Sunday, 31 May 2015

4 reasons you'll never be a millionaire — and how to change that

Relaxing vacations on the French Riviera, huge donations to your favorite charity and an early retirement.
These are the kinds of things people think of when they hear the word "millionaire."
It's unlikely you'll ever experience that. Sorry.
Unless, of course, you can overcome the following four roadblocks stopping you from achieving millionaire status.
Each roadblock below also offers an "immediate action step" to help you overcome the things holding you back.
Let's get started.

1. You don't understand how money works.

Money is not a complicated topic, but still, few seem to really understand how it works. Do you?
Sure, you can blame the school system or your parents, but the responsibility is still on you to figure out how money is made, how it is held, how it is invested and how it is preserved.
Millionaires understand that money is not something that is discovered, won, or created by chance.
As I stated in my previous column, 5 Powerful Books That Changed the Direction of My Lifewealth is not an accident, but an action. Building wealth is the world's largest game, and if you want to win, you need to learn the rules. So start studying.
Immediate action step: Start by reading several great money books, such as:
  • "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" by Robert Kiyosaki
  • "The Total Money Makeover" by Dave Ramsey
  • "The Richest Man in Babylon" by George Clason
But don't just read, internalize the knowledge. Debate it. Talk about it with your spouse, grandma and mail carrier. Personal finance can be learned, and by mastering it, you might discover that wealth is much easier to build than you previously thought.
polo match wealthy crowdFlickr / Land Rover MENAWealthy people never stop learning.

2. You don't value your education.

I get it: You are busy.
You have 25 hours of work to do every day and there simply isn't enough time to get it all done. That's the life of an entrepreneur, so something needs to be sacrificed. Chances are, you are sacrificing your continuing eduction, and it's severely hurting your chances of becoming a millionaire. Wealthy people never stop learning, despite the business in their life.
In a recent interview on The Tim Ferriss Show, Noah Kagan says he takes time every morning to read, as well as setting aside time every Tuesday morning to simply learn.
When is the last time you scheduled "learning time"? Do you just try to "fit it in" when everything else is caught up?
Follow the advice of Kagan, Ferriss and other incredibly successful entrepreneurs: never stop learning, no matter how busy you are.
Immediate action step: Listen to the interview with Noah Kagan on The Tim Ferriss Show. Trust me — it'll get you far closer to millionaire status than those TPS reports you were planning on working on today.
wealthy people looking at classic cars mar a lagoJulie Zeveloff/Business InsiderMillionaires make a conscious decision to live on less than they make.

3. You live to your means.

What are you doing with your extra money each month?
I know, you probably don't have any left over. Your boss doesn't pay you enough. Your company hasn't taken off yet. Or whatever other excuse you have. But let's face it: you are spending too much money. I don't care how much you make — it doesn't matter. Everyone lives to their means. You could make $2,000 per month or $20,000 per month and you'll still be broke.
The millionaires I know have made a conscious decision to live on less than they make. Instead of upgrading their life every time they make more money, they choose to put that extra cash to work for them through various investments, such as their business, stocks, real estate or other assets, which I'll talk about next.
Immediate action step: Pull out your bank account statements for the past three months. Figure out where every single dollar went, organizing the entire list into categories. Then, create a solid budget for your future.
If budgeting is difficult for you, I'd recommend YouNeedABudget. Also, read The Simple Action No One Does That Will Make You A Millionaire. That blog post alone might just make you a millionaire, someday.
wealthyOli Scarff/Getty ImagesStart collecting things that will make you money in the long term

