Well, isn't this just GREAT! A BACON SHORTAGE! Say it ain't so!
Anyway a recent press release from the U.K.'s National Pig Association is warning that a "world shortage of pork and bacon next year is now unavoidable": "New data shows the European Union pig herd is declining at a significant rate, and this is a trend that is being mirrored around the world. Pig farmers have been plunged into loss by high pig-feed costs, caused by the global failure of maize and soya harvests. All main European pig-producing countries report shrinking sow herds." And the Financial Times reported that this past season's droughts in North America and Russia are to blame for the spike in prices for grain crops, which are used to feed animals. (Huffington Post)
If someone would just listen...hurry up and make a Bacon fragrance...i dunno, maybe call it Petunia or Pinky or heck even Porker, I don't care...let me tell ya men would love us ladies to bit (bacon bits) and you'd make a gaziollion dollars. Gotta run...bacon on sale at Bi-Lo,
So, would it be worth the trade-off? You see there’s a new study has finds eunuchs -- who are castrated men -- live nearly 20 years longer than other men.
The South Korean researchers studied 80 eunuchs from the Chosun Dynasty, which ruled in Korea from 1392 to 1897, comparing the only known record of eunuchs' lives to genealogical records of other men of similar social rank.
They found the average lifespan of the eunuchs was about 70 years, 14 to 19 years higher that non-castrated men of similar social standing. Previous studies have shown that castration increases lifespan in animals, but human studies haven't been conclusive. The researchers said the study supports the idea that male sex hormones decrease men's lifespan.
Now, I don’t mean to imply that fear isn’t real. It is. What I want to focus on in this article are those times when we are afraid to do something and as a result don’t do anything; not what we might be afraid of: a recent diagnosis, the dark, etc.
Recently I read that some psychologists refer to most of our FEARs as Fantasized Experiences Appearing Real. That’s all. Fantasized Experiences. We get ourselves all worked up over imagining negative outcomes before even trying some new activity or experience. If we’ve never tried it, then how could we accurately predict what the results would be?
I love this quote by author, Mark Twain: “I have lived a long life and had many troubles, most of which never happened.”
That is so true for each of us! Almost all of our fears are self-created and never materialize. Mere fantasy. Once we gut it up and finally take the first few steps toward a new experience, we usually realize we had nothing to be afraid of. Many of us even say things like, ‘I wish I would have done that sooner!’; or, ‘That wasn’t so bad after all!’
Back in the day of the cave man fear was a natural way for our body to alert us to the possibility of danger and give us the boost of energy we needed to run away from large scary man-eating animals. Today, luckily, we really don’t encounter many life-threatening circumstances. Fear now serves as our signal to remain alert and cautious. Fear triggers and heightens our awareness level, bringing us greater clarity. Once we embrace that the purpose of fear is to guide us, we can channel it and use it to our advantage and as a result, gain confidence.
Spend a few minutes thinking about all the times in your life that you were afraid to do something, and make a quick list of those things. Then, write down what you imagined would happen when you did them. This is usually where people start chuckling to themselves. Next, write down what actually happened. Isn’t it amazing how many times we allow fear and negative self speak to make us downright scared only to discover that our fear was unnecessary?
If you were to ask any successful person about the fears they’ve faced, it’s likely that
each would admit to feeling fears at many points along their path to success. The difference for them is that early on they learned to acknowledge when they felt fear, and they embraced fear as being both natural and a necessary part of their growth. They continued moving forward through the fear and learned that most of their fears were a waste of their time and energy. So, now when they feel fear they barely skip a beat.
“Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” Robert F. Kennedy
The other major point of difference for those who are successful is that they realize that achieving growth and many of the ‘good things in life’ requires taking risks. They don’t allow themselves to become paralyzed by fear. If they did, they would never achieve their dreams. Sure, some of them took risks that didn’t work out as planned. I met with a business owner last week and he shared that he made a huge mistake once that cost him $500,000. That almost wiped him out. He was scared to death. But because he had also realized many other successes he knew he would succeed again. So, off he went on another business adventure and now he’s more successful than he ever imagined possible.
