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6 Tips For Creating Your Dream Job

6 Tips For Creating Your Dream Job

We live in an information age. We are the founders of the future. We have so much information  constantly at our fingertips, and the capability to reach an amazingly immense amount of people at any time, it is no wonder that people have discovered how to utilize this capability to create innovative career opportunities.

In 2015, 45% of U.S. employees were able to work from home, and that number continues to rise. It is an ideal situation for many, whether you are a young entrepreneur or a stay-at-home mom. The flexibility is valued. From one business owner to another, here are some basic startup tips for anyone looking to begin an online business while striving to be able to work from home.

1. The Why

This is the most important aspect of any business. If you do not go into creating this business idea with a firm, objective purpose then it does not matter how much time and effort is put into the company. It will dissolve. Your team and yourself will have no direction and the company will fall to the wayside. People don’t necessarily buy the product, they buy the ‘why.’ What does your company stand for; what makes your product or service fulfilling?

2. Building & Design

Now that you have the why figured out a general business idea/plan it is time to start building. The tech industry has grown exponentially, especially in city centers like New York. Tech based startups are creating new jobs and opportunities at a rapid pace because the need is there. Everything is online now, so a business needs to be embracing things like social media, marketing, and analytics. These are all necessary platforms for a business to succeed and acquire new clients/customers, as well as monitor what is working and what is not.

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Things as simple as the time of day that something is published or shared can make or break a sale. Creating a website that is easy to navigate, showcases the product or service, creates a platform for added interaction with the customer through social media and is grounded in the analytics that will help guide future decision making.

Some of us are not artistically gifted, so creating a website that looks professional and will attract the customer we have in mind may not be doable without help. If so this will be your first real purchase, and it is extremely worth the time and money. It does not matter how good you are at what you do or how amazing your product might be, if the platform you are showcasing this on does not portray just that customers are not going be interested.

A well designed website goes a very long way. You have 5 seconds to get a user’s attention or you’ve lost them so make it count.

3. Marketing

Marketing is a process that takes time and can involve hours of research for a plan to be effective. There are so many different marketing avenues you can take, and each are more or less effective depending on the business using them. This is yet, another example of how analytics will help you navigate what works for your business. This is all trial and error.

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Just because the tech industry and online business is blossoming does not mean that it is easy. There will be failures, try, try again.

Your brand along with goods and/or services is a key feature that you will be marketing. Your online presence will work while you’re asleep, while you’re on holiday, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Maintaining a solid, persistent online presence is the key ingredient to a successful branding. Once a marketing strategy is in place, advertise.

4. Advertising

Being timid when it comes to self promotion will not get you far. Promoting yourself online requires some finesse. You can easily hit the wrong note or appear arrogant if all you’re talking about is yourself, so be sure to involve others in the conversation.

Once your product/image is developed and your marketing strategy is in place, present your product or service to your audience. Social media is the most common and inexpensive route to take, but there are also so many others.

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Communicating your brand with potential customers can be done through print, radio, internet ads and even television. The price varies and the reach varies as well. Like with everything else being, aware of who your audience is through analytics and marketing will help you make the most educated decisions as well as trial and error.

Every step of the way test and measure everything. You can’t grow if you don’t change what isn’t working. If you are not faithfully testing, measuring and tracking your results then you will never know.

5. Legal and Financial Considerations

If you plan to advertise online (which you most likely are and SHOULD be), whether you’re buying ads on search engines or direct marketing through email understanding some basic rules is important.

Understanding the federal advertising laws to Internet advertising and marketing, complying with the law when developing online ads, things like CAN-SPAM that creates criminal prohibitions against those who knowingly transmit spam through others’ computers without authorization as well as help with navigating sales and eCommerce and utilizing those resources.

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Do your research on what works and what doesn’t, what is legal and what is not and what you can afford to make happen right away considering both time and cost.

6. Drive

What it all comes down to is the drive and ambition of all of those involved, the ‘why’ has to be united. Start ups lose money often before making any, so keep in mind that you won’t always be able to monetize all of your projects even though they were successful.

