Staying Calm During the Dog Days of Summer …
Much of our nation is experiencing sweltering heat, hurricanes, and lightning and thunder-caused fires out West. Couple these events with our continued fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, and its no wonder we all feel stress, frustration and anxiety. And adding to our daily routines, many of us have school-age children that we manage, home schooling while holding down full time jobs, and working remotely!
Our current normal takes a mindset and energy level that could be termed “super-human”. Seth Godin, a renowned American writer on leadership, mindset and more, wrote a blog post, “Calm Also Has a Coefficient”. He outlines steps to help us thrive. Carefully pick and choose a circle of friends providing you with support and calm. Measure how much daily news you digest. Keep your antennae alert for positive and calming activities, rather than causing anxiety and a loss of energy. Your mind incorporates all your daily inputs, whether positive or negative, and creates a perspective through which you face the world.
We don’t know when this pandemic and the accompanying challenges may end or transition to a New Normal. We can, however, control our immediate circles, and our environment to support how we navigate our journey through this time. We are in control. With positive energy and a positive mindset we may flourish and experience more than we thought possible just some 150 days ago.
Be Well. Be Safe. Be Positive.
Marilyn and Ora
Since 2011, the number of Americans owning smartphones has increased from 35 percent to 81 percent, although there remains a significant digital divide, demographically. A Pew Research survey found the vast majority of younger Americans rely on smartphones, while just 53 percent of the 65-and-over crowd use the devices.1
Americans who have embraced the technology are finding it can greatly simplify and enhance their lives. No matter what you want to accomplish, the chances are you can download an app to get it done. Apps, a.k.a. mobile applications, are computer programs that make it possible for your phone to do almost anything. All you have to do is tap the right icon.
For example, you can:
Drive more safely: Even adults have been guilty of using their phones while driving. Some apps use text-to-voice translators to let you listen and respond to texts and emails while driving so you can keep your eyes on the road.2
Check out a book: Anyone with a current library card can download e-books and audio books from their libraries with an app.2
Stay healthy: Whether you want to know more about nutrition, fitness, or specific health issues, it’s likely there is an app to help your specific needs.2
Shed some light: If it’s getting harder to read menus in dark restaurants, see if your phone has a flashlight app. If not, you can download one.2
Stay in touch: Have family or friends who live far away? Mobile messaging apps let you share pictures, send texts, and make voice or video calls.3
Entertain yourself: You can watch television and movies, listen to music and podcasts, read books and articles, find dates, play games, and so much more.4
Translate languages: It can be daunting to travel through a country when you don’t speak the language. Smartphone apps can help bridge language barriers.5
Manage your money: If you have trouble with budgeting and spending, an app may help.5
Provide first aid: Don’t panic when disaster strikes. The American Red Cross has an app that provides expert advice for everyday emergencies.6
Apps can be mighty helpful. In fact, you may find yourself spending too much time on your phone. If that’s the case, there are apps for monitoring and controlling phone use.7
It’s not widely known, but countries, states, and provinces often stockpile goods they believe are essential to human survival. For instance, since World War I ended, the Swiss have maintained emergency supplies of sugar, rice, edible oils, and animal feed, reported Reuters. See what you know about stockpiling by taking this brief quiz.
2. What might you find in the United States’ Strategic National Stockpile?
a. Antibiotics, vaccines, and antivirals
b. Corn, soybeans, and flour
c. Ferromanganese, copper, and chromium
d. All of the above
3. Which countries have global strategic petroleum reserves?
a. United States
4. How big is the United States’ cheese stockpile?
a. 1.4 billion pounds
b. 900,000 cubic yards
c. Enough to wrap around the U.S. Capitol
d. All of the above
Many countries around the world have strategic petroleum reserves.15
Milk production has increased by 13 percent over the last 10 years in the United States but Americans are drinking less milk. Suppliers turn the extra milk into cheese because it is less perishable and stays fresh for longer periods.16
It’s So Easy!