Stories of people realizing amazing successes after they’ve experienced nearly catastrophic failures are endless. We all need to take our cues from them and turn off the crazy tape we allow to play over and over again in our heads that tells us to be afraid, they won’t choose me, etc. It’s all garbage so throw it out. Believe in yourself. Make your move toward realizing your dream. Keep moving even when you feel doubt, experience setbacks and encounter rejection. Use those experiences as reminders to get going. Each obstacle you overcome teaches you something, makes you stronger and gets you closer to where you want to be.
So pick up the phone, make that call you’ve been putting off. Go to that networking event and meet new people. Go get that degree you’ve been wanting for years. Take your next step, whatever it is, no matter your age.
Don’t settle for being good when you can take a chance or two and become great. Feel the fear, embrace it as normal, know you’ll learn from it and take the first step through it. Don’t let fear hold you back. Later, when reflecting on your accomplishments you’ll be smiling, maybe even laughing out loud. Here’s to your continued growth and success.
Time changes everything except something within us which is always surprised by change – Thomas Hardy
In a recent USA Today feature from various walks of life shared their insights as to what they believe world will look like in 30 years. It was a fascinating read. Here are a few highlights.
Bill Ford, executive chairman of the Ford Motor sees exciting developments in the future of ground transportation over the next three decades: a world in which cars will run on electricity, hydrogen or other energy alternatives and will be interconnected with smart phones in ways that make getting from one place to another more efficient and safer than ever. They have even begun tinkering with systems that monitor pollen counts for asthma suffers and heartbeats for heart patients.
British entrepreneur Richard Branson predicts space flight will be nearly as common for travelers as taking a plane trip. “In the past 30 years, only 500 people have been to space. I suspect in the next 30 years there may be like 5 million people who will have had the opportunity to become astronauts,” he said.
Sebastian Thrun, a Google vice president and Stanford research professor best known for his role in building Google’s driverless cars has some amazing predictions about the future of education. He believes that learning will be free and available to everyone who wants it while operating like a whimsical playground: No one is late for class, failure is not an option, and a lesson looks something like Angry Birds, the physics-based puzzle game.
While it is hard to imagine what life will be like in 30 years these predictions made for compelling reading and speculation. It also caused me to give consideration as to the future of leadership and what it too will look like. We can get a glimpse of what leadership will look like in 30 years by looking to the top companies for leadership development today.
Earlier this year, the Hay Group, the global management consulting firm, released its seventh annual Best Companies for Leadership Study and Top 20 list. The study ranks the best companies for leadership around the world and examples of how those companies nurture talent and foster innovation. This year, General Electric topped the list, followed by Proctor & Gamble, IBM, Microsoft and Coca-Cola.
Key findings from the Hay Group include: 100% of the Best Companies let all employees behave like leaders. Only 54% of peers do likewise; leadership boosts the bottom line. Best companies outperform the S&P 500 almost 2x over 10 years; 90% of Best Companies let employees bypass the chain of command with an excellent idea; in Best Companies, 95% of senior leaders take time to actively develop others. Only 45% of leaders at peer companies do this.
Shaping the future of leadership is not as complicated as space travel nor does it require futuristic technology. Leadership in 2042 is being determined by our actions and beliefs today. Here are three reminders worth review as you consider the future of leadership.
Build a strong foundation. Your core values and principles are what define you, sustain you, and cause you to endure. The foundations of leadership are built on time-tested principles that include trust, loyalty, relationships, and servanthood to name a few. Re-package and market it any way you choose, but these will always be the underlying principles of whatever “new” leadership trend that emerges.
Invest in others. The succession of leadership and what it will look like in 2042 is being determined by the relationships and investments you make in others today. When you build the leadership potential in others (family, colleagues, students, etc.) you are securing the leadership of the next generation. As the Hay Group points out, those who are committed to building strong leadership in others are the leaders in their industry now and in the future.
