Archives for posts with tag: ecofren your say


This is so beautiful,  this photographer caught this special moment, what a privilege to see this.

Live simply, love generously, care deeply and speak kindly.
Grace is God reaching down
Faith is man reaching up!


self-depSelf-deprecation is a basic character flaw or personality defect, one of seven possible “chief features” adopted in adolescence to protect the self at the level of false personality.

Self-deprecation means belittling yourself, or running yourself down, in the eyes of others. It is a drive to make yourself small or even invisible.

Self-deprecation is defined as:

The disparagement of one’s own abilities; [1]

communication that expresses something negative about its originator; making negative statements regarding one’s own appearance or abilities, such as saying “I’m so fat” or “I’m such an idiot”; [2]

expressing disapproval or being critical of oneself. [3]

As with the opposite chief feature of arrogance, self-deprecation is a way of manipulating others’ perceptions of yourself in order to avoid taking a “hit” to your self-esteem.

In this case, however, the basic strategy is to “get in first”—to launch a preemptive attack on your own failings before anyone else can do so. While the arrogant person tries to deny their imperfections by feigning perfection, the self-deprecating person believes their own imperfection is absolute: I am simply not as good as other people.

Like all chief features, self-deprecation involves the following components:

  1. Early negative experiences
  2. Misconceptions about the nature of self, life or others
  3. A constant fear and sense of insecurity
  4. A maladaptive strategy to protect the self
  5. A persona to hide all of the above in adulthood

Early Negative Experiences

In the case of self-deprecation, the early negative experiences typically revolve around failing to live up to parents’ high expectations.

Perhaps the parents are perfectionists and expect the child to measure up to an impossible standard. Perhaps the parents are over-achievers and cannot accept having a child who isn’t similarly talented or driven. Either way, the child can never be up to scratch.


From such experiences of being constantly below standard, the child comes to perceive himself as something fundamentally flawed, basically inadequate.

Again and again, the child in this position learns that “who I am is not good enough.” The love, care and attention that he craves is unavailable, and the reason for this is—apparently—his own deficiency as a person. His constant sense of failure, and of being a constant disappointment to others, give rise to a fundamental sense of shame.


Who I am is not good enough. Nothing I can do will ever be good enough.

I should feel ashamed of myself just for being me.

Even before I try, I know I’m going to fail—so there’s no point in even trying.

At least I will always be right about one thing: my inadequacy.

I have nothing of value to offer anyone.


Based on the above  misconceptions and early negative experiences, the child becomes gripped by a specific kind of fear. In this case, the fear is of inadequacynever being good enough to please or satisfy others, never being good enough to deserve success or love or happiness.

The child feels like a gatecrasher in life, an uninvited guest, an interloper, and constantly fears being caught and exposed.

His attempts at living a normal life cause great internal conflict because he feels a normal life is not something he deserves, being below standard as a human being.


The growing individual becomes hyper-sensitive to the possibility of being exposed as inadequate, and sees the threat of this exposure everywhere.

His basic strategy for coping with this threat is to manipulate others’ perceptions in advance. Typically this involves:

  • avoiding others’ attention if possible: he will try to divert attention away from himself, keep the focus on other people or things;
  • managing others’ expectations: to lower others’ expectations, he will tend to apologise in advance for every forthcoming “failure” and deliberately act as inadequately as possible so that no-one expects anything else.

Remember, the individual with self-deprecation truly believes in their own inadequcy. They see little point in denying it. Their ploy, then, is one of damage limitation:

I cannot succeed in life, I cannot feel good about myself, I cannot get on with others. The best I can hope for is to limit the damage by hiding myself from view.

If I am belittled, I probably deserve it. But at least if I belittle myself first, I leave others with nothing to belittle me about.

As they enter adulthood, they come to rely on this strategy more and more.


Emerging into adulthood, the individual probably does not want go around being overtly afraid and insecure about their fundamental inadequacy. Hence the defensive strategy of self-deprecation puts on amask of invisibility. He will tend to make himself small, silent and invisible; he will tend to talk very quietly, cover his face, look downward. This mask or persona continually says to the world, “I am not here. Look the other way. Pay me no attention. And if you do happen to notice me, don’t expect anything special.”

Outwardly, he also pretends to be the most inadequate person in the world—so that anything he then manages to do just adequately or even better comes as a nice surprise to everyone and might even elicit praise.

He might even become so adept at deliberate self-deprecation that it develops into a personal style of humour, much enjoyed by other people. His obvious lack of arrogance will also be attractive to some. If he completely identifies with the sense of inadequacy, however, this could have a debilitating effect. Whenever he receives praise or appreciation, he will simply not believe it.

All people are capable of this kind of behaviour. When it dominates the personality, however, one is said to have a chief feature of self-deprecation.

Positive and Negative Poles

In the case of self-deprecation, the positive pole is termed HUMILITYand the negative pole is termed SELF-ABASEMENT.

+ humility +




– self-abasement –

Humility, or modesty, is a state of having little ego or pride, and therefore not trying to elevate yourself in the eyes of others. Ideally, this is a state in which you can appropriately recognise and accept your “ordinariness”. You feel free from ego concerns. We could all do with some humility.

Self-abasement, on the other hand, is a state of excessive, unwarranted humility. In other words, a state of self-inflicted humiliation and degredation. It is a state in which you are trapped in a vicious circle of self-criticism. Even if you come to understand that you have adopted self-deprecation as a false defensive measure, this is just further “proof” of your ultimate inadequacy.

