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15 Brilliant Websites That Will Inspire And Change Your Life

15 Brilliant Websites That Will Inspire And Change Your Life

I have to say that I love living in the world as it is today. Even with all its warts, it’s still pretty great. The main reason I love it is that information about anything is right at your fingertips via the internet. There are millions of people putting out life-changing information because it is their passion, and it’s all available at the click of a button.

One of the drawbacks of this age, though, is that sometimes there is too much information and you have to rely on friends to help you weed out the good from the bad or useless. And that is why I am taking to my keyboard today.

Here are 15 websites to change your life and get you inspired and motivated:

1. GCF LearnFree

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    I have put this one first because there’s still a huge number of people who have no computer knowledge and don’t know how to get started in the new computer-based world. While it is ironic that you need a computer to access this site, if you have a relative or friend who needs to become computer literate, this is a great site that you can use to help them get started.

    It has simple tutorials about computer basics, along with videos. It is straightforward and easy to use. Your friend or relative can get started right away and be up and running in no time.

    2. Duolingo

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      I love this site! It’s a language learning site that first tests you to see where your weaknesses are and then gives you lessons based on the results of your tests so that you don’t waste your time. You can learn English, Spanish, Italian and more! It is set up as a series of little games and it is very addictive! The format is very user and learner friendly. I am finding myself spending more and more time playing on it and my Italian skills are getting so much better. Try it out! If you love games you will love learning with Duolingo.com.

      3. Fierce Gentleman

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        As soon as I read the term “Fierce Gentleman” I had to check out this site, and I love it! Gentlemanly qualities as we knew them seem to have become a bit rare these days. I believe it’s because of the changes we have experienced and the rapid morphing of cultures: it can make your head spin! We needed a new definition for the term “Gentleman.” In his articles, Andrew Long lays out what it takes to be a Fierce Gentleman and even some advice for Fierce Ladies. Fortunately, the qualities that Andrew advocates are qualities that gentlemen have had in days past and they can be brought forward to live again in this day and age.

        In this confusing time of mixed messages about what is cool or good or ethical, Mr. Long lays out just what is needed for you to keep your integrity and be extremely cool at the same time.

        4. The Invisible Mentor

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          Avil Beckford writes for The Invisible Mentor. Each month she spends hundreds of hours of researching and reading in order to bring us the most useful and enlightening information from older and perhaps forgotten writers whose works are still vital today.

          What I love about Avil is that she has the idea that learning and information are not to be reserved for only those who go to school but should be made available for everyone. She also reminds us that those who are the most successful in their fields are the ones who ceaselessly go on learning with a thirsty vengeance.

          Her ideas on learning, I believe, are the wave of the future. Antiquated systems of learning are being replaced by methods that teach people to think and develop judgment rather than memorize by rote. This depends on being able to read a lot and assimilate information.

          On her site you will find articles, great quotes, pieces of advice and all kinds of useful information.

          5. Dumb Little Man

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            Jay White writes for this blog and his purpose is to gather up and present information that makes your life a bit easier. His blog is a mix of great information and tips communicated in an informal and friendly way, which makes it seem like you are sitting with an old friend talking about life.

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            You will find information here about money, relationships, being happy and other related topics. Dumb Little Man is one of my favorite places to stop by for a cup of tea and a few wise words from friends.

            6. Michelle Chappel

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              Michelle Millis Chappel is a Renaissance woman. Initially she studied and received her PhD in Psychology, but then left academia to follow her dream of being a singer-songwriter-producer. She is also a noted motivational speaker and tireless volunteer. Her blog is a delightful mix of childlike enthusiasm and good friendly advice delivered with compassion and understanding. Her purpose in life is to help you find your true passion and calling and then help you achieve it.

              7. Fathom

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                Fathom is a travel website on steroids! I love it. Just looking at the first page fills you with the excitement you feel when you are packing for a trip somewhere you’ve always wanted to go!

                I’m an avid traveler and I believe that travel and communication with other countries and cultures is our saving grace in a world gone violent. How can we be OK with bombing villages when we know the people who live there?

