3 Old Fashioned Touches That Will Make Your Employees Feel Valued

Motivate Your Employees
Motivate Your Employees

Everyone complains that common courtesy is dying. The last thing you want is for your employees to feel like there’s nothing good coming from you. If you want to blow them out of the water with your thoughtfulness without actually pulling out all the stops (because you’re not made of money or time) you can go old school to impress them. These are three cheap and quick suggestions that will make your employees feel like they can trust you.

Write a Thank You Note

Did an employee do something above and beyond recently? You don’t have to hand these out like candy, but if an employee does something amazing like soothing an irate customer, handling a store robbery well, or even just heroically filling in for a coworker who had a personal emergency and was unable to come to the store you can show them that you noticed by writing them a little note. For the cost of three minutes of your time and a small, plain note card you can make them feel like a valuable member of your team. The more they feel appreciated, the more likely it is that the behavior that earned them this note will be repeated. It’s cheaper than bonuses.

Spring for Some Cupcakes on Birthdays

Make Your Employee Feel Good About Themselves
Make Your Employee Feel Good About Themselves

In this modern age it’s so easy to put people’s birthdays into your phone or connect through social media so that you have it always. Just have it go off the day before so that you can swing by somewhere and drop ten dollars on a box of mini cupcakes for the office. These little touches will make your employee feel good about themselves and will make all the other employees like you because free mini cupcakes are nothing to sneeze at.

If food treats aren’t going to be all the rage in the office for one reason or another (like if an employee has severe allergies) you can bring in something else cheap and fun. Even if you have to resort to another card, try to give people perks on their special days. It’s when they most want to be remembered so you’re getting more gratitude out of every gift.

Hand Deliver Bad News

Deliver Bad New Personally And In Private
Deliver Bad New Personally And In Private

One of the toughest jobs as a boss is having to tell bad news. This isn’t just “You’re fired” type bad news. All bad news should be hand delivered to get the best possible response from your employees. You don’t want to send around the news that a coworker has been injured in a traffic accident via memo. When you’re not there during the hard times you send the message that you don’t really care about your employees at all. On the other hand, if you actually come down and stand with them they’re going to remember that you were there when things were hard. It’s tough to inspire loyalty in people, but treating your employees like friends when things are harder is a great way to do it.

Emotional Eaters: Getting Control of Your Diet

Stop Emotional Eating
Stop Emotional Eating
Being an emotional can be extremely tough for some of us. Emotional eaters eat when they have trouble dealing with their emotions. Some people think that emotional eaters only eat unhealthily foods when they are upset. But this isn’t always true. Emotional eaters may eat unhealthy foods regardless of what type of emotion that they’re experiencing. Some emotional eaters eat lots of food when they’re sad, angry, happy, and even when they’re anxious. Being an emotional eater is a difficult thing to breakout of. However, that doesn’t mean you can work you way around it.

Stock Up on Healthier Comfort Foods

Some emotional eaters run straight for those foods that are high in calories. Things like soul food, ice cream, cake, and greasy fattening food can be a emotional eaters go to foods. If you feel like you won’t ever be able to conquer the fact that you are an emotional eater, you can still take better care of your body by swapping out some of those bad foods for ones that are a lot healthier.

You Know It's Not Good For You... So Stop!
You Know It’s Not Good For You… So Stop!
Instead of eating ice cream, try enjoying some yogurt (frozen or otherwise). Yogurt can be a great probiotic and can help you regulate your digestive system while also being one of your comfort foods. Instead of eating cake loaded up in sugary frosting, try opting for pound cake, or angel’s food cake. It’s still cake, but it’s a somewhat healthier alternative to it. You can also try experimenting with vegan cake, which is made without wheat, and can also work well on your diet. Sometimes it’s hard to say no to soul food, especially when you’re in the mood for it. Why not try preparing the same foods in a different, and healthier way? This way you’re still getting the soul food, but you aren’t suffering from the high calories that can come along with it. If you must have something fried, try frying it in olive oil instead of vegetable oil as olive oil is a much healthier alternative.

Enjoy Some Natural Sugar from Fruits

Sugar is one of the main culprits of weight gain, and if you eat a lot of it when dealing with your emotions, it may be hard on your body. A lot of people rely on sugar to put them in a good mood, but this isn’t something that should be recommended. Sugar will definitely cause a spike in your blood sugar that will give you the energy you need (and also the happiness), but the crash is pretty much inevitable, and you will feel terrible afterward.

