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Breaking Through the Glass Ceiling Free Online Event


Are you done feeling unfulfilled in your work? Do you know you deserve more than what you seem to be getting? Are you ready to be on purpose with unbelievable confidence? Perhaps you’ve already experienced life and career success, at least in the traditional sense … but it’s unfulfilling, or just plain exhausting.  Maybe you want the confidence to be able to hit the next level. Maybe you want to find deeper meaning, to do work that feels aligned with your purpose, gifts and passions.  But what is your divine purpose? How do you access your inner authority to gain certainty and direction? What does that even look and feel like in daily life?! If you feel like you have a glass ceiling standing...
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Turning a Crime into a Story


A few years ago, I attended a crime writers conference where one of the speakers told us true crime stories were less interesting than crime fiction. Although true crime stories hold a certain fascination for some – there will always be people who want to know all the gory details about who was having sex with whom and how that led to murder or whatever – the point the speaker was making was that, in the main, most real crime is committed for very banal reasons by fairly stupid people. A straight retelling of such stories generally does not make for a good reading experience. So, what’s a crime writer to do with all that true crime material the world delivers each day?  You select a crime an...
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A World of Ideas to Keep a Crime Writer Busy


Crime writers will not have to worry about a lack of source material for their story ideas any time soon. Now that the pandemic and the protests are slipping down in the news headlines, we’re seeing the normal run of everyday crimes getting some media attention again. Despite the lockdown, we still seem to be murdering each other and stealing other people’s stuff, while our political and corporate leaders continue playing their corrupt power games.  While most of us have been happily surfing the web to distract ourselves from or to follow the pandemic and protests, several state actors have been actively engaged in cybercrime, espionage, and the dissemination of false information across soci...
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Can we get life to resemble fiction?


In crime fiction, we tend to portray the police as the good guys. Our characters are dedicated investigators bringing perpetrators of serious crime to justice. After all, that’s what our readers expect to find in a murder mystery. They’re not looking for stories of police brutality. Unfortunately, what we’re seeing in real life is examples of the police as perpetrators of violent crime. We’re seeing videos of police officers murdering people on the streets of America. We’re seeing footage of heavily armed officers brutally attacking peaceful #blacklivesmatter protesters with batons, rubber bullets, and tear gas.  It’s tempting to see what’s going on as an American problem. It’s not. It happe...
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What Do You Think Is Happening?


There appears to be a lot going on in the world at the moment. I suspect that what we think is happening depends on who we are, where we are, and what we use as our information sources. I believe we can only come to a common understanding by listening to each other. There is no right or wrong answer since none of us has all the details. There is only a multiplicity of views which, when woven together, will create our common whole. So, this week, instead of telling you what I think is going on, I invite you to share what you think is going on in the comments below. Original link
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Resuming Control of Your Story


If you listen to the news media or spend your days scrolling through social media posts, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking the sky is falling. It’s not. If you’re finding the news depressing; turn it off. If you can’t trust what your friends and others are sharing on social media; do your own research or stop reading the fake news posts they share. If Trump’s tweeting and the media coverage his insane tweets attract are driving you to distraction; ignore him. In the greater scheme of things, Trump is irrelevant. He’s only a bit player in the story of your life – even if you live in the USA. Tino Renato | DTS Your life is about you and you are the author of your story, even if you’r...
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Be Responsible


Henry Be | Unsplash Being responsible is taking responsibility for your words, thoughts, and behaviours. It means no more blaming others for any aspect of your life. It means knowing you always have the power to choose how you will respond to any life event or any person’s behaviour. Original link
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Be Open


Henry Be | Unsplash Being open helps you to be peaceful as it allows for diversity. Being open-minded allows you to learn new things and enjoy new experiences. Being open-hearted allows you to be loving and compassionate. Being open allows things to flow through you and manifest in your world. Original link
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Be Present


Henry Be | Unsplash Being present is choosing to have your attention in the here and now. It’s what allows you to hear what the person in front of you is saying, and not just with the words being spoken.  Being present is the ultimate gift you can give to another. It’s how you say: I see you. I hear you. It’s also the ultimate gift you can give to yourself. Original link
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Be Mindful


Henry Be | Unsplash Being mindful is paying attention to what’s going on in your life as it’s happening. It’s about focusing on the task at hand and not time travelling down memory lane or into distant future scenarios. Being mindful enhances the enjoyment of living as it allows you to savour experiences instead of living through them while wishing you were somewhere else. Original link
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Be Grateful


