Archive for: June, 2023

Public Speaking – Dissolve Your Anxiety and Be Powerfully Present When You Speak in Public

Jun 14 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

“Anxiety is any time you leave the present.”

– Fritz Perls

Here’s a quick way to stop feeling anxious about speaking in public.

Stop thinking about it.

That’s right. Just stop thinking about the fact that you’re going to be speaking. Stop worrying and anticipating and fretting over how you’ll do, what you’ll say, whether you’ll blank out.

Easier said than done, right?

When we have a big event coming up, like a chance to speak in public, our minds love go into overdrive with ideas, planning and preparation. But all this thinking turns ugly when the mind starts to bombard us with worry, threats and insults, such as “You dufus! You’ll never make a good impression. You’re sure to forget what you’re supposed to say…” and on and on it goes.

These are the kinds of thoughts that can cause massive amounts of anxiety.

Anxiety, as Fritz Perls eluded to in his quote above, is fear about something that is not happening now and has not happened yet. It’s the fear of something imaginary, really. Something we experience in our minds only.

So, how can you release your feelings of anxiety?

Bring yourself back to the present, right here, right now. Let go of all the “what-if’s” and be here now. Here are three tools to help you come back into the present.


The breath is your best friend when you are anxious. Not only because the very act of breathing deeply calms and centers your nervous system but because it is a reliable point of focus. If you can bring your full focus to your breath, allowing yourself to simply be aware of the breath moves in and out of your body, you can come back to the present moment.

People who meditate know how to do this, and you can, too. Just bring your attention to the sensations of breathing. Feel the air enter your nostrils. Feel your belly expand with the inhalation and then let go with the exhalation. Just be with the sensations of breathing and you will start to feel centered, calm and at peace. Even if thoughts of doom and gloom start to enter your mind, just refocus on the sensations of breath.


Place your hand on the desk or table in front of you. Let your full attention be with the sensation of your hand on the table. You’re just noticing what your hand feels as it touches the table. That’s all.

You can do this with any part of your body. Feel your butt on the chair, your feet on the floor. The important thing is to just be with one point of contact. Let your attention be with just this much. Just the hand on the table. Just the butt on the chair.


So often when we are waiting to speak, we are thinking about what we are going to say or do. We are, once again, in the future.

Listen to what is present now. If your refrigerator is humming, let yourself be with that sound and take it in. When you are being introduced before you speak, really listen to the person introducing you. Let go of everything except your intention to listen. This will bring you smack dab into the present.

Sure, your mind might start shouting at you, “Hey, you better remember this, and don’t forget that.” Just bring your attention back to what is present now.

All your power is in the present, now. So bring yourself back to your powerful present by focusing on your breath, your touch and listening.

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Be a Confident Webinar Presenter

Jun 13 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

It is quite common for people who have never presented a webinar to become nervous as their first presentation approaches. This is normal and nothing to be worried about. There are a variety of things that you can do to make yourself feel and be more confident. These include; knowing your material, practice, detecting and correcting flaws in your presentation and working with a partner.

Know your material! This seems almost too basic to mention but it is a fact that many new webinar presenters fumble with facts, lose track of their train of thought or appear disorganized. None of these is what you want your viewers to see. You must be comfortable with the knowledge and facts included in your presentation and be able to put them across in a concise and comprehensive manner. This leads us to our next suggestion.

Practice, practice, practice. Any of you that have been involved in sports or the performing arts will already be well aware of this way of becoming proficient and confident in a skill. The more you practice and the more webinars you present, the better you will become at it. Using a mirror is one technique many people find effective in improving their webinar performance.

Detecting and correcting mistakes in your webinar can be one of the most challenging parts of the process of preparing your presentation. Self-correction is helpful; watching yourself on a recording can be very instructive as to any mistakes that you are making. It is very helpful to have a friend or colleague assist you as well. Their assessment of your presentation might be very different from yours and give you valuable insights into how you could improve your webinar. This is one part of working with a partner.

You might also consider using your partner to either co-host your webinar or give a talk or presentation within it. For many people knowing that they have help on hand reduces any apprehension they might be feeling about giving the presentation. It can also be easier to get ideas and energy flowing when you have someone to discuss the webinar with.

Let’s go over the techniques that we have discussed to help you feel more relaxed and confident when you make your webinar presentation.

You need to have good knowledge of the material in your presentation and the ability to deliver it comprehensively.

You need to have practiced your presentation several times.

You need to have the webinar critiqued both by yourself and by a friend or colleague.

