Spare oil capacity could be ‘stretched to the limit’ by OPEC’s supply boost, IEA says

OPEC’s rejuvenated bid to tame crude prices could soon exhaust the world’s spare capacity cushion, according to the latest monthly report from the International Energy Agency (IEA).
Energy

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Saudi king said will boost oil output if needed: White House

WASHINGTON/RIYADH (Reuters) – The leader of Saudi Arabia promised President Donald Trump that he can raise oil production if needed and the country has 2 million barrels per day of spare capacity, the White House said on Saturday, rowing back on an earlier Trump tweet that appeared to suggest the Saudis had agreed to boost output by that amount.


Reuters: Business News

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10 Hair Tinting Products for a No-Risk, Temporary Color Boost

Gorgeous hair is forever the goal, right? We think so. And with all the time and money spent perfecting our hair color, it only makes sense to want to make the most of it. While we could go to the salon every four weeks for a touch-up, we prefer to focus on making our hair color last as long as possible and one of our favorite tricks is using a color-depositing product.

Color-depositing hair care products can do everything from conceal roots and boost color between salon visits to create custom tinted looks on your natural hue that will only last a few shampoos. While some neutralize brassiness, others add a dose of vibrant color for a unique new look. So, whether you have natural or color-treated blonde, brown, red (or rainbow!) hair, there’s a color-depositing hair care product for you. Read on for 10 of our favorites.

[ Next: Essential Tips for Protecting Hair From the Summer Sun, Chlorine and Salt Water ]

 

This article originally appeared on TotalBeauty.com

The post 10 Hair Tinting Products for a No-Risk, Temporary Color Boost appeared first on theFashionSpot.

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Harmony Juvenile Products Recalls 148,165 Big Boost Deluxe Booster Seats

by

Michelle Stein

posted in Products

Parents and caregivers of older kids should definitely take note of a new recall affecting nearly 150,00 car booster seats.

On Thursday, Harmony Juvenile Products recalled 148,165 of its Big Boost Deluxe booster seats, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA.) In the event of a crash, the seat belt may cause excessive force to be applied to the restrained child’s chest. Consequently, this “excessive force” can increase the risk of injury during a car accident.

The Big Boost Deluxe booster seats were sold at Walmart, among other retailers. The seat was designed to fit children between 30 and 110 pounds and between 34-57 inches tall.

Harmony’s product page for the seat notes this seat was the winner of the IIHS BEST BET Award from 2016 to 2018. Interestingly, BEST BETs are seats that “provide good belt fit for typical 4 to 8 year-olds in almost any car, minivan or SUV,” according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The description also claims the seat “exceeds US FMVSS 213 standards.”

The remedy for this recall was still “under development” at press time, according to the NHTSA, and the manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule.

“To our understanding, there have been no injuries or incidents as a result of this non-compliance anywhere in the world including USA, Europe and Canada,” Harmony said, according to NBC12. “We are working in conjunction with NHTSA on a remedy.”

In the meantime, owners can contact Harmony customer service at 1-877-306-1001, call the NHTS Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or visit safercar.gov for more information.

What do you think of this recall? Do you own one of these booster seats?

Image via Harmony Juvenile Products

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A strong economy and big boost in profits still can’t make investors happy

First-quarter indicators showed that while the economy has yet to roar, it's at least starting to purr.
Economy

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There’s finally some good news on opiates, and it could mean a boost for the jobs picture

Prescriptions for opioids dropped 12 percent in 2017, believed to be the biggest decline in nearly 25 years.
Economy

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‘Chappaquiddick’ Bets Political Controversy Will Boost Box Office

Are audiences experiencing scandal fatigue? With the news dominated by various Trump-related controversies and squabbles, John Curran’s upcoming drama “Chappquiddick,” which centers on failed presidential contender and Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy, is trying to convince consumers to break away from the cable news chyrons to immerse themselves in a different kind of political cause celebre. […]

Variety

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Milly Looks to Boost West Coast Presence With Fred Segal Pop-up

CALIFORNIA VIBES: Milly cofounder and creative director Michelle Smith always felt her brand had a California aesthetic to it. A new pop-up at Fred Segal’s Sunset Boulevard flagship could help the company in boosting the line’s physical presence on the West Coast.
“I have a big presence on the East Coast and other regions like Chicago and then the South, and I can see from milly.com that I have a tremendous demand from the West Coast, but I don’t have a very strong physical presence here with my product,” Smith said of why the Fred Segal pop-up made sense. “It’s really exciting to have a physical presence here now and be able to really meet customers.”
Smith was in town to not only show her fall line to fashion editors but also prepare for Tuesday’s unveiling of a six-week pop-up at Fred Segal, which will also include Milly-dedicated windows for the next two weeks. The windows will feature some of the pieces from an exclusive capsule done in collaboration with Fred Segal, in addition to neon art curated especially for the pop-in, with a focus around themes of female empowerment and self-care.
The capsule for the store, part of the “Wildflower” spring collection,

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Dollar General Provides FY18 Outlook; Boost Qtly Dividend 12% – Quick Facts

Dollar General Corp. (DG) on Thursday provided financial guidance and store growth outlook for fiscal 2018. It projects earnings per share in a range of $ 5.95 to $ 6.15, on net sales growth of about nine percent, with same-store sales growth in the mid-two percent range.
RTT – Earnings

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Screen time might boost depression, suicide behaviors in teens

Increased time spent in front of a screen — in the form of computers, cell phones and tablets — might have contributed to a recent uptick in symptoms of depression and suicide-related behaviors and thoughts in American young people, especially girls.
Teen Health News — ScienceDaily

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Back-and-forth exchanges boost children’s brain response to language

Cognitive scientists have now found that conversation between an adult and a child appears to change the child’s brain, and that this back-and-forth conversation is actually more critical to language development than the ’30-million-word gap.’
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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China eyes ‘black tech’ to boost security as parliament meets

BEIJING (Reuters) – At a highway check point on the outskirts of Beijing, local police are this week testing out a new security tool: smart glasses that can pick up facial features and car registration plates, and match them in real-time with a database of suspects.


Reuters: Technology News

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U.S. charges Russians with 2016 U.S. election tampering to boost Trump

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Russian propaganda arm oversaw a criminal and espionage conspiracy to tamper in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign to support Donald Trump and disparage Hillary Clinton, said an indictment released on Friday that revealed more details than previously known about Moscow’s purported effort to interfere.


Reuters: Politics

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U.S. charges Russians with 2016 U.S. election tampering to boost Trump

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Russian propaganda arm oversaw a criminal and espionage conspiracy to tamper in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign to support Donald Trump and disparage Hillary Clinton, said an indictment released on Friday that revealed more details than previously known about Moscow’s purported effort to interfere.


Reuters: Top News

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Homebuilders shrug off higher mortgage rates, stay optimistic on economic boost from tax cuts

Tax cuts are still making homebuilders feel better, even as rates rise.
Economy

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UPDATE 1-China revives QDLP outbound investment scheme in boost for foreign funds-sources

SHANGHAI, Feb 8 (Reuters) – China has resumed an outbound
investment scheme after a two-year hiatus, granting licenses to
about a dozen global money managers, sources said, signaling
that Beijing is less worried about capital outflows amid a surge
in the Chinese currency.


