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In real estate it is recommended that you have an accountability partner. I know several offices that hold you to your weekly goals such as door knocking, cold calls or weekly meetings. Some of these offices will even take cash donations and hold them until you achieve your weekly or monthly goals. If you don’t follow through, your money is donated to a foundation of their choice.
Accountability partners can apply to fitness as well. Everyone, regardless of their fitness level, needs an accountability partner. It is only human to make excuses, cut corners or just blatantly not show up. Recently I found myself in a rut. I was still going to the gym everyday but it was hard to do it alone. I had to think of workouts alone, do them alone and could not follow a baseline of how I was performing. I recently reached out to a good friend who was on my team. We were pretty close in all workouts we did but he trained in the afternoon and I trained in the early morning. I convinced him to start training in the morning because it would push us both to be better.
In the last few weeks, both of us have grown exponentially. We are able to brainstorm ideas about how we can perform better overall. We know each other’s weaknesses and make sure that we can schedule those into our sessions. Although it hurts our ego every day, it makes us better as a whole. I will never be perfect. But the more weaknesses I can make strengths, the stronger both mentally and physically will be.
I would challenge all of you to find an accountability partner to push you every day in life, including fitness. Find someone who can push you on your runs, biking or any fitness activity. Not only will you become a better athlete, you will be mentally stronger and be in better shape then you were before.
But just remember, just as in real estate when you have to put money aside to hold yourself accountable to your goals, you have to do the same in fitness. For example, my accountability partner and I will hold ourselves to 400 meter sprints or burpees as a penalty for not achieving our weekly goals. *Please remember that these goals are not large ones, they are small weekly steps. But knowing there is a penalty waiting if you if you don’t do the prescribed work, will push just a little bit harder.
A member of the Minnesota National Guard deployed overseas can’t stop worrying about a spouse juggling work and parenting responsibilities halfway across the world.
A Shakopee college student struggles to work full time while pursuing an undergraduate degree.
An Eagan couple joins more than 50 million workers who spend time each week caring for an aging relative while meeting the demands of a job.
For many Minnesotans, supporting a family is about more than providing an income. It’s about spending time with loved ones, cherishing good moments and caring for each other during difficult times.
For nearly 30 years, public-sector workers have been able to choose to accrue paid time off, or “comp time,” instead of cash wages for working overtime hours. As a result, state and local employees have more opportunities to spend time with their families and attend to their needs.
Unfortunately, the Fair Labor Standards Act denies many private-sector workers this fundamental choice. The 75-year-old law assumes everyone would choose more money in the bank over time with family.
No doubt some workers would seize an opportunity to earn a few extra dollars, perhaps to cover an unexpected home repair or purchase a student’s school supplies. But others might welcome the chance for additional paid time off to see a child hit a home run, visit with an elderly parent or be with a loved one about to deploy overseas.
Although comp time has been available in the public-sector since 1985, private-sector employers can be sued or fined by the federal government for extending the same benefit. That’s not fair to millions of hardworking Americans.
A West St. Paul dad shouldn’t miss his daughter’s soccer game because of outdated federal policy. An Apple Valley mom shouldn’t miss her son’s Little League ballgame because of a law written during the Great Depression. A Red Wing family shouldn’t have to confront unnecessary barriers in order to care for their grandmother. When it comes to overtime compensation, workers should decide what’s best for their families.
Legislation moving through Congress, known as the Working Families Flexibility Act of 2013, will help bring an antiquated law into the 21st century. The legislation would allow private-sector employers to offer employees working overtime hours a choice between comp time and cash wages.
Some mistakenly think this effort will lead to more intrusion by the federal government. I appreciate the perspective of Americans who critically view lawmakers through that lens; I share their skepticism. I also believe that hardworking Americans, not the government, make our country great. This common-sense legislation will reduce the role of the federal government in the nation’s workplaces, not increase it.
Under the proposal, the use of comp time would be voluntary for both workers and their employers. If a worker decides additional income is what’s most important, then that’s what he or she will receive. If an employer believes administering comp time would interfere with his or her business, then that is a decision Washington will not second-guess. The bill simply removes a barrier that prevents employers and workers from making these choices for themselves.
As chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, I am proud to help move this bill to the floor of the House of Representatives.
Minnesotans sacrifice a great deal to provide for their families. As a father of two and grandfather of four, I know well the challenges that come with juggling home and work. I understand the difficult choices hardworking American families make every day.
We can make life a little bit easier by removing barriers that deny workers the choice and flexibility they need to thrive at home and work.
As I tell my colleagues in Washington — it’s about time.
To learn more about the Working Families Flexibility Act of 2013 (H.R. 1406), visit edworkforce.house.gov/YourTime.
