Category Archives: Health

The Number of Friends you have can affect your future employment opportunities

It should come as no surprise that the number of friends and professional connections you have affects your health in life. The more social you are, the more people you have looking out for you. The more connections you have in life the more you are aware of what is happening around you. We all like to think that we don’t need anyone else in life to help us because we feel that we are bothering that person but the truth is that when you create a healthy relationship with someone where the give and take are roughly equal, in a sense, then you will see that we very much need people in our lives. The truth of the matter though is that our social circles also affects our career options in life.

Our social life is directly linked to our health which means the more events you attend and the more people you meet, the more energetic you are to get out and meet more people. Social fears and phobias develop in youth when a child is prevented from going out and exploring the world on their own. They never learn social skills by learning to strike up conversations with strangers. The problem with the age of 18 is that society somehow thinks its a magical number where someone just is expected to know how to deal with everything in life all of a sudden because they turned 18; not if they are not allowed to learn and do things on their own before then.

Many young adults, and people in general, feel they are socially awkward and rather than risk looking like a fool in front of other people they just stay home and watch on-demand entertainment (a habit that is destroying traditional TV watching). The reason Dale Carnegie made a huge success on his books was because he first tapped into the area of social-psychology by teaching people how to interact with one another and showing them how to make friends by using very simple techniques. Those same skills are still being taught today in seminars and workshops which can cost a lot of money. So why don’t schools focus on teaching students social skills that literally can make or break one’s whole life experiences? The reason? It’s too soft a skill to teach and many certain groups of people would feel that their children are being brain-washed by some left or right wing thinking. How sad.

Your Future Employment
It’s no surprise that people with the jobs they like the most are usually connected to a number of other people. For example, Bob in senior accounting will let his best friend know there is an opening coming soon and that if his friend wants to apply he should send his stuff right away to so and so. Study after study keeps confirming that the more people you know the easier it is to get a job. Infact, it has been proven that the more social people are in school the higher their success rate later in life. You can read here for some networking career tips here from Yale’s career center on how to get better at networking.

The great thing about school is that you are constantly surrounded by people so it is easier to make connections, find out what is happening in your community, and learn about job opportunities faster. Group projects enable people to make new connections and learn about people’s strengths and weaknesses. The schools that create the best creative people focus on group projects for all their work because it gets people to learn to work together and maximize their strengths but also connections. Teens and young adults are exposed to a number of new people daily because of their school life so the number of opportunities in life is dependent on the number of friends they have and the connections of their friend’s friends.

The interesting thing about social groups is that they get smaller as you get older because life switches from doing school daily for 12 years surrounded by a lot of people to going to college and learning more but in a less crowded manner. In school you have people around you all the time that you know, whereas, in college you are surrounded by a lot of people you don’t know so your social circle shrinks. This is why they say to join student organizations because it will help you make new friends with people who share your same interests. After college your social circle shrinks again because you are constantly working and have less time to spend with friends. Your friends social time also shrinks because they might be more focused on career goals and might be starting a family.

Social groups change from the teens to the 20s and  the 30s, from large groups of people to smaller groups to pairs. This kind of social shock for some can limit people’s social opportunities. The people who are not tied down enjoy more opportunities in their life and career because they do not have to discuss their decision with anyone else. They advance faster in their career and can travel more. The challenge with getting older though is that it does get harder to make new friends because there are less opportunities to join organizations and meet people if you are not social. This is why the website is so huge because it allows people to find groups of people with similar interests but for many though it can still be a challenge just to show up to one because of social phobias. But if everyone has them why not make the first move by introducing yourself?

Social Skills Over Time
This is an area that most people do not think about because most people think their social skills are fine or that they do not need to make any new friends. The truth is that people need to always refine their people skills because those that know how to talk with others to get stuff done go farther in life than those that do not know how to start a conversation. Growing up in school it is easier to start conversations with other people because you are surrounded by so many people you grew up with so it is easier to just jump right in to any group of people and start talking

In college you have to be more forward in order to talk with other people otherwise you will be left by yourself most of the time. You cannot expect other people to approach you so you have to get out and do stuff and many times just go right up to people and say, “hi.” The last part is a huge challenge for majority of people because of fear. In the workspace it can get a litter easier to strike up a conversation with someone because everyone works for the same employer making it easier to have something to say in the beginning. It is not uncommon to develop work friendships because everyone is working on the same projects and have something to talk about afterwards. Then Ttere are those groups of people who just want to come in and impress the boss so they work longer hours, finish their work faster, and get more done at the expense of talking to people and making friends.

People who work in the same job for many years risk losing the understanding of what it takes to find a job. They expect that they will always have the same job. Those are the people who will have a culture shock when they are finally let go and have to find a new job again. The challenge with that is that they do not realize that after all those years they should have been making more friends and connections and updating their skills in order to stay marketable to other companies instead of working hard all the time and ignoring social outings with co-workers. The risk with getting too comfortable in your current job is that you can lose your job at anytime and have nothing to show for what you’ve done. The connections you make in your 30s and 40s have a huge impact on your employment in your 50s and 60s when it is harder to employ older individuals.

