Friday, May 9, 2008
I think that this is a shame. We spend more time in the bathroom than we really think about, and it pays to have an area that is clean, hygienic, comfortable, and attractive. Many people never get around to doing the basics, let alone implementing bathroom remodeling ideas. I should know. I have been doing small construction projects for friends and acquaintances for a long time, but only recently started to use bathroom remodeling ideas in my own house. Up until then, it was all I could do to keep the old, decrepit pipes up to date.
That all changed when a friend asked me to put in a skylight in his house. Putting in a skylight is actually more work than you would think. The actual installation would be easy, if not for the wear and tear put on a roof. You have to make sure that the skylight is properly installed, or else you'll get rain seeping in, which will cause all kinds of problems.
Anyway, putting in the skylight made me think about the bathroom. In my house, the bathroom only has one window, and it is a small one. There is little natural light, and little ventilation. I realized that a skylight would be an excellent bathroom remodeling idea. It was actually one of the best bathroom remodeling ideas I've ever come across, because it would give me both light and ventilation. As long as I remembered to close it when it rains, it would cause no problems.
Of course, not all bathroom remodeling ideas need to be as elaborate as that. There are very simple bathroom decorating ideas that can make a much more comfortable space. One of my favorite ones is to put a soft, cushy carpet in front of the toilet. That way, when you're using the bathroom in the morning, your feet do not get cold. You can also install classy, wrought-iron towel racks to give your bathroom a more upscale look. This is one of the most simple and inexpensive bathroom remodeling ideas I have come across, yet it will still make a big difference in how your bathroom looks.
It was initially hard to get used to buying all of my decorating supplies at the American blind and wallpaper factory, but I have gotten used to it. The first time that a friend suggested that I use the American blinds and wallpaper factory, I just could not get in to it. It was impossible for me to look at these pictures of a house decorated with a particular shade, or a particular wallpaper on the screen, and translate that into how it would end up looking in my own house. I was so used to going into the hardware store and looking at shades in person, that I just could not make the transition very easily. But soon using the American blind and wallpaper factory became like second nature for me.
Now, I could not imagine the hassle of buying all of my home fixings without the American blind and wallpaper factory. The selection is great, because they are a warehouse and can keep an extensive inventory all at one location. Aside from that, I have come to like the way that the American blind and wallpaper factory shows you all of the blinds and wallpaper already set up in a house so that you can see exactly what it looks like. I used to dislike it, but now it makes it much easier for me to get an idea of what I am doing.
Monday, March 24, 2008
What is the first thought that strikes you when you think about developing your business? Development or growth is indicative of higher profits, more customers (rather satisfied customers), and expansion in both reach and income.
How do you achieve these growth parameters in your home improvement business?
Well to start with, review your existing marketing efforts. Are you waiting for customers to look for you, or have you established a channel of communication whereby they can easily locate you? Develop an online presence if you already do not have one. Create a website that takes the prospective parties through a road map of how things would happen and how exactly you can help them. If possible, let it be an interactive site wherein the seekers can drop in their queries and you can contact them accordingly. Start a question-answer section on your site where you can provide some quick tips about home improvement. If your customers are happy with your tips, they can give you huge business as an award. Make a picture gallery that depicts the old and new pictures of some of your works. Do not forget to add testimonials, and if possible, a few happy faces.
Don’t just sit back because you now have an online presence. Send out your pamphlets and do a basic market research to understand your competition’s offerings. If time and resources permit, carry out a neighborhood survey to see if anybody requires such services. You might not get business directly by this means, but leaving your card and pamphlets while conducting this survey can get you few referrals. Send out cards or mementos to important clients and seek referrals through them as well.
Another way to grow is by adding to the portfolio of your services. See what your competitors provide and maybe start doing few things complimentary. To further increase your presence, you can also advertise in various women’s or home-related magazines. Being present at trade shows organized around home products always helps you generate business. It is then up to you to convert initial interested seekers into concrete clients.