When you read recipes from the 1800s, modern cooking seems pretty simple. Mary Randolph’s 1824 classic cookbook, The Virginia Housewife, offered a soup recipe that began, “Put fowls in a coop and feed them moderately for a fortnight; kill one and cleanse it, cut off the legs and wings…” After reading her instructions, grocery stores seem downright indulgent. Here is a recipe for fowl from Real Simple that is tasty and requires a lot less labor.8, 9
1 tablespoon olive oil
6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 2 pounds)
Kosher salt and black pepper
4 stalks celery, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
2 onions, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves or 2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 bay leaves
10 cups water
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
6 tablespoons (3⁄4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, plus more for serving
Heat oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season chicken with 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Brown in batches, 4-6 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate; reserve the pot.
Add celery, carrots, onions, thyme, and garlic to chicken drippings in the pot and cook, stirring until the vegetables begin to soften, 5-7 minutes. Add chicken, bay leaves, and 10 cups water. Bring to a simmer and cook until chicken is cooked through, 25-30 minutes. Discard bay leaves and transfer chicken to a plate; let cool. Shred chicken with 2 forks and return it to the pot (discard skin and bones).
Whisk together 1/2 cup flour, 2 cups cooking liquid, and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a small bowl. Slowly whisk flour mixture back into the pot and simmer until slightly thickened, 8-10 minutes.
Dumplings: Whisk together the remaining 2 cups of flour, baking powder, baking soda, and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Whisk in butter, buttermilk, and parsley. Reduce heat to low and drop the mixture into the broth in 8 large spoonful's. Cover and simmer until dumplings are firm, 12-15 minutes. Serve chicken and dumplings sprinkled with parsley on top.
Sometimes in life we forget what is in our hearts; what makes us tick and smile. Strive to keep that bright light alive inside you. Pursue a career or work that brings out the best YOU. Invest time, energy, in a field of study or work that intrigues you and keeps you coming back for more. Marry your purpose with your passions to reach your desired destination.
Forget about the fast lane. If you really want to fly, just harness your power to your passion.
Find something you are passionate about and stay tremendously interested in it.
Women have been advocates for many years. In the United States it was not until the 19th Amendment was ratified in 1920 that women had the right to vote! It’s hard to imagine that we were not allowed to vote, up until 100 years ago! Women advocates organized, petitioned, and picketed to win the right to vote from the late 1800s. But it took decades to win this right. Today we take that right for granted.
This example reminded me that today, we must learn and continue to advocate for what is socially and economically the right course for ourselves, our family and our community. We are in the midst of some very challenging times with a pandemic that rules our lives; an economy that is shattered by this virus; and an unknown future both at home and abroad.
We feel that change is in our future and much of it is unknown, however, each of us can help shape that change by advocating for what we feel is right for ourselves, our family, our business and our community. Living on the sidelines, may work for some, however, for many of us, we want to see a bigger, brighter future for all women. (Not to leave our male counterparts out of the conversation.)
However, when we look at the data available on women’s progress since the 1920s, while it does look impressive, we still are not “equivalent” in many ways to our male colleagues, whether we measure equal pay for same work/role; numbers of C-level women in public companies; ability to work and raise families; and the list goes on.
In my business, I advocate for all of our clients and am mindful to coach and consult our clients who are independent women, that they need to advocate for themselves when needed. With our Prosperity Blueprint TM process and continued conversations regarding our client’s Financial House, we do influence and inspire our clients to step into their power and take great care of themselves, whether it be Work, Wealth or Worth. We have found when our clients have a solid foundation in these three areas, their Financial House is stronger, their mindset is more positive and their future looks much brighter.
Take time to advocate for you, so you can take care of your family, your business, your community and the causes you care about deeply. This pandemic situation will pass with time and with your intentional energy we will be a better nation, a stronger state and thriving community for it. Be kind, be safe, and be secure.