Social Evolution
Again this is an area that most people do not spend time thinking about because they are too focused on themselves for anything. The myth that if you just do your job really well and meet all your deadlines your company will reward you with a promotion, bonus, and job security. Job security isn’t real anymore and everyone is at risk for losing their job at any moment. In many cases the people who finish their assigned work the fastest might make it harder for the company to find them work to do and see a reason for demoting you to part-time instead of full-time or just hiring on a case-by-case basis. This can come as a shock to someone who believed that as long as they did what was asked of them, they would be rewarded. That is just not the case anymore.

Researchers, Connie Wanberg, Ruth Kanfer, Darla J. Hamann, and Zhen Zhang went through many studies across different disciplines to analyze social behavior on employment and what they found was that people who are younger tend to be unemployed for shorter periods of time than older individuals. This is all due to the fact that younger people are exposed to more social groups and interact with more people on a daily basis so they hear about more opportunities faster. Older individuals, on the other hand, are unemployed longer because of the nature of many things, including their social circles, which tend to be smaller because they value the quality of certain relationships more than maintaining larger groups of friendships. The other issue is that older individuals are out of touch with the ways of finding a job in today’s economy. If a person in their 50s and 60s, and maybe even 70s were to look for a job they would have to understand that they will not find it in any kind of newspaper or walking door-to-door to shops and businesses. They will have to learn how to perform certain actions that are common in the workplace now that were not taught when they were in school.

The number of social connections gets smaller as people get older and the only way to fix that is by maintaining the ones you have now and going out and meeting more people. The results of the researcher’s study found that if you want to make it easier on yourself for finding a job when you are older, you need to maintain the relationships you have at work and outside in your 30s and 40s so that you have connections to new job opportunities in your 50s and 60s. Those friendships from long ago will help you manage new job opportunities in the future. Infact, older people are realizing that with the new gig economy happening, they can find new sources of income that can help offset the growing costs of living. This is very important to learn because it can mean an improved way of living. For others who still want to continue working, it is helpful to understand the importance of always meeting new people in life.

In the movie, The Intern, a older man realizes that retirement is not all what he hoped it would be. He spends time with a few people but he knows his time could be better spent working again. The long days of having nothing to do got to him so he applied for a job. He found a flyer looking for older people who would like to work for a startup fashion company. He took the information and called them up. In the movie you see this man grow his social circle by ten-fold and make new friends. He quickly realized how outdated his technical skills were but not his executive skills. Many older people will enjoy this movie because for some it will strike a chord in their heart in knowing that they would like to work again like they used to when they were younger. The other part that is touching about the movie is that the older man watches how frantic all these young people are working knowing what is at the end for all of them. I thoroughly enjoyed the film because no matter where you work, there will always be someone there after you to fill in the spot so rather than focus on putting in the long hours, one should focus on the friends they will make everywhere they go because you never know when you might need to call on that person for a favor or a lead to a new job later on in life. Do yourself the favor of going and seeing this movie because it has so many interesting things to say about the workplace for older people who are can still provide value.

If you are stuck about how to improve your social circle, look back at some of my past articles on networking but start first with Never Eat Alone and The Fine Art of Small Talk. Those should help you get started. You can look in the book section of this website to find out other books to read on networking.

News Article

To Get A Job in your 50s, Maintain friendships in your 40s

The Sharing Economy Attracts Older Adults

Improve Yourself with Books to Read in 2015

If you did a search right now on the top ten books to read for 2015, you would probably find tons of lists already out there. The challenge with this is that there are so many genre of books now that the lists are endless. Twenty years ago things were not as complicated because most “Must Read” book lists came from large chain book stores and newspapers. Now we have so many different sources on what to read, including this blog right here, that it is hard to narrow down just what all is good to read.

Goodreads is a good place to start if you don’t already have an account. If you love reading you need to open yourself an account and use it. I use that website just about everyday when I update everything I am reading. They have tons of lists to follow, groups to join, book reading challenges, and more. I enjoy reading the reviews to get a better idea of what it is about I’m to read so I know I will get something out of it.

In the meantime the books selected all come from authors who have already written some amazing books. A few of the books I look forward to reading this year are Clay Water Brick, The XYZ Factor, and Work Rules.

Try to always take at least an hour a day to read, 30 minutes when you wake up, and 30 minutes before you go to bed or 4 15 minute breaks throughout your day. If you are a real go-getter in life than you can have 8 15 minute breaks throughout your day. However you decide to read, make sure to take some time also to include the classics, self-help books, and adventure books, either in physical form or audiobooks. Always check your public library first to see if they have a copy available.

In the list I have included those from the list but also some classic business books everyone should read.

