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Productivity 501

By Mark Shead

Review: Money Girl’s Smart Moves to Deal with Your Debt

Every Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal finance or other book of interest. Also available is a complete list of the hundreds of book reviews that have appeared on The Simple Dollar over the years. Whenever I stumble across a free opportunity to download a good electronic book, I usually do so.

How to Gain Respect and Make Professional Connections

No matter how talented or smart you are, if you can’t communicate effectively with others it will be difficult to get a job, retain clients, and have productive relationships. It's a delicate process. Communication can be a hectic two-way street with messages coming and going between sender and receiver.

A year ago on Unclutterer

2010 Unitasker Wednesday: Fit and FoldUnfortunately, like most tasks that seem difficult, there is an inventor ready to produce a plastic doodad who is also eager to take your money from you.

SMILA SOL Ceiling Fan

Materials: SMILA SOL Description: The Kids Bedroom of our house (built in 1954) originally had a ceiling fixture. At some point a previous owner replaced it with a ceiling fan, which didn't match the decor. I replaced it with plain white one from Home Depot, but was a little leery of the glass dome on the light kit and 2 rambunctious kids.

Is Talking Personal Finance Like Religious Evangelism?

Brent sent me a great email earlier this week: Have you ever noticed how a lot of the articles you write could easily appear on a religious website trying to convert nonbelievers? Just switch a few things around and you’d be there. Instead of telling people to read Your Money or Your Life, you’d tell them to read Mere Christianity or something.

Linkswitch #57, Typography Tips, Freelance Startup, Getting More Work

The Netsetter: Web Pages vs. Web Sites A couple of weeks ago, I was trying to explain to a friend why links from high PageRank sites are often overrated.

Reader Story: Sailing Away from the American Dream

This guest post from Michael Robertson is part of the “reader stories” feature at Get Rich Slowly. Some stories contain general advice; others are examples of how a GRS reader achieved financial success — or failure. These stories feature folks from all levels of financial maturity and with all sorts of incomes.

Manvotional: False Pride

George Lorimer, an editor at the Saturday Evening Post, published a series of fictional letters in that magazine in which a father, John Graham, imparts advice to his son, Pierrepont, throughout the different stages of the young man’s life.

Spice it Up! Klippan Sofa

Materials: RIT dye, salt, washing machine, Klippan sofa slipcover Description: When I moved into my Lower Greenville apartment in Dallas, I had a limited budget to outfit an entire apartment. So, of course, I went to every budget-lover's dream store, IKEA!

Changing Course

Condi writes in: Six months ago, I almost had my children taken away from me because I didn’t have enough money to pay any of the bills and keep food on the table for my children. It was the worst time of my life and since then, I’ve cleaned up my act. I’ve stopped drinking and smoking.

Tips For the Socially Reticent

Some people are known to be loners, reticent. If you are one of them, you avoid social encounters. You don’t make too many friends and like keeping to yourself. People, and encounters with them, make you uncomfortable. You find it difficult to have meaningful and positive interactions with others.

Sater 2.5 seat sofa to leather chair

Materials: Sater 2.5 seat sofa (leather), assorted hand tools Description: My roommate and I bought an IKEA Sater 2.5 seat sofa, and after about 6 months of normal use (never more than 2 people sitting on it, it snapped in half, folding like a hinge, with the frame resting on the floor.

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #7

Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well. 1.

Studs Terkel’s Working

A couple of weeks ago, I shared an instructional video from 1948 called You and Your Work. This film painted an ideal (and idealized) view of the workplace and the worker’s role in it. But we all know work isn’t really like that, right? Yes it’s important to work hard, and yes it’s important to maintain a positive attitude, but jobs and careers are complicated.

Fighting Clutter? Go Shelf By Shelf.

“Order is Heaven’s first law,” wrote Alexander Pope, and one thing that has surprised me about happiness is the significance of clutter to happiness. In the context of a happy life, a roomy coat closet or a neat kitchen counter seems trivial -- but somehow, it can have a disproportionate effect. For most people, and certainly for me, outer order contributes to inner calm.