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How to Compete at a Moth StorySLAM

The Moth just celebrated its 20th anniversary. Founder George Dawes Green, a storyteller from the American South, used to spin tales in the summer to friends, while moths flocking to his porch light. He moved to New York and took his tradition along. Now, there are 500 storytelling programs each year in the U.S. and abroad. The Moth Radio Hour is heard on 400 radio stations and is available as a podcast, with 1 million listeners. One of the ways to get your story told is to compete at a…

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3 Secrets to Making A Great First Impression

Perhaps you've heard the expression "You never get a second chance to make a first impression." How quickly do people form an opinion of you? Seconds? Minutes? WORSE. Not to scare everyone, but Princeton psychologists Janine Willis and Alexander Todorov conducted experiments that showed first impressions occur in 1/10th of a second and aren't greatly altered by longer exposure to the person. It isn't fair, but many judgments are made on faces alone. Studies show that naturally attractive people get better outcomes in all forms of life. But what can…

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Learn to Speak the Language of Love

Is love a mystery? Not really. If you're in a relationship, or planning to be in one, one of the best things you can do is learn to be a better communicator. Below are some quick tips on how to bring even more love into your life. Determine your love language by taking the 5 Love Languages Test by Dr. Gary Chapman. http://www.5lovelanguages.com/profile/couples/ If you don't want to take this test online, there is an option to download the .pdf file. You will find which of the 5 Love Languages…

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Lawyers: How to Win Cases with Storytelling

  Remember being a child and having your favorite book read to you by a parent? Or hearing someone tell a funny family story that is often repeated? How about telling your friends about something great that happened over the weekend? Storytelling is the oldest form of narrative communication by humans. It's wired into our DNA. Every human culture uses stories in an attempt to explain and make sense of the universe. The fastest way to connect to a jury when presenting your case is to use stories. When you talk…

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7 Steps to Promoting a Bestselling Book

If you're a writer, it's likely you've spent countless hours conceptualizing, writing, and editing your book. You've also probably spent as much or more time getting it published. Now what? Brooke Warner, publisher at She Writes Press, recently spoke at Publishers and Writers San Diego about the value of building an author platform. She shared an analogy that I loved, saying, "Some writers want to hole up as they write, only to emerge after the book is done or published with the expectation that the readers will come. But not…

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QUICK TIPS ON LEADING DURING A CRISIS

Sometimes stressful situations make you feel like you're in a building that's on fire, your hair’s on fire and everything is crashing down around you. Studies have shown that 90% of top performing leaders stay calm and in control during times of crisis-- but it isn’t always easy. Here are a few tips to help weather the storm: 1)  Take a Deep Breath The event you're in, or the problem you need to solve, won't spin out of control any faster if you take a moment for yourself. Do some…

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How To Find the Truth

With all the advertisements, media spin, rumors, sales pitches and more that come our way, it's becoming increasingly difficult to make correct decisions based on fact. Have you ever wondered how to find out the truth? One way is to become a critical thinker. Critical thinking means disciplined thinking that is clear, rational, open-minded, and informed by evidence. The most important part of that sentence is "informed by evidence," meaning the decision you are making is based on verifiable, factual evidence. Here are a few tips on cutting through propaganda…

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Restore the Voting Rights Act

It's been three years since the U.S. Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act or VRA.  What does that mean for Americans? What even IS the VRA? If you are, like I was, unfamiliar with the VRA, this blog will explore why it was--and still is--essential to American Democracy.  History President Lyndon B. Johnson's address to Congress about his vision of a Voting Rights Act occurred on March 15, 1965. His speech took place one week after the events in Selma, Alabama. Imagine. On March 7, 1965, 600 civil rights…

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VOTER SUPPRESSION 101

Voter Suppression. It's something I hadn't spent much time thinking about until this election cycle. The GOP has driven so far to the right that their base threw up their hands and went for a non-politician. The Democratic Party also shifted so far to the right that a progressive movement rose up and got behind the campaign of a not-widely known Senator from Vermont.  Big money and Super Pacs have been deciding elections, the mainstream media's been selling everyone a line and people have finally begun to notice. It's been…

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12 Quick Tips to Help You Feel Confident

None of us go through life with our confidence meter stuck on 100% all of the time. Why do we feel confident? Why don't we? Improving our confidence takes self-reflection and practice. I recently conducted a  workshop on improving self-confidence at the University of San Diego's Women's Center. I had about an hour to condense a broad topic into a crash course. In addition to a quick look at psychological studies of confidence issues based on gender, and providing a detailed handout for self-reflection, here are a few ideas I…

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