Reuters: Company News

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Jordan Belfort: Federal watchdogs gave bitcoin a boost

Bitcoin’s two-day climb may be the unintentional handiwork of Wall Street’s watchdogs. At least that’s the thinking of the “Wolf of Wall Street,” Jordan Belfort. Instead of dropping the hammer on cryptocurrencies in front of the Senate banking committee Tuesday — as many expected — the Securities and Exchange Commission and Commodity Futures Trading Commission…
Tech | New York Post

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6 Alternative Therapies Athletes Use to Beat Pain and Boost Their Performance

They sound wacky, but some pros swear by them.

Health – Good Housekeeping

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How Apple CEO Tim Cook and CFO Luca Maestri Gave Apple a $50 Billion Boost

Apple had a tremendous quarter of holiday sales at the end of 2017, as revenue jumped 13% to an all-time record of $ 88.3 billion and earnings per share rose 16% to $ 3.89, also a record. Both numbers were slightly better than Wall Street expected.

But amid growing reports of slowing demand for iPhones, Apple also provided a big disappointment to Wall Street in its forecast for sales in early 2018. Expected revenue is $ 60 billion to $ 62 billion for the quarter, well below the $ 65.4 billion average analyst forecast.

At first, it seemed investors’ worst fears had come true. Apple’s shares, which have lost about 7% over the past two weeks, fell another 2% in after-hours trading on Thursday night.

Then CEO Tim Cook and CFO Luca Maestri got on the phone with analysts and turned the whole narrative around. By the time they were done talking, Apple’s stock price had erased the initial loss and gained as much as 4%–a roughly $ 50 billion swing in market value in less than an hour.

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The stock gains came as Morgan Stanley’s longtime Apple analyst Katy Huberty challenged Cook and Maestri to explain the softer-than-expected forecast. That prompted the two executives to provide more detail than they typically provide about future iPhone sales.

“Just how should we read into a modest slowdown,” Huberty asked, going on to question whether sales might be slumping due to higher prices or Apple’s recent decision to charge $ 29 to replace batteries in older iPhones and perhaps prolonging their useful life.

Maestri explained that the forecast didn’t really indicate slower iPhone sales to customers. Each quarter Apple reports in sales how many phones it ships ready for sale. That includes phones shipped but not yet sold being held in inventory. Apple was able to make so many iPhones at the end of 2017 and stash them in inventory that even with continued strong sales, it won’t have to replenish its inventories as much as usual in the beginning of this year. Part of the reason is that the iPhone X didn’t go on sale until November, instead of the usual September sale date, giving the company more time to build up inventory.

“Our guidance for iPhone, we’ve got double-digit year-over-year growth,” Maestri explained, offering a product level of detail not usually disclosed by Apple about its quarterly forecasts. Apple’s $ 60 billion to $ 62 billion forecast for total revenue represents 13% to 17% growth from the same quarter last year.

Investors also likely were pleased with Apple’s plans for its vast cash hoard of $ 285 billion, most of which is stuck overseas but can now be brought back into the country with a lower tax bite. Cook and Maestri said Apple would aim mostly to pay dividends and buy back stock at a pace that would bring the cash level down to about the level of Apple’s $ 122 billion of debt. “Given the increased financial and operational flexibility from the access to our foreign cash we are targeting to become approximately net cash neutral over time,” Maestri said.

Cook was careful in talking about demand for the iPhone X specifically, however, saying only that it was the best-selling model in the company’s line up. “Since the launch of iPhone X it has been the most popular iPhone every week, every week since and that is even through today, officially through January,” he said. “We feel fantastic about the results.”

Apple’s results appeared to vindicate Cook’s bet on higher prices, as the company not only added the $ 1,000 iPhone X to its line up in 2017 but also raised prices on both iPhone 8 models compared to the prior year’s line up.

The number of iPhones Apple


aapl



sold in the holiday quarter actually dipped 1% to 77.3 million. But the average selling price jumped over $ 100 from last year to almost $ 800. Net net, iPhone revenue increased 13% to $ 61.6 billion.

The rest of the smartphone industry wasn’t so fortunate. Overall, fourth quarter phone shipments plunged 9% to 400 million devices, the largest drop in history, according to market tracking firm Strategy Analytics.

Fortune

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Four Ways to Benefit from the Federal Reserve’s Interest Rate Boost

Interest rates across the country are moving higher once again. The Federal Reserve on Dec. 13 boosted the federal funds rate to a range of 1.25% to 1.5%, marking the third increase for the benchmark rate this year. The action will mean higher rates on everything from consumer loans to credit cards to some mortgages.

The Fed cited job gains, declining unemployment, more household spending and larger investments by businesses in recent quarters among reasons for the hike. The nation’s central bank anticipates increasing rates three more times in  2018 and twice in 2019.

Of course, higher borrowing costs is not popular. But extraordinarily, here are some ways individuals and entrepreneurs might benefit from the Fed rate hikes:

Potentially more loans for small businesses

Interest rates that banks charge small businesses for loans will move higher. That gives banks greater motivation to lend money, potentially increasing the number of loans they make to small businesses.

Greater returns for savers

A Fed rate hike often translates into higher rates on a certificate of deposit and other savings accounts. Individuals perhaps can now hunt for higher-yielding savings accounts even though the gains might be small. Yet, any increase on low-yielding interest accounts for savers is a plus.

More interest income for seniors

Senior citizens who put money into CDs and savings accounts can reap more income from a boost in interest rates. The modest gain can provide older Americans more income for retirement savings and give them more income to live on, experts say.

Prompt homebuyers to get off the fence sooner

The Federal Reserve’s plan to keep boosting rates will eventually mean higher rates on some home mortgages. That expectation can compel buyers to buy homes sooner rather than potentially face paying higher mortgage rates later. Also, getting a mortgage pre-approved now also might get them the home they want and make an offer quicker than buyers who don’t act as fast.

The post Four Ways to Benefit from the Federal Reserve’s Interest Rate Boost appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Money | Black Enterprise

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Walmart Is Rolling Out a Minimum Wage Increase and a Boost to Benefits

Walmart, the nation’s largest private employer, announced it’s raising entry-level pay to $ 11 an hour for all of its U.S. employees. It will also be giving out bonuses up to $ 1,000.

For a company that prides itself on rollbacks, this pay raise is anything but.

The change comes on the same day that Walmart announced it is closing 63 Sam’s Club stores across the country.

The retail giant is crediting the pay raise to the recent tax overhaul, which cut the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. While the company expects to add $ 300 million in annual expenses thanks to the pay raise, it looks to save billions thanks to the new bill.

Walmart isn’t the first to announce a pay raise for its employees following the tax cut. Wells Fargo is raising minimum wage to $ 15 an hour, and AT&T Inc. will be giving out bonuses to most of its U.S. employees.

Who Will See These Changes?