4. You don't collect assets.

A job will never make you rich. Neither will saving all your cash in a coffee can. So how can you build that wealth?
Start collecting assets.
An asset, as defined by, is "a resource with economic value that an individual, corporation or country owns or controls with the expectation that it will provide future benefit."
Millionaires collect assets. It's as simple as that. Do you?
An asset could be a profitable business, a growing stock portfolio, or investing in the right piece of real estate. (Not all real estate is a good investment. It's what you do with it that matters.)
Your car is not an asset. That shiny new electronic gadget on your arm is not an asset. Your home might not even be an asset. These are all liabilities that are robbing you of future wealth.
Stop collecting these, and start collecting things that will make you money in the long term.
Immediate action step: Make a detailed list of all the assets in your life, as well as their current value. Are you comfortable with this list? Then, make a detailed plan to acquire more assets and make a pact with yourself to NOT buy so many liabilities.
Becoming a millionaire is not impossible. In fact, it's relatively easy when you have time on your side and the knowledge to do so.
However, it does require overcoming hurdles, which can be tough. If you want to achieve a million dollars in net worth, or more, continue to learn about the game of money, value your education, live below your means and start collecting assets. You'll get there soon enough!
Read the original article on Entrepreneur. Copyright 2015. Follow Entrepreneur on Twitter.

Do you want to be organized . Try this....


If you have a strong ambition to become successful, it’s practically a condition to be highly organized. This isn’t something you’re born with – this is something you need to practice. It will require a lot of sacrifice, but you can be sure it’ll pay off.
Luckily for you, there’s a pattern that occurs if you closely observe people who do well in this area. Highly organized people have small daily routines which enable them to get everything done. If you adopt these little habits, there’s only one way to go from there – and that’s up!

1. They Are Honest

Being organized implies that you don’t have time to spare on petty lies and dramatic schemes. By removing dishonesty from your life permanently, you’ll have more time for positivity, and that’s a fact all organized people know. Always being honest isn’t the easier way, but it can potentially save you from a lot of stress in the future.

2. They Get Up Early

Discipline is quite important when you want to achieve your goals. Getting up early should be the first habit you adopt if you want to become organized, because then you have the whole day in front of you and possibilities regarding what you can achieve during only one day are limitless, really.

3. They Don’t Deny Help

The help that’s being offered to you shouldn’t be denied so lightly, because you don’t have to do everything by yourself. Accepting someone’s help doesn’t mean you’re not capable enough – besides, you can always return the favor. I’m sure that organized people who achieved great things with their lives and careers accepted help at some point, so why shouldn’t you?

4. They Eat Healthy

Like getting up early, this one two is a daily routine which is implied in the circle of organized people. It’s quite simple if you think about it; if you want to have everything from your list done, you need to have enough energy to go through the whole day. It’s never too late to learn how to prepare healthy meals – it’s only necessary to be willing.

5. They Have a To-Do List

Speaking of lists, every organized person has a to-do list. No matter how well your memory is, something will slip your mind eventually. In order to remember every task that needs to be done and plan your time correctly, you should start your mornings with making a to-do list.

6. They Work Out

Your body is your temple, and if you want it to serve you well in the future, you need to maintain it. If gym isn’t really your cup of tea, you can always go with something like jogging. One day of a highly organized person may require all sorts of activities, and they’re always prepared.

7. They Don’t Procrastinate

Leaving things for which you have time to accomplish for tomorrow won’t lead you anywhere. It will only take more time to finish your projects, which obviously lowers your efficiency. Highly organized people don’t leave anything for later, which is exactly what makes them so productive.

8. They Practice Concentration

In order to successfully compete everything on your to-do list, it’s quite important to stay concentrated. Most highly organized people solve this problem by meditating. If you learn how to meditate, you’ll be able to freshen up in a matter of minutes, and continue with finishing your daily tasks successfully.

9. They Have Extraordinary Appreciation for Time

Their schedule is the secret weapon of organized people, and they show great appreciation for their and other people’s time. It’s a very practical habit – if you show up on time, and get things done when you planned, you can move on to another task. Of course, you should always leave at least a few gaps for changes and improvements.

10. They Put Everything Back in Place

This habit is a real time-saver. A precondition to being organized is that you maintain order in your surroundings. Getting rid of all that clutter in your life will help you with achieving efficiency, but it will also have a positive effect on your mind, no matter if you have previously paid attention to the mess around you or not.