Handling Self-Deprecation

People with self-deprecation may feel constantly ashamed of themselves for no good reason and are often apologising for themselves. Depression is a possible outcome.

As with every chief feature, the key is becoming conscious of how self-deprecation operates in yourself. If you have self-deprecation, you can begin by observing your outward social behaviour and persona in action:

  • Do I criticise or belittle myself to others?
  • Do I try to manipulate how others judge me by lowering their expectations? (e.g., “Knowing me, I’ll probably get it all wrong.”)
  • Do I sometimes exaggerate how incompetent I am in the hope that others will be pleasantly surprised by my results?

Try to catch yourself in the act of putting on your “I’m useless” mask.

Then dig deeper:

  • Why do I try to manipulate others’ perceptions and expectations?
  • Why do their judgements matter to me? What am I afraid of?
  • What do I fear would happen if others saw the reality of me?

Approaching the deepest level you may need outside help in the form of a counsellor, therapist or at least a close friend:

  • Where does this fear of being inadequate come from?
  • How was I hurt?
  • Can I let it go?

Insight in itself will not remove the self-deprecation. By the time you reached adulthood, the neural pathways underlying this defensive pattern were pretty well established in the brain. Nevertheless, the brain is plastic, malleable, reconfigurable. Just as you can become more aware of self-deprecation through self-observation and self-enquiry, so too you can gain more control over it through using that awareness and by exercising choice in the moment.

  • Whenever I am tempted to run myself down before I’ve even done anything, I will now be more willing to let my results speak for themselves.
  • Realistically, I now know that even if I am judged as less than adequate, that will not kill me. It need not even hurt me. I shall pay far less attention to others’ expectations and judgements.

Another way to handle a chief feature is to “slide” to the positive pole of its opposite. In the case of self-deprecation, if you are getting caught in the negative pole of self-abasement (self-inflicted humiliation and degradation), you can re-balance yourself using the positive pole of arrogance, namely pride. In other words,  pay attention to things that make you feel truly proud of yourself. Better still, do things that make you feel truly proud.





Danger of wearing pantyliner everyday

Shocking, shocking, shocking – wearing pantyliner everyday would lead to vagina bacteria infection! This is such a critical issue to me that I wished I could amplify my voice to the whole world and warn all the female counterparts. Not to scare everyone off, there are also mild cases like genital acne problem or yeast infection. But, that is disturbing enough.

I asked the doctor why would wearing pantyliner on a daily basis brings about these issues. Her explanations were simple to understand and I wish to pen them down so that I can remember them and let this be a warning to all of us.

Issues #1

Firstly, the adhesive strip at the bottom of the pantyliner is made of plastic. And, we all know that skin is unable to breath through plastic.

Now image this: You pass out normal genital discharge during the day, your discharge stays on the pantyliner, which would be sticked against your skin for as long as you are still wearing the pantyliner. We also know that bacteria grow much faster in wet and high-temperature area. Now, you see, the bacteria is growing on areas like your Labia Majora and Clitoris. This will highly likely cause gential acne and irritation.

Issue #2

Well, I was thinking, how about those pantyliners that say “super absorbent” or “breathable backsheet”? The doctor said those added attributes definitely require added chemical content. Well, and God knows how those chemical is treating our skin.

Issue #3

I sort of forgotten the real purpose of pantyliner until the doctor mention it again, and here is what I found on Wiktionary. A pad worn on the inner surface of women’s underwear … during a shoulder-day of the menstrual period, designed to absorb small, spotty quantities of menstrual fluid, in contrast to a tampon or sanitary napkin, worn on heavy-flow days.

Yes, if you got it right, pantyliners are meant for spotting days, and not to be worn on a daily affair.

One thing you can do for yourself

The type of panties that we wear would contribute to the problem too. It is strongly advisable to wear panties that is made of at least 95% cotton. Cotton is absorbent and creates less abrasion against the skin, thus, lower chance of developing genital irritation.

Girls, ladies, babes, we should take care of our own bodies, because we own them.

Stupid is As Stupid Does

By Doug Linman, Ph.D.

WE wake up everyday with a natural presence of mind. We get up, brush our teeth, shave, shower, dry off, dress ourselves and launch into our work, or family/home time, social or hobby time. It all seems to make such perfect sense that it is a wonder that anything could really go wrong. But it does, and some have said if there was only a book on how not to be stupid I would get it. There are so many subjects to discuss where the book helps, that I have collected a list of some first important ones as a quick reference guide, so you can remain the more intelligent looking one in the room.

Ok here goes:


Should you open the door for a woman? Yes you fool and stop asking this question.

Who pays for all the date meals? How about learning how to cook instead, you save money and its much more fun.

Should I date people I meet in a bar? If they ask you for more party time, the answer is NO! You should seek people that are ready to leave that environment and do simple things with you, like skating, hiking, movies, or walking, in truth a relationship this desires to start working on sincerely discovering each other, then go for it!

What should I find out about the people I am dating? Well, assuming you have not had sex with them and if you have made serious considerations then by all means find out what you can from friends, church, on-line, but DO NOT hunt past girl friends or guy friends to establish a group infested credible feeling. You have to figure this out for yourself by thinking through basic behaviors. If considering anything intimate, you MUST both visit a doctor and get an all clear test including drug usage. There is a 50% rise in STDs and many of these, like Herpes, do not go away, ever. So THINK about yourself first, before you do anything with anyone else that could permanently alter your life.

My boyfriend is terribly jealous but I really love him, do you think if we get married this will change? Dear Lost in Space NO! Dump him now, go live a better life and grow out of this.