A home improvement business is a place for the creative minds. Development in this field comes from your own hard work. One happy and satisfied client can help you add many. So, pay close attention to your existing projects and see them turn numbers for you.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Conflict is part of life. It is only when we as family members don’t have the skills to move through conflict that it becomes a problem. If you find yourself revisiting the same issues—“Why can’t you pick up after yourself?”, “Why can’t you help out more with the kids?”, or “Why can’t you two just get along for once?”—you may be living in a cantankerous home environment that has your whole family in the “deep end” of life.
Don't despair: there is a solution.
Easy-to-Use Activities for Conflict Resolution Skills Development
My book, When You’re About To Go Off The Deep End, Don’t Take Your Kids With You contains dozens of easy-to-use tips for developing conflict resolution skills in your children. Here are three of the most effective:
1. Establish Family Rules For Conflict – As a family, create a document that each of you can refer to during fights and arguments. Include things like: we are specific when we talk about our problems, we forgive one another, we are honest, we don’t yell or put another person down, etc. Create this document when things are going well in your household and commit to referring to it whenever a fight heats up. The more everyone is involved with creating the family rules for conflict, the more members of the family will tend to use it.
2. Use a "Mom’s Timeout" – Timeouts are often used as punishment when a child misbehaves (for example, putting them in a corner or on a stair for a certain amount of time). This technique meets with varied success. In my book, I spend four pages discussing a “Mom’s Timeout.” How this activity works is that mom (or dad) takes the timeout—disengaging from the conflict in order to return with a clear head, one of the key requirements to resolving conflict quickly. This strategy works all the time when used correctly. Why? Because, although a mom can’t control her child all the time, she can control herself.
3. Perform "Daring Do Overs" – We all make mistakes and say things that we wish we could take back. Instead of feeling guilty, use a “Daring Do Over.” This activity is like the rewind button for your mistake. It's your “take two” opportunity in which you can do it all over again—only this time, better. This strategy not only decreases conflict, but also helps all members of the family to practice behaving well so there is a much better chance that we all do it better next time.
Many of us cringe at the thought of conflict; however, it is an unavoidable part of life. Equip your children with the skills to handle conflict well by using the above activities for conflict resolution. Your family members will not just survive conflict: they will actually thrive as a result of it.
In developing success in life such as building a home business, one can learn greatly when developing in ones' great strengths. There are many great lessons that one can learn on how to focus on strengths to develop on success for home business.
A great lesson that one can learn is through focusing on the individual strength, it can enable such individuals to understand his strengths better. Through such understanding, with persistence and consistency in taking great action, individual can achieve great level of success
Secondly, the great lesson in focusing in ones strength is it can enable the individual to internalize and realize their great potential. For example, through developing such focus such as writing down ones strengths, it can enable individuals to create a clear plan and work on the plan to success. One can learn here that such plan can involves small but consistent action taking by such individuals. Through such great consistency, it can enable them to reach great level of success.
Thirdly, in building strengths in oneself, one can realize that he can experience disappointment and setbacks. Through such experiences, he can also realize that he might need to step out of his comfort zone and face many great learning opportunities such as criticisms and delayed gratifications to achieve success. Such learning opportunities can teach individuals to learn about patience and controlling emotions in dealing with the different challenges and situations.
Fourthly, in developing strengths, one can also learn to appreciate others feedback better. Through the continual learning and development of strengths, feedback from others is an important part of the process. Feedback from others enables the individual to take a step back, reflect, create the plan and act on it to develop on building and developing the business.
Fifthly, such understanding in ones strengths can develop individuals' mental strength as well. Once the individual understand his strengths better, he can develop great confidence and focus on continually improving himself.
In developing and focusing on strength, one can realize that it requires planning, consistency taking action to develop and improve on the strengths. It can also require the individual to step out of his comfort zone. Through such experience, one can learn that it is a continual learning journey and developing on strength in the home business can require such individuals to continually learn and improve. In such learning experience, one can learn that with a simple and clear plan to succeed, individuals can develop their strengths effectively and achieve great success in the business.