11. They Take Care of Their Appearance

Morning hygiene in the bathroom
If you want to be maximally efficient, it’s very important to remove all distractions, which is why highly organized people always strive towards neatness. If you want to take up your responsibilities, you need to learn how to be an organized adult who takes care about their appearance. But that’s not the only benefit that looking like a professional brings – it will also help a lot with making the right first impression when meeting new people.

12. They Don’t Have Bad Habits

Bad habits slow you down. Highly organized people can do so much during the day because they don’t have anything pulling them back, which is why you need to leave your bad habits in the past, and make room for new ones.

13. They Use All Kinds of Tools

Organized people always look for an optimal solution and the smartest way to achieve their tasks. Before you engage in any kind of action, think about its process, because there’s probably some kind of tool which will help you get it done faster, while the results stay the same or perhaps get even better.

14. They Take Breaks

Highly successful people know how to listen to their bodies. It’s a scientific fact that breaks help your mind process things faster, and that they enable you to look at your problems from a different perspective. So, when your mind slows down or when you start feeling tired, get up, take a walk and rest your head for the next ten minutes, and you’ll be able to see the effect for yourself.

15. They Don’t Leave Anything Unresolved

Getting enough sleep is very important if you want to be well, rested and ready for the next day, which is why nothing should trouble you when you go to sleep. Being organized requires from you to maintain clear and honest relationships with people in your private and in your professional life.
Once you start applying these suggestions to your daily routine, you’ll probably get stuck for at least a couple of times. But, that is a test all of us need to pass, so don’t give up. I hope you’ll find my suggestions insightful. Good luck!

CFA or MBA? 11 Facts to Help You Decide

self-improvement educationAfter years of financial work, most financial practitioners would schedule a self-improvement plan, especially those who would like to start their own businesses. The common question is that whether one should take a CFA test or get an MBA degree for career development. Indeed this is a big decision.
The MBA, short for Master of Business Administration, covers various areas of business such as accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, and operations in a manner most relevant to management analysis and strategy. On the other hand, CFA, short for Chartered Financial Analyst, covers special, specified skills and concepts in asset management, private wealth management, equity research, and ratings advisories in financial institutions.
An MBA could enlarge your social network and widen career choices, but a CFA gives you accuracy and rigor in financial areas. You may need to spend years of full-time study and finish the graduation thesis for an MBA, but you may spend even more years of hard studying to pass three exams before you could get the CFA charter certificate.
Below are 11 factors that might help you decide which one you should get.

1. Cost

It should be noted that an MBA degree from any top university is a high-cost and expensive self-enhancement project. The total all-in cost (tuition fees, modest living expenses, forgone salaries, etc.) of a 2-year top MBA program is around $275k to $325k. The cost of a CFA is much lower, at about $1,000 to 1,500 per level, less than $8,500 (on average) for all three level tests if you take part in additional prep classes.

2. Time

If you want to get a MBA certificate, you need to spend two years of full-time study. That means if you’re not brave enough to quit your job and focus on the MBA degree, it would be a dilemma indeed. However, the CFA would cost at least 250 hours of self-guided study before you can sit the six-hour exam. You could make the CFA program study as part-time task.

3. Content

The purpose of these two certifications is obviously different, therefore the content is of course different. Getting an MBA certificate means you’re going to get comprehensive and all-inclusive training and knowledge in management analysis and strategy. MBA covers various courses like accounting, finance, marketing, and human resources, while CFA program will deliver you special, specified skills, and concepts on asset finance exclusively.

4. Application procedure

To apply for an MBA program, you need to prepare a lot of things, including an online application, recommendation letters, resume, admission essays, university transcripts, GMAT or GRE score reports, English language proficiency, etc. For the CFA, you need an international travel passport. Also, you need to meet one of these 3 requirements for CFA application: four years of professional work experience (does not have to be investment related), a bachelor’s (or equivalent) degree, or be in the final year of your bachelor’s degree program.

5. Teamwork

Task requirements differ from each other. Unlike the MBA requires group tasks, the CFA has no teamwork requirement. It’s totally upon your own schedule. If you can, you could study and finish all CFA programs individually.

