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Thankful Heart

Considering the skies, hearing sounds of the birds of the air and being greeted with nice cool morning breeze. Observing the plants, tiny, small and great, this is all wonderment of God; the most amazing thing is that he created all that for you. How mindful of him?

Many times we expend our energies in pursuing so many different things in life, work, careers, marriages, professions, sorting out family uproars and many more similar activities. At times these happenings may poise a huge toll on our lives especially if we don’t get any sense of approval or accomplishment.

Such activities are there for human beings and are part of us. On the other hand there are not there to last forever. Even in such stressful conditions God want us to enjoy life and have complete peace of mind.

If we can only allow him for 5 minutes to hear what he wants to tell you, forget your requests for a while and concentrate on his word and promises.  See goodness in the things he has created, thank him; see the possibility of him fulfilling your heart desires, perceive that you are a reason he created those things that exist.

He will definitely speak to you. Whatever you will hear from him follow and do it diligently, that will significantly change your life. Do not always push for your own agenda; seek to know his agenda for your life.

Overcoming any problem begins with a thankful heart. Those are words to a song I heard years ago. When I first heard them, I thought, “how could that be true?” I wasn’t convinced that the writer of the song knew what she was talking about so I began to check the words out against my problems. Sure enough, no matter what it was I was challenged with, I really did not begin overcoming the situation until I began to look at what I had to be thankful for in it.

Thankfulness adjusts our attitude. Does anyone out there need an attitude adjustment?  I remember my mother telling me at times to adjust my attitude. She would do so with her hands on her hips which meant I better adjust it quickly.

I Thessalonians 5:15 is our prescription for an attitude adjustment and just what God orders for His kids. It says, “Be joyful always; pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (NIV) God is too good to tell us to do something and not provide what we need to do it. Our job is to obey and He will supply. Our job is also to ask Him for what we need and admit we cannot do it without Him.

Sometimes overcoming begins with simply thanking God because He is good.            Psalms 107:1 says, “Give thanks to the Lord for he is good and  his love endures forever.” When we can’t think of anything to be thankful for, we can always start with thanking God for his love. No matter what we are going through, we can rest in the fact that we are loved by the creator of the universe. We may not always feel loved and actually be rejected by people, but nothing can separate us from God’s love for us. His love has comforted me on many a difficult day as I simply made the statement, “God I thank you that you are good and you love me.” Those words help me adjust my attitude and remind me of the truth. I have prayed this prayer to help renew my mind when it has battled looking at all I have lost in the death of my mother. No matter what my circumstances, He is good and He loves me.

Gratefulness is my quick access to the presence of God, especially on the difficult days. His presence is what comforts me, gives me hope, helps me and is my anchor. Some days I do better than others, but scripture says in Psalms 95:2 , “Come into his presence with thanksgiving…” (KJV) If you need more of His presence, try thanksgiving. It works for me.

I sometimes talk to God like this; “God, I need your help. Your word says to give thanks in all things so all I can think to thank you for is what I will learn in this situation. Thank you for the experience I will gain. Thank you for helping me through this.” God is faithful but often times we must wait on Him and trust Him.

I do not believe God just gives us patience but He will help us to be patient. As we grow in that character, we learn the benefit of trusting His timing. God doesn’t just  give us longsuffering, but He will help us endure difficult things if we look to him. I know this from personal experience as I have walked through the valley of the shadow of death. Anyone can quote a scripture or pass a written test, but character is developed in the soil of difficulties.

Colossians 3:17 states how we are to conduct our lives. “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”  Thanks is an expression of gratitude and gratefulness. Thankful is an adjective that means pleased or relieved. How thankful are you? Do you have an overall feeling of being pleased and relieved? I personally could do better at being thankful.

I know sometimes I have to simply pray, “God change my heart.” to develop an attitude of gratitude. According to this scripture, all our words,our job and actions should be done like we were doing it just for Jesus and with a beautiful attitude of thankfulness.

At the end of the day, all of us have plenty to be thankful for. James 1:17 says,

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”  All that we have that is good, is a gift from God. That is plenty to be thankful for. May God grant you grace today to see and perceive beyond circumstances and be thankful.

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Mindset Types

Mindset Part 2

In the previous chapter we did talk about mindset and that it’s a very important aspect of human being .Everyone in life has gone through some disheartening moments in their livelihood. Some are still experiencing some atrocious and despicable experiences. Perhaps that’s what the world cannot offer is total guarantee that things would be well for the whole of human life.

I’m just looking at the clip of thousands of homeless Nepal men, women and children on BBC News who have been displaced by one of the world’s most dreadful earthquake. The emotional impact has been devastating to the villagers who have lost not only their homes but also their beloved ones.

The first 7.8-magnitud earthquake struck the Nepalese village of chapagaun at launch time on 25th April 2015. The disaster killed more than 8000 people and left thousands injured and homeless. In the absence of permanent shelter, 200 villagers have established a temporally camp in a square, where they eat and sleep together.