You can also use the person who critiqued you to co-host or present part of the webinar.

If you follow these simple steps you will find yourself confidently presenting your very own webinar.

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Presenting – Michael Prue, A Working Class Success Story – From Regent Park to Queens Park

Jun 12 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

One person who has been extremely supportive of my “Celebrate Toronto” project is Provincial Member of Parliament, Michael Prue. He and his staff have connected me with various individuals in the Beach who are good candidates for my first Toronto neighbourhood portrait. Way back in November I was invited to come out to lunch with him and his team and Michael and I even recorded a joint Rogers television show together. He came across as a very open and friendly individual with a bright smile and a boyish charm, and I thought Michael himself might be a good candidate for an interview so people in his riding, “Beaches – East York”, could get to know him from a more personal point of view. So we arranged to meet at the Boardwalk CafĂ© on Toronto’s waterfront, in the Woodbine Beach area. For a few hours I had a chance to pick his brain and ask away while Michael freely opened up to me.

Michael is one of those rare Torontonians whose family tree is anchored for several generations in the Toronto area. Toronto is one of the few cities where the majority of people were born somewhere else (myself included) and immigrated here. Not so with Michael. Both his parents were born in Toronto, six out of eight of his great grandparents were from Toronto. He traces his roots back to Irish / English / Scottish immigrants generations ago and some of his relatives have a bible with Laura Secord’s name in it. (Laura Secord warned the British Army of the advancing Americans during the War of 1812.). Another side of his family is related to the Thompson family in Scarbourough – David and Mary Thompson were some of the pioneers who opened up land to the east of today’s metropolis. A grandfather on his mother’s side was actually from Montreal of Irish and French background. His paternal great grandfather’s name was Proulx and that name was later anglicized to Prue.

Michael was born at Women’s College Hospital and grew up in a tenement building on Oak Street. That’s where Michael spent the first four years of his life before the tenements were torn down and Regent Park, Toronto’s most (in)famous public housing project was built. Families who were living in the area before the housing project was built had first dibs on some of the apartments that were going up in the new housing complex.

Michael Prue’s father was born in 1921 and had a very difficult time finding work during the Depression. He quit school in 1936 to work in various odd jobs. In 1939, when World War II started, he was one of the first to volunteer for the Canadian Army and was sent to the battlefields of Europe. His father often talked about his experiences in Europe and the places he had seen: North Africa, Italy (he fought at Montecassino), Germany, Holland, Denmark, and England/Scotland/Wales. Michael recalls his father talking often about the places, but very rarely about the war itself. He still remembers one of the highlights: a story of his father finding a secret stash of wine in Italy.

After the war Michael’s father worked on Queen Street at a factory that produced rubber components. His job as a regular factory worker was later followed up by a position as a janitor which he held until retirement. Michael’s mother stayed home with her children until Michael was about 12 years old and then started to work as a part-time bookkeeper.

Growing up in a working-class family in Regent Park shaped Michael’s outlook on life a great deal. His family was doing better than average in this neighbourhood considering that many families in Regent Park were single-parent low-income households. Once he entered high school, things started to change. Michael attended Jarvis Collegiate which at the time was attended largely by children from Toronto’s affluent Rosedale neighbourhood.

Michael was one of the few people who attended an academic high school, most of the boys he grew up with ended up at Central Tech while the girls attended Central Commerce, preparing them for work in the trades or in lower-level administrative jobs. Only 8 or 10 of Michael’s colleagues went to Jarvis Collegiate, but Michael said the class differences during his high school years were almost insurmountable. Despite the fact that he was on student council, he never got invited to dances or special events, and that experience of being excluded on the basis of his social class made him feel “a little bitter towards rich people”. He admits that he still works on overcoming this feeling to this day.

This is also what attracted him to the ideology of the NDP, a party whose constitution states “we will invite the co-operation of all persons who are dedicated to the extension of freedom, the abolition of poverty and the elimination of exploitation”. Of his schoolmates Michael was the only one to go on to postsecondary education, and many people ask him today why he is so determined to fight for underprivileged individuals if he himself has done well. To that he responds that he has seen how so many people have gotten shafted based on their economic (or ethnic or racial) background, and that’s why he continues to fight on their behalf to this day.

His university career includes an Honours Bachelors degree in Political Science and Anthropology from the University of Toronto and a Masters degree in Canadian Studies and Political Science/Anthropology from Carlton University in Ottawa. When I asked Michael what “Canadian Studies” is he explained that it encompasses Canadian literature, geography and history. Although he was accepted by various other universities for his masters program he liked Carlton because he wanted a broader education than just political science. At this Ottawa university Michael also had the opportunity to improve his French language skills.

