Remember, some nitpicky bosses don’t mean you harm. It’s just who they are. You are who you are. If you understand them, you can better get along with them, until you are able to move on. Don’t stop looking for new places to go.


#BelieveInYourself #Sales #Success
It’s no secret that the secret to good sales is believing in oneself.
Tom Black, a sales consultant, wrote in an Oct. 18, 2015, column in The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville, that successful people in all professions, especially sales, begin with a basic belief that they can achieve success.
OK, many of us think we are good at something. A few of us think we are not good at anything. Another few believe we are good at everything. Consultants, using their considerable ability to persuade, tell others that all they have to do is believe in themselves.
Black boils it down to three steps: write down one’s beliefs and read them regularly; surround oneself with those who believe in him; thirdly, tell someone important to him what he believes he will become.
These are simple concepts on their face, so why isn’t everyone successful? Why don’t we all believe in ourselves?
The simple answer is that, in the process of creating belief in ourselves, our beliefs change. A setback here, a mistake there, can, and often does, modify strong beliefs in ourselves.
As we proceed to surround ourselves with people who believe in us, we run across naysayers, competitors (those who would succeed because we have failed) and well-meaning folks who tend to prick a pinhole in our balloons and deflate our beliefs.
We want to stay strong in our beliefs. But even when we know that what we have, and what we can achieve, is all good, a comment here, a sidetrack there and failures to act bring setbacks. Even successful people have setbacks and run into people who trash their beliefs. The difference among them is that they don’t let circumstances alter their beliefs.
They press on, even when it’s difficult to do so. Their eyes, and their minds, are always on the prize, and they have the ability to ignore, or do away with, everything else.
It takes a strong mind, not just a smart one, to do that. Perhaps you know people in your field who are not as good as you at what you do, but are more successful. The contrary can also be true: those in your field whom you may hold in high esteem may not be as successful as you.
If you want to be a successful person, and believe you have the strength of mind to do so, but still may be looking for the best way to channel that strength, visit You’ll see stories of strong-minded people who, as Black suggests, found other strong-minded people who believed in them, to put around them. They are not waiting for other shoes to drop. Nor are they planning to give up when setbacks arise. For them, the prize is just too good not to go for.
There are many reasons out there to be concerned for your well-being. They are well-publicized. You can pay attention to them, or choose not to. You can see the world for what is, and believe the sky will fall, or you can see the world – and yourself – for what can be, and rise above the “circumstances.”
Yes, there are choices here. You can ask people around you what they would do if they were you, or you can ask yourself what YOU would do for you. Choose wisely.


#setbacks #OvercomingAdversity #LoseTheVictimMentality
Life is going your way. Suddenly, a setback – an injury, death, business disaster etc.
“It’s not whether you get knocked down; it’s whether you get back up,” says legendary football coach Vince Lombardi.
Andy Bailey, lead entrepreneur coach with the firm Petra, quoted Lombardi in an Oct. 11, 2015, column he wrote for The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville.
“A setback defines your company or career only if you let it keep you from trying to move forward, “Bailey writes.
In other words, no matter how well things may be going now, setbacks will come. Perhaps you will lose a job. Perhaps your biggest client bolts. Perhaps the one person you relied on the most in life dies.
They all hurt, but they shouldn’t kill you. You can recover from almost anything if you want to. You just have to use the inner strength to move on.
Bailey suggests three things: lose the victim mentality, recalibrate and do the hard work.
Let’s discuss each of those. Do you know anyone who can’t escape “woe is me?” A setback will send them right into a tailspin. They will blame everyone and everything for ruining their lives. They will believe they were meant to have something bad happen to them.
They are the victims. However, good, strong people are NEVER victims. They believe when bad things happen, they can, and will, overcome them. It may take them a bit longer to achieve what they want, but no matter. They know to press on, and they do.
Maybe you’ve done something wrong in your great life plan. Presuming you can figure out what it is, you fix it and move on. Most strong people can determine what they should have done differently, and recalibrate, or adjust.
Of course, these same, strong people know about hard work and do it. They look at problems as fixable, as long as they are willing to do what it takes.
It’s not just working hard. Some very hard-working people lose their jobs every day. Sometimes it means finding something different to work hard at.
If you are someone who has worked hard, and suddenly have what you’ve worked so hard for disappears, there are many ways to recalibrate, or adjust. You don’t have to be a victim. If your job disappears, there are many ways to make money that have nothing to do with a traditional job. For one of the best, visit Oh, you’ll still have to work hard, but you may find life more fun and more lucrative.
It doesn’t necessarily take a village to overcome a setback. But an individual could create a village to get him past what was holding him back. Let not your circumstances define you. If things go badly, turn them around. Anyone can do it, if you have the motivation.
Another tip: hang with people who encourage you, rather than those who discourage you. Sometimes, when one combines bad circumstances with pessimistic people, the mixture is toxic to one’s psyche.
As motivational speaker, author and leadership expert John Maxwell has said, one will not necessarily be a great singer just because he believes he can. He has to have some God-given talent to get him there. But, for many other things, you can achieve what you believe.
Follow Bailey’s advice: don’t be a victim, recalibrate if necessary and do the hard work. No matter what you are trying to achieve, don’t let setbacks squash you.