One remarkable scene that stroked my mind was the remarks of one of the affected old woman she said “We eat and pass the time together, the earthquake has made the future very dark, but it’s nice to see the young children laughing and playing”.

There are many different situations that really put us in a very awkward situation that we are deviated to see the future very dark, no glimmer of hope. Opting for the right mindset will help us console our broken hearted. There is always a way we can look at the situation and decide how we can be able to respond to it.

Opting for the right mindset is not to overlook the obvious disaster that has befallen you but it is to be able to decide how you will be able to respond to that particular situation. It’s about having total control over both the internal factors and external factors that surround you. It’s about accepting and applying the appropriate action that is deemed fit to the required stand.

Like in many circles, there are factors within and outside that impact the approach and success of one’s life. The external environment consists of a variety of factors outside your life doors that you typically don’t have much control over.

In a story of the Nepalese woman above, she eluded on a weird aspect amidst the calamity, she mentioned that children were playing and laughing. It can be taken literary that they are kids they don’t know much about what’s happening but the most profound lesson we can get from that is that one is capable of deciding how to respond to any situation. Mindset can be conditioned to process and to act in a certain way. And yes, the mindset itself is not fixed. You can change your mindset just by thinking it through

Fixed Mindset

At this point it is worth noting about different types of mindsets and how they relate and affect our actions. There are two basic mindsets that shape our lives. A fixed mindset and Growth Mindset; in a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time documenting their intelligence .

People in a fixed mindset believe you either are or aren’t good at something, based on your inherent nature, because it’s just who you are.This sounds simple, but it’s surprisingly deep. The fixed mindset is the most common and the most harmful, so it’s worth understanding and considering how it’s affecting you.

For example: In a fixed mindset, you believe “She’s a natural born singer” or “I’m just no good at dancing.”

The fixed mindset believes trouble is devastating. If you believe, “You’re either naturally great or will never be great,” then when you have any trouble, your mind thinks, “See? You’ll never be great at this. Give up now.”

Growth Mindset

People in a growth mindset believe anyone can be good at anything, because your abilities are entirely due to your actions. In a growth mindset, you believe “Anyone can be good at anything. Skill comes only from practice.” The growth mindset believes trouble is just important feedback in the learning process.

Can you see how this subtle difference in mindset can change everything?

More examples:

FIXED MINDSET GROWTH MINDSET
You want to hide your flaws so you’re not judged or labeled a failure. Your flaws are just a TO-DO list of things to improve.
You stick with what you know to keep up your confidence. You keep up your confidence by always pushing into the unfamiliar, to make sure you’re always learning.
You look inside yourself to find your true passion and purpose, as if this is a hidden inherent thing. You commit to mastering valuable skills regardless of mood, knowing passion and purpose come from doing great work, which comes from expertise and experience.
Failures define you. Failures are temporary setbacks.
You believe if you’re romantically compatible with someone, you should share all of each others views, and everything should just come naturally. You believe a lasting relationship comes from effort and working through inevitable differences.
It’s all about the outcome. If you fail, you think all effort was wasted. It’s all about the process, so the outcome hardly matters.

Modern psychology knows about how belief systems about our own abilities and potential fuel our behavior and predict our success. Much of that understanding stems from the work of Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck, synthesized in her remarkably insightful-Mindset the new psychology of success.

In the next chapter we will look at other common references in order to understand how we can inquiry into the power of our beliefs, both conscious and unconscious, and how changing even the simplest of them can have profound impact on nearly every aspect of our lives.

The risks of cloud data loss prevention

Cloud data loss prevention offers many advantages to enterprises today, but it is not without challenges. Expert Rob Shapland discusses the issues to be aware of.

Data loss prevention is a hot topic in the enterprise. Although it has been around for a number years, many organizations are only now approaching the security program maturity level where they can consider implementing the technology successfully.

What’s even more advantageous for enterprises is the advent of numerous cloud-based data loss prevention (DLP) options. Not only does cloud-based DLP give organizations more opportunities to deploy the technology than ever before, but it also is critical for helping enterprises extend corporate DLP policies to the cloud.

However, enterprises must consider their cloud data loss prevention options closely to avoid deployment problems and even increasing the risks to their environments. That’s what we’ll discuss in this tip.

Top cloud data loss prevention issues facing enterprises today

Some DLP services offered today are completely cloud-based. In these offerings, companies pay a per-user subscription fee, and all data transmissions are monitored by the cloud provider. The main issue with this service is that sensitive data is therefore being handled in the cloud; many organizations are not willing to let their most sensitive data leave their networks.

While DLP is great in theory, in practice it is very difficult to implement successfully and an enterprise’s expectations of what it can do must be tempered.