After completing university he got two job offers on the same day: he was offered a one-year contract position as chief lobbyist with the Independent Publishers Association where he would have been supervising a staff of 5 people. Not bad for a 25-year old straight out of university.

His second job opportunity was as an immigration officer, and after consulting with his future wife he ended up accepting the job with Immigration Canada, particularly since it was a long-term opportunity with the Federal Government. Over his 20 year career with the Immigration Department Michael accumulated numerous interesting stories and anecdotes. He initially worked as an immigration officer at the airport and in 1973 – 1974 there was a lot of illegal immigration from various third world countries. People would arrive pretending to come here as tourists and then disappear and work illegally, jumping ahead of the queue of immigrants who had followed the proper procedures.

Often the job of an immigration officer is quite sad, because by definition it involves splitting families apart. Immigration officers have to assess cases in the family reunification category, and Michael recalls one story where a woman tried to bring in her elderly father who had cancer. Michael declined the application due to the certain costs for the Canadian health care system, knowing that this woman would never see her father again. He compares it to being a doctor, having to make tough decisions that affect people’s lives, but needing to remain emotionally detached.

His university studies in anthropology came in handy several times when he was dealing with refugee claimants from various third world countries. Michael asked some probing questions as to the kinship system in the refugee claimant’s family. Which side of the family, the mother’s side or the father’s side, would be responsible for looking after off-spring if the parents died? His extensive knowledge of matrilineal, patrilineal and other kinship systems of different societies around the world made one lawyer withdraw a refugee claim on behalf of his client. Michael simply knew too much about local family structures and lineages for his client to get away with bogus claims.

Michael also explained that deportations happen to Canadian immigrants from other countries when they commit serious crimes in their new home country. He indicated that anecdotally, along with his colleagues they thought that about half of them were from Jamaica. They were not allowed to keep stastistics. According to Michael, there is actually a sociological reason behind some of the crime problems in the Jamaican-Canadian community: during the 1960s Canada imported a large number of female immigrants from Jamaica to work as domestic servants and nannies. These women had to be single, have a grade 9 education, speak English and have “no issue”, i.e. they were not allowed to have children to qualify for this program.

Many hundreds of Jamaican woman arrived in the 1960s, seeking a better life in Canada. In the 1970s, after they had become Canadian citizens, they started to send for their children, since so many of these women indeed had one or even more children who had actually been raised by aunts, cousins or other family members. As a result of the missing parental attachment, many of these children had grown up without much discipline and little education. In Caribbean families it is often the mother that holds the family together, and once she is gone the family falls apart.

So when these young Jamaican people arrived in Canada to be reunited with their mothers they saw all this wealth around them, they realized their lack of opportunities as new immigrants with few immediate job prospects, and they became resentful. In the end it was Canada’s immigration policy that caused this problem which continues to cast its shadows today.

I asked Michael why he made a move into politics. He explained that politics had always been in his blood and recalls an incident that happened when he was about six years of age. He had gone on an outing with his parents to Riverdale Park, which at that time was the location of the Toronto Zoo. All of a sudden Michael had disappeared and his parents were frantically searching for him in the crowd of people. His father finally found him, admiring a man on a soap box who was sharing his philosophies in front of many onlookers.

Not only does Michael enjoy public speaking, but he also wants to make a sincere difference, particularly for the less fortunate people in society. During his last few years with the Immigration Department he ran six times for politics and won twice and became a Councillor in the former Borough of East York, which since our municipal amalgamation on January 1, 1998 is part of the City of Toronto.

All East York Councillors were part-timers who would attend committee meetings on various evenings and afternoons, and Michael would simply take unpaid time off work to mind his civic duties as a Councillor. From 1993 to late 1997 Michael was the Mayor of the Borough of East York, a time of a major economic slowdown. Michael is indeed the first person that I heard refer to this era as a “depression”. And by any economic definitions this time was indeed a depression since it was a period of more than six quarters of negative growth in a row.

This was a time when no new major commercial or industrial projects were undertaken at all in Toronto. As a matter of fact, Michael indicates that the new Dorothea Knitting Mills factory in East York was the only new commercial / industrial project in all of Toronto, and his borough was able to attract this new investment due to their favourable licensing program that would give new entrepreneurs all necessary permits within a 90-day period, unheard of in any other part of the city.