It may seem backwards, but if you are going into building your business, your brand, in an avenue that you find fulfilling–looking at money as a resource instead of a goal may be the best way to approach your endeavors.This “goal” creates a space that keeps the drive behind the initial reason for starting the business. The fulfillment stays the focus.

There are no foolproof books on how to build a successful online business, especially with the pace of change. The best way to learn is by doing so take the necessary steps and do. The opportunities are endless.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2019

7 Natural Memory Boosters That Actually Work for All Ages

7 Natural Memory Boosters That Actually Work for All Ages

Forgot a name? Misplaced your keys? Taking longer to find the right words? Don’t panic. There’s plenty you can do to improve your memory.

You’re probably expecting us to reveal 7 little known and newly discovered herbs from the forests of the Amazon, the peaks of the Himalayas and the Arctic tundra. No such luck.

Despite Americans spending hundreds of millions of dollars a year on Ginkgo Biloba, Ashwagandha, Periwinkle, Bacopa, Vitamin B’s, Omega 3’s and memory boosting supplement cocktails, there is very little scientific evidence they actually work. [1]

So, how do we remember?

The first process in remembering is creating a memory.

This is where our brain sends a signal, associated with a thought, event or piece of information our mind is processing, over our brains neural pathways, called synapses.

Think of our neural pathways like roads and information like trucks. The better the roads, the more trucks can be driven.

The second step in remembering is memory consolidation.

Consolidation is when the brain takes that thought, event or piece of information and actually stores it in the brain. So now we’re talking about taking delivery of the trucks and storing its contents in the warehouse.

Consolidation helps us store information and label it properly, so its organized and easy to retrieve when needed.

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The last step is memory retrieval.

That’s the step whereby we try to retrieve the information stored in our brains. You know when you have the name of someone on the tip of your tongue.

You have the information; it’s been stored, but you just can’t find it. Our memory recall is typically better the stronger the memory is and the more often we’ve used it.

Memory decline is a normal part of aging. However, new scientific research is discovering many new ways for us to improve memory creation, consolidation and retrieval–no matter our age.

I’m going to offer you 7 completely natural memory boosters, backed up by scientific research. It may take a little more effort than a magic memory pill, but the benefits will transcend your memory and improve your overall quality of life as well, making you more fit, energetic, happy and sharp.

1. MIND Diet

Healthy eating, particularly more dark colored fruit, vegetables and oily fish has been shown to improve memory and stave off cognitive decline.

The MIND diet is proven to reduce the risk of dementia. It’s a mix of the popular Mediterranean diet and the low blood pressure DASH diet.[2]

The study kept track of the diets of almost 1,000 older adults. They were followed for an average of 4½ years.

The study concluded that “people whose diets were most strongly in line with the MIND diet had brains that functioned as if they were 7½ years younger than those whose diets least resembled this eating style.”

The study also showed that people who followed the MIND diet in the study reduced their chance of getting Alzheimer’s disease in half.

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So what does the MIND diet consist of? Lots of vegetables, leafy greens, nuts, berries, beans, fish, poultry, olive oil, whole grains and wine.

2. Aerobic Exercise

Aerobic activity is about as close as we get to a magic pill for our memories. Exercise helps your brain create new capillaries and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which creates new brain cells and connections. To put it in plain english, aerobic activity changes our brains and helps it grow.

Studies have shown that exercising increases the size of the hippocampus and improves memory. In fact, even if you start exercising as an older adult, you can reverse cognitive decline by 1 to 2 years and protects against further decreases in the size of the hippocampus, which is essential for memory.[3]

In another study, reviewed by Dr. Ian Robertson of the University of Dublin, they looked at a group of people of 60 years and older, who engaged in “active walking” for four months.

They compared them with another group of people who only stretched over the same period of time. After testing both groups before and after the 4 month period, the walkers improved their memory and attention considerably more than the stretching group.

So which exercises are best and how much do we have to exercise?

Turns out, it doesn’t really matter whether you run, swim, row or bike. What does matter is that you push yourself beyond your current abilities, keep doing more, keep getting better. Set yourself short term goals and keep pushing the goal posts.