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In last week’s blog, I reintroduced to you Evernote, the app that helps you organize pretty much everything. One of the great additions the company has made to Evernote is the suite of complementary apps you can use with it. Today, we’re covering one of those apps to make your life a little easier.
Penultimate is a very easy-to-use handwriting app for the iPad. It combines the natural experience of pen and paper with the flexibility and syncing of Evernote. It’s perfect because sometimes you just need to physically write something down…or highlight it…or color it. The best part is you can leave the notebook and pen box at home.
The app allows you to use black or color ink on your choice of three different photorealistic paper styles, or import any image to create your own personalized paper. The inking technology used in the app produces pen strokes that look even better than real ones, and the automatic Wrist Protection mode prevents stray marks from appearing on a page for writers of all grips leaving only your words and pictures on the page. The whole interface has been designed to be simple and intuitive with no complicated settings so it really is easy to use. Check out this video to see all of the magical things Penultimate can help you create:
As you can see, whether you’re taking notes, sketching, or brainstorming, Penultimate gives you the tools to do it on your iPad. Once a project is completed, save it in one of your notebooks, separated by topic, project, or category. All of your work will automatically be synched to your database on Evernote so you always have access to it on multiple devices. You can even send your work to colleagues in PDF format for easy collaboration. And it’s searchable just like your other items in Evernote. Pretty cool since it’s all “handwritten.”
It’s easy to see how Penultimate will quickly become one of the core productivity apps on your iPad. So lose the paper and start writing today!
Week Ahead for the Committee: May 6-10
Committee to Hold Hearings on the Obama Administration’s Regulatory Record and Impact of the Health Insurance Tax on Small Businesses
WASHINGTON, DC – The House Small Business Committee, chaired by Rep. Sam Graves (R-MO), today announced the schedule for the week of May 6, 2013:
On Wednesday, May 8th, at 1:00 p.m., the House Small Business Committee will conduct a hearing titled Retrospective Review: Have Existing Regulatory Burdens on Small Businesses Been Reduced? The purpose of the hearing is to examine whether agencies’ efforts to review their existing regulations, as ordered by President Obama, are resulting in meaningful burden reductions on small businesses.
“I applaud the call for federal agencies to identify and review regulations that are ‘outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome.’ It is time that agencies undertake a serious evaluation of this order and review the effectiveness and economic impact of regulations and take actions to reduce burdens,” said Chairman Graves. “Our committee wants to make sure this is more than a feel good exercise and has meaningful results. I also call on the President to similarly evaluate new regulations. According to the Heritage Foundation, the cost of major federal regulations increased by $70 billion during the President’s first term. Small businesses would benefit from an improved overall regulatory environment and I look forward to having a thorough dialogue on these issues.”
On Thursday, May 9th, at 10:00 a.m., the Small Business Subcommittee on Health and Technology, under the chairmanship of Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY), will conduct a hearing titled The Health Insurance Fee: Impact on Small Businesses. A recent study by NFIB found that the health care law’s annual fee assessed on the health insurance policies that most small firms purchase is likely to be passed on to the purchasers of the insurance in the form of higher premiums. This hearing will seek to examine the economic impacts of the fee on small businesses.
“The annual fee assessed under the health care law is not only burdensome to small businesses, but the American economy as well,” said Subcommittee Chairman Collins. “According to the NFIB study, firms that sponsor health insurance policies for their employees may see premiums rise by two to three percent. Paying higher health insurance bills means less money for small business owners to invest in their company, expand and hire new employees. The study projects more than 200,000 fewer jobs as a result of the health insurance tax with the majority coming from the small business sector.”
Watch both hearings live HERE.
Wednesday, May 8, 2013, 1:00 p.m. EDT
2360 Rayburn House Office Building
Small Business Committee
Retrospective Review: Have Existing Regulatory Burdens on Small Businesses Been Reduced?
Thursday, May 9, 2013, 10:00 a.m. EDT
2360 Rayburn House Office Building
Small Business Subcommittee on Health and Technology
The Health Insurance Fee: Impact on Small Businesses
On Tuesday, May 7 at 10:00 a.m., the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce, chaired by Rep. John Kline (R-MN), will hold a hearing entitled, “Raising the Bar: Exploring State and Local Efforts to Improve Accountability.” The hearing will take place in room 2175 of the Rayburn House Office Building.
The challenges facing our nation’s elementary and secondary education system are clear: fewer than 40 percent of 4th graders are proficient in reading and math, and only about three-quarters of students graduate from high school. Many students who do graduate from high school lack the knowledge or skills they need to succeed. Instead of working with Congress to change the nation’s K-12 education law (known as No Child Left Behind), the Obama administration imposed a temporary waiver scheme that merely exchanges a few of the law’s most onerous mandates for new requirements dictated by the Department of Education.