Michael loved being Mayor since he could really effect change and make a difference in people’s lives. Being a provincial Member of Parliament in opposition is a different story. Since Michael is a member of the New Democratic Party’s caucus he is not part of the ruling Liberal government. As a result his role is limited to being a critic, something that he finds frustrating. He has, however, been able to make some changes.

One example was the case of a woman on welfare who found a $25,000 bundle of money on the streets. She correctly assumed that these funds were the property of the local bank, and it was indeed confirmed that this large bundle of money had been dropped by armoured car employees. The bank gave her a $3000 reward for her honesty, however, because she was on welfare the provincial authorities clawed back the $3000 from her welfare payments, in effect punishing her for her honesty. This honest citizen would have seen none of her reward if Michael Prue had not intervened. He brought this case to the attention of the Minister of Community and Social Services and after persuasively arguing his case, the woman was allowed to keep her reward without having the same amount clawed back from her welfare payments.

Michael also went to bat for a man who is suffering from late-stage diabetes. His disease is so serious that he is losing his vision and will have one of his legs amputated in the next few days. This man is receiving a regular disability support payment because he is unable to work. The provincial government has cut his nutrition subsidy in half, a supplementary payment that allowed him to pay for a special diet which involved expensive items such as macrobiotic yoghurts and protein shakes since he has a hard time digesting proteins due to his condition.

Michael explained that the government was saving $10 a month in nutrition supplements while incurring extra hospital costs of $600 a day for the leg amputation which happened it is believed primarily due to the lower grade diet the man was forced to eat because of the cut in his nutrition supplement. Sometimes governments’ decisions do not make sense from an economic point of view and they can cause serious hardships to the individuals in question. Wherever he can, Michael tries to point out these contradictions and tries to help the people affected.

I questioned Michael about his Beaches-East York riding – the electoral district that he represents. He explained that some areas of his riding have a fair number of low income residents, new immigrants and other people with social issues. A relatively recent wave of Bangladeshi immigrants along Danforth Avenue has caused a readjustment in the neighbourhood as they have started to open stores and hold cultural events along this popular Toronto thoroughfare. Michael has experienced the Bangladeshi immigrants as a very adaptable and resourceful group of people who have adjusted quite successfully to their new environment. Michael has found them to be hard working and very interested in the local community. Individuals from this community have gotten involved in political campaigns of different candidates from all parties and they participate in the democratic process.

We also talked about the Thorncliffe Park area, for which Michael was responsible when he was Mayor of East York. This area has Canada’s largest concentration of Muslim immigrants and many of these residents are Ismaili Muslims, a Shia sect that celebrates the Aga Khan as its spiritual leader. Michael characterizes this group of Muslims as real immigrant success stories since they often arrive from other countries without much money and a lack of English skills. He admits that when he saw some of them arrive in winter in short sleeved shirts and light cotton pants, just having landed from various places in East Africa, he thought that they would never make it.

Within a few years the Ismaili Muslim immigrants had achieved substantial economic success and virtually all their children were attending university or college. Michael explained that their unique traditions are key to their success: these immigrants pool their money and dedicate themselves to helping one another achieve a better life. But their generosity and community assistance is not limited to members of their own group: they become involved in charitable activities that help people of other communities and backgrounds. Their stated goal is to become good citizens of the country they belong to and they see it as a duty to make their home country a better place for everyone. Michael admits that he truly underestimated the ability of this group of immigrants and expressed his praise and admiration to them during a recent public event.

Another part of his riding is the Beach, also referred to as the Beaches. I tried to clear up the confusion as to why some people might call this area “the Beach” while others might refer to it as the “Beaches”. Michael explained that historically the area consisted of several beaches, including Woodbine Beach, Kew Beach, Balmy Beach and Scarborough Beach, but the commercial strip along Queen Street East from Woodbine to Victoria Park has always been referred to as “the Beach”. The wider area outside the Queen Street strip is still mostly referred to by many as “the Beaches”.

When Michael’s mother was growing up in Toronto’s East End near Victoria Park and Danforth, the area was still very WASP (white / Anglo-Saxon / Protestant), and especially leading up to and during the second World War there was a lot of racism, not just in the Beach, but in other parts of Toronto and Canada as well. This era was not a proud moment in Canadian history. Michael refers to an excellent book called “Sabbath Goy” written by a Torontonian about his youth growing up in the Christie Pitts area and being hired by Jewish families to complete light work on the Sabbath.