3. Sleep

You need your sleep. The deeper the better. Sleep helps improve your procedural memory (how to do things, like how do I navigate my iPhone) and declarative memory (facts, like what’s my password).[4]

Even short naps from 6 to 45 minutes have been shown to improve your memory. In one Harvard study, college students memorized pairs of unrelated words, memorized a maze and copied a complex form. All were tested on their work. Half were then allowed to take a 45 minute nap. They were then retested. Those who took a nap, got a boost in their performance.[5]

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Another study showed that getting REM (deep) sleep can increase your memory and mental performance by 33% to 73%. Getting a deep sleep helps the brain consolidate memories through dreams and “associative processing”. However, the study also revealed that heart rate variability in deep sleep also contributed significantly to increased memory performance.[6]

4. Relax

We all know that stress is bad for our health. It can raise our blood pressure, impact our immune system and interrupt our sleep. Stress also impairs our memory.

When our body gets stressed, it releases cortisol into our blood stream, which can cause short and long term physical changes to the brain. While cortisol has sometimes been shown to cause increases in short term memory, it can actually decrease our long term recall memory.

To help reduce the stress in your life, try relaxing with meditation, yoga or breathing exercises. Unplug–even for just a few hours. Stop checking your emails, social accounts and news. Release some endorphins with some exercise.

Bottom line, the more anxious and stressed we are, the less clearly we think, the poorer our memory works.

5. Continuous Learning

The mind is like a muscle. The more you challenge it, the stronger it gets. The more you learn, the more you can learn.

Research shows that learning can actually change the physical makeup of your brain. Not too long ago, we used to think that you were born with a fixed amount of brain cells, which declined with age. New research now shows that we can actually increase the number of brain cells we have throughout our life.

Aside from staying physically active, learning new skills and studying can actually keep our brains healthier. Consider taking a continuing education class, studying a new language, learning a new instrument, playing new card games.[7]

Studies show that the more complex the task, the more benefits for your mind. Simply showing up to class is not enough. You need to be actively engaged. Anything that forces you to focus and learn something new and get out of a rote routine will help you sharpen your mind and boost your memory.

Try these 15 Ways to Cultivate Continuous Learning for a Sharper Brain.

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6. Stay Social

The more deep and meaningful social connections you maintain, the more you protect your brain. Bottom line, the more friends you have, the more people you work with, the more you’re forced to use your brain.

Social isolation and loneliness are significant risks of dementia. Without interacting with others, our brains wilt. Isolation and loneliness lead to depression, physical and mental decline.[8]

In a 2016 study published in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, seniors with a full social calendar did better on memory, reasoning, and processing speed tests.[9]

What to do?

Party! Seriously, get together with friends as often as possible. Have family dinners. Choose social activities or sports like tennis, golf, cards or go for walks with a friend. Bottom line have fun, build meaningful social relationships and stay connected. Not only will it make your mind sharper and your memory better, you’ll be happier, too!

7. Wakeful Rest

This one is getting harder and harder to do. In a world where we can’t sit on a bus, go up an elevator or go to the bathroom without our phones, doing absolutely nothing to distract our minds is becoming increasingly difficult.

But, the results are in. Doing nothing is great for your memory. Quietly resting for 10 minutes, after you learn something will help you remember and help you create more detailed memories.[10]

What we do minutes after we learn something new has a significant impact on how well we retain the new information. In another study, it didn’t matter what you did after you learned something new, as long as you weren’t distracted by outside factors. In other words, you could be thinking of your day, making a grocery list, or thinking of a story.

In either case, wakeful rest for a period of 10 minutes helped the brain process and consolidate your memories so that you were better able to recall the information at a later date.[11]

Bottom Line

You don’t have to spend a dime on cocktails and supplements promising a quick boost to your memory power. There is very little conclusive scientific evidence suggesting supplements will help improve the memories of healthy individuals–not for Ginkgo Biloba, Vitamin B, fish oils, Vitamin D, Folate or other supplements claiming they a secret formula.

There are far cheaper and more effective ways to boost your memory: exercise, rest, eat well, learn, love, laugh and relax. Who wouldn’t want that prescription?

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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