Top Business Books to Read for 2015
1. Clay Water Brick – Jessica Jackley
People wonder how anyone can make a successful business happen without having money to support everything. This book here shows you how some of the most innovative individuals created something great with the least amount of resources. This is a good one to start with to get out of the mindset that you need X – Y- Z before you can get started. If you think that is true, read the Kids who are exceptional article.

2. How to Fly a Horse – Kevin Ashton
You would think training a horse to fly would be easy but then again you probably have no idea where to start. The author takes the reader on a journey through history to show how some of the best creations came from challenge situations. Creating something from the ground up is never easy so with the world we live in today where costs for starting a business has dropped to near zero, why is it still hard? This book was on the list of Amazon’s best books of 2014

3. Getting To Yes with Yourself – William Ury
This is the same guy who brought you Getting to Yes, which is ranked as the number one best seller in Business Negotiating category on Amazon. The author explains that all the challenges that happen in life all take place in your head. When you think a deal is going wrong because you emphasized the wrong word, chances are you are probably wrong, or maybe you shook his hand longer than you should have, making you seem desperate. These are all mental games you play with yourself so when you begin to realize not to take life so seriously you can then see how easy it is to make yourself agree with what you are saying. A great movie to watch to help you understand why you should not take life so seriously is called “Being There.” Considered one of the best philosophy movies ever made about Life.

4. Bold – Peter Diamandis, Steven Kotler
This book explains the power of exponential entrepreneurship. When you bring people of life mind together to work on a task you double, triple, or even quadruple the power that goes into solving a problem. This is the idea behind XPRIZE, a program that uses crowdsourcing to it’s ultimate power by asking people all over the world to solve their problems posted on their website, Singularity University, in return for a large cash prize. This book explores all they have learned about this impressive program about how ideas are solved through the help of exponential power.

5. Yes, And – Kelly Leonard, Tom Yorton
The power of Improv acting has helped changed so many people’s personal and business skills for the better because it changes how a person thinks in any given situation. Improv is a form of acting that encourages no sensor thinking and to accept everything thrown at you and learn to think in the moment. Many companies hire theater companies to come in and provide Improv training with their sales staff because of how important it is to learn. If you want to learn more about this skill and join a program, read my previous article on the art of storytelling.

6. The XYZ Factor – Nancy Lublin, Alyssa Ruberman
This is a book about learning to empower people to see the benefit of their actions when they put them to good use for others. This can be very challenging for companies when they work with younger generations that are only interested in instant gratification and isolated circumstances, most of which they have grown up in. The program is meant to get kids out of this habit of waiting, which many grew up in homes where they had to wait to be told what to do and when, and start getting out there and making a difference on your own. For any kid who grew up in a restrictive household, the transition to learn how to think for themselves is very difficult, which is not fair to companies that have to deal with that, and so teaching younger individuals how change is possible through their actions is a good skill to learn.

7. Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader – Herminia Ibarra
This book takes on a different approach for leaders. There are many management books that say to find your style of management and leadership in order to guide your department or people. This book here says to listen to what the people are looking for and take guidance from how they need to be managed. When you don’t over think a problem and dwell on it you can then work from the insight your team gives you.

8. Better Than Before – Gretchen Rubin
Changing habits can be hard but when you learn how to find the little tricks to turn small little actions into bit time change that is when results start to show. The author here talks about improving your life with changing your habits and routines. Humans are creatures of habit so it is important to understand how to make new habits work. Chip Heath also wrote a great book on the subject as well called Switch – How to change things when change is hard.

9. Work Rules! – Laszlo Bock
Imagine being the HR manager for one of the best companies to work for in the world? How much pressure would you have to know that you have to hire people that are extremely intelligent but also creative at the same time? That is a lot of pressure, in that, you have to design and create interviews to weed out the fakes and still find the ones that are hard to see the first time. Then after that you have to learn how to create an environment that encourages people to grow and increase productivity, all of which can be challenge, but brought together in this richly packed book of data examples.

10. Surprise – Tania Luna, Leeann Renninger
This element of surprise is important for many reasons but none more so than in the business world. Surprises happen all the time so being able to anticipate that surprise can keep you on your toes but also understand that change is constant. When you learn to accept things as they come, training from Improv acting, you won’t feel threaten by what is happening every time something new comes up.

11. No One Understands You and What to Do About It – Heidi Grant Halvorson
Why do people know who we are? Isn’t that what makes people want to work with other people, because they think different and act different? People who really studied psychology in college, and when I say really studied, I mean they went way beyond the required readings and read more than your typical grad student, you would know that how a person walks, the words they use to speak, the actions they take says everything about a person already. Not everyone studied psychology in college or graduate school so books like this are important to read because it helps people connect with others when they understand them. Engineers have the worst record when it comes to social and people skills so a book like this might help them to learn that when talking about a project of their their’s it is important to include personal identifying properties of themselves with how they created it instead of just the dimensions and costs and benefits of the projects. If you want to read another book on the subject and learn more about a person by the words they speak, “The Secret Life of Pronouns: What Our Words Say About Us,” is a great book to read.