As the committee renews its efforts to rewrite No Child Left Behind, a top priority will be granting states and school districts the flexibility necessary to develop their own accountability plans that provide parents more accurate and meaningful information about school performance.
Tuesday’s hearing will offer members an opportunity to examine the appropriate federal role in accountability and explore innovative state and local efforts to hold schools accountable for student performance. To learn more about this hearing, visit www.edworkforce.house.gov/hearings.
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Oprah, Bill Clinton, Steve Jobs and Madonna. What do all these people have in common? Great charisma. They’re very likeable people; others feel good around them and are greatly influenced by their presence. Most people would say that the charisma they possess could have never been taught. It’s just something they were born with, something only some people are lucky enough to have. Well, the book I’m currently reading may beg to differ.
Charisma, as stated in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, is “a special magnetic charm or appeal. A personal magic of leadership arousing special popular loyalty or enthusiasm for a public figure.” It’s that quality in a person that helps them lead successful organizations, improve relationships, work a room to their advantage and make an impression in any scenario they might face.
True, it may come naturally to some more than others, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn how to become more influential and persuasive by following a few guidelines. The Charisma Myth, by Olivia Fox Cabane, gives everyone the tools to create their own charismatic style. The book outlines what Cabane believes to be the main components of charisma; presence, power, and warmth. Then, it offers methods on developing these characteristics, overcoming obstacles in uncomfortable situations, and provides exercises to put these into practice. The book really shows how anyone can develop this characteristic no matter what situation you might find yourself in.
I’m in the process of re-reading The Charisma Myth with my Saturday morning leadership book club. The group includes some friendly faces you might recognize such as David Bergman, Doug Tobin, Gil Troutman, Andy Tse, Jimmy Oyenuga, and Jurgen Weller. Over the next few weeks, as the group and I discuss the book, I’ll be giving you a glimpse into each of the chapters so you too can be given the tools to master the art of personal magnetism.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator John Thune (R-SD), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, released the following statement after President Obama formally announced the nomination of Penny Pritzker to be the next Commerce Secretary:
“I look forward to learning more about Ms. Pritzker’s background and meeting with her as the confirmation process moves through the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee. Americans continue to suffer from weak economic growth and persistent, high unemployment, and I am anx...
Part-timers to lose pay amid health act's new math
Many part-timers are facing a double whammy from President Obama's Affordable Care Act.
The law requires large employers offering health insurance to include part-time employees working 30 hours a week or more. But rather than provide healthcare to more workers, a growing number of employers are cutting back employee hours instead.
The result: Not only will these workers earn less money, but they'll also miss out on health insurance at work.
Consider the city of Long Beach. It is limiting most of its 1,600 part-time employees to fewer than 27 hours a week, on average. City officials say that without cutting payroll hours, new health benefits would cost up to $2 million more next year, and that extra expense would trigger layoffs and cutbacks in city services.
Part-timer Tara Sievers, 43, understands why, but she still thinks it's wrong.
"I understand there are costs to healthcare reform, but it is surely not the intent of the law for employees to lose hours," said the outreach coordinator at the El Dorado Nature Center in Long Beach. "It's ridiculous the city is skirting the law."
Across the nation, hundreds of thousands of other hourly workers may also see smaller paychecks in the coming year because of this response to the federal healthcare law. The law exempts businesses with fewer than 50 full-time workers from this requirement to provide benefits.
But big restaurant chains, retailers and movie theaters are starting to trim employee hours. Even colleges are reducing courses for part-time professors to keep their hours down and avoid paying for their health premiums.
Overall, an estimated 2.3 million workers nationwide, including 240,000 in California, are at risk of losing hours as employers adjust to the new math of workplace benefits, according to research by UC Berkeley. All this comes at a time when part-timers are being hired in greater numbers as U.S. employers look to keep payrolls lean.To read more, click here.
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On April 1, 2013, USTR invited written public comment on the proposed TTIP.
The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) requests public written and oral comments concerning the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Agreement (TTIP). Submission d
On April 30, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued proposed regulations on the health insurance premium tax credit, providing guidance on determining whether healthcare coverage under an eligible employer-sponsored plan provides minimum value.
On April 30, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued proposed regulations on the health insurance premium tax credit, providing guidance on determining whether healthcare coverage under an eligib
On April 24, 2013, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) released an Interim Final Rule (IFR) amending the methodology for calculating the prevailing wages to be paid to H-2B workers and U.S. workers recruited under this visa program.
On April 24, 2013, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) released an Interim Final Rule (IFR) amending the methodology for calculating the prevailing wages to
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