So who exactly gets to reap these benefits?

All full- and part-time hourly employees in the U.S. are eligible for the one time bonus, maxing out at $ 1,000. The amount received is based on how long the employee has been with the company. Those who have been there for at least 20 years will get the full $ 1,000.

With over 1.5 million employees in the U.S., Walmart expects to spend upwards of $ 400 million on bonuses this year.

The raise in minimum wage, up from $ 10 an hour, will begin in February 2018 and applies to all hourly employees. While current full-time Walmart employees make an average of $ 13.85 an hour, this pay raise will bring it up to $ 14.50.

Thanks to competition in the workforce, this is the third time in two years that Walmart has raised minimum wage. Cities and states across the country have raised hourly pay over the last few years, and 2018 doesn’t look like it’s going to be much different.

Beefing Up Benefits

Along with the raise of hourly pay and distribution of bonuses, Walmart is moving to boost some of its benefits, including its parental leave policy.

Full-time hourly employees can now get 10 weeks of full-pay maternity leave, up from eight weeks. Additionally, paid parental leave has been boosted to six weeks.

The company is also offering financial assistance for those looking to adopt. Full-time hourly and salaried employees can get up to $ 5,000 per child, which can be spent on expenses that come along with adoption, such as adoption and court fees.

Kaitlyn Blount is a junior staff writer at The Penny Hoarder.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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In year of chaos, Trump’s boost to economy can’t be denied

President Trump has an ace in the hole that his opponents are forgetting. Again! Despite all the sideshows — the alleged Russian interference in the election, obstruction of justice probes, ringers in Trump investigations and, of course, the president’s big mouth and poor judgment — Trump became president because of one thing: The US economy…
Opinion | New York Post

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6 Ways Black Businesses Can Cut Expenses and Boost Profits

Saving money is always a great option for a business, regardless of whether they are already making money or struggling financially to pay bills.

Some eight out of 10 small businesses fail during the first 18 months, according to Bloomberg. So, while many small business owners typically search for new strategies to uplift sales, it is just as significant to develop a blueprint to trim the fat to help establish       or enhance earnings growth for your company.

 

(Image; iStock/FS-Stock)

 

And with a new year approaching, now is an opportune time to carefully examine how to make your business leaner and more cost-efficient.

Here are some cost-cutting strategies to consider to get started:

 

Become more environmentally friendly

 

Energy is among the biggest expenses most businesses face. Cutting that usage by a small percentage can bring savings. To help achieve that, consider using programmable thermostats or LED light bulbs. File documents digitally or send messages by email instead of using paper. Use rags to clean up spills instead of paper towels. Buy a refillable water dispenser instead of providing bottled water.

 

Trim office supply costs

 

Inform existing vendors that you are shopping around to get the best prices on office suppliers. Don’t be afraid to let them know you are looking beyond your traditional pool of vendors. See what type of deal you can fetch from larger discount suppliers such as Amazon or Walmart. This also might cause existing vendors to be more open to negotiating new pricing options.

 

Better utilize your resources

 

Instead of sending raw materials such as paper, cardboard, and metal to a recycling center, try selling them. Consider leasing unused space for production or inventory to another entrepreneur or individual. The area, perhaps, can be used as office or warehouse space, depending on the size.

 

 Reduce meetings

 

Everyone knows the term “time is money.” That saying truly applies in business. Keep salaried or hourly employees involved in making your company profitable by ensuring they are spending more time doing productive work instead of sitting in meetings. Consider sending a group email, or walking to each employee, to get an update on their progress. Cutting expenses can help boost productivity and make what you are paying employees more cost-efficient.

 

Check out outsourcing

 

Take an inventory of which services can be potentially outsourced. For instance, ask yourself if it is cheaper to have notary and signing service outsourced instead of having them done in-house. That means you have to pay one or more workers and cover their ongoing expenses for such things as license renewal and continuing education. Talk with other businesses about what services they outsource.

 

Cut back on financial expense

 

Consider price shopping to see where the best rate can be found on insurance costs. Ask your existing financial service provider or insurer to match that rate. See what bank accounts or insurance policies can be combined into one account, if possible. Do everything possible to not take on unnecessary debt. If necessary, carefully assess how that will affect your cash flow, credit rating, and ability to borrow later.

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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5 Key Takeaways from Venture Capitalists to Boost Your Rate of Entrepreneur Success

Culture Shift Labs has been working very diligently to make sure there is a common meeting ground for changemakers of color. Recently they held their 8th Annual event in New York City that consisted of a weekend of conversations on technology, innovation, social impact, and most notably venture capital investment.

 

(Image: iStock/shapecharge)

 

 

There was a plethora of power players in the house including Troy Carter, CEO and founder of Atom Factory; Mark Ein, founder of Venturehouse Group; Kwame Anku, founding principal of the Black Angel Tech Fund; and NBA all-star Alonzo Mourning.

Black Enterprise was in attendance and there were five key takeaways that we went away with.

1. Most investors say no. You have to work to get to a yes. Nine times out of 10 an investor is going to turn you down. Make sure that you are persistent in a way that’s progressive. If you are returning to an investor who you’ve already asked for money, make sure there is a measureable improvement or else you are wasting their time.

2. Avoid spending time with people who aren’t giving you money. Look for investors who are in your space and excited about your product. That way they come on as strategic partners and are not just giving you money.

3. The difference between a Studs versus a Duds product/company is leadership, determination, and resilience.

It takes tenacity to become an entrepreneur. A product isn’t birthed overnight. You have to stay focused but, additionally, you need to know when to pivot. Working on something too long that’s not working in the market, even if determined, is a waste of your time.

4. You learn when things aren’t going well. So, don’t stop. Fail and fail fast. It’s not a loss. It’s a learning process.

5. When speaking to investors ask, “What’s your timeline?” You need this information to manage your expectations. This way, you don’t become the person with the interesting product, to the person who’s now bothering them. Remember, you aren’t the only one looking for investment.

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Reddit could go public in 2 years to boost parent company

Reddit, the online discussion platform that has weathered a few storms, says it could be looking at an initial public offering in two years that could give a big boost to its beleaguered parent company, Advance Publications. Reddit CEO Steve Huffman dropped the news at a conference on Monday, according to Variety. “It’s highly probable…
Tech | New York Post

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iPhone X demand remains strong as Apple prepares to boost production

iPhone X Sales

Now that we’re about a week removed from the iPhone X launch, it’s become clear that Apple has yet another hit on its hands. Despite reservations about the notch design, not to mention the removal of the tried and true home button, interest in Apple’s latest iPhone is at a level we haven’t seen in years. Even better, Apple has seemingly worked around early production issues which led to relatively limited supply on launch day.

That said, a new research note from reputed analyst Ming Chi-Kuo relays that iPhone X production during the current holiday quarter will fall somewhere in the 25-27 million range. Kuo’s note, which was originally obtained by 9to5Mac, further adds that production is set to increase by upwards of 45% during the first quarter of 2018.