12. The Eureka Factor – John Kounios, Mark Beeman
Do you remember the time you came up with that amazing idea that someone has already come out with? Why did you beat them to it? And why can’t you have more moments like that? This book explains how those moments come about and how to have more of them. They spark imagination, ideas, and bring about change so if they are so important why are they so few of them? Learn more about how the brain works with this book about how great insights are achieved.

13. The Road Character – David Brooks
Ever wondered why Robert Moses lead the life he did, or why the Men Who Built America, had such deep rich self-fulfilling lives? The challenge with creating a rich fulfilling life is not just the doing part but the upbringing part; people of character are built upon a solid foundation of morals, beliefs, and values, which guide them in everything they do. When you have no guidance in which to follow, then why would it surprise you to learn that your life has no purpose? The men who built america found their purpose because they had the keen sense to see what others couldn’t and put it into action. This book takes a look at ten lives and examines them for all these traits to learn how to create a life worth living.

14. Triggers – Marshall Goldsmith
Behavior Consultant Mr Goldsmith looks at how to change behavior for the good and how to make them into certain habits. He takes a look at how behavior works and why we behave differently when we are in groups and when we are by ourselves. This book helps explore all that in order to find the right behaviors that will lead to a successful life.

15. The Misfit Economy – Alexa Clay, Kyra Maya Phillips
Did you know that Pirates in the Indian ocean make millions stealing huge oil tankers and cargo ships in the area? Or that hackers cause millions, if not billions in loses every year to companies, but encourage the growth for many more industries? The growing behavior of misfits is creating whole new industries to come about because the reality is when someone acts bad, you need another to fix it. This book examines the history of people that did things unconventionally and how it turned out for them and what you can learn from doing that. The reality is, business has no rules, so once you learn that rule, all bets are off for anything you do.

16. Wiser: Getting Beyond Groupthink to Make Groups Smarter – Cass Sunstein
This important book contains the very reason you don’t want to surround yourself with people of like-mind. But if you have too, this book will teach you what you need to be aware of to keep from falling into the trap of staying with status-quo. Cass showed that when people of like-mind get together their values strengthen because each member reinforces what they already know or believe in. This is very dangerous because this is how progress is slowed down because if everyone thinks the same way and they all agree with one another then there is nothing to change or improve.

Cass also shows that similar minded groups make less dramatic changes than groups that are composed of different mindsets. He talks about this in the new elected Congress that is very one-sided and how dangerous this will be for policy making and America. You can watch his interview on The Daily Show to learn more about what happens when people who are conservative get together with similar minded individuals, and vice versa. This is a very important concept to learn so you don’t fall into the same mental trap. This is why the phrase, “Keep Your Friends Close, but your Enemies Closer,” is important to learn because your enemies will keep you on your toes and learning all the time. This book is ranked number 1 in Business & Organizational Learning.

Here are some Additional Books to read

Zero to One – Peter Thiel (Number 1 in Economic Policy and Development)
The Hard Thing About Hard Things – Ben Horowitz
The lean Startup – Eric Ries
Business Adventures – John Brooks (Number 1 in Commerce)
Influence – Robert Cialdini (Number 1 in Marketing and Consumer Behavior)
22 Immutable Laws of Branding – Al Ries

To find more business books to read, check out my previous article and Book Page
This book changed this billionaire’s understanding about Business
Business Books

News Article

15 New Books to Read in 2015

These Markets are Predicted to Rule in 2015

It is very difficult to believe what certain markets will do in the future. The research has shown over and over that no matter how many special tools you use to predict the future nothing comes as close as to the moment when it happens. The truth is that if fortune tellers were real, they would all be rich, economic professors would be rich, and so would statisticians because they all should know how markets work so they are the best ones to ask about where things are headed and what is the probability of success.

Business people love predictions because they like investing in companies that are primed to take off in the future so they buy in at the lowest price ahead of everyone else. The challenge with this is that you have a 50/50 chance of being right, as does everyone else, including the hot shots up in the ivory towers of investment firms. The truth is, investing, is a complete game of chance that no machine, algorithm, app, or fortune teller, will ever get right and that all the best investment bankers have the same rate of success as that of a monkey throwing darts at a wall of random investment items.

But hey, people like the risk so with that said here are some of the top markets to make billions more this new year along with a few others that I have predicted for myself. If you are interested in investing in any of these companies, open yourself an E*Trade Account, use a virtual trading program to test out your predictions beforehand, and see if you break even or make a profit. I will listed a few stock market trading programs that you can use if you are interested to see how well you will do with investing without the risk of using your own money.

Top Technology Predictions of 2015
1. Companies will be investing in insurance against hackers
More and more companies are realizing that they cannot just hire regular IT staff if they want to protect their consumers from hackers. They need to invest in highly trained IT individuals who have proven records of preventing hackers from getting in. This is why the hacker convention every year in Las Vegas brings thousands of hackers to the convention in hopes of landing a top job with a company. There are many competitions in which they compete for a prize cash or a luxury job with a top employer.