The Beach neighbourhood generally presents very few concerns to their provincial member of parliament. One thing residents are passionate about is education, and when the provincial government cut funding to schools, Michael received numerous letters from constituents in the Beach, indicating their worries about this policy. At the time when the provincial government passed a law outlawing pit bull ownership due to many violent dog attacks, various residents of the Beach also spoke out, both on the pro and con side. Overall, he says the residents from the Beach are very easy to deal with. He says he’s been having “a hoot” working in politics and really enjoys interacting with the public.

Very recently there has been some controversy in the Beach: St. Aidan’s Anglican Church has proposed to participate in a city-wide drop-in program for the homeless called “Come in from the Cold”. Once a week homeless people would drop in and have a place to stay at St. Aidan’s for the night while other locations throughout the city would house the homeless on other days of the week. Michael has received letters and faxes from people who were opposed to the project. The project would have a total of 12 homeless people spending one night a week at St. Aidan’s Church. The referring agencies in downtown Toronto would have to call ahead and make a reservation before the homeless people actually receive a streetcar token to get to St. Aidan’s.

Some of the local residents expressed concerns that the homeless people might bring in diseases, or a criminal element into the neighbourhood. They did not want their children exposed to communicable diseases like tuberculosis. Various rather nasty articles were written in different Toronto media about the lack of community spirit in the Beach. Finally a meeting was held on January 16 which was attended by hundreds of people. Details of the program were explained to the residents and most of the fears were allayed. In Michael’s view, 95% of the concerns were unfounded. Many of the residents stood up at the meeting and said that they agree with this project and feel ashamed about this fearful reaction. More than 100 people volunteered to help out with the homeless program. Money was being collected and one woman donated $1000, saying that she is a devout atheist, but she supports the program and wants to put her money where her mouth is.

Michael adds that the police don’t see a problem with the program. Homeless people generally do not present a large crime issue, although they may get verbally abusive if they are asked to move. Michael laughs and says that many police officers have been told to get lost (Michael actually used more colourful terminology) by a diverse group of residents, not just the homeless. He commented “it’s amazing what 10 or 12 people can do with a fax machine” and says it’s ironic because the Beach is really a rather left-wing area that consistently votes for the NDP. So the big controversy over the “Come in from the Cold” program was rather surprising, and fortunately the residents’ fears have been addressed at the recent meeting.

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Create Valentines Presents Personalised With Your Photos

Jun 11 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Canvas Prints

Pick a single photo and have it printed on canvas. You can even write a short text message or caption that is included around the edge of the photo on the front of the canvas or have the message printed on the back of the frame. The choice of photo is down to you, and you can choose between pictures of people, places, or objects. One of the simplest but most effective ideas is to use a picture of the two of you together.

Photo Montages

Why choose a single photo when you can use many different pictures instead? Publishing applications like Microsoft’s Publisher can be used to great effective montages that consist of a number of pictures but if you’re not confident in creating your own photo montage, you can let a professional design team do the work for you. Choose from a handful of pictures or a larger selection of pictures to create exactly the design you want.

Valentines Cushions

Love Hearts cushions are special Valentines Day items that include a Love Heart design and can be personalised so that they include a short but effective text message within the hearts. While these do prove especially popular, you can also customise a cushion with any picture, photo, or other design, so that you can give a gift that you know the recipient will truly enjoy. Valentines Cushions aren’t just romantic but they are comfortable and beautiful looking too.

Valentines Puzzles

Another unique Valentines Day gift idea is a personalised love puzzle. Create any text or picture based design and have this printed onto quality puzzle board. The board is then cut into shape, according to the size of puzzle you pick, and a display tin is created. While it is standard to include the image on the tin, you may also go for the surprise option so that the recipient must finish the puzzle in order to read the message or see the picture that you used.

Coasters And Placemats

If you’re planning a romantic, candlelit meal then why not finish the table with customised table settings? Placemats and coasters can be customised with any photos or text in the same way as any other item. You could use a picture of the two of you together and then further personalise it with the date and a brief Valentines message.

Gift Boxes And Cards

Whether you choose a personalised Valentines gift or not, your present can benefit from a photo gift box. Print a picture on the lid or across the lid and all sides of the sturdy gift box. Available in a selection of sizes, the photo gift box is the ideal accompaniment to any gift. You can also create unique Valentines Day cards using any photos, captions, or text – the only thing that limits you when designing these items is your imagination so you can go as wild or be as reserved as you like.