                Reading through the articles on Fathom will start you dreaming, then acting, then packing! In the meantime you can take mini mental vacations anywhere on the globe just by clicking over to this site.

                8. Entrepreneur

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                  If you have ever dreamed of starting your own business or franchise, this is the one-stop shop for you. On this site they have articles and advice on every aspect of starting or running a business, from hiring your first employee to how to smartly lease business equipment.

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                  If you are unsure where to start on Entrepreneur.com, check out the tab entitled “Answers” and it will give you some ideas.

                  Have fun and get started on your new venture!

                  9. Jamie’s Home Cooking Skills

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                    My favorite chef EVER, Jamie Oliver, has developed a website devoted to educating everyone about the joys and necessities of learning to cook. Jamie has recognized that poor food supply and lack of food education has had a dramatic effect on the health of entire populations and he is on a campaign to put food education into schools.

                    He has now developed this website that gives you valuable basic information about how to cook. He has created videos and recipes that are easy and accessible and yet tasty and nutritious. Everyone should have rudimentary cooking skills and know how to prepare delicious food.

                    My view on life is this: We only have a certain number of meals available to us in our lives. We had better make them all good! Jamie’s site will give you the training you need to really up your standard of living by allowing you to have delicious food for every meal simply because you can create it yourself!

                    10. Rational Optimist

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                      This blog, written by Matt Ridley, is described as, “A counterblast to the prevailing pessimism of our age, and proves, however much we like to think to the contrary, that things are getting better.”

                      In his blog, Matt gives real life solutions for the problems of the world. Many of these are available now if we just access them. This blog is as interesting as it is practical.

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                      11. App Treasure Hunter

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                        App Treasure Hunter is a site dedicated to finding and testing out educational apps. It has been developed by a handful of parents and educators with a passion for great education applications. App Treasure Hunter gives you in-depth reviews performed by educational experts and practical advice for handling and educating your children. The pros at App Treasure Hunter save you a ton of work. The site is fun and interesting to browse.

                        12. The History Blog

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                          I love this site because it is so darned interesting! You can go there while waiting in line at the Starbucks, or while in your doctor’s office. History is such a fascinating subject and this blog provides you with history, art, culture and photos, along with their wider historical context. Learning history gives you instant experience for living today’s life. The history here is not delivered in dry and boring prose. As the writer states on his homepage: “My name is Livius. I shall endeavor not to suck. That is all.” I can tell you that he has fulfilled his promise and doesn’t suck, not even a little bit.

                          13. Brainy Quote

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                            I love this site and have used it for finding quotes for my blogs. This site compiles and publishes quotes from really smart people and there is always something there that pertains to your specific situation. Go there to find some helpful tips or just browse. It is entertaining and insightful!

                            14. Tiny Buddha

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                              One thing I love about each new website is that each one has a specific feeling associated with it. Tiny Buddha, as you can imagine, has a sweet and compassionate feel to it. There are great blog posts as well as a forum where you can get help from others. I have browsed the forum and helped a few people. I even made a great new friend on the other side of the world.

                              15. A Beautiful Mess

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                                This is a charming and fun-packed website. I love it because it gives you amazing recipes, beautiful photos, great projects and has a really fun feel to it. You could spend hours poking around and come away with ideas that will keep you busy for days. Check in on Elsie and Emma and get a glimpse into their lives. They are adorable!

                                Now that we are entering a new year with exciting new possibilities, I am hoping that these will prove to be websites to change your life and provide you with ideas and assistance finding your dreams!

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                                Last Updated on March 14, 2019

                                7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

                                7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

                                Recruiters might hold thousands of interviews in their careers and a lot of them are reporting the same thing—that most candidates play it safe with the questions they ask, or have no questions to ask in a job interview at all.

                                For job applicants, this approach is crazy! This is a job that you’re going to dedicate a lot of hours to and that might have a huge impact on your future career. Don’t throw away the chance to figure out if the position is perfect for you.

