FEBRUARY 2013

4 Personal Development Skills Worth Learning this New Year

by: Tandelyn Atkinson Weaver (reading – 7.1. - 13.1.)

Do you find yourself working at a job you hate, resenting the demands of family life, and hanging out with “friends” you could care less about? You put on a happy smile for everyone to see, but deep inside you feel stale. You’re just waiting for the clock to turn another day, so that you can do the same thing all over again. For the past few years, nothing is interesting, exciting or fulfilling. In fact, when asked when the best day of your life is, you have a hazy picture of an event that happened a decade ago.

Well, if this is you, know that you’re only doing this to yourself! (It may sound harsh, yes, but it’s true.) There’s absolutely no reason for people to feel that they’re merely play-acting a role they didn’t want, trapped in a scene they can’t avoid. Your life is your own and it is what you make it. You’re the captain of the ship. Perhaps what’s lacking from you is a personal development skill.

But don’t worry; help is on the way! Below are just 4 of the personal development skills you can still learn:

Self-Awareness

Everything starts with self-awareness. This is the ability to push pause and look at what’s happening inside of us at any given time. It’s a personal development skill because contrary to popular belief, it’s not as easy as it sounds.

Many of us are conditioned to look more towards what’s going on outside of ourselves, than what we’re feeling and thinking. Some of us also tend to be constantly in denial about the things happening in our life. But if we don’t practice the personal development skill of being self-aware, we may miss the emotions simmering just beneath the surface. The last thing we want is for the things we repress, to suddenly blow up in our faces!

Countering Irrational Thinking

Here’s a personal development skill worth learning: the ability to debate with one’s self when we’re being unreasonable.

Irrational thoughts are those that make no sense whatsoever, and may in fact be self-defeating, but are so powerful we cling to them for dear life. For instance, we may have convinced ourselves that we need to please everybody in order to be loved. Or maybe we think that we need to win someone else’s approval first before we can consider ourselves a success. But really, are thoughts like these helping people become who they’re meant to be? You have to know how to stomp these thoughts down; otherwise they will take over your life!

Communicating What We Feel

Few consider assertive communication as a personal development skill. But it makes sense that it’s one, doesn’t it?

Unless you tell people what you need, it will be difficult for them to respond effectively. There are times when we spend our lives resenting how loved ones fail to provide us with what we’re looking for, when a simple request from us would have solved the problem. The world does not have a crystal ball that can guess what’s going on inside us. If you want to be heard, you have to speak!

Bouncing Back from Failure

Lastly, invest in developing your resilience.

Failure can do either one of two things: it can defeat you, or it can make you stronger. The key really is in practice. Whenever you fail, figure out what went wrong and endeavor not to make the same mistake twice. Real estate mogul Donald Trump had to declare bankruptcy at one point in his life, but did it stop him from trying again? J. K. Rowling, author of the bestselling Harry Potter series, had to go through several manuscript rejections before getting published. When you fail, cry. But only for a moment. Harness the personal development skill of dusting one’s self off and trying again.

If you add these four personal development skills to your list of New Year’s resolutions, for sure you’ll have a different outlook same time next year!

About The Author

Tandelyn A. Weaver is the president of The Power of Positive Action, LLC. A certified life coach, Tandelyn provides FREE advice on the “7 Strategies Women Entrepreneurs Must Have for Success, Wealth and Personal Freedom” through her website www.PersonalFreedomForWomen.com .



Travel Option to Limpopo in South Africa - Modjadji, the fabled Rain Queen

by: Gerald Crawford (reading – 14.1. - 20.1.)

Named after the great Limpopo River that flows along its northern border, this province is rich in wildlife, spectacular scenery and a wealth of historical and cultural treasures.

Known as the Great North, Limpopo province is home to ancient lands and pre-historic secrets. This is home to Modjadji, the fabled Rain Queen; The Stone Age and Iron age relics of Makapansgat Valley and the treasures of Mapungubwe that date back to time immemorial.

Straddling the northern Kruger Park, Limpopo province boasts wildlife safaris, nature trails, untamed Africa at its finest. This is the land of wide-open bushveld, big-sky country, the ever-present thorn tree and the mystical baobab tree.

The Limpopo province also offers up Africas wild edens from Highveld grassland savannahs to subtropical forests to formidable mountain ranges.

South Africas northernmost province, Limpopo, borders onto Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Botswana thus making it the ideal entrance to Africa. The Limpopo province celebrates a rich cultural heritage and at many archaeological sites the mysteries of the past and ancient peoples are still being unearthed. Historians reveal that the first black Africans moved across the Limpopo (into what became known as South Africa) before 300 AD. The Voortrekkers arrived in the early nineteenth century and this part of the world changed forever. Numerous battles between indigenous African people and the Voortrekkers ensued. During apartheid, portions of land were divided into homeland areas. However, today the Limpopo province is united in its aim to offer the best possible welcome for its visitors.