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Front-Line Customer Service People Can Present Your Business With Pizazz: Three Tips + a Bonus

Jun 10 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

No matter how much new technology exists, customers are still customers, and they have emotions that can easily be tapped, for better or worse! You can have all the best products, and provide exceptional after-purchase service — but it is all lost if you never get the opportunity to make the sale!

The people on the front lines, whether they are face-to-face with customers or communicate via technology and telephone, are the most important, and often least trained, employees in your business! Here are three ways you can help your front-line folks present your company with pizzazz and professionalism!

  • Be sure every single person understands the company mission, vision, products, and special offers. I know, this sounds so obvious! But you would be amazed (or maybe not!) to realize how often a customer is met with a blank stare, or a vacant voice saying “I don’t know” or “It’s not my job… ” Include your front-line people in on sessions where everyone shares examples of the company vision & mission in action, so they feel a sense of ownership in the business. It is impossible to present something you do not understand!
  • Provide training to your front line in cutting edge communication skills. I’m not talking about the basic sending-receiving type of stuff. I’m talking about knowing what you want to communicate, and then using professional presentation techniques to share your messages with power, professionalism, and pizzazz. I’m talking about vocal variety, pausing, compassionate exchange, clarity, and vocal energy to connect with customers at an emotional level.
  • Trust your front line staff to make decisions in the best interest of the business! This one is critical, but takes commitment on your part to provide the skills they need! Eliminate handcuffing rules and policies. Clarify the bottom-line expectations, then help your staff learn how to make wise decisions related to customers. Share examples, set up realistic scenarios, meet to discuss sticky situations, provide clear boundaries they can work within without the need to get you involved – do what it takes to free your front-line staff to be your best sales force, your most powerful advocates! Then support them in what they do!

And now, a Bonus (again so obvious it should not need to be said – but experience tells me I need to say it!):

  • Recognize outstanding work when you see it! Your front line staff has a tough job that often goes unappreciated and unrecognized. Their work is taken for granted and the value of their efforts is overlooked. Make time to demonstrate the benefits of what they do, and how much you appreciate their work. And above all, ask them what recognition looks like to them. so you can be sure that your efforts aren’t wasted!

You bet your bottom-line success on the abilities of your front-line people to make powerful, professional connections with current and potential customers! Are you doing everything you can to guarantee success?

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Can I Purchase a New Home and Then Let My Present Home Go to Foreclosure Or Short Sale?

Jun 09 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

This question has caused much controversy not only among realtors but among the general public.

At issue here is this…. A homeowner, who is not in distress, has kept up their house payments and watched as the value of their home and neighborhoods continue to plunge and neighbors walking away from their obligations.

OR a homeowner whose present mortgage is getting ready to shift upwards and cannot afford the adjustment could afford a lower mortgage of a home purchase priced far below their present home.

Many homeowners have chosen to purchase a new home at a much lower price while keeping up the payments on their current home and then when escrow closes walks away from the higher mortgaged home with loss equity.

Is this legal? Is it ethical? What do the lenders think? Is this fair to the other homeowners who maintained responsibility for their investment and/or obligations.

The short sale process was instituted for those who had a hardship…..Hardship can mean anything from loss of job, illness, death in family, job relocation. Anything that would take away funds that were used to support a present mortgage and was used as legal income as disclosed in the loan application.

Is this illegal for distressed homeowners to purchase and walk away from their original mortgage obligation? I don’t think unless there was fraud committed in presenting hardship. But then I am not an attorney, but there may very well be moral and ethical issues involved. Granted each homeowners case is different. Further, may open them up to litigation from those lenders to recoup losses down the road.

I can certainly understand the frustration and desparateness of those homeowners whose terms were changing increasing their monthly mortgage obligation and their banks or lenders not cooperating with them to modify their loans. Most have families and need to provide and survive and that means making some decisions that could jeopardize their credit even more so.

However we are seeing many who are NOT in distress purchasing new and then walking away from original mortgage obligation.

Today lenders on new homes loans and purchasing are requiring,if the borrower presently has another mortgage to qualify for both mortgage payments and they will NOT count rental income to qualify.

They are scrutinizing much more. Further the consumer needs to be aware that the loans in default have been sold in mass to collection agencies and attorneys. Depending on those who walked away from their original homes will depend on whether or not they are non recourse or recourse loan but I do believe many of those who have chosen this path may very well be in for a surprise in the next few years.