Henry Be | Unsplash Being grateful is being able to say ‘thank you’ for whatever happens. Sometimes it’s not easy, especially when things don’t go the way you want, but every life circumstance holds something you can be grateful for. Better to look for that something than spend the rest of your days complaining. Being grateful is simply remembering life is a gift and saying ‘thank you’ every day. Original link
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Be Generous


Henry Be | Unsplash Being generous means you’re prepared to share your resources, knowledge, and skills for the benefit of others. In fact, you’re prepared to give them away with no expectation of getting anything in return.  Being generous is acting from the realisation we are in this project of life together and get a better outcome when we share and lend each other a helping hand. When you’re generous, you’re saying you think of the welfare of others. Original link
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Be Collaborative


Henry Be | Unsplash Being collaborative is how you signal you’re a team player, whether that team is a work team, a family, or a partnership. It’s about pitching in to help, lending a hand, or joining in a group effort to get something done.   We are social beings, and working together builds cohesion and a sense of belonging. Original link
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Be Considerate


Henry Be | Unsplash One sure way to upset people is to do something that affects them without consulting them first. If you’d like people to show you some respect, the solution is to respect their feelings first.  Being considerate means thinking about the impact your actions may have on others and communicating with them before you act.  If you’re in a personal or professional relationship, being considerate is how you show the significant others in your life they are important to you. Original link
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Be Compassionate


Henry Be | Unsplash Being compassionate allows you to appreciate a situation from another person’s point of view and consider their circumstances before acting. Compassion allows you to show genuine concern for others. Being compassionate is an expression of solidarity with others in your life. It’s an expression of your humanity. It’s a way of showing people your heart is open. Original link
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Be peaceful


Henry Be | Unsplash The easiest way to live in a peaceful world is to be a peaceful person.  Stop fighting with people simply because you disagree with them. Listen instead of shouting them down. You might learn something and make a new friend instead of creating an enemy.  Being peaceful means choosing to stay unruffled when others question or oppose your point of view or disagree with your decisions.  Everyone is entitled to their opinion. You don’t have to justify yours or demolish theirs. You can agree to disagree without starting world war three every time someone sees the world differently.  It takes courage and self-confidence to be peaceful but we all like being around a peaceful per...
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How to create a 3 month cash reserve


It’s never been a good strategy to live from payday to payday without savings. Yet, for a variety of reasons, a lot of us do just that. Some of us now have direct experience of what happens when our part of the economy shut downs overnight and we don’t have the cash reserves to tide us over until things open up again.  It’s been a bit of a rude shock for some. If you’re relying on unemployment payments, you’re no doubt grateful but also painfully aware they are not sufficient to meet your usual living costs. And, it appears many businesses are in the same situation, which is why they’ve been crying out for government support as well. The shutdown has revealed that too many businesses, big an...
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Books to read while social distancing


If you’re looking for something to read while staying at home, I’ve written a few books you might want to consider. Looking for some crime fiction? Check out my Inspector West and Stella Bruno Investigates series. How about a few ideas on Living Alone? Or maybe you want to brush up on a few skills while you have the time. Check out my Everyday Business Skills series. Thinking about writing a book? Take a look at Field Notes for Writers. Maybe you’re looking for something light and contemporary. The New Girlfriend might be just what you need. Perhaps you’ve reached that point where you need something a little more introspective, something a little more deep and meaningful. I’ve got a selectio...
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Make the most of this moment.


Welcome to the world of self-isolation – the place where we stay at home. If you can work from home, you’ve got something to get on with during working hours, but if you can’t, then you have some extra hours to fill. Even if you are still able to work, the range of after-hours activities available to all of us has been seriously curtailed. The pubs, bars and eating places are closed. The theatres are closed. They’ve cancelled the football and basketball. They are telling us to stay home. So, what are we going to do while we wait for the ‘all clear’ to resume our normal routines? Maresa Smith | DTS I’ve written a few articles over the years on the importance of pausing, taking time out to slo...
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Reading The East Park Syndicate


The East Park Syndicate, like any good murder mystery, starts with the discovery of a body. In this case, the body of the mayor of East Park – businessman and political insider – Doug Clarke.  The story is driven by several questions: Who killed Doug Clarke? Why was he killed? Will Inspector West and his team solve the mystery and arrest the killer? As you’d expect, I’ve also thrown in a few curveballs to make solving the crime just that little bit more of a challenge for Carl West and his team. No story exists in a vacuum. There are always social problems within a story’s context that will influence people’s behaviour, so it’s not surprising that a few of the social issues currently playing...
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