                                Here are 7 killer questions to ask in a job interview that will both impress your counterpart and give you some really useful insights into whether this job will be a dream … or a nightmare.

                                1. What are some challenges I might come up against this role?

                                A lesser candidate might ask, “what does a typical day look like in this role?” While this is a perfectly reasonable question to ask in an interview, focusing on potential challenges takes you much further because it indicates that you already are visualizing yourself in the role.

                                It’s impressive because it shows that you are not afraid of challenges, and you are prepared to strategize a game plan upfront to make sure you succeed if you get the job.

                                It can also open up a conversation about how you’ve solved problems in the past which can be a reassuring exercise for both you and the hiring manager.

                                How it helps you:

                                If you ask the interviewer to describe a typical day, you may get a vibrant picture of all the lovely things you’ll get to do in this job and all the lovely people you’ll get to do them with.

                                Asking about potential roadblocks means you hear the other side of the story—dysfunctional teams, internal politics, difficult clients, bootstrap budgets and so on. This can help you decide if you’re up for the challenge or whether, for the sake of your sanity, you should respectfully decline the job offer.

                                2. What are the qualities of really successful people in this role?

                                Employers don’t want to hire someone who goes through the motions; they want to hire someone who will excel.

                                Asking this question shows that you care about success, too. How could they not hire you with a dragon-slayer attitude like that?

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                                How it helps you:

                                Interviewers hire people who are great people to work with, but the definition of “great people” differs from person to person.

                                Does this company hire and promote people with a specific attitude, approach, worth ethic or communication style? Are the most successful people in this role strong extroverts who love to talk and socialize when you are studious and reserved? Does the company reward those who work insane hours when you’re happiest in a more relaxed environment?

                                If so, then this may not be the right match for you.

                                Whatever the answer is, you can decide whether you have what it takes for the manager to be happy with your performance in this role. And if the interviewer has no idea what success looks like for this position, this is a sign to proceed with extreme caution.

                                3. From the research I did on your company, I noticed the culture really supports XYZ. Can you tell me more about that element of the culture and how it impacts this job role?

                                Of course, you could just ask “what is the culture like here? ” but then you would miss a great opportunity to show that you’ve done your research!

                                Interviewers give BIG bonus point to those who read up and pay attention, and you’ve just pointed out that (a) you’re diligent in your research (b) you care about the company culture and (c) you’re committed to finding a great cultural fit.

                                How it helps you:

                                This question is so useful because it lets you pick an element of the culture that you really care about and that will have the most impact on whether you are happy with the organization.

                                For example, if training and development is important to you, then you need to know what’s on offer so you don’t end up in a dead-end job with no learning opportunities.

                                Companies often talk a good talk, and their press releases may be full of shiny CSR initiatives and all the headline-grabbing diversity programs they’re putting in place. This is your opportunity to look under the hood and see if the company lives its values on the ground.

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                                A company that says it is committed to doing the right thing by customers should not judge success by the number of up-sells an employee makes, for instance. Look for consistency, so you aren’t in for a culture shock after you start.

                                4. What is the promotion path for this role, and how would my performance on that path be measured?

                                To be clear, you are not asking when you will get promoted. Don’t go there—it’s presumptuous, and it indicates that you think you are better than the role you have applied for.

                                A career-minded candidate, on the other hand, usually has a plan that she’s working towards. This question shows you have a great drive toward growth and advancement and an intention to stick with the company beyond your current state.

                                How it helps you:

                                One word: hierarchy.

                                All organizations have levels of work and authority—executives, upper managers, line managers, the workforce, and so on. Understanding the hierarchical structure gives you power, because you can decide if you can work within it and are capable of climbing through its ranks, or whether it will be endlessly frustrating to you.

                                In a traditional pyramid hierarchy, for example, the people at the bottom tend to have very little autonomy to make decisions. This gets better as you rise up through the pyramid, but even middle managers have little power to create policy; they are more concerned with enforcing the rules the top leaders make.