6. Pass rate

Only 37% of CFA test takers passed December 2012′s CFA Level I exam. In June 2012, 38% passed Level I, 42% passed Level II and 52% passed Level III. On an average, 60% would fail in CFA test, with even low pass rate across total 3 levels. On the other hand, 95% of Harvard MBA test takers could pass the MBA test.

7. Job Prospects

With MBA degree, you get broader job prospects and wide career choices. But with a CFA certificate, since it delivers specific, specialized knowledge in finance industry, your career choices are greatly narrowed but financial career could be greatly sharpened and improved to another level. “An MBA can take you into all sorts of industries,” said Skiddy von Stade, CEO of financial recruiting firm OneWire. “A CFA is for a stock picker that really wants to be an analyst. The CFA carries a lot of weight with asset managers. It’s an analytically driven test.” Outside of finance, the CFA is of little use, while the MBA is more widely recognized.

8. Benefit/Compensation

It’s important to know the return of CFA and MBA. According to the calculation from PayScale, a compensation research firm, the compensation differs a lot. Median pays of 0-5 years of experience are $72,000, $87,000, $57,000 and $63,000 respectively for people that hold a CFA and no MBA, CFA and MBA, MBA and no CFA, and an MBA in finance and no CFA. These differences stay constant for CFA and MBA holders of 5-10 years of experience.

9. Learning

Some CFA certificate holders said that MBA programs teach things they could learn from college class, while CFA programs deliver knowledge that couldn’t be learned from college.

10. Partnering relationships

CFA Institute has started partnering relationships with multiple business schools into their class offerings. Some exam materials are even delivered in these courses. This would surely result in reduction of CFA test difficulty. More students are now expected to take Level I of the CFA exam directly after graduation.

11. Achievement

The founder of the CFA Institute is Benjamin Graham, one of the most legendary and valuable investors. With the profound knowledge gained from CFA tests… who knows? You could become the next Benjamin Graham. In contrast the broad coverage of MBA makes it becomes hard to become a great master.
Featured photo credit: FGV via

Stay contented



Stay contented
Contented people have fewer health issues and are more likely to enjoy life to its fullest. Being contented is deep within and you can achieve it with these suggestions
Be in harmony with those around you
If you are having difficulties in your relationships, it is important to sort these out quickly. Impoverished relationships are a key source of discontentment and if you have tried hard with some people and nothing improves, it is important to reassess whether or not you will continue to have that disruptive influence in your life.
Stop seeking the riches and fortunes that you feel others have
Think about the realities involved; what a lot of other people have are debts and a need to be boastful through belongings. Eschew this path and avoid falling into the trap of wanting all the goodies others have. Having all that stuff will not make you happy.
Love your job
No matter how much you earn, no matter how much training in a specific field you have, no matter how much you think you ought to follow the “right path”, working in a job you hate will not bring you contentment. Even your perfect home life cannot overcome the daily grind of a much-detested job. The key is to accept that you might not be cut out for the career you chose for yourself. Accept that happiness may just come with a less paid job that comes with greater fulfilment.
Keep healthy
Floss your teeth daily, eat nutritious foods, exercise regularly, have a good laugh at least twice a week. These are simple things, said often and over and over again, but there is a reason for this. Do them and contentment will follow.
Be a good neighbour
Get to know the people around you and be there for them as much as you can. Create community wherever you go and show trust to others. Reaching out to all is part of being contented within ourselves.
Trust and have faith
Learn to trust more and have faith in both others and yourself. This may seem difficult at first in a world where you are taught to “trust nobody but yourself” but if you cannot even trust yourself, even that adage is twisted. Forget the negative connotations about trust. Be a pragmatic trust-warrior by accepting that there will be some people who will abuse that trust but for every abuser, it is likely there will be nine people who reciprocate your trust, or who eventually come around because someone cared enough to trust them.
Be in the moment
Don’t worry about the past and the future. Contentment is reached when you make the most of the present as thinking of the past and the future will in the end lead to disappointment.
Positive thinking
Changing your outlook to a positive outlook makes it much easier to be content.
Don’t compare
Comparing your life against others or your past creates a lot of unhappiness. Enjoy and make the most of what you have.
That is sitting still for 20 minutes a day, which gives time for your worries to come up, but don’t think about them. Just allow them to naturally pass until you achieve a calm mind. Meditation is allowing your mind to become calm.
Ask questions
When you experience a thought nagging at the back of your mind, write it down as a question. This focuses your mind and helps you not become obsessed with your thoughts.