Continue reading…

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IPHONE X DEMAND REMAINS STRONG AS APPLE PREPARES TO BOOST PRODUCTION originally appeared on BGR.com on Sat, 11 Nov 2017 at 15:04:18 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


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Is Kylie Jenner Keeping Baby News Secret to Boost Her Ratings?

Theories as to why Kylie Jenner hasn’t revealed she is pregnant abound online, with the most delightfully batshit suggestion being that it is because she is actually Kim’s surrogate.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Microwave-powered hard drive will boost capacity to 40TB, blow your SSD away

mamr hard drive

SSDs are all the rage these days thanks to their extremely fast speeds, smaller sizes, and lower potential for physical failure. They’re great, but there’s one area where they serious lag behind their older physical disk brethren: storage capacity. Western Digital, which has continued to push disk-based drive technology forward even in the face of stiff competition from SSDs, has developed something that could keep the “old” standard in the lead for a long, long time, and it’s all about microwaves.

The company is preparing its eventual rollout of MAMR — or microwave-assisted magnetic recording — storage tech, and it’s already showing some really impressive capabilities. In fact, Western Digital expects that by the year 2025, MAMR-based drives will be able to handle up to 40TB of data, making it a fantastic option for data centers and eventually consumers.

Continue reading…

Trending right now:

  1. Asteroid that barely missed Earth this week could wreak havoc in the not-so-distant future
  2. There’s finally a good robot vacuum you can get for just $ 75
  3. A new iPhone X feature was just discovered and it’s sheer brilliance


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Kanye West Steps out in Never-Before-Seen adidas YEEZY BOOST 700 Wave Runners

The current king of dad fashion, Kanye West, was spotted rocking an unreleased pair of his latest adidas YEEZY BOOST 700 Wave Runners. Unlike the blue-accented “Gray/Chalk White/Core Black” colorway that was offered for pre-order in August, this iteration sports a mix of lighter shades of grey and muted green tones. The shades are then complimented with neon orange accents on the midsole and a gum rubber outsole.

So far there is no further information or release date on this colorway of adidas YEEZY BOOST 700 Wave Runner, but for those who have already pre-ordered the “Gray/Chalk White/Core Black” model can expect the sneakers sometime in November.

In case you’ve missed it, Kanye West’s YEEZY Runner fronts Vogue Australia‘s editorial.

Click here to view full gallery at Hypebeast.com


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11 Ways to Boost Your Small Business’ Cash Flow

Smart small business owners stay on top of their cash flow, monitoring their financial statements regularly. These owners can tell you just how much money is coming in and going out of their business.

(Image: iStock/andresr)

 

If you’ve been less than diligent about monitoring your business’s money, these tips can help you boost your business’s cash flow:

1. Choose a Good Tool to Monitor Cash Flow

 

Online accounting software such as QuickBooks Online makes it simple to reconcile your accounts, generate reports, and more. Information is secure in the cloud, making it easy for you to stay on top of your cash flow wherever you are.

2. See Where You Can Cut Costs

 

Focus on recurring monthly, quarterly, or annual expenses. Can you cut back on utilities, rent, or payroll? Are you spending money on subscriptions or services you’re not using or insurance you no longer need? Can you renegotiate the terms of outstanding loans or leases?

3. Cash in on Assets

 

Do you have equipment you no longer use or inventory that’s becoming obsolete? Consider selling it to generate quick cash. 

4. Open a Business Line of Credit

 

A business line of credit is a good insurance policy against cash flow problems. You may be able to get a line of credit for a percentage of your accounts receivable or inventory if you use them as collateral. 

Also, look for business credit cards with rewards such as points you can use toward travel or business purchases. In addition to providing a cushion for lean times, business credit cards also categorize your purchases, so it’s easier to track expenses.

For more information, check out, “5 Signs Your Business Is Ready for a Credit Card.” 

5. Lease Equipment Instead of Buying

 

By leasing vehicles, computers, and other business equipment, you get access to the latest features and avoid tying up cash—but you still get to expense the lease costs on your business taxes.

6. Issue Invoices Promptly

 

Send invoices when the work is completed or products are delivered. Why wait? Find out the specific person, job title, and address to send your invoices to so they don’t get lost in a shuffle from department to department. Design your invoices so they’re straightforward and easy to read, with key areas like due date, amount due, where to send payment and payment methods highlighted. Speed things up further by emailing invoices instead of mailing them. Establish a process for following up with late or delinquent payers:

  • An initial form letter 10 days following receipt asking for payment.
  • A second follow-up letter—more aggressive—in 20 days demanding payment.
  • A third letter in 30 days and a phone call from your collections clerk seeking payment.

If you’re on the road and in a pinch, try the free instant invoice creators Invoice-o-matic and invoiceto.me. They’re so simple, you don’t even have to register—just input your info into a template, then generate a PDF you can email to your customers.

7. Use Mobile Payment Solutions

 

If you sell products or provide services at customers’ homes or offices, get paid on the spot with mobile apps that use your smartphone or tablet to accept payment by credit and debit card. Square is a widely-used small business mobile payment solution. 

8. Offer Customer Deals

 

Consider offering your customers incentives, such as a percentage off the total, for early payments. Do the math beforehand to ensure the tradeoff (getting paid early) is worth the loss (less money in the long run).

9. Ask for Deposits or Partial Payments on Large Orders or Long-Term Contracts

 

For example, a building contractor or website developer might charge a 10% deposit upfront before beginning to draw up plans for the project, then charge half the remaining amount when work begins, and the balance upon completion. Charging this way, the company generates enough cash to finance the materials and pay the workers needed for the job.

10. Delay Payments to Vendors

 

Unless there’s a worthwhile incentive for you to pay early, figure out how late you can pay your vendors without risking late fees or harming your relationship. This keeps the cash in your account and out of your vendor’s until it absolutely has to be there.

11. Require Credit Checks on All New Non-Cash Customers

 

 

 

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Financials, industrials boost S&P to record high

(Reuters) – The S&P 500 hit a record intraday high on Tuesday, led by gains in financial and industrial stocks after Irma weakened to a tropical depression, but declines in McDonald’s and technology stocks weighed on the Dow and Nasdaq.


Reuters: Business News

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Trump signs $3.9B VA healthcare spending boost into law

President Donald Trump signed a large spending bill aimed at reforming the Veterans Healthcare Administration, fulfilling a central promise from his campaign.
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3 Employee Wellness Programs That Boost Productivity And Lower Costs

EMPLOYEE WELLNESS PROGRAMS

In the last few years, employee wellness programs have become increasingly popular. Companies are finding that spending extra money to help their employees achieve their goals and live better lives is actually an investment.

It seems counter-intuitive, but spending money can actually save you money in the long run. Additionally, if you spend on the right things, you can boost productivity. You end up with happier, more invested employees, and that can go a long way toward helping you in the long run.

Over time, the increases in productivity and the savings in some areas of your company can result in a return on investment that more than matches your initial outlay for employee wellness programs.

 

1. Physical Health Employee Programs

 

Several years ago, I remember my father coming home with a step counter from his work. This was well before the days of wearables. However, his company was instituting a physical health program and everyone got a step counter.