My girl friend gossips about other people all the time. I have asked her to stop this because I think it is wrong. She simply feels the need to continue this and ignores me. How can I get her to stop this? Dear What were you thinking, You have no power over this childish behavior. As a gentleman, state your case, say you have tried but it remains a show stopper, break it off for good immediately –with NO going back—and go live a better life.

I am married with 3 children. Our last child was born 10 years ago. My wife is nearly 100lbs overweight and looks terrible and unhealthy. No other medical reasons just food addiction. I did, for several years, mention her weight which put me in a permanent and childish dog house, so I say nothing now and no longer seek her intimately. I do love her, but feel I am left in a very empty adult life except for my children who remain my precious kids. Our Children are 11, 13, and 15 and I do not wish to hurt my family or leave my wife until everyone is grown and out. I do feel that after 10 years of waiting with no change that I have had enough. Counseling made it worse between us since I was the one that initiated the need to go, and then the therapist turned out to be terrible and drove us to a more negative place.I am a healthy 6 foot 2, 197lbs guy, that bikes on the weekend and remains healthy. The kids and I do these things together as well. Dear Health Nut, your responsibility is to your family until they reach majority. The math shows you have 7 years to go if you are leaving because your wife is unwilling or unable to see that without immediate change you will be gone. Both Women and Men seem to forget that remaining healthy, attached, connected and attractive to your spouse is part of your marriage VOW responsibility. The question remains; what is driving your wife to such depression levels that food is her only out. This is the real issue and there is direct help for this, maybe doing this through your church might be less of a stress. Explore at bit more before you throw in the towel, but state clearly to her now in a very nice way or love letter, that if you did not love her you would not be seeking a joint solution to remain together.


I am 17 and have not been offered any jobs because I have rings and piercing and I do not think this is right! Dear Give me a break, stop your whining, grow up and figure this out very simply. Historically, regular jobs are seeking regular people to represent their companies and deal directly with their expected and attracted clientele. This fiduciary responsibility and demand is placed on companies by their investors, shareholders and industry. Period, end of sentence! So, where can a revolutionary fellow like yourself find a job? NOT in standard corporate America, but certainly you are needed, sought and required in specialty industries; like young clothing stores, video stores, mechanical, house building, etc..any place where the public dress code is not a required part of the job, as it is in regular business. By the way, in regular business; women should stop the perfuming levels and exposing way too much. It is not that much appreciated and it sets you up for backroom ridicule, not promotion. Men, no different with the please smell my body sprays! Your professional image, qualifications and consistent mature behavior is what levels the salary job markets between men and women, not the human resources labor category.

I am 20 years old and have no credible experience to form a Resume and little money to pay for a professional resume writer since they are very expensive. What can I do? Dear Oh Well; First of all, you need to list what you do know, what you are good at, what you may really desire right now to work at and just for this first phase. Do not over think this! You do not have to make a forever decision, just an I need a job now decision. Now, take your list with you as you travel about, visit a couple of local colleges and ask them to find an English major or writing, journalism, or media student to help you write your resume for a few dollars, or post your need in local Coffee shops, but NO phone numbers, just your email or something you can control. Also ask your church for help as well, they will probably have someone who is good and will help you for free.

I need to file Bankruptcy this month; will this affect me getting a job right now? Dear Down but NOT Out, If you are just filing now, the answer is NO. It will take at least 90 days before its official and in public records. So, stop over thinking this loss, get a job now and waste no more time about this. The sooner you start recovering the better off you will feel, which will rebuild your self confidence and allow you to consider, down the lane, what type of Credit fixing agency you need to help restore your credit rating, which will initially go down, but with a job in your pocket will return. Hopefully, you will get rid of all your CC debt and never allow this to overtake your life again. You can obtain CC negotiation support through the Bankruptcy Court and other great help, so use them; its the only free part. It will cost you at least $1500 to file with a BK attorney, the paperwork is extensive but if you download it (Chapter 7 or Chapter 11) and get most of it done/drafted for your lawyer, this would be good and will save you some money. Read and study on both types of Bankruptcy so you know the differences allowing you to ask informed questions. There are credit counseling requirements as well that you must meet, so follow your attorney’s guidance. Please remember one thing, this IS NOT the end of the world; it is actually a clean beginning! So do not get depressed over this, you will be OK, and with your new job and your past debt relieved, even better.


There is great speculation that our economy will jump back up this year and everything will start going back to good levels! Dear Mmm you are dreaming….I have heard this as well but only from people who remain uninformed or are living in denial. NO! This will not be the case all across America, we are clearly in a deep recession and things are not good and will get worse causing all sorts of adjustments in jobs, business operations, tax revenues, investments, security, international operations and other considerations. The incoming President faces the toughest call to duty since the 1930s. His next 4 years will be historic in our United States economic status and its recovery. I think everyone is feeling various pressures in this area and depending on what you do for a living you might be fine. One example is: cleaning services- this area alone has risen 230% over the last 90days because of foreclosures and the clean up necessary to get these homes/condos in shape for resale. So this group is doing very well and will continue to do so for at least the next 2 years before it levels off back to standard levels. There are more examples of some good areas, a few also in Day Trading with caution, fixing and repairing homes, infrastructure projects, solar panel installations, green technologies, Bio Tech and Health Services to name a few. The issue is available Cash and Credit for spending and thus stimulating the economy. This is where the weakness lies and will for sometime. Credit laws, as an example, are being re-written as this article comes out and will be completed within these next 18 months in 2009 going into early 2010 affecting the future of credit reporting, credit availability, interest and penalties, credit worthiness, and credit establishment. There are several regulatory matters that are already in play like this that we will not even hear about until the third quarter of 2009 but will start affecting us possibly sooner. Banking and lending institutions as well will have regulatory changes and new protections and submission requirements. International business is already changing its rules of engagement, there is talk of a new currency idea, and business contracts are advancing new protection language to assume assets. So the effects are not over and more are coming. The Court systems will be busy over these few years as consumers and regulators go in and out of understanding what is right and fair.