The lenders have up to 4 years to come back and sue for judgment from the date of short sale or foreclosure.The homeowner in default will have their credit scrutinized for the next 4 years. It has been intimated that these collection agencies will be ready to pounce if they see more income coming in or assets all of the sudden show up even up to the last minute of the 4 year process.

We have very angry consumers who see those around them walk away from and appear to be clear from any further financial obligation or tax penalties who have kept their own commitments.

I believe the backlash from this will last several years. I believe a consumer MUST check with legal counsel and/or a CPA before just walking away from their present mortgage to understand the implications that may be involved. No one case is the same.

I personally believe there will be many shocked consumers down the road due to decisions made without adequate legal counsel.

We have had requests to list homes supposedly in distress who want to go out and purchase another home before short sale. What we do is to direct them towards a reputable lender and tell them to explain in detail their situation and whether or not it is possible for them to get a loan and to consult with a real estate tax attorney before proceeding with anything. We will never knowingly partake in anything that would appear to be fraud or unethical.

If their attorney gives the go ahead then we will follow the legal guidelines as provided.

Typically speaking after short sale if your financial situation stabilizes as well as credit you should be able to purchase again in 2 yrs or so. Foreclosures they are predicting within 4 years. Obviously everything depends on the consumers stability at that time and history of paying credit obligations after the incident of short sale and /or foreclosure.

So the bottom line is if you are a homeowner in distress contemplating short sale, purchasing before short sale and/or foreclosure PLEASE make sure you have spoken with a real estate attorney and know what may or may not result in your actions. DO NOT listen to family and friends who are not qualified legal counsel.

Above all do not listen to any real estate agent who promises you the world without checking with legal counsel.

Disclaimer: I am not an attorney and cannot give legal advice and nothing that I write should be construed as such.

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Top 10 Christmas Presents for Her

Jun 08 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Be bold. Be original. Be personal. Women, more often than not, are notoriously hard to buy for at Christmas, whether it’s your significant other, Mum, sister, niece or just a chum. Each of these women has their own likes and dislikes, which can be extremely frustrating.

Tearing your hair out in an effort to find anything that could qualify as an alright Christmas gift for her? Leave the Veet hair removal creams, Nigella Lawson cookbooks and cheap Eu de Toilet perfumes alone. Gifts like these suggest she’s either too hairy, hopeless in the kitchen or worthy of a fragrance that smells like the bathroom, mouldy fruit or your dirty socks.

Luckily, there are alternatives – that is to say personalised Christmas gifts. There are two very simple reasons why you should opt for these types of pressies. A.) You’re not going to have a heart attack battling your way through the maddening crowds of your local high street because they’re sitting cosily online. And B.) These beauts can be personalised with any name plus a thoughtful message of your choice.

So without further ado, here are the top 10 Christmas presents for the fairer sex…

10. Personalised Chocolate Bars

Wish the lovely lady or little girl in your life a very yummy and edible “Happy Christmas” with a personalised choccie bar. These scrumptious Xmas present ideas feature cute, Christmassy designs along with her name emblazoned across the packaging. Simply marvellous, darling!

9. Engraved Silver Trinket Boxes

If you have to give her little more than a silver-plated pair of earrings from Elizabeth Duke, then be a bit swish about it and pop them inside a gorgeous silver trinket box, engraved with her name.

8. Pampering Experiences

One of the top Christmas gift ideas 2011 comes in the form of gift experiences – namely pampering experiences. What woman wouldn’t relish relaxing and unwinding at a luxurious spa? Or being made up like a model for a professional photo shoot that will have jaws dropping?

7. Female Spoof Newspapers

If she loves to be in the limelight, then let her dominate the front pages in a spoof story! You can get titles like Sexiest Woman Alive, Christmas No. 1 Female Solo Artist and much, much more.

6. Year Edition – Newspaper Book

You could even create a newspaper book, from any date of your choice, just for her. These special books are complete recreations of a national newspaper, containing major news stories from that year so she can relive the news that happened on that day.

5. A Christmas Gift Book from Me to You

If you’re buying for a girlfriend or wife, and feeling a tad soppy, then why not have a book specially created for her? See her name embedded in beautiful images – written in snow, embroidered on a stocking, spelled out in baubles – for a truly matchless gift.

4. Personalised Pop Art

For a photo with a twist, consider personalised pop art. Have her favourite photograph immortalised for life by turning it into an Andy Warhol-style work of art. That could be a snap of you, you and her, her favourite pet, holiday… the list goes on.