Instead of loading up on sugary chocolate and candies, try for some healthy and delicious fruit to give you the sugar that you need. Toss some strawberries, grapes, pineapples, and blueberries in a bowl and enjoy. The natural sugar will be great for giving you an energy boost, and you won’t have to worry about gaining weight from eating them. Best of all, these fruits work great as a dessert or a snack. You can even grow you own, and save yourself some money. Growing your own fruits and vegetables can help give you something to focus on and can be great for your mental health.

Get Involved with Exercising

Go Outside And Exercise
Go Outside And Exercise
Another great thing that emotional eaters need to consider is exercising. A lot of times, emotional eaters eat because it helps the cope with various things. But eating isn’t the only coping mechanism that humans have. Sometimes exercising can work just as well as eating to help you cope with your emotions. In fact, more often that not, exercising will actually work better than eating to help you cope.

Exercising releases different chemicals in your brain that will put you in a better mode. Sometimes it may not seem like it’s working, so give it time. After a while, whatever was causing your emotions to flare won’t seem as difficult to deal with.

Being an emotional eater isn’t a death sentence. Sure, it may be tough to figure out when your emotions are going to be out of whack, but if you replace the current unhealthy foods you have with their healthier alternatives, whenever you get struck with emotional issues, you will already have healthy food for you to enjoy. Give it a try. Your body will thank you.

The Best Sites for Shopping For Gadgets

Go Online To Shop For Gadgets
Go Online To Shop For Gadgets
Do you know someone in your family or amongst your friends who really loves technology and the latest in gee-whiz gadgets and gizmos? If so, you know that it can be very difficult to shop for them around the holidays or for their birthday for two reasons. Either they already have everything you might otherwise purchase for them, or everything that you look at is far too expensive. This is usually the case when you’re trying to find gadgets to buy inside brick and mortar stores. But have you ever considered browsing online for those gifts? Simply doing a Google search might not be very helpful, but there are actually quite a number of excellent websites online that offer tons of gadgets and other tech-related items your friend or loved one will be happy to receive.

Thinkgeek is Great For All Ages

ThinkGeek... Join In. Geek Out
ThinkGeek… Join In. Geek Out
If you’re shopping for a teen or just an adult who really loves toys, ThinkGeek is the way to go. It has a huge assortment of everything from witty technology-related T-shirts to actual gadgets. Not only that, but they have plenty of interesting gadgets you can use in the office, such as a USB-powered foam dart launcher that one can control from their computer. It’s a great site that has a whole range of gifts and gadgets for all ages. Not only that, but they offer a great wishlist feature, so you might want to give the person you’re trying to shop for a nudge in the right direction by getting them to create a wishlist on the site. ThinkGeek also offers a service called "Geek Points," which allow users to accumulate points for successive purchases and eventually receive free gadgets or other items with a later order.

The Sharper Image Has Tons of Interesting Products

Although you might not have seen a Sharper Image store in your local mall for a while, they’re still alive and well on the Internet and they remain one of the best places for gee-whiz gadgets and neat toys for adults who love electronics. You’ll be able to find everything from automatic watch winders to massaging chairs. They even have great gadgets for those who love the outdoors, as well as fun items you could add to your desk at the office. Be sure to check the site around major sales holidays, such as Cyber Monday, for a chance at scoring a great deal.

Amazon Can Surprise You With Cool Finds

Amazon Has It All
Amazon Has It All
While it might not be the first place you think to go looking for devices, Amazon really does have everything, and it’s probably your best bet if you have a specific kind of item in mind. The site’s search engine is so powerful that you’ll be able to quickly find the electronics you’re looking for, or you can browse categories to see what’s out there for purchase. Consider taking advantage of the site’s amazing Amazon Prime offer, which allows you to receive shipments in only two days for free, or one day for a small additional fee. If you need your gizmos fast, this is the place to go.

Why The Dating Culture Is Dead

Nowadays Courtship Is Dead
Nowadays Courtship Is Dead
If you’re trying to get in touch with people your age and you’re trying to figure out how to actually get into a relationship, you may be wondering why nobody seems to really date anymore. You don’t really see guys asking girls out on dates that often anymore. It all seems to be done online or via text message, and it can be a bit troubling if you’re really trying to get back into the dating scene after a long absence. Well, dating culture is pretty much dead, and there are several reasons behind that which you’ll probably want to understand. Here’s what you need to know:

It’s Too Much Hassle

Dating is kind of archaic now, and it happened so quickly you may be wondering why it happened. Asking people out on dates is all well and good, but most of the time you’ll wind up getting into a relationship in a less traditional way. You may meet up at a party and wind up hooking up or maybe you just get really close with someone and wind up going out with them without ever really asking them out. That’s just the way things are nowadays; dating traditionally is a bit too much of a hassle.