In the meantime companies cannot afford to lose money each time they get hacked so now insurance companies are offering another way to protect businesses. Hackers obiviously are driving the market more so hiring the best IT people around won’t always get things fixed. Amazon, facebook, Microsoft, and Google hire some of the best around so trying to get the employees you want can be difficult if you don’t have deep pockets.

2. Smartwatches will beat out similar technology
There is no surprise that I have seen more and more kids and adults wearing smartwatches now. The hype was that so many of our famous TV heroes had watches that they talked to and now we finally have that technology and people are using them in different ways. Kids like it because it informs them when they get a txt from a certain person or at anytime. Adults can check information on the web real quick by just talking to it.

The industries in competition with smartwatches are those for fitness. How many devices have you seen on the market that require something else to be taped, or wrapped around your arm, wrist, or body, in order to record your vitals. Smartwatches are coming with monitoring apps that can do the same thing so it will make it harder for fitness devices to keep up, but time will only tell if this really happens. They are even turning into drones, read my prediction for drones below.

3. The Apple watch will beat out other watches
This prediction I have a huge issue with because Android has more downloads than Apple and Android offers better options. There are more Android watches coming out than the one Apple watch so this will really be just a numbers game that gets played out in the end. By the middle of the year there should be a good understanding of whether or not this is true.

4. Everything will have sensors and chips installed in them
This is probably going to happen because we have apps for everything now so it was only a matter of time before your refrigerator, toaster, coffee makers, washer and dryer, TV, and baby crib were all connected to the internet. The website IFTTT predicted a long time ago that most everything in our home would be connected to the internet. Imagine being able to turn on the bed warmer for the baby crib before you got home? Apps let you turn on the lights in your home when your out of town anywhere in the world so why not connect your washer and dryer machine to the internet as well? We already have refrigerators that can txt you when you are running low on eggs so it makes sense that we have apps that can notify you of what to buy when you are at the store shopping. You can even have a chat history to go back and see when you last checked on the milk. The internet of things will make this all possible, in homes, governments, and businesses.

5. Company employees will hangout together online
Companies for a long time have created many amenities for employees to use when they are at work because it encourages employees to get to know more people working there but also to increase their social well being. There are many online platforms that already do this like Yammer and Slack that are designed only for companies to use internally.

The beauty behind these internal networks is that you only communicate with people who work for the same company. This makes it very safe for people to use and keeps employees updated about what is happening only within the company.

6. Fitness programs will be created around companies
Now that there are many apps for helping people get together for anything there is now an up rise in apps coming from companies and app makers to bring people together to help them get in shape.

The rise of this collective group of similar interests will drive more and more people to get involved in activities. Companies benefit the most because when employees stay inshape and healthy then that means they miss less days, are better focused on the job, and less errors happen.

7. Our biometics will become our passwords
This prediction I have a huge problem with because once companies have your biometrics stored on their servers, what does that mean about ownership of them and what happens when a hacker breaks in and steals those metrics? A hacker recently showed how he was able to recreate a person’s fingerprint just by using photos of the person. He did this to demonstrate how easy it is to steal anyone’s fingerprint using software he purchased that is made available to the public.

This is important to understand because there are many instances where people have been able to steal a print of a finger left on a surface and use it to hack into a system using a copy of the print. Apple thumb print has been shown to be vulnerable to this method but they have said they are improving it. Here is a video that shows if it is possible to fool touch ID on Apple iPhones.

Many companies say that your biometrics only get stored locally but many people will complain that not everything in stored in the “cloud.” You can not please everyone so it makes it hard for companies to find the right balance. Once hackers get your fingerprints then we will move into a new method of passwords that don’t reply on our biometrics. We even have password systems that can detect who you are by how you type and your body language.

8. Visual data will be the norm for everything
When infographs starting showing up people loved them because it put important information into a structure that was entertaining to read. Why read a book when you can look at a graph that works like a flowchat to teach you all you need to know about this one subject in an interesting way?

People have gotten hooked on them because they are entertaining to read when viewing a presentation. The challenge with this is that you have to show more bells and whistles each and every time you present if you want to keep your audience’s attention.