#JobRelocation #RelocateForAJob #WhereTheJobsAre

So there is no job for you where you live.

What goes into your decision to move where the work is, or stay where you are?

Susan Ricker of discussed this in an article Sept. 13, 2015, in The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville.

The article quotes Jodi Chavez, senior vice president at recruitment and staffing firm Accounting Principals, as saying that relocation is common in certain professions – usually those jobs that require travel as part of the work. (Read: high-level jobs).

But even if the employer pays the cost of moving, one could be moved from a relatively low-cost area to a higher-cost area. The salary change, presuming there is one, has to compensate for that. If it doesn’t, that should provide some food for thought.

There are many perks, the article states, to some locations vs. others. Certain cities, like San Francisco and New York, provide a wide range of potential off-the-job activities. They are also among the more expensive places to live.

But let’s step back a moment and presume that you are just out of a job. Either you’ve been laid off, your job has gone away or you are being “retired” before you want to be. There is no benefactor to help with moving expenses.

But, there is, or at least could be, a job waiting for you as long as you move to a certain location.

What do you do?

Let’s say you are in a tough housing market now. You could rent your current house, move to your new location and let your previous house be financially productive for you. There are significant headaches to being a landlord, even if you hire a property manager to deal with day-to-day tasks. You’ll find there’s a difference between renting a house that was your home, and renting a house that you had bought specifically for that purpose.

The tenants may not know, or care, that the house they are renting used to be your home, and may not take care of it as you had.

If you are moving to a place at which the cost of living is considerably less than it is at your current location, you might make money simply by moving.

If you don’t want to rent your current house, the benefit you may get from the lower cost of living at your new location may mitigate having to sell your current house quickly, perhaps getting less than you believe it is worth.

Of course, there are emotional attachments to where you live – friends, family, off-work activities etc. But, if you have to work, and there is no work where you want to be, sometimes difficult decisions have to be made.

Another thought: what if there were other ways to put money in your pocket besides having a job? There are many such vehicles. For one of the best, visit What if you, and your friends, family etc., could help each other succeed, without having to move?

Still, moving, whether you are being relocated, or are relocating yourself, is a difficult decision. If you ever face it, here’s hoping that your employer is helping you as best he can. If not, think long and hard about all the advantages, and disadvantages, of moving and act according to your best interests.



#FindYourPurpose #StopProcrastinating #JustDoIt
How do I stop procrastinating?
How do I gain more confidence in myself?
How can I reduce my fears and anxiety?
These are questions Gregg Steinberg gets from people struggling with their careers.
Steinberg, a professor of human performance at Austin Peay State University in Tennessee, says there are no easy answers to those questions. The best answer, though, is to fill your life with purpose.
Steinberg discussed his strategy for doing that in a column Aug. 16, 2015, in The Tennessean newspaper of Nashville.
His three-step strategy includes thinking of a time in your life in which you had a meaningful impact upon another person’s life. Then, think of words that represent that situation for you. For example, if you successfully mentored a younger colleague, your words might be, “be the teacher,” Steinberg writes.
When you are feeling de-motivated and burned out, you need to say the words and visualize the situation in which you created success, Steinberg says.
It’s easy to put things off. It’s easy to think that you CAN’T do something. It’s easy to be AFRAID to do something.
Most motivational experts advise people to create urgency in their lives. In other words, do what you need to do TODAY to make your lives better tomorrow. Once you begin the path to success, it will be easier to keep going. Sprinters and other racers have to wait for the gun to go off to start running. Pretend the starting gun has just gone off in your head. That will help you conquer procrastination.
The motivational experts often tell you to “do it afraid.” It’s OK to be afraid to do what you need to do, but do it anyway. Putting it off won’t make the fear go away, so do it now, and do it afraid.
You also can reduce your fears by acknowledging any successes. You complete a project, make a sale etc., so celebrate. Take yourself out to dinner – and take your favorite person(s) with you. Celebrating alone is no fun.
As you feel successes, your fears decline. Once you “did it afraid” a few times, you become less and less fearful or anxious.
Once you discover what you want, and learn what to do to get it, don’t wait. As the Nike slogan says, Just Do It! Chances are, whatever you want to accomplish will be done over time. You don’t necessarily get one shot. Even the sprinter who loses a race gets to race again. So, if you do what you need to do immediately, and not find success, chances are you’ll have other opportunities to find success. You just have to know what you are seeking is good for you, and for others, and stay committed to it. It will become, as Steinberg says, your purpose.
If you have the need to change your life, and have the ambition to do it, but are unsure which path to take, visit That path has proved successful for many who were once in your shoes.
So the best advice is to find your purpose, create some urgency to moving toward it, do what you need to do, even if you are afraid, then celebrate your successes along the way.
To wallow is hollow. To pursue is cool. Pursue your purpose.