Employee wellness programs focusing on physical health have come a long way from issuing step counters. Many companies are issuing wearables. In fact, the company I work for, Student Loan Hero, sends each employee a FitBit to help them set goals and monitor progress.

Some companies that use these tools offer prizes to winners. So far, we have had two different step challenges since receiving our FitBits. But you don’t have to limit your company to step challenges. There are companies that encourage more sleep at night or encourage greater water intake to replace drinking soda.

Prizes offered to winners can range from merchandise to gift cards to cash.

Also, consider a wellness stipend that can be used for gym memberships, therapeutic massage, and other items that can enhance your employees’ health.

 

Saving money on health care costs

 

While there are costs associated with handing out fitness wearables and giving prizes to employees for completing challenges, it can actually be a net gain for companies.

According to Entrepreneur, companies that integrate wearables into their employee wellness programs have lower health care costs.

It makes sense when you think about it. After all, if your employees are encouraged to exercise, eat right, and sleep well, they will be healthier and happier. That means fewer claims against your company insurance plan.

Not only that, but sending biometric data to insurance companies that offer discounts can reduce health care costs as well. There are privacy issues involved, so you need to be careful. However, if you can partner with a benefits provider you might be able to see some savings from implementing your program.

With these physical wellness programs helping employees feel better and sleep better, they are also more likely to be productive. This improves your bottom line and helps employees feel valued, reducing turnover and its related costs.

 

2. Mental Health Wellness Programs

 

Physical wellness programs can go a long way toward helping your employees. However, you don’t want to neglect mental health.

Depression, anxiety, stress, and other issues can sap your employees and reduce productivity. On top of that, morale can suffer when employees don’t have access to mental health wellness programs.

You can reduce illness leave, disability costs, and absenteeism, as well as attract strong talent, when you have a robust mental health wellness program, according to Employee Benefit News. This saves you money in the long run by reducing turnover and helping your employees become more productive.

Provide access to counseling and other tools that can help struggling employees. This includes relationship counseling as well as other types of mental and emotional health counseling. While we often make a distinction between work life and personal life, the reality is that what happens at home can affect your employees’ performances at work. Getting that help for them can be a net gain for you in the long run.

You might be surprised to learn how many employees could benefit from help with this type of program. Make it a point to offer services they can access easily, confidentially, and free of charge to them. You’ll end up with a more fulfilled workforce.

 

3. Financial Wellness Programs

 

Most Americans are stressed about money. Being concerned about finances can weigh on your employees and make them less effective.

In fact, according to a 2015 poll, about 36% of Americans miss work because of financial concerns. That means your workers’ productivity is being impacted by financial woes. Money is a major source of stress for many Americans — and it has been for several years now.

Money worries tie into mental health, emotional health, relationships, and even physical health. Finances can keep your employees up at night and distract them at work. When your employees can’t focus on their jobs because of their money-related stress, that can be a huge problem. You lose out in terms of productivity and in other ways.

Creating a financial wellness program can help your employees work through their issues and get on the right track. Ultimately, that can help your business.

Consider offering financial wellness programs that allow your employees access to financial planners who can help them map out their goals. It’s even possible to include debt counseling help in your plan. This is a major concern for many Americans, and being able to help your employees get help putting together a debt repayment plan can ease their fears. You can also provide access to financial software, like YNAB, that might come with a fee.

 

Financial wellness benefits

 

Employee wellness programs that include financial health go beyond benefits like a 401(k) plan. An increasing number of companies are starting to offer student loan repayment assistance as a benefit. Other companies offer pet insurance for their employees stressed about providing care for their fur babies.

The reality is that many employees are looking for benefits that can help them with their specific financial issues. When you add financial wellness benefits to the mix, you can help your employees get a handle on the situation.

Once your employees feel more comfortable about their finances, they will be better able to focus at work, providing you with better outcomes.

 

Bottom Line: Employee Wellness Programs Help Your Business

 

Don’t neglect employee wellness programs. Gone are the days when workers were seen as disposable. Instead, if you want to succeed as a modern business, you need to recognize the value of a happy, healthy employee.

Human capital is every bit as important as financial capital. Consider how much time and money go into training employees. Turnover means you have to go through the process regularly, and that can be costly and time-consuming. On top of that, you end up in a situation where you miss out on productivity as you look for a suitable replacement — then have to deal with the learning curve.

Instead, if you can attract top employees and keep them happy with a comprehensive employee wellness program, you can save a lot of time and money. You can also see an increase in productivity.

Workers like to feel as though they are valued by their employers. The right wellness programs can help your workers feel as though you care. They will be more likely to stick around, feel a stake in the success of your company, and work hard to ensure that you succeed in the long run.

This piece was written by  and originally published on DUE.com.

 


I’m Miranda and I’m a freelance financial journalist and money expert. My specialties are investing, small business/entrepreneurship and personal finance. The journey to business success and financial freedom is best undertaken with fellow travelers.

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Boost Your Finances With These Great Weekend Reads

simple tips

Just in case your week has been consumed with the never-ending White House scandals or the shocking allegations about R. Kelly’s sex slavery cult, then you may have missed some of the inspirational and empowering pieces that were published this week on BlackEnterprise.com. Take a break from all the chaos in the world to hone in on your business, well-being, and financial goals with these original BE pieces.

 

Multiple Ways Life Insurance Can Build Wealth for Blacks and Community

 

Insurance is an important wealth-creating tool

 

 

Recent research shows that life insurance as an inheritance has been underutilized and under leveraged by African Americans for years. Click here to read more.

 


Millennial Savings Trends: Coupon-Saving No Longer a Granny’s Game

 

Report finds that young professionals making competitive salaries still love a good bargain

 

(Image: iStock/sdominick)

 

Coupon cutting used to be a thing of the past, but according to a new report, millennials are turning the tables on the stereotype. Click here to read more.

 


 

Quick Tips to Plan Your Own “Girls Trip” Away From the Office

 

Rule 1: Make sure everyone gets along

 

(Image: iStock/tunart)

 

Make it clear that extra guests, children, and significant others are not invited, because this trip is just for a special group of sister-friends. Click here to read more.

 


Our 2017 List of the Nation’s Largest Black Businesses Offer Strategies to Grow Your Business

 

Black Enterprise’s 2017 BE 100s list of the nation’s largest, and most profitable black-owned businesses

 

For 45 years, the BE 100s—the nation’s largest black businesses—have demonstrated enduring qualities of fortitude, dexterity, ingenuity, and, yes, swagger. Click here to read more.

 


Bye, Siri and ‘HelloAlice’: How Black Women Can Use This New Tech for Business Success

 

AI platform could help level playing field for #BlackGirlMagic in business

 

(Image: iStock/sturti)

 

Here are three ways Alice can balance the scales of success for women entrepreneurs, including those of color based on our testing. Click here to read more.