9. Everyone will start to own a 3-D printer
Printing 3-D objects is becoming an important skill to learn because it has so many applications. Just like when I wrote about the teen who helped his friend by printing out a hand he made for him using a 3-D printer, you start to see the many uses 3-D printing can have. The new HP Sprout computer has a function where you can scan an object in front of the computer and then make a copy (imagine all the stupid copyright lawsuits that will pop up because of that amazing leap in technology all because lawyers like to sue). This will revolutionize how people interact with everything. (Click here to see Sprout computer in Action)

3-D printers will get cheaper and for many who wish to learn how to use one (join a hackerspace or techshop program) you will be getting a jump start on a skill that more and more companies will expect their employees to know. There are some public libraries, like the teen in the article above, that have 3-D printers available for the public to use, you just have to know how to use it first. The leap in 3-D printing is such that we have 3-D printers that can print food using natural ingredients. The campaign on kickstarter failed last year but the technology and concept is still there. (Click here to watch Foodini in action)

10. Cloud Computing will become the norm
The convenience of storing everything in the cloud is so you don’t have to worry about losing any documents ever again. The challenge with some of these cloud programs is that you have no idea what is stored in it. I use many different cloud programs and the ones that let me see and organize my files are the best. You are in control of everything that is stored no matter where you go.

People will start to get smart about how to use them and what to store as time passes on. Companies like Evernote, Dropbox, Google, and Amazon will continue to dominate an industry that is expected to continue growing.

11. Health Care Apps will take over
If I was to tell you that there is an app that lets you ring up a doctor to visit you at your home whenever you want and it works the same way as uber, would you believe me? More and more health care apps are popping up that are replacing the regular doctor’s visit. Why make the trip to the doctor’s office or take the kids out of school just for a simple check-up when instead you can just schedule a visit at your home that fits your schedule?

We now have special devices that can monitor heart rates, blood pressure, and soon to come tattoos that will administer prescription medication. Doctors already have the ability to monitor your vitals from their office computer or mobile device making it easy to notify you if anything looks wrong. Many people even have skype doctor visits, and many places now are installing quick check-up stations in grocery stores that cover everything for a basic check-up and costs way less. Some are called SoloHealth Stations and others are called HealthSpot. These eliminate the need to wait all the time for a doctor.

12. Companies will spend more on technology and online advertising
It is no joke how many people use the internet everyday so it is very important for companies to be able to get their name out there so people know what they do. This is why Google AdWords is the bread and butter of revenue for Google. The challenge with that is that most people do everything from their phones now so that real estate of screen space is very limited in trying to get an ad in front of someone.

Remember no one likes it when they are reading something and an annoying ad starts playing but doesn’t know where it is coming from. I have made it a point now that if a website starts playing something and I can not find where to shut it off, then I just close out the website all together and don’t go back. Many sites now are getting aggressive and locking your screen to watch the ad before you can do anything. Not a smart move.

13. More and More Apps will use the Uber model
Many apps that will come out this year will rely on the Uber model for pricing. This means more and more people will have ways to make more money. In an article I found, there was a CEO that also become an Uber driver to make some extra money to pay his bills, shows that more and more people are turning to freelance work to supplement their income.

This means more people will be able to find jobs that match the type of work they do. There are apps that allow you to book appointments with hairstylists that come straight to your house, and the same for many other industries. More people will start to see the Uber model for paying as a lucrative pricing structure for their freelance work. This means that more and more people will start to work independently, which also means that companies will need to do a better job of attracting and keeping employees.

14. Drones will become more apart of our everyday life
Hard to believe that a child’s toy would become such an important device in everything we do now. How many commercials or music videos have you watched where drones are filming the whole thing? Many real estate agents now use them to film the outside and inside of property they are selling, even though in most states that practice is considered illegal. The FAA bans the practice for commercial purposes, but the laws are slowly changing if you are certified and in an approved area for filming. In Canada the practice is regulated and you must be certified to fly. This website provides a nice little overview of drone law and what is currently happening.

In the meantime the different designs and use for drones is taking off. We now have drones that you can wear on your wrist. The Nixie drone can even take off on it’s own, follow you, and film you doing what ever you want. How’s that for a leap into the future? Drones are predicted to be one of the highest in demand jobs in the next ten years, so if you need a high paying job, start studying now. More companies will be posting jobs looking for drone operators and maintenance repairmen. For anyone that already runs an independent aerial photography business with drones then you know how much money is to be made. IRIS+ personal drone is an example of just how far drone technology has come and where it is going.

15. Wearable technology will start to replace tablets and Computers
This is one prediction that I hope doesn’t happen but most likely will. I love using a desktop computer because it has so much more power than a mobile device but that is all changing. There are so many predictions from Back to the Future 2 that we are supposed to have today that some are just becoming true. Where are our flying cars? Well, here they are (Flying Car 1, Flying Car 2). Where’s our self-tying shoes? Well, here they are. What about the hoverboard, I’m mean by now we should have that right? Yes we do, but I won’t link to it. What about automatic adjusting clothes? Surprisingly enough, we have it, but it’s just not where it should be like in the movie. In the meantime just enjoy the one-size-fits-all format. (Read more about the predictions BTTF 2 got wrong, but we do have mind controlled video games, self-tying shoes, and hoverboards (no I’m not talking about the hoax video either.)

