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7 Real Things You Never Knew About Jews

7 Real Things You Never Knew About Jews

Jews are known for many things, which means most people are believing incredible myths about them. From the “strange” idea of Jews being people with horns who run America, even the world, to the belief they have sexy time underneath a sheet, there are many crazy myths surrounding Jews.

Most of them are simply ridiculous ideas, like the ones above, yet there are also some myths that are very plausible. With lots of Jews in Hollywood and American big cities, these myths turned into real “legends”, that only Jews can understand.

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That is until now – I managed to gather my courage and asked my Jewish friend the truth about these common myths. She told me everything I wanted to know and I am now sharing these with you. However, I am not sure we are still friends…

1.Jews can get tattooes

This is probably the most common myth you can hear about Jews. It comes from the phrase in the Leviticus, which says Jews shall not carve any signs on them. This phrase is already controversial, as many Jews believe it to refer to idols, not regular tattoos. However, there is no religious law that prohibits Jews from being buried in Jewish cemeteries if they are tattooed. Most Jews simply tell this to their kids to prevent them from getting tattoos. But, there are cemetery administrators who impose strange rules, so this myth might come from someone who simply denied a Jew’s’ right to be buried in the cemetery due to being tattooed.

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2. Hanukkah is not the most important Jewish holiday

Hanukkah is not the biggest Jewish holiday – in fact, it’s not even mentioned in the Holy Books. Hanukkah is the celebration of the victory over the Syrians, when the lamp oil lasted longer than everyone expected, giving the Jews a big advantage. Rabbis were the ones to come up with Hanukkah and since then, it became the most notorious celebration of the Jews. The fact people exchange gifts for Hanukkah, which resembles the habit of exchanging gifts for Christmas, contributed to the notoriety of this holiday. When it comes to important holidays, there are Rosh Hashanah, Shavuot and the Passover, all of them mentioned in the Holy Books of Jews.

3. Food is kosher depending how you cook it

There is a belief rabbis bless the food to make it kosher – this is simply a myth! There is no magic blessing that can make food kosher. The actual ingredients and the way you cook the food is what makes it kosher or not. The only role of the rabbi is to make sure these rules are followed and you are not adding anything non-kosher to the pot. Speaking of the pot, you can’t make kosher food in pots used to make regular food.

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4. Jews focus on the life they live on earth

Opposed to Christians, Jews don’t focus on the eternal life: they focus on the life they are living on the earth. They also have a version of Hell, but for Jews, the time spent in this damnation place is much shorter: one can only stay 12 months in the Hell. Of course, this makes the afterlife a lot easier, compared to that of a Christian.

5. Jewish parents are flexible when it comes to shiksas

This one is half true: Jewish moms and dads always hope their son is going to marry that nice girl they introduced to him at the temple. But this doesn’t mean that shiksas are not going to marry any Jewish boy anytime soon. Just like conservative Catholic parents are not happy when their kids bring to dinner their Jewish dates, Jewish parents are first reluctant to shiksas. But then everyone finds a way to have a good time, as long as the girl is not going to force her new family to eat pork.

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6. Torah readings are not daily

There are Jews who read from Torah daily, but many Jews stick to weekly readings. However, most Jewish families do the readings when they all gather around, which is mainly at big holidays. In the end, the frequency of the readings depend on how conservative the family is.

7. Jews do eat bacon

Yes, technically Jews are not allowed to eat pork, so bacon is also banned. But you can still be Jewish and eat bacon, if you want to. This is what makes Jews so awesome!

These are some of the most important parts of the life of a Jew, which had been widely discussed by many non-Jews, thus the wide array of myths created around them. Now that you know the truth, you can have fun with your Jewish friends, without believing they are strange creatures who run around speaking in an ancient language, while celebrating Hanukkah with kosher food.

Featured photo credit: upload.wikimedia.org via upload.wikimedia.org

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Last Updated on October 20, 2020

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future. Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

Bonus: Think Like a Rhino

More Tips for Procrastinators to Start Taking Action

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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