Money – Black Enterprise

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How to Make an Impact in Your Industry and Boost Career Success

If you’re looking to stand out in your industry, a focus on making an impact over income can take your career to unimaginable heights. Here are four steps to getting started:

(Image: iStock/bowdenimages)

 

 

Identify an Untapped Need or Overlooked Opportunity

 

Is there something missing from a well-known process in your industry? What are the issues in your field that people ignore or refuse to talk about? Have you found a way to challenge or change “tried and true” practices that no longer work in your industry? Can you simplify an over-complicated process?

Put People, Not Products at the Heart of Everything You Do

 

Martin Luther King is a perfect example of someone who painted a clear vision and gathered people together for a common cause. Even today, MLK’s I Have a Dream speech empowers people to take action.

To get started, rally people around your vision and make sure it’s easy for them to communicate at least three key messages: Who are the people that can benefit the most from this change? What are the benefits of supporting this movement? What transformative results can they expect? Which habits do they need to break to achieve success?

Amplify Your Voice Across a Variety of Channels

 

Use blogs, videos, news articles, podcast interviews, or live events to amplify your voice. Be bold and unapologetic when you talk about why the status quo should be challenged. What evidence can you share to change the conversation about an untapped need in your area? What’s holding people back from success? How can you best demonstrate a new way of thinking or approach? What tools can people use to succeed?

Don’t Complain, Create

 

Mahatma Gandhi said it best: Be the change that you’d like to see. Provide a clear direction or steps for people to follow: How can you cultivate a collaborative environment, event, or platform for people to learn, connect, and exchange information? How can you create an opportunity for them to pay it forward in ways that spread your brand’s key messages?

 

 

 

Career – Black Enterprise

EMPLOYMENT UPDATE:

Five Cities Receive Half-a-Million-Dollar Grants to Boost Spending with Black Businesses

Five cities have received grants totaling a half-million dollars via a national program to help black- and women-owned firms land more contracts with local governments.

(Image: iStock/monkeybusinessimages)

 

As part of an expanded City Accelerator program, Charlotte, Chicago, Memphis, Milwaukee, and Los Angeles will each get $ 100,000 to boost procurement spending with those businesses.

During the next year, the five cities will work together to refine their approach for that activity, including pursuing at least one new strategy to increase the diversity of municipal vendors and contractors and direct buying more goods and services from local minority-owned firms.

Compelled to Boost Spending with Diverse Vendors

 

The program, funded by the nonprofit agencies of Living Cities and the Citi Foundation, was started four years ago to also spur economic development activities and create jobs in communities with a high number of low-income residents. Participating cities have procurement programs in place or desire to boost their spending with diverse vendors.

At the same time, a growing number of cities are placing a higher priority on procurement reform. And the ante is high for potential suppliers, with annual procurement spending by cities across America estimated at $ 1.6 trillion. Another prospect is that these cities will inspire local companies to do more business with those vendors.

Though the cities will of course decide what type of diverse businesses they might hire, some observers contend that they could range from suppliers and service companies that can do everything from local infrastructure work to those providing retail services.

“These cities are taking a hard look at how they purchase goods and services for their communities,” Ed Skyler, Citi’s executive vice president for global public affairs and chairman of the Citi Foundation, stated in a press release. “They recognize that there is an opportunity to strengthen their procurement practices—and cities overall—by connecting directly with the diverse businesses and ideas within their communities.” Skyler is also a former deputy mayor of New York City.

Ben Hecht, president and CEO of Living Cities, agrees. “These five cities were asked to lead the way, and we are excited to lift up their work as examples of how we can create a new urban practice dedicated to getting dramatically better results for low-income people faster.”

(Image: Living Cities)

 

 

 

New Approaches to Do More Business with Suppliers

 

In North Carolina, Charlotte is making progress after a 2014 study ranked it last in economic mobility among the 50 largest cities. “The City of Charlotte is committed to providing equal access and opportunities for all businesses to grow, especially businesses owned by people of color,” Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts, stated in a press release. “Through the City’s Charlotte Business Inclusion Policy, we have made significant strides, achieving $ 41 million in spending with local minority, women, small business enterprises in fiscal year 2016.”

Another city, Milwaukee, intends to ramp up its procurement activity with diverse vendors. The Governing.com blog reports the city spends over $ 200 million on contracted services a year, spanning from construction to copier maintenance. It has a population of slightly more than 600,000 people.

Referred to as a “minority-majority” city, only 30% of Milwaukee’s businesses are owned by people of color. A city ordinance prevents the city from directing efforts toward increasing the number of minority or women-owned small business owners. But it appears that the city is hoping to change that.

“We have long emphasized connecting our work on the city with jobs and businesses in the city,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett stated in a press release. “Working with the City Accelerator on our procurement strategies will help connect us to more city businesses, and support business growth throughout Milwaukee.”

The five newest cities will also get coaching and technical help to apply new strategies to enhance their procurement practices in addition to the grants.

Other cities have worked on programs beyond just improving procurement activity.

 

Ongoing Programs to Enhance to Local Economic Development Efforts

 

Since 2013, City Accelerator has worked with 12 U.S. municipalities to test new ways to drive sustainable growth while boosting opportunity for residents with small income.

In Philadelphia, the city tested the use of various messages and attention-grabbing mailings to ensure that low-income seniors were signing up for subsidies offering a 25% reduction in their water bills.

In San Francisco, the city is using its City Accelerator support to develop a financing plan to reinforce the city’s coastal seawall, which protects vital public transportation assets and land designated for affordable housing on land adjacent to the Port of San Francisco.

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Just 10 Insightful Quotes On Gratitude For When You Need A Boost

Thankfulness may be the last thing on everyone’s minds right now, but keeping up the time-honored Thanksgiving tradition serves some benefits.

Research shows gratitude can reduce stress, improve sleep and more. It also can make you more emotionally resilient, which can help in the face of tough times.

Still not convinced it’ll give you a boost? Enter these legendary writers, who have some of the wisest words on cultivating an attitude of gratitude. The quotes are here to remind you that there’s so much in the world to appreciate ― and you’ll be healthier if you are able to do it.

Check out the sage insight below:

1. “This is a wonderful day. I’ve never seen this one before.” —Maya Angelou

2. “Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” —Charles Dickens

3.

4. “Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” ―Ralph Waldo Emerson

5. “Piglet noticed that even though he had a very small heart, it could hold a rather large amount of gratitude.” ―A.A. Milne

6. “Gratitude looks to the past and love to the present; fear, avarice, lust and ambition look ahead.” ―C.S. Lewis

7.

(In other words, state your thanks out loud, write it down or tell your loved ones.)

8. “In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it’s wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.” ―Elizabeth Gilbert

9. “[For] love casts out fear, and gratitude can conquer pride.” ―Louisa May Alcott

10.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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Supreme Court’s Nod to Gay Marriage a Psychological Boost to Couples: Experts

5-4 decision should help bring acceptance, respect for these committed relationships
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Even Light Activity Can Boost Seniors’ Health

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Sleep Apnea May Boost Depression Risk in Men, Study Finds

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Can Pets Help Boost Social Skills for Kids With Autism?