Wearable technology will be taking over because it makes sense that we can interact with the internet in our everyday clothes. We have devices that we can wear that can monitor our vitals for us and keep a log of everything that is happening, which we can also share with our doctor. We have contact lens that we can see the internet with which will only become more and more popular as they get perfected. It’s not available yet for commercial use but will become the popular choice to use once it does. This means you can wear your sunglasses, which we also have transition contact lens now to replace your sunglasses with, over your “google glass” contact lens and still look cool while accessing whatever you want from the internet.

Don’t be surprised at what all is happening with technology. The idea is that technology needs to “fit” to our needs. We now have thumbprint identification, which was shown in Back to the Future 2, something we think nothing of now. We have jackets we can wear that provide power anytime we need it for our devices. Again, we take it as a given because of all the devices we now carry with us. Google glass has become the norm for major cities where Google provides more services, like Silicon Valley, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.

If you want to keep up on wearable technologies here are two great places to check out.
Amazon Wearable Electronics
Wearable Devices Magazine

16. Self-Driving Cars will become apart of more Cars
This sounds like something from a Sci-Fi movie but now that we have self-driving cars from Google the technology is taken as a given once again. The technology will start to be integrated into other types of cars. The Mercedes-Benz E class car has integrated the technology into their cars but also made it to where the driver can take over as well.

This is a shift in driving where more and more highways will turn into superhighways, in that they will be installed with senors for self-driving cars to use. These sensors will help self-driving cars monitor the conditions of the roads so as to avoid traffic jams, bad road conditions, and even animals or objects on the road. The technology is here it just needs to be perfect and more roads and highways need to be fitted so the cars have more information to use as to make the drive safer.

The predictions placed here are just that, predictions. If you are interested in learning more about some of these industries you can click on the article below for more links. If you are interested in trying your hand at playing the stock market you can sign up with any of the websites below to get started. Each one will give you play money to test your theories about which companies are good for investing in. Maybe you can invest in some of the companies that are expected to do really well this year and see how you do in the end. Good Luck and feel free to post comments about how well you do.

Stock Market Simulators
Smart Stocks

News Articles

14 Tech Trends that will make someone billions of dollars in 2015

Two Boys, under Ten, raised a million dollars with self-published book

People write books for all kinds of reasons, from personal stories that the world needs to know to stories that came from a dream that tell of a distant world. Inspiration is want compels people to sit down and put into words something they experienced. Many people write their own books today in hopes that it might land them a steady income after awhile and many write books having never made a decent living off of it. In almost everything one puts their energy into there is a opportunity cost involved, sometimes that cost is high and sometimes it’s so low that it doesn’t matter.

In this situation though something special happened between two little boys that inspired one to do something great for his best friend.

A Special Connection
Dylan Siegel is a boy that most would love to have as a friend. At 8 years old he has accomplished what most mature authors can only dream of achieving, writing a book that earns them a million dollars. This is no easy feat by any means but his motivation is what helped him achieve this special attention because you see, his friend, Jonah Pournazarian, who is only a year older than Dylan has a rare liver condition that makes it impossible for his body to digest sugars, a condition known as Glycogen Storage Disease 1B.

This condition is very difficult to manage because it requires him to be on a very strict eating diet, which mainly consists of cornstarch, and schedule that includes 7 meals a day. If he misses just one meal it could mean he falls into a seizure and dies. Of the 7 meals he eats 2 different meals that provide him with the nutrition his body needs. Everything he eats has to be monitored and his blood levels have to be checked all the time. With the latest technology today monitoring blood levels is not hard, the hard part is making sure he has what he needs at the right time.

In an interview Dylan was asked about his friend and he said that his friendship gives him a special feeling inside that makes him happy to be his friend. It is his friendship with Jonah that has inspired him to sit down and write a book to help raise money to find a cure for his friend’s condition. How many young boy’s do you know that would take the time out to sit down and do something special for their friend? Not many but it happens.

Touching Lives
After Dylan got his parent’s to publish his book he made an effort to tell as many people as he could to buy his book. He set up a website to learn more about the story behind the book and to teach people about this condition his friend has. This has encouraged many people to get behind the cause and support his efforts. Dylan and Jonah has set up their table in many places to sell their book and once the news caught wind of what was happening, more and more people took notice.

The condition that Jonah has is extremely rare so it makes it difficult for pharmaceutical companies to invest any research money into finding a cure if the population of those with the disease is too low to support a profit. That is the nature of the medicine industry, there has to be enough people with the condition for there to be a solid effort in finding a cure. Dylan did his research and wanted to help make sure that labs working on finding a cure had the money to do so. He didn’t want to lose his best friend so he wrote that book to show that people care about others, especially when they are your best friend.

After getting the word out and the news picking up on the story, Dylan and Jonah now travel around doing book readings to audiences and book signings. They have created a facebook page to help spread the word about his cause and what else he plans to do with the book. In a recent clip on ABC news Dylan was happy to make the call to the doctor, Dr. David Weinstein,  who is helping to find a cure letting him know that he raised a million dollars for him. How many friends do you know who would go to the lengths that 6 year old Dylan has? Friendship is a powerful thing.