In order to be effective, DLP must cover all outbound Internet traffic, on all devices — this includes even the files uploaded to Microsoft OneDrive, Google Drive, Box, Dropbox, and so on. Fortunately, many cloud-based DLP services offer scanning of all files that are uploaded to such file-sharing sites. The DLP service will normally have three responses if a user attempts to send or upload sensitive data: Send an alert to an administrator, encrypt the data before sending or prevent the data from being sent.

it is difficult to implement successfully, and an enterprise’s expectations of what it can do must be tempered. DLP is only as strong as the rules that are defined by the organization as well as the services that it can scan. For example, it’s not very useful to have a DLP service that scans corporate email and cloud services if users can simply remove data from the network on a USB stick.

One main problem with cloud-based DLP is the same issue that DLP has always had: How do you define rules that block content that should not be sent out of the network but also limit false positives? DLP needs to be transparent to business users and only step in when a user makes a mistake or intentionally attempts to send data out of the network.

Another major problem with cloud data loss prevention and DLP overall is that in many cases, it’s easy to bypass. For example, users are easily able to do all of these things in order to bypass DLP protections:

  • Send data in an encrypted zip file
  • Screenshot the data and put it into a Microsoft Word document
  • Use large file sizes that the DLP cannot scan
  • Change the font of the data to wingdings

While these scenarios assume that the user is actively trying to avoid the DLP rules, it is a valid assumption. A large proportion of attacks have at least some elements of insider involvement or alternatively, an outside attacker may have compromised a real staff member’s credentials in order to exfiltrate data. If the employee trying to bypass the DLP rules has knowledge of how the rules function, it becomes easy to design an email that bypasses them.

A final issue with DLP surrounds rules management. In the initial phase, rules need to be defined and tested. Responsibility for DLP management needs to be assigned to a staff member (or group of staff members) in order to constantly review the policies. The balance is ensuring that sensitive and confidential data is blocked from being sent or uploaded to the cloud without blocking legitimate business traffic. In many organizations this can be a difficult balance to achieve and requires constant evaluation of the rules, and will almost certainly lead to legitimate emails being blocked with the additional overhead that entails.

Overall, cloud data loss prevention — and indeed all DLP products — should be seen as one layer in a defense-in-depth strategy. The prevention part of the name suggests that DLP can thwart sensitive data from leaking out of your organization, but this is far from the truth. It should be considered an aid in this process, and the return on investment of such a product or service needs to be carefully judged against the benefit it brings.

How college kids helped divest $50 billion from fossil fuels

Fortune

This post is in partnership with Time. The article below was originally published at Time.com.

By Victor Luckerson

Environmentalists hope Monday will come to be viewed as an “economic tipping point” in the battle against climate change.

More than 700 investors pledged to divest their holdings from fossil fuel companies, just a day after an estimated 400,000 demonstrators marched through the streets of New York to demand that world leaders take action to stop climate change at a United Nations summit this week.

The divesting organization garnering all the headlines is the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, a respected charity that is run by the heirs of John D. Rockefeller, who built his fortune refining oil at Standard Oil Company. The Rockefeller Brothers Fund and about 50 other foundations have a combined $4.2 billion in assets total, which will no longer be invested in fossil fuel companies. Combined with individual investors and…

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Writing Skills

Grammar, Spelling and Punctuation

Correct grammar, punctuation and spelling are key in written communications.  The reader will form an opinion of you, the author, based on both the content and presentation, and errors are likely to lead them to form a negative impression.

If you are unconvinced about the importance of accurate writing, think of the clues we use to identify spam emails, “phishing” websites, and counterfeit products: poor grammar and spelling.  Similarly, some employers state publicly that any CV containing spelling or grammatical mistakes will be rejected immediately, whilst a BBC news article quotes research that calculates spelling mistakes cost online businesses “millions” in lost sales.

In addition, checking for poor writing and spelling mistakes should be seen as a courtesy to your readers since it can take them much longer to understand the messages in your writing if they have to think and re-read text to decipher these.

Therefore, all written communications should be re-read before sending to print, or hitting the send button in the case of emails, as it is likely that there will be errors.  Do not assume that spelling and grammar checkers will identify all mistakes as many incorrect words can indeed be spelt correctly (for example, when “their” is used instead of “there” or “principle” instead of “principal”) or entire words may be missing.  If at all possible, take a break before re-reading and checking your writing as you are more likely to notice problems when you read it fresh.

Even if you know spelling and grammar rules, you should still double check your work since our brains tend to work faster than our fingers can type and accidental typographical errors inevitably creep in.

Improving Your Writing Skills

A trick to checking your work and improving your writing skills is to read your work aloud.  Reading text forces you to slow down and you will pick up problems with the flow that your eye would otherwise skip over.

Another way to improve your writing skills is to read.  However, the best way to improve is to write.  Try writing practice pieces that you do not even need to show anyone else.  As your confidence as a writer grows, you may feel happy to show your writing to friends or others and, when you do, ask for their honest feedback and constructive criticism.  You might even find a friend or colleague willing to act as a writing mentor to work with you as your writing skills develop.

Find more at: http://www.skillsyouneed.com/writing-skills.html#ixzz2XOxcQ5EO