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How Constraints Make You Better: Why the Right Limitations Can Boost Performance

In 1930, a 23-year-old teacher in Uruguay named Juan Carlos Ceriani created a new sport. Ceriani wanted to design a game that was similar to soccer, but that his students could play indoors throughout the year. His new game became known as futsal.

Futsal is very similar to soccer, but it has a few important differences. First, it is played in a much smaller area. (Ceriani designed the game so that it could be played on YMCA basketball courts.) Second, the ball is smaller and has less bounce than a regular soccer ball. Third, there are only five players per side rather than the typical 11 players per side in a soccer match.

This combination of factors — a tighter playing environment and a less-bouncy ball — requires futsal players to develop more creative ball skills because they are constantly playing in crowded spaces. Additionally, because there are fewer players, each person touches the ball much more than they would in a standard soccer match. In fact, according to research quoted by Daniel Coyle in his book The Talent Code, futsal players get 600 percent more touches during a typical game than soccer players do. [1]

Throughout the 1930s and into the 1940s,futsal migrated from Uruguay to Brazil, where the Brazilians fell in love with the new game. (Even today, over 75 years later, more people play futsal in Brazil than soccer.) It’s hard to say why futsal became so popular in Brazil, but one thing is for sure: The young Brazilians who grew up playing futsal throughout the 1940s and 1950s developed incredible ball handling and technical skills.

Eventually, these children grew into adults and made the transition from futsal to soccer. The athletic creativity they developed in those futsal games would help the Brazilians to shine on the world stage. During the 12-year span from 1958 to 1970, there were four World Cup championships. Brazil won three of them. [2]

Constraints Accelerate Skill Development

It is common to complain about the constraints in our lives: too little time, not enough money, too small of a network, barely enough resources. Certainly, some of these constraints do hold us back. However, there is also a positive side. The constraints in our lives often force us to make choices and cultivate talents that would otherwise go undeveloped. Constraints drive creativity and foster skill development.

Just as the constraints of futsal forced Brazilian children to develop creativity and better ball handling skills, constraints can also drive your own skill development. In many ways, reaching the next level of performance is simply a matter of choosing the right constraints.

How to Choose the Right Constraints

From what I can tell, there are three primary steps to follow when using constraints to improve your skills.

1. Decide what specific skill you want to develop. The more specific the skill, the easier it will be to design a good constraint. For example, futsal didn’t help players develop the skill of being good at soccer. That’s too general. It helped them develop creative ball handling skills, which turned out to be valuable in the game of soccer.

Similarly, you shouldn’t try to develop the skill of being “good at marketing,” for example. It’s too broad. Instead, focus on learning how to write compelling headlines or analyze website data — something specific and tangible.

2. Design a constraint that requires this specific skill to be used. There are three main options for designing a constraint: time, resources, and environment.

  1. Time: Give yourself less time to accomplish a task or set a schedule that forces you to work on a skill more consistently.
  2. Resources: Give yourself fewer resources (or different resources) to do a task.
  3. Environment: According to one study, if you eat on 10-inch plates rather than 12-inch plates, you’ll consume 22 percent fewer calories over the course of a year. (More on this idea and other nutrition improvements here.) One simple change in environment can lead to significant results. In my opinion, environmental constraints are best because they impact your behavior without you realizing it.

3. Play the game. Constraints can accelerate skill development, but they aren’t a magic pill. You still need to put in your time. The greatest Brazilian soccer players were still playing futsal all the time. The best plan is useless without repeated action. What matters most is getting your reps in.

The Idea in Practice

I am currently experimenting with different constraints to boost my skills in certain areas. Here are a few skills I have been working to develop and the constraints I am placing on myself to make them happen:

Writing skills. I want to be a better writer, so I set a schedule where I have to publish a new article every Monday and Thursday. The schedule is my constraint. It doesn’t matter how good or how bad the article is. It doesn’t matter how long or how short it is. I have to get something out every Monday and Thursday. This forces me to be creative and to do the one thing that good writers do: write. I don’t always hit the mark, but I have stuck with this schedule for two years and I’ve written over 200,000 words.

Storytelling skills. I have some friends who are amazing storytellers. I’ve never been great at it, but I’d like to get better. The constraint I’ve placed on myself is scheduling talks without the use of slides. My last five speaking engagements have used no slides or a few basic images. Without text to rely on, I have designed a constraint that forces me to tell better stories so that I don’t embarrass myself in front of the audience.

Strength skills. I only lift three days per week. To someone who doesn’t workout, this might sound like a lot. However, many strength athletes train four to six days per week, sometimes twice per day. With restricted training time, I have to be very deliberate with my workouts if I want to make progress. Right now, I’m prioritizing foundational strength over all else. I’ll move on to in-depth technique development once my strength levels are higher.

What do you want to become great at? What skills do you want to develop? Most important, what constraints can you place upon yourself to get there?

James Clear writes at JamesClear.com, where he shares science-based ideas for living a better life and building habits that stick. To get strategies for boosting your mental and physical performance by 10x, join his free newsletter.

This article was originally published on JamesClear.com.

Sources

  1. The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle.
  2. Wikipedia entry on Futsal.

Thanks to many readers for suggesting that I read The Talent Code. I love getting reading suggestions from you and, as always, I appreciate you holding me to a high standard in my work. Thanks for reading!
GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

Science Proves That Hugs Can Boost Your Immune System

We know that hugs make us feel warm and fuzzy inside. And this feeling, it turns out, could actually ward off stress and protect the immune system, according to new research from Carnegie Mellon University.

It’s a well-known fact that stress can weaken the immune system. In this study, the researchers sought to determine whether hugs — like social support more broadly — could protect individuals from the increased susceptibility to illness brought on by the particular stress that comes with interpersonal conflict.

“We know that people experiencing ongoing conflicts with others are less able to fight off cold viruses. We also know that people who report having social support are partly protected from the effects of stress on psychological states, such as depression and anxiety,” the study’s lead author, psychologist Dr. Sheldon Cohen, said in a statement. “We tested whether perceptions of social support are equally effective in protecting us from stress-induced susceptibility to infection and also whether receiving hugs might partially account for those feelings of support and themselves protect a person against infection.”

In the experiment, over 400 healthy adults who filled out a questionnaire about their perceived social support and also participated in a nightly phone interview for two weeks. They were asked about the frequency that they engaged in interpersonal conflict and received hugs that day.

Then, the researchers exposed the participants to a common cold virus, and monitored them to assess signs of infection. They found that both perceived social support and more frequent hugs reduced the risk of infection associated with experiencing interpersonal conflict. Regardless of whether or not they experienced social conflicts, infected participants with greater perceived social support and more frequent hugs had less severe illness symptoms.

“This suggests that being hugged by a trusted person may act as an effective means of conveying support and that increasing the frequency of hugs might be an effective means of reducing the deleterious effects of stress,” Cohen said. “The apparent protective effect of hugs may be attributable to the physical contact itself or to hugging being a behavioral indicator of support and intimacy… Either way, those who receive more hugs are somewhat more protected from infection.”