The Road Ahead
Dylan now plans to turn his Chocolate Bar book into a complete series to help raise more money including awareness for his friend. The book has garnered attention from all over the world with kids sending in video replies about how much they enjoyed Dylan’s book. The boys have appeared on many talk shows all around trying to spread the word.

The boys say that they will not stop, even though their goal was to reach a million, until they find a cure for Jonah, so that is when they will stop. The connection these two boys have made will be a life long connection. So far researches have been able to find a cure for the same disease in dogs now they need to bridge the connection in humans. Hopefully they will see the cure within the next few years.

The Business Side of Building a Brand
What these boys are doing is the same as what it takes to build a brand. They attend press events, they talk about their book, the story behind the book, and their mission goal. These are the most pressing matters when talking about your business and brand. People want to know who you are, how you got your idea, and where you plan to go with it. These are all the same concepts that any startup company, or writer, must go through to get their name out there.

Dylan got the business bug from playing Monopoly. His mom, Debra Siegel, says that when her son plays monopoly, watch out. He has learned that control of certain properties on the board puts you in control. The same is said for anything you do, when you cover all your bases and have gained enough ground then you can start controlling the flow of things. Dylan knew he was just a kid so he knew he was limited by what he could do. He knew that getting a book into people’s hands was a great way to spread his message so by sitting down and working on one he could show that he was serious by the effort he put into it.

When you look at the design and wording of his book you see that he drew every page himself, and wrote all the words himself. To an accomplished writer the book may look childish and poorly structured with no way of ever becoming a success, and that might be all the things they tell you in the publishing industry (correct grammar, plot line and structure, character development, etc). So why don’t these things apply to his book? Isn’t that why literary agents are so mean to new writers? They haven’t mastered these areas so why risk trying to become an author in the first place?

Dylan had the beauty of ignorance on his side. He was only 6 years old and didn’t understand how the world works as an adult so those things didn’t interfere with his train of thought, which was only about writing a book that him and his friend understood (chocolate bar stands for something awesome and cool) and that he could raise money with. What Dylan has that most adults do not have is access to social capital – school environments. Schools have lots of people in them and it is very easy for a kid to tell his teacher about what he is doing and then have the teacher put up an announcement in the school for everyone else to know about.

Adults do not have access to such resources after they graduate high school and college. They must rely on their social skills, what they know about business and marketing, and social media to spread the word. For many adults who have been trying that for years and have gotten no where with you understand the frustrations of what I am talking about. You also feel a little envy for why Dylan has reached his goal and you are still trying to get someone to buy your novel that you spent the last 5 years writing.

This is where Dylan’s success changes from so many others. I have met many kids in school who have used the power of social capital in their schools to help get their idea off the ground. It works faster when you are surrounded by a lot of people everyday instead of always having to hire someone to do one thing at a time. By using the power of social media, Dylan created a facebook page, a youtube channel, and a twitter account to help maximize the spread of his message. He had all his friends join all his pages and that helped spread the word even faster, so when you break down all that Dylan has, over the resources that an adult has, you can see how he was able to reach his goal of one million dollars and why he will be able to continue past it. Great Job Dylan and keep up the great work. Here’s hoping for the day when they announce a cure.

Enjoy This highlight of the two boys

News Articles

Boy’s ‘Chocolate Bar’ Book Nets $1M for Rare Liver Disorder Research

Boy raises nearly $1M with self-published book for friend with rare disease


Boy, 6, writes book, raises $92,000 for best pal’s rare disease

Social Media Accounts

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Chocolate Bar Website

In an effort to raise awareness for suicide prevention, people look to Mrs. Doubtfire

In an effort to show care and concern for preventing suicide people all over have been putting forth their best Mrs. Doubtfire face and posting it online. The groups’ hash tag is #DoubtFireFace and you can search for it through twitter or online. You can see the many videos that people have already posted on youtube, facebook, and twitter. As a scene that is a classic piece of film history now you can take a look at the role that made everyone wish they had a nanny like Mrs. Doubtfire growing up.

You can see more videos that people have posted in this Huffington Post Article showing their own Doubtfire face. A quick search on youtube pulls up many other videos as well.

If you are interested in helping out, please visit the many sites dedicated to stopping suicide from happening.

Facebook Page – DoubtFireFace
Help Raise Money for the Program
National Suicide Prevention Program – 1-800-273-8255

Need to Learn about the Last 125 years real quick? WSJ Makes it Possible

From 1889 to today you can explore all the major events that the wall street journal has covered in the United States through this well developed webpage that explores major events in US history through photos. They covered 125 years worth of events. You can look by certain decades of influence or you can look at individual events.

This site is a great tool for learning about and remembering all the major things that one should at least be knowledgeable about. Anyone studying US history this is a great learning tool to help illustrate those events in photographs. Take a look around and explore. You might be surprised to learn about some important milestones in this country’s history and the people who came before you.

Wall Street Big Issue