This one was interesting, but as a parent as well with over 30 years experience, I got it. We are talking about 2 year through 5 year old’s, so we have a common place to discuss. I would like to think there are no bad children, just bad parenting. Sorry, but most children are blank slates ready for input and most of that input — in audio and video forms– comes directly from the parents and their behavior. I have witnessed stroller year children getting yelled at by both Dads and Mothers for their child crying and yet neither of them would pick the child up and simply hold them and provide a soothing attentive voice! This area is certainly tough to discuss because I truly believe that parents hold all the cards at this age, a most delicate time of training, and many simply do not rise well to the occasion using all sort of strange excuses and means to provide no consistent training and education as a true teacher would their students.

Parents are the highest level of teacher to their early childhood family! This should be a great and spiritual time where the best of both parents is offered as a wonderful and positive gift for the child to learn and appreciate. Instead, discouragement and terrible barrier building is sometimes displayed that directly drive more poor behavior from the child. At 2 years old, its not the childs fault for being out of control—its yours! I know some moms are at their wits end especially the first couple of years after handling the most significant thing that happens to a female body and mind, giving life! Nothing can possibly compare or compete with this. Some women recover immediately, just naturally gifted, as new moms and fun to watch as they handle the crying and screaming with such ease, warmth, comfort, and almost expected spiritual simplicity. These are the ones to observe for they are rare and can certainly provide great insight for many mothers and fathers. While wonderful, we need to get back to the general less perfect parenting levels which are not as easy and especially arriving now from a whole generation that grew up mostly in Day Care facilities. Great Parenting skills that are positive, directed, consistent, absolute and always fair come from two sources.

The first being your own parents who did the job right and allowed you a natural ability that you will foster in your children. The second is study/education that you can reference and use everyday to quickly build your confidence and natural abilities. Do not make this education a life long project of reading 500 books on parenting or taking endless classes. You either get it quickly from possibly one well laid out book or class, or you are more than lost..but still redeemable… Do not get any book called All About Two Year Olds! The reason is simple, by the time you bring it home from the store it is of little value. Get the one book from Toddler to 7 years old for example and read it all several times, taking notes, NOT about the YEAR they are– but about the BEHAVIOR they are displaying. Children do not come with the same learning speed chip, so forget the year business and calmly observe what they are doing and how they are reacting to all the stimuli. It is their first time hearing and seeing everything just as it was for you! So always place yourself in their little shoes. They need consistent guidance, not loud, negative criticism. Hang out at all levels with your child so they and you get connected early at all these levels, and you will be able to understand what might be upsetting them before they cry or scream. This intuition can be trained and developed in you by simply playing at these levels with your children, which will buy you natural respect and observance from you child. Many times it is what you do not say that has the most impact. Children are wonderful, they change your life for the better if you allow yourself to grow up with them.

Douglas Linman, Ph.D.

Article Source:


By Patti A. Wood, MA, CSP

In the most important interviews of their careers Gary Condit sucked in his lips and stuck out his tongue, Bill Clinton touched his nose about every four minutes and Enron’s Ken Lay overacted and was over confident. In these public moments they gave us nonverbal cues that they were lying. They lost their credibility.

Maintaining credibility is an important part of customer service. You need to trust the people you do business with. Your customers need to trust you to be honest with them. If you feel that the car salesman is trying to sell you a lemon or the computer help desk is lying about the need to upgrade to their new software your confidence in their business is undermined. When you tell a customer that you can deliver in three months and swipe your tongue across your lips he picks up on a subconscious level that you may be lying and you lose the sale. When your front counter employee smiles and sarcastically says they are so sorry you are so upset, the words are meaningless. Can you spot a liar? And can you not be seen as a liar yourself.

Nonverbal Communication is the way the subconscious mind speaks. No matter how much you want to control it, it gives clues to how you are truly feeling. This makes it an ideal medium for detecting lies. Eyes, head, voice and hands leak out cues of withholding and deception or cues that can establish credibility. Body Language cues an undeniable although the underlying motivation and interpretation can vary.

There are up to 10,000 body language cues packed in every minute of interaction. When someone is not telling the truth, their nonverbal behavior speaks volumes. Body language cues are undeniable although the underlying motivation and the interpretation can vary. Therefore you need to base your interpretation on a number of factors called deception cues.


The Nine Months Pregnant Pause – Pauses

Liars have longer pauses, shorter answers and longer times between a question and a response than someone who is merely nervous. It makes sense that liars need time to create the lie, recalling the truth takes less time. If you ask a clerk if they gave you back the correct change and there is a long pause before their response it may be an indication of deceit. This is not a cue you would take in isolation as fact. You might combine it with checking to see where their eyes go after you ask them the question.

People tend to look up to the right to visualize or create a new response or down to the right to create the sounds of a new response. We recall information that occurred in the past by looking up to the left or down to the left. Spot a liar by listening for pauses and right eye movement. Be credible by answering spontaneously.