Saturday, 30 May 2015

Smokers are three times more at risk of diabetes than non-smokers'

Tobacco claims nearly six million lives every year. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), more than five million of these deaths are the result of direct tobacco use, whereas second hand smoke causes more than 600,000 premature deaths in non-smokers.
The effects of smoking are deadly. It can affect almost every organ of the body. The effects of tobacco use are even more deadly in people with diabetes. Because nicotine in tobacco increases blood sugar levels among smokers with diabetes. High blood sugar levels in return can increase the risk of serious diabetes complications like heart attack, stroke, kidney failure and nerve damage.
On the occasion of World No Tobacco Day (WNTD), which falls on May 31, Dr K Vijay Kumar, MBBS, MD (Internal Medicine), Consultant Physician and Diabetologist, Multi-speciality hospitals, Bangalore, talked to Salome Phelamei of Zee Media Corp on why tobacco use is particularly bad for people with diabetes.
Dr K Vijay Kumar is a Life Member of Research Society for Study of Diabetes in India and the Indian Medical Association.
Every year, on May 31, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and partners celebrate WNTD, highlighting the health risks associated with tobacco use and advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption.
Below are excerpts from the interview:
Does tobacco use increase the risk of diabetes?
Yes. Tobacco can increase blood sugar levels and also lead to resistance of insulin in the body. Studies have shown a dose-responsive increase in the relative incidence of diabetes in smokers, and that smokers are three times more at risk of diabetes than non-smokers.
Why is smoking particularly bad for diabetics?
Diabetes is a chronic disease and if not managed properly can lead to long-term complications such as heart disease, kidney disease (nephropathy), nerve disease (neuropathy), eye disease (retinopathy) and foot disease. Smoking combined with diabetes increases the risk and severity of diabetes complications.
Smoking can in fact accelerate the onset of diabetes related complications due to its metabolic effects in combination with increased inflammation and endothelial dysfunction (damage to the inner lining of blood vessels).
What are the harmful effects of smoking with diabetes?
As smoking increases blood sugar levels, maintaining good blood sugar count can be difficult for smokers. It is clearly established that smoking is a fairly large and independent risk factor for heart disease, stroke and peripheral vascular disease in people with diabetes. Smokers are also more at risk for nerve and kidney damage.
How does smoking increase heart disease risk in diabetics?
About 20% of deaths from heart diseases are attributed to smoking. Smokers are three times more likely to die from heart diseases than people with diabetes who are non-smokers.
Smoking can damage the lining of the blood vessels and cause the build-up of fatty deposits in the arteries (atherosclerosis).
It raises the heart rate and blood pressure by causing narrowing of the blood vessels (vasoconstriction). It increases the likelihood of forming blood clots in the arteries leading to heart attacks. It reduces the flow of oxygen to the heart and damages the heart muscles.
Suggest some tips for quitting smoking
Quitting smoking can be difficult, but it is not impossible. Ex-smokers enjoy a better quality of life, have fewer diseases and also an increased lifespan compared to those who continue to smoke.
Here are five simple steps to get you started:
  • Talk to your doctor and create a quit plan. Ask about nicotine replacement therapy (NRT).
  • Talk to your friends and family about your quit day. Ask them for support.
  • Never stay bored. Get busy. Try to get out of your home and go for a walk or exercise if you feel alone and bored.
  • Avoid people, places, materials and situations that can trigger your smoking urge.
  • Stay positive. Whenever you feel like having your next puff, think it is for your own good that you quit. It can be hard but the reward is more than worth it. Your doctor will be the best person to address your concerns and make further recommendations.
  • There is no evidence that e-cigarettes are a healthier alternative to smoking. Cessation is the best advice.