The Limpopo climate is renowned for its hot yet pleasant summers and dry winters. Its weather is characterized by almost year-round sunshine. It can get very hot in summer (October -March), with temperatures rising to 27°C (80,6°F) and, sometimes, even touching the mid-30 s Celsius (mid-90 s Fahrenheit).

Biodiversity

South of Limpopo are the Soutpansberg mountains, South Africas northernmost mountain range and one of the most diverse habitats in the country. There are 340 indigenous tree species here, an abundance of animal life and the worlds highest concentration of leopard. Ancient, gigantic baobabs (upside-down trees) guard vast expanses of mountains, bushveld, indigenous forests and cycads.

About The Author

Gerald Crawford was born in South Africa, studied electronics, telecommunication, eco-travel and african travel concepts. He taught responsible tourism in South Africa. If you have any questions or comments please e-mail me on. E-mail Address: gerald@12234455.co.za Website Address: www.12234455.co.za



Kenyan safari travel tips

by: Jack Jones (reading – 21.1. - 27.1.)

You are really spoiled for choices when it comes to deciding upon what to see and do in Kenya. For how big the country is, it sure does pack a lot into it. With having mountains, deserts, tribes, coral reefs, beaches and some of Africa’s most spectacular wildlife. There are a million and ten different reasons to come and visit Kenya.

For some the idea of choosing what to see and do on a Kenyan safari can be a very daunting task, as there are so many different options to choose from. To help you make the most out of your Kenyan safari, I have put together a few helpful tips to make sure you get your safari experience right first time.

Decide what the main focus of your trip should be, it can be changed dramatically by choosing to see either the big five or to go off exploring other wildlife. I would strongly recommend researching into the type of wildlife you want to see beforehand to avoid disappointment.

Because the weather conditions can vary so much when you’re out on safari I would suggest trying to balance your packing and have a small selection of clothing to choose from. You can easily pack too much for a safari trip, so I would take time to consider what items to pack and what items to leave behind. After all when you go on safari you are there to take pictures of animals and experience the Kenyan wildlife at first hand, not to be having four costume changes a day to look good in your holiday snaps.

Unless you have a lengthy holiday, please don’t try to see all of Kenya’s safari parks in one go. Take the time to really enjoy a few places in Kenya rather than sift through too many places.

This brings me onto my next point of considering the length of your safari. Things to take into consideration when choosing how long you wish to be out on your Kenyan safari can be how far into the wilderness and away from the traditional tourist spots you want to get.

A key aspect when you’re planning your Kenyan safari is what accommodation style you would like to stay in. For some the idea of staying in a tent for the entire trip would be an amazing prospect and a spectacular adventure. For others they may be wishing for a pleasant stay in a lodge where you can hear the Kenyan wildlife rustling from behind a locked door.

My last tip would be to get insurance before you embark on your Kenyan Safari, no matter how many precautions you take, things can just happen on Safari sometimes.

To plan the Kenyan safari trip of a lifetime contact one of the experts at Mahlatini today to start planning your Kenyan adventure.

About The Author

Jack is a professional travel writer and for more information on Kenyan safaris visit Mahlatini today

The author invites you to visit: www.safaris-kenya.co.uk .



What are Soft Skills and Why are they so Important?

by: ILead India (reading – 28.1. - 3.2.)

Most people are still not clear about what soft skills mean. Frankly, the term itself was coined just a few years ago. In any job, the sole importance was given to the candidate's resume and what his qualifications were. But nowadays, a lot of stress is being laid on the candidate's soft skills and if he is properly trained in them.

So what are soft skills? It is hard to be exact in this case, but it essentially is a method to judge a person's performance, leadership ability, and team spirit. Hard skills constitute your educational qualifications and previous job experience. In fact, a lot of recruiters are now paying more attention to soft skills rather than the hard ones. A lot of candidates with impressive resumes but poor soft skills have been rejected in the final rounds of interviews.

That is why you should enroll in soft skills programs in order to develop these skills better. Soft skills can be classified into these categories:

Negotiation

This is a very crucial soft skill that you need to possess. The art of negotiating a deal with a client or even negotiating with a co-worker is something that you need to master effectively. There is no hard and fast rule about mastering this aspect but you will be trained to negotiate to the fullest of your capabilities.

Team building

Instilling team spirit in the members of a team is perhaps the most difficult task ever. Ego, personal rivalry, office politics, and various other factors come into play and you have to overcome all these hurdles and utilize all the resources efficiently. This is known as team building and it requires some training beforehand.

Communication

Last but not the least, you need to communicate well with your superiors and peers. If you can't express your thoughts or grievances in the proper manner, then it will soon begin to affect your performance. Honing this particular soft skill is all the more important when you are talking to clients of the company.

About The Author

iLead India has prolific writers who write on a wide range of topics pertaining to education, including higher studies, post graduate courses, academic institutions, MBA education and more.

The author invites you to visit: www.ilead.net.in .