                                If having a high degree of autonomy and accountability is important to you, you may do better in a flat hierarchy where work teams can design their own way of achieving the corporate goals.

                                5. What’s the most important thing the successful candidate could accomplish in their first 3 months/6 months/year?

                                Of all the questions to ask in a job interview, this one is impressive because it shows that you identify with and want to be a successful performer, and not just an average one.

                                Here, you’re drilling down into what the company needs, and needs quite urgently, proving that you’re all about adding value to the organization and not just about what’s in it for you.

                                How it helps you:

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                                Most job descriptions come with 8, 10 or 12 different job responsibilities and a lot of them with be boilerplate or responsibilities that someone in HR thinks are associated with this role. This question gives you a better sense of which responsibilities are the most important—and they may not be what initially attracted you to the role.

                                If you like the idea of training juniors, for example, but success is judged purely on your sales figures, then is this really the job you thought you were applying for?

                                This question will also give you an idea of what kind of learning curve you’re expected to have and whether you’ll get any ramp-up time before getting down to business. If you’re the type of person who likes to jump right in and get things done, for instance, you may not be thrilled to hear that you’re going to spend the first three months shadowing a peer.

                                6. What do you like about working here?

                                This simple question is all about building rapport with the interviewer. People like to talk about themselves, and the interviewer will be flattered that you’re interested in her opinions.

                                Hopefully, you’ll find some great connection points that the two of you share. What similar things drive you head into the office each day? How will you fit into the culture?

                                How it helps you:

                                You can learn a lot from this question. Someone who genuinely enjoys his job will be able to list several things they like, and their answers will sound passionate and sincere. If not….well, you might consider that a red flag.

                                Since you potentially can learn a lot about the company culture from this question, it’s a good idea to figure out upfront what’s important to you. Maybe you’re looking for a hands-off boss who values independent thought and creativity? Maybe you work better in environments that move at a rapid, exciting pace?

                                Whatever’s important to you, listen carefully and see if you can find any common ground.

                                7. Based on this interview, do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications for the role?

                                What a great closing question to ask in a job interview! It shows that you’re not afraid of feedback—in fact, you are inviting it. Not being able to take criticism is a red flag for employers, who need to know that you’ll act on any “coaching moments” with a good heart.

                                As a bonus, asking this question shows that you are really interested in the position and wish to clear up anything that may be holding the company back from hiring you.

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                                How it helps you:

                                What a devious beast this question is! On the surface, it looks straightforward, but it’s actually giving you four key pieces of information.

                                First, is the manager capable of giving you feedback when put on the spot like this? Some managers are scared of giving feedback, or don’t think it’s important enough to bother outside of a formal performance appraisal. Do you want to work for a boss like that? How will you improve if no one is telling you what you did wrong?

                                Second, can the manager give feedback in a constructive way without being too pillowy or too confrontational? It’s unfair to expect the interviewer to have figured out your preferred way of receiving feedback in the space of an interview, but if she come back with a machine-gun fire of shortcomings or one of those corporate feedback “sandwiches” (the doozy slipped between two slices of compliment), then you need to ask yourself, can you work with someone who gives feedback like that?

                                Third, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about before you leave the interview. This gives you the chance to make a final, tailored sales pitch so you can convince the interviewer that she should not be worried about those things.

                                Fourth, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about period. If turnover is keeping him up at night, then your frequent job hopping might get a lot of additional scrutiny. If he’s facing some issues with conflict or communication, then he might raise concerns regarding your performance in this area.

                                Listen carefully: the concerns that are being raised about you might actually be a proxy for problems in the wider organization.

                                Making Your Interview Work for You

                                Interviews are a two-way street. While it is important to differentiate yourself from every other candidate, understand that convincing the interviewer you’re the right person for the role goes hand-in-hand with figuring out if the job is the right fit for you.

                                Would you feel happy in a work environment where the people, priorities, culture and management style were completely at odds with the way you work? Didn’t think so!

                                More Resources About Job Interviews

                                Featured photo credit: Amy Hirschi via unsplash.com

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