#Success #ChooseSuccess #SuccessIsStateOfMind

Many of us look at people we deem successful and believe we cannot be like them.

Either we believe our circumstances are holding us down, or we believe we are not as smart as successful people are, or that luck is not on our side.

Rory Vaden, co-founder of Southwest Consulting, spoke to one of the most successful people he knows, Spencer Hays, founder of Tom James fine clothing and executive chairman of The Southwestern Co. Vaden discussed that conversation in a column in the June 28, 2015, edition of The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville.

According to Vaden, Hays believes that success is simply a choice. It’s the choice to do whatever it takes – or not – to be successful.

To most of us, that’s a very simplistic answer. We all would choose success over failure. But it’s not a matter of wanting success in the abstract. It’s a matter of defining success in one’s own mind, and going out and getting it.

In other words, make up your mind to be successful and do what you need to do.

Vaden said the idea of making up one’s mind to be successful was the one thing that Hays said that struck him in his conversation.

It appears to many that making up one’s mind to be successful is very difficult. How many people do you know start something and give up without finishing it, especially when things got tough? These people wanted to be successful at the beginning, but later discovered that what they had to do to get there was not worth the effort or the sacrifice.

An idea has to travel from one’s head, to one’s heart, to one’s gut. When one finds what he wants to do, he does what he needs to do to accomplish it, no matter what happens.

Another scenario: how many people do you know who had a goal, but listened to those who told him he could never accomplish it? The naysayers believe they mean well, and some actually do. But the successful person believes more in what he wants to achieve than he does others’ opinions of him or his goal.

We can certainly find people who might tell the person who lost a job that it was his own fault. Most of us have circumstances we can’t control. Those are not important. What’s important is how we respond when those circumstances hit.

We can complain, and convince ourselves that the world is against us. Or, we can look for something that will give us the motivation we need to conquer our circumstances.

A third scenario: a person has the motivation, work ethic and has made up his mind to be successful. He just needs a vehicle to help him find success. If you are one of those, visit It’s one of many, and one of the best, such vehicles for personal success and for helping others find success.

Choosing success is not like choosing from a restaurant menu. You can’t just say you want something and someone else is going to bring it to you. Choosing success is choosing to do what you need to do, regardless of whom or what surrounds you. It’s about believing in your goal, and pursuing it above all other things – except perhaps faith, family and friends.

It’s having faith in what you know is good, regardless of what others think. If you choose success, you’ve chosen wisely.



#retirement #retirementconflicts #retirementlifestyle
Most of the talk today is about whether a person, or couple, has enough money to retire.
That determination for a couple may ride on what they would like to do in retirement.
USA Today writer Nanci Hellmich discusses why couples should talk about each’s visions of retirement prior to retiring. She took on the subject in a June 26, 2015, article in The Tennessean newspaper of Nashville.
“Couples don’t always have the same dreams for retirement,” Hellmich writes. “It usually takes some negotiating to come to terms with what they’re going to do.”
Hellmich’s article illustrates the point: He imagines summers fly-fishing in a cold mountain lake and winters by the fire reading his favorite books. She envisions summers playing with the grandchildren in their back yard and winters volunteering for her favorite charities.
If we take it further, let’s presume they don’t have a place near a cold mountain lake. They would have to buy or rent one. Let’s also presume that their grandchildren already live near them. To satisfy her, they merely need to stay home – probably a less expensive alternative.
“For lack of a better word, couples need to do some horse trading… You really have to negotiate in good faith,” Hellmich quotes Pepper Schwartz, AARP’s love and relationship expert.
Hellmich’s article gives some talking points for couples: create a list of characteristics for retirement that each spouse wants; talk to family and friends who would have an interest in your decision. If your kids want to have you around, presumably not as just a free baby sitter, you have to talk about it with them. If you don’t live near your children, and they want you to move closer, you have to think about that, too.
Other talking points the article cites include prudently pruning your retirement dream list. Figure out areas in which you can compromise. If the man is a golfer, for example, and wants to play a lot, and the woman is not, make sure, before you move to that golf resort that you vacation there first. Perhaps the non-golfer will be miserable in a golfer’s paradise. The article points out that couples should carve time to listen to each other, and tell each other, after some discussion and compromise, how much one appreciates the other’s give and take.
Of course, it would be best all around if money were no object. He could fish or golf, she could volunteer for charities and hang with the grandkids. There are many ways out there to secure a good retirement income, one in which compromise may not be necessary. For one of the best, visit
If you are young, it’s never too early to talk about these things. If you are able, take some types of vacations you might not otherwise take to see how you like them. Your doctors will probably tell you that staying active will be very important as you get older. Just lying on the beach with a book or tablet may not be as nice at 60 as it is at, say, 25. Besides, it may not be the best thing to do for your skin.
Don’t make retirement life a reason to fight. If you love your spouse, this is an issue that likely can be worked out with good, heartfelt conversation. Then again, if you are single, you have the ability to do whatever you want, wherever you want, in retirement. Make sure you have sufficient pennies put away, or coming in, to make whatever you want to happen, happen.