The Hands Have it – Excessive Gesturing and Adaptors

If you lie spontaneously in the moment you will tend to spend more time gesturing with your hands and using adapters, such as scratching your body or playing with a pen than someone who is just nervous.

If you ask Sara in Payroll, who serves you the internal customer, why your check is so late, and then she picks up the beanie baby from on her desk, begins to play with it as she says she has worked on this for hours and she has no idea. If this frog juggling seems excessive, and especially if it is combined with other cues of deception you have got her. Realize the rehearsed or practiced liar who has planned their deceit ahead of time will try to control gestures.

Mind Your Mouth – Mouth, Lips, and Tongue Cues

Be careful of pursing or licking your lips. Condit pursed his lips and sucked them inward more than 14 times in his famous 2002 television interview with Connie Chung. This can indicate extreme anxiety, withholding information and withholding aggression. Tight lips indicate you may be planning to keep the truth in. If you actually suck the lips part way in, you may be withholding anger. When you are nervous, your mouth becomes dry, and you lick your lips and swallow as you struggle to find the right words to say.

Be Still My Love — Lack of Animation

Deception is all about keeping something hidden. The more a person moves his body or expresses with his voice and the more he or she speaks, the more we can learn. Practiced liars know this and usually keep as still as possible. Being overly controlled can work against you. Gary Condit was coached to stay still in his television interview. So he kept his face inexpressive, his upper body stiff and his legs crossed. First, he looked frozen, and then when he couldn’t hold it any longer he leaked out aggression cues such as finger pointing grasping motions and sticking out his tongue. We spotted a liar. I have often seen a normally animated customer service rep get up to a product explanation and become a monotone automatron. The audience wonders what you are hiding and is bored to tears. Spot a liar by looking for someone who is too stiff and still. Don’t look like a liar by making sure you are naturally animated.

Hand Jive — Hiding Hands

The hands come out symbolically from the heart; hands and arms symbolically express the emotions of the heart. Liars tend to keep their hands hidden and still. They stick them in their pockets, clench them together or hold them behind their backs. Imagine that the person who you suspect of lying has the truth in the palms of their hands and see if they show it to you. It is not surprising that one of the first things we do to start a business interaction or close a deal with a customer is shake hands. My three years of academic research on handshakes show that the single most important factor in the handshake is palm to palm contact. Research also shows, when you’re the customer and don’t get it, you wonder what the person is hiding, you are uncomfortable for the rest of the interaction and you are less likely to purchase. When people are trying to hide their true feeling or the truth they may stick their hands in their pockets, clench them together, or hold the behind their backs. To spot liars — look to see if the hands are open and “above board.” Because people do hide their hands when they are nervous, if you see hidden hands ask yourself why they are nervous. Don’t look like a liar by using your hands normally as you speak or if that is not normal loosely at your sides. And try not to clasp your hands together. Body language is highly symbolic and it will look like you are hiding your own hands for comfort.

Windows to the Soul — Closed Curtains

We have what I call windows all over the body. Just as we pull down the shades when we don’t want others to see in, we also close off the entrances to our body so our true feelings aren’t seen. There are windows at the bottom of the feet, the kneecaps, the bottom of the torso, the middle of the chest, the neck, mouth and eyes and the top of the head. Liars tend to close entrances to hide the truth. A liar closes these windows by putting clothing over them, turning his body away from the person he is talking to, putting objects or furniture between himself and others and most simply folding his arms. When someone’s windows are closed we don’t feel as comfortable in an interaction. You’re asking a clerk an important question as her face is turned toward you but the rest of her body is turned toward the exit. Her windows are closed. She is saying, “I am pretending by looking at you that I want to talk but really I want to go home. I am not really interested in serving you.”

In the 90’s I consulted with the architect and owners of new “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” museums on the layout of the entrances and ticket counters of new locations. They planned raised platforms, high counter top ticket booths an average of ten steps from the door. This design was great for security but I shared with them why it would reduce spontaneous purchases.

People had to go too far to see the ticket person and most of his or her windows would be hidden. Customers would not feel safe and comfortable. To spot a liar look for barriers and closed windows. Don’t look like a liar and keep your windows open.

Why Can’t We Be Friends? — Withdrawn Behavior

If we are comfortable with ourselves and the person we are with, and the topic we are discussing, we will be open and friendly. Liars don’t usually feel very comfortable so they tend to hold back and be less friendly. It is easier for friends and intimates to lie successfully because they appear less withdrawn and friendlier. Perhaps they work harder at lying because the person knows them, perhaps they are more concerned about the consequences of detection or maybe they are better at it because they have experience lying to the person in the past. In any case they lie differently and as with career criminals, they can usually maintain a more relaxed overall demeanor and look the person straight in the eye.

Strangers need to work harder to keep others from seeing the truth. Consequently, they are more withdrawn and closed off from the person with whom they are conversing and usually don’t appear as friendly. You have heard for years that you need to be friendly with the customer. Now you know why.

Our ancestors went to the friendly tribes to trade. These days getting a front line service representative to love their jobs and enjoy dealing with the customers is incredibly difficult. Attitude problems and surly help seem be the norm. You can’t just tell the help to smile. Employees need to be comfortable with their tasks and knowledge. Ask yourself “am I giving enough time to training and what am I doing to make the workplace friendly? To spot a liar look for someone unfriendly. Don’t look like a liar by reaching out, being open and receptive.