If you needed any more reason to go wrap your arms around someone special, consider this: Hugs also lower blood pressure, alleviate fears around death and dying, improve heart health and decrease feelings of loneliness.

The findings were published in the journal Psychological Science.
Weddings – The Huffington Post
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How Gratitude Can Boost Your Love Life

Relationships are never picture-perfect. They can be a messy bag of frustration, passion, joy, and disappointment. There are probably one or two things that drive you crazy about your partner. He doesn’t take out the trash, or she checks her phone too much at the dinner table, or he doesn’t seem to listen when you vent about your bad day. But of all the things you think need improvement (which, don’t get me wrong, could be perfectly valid), how about focusing on what you’re getting?

Just as it’s a choice to criticize or blame our partners for what we think we’re not getting in a relationship, it’s also a choice to be grateful for what you have and for where you are in this moment. Gratitude can not only improve your attitude; it can help improve your love life, as well. Let’s look at how.

How you act is what you attract. Kindness attracts kindness. Thoughtfulness attracts thoughtfulness. Love attracts love. One thoughtful act can be monumental in someone’s day. And guess what? It can make your relationship stronger.

Bottom line: kindness trumps criticism, every time.

My fiancé taught me much about gratitude and the incredible ripple effect it can have on creating and maintaining a great relationship. He’s one of the most loving, giving men I’ve ever met. He leaves notes on my pillow as thanks for something I’ve done for him (like taking him to Palm Springs for his birthday), as acknowledgement after I’ve accomplished something monumental (like writing a book), or when I’ve had a tough week to give me a boost. Sometimes… just because.

So, whether it’s a note, a gesture, or by simply saying, “I appreciate you,” your relationship will get a feel-good boost. Keep it up, and you’ll go from complaining to compassion, arguing to appreciation, or blaming to a better understanding of your partner or the situation. By saying, “Thank you” to your partner for something they’ve done, like helping with the dishes, running an errand for you, or picking up your favorite coffee, it’ll encourage them to do more, as well!

So take this opportunity to be grateful for the great things you have and for where you are right now, because what you focus on, you get more of. By expressing gratitude, you’ll improve your connection, ease the little annoyances, deal with problems better, have better discussions, and find better solutions. And by acknowledging the best in someone else, you bring out the best in yourself, too.

This goes for any relationship in your life. So how about saying a big, “Thank you” to someone for what they’ve done for you, what they’ve inspired in you, or maybe even just for being a great friend, roommate, or coworker. Or say thanks to that driver who let you in (give him or her a wave, please) or the waiter who gave you a big smile when you were having a rough day, or the Starbucks cashier who treated you kindly when you ordered your triple, venti, soy, no foam, no whip, pumpkin latte.

A little “thank you” goes a long way.

And BTW, “Thank you” for reading this.
Weddings – The Huffington Post
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Dulled Sense of Taste May Boost Weight-Loss Surgery Results

Study showed those who found food less flavorful after procedure lost 20 percent more weight

healthfinder.gov Daily News
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Boost Your Child’s Fitness: Teach Yourself

Boost Your Child’s Fitness: Teach Yourself


Teach Yourself – the world’s leading learning brand – is relaunched in 2010 as a multi-platform experience that will keep you motivated to achieve your goals. Let our expert author guide you through this brand new edition, with personal insights, tips, energising self-tests and summaries throughout the book. Go online at www. teachyourself.com for tests, extension articles and a vibrant community of like-minded learners. And if you don’t have much time, don’t worry – every book gives you 1, 5 and 10-minute bites of learning to get you started. – Sensible advice on how to get your child interested in sports – Lots of suggestions for sporty activities for you to do together – whatever your fitness – Tips, tricks and techniques for getting them to eat healthily – Advice if you’re worried about your child’s weight This book will help you overcome all your concerns about your child’s health and fitness, giving you sensible advice for how to boost their activity levels and keep them active and healthy. It shows you things to do as a family, gives advice on how to motivate your child, and offers you tips on keeping their diet healthy – with plenty of sensible suggestions if you need to help your child lose weight.

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‘SNL’ Obama Resorts To Kissing Justin Bieber To Boost Health Care Sign-Ups In Cold Open

Well, you can’t get much more “buzzy” than booking the President of the United States on “Between Two Ferns,” so how else can President Obama spread the word about his health care plan?

“Saturday Night Live” explored his options in this weekend’s cold open sketch, which featured Noel Wells as an obnoxious social media expert with even more “totes viral” ideas on how get more people to sign up for Obamacare by the end of March.

When a photo op with Pharrell’s hat, Kim Kardashian and even The Pope can’t do the trick, they’re forced to bring out the big guns: a kiss with Justin Bieber.

Check out Obama (Jay Pharoah’s) hilariously passionate kiss with the Biebz (Kate McKinnon) in the GIF below, and check back for a video clip when available.


Comedy – The Huffington Post
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What Your Doctor May Not Tell You about Fibromyalgia Fatigue: The Powerful Program That Helps You Boost Your Energy and Reclaim Yo

What Your Doctor May Not Tell You about Fibromyalgia Fatigue: The Powerful Program That Helps You Boost Your Energy and Reclaim Yo


– "What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Fibromyalgia (Warner, 1999), also by Dr. St. Amand and Claudia Craig Marek, has netted over 120,000 copies and has a monthly reorder rate of 3,000 copies. This book will serve as a companion to the hundreds of thousands of readers currently following the protocol outlined in that book.- Other titles on this subject frequently appear on Ingram’s "A-list" for health books, including "Fibromyalgia (Walker & Co., 1996), which has over 350,000 copies in print, and "Fibromyalgia and Chronic Myofascial Pain Syndrome (New Harbinger Publications, 1996), which has over one million copies in print.- Dr. St. Amand discovered guaifenesin’s use as a treatment for fibromyalgia, and his work is often cited. he is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine and is on the teaching staff at UCLA Harbor General Hospital. He has been in practice for over 40 years.
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Hammer Nutrition Race Day Boost – 32 Servings

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Getting Married Could Boost The Economy, Says Gallup Poll

Want to do your part to help America’s economy? Get married.

A recent Gallup poll says that married Americans spend more money than their single counterparts, which means if more people got hitched, the economy could benefit as a result.

According to the poll — based on telephone interviews with over 135,000 Americans aged 18 and older — married Americans reported spending $ 102 on average per day. That number dropped to $ 98 for those in domestic partnerships, $ 74 for divorcees, $ 67 per day for single and never married people and $ 62 for widows and widowers.

In the report, Gallup attributed married couples’ spending habits to the fact that they tend to have higher incomes.

Jay Zagorsky, a research scientist at Ohio State University who has studied wealth trends by marital status, told Today.com earlier this year that married couples had about four times the wealth of those who had never tied the knot. And the same story cited U.S. Census data that found that, “In 2010 the median net worth for a married couple between the ages of 55 and 64 was $ 261,405. That compares to $ 71,428 for a man heading a household, and $ 39,043 for a woman heading a household.”

Click through the slideshow below for more interesting findings about marriage.


Weddings – The Huffington Post
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