Commitment to a personal growth plan. The shape and future of leadership depends on your personal growth plan. Charlie “Tremendous” Jones summed it up best when he said, “You’re the same today as you’ll be in five years except for two things: the people you meet and the books you read.” Personal growth does not happen by accident. It happens when you have a plan and execute it.
Shaping the future of leadership begins one leader at a time and it begins with you. Are you ready?
People with psychopathic tendencies -- callousness, manipulation and anti-social behaviors -- apparently have an impaired sense of smell. Australian researchers said studies showed people with psychopathic traits have impaired functioning in the front part of the brain -- the area largely responsible for functions such as planning, impulse control and acting in accordance with social norms. Their study, published in the journal Chemosensory Perception, found individuals who scored highly on psychopathic traits were more likely to struggle to both identify smells and tell the difference between smells, even though they knew they were smelling something. (UPI)
So, the nose knows?
A federal jury yesterday (September 19th) awarded a 59-year-old Colorado man $7.2 million in damages for developing a chronic obstructive disease known as "popcorn lung" from inhaling a chemical used to flavor microwave popcorn. Wayne Watson charged that the popcorn manufacturer and the supermarket chain that sold it were negligent for not warning on labels that the butter flavor chemical is dangerous. Watson was diagnosed in 2007 after years of eating two to three bags of microwave popcorn a day, purposely inhaling the buttery-smelling steam after he opened the bags. He was the first popcorn consumer diagnosed with the disease, although there had been other legal cases involving people who worked at plants where microwave popcorn was made. Jurors sided with Watson and found the popcorn maker, Gilster-Mary Lee Corp., liable for 80 percent of the $7.2 million damages and supermarket chain King Soopers liable for 20 percent.
What do you think of the jury awarding Watson a whopping $7.2 million?
Do you think the popcorn maker was negligent for not putting a warning label on the microwave popcorn? Was the supermarket negligent for selling it?
Is is justifiable for company to have to guard against something like a customer putting his face in a just-opened bag of microwave popcorn and inhaling the steam two to three times a day for years?
Does hearing about "popcorn lung" make you more wary of buying microwave popcorn or of people in your office making bags of it, with the fumes traveling throughout the workplace?
What is wrong with South Carolina? A Bluffton woman will go to court to defend her family's right to keep a chicken as a pet, despite a city ordinance that bans chickens. 41-year-old Stephanie Stewart said she plans to argue that the chicken is a family pet, and not a banned livestock animal. She said, "I am not looking to farm, and I'm not going to build an ugly coop in my yard. [Smartie] sleeps in a dog crate in the garage. She mostly stays in my flower beds underneath plants I have out there. She scratches around, and if it's getting dark, she will peck on the door to come in." Police cited Stewart last month, after receiving a complaint about her violation. The town manager said, "I will assure you the police department was not just riding through the neighborhood and saw a chicken and issued a citation. A complaint was filed, and the police department responded." (UPI)
WOMAN, get a dad-gum dog, get a cat, what about a turtle, fish...and get over it...a chicken is a chicken..NOT a pet...eat the thing and hush! Nopw, have a nice day!
Mitt Romney got his version of the "boxers or briefs" question last Friday - and his answer may surprise those who mock his uptight demeanor.
During a taping of ABC's "Live! With Kelly and Michael," hosted by Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan, Romneywas asked what he wears to bed at night. "I hear the best answer is 'little as possible,'" he joked, according to pool reports but then did not elaborate.
At the top of your competitor's ideal prospect list, that's where!
If that makes you nervous that's a good thing. Your nerves just may drive you to make sure you're doing the right things to keep your customers engaged, happy and loyal.
Customers leave because 1) a competitor offered them a lower price and what you sell is a commodity so you experience this often; 2) they were unhappy about something and used price as an easy out; 3) they are bluffing and are really just shopping you for price; 4) they had no idea that you considered them to be a valuable part of your business.
If what you sell is viewed to be a commodity, then price will always play a role in the customer's decision-making process. Determine how low you can price your product/service and/or how much volume you need to realize profit. Don't waver from those numbers. Have a plan to personally interact with your top customers regularly and meaningfully so they attach value to you, personally. Be sure they know the full breadth of your offerings and the many ways you can help them. Hopefully, the relationship you forge will mean something to them and they'll be loyal to you.