I Want To Sell You A Car! — Excessive Confidence

Have you ever experienced a super smooth salesperson? He may have over enthusiastically praised the product and you felt uncomfortable about his pitch? Then you have deciphered a lie by noting that the person sounded too good or too confident. We look and listen for anything that doesn’t sound normal. Nonverbal communication, in this case paralanguage, which included things like voice, tone, volume, and speaking rate that sounds over confident or overacted is read at the subconscious level as out of the norm. Years ago a friend who was a very successful computer salesman came over to my office to do some selling for me over the phone. Instead of having a planned patter he hemmed and hawed and stumbled over his words. His mistakes surprised me. I thought he was just warming up. Five calls latter he was still sounding awkward. So I gathered up my courage and asked him about his behavior. He said, “Oh, when I first started as a salesman I was very awkward and very successful.”

People went out of their way to be nice to me on the phone. Sometimes they even finished my sales pitch for me! I noticed later when I became very confident (make that cocky and fake) that I was not as successful, in fact my prospects hung up on me! So I stayed very humble. I don’t worry about sounding smooth and perfect. Just being my bumbling self works for me. What my friend was experiencing is a nonverbal effect of deception. When nonverbal communication, in this case paralanguage, which includes things like voice tone, volume, speaking rate read at a subconscious level as false, our internal alarms go off. Spot a liar by going with your gut impression. Your instincts read fake at a hundred paces. Normal levels of confidence, however, also read as sincere. Don’t look like a liar by being your real self.

Don’t Cry For Me Argentina — Circumstances Not Matching Demeanor

One of the first things you look for when reading body language is the alignment of the circumstances to the demeanor of the person talking to you. For instance, in Connie Chung’s television interview with Congressman Gary Condit, we expected him to be emotionally upset and embarrassed, considering he was a politician suspected of having an affair with a young woman who had been missing for 115 days.

Instead, he began the interview calmly and proceeded to become indignant. This demeanor was not what we expected. The lack of appropriateness is a sign that the person is not being sincere. When I was driving back from New York a few days after September 11th gas station attendants continued to say with feigned brightness “Have a nice day.” They were on automatic pilot. I knew they didn’t even realize how they sounded. Oddly enough when I shared that I was coming back from New York near Ground Zero each and every person became real and in the moment. Spot a liar who uses a planned “It’s a great day. May I help you?” delivery. Don’t look like a liar by being in the moment.

Nothing Is Wrong! — Nonverbal Behavior Does Not Match Spoken Words

When the spoken words don’t agree with the nonverbal communication, we generally trust the nonverbal communication to tell us the truth. When a customer says nothing is wrong, while sitting with arms wrapped tightly around the body and a scowl on the face, we doubt her sincerity. If service rep says “yes, we can do that for you” while shaking his head “no,” we can be sure he is, at least, ambivalent about the answer. Spot a liar by watching for lack of synchronicity. The subconscious reveals the truth. If the service person says, “This is a great service contract,” while rubbing the eyes, it doesn’t; look right, the ears, it doesn’t sound right or the nose, it stinks. Look credible by having your body language match what you are saying.

A smile is the most common facial expression to mask emotions. It is often used to mask displeasure and anger. A real smile changes the entire face. The eyes light up. The forehead wrinkles, the eyebrows and cheek muscles rise, skin around the eyes and mouth crinkles and finally the mouth turns up. In a masking smile, nothing moves but the corners of the mouth and often they curve up rather than down.

Knowing these cues can help you decipher when someone else is being less than forthcoming. Sometimes people say: “It’s all in your mind.” Now you know “It’s all in your body.”

The World’s Worst Floods
The Deadliest Floods As Measured By Death Toll

Throughout history, floods have proven to be the deadliest natural disasters. This is mainly due to the high population densities around rivers. When well-behaved, rivers provide the resources needed for agriculture, transportation, and industry. It is no accident that all of the ancient civilizations rose around rivers.

It also should be noted that not all of the dead were the victims of the initial floodwaters. Disease and famine that followed the disasters probably killed more than the floodwaters themselves.

Flooding disasters primarily as a result of typhoons or hurricanes have been excluded from this list and are instead included on the list of worst hurricane disasters.

Huang He (Yellow) River, China
Death Toll: 1,000,000 to 3,700,000

The Huang He River is prone to flooding because of the broad expanse of plain that lies around it. One of the major reasons for the flooding is the high silt content that gives the river its yellow tint (and thus its name). The silt—which constitutes as much as 60% of its volume—builds up until the river actually is higher than the surrounding land. The tendency to flood is exacerbated by ice dams which block the river in Mongolia; the dams back up the water, and then release devastating walls of water when they break.

The history of flooding has prompted the Communist Chinese government to embark on a program of building dams for flood control. The dams, however, have not proven entirely effective and have been the target of criticism from environmentalists.

Huang He (Yellow) River, China
Death Toll: 900,000 to 2,000,000

Huang He (Yellow) River, China
Death Toll: 500,000 – 900,000

The 1938 flood of the Huang He was caused by Nationalist Chinese troops under Chiang Kai-Shek when they broke the levees in an attempt to turn back advancing Japanese troops. The strategy was partly successful. By 1940, the Japanese were essentially in a stalemate with Chinese forces.

Huang He (Yellow) River, China
Death Toll: 300,000

Chinese rebels destroy the dikes along the city of Kaifeng, flooding the surrounding countryside.

Ru River, Banqiao Dam, China
Death Toll: 230,000

This flood was caused by the collapse of the Banquia Dam, along with several others, following a heavy rain caused by a typhoon. It is the worst dam related collapse in history.