Communication Is Instant

People Are Into Online And Speed Dating
People Are Into Online And Speed Dating
One of the biggest reasons why dating culture is more or less a thing of the past is because communication is more instant than it has ever been before. You don’t need to look forward to your date on the weekend to finally see your girlfriend or boyfriend. You can just text them literally all the time and it’s like you’re constantly on a date. This is one of the main reasons why dating isn’t such a big deal anymore. You may wind up falling into a relationship without ever realizing it was sudden, and that’s because communication is so instant and effortless. There’s no need to try and get all your conversation taken care of on your first date – you can just text or message them later on, after all.

We’re More Casual as a Culture

Dating is a bit more serious than just hanging out with someone and getting to know them, and as a culture, we’ve already kind of moved on from the whole idea of strictly dating someone. Courtship is a thing of the past, and soon dating will probably be the same thing. It’s still something people do, but as a culture it’s not that big of a deal anymore.

It’s Not Really Necessary

Relationships Are Casual
Relationships Are Casual
Asking someone out on a date isn’t as necessary as it used to be. Nowadays people just seem to fall together as boyfriend and girlfriend and what-have-you without any of the fuss of having to ask each other out. It’s a more natural progression and dating isn’t really that big of a deal anymore. Try not to let it stress you out and just let things happen. You don’t really need to ask someone out on a date anymore unless you really want to – just spending time with them is usually enough.

3 Things That May Be Costing You More on Your Phone Bill than You Realize

Don't Get The Unpleasant Surprise Of A costly Phone Bill
Don’t Get The Unpleasant Surprise Of A costly Phone Bill
For smartphone users, apps on your phone can assist you with productivity, help you find your way around, and keep you entertained with games. Many people spend a lot of time of their phones every day. It’s great when you find an app that helps you out or a great new game and you discover it’s free. Indeed, there are thousands of apps out there that cost nothing or offer free versions. Your phone will also come pre-loaded with apps and services that make your life easier. However, smartphone users should proceed with caution. Many apps can jack up your phone bill or charge your accounts without you realizing how much you’re actually spending.

Know Your Phone Settings

The first step to protecting yourself from unnecessary charges is to get to know the settings on your phone well. Smartphones have all kinds of settings and functions to protect your privacy and your data, and some of these can help to protect your wallet as well. The most important setting to understand is your Wi-Fi setup and allowances. Most often, apps either run entirely off an Internet connection, like mapping, or have a component that allows you to connect to the Internet for added features or social networking. Knowing which apps access the Internet will help you decide which ones should then be able to use your data plan when Wi-Fi is not available. This can save you a lot of money, especially if you’re using apps that include instant video or music streaming that can use a lot of data very quickly. If you have a shared or limited data plan, this can spell trouble and cause you to exceed your monthly limits. A great way to prevent this is to learn your Wi-Fi settings and consider limiting access to all but essential applications like mapping, e-mail, or emergency services.

Beware of Free Games with Paid Extras

There Is No Such Thing As Free Use
There Is No Such Thing As Free Use
Scoring free games on your phone can be great. Many games now, especially those with social networking access, are initially free but often offer paid bonuses and add-ons within the game. Anyone who’s been addicted to the latest fad game can attest to indulging in purchases or at least being tempted to. This temptation can lead to high charges on your phone bill or the account your phone is linked to. It becomes even more difficult when older children and teens have access to these games. They may not understand they are spending real money outside the game, or know the budget plan you have for your finances. For younger users, the temptation to buy additions to the game can cost parents a bundle and even be disastrous for those with limited budgets and resources. To keep this from happening, or to keep yourself away from overspending, visit your phone settings again. On most smartphones, you can shut off in-app purchases and lock these settings with parental controls and passwords. That way, everyone can keep having fun and your wallet won’t have to suffer. Just as app developers are coming with new ways every day to try to get you to spend money, you have to keep up your knowledge about how to control what you purchase.

Review Your Phone Plan

Review Your Phone Plan
Review Your Phone Plan
Knowing your phone settings is important to preventing data overage charges on your phone bill, but it goes hand in hand with knowing your phone plan. You should make sure to familiarize yourself with how much data you have per month, when your billing cycle starts, and very importantly what financial penalties you face if you go over your data limits. Many phone service providers charge a flat amount when you go over your data limit, but that amount can vary and may be quite high. Keep this in mind especially if you have a shared plan.

Rants From Carter Cole