Once a customer decides to leave your business it's too late to figure out what went wrong without going into panic mode and sounding desperate to keep them. If you truly had no idea they would consider leaving, then you haven't spent enough time with them figuring out what's important to them in your relationship. You erred somewhere. Take responsibility and learn everything you can from the experience. Then, immediately turn that learning into practice with your other important customers and begin a strategic campaign to a) engage with your top clients and 2) win back the customer that left, if it still makes viable business sense to pursue them.
Take a look at the purchasing habits of each of your top accounts to determine when their contracts come up for renewal. Three months prior to that expiration date, contact them for renewal proceedings. This is where you'll discover their plans and concerns and whether they're considering other offers. Go into those negotiations with a solid plan for what you're willing to do to retain them as a client. If a competitor offers a lower price you must know the difference between your offerings, what guarantees you're able to make that they can't, how you've adapted to your client's changing needs, etc. In other words discover whether the client still places a value on the things you think they do. Armed with this information, you'll have a better chance of negotiating through a pricing ploy.
Go to great lengths to let your customers know how valuable they are to you. If you use an internal system of categorizing them as 'key' accounts, for example, let them know they're key to you. Have a plan for what you'll do differently for your top accounts and how often. In every relationship it's key to let the other party know and witness how much you value them. It's a new quarter. Suggestion: have your top officers make a personal connection with your top customers in the next 90 days; and, have them continue that practice each quarter.
The wolf is always scheming to knock on your customer's door. Your plan and actions will determine whether he stays outside or gets invited inside.
A successful man is the one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him? - David Brinkley
The nation watched in horror when the video tape emerged showing the bullying of 68-year old school bus monitor Karen Klein. According to ABC News more than 32,000 people went online and donated more than $700,000 to her after they saw the inexcusable way in which she was bullied by middle school students in a suburban Rochester, N.Y. suburb.
In the months since that incident Klein has moved forward with the next chapter of her life in a most surprising way. Actually, what she has done is quite admirable. Klein took $100,000 of the money and has started The Karen Klein Anti-Bullying Foundation.
If I have learned one thing about leadership over the years it is this: adversity brings out the best in leaders. It was Henry Ford who said, “Don’t find fault, find a remedy,” and that is what Klein is doing – finding a remedy. Klein’s actions compel me to look within my own heart and consider the way I would react if I were in her shoes. Could I have been so gracious as to do the same? How about you? What will you do with the bricks others have thrown at you? Here are a few tips to help you along the way.
Let it go. Leaders often find themselves in unique and unenviable situations. Leaders are easy targets not because they are like the brick throwers but because they are bigger. And when people throw bricks it can be a challenge. Leaders set themselves apart not when they pick up the brick with revenge in mind but a purpose. Klein’s purpose was clear. What was meant to harm is now being used to heal. The choice and the possibilities are powerful. When you learn to let it go you can go to a higher level of leadership.
Be an example. When generous people from across the country reached out through their donations she easily could have taken the money and fled. Klein’s actions are characteristic of leaders who have, through the school of hard-knocks, learned that the best revenge is to take the bricks others have thrown and do something useful. Anger and resentment toward those who wronged her would have accomplished nothing. Now, through the work of her foundation, Klein can educate others and make a difference. Klein, like all smart leaders, are empowered by adversity and use it to demonstrate what makes them so special. With your bricks you can build or bash, what will you do with yours?
Live your values. By choice and for little pay, Karen Klein worked as a school bus monitor because she cared. The way in which she responded to the bullying is testament to her character. Adversity did not shape her values it merely revealed them. The fact that she would take $100,000 and start an anti-bullying foundation should come as no surprise.
Here is a leadership truth worth remembering: values do not change with your circumstances but give you clarity when they do. In good times and in adversity your values shape you as a leader and as an organization.
Let’s be clear—bricks hurt. We don’t like being attacked. But when you learn to let it go, lead by example, and live your values there is a satisfaction and peace that gives you the courage to lead.