Yangtze River, China
Death Toll: 145,000

Although the Huang He has caused more deaths, the Yangtze has had more than 1,000 recorded floods.

The Netherlands and England
Death Toll: 100,000

A combination of high tides and storms flooded the Thames and the Netherlands, killing 100,000.

The Netherlands
Death Toll: 50,000

A seawall on the Zuider Zee failed, flooding the low-lying polder.

The Neva River, Russia
Death Toll: 10,000

An ice dam clogged the Neva, flooding nearby cities.

The Netherlands
Death Toll: 10,000

The failure of a seawall on the Zuider Zee flooded the Dutch lowlands.

Jane Wagner:
A sobering thought: what if, at this very moment, I am living up to my full potential?

Jane Wagner:
I personally think we developed language because of our deep inner need to complain.

Jane Wagner:
Our ability to delude ourselves may be an important survival tool.

Alice Walker:
Deliver me from writers who say the way they live doesn’t matter. I’m not sure a bad person can write a good book. If art doesn’t make us better, then what on Earth is it for.

Alice Walker:
No person is your friend who demands your silence, or denies your right to grow.

Lydonna Walker:
You need to ride the horse when it’s alive, not beat it when it’s dead.

Michelle Walker:
If you think you’re too small to make a difference, you’ve obviously never been in bed with a mosquito.

Barbara Walters:
Success can make you go one of two ways. It can make you a prima donna, or it can smooth the edges, take away the insecurities, let the nice things come out.

Carolyn Warner:
Years ago fairy tales all began with “Once upon a time…”, now we know they all begin with, “If I am elected…”

Christi Warner:
A friend is one who knows all about you and likes you anyway.

Martha Washington:
I’ve learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends on our dispositions and not on our circumstances.

Faye Wattleton:
The only safe ship in a storm is leadership.

June Wayne:
The arts are the rain forests of society. They produce the oxygen of freedom, and they are the early warning system when freedom is in danger.

Cathy Weatherford:
What you teach your own children is what you really believe in.

Mary Webb:
If you stop to be kind, you must swerve often from your path.

Barbara Weeks:
Happiness is being married to your best friend.

Simone Weil:
All sins are attempts to fill voids.

Simone Weil:
Imagination and fiction make up more than three quarters of our real life.

Simone Weil:
Those who are unhappy have no need for anything in this world but people capable of giving them their attention.

Simone Weil:
To be a hero or a heroine, one must give an order to oneself.

Anita Weiss:
I moved to New York City for my health. I’m paranoid and New York was the only place where my fears were justified.

Lina Wertmuller:
You should always carry a gun. Not to shoot yourself, but to know that you’re always making a choice.

Jessamyn West:
It is very easy to forgive others their mistakes; it takes more grit and gumption to forgive them for having witnessed your own.

Jessamyn West:
Memory is a magnet. It will pull to it and hold only material nature has designed it to attract.

Jessamyn West:
We want the facts to fit the preconceptions. When they don’t, it is easier to ignore the facts than to change the preconceptions.

Mae West:
I believe in censorship. I made a fortune out of it.

Mae West:
I feel like a million tonight ?but one at a time.

Mae West:
I generally avoid temptation, unless I can’t resist it.

Mae West:
I go for two kinds of men:the kind with muscles, and the kind without.

Mae West:
I wrote the story myself. It’s about a girl who lost her reputation and never missed it.

Mae West:
It is better to be looked over than overlooked.

Mae West:
It’s hard to be funny when you have to be clean.

Mae West:
It’s not the men in my life that count, it’s the life in my men.

Mae West:
Keep a diary, and someday it’ll keep you.

Mae West:
Loves conquers all things except poverty and toothache.

Mae West:
Say what you want about long dresses, but they cover a multitude of shins.

Mae West:
To err is human, but is feels divine.

Mae West:
Virtue has its own reward, but no box office.

Mae West:
When choosing between two evils, I always like to try the one I’ve never tried before.

Mae West:
When women go wrong, men go right after them.

Meredith West:
If you want to stand out, don’t be different, be outstanding.

Rebecca West:
Any authentic work of art must start an argument between the artist and his audience.

Rebecca West:
Before a war, military science seems a real science, like astronomy. After a war it seems more like astrology.

Rebecca West:
God forbid that any book should be banned. The practice is as indefensible as infanticide.

Rebecca West:
He is every other inch a gentleman.

Rebecca West:
People call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat or a prostitute.

Rebecca West:
There was a definite process by which one made people into friends, and it involved talking to them and listening to them for hours at a time.

Vivienne Westwood:
It is not possible for a man to be elegant without a touch of femininity.

Edith Wharton:
If only we’d stop trying to be happy we’d have a pretty good time.

Edith Wharton:
Life is the only real counselor; wisdom unfiltered through personal experience does not become a part of the moral tissue.

Edith Wharton:
There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or to be the mirror that reflects it.

Margaret Wheatley:
The things we fear most in organizations ?fluctuations, disturbances, imbalances ?are the primary sources of creativity.

Lynn White:
We live in an era when rapid change breeds fear, and fear too often congeals us into a rigidity which we mistake for stability.

Katharine Whitehorn:
A food is not necessarily essential just because your child hates it.

Katharine Whitehorn:
A good listener is not someone with nothing to say. A good listener is a good talker with a sore throat.

Katharine Whitehorn:
Have you ever taken something out of the clothes hamper because it had become, relatively, the cleanest thing?

Katharine Whitehorn:
No nice men are good at getting taxis.

Katharine Whitehorn:
The easiest way for your children to learn about money is for you not to have any.

