Monthly Archives: April 2011

Gift Giving from the Heart

by Monique Shire

When I think of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, I think of memories.  I think of family vacations and memories made with loved ones:  anniversaries spent at a beach, graduation parties at the family’s favorite local restaurant, visits to relatives far away.

I prefer to give Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gifts that are personal.  Here are some suggested gift items – some traditional and others for “the person who has everything.”

  1. Start a charm bracelet or create a charm to add to an existing bracelet.  Charm bracelets tell your story.  Whether you are a skier, swimmer, gardener, yogi, world traveler – there’s a charm for you. Don’t forget the charm that is engraved with a name, monogram, date or meaningful saying.
  2. Picture frames are a wonderful way to remember a special moment.  Picture frames can be engraved: the place traveled to and the date.  Monica Rich Kosann ( has created wonderful sterling silver image cases that once engraved will become a part of the family’s heirlooms. Consider writing a note that can be facsimile engraved behind the photograph that someone will find many many years from now.
  3. Engraved cufflinks are a staple in every man’s wardrobe.  They belong only to the one person whose name, initials, or monogram faces out into the world.  Hand enameled sterling silver cufflinks by Deakin & Francis ( can become a family heirloom as well.
  4. Watches are great gift idea for both mom and dad.  Engrave the case back with a special saying or simply a date to mark the moment in time that the timepiece became a part of your family.

For more gift giving ideas, visit

Get Yourself Unstuck: 10 Simple Reminders

by Heidi Michaels

I’m usually pretty efficient about getting things done but I have to admit I can procrastinate on certain things until it drives me crazy!  I’ll admit, I procrastinate about paying my bills.  It’s a chore I just don’t enjoy, yet it’s important to me that bills are paid on time.  While I know that the best remedy to procrastination is, of course, action,  the key is finding the energy and the will-power to get moving!

Whether you a constant or occasional procrastinator here are 10 Simple Reminders to try the next time you are procrastinating and want to get moving!

1. Recall your values. Your actions should always match the values you hold for yourself.  If they don’t, you will find it hard to summon the energy to act.  To re-align with your core values ask yourself “What’s important about completing this task?  What will it give you?”  Focus on that.
2. Once you’re moving, keep going Create a short, written plan and take action on it today.  Keep it simple and start with the most important task first.  You don’t have to attack the whole project now…take small steps!  Balance the time spent planning with the time spent doing.  Stuckness and procrastination reside in our minds…action is the best antidote. Get out of your head and into action.
3. Make an appointment with yourself. Put YOU on your calendar. Determine how much time you can realistically dedicate to the task and work it into your schedule.  Don’t leave it for when you have a spare minute. (That spare minute never comes along!)
4. Chunk it down. Break up the project into small increments.  Say 30 minutes.  When time is up do something else. Most importantly acknowledge your progress.
5. Progress not perfection. Don’t try to do everything perfectly.  Perfectionism often causes procrastination and all or nothing thinking.  Instead, aim for progress.  Any small step towards completion is an accomplishment.
6. Eat the Frog. According to Brian Tracy’s book of the same title, do the worst task (or part of the task) first and get it out of the way.  Once you tackle that, the rest is easy.
7. Make it fun. Put on some music, invite a friend to help, make a game of it.
8. Be accountable. Giving your word to someone else is a great tool to facilitate results.  Remember, you don’t have to do it alone.  Find an accountability partner who will help you keep your aim on progress, help problem solve, and celebrate success with you!
9. Remember, our minds create the project to be much bigger than it really is. Once you take action you will realize it’s not so bad afterall. Just imagine how good you will feel in completing the task or project.
10. Reward yourself! Reward yourself along the way.  Focus on what you are doing…not what you have not  yet finished.  Focus on complimenting yourself not finding fault with yourself.  Reward yourself with a simple pleasure like reading a book or going for a walk.

Learn more life management tips at