3. Name a Box of Chocolates

You’ve probably heard of naming stars after people. But why not have a selection of sumptuous chocolates named after the sweet-toothed lady in your life, and registered on the ‘Chocolate Foundation’ database? There are over 12 billion chocolate combinations to choose from! These scrummy packs also include a history of chocolate, recipes and more.

2. Personalised Wimbledon Tennis Book

Laver… Billie Jean King… Connors… Ashe… Becker… Sampras… These are just some of the biggest names in tennis. If she’s tickled about tennis, then what better gift to get her than a book all about the beautiful sport? From Tony Wilding’s fourth Wimbledon win in 1913 to Fred Perry’s victory in 1934, and much more in between, this book reveals the greatest Wimbledon Tennis Finals from the past and present, as covered in the newspapers of the time. An “ace” gift for any tennis-loving lady.

1. Personalised Classics

If she’s a bookworm, create a novel for her. Well, that is to say, have her name featured in a timeless classic. Titles include Pride & Prejudice, Alice in Wonderland, Romeo & Juliet and more.

And that, ladies and gents, is a rundown of the top Christmas presents 2011 for women. So get yourself online now!

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Importance of Presentation Skills

Jun 07 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

We are living in the world where information dissemination is the core of any activity of life, either business or personal life. In today’s world a business manager has to deal with a lot many personal as compared to a few decades back. A company has to promote products and label, and market franchise. whether you are in the marketing business or in any other field the importance of presentation cannot be overlooked. take this site for example if they don’t use best designs and good looks with great images they won’t attract any visitors to their site and will lose a lot of traffic too. So for them it is very imp that they push a very good first impression on their user. because if the user is impressed then he/she will come back, if the site is very difficult to use and not looking good, people might not even visit it no matter what content it contains.

Same goes for the businesses now people cannot rely on their power and place to get work done you have to get it done with the help of power of convincing others which involves presenting your point in a good way so that the listener not only understands it but agrees upon it. So, here it is important they way you say things. Words like I know it is right, I can make it work can be damaging. A good presenter uses calm and selective words to convey their message across to the other person and that is the way to go. A formal presentation or just a chat they way you look is very imp. in leaving an impression on other. So, don’t be afraid be cool and calm and from my side happy presentations.:)

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5 Key Tools When Delivering a Presentation

Jun 07 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

How would you like to delivery your next presentation with ease?

1. Go to the center of the stage, stand with your feet slightly apart inline with your shoulders and let your hands fall at your side. This would allow you to relax, take a deep breathe and just look at the audience.

2. Scan the audience from left-to-right-to-left. Give a BIG smile. That will command the audience attention. You will be surprise that the room will get very quite and all eyes will be on you. (don’t be scared, this is what you want). Remember you have information that you want to share with your audience, that is why they came.

3.The first words out of your mouth should be in the form of a question; relate it to your topic. e.g. How many of you…? Then you always acknowledge the audience by saying THANK YOU once they have responded.

4.You want to introduce yourself and give the title of your When you are preparing for a presentation, here are 5 key tools to keep in mind when giving your delivery presentation e.g. My name is XXX and I would like to welcome you to XXX.

5.Acknowledge the audience for coming out. e.g. I know most of you are busy, so thank you for taking the time to come here today.

These 5 tools will get you started with your delivery of your presentation.

You have to make sure and stay relaxed, and think about the information you are delivering.

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Does Your Presentation Pass the Google Test?

Jun 05 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Learn from Google. They know something about the presentation of information. They took the chaotic information soup of the Internet and presented the information in the way that people want. Google didn’t invent this but they are the number one search engine.

Why is Google so popular and how can you apply these lessons to your presentation?

1. Don’t waste time.

Your audience is on Google time. Get started on time and get to your point quickly. Imagine how quickly Google would die if people had to wait minutes instead of seconds for search results. Grab the interest of your audence quickly.

2. Prioritize your information

Put your most important points first. Why? Because if you lead with weak points your audience will tune you out by the time you get to the good stuff. Internet marketers attempt to get top Google rankings because most people only pay attention to the top three search results. Never make your audience wait for the important part. Give it to them early in your presentation.

3. Focus on topic

One presentation = one purpose. Stay on topic and deliver one message. If your purpose is to sell the idea then focus on the benefits. Don’t get bogged down on the logistics. When you search for “how to improve golf game” you don’t want to read about the history of the game. If you try to deliver more than one message you will sabotage yourself. Google penalizes websites that try to mislead the search engines.

Deliver your presentation like an Internet search engine and you will be a more successful presenter.

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