Katharine Whitehorn:
Why do born-again people so often make you wish they’d never been born the first time?

Faith Whittlesey:
Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but she did it backwards and in high heels.

Anna Wickham:
It is well within the order of things that man should listen when his mate sings; but the true male never yet walked who liked to listen when his mate talked.

Suzan Wiener:
Often the best thing about not saying anything is that it can’t be repeated.

Colleen Wilcox:
Teaching is the greatest act of optimism.

Oprah Winfrey:
You can have it all. You just can’t have it all at one time.

Liz Winston:
I rely on my personality for birth control.

Liz Winston:
I think, therefore I’m single.

Liz Winston:
When mom found my diaphram, I told her it was a bathing cap for my cat.

Shelley Winters:
All marriages are happy. It’s trying to live together afterwards that causes all the problems.

Laurie Jo Wojcik:
Daughters go into analysis hating their fathers and come out hating their mothers. They never come out hating themselves.

Harriet Woods:
You can stand tall without standing on someone. You can be a victor without having victems.

Virginia Woolf:
Each has his past shut in him like the leaves of a book known to him by his heart, and his friends can only read the title.

Virginia Woolf:
Humor is the first of the gifts to perish in a foreign tongue.

Virginia Woolf:
I would venture to guess that Anon, who wrote so many poems without signing them, was often a woman.

Virginia Woolf:
If one could be friendly with women, what a pleasure ?the relationship so secret and private compared with relations with men.

Virginia Woolf:
If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people.

Virginia Woolf:
Literature is strewn with the wreckage of men who have minded beyond reason the opinions of others.

Virginia Woolf:
The first duty of a lecturer: to hand you after an hour’s discourse a nugget of pure truth to wrap up between the pages of your notebooks, and keep on the mantlepiece forever.

Virginia Woolf:
The older one grows, the more one likes indecency.

Virginia Woolf:
To enjoy freedom we have to control ourselves.

Beverly Wright:
Be sure to dip the biscuit while the gravy’s warm.

Kristi Wrightson:
You need to be fully committed to the habit you want to create.

Claudia Young:
If age imparted wisdom, there wouldn’t be any old fools.

… By Matt Groening (Creator of The Simpsons and Life in Hell)
Deep Thoughts about Gender Differences

SEX: Women prefer 30-40 minutes of foreplay. Men prefer 30-40 seconds of foreplay. Men consider driving back to her place as part of the foreplay.
MATURITY: Women mature much faster than men. Most 17-year old females can function as adults. Most 17-year old males are still trading baseball cards and giving each other wedgies after gym class. This is why high school romances rarely work out.
MAGAZINES: Men’s magazines often feature pictures of naked women.
Women’s magazines also feature pictures of naked women. This is because the female body is a beautiful work of art, while the male body is lumpy and hairy and should not be seen by the light of day. Men are turned on at the sight of a naked woman’s body. Most naked men elicit laughter from women.
HANDWRITING: To their credit, men do not decorate their penmanship.
They just chicken-scratch. Women use scented, colored stationary and they dot their “i’s” with circles and hearts. Women use ridiculously large loops in their “p’s” and “g’s”. It is a royal pain to read a note from a woman. Even when she’s dumping you, she’ll put a smiley face at the end of the note.
COMEDY: Let’s say a small group of men and women are in a room, watching television, and an episode of the Three Stooges comes on. Immediately, the men will get very excited; they will laugh uproariously, and even try to imitate the actions of Curly, man’s favorite Stooge. The women will roll their eyes and groan and wait it out.
BATHROOMS: A man has six items in his bathroom – a toothbrush, toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of Dial soap, and a towel from a Holiday Inn. The average number of items in the typical woman’s bathroom is 437. A man would not be able to identify most of these items.
CATS: Women love cats. Men say they love cats, but when women aren’t looking, men kick cats.
DRESSING UP: A woman will dress up to: go shopping, water the plants, empty the garbage, answer the phone, read a book, get the mail. A man will dress up for: weddings, funerals.
WEDDINGS: When reminiscing about weddings, women talk about “the ceremony.”
Men talk about “the bachelor party.”
SOCKS: Men wear sensible socks. They wear standard white sweat socks.
Women wear strange socks. Socks that are cut way below the ankles, that have pictures of clouds, that have a big fuzzy ball on the back.
NICKNAMES: If Gloria, Suzanne, Deborah and Michelle go out for lunch, they will call each other Gloria, Suzanne, Deborah and Michelle. But if Mike, Dave, Rob and Jack go out for a brewsky, they will affectionately refer to each other as Bullet-Head, Godzilla, Peanut-Head and Useless.
MENOPAUSE: When a woman reaches menopause, she goes through a variety of complicated emotional, psychological, and biological changes. The nature and degree of these changes varies with the individual. Menopause in a man provokes a uniform reaction – he buys aviator glasses, a snazzy French cap and leather driving gloves, and goes shopping for a Porsche.
THE TELEPHONE: Men see the telephone as a communication tool. They use the telephone to send short messages to other people. A woman can visit her girlfriend for two weeks, and upon returning home, she will call the same friend and they will talk for three hours.
RICHARD GERE: Women like Richard Gere because he is sexy in a dangerous way.
Men hate Richard Gere because he reminds them of that slick guy who works at the health club and dates only married women.
PLANTS: A woman asks a man to water her plants while she is on vacation. The man waters the plants. The woman comes home five or six days later to an apartment full of dead plants. No one knows why this happens